From 5 to 6 p.m. Monday at the corner of State and Anapamu streets, in front of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art at 1130 State St., members of the Santa Barbara chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace will hold a vigil for all loss of life, Palestinian and Jewish, resulting from the ongoing Israeli invasion of Gaza. The names of the dead will be read.

As of this writing, the death toll is over 1,400, with the vast majority being civilians. We mourn the tragic losses that are occurring, whether to families in Gaza or to families in Israel.

Our members and supporters, many with contacts in the region, feel the need to grieve with others and to express their belief that this carnage must end. In good conscience we cannot stand by.

It is our belief that this latest invasion must be viewed in the context of 66 years of ill treatment of Palestinians by the Israelis. The Nakba, or Catastrophe in Arabic, in 1948 destroyed over 500 villages; it has been followed by ongoing dispossession of Palestinian land and homes. From 1967 until now, Palestinians in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza have lived under the yolk of a brutal military occupation. Gaza has been under Israeli siege for seven years, punctuated by wars such as we are witnessing today. With nowhere to run to, Gazans are dying in horrific numbers.

Our action in Santa Barbara is in concert with similar actions being held all over the U.S. and all over the world.

Jewish Voice for Peace is a national organization of Jews and others opposed to the Occupation, and to discrimination against Palestinians within Israel. Click here for more information.

— Rand Clark represents the Santa Barbara chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace.