Petition to ISMRM to recognize and Condemn Hamas

Petition to ISMRM to recognize and Condemn Hamas

מספר חתימות

פורסם בתאריך: 21/10/2023

On October 7 2023 Hamas unleashed a horrific terrorist attack on Israel, that resulted in over 1400 victims of all religions and nationalities - the vast majority of them civilians, including elderly, women, children, babies. It also included at least 210 kidnapped victims, as well as thousands of wounded people. The level of unprecedented brutality and viciousness of the crimes against humanity perpetrated by Hamas on that day are unparalleled since the horrors of the Holocaust, and include the brutal rape of women over their dead partners; torture, dismemberment, and beheadings of bound parents next to their children and children next to their parents; binding and gagging of elderly; people burned alive; mass executions, including in a music festival where over 260 youngsters lost their lives. Entire villages were burnt down, and the whole region was precipitated into a spiral of violence and that will last generations. 

In response to the Hamas terror, the civilized world reacted in horror. Prime Minister Sunak called it pure and simple “by its name: it was a pogrom” Chancellor Scholz was equally firm, stating “"The acts of Hamas were inhumane and barbaric”, highlighting the people’s solidarity “in the country whose history is indissolubly linked to the Shoah”. But probably few put it better than President Biden, which highlighted the “pure, unadulterated evil unleashed” by the “brutality of Hamas, that brings to mind the worst rampages of ISIS”.

Following these events, many professional societies came out spontaneously to condemn these horrific events. As the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM) was not one of these, the Israeli Chapter of ISMRM approached the Executive Committee, calling for an unequivocal condemnation of Hamas’s barbaric assault on human values. This was only natural, as ISMRM –which is OUR society, OUR home– has taken in the past the right moral stance, and supported Ukraine’s rights and actively denounced the racism behind George Floyd’s murder. 

Alas, on 19 October 2023, the Executive Committee of the ISMRM posted a pusillanimous, offensive statement on their website ( whereby they “strongly condemn terrorism in all its forms, and we believe that everyone should have the right to a peaceful and safe existence”.  On receiving such statement many of us –both individually and as a Chapter– contacted the ISMRM Executive Committee, expressing our dismay at a statement that in essence puts Hamas and Israel on the same footing. How can ISMRM’s statement not name Hamas? How can it be lacking any empathy for the Israeli victims? Despite our dismay, our reaction was to seek dialogue and unity: We asked the Exec-Comm members to email us; we texted them, we gave them our cell phones and asked them to call or Zoom with us to discuss this matter. NOTHING: The ISMRM Executive Committee, which so much prides itself in dialogue and inclusion, simply hid behind a wall of silence, and decided to ignore each and every request for contact that they were sent over the last several days.

We at the Israeli chapter of the ISMRM know that this is not the spirit of our Society: we know that the ISMRM, unlike its current leadership, is NOT made up by scientists and clinicians that hide behind walls of silence pretending nobody is talking to them.  We are therefore contacting you to help us convince the Executive Committee of the ISMRM to revise their inexplicable stance; to abandon the deafening silence which they decided to embrace, and put out an unambiguous statement condemning the terror events launched by Hamas last October 7. To this end we request that you send the Executive Committee members a statement to this effect via your professional email, and that you join us in signing the petition.

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