The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News


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EIU participates in national walk out

Rob Le Cates
Eastern alumni Cass Manansala listens to her friend and protest organizer Jason Farias, a senior history education major, as he speaks on the genocide Palestinians are experiencing in Gaza at the Mellin Steps Wednesday afternoon. She said she showed up to help support her friend but also to stand up for a cause very important to her. She wasn’t educated on what was happening between Israel and Palestine but talked to some of her friends who are Palestinian and have family impacted by the conflict and now has a passion for ending the genocide Palestine.

Unrest in Israel and Palestine in Gaza has led to a national walk out around college campuses and on Eastern’s campus on Wednesday 

“There have been over 100 student groups who supported Palestinian Liberation who have called for a national student walkout today,” Jason Farias a history education major said. “Like I said, there is 100 groups, the National Muslim Association, Anak bayan, which is a Filipino activist, group, student activist group. Several students where Palestinian justice is really a large number of student groups from Harvard to Champaign, UIC, North Carolina, Colorado, UC, UC Berkeley, it is happening across the country right now.” 

As the organizer of the protest, Farias became interested in this topic for a while now. Also, he thinks that it is important to make aware to the communities, he said that this is wrong and a humanitarian issue that the U.S. should be aware of. 

Activist leader Silver Damsen knows it is important for Israel and Palestine to get along and the U.S. is not helping the humanitarian crisis.  

“Israel and Palestine are a tough situation going on since 1947, 1948,” Damsen said. “It was horrible what happened to the Jews with Hitler and the Holocaust and that there is no excuse for that it is a crime against humanity. It is something that everyone should be outraged about. However, that does not mean that because that happened to the Jews, that now 75 years later, they should practice genocide on Muslims. It is just not acceptable. It is like genocide is wrong no matter who is doing genocide. And the situation in Palestine is genocide.” 

Jason Farias, a senior history education major, leads a group throughout campus during a student walkout demanding a free Palestine at the Mellin Steps in protest of the Israel genocide on Palestinian civilians Wednesday afternoon. Farias said there were around 100 other schools in the nation participating in the walk. (Rob Le Cates)

Farias led a bunch of students in chanting as they marched down the sidewalk next to the library heading towards the south quad. 

Some suggested to stop helping Israel and that if they were helping lead the U.S. government that they should consider other steps that students and community members think should be taken.  

“I would call for a ceasefire immediately, under siege on Gaza,” Farias said. “Cease all funding to Israel until they end their practices of apartheid. When South Africa was during apartheid, the entire international community banded together we ended boycotts, divestments, and sanctions against them. We need the same thing against Israel until they end apartheid and occupation of Palestine.”

This was an important topic for students and individuals. These people are protesting for what they say are basic humanitarian rights and to make people aware.

“It is just like a war that started like back in history, but like we are presenting for the people who are being damaged or like filling up their homes during this time,” Muhammad Ibrahim, a graduate student studying art, said. “And we are just here to support basic humanity rights and just to bring awareness.”

The national movement started at 12 p.m. and ended at 2 p.m. and the hope was that there would be a change in decision making in the government.  


Chandler Smith can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Chandler Smith, Reporter
Chandler Smith is a senior broadcast journalism major. He previously served as a reporter at The News.
Rob Le Cates, Editor-in-Chief
Rob Le Cates is a junior journalism major. He previously served as summer editor-in-chief, photo editor and assistant photo editor at The News.

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