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Caterpillar Removed from Pension Fund over Ties to Israeli Occupation

The pension fund giant TIAA-CREF has removed the corporate construction giant Caterpillar from its Social Choice Equity fund following long-term protests by activists for Palestinian rights. The TIAA-CREF and other pension funds have come under pressure to remove Caterpillar over the company’s ties to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Caterpillar has supplied the bulldozers that have razed thousands of Palestinian homes, destroyed Palestinians’ arable land, and notoriously killed the U.S. activist Rachel Corrie in 2003. The decision removes more than $73 million in pensioners’ money from Caterpillar’s stock. In a statement, the group Jewish Voice for Peace said: "By selling weaponized bulldozers to Israel, Caterpillar is complicit in Israel’s systematic violations of Palestinian human rights. We’re glad to see that the socially responsible investment community ... is starting to take appropriate action."

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