The Canary is excited to share the latest edition of our letters page. This is where we publish people’s responses to the news and politics, or anything else they want to get off their chest. We’ve now opened the letters page up so anyone can submit a contribution. As always, if you’d like to subscribe to the Canary – starting from just £1 a month – to support truly radical and independent media, then you can do that here:
This week’s letters
This week we have more people’s thoughts on the situation in Israel, Gaza, and the Occupied Territories, plus a call for support from one reader.
Israel’s genocide and war crimes in Gaza
International law dictates that an occupied people may resist, unto arms. This was accepted in the case of Ukraine, even embraced, because our leaders told us it was acceptable. Double standards!
After so many years of no progress for the Palestinian people through peaceful means, did the world really expect Gazans to oblige Israel and die their imposed “slow death” quietly? Being “put on a diet” by Israel’s blockade and having Israel keep the population growth down by regularly “mowing the lawn” is both immoral and illegal.
We must insist that international law is the standard for behaviour from all parties. The taking of hostages is a violation which both sides have now committed. Israel has been illegally transferring Palestinians from their lands into prisons within Israeli borders. This is a violation of international law and equates to a hostage situation too.
It is a violation to kill civilians and you need only to look at the numbers killed and the ratio of Palestinians to Israelis to see who violates that law most frequently and in killing the largest numbers of civilians. Over 8,000 Palestinians have been killed in just over three weeks, thousands more over the last 75 years.
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This is not a war nor a conflict of two equal sides – but is a brutal and illegal ongoing occupation.
Before the world criticises the Palestinian freedom fighters, many of whom are not Hamas members, they must criticise Israel and enforce international and humanitarian laws upon them. Sanctions are the obvious first step. International Courts of Justice to investigate probable war crimes must follow. Here I must remind readers that Hamas are the democratically elected leadership in Gaza, and just because our government and the US proscribe them as a terrorist organisation doesn’t make that true. They labelled Nobel Peace Prize winner Nelson Mandela a terrorist when it suited their foreign policy.
Instead of always the first question from media interviewers being “will you condemn Hamas” let it be “will the West condemn all violations of international law and enforce these laws to which we profess to subscribe?”
Our elected leaders are complicit in Israel’s war crimes. They do not speak for me. Do they speak for you?
Sue, via email
The Geneva Convention Article Three specifically prohibits hostage taking.
Hamas has 239 hostages since 7 October 2023, that’s 23 days.
Israel has held 2,200,000 Gazan’s hostage for 16 years (5840 days).
That is Israel holding 9206 times the number of Hamas hostages.
The Israeli’s have held the Gazan’s hostage for 254 times longer than Hamas.
Just imagine what death and destruction the Palestinians would be liable to inflict on Israel in retribution – if, only if, they actually had an army, a navy, and an air force.
What Israeli forces are doing is destroying Gaza as an occupying force. This is not a war, this is a genocide.
The abused have become the abusers.
Dave Putson, via email
The widely discredited and pernicious IHRA Definition of Antisemitism is being exploited by the Israeli ambassador Tzipi Hotovely to make wild accusations of antisemitism in country-wide demonstrations where in fact what is evident is anti-Zionism and anti-Israeli apartheid feeling. No doubt there is antisemitism shown by a racist fringe, but most so-called antisemitic incidents are not motivated by hatred of Jews as Jews.
It is time to repudiate the IHRA definition because it is a major impediment to free speech as it conflates antisemitism with opposition to Israeli apartheid and anti-Zionism.
Alan Marsden, via email
A reader’s story: can anyone help?
What’s happening? Violations of human rights, misconduct in public office. The reasons to why our fundamental rights are taken away. Political repression tactics, persecution, state terrorism by the people in control.
Who? “The Institution”
Why? Because “The Institution” and everyone in it, has the power to do what they wanted to do.
They found me an external threat; media have been encouraged to move to the defensive, whilst we watched, as they tried to “cover up”.
Their own underlying beliefs and values, hostility towards race and religion, went against the values that would protect others human rights. The evidenced misconduct in public office and organisational, systemic issues amongst the authorities, discrimination towards the vulnerable members of society, especially those with neurological conditions and autism. The lack of priority leaving an ongoing problem amongst authorities, who we witnessed using the multi-agency approaches to “cover up” abuse and misconduct.
When? Three years ago, August 2020, I opened a can of worms, my solicitor warning me. He witnessed this but the interview tape was withheld, amongst other data. “They” have been trying to muddy the waters since. I’ve been physically, mentally, verbally, disadvantaged but still looking after my son who has been left tormented by the abuse. Our trust diminished. We refuse to go back to our abusers for help.
How should they have behaved? Rule of law by Tom Bingham, “Chapter 6 The Exercise of Power: ministers and public officers at all levels must exercise the powers conferred on them in good faith, fairly, for the purpose which the powers were conferred, without exceeding the limits of such power and not unreasonably”.
Instead, minister Kelly Tolhurst, when reporting assault inside police station, and other arrests: her reply “we’ll see what really happened”. Amongst other comments and lies. Then went on to hide a public concern, had CCTV of the assault deleted by police.
Former parliamentary standards commissioner Kathryn Stone: “The Commissioner could only investigate a complaint about an MP’s handling of an issue or problem raised by a constituent, where one of the eight rules of conduct might have been broken.” Ignoring discrimination and public concerns refusing to investigate.
“Abuse of Power” by Theresa May, “Public service is about a public service”. “The system was designed to operate by people of good intent and integrity”.
We weren’t only bearing the consequences of a failing system.
But I believe in karma.
Snetta Kumari, via email
ED: if you would like more information on Snetta’s story, please email editors(at)thecanary.co
Want to get involved? Email membership(at)thecanary.co and we’ll publish your letters, too! Terms and conditions of publication apply.
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