July 22, 2006
Dear Leslie Kielson,
Dear Judith Le Blanc,
UFPJ National Co-chairperson
Thank you for your message. Even though I don’t live in your country anymore I am glad to receive your e-mails; it’s a good way to keep in touch with "the largest antiwar coalition in the United States".
I am not a US citizen but since the American Empire is keeping the world under its boots, I hope you will take the time to read what I have to say.
In your e-mail you remind your supporters of the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan’s call for an immediate ceasefire. Immediately after you have the impudence to write: "Yesterday, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki condemned the Israeli aggression and called on the world to take action".
Among all the heads of States and Governments you could mention [the entire world but the Axis Washington – London – Tel Aviv] why did you choose the PUPPET Prime Minister of Occupied Iraq?
Your organization wrote a letter to "Dear Ambassador Bolton", the US Ambassador to the UN. In this letter, you write: "we want to express our concern over the escalating crisis between Israel, Lebanon, and Palestine". Which "crisis" are you talking about? There is NO "crisis", as all the world but United for Peace and Justice has far too well understood.
Your letter to "Dear Ambassador Bolton" continues: "We are gravely concerned about the loss of life on all sides. We condemn all attacks on civilians, and call for the release of political prisoners and POWs held on all sides in this conflict." A masterpiece of hypocrisy.
Israel has been attacking civilians in Palestine since even before the State of Israel came to existence. Its "political aim is nothing less than the liquidation of the Palestinian nation" as John Berger, Noam Chomsky, Harold Pinter and José Saramago recently wrote. To use a more common word, GENOCIDE.
Your letter continues: "Hezbollah's crossing of the Israeli border to capture two soldiers may have violated the 1949 Armistice between Israel and Lebanon." Spreading Israeli propaganda must be the main goal of United for Peace and Justice. The two Israeli soldiers were captured in Lebanon and the "cross-border operation" is just another myth coming directly from Tel Aviv.
But who cares for the truth when printing propaganda is much easier and far more convenient?
Yes, I read in your letter the words "international Law" many times. So much nobility! But what does "international Law" exactly mean for United for Peace and Justice, an organization that sees the Democratic Party of Hilary Clinton as its own natural harbour? Your heroine recently said: "I fully support Israel's right to defend itself."
Have you sent a copy of your letter to Lady Clinton and all the other pro-Israeli Democratic members of the Congress as well? Or didn’t you have enough envelopes?
Salim Lone, a former spokesman for the UN mission in Iraq wrote today on the Guardian:
"Kofi Annan finally made the headlines yesterday with his call for an immediate ceasefire in the Middle East crisis. It was too little, too late. That the United Nations secretary general waited nine days before seriously speaking out has dealt a severe blow to the organisation's humanitarian image. That he twinned his criticism of Israel's "excessive use of force" with repeated condemnations of Hizbullah again showed how deeply in thrall to the US the world is. (…) Another victim of this new war is the UN, whose standing in the Arab and Muslim world is already deeply fractured. Annan apart, it was astonishing to see his Middle East envoy, Terje Roed-Larsen, declare, as destruction rained down on the Lebanese and Gazans, that he agreed with Israel that conditions were not yet ripe for a ceasefire. Such a public disavowal of the organisation's primary humanitarian and protection mandates represents a new low in its moral standing. Thus far Britain has supported the US occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan - the current crisis has made Britain an indispensable player in the making of the new order that the US and Israel seek. Such a frontline role has obvious advantages in a world with a single superpower - but Britain's dramatic shift from a moderate postcolonial role and its distance from mainstream Europe carry great perils."
Quite different from the letter (and the spirit!) of "the largest antiwar coalition in the United States".
Your letter to "Dear Ambassador Bolton" ends with a prophecy: "We look forward to hearing your response."
You may read the "response" from your beloved New York Times’ pages: "The Bush administration is rushing a delivery of precision-guided bombs to Israel, which requested the expedited shipment last week after beginning its air campaign against Hezbollah targets in Lebanon, American officials said Friday."
But as tradition wants, you left the best for the end: "Help us continue to do this critical work: Make a donation to UFPJ today."
One of the most ugly faces of this bloody Empire is mirrored in the so-called "anti-war movement". Just to be clear, there is NO anti-war movement as such. The oppressed victims fight the real struggle for peace and justice wherever the Empire strikes. There is then an international, diverse galaxy of different, independent subjects, more or less organized, moved by solidarity, compassion and an inner drive for justice.
Even though too often it represents an obstacle for a more effective organizing, the diversity of opinions, ideas and tactics is the real wealth we all should seriously defend against the old danger of authoritarian ideologies and vertical structures.
However this shouldn’t prevent us to speak out when "peace and justice" become a business that has nothing to do with the oppressed victims’ struggle and all to do instead with the acquisition of privileges and power that neutralizes real dissent and block change.
"Please forward widely", you wrote at the top of your email. That’s what I am doing.
Thank you for your time.
From: UFPJ Action Alerts
Sent: 20 July 2006 22:59:42
To: Gabriele Zamparini
Subject: Emergency Letter to Bolton on Lebanon & Gaza -- UPDATE
** Please forward widely**
As talk of a full scale Israeli ground invasion of begins, it’s even more important that we take action to save lives now. At a meeting of the Security Council today, United Nations General Secretary Kofi Annan called for an "immediate cessation of hostilities and a far greater and more credible effort by Israel to protect civilians and infrastructure." He reported that over 300 Lebanese have been killed and more than 600 wounded -- mainly civilians, about one third of them children.
Yesterday, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki condemned the Israeli aggression and called on the world to take action. Today, a peace action was called in Beirut by women's groups and other non-governmental organizations, while the Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora said his country has been "torn to shreds."
Our voices must be raised to end the Bush administration’s stonewalling at the U.N.!
We want to thank those who have responded by signing onto the letter and others who have sent in suggestions for how to strengthen it. Please review the updated version below. If you or your organization have not signed on, please do. If you signed on to the draft letter yesterday, please contact us to confirm your signature.
The deadline for having your organization’s name on the letter is Friday, July 21, at 12 Noon EDT. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to have your organization listed. For more information, call the UFPJ national office at 212-868-5545.
Please join United for Peace and Justice and other peace and justice activists to deliver the letter on Friday, July 21, at 4 PM. We will meet at the U.S. Mission to the U.N. at 140 East 45th Street (between Third and Lexington Avenues).
We call for the Bush administration to:
Support a Security Council resolution calling for an immediate and unconditional cease-fire.
Urge negotiations now to resolve all disputes, including the release of prisoners on all sides, with the goal being a comprehensive just and lasting peace in the region based on the implementation of international law.
Put an end to US blocking of UN action to resolve the crisis.
Judith Le Blanc
UFPJ National Co-chairperson
Dear Ambassador Bolton,
On behalf of United for Peace and Justice (UFPJ), the largest antiwar coalition in the United States, we want to express our concern over the escalating crisis between Israel, Lebanon, and Palestine and urge you to support a Security Council resolution calling for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire.
We are gravely concerned about the loss of life on all sides. We condemn all attacks on civilians, and call for the release of political prisoners and POWs held on all sides in this conflict.
Hezbollah's crossing of the Israeli border to capture two soldiers may have violated the 1949 Armistice between Israel and Lebanon. But it is important to note that Hezbollah attacked soldiers, not civilians. In addition, as the New York Times recognized on July 19, Hezbollah did not fire rockets into Israeli cities until after the Israeli army began bombing civilian areas of Lebanon.
The Israeli government could have chosen to engage in serious negotiations for a prisoner exchange, as they have so many times before. As recently as 2004, in a German-orchestrated swap, Hezbollah exchanged a kidnapped Israeli civilian and the remains of several Israeli soldiers killed in combat in Lebanon, for over 400 Palestinian, Lebanese, and other Arab prisoners.
Instead, the Israeli government chose to escalate what would have remained one of many common border skirmishes into a war. They have been deliberately shelling civilian areas and civilian infrastructure in both Lebanon and Gaza. Israel's attacks were and are clearly disproportionate in their use of force. They constitute acts of collective punishment against the Lebanese and Palestinian populations -- extremely serious violations of international law.
While the world is crying out for global intervention to stop the bloodshed, we are outraged by the response of the Bush administration. Instead of using its influence on Israel to stop the devastating attacks on the Lebanese and Palestinian populations, Washington has supported and enabled such attacks through supplying war planes, missiles, jet fuel, financing, and political support. This, in violation of both international and domestic law -- specifically, the U.S. Arms Export Control Act. And instead of rallying the international community to stop further bloodshed, it has blocked UN efforts to call for an immediate ceasefire.
We urgently call on the Bush administration to work with international partners to broker an immediate and unconditional ceasefire and commence negotiations to peacefully resolve all aspects of the crisis, with the goal being a comprehensive just and lasting peace in the region based on the implementation of international law.
We look forward to hearing your response.
Help us continue to do this critical work: Make a donation to UFPJ today.
ACTION ALERT * UNITED FOR PEACE AND JUSTICE
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