“Israel Genocide?” statement in response to the United Nations Human Rights​ “Report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict” and call to action

The United Nations Human Rights “Report of the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict” has been released and the word genocide appears only once, to define what an International Crime is.

Even though the numbers speak for themselves, the treatment of the occupying army and the population it besieges as some kind of equals, with equal responsibility and military ability, in this report is glaring. We feel that the report, while detailing Israel’s individual war crimes, both in the Gaza Strip and in the West Bank, during Israel’s attack last summer, intentionally glosses over the context of 68 years of colonization and its subsequent on-going genocidal effects.

A crime of this magnitude- which lasted 51 consecutive days and resulted in the extermination of 89 whole families and the deaths of scores of others, and in devastating damage to civilian property and infrastructure in the context of Israel’s ever-tightening de-facto stranglehold on Palestinian land and lives and infinitely superior fire-power- cannot be assessed under the laws of war, but under the laws of genocide. We appeal to the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, Adama Dieng, and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda to investigate the possibility that Israel is committing the crime of genocide against the Palestinian people.

We also call on each and every one of you, who agree with our appeal, to send this email below to the relevant offices. Seeing this report, we cannot stress enough the importance of such civil society action. Please help us preasure the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the ICC Prosecutor. Together we will end Israel’s genocide of the Palestinian people.

UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor: Investigate the Possibility that Israel is Committing the Crime of Genocide Against the Palestinian People

To UN Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and ICC prosecutor,

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2,391 signatures

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Letter of Support from the BDS National Committee (BNC) for the Israel Genocide? Campaign

19 Jan 2015

Dear friends, organizers of the Israel Genocide? Campaign,

The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) welcomes and supports your initiative to encourage people worldwide to write to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, and demand that the UN conduct an enquiry into the possibility that Israel may have committed the crime of genocide against the Palestinian people and publish its findings and recommendations.

Continue reading

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UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor: Investigate the Possibility that Israel is Committing the Crime of Genocide Against the Palestinian People

Click to take action right now and demand the U.N. Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor investigate Israel for the possibility of the Crime of Genocide

The Crime of Genocide is defined in a declaration made by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its resolution 96 (I) dated 11 December 1946:

Article 1

The Contracting Parties confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish.

Article 2

In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

(a) Killing members of the group;
(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

Article 3

The following acts shall be punishable:

(a) Genocide;
(b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;
(c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;
(d) Attempt to commit genocide;
(e) Complicity in genocide.

Article 4

Persons committing genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in Article 3 shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals.

We are people from all around the world who fear that we are witnessing the genocide of the Palestinian people by the State of Israel. Witnessing Israel’s daily violations of Palestinian human rights- military take-over of land, restriction of movement, economic strangulation, house demolitions, restrictions on basic foodstuff, mass arbitrary arrests of both adults and children, torture, extra judicial executions, and large-scale massacres of whole families, openly calling for genocide and extermination by law makers and other public figures- we can not keep silent about this 67 year-old atrocity, unfolding before our eyes.

We demand the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor take action and investigate the possibility that Israel is committing the Crime of Genocide against the Palestinian People, and that the office publish its findings and recommendations.

Please see our call to action and act now.

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Colonial Slow Genocide: Palestinian Leader Abbas asks Britain for “Balfour” Apology by Juan Cole

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

On the occasion of this entirely justified demand by Palestine, I’ll share a couple of my posts that delve into the significance of that declaration, which led to settler-colonialism in the British Mandate of Palestine and to the current Apartheid state in Israel-Palestine and the statelessness and oppression at the hands of Israelis of millions of Palestinians. This extended colonialism is unparalleled in the whole world: no other colonial power now existing is keeping millions stateless and without the right to have rights.

Continue reading at http://www.juancole.com/2016/09/colonial-genocide-palestinian.html

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Annie Baker, Kathleen Chalfant, Tonya Pinkins Sign Black Lives Matter Protest Letter by Playbill

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

“Opposition to Israeli government policies is not anti-semitism, and the conflation of those two things has terrible consequences,” Tony nominee Kathleen Chalfant said in a statement. “It impedes, perhaps fatally, the search for just and humane solutions in Israel/Palestine and is now interfering in the search for social justice here in America. We have a moral obligation to stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter and the Palestinian rights movement in their struggle for freedom, justice and equality.”

In addition to Chalfant and Pinkins, signees include Justin Vivian Bond, Wallace Shawn, Alice Walker, Naomi Wallace, Annie Baker and Sarah Ruhl.

The letter reads:

We, the undersigned, are deeply disturbed and disappointed by Feinstein’s/54 Below’s decision to cancel a scheduled benefit concert for Black Lives Matter. This decision, ostensibly due to “a recent addition to the BLM platform that accuses Israel of genocide and endorses a range of boycott and sanction actions,” both undermines the visionary leadership of the Movement for Black Lives and contributes to the institutionalized silencing of advocates for Palestinian human rights.

Continue reading at http://www.playbill.com/article/annie-baker-kathleen-chalfant-tonya-pinkins-sign-black-lives-matter-protest-letter

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NYC City Council attempt to stifle BDS backfires on Workers World

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

“What New Yorkers should be very concerned about is not only that their representatives are organizing an effort to impinge on their constituents’ right to free speech, free thought and association, but that they’re doing so at the behest of a government currently being investigated for genocide, war crimes and apartheid,” said Lamis Deek, a human rights attorney and member of Al-Awda New York.

Continue reading at http://www.workers.org/2016/09/15/nyc-city-council-attempt-to-stifle-bds-backfires/#.V-pCr5N971I

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Attorneys Level Charges Of Genocide As Israel’s Impunity Continues by Joe Catron

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

Katherine Franke, director of Columbia Law School’s Center for Gender and Sexuality Law, faculty director of its Public Rights/Private Conscience Project, and chair of CCR’s board of directors, was the primary author of the legal analysis.

The document applies the convention to not only Israel’s repeated military operations against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, but also Israel’s protracted occupation of Gaza and the West Bank (the effects of which it calls “incremental genocide”), Israel’s expulsion and killing of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians during its founding in 1948, and racist incitement against Palestinians by Israeli government officials.

“Persons that can be prosecuted for genocide include ‘constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials and private individuals,’ and according to the terms of the Genocide Convention they can be tried by the International Criminal Court, other international tribunals (such as the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda for Yugoslavia), [or] any court in the country or territory of which the act was committed,” Franke said.

“The crime of genocide is also understood according to customary international law to create universal jurisdiction, meaning that cases can be filed anywhere in the world, and are not limited to the territory where the conduct took place.”

While avoiding direct accusations, the briefing concludes that charges of genocide against Israel are hardly new in international legal circles:

“Prominent human rights advocates and scholars have argued that the killings of Palestinians and their forceful expulsion from mandate Palestine in 1948, the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, and the violence and discrimination directed at Palestinians by the Israeli government have violated a number of human rights protections contained in international human rights law, genocide being among them.”

Continue reading at https://www.mintpressnews.com/attorneys-level-charges-genocide-israels-impunity-continues/220299/

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We’re Jewish Student Activists and We Don’t Need To Be Protected From BDS by Julia Berkman-Hill and Joshua Leifer

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

Kogen also makes the argument that Jews should put support for Israel before support for groups that are critical of Israel, most notably Black Lives Matter. But we cannot shirk our obligation to fight for racial justice because of objections to the words “genocide” and “apartheid.” Though we should have a conversation about those words, we must demonstrate our commitment to black and brown lives, Jewish or not. Arguing that Jews should inherently choose Israel over other issues, such as racial justice, erases the lived experience of black Jews for whom supporting and participating in Black Lives Matter is a matter of survival.

What’s more, we will not be able to participate in social justice work with our full selves until we address the injustice that our own community perpetuates. If we are silent, or perceived as silent, about the time and money our community spends justifying the destruction of Palestinian lives, why should anyone take us seriously when we say black lives matter?

Continue reading at http://forward.com/opinion/349628/were-jewish-student-activists-and-we-dont-need-to-be-protected-from-bds/

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Sailing for freedom and solidarity by Marilyn Porter

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

In 1943 Polish-Jewish legal scholar Raphael Lemkin defined genocide as “not necessarily signify[ing] mass killings,” but more often referring “to a coordinated plan aimed at destruction of the essential foundations of the life of national groups so that these groups wither and die like plants that have suffered a blight.

“The end may be accomplished by the forced disintegration of political and social institutions, of the culture of the people, of their language, their national feelings and their religion,” he continued. “It may be accomplished by wiping out all basis of personal security, liberty, health and dignity.”

Today the United Nations accepts genocide to mean “any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”

It is hard not to see the incessant incursions and harassment, the settlements and the enforcement of illegal blockades as anything else but an attempt at the forced disintegration of Gaza.

Continue reading at http://theindependent.ca/2016/09/10/sailing-for-freedom-and-solidarity/

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