"We are gradually moving from an open-air prison to an open-air mass grave," said Jean-François Corty, Medecins du Monde, speaking about Gaza (my translation from French).
The colonial mind, hypnotized by power, thinks that the oppressed will stop resisting subjugation if they terrorize them "enough." But they know nothing about human nature; the oppressed will resist their oppressors until they live in dignity.
Israel, in complicity with the USA, Canada, and most of Europe governments (colonial powers that have been long-time champions of human rights... violations), has killed 8005 human beings in Gaza, including 5404 Children and Women, so far.
Israel continues to slaughter and starve 2.2 million civilian Palestinians with a genocidal bombardment and blockade.
If you are OK with it, then all your words about human rights, black lives matter, indigenous rights, residential schools, and feeling scandalized by atrocities and genocide committed in the PAST are worth nothing because, in the PRESENT, you are just supporting the same. Most likely, if you had lived in the past, you would have supported (actively or by your silence) the same atrocities that you condemn verbally today (it is too easy to do so today).
Stand for human rights for all, call your members of parliament and your complicit government and ask them to support a ceasefire; demonstrate firmly and peacefully. Don't condone massacres.
Letter from Palestinian Christians [Leaders & Theologians] to Western Church Leaders and Theologians
...we write to challenge western theologians and church leaders who have voiced uncritical support for Israel and to call them to repent and change
…we categorically reject the myopic and distorted Christian responses that ignore the wider context and the root causes of this war: Israel’s systemic oppression of the Palestinians over the last 75 years since the Nakba, the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestine, and the oppressive and racist military occupation that constitutes the crime of apartheid. This is precisely the horrific context of oppression that many western Christian theologians and leaders have persistently ignored, and even worse, have occasionally legitimized using a wide range of Zionist theologies and interpretations. Moreover, Israel’s cruel blockade of Gaza for the last 17 years has turned the 365-square-kilometer Strip into an open-air prison for more than two million Palestinians—70% of whom belong to families displaced during the Nakba—who are denied their basic human rights. The brutal and hopeless living conditions in Gaza under Israel’s iron fist have regrettably emboldened extreme voices of some Palestinian groups to resort to militancy and violence as a response to oppression and despair. Sadly, Palestinian non-violent resistance, which we remain wholeheartedly committed to, is met with rejection, with some western Christian leaders even prohibiting the discussion of Israeli apartheid...
… western attitudes towards Palestine-Israel suffer from a glaring double standard that humanizes Israeli Jews while insisting on dehumanizing Palestinians and whitewashing their suffering…
… this double standard reflects an entrenched colonial discourse that has weaponized the Bible to justify the ethnic cleansing of indigenous peoples in the Americas, Oceania, and elsewhere, the slavery of Africans and the transatlantic slave trade, and decades of apartheid in South Africa. Colonial theologies are not passé; they continue in wide-ranging Zionist theologies and interpretations that have legitimized the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the vilification and dehumanization of Palestinians—Christians included—living under systemic settler-colonial apartheid.
… we reject all theologies and interpretations that legitimize the wars of the powerful. We strongly urge western Christians to come alongside us in this. We also remind ourselves and fellow Christians that God is the God of the downtrodden and the oppressed, and that Jesus rebuked the powerful and lifted up the marginalized..
… we hold western church leaders and theologians who rally behind Israel’s wars accountable for their theological and political complicity in the Israeli crimes against the Palestinians, which have been committed over the last 75 years.
Urgent Call for Action by Jewish Canadians to stop a genocide-in-the-making
"...We mourn, but we reject the use of our mourning as a reason to commit atrocities on the Palestinian people. The test of our humanity happens at the most difficult times – we do not respond to atrocities by committing atrocities on a larger scale. We recognize that the Palestinian people, and particularly those in Gaza, are people traumatized by a history and ongoing experience of displacement, military occupation and siege at the hands of the Israeli government and military. Civilians anywhere must never be the targets of militant action.
This is literally a moment of life-and-death. The language dehumanizing the Palestinians used by Israeli government officials, as well as other governments and reporters; the Israeli army dropping 6,000 bombs in six days primarily on civilian targets; the total destruction of civilian infrastructure; the complete cutoff of electricity, food, water and other essentials; a collapsed healthcare system; the displacement of more than one million people, half of them children; and the imminent ground invasion – these are the clear contours of a genocide-in-the-making. We must stop it before it proceeds further!
We appeal to Canadian leaders in all spheres of life: do not be a bystander. We call on the Canadian government to use all its resources and influence to stop this! Canada should not enable what’s happening in Gaza. Call for Israel to stop the bombing of Gaza. Call for an immediate ceasefire, and the return of all the Israeli hostages. Engage in a real process to address the long-standing oppression and deprivation of rights of the Palestinian people – that’s the only viable path for a real, just peace..."
Statement issued by the Middle East Council of Churches About the war of extermination against the Palestinian people in Gaza
It is no longer a secret to everyone that what the Palestinian people are exposed to in Gaza is not a military reaction to a military action, but rather a genocide and ethnic cleansing, targeting the detainees of the largest prison in human history, and with a premeditation.
What is happening on the land of Gaza in terms of scorched earth practices, and the burning of those on it, has deviated from all logic, divine and human law, as even wars have controls defined by international treaties and conventions.
Attacking defenseless civilians, including the sick and those with special needs, as well as children, women and the elderly, destroying infrastructure and the medical system, killing medical staff and journalists, and cutting off water, supplies and medicines from a community consisting of two and a half million people, can only be described as a crime against humanity.
The Middle East Council of Churches, whose membership includes all the churches of the region, and whose development institutions are spread throughout the entire territory of Palestine and the map of Palestinian displacement, calls on the international community, including international institutions concerned with human rights, childhood and civilian protection, and calls on all honorable people in the world, to take the appropriate position and to proceed with the appropriate steps immediately, the first of which is stopping the aggression against Gaza, lifting the siege and opening the crossings. We raise prayers for the comfort of the souls of those who died, for the healing of the wounded and sick, and for peace to prevail in the world.
This crime cannot pass without accountability. Rather, the international position and its effects must be binding to those who insulted human dignity and did not care about human life or safety. If humanity as a whole does not act immediately and in an appropriate manner, this crime will remain a stain of shame on the forehead of humanity forever.
Thanks to our government's unwavering support for "democracy" and "self-defence," 4,079 Palestinians have been killed, including 1,413 children and 806 women. Moreover, 52,000 housing units are now destroyed or severely damaged by Israeli democratic airstrikes.
And, of course, who to blame for Israel's crimes? The victims, who else? Listen to the thugs in suits in the political sphere and the media.
Food, Water, and electricity are still blocked, and people haven't died from starvation yet, so why should Canada pressure the Israeli government? No, no, we should only nicely ask Israel (without naming it) to abide by international law during its perpetration of genocide!
What we are witnessing is an illustration of the colonial mind.
Because it is a genocidal war ...Open Letter: Sociologists in Solidarity with Gaza (475 sociologists, so far)
"We cannot sit back and witness the continuation of this genocidal war. We demand that our governments push for an immediate ceasefire. This stance follows in the tradition of the civil rights movement, anti-war and anti-apartheid protests of decades past. Aligning ourselves with these freedom struggles, we call on all of our colleagues to stand in solidarity with Palestinians and against settler colonialism, imperialism, and genocide."
Listen to how Palestinian voices are silenced in news from a professional journalist Ginella Massa
Statement of 2000 members of the University of Toronto in Response to University of Toronto VP-International’s “Message to the Community on the War in the Middle East”
"we..... have three significant concerns about the University’s statement:
This statement mentioned only the attacks on Israeli civilians. It did not acknowledge the latest militarised violence enacted upon Palestinian civilians, which at the time of the statement had already seen renewed bombarding of Gaza neighbourhoods, as well as the Israeli decision on October 8th to disconnect Gaza's access to water, electricity, fuel, food and humanitarian aid...
The statement failed to acknowledge the brutal, untenable conditions that Israel has long imposed on Palestinians, which have been decried specifically as crimes of apartheid and oppression by major human rights authorities including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner. The events of the past week are a direct result of these ongoing conditions, and by failing to provide this context, the University has contributed to the villainization of Palestinians.
A statement on events in Israel-Palestine was only made when there was a mass attack on Israelis. However, Gaza has been subjected to a 17-year blockade, as well as multiple Israeli bombardments resulting in large numbers of civilian deaths:
2008 - 1,385 Palestinians killed, including 318 children
2012 - 168 Palestinians killed, including 33 children
2014 - 2,251 Palestinians killed, including over 1,500 children
2018 - 214 Palestinians killed, including 46 children
2021 - 230 Palestinians killed, including 67 children
(Source: Visualizing Palestine)
Furthermore, the ongoing Israeli occupation commits daily acts of violence against Palestinians, including the killing of civilians, infliction of life-altering injuries, sexual violence, house demolition, and arbitrary detention.
These atrocities received no comparable statement of support from the President’s Office or International Office.
We, the undersigned, decry and mourn the loss of civilian lives, Palestinian and Israeli. We ask that Palestinians’ lives, traumas, and families be valued by the University of Toronto equally with Jewish people and other equity-deserving groups." (end of quote)
The extent of repression of free expression is demonstrated by a warning at the end of the letter "We recommend that signees carefully consider the potential risks of signing this letter with their full names, as there are documented patterns of retaliation against individuals who advocate for Palestinian human rights. Signees are invited to sign using a descriptor instead of a name if they wish and to make their affiliation to UofT clear (whether student, staff, faculty, donor or alum)."
More than 2000 Artists and Academics in Canada in Support of Palestine. You can add yours using this form...