Protests marked Caterpillar Corporationâs annual shareholderâs meeting in Chicago on June 10th. A number of peace and Palestine solidarity groups gained access to the meeting itself through the purchase of corporate shares, while others rallied outside the building, educating passersby about the crimes Occupation forces are committing with Caterpillar equipment. A supporting protest was also held outside Caterpillar offices in Portland Oregon (USA).
Caterpillarâs D-9 and D-10 bulldozers are used by the Israeli military to destroy Palestinian homes and agricultural property, a war crime under international law.
Activists shareholders inside the meeting introduced a resolution that would require Caterpillar to report on foreign sales of weapons related products. The resolution did not pass, but was noted in international and business media coverage.
CEO Jim Owens reportedly said that those who donât like the actions of Caterpillar should divest from itâs stock. One shareholder not affiliated with the activists said he would take Owens up on his advice to divest, having already suffered investment losses in other companies due to bad PR and lawsuits.
Groups represented in the shareholders meeting included Jewish Voice for Peace, the Sisters of Loretto, Chicagoans Against Apartheid in Palestine, the US Campaign to End the Occupation, and Hampshire College Students for Justice in Palestine.
The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Reuters, and other international media reported the protests in their coverage of the meeting.