Re: Israel/Palestine. We Must Not Remain Silent. Support Rep. McCollum and Rep. Newman’s initiatives

May 13, 2021 | PDA News

In solidarity,
Alan Minsky for the PDA National Team

We Must Not Remain Silent

American citizens are not neutral observers in the Israel/Palestine conflict, which tragically re-ignited into a violent conflict this past week. As citizens in a democracy, Americans are responsible for our government’s actions. Currently, U.S. funding and weaponry bolsters the Israeli government.

As bad as the past 75 years have been, in recent years the Israeli government has increasingly adopted, and put into practice, Jim Crow-like racist policies towards Israeli Arab citizens and the Palestinian people – and yet U.S. dollars continue to flow to Israel.

Our commitment to human rights and justice demands that we not sit idly by – and there are actions that we can take that will make an impact.

Therefore, we call upon all PDA supporters and activists to support Rep. Betty McCollum’s Bill H.R. 2590 by calling your Member of Congress at 202-224-3121 and asking them to become a cosponsor.

H.R. 2590 promotes and protects the human rights of Palestinians living under Israeli military occupation and ensures that United States taxpayer funds are not used by the Government of Israel to support the military detention of Palestinian children, the unlawful seizure, appropriation, and destruction of Palestinian property and forcible transfer of civilians in the West Bank, or further annexation of Palestinian land in violation of international law.

Furthermore, we applaud and support the initiative taken by Rep. Marie Newman, who in a recent letter to the Biden Administration made four simple, and essential, demands:

1) Immediately send the strongest possible diplomatic message to Israel to desist from its plans to demolish Palestinian homes in Al-Bustan and evict Palestinians from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah; 

2) Publicly reiterate that U.S. policy opposes Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem and that East Jerusalem is Occupied Territory under international law;

3) Undertake an expeditious review of previous Congressional requests that the State Department investigate whether Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes with U.S. weapons violates the Arms Export Control Act (AECA);

4) If Israel proceeds with its plans to demolish Palestinian homes in Al-Bustan and evict Palestinian residents from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah, then the U.S. Embassy to Israel should send observers to document Israel’s forced displacement of Palestinians, including details on the military units involved in these operations and the usage of any U.S. weapons for purposes of oversight and accountability regarding Leahy Law and AECA violations.

When you call 202-224-3121 to ask your congressperson to co-sponsor H.R. 2590, we encourage you to also ask them to sign onto Rep. Newman’s letter, as well.

Please let us know when you’ve made your call.

Thank you so much for your efforts for peace and justice.