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.

3,534 signature
Goal: 5000 signature

Will you sign?

Showing 2199 reactions

  • Jeffrey Greer
    signed 2023-11-11 08:25:10 +1300
  • Peter Phelan
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:50 +1300
  • James Snowsill
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:41 +1300
  • Tania Sturt
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:30 +1300
  • Danielle Herrick
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:25 +1300
  • Joanna Smith-Holley
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:25 +1300
  • Judy Just
    signed 2023-11-11 08:24:09 +1300
  • Patrick Rossiter
    signed 2023-11-11 08:23:55 +1300
  • Darren Richards
    signed 2023-11-11 08:23:24 +1300
  • Malcolm Moncrief-Spittle
    signed 2023-11-11 08:23:20 +1300
  • Brenda Hinton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:23:01 +1300
  • Jerry Walton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:47 +1300
    This conflict is appalling.

    But if it is correct that the official Hamas view is that Israel should not exist and they will not accept a two State settlement then regrettably Hamas is as much to blame as the Israelis are!,
  • Christopher Atkinson
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:36 +1300
  • George Andrew
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:25 +1300
    I don’t agree with violence as away to push an agenda, but I agree with protecting the Israeli civilian s from terrorist actions. It’s an invasion of Israel and an act of war. Israel is correct in it’s actions. They have also given the Gaza Strip North and South time to vacate. Whereas there was no warnings of the terrorist acts that killed hundreds or so people and took some hostage. This they have been doing for quite a lot of years. The Gaza strip people also condone the terrorist actions by aiding the cause of Hamas. Now they are playing the Humanitarian card and getting the aid of the world against Israel. No I do not agree with those who are calling for a cease fire. Israel has to stop Hamas completely otherwise it will build again and they will have to do it all over. I do feel for those who are affected and pray that they will keep safe. Israeli and Gaza Strip people.
  • Kirsty Hulena
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:19 +1300
  • Kevin Brown
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:17 +1300
  • Alan Rossiter
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:05 +1300
  • June Brown
    signed 2023-11-11 08:22:04 +1300
  • Tania Huata
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:54 +1300
    We should be able to express our views with out being suppressed. Refuse to be silenced by totalitarian behaviour.
  • Brooke Tucker
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:35 +1300
  • Daniel Poynton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:26 +1300
  • Marlene Burge
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:22 +1300
  • Barry Parkin
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:20 +1300
    Safety of civilians esp children and the elderly in all instances is basic civilised and human behaviour. To suggest anything else degenerates the holder of those views to being inhumane and not fit to be a member of a society
  • Chun Lee
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:17 +1300
    We should be free to express our thoughts.
  • Ann Lamberton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:21:14 +1300
  • Brian Winslade
    signed 2023-11-11 08:20:52 +1300
  • Malcolm Elliot-Hogg
    signed 2023-11-11 08:20:33 +1300
  • Erica Lang
    signed 2023-11-11 08:20:29 +1300
  • Don Franks
    signed 2023-11-11 08:20:23 +1300
  • Caroline Banks
    signed 2023-11-11 08:20:23 +1300