Louis Michel of the European Union has talked of “the overwhelming responsibility of Hamas” for the massacre in Gaza. This petition calls for him to be sacked, and for an apology to be made to the people of Gaza. I wish the text were stronger – it should mention that Israel, not Hamas, broke the ceasefire, that Gaza has been subjected to a brutal siege, that ethnic cleansing and occupation are the root of the problem, not resistance. Still, it’s worth signing. Here’s the text:
Petition – Protest EU Policy on Gaza
To: European Union
January 26, 2009
Touring some of Gaza’s worst-hit areas of Israel’s 22-day assault which killed about 1,300 Palestinians, including 400 children, Louis Michel, a senior EU official and former Belgian foreign minister, described the situation as “abominable, indescribable”. He then added:
“At this time we have to also recall the overwhelming responsibility of Hamas. I intentionally say this here – Hamas is a terrorist movement and it has to be denounced as such.”
He then went on to state that there would be no dialogue with Hamas, saying its use of terrorism against Israeli civilians, including the use of “human shields” in Gaza meant it was not a legitimate resistance movement. He called on Hamas to recognize Israel’s right to exist and to renounce violence.
We the signators of this petition are shocked, appalled and outraged by these comments.
They are the moral equivalent of rubbing salt into the wounds of the people of Gaza.
We demand the immediate ouster of Louis Michel from his position as EU Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid. We also demand a public apology be immediately given to the people of Gaza, especially to those who have lost members of their family in Israel’s 22-day attack on Gaza.