I write this brief letter and appeal on this fifty-second day of conflict between the Israeli government and the hapless population in Gaza. I also write as a child of Holocaust and concentration camp survivors.
LETTER TO THE DANDENONG COUNCIL, Melbourne, Australia, ABOUT THE IMMINENT GENOCIDE IN GAZA, November 29, 2023.
The propaganda narrative since 7 October has been to frame this genocide as a war between Hamas and Israel. This is a false and mendacious characterisation of what is currently happening. This is a war of so-called ‘collective punishment’ against a defenceless civilian population in Gaza. The civilian population in Gaza is not responsible or guilty of the war crimes committed by Hamas or Islamic Jihad on 7 October.
This war waged by the Netanyahu government can only be described as a war of terror and annihilation against a civilian population given the power of the Israeli war machine. As you are, I am sure, well aware this onslaught by the Israeli military has already resulted in over fifteen thousand deaths. Gaza is now on the brink of starvation, the Gazans have no clean water to drink, and the Gazan population faces imminent massive deaths not only through starvation, but also through dehydration.
The most urgent question and task now is for the international community to do everything in its power to urgently stop this forthcoming and not too distant genocide.
It is therefore incumbent, on your capacities as a Council, to appeal in the most strongly possible terms to our Federal government to make very clear to the Israeli government that an immediate lasting ceasefire be declared and that negotiations begin with representatives of the Palestinian people in Gaza and the West Bank forthwith.
Above all, what must be emphasised and stressed to the utmost, and communicated to Penny Wong and other members of the Albanese government, is that the killing of the civilian population which is considered a war crime by the United Nations and the International Criminal Court, stop immediately and the current ceasefire be extended indefinitely.
MY MOTHER AND THE PALESTINIANS
My mother a survivor of Nazi slave
When talking to me
Quite a few times
About the horror she experienced
Said to me
The Americans and the British
Knew that a genocide was happening
But they did nothing to save us
And when I talked to her
About the killing and barbarism
She often replied
The Palestinians are the Jews of today
And I fear that they may
Suffer the same fate
We did during the Holocaust
How true her words ring today!
Melbourne, November 2023