Friday, January 09, 2009
Refuseniks ask for money
I received the following email from Arik Diamant, an Israeli Defence Forces reservist writing for the Refuseniks, a group of Israeli soldiers who refuse to engage in military operations in the Occupied Territories. So far, 628 soldiers have pledged not to serve in the Territories; they will face legal action from the military for doing so.
They had to cease operations some time ago for lack of funds and public interest, but they intend to start advertising and demonstrating against the current invasion of Gaza. Please consider donating if you are able.
It's been almost four years since we sent our last newsletter. The "Disengagement" plan seemed to crush the Israeli peace camp and silence any discussion on the morality of the occupation and the siege on Gaza. Refusal became irrelevant to the Israeli public discourse. Sadly, we had to close our offices for lack of funds and public interest.
Some of us continued our activity from within other groups such as Physicians for Human Rights, Yesh Gvul and Combatants for Peace. Others receded to caring for their families and developing their carriers. Lately, however, we've been summoned again to play a role in our country's politics. The brutal, unprecedented violence in Gaza is shocking. The false hope that this kind of violence will bring security to Israelis is all the more dangerous. We cannot stand aside while hundreds of civilians are being butchered by the IDF.
A few years older, hopefully a little wiser, the core members of Courage to Refuse have decided to resume activity and play once more a part in fighting for peace and democracy. This morning we published an ad in Haaretz calling soldiers to refuse to bomb Gaza. At least three soldiers have already refused to participate in the Gaza campaign and are on their way to prison. The rest of us will be demonstrating in front of the Ministry of Defense in protest of the IDF's murderous activity in Gaza this upcoming Thursday.
We turn to our supporters, in Israel and abroad, to help us in financing our activities(ads and demonstrations). We are making great efforts to re-establish an online donation service that will be 501c3 certified. Until then we urge all those capable of helping to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, phone number and the sum you are willing to donate. We will contact you and guide you in placing your donation.
Please help us bring change. Thank you,
Courage to Refuse
Editor: Diamant also has an article for Ynetnews that may be of interest.