Saturday, November 14, 2009

Churchs for Middle East Peace on Goldstone Res. and Related

Note the breakdown of the US legislators and their outrageous voting as shown below...
Goldstone Resolution and CMEP letter to President Obama

Last week, the Goldstone resolution, H. Res. 867, passed the House by a vote of 344-36, with 22 voting present. The resolution, introduced by Congresswoman Ross-Lehtinen blocks "any endorsement or further consideration" of the Goldstone report--a detailed report comissioned by the United Nations Human Rights Council that found credible evidence of war crimes by Israeli military and Hamas in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead.

CMEP strongly opposed this resolution and urged Members of Congress to vote against it because the resolution ignores and fails to address the claims of the civilian population in Gaza and important questions raised by Israelis about their country's conduct during Operation Cast Lead.

CMEP would like to extend a special thank you to the courageous Members of Congress that voted "present" or opposed this unbalanced resolution. Also, special thanks to Rep. Ellison (D-MN), Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Moran (D-VA), Rep. Delahunt (D-MA), Rep. Baird (D-WA), Rep. Dingell (D-MI), Rep. Kucinich (D-OH), Rep. McCollum (D-MN), Rep. Edwards (D-MD), Rep. Price (D-NC), Rep. Capps (D-CA), Rep. McGovern (D-MA), Rep. Miller (D-CA), Rep. Woolsey (D-CA), and Rep. Farr (D-CA) for speaking on the floor or inserting statements into the record expressing concerns with H.Res 867.

In response to the Goldstone resolution, CMEP sent a letter to the President highlighting the importance of impartial and transparent investigations into serious allegations of misconduct so the subsequent findings do not undercut in any way ongoing U.S. efforts to restart negotiations.

3. Department of State 2009 Report on International Religious Freedom

On October 26, the Department of State released the 2009 International Religious Freedom Report , which records the status of respect for religious freedom in all countries during the period from July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009...

The Annual Report contains a chapter on Israel and the Occupied Territories. The chapter states that "The Israeli Government generally respected the right to freedom of religion in the Occupied Territories during the reporting period...However…Israel's strict closure policies and the separation barrier constructed by the Government of Israel had the effect of severely restricting the ability of Palestinian Muslims and Christians to reach places of worship and to practice their religious rites."

Additional Reading:

"U.S. State Department: Israel is not a tolerant society," Akiva Eldar, Haaretz, November 6, 2009.
NOTE from blogger - I'm grateful as are many for the reports from CMEP. They point out with some discretion that the US State Dept. Annual Report could be worse still sounds way to weak and overly gentle, judging by many other reports. This and the Goldstone vote in US Congress only add to the derisive voices of so much of the world watching the lack of any fairness toward Palestine - devoid of requiring desperately needed accountability for the state of Israel.

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