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MWA Commends Jewish NY U.S. Senate Candidate, Jonathan Tasini on Support of Gaza
"The November 2 mid-term elections include senate races in seven key states, New York is one of them, and for the 1.5 million citizens of Gaza, the support of candidates like Tasini cannot come soon enough," stated MWA Director, Aishah Schwartz.
By: Aishah Schwartz
"At a time when news agencies are reporting that nearly 300 members of Congress have signed a letter addressed to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declaring reaffirmation of their commitment to 'the unbreakable bond that exists between [U.S.] and the State of Israel', every voice counts," stated MWA Director, Aishah Schwartz.
"In working toward educating American citizens about the urgency of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and in stressing to President Obama the dire need for immediate relief in the embattled region, Tasini further supports the 54 U.S. Representatives who delivered a list of embargo-breaking relief efforts to President Obama on January 21—just 19 days after nearly 1,400 Gaza Freedom March delegates, representing 43 countries, attempted to enter Gaza—converging on Cairo, Egypt, bringing widespread international media attention to the tenuous conditions under which the Palestinian people have endured, particularly this past year after the December 2008 Israeli-led bombings and massacre that left more than 1,300 dead," Schwartz added.
In a release published on the candidate's website, Tasini echoed the Obama administration's criticism of Israel's recent decision to approve the construction of 1,600 new homes in East Jerusalem, stating, "The decision by the Israeli government is counter-productive, done in bad-faith and sends a signal that the Israeli government is not serious about reaching a comprehensive peace agreement in the Middle East—which must result in the creation of an independent, viable Palestinian state for any peace agreement to be long-lasting.
"But, our government must go further. I am calling on the Administration to recognize the humanitarian crisis that is taking place every day in Gaza as a result of the Israeli blockade and demand that the blockade be halted immediately. Gaza is home to 1.5 million people who are being denied regular access to food, electricity, and medical supplies because of the blockade.
"The blockade violates international law because it imposes collective punishment on a civilian population as a retaliation for the actions of armed groups which are illegally firing rockets at Israeli civilians. Violence against civilians cannot be tolerated—by either side. As well, the blockade will only serve to make long-term reconciliation more difficult because it further embitters a civilian population, which has already suffered decades of poverty and economic hardship because of the lack of a peace agreement and military conflict.
"I speak out not just as a candidate for public office. I speak as a Jew. I speak out as the son of a father who was born in Palestine, and who fought in the Jewish underground. I speak as someone who has had family members killed in the decades-long conflict, and who has lived in Israel and witnessed violence first-hand. And I speak as someone who has many family members still living there—and, therefore, I will not rest nor be silent, as a candidate and as a U.S. Senator, until our government is clearly an unstinting supporter of a two-state solution and is willing to speak up when international law is violated."
Schwartz added, "The November 2, 2010 midterm senate races are crucial, with seven states holding the potential to affect a shift in the filibuster-proof majority that the Obama administration has held for the past year. New York is one of those states. If we're going to continue to talk about 'change'—let me add that change in U.S. foreign policy that provides funding to Israel for crimes against humanity, cannot come soon enough for the Palestinian people—and there is no better time for US citizens to register to vote."
Please take a moment to let U.S. Senate candidate Jonathan Tasini know that you appreciate his support; Gaza can't wait. (Contact Tasini here: http://jonathantasini.com/
"In December 2009 I had the opportunity to see with my own eyes the conditions under which citizens of Gaza currently live; they deserve every glimmer of hope we can provide - and more," Schwartz stated.
Tasini is also a union member and supporter of the Employee Free Choice Act. Learn more here: http://jonathantasini.com/
Register to Vote!
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More on the Gaza Freedom March Journey Here
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Established in 2006, MWA is an internationally-