Google, Amazon workers to hold Day of Action protest against $1.2bn deal with Israel

Hundreds of employees of the American tech giants Google and Amazon will hold a protest rally on Thursday against their companies’ recent billion-dollar deal with the Israeli regime.

The employees will hold their “Day of Action,” which is part of the #NoTechforApartheid movement, on September 8, demanding the cancelation of the Project Nimbus contract over Israel’s grave human rights violations against the Palestinians, Palestine’s official Wafa news agency reported on Sunday.

Under the $1.2-billion contract, Google (Google Cloud Platform) and Amazon (Amazon Web Services) were selected to provide Israeli agencies with cloud computing services, including artificial intelligence tools and machine learning.

Rights groups have already expressed concern that technologies could be used by Tel Aviv to surveil the Palestinians in the occupied West Bank.

According to the #NoTechForApartheid movement, three vigils are scheduled to be held outside the headquarters of Google and Amazon in the cities of San Francisco, New York, and Seattle in an effort to prevent the Tel Aviv regime from using technology in its crimes against Palestinians.

The #NoTechForApartheid movement, which was founded last year, has also launched a campaign to sign a petition calling on the management of the two companies to cancel the major deal.

The petition, which has so far been signed by nearly 40,000 American citizens, calls on Google and Amazon to “stop dealing with the Israeli apartheid regime and withdraw from the Nimbus project.” It warns collaboration of the two American tech giants “with Israeli apartheid is part of a larger pattern of Big Tech fueling … violence across the globe.”

While “the Israeli military bombed homes, clinics, and schools in Gaza and threatened to push Palestinian families from their homes in Jerusalem [al-Quds] May 2021”, the two American tech giants signed the controversial deal with Tel Aviv, the petition said.

“By doing business with Israeli apartheid, Amazon and Google will make it easier for the Israeli” regime “to surveil Palestinians and force them off their land.”

“We’re heeding the call from over 1000 Google and Amazon workers to rise up against the contract, known as Project Nimbus. Technology should be used to bring people together, not enable apartheid, ethnic cleansing, and settler-colonialism,” the #NoTechForApartheid movement stated in its petition.

This came after on Wednesday, a Google employee, who had been a vocal critic of the company’s billion-dollar contract with the Israeli military, said she plans to quit her job, accusing the tech giant of retaliating against employees who speak out in support of Palestine.

Ariel Koren, a marketing manager for Google’s educational products, published a memo on Medium to colleagues announcing her plan to quit. She also said that the tech giant tried to retaliate against her for her activism.

“Due to retaliation, a hostile environment, and illegal actions by the company, I cannot continue to work at Google and have no choice but to leave the company at the end of this week,” she said in her letter.

Koren, who is Jewish, spent more than a year organizing against Project Nimbus, a $1.2-billion agreement for Google and Amazon to supply the Israeli military with cloud and computing services.

In March, the Los Angeles Times reported that said Project Nimbus would facilitate the surveillance of Palestinians, as well as assist the expansion of Israeli settlements.

Soon after voicing her concerns, Koren was told her role was moving to a different location and that she had 17 days to relocate or lose her job.

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