First Step: A Petition for a Ceasefire AND Negotiation

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The humanitarian crisis erupting in Gaza has devastated all people who hope for peace and justice in our world. Only yesterday, Israeli rockets hit a U.N. refugee school operating in Gaza where at least 40 men, women, and children were killed.

Peace Action abhors the use of violence – by any government, political party, or person. While Gaza has been under an-Israeli-imposed economic blockade for over a year, Hamas provoked the war by firing 25 Soviet era rockets into Israeli territory; one of which hit an empty kindergarten, but no people were killed in these attacks and many of the rockets never exploded. Israel responded with air strikes and ground invasion.

According to the New York Times since the invasion began:

  • Hamas has killed five Israelis;
  • Palestinian medical officials estimate the death toll there is over 600 and United Nations estimate that about a quarter of those killed were civilians;
  • Three Israeli soldiers were killed and 24 were wounded when an Israeli tank mistakenly fired at them Monday night;
  • Fuel and water supplies are severely strained for hundreds of thousands, causing many Palestinians to flee into Egypt; and,
  • The number of injured Palestinians estimated at over 3,000 people.

As peace activists we cannot be silent while so many suffer at the hands of war. It is our mission to promote global peace by influencing U.S. policies. In this particular conflict there are a number of things you can do.

Congress needs to speak out against the violence and call for a cease-fire and negotiations. Send them a letter today. Tell them, “I urge you to support US engagement in efforts to bring an immediate ceasefire that will end the violence and protect all Israeli and Palestinian civilians.”

You can also demand U.S. leaders enforce U.S. and international law with a letter to the editor, here.

Go to a vigil or protest in your area by finding your local Peace Action.

How ever you take action, please do so today.  The crisis in Gaza will continue until the U.S. takes a stand against all violence.


Kevin M. Martin
Executive Director
Peace Action

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Showing 11 comments
  • joeland7

    There is no way anyone a reasonable person can justify the the carnage in Gaza. It is barbaric. It sadden me to know that the GBU-30 smart bombs that Israel is using were delivered only two weeks ago from the US and all the weapons the Israel is using were given to them by the US.

  • Daniel Jones

    To be honest, neither side has enough maturity to act in a peaceful manner. The same process continues to repeat itself. Rockets, then bombs, then retaliation, then a so-called peace initiative. As long as the mind set of the principals remains unchanged, there is little hope for peace in the region. The only thing sad about the situation is that children are being killed. If all the adults were killed, peace would reign. Turn the leadership over to the children. They seem to exhibit more maturity and flexibility. Put all the older generation of both sides on an island together with enough ammo to eleminate the generations of hate.

  • barbpa

    Daniel, I know- it makes me so sad to think of the children: there, in Iraq, and in Afghanistan.

  • Sum Thoughts

    We are long past the day when lying equivocations were socially or politically acceptable.

    You are flat wrong when you wrote that “Hamas provoked the war”. You share the lie with President Bush.

    Israel was in massive violation of the truce, and yet Hamas did not respond with rocket fire. Gaza was being strangled for food, medical supplies and fuel. Over 220 patients died before the air attacks began, because Israel would not let them leave Gaza for medical care. These are serious violation of Israel’s responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention. The UN reports 46% of Gaza children have stunted grown, and this was *before* the near-total blockade that started Nov. 5. Richard Falk, the US Special Rapporteur for Gaza, said Israel’s actions constitute “severe and massive violations of international humanitarian law as defined in the Geneva Conventions”. Read the Fourth Geneva Convention for yourself, and compare them with Israel’s blockade:

    Since June 2008, Hamas has replied with rockets only when Israel first violated the ceasefire and killed Hamas leaders. This is well documented.

    I don’t know if you suffer from ignorance or malevolence, but the effect is the same: you are hiding the facts of a suite of massive crimes against humanity.

  • Steffy

    Excuse me? Because most of Hamas’ rockets are duds, and the one that did explode only hit an empty Israeli kindergarten, it’s okay for Hamas to launch rockets into Israel? I don’t think so!

  • tanay marquette


    i believe the point is that the palestinians do not have an army outfitted with the means for any meaningful destruction. their rockets are more a symbolic statement that says they refuse to go quietly into the night as isreal would like to see. isreal has been an illegal aggressor since its inception in 1948. from terrorizing the palestinians, practicing enforced removal from their homes and land, and perpetrating massacres (which are on record), isreal never even accepted the borders given to them in 1948. the rabid zionists always claimed their ‘right’ tio grab greater palestine as they like to call it.

    even this petition is incorrect with its mild tone. over 50% of the deaths to date are women and children. a norwegian doctor in gaza, there to give medical assistance since january 1, 2009 notes that of all the people coming through the hospital he has seen only 1 militant brought in. he states emphatically isreal is waging a blatant war against the civilian population.

    as for hamas being the instigator, this is another bogus claim. hamas held its truce agreement, cutting the rockets by over 90% while isreal continually rained bombs on the people and refused to open the borders for life sustaining supplies and fuel.

    let’s get real here folks, isreal is no victim but has perpetrated its colonialist and racist agenda on a people who have every right to live in that region. they have a continuous history of working the land and living in peace with jews who came to live there. were there conflicts? yes. what nation is conflict free. but the general tone of the land was of acceptance and mutuality. isreal never even attempted to make peace with the people of the land. further, isreal has breached every single effort for a truce. they have no intention of making peace. theirs is an arrogant government that will twist and turn every word and situation to blame anyone else but themselves. their
    use of depleted uranium and white phosphorous alone makes isreal a rogue state.

    i think it quite a statement that hamas with the miniscule and ancient weaponry available to them is holding out against isreal who funded militarily by the usa with heavy munitions and weaponry. this country bears a good deal of the blame for this situation over there. it is time to stop fearing isreals blackmail and call their illegal aggression for what it is.

  • Shlomo Kike

    “Gaza has been under an-Israeli-imposed economic blockade for over a year”
    “Blockade” is almost a sterile word, like “incursion” or “surge”. “Peace Action”
    censored out all of what Dr. Falk, the UN Special Rapporteur calls
    a “sever and massive violation” of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
    Also censored was: (1) that the Hamas rocket fire – at least since
    June, 2008 – has only been in response to Israel violating the
    cease-fire by killing Hamas leaders, (2) that Israel is on record
    as having planned this slaughter for 6 months, and (3) that on
    Dec. 23, the Israeli cabinet again refused a cease-fire for the single
    reason that Hamas refuses to recognize the state of Israel.
    So “Peace Action” is as bad as it gets.

  • Jeff Smith

    Even as the ordnance explodes in Gaza, hundreds of candidates for the U.S. Senate and House are jockeying for position for the 2010 primaries and general elections, and even some 2009 special elections. The sound of silence on Gaza is stunning, shocking, and sad. It is also hypocritical; were there hundreds of Isareli lives being lost, or American casualties, the outcry would be deafening. The lives being lost on both sides can never be reclaimed; the damage being done to any hopes for peace, to the U.S., and to Israel itself, will take much to undo. No true friend of Israel, or of peace, can remain silent.

    • barbpa

      I know it’s horrible…the vote in the Senate yesterday was basically a complete sham of our system. There was no role call and no formal vote – Senators raised their hands. They planned to avoid taking a stand against violence without hurting their political potential. It is an election season after all and I believe the sympathy in the U.S. for the Palestinians is strong.

  • Sol

    I totally agree with Sum thoughts. If you cannot get your facts straight, then you are part of the problem. Regardless of the actions of Hamas (which are stupid and immoral), Israel is the party with all of the power and is the party responsible for the situation. Palestinians have a legitimate right to defend themselves from the genocide and occupation by Israel. Israel had a cease fire, but that did not suit their purposes, so they deliberately broke the truce on November 4 by killing six Palestinians in an attack on Gaza. Israel never relaxed the siege of Gaza even though that was supposed to be part of the cease fire. I cannot sign your tepid petition.

    In Peace,

  • Adela

    In spite of the propaganda and the way journalist in the Western world cover the news, most people in the world know that Israel protects the economic and political interests of the US. The US government wants to keep the area under their control. This is what imperialist countries do. Look at history. I come from a country where the US gave the order to kill 1000 people in a little town and then buried them to get rid of the evidence (the truth always emerges). They are capable of this and more.
    The Palestinian people have the right to live in peace and protect themselves from US and Israel invasion.
    Free Palestine!

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