New York, New York, January 30, 2009. Here in New York, activists opposed to the U.S.-backed Israeli assault on Gaza disrupted a gala event last night put on by the lobby group AIPAC. While most of Gaza was in ruins, New York state politicians and Zionists were rubbing elbows at a $1500-a-plate dinner. The demonstrators chained themselves together to block entrance to the Marriott Hotel.

Police forced them apart by burning off the chains with blowtorches. The 10 non-violent activists were arrested and placed in jail overnight. Meanwhile, the real criminals, feasting on the carnage and destruction left in the wake of Israel's siege on Gaza go unpunished. All then were released this afternoon, each charged with resisting arrest, trespassing, and disorderly conduct.

The event was attended by prominent business people, lobbyists and U.S. politicians, including New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The blockade disrupted what the participating activists considered a disgraceful gathering.

The Marriott blockade comes on the heels of several similar actions opposing Israel's recent conduct that have occurred in cities around the world such as Toronto and San Francisco and at over a dozen universities in England. In its scope, tactics, and goals, the movement to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine recalls the movement that arose in opposition to Apartheid in South Africa.