More than 40 founders, investors, engineers and others in the technology industry announced a new initiative called “Tech for Palestine” in order to end technology support for the Israeli war on the Palestinian people throughout Gaza and the West Bank, and work towards a free Palestine.
Initiative owner Paul Biggar hopes to raise awareness of the war in Gaza, fight for a permanent ceasefire and provide a platform for those who are afraid to support Palestine publicly.
Biggar launched the initiative after writing Blog It resonated in the tech industry criticizing the lack of support the tech industry has shown for Palestinians.
“‘Stop bombing kids’ shouldn’t be controversial, and victim support certainly shouldn’t cost people their jobs,” Biggar wrote in his blog post. “And yet, this is the reality that tech workers face when they oppose Israel’s war on the people of Gaza.”
Biggar said in press release He published it on the initiative’s website and on his blog: Thousands of people contacted him after publishing the blog post, and many of them were afraid to speak about themselves for fear of possible professional influences.
The initiative is one of the first tech initiatives to take a public stance in support of Palestine, and may represent a turning point in the business industry's position regarding the conflict between Israel and Hamas, as more people seek to speak out in favor of a ceasefire.
He pointed out that dozens of these people started projects to change the industry in order to ensure that people speaking on behalf of Palestine could be heard, adding that dozens volunteered to help.
Still in its early days, the platform features projects run by small groups and serves as a place to share resources and advice, something many pro-Palestinian tech workers in particular do.
Communicating technical voices in support of Palestine
“Our goal is to change technology,” Biggar says. “Today, people like Sean Maguire at Sequoia, Tal Broda at OpenAI, and Matt Okko at DCVC can continue to represent their companies despite saying things no one should say.” “Which shows them as supporters of Israel's genocide. At the same time, an organized movement within the tech industry is working to cancel tech workers and leaders who speak out against genocide.”
“However, this is changing,” he adds. “People are speaking up. In the last few months we have seen a lot of tech people speaking up, including Paddy Cosgrave, Paul Graham, Andrew Dudum, Albert Wenger, Joe D’Amato, Sidra Kassim, Amir Nathu and myself.”
Many people are helping to build the platform, such as Idris Mokhtarzadeh, founder of Trueble.
So far, the platform has created the “Palestine Badge,” which calls for a ceasefire, in addition to the “Palestine Banner,” which can be used on websites to place a banner in support of the ceasefire.
The initiative also has a project to boycott some venture capitalists who support the Palestinian genocide.
The Anti-Palestine Venture Capital Funds project provides a constantly updated list of venture capitalists who support the extermination of Palestinians and a list of venture capitalists who support Palestinians.
According to the website, the initiative has several projects in development, such as the “Israeli Technological Alternatives” project.
Biggar said there are plans to work extensively with Palestinian organizations and help Palestinian startups through mentorship and cloud credits.
Muslim Change Makers founder Arafa Farouk decided to work with the new initiative after reading Biggar's viral blog post, and began publishing resources on how to support Palestine.
Arafa said: “We cannot go to Gaza and provide assistance on the ground because of the blockade, although we help no matter where we are in the world.”
One of the engineers decided to join the initiative; Because he felt suffocated at work. He agreed to work as an engineer and product manager to help build resources for the “Technology for Palestine” initiative.
A former tech brand marketer also spoke about how she was glad there was a way to get involved in the cause. She said: “Technology for Palestine is a necessary initiative, as the technology community can no longer remain silent when we are witnessing mobilization around the world and the United States demanding peace and the humanization of the Palestinians.”
The “Technology for Palestine” initiative comes as the death toll among Palestinians continues to rise, and Biggar hopes that this new initiative will help bring about a significant increase in the number of people speaking out.
One of the few technical efforts to support Palestine includes the “No to Apartheid Technology” initiative, which calls for an end to “Project Nimbus,” a project that previously saw Google and Amazon sign a $1.22 billion deal to supply the Israeli military and government with cloud technology.
Paul Biggar is an American computer engineer and entrepreneur of Irish descent. He founded Circle CI and served as its CEO. He also contributed to the Google TikTok project. He holds a PhD in Analysis of Scripting Languages.