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Debra Reiger, State Chair, California Peace and Freedom Party"

All nations, including Palestinians and Israelis, have rights to self-rule and economic and cultural development along the lines chosen by their people. Under Israeli occupation, the Palestinians have been denied these rights, and this has created a situation that inevitably leads to violence. Peace is only possible with an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the blockade of the Gaza Strip. While the United State government sometimes gives lip service to Palestinian rights, its actions speak louder: the current ultra-right Israeli government gets anything it wants, including advanced weapons, and the Palestinians get nothing. This benefits neither Palestinians, who suffer daily oppression, land-theft, violence, and exile, nor the Israeli population, increasingly deprived of their democratic rights by the ultra-right Netanyahu government.

As part of a continuing series of reciprocating violent actions, the Hamas leaders of Gaza launched an attack on Israel yesterday, and the Israeli government is continuing its violent actions against Gaza, this time labeling them as a response to that attack. A population under occupation or under blockade will not accept the status quo, and in response to the steady stream of violent Israeli actions such as the recent attack on the Al-Aqsa mosque, the almost-daily pogroms against Palestinians near illegal Israeli settlements on the West Bank by Israeli armed gangs, and the repeated attacks on Palestinian journalists, students, and others attempting to use non-violent means to resist the occupation, it is inevitable that Palestinians will attempt to resist the occupation through violent means.

The Peace and Freedom Party of California strongly opposes current US government provision of weapons and military supplies to the Israeli armed forces, which are used to enforce the occupation. We oppose the current Israeli attacks on Gaza, which of course will lead to further acts of Palestinian resistance. Political decisions in the United States to support the current ultra-right Israeli government at any cost, and allow Palestinians to suffer and die from the results, are wrong. The United States can only promote peace in the Middle East by taking an even-handed approach, ending the supply of deadly weapons to Netanyahu's government, and actively supporting international recognition and support for the sovereign democratic rights of the Palestinian people.

We endorse actions across the country to protest Israeli military attacks on Palestine. Peace is needed, and peace cannot come when most Palestinians live under occupation. Neither Palestinians nor Israelis can live peaceful and productive lives while the occupation continues. Our party takes an internationalist position, recognizing the rights and needs of all the peoples involved, which means that we oppose occupation, oppression, and war. But peace can only come with a measure of justice, with an end to the violent suppression of the occupied people, and with an end to US financing and support for oppression and injustice.

We endorse and encourage attendance at nationwide rallies and demonstrations condemning the present attacks on Gaza and the continuing oppressive actions in the west Bank. We urge all US officials to wake up and realize that the endless provision of advanced weapons to the Netanyahu government keeps the occupation and oppression going. Cut off the weapons to Netanyahu! End the occupation!

Debra Reiger
State Chair, Peace and Freedom Party

Note: There are hundreds of demonstrations currently taking place against US aid for the Israeli occupation. The Peace and Freedom Party (without carefully reviewing the expressed demands of each demonstration), endorses participation in these demonstrations, and asks its members and supporters to attend them. The ANSWER Coalition lists a few of them on this page.

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