Gaza Ceasefire Now

Palestinian Rights: Ending the Brutal War in Gaza and Beyond

The seventy-five years and counting failure to secure national rights and justice for Palestinians since the founding of the state of Israel has vexed the international community in ways few other conflicts have over that period. The ongoing state of apartheid — supported economically, politically, and militarily by the United States — has been and remains unacceptable, and an impressive movement in the U.S. and globally to act in solidarity with the Palestinians has grown over the last few decades. This solidarity has only grown stronger since the Gaza War which began on October 7, 2023. Peace Action and others have organized and advocated effectively for common sense policies that could, for the first time, begin to hold Israel accountable and change, however slowly, U.S. policy.


Ceasefire NOW!

October 7, 2023 brought escalation into a brutal war. The shocking, horrific attacks by Hamas on Israel sparked a paroxysm of astonishing violence by Israel against not only Hamas but the people of Gaza, with tens of thousands killed in a matter of months, mainly women and children. A strong groundswell of voices calling for a ceasefire is still falling on deaf ears among most policy-makers in Washington — many of whom are stuck in a longstanding status quo to uncritically support Israel, even as it commits what the UN has called a “genocide in the making”. But based on the strong grassroots advocacy by our members and our allies we have begun to see some members in Congress advocate to hold Israel accountable, leverage US military aid, and take steps toward justice for Palestinians. Peace Action is part of a coalition aiming to shift US policy away from its years of complicity in the atrocities carried out against the Palestinian people.

Additionally, a prolonged war in Gaza raises the odds of calamitous regional war, with Israel and/or the U.S. becoming further involved in kinetic strikes in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Yemen. International diplomacy is the only way to avert a further catastrophe.

Take action today – contact your members of Congress to demand they support a ceasefire in Gaza NOW!

Advocating for U.S. Humanitarian Aid Including Ensuring Ongoing UNRWA Funding

Due to Israel’s ongoing bombing and invasion, Gaza currently has “the highest number of people facing catastrophic hunger ever recorded…anywhere, anytime,” according to UN Secretary-General António Guterres. He described the imminent famine facing Gaza as an “entirely man-made disaster.” At a time when tens of thousands are on the verge of starving to death, the US government is working to stop funding the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), the organization most important in providing effective and efficient famine relief and other crucial humanitarian aid.

Many aid agencies have pointed out that UNRWA is the only humanitarian aid organization capable of distributing food and water throughout Gaza in the way needed. UNRWA is “best understood as an unofficial substitute for the state in the areas where it operates,” serving 85% of Gaza’s population of 2.2 million displaced.

We are about to witness in Gaza the most intense famine since the Second World War and the civilian deaths caused by that famine could rise to the same tragic numbers as those caused by the widespread bombings. Peace Action is working to prevent this funding cut, both during this critical time and into the future rebuilding to come.

Beyond the War: Ending Decades of Apartheid

Peace Action is working to promote human rights by ending Israel’s apartheid policies. The expansion of Israeli settlements has increased under the recent right-wing governments, making true peace a distant dream. Peace Action wants to see the U.S. defend human rights for all by pressuring the Israeli government to end its violations of international law. We can leverage the massive U.S. military support Israel receives, conditioning or ending it as long as violations continue.

For years, we have actively been promoting Rep. Betty McCollum’s (D-MN) bill to protect Palestinian children and families. Israeli security forces detain around 500-700 Palestinian children every year and place them into a military court system that fails to protect their fundamental rights. Abusive physical violence, including chokeholds and beatings, is experienced by three out of four of these children. These violations have been documented by the UN, the State Department, and human rights organizations. McCollum’s legislation would ensure that no U.S. taxpayer funds are used by the Israeli government for 1) the military detention of Palestinian children; 2) the demolition of Palestinian homes and property; and 3) to further annex Palestinian land in violation of international law.

Right now the most urgent need is to end the bombing, feed starving people, and give Palestinians the medical care and other services they need. As Gaza enters a post-war phase, we must also ensure that Israel allows people to return to their homes and does not seek to exert even more control over Gaza or enforce a long-term blockade. We must also finally end the occupation and apartheid conditions that have gone on for far too long. Peace Action will be working to press members of Congress to speak out against continued U.S. complicity in Israel’s oppression and to end the multi-billion dollar blank check the U.S. makes out each year for the Israeli military.

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