June 10th: A Call To Action
The Women's International League is joining with the US Campaign to End the Occupation and United for Peace and Justice in mobilizing for a historic demonstration on June 10th, 2007. WILPF members are encouraged to seize this opportunity and gather with US peace and justice activists to unite in our efforts to challenge and change U.S. policy in the Middle East. In WILPF's tradition of promoting policies that move us closer to our mission of world peace and global equality, our goal is to challenge the neo-conservative agenda and to offer the seeds for an alternative U.S. foreign policy on the Middle East. At the core of the unresolved conflict in the Middle East is the Palestinian struggle for self-determination.We see this demonstration as an opportunity to unite with our allies, and assert our position of peace built on justice to U.S. Congress, the President and the rest of the nation.
People around the world are joining together in a global Day of Action as “The World Says No to Israeli Occupation” to protest the 40th anniversary of Israel’s illegal military occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, and Syrian Golan Heights.
In the United States, thousands of people from all over the country will converge on Washington, DC from June 10-11, 2007 to send a clear message: The United States Says No to Israeli Occupation!
We know that occupation is wrong. We see U.S. troops occupying Iraq, and we say no. We see Israeli troops and civilians occupying Palestinian land, and we say no again. Wrong in Iraq, wrong in Palestine.
We in the United States have a special obligation to protest Israel’s illegal military occupation because it is our government that provides Israel with the uncritical military, economic, diplomatic, and corporate support that it needs to sustain and expand its control of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem.
If we do not protest, then we are complicit in the human rights abuses inflicted daily on Palestinians who are forced to live under Israel’s brutal military occupation. In its 40 years of military occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, Israel has killed thousands of Palestinians and injured tens of thousands; destroyed thousands of homes; uprooted hundreds of thousands of olive trees; built hundreds of illegal settlements on expropriated land; denied Palestinians their human rights to food, water, education, livelihoods, and health care, and imposed a system of checkpoints, walls and fences, road closures, military bases, barricades, sieges, and curfews that restrict freedom of movement and collectively punish the entire Palestinian population.
Israel is committing these human rights violations with U.S. aid, in violation of the U.S. Arms Export Control and Foreign Assistance Acts. Every time Israel kills a Palestinian civilian with an F-16 fighter jet, Apache helicopter gunship, or Boeing JDAM missile, it is done with our taxpayer dollars in our name. Every time Israel demolishes a Palestinian home with a Caterpillar bulldozer, it is done with our taxpayer dollars in our name. Every time Israel steals Palestinian land to build another settlement, it is done with our taxpayer dollars in our name.
And Israel’s human rights violations of the Palestinian people are not limited to the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Both in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Palestinians are subjected to a system of apartheid. Inside Israel, Palestinian citizens are discriminated against and cannot exercise their full rights as citizens. And Israel continues to deny Palestinian refugees, who were forcibly exiled from their homeland during Israel’s establishment, their internationally guaranteed right of return.
On the 40th anniversary of Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, we will come together in Washington, DC to say “The United States Says No to Israeli Occupation” and to demand:
* An end to US military, economic, diplomatic, and corporate support for Israel’s illegal military occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem.
* A change in US policy to one that supports a just peace between Palestinians and Israelis based on equality, human rights and international law, and the full implementation of all relevant UN resolutions.