October 10, 2023
From Popular Resistance

In the early hours of Monday morning, Palestine Action struck four offices home to iO Associates, the sole recruiters for Israeli arms manufacturer Elbit Systems. Offices in Manchester, Bristol, London, and Reading were sprayed with red paint from fire extinguishers, to symbolise the blood of the Palestinians that Israel continues to spill. This action follows two occasions in which activists stormed the new Manchester offices [1], the first time confronting iO’s Director Ross Markall, who assaulted the protestors unprovoked. Shortly after this, iO Associates removed all of Elbit’s job offers from their website, however they have since been put back up [2].

This action, and Palestine Action’s 3-year campaign targeting Elbit Systems and their affiliates, is part of an international movement to end the colonisation of Palestine. The ethnic cleansing of Palestinians has been underway since at least 1948, a year when Zionist militia forcibly expelled over 750,000 indigenous Palestinians from their homes, destroyed over 500 villages and massacred many families [3]. Since then, the ethnic cleansing never stopped and the Zionist regime formed into apartheid rule and military occupation. Over 2 million Palestinians in Gaza have been under a brutal land, air and sea blockade for 15 years. Despite the majority of the Gazan population being children and refugees, Israeli bombardments have continued to destroy hospitals, schools, homes and civil infrastructure. Currently, Israel is using internationally-banned white phosphorus in its assaults on the Strip [4].

This process relies on the facilitation by international actors, not least of all weapons companies supplying the apartheid regime. iO Associates are the sole recruiters for Elbit Systems UK, the UK arm of Israel’s largest weapons manufacturer. Elbit Systems have openly been using military bombardments on Gaza as a means to develop their weaponry, which they market as having been “battle-tested”. They supply 85% of Israel’s military drone fleet and land based equipment, as well as bullets, tear gas and internationally banned weapons [5]. Not only are they the majority provider of weaponry for the Israeli military, they work alongside the occupying force, with Elbit staff themselves supporting and conducting attacks against the indigenous population of Palestine.

On 7th October, the world bore witness to the most significant Palestinian resistance operation since the Second Intifada, with operation ‘Al-Aqsa Flood’ seeing a massive deployment of resistance fighters who have taken occupation settlements in the Gaza envelope. Gazans have demolished the Israeli ‘security’ border which, for almost two decades, has kept over 2 million Gazans captive in the world’s largest open air prison. Intensifying their usual bombardments of Gaza and killings of Palestinians, the Israeli military continues to use air strikes to target hospitals, UN schools which are used as shelter, and residential tower blocks. In the past two days, Israel has massacred at least 400 Palestinians.


[1] https://www.palestineaction.org/io-associates/
[2] https://www.palestineaction.org/job-vacancies-down/
[3] https://www.aljazeera.com/features/2017/5/23/the-nakba-did-not-start-or-end-in-1948
[4] https://new.thecradle.co/articles/operation-al-aqsa-flood-rages-on-as-israeli-jets-pound-gaza}[5] https://corporatewatch.org/elbit-systems-company-profile/

Source: Popularresistance.org