Wednesday, 31 December 2008



In the dark hours of the Israeli massacres in Gaza, it is good to know of the groups in Israel who oppose these horrific actions. Among these, pride of place in my opinion, goes to the Shministim, the young Israelis who say NO to conscription in the Israeli Army.

The Shministim are not the first refuseniks in time but they are especially inspirational.

Reading through their testimonials is a boost to any human who espouses non-violence. They suffer jail terms for their refusal. This is not easy in any country but especially so in iron-fisted Israel where the word "traitor" is easily thrown around at people who act out of conscience in a way that is not complicit with the beliefs of the IDF and the State.

These young teenagers of the Shministim are a light of hope shining in the midst of the darkness that is the State of Israel.

As an introduction please look at the video below and listen to what they say:
(there are four speakers aged 18, 19, 19, 19)

"We are Shministim ...
We are Israeli Conscientious Objectors
That means we refuse to serve in the Israeli Army
Because they are occupying another people, the Palestinians
Palestinian kids like us can't get to school because of checkpoints
Many Palestinian kids get arrested for no reason
A lot of them have been killed or their homes demolished
The Government says this policy is keeping us safe
But denying Palestinains their basic human rights put us all in danger
It's illegal
It's wrong
It's immoral
It's against my personal beliefs (x2)
It's against my basic values
It's against my values
That's why we are Conscientious Objectors (x3)
That's why I am a Conscientious Objector
We are Shministim (x3)
I am a Shministit
We are being jailed for refusing to serve in the Army
We need your support
Please sign the letter
and tell all your friends
Palestinians, Israelis, Jews, Muslims, Christians, Atheists, - everyone
We all need to stand together against violence
against oppression
no matter who does it
Take a stand with us for peace
and coexistence
and refuge for children like us everywhere
Sign the letter today (x2)
Please sign the letter today"

The names are: Sahar Vardi, Yuval Oron-Ofir, Omer Goldman and (I think) Miya Tamarin.

Link to sign the letter:


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