Jewish Activists Delivered Over 17,000 Signatures of Protest at Romney's Campaign Headquarters
(Aug 6, 2012) - Representatives of Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) delivered over 17,000 signatures to Mitt Romney's Boston, Massachusetts, office this afternoon
calling on the presumptive Republican presidential nominee to apologize for the ignorant and offensive remarks he made last week while in Jerusalem, where he claimed that differences between the Israeli and Palestinian economies were due to cultural factors, or even to divine providence.
"Mitt Romney is ignoring the elephant in the room, which is Israel's 45-year-old military occupation of Palestinian lands,” said Rabbi Joseph Berman of JVP. "Palestinians do not have freedom of movement for people or goods. They are not free to go and study or work as they please. They are not free to import or export raw materials or completed products without restrictions imposed by discriminatory Israeli policies and controls."
In addition to facing severe impediments to economic growth due to Israel's occupation regime, including theft of land and natural resources and restrictions on movement, Palestinians in the West Bank are a captive market for Israeli consumer products and a cheap labor force for Israeli industry, without any of the labor protections that Israeli workers enjoy under Israeli law.
"Mitt Romney says that he believes in the importance of a 'culture of freedom' for economic development, yet he seems oblivious to the fact that millions of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation are not free, and that their lack of freedom is the first and most important obstacle to their economic progress," said JVP’s Pam Rogers. "Mitt Romney should do the right thing and apologize to the Palestinian people for his uninformed and derogatory comments."
Jewish Voice for Peace is a national grassroots peace organization dedicated to promoting a US foreign policy in the Middle East based on peace, democracy, human rights and respect for international law. With over 115,000 online supporters, 35 chapters and a Rabbinical Council, JVP’s board of advisors includes Tony Kushner, Ed Asner, Naomi Klein, Noam Chomsky, Eve Ensler and others.
Obama campaign: Romney failed the first rule of overseas trips – do no harm. Haaretz, August 1, 2012
Jewish group asks Romney to apologize to the Palestinians. The Hill, August 6, 2012.
More Palestinian problems for Romney. Salon, August 7, 2012.
Romney’s Boston HQ refuses to accept Jewish Voice for Peace petition. JTA, August 7, 2012.
US Jewish group calls for Romney apology to Palestinians. Ma'an News, August 7, 2012.
Israel is losing crucial support. AlArabiya, August 10, 2012.