Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Letter to Rachel Corrie's family and Washington State legislators

By Mohamed Khodr
rachel corrie shrouded

Below is a letter I sent to the Corries but more importantly to executive and legislative members in Washington State where Rachel Corrie was a resident. It includes the Governor, Lt. Governor, Senators and Congressmen in D.C. and senators and members of the general assembly in Washington State as well as the media.
March 4, 2010
Mr. and Mrs. Corrie
Honorable Members of the Executive and Legislative Branch Washington State
"Right and wrong are the same in Palestine as anywhere else. What is
peculiar about the Palestine conflict is that the world has listened to the
party that committed the offence and has turned a deaf ear to the victims."
-British Historian Arnold Toynbee

This coming March 16 will be the seventh anniversary of Israel's deliberate murder of a 23 year old young idealist college student from Olympia, Washington named Rachel Corrie. Her story and the shocking photos of her murder can be found in the links below.

For seven years Israel has denied and falsified the story of this American citizen's murder, albiet with the silence and usual paralysis of our government when the issue has to do with Israel.

Notice how Israel publicly rebuffed President Obama on freezing illegal settlements. It not only continued building illegal settlements by the hundreds in the West Bank and East Jerusalem but it continues to demolish Arab Christian and Muslims homes in East Jerusalem while the U.S. retracted its opposition and took the usual default position of silence and blaming the victims as it's done for over 60 years.

The blatant and open murder of an American citizen by Israel was met by utter callousness and silence by the White House, Congress, and the main stream media. The enormous and heart wrenching pain her parents have endured all these years have been suffered alone without any substantial support from our government whose main responsibility is the protection of its citizens. They've travelled across this country and abroad keeping the memory of their daughter's death alive while seeking any support for justice for their daughter. Rachel. Other peace activists have been similarily killed, maimed and injured by Israeli forces for their just work to protect the civilian Palestinian population and bring their plight to the world's attention.

An American ecumnenical group called the Christian Peacemaker Teams ( risk their lives daily as they escort Palestinian children to school thereby preventing their murder or injury by Israeli soldiers (See Guardian UK paper article: Israeli Officer: I was right to shoot 13 year old child, Radio exchange contradicts army version of Gaza killing, Nov. 24, 2004)

Compare our national silence on Rachel's murder to the uproar and outrage by our government and media that followed the murder of Daniel Pearl, WSJ journalist, in Pakistan. A movie was made about his murder while for the first time in modern history the State Department placed an advertisement for the movie, A Mighty Heart, on its official website. The website later took down the ad.

(State Department Website with Daniel Pearl Movie–no longer exists)


Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act Subsequent to the U.S. House of Representatives passing the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act on June 10, 2009, Senator Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) introduced the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act to the Senate on October 1, 2009, where it is currently under consideration by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. This legislation would direct the State Department to include information relating to freedom of the press worldwide in annual country reports on human rights practices. "The right to a free press is a right upon which we all rely. And every time a journalist is kept from doing his or her job, it is each of us whose right is being violated,"

said Dodd in a floor statement. "This legislation, in turn, will help to shed light on crimes where these brave journalists themselves are the victims."

What Now for Rachel's parents as they continue their painful struggle for justice for their murdered daughter?

Will you the elected officials of Washington State muster the courage and compassion to speak out for this young dead American peace activist who saw the wrongs of what our nation is doing in its blind and unquestionable support of Israel?

Or will her death be once again ignored and swept under the rug of political expediency, fear and political correctness? Is her life less worthy and valuable than Daniel Pearl's or the murder of any other American citizen abroad?

When will this idealistic young Washingtonian rest in peace knowing that her parents no longer struggle alone but have been joined by your spirit for truth and justice?

Many of you are parents and grandparents and can fully understand and sympathize with the tragic pain of having a young daughter killed by an American bulldozer in a nation that wouldn't exist without America's support and contiued benevolence.

I ask you in all that is holy and meaningful in your lives do not let Rachel's death go unanswered, do not let this young woman's death pass without justice. Her parents need your help and support as they take on one of the world's most powerful nations, politically and militarily, with unprecedented support in our Congress and media.

Washingtonians need to know you'll be there to help, support, and protect them against the evil dangers they face abroad whether in Israel or Pakistan.

May the memory of our dear Rachel always be an inspiration to Peace and Freedom loving peoples throughout the world.

With all due respect and hope, I remain

Mohamed Khodr M.D., M.P.H.
Please view the photos of Rachel Corrie's stand in front of the bulldozer and after her murder. It clearly shows she was standing in direct site of the Caterpillar's driver. She was trying to prevent the house demolition of a Palestinian physician and his family's home, not the lie of Hamas tunnels.
(Rachel's heartwarming and moving words on Israel's occupation: See what Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and many other organizations say about her murder)

Daniel Pearl's Website with Congressional Act included