Israelis Take Tent Protest to the White House

A group of Israelis living in New York pitches up outside the White House in Washington, in a show of solidarity with the social protests currently sweeping Israel.

A group of Israeli artists has organized their own tent protest outside the White House in Washington, in a show of solidarity with the social protests that have swept Israel in recent weeks.

The protesters traveled from New York to pitch up their tent, joining the groups of protesters that regularly congregate around the White House in Washington to express their political views.

Israel tent protest outside the white house - August 4 2011

“We are a band called ‘Punk Hapoalim,’ we came to Washington to set up the first tent protest outside the White House,” one of the protesters, Yaron Atar, said.

“As we found out that it is illegal to pitch the tent, we decided to walk with our tent held up in the air. We started the march around the White House carrying a sign that says 'the people demand social justice' in Hebrew, as this is the symbol of the protest in Israel. In this way we are showing our solidarity with the protest and struggle in Israel, and bringing them to the attention of the American public,” he added.

The protesters also carried a sign in English that says “stop the machine,” the slogan and name of the U.S. movement which is planning a similar tent protest outside the White House on October 6.

“On the way here we dragged an entire bus into a discussion on the protests,” adds Ariel Shalem De Lion from New York.

“They saw the sign in English, and then we got into a vibrant debate with the entire bus, with people from Colorado, Ohio, African-Americans. They started raising questions about social problems that they have here in the United States that are also unfair. If your father does not have credit here, you cannot get credit, and there is no way of getting out of this,” he said.

In the video below, Natasha Mozgavaya interviews some of the tent protesters outside the White House. The video starts in Hebrew, but click ahead to hear some of the interviews in English.