Naperville Sun

'End the Occupation' group praised for its activities

  As an American Jew concerned about the conflict in Israel/Palestine, I want to thank The Naperville Sun for its coverage of the activities of Naperville's End the Occupation Coalition, a group whose vigils I have been privileged to attend.

  In Israel numerous groups including Gush-Shalom, Bat-Shalom, The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, Yesh Gvul, Kvisa Sh'hora, Balad Youth, Hadash Youth, Meretz Youth, Neled, Women in Black, New Profile, and Coalition of Women for Peace have clearly, strongly and publicly called for an end to the Israeli occupation. In Chicago, "Not in My Name" (a predominately Jewish group working to end the occupation — www.nimn.org) is receiving news every day of the quickly growing number of soldiers in the Israeli Defence Forces who wish to protect Israel, but refuse to serve in the occupied territories.

  For the Israeli officers and combat soldiers who have signed the petition to refuse to "continue to fight beyond the 1967 borders in order to dominate, expel, starve and humiliate an entire people," ending the occupation is a significant and necessary step towards peace. I extend my sincere thanks to those Americans, including the members of Naperville's End the Occupation Committee, who are encouraging that step.

Michael Levin, Ph.D., Berwyn

02/17/02