3rd Thursday Middle East Action Alert: Call on Congress to stop U.S. complicity in suffering and to end violence
Monthly action alert on #Israel/#Palestine peacemaking
Commemorating the 10th Anniversary of the Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice on the Legal Consequences of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
July 9, 2014 marked the 10-year anniversary of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) advisory opinion on the legality of Israel’s construction of the separation barrier. [While the barrier is sometimes referred to as the “wall,” it is constructed in different ways along its route. “The Barrier consists of concrete walls, fences, ditches, razor wire, groomed sand paths, an electronic monitoring system, patrol roads, and a buffer zone,” as explained in “The Humanitarian Impact of the Barrier,” July 2013, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, occupied Palestinian territory.] In its opinion the ICJ declared that the barrier being built by Israel in occupied Palestinian territory is illegal, that it should be torn down, and that those who have suffered as a consequence of its construction should be compensated. Yet 10 years later, the barrier remains, cutting into Palestinian territory and separating Palestinians from schools, work, and neighbors. Given its projected route, it is estimated that, if completed, around 85% of the barrier will run inside the West Bank, de facto annexing West Bank land and water resources to Israel.
As violence escalates throughout Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank, it is abundantly clear that the underlying causes of this human tragedy must be addressed. All aspects of Israel’s illegal military occupation–including the barrier in the West Bank and the blockade on Gaza–will need to end, in order for a just and secure future to result.
Take action to end the violence – for today, and for the future. Let your senators and representative know that as a person of faith, respecting the dignity of every human being you call on them to:
- Demand an immediate ceasefire by all parties.
- Condemn all violence against civilians, both by Palestinians and by Israeli forces. It is clear that rockets from Gaza target civilian areas in Israel. It also must be made clear that in Gaza, where 1.8 million people [CIA World Factbook, July 2014 estimate] live in a 140-square-mile area, with borders controlled by Israel and Egypt, civilians are often in harm’s way from Israeli fire, regardless of the intended target.
- Insist on an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land, including full dismantlement of the barrier built on Palestinian land, and an end to the Gaza blockade.
- Recognize that U.S. diplomatic and financial support enable the occupation. The U.S. provides over $3 billion per year in military aid to Israel.
- Condition military aid to Israel on its compliance with U.S. law and policy. Questions must be raised about how U.S. military aid to Israel is being used in order to ensure that it is not enabling human rights violations including those arising from the construction of the separation barrier, and contributing, for example, to the support of settlements in contradiction of U.S. policy.
10 years after the ICJ ruling, 47 years into the occupation, now is the time to say: Enough. Call on Congress to stop U.S. complicity in suffering and to support U.S. policy for a just peace.
For more information:
“The Humanitarian Impact of the Barrier,” July 2013, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, occupied Palestinian territory.
“Separation Barrier,” B’Tselem – The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories.