A petition started by the new group Particles for Palestine calls upon physicists and other scientists around the world to support a ceasefire in Gaza, the provision of humanitarian aid, free speech on the Israel-Palestine conflict and reflection on the near invisibility of Palestinians in their professional field. They write, “We call on our communities to think deeply about why most of us have few or no Palestinian colleagues, know few Palestinian researchers in our fields, and are not part of or employed by institutions with active partnerships with Palestinian academic organizations.” The answer, as they powerfully suggest, is clear: Israel has done its level best to stifle academic and scientific life in Palestine, just as it is doing its best to destroy Palestinian civilisation in Gaza. Scientists from all fields are urged to sign the petition, of which the original can be found here.


To fellow physicists and other scientists around the world:

We write with utmost urgency to demand a ceasefire in Gaza and the dispatch of long-term humanitarian aid. We also write to express concern about attacks on the freedom to protest violence against Palestinians, as well as attacks on academic freedom of students and faculty expressing their concerns through speech, protest, and participation in the boycott, divest and sanction movement popularly known as BDS. Moreover, we want to highlight the visible absence of Palestinian physicists in our community and urge scientists to consider the reasons for this.

We believe that all life is sacred, and that the taking of life is a profound act that steals the future from an individual, their family, and their larger community. From the period marked by Palestinians as the Nakba and Israelis as its war for independence through the October 7 Hamas attack to the ongoing genocidal violence in Gaza and the West Bank, we mourn the enormous loss of life. We recognize that these deaths have not happened in a vacuum, but rather in a political environment where Jewish lives are typically more highly valued than Palestinian lives. We recognize also that Jews have experienced a long history of violent horrors, particularly in the context of Europe and its former settler colonies. Experiencing and witnessing violence is especially difficult for those of us who come from communities that have long been targeted by state and vigilante violence. We believe that violence deeply harms the perpetrator as well, and that lasting healing and justice cannot be obtained through further violence.


It is in the context of this history that we have been horrified by the brutal and illegal targeting of the entire Palestinian population, ostensibly in retaliation for violence perpetrated by a small number of people. Palestinians have been subjected to large-scale forced migrationaerial destruction of entire neighborhoods including schools and essential food suppliers, deprivation of water and basic medical supplies, and doctors forced to operate on children without anesthetic. These actions are clear examples of collective punishment. Human Rights Watch states Israel is guilty of the human rights violation of persecution of Palestinians, and joins with Amnesty International and B’Tselem in finding the government of Israel responsible for the human rights violation of apartheid inside and outside its internationally-recognized borders. UN human rights experts have demanded an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in order to prevent an incipient genocide, and we endorse this proposal.

We support the call for a ceasefire and demand that Israel and its allies immediately find a way to deliver humanitarian aid to the 2.5 million inhabitants of the Gaza strip, and that the ethnic cleansing of villages and military raids in the West Bank cease immediately.


We have heard troubling stories about suppression and criminalization of anti-war protesters in Palestine, Israel, Germany, and France. We also know of at least one case where a Palestinian astrophysicist, Al-Quds University Professor Imad Barghouthi, was again arrested at home in the middle of the night and placed under six-month administrative detention, without charge. Barghouthi’s family reports that the soldiers who arrested him threatened to bulldoze their home if he resisted arrest.

This suppression of Palestinian science extends beyond the imprisonment of individuals, and impacts the entire population. Al-Azhar University and the University of Gaza, which train future scientists, have been severely damaged, and in at least one case likely entirely destroyeddisrupting learning opportunities for a generation and possibly beyond. The damage to these universities highlights for us a disparity in American science: the high number of partnerships between Israeli and American institutions while there are few similar relationships with Palestinian universities. The contrast is so stark that the American Physical Society executive sent out a letter co-addressed to members of the Israel Physical Society. No such message has gone out to our Palestinian colleagues. We call on our communities to think deeply about why most of us have few or no Palestinian colleagues, know few Palestinian researchers in our fields, and are not part of or employed by institutions with active partnerships with Palestinian academic organizations. In the past, Palestinian students in Gaza have also been repeatedly barred by Israel from attending physics summer schools organized in the West Bank.

Meanwhile, in the U.S. students and professors are being harassed, doxxed, and fired for speech protected by academic freedom. For example, geneticist and UC Berkeley Professor Michael Eisen (who is Jewish) was fired from his role as editor-in-chief of an academic journal because of a satirical post on social media. These brazen attacks on academic freedom have a chilling effect on free exchange, with particular implications for Palestinian-descent students, as well as students of color for whom this violence is all too familiar and who may see their experiences as connected to Palestine through policing exchange programsWe reject the premise that criticisms of Israel – even of political Zionism – are always rooted in anti-semitism. We note that the Jewish diaspora is home to a variety of viewpoints and that internal debate within Israel is broad as well. We call on all institutions to respect this diversity of perspective from Jews and non-Jews alike.

We call on Israel and its allies, including leaders in the U.S. and Europe, to respect the freedom of any individual or group to protest what they see as injustice, including through non-violent activities such as BDS.


It is past time to ensure that Palestinians have access to the resources and opportunities needed to participate fully in the global scientific community, and we all have a role to play in advancing this change. This means ensuring that those working among us know that we value their lives and their communities, and it means that they have safe places to learn and work. Opposing genocidal violence and rhetoric is an important first step. Beyond that, educating ourselves about BDS — what it is and what it isn’t — is a valuable step toward supporting academic freedom. Our colleagues in the Palestine Academy for Science and Technology deserve our vocal support. Those wishing to get more directly involved can take the time to connect with the organization Scientists for Palestine, which actively works on strengthening connections and opportunities.

Therefore, we call on scientists around the world, as well our professional societies such as the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society and the Canadian Association of Physicists, to take a strong position in support of: a ceasefire, humanitarian aid, Palestinian scientists and students, the right to non-violent protest, and academic freedom for critics of Israel. Concrete actions you can take in support of these aims include contacting elected representatives, organizing and participating in peaceful protests. We hope also that you will join us in opposing anti-Arab racism, Islamophobia, and anti-Jewish hatred at every turn.

Particles for Palestine: Philip Agyres, Cyril Closset, Daniel Harlow, Seyda Ipek, Nabil Iqbal, Madalena Lemos, Mario Martone, Brian Nord, Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, Suvrat Raju, Carlo Rovelli, Nausheen Shah, Brian Shuve, Thomas Van Riet, Tien-Tien Yu

Those who wish to join us in action can sign at Action Network. By signing at Action Network you give Particles for Palestine permission to share your name, as we have capacity to do so. We gratefully acknowledge Scientists for Palestine’s support in hosting the Action Network petition.

SIGNATORIES (as of 11/17/2023)

Emily Knight

Danielle N Lee

Giordon Stark

Danny Doucette

Karina Cho

Claudia Rankins

Hasan Gunes

Sam Alterman

Jonathan Cohn

Steven Thrasher

Meagan Lang

Kaitlyn Diederichs

Oz Amram

Desmond Ramirez

Yaamini Venkataraman

Yilen Gómez Maqueo Chew

Alex S Arvanitakis

Bianca Lepe

Noah Vaughan

Deepak Vaid

Steven Lowette

Michael Busch

Nicholas Montiel

pavan dharanipragada

Caroline Casey

Marco Borja

Ana Alexandre

Guilherme Ilário Correr

Joseph Peacock

Celeste Melamed

Joseph Osmundson

Dante O’Hara

Chiara Toldo

Shubho Roy

Toyoko Orimoto

Martina Gerbino

Durrah Alessa

Madalena Lemos

Brenna Mockler

Zosia Krusberg


Sahil Showkat

Ananth Shankar

Owais Farooq

Milind Shyani

Karen Macias

Ronak Soni

Vignesh Vaikundaraman

Amitava Banerjee

Simeon Hellerman

Rachana Yajur

Ramsha Ashraf

Cristiano De Nobili

Nathan Sitaraman

Hiba Kamel

Cynthia Woodbridge

Grey Pines

Alexandra Vassar

Pratiti Deb

Ferah Munshi

Kyle Lleras

Emma Alexander

Emil Mathew

Alyssa Hayes

Bedir Unver

Natalie Stake-Doucet

Amber Ying

Lucianne Walkowicz

Terry Pilkington

Haley Vecchiarelli

Sarah Popp

Bethany Suter

Philip Argyres

Erika Gwin

Bashi M

Matthew Azevedo

Lucas Frye

Mike Miccioli

Antonio Padilla

Patricia Fofie

Jorge Torres

April Peterson

Hege Hermansen Hermansen

Ryan Bodenstein

Assaf Kfoury

Konstantinos Zoubos

Maria Elena Antinori

Claudia Mignone

Holly Olivarez

Charis Kaur Pooni

Nizar E

Gina Chen

Subhayan Sahu

Muhammad Hamza Waseem

Víctor Martín Lozano

James Breton

Alissa Matus

Natércia Rodrigues Lopes

Rabia Husain

Saniya Heeba

Mario Pelaez Fernandez

Maria Gorizia Ammendola

Ibrahim Chahrour

Brandi Williams

Shafayat Shawqi

Diana Schooling

Mehgan Blair

Bri Berroteran

Hashem Almoisa

Sam Nastase

Akshat Jain

Zoe Darlington

James Huynh

Bernardo Zan

Joshua Lerner

Holland Frieling

Karlie Noon

Harry Hochheiser

David Zegeye

Laura Lopez

Yasmine Mhirsi

Fungai Chanetsa

Ilham Prasetyo

Jamie Ho

Aditya Tri Oktaviana

Seven Rasmussen

Adenike Giwa

Nathanael Wong

Tarik Aougab

Alysa Obertas

Adrian Lucy

Ornella Ascione

Ardi Pritadi

Kristen Garofali

Takumi Murayama

Sarah Lang

Katarzyna Nowak

Julia Steinberger

Christian Capanelli

Chell Le

Samantha Medina

antonio platania

Ila Varma

Sarah Stamer

Rajita Menon

Mabel Stephenson

Jean-Philippe Gourdine

Fungai Hove

Ruxandra Costescu

Manodeep Sinha

Caitlin Doughty

W. Khater

Valeria Montano

Benjamin Percival

Encieh Erfani

Mohamed Sabba

Marianna Ruggerio

JL Andrepont

Rachel Williams

Marco Baity-Jesi

Claire Ramsay

Laura Niggli

Isabel Hagen

Rayna Rusenko

Callie Hood

Ricardo Ogando

Kheya Sengupta

Mehr Un Nisa

Cameron W

Mary Kane