As Israel's war on the occupied Gaza Strip nears two weeks in duration, Palestinians casualties continue to mount at a horrific rate.According to medics, Israel has killed nearly 800 Palestinians and wounded more than 3,000-all with U.S. weapons provided by U.S. taxpayers in violation of U.S. law.
Last night, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1860 by a vote of 14-0 with the United States abstaining.The resolution calls for an "immediate, durable and fully respected ceasefire, leading to the full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza" and for "unimpeded provision and distribution throughout Gaza of humanitarian assistance, including of food, fuel and medical treatment".
Although the White House reportedly overruled the State Department and changed the U.S. vote from "yes" to "abstain", this vote is a clear indication that our collective pressure is being heeded and we are forcing a change in U.S. policy.Keep in mind that for the first ten days or so of Israel's war on Gaza, both President Bush and Secretary of State Rice urged a conditional, non-immediate ceasefire that has allowed Israel to continue its killing of Palestinians.
Now, we need to demand from our Members of Congress, the State Department, White House, and the Obama Transition Team the immediate implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1860.
Israel already has rejected the Security Council Resolution and is continuing its deadly attacks on and siege of Palestinians in the occupied Gaza Strip. An immediate ceasefire is the best way to protect all civilians.Because Israel is defying the will of the Security Council, the United States must impose an immediate arms embargo on Israel until the resolution is implemented, just as President Eisenhower did when Israel invaded Egypt in 1956.The United States must also investigate Israel's misuse of U.S. weapons in violation of the Arms Export Control Act as demanded by Rep. Dennis Kucinich, and impose the sanctions that are required by law on countries that violate this law.
TAKE ACTION NOW 1. Call your Representative now at 202-224-3121and tell them to vote "NO" on H.Res.34 and instead support UN Security Council Resolution 1860 which calls for an immediate ceasefire and humanitarian access.Earlier this morning, the House of Representative debated this resolution "recognizing Israel's right to defend itself against attacks from Gaza" but has yet to vote on it.To watch the debate, click here and then on the segment that begins with Rep. Berman at 9:15am.Congress is expected to vote on the resolution later today, so call now.
2. Contact Congress, the State Department, the White House, and Obama Transition Team and demand an immediate arms embargo on Israel and full and immediate implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1860.Send a letter by clicking here and register your opinion on the Obama Transition Team's website by clicking here.
3. Take your demands to the street.Many protests are scheduled across the country this weekend.Attend one near you or organize one yourself.For the latest protest information, check our calendar for frequent updates by clicking here.
Join in with many others who are taking action to end Israel's war on and siege of Palestinians in the occupied Gaza Strip.Download educational resources, find action ideas, sign up to help us organize, and more by clicking here.
Thank you for all that you are doing.Our collective pressure is working.We need to step it up!