UK workers ramp up pressure on Big Tech to end Israeli military contract

Tech workers launch UK campaign and mass call to action against company complicity with Israeli government

Palestine demo

Tech workers in the UK have ramped up a campaign calling on Google and Amazon to terminate an AI contract with the Israeli government arguing it constitutes a breach of the companies core values.  

Project Nimbus is a $1.2 billion contract signed by Google and Amazon to provide cloud technology to the Israeli government and military. Workers have been campaigning against it since the contract was initially signed in 2021.

Opposition has ramped up since the latest Israeli military attacks on Gaza, following the Hamas attacks and kidnaps on October 7 when 1,200 people were killed, and now with more than 15,000 Palestinians, including 6,000 children, killed by Israeli bombing.

One Google employee said: “The images we see over and over again are of hi-tech military bombardment directed at a civilian population.

“Tech workers built Israel’s capacity for this and it’s our responsibility to get tech companies to stop doing business with Israel as long as it commits war crimes and genocide.”

Last week UK tech workers launched the “No Tech for Apartheid” campaign compelling the companies to cut ties with the Israeli military. Nearly 75,000 people have since sent a letter to Amazon and Google executives calling on the companies to immediately cancel the Project Nimbus contract, which currently lasts until 2028.  

Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have labelled the Israeli government’s policies on land access and intense restrictions on movement against Palestinians as amounting to apartheid.

The United Tech and Allied Workers (UTAW) union, who launched the campaign, passed a motion in October calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and responding to a call from Palestinian Trade Unions for their international counterparts to take action against companies complicit in the Israeli government’s military regime.

Trade unions in the UK are speaking out against the immense suffering in Gaza as the death toll continues to rise. For example the University and College Union (UCU) recently called for pension scheme divestment from companies complicit in Israel’s assault on Gaza and illegal occupation of the West Bank. Whilst trade unionists are continuing to organise blockades of Israeli arms factories in England.

Hannah Davenport is news reporter at Left Foot Forward, focusing on trade unions and environmental issues

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