Tens of thousands of Israeli right-wing activists took to the streets May 18, 2023, waving blue and white Israeli flags while marching from West to East Jerusalem, and shouting “Death to Arabs” and other racist chants in the heart of Palestinian neighborhoods. Some of the marchers attacked Palestinians and journalists, throwing rocks at reporters, according to Haaretz.1
“Jerusalem Day” or “Flag Day” is Israel’s annual celebration of its occupation and subsequent annexation of the eastern half of the city in 1967. The day’s march, attended this year by far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Knesset member May Golan, starts at the Great Synagogue in West Jerusalem and ends inside the Old City, at the Western Wall. While the route has been diverted in the past so as not to flow through Bab al-Amud, the main artery for Jerusalem’s Palestinians, the current government insisted on maintaining the usual route, despite recent tensions.