Letter sent to: Alistair Darling MP, David McLetchie MSP, Gavin Brown MSP, George Foulkes MSP, Robin Harper MSP, Fiona Hyslop MSP, Margo MacDonald MSP, Ian McKee MSP, Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP
1st June 2010
Dear Alistair Darling MP, et al
I’m writing to you, as one of my elected representatives, to express my shock, horror and outrage at the illegal and murderous actions of the Israeli Defence Force against an unarmed humanitarian aid convoy.
You will be aware that the IDF have illegally boarded a flotilla of unarmed ships bringing 10,000 tonnes of essential humanitarian aid to Gaza which had been collected to help relieve the suffering of the Palestinian people – a people, as you will be aware, who have been subjected to a prolonged, inhumane and illegal blockade by the Israeli state.
You will also be aware by now that heavily armed IDF commandos have callously murdered AT RANDOM nineteen unarmed and defenceless crew members of the aid convoy, injured numerous others, and have taken prisoner the other 500 members of the convoy.
You will be aware too that, CRUCIALLY, this incident has taken place in international waters which are subject to international law, making this nothing less than act of premeditated murder, piracy and kidnapping on the high seas.
As one of my elected representatives I would like to know how what you think about this, and what you intend to do about this. As well as any personal or party political stand you feel is the right course of action I’m asking, as one of your constituents, if you would consider:
1) writing a personal letter, or support a motion in Parliament, addressed to President Barack Obama publicly calling for him to condemn the action of the IDF, as well as calling for the UN to support tough punitive measures against the Israeli state.
2) issuing a personal statement, or support a motion in Parliament, calling for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador from the UK. The Swedish government, to their credit, has already done this.
3) issuing a personal statement, or support a motion in Parliament, calling for a public boycott of all Israeli goods until the blockade is lifted.
The Israeli state got away with their heavy-handed murderous attack on Gaza in December 2008 because the international community sat back and did nothing. Because of this the Israeli state feels it can get away with any act of violence and intimidation, no matter how inhuman or illegal. Words of censure have failed to halt their acts of aggression against the Palestinian people. What is needed now is international action and for good people to speak up rather than remain silent.
I hope you will give this your sincerest thoughts for no matter which way the apologists for the Israeli state try to spin this latest outrage the IDF have gone way beyond the pale of acceptability and legality.
I will declare a personal interest in this as a very good friend of mine, Lorty Philips, was on board the convoy and is currently being kept prisoner by the Israeli military. Lorty is not a party political activist. She’s a gentle soul, without an ounce of hate in her body, who wanted to give practical assistance to the people. I’m fearful of the way the Israeli military will treat her, and all the others who have been kidnapped, and I want action not fence-sitting from my elected representatives in both Westminster and Holyrood.
I’m not asking for platitudes. I am asking you, as one of my elected representatives, to look inside yourself, ask yourself why you became a politician in the first place, and to be brave, ignore the usual political protocols, and take a principled and personal stand for what is fair, specifically, taking a firm public stand against a rogue state which is killing innocent people and destabilising peace in the Middle East.
I look forward to your early response.