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‘We will fight’: Over 40 arrested as Jewish activists and allies confront Amazon for profiting off ICE terror

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“Amazon collaborates with ICE, and everyone needs to know that. When we say never again we mean it. Never again to camps, never again to roundups, and never again to profiting from misery.”

More than 1,000 Jewish activists and allies gathered at an Amazon book store in New York City on Sunday to protest the online retail behemoth’s collaboration with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which swept up nearly 700 people last week in what was reportedly one of the agency’s largest-ever raids.

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Over 40 demonstrators were arrested during Sunday’s action, which included a sit-in inside the Amazon store.

As Gizmodo reported, the activists rallied “to draw attention to [Amazon Web Service’s] cloud contracts with ICE and Palantir Technologies, which provides the agency with data for use in immigration raids and other enforcement actions.”

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Amazon, run by world’s richest man Jeff Bezos, has been described as a the “the invisible backbone of ICE’s immigration crackdown” due to its lucrative government contracts.

Demonstrators hoped to call attention to Amazon’s role in ICE’s nationwide terror campaign against immigrants, which has been intensified by President Donald Trump.

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The protest in New York City was one of a number of nationwide demonstrations against Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda on Tisha B’Av, a Jewish day of mourning.

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According to the Washington Post, thousands of Jewish activists took part in demonstrations in around 60 locations across the United States, from Philadelphia to Los Angeles. One organizer saidover 250 Jewish activists have been arrested over the past month for protesting ICE’s mass detention and abuse of immigrants.

“We mourn the destruction of all things holy on the Jewish observance of Tisha B’Av,” Sharon Kleinbaum, senior rabbi with Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, told Gizmodo in a statement.

“This current administration’s attacks on immigrants, Muslims, Jews, people of color, and so many others are likewise horrific destruction of holiness,” said Kleinbaum. “CBST is proud to stand with all those suffering today and against the evil of the camps, ICE policies, and the separation of families. Never again is now.”

Rabbi Shai Held added that there is “a tremendous amount to mourn—the relentless assault on the most basic values of empathy and decency; the cruelty daily enacted in our name; the metastasization of racism and antisemitism in our country.”

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“We mourn,” Held said, “but we are also here today to say that beyond mourning, we will fight.”


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Big chain retailers — including Target and Home Depot — beg government to enforce standard mask-wearing nationwide

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In a letter sent to the National Governors Association, an industry group representing many of the largest retailers in the U.S. asked the country's governors to mandate and enforce rules requiring people to wear masks at all times while in public.

With the coronavirus spiking dramatically in some states, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represents Target and Home Depot among others, sent the letter on Monday, reports CBS News.

One major issue has been the increasing incidence of angry shoppers attacking employees due to non-standardized rules on masks.

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Tech titan chiefs to testify at US antitrust committee

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The US House Committee on the Judiciary on Monday announced that leaders of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google will testify during an antitrust investigation hearing.

The hearing, scheduled to take place July 27, comes against a backdrop of growing complaints about tech platforms that have dominated key economic sectors, and calls by some activists and politicians to break up the Silicon Valley giants

Chief executives Jeff Bezos (Amazon), Tim Cook (Apple), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) and Sundar Pichai (Google) will be allowed to appear virtually if they wish, according to a joint statement released by Judiciary committee chairman Jerrold Nadler and Antitrust subcommittee chairman David Cicilline.

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New Zealand restricts entry for Kiwis escaping coronavirus

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New Zealand began restricting the return of its own nationals Tuesday as the country faces an accelerating influx of citizens fleeing coronavirus outbreaks overseas and limited quarantine facilities.

National carrier Air New Zealand put a three-week freeze on new bookings and the government is in talks with other airlines to limit capacity, officials said.

New Zealand has gone 67 days without any cases of coronavirus in the community and its 22 active cases are all in managed quarantine facilities for New Zealanders flocking home from worsening epidemics elsewhere.

There are nearly 6,000 people currently undergoing the mandatory 14-day quarantine in the facilities and another 3,500 are due to arrive this week.

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