PLEASE! Not in my name!

By Rev. Jeffrey Haggray

VALLEY FORGE, PA (10/23/2023)—As a proud American citizen I am profoundly troubled that the leadership of the United States government has pledged unlimited and unqualified support for war crimes by the Israeli government. The Israeli military is currently killing innocent Palestinians in Gaza with the endorsement of our government. More than 400 innocent Palestinians have been killed by Israeli airstrikes within the past 48 hours.

Our government’s unrestrained support for Israel to kill innocent civilians in Gaza, as is now happening, cannot be condoned under any humanitarian standard. Continued unqualified financial and military support for the Israeli military superpower to kill untold unarmed Palestinians means that the blood of the innocents in Gaza is on American hands. And YES, the Palestinian people are innocent! Additionally, the might of America’s military has been committed to standby to insure that neighboring nations must not intervene to prevent genocide in Gaza. In doing so, our government commits rhetorical criminalization of Israel’s neighbors backed by threats of violence to force Arab nations to stand down as Israel kills innocent civilians in Gaza. This is morally wrong.

What is the moral equation at work in the minds of Israeli and American officials? Is it that war crimes on the part of Hamas militants against innocent Israeli civilians justify exponentially more war crimes against innocent Palestinian civilians? That is a morally bankrupt argument.

All lives matter! Palestinian lives do not have less value than Israeli and American lives.

Have you listened to the cries of innocent civilians, including children in Gaza pleading for mercy?

If our answer is, look at what Hamas did on October 7th, then consider that Palestinians fundamentally do not understand how Americans have not been outraged before now as for years Israeli airstrikes have killed innocent civilians in Gaza without any consequences or external intervention by the American government. This war did not start on October 7th.

Those buildings we see crumbling in Gaza beneath Israeli airstrikes for many years represent untold thousands of innocent Palestinian lives that have been destroyed without American intervention, and often without adequate coverage by America’s media. Continuing to kill Palestinians on roads, in medical facilities, houses of worship and everywhere while casually regarding that as collateral damage, or making unverified claims that Hamas uses innocent people as humans shields as justification for killing innocent Palestinians, must be condemned by our government as war crimes.

Palestinians have also suffered the trauma of their innocent loved ones, older adults, children, women and men dying mercilessly at the hands of the Israeli military. How can we look away from the genocide of Palestinians! God help us all!

I join with millions of people around the world pleading with America’s government to cease financial and military support for the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza. Further, I join with a global community in calling for an immediate ceasefire and an end to this war. All lives matter!!!