We are doing nothing to prevent further harm in Gaza

Like many people, I have been disturbed by the events in Gaza. I always viewed the occupation of Gaza as wrong, but I did not understand the extent of the harm imposed upon Palestinians until the recent events unfolded. I am ashamed of being European because European governments are doing absolutely nothing, and I am ashamed of being American because the United States has poured billions of our tax dollars into the military coffers of Israel. But if I just sit on my hands, I am part of the problem. I sent money to specific organizations, and I wrote to various officials several times (including the American and the French presidents), but I know this does not do much good. I am an average person who is desperate to do something but does not know where to turn.

The San Luis Obispo City Council rightly condemned anti-Semitism, and it should also have condemned Islamophobia. Both are wrong. Beyond this, we must be able to recognize who is responsible for the present situation. As Chomsky said, Palestinians have no oil, no minerals, nothing that anyone could want, so they have no friends. The least powerful always get kicked around by everyone. Not so long ago, the least powerful were the Jews, now they are the Palestinians, and the victims have become the perpetrators. We are watching the Warsaw Ghetto again, except that now it’s called Gaza: men, women, and children forced into a locked area, starved, and then shot like rabbits. And we are doing nothing.

I have a dream: all the American city councils standing up and saying no, we can’t support the genocide of a people; no, our government can’t give our tax money to kill children; no, we won’t go along with this. Imagine if this had happened before the Vietnam War? Or before the invasion of Iraq? Why can we only see the truth years down the road when all the damage has already been done?

Odile Ayral

San Luis Obispo

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