Letter to the Zionist Federation and to British Jewry

Posted: August 3, 2014 in Israel, Palestine
Tags: , , ,

By Geoffrey Cohen

We, as British Jews, are here to express our solidarity with the Palestinian people. Over 1,000 Palestinians have been killed recently by the Israeli state, and thousands more displaced, injured and arrested. Israel has killed civilians, destroyed homes and impoverished the Palestinian population. We are here to say: not in our name.

We reject the idea that the Israeli government had no choice but to decimate Gaza. Gaza is an open-air prison, a huge ghetto, caged in by Israel over land, sea and sky. Its population is largely that of trapped refugees. Israel has the choice to end its blockade of Gaza, and to allow Palestinians the chance to live without domination. This is the only true road towards peace.

Those who call for peace with the Palestinians without calling for justice and reparations only affirm the occupation. Brutalising and attempting to dominate a population can only lead to more violence and bloodshed.

Israel dehumanises Palestinians, negates their right to self-determination, denies their right to resist, and strips them of their dignity. We wish to underline the gaping difference between the violence of the Palestinian oppressed and that of the Israeli oppressor.

The value of a Palestinian life is equal to that of any Jew. In ending the lives of so many Palestinians, the Israeli government and military have committed an outright atrocity.

We affirm a Jewishness not tied to state violence. A diasporic Jewishness that welcomes critique and speaks truth to power. We refuse to be complicit in our words, in our actions, or in our silence, to the massacres perpetrated in our name.

Not in our name, not in anybody’s name.

Free Palestine. Justice for all.



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