BAYAN-Canada in Toronto
Denounces Israelís Bombing of Gaza
BAYAN-Toronto, the Toronto section of BAYAN-Philippines, the legal
alliance of progressive Filipino organizations, condemns the state of
Israel for its bombing and shelling of the Palestinian people in Gaza. As
of this writing, 380 people have been killed, including many women and
children, over 1000 injured and numerous properties destroyed. This
outrage was preceded by many months of siege by Israel to deprive the
Palestinian people of necessities like food and medicines in order to try
to overthrow the legitimately elected government of Palestine. Its
background has been almost 60 years of outrage by Israel against the
Palestinian people: ethnic cleansing through wholesale terrorism,
illegitimate seizure of Palestinian farms, homes and other properties,
daily humiliations, state sponsored torture, collective punishment, racism
and systemic discrimination against Arabs and other people of colour, and
the turning of what little is left of the Palestinian homeland into a
giant prison camp divided into apartheid style reserves or bantustans.
This horror has only been possible because the state of Israel has
received yearly, without fail, billions of dollars of economic and
military aid from the United States, and unfailing political support from
the same and its co-imperialist allies. To its great shame, Canada has not
been lacking in its support of Israelís horrors against the Palestinian
people. Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon has put the
blame for the Israeli aggressions against the Palestinian people on the
victims themselves. Shame!
Let us be crystal clear on the character of Israel. Israel is a settler
colonial state imposed by European Zionists against the native people of
Palestine through deprivation of Palestinian freedom, rights, property,
peace, justice, institutions, safely and lives. Israel is a racist state
that treats its Arab minority as second class and even mistreats coloured
Jews. Israel is a theocracy that discriminates against people on the basis
of religion. Israel is a fascist state that engages in systemic torture
and collective punishment. This is a society that regularly contemplates
in its mass media the utter liquidation of the Palestinian nation as a
nation and its effacement from its homeland.
Those who call, therefore, for Israelís right to self-defence are
defending ethnic cleansing, state sponsored terrorism, collective
punishment, state use of torture, harassment and humiliation, bulldozing
of homes and people, the shooting of women and children, the destruction
of infrastructure and all institutions required by the Palestinian people
to exist. Shame on Cannon! Shame on Harper and the Conservatives! Shame on
the Canadian government! Shame on the Canadian state!
We, Filipinos, are in profound solidarity with the Palestinian people.
Though Palestine and the Philippines are on opposite sides of Asia, we
have many things in common. Like the Palestinian people, millions of
Filipinos are regularly deprived of decent wages, basic rights, and a
humane livelihood: collective punishment, torture, imprisonment, exile
from our homes, destruction of our economy, destruction of our culture,
ethnic cleansing, etc. Some more in Palestine, others more in the
Philippines! Though different in specifics, we are both oppressed nations
under the boot of US imperialism, and its allies like Canadian
imperialism. Whereas the US acts through a proxy settler state against the
Palestinian people, its acts through a neocolonial state against the
Filipino people. That is all. Now, our Filipino migrant workers in the
West Bank too experience daily the racism of their Israeli bosses and
other Israelis, on the one hand, and the friendship of Palestinians among
whom Filipino migrant workers live, on the other hand.
STOP THE ATTACKS ON GAZA!
JUSTICE FOR THE PALESTINIAN VICTIMS OF THE US-ISRAELI ATTACKS!
WITHDRAW US ECONOMIC, POLITICAL AND MILITARY AID TO ISRAEL AND THE
LONG LIVE INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY!
3 January 2009