By Scott Steward
There have been multiple events, locally and regionally, voicing support for an end to violence in Israel and Palestine. These voices are American voices. These Americans do not agree with the unwavering support of Israel's government, and they have all condemned the killing of innocent civilians.
The recent conflict was sparked on October 7 by Hamas firing thousands of rockets toward southern and central Israel in conjunction with Hamas militants, many on motorcycles, who stormed blockaded areas of the Gaza Strip, shooting at Jewish settlers and slaughtering people at kibbutzim and small towns, reportedly taking Israeli citizens as hostages (source). Israel has retaliated with massive airstrikes; Palestinian civilians have also been killed.
Last Saturday ten thousand people marched through San Francisco to demand an end to the genocide in Gaza and support the Palestinian people in their struggle against apartheid and occupation.
On October 18th several community and campus organizations hosted an Emergency Teach In: Palestine Now that was a standing room only event in Young Hall.
The voices at these rallies all want Israel to exist in harmony. The dominant message peace and freedom for all. Ultimately it is up to Israeli's and Palestinians and the nations around them to sort out peace. Our government needs to stop contributing to the long festering conflict. Current policy asks us to reinforce Zionistic goals of racial/religious dominance, and this has greatly reinforced extremism at home.
We should not be offering the far-right government of Israel unwavering support. Palestinians are human beings who have the right to self-determination too. Hamas does not speak to the majority of Palestinians. Hamas is the organization that Netanyahu's government chose to support in 2014 over the more civil Palestinian Authority. Hamas was a fringe organization bent on terrorizing Israelis prior to Zionist support.
In 2019, Netanyahu was quoted as saying that "those who oppose a Palestinian state should support the transfer of funds to Gaza, because maintaining the separation between the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas in Gaza would prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state."
Neither the current government of Israel nor Hamas are sincerely interested in a peaceful coexistence. We say stop. No more money for guns and weapons and we will make peace with our secular and religious Arab brothers and sisters.
As a continuation of voices against enabling hostilities in Israel and Palestine, the Davis Peace and Justice Network will be holding a peaceful demonstration in front of congressional representative Mike Thompson's office on Tuesday October 26th at 4:30 pm until 6:00 pm. We are asking Mike Thompson to de-escalate Israeli-Hamas hostilities and to condition further support of Israel on substantial recognition of Palestinian human rights and lands.