The Fascist March and the Celebration of Occupation and Oppression of the People of Palestine

Media Briefs
June 07, 2022
Marking 55 Years of Israel’s Occupation: The Fascist March and the Celebration of Occupation and Oppression of the People of Palestine

Incitement and violence remain a feature of the Israeli government's policy against the land and people of Palestine, particularly in occupied Jerusalem. One recent example of such organized demonstrations against a defenseless civilian population under foreign colonial occupation was the so-called "flags march", a state-sponsored march of fascist characteristics organized by radical Zionist settlers in celebration of Israel's illegal occupation and annexation of Jerusalem.  

The fascist march follows a historic pattern: thousands of radical Zionists invade large parts of Jerusalem’s Old City forcing merchants to close their shops and locking thousands of families inside their homes. The use of hateful incitement such as "death to the Arabs", "may your village burn", and calls for a "second Nakba" have become traditional parts of it.  

This report highlights all recent Israeli attacks against Palestinians in occupied Jerusalem, during the holy month of Ramadan, Easter, and the funeral of veteran Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.


The following are some events that occurred in occupied Jerusalem on 29 May 2022 that paint a fascist image of Israeli settlers[1]:

  • 81 Palestinians were injured in and around the Old City (28 of them were hospitalized).
  • The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) prevented medical teams from treating the injured by beating or arresting them. Three Red Cross paramedics were beaten by the IOF. A fourth paramedic was arrested and later released.
  • Over 50 Palestinians were detained, including children and women.
  • A total of 21 journalists were attacked by the IOF or settlers.
  • Israeli settlers also harassed several other journalists, including with vile chants against the assassinated Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.  
  • In further violation of the historic status quo at this Holy Place: a record number of 1656 Zionist radicals raided the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound, protected by Israeli the IOF, who conducted prayers and raised Israeli flags. 
  • Over 1100 shops in the Old City were forced to close. An additional 664 shops outside the Old City were also forced to close, including Musrara, Sultan Suleiman Street, Salad Eddin Street, Al-Zahra Street, and Al-Rashid Street. 


Attacking the Funeral of Palestinian Journalist Shireen Abu Akleh

In Jerusalem, the brutality of Israeli occupation forces is well-known. The Israeli government is also known to enjoy impunity, even in blatant cases of extrajudicial executions such as that of Iyad Hallaq, an autistic Palestinian. Israel, despite its systematic violations of human rights, enjoys privileged relations with the European Union and the United States. There is no doubt that the Israeli government supports everything its occupation forces do, including the savage attacks on Shireen Abu Akleh's funeral. 

Following the killing of Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh by an Israeli soldier, the Israeli occupation created many obstacles to prevent the funeral of one of the most well-known Palestinian journalists from being held normally. They involved raiding the family home, interrogating family members, taking violent action against those raising the Palestinian flag, and ultimately attacking the procession itself, as seen in the shocking images of mourners being beaten up by the IOF. Mourners were also restricted from accessing the nearby Greek Catholic (Melkite) Church as well as the Cemetery due to several movement restrictions. The IOF also broke the window of Shireen Abu Akleh's funeral car in order to remove the Palestinian flag. Other attacks against mourners left 33 people injured and 15 people arrested. In attacking the funeral, the Israeli occupation police violated protected areas such as the Catholic Saint Joseph Hospital, protected by the Geneva Conventions, as well as the right to worship. 

None of the Israeli officers responsible have been held accountable. 


Desecrating Ramadan

Muslim, Christian, and Jewish religious celebrations coincided this year. Many aspects of the celebrations in Jerusalem were severely affected by the reality of the occupation.

With the protection of the Israeli Government, Zionist extremist campaigns aimed at changing the status quo of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound continued. During the Holy Month of Ramadan, at least 4500 Israeli Jews participated in the provocative raids into the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound. On at least several occasions, this involved the IOF expelling Muslim worshippers from the Mosque, including by hurling tear gas canisters that destroyed at least 50 centuries old windows2.

The IOF attacks upon Palestinian worshippers resulted in at least 200 injuries, including 40 hospitalized and eight in critical condition. Of those injured, at least 50 were under 18 years of age3. A total of 650 people were arrested, including 14 children under the age of 14 and 75 between the ages of 14 and 18.


Easter: Struggling to Reach the Holy Sepulcher

The Israeli occupation also disrupted Easter celebrations, either by limiting the number of military permits issued to allow Palestinians from elsewhere in the occupied West Bank, including Bethlehem and Ramallah, to take part or by imposing movement restrictions around holy sites. During the celebration of Palm Sunday on 10 April, the IOF blocked the traditional scouts’ procession for around 45 minutes. Also on 23 April, the IOF disrupted the celebration of Holy Fire Saturday by assaulting several Palestinian worshippers.


Beyond Impunity: Racism and Brutality as a Cheered Policy of Israel’s Occupation Forces

The events described above are all manifestations of the Israeli occupation, violence, oppression, and attempts to perpetuate the denial of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. They represent official policies that allow the occupation forces free rein in the conduct of brutal operations, to the extent of assaulting a funeral, to further bolster Israel's colonial-settlement occupation and Apartheid.

Clearly, such actions enjoy broad mainstream support in Israel. The fascist march (“flags march”) was authorized by Minister Omer Barlev from the Labor Party, who enjoys privileged relationships with several European social-democratic as part of the network of the Progressive Alliance. He said that the decision to approve the fascist march was the “right and inevitable decision.” He is the same Minister that backed the action of the IOF during the funeral of Shireen Abu Akleh, while spreading lies that the intentions were “to properly conduct the funeral in coordination with her family”.  

Israel’s Foreign Minister Yair Lapid also backed the actions of the IOF during the fascist march. FM Lapid is regarded as a "moderate", and was recently praised by the EU Parliament Speaker, Roberta Metsola, who stressed after a meeting with him that the "strength" of their relationship is built on their “openness, history & common values.” FM Lapid stressed his "pride" and applauded the IOF for participating in the fascist march, the same forces that brutally attacked Palestinians and failed to arrest a single extremist Zionist. FM Lapid went so far as to congratulate the occupation police force for their “professionalism."  

PM Bennet also congratulated the IOF, thanked the extremists who participated in the march, and concluded, “the people of Israel are alive.”

The fact that there has been little international condemnation and virtually no attempts to hold Israel accountable means that Israeli violations of international law and attempts to obstruct the Palestinian people from exercising their rights are likely to continue. And occupied Jerusalem remains a testament to Israel's vicious attempts to impose Jewish supremacy over all of historic Palestine, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.


[1] Sources: Palestinian Journalists Syndicate, Jerusalem Islamic Waqf, Palestinian Prisoners Club, Jerusalem Merchants Committee.

2 The Jerusalem Islamic Waqf

3 Jerusalem Governorate


Back to top