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Sunday, June 23, 2024
The Eagle

SIS staff and faculty call for ceasefire in Gaza

“We now call on our governments and campuses to bravely Wage Peace instead.”

Faculty and staff members in American University’s School of International Service have co-authored and signed a statement calling for an enduring ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas War. 

The statement, which continuously references the SIS “Waging Peace” motto, has 39 signatories as of Dec. 8. At least 16,015 Palestinians have been killed since Hamas attacked Israel and the war began on Oct. 7, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

“Even among divergent understandings of the root causes of this excruciating violence, we, the undersigned, agree that lasting peace, equity, and security in the region depends upon a ceasefire now to prevent further military escalation and a worsening humanitarian crisis,” the statement said. 

The statement also calls for an end to the siege on Gaza, which has prevented food, water, fuel, humanitarian aid and other life-sustaining resources from entering the region. 

Signatories also called out the United States’ support of Israel’s military occupation. The U.S. currently gives Israel $3.1 billion in foreign aid, making Israel the world’s largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid.

“The U.S. government must end its weapons shipments to Israel, and Israel must end its mass bombardment and total siege of Gaza, its ever-expanding settlements on Palestinian land, and its long-term military occupation,” the statement said. “Hamas must release the remaining 239 hostages, among other actions. The Israel government must release thousands of Palestinian political prisoners and stop the settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank, among other actions.”

The statement also drew attention to the lack of recognition of Palestinians within the AU community, noting that the University administration has not acknowledged the pain Palestinians are experiencing in their statements about the conflict. 

Nation-wide, many Palestinians on college campuses have expressed feeling unsafe. In October, a threatening and anti-Palestinian note was found in an AU staff member’s office. 

“Peace is not passive and must be forged valiantly, against the dehumanization of all people and against the normalization of war,” the statement said. “To counter the inflamed cycles of anti-Muslim racism, anti-Semitism, and anti-Arab racism, we now call on our governments and campuses to bravely Wage Peace instead.”

Editor’s Note: The Eagle refers to the Israel-Hamas war in accordance with the Associated Press. For more information on how The Eagle covers global conflict, see this letter from the editor and our ethics code

This article was edited by Tyler Davis and Abigail Pritchard. Copy editing done by Isabelle Kravis, Sarah Clayton and Luna Jinks.

As the semester comes to an end and one of the founding members leaves American University, Section 202 has decided to take a trip down memory lane. For our fans, old and new, who are wondering how Section 202 came to be, this episode is a must. Listen along as hosts Connor Sturniolo and Liah Argiropoulos reminisce about the beginning of Section 202 and how it got to where it is now.

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