Some people have put together a powerful petition
calling for an end to the attacks on people working for justice in Palestine.
We feel this is an extremely important project and hope a great many people will sign it.
In our view it is crucial to demonstrate that those who care about
peace and justice wish these damaging and divisive campaigns to come to
an end, and that groups instead focus on their real missions.
The signatories include many highly respected and committed individuals, including:
Professor of International Law Emeritus, Princeton University, and
former Special Rapporteur on Occupied Palestine, UN Human Rights
founding member of the board of Trustees of Birzeit University and
Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Centre, author, “Reflections from
Palestine: A Journey of Hope” (descendant of Birzeit University
retired US Army Colonel and former US diplomat turned peace activist;
passenger on 2010 Gaza Freedom Flotilla; co-organizer and passenger on
Gaza Freedom Flotillas 2011 & 2015; co-organizer of 2009 Gaza
Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh, Professor, Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities, Co-Founder Al-Awda-Palestine Right to Return Coalition.
Hedy Epstein, Holocaust survivor; St. Louis Palestine Solidarity Committee*; Jewish Voice for Peace - St. Louis**
Ray McGovern, Retired CIA officer turned peace activist. Co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity.
Dr. Samir Abed-Rabbo, author and editor, former Dean of The Jerusalem School of Economics and Diplomacy.
Professor, Research & Program Coordinator and founder, Institute of
Community and Public Health, Birzeit University; active in 1980s
Palestinian social action movement.
Americans for Middle East Understanding, Former US Ambassador to Iraq
& Mauritania, Participant in the 2010 Gaza Freedom Flotilla
National Board Vice Chair, Al-Awda Palestine Right to Return Coalition,
son of one of the few survivors of the massacre at Deir Yassin
Palestine on April 9th 1948
James Abourezk, former Senator, South Dakota
Former CIA Officer turned anti-war activist & journalist; Executive
Director, Council for the National Interest*, member, Veteran
Intelligence Professionals for Sanity
USS Liberty Survivor, Past President, USS Liberty Veterans Association,
Participant in three Gaza Freedom Flotillas, Free Palestine Movement*.
The Rev. David W. Good, Minister Emeritus for The First Congregational Church of Old Lyme, President: Tree of Life Educational Fund
The Reverend Canon Richard K. Toll, Founder & former Director, Friends of Sabeel*, Retired Episcopal Priest
Ernest Gallo, President, USS Liberty Veterans Association
Cindy Sheehan, anti-war activist and former presidential candidate, Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox
James Petras, Professor Emeritus, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY
Lawrence Davidson, Professor Emeritus, West Chester University
John Erickson, NorCal Friends of Sabeel* — Co-Chair
...and many more.
Below is the petition. You can sign it here.
An open letter to the U.S. Campaign and other Activists for Justice in Palestine.
participants in the struggle for justice for Palestinians, coming from a
variety of ethnic, religious, and political backgrounds, we call for an
end to internal attacks on fellow activists and organizations. These
only impede the work for justice.
appreciate the important contributions to that cause made over many
years by If Americans Knew, Jewish Voice for Peace, and the U.S.
Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.
light, we are dismayed by the recent unfounded attacks on one of the top
organizations working on this issue, If Americans Knew, and its
dedicated leader, Alison Weir, by the leadership of Jewish Voice for
Peace and the U.S. Campaign. Many of us are members of these groups and
are unhappy at these significant actions made in our name but without
that important differences among these organizations exist – each has
its own constituencies, approach, and style, as is the case with the
scores of other organizations that together make up the solidarity
movement. Some may disapprove of taking the Palestinian case to people
who don’t define themselves as “liberals” or “progressives.” Others may
disapprove of working with Zionist groups and failure to state that
Zionism is racism, etc. We have no problem with any group articulating
such differences and even making principled criticisms of another’s work
– that is part of the life of any healthy democratic movement.
believe strongly that secret dossiers, ideological inquisitions, double
standards, misrepresentations, spreading innuendo, and attempting to
excommunicate groups or individuals one disagrees with from the ranks of
the movement sow unnecessary divisions and distract from what must
remain our primary focus: building the broad united front that’s
necessary to change United States policy in the Middle East and to help
Palestinians obtain justice in their homeland.
believe that the vitriolic, ADL-like accusations that Alison Weir is
“anti-Semitic” and/or racist are scurrilous and without foundation. They
are based on guilt-by-association arguments through which numerous
committed activists – including the leadership of the US Campaign and
JVP – could equally, and also incorrectly, be called “anti-Semitic”
painfully aware that there are well funded opponents who spare no effort
to undermine and divide this movement for justice and human rights in
Palestine. We therefore expect those who sincerely share our goals to be
mindful of the potential to fracture the movement and be judicious and
principled in their critique of groups and individuals who make
significant contributions to the movement.
We call for these attacks to cease and for those initiating them to return to their main task, working for justice in Palestine.