Breaking the Siege of Gaza
A call to action circulated by Ta’ayush (Arab-Jewish Partnership)
Visit the Gaza Freedom March website
[Since our original posting on 2nd September a ‘Statement of Context’ has been added to the appeal to support the march. This has led to some ructions, with one of the original sponsors, Norman Finkelstein, withdrawing his support. We’re keeping a watching brief on matters but see no reason to question our support for the project.]
The Coalition Against the Siege
Call for Action
Calling on civil society organizations, activist groups, artists and activists to join the International Campaign to Break the Siege on Gaza
On 1st January 2010, numerous international delegations, activists, civil society organizations and prominent individuals will join the Gaza Freedom March. Each day, more civil society organizations world-wide are joining the global effort to end the siege on Gaza. In Israel, a wide coalition of anti-occupation organizations has endorsed the march and is planning a series of public events and visibility protest actions to gain a momentum towards the central event. We Need Your Active Participation!
We call on all potential participants – peace, human rights and protest organizations, art collectives, writers and poets, photographers, theater and performance artists, academics and intellectuals, and all people of conscience and commitment to peace and freedom – to send your ideas and proposals for events and projects against the siege on Gaza.
What You Can Suggest – Some Examples:
Exhibitions and Art Installations; Reading of Testimonies; Theater Productions; Publications; Cultural, Political and Academic conferences; Design of Visibility Materials (posters, stickers, t-shirts); Creative Demonstrations, Protest Actions and Public Events; Web-based Campaigns; and more… You have a great idea, but no resources to implement it? Please tell us about it. For more information and for placing your suggestions please e-mail.
The campaign is funded through donations. Help us maintain it! Please send checks made out to “Matte Hacoalitsia” at PO box 1335, Kfar Saba 44113 or transfer your contribution to account #119442, Bank HaPoalim, Branch 679, Chernihovsky, Kfar Saba. Thank you!
Endorse the International Coalition to End the Illegal Siege of Gaza‘s call
Amnesty International has called the blockade of Gaza a “form of collective punishment of the entire population of Gaza, a flagrant violation of Israel’s obligations under the Fourth Geneva Convention.”
Human Rights Watch has called the blockade a “serious violation of international law.”
Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter has said the people of Gaza are being treated “like animals,” and has called for “ending of the siege of Gaza” that is depriving “one and a half million people of the necessities of life.”
One of the world’s leading authorities on Gaza, Sara Roy of Harvard University, has said that the consequence of the siege “is undeniably one of mass suffering, created largely by Israel, but with the active complicity of the international community, especially the U.S. and European Union.”
The law is clear. The conscience of humankind is shocked.
Yet, the siege of Gaza continues.
The people of Gaza have exhorted the international community to move beyond words of condemnation.
It is time for us to take action!
The Long March toward Freedom
To mark the anniversary of Israel’s bloody 22-day assault on Gaza the International Coalition to End the Illegal Siege of Gaza will dispatch contingents from around the world to Gaza.
On January 1, 2010 we will march alongside the people of Gaza in a nonviolent demonstration that breaches the illegal blockade.
The march is inspired by decades of nonviolent Palestinian resistance from the mass popular uprising of the first intifada to the West Bank villagers currently resisting the land grab of Israel’s annexationist wall.
It draws inspiration from the international volunteers who have stood by Palestinian farmers harvesting their crops, from the crews on the vessels who have challenged the Gaza blockade by sea, and from the drivers of the convoys who have delivered humanitarian aid to Gaza.
It draws inspiration from Mahatma Gandhi.
Gandhi called his movement Satyagraha-Hold on to the truth. We hold on to the truth that Israel’s siege of Gaza is illegal and inhuman.
Gandhi said that nonviolence requires more courage and is more effective than violence. We want to prove the truth of Gandhi’s beliefs with our deeds.
We are not afraid, we won’t turn back, we won’t let Gaza die.
Gandhi said that the purpose of nonviolent action is to “quicken” the conscience of humankind. We want to bring humankind not just to deplore Israeli brutality but actively to stop it.
Those of us residing in the United States also draw inspiration from our Civil Rights Movement.
If Israel devalues Palestinian life then-just as northern whites went down South during Freedom Summer-we must both interpose our bodies to shield Palestinians from Israeli brutality and bear personal witness to the inhumanity that Palestinians daily confront.
If Israel defies international law then-just as federal marshals were sent in to enforce the law of the land against racist southern sheriffs-we must send nonviolent marshals from around the world to enforce the law of the international community in Gaza.
We take no sides in internal Palestinian politics. We side only with international law and basic human decency.
We conceive this march as yet another link in the chain of nonviolent resistance to Israel’s flagrant disregard of international law.
The siege is illegal.
The wall is illegal.
The settlements and house demolitions are illegal.
The closures and curfews are illegal.
The roadblocks and checkpoints are illegal.
The detention and torture are illegal.
The truth is that if international law were enforced the occupation would be unsustainable.
The march can only succeed if it arouses the conscience of humanity.
If we join ranks with the people of Gaza in the march for freedom, and millions more around the world watch the march on the internet, we can breach the siege without a drop of blood being shed.
If the whole world is watching, Israel can’t stop us.
Please join us.