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Take action now and tell President Obama to publicly call on Israel to desist from attacking or otherwise interfering with The Audacity of Hope and the flotilla to Gaza. Also, please call the State Department as soon as possible and deliver the same message. You can find the number to the State Department and a suggested comment below.
En route to Palestine in May last year, a six-boat flotilla carrying more than 700 civilians from almost 40 countries was overtaken by Israeli commandos in international waters. Nine passengers, including one American citizen, 18-year old Furkan Doğan, were killed, and many were wounded, taken to Israel and detained. The flotilla was attempting to deliver humanitarian and rebuilding supplies to Gaza. Next week another flotilla will set sail for Gaza. The Freedom Flotilla II—Stay Human, with hundreds of people from many different countries, will bring humanitarian supplies to the besieged civilian population of Gaza. In doing so, Stay Human will break the blockade (the U.N. has deemed the blockade “collective punishment” being inflicted by Israel). The Israeli Navy has already stated their intention to forcefully divert the flotilla even “[using] force to ‘neutralize’ the ships and attacks if necessary." On one boat, The Audacity of Hope, U.S. citizens will take letters for the people of Gaza from people in the U.S.
The U.S. government has a particular responsibility to protect its citizens from harm by foreign forces, yet it has said nothing thus far to ensure the safety of the passengers. Instead of calling upon Israel to desist from another deadly attack upon peaceful activists the United States has charged that the passengers are “irresponsible” and that it is their “provocative actions that entail a risk to their safety." Please take action now: write to President Obama and ask that he take immediate steps to ensure the safety of the US citizens and all other passengers aboard the flotilla, including by calling upon Israel to desist from attacking or otherwise interfering with The Audacity of Hope and the other ships in the flotilla as they travel to Gaza.
Also, call the State Department's comment line at 202-647-5291 (and press 1 to leave comment) and urge them to do the same.
Hi, my name is (your name) from (your town and state). Next week the Freedom Flotilla II—Stay Human, a flotilla of hundreds people from many different countries, is setting sail for Gaza. The purpose of the flotilla is to break the siege of Gaza and deliver desperately needed humanitarian supplies. The Israeli Navy has already stated their intention to forcefully divert the flotilla. One boat, named The Audacity of Hope, will be comprised of US citizens who are supporting the human rights of Palestinians by traveling to Gaza to express their solidarity with the besieged population there, carrying letters from people in the US to people in Gaza. The US government has a particular responsibility to protect its citizens from harm by foreign forces. Please take immediate steps to ensure the safety of the US citizens and all other passengers aboard the flotilla, including by calling upon Israel to desist from attacking or otherwise interfering with The Audacity of Hope and the other ships in the flotilla as they travel to Gaza. Thank you.
For more information:
CCR is engaged in Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) litigation seeking information about the U.S. knowledge of, and response to, the attack on last year’s flotilla. For more information, please see our case page. For a factsheet about the illegality of the blockade of Gaza and the attack on the Gaza flotilla, please click here.