GazaPassage’s International Envoy, Edward “Coach” Weinhaus, Esq. sent a letter to the Israeli Security Cabinet, its Observers, and permanent invitees today demanding security resources to allow the 100 GazaPassage Pilot participants to exit Gaza. GazaPassage has given the cabinet one week, until May 21, 2024 to clear the passengers so that they can leave by May 25, 2024.

GazaPassage announced the Phase V Pilot program a month ago. The organization, which helps non-combatants escape the warzone in Gaza, held an emergency session of its Working Group last night to craft the demand. Spokesman Christopher Bedell pulled no punches about the organization’s plea: “With no money and only volunteer’s time, we have found a near endless amount of non-combatants’ lives to save, transportation, and identified a suitable destination. All Israel needs to do, ironically, is let them go.”

Bedell and Coach were joined by a third Working Group member (pictured above), Dr. Isaac Amon, Esq. in St. Louis last night. Dr. Amon is an International Due Process Watchdog and former war crimes investigator at the Hague. Dr. Amon, in taking a respite from building his publication covering Israeli tribunal due process, stated that GazaPassage’s mission is about “saving lives today; my publication is about saving lives tomorrow and building a better world where justice is not only done but is seen to be done.”

Asked if the organization was critical of Israel, Bedell demurred, “Our job isn’t politics. It’s to save lives. Israel’s response will determine the level of criticism it receives from the rest of the world. We just help non-combatants leave the warzone.”

Coach wasn’t the letter’s only signatory.  Well-known Palestinian-American Abir ElZowidi is the letter’s first co-signer.  Ms. ElZowidi’s experience losing family members in Gaza during conflict with Israel is not an academic matter. In 2014, Israel National News reported her painful description of the loss of six family members.

Coach and ElZowidi promise more support, informing the Israeli Security Cabinet, “Further signatories and supporting organizations will be appended.”

In a rare statement to the media, GazaPassage’s International Envoy directed any potential signatories to contact Ms. ElZowidi or to reach out to him directly via his LinkedIn profile. “That’s where the Pilot Participants found me.”

In Israel, Coach is best-known as a journalist for GlobeBanner where he broke the story about an audio recording of an Oct. 7th attacker bragging to his parents about murdering 10 Jews. Hours after sending his story to the IDF, they released the audio to the world. When asked about his time as an investigative reporter in Israel, he directed us to GazaPassage’s Phase III, where the organization bifurcated its mission to help Gazans return to a secured north.

Bedell said, “If the Israeli Security Cabinet thinks Coach is going to leave them alone, they don’t know Coach. Expect more pressure until we have helped every non-combatant we can.”

GazaPassage has not revealed the Pilot’s destination. Bedell remarked, “The nations of the world know who will and won’t accept our Pilot participants.” When asked about logistics, Bedell noted that the organization had arranged “services for both extraction and transportation. Success depends on Israel showing it has true concern for non-combatants. If you want more answers, I suggest asking Israel to clear our obstacles.”

The letter sent May 14, 2024 to the Israeli Security Cabinet can be found here.

Bedell intoned Israel faced significant stakes if it chose to ignore GazaPassage, Ms. ElZowidi, and other signatories, “Israel can choose whether our Phase VI is about a PR campaign to pressure Israel,  or the safety of innocents. My friendly advice is they decide quickly.” Phase V describes the organization’s “PPP Audit” of the Pilot participants’ treatment upon their successful escape from a war zone.

GazaPassage’s initial phases are listed below. GazaPassage accepts no donations.

Phase I: October 15, 2023 – Sending International Envoy to Israel
Phase II: GazaPassage Pledge created during Phase II (announced when Phase III)
Phase III: Dec: 2023 – Mission Bifurcation after Israel Says It Will Allow Gazans Back in the North
Phase IV: Jan 2024 Funding Model
Phase V: April 2024: Current Pilot Program