“A textbook case of genocide” is how Israeli academic and Holocaust scholar Raz Segal described Israel’s ongoing bombardment of Gaza.

Craig Mokhiber, the director of the New York office of the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, resigned on Oct. 28, citing the U.N.’s failure to prevent genocide in Gaza as a reason in a letter to the U.N. high commissioner in Geneva. Jewish Voice for Peace – an American Jewish organization – describes the onslaught in Gaza as a genocide.

At JVP direct actions, which have been ongoing since the start of the Israeli attacks on Gaza, one sees a sea of Jewish American activists and allies wearing black shirts that read “Not in Our Name” and “Jews say Ceasefire Now.” All of the above mentioned individuals and organizations are calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. As of this writing, more than 11,000 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza since Israel’s bombardment began.

Recent polling has shown that 66% percent of Americans support a ceasefire in Gaza. Why, then, is Maine’s congressional delegation so hesitant to call for a ceasefire?

Any person of conscience can see the visceral suffering of Gazans – it has even started to appear in American corporate media – albeit weeks after the Israeli bombardment of Gaza commenced.

Al Jazeera has been reporting on the ground in Gaza since the onslaught began, documenting war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Israeli regime in real time. On Oct. 19, Israel bombed one of the oldest churches in the region, the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Porphyrius, killing at least 16 displaced Palestinian Christians seeking refuge within the church, including multiple family members of former Michigan Congressman Justin Amash.


“So many of the people suffering are just children. They don’t deserve violence and death,” Amash posted to X (formerly Twitter).

Maine’s congressional delegation appears to support sending an additional $14.3 billion dollars in military aid to Israel as requested by President “Genocide Joe” Biden, on top of the nearly $4 billion dollars in military aid Israel receives annually from taxpayers.

That’s more than millions of tax dollars from us Mainers alone every year — tax dollars that are currently being used to fund ethnic cleansing and genocide. Couldn’t that money be better invested within our own communities?

As a lifelong resident of Porter, Maine, I see the crumbling infrastructure of rural Western Maine every time I leave my home. I see my community, friends and family members struggling with addiction and access to health care, with little to no treatment options in our area. I see friends and family using GoFundMe for their cancer treatments, funeral expenses and medical bills after car or other unexpected accidents. But our elected officials think that millions of Maine tax dollars should go to a country that, by many reputable accounts, is committing genocide.

Recently, U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, one of Maine’s most egregious supporters of Israel’s genocidal bombardment of Gaza, voted to censure Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib – the only Palestinian-American member of Congress.

House Democrats and Republicans came together to censure Tlaib, whose only offense was calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and centering the thousands of Palestinians who have lost their lives since the bombardment of Gaza began.

Golden’s vote to censure Tlaib is reprehensible, repugnant and flies in the face of the very Constitution he swore an oath to uphold. What happened to freedom of expression? Protest? Dissenting opinions? The constitutional right of every American to oppose their tax dollars being used to pay for weapons that kill Palestinian children?

The censure of Tlaib harkens back to the McCarthyite witch hunts of the 1940-50s, witch hunts that were sharply criticized by Sen. Margaret Chase Smith of Maine in her revered speech, “A Declaration of Conscience.” Where is your conscience, Rep. Golden?

I call on all members of Maine’s congressional delegation to immediately call for a ceasefire in Gaza.

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