Gaza letter in Lancet causes a stir
In an open letter for the people of Gaza, 24 leading scientists and doctors denounced the aggression and challenged the perversity of the defensive hostility in Gaza by Israel.
The letter was published by the Lancet, a weekly peer-reviewed medical journal which is one of the oldest and most prestigious general medical journals in the world.
In the letter, the 24 European and North American professionals acknowledged that they have worked in Gaza at some point and urged their colleagues, young and old, to join them to denounce the Israeli aggression.
“We are appalled by the military onslaught on civilians in Gaza under the guise of punishing terrorists. This is the third large scale military assault on Gaza since 2008. Each time the death toll is borne mainly by innocent people in Gaza, especially women and children, under the unacceptable pretext of Israel eradicating political parties and resistance to the occupation and siege they impose,” stated the letter.
After challenging the Israeli offensive, the letter illustrates the situation in Gaza in detail, by describing various facts and by mentioning the direct and indirect impact it has on the lives of the people.
The letter is also a platform that demonstrates their frustration and helplessness, due to the fact that even those who want to go and help are unable to reach Gaza due to the blockade by Egypt and Israel. A call for tighter sanctions on Israel, with cessation of any trade and collaborative agreements with Europe, was made.
The authors also registered their dismay that only 5% of their Israeli academic associates signed an appeal to their government to stop the military occupation of Gaza.
The letter concludes by recognizing the complicity of the European and North American countries and the rest of the Israeli academics, in the massacre in Gaza.
The letter has attracted a wave of criticism. Dr. Bruce M. Marmor, a veteran internal medicine specialist in Syracuse, New York, said it was “purely political, inaccurate and prejudiced.”
“The editors of The Lancet, which is supposed to be a medical journal, should have [recognized] the letter for what it is — a gross example of anti-Jewish bigotry, pure and simple,” said Dr. Marmor.
Following the response to “An open letter for the people in Gaza”, The Lancet has decided not to publish the names of signatories, concerned about threatening statements to the signatories posted on social media.
To view the open letter published by the Lancet, click the following link: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736%2814%2961044-8/fulltext