Google employees arrested and fired after sit-in protest

Employees at Google's offices in New York and Sunnyvale staged a sit-in in protest of Project Nimbus on Tuesday. Nimbus is a government contract between Google and Amazon and the Israeli government for their cloud computing services. Protestors demanded that the $1.2 billion contract be terminated, ending Google's complicity and aid in human rights violations in Palestine. Nine were arrested and 28 fired, according to reports.

"We did not come to Google to work on technology that kills. By engaging in this contract leadership has betrayed our trust, our AI Principles, and our humanity," said Billy Van Der Laar, a Sunnyvale-based software engineer. 

First announced in 2021, Project Nimbus has been the source of sustained internal protests at Google and Amazon. That year, a coalition of tech workers at both companies under a campaign called No Tech for Apartheid called on their employers to end the contract.

Gaby Del Valle, The Verge

While management over at Google has denied that Project Nimbus works with the Israeli military, TIME recently reported that Google definitely is.

A company document viewed by TIME shows that the Israeli Ministry of Defense has its own "landing zone" into Google Cloud. The defense ministry reportedly sought consulting assistance from Google to expand its Cloud access, according to a contract viewed by TIME. Google offered the defense ministry a 15 percent discount on the consulting fees because of the "Nimbus framework," according to the contract, and the defense ministry paid more than $1 million for Google's consulting services. The contract was not signed, but a comment on it said it was part of "an Israel/Nimbus deal." 

Google staff at the two locations refused to leave the buildings and were arrested shortly after. The whole protest, including arrests, were livestreamed and are viewable down below

Previously: Standing up by sitting down: the overlooked power of the sit-in