Letter from Eran Efrait – a Veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces

Jewish Voice for Peace

Peace Camp

Letter from Eran Efrait – a Veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces

Dear Nancy,

My name is Eran Efrati, I am Jewish, a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces, and a 7th generation Jerusalemite.

What I’ve seen in Israel over the last few weeks is beyond anything I have witnessed in my life.

I’ve seen terrified Palestinian children in Hebron and Halhul, sitting on the ruins of their homes.

I’ve seen mobs in the street chanting “death to Arabs” and pulling out Palestinian men from their stores to beat them as other Israelis stood idly by. I’ve seen soldiers lined up at the Gaza border, ready at a moment’s notice to invade.

And now, like you, I’ve seen the climbing death toll in Gaza, over 80 dead and some 500 injured –all by Israeli missiles, with no end in site.

As much as it pains me to say it, I don’t think I can do a lot about it, but I believe you can.

American voices – and especially Jewish American ones – are probably the most critical voices in the world right now.

We need you to tell us – Israeli politicians, the Israeli media, Israeli society – that you can’t support this. That you can’t support human rights violations. That you can’t support racism. That you won’t support the idea that Jewish lives matter more than Palestinian lives.

We know the roots of this are long and deep. But the truth behind this latest assault has finally coming: the Israeli government lied, and created this situation.

For weeks, the government knew that the three kidnapped teenagers were dead. But they instituted a gag order on the media, lied to Israelis and the world, and falsely claimed the mass arrests and collective punishment of Palestinians was all in the hopes of finding the teenagers alive.

In other words, their chosen response was to kidnap the mind of an entire country.

From the very beginning, this has been about punishing Palestinians. From the beginning, the government has been wiling to manipulate and use its own people for that goal.

Years of occupying the Palestinian people have produced values of vengeance in the place of the Jewish values of human life and equality.

Overhead, I hear airplanes headed to Gaza all day long, and I know there’s nothing I can do to stop them. And now we all know the lengths they’ve gone to justify this attack, and how fully Israeli society has bought into it. And I don’t think we can stop it from within.

But I think you can.

Please join me and sign this Open Letter now – if they get another 10,000 signatures, Jewish Voice for Peace will take out ads in Haaretz and the Jewish Forward with our message. We oppose the occupation, the bloodshed, the privileging of Jewish lives over others lives:

http://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16061

 

Eran Efrati

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Jewish Voice for Peace

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We Must Face the Root Cause of this Crisis – Jewish Voice For Peace

Jewish Voice for Peacehttp://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/

 Palestinian,Israeli children

 We Must Face the Root Cause of this Crisis.

Rebecca Vilkomerson

Executive Director

 

The last 24 hours have been devastating. The weeks leading up to it have been

horrifying.

 

We have watched with sadness and anger as the deaths of children have mounted,

racist mobs have rampaged, the fears of people throughout both Israel and Palestine

have reached unbearable levels, and the collective punishment of the Palestinian

people has intensified.

 

We can not wait one more moment to speak up.

Please join me in signing this urgent Open Letter that says:

Only by ending the occupation and embracing equality can this terrible bloodshed end.

Click here: [

http://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16061 ]

 

We are obligated at this moment — as Jews and as human beings — to be clear about

the roots of this violence. So when we reach 18,000 signatures, we’ll publish the

letter in “Ha’aretz” and “The Forward”.

 

Where our leaders have so thoroughly refused that truth, we must stand up together

and say:* *our unshakeable belief in justice compels us to acknowledge that the root

of this violence lies in the Israeli government’s commitment to occupation over the

well-being of Palestinians or Israelis.

 

In just the last two days, scores of Palestinians–with no place to hide–have been

killed, while the entire population of Gaza experiences the terror of widespread

bombing. Israelis have had to endure the fear of never knowing when or where the

next rocket will fall.

 

We must speak up now.

Please join me and sign this urgent Open Letter that says, the occupation must end.

Click here to sign: [

http://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16061 ] And

forward this to your friends so they do the same.

 

None of this should be happening. As we mourn all who have died, we reaffirm that

all Israelis and Palestinians deserve security, justice, and equality.

 

The occupation, with US military and financial support, is the root cause. And it

systematically denies the very humanity of Arabs, while valuing Jewish lives at the

expense of others.

 

Anti-Palestinian bigotry is not only acceptable but a powerful political tool in

Israel. Long before this latest escalation, everyday life for Palestinians meant

increasing numbers of settlements taking over their lands and homes, and a web of

violence and control which reached into every area of life, simply because they are

not Jewish. The recent and very public violence against Palestinians in the streets

of Jerusalem and elsewhere did not happen in a vacuum.

 

Enough is enough. Israeli and US leaders need to know we are not going away. We will

hold them accountable.

 

Those few Israelis who are bravely speaking out against their governments’ inhumane

policies need to know that they have our support. Those Palestinians who are under

daily assault need to know that we see them.

 

As part of a vast network of people across the globe, we have more power than we may think. But we have to take action.

Sincerely,

Rebecca Vilkomerson

Executive Director

 

A SHORT ANIMATED VIDEO EXPLAINING THE CONFLICT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y58njT2oXfE

 

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https://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/salsa/donation/common/public/?donate_page_KEY=140

]

Contact Info:

Jewish Voice for Peace

1611 Telegraph Ave, Suite 550

Oakland, CA 94612

510.465.1777

info@jewishvoiceforpeace.org [ mailto:info@jewishvoiceforpeace.org ]

 

Connect with Us:

Become a 2014 JVP Member [ http://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/join ] | Facebook [

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/JewishVoiceforPeace?ref=ts ] | Twitter [

http://twitter.com/jvplive ] | Forward [

mailto:Enter+email+address+here?subject=FWD%3A+Check+This+Out&body=I+thought+you+might+be+interested+in+this+message+http%3A%2F%2Fhq-org.salsalabs.com%2FblastContent.jsp%3Femail_blast_KEY%3D1302362  ]

 

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