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Open letter to John Key Jan 26 Print
Monday, 26 January 2009

Open letter to Prime Minister of New Zealand, John Key, from Palestine Human Rights Campaign - Aotearoa/New Zealand

Dear Mr Key,

    We have given you several opportunities to make a statement of principle regarding Israel's belligerent military occupation of Palestinian land and its gross violations of international law and the Fourth Geneva Convention. Your latest response has been merely to pass our message on to Mr McCully who, so far, has made only a vague statement equating Israel and the occupied Palestinian people as equal parties to a dispute. We still do not know where the Government, yourself or the Foreign Affairs Minister stand regarding the violations of international law being committed by an occupying power.

    Please watch this eight-minute video by Jonathan Miller from Channel 4 News at the following link: http://www.organizedrage.com/2009/01/video-israels-shame.html

    See how Israeli bulldozers destroyed a whole village. The scale of devastation is almost beyond belief. Whole families have been massacred and any suggestion that Israel's air strikes were in any way 'surgical' is ludicrous. If you don't believe us, watch the video. The ferocity with which Israel punished the people of Gaza for their resistance is reminiscent of outrages committed during the Second World War. If you don't believe that, watch the video.

    United Nations officials, the prestigious British medical journal The Lancet and several world leaders have had the courage to speak out. What's stopping you? Please don't fob us off by passing our letter on to Mr McCully.

    Where do you stand, Mr Key? Are international peace and stability, secured through the observance and the defence of international law and conventions, important to you? Or are you willing to sacrifice moral principle in order to gain hoped-for economic advantages such as a free trade agreement with Israel's main arms supplier, the United States?

    If you have the courage to denounce the terrible crime Israel has committed in the Gaza Strip, then you will have done honour to your office and to humanity.

    If you remain silent on a matter which is now unavoidably clear to so many people, your silence will be seen as timid, inexcusable and shameful.

    If you try to equate Hamas resistance with the hi-tech military might of Israel – the occupier with the occupied – then it would be fair to conclude that you support Israel's behaviour, and, as you have the responsibilities of a national leader of a UN member state, you become, to that extent, complicit in Israel's actions.

    Please let us know where you stand.