Google employees lead sit-ins protesting company’s complicity in genocide

Tech workers are joining the Palestine solidarity movement in leading coast-to-coast sit ins at Google offices across the country

April 16, 2024 by Peoples Dispatch
Google workers stage sit-in to end Project Nimbus (Photo: No Tech for Apartheid)

On April 16, Google workers led sit-ins at the office of Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian in Sunnyvale, California, and Google’s New York City headquarters in protest against Google’s complicity in the Israeli genocide of the Gaza Strip, through Project Nimbus, the tech giant’s contract with the Israeli government and military.

Tech workers at both Amazon and Google have been organizing for years to end Project Nimbus, which is Google and Amazon’s USD 1.2 million contract with the Israeli government and military. Despite retaliation from Google including the firing of workers, the movement against Project Nimbus has only grown. 

“Google is enabling and profiting from Israel’s AI-powered genocide through Project Nimbus, their USD 1 billion cloud contract with Israel. The Israeli military is also using Google Photos as part of a facial recognition dragnet across Gaza, which has led to the arrest, imprisonment, and torture of thousands of Palestinians with little to no evidence. It’s clear that the Israeli military will use any technology available to them for genocidal means,” say the Amazon and Google workers, organized in the group No Tech for Apartheid, in a recent statement. “Google workers do not want their labor to power Israel’s genocide of Palestinians in Gaza.”

This action comes days after Time Magazine reporting confirmed that Google is providing direct cloud computing services to the Israeli occupation forces, despite the company stating the contrary. 

“We have been very clear that the Nimbus contract is for workloads running on our commercial platform by Israeli government ministries such as finance, healthcare, transportation, and education,” a Google spokesperson previously told Time Magazine. “Our work is not directed at highly sensitive or classified military workloads relevant to weapons or intelligence services.” Time reporting revealed that the Israeli Ministry of Defense has its own secure entry point into the Google Cloud.

Tech workers staging the sit-ins in California and New York are demanding that the company end Project Nimbus, stop “the harassment, intimidation, bullying, silencing, and censorship of Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim Googlers,” and address health and safety issues in the workplace, which arise from the “mental health consequences of working at a company that is using their labor to enable a genocide,” workers say.