Direct action seeks to ‘break the murderous supply chain’ of Israeli arms company Elbit

Palestine Action campaigner spraying red paint

On 9 June, direct-action network Palestine Action targeted LaSalle Investment Management’s headquarters. This organisation is the landlord of Elbit Systems’ London HQ. Elbit is Israel’s biggest private arms company.

Campaigners have previously called on LaSalle to evict Elbit or recognise its role in repressing Palestinians; but they’ve reportedly had no response. Today, they stepped up the pressure, “drenching the site in blood-red paint, preventing entry and covering the site in ‘war crime scene’ tape”.

The Israeli state’s latest attack on Gaza in May killed 253 people, including 66 children. Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said the apartheid regime had committed war crimes. Palestine Action responded to the offensive by shutting down an arms factory in Leicester belonging to UAV Tactical Systems, an Elbit subsidiary. And it stressed that:

Our activism does not stop when Israel stops dropping bombs. It stops when the illegal occupation and systematic brutalisation of the Palestinians stop. Elbit supplies not only Israel’s murderous drones, but also the surveillance hardware, fortified security walls, and police technology which makes daily life for Palestinians insufferable.

‘Evict Elbit’

In a press release regarding the 9 June action, Palestine Action said:

Activists endeavour to disrupt and pressure Elbit’s landlords to cut their ties to Israel’s arms trade and to the brutal repression of Palestinian civilians.

It continued:

Neither Israeli war crimes nor Elbit Systems operate in isolation – they rely on a global supply chain of manufacturing, shipping, marketing and, of course, landlords, to function effectively. Palestine Action intend to break this murderous supply chain to save Palestinian lives.

It then added that:

Actions taken by Palestine Action to date have severely disrupted Elbit’s kill chain, forcing their sites to shut down for weeks at a time, and has cost them millions of pounds in losses.

And it finished with a call to action, asking conscientious people across Britain to “take autonomous direct action against JLL LaSalle Investment Management, at any of their 30+ sites across the UK“.

Tactics

In a separate press release, Palestine Action explained that Elbit “has 10 sites in the UK”, including “five arms factories, two headquarters, and three RAF sites”. It also insisted:

Complicit landlords get rich off Elbit Systems’ headquarters in London and Bristol, as well as from the massive arms factory, Instro Precision, in Kent.

The “three main real estate culprits”, it said, are LaSalle, Sedgemoor District Council, and Discovery Park in Kent.

It then outlined some tactics to oppose this complicity in Elbit’s activities, such as:

  • Occupations (like just “sitting down and refusing to leave”).
  • “Blocking doors and entry points for workers”, which “can force a site to close”.
  • “Dowsing buildings in red paint”.

Main article image via screenshot/Palestine Action