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Jewish Groups Call on Congress to Pass Rachel Corrie Bill

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE—Wednesday April 2, 2020

CHICAGO, April 2, 2003-Several grassroots Jewish peace organizations today urged Members of Congress to support the Rachel Corrie Resolution (H.Con.Res.  111).  Rachel Corrie was a 23 year-old American peace activist who was killed by an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) bulldozer while attempting to protect a Palestinian home from demolition through an act of nonviolent civil disobedience in the Gaza Strip on March 16.

The Rachel Corrie Resolution was introduced in the House of Representatives on March 25 by Brian Baird (WA-3) and currently has 10 cosponsors.  The resolution expresses sympathy to the Corrie family for their loss, calls for a U.S. investigation into her death, and urges the United States and Israel to work together to ensure that this never happens again.

Charles Lenchner, President of Jews for Peace in Palestine and Israel, stated that "according to an Israeli peace group, the Israeli military judge advocate general has concluded that no charges will be brought against the bulldozer driver.  Therefore it is even more imperative that the United States conducts a full investigation into Rachel's death."

According to Rachael Kamel, an activist with Jewish Mobilization for a Just Peace, "Rachel Corrie represented the finest tradition of nonviolent peacemaking.  At this time, the international nonviolent peace forces provide the only protection available to the Palestinian civilian population.  An investigation is needed not only to clarify the circumstances of her death but also to help Congress and the American public understand more fully the violence carried out every day in the Occupied Territories in our name and with our tax dollars."

Mitchell Plitnick, Co-Director of A Jewish Voice for Peace adds, "Rachel Corrie was an American civilian killed during a foreign military operation.  Eyewitnesses have expressed doubt that the incident was accidental.  Under such circumstances, the need for an impartial investigation to establish the truth of the matter is undeniable."

"The IDF is treating this death as an accident, in spite of eyewitness reports and photographs that directly contradict the military account.  Given the historic brutality of the IDF's actions in the Occupied Territories, a more objective investigation must be carried out if justice is to be served."  said Sam Miller/Eisenstein, a member of Jews Against the Occupation.

Hilda Silverman, of Visions of Peace with Justice in Israel/Palestine and Jewish Women for Justice in Israel/Palestine, concluded, "Rachel Corrie was a hero to many of us, as well as to the Israeli peace and justice activists with whom we work and to the Palestinians for whom she risked and lost her life.  Our hearts go out to her family, her friends, and her colleagues in the International Solidarity Movement; and we join the call for an impartial U.S. investigation of the circumstances of her brutal death."

Participating organizations include Jewish Mobilization for a Just Peace and Bubbes and Zaydes for Middle East Peace (Philadelphia), A Jewish Voice for Peace (San Francisco), Jewish Voices Against the Occupation (Seattle), Jews Against the Occupation (New York), Jews for Peace in Palestine and Israel (Washington, DC), Not in My Name (Chicago), the Tikkun Community, and Visions of Peace with Justice in Israel/Palestine and Jewish Women for Justice in Israel/Palestine (Boston).

[April 2, 2020]