Monday, December 29, 2008

Gush Shalom, Bless You.....

Unchecked, creeping, ever expanding illegal settlements in Palestinian territory; midnight destruction raids by illegal settlers into centuries old olive groves in Palestinian territory; many Israelis, in and out of uniform viciously harassing women, children, old people ect.; the use of rubber bullets and live rounds on peaceful protesters and their international supporters, apparently more for fun than anything else, by IDF soldiers; the list could go on and on, but if you truly want to know the truth, you'll find it. Then again, the seeking of knowledge and truth seems to be in short demand these days. Perhaps it's too uncomfortable, or it would mean each and every one of us would have to take a personal amount of responsibility for this outrage. Your silence and continued support is heard and appreciated by those vying for election, attempting to appeal to the base radical extremists of Israeli society, who happen to be the loudest, most racist and have much of the money. I'm sure those billions of American aid dollars and the profits from our continued trade will be used equally as wisely by the next leader of Israel.

From The Israeli Peace Bloc - Gush Shalom:
We call upon the heads of Israeli universities and student unions to raise their voice in protest at the bombing of the Gaza University by the Air Force. "Whether you support the assault on Gaza in itself or oppose it, it is your duty to remind the government that there are some red lines which should not be crossed, and that turning a recognized academic institution into a military target is violating one of the most important of them.

[From here Dec 27. statement] The war in Gaza, the bloodshed, killing, destruction and suffering on both sides of the border, are the vicious folly of a bankrupt government. A government which let itself be dragged by adventurous officers and cheap nationalist demagoguery, dragged into a destructive and unnecessary war which will bring no solution to any problem – neither to the communities of southern Israel under the rain of missiles nor to the terrible poverty and suffering of besieged Gaza. On the day after the war the same problems will remain – with the addition of many bereaved families, wounded people crippled for life, and piles of rubble and destruction.

The escalation towards war could and should have been avoided. It was the State of Israel which broke the truce, in the 'ticking tunnel' raid on the night of the US elections two months ago. Since then the army went on stoking the fires of escalation with calculated raids and killings, whenever the shooting of missiles on Israel decreased.

The cycle of bloodshed could and should be broken. The ceasefire can be restored immediately, and on firmer foundations. It is the right of Israel to demand a complete end to shooting on its territory and citizens – but it must stop all attacks from its side, end completely the siege and starvation of Gaza's million and half inhabitants, and stop interfering with the Palestinians' right to choose their own leaders.

Ehud Barak's declaration that he is stopping the elections campaign in order to concentrate on the Gaza offensive is a joke. The war in Gaza is itself Barak's elections campaign, a cynical attempt to buy votes with the blood and suffering in Netivot and Sderot, Gaza and Beit Hanun. Also so-called peace seekers such as Amos Oz, who give this offensive their support and encouragement, could not afterwards shrug off responsibility.

Contact: Gush Shalom Spokesperson Adam Keller, adam@gush-shalom.org

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