Photo essay: Tens of thousands march on Parliament Hill for Gaza

Jahanzeb Hussain

On Saturday, Nov. 23, tens of thousands gathered on Parliament Hill to express solidarity with Palestine and condemn Ottawa’s uncritical support of Israel.

Your ad here
Don't like ads?
Automated ads help us pay our journalists, servers, and team. Support us by becoming a member today to hide all automated ads:
Become a member

Protesters converged in the federal capital from Montreal, Toronto and other cities nearby. As they assembled in front of the parliament and marched in the streets of the capital, the atmosphere was upbeat, determined and even carnivalesque.

The Palestinians beamed with pride in wearing their national symbols; Arabs from other parts of the Middle East joined them with equal pride; queers in support of Palestine held their banners and flags with pride; Jews said not in our name; protesters with Black ancestry held aloft Nelson Mandela and Malcolm X’s quotes; Bosnians supported Gaza because they remember Srebrenica; Muslims called out Islamic states of their failure to protect Gaza; and indigenous nations of Turtle Island reminded everyone why the fight against settler colonialism must go on.

A unique aspect of pro-Palestinian support is the diversity of people who identify with the Palestinian cause. There is a universality to the fight for Palestinian liberation. Like a river, it absorbs many different streams to flow as one. This universality from below contrasts starkly with international institutions that claim to be universal but consistently fail to live up to their stated ideals. Nowhere is that more obvious than in the case of Palestine.

Support for Palestine stretches across nations and cultures. Here, a Filipino contingent expresses solidarity with Palestinians.
Jahanzeb Hussain

As governing structures across the globe are hemorrhaged by expediency, self-preservation, hypocrisy and war-mongering, popular support for Palestine provides the only sense of hope that governments and corporations could be pushed to change their unchecked support for Israel.

The quote from Nelson Mandela remains popular among Black supporters of Palestine.
Jahanzeb Hussain

The march in Ottawa was an expression of that support. The horrifying images from Gaza leave no doubt over the extent of human suffering Israeli actions are causing. Canadians, like the rest of the world, are plugged in day and night over what is taking place in Gaza.

Bosnians relate to Gazans because of their own history.
Jahanzeb Hussain
A group of Sikhs in support of Palestine.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Indigenous solidarity with Palestine.
From killing children to bombing hospitals, protesters remind the world of Israeli crimes in Gaza.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Protesters remember the journalists who have died in the line of duty in Gaza.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Images of human suffering from Gaza have shocked the world. Here, a young woman pays tribute to a Palestinian father mourning the death of his daughter.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Canadian support for Israel was widely condemned at the protest.
Jahanzeb Hussain
For many protesters, Canada has much to learn from its own colonial history.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Canada’s history of residential schools is a reminder why every child matters.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Queer solidarity with Palestine has been one of the most noticeable aspects of the protests.
Jahanzeb Hussain
Progressive Jewish support for Palestine has been at the center of all protest movements.
Jahanzeb Hussain
An immediate and permanent ceasefire was on everyone’s lips at the march.
Jahanzeb Hussain

While the Netanyahu government might try to spin the narrative, Palestinians, with the help of brave and young journalists, simply have to pick their phones and cameras to show the world the reality. Showing the truth has never been simpler. The protesters in Ottawa had seen the truth.

You might also be interested in...
A closer look at the racist myth at the heart of Selina Robinson’s comments
Richie Assaly
February 7, 2024
EXCLUSIVE: Information commissioner finds feds withheld details of relationship with private spy agency
Ethan Cox
February 14, 2024
New Indigenous Alberta NDP leadership candidate to UCP: ‘Start packing your bags’
Brandi Morin
February 24, 2024