PALESTINE Solidarity Alliance's Tasneem Mart's reply to my letter ("Human rights ignored", October 3) is more instructive for what she leaves out than what she puts in ("Walk supports freedom, not any party", October 15). She makes two rather trivial points: that this was a "walk", not a "march" and the walk was about freedom and not about a political party.
But, Miss Mart, you fail to address the main thrust of my letter devoted to the policies of Hamas, Gaza's "democratically-elected ruling party" (your words). This party, which presumably represents the collective will of the Palestinian people, has policies which bear directly on the predicament of the people whose freedom and wellbeing you so assiduously promote.
You drew an analogy with South Africa's freedom struggle and the ANC, so let's follow it through. Compare the ANC's Freedom Charter, a noble and worthy document, with the founding document of the Palestinian government, the Hamas Charter – a document more base and hideous than anything you can imagine.
This charter calls for genocide, and I quote: "Kill the Jews; [and when] the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, [the rocks and trees] will cry: O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him!". It goes on: "Hamas strives to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine" and "[peace] initiatives, the so-called peaceful solutions, and the international conferences to resolve the Palestinian problem, are all contrary to the beliefs of Hamas."
Can a call to violence and genocide be expected to alleviate the Palestinian predicament, a call backed up daily by rocket attacks against Israeli civilians. Is it surprising that Israel insists on controlling air and sea access into Gaza?
Finally, you call your organisation the Palestinian Solidarity Alliance. The dictionary defines "solidarity" as "unity or agreement of feeling or action, like-mindedness and singleness of purpose". Does this mean that your organisation supports violence and genocide, and rejects peaceful solutions as stated in the Hamas Charter?
Chuck Volpe, Port Elizabeth