A Statement from the International Council
The suffering is immense, and the grimly disproportionate body count only emphasizes the military inequality between the two sides. But neither can defeat the other. We call on citizens and governments across the world to demand that the fighting end.
We then seek a commitment by citizens and governments to work for equal rights for both peoples. As a former President of Initiatives of Change International, Rajmohan Gandhi, expressed it in a recent article, ‘The heart of the problem is the demand that Palestinians should accept an inferior status and not ask for liberty or equality.’
He points out that this is not only true of Palestine. ‘In country after country, the voice of domination says: “Many may live in my nation, but only the pure and rightful group must rule. Others may be tolerated provided they bend their backs and lower their heads.” This voice competes with another voice that tells us: “Whatever their birth or belief, their color or creed, the dignity of every human being is precious.”
‘We’re all involved in this clash between supremacy and humanity, and history records the choices we make. As it has done in every re-enactment of such a clash, including during the Holocaust.’
We call on all nations to recognize Palestine as a sovereign nation, opening the way to a whole new level of international support diplomatic, economic and social. Israel has received this support for decades. Now Palestine should receive the same. Respectful relationships will grow as the vast inequality between the two nations is reduced.
Initiatives of Change has given much attention to resolving this conflict. In both countries, Palestinians and Israelis, inspired by Initiatives of Change, are working for a society based on firm ethical foundations and mutual respect. Under the leadership of Cornelio Sommaruga, former President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and others, Palestinian and Israeli representatives have come together at our international conference center in Caux, Switzerland on several occasions.
We will redouble our efforts. Please be in touch if you wish to join us.
Suresh Vazirani (President), Mounir Beltaifa (Vice President), Marta Dabrowska, Bill Hamilton, Yeonyuk Jeong, Stephen Kimaru, Rob Lancaster, Wimarshana Ranasinghe, Roweida Saleh, Cecilia (Thembi) Silundika