We serve on the Israel Palestine Task Force of the Western District Conference of Mennonite Church USA. One of our priorities is to facilitate relationships between Mennonites and groups in Gaza. We have come to know people in Gaza; their work in education, entrepreneurship and humanitarian aid is inspiring. They have sent us pictures of the violence and devastation in Gaza (recent Israeli bombings left 232 Gazans dead, compared to 12 deaths in Israel due to Hamas rockets).
Whether it be Hamas or the Israeli Defense Forces, launching rockets and missiles that injure and kill innocent civilians is unacceptable. Our society tends to deem Palestinian violence as terrorism while justifying Israel’s as necessary. The U.S. gives Israel about $4 billion annually, which supports Israel’s military efforts against Palestinians. Please contact U.S. legislators to ask them to stop fueling the humanitarian crisis in Palestine/Israel. The injustice of occupation and the suffering of the Palestinian people need to be addressed before any lasting peace can be made. We also encourage you to donate toward rebuilding at mecaforpeace.org.
Robert Atchison, Manhattan, Kan., Katie Mitchell Koch, Wichita, Kan., Esther Koontz, North Newton, Kan., Kathy Neufeld Dunn, McPherson, Kan.