Twitter users in Palestine are teaching protesters in Ferguson, Missouri how to cope with police brutality
From one embattled corner of the world to another: Palestinians have been tweeting people in Ferguson, Missouri with tips on how to deal with tear gas attacks.
Since the August 9 shooting of 18 year-old Michael Brown, Ferguson streets have been lined with protesters demanding that the officer responsible be brought to justice. Local authorities have responded with a heavy police presence and aggressive crowd control strategies that include tear gas and rubber bullets. Ferguson security forces even teargassed an Al-Jazeera camera crew.
Once reports started coming in about the use of police tear gas, Palestinian Twitter users responded by tweeting first-hand advice. Tips include standing close to the police, thus rendering a tear gas attack ineffective, rubbing Coke and milk in your eyes, and running against the wind. West Bank resident and Palestinian-American activist Mariam Barghouti led the first wave of online advice:
Solidarity with #Ferguson. Remember to not touch your face when teargassed or put water on it. Instead use milk or coke!— مريم البرغوثي (@MariamBarghouti) August 14, 2014
Always make sure to run against the wind /to keep calm when you're teargassed, the pain will pass, don't rub your eyes! #Ferguson Solidarity— مريم البرغوثي (@MariamBarghouti) August 14, 2014
It feels so weird using my experience from #Palestine and Israeli oppression to give advice to #Ferguson. Much love and solidarity!— مريم البرغوثي (@MariamBarghouti) August 14, 2014
Don't Keep much distance from the Police, if you're close to them they can't tear Gas. To #Ferguson from #Palestine— Rajai abuKhalilرجائي (@Rajaiabukhalil) August 14, 2014
It's not just advice that Palestinians are sending to America – it's love and solidarity as well. People from Gaza are tweeting empathetic messages of support to Ferguson too.
"The Palestinian people know what mean to be shot while unarmed because of your ethnicity" #Ferguson#Palestinepic.twitter.com/13og2X0TWl— Sihame Assbague (@s_assbague) August 15, 2014
Revolution of #Ferguson, can't be prouder of these people who won't let their son's blood goes for nothing #MikeBrown— Inas Safadi (@InassSafadi) August 14, 2014
Last night, Americans gathered in Times Square, New York to protest the shooting of Michael Brown. Around 1,000 peaceful protesters descended on Times Square chanting "Hands Up, Don't Shoot" a reference to the allegation that Michael Brown was unarmed at the time that he was shot by a police officer.
Yesterday, Barack Obama spoke for the first time on the ongoing protests over Brown's death, saying: "Now is the time for healing. Now is the time for peace - and calm - on the streets of Ferguson."