The latest Israel-Palestine crisis

With the latest round of violence, people, from MS-NBC reporter Ali Velshi to comedian John Oliver, are speaking out, including more Jewish voices calling for an end to the mistreatment of Palestinian families.

As published in the Jewish Telegraph Agency, a trusted global source of news and analysis on issues of Jewish interest and concern, American student rabbis sign letter calling for American Jews to hold Israel accountable for its human rights abuses. The article states the student’s letter accuses Israel of apartheid and calls on American Jews to hold Israel accountable for the “violent suppression of human rights.”

American Senator Bernie Sanders in a NY Times op ed, recognizing Israel’s rights, asks the question almost never asked: “What are the rights of the Palestinian people?” He urges immediate cease-fire and notes that the conflict did not begin with Hamas rockets, seeing “a deepening Israeli occupation in the West Bank and East Jerusalem and a continuing blockade on Gaza that make life increasingly intolerable for Palestinians.” He says, “if the United States is going to be a credible voice on human rights on the global stage, we must uphold international standards of human rights consistently, even when it’s politically difficult. We must recognize that Palestinian rights matter.”

Physician, author, activist Alice Rothchild, in an May 14, 2021, article in CounterPunch, expresses her grief and outrage at the escalations of violence in Israel/Palestine.

Fox pundit Geraldo Rivera, who has first hand experience in Palestine, decried Israel’s use of American weapons to kill children and called for a cease-fire saying, “It’s outrageous that we gave Israel these hundreds of millions of dollars worth of weapons without insisting on a ceasefire now.” He went on to say, “I want our audience—the fact that the United States of America is providing Israel many of the weapons Israel is using today to kill Palestinian civilians without demanding a cease-fire, Tlaib is right,” he exclaimed. “That makes us complicit in an ongoing crime against humanity.” More on this progress in hearing a Palestinian point of view in the media can be found here.

Jewish Voice for Peace calls for action. Calls for boycott, divestment and sanctions have been growing, becoming mainstream.

The violence is nothing new. An Israeli soldier spoke out against it in the past, and his words continue to resonate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2sBGe_qHaY

Jewish trade unionists in Canada also weighed in: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1VWAfhDKOv-loqYMRr7iA9yxmar55Lrt3EOnO3zEBE3Q/edit

Non-Jewish perspectives are also worth noting, including Palestinian American Rashida Tlaib’s heartfelt concerns published in Democracy Now: https://www.democracynow.org/2021/5/14/rashida_tlaib_israel_palestine_gaza_war?utm_source=Democracy+Now%21&utm_campaign=34eca31d6a-Daily_Digest_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_fa2346a853-34eca31d6a-191542113.

Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh, who teaches and does research at Bethlehem University (BU) and directs the BU’s cytogenetics laboratory and the Palestine Museum of Natural History and Institute of Biodiversity and Sustainability in occupied Palestine, described his perspective that we are witnessing the last throws of a settler colonial system. Qumsiyeh is the author of the book, Sharing the Land of Canaan.

Other perspectives, including those of Palestinians, can be found in the following links:

https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=134472435338228&ref=watch_permalink

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