Gush Shalom: A Call To Europe
[ Tuesday April 11, Tel-Aviv: Gush Shalom joined the action called by the Women's Coalition for Peace. Activists of different groups protested the ongoing Gaza bombardments by the Israeli army, which the day before claimed the life of a nine-year old girl. Hadil Ghaban was hit while inside her home (*). The route of the march included several embassies in front of which was spread out the slogan:
'Et Tu, Europa!'
Here follows the text of a paid ad
which Gush Shalom publishes in different Israeli papers on
the day before Pesach/Passover (when Jews celebrate
A CALL TO
We, Israeli patriots concerned about the future of our state, hereby call upon you, the leaders of the European Union and the heads of European governments:
Stop the blockade on the Palestinian government!
Don't starve a whole people in order to overthrow its elected government!
Only three months ago, European monitors supervised the Palestinian elections. They confirmed Palestine as the first democracy in the Arab world (holding its second democratic elections, the first having been won by the Fatah movement.)
This time, a Parliament with a Hamas majority was elected. Now you are giving the Palestinians a lesson in democracy: you are telling them that, unless they overthrow the government they have just elected, there will be no milk for their children, no medicines for their sick, no work for their unemployed, no salaries for their doctors and teachers.
You are fulfilling the cynical prescription of the advisor to our Prime Minister: "We need to make them lose weight, but not to die."
This is not only a barbaric policy, it is also a terrible mistake: no people in the world would submit to such brutal and humiliating pressure from outside. The inevitable result will be a further radicalization of Palestinian opinion, and a deepening of the hatred for Israel and the West in the whole of the Arab and Muslim world.
That will make the prospect of peace even remoter, the peace we all need like air to breathe. It will lead to a bloodbath, which will cost the lives of thousands - Israelis, Palestinians, Europeans and Americans.
Talk to the Palestinian government!
Start a dialogue with Hamas!
Certainly, they must recognize the State of Israel's right to exist, just as Israel must recognize the right of the State of Palestine to exist. But such recognition will grow out of negotiations, not the other way round.
Certainly, they have to stop violence, just as Israel must do so. But even at this stage a prolonged armistice can be achieved.
Certainly, they must accept the Two-State solution, and so must Israel. But their leaders have already hinted that they are ready for it - and this must be put to the test of negotiations.
We call upon you, leaders of Europe:
It is in the interest of Europe, as it is in the interest of Israel and Palestine, to achieve peace. Don't succumb to pressure from outside interests, whose policy has already led to several recent disasters in the Middle East.
For the sake of all of us: follow an independent line, guided by wisdom and morality!
The Israeli Peace Bloc
P.O.Box 3322, Tel-Aviv 61033 * www.gush-shalom.org *
(*) See also the Yediot Aharonot article 'War on Qassams not kosher', by Aviad Kleinberg
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