Islamic Human Rights Commission
26th April 2002
URGENT ALERT: Rally for Israel, London, May 6, 2002
May 6th has been designated a ‘solidarity with Israel’ day by the Israel Solidarity Campaign. Supporters of Israel are being called upon to give “a public show of support to Israel” at the Trafalgar Square rally. “This is not a political or religious rally. We are saying we care about the people of Israel and the appalling tragedies which they have suffered” says Alan Fox, the rally’s national coordinator.
Trevor Gee, one of the organisers of the event said that the rally would provide an opportunity for supporters to show their commitment “to three things: the state of Israel, a campaign against terror and a campaign against anti-semitism”.
At a time when it is clear that the most appalling crimes against humanity have been perpetrated by Israeli forces in Jenin, and when the campaign against Palestinian rights has accelerated to even more horrendous levels, it is disgusting and disgraceful that people should march in support of those who have perpetrated acts of genocide.
Please protest the organistaion of this march to the London Mayor, Ken Livingstone. A specimen letter is provided below.
Ken Livingstone MP
43 Marsham Street
London SW1P 3PY
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com date:
Dear Mr. Livingstone,
Re: Rally for Israel, May 6, 2002
It has come to my attention that on May 6th 2002, the Anglo-Jewish community has been asked to give “a public show of support to Israel” at a Trafalgar Square rally, organised by the Israel Solidarity Campaign. According to Trevor Gee, one of the organisers of the event, the rally would provide an opportunity for the Anglo-Jewish community to show its commitment “to three things: the state of Israel, a campaign against terror and a campaign against anti-semitism”. However, despite the recent horrific atrocities committed in Jenin and other Occupied Territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, there is no condemnation of Israel’s campaign of terror.
Instead, such condemnations only come from those who have painstakingly managed to make their way into the Israeli designated ‘no-go’ crime scenes e.g. United States envoy, William Burns, was unusually outspoken as he trudged across the ruins. ‘It’s obvious that what happened in Jenin refugee camp has caused enormous suffering for thousands of innocent Palestinian civilians’, he said. But in spite of this ‘obvious’ fact, the scheduled March shows no acknowledgement or consideration for the recent atrocities committed by the State of Israel against innocent Palestinians. Instead, as according to Alan Fox the rally’s national coordinator, the community is solely saying, “we care about the people of Israel and the appalling tragedies which they have suffered”.
Whilst the public acknowledges that all innocent victims and their families have indeed suffered, the rally on the other hand has blatantly failed to acknowledge an indisputable fact that ‘Operation Defensive Shield has been the largest military offensive by Israel since the 1967 war. Despite the Israelis’ current attempts to block the truth by a) preventing journalists from entering Jenin to report at the scene of the crime, and b) refusing the UN demands for an inquiry into what happened until the ‘humanitarian’ inquiry team has been converted into one of a ‘military’ composition, many brave journalists, such as Justin Huggler and Phil Reeves of the Independent, have “unearthed compelling evidence of an atrocity” – in their own words. What is for sure is that nearly half the Palestinian dead who have been identified were civilians, including children, women and the elderly.
The Independent has revealed the use of Palestinian civilians as human shields; of the shoot on sight policy used even on children, women and the elderly; of the deliberate prevention of access to medical staff and supplies; of the unyielding policy of bull-dozing homes along with their occupiers – be they women, children or the elderly; of the stench of rotting human corpses but moreover the “whiff of wrongdoing, of an army and a government that had lost its bearings”.
As an observer, it is clear “these are the facts that the Israeli government does not want the world to know. To them should be added the preliminary conclusion of Amnesty International, which has found evidence of severe abuses of human rights – including extra-judicial executions – and has called for a war crimes inquiry”.
In light of the above war crimes, is it not rather disturbing to pronounce ‘solidarity with the State of Israel’ when that State has acted in such an illegitimate manner so as to violate the right to life with such brutality? Surely a rally in support of Israel at this moment in time cannot be interpreted as anything other than endorsing war crimes.
Is such a rally morally or even politically feasible given the current humanitarian crisis in the West Bank and Gaza Strip? Surely blindly supporting a campaign against terror, which encompasses nothing but terror itself, defeats the fundamental purpose? I sincerely hope that the Mayor’s office will oppose the plans to hold this rally in London and specifically Trafalgar Square. I look forward to hearing from you in response to the above matter.
“And what reason have you that you should not fight in the way of Allah and of the weak among the men and the women and the children, (of) those who say: Our Lord! Cause us to go forth from this town, whose people are oppressors, and give us from Thee a guardian and give us from Thee a helper.”
Holy Qur’an: Chapter 4, Verse 75
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