Original article can be found here.
(BAY AREA 06/30/2010) – Sen. Tony Strickland, R-Thousand Oaks, introduced Senate Concurrent Resolution 117, which declares California’s support of Israel’s deadly May 31 attack on the Freedom Flotilla. The bill also affirms the state’s support of Israel’s siege on Gaza and its “right to protect and defend itself.”
The American Muslims for Palestine asks its supporters in California to call their sate senators and demand this bill be defeated in committee.
The Freedom Flotilla, a fleet of nine vessels bound for Gaza with more than 10,000 pounds of donated humanitarian and medical supplies, was attacked by Israel while in international waters. Nine unarmed humanitarian activists were killed; several others were injured. Israeli commandoes arrested and detained the nearly 800 surviving activists.
Sen. Strickland calls these peace-loving civil resistance volunteers “terrorists.”
“Israel has every right to ensure their country and their people are kept safe from terrorists. …Just like every other country in the world, Israel has the absolute right to defend itself,” Strickland said in a press release.
“That Sen. Strickland would compare these unarmed, humanitarian activists to terrorists is unconscionable,” said Dr. Hatem Bazian, chairman of American Muslims for Palestine and professor of near eastern and ethnic studies at the University of California, Berkeley. “What Mr. Strickland is doing is taking the focus off of Israel’s illegal actions in international waters that resulted in the deaths of nine innocent people and the illegal detention of hundreds more. It is unthinkable that in the land of freedom and justice, we would have an elected official that would not only praise such rogue behavior but would sponsor a bill officially sanctioning it.”
SCR 117 has moved to the Senate Rules Committee for assignment. It is imperative that supporters of justice in California call upon the members of the Rules Committee to keep this bill from advancing.
- Call your state senators and demand this bill be defeated. Find your senator by clicking here.
- Attend the next Rules Committee meeting. The committee meets at 1:30 p.m. every Wednesday in Room 113 in the California State Capitol building.
- Contact the Rules Committee members to demand the defeat of this bill. Senators on the committee are: Darrell Steinberg (chair); Samuel Aanestad (vice chair); Gilbert Cedillo; Robert Dutton; Jenny Oropeza. Get their contact info at http://www.senate.ca.gov/ftp/sen/committee/STANDING/RULES/_home1/PROFILE.HTM.
- Israel’s siege on Gaza is illegal and has no basis in international law
- 90 percent of Gazans rely upon the United Nations for food aid
- Israel allows in less than 25 percent of needed and necessary humanitarian items
- The passengers of the Freedom Flotilla were unarmed civilians trying to take items such as wheelchairs and prefabricated homes to Gaza
- Israeli commandoes killed nine unarmed civilians in international waters, a grave breach of international law
- One of the dead was an American citizen.