Letter to Editor: Deafening silence on Gaza by Harlow Labour leader

General / Wed 1st Nov 2023 at 05:20pm

Dear Editor, 

THE cruelties being inflicted upon the inhabitants of the Gaza Strip have provoked outrage around the world. Leading members of the Labour Party in Britain, including frontbench MPs, the Leader of the Labour Party in Scotland, the Labour Mayors of London and Greater Manchester, and Labour groups on at least twenty councils have issued statements calling for an immediate ceasefire. However, here in Harlow there is a deafening silence from Chris Vince, who is both the Leader of the Labour Group on the Council and the Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Harlow. 

The massive bombardment of the Gaza Strip and the cutting of supplies of water, food, medicine, and electricity to that territory are collective punishment, which is a crime under international law.  

The United Kingdom not only supplies arms to the State of Israel, it is also an important ally of that state. Political leaders at all levels in this country have a moral duty to condemn the British government’s support for the collective punishment of the people of the Gaza Strip. To remain silent is to endorse. 

I am a member of the Labour Party and I must say that I have always found Chris Vince to be somewhat vague about his stance on a number of political issues, but I do not think that it is unreasonable to expect the most prominent member of the party in the town to condemn war crimes and express support for a peaceful resolution of a conflict in which the British government is complicit. 

I hope that Harlow Council’s Labour Group will follow the example of their colleagues in places such as Glasgow, Leeds, and the London Boroughs of Brent and Tower Hamlets, and pass a motion calling for an immediate ceasefire and the full restoration of supplies of water, food, medicine, electricity and other necessities to the people of the Gaza Strip. 

Yours sincerely 

John Wake 

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6 Comments for Letter to Editor: Deafening silence on Gaza by Harlow Labour leader:

2023-11-01 18:38:34

The war would end if Hamas surrendered. So why don't you call on them to do this, it seems it is always Israel that is blamed. Hamas committed murder. They fired rockets that had to travel over a hospital with devastating consequences. They want to destroy a nation of people that have always lived in the area

2023-11-01 19:14:02

Picture the scene - Chris Vince publishes a letter on YH saying that there needs to be a ceasefire between Hamas and the IDF. Ismail Haniyeh is interrupted from deciding who to kill next by a flunky in a uniform with too many medals. "What!!! The Great Chris Vince has said what? In that world renowned publication Your Harlow, the ultimate reference for world political discourse? We must stop everything now!! Stop firing missiles!! Release all hostages!!". Meanwhile, in Tel Aviv, the office of Prime Minister Netanyahu: " Sorry, Richi, I must interrupt your call. I have just been informed that Chris Vince of Harlow has called for a ceasefire. Yes, in Your Harlow. You read it every day as well, Richi? So does the whole of Israel. Yes, I hope that SFG College will open soon to students as well. But if Chris Vince calls for a ceasefire, then it must happen." The idea that Chris Vince's opinion, or any of the Labour politicians opinions listed above, will have the slightest influence over any happenings in the Middle East is ridiculous. Only one person has the slightest influence ("Sleepy Joe"), and that is probably being ignored. At this time, Hamas is responsible for it's own actions, the Israeli government is responsible for it's own actions. Caught in the middle are innocents of many nationalities and religions being killed. And it matters not one jot what Chris, Sadiq, Anas, or Keir says or does. While we are here, I would like to know what Chris Vince thinks of UK Gardeners Urged To Use Bananas To Help Roses Bloom. There has been a deafening silence from Chris and the whole of the Labour party on this matter. (https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/uk-gardeners-urged-to-use-bananas-with-roses_uk_65422324e4b0ae2dc0b6013b). I do not think that it is unreasonable to expect the most prominent member of the party in the town to tell us all the gardening tips he knows. Which would be more effective? Chris calling for a ceasefire, or Chris growing nicer roses due to bananas? And just for the record, no one has asked me what I think of the conflict in Gaza. Yes, there is also a deafening silence from me on Gaza. Straw Man Argument.

Peter Henegan
2023-11-01 19:23:26

Hugo, who is Chris Vance?

2023-11-01 20:38:20

Chris is silent as he is afraid he will upset Starmer before he is even elected.

David Forman
2023-11-02 12:44:54

Chris Vince is a current member of Amnesty International and made sure he got a YourHarlow press release out of helping to set up the Harlow branch in March 2018. Amnesty International have called for a ceasefire, both sides to protect civilians and address the root causes of the conflict. Chris Vince's membership of Amnesty International and his silence makes him a hypocrite. See Amnesty International statement at https://www.amnesty.org.uk/issues/crisis-gaza-israel

David Forman
2023-11-02 12:51:11

Forgot to say a leading United Nations Human Rights Director resigned on October 28 due to the U.N.'s failure to prevent a genocide in Palestine. He called what his happening there a "text-book case of genocide". See his Interview and resignation letter at https://www.democracynow.org/2023/11/1/craig_mokhiber_un_resignation_israel_gaza