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US Congressman Danny Davis calls for lifting the blockade of Gaza

US Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL) has called for a lifting of the blockade against Gaza. In a September 8th letter to the Chicago Sun Times, one of the City’s two major daily newspapers, Davis urged an end to the blockade on humanitarian and strategic grounds. Congressman Davis now joins the only two other members of Congress, Rep. Keith Ellison and Rep. Barbara Lee, who have spoken out against the blockade.

Davis’ move is the result of a sustained effort by the Committee for Just Peace in Israel and Palestine (CJPIP), urging the Congressman to advocate for an end to the Israeli occupation and to stop military aid to Israel. For years our community-based organization and other constituents in his district have met periodically with Rep. Davis’ staff to educate them on the issues and to urge action. In this most recent attempt, CJPIP was able to broker a meeting at a local church with the Congressman during the Congressional summer recess. We brought more than 40 constituents with us. The Congressman was visibly moved by our presentations that highlighted the horrific impact of Israeli attacks and siege on Gaza, linked the Israeli military occupation to police brutality and the breach of civil rights in Ferguson, MO, and illustrated connections to other human rights causes amplified by economic activism and divestment campaigns.  At the end the meeting, he pledged to write a statement. The Sun Times letter was published about two weeks later. CJPIP will continue to monitor the Congressman’s votes and circulate his statement, so that others may follow suit.

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Chicago resident, who met Gaza Writes Back authors last spring, asks Congressman Davis to lift the siege on Gaza.

Chicago resident, who met Gaza Writes Back authors last spring, asks Congressman Davis to lift the siege on Gaza.



Marsha Love and Jennifer Bing

Marsha Love and Jennifer Bing, members of the steering committee for the Committee for Just Peace in Israel and Palestine, a community based group in the Chicago area dedicated to organizing activities and educational events that advance the cause of peace and justice for Palestinians and Israelis.

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27 Responses

  1. eljay on September 15, 2014, 8:13 am

    >> US Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL) has called for a lifting of the blockade against Gaza.

    Let the defamation begin…

    • The JillyBeans on September 15, 2014, 3:32 pm

      I’m afraid 2012 already beat you to it.

      He’s already been labeled “anti-Israel” two years ago.

      • eljay on September 15, 2014, 9:08 pm

        >> TJB: He’s already been labeled “anti-Israel” two years ago.

        In that case:
        – Let the defamation continue.
        – Let the defamation begin anew.

      • thetumta on September 22, 2014, 7:42 pm

        But now he may have a death wish or hopefully not? It’s getting very serious, defections from their intelligence units and not. When their best of the best say enough, we getting close to the end. Close to the end often ends in a short-term spasm of severe violence before the bottom is reached, hopefully.

        He should take care as they are very formidable.

        Hej! Tumta

        P.S. There is an advantage to being closer to the end then the beginning.

  2. pabelmont on September 15, 2014, 9:14 am

    I congratulate all the activists for persevering with Rep. Davis. They have worked a sort of magic.

    It is an old adage of politics, “OK, You’ve convinced me; now pressure me!”. Here it appers that educating and convincing ab honorable man was enough. He is a Congressman. he knows the score. He knows what awaits those who oppose Israel.

    I wish there were a re-election PAC for pro-Palestine folks (and pro-Human-Rights and pro-International-Law folks) to support such people as Danny Davis, Keith Ellison, and Barbara Lee. Anyone know of one?

  3. lobewyper on September 15, 2014, 9:18 am

    This is indeed good news! Thank you Congressman Davis.

  4. amigo on September 15, 2014, 9:56 am

    It is fitting that the first and only Congress reps to stand up and be counted are African Americans.

    Time for a “Rainbow” coalition.

    • a blah chick on September 15, 2014, 10:06 am

      I noticed that as well.

      And where is the Black Caucus?

      • amigo on September 15, 2014, 11:07 am

        ” And where is the Black Caucus?” ABC

        You might find the answer here!!.

        “All CBC members absolutely know that Israel is an apartheid society, with one set of laws applying to Jews, a second to Israeli Arabs and a third to Palestinians. Congressional Black Caucus members know that Israel requires different colored license plates for non-Jews so their vehicles can be profiled at a distance, and Jewish-only roads between settlements carved from the villages of Palestinians and watched voer by military garrisons. They know that Israel refuses to recognize mixed marriages, or even marriages between Palestinians in Gaza and those on the West Bank. Black members of Congress know what an ethnocracy is, and even though they claim to have opposed it in South Africa and here at home, they choose to endorse it in Israel, out of greed and subservience.”Bruce Dixon.

      • MHughes976 on September 15, 2014, 1:25 pm

        It will be interesting how the constituents of these Representatives react – sympathy? surprise? – and whether their colleagues now begin to come under constituency pressure.
        I think that some of the problem goes back to the days when Martin Luther King was trying desperately to hold his huge, unwieldy coalition together.

    • bilal a on September 15, 2014, 10:39 am

      Look deeper than skin color. Obama is rainbow, as is Israel, now providing support to Al Qaeda on the Golan:

      The UN remarks came in a report by its Secretary General on the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) during the period from May 29th to September 3rd 2014.

      The report said that members of the so-called “armed opposition” transported 47 of its wounded members through “the ceasefire line” and handed them to the “Israeli army”, indicating that the “Israeli army” handed 43 of the wounded who were treated at the Israeli hospitals to the armed terrorist organizations.

      Foreign Policy mag/ june 2014 Exclusive: Israel Is Tending to Wounded Syrian Rebels

      Report: UN pulling out peacekeepers from Syrian side of Golan Heights

      • quercus on September 15, 2014, 4:34 pm

        @ bilal a. “Israel tending to Wounded Syrian Rebels” — how noble, how kind, how just, ………. how sarcastic I am.

        Are you truly a nitwit, bilal a, telling us that Israel is tending the those who are attempting to wipe out Israel’s arch enemy, Bashar al Assad? And as for the U.N. pulling out its peacekeepers from the Syrian side ……. Israel launches attacks against SYRIAN side does it not?

      • bilal a on September 16, 2014, 11:34 am

        un report on Israeli aid to al nusrah in golan

    • Mooser on September 15, 2014, 1:12 pm

      “It is fitting that the first and only Congress reps to stand up and be counted are African Americans.”

      Counting down the minutes til somebody (among the usual suspects) writes an “all-we-did-for-them-and-this-is-the-way-they-pay-us-back” article. Shouldn’t be long.

  5. American on September 15, 2014, 10:21 am

    Yay for the anti semites who dare call for lifting the blockade on Gaza!
    He’ll be accused of calling for the destruction of Israel by allowing life sustaining necessities into Gaza.

    • Chu on September 15, 2014, 5:18 pm

      I wonder if the Congress will attack him, or AIPAC, or a combo platter?

  6. American on September 15, 2014, 10:41 am

    Call or fax Davis

    2159 Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515-1307
    Phone: 202/225-5006
    Fax: 202/225-5641
    or use the toll free no and ask for his office—1 877 762 8762

    And this is a good place to remind people not to give their political donations to the DNC—Do Not do That!
    What you do instead is donate directly to the individual politicans you want to reward or support.
    When you donate to the DNC ‘establishment’ they use your money to elect who ‘they want’, not who you want.

    • Kay24 on September 15, 2014, 10:48 pm

      A list of politician who do not support Israel, speak out against the illegal settlements, and condemning the massacre of Palestinians, would be good. I am afraid though that that list will be very, very short.

    • radkelt on September 16, 2014, 10:22 pm

      DNC “do not contribute”

  7. Taxi on September 15, 2014, 11:48 am

    The Chicago Sun is abhorrently zionistic – man I’ve read so much racist stuff against the Palestinians there! Why bother publishing it there? The readers/commentators are rabid zionists and NOT open to any acts of justice or random kindness to ANYTHING Palestinian. I don’t therefore think that this letter will ‘change minds and hearts’.

    But I do applaud congressman Davis for his humanitarianism and his patriotism. And I also agree with American above: send money DIRECTLY to politician who do right, not some organization that they may belong to.

  8. stopaipac on September 15, 2014, 3:21 pm

    This is a good thing, and he should be thanked, as far as it goes. However, even the Obama administration has said that the Gaza blockade must be “eased”, so this is hardly exceptional.
    And these words are not backed up by any action that would make Israel notice. Like Barbara Lee and Keith Ellison, Davis is an enthusiastic supporter of “robust” military aid to Israel, and opposed to the nonviolent Palestinian movement of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions. In other words, he still opposes any *consequences* for Israel. Just like every other current member of Congress. In other words, like Obama… and Lee and Ellison and most every US President (even W. Bush expressed “concerns* about the Wall, for example), Israel can and will just ignore this, and expect the next “robust* check for military aid, that Davis have pledged them (Davis, Lee and Ellison are getting a little campaign funding from J Street PAC, and have pledged to support such aid…). In other words, these 3 congresspeople still want to be both Israel’s rehab sponsor and drug dealer at the same time, to paraphrase Jon Stewart.
    What is needed is a sustained push and clear demands, and not letting anyone off the hook for mere nice words. Yes, nice words are refreshing from this Congress, given its extremist anti-Palestinian disposition. But we cannot be satisfied until we get real action that will make a difference.
    We cannot be satisfied with what amounts to “constructive engagement” with an apartheid regime. For those young folks… “Constructive engagement” was the Reagan policy toward apartheid South Africa, it acknowledged that SA need to make “some adjustments” in policy and expressed its concerns, but strenuously opposed any consequences in the form of sanctions against the regime… It was an immoral policy of saying one policy, and materially supporting another.
    Ellison, Lee and Davis, and probably a handful of other members of Congress are probably the few that have any conscience at all. So we must demand of them that they do what must be done to satisfy even the basic of international law and human rights. NO MILITARY AID FOR ISRAEL!

    • radkelt on September 16, 2014, 10:54 pm

      stopaipac, thanks for the reality check.

      • MHughes976 on September 18, 2014, 6:25 pm

        I second radkelt’s sentiment. Davis looks, on stopaipac’s showing, as if he is responding to constituency pressure rather than leading it and probably hoping to get away with a rather small response.

  9. Kay24 on September 16, 2014, 8:31 am

    He will be denigrated just like Helen Thomas, Rev. Desmond Tutu, and others, who makes the “mistake” of speaking out, speaking their minds, or criticizing a country.

    They personally attack the individual and make them out to be anti semitic, so that they are either an example to others, or will be ostracized in our nation that boasts of free speech.

  10. Talkback on September 16, 2014, 11:13 am

    Has he been labelled “Jew” – sorry “Anti-Jew”, yet? Or will he repent after (t)his anti Israel heresy?

  11. JWalters on September 17, 2014, 6:42 pm

    Congratulations to Mr. Davis for his courage.

  12. michelle on September 18, 2014, 2:07 pm

    i hope he’s strong the current is against him
    hopefully not for long though
    G-d Bless the just

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