Israel said it declared war yesterday – but it is waging a daily brutal war against the Palestinian people and has imposed its vicious apartheid regime for every day over the last 75 years. This is why we hold Israel fully responsible for each and every killing over the last days across historic Palestine. This is why the only ethical and effective way forward is to stop Israel, its crimes against the Palestinian people, and international complicity with it now.
For 75 years Israel has continued to ethnically cleanse the Palestinian people, committing massacres, stealing their land, and imprisoning and torturing them. It has kept them for decades under military occupation and siege. Their settler militias have raided, burnt, and looted Palestinian villages and homes.
For 75 years Israel has tried to bring about the ‘peace of the cemetery’, attempting to destroy the will of the Palestinian people to claim their rights.
Since the beginning of the year, Israel’s current government, the most openly racist and far-right administration Israel has ever had, has systematically attempted to implement the so-called “Decisive Plan” of its cabinet minister Bezalel Smotrich to destroy any hope of the Palestinian people.
The massive, ever-increasing killings since the beginning of the year, the programs by the settler militias, and the fanfare around a possible normalization of the Saudi dictatorship with Israel were all aimed at sending one message to the Palestinian people: “You are alone, give up, there is no hope.”
Yet, the Palestinian people won’t give up their hope nor their homeland. There has never been a people in history that simply accepted to submit to their own oppression, perpetual racist segregation, colonization, and dispossession. Why should anyone be surprised that Palestinians don’t?
What is astounding is the readiness of world governments and mainstream media to fall in line, parrot Israeli propaganda, and back the announced escalation of Israeli crimes against the Palestinian people.
Israel’s prime minister Netanyahu called on the people in Gaza to evacuate, as he announced an unprecedented massacre and destruction in the tiny besieged Strip, sparing no one.
Palestinians in Gaza, the overwhelming majority of them refugees expelled by Israel from their homes, are fighting for exactly this, to leave Gaza and go home to their lands and villages.
We hold Israel responsible, not only for the ongoing massacre in Gaza, because those that Israel says ‘infiltrated’ over the last days, went back to where their fathers and forefathers lived and from where they have been violently expelled. They should have been living there, in their homes, in dignity, peace, and prosperity. Palestinians, the majority of them living in crowded refugee camps and scattered across the world, want to leave and return to their homes.
We hold Israel responsible because the walls and fences that people from Gaza have overcome and cut over the last few days are an inhumane crime in the first place. 15 years of the tight, brutal siege of the 2 million Palestinians in Gaza, coupled with intermittent mass bombings and massacres is what Richard Falk calls a “prelude to genocide”.
We hold the international community responsible because it has for 75 years granted Israel impunity. Instead of enforcing respect for human rights and international law, they have handed Israel more weapons and propped up Israel’s military industry, trained on killing Palestinian civilians. They have made Israel’s ongoing war sustainable.
They have maintained military cooperation and business-as-usual in order to adopt the ideologies, methodologies, and technologies of Israeli apartheid for their own human rights abuses and crimes. They have given Israel diplomatic backing to further their own colonial interests. They have simply stayed silent or continued to stick to worn-out rhetoric, avoiding recognizing Israel’s historic responsibility. Yet, in front of injustice, there can never be neutrality.
Instead we all – including those implementing, supporting, and profiting from Israeli war crimes and crimes against humanity – know that the only way, in which the suffering in Palestine can end is to ensure freedom, justice, and equality.
This puts pressure on Israel, which wages the war on the Palestinian people for 75 years.
While Palestinians are bracing for one of the worst massacres and large-scale killings and destruction, we call on all those who support us and want to achieve a piece of justice, freedom, and equality to:
- Immediately mobilize to challenge Israeli propaganda and those parroting it, whether in the media or in the governments.
- Organize protests to demand an end to Israel’s criminal attack on the Palestinian people, the full implementation of Palestinian rights, and an end to business as usual with apartheid.
- Escalate BDS campaigns, especially efforts to end military and security relations with Israel and to oppose any form of normalization with apartheid.
- Push your governments to support the Palestinian call for the immediate re-activation of the UN Special Committee against Apartheid