“All Israel is occupied Palestine.”
Occupation: Attorney and Public Defender
Organization(s): Labor for Palestine, Jews for Palestinian Right of Return, US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI)
Michael Letwin (1956-) is a public defender in Brooklyn, New York, and a third-generation, lifelong political activist since the 1960s. He is former President of the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW Local 2325 (1990-2002), the oldest and largest (1000+) attorney labor union in the United States. He is a co-founder of New York City Labor Against the War (NYCLAW) (2001), Labor for Palestine (2004), and Jews for Palestinian Right of Return (2013), and Labor for Standing Rock (2016). He is affiliated with Al-Awda NY, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, MENA Solidarity Network US, and is a member of the U.S. Campaign for the Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel Organizing Collective.
In 2007, he was a member of an attorney/activist delegation to the West Bank and 1948 Palestine. In 2010, he was a featured speaker at a Palestine solidarity conference of the Irish Confederation of Trade Unions. In 2012, he was on a National Lawyers Guild delegation to investigate U.S. support of military repression against the Egyptian revolution. He helped launch the successful campaign for Stevie Wonder to withdraw from a Los Angeles fundraiser for the Israeli military (2012), and was active in both UAW 2865’s adoption of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) and Block the Boat’s campaign to prevent Israeli Zim Line ships from docking at U.S. ports (2014).
His writing on Palestine includes “Labor for Palestine: Challenging US Labor Zionism” (American Quarterly, December 2015), “Labor Zionism and the Histadrut” (2010), “The Jewish Labor Committee and Apartheid Israel” (2010), and numerous statements issued by Labor for Palestine and Jews for Palestinian Right of Return. He has also been active in Occupy Wall Street and the Black Lives Matter movement.