The echo of Bouazizi resonates in America: Bushnell’s action for Gaza

On February 25, Aaron Bushnell, a simple soldier in the American Air Force, became an international icon, especially in the Arab world, after setting himself on fire live on Twitch in front of the Israeli embassy in Washington.

Dressed in his military uniform, Bushnell revealed his rejection of “complicity in genocide”, in protest against the Israeli war on Gaza, which was then entering its 144th day and had led to numerous atrocities against civilians by the occupying forces. 

His gesture sparked a wave of emotion and support on social networks, where the hashtag Aaron Bushnell became trending in several countries.

Compared to Mohamed Bouazizi, whose self-immolation sparked the Arab Spring, Bushnell is seen by some as a potential catalyst for global awareness.

Voices are being raised to question the effect of his act on young people committed to the Palestinian cause and against the atrocities in Gaza.

Bloggers pointed out that despite tries by American media to downplay the incident, Bushnell’s name dominated trends on social platforms, presenting him as a figure of honour and freedom, capable of significantly influencing American policy and growing pressure on Washington to end its support for Israel.

Bushnell is described as having wanted to awaken American conscience and recall the humanitarian values endorsed by the United States, today compromised according to criticism of the Biden administration and its systematic veto in favour of Israel.

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