We must preserve tolerance and peace in debate over Israel-Gaza conflict


The 7th of November marked one month since an attack on Israel reignited bloody conflict in Gaza. This ongoing and devastating situation has continued to fuel intense emotions overseas and in New Zealand.

The cause is complex, and so is knowing the appropriate response.
We do not pretend to have the perfect answer.

But no matter which side we are on, if we strike at the basic democratic principles in our outrage, we will all be poorer.

One side can’t have the right to have their say without the other receiving the same. The opportunity to listen and provide counter-speech must exist, otherwise this wouldn’t be a democracy.

Would you sign this public letter, regardless of which side you come from on this issue, working with us to preserve open debate and civil discourse?



Together, we sign this letter whilst disagreeing on many things.

We disagree about a way forward in the Middle East, and we disagree about much to do with the Arab-Israeli conflict.

We all agree, however, on the basic principles of democracy and are united against violence.

We are appalled that a Member of Parliament required Police protection to leave a protest in Auckland Domain because he expressed an unpopular opinion. We condemn intimidation, violence, and intolerance. 

We are saddened by the unprecedented levels of both antisemitic and Islamophobic actions occurring around New Zealand associated with events overseas. Our common desire is that New Zealand would be a peaceful and free nation, where all people can speak freely and share their story.

We encourage all New Zealanders to use their voices to call out intolerance and hate, and to speak up for peace.

3,543 signature
Goal: 5000 signature

Will you sign?

Showing 2208 reactions

  • Basil Wood
    signed 2023-11-11 09:08:18 +1300
  • ron harfield
    signed 2023-11-11 09:07:45 +1300
  • Selwyn Brown
    signed 2023-11-11 09:07:36 +1300
  • Pat Cook
    signed 2023-11-11 09:07:35 +1300
  • Owen Elmiger
    signed 2023-11-11 09:07:24 +1300
  • Susan Aucutt
    signed 2023-11-11 09:07:10 +1300
  • Rolf Turner
    signed 2023-11-11 09:06:56 +1300
    There can be no peace until both sides, Hamas and Israel, acknowledge their own culpability.
  • Phil Coker
    signed 2023-11-11 09:06:12 +1300
    Same thing happens if you dare to critisise anything maori
  • Barry Austin
    signed 2023-11-11 09:05:31 +1300
  • Dave Peel
    signed 2023-11-11 09:05:01 +1300
  • Steve Lawrence
    signed 2023-11-11 09:04:44 +1300
  • Joanne Dorne
    signed 2023-11-11 09:04:43 +1300
  • Donald Stuart
    signed 2023-11-11 09:04:10 +1300
    Arabs are born to kill , and will continue to do so
  • Alison Sky
    signed 2023-11-11 09:03:53 +1300
  • Gary McMilllan
    signed 2023-11-11 09:03:18 +1300
  • Don& Rene Welsh
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:57 +1300
  • Stella Hansen
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:55 +1300
  • Jennifer McGreal
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:28 +1300
  • John Drinnan
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:24 +1300
    Social media reveals a deep seated with blood lust and fascist tropes like people being animals. The issue has come to represent an ugly aspect of how divided we have become
  • Susan Middleton
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:05 +1300
  • Monique Wells
    signed 2023-11-11 09:02:01 +1300
    If any opinion is deemed unacceptable, it starts a precedent for opinions about me. They came for the Jews, but I wasn’t a Jew, so I didn’t say anything………. when they came for me there was no one left to speak for me.
  • john McKenzie
    signed 2023-11-11 09:01:48 +1300
  • Phil Gouge
    signed 2023-11-11 09:01:47 +1300
  • Clare Antenen
    signed 2023-11-11 09:01:35 +1300
  • Alan Foster
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:54 +1300
  • Paul Barnes
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:43 +1300
  • Ben Castelow
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:29 +1300
  • Olivia Nicol
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:15 +1300
  • Janet Dean
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:10 +1300
  • Paul Canavan
    signed 2023-11-11 09:00:10 +1300