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NEW: Protests come to Arlington amid Israel-Hamas war

Protests have been targeting the Arlington offices of military contractors amid the Israel-Hamas war.

At least the second protest in as many days was being held outside of the Lockheed Martin building at 2121 Crystal Drive today. The midday protest featured about ten demonstrators carrying Palestinian flags, holding signs and conducting a “die-in” on the public sidewalk.

They also placed child-sized coffins and baby dolls splashed with red paint on the ground around them. A contingent of Arlington County police officers stood watch over the protest and at one point directed the demonstrators off of private property.

Organizer Hazami Barmada, who was holding a sign with the words “Your Weapons Are Killing Babies,” said the group has been conducting protests around Arlington and D.C. for the past 15 days.

“We do die-ins and silent protests like this to help hopefully inspire the hearts and minds of more people to understand the plight of what’s happening to the… Palestinian population,” she said. “Today, we are in front of Lockheed Martin. We’ve actually been in front of all the weapons manufacturers in the D.C. area. And we’re going to continue to do that to put pressure on corporations that are benefiting financially from the genocide and ethnic cleansing that’s happening towards the Palestinian people right now.”

“The seventh of October, we saw a massive spike in [Lockheed Martin’s] stock and also the revenue of the support for these companies that are benefiting,” Barmada continued, referencing the day that Hamas militants crossed into Israel from Gaza and killed over 1,000 Israeli civilians. “So we’re putting our bodies out on the line right now. To say enough benefiting financially off of the murder of innocent civilians.”

Since Oct. 7, Israeli bombardments and a currently underway ground invasion have reportedly killed more than 10,000 Palestinians. Pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian protests have broken out worldwide since the start of the war, and international pressure has ramped up for a release of the several hundred Israeli hostages being held by Hamas and for Israel to minimize civilian deaths.

“Human rights for the Palestinians does not negate human rights for someone else,” Barmada said. “We do this in from the White House, the State Department, all buildings around D.C., to remind people of the cost of inaction and the human realities behind it.”

Barmada said the group protested at the U.S. Capitol yesterday and plans to protest in front of Raytheon in Rosslyn later today.

The Rosslyn protest will be at least the second this week at the now Arlington-based company’s headquarters. Yesterday six activists were charged with trespassing by Arlington police during a protest “to confront the war profiteer on its role in producing weapons that are causing extreme suffering and death to innocent children, women, and men around the world,” according to the anti-war group Code Pink.

ACPD spokeswoman Alli Shorb confirmed the incident. A group of six people from Pennsylvania, Maryland, Wisconsin and New York — ranging in age from 28 to 77 — were arrested, charged and released, she said.

More, below, from ACPD.

TRESPASS, 2023-11080112, 1100 block of Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 12:12 p.m. on November 8, police were dispatched to the report of trespassing. Upon arrival, it was determined a group of individuals were protesting on private property. The property manager reportedly spoke with the group and asked them to leave which they refused. Responding officers then spoke with each member of the group regarding the request from the property manager and advised they would be subject to arrest if they remained on the property. The below listed individuals remained on the property following the announcement and were arrested and charged with trespassing and released on personal recognizance.

James Jarvis contributed to this report

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