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  • Writer's pictureNathanael Bueno

Hawai‘i takes a stand against the genocide of Palestinians



Hawai‘i for a free Palestine


On March 21, by a vote of 24-1, the Hawai‘i State Senate approved a resolution that urged President Joe Biden and the members of Hawai‘i’s congressional delegation to, “publicly call for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in Gaza and continue negotiations for lasting peace [...].” 


The resolution also urged to, “facilitate the de-escalation of hostilities to end the current violence, promptly send and facilitate the entry of humanitarian assistance into Gaza, including fuel, food, water, and medical supplies [...].”


Hawai‘i has a shared history of land ownership conflicts and the resolution has shown the State Senate’s commitment to solidarity in addressing one of the most prolonged and complex conflicts of our time.


A statement issued by U.S. Rep Jill Tokuda condemns the actions of Israel stating that, “This must not, and cannot, continue. Any decision by Israel to continue its ground offensive into Rafah over the strong concerns and objections by the Biden administration should force a serious reevaluation of our bilateral relationship. [...] Israel and Hamas must negotiate an immediate ceasefire that allows for the safe return of hostages and the swift delivery of humanitarian aid.”


This is a significant departure from Hawai‘i’s previous stance with Israel when in October of 2022, previous Gov. David Ige signed a Joint Declaration that tied the knot on Hawai‘i and Israel’s relationship. Since then, there have been over 2,500 signatures in a petition urging to have the Hawai‘i and Israel relationship terminated.


In a testimony supporting the cease-fire resolution by Anna Frederick, executive director of the Hawai‘i Alliance for Progressive Action, Hawai‘i residents accumulate $13 million of the $3.8 billion federal taxes for funding the U.S. military that provides economic aid to the apartheid state of Israel every year. Economic aid expedites the war crimes committed against Palestinians, obstructing them from any grasp of any necessary aid (ie. food, water, and shelter).


The current genocide of Palestinians


The people of Palestine are currently suffering a genocide with humanitarian aid that can never be satisfied.


Reiterating a live update by the Associated Press, on October 27th of last year, Israel launched continuous airstrikes over Gaza City at nightfall into the following day. This was part of a plan for the Israeli military to invade Gaza and hunt down the Hamas militant group which carried out an attack on Israel on October 7th that killed at least 1,200 Israelis, injured thousands, and took about 240 hostages. Since then, more than 30,000 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed. According to a report by the United Nations News, 70% of people killed in the war in Gaza are women and children, which would mean two mothers are killed every hour.


Right now, Israel has placed Gaza under complete closure, blocking all access to food, water, fuel, electricity, medical supplies, and other basic human necessities. People are not only dying from the direct attacks by the Israeli military but also from starvation and disease. This is very clearly a humanitarian crisis that should be classified as a genocide as it grows exponentially worse every day.



In the West Bank, Palestinians are also suffering violence from an increasing amount of settler attacks, mass arrest campaigns, and military raids. According to a report by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, at least 400 Palestinians have been killed with hundreds more injured. These were just numbers reported in January of this year.


Historical Context


Israel and Palestine have a complicated political history with conflicts that originated in the last century. A brief article by History outlines the timeline of the Gaza Strip, a 140-square-mile strip of land that is located along the Mediterranean coast between Egypt and Israel, stating that the region has suffered protest, militant enforcement, and violence for decades. 


On May 14, 1948, Israel gained official statehood. War broke out just one day later, which is known as the 1948 Arab-Israeli War involving five Arab countries Jordan, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, and Lebanon. The result was Egypt being given control of the Gaza Strip. But before Israel’s statehood, the majority of the people residing in that region, previously known as Palestine, were Arabs.


The aftermath of that war left an estimated 700,000 Palestinians displaced from their homes in Israel and thousands of Palestinian refugees settled in the Gaza Strip. In 1967, the Six-Day War ended Egypt’s control of Gaza since Israel ended up taking control of the strip. Consequently, the 1993 and 1995 Oslo Peace Accords between Palestinian and Israeli leaders aimed to potentially end decades of conflict and negotiate Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza. That didn’t happen until 2005 under Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.


In 2006, the Islamist political group, Hamas, won elections and took control of the Gaza Strip. A series of protests, bombings, and heavy violence ensued, which led to Israel and the United States condemning these actions and classifying Hamas as a terrorist organization. 


In the spring of 2018, the United States opened its new Embassy in Jerusalem, a move facilitated by ex-U.S. President, Donald Trump. This gave Palestinians the impression that Jerusalem was recognized as the capital of America’s closest ally. Their response was a planned protest known as the Great March of Return, which resulted in countless protester deaths.


Still, the violence between Israelis and Palestinians escalates with the apartheid state of Israel placing Palestinians under a relentless state of apprehension and instability. This ongoing conflict evolved into the attack on October 7th of last year, which led current Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to declare war leading to thousands of Palestinian deaths that continue today. 


Getting humanitarian aid to Gaza


The people of Palestine are currently suffering a genocide with humanitarian aid that can never be satisfied, reinforced by the apartheid state of Israel. According to the Aid Worker Security Database, there have been at least 210 aid workers who have been killed since the conflict started in 2023. 


On April 1st, seven aid workers from World Central Kitchen were killed by an Israeli airstrike. WCK is a relief organization that provides food to victims of humanitarian disasters around the world. The deaths of these aid workers caused immense international outrage that seemed to overshadow the deaths of the thousands of Palestinians that have already and continue to happen. They were the leading food supplier in Gaza as they have provided 48 million meals to Palestinians since the crisis began.


Israeli Defense Force Chief Herzi Halevi made a public statement saying that the strike killing the seven aid workers who were traveling in a strictly deconflicted zone was “unintentional”, showing the dangerous lack of awareness for an apartheid state to have, especially when possessing military-grade weapons.


Donations can be made to humanitarian aid efforts in Gaza for free. Arab.org is a click-to-donate website where the user can simply click to generate an ad that generates a donation to the desired charity. Six causes can be clicked on per day. 


Doctors Without Borders is another credible donation resource. They are an international medical humanitarian organization providing aid in nearly 60 countries and they are recognized as tax-exempt. Lastly, the UNRWA is an organization that provides direct food assistance to Gaza, and they recently had their funding cut. They work with people with disabilities and those who live in places with conflict. 


To stop wondering what the result will be is up to your own will to take action and contribute to humanitarian aid efforts in Gaza. Everyone can play a role in ceasing the violence.




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