Updated: Oct 22
The Campaign for Peace, Disarmament, and Common Security calls for an immediate ceasefire in the Hamas-Israel War. War is never the answer.
We condemn the brutal and indiscriminate killing of civilians on all sides and the taking of hostages. Both are morally unacceptable and severe violations of International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law. It is civilians on both sides who will be the primary victims. The war should cease before more people are killed, wounded, or traumatized for life and before it expands into a still more catastrophic war with disastrous consequences for the people of neighboring nations.
There will be no military winners in this war. As bad as Israeli suffering is, Palestinians will pay the highest price.
Hamas’ invasion of southern Israel appears to have been timed to impact or sabotage Saudi-Israeli-US negotiations, that were designed to normalize relationships between the absolute Saudi monarchy, and the increasingly apartheid and undemocratic extreme right-wing Israeli government at the expense of Palestinians.
Since the 1979 Camp David Agreement, the now 2.1 million Gaza Palestinians who have been isolated and subjected to years of blockade in an impoverished and resourceless strip of land only twice the size of Washington, D.C. Since 1967, despite the 1997 Oslo Accords, now 3 million West Bank Palestinians have suffered often racist Israeli military occupation and settler violence.
Israel’s third-ranking general, Matityahu Peled, spoke with the head of Israel’s Air Force, Ezer Weizman days after Israel’s 1967 conquest of East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and the Golan Heights. After Peled indicated that an independent Palestinian state could then be created largely on Israel’s terms. Weizman’s reply was “What? Are you crazy!” A decade later, in a more hopeful period of Israeli-PLO negotiations, Walid Khalidi, who was viewed by many as a possible future President of Palestine sought to address Israeli security concerns by proposing the creation of a sovereign and disarmed Palestinian state.
Those moments marked two major lost opportunities, among others, for the Palestinian and Israeli peoples.
Since then, with the expansion of Israeli settlements, settler violence, and the apartheid Wall, successive Israeli governments have sought to eliminate the possibility of the creation of an independent Palestinian state and have continued to advance the prospect of formal annexation of the West Bank. The expansion and the integration of Israeli settlements into Israel’s pre-war 1967 boundaries leave the possibility of a negotiated two-state peace settlement an open question.
Both Israelis and Palestinians, have historic claims to the land of Israel-Palestine. Each has a right to self-determination and to mutual recognition. Until Palestinians’ fundamental human rights are respected, the cycle of violence will continue to take Israeli and Palestinian lives, inflict trauma, and destroy what people have created.
CPDCS calls for an immediate ceasefire, for no widening of the war, for the release and exchange of hostages and prisoners of war, and for facilitated negotiations leading to either fulfillment of the vision of a two-state resolution, or to an end of the apartheid system with the establishment of a single, democratic, and confederated Israeli-Palestinian state.