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.

3,544 signature
Goal: 5000 signature

Will you sign?

Showing 2208 reactions

  • James Ahmu
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:55 +1300
  • Tracy Phua
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:50 +1300
  • Louise Burnside
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:48 +1300
  • Mark Shaw
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:41 +1300
  • noel bishop
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:41 +1300
    My desire is for in NZ all debate should be free of intolerance ….and hate…
  • John Obrien 0
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:40 +1300
  • Noel Brinson
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:39 +1300
    This is the concern of global integration, when you escape from a war torn country to a peaceful society you must leave the conflict behind, however hard it may be.
  • Shona Rutherford
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:29 +1300
  • Jo Cotton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:28 +1300
  • gavin hodder
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:15 +1300
    Matters like this date back for centuries in their root cause. its up to the parties involved with international support to try and reach a settlement. War has no winners. And neither does religious bias.
  • Helen Gafa
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:15 +1300
  • Malcolm (Bob) D́owner
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:09 +1300
    I am not antisemitic or Islamophobic. I am anti Zionist. I am sympathetic to the cause of the Palestinians.
  • Al Hanline
    signed 2023-11-11 08:12:04 +1300
  • Chris Hall
    signed 2023-11-11 08:11:59 +1300
  • Dane Giraud Giraud
    signed 2023-11-11 08:11:30 +1300
  • Debbie Hayes
    signed 2023-11-11 08:11:24 +1300
  • Paul Simpson
    signed 2023-11-11 08:11:22 +1300
  • Phil garside
    signed 2023-11-11 08:11:05 +1300
  • Peter Broughton
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:59 +1300
    I stand for Israel and the peace of Jerusalem. Naturally they have the right to defend themselves.
  • Jonathan Twyman
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:50 +1300
  • Michael Roberts
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:46 +1300
  • Ann Anderson
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:38 +1300
  • Kerry Burrell
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:28 +1300
  • Hannah Taylor
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:12 +1300
  • jeff matthews
    signed 2023-11-11 08:10:01 +1300
    Debate of opposing views is the cornerstone of democracy
  • Janette Martin
    signed 2023-11-11 08:09:58 +1300
  • Alan Pitt
    signed 2023-11-11 08:09:55 +1300
  • Laurie & Helen Tuff
    signed 2023-11-11 08:09:52 +1300
  • Elaine Booker
    signed 2023-11-11 08:09:42 +1300
  • Belinda Cranswick
    signed 2023-11-11 08:09:40 +1300