Congressman Paul Findley published a book in the 1970s called "They Dare to Speak Out". He listed many examples of courageous individuals who speak truth to power with regard to US policy in the Middle East. Speaking out against Israeli occupation, oppression, and apartheid is not cost free but the reward of being able to live with one's conscience is priceless. This list is just a sampling of names of people we consider with honor for heir honest and truthful stand for peace with justice:
Examples of Individuals with good work for peace with justice (please send names of/info on others you think should be listed to mazin at qumsiyeh dot org)
Folke Bernadotte (deceased)
In his capacity as leader of the Swedish Red Cross, Count Folke Bernadotte saved tens of thousands of Jews from Germany. Yet, a Zionist terrorist group (called Lohamei Herut Yisrael by its members, better known as the Stern Gang after its founder) assassinated him in Jerusalem in 1948 because he spoke also for the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and lands. Nathan Friedman-Yellin, a leaders of the organization that assassinated him was quickly released from prison and then elected to the Israeli parliament. Other Stern Gang members became prominent leaders (e.g. Menachem Begin became Israeli Prime Minister).
Suha Bishara, Lebanese Christian Resistance fighter
Hajo G. Meyer Quote from a lecture I heard Meyer delivered in 2007 in CT:
Jews are not a nation but they do share a common socio-cultural heritage: JUDAISM. With its mixture of dietary and other customs Jews naturally were apart from communities were they lived and this led to resentment and animosity. Zionism and enlightened Judaism are opposite sides of the spectrum. Yet, the Torah (Old Testament) contains basic elements for both. Israel is thus a Zionist State. Its designation as Jewish state is misleading! Claim that Zionism part of Judaism�s heritage is correct but Zionism is related to the darkest part of the Torah. This part of the heritage is nationalistic, ethnocentric, xenophobic, blood-and-soil. Its nationalistic God orders his �chosen people� to perform cruel ethnic cleansing�. It is extensively found in Joshua, Judges and Samuel. It took me more than 70 years to learn about it because Since 70 AC and especially after Mendelssohn and French Revolution German Reform rabbis made it ever more obscure. Their colleagues in the US did the same! The religious fanatic and murderer of Prime Minister Rabin said: if I had to murder children like prescribed in Joshua I would gladly do it. By contrast, the bright side of Judaism is seen in Lev 19:34. "The stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you and thou shalt love him. He is like you, for you (as well) were strangers in the land of Egypt.� This message of equality was also noted by many Prophets, by Rabbi Hillel, 1st century B.C., by German Reform Rabbis, and later by the US Reform movement (although the latter seem to have abandoned it). Here is Rabbi Leo Baeck in THE ESSENCE OF JUDAISM I: �Man has been created in the image of God� However large the differences, what they have in common and what characterizes all of them is that image of God in them� It is impossible to express the unity of all human beings more clearly and more definitely� Simon ben Asai said: ... When God created man he created him in his image��in this sentence all of Torah is contained.�
Here is the US Reform Pittsburgh Platform 1885: We recognize in the Mosaic Legislation a system of training the Jewish people for its mission during its national life in Palestine, and today we accept as binding only the moral laws.. and reject all such as are not adapted to the views and habits of modern civilization." and the US Reform Columbus Platform 1937: "Judaism emphasizes the kinship of the human race, the sanctity and worth of human life and personality. .. Justice to all irrespective of race sect or class ...is the inescapable obligation of all. ... It abhors all violence and relies upon moral education, love and sympathy to secure human progress." .... Conclusion: occupation is at variance with basic concepts of universal and humanistic Judaism, at variance with ethics, at variance with International and humanitarian law. To address this we must address the unequal power structure occupied /colonized versus occupiers/colonizers and speak the truth to demolish the myths that Zionism is the same as Judaism.
Bertrand Russel (1872-1970) was a Great Philsopher, scientist, anti-war activist, Palestinian human rights advocate "On 31 January 1970 Russell issued a statement condemning "Israel's aggression in the Middle East", and in particular, Israeli bombing raids being carried out deep in Egyptian territory as part of the War of Attrition. He called for an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-Six-Day War borders. This was Russell's final political statement or act. It was read out at the International Conference of Parliamentarians in Cairo on 3 February 1970, the day after his death". https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertrand_Russell
Siegel has worked with various Jewish peace groups and was a nurse at the Sabra and Shatila Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon during the massacres in 1982. She said today: "Sharon was found indirectly responsible for the massacres by the Israeli Kahan Commission of Inquiry, which I testified before. His forces provided the flares, allowed the Phalangist forces (who -- totally predictably -- conducted the butchery) in and prevented the Palestinian civilians from escaping. These were crimes against humanity; people of conscience can't say that's not directly responsible.... In the summer of 1982, Sharon laid siege to the people of Beirut; he's applying the same methodology to the Palestinians under occupation today. He's building trenches around these Palestinian areas so that people can't get in or out." http://www.adc.org/press/1999/16sept99.htm
COMMON STATE, Potential Conversation http://dafilms.com/event/155-film-activism-in-action-online-retrospective-of-eyal-sivan/
More on Eyal Sivan as well as his project Towards a Common Archive with Ilan Pappe here:
I F Stone (Isadore Feinstein Stone), famed Jewish American journalist wrote a lengthy article in 1967 after the latest Israel victory and conquest of Arab lands. It is worth reading nearly 40 years later. Excerpts: "There is a good deal of simplistic sophistry in the Zionist case. The whole earth would have to be reshuffled if claims 2,000 years old to irredenta were suddenly to be allowed. Zionism from its beginning tried to gain its aims by offering to serve as outpost in the Arab world for one of the great empires. Herzl sought to win first the Sultan and then the Kaiser by such arguments. Considerations of imperial strategy finally won the Balfour Declaration from Britain....THE MYTH that the Arab refugees fled because the Arab radios urged them to do so was analyzed by Erskine B. Childers in the London Spectator May 12, 1961. An examination of British and US radio monitoring records turned up no such appeals; on the contrary there were appeals and "even orders to the civilians of Palestine, to stay put...In the outside world the welfare of Jewry depends on the maintenance of secular, non-racial, pluralistic societies. In Israel, Jewry finds itself defending a society in which mixed marriages cannot be legalized, in which non-Jews have a lesser status than Jews, and in which the ideal is racial and exclusionist. Jews must fight elsewhere for their very security and existenceagainst principles and practices they find themselves defending in Israel....It must also be recognized, despite Zionist ideology, that the periods of greatest Jewish creative accomplishment have been associated with pluralistic civilizations in their time of expansion and tolerance: in the Hellenistic period, in the Arab civilization of North Africa and Spain, and in Western Europe and America. Universal values can only be the fruit of a universal vision; the greatness of the Prophets lay in their overcoming of ethnocentricity. A Lilliputian nationalism cannot distill truths for allmankind. " http://www.bintjbeil.com/E/occupation/holy_war_stone.html
(received from Tim Murphy via NY Transfer)
On April 30, 2007 Mordecahi Vanunu was convicted on 14 out of 21 counts of violating a court order which denied his his right to speak to foreign journalists in 2004 after his release from 18 years in jail for telling the world the truth that Israel was already nuclear in 1986. His appeal will be heard November 13, 2007 fighting a six-month jail sentence. After WW II, Attorney Yaccov Shapiro, who later became Israel's Minister Of Justice, described the Emergency Defense Regulations which has been used to deny Mordechai Vanunu the inalienable right of freedom of speech and movement as "unparalleled in any civilized country: there were no such laws in Nazi Germany."(Naeem Ateek, Justice and Only Justice p.34). 13 Minutes with Vanunu" Jan. 2008 streaming video
After a year and a half long FREEDOM of Speech trial in Jerusalem, on July 2, 2007, an Israeli court sentenced the whistle blower of Israel's WMD program, Mordechai Vanunu, to six more months in jail for violating a ban imposed on him in 2004. Since his release from Ashkelon Prison on April 21, 2004, Israel has denied him the right to leave the state and has forbidden him to speak to foreigners. Two days before President Bush's first trip to Israel Palestine and a day before Vanunu's appeal was to begin, Israel sentenced him to community service instead.