Convoy to take aid to Gaza
Published Jun 13, 2009 9:21 AM
Supporters of the beleaguered Palestinian people plan to leave from New York
City on July 4 with medical supplies they will deliver to hospitals in
This effort has been spearheaded by British MP George Galloway, who heads an
international effort called Viva Palestina to break the genocidal blockade that
has been imposed upon the people of Gaza by the U.S., the Western European
powers and the racist state of Israel. Galloway has been speaking across the
U.S. to raise money for the convoy, co-led by Vietnam vet and author Ron Kovic.
The U.S. humanitarian organization IFCO/Pastors for Peace is the convoy’s
On May 26 nearly 700 people packed a catering hall in Brooklyn’s Arab
community to welcome Galloway. The Brooklyn meeting alone raised nearly
$100,000. The meeting was organized by Al-Awda NY, the Palestine Right to
Return Coalition; the Arab Muslim American Federation (AMAF); and the Break the
Siege on Gaza Coalition.
Galloway described the human devastation wrought by the U.S.-funded Israeli
attack on Gaza in December and January, including the horrible effects of such
U.S.-supplied weapons as white phosphorous and DIME (Dense Inert Metal
Explosive). Adults and children who inhale white phosphorous literally bake to
death from the inside out; DIME tears off human limbs.
The blockade compounds the effect of the destruction. People cannot get
materials to rebuild their homes; children who have lost arms and legs cannot
get wheelchairs or prosthetics; and hospitals lack basic medicines.
Galloway also described the outpouring of sympathy that met a humanitarian aid
convoy he led from Britain to Gaza earlier this year. The 110 vehicles traveled
through Europe and North Africa to Egypt, where popular enthusiasm forced the
U.S.-backed Mubarak regime to open the Rafah crossing and let the convoy pass
He especially urged people in the U.S. to take action, since the U.S. funds and
arms the Israeli war machine.
The meeting also heard poets Remi Kanazi and Salah Tahani, whose words painted
vivid pictures of the suffering of the Palestinian people and their
determination to regain their land. Other speakers included Wael Mousfar of
AMAF and Dima AbiSaab of Al-Awda NY. The event was emceed by Lamis Deek,
Al-Awda NY co-chair.
More information about the convoy effort can be found at vivapalestina-us.org.
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