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Scientific Brutality Illustration by Bree (Brian) Jiang

Scientific Brutality

Science workers are expected to remain politically neutral, even as their work is used for militaristic aims.

The dimly lit bar is an unconventional setting for a gathering of scientists. Gone are the white coats and clinical lighting of a lab. Instead, attendees in sweaters, jeans and keffiyehs—Arab scarves with detailed patterns commonly associated with Palestinian identity—commiserate with quiet laughter over coffee and tea. I listen intently as a woman speaks in English and Arabic, her voice projected into the room at Montreal’s Co-op Bar Milton-Parc over a laggy Zoom connection. A Palestinian medical student, she is talking to us from the Latin American School of Medicine in Havana, Cuba, where she studies. We take in her story as she describes the pain of learning to save lives as her people are dying.

This event was the launch of the “Science Under Occupation” issue of the magazine published by Science for the People (SFTP), an activist organization based in the US with chapters in ...

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