400,000 Marched In Washington DC Against Biden’s Complicity In Genocide

Hundreds of thousands marched in Washington, DC. They demand an immediate ceasefire and protest Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza.

On January 13, a crowd of 400,000 gathered in Washington, DC’s Freedom Plaza to take the Palestine solidarity movement straight to Biden’s doorstep. Hundreds of thousands then marched, holding Palestinian, Yemeni, South African, and Puerto Rican flags, through DC and straight to the gates of the White House.

The mobilization was organized by the American Muslim Task Force on Palestine, which includes American Muslims for Palestine, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Islamic Circle of North America, Muslim American Society, Muslim Student Association-National, Muslim Legal Fund of America, Muslim Ummah of North America, and Young Muslims, and the ANSWER Coalition.

Frustrated with Biden’s support and bankrolling of Israel’s genocide in Gaza, protesters surrounded the President’s residence and chanted “Hands off Yemen!” and “Yemen, Yemen, make us proud, turn this invasion around!” in reference to the US-UK bombing campaign against Yemen in response to the country’s blockade of Israel-bound ships. Protesters also left bloody baby dolls at the gates of the White House to condemn the genocide in Gaza and the over 10,000 children that have been killed to date. As the crowd demonstrated, several snipers were seen on the roof of the White House.

The hundreds of thousands who showed up in DC were joined by millions across the world who participated in a global day of action in solidarity with Palestine to mark nearly 100 days of Israel’s genocide in Gaza. Rallies, strikes, and mass mobilizations were held in major cities of South Africa, Japan, Turkey, the UK, South Korea, Indonesia, Ireland, New Zealand, Ivory Coast, Sweden, Italy, Germany, Austria, Australia, Finland, as well as throughout the United States. Thousands shut down the Port of Oakland in California at 5 am on Saturday morning.

Before marching, the crowd of hundreds of thousands in Freedom Plaza heard from a diverse array of speakers from the US Muslim community and anti-imperialist organizations. “So long as the genocide in Gaza is being funded by this administration,” said Ismahan Abdullahi of the Muslim American Society, “we will not relent in our efforts to demand justice and the liberation of the Palestinian people.”

“Just as South Africa courageously rose to rightfully charge Israel with genocide, we the people of the United States of America will rise and continue these efforts,” she continued.

“You Genocide Joe, you Blinken the butcher, and your Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin. You will be haunted by the screams of the children in Gaza,” said Taher Herzallah of American Muslims for Palestine, who, like many other speakers, placed the blame for the ongoing Gaza genocide directly onto the United States government. “You will be haunted by the prayers, the agonizing prayers of the elderly and the women of Gaza. And we, this new generation, will be the answer to their prayers.”

2024 is an election year, and Biden, who is running for reelection, has been hounded by Pro-Palestine demonstrators at several campaign events already. Mainstream media outlets openly worry about Biden’s chances in 2024, with the aging President losing key demographics of Democratic Party support such as young people and Arab-Americans.

“Instead of focusing on the American people, our tax money is being used to spread hatred, to spread warfare, to support criminal activity, frankly speaking, to support a genocide,” Mohamed Sabri, who traveled from Chicago to attend the march in DC, told Peoples Dispatch about why he will not be voting for Biden.

As a result of Biden’s unpopularity, third party candidates running for president in 2024 have gained new prominence. Both Jill Stein and Cornel West, running platforms to the left of the ruling Democratic Party, spoke at the March for Gaza.

Peoples Dispatch spoke to presidential and vice presidential candidates Claudia De La Cruz and Karina Garcia, who were on the ground, marching among the crowd of hundreds of thousands, and are running jointly on an explicitly socialist platform. “We know it’s significantly important for any presidential candidate running for the 2024 election to prioritize the freedom, liberation of Palestine. Anyone who does not do that is standing in support of genocide,” said De La Cruz, the presidential candidate for the Party for Socialism and Liberation.

“Democratic politicians, they like to pay a lot of lip service during the year, especially around domestic issues, and they never want to talk about imperialism, which is at the center, it’s the core of all of the problems faced by the entire world,” added Garcia.

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