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Stop Israel's terror, and Harper's complicity


July 18, 2014

The ground invasion of Gaza has begun, and is expected to be a bloody. Already before the invasion Israel has killed more than 275 Palestinians, most of them civilians.
 
The Israeli government and their willing supporters in the corporate media say that they had no choice because Hamas rejected an Egyptian brokered ceasefire agreement.
 
The phony cease-fire offer
The reality is that Hamas was never consulted about that agreement. What was offered by the Western-backed Egyptian dictatorship was a continuation of the status quo: a slow and agonizing death for the more than one million people trapped in Gaza. The conditions set by Hamas were not considered in this proposal. They include such basic terms as opening Gaza's borders to allow free flow of goods and medicines and UN oversight for both borders and an open port.  
 
These conditions fly in the face of Israeli ambitions to perpetually control the occupied territories. At a Knesset meeting in January of this year, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that there was no solution to the occupation of Palestine.  According to Haaretz he said, “I don’t want a binational state, and I don’t want them (Palestinians) as either citizens or subjects...Currently, we have no solution.”
 
He has no solution because he cannot openly declare that Israel has no intention of giving up the occupied territories. That would be a disaster internationally and would expose his lack of desire for peace.
 
The supposed peace deal as proposed would have allowed Israel to continue to act with impunity. Over the past decade more than 7,000 Palestinains have been killed in what the UN describes as “combat” deaths. Many more have died as a result of an embargo on basic food and medicines. There is chronic starvation in Gaza and very little water for civilians.
 
Israel is using this current attack as a means of squeezing the territory even harder. The Israeli military has bombed civilian infrastructure, from wells to electricity grids, in direct violation of international law. According to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, the bombings, “have caused serious damage to civilian infrastructure including homes, schools, sports facilities and a hospital in many parts of Gaza City.”
 
BDS
The US and Canadian governments remain steadfastly supportive of Israel’s right to kill civilians in densely populated areas. They will remain supporters of the killing as long as it supports their own imperial ambitions. Israel is the watchdog in the region which can be relied upon to discipline the Arab populations if they ever try to throw off the shackles of imperialism.
 
But for the imperial powers this support is becoming increasingly difficult to justify. The campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions on Israel has been exposing the brutality of the Israeli state. The ongoing and illegal building of settlements is decried internationally. In fact, the EU has recently placed sanctions on funding and trade with the settlements.
 
The Israeli state is delegitimizing itself with each new round of barbarity. The attack this week that killed four children playing soccer happened just outside a series of hotels that house most foreign journalists. For a brief moment, the veil of censorship was lifted and people could see the reality of this attack.
 
Stop Harper’s complicity
This has made supporters of Israel nervous. In Canada it has meant an unprecedented show of support from the government benches. The conservative party even had their own minister of foreign affairs speak at a pro-Israel rally on Parliament hill.
 
It remains the task of the people across Canada to push our politicians away from this blanket support for Israel. Each party leader seems intent on supporting the killing of Palestinians. Mulcair's shameful silence has allowed Harper (with Trudeau's support) to speak unopposed in support of Israel's war crimes. We have begun to see some NDP MPs calling for an end to the invasion, but we need far more.
 
We need to build the mobilizations as large as possible, to force MPs to speak out against Israel’s war crimes—including the siege on Gaza and occupation of Palestine—and to stop Canadian complicity with Israel’s terror.
 
There are 17 mobilizations across the country this weekend. Visit www.canadianpeace.org/gaza-solidarity for more information.

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