St. Louis-area college student groups want universities to sever ties with Boeing

Chad Davis


A coalition of pro-Palestine student groups at St. Louis-area universities are calling for their leaders to sever ties with Boeing because of the weapons manufacturer’s connections with Israel.

In a letter addressed to University of Missouri–St. Louis, St. Louis University and Washington University leaders, seven groups including the UMSL Middle Eastern Students Association, SLU Muslim Students Association and Resist Wash U called for university leaders to cease recruitment events and hiring fairs featuring the organization and for universities to divest from the company.

“There should be absolutely no connection with Boeing,” Wash U junior and Coalition of WUSTL Students For Palestine member Maclean Kelley said. “Boeing is the world's third-largest weapons manufacturer and is responsible in large part for enabling not just the genocide of Palestinians that's currently being escalated, but also lots instances of mass violence throughout history.”

The SLU Middle Eastern Students Association, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Muslim Students Association and Occupy SLU also signed onto the letter addressed to university leaders.

Kelley said the groups started reaching out to each other over the past several weeks to build a coalition of support, taking influence from student groups that organized during the Ferguson uprising in 2014. Student groups will also organize rallies and speaker engagements over the week as part of a week of action across the universities.