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Student Protests: We've Been Here Before & The Result Was The End Of Apartheid

As someone who was mobilised during my time as student, witnessing the conviction and courage students are showing as part of their solidarity for Palestine fills me with a deep sense of pride. The images and videos circulating evoke the memory of my own organising for Palestine as a student as well as, more significantly, the legacies of student protests in the 1960s against the Vietnam War and the 1970s and 1980s against apartheid in South Africa.

Like they were then, protesting students today are being met with punitive measures, backlash and threats from university elites, the police and criminal justice system – the full repressive force of the state. But the encampments in solidarity with Palestine have shown that the impossible can be made possible when theories being studied are put into practice. The students leading these protests sit at the axis of an inevitable social reckoning; they are the conscience of Western hegemony and the world order.