Rights Blog 2006
"The American people have this lesson to learn: That where justice is denied, poverty enforced, where ignorance prevails & where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob, and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe" Frederick Douglas 1886
"If we do not change our direction, we are going to end up where we are now headed" Chinese Proverb
Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Your comments may be posted here after review.
Here is the front image from my Christmas Card to you
Question: What would happen if the Virgin Mary came to Bethlehem today?
Below are reflections/greetings for this holiday season followed by a statement and action alert from the Palestinian American Congress.
1) Click here Christmas 2006
and May this holiday season and the new year bear the fruits of the collective hard work for peace with justice to all people.
2) From the Palestinian American Congress: Holiday Greetings and Action Alert
Many traditions celebrate holidays this season and we in the Palestinian American Congress wish them all peaceful and happy Holidays. Such holidays remind us of those less fortunate than we are and of our responsibilities to them. We thus stand in solidarity with our Iraqi brothers and sisters of all religions as they endure their fourth year under military occupation. We stand in solidarity with our Palestinian brothers and sisters who are unable to truly celebrate or even to practice their religious traditions because of the Israeli occupation, ethnic cleansing, theft of their lands, and destruction of their society.
Palestinian Christians this Christmas season cannot travel between Bethlehem and Jerusalem (a distance of 7 miles) because of the illegal apartheid walls. Palestinian Muslims this Eid Al Adha are subjected to similar restrictions. Both live in shrinking apartheid cantons subjected to political, economic, and physical siege. Most families cannot provide for their Children's basic needs let alone buy gifts for the holidays. Our prayers and thoughts must be with those people. But they need more than that. They need our solidarity and support. There are many things each of us can do. Here are just ten suggestions.
1) Learn more about history (http://www.PalestineRemembered.com) and the isolation of Palestinians and infringement on their religious and civil rights (http://www.maannews.net/en/,
http://www.openbethlehem.org, http://electronicintifada.net/new.shtml ). Learn more about suffering of Iraqis (see http://www.electroniciraq.net/) and other people.
2) Support the Palestinian Civil Society call to action; for boycotts, divestment and sanctions from Israel until it complies with human rights and International law (see http://stopthewall.org/news/boycot.shtml).
3) Write letters to the editor (150-200 words) and/or op-eds (700-800 words) to your local or national newspapers about the issues. Some media contacts can be found here:
4) Write and call your TV and radio stations and ask that they interview native people from these areas on issues of religious freedom and the plight of Muslims and Christians in Iraq and Palestine and
beyond (write to us if you would like suggested speakers near you).
5) Write and call your elected officials. Contacts available at
6) Contact local churches in your area and ask that they bring Palestinian Christians to speak to their congregations and that they pray for justice and peace.
7) Contact mosques and ask that they dedicate a Friday Prayer to Donate to worthy causes that help the suffering populations and/or those that educate and lobby to stop policies of oppression and deprivation.
8) Take time to teach children about what is going on in Palestine. Give them copies of this book titled "A little piece of ground" by award winning author Elizabeth Laird (published by Haymarket Books) and then discuss it with them. http://tinyurl.com/y7lej6 and http://www.haymarketbooks.org
9) Hold a teach-in, a vigil, a forum or other community gatherings to bring attention to the plight of people in need.
10) Send this message to your relatives, friends, co-workers and acquaintances and ask them to act. Forward to other listserves.
Wheels Of Justice promotional video of about 9.5 minutes on youtube (the bus will be in AZ, NM, TX, LA, GA, FL in April so book your appearances early; email me email@example.com)
Ethnic cleansing of Palestine 1948 by Prof. Ilan Pappe (revealing article that summarizes some material from his newest book on the subject)
Johann Hari: Ethnic cleansing returns to Israel's agenda
The silence over Lieberman's appointment is a bleak sign of how far Israel has drifted to the right
Boycotts, Divestment, and Sanctions: a movement whose time has come http://users.sgci.com/~peacenews/2006Sept.html
more from Palestine Joint Advocacy Initiative http://www.jai-pal.org/content.php?page=173
Watch Ali Abunimah discusses his book One Country on C-SPAN2: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6265.shtml
Streaming Video from the Arab world to balance the non-sense spewing from CNN, Fox etc http://www.linktv.org/mosaic/streamsArchive/
When There's No One Left to Blame: What Are You Going to Do Now, Israel? By VIRGINIA TILLEY, Johannesburg, South Africa
Action: Sign Petition- Why we stand for immediate withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/OutNow/
Boston Metro (owned by NY Times) published an interview with Mitchel Bard and now they interviewed me on Carter's book (it is not quite reflective of what I said but is close)
- Fact of the day: Zionists lobbied and worked against allowing Jewish refugees from WWII to settle in other countries. Here is just one excerpt from Alfred Lilienthal's book "What Price Israel":
President Roosevelt was deeply concerned with the plight of the European refugees and thought that all the free nations of the world ought to accept a certain number of immigrants, irrespective of race, creed, color or political belief. The President hoped that the rescue of 500,000 Displaced Persons could be achieved by such a generous grant of a worldwide political asylum. In line with this humanitarian idea, Morris Ernst, New York attorney and close friend of the President A Jewish cofounder of what became the ACLU - MQ went to London in the middle of the war to see if the British would take in 100,000 or 200,000 uprooted people. The President had reasons to assume that Canada, Australia and the South American countries would gladly open their doors. And if such good examples were set by other nations, Mr. Roosevelt felt that the American Congress could be "educated to go back to our traditional position of asylum." The key was in London. Would Morris Ernst succeed there? Mr. Ernst came home to report, and this is what took place in the White House (as related by Mr. Ernst to a Cincinnati audience in 1950):
Ernst: "We are at home plate. That little island and it was during the second Blitz that he visited England on a properly representative program of a World Immigration Budget, will match the United States up to 150,000.
Roosevelt: "150,000 to England—150,000 to match that in the United States—pick up 200,000 or 300,000 elsewhere, and we can start with half a million of these oppressed people."
A week later, or so, Mr. Ernst and his wife again visited the President.
Roosevelt (turning to Mrs. Ernst): "Margaret, can't you get me a Jewish Pope? I cannot stand it any more. I have got to be careful that when Stevie Wise leaves the White House he doesn't see Joe Proskauer on the way in." Then, to Mr. Ernst: "Nothing doing on the program. We can't put it over because the dominant vocal Jewish leadership of America won't stand for it."
"It's impossible! Why?" asked Ernst.
Roosevelt: "They are right from their point of view. The Zionist movement knows that Palestine is, and will be for some time, a remittance society. They know that they can raise vast sums for Palestine by saying to donors, 'There is no other place this poor Jew can go.' But if there is a world political asylum for all people irrespective of race, creed or color, they cannot raise their money. Then the people who do not want to give the money will have an excuse to say 'What do you mean, there is no place they can go but Palestine? They are the preferred wards of the world."
Morris Ernst, shocked, first refused to believe his leader and friend. He began to lobby among his influential Jewish friends for this world program of rescue, without mentioning the President's or the British reaction. As he himself has put it: "I was thrown out of parlors of friends of mine who very frankly said 'Morris, this is treason. You are undermining the Zionist movement.' " He ran into the same reaction amongst all Jewish groups and their leaders. Everywhere he found "a deep, genuine, often fanatically emotional vested interest in putting over the Palestinian movement" in men "who are little concerned about human blood if it is not their own."
This response of Zionism ended the remarkable Roosevelt effort to rescue Europe's Displaced Persons.
- AFSC action: Support President Carter, write to Congress
- A petition of "thank you President Carter" http://tinyurl.com/ycegyc
- French Voters signing pledge to vote only for those who support sanctions on Israel and thus support freedom for Palestine
- Institute for Middle East Understanding provides media outlets with access to Palestinian Christians and others who speak on the holidays in the Holy Land. They share their memories of Christmas in Bethlehem and how those compare to Bethlehem today. (pass to your media contacts)
- My letter to the Boston Globe as published. It will receive the usual apoplectic Zionist responses. If you want to write, send your letters to firstname.lastname@example.org
Delicate matters of diplomacy in the Middle East
Boston Globe, December 13, 2006
THE 160-PAGE Iraq Study Group report will fail because it does not address human rights and international law (except in describing the background of its authors -- for example, Vernon "Jordan practiced general, corporate, legislative, and international law in Washington, D.C."). While the report recognizes the centrality of the issue of Israel-Palestine, the United States is told to continue to support Israel and promote talks with "Palestinians (who acknowledge Israel's right to exist)." But Israel is not required to recognize Palestine's right to exist; Israel never defined its borders (so recognizing its right to exist under such unfair and vague terms means nullifying Palestinian rights in their lands); and there is no such thing as the right of states to exist in international law (they simply exist; no one demanded that Mexico recognize the right of the United States to exist). Unless the American public rises in unison to demand respect for international law and human rights, it looks like mayhem will continue and we the taxpayers will continue to pump billions to support Israeli apartheid and the US government's other pet projects of occupation and oppression in Iraq and elsewhere.
MAZIN B. QUMSIYEH
The writer is author of "Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human Rights and the Israeli/Palestinian Struggle."
- My letter in response to Daniel Pipes "opinion"
(you can write your own letter to email@example.com)
Daniel Pipes was given the space to publish an op-ed on these pages challenging the right of Universities to determine hiring and promotion without interference by outside groups. It is remarkable that the column failed to mention which outside groups he was alluding to or what agenda they were promoting. The groups are those whose interests are Zionism first (they claim they merely support Israel) and hence are anti-American in my views and the views of most of other targeted faculty. His attacks and others like him are focused on those who speak truth about the situation in Western Asia (aka the colonial term "Middle East") in a way that challenges Zionist mythologies. Pipes himself used the McCarthian tactics of compiling lists of professors to be targeted and had to withdraw that from his website when he realized that it exposed his agenda. Pipes' attempt to silence free speech at academic institutions was actually the reason his appointment to the US Peace Institute was never approved by the Senate. Yet, people like Pipes refuse to engage in public dialogues with people like me and other targeted academics because it would also lead to exposing their agenda and their lies. For a detailed description of these issues, see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/assaultontruth/ Pipes and others like him hope that intimidation will work and that there won't be open discussion of these issues. They continue to push for support of Israeli apartheid which they believe is a win-lose scenario. But it only profits them financially on an interim basis (Pipes's slalary is derived from his anti-Academic stances) and it clearly leads to only lose-lose outcomes for people in Western Asia (including Israelis and Palestinians). A win-win situation (based on human rights and International law) is feasible. But Pipes and company manage to only delay that inevitable outcome by attacking academic freedom and personally attacking patriotic Americans who refuse to succumb to their lobby and intimidating tactics (e.g. see attacks on President Jimmy Carter for his new book "Palestine: Peace not apartheid").
It is truly remarkable that the Iraq study group report in 160 pages and thousands of words fails to mention human rights and International law (the words only appear in describing the background of three of the study authors such as "Mr. Jordan practiced general, corporate, legislative, and international law in Washington, D.C." and "Mr. Hamilton’s distinguished service in government has been honored through numerous awards in public service and human rights as well as honorary degrees".) So like the Israel lobby authored Bush-pedaled "road map to peace" (2218 words, lacking the four words "Human rights" and "International law") it is destined to be relegated to the dustbin of history and will not help bring justice nor peace in the Middle East. As far as the requirement that the US promote talks between Israel and "Palestinians (those who acknowledge Israel's right to exist)" that is simply a non starter since Israel does not recognize the right of Palestine to exist and has never defined its borders so recognizing its right to exist under such broad and vague terms means nullifying Palestinian rights in their lands. Further in International law there is no such thing as right of states to exist (no state has a right to exist in legal terms, they simply exist; no one for example ever demanded that Mexico recognize the right of the US to exist or that India recognize the right of Pakistan to exist or vice versa).
Anyway, it seems that as in all human history, we must still rely on grass root efforts to effect social change (in America that is how Women got the right to vote, how civil rights laws came about, how we ended the war on Vietnam, how we ended support for Apartheid South Africa, and how we will end support for Apartheid Israel and US military adventure in Iraq). I have been to five states in the past month and spoke at dozens of events and anyone cannot help but notice the tremendous hunger for change, for information, and for action among people of various backgrounds. I spoke at Juniata College and Bard College to very interested and packed audience. Let me tell you though about one most inspiring event in my home state of Connecticut (CT is also proud to have organized in the past few weeks a bus to see the Rachel Corrie play in New York, demonstrating against the visit by war criminal Shimon Peres, to hosting four talks by Anna Baltzer, to a statewide peace conference planning etc). The event I do want to expand on is the Second Tree of Life Conference at Old Lyme Congregational Church that focused on the plight of Bethlehem as an example of a Palestinian city under occupation and siege.
The event held at the first Congregational Church of Old Lyme (http://www.fccol.org/) was attended by nearly 200 people. Speakers included Yehuda Shaul, the founder of Breaking the Silence (Israeli soldiers speaking of atrocities they were ordered to undertake), Benjamin Beit Hallahmi (Israeli professor of psychology at Haifa University and author of Original Sins a book on the Zionism's crimes and distortions), representatives of Bethlehem University (which is an extraordinary model of hope in the troubled Holy Land, being a place where Christians and Muslims live and study together, http://www.bethlehem.edu), Anna Baltzer (see http://www.annainthemiddleeast.com ), and Dr. Mark Braverman (The Fellowship of Reconciliation).
Attendees learned in this conference simple facts like these:
- Bethlehem University was closed by a military order for three years during the late 1980s
- Bethlehem University student body diversity shrank as Israel instated hundreds of checkpoints and walls that separate Palestinian areas from other Palestinian areas.
- Hundreds of students were held over the past few years as political prisoners (20% held without charges in "administrative detentions")
- The apartheid wall/segregation barrier resulted in loss of over 10% of Bethlehem area.
- The apartheid wall/segregation barrier separates Palestinian families from each other and from their jobs, hospitals, schools, churches and mosques.
- There is a new Jewish only settlement/colony built in Bethlehem at Rachel's tomb area (a holy site for Muslims that includes a large Islamic cemetery that is now off limits to its owners and relatives of those buried there)
As I witnessed in my last visit to Bethlehem in July, the situation has deteriorated rapidly from the time six years ago when I wrote and published the article below on Christmas in Bethlehem.
You can take the opportunity of Christmas to write about the Holy Land today and how apartheid is being implemented in the land of the birth of Jesus, the prince of peace (for resources get on the web, at least see http://www.openbethlehem.org/ and http://www.stopthewall.org). Letters to the editor (150-200 words) or op-eds can be submitted to your local or national newspapers but also send them to TV and radio stations and ask that they interview native people from these areas. Some
media contacts can be found here:
http://www.pmwatch.org/pmw/contact/media.asp or using this link
You can also attend conferences and travel to Palestine to bear witness and learn first hand. A group that does both kinds of activities is Sabeel (see their upcoming conferences and trips as well as a list of other groups sending delegations at http://www.fosna.org/conferences_and_trips/index.html )
A season of Mayhem (title inserted by editor, not my original title)
Published in the Boston Globe January 4, 2001
Yesterday was the (UN designated) International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
ACTION: Palestinians are the Priority Petition
ACTION: Submit this piece to your local paper and Write letters of support (see link below)
APARTHEID: Israelis adopt what South Africa dropped By JOHN DUGARD
Many aspects of Israel's occupation surpass those of the apartheid regime. Israel's large-scale destruction of Palestinian homes, leveling of agricultural lands, military incursions and targeted assassinations of Palestinians far exceed any similar practices in apartheid South Africa. No wall was ever built to separate blacks and whites."
Zionist groups are mobilizing to get letters to attack this article. To write letters to support the article, use this link
ACTION: Call and support ending the US support for Apartheid Israel, support Jimmy Carter in calling what is happening apartheid
Nancy Pelosi (202) 225-4965 -- a nice staffer will take your message
The DNC (Democratic National Committee, Gov. Howard Dean) 202-863-8000
NEWS AND VIEWS
Dr. Jeff Halper responds to two Zionists in the Kansas City Jewish Chronicle
"Security is not the issue; Israel's exclusive claim over the entire country west of the Jordan, which leaves no place for the Palestinians, is. Almost no element of the Occupation can be explained by security: not the 300-400 settlements (and they are illegal; the Fourth Geneva Convention prohibits an Occupying Power from moving its population into an occupied territory - and even your government considers the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza occupied); not the construction of 29 Jewish-only highways linking the settlements to Israel;.....more"
IRC report on Palestinian Impoverishment: A growing number of households in the Palestinian territories are becoming impoverished, according to a report recently completed by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). http://www.icrc.org/web/eng/siteeng0.nsf/html/palestine-news-211106?opendocument
Refugees Are The Key: Israel should admit its historical responsibility to the Palestinian people and recognize the rights of the refugees. by SAM BAHOUR
Are Israeli actions against Palestinians Genocide?
Muslim lawyer wrongly arrested by the FBI settles case against the US government for $2 million
Ten thousand orthodox Jews protest the existence of a "Jewish State"
Ali Abunimah and Columbia University professor Rashid Khalidi addressed on Democracy Now the current situation in Palestine, the role of US policy, and former President Jimmy Carter's new book on Palestine. To read the transcript or listen to audio:
The 37th National Day of Mourning was held in Plymouth, MA on US Thanksgivng holiday by the United American Indians of New England
And The Truth about Thanksgiving http://www.raceandhistory.com/selfnews/viewnews.cgi?newsid1006609974,95667,.shtml
Outreach to supermarket shoppers in Belgium to boycott Israeli consumer products http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6075.shtml
"GAZA: Stop the Seige! Stop the War! Petition to the Israeli government and world leaders, written by Gila Svirsky and Debby Lerman?
Palestinian academics in solidarity with Irish academics in solidarity with Palestinians
Ceylon Mooney reports from occupied Palestine (Ceylon was the main engine for many years behind the highly successful Wheels of Justice tour)
Video of Police spying on Americans and beating the crap out of people in a crowd spraying young children footage taken by police themselves
CIA Role in Robert Kennedy Killing, BBC investigation
Video clips from Zochrot outreach, including visits to Der Yassin, Majdal, and Birim
Video: Nakba in Hebrew http://www.nakbainhebrew.org/images/kikar.wmv
Video: Remebering Deir Yassin http://www.zochrot.org/images/Media/dyir%20yassen2006.wmv
Video: Remembering Village of Bira'am http://www.nakbainhebrew.org/images/Bira'am/video.wmv
Video: Remebering Village of Magdal http://www.zochrot.org/images/Media/Magdal.wmv
Video: Zionism, the real enemy of the Jews http://www.wakeupfromyourslumber.com/node/115
More Israeli apartheid laws are being enacted and others being enforced. A new law will punish Palestinians using yellow-plated ("Israeli") cars (including taxis) and punish the drivers unless they have special permits from Israeli occupation authorities. A Palestinian getting a ride even from a friend or a relative (or even an Israeli spouse) will get them both punished. The law was enacted and will go into effect in January. Israel also is proceeding with other laws intended to ethnically cleanse Palestine of a key segment of its remaining population and deny any international support to Palestinians. An apartheid law is being implemented removing Palestinians, including those born in Palestine, who hold foreign passports (and who were unable to retain or get the Israeli issued ID card, other set of apartheid laws stripped thousands of their ID cards). Tens of thousands of Palestinians thus were denied their residency rights and families are forced to either separate or find other countries to live in. This coincides with accelerated plans to de-develop the remaining Palestinain economy by a system of strangulation. For example, Palestinians in Jerusalem are being separated by massive walls from Palestinians in the suburbs of Jerusalem (imagine the devastation to both suburbs and city in America if a wall is built around the city separating it from these suburbs). BTW Bethlehem and Ramallah are each within 10 mile radius of Jerusalem old city and are thus suburbs. Unemployment in the West Bank (including Jerusalem) is now at 70% and over 50% of Palestinians who remained in Palestine live in poverty. 80% of Palestinians overall are refugees or displaced people (the largest and longest lasting among the world's refugees).
Foreigners are also now routinely denied entry to Palestine. This is intended to remove witnesses and peace activists from the deepening apartheid/hafrada. How will we respond and will the hundreds of organizations around the US (and thousands around the world) that profess support for human rights rise to this challenge? Will governments be forced to obey the International Covenant against Crimes of Apartheid and Racism? Will more people write regularly to the media to demand they do their job and report the real news, not racist PR?
A new e-Book/Book on the Web explores some of the Israeli apartheid laws and practices: "Foundations of Civil and Political Rights in Israel and the Occupied Territories"
The Niggerization of Palestine
25 Leading Professors from major academic institutions in Germany explain "Why the 'special relationship' between Germany and Israel has to be reconsidered"
Swedish human rights worker viciously attacked by Jewish extremists in Hebron
"Tove Johansson from Stockholm walked through the Tel Rumeida checkpoint with a small group of human rights workers (HRWs) to accompany Palestinian schoolchildren to their homes. They were confronted by about 100 Jewish extremists in small groups. They started chanting in Hebrew “We killed Jesus, we’ll kill you too!” — a refrain the settlers had been repeating to internationals in Tel Rumeida all day....."
Palestinian mass resistance blocks Israeli air strike
Palestinians have started to employ new tactics to prevent Israeli air attacks on their houses. Hundreds of protesters successfully forced the Israeli air force to halt air strikes on a house belonging to Muhammad Baroud in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip on Saturday night.
Picture Balata: Outside the West Bank City of Nablus lies the Balata Refugee Camp. Home to almost 25,000 residents living on less than one square kilometer, Balata is the most densely populated refugee camp within the West Bank. In recent years Balata has seen hundreds of deaths and arrests, dozens of home demolitions and the camp is subject to near nightly invasions by the Israeli army. It is here that the Picture Balata workshop was started to teach youth from the camp about photography. Picture Balata puts the camera into the hands of the children born and raised inside the ongoing Israeli occupation of Palestine. http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article6067.shtml
Israeli Zionist Group on Israeli settlements/colonies in the occupied West Bank: "More than a third of the Jewish settlements in the West Bank are built on privately owned Palestinian land, an Israeli campaign group has reported. Peace Now says nearly 40% of the land the settlements sit on is, according to official data, "effectively stolen" from Palestinian landowners. This, the group says, is a violation of Israel's own laws. Settlements in the occupied West Bank are illegal under international law, although Israel rejects this. About 430,000 Jews live in these residential areas in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Peace Now called on the Israeli government to return the private land to its owners." http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6168752.stm
The challenges facing human rights advocates with regards to US/Israeli hegemonic designs in the Middle East are daunting. Our organizational structures and ability to work together must and will rise to meet the challenge. It is not easy. But if it was easy, it would have already been done and the struggle would not be as worthwhile. Let us review some sobering reminders after the US vetoed yet another (mild) UN resolution regarding Israel.
First there is the Israeli lobby that many like to ignore but like the 800 pound gorilla in the room, is really hard to ignore. Here is an article of relevance on how AIPAC is early Building Ties With New American Lawmakers
A more detailed analysis of the lobby's influence is here: http://www.qumsiyeh.org/thelobby/
Then there are "Christian" Ziolnists, an important factor in countries like Holland, England and the US. They preach hatred, collect money, ignore the message of Jesus (e.g. Sermon on the mount), and collect money, support Israel's ethnic cleansing of Palestinian Christians and Muslims, and collect money. Here is a link to an article Defining Christian Zionism By Donald Wagner
and this news story shows how such bigots operate, speak while enriching their pockets
The Israeli economy profits from the ignorance of many in trhe world. Diamond exports were at nearly $10 billion. Diamonds are merely rocks (not taht rare by the way, there are rarer rocks) culled from African land at slave wages and compensations to Africans, cut and "polished" mostly in Israel (or by Zionist controlled industry leaders), pedaled as valuable items by slick and misleading advertisement campaigns (for love, "a diamond is forever"!), and sold at exorbitant prices. Much of the profit goes to fund wars, violence, occupation etc (the term "blood diamonds" is thus apt description). But diamonds are not the biggest Israeli exports. Most Israeli exports relate to weapons and "security" (Israel likes to use the term "high tech industries"). Most of these Israeli exposrts are American technology given courtesy of the US taxpayers even though they end up competing with US industries.
In a recent article in Tikkun Magazine, Israeli author and activist Dr. Jeff Halper argues that Israel has no interest in peaceful resolution but "muddling through" in order to balance continued theft of Palestinian land with its "security". http://tikkun.org/magazine/tik0611/frontpage/responsibility1106
The Israeli lobby pushed for the wars and sanctions on Iraq (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/connectingthedotsiraqpalestine/ ). What were the consequences of these wars and sanctions? Over 2 million Iraqis killed in the past 15 years as a direct result. Here is just some (graphic) video of what happened in one part of Iraq, Fallujah
Today we had the last event for the fall leg of the Wheels of Justice Bus Tour (http://www.wheelsofjusticetour.org). I and Dr. Dahlia Wasfi were speakers. Dahlia was born to a Jewish American mother and a Muslim Iraqi father in New York. She spent her early childhood in Basra. Dr. Wasfi graduated from Swarthmore College in 1993 with a B.A. in Biology, and from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in 1997. Her latest trip to Iraq was a 3-month stay during the spring of 2006. Watch this powerful testimony of Dr. Dahlia Wasfi before a US Congressional Committee in Washington, DC: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ELjgVq6GtPA
She spoke in tour events about the effects of sanctions, direct violence, and depleted uranium (also effected US troops with increased mortality and increased birth defects in children of vets) but most of all she speaks of her own personal story in a way that humanizes Iraqis. She spoke of how Rachel Corrie inspired her to focus her life on telling the truth and changing the system. Dahlia's website, http://liberatethis.com includes a wealth of useful information.
Talking about Rachel Corrie, I think people need to go see the play My Name is Rachel Corrie (http://rachelcorriefoundation.org/?p=47) which is playing at Minetta Lane Theater in New York. We have a few extra tickets (from the bus trip from CT to NY) so email me if you are in CT and NY and are interested in buying these tickets.
In a later email report, I will give you a glimpse of the wonderful people we met along the bus tour in the past two weeks. We had great receptions from high schools, classes at colleges, public presentations and informal discussions. People are more hungry for facts than ever before. The corporate media outfits under heavy Zionist influence are pushing to lengthen this devastating war. See "Operation Last Resort-The New Media Offensive to Prolong the Iraq War" By Norman Solomon
I just finished reading Carter's new book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid". Ofcourse there are far better books on this question but Carter brings in a presidential level visibility to the subject of Israeli Apartheid. Here is Carter in a revealing interview about the book with the Jewish Daily Forward
(action item: ask supermarkets, bookstores and other places where books are sold to get copies).
Finally, below is a declaration from us Palestinians living in America who met in Cleveland over the last weekend in a preparatory meeing for a large popular conference of Palestinians to be held in Chicago in 2008 (the 60th anniversary of the Nakba).
There is so much work being done all around the world, and so much work yet to do. We must intensify our efforts. As Howard Zinn also said: you can't be neutral on a moving train (corollary: silence is complicity).
The Cleveland Declaration and Summary of Meeting
Activists and organizers from the Palestinian community in the US with diverse political backgrounds, geographical locations, and organizational affiliations met in Cleveland, OH Nov 10-12, 2006 in follow up to the initial meeting held in Detroit on June 23, 2006.
We, the participants, had grave concerns about: a) the recent escalation of massacres and other war crimes committed in Beit Hannoun and other areas of occupied Palestine, b) the plight of Palestinian refugees in Iraq as well as the suffering of all people in Iraq under US/British occupation, c) the recent atrocities committed by Israel in Lebanon, and d) the US government veto of yet another UN Security Council that attempted to hold Israel accountable for persistent severe Human Rights violations, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.
In these historic times, the participants reiterated their commitments to affirm our Palestinian narrative and assert our rights to:
-- Self-determination and equality for the Palestinian people
-- Return of the Palestinian refugees to their original homes, lands, properties and villages (a natural right supported by international law and UN Resolution 194)
-- End of Zionist occupation and colonization of Palestine, including Jerusalem
After a weekend of intense deliberation, brainstorming, and strategizing the participants have decided and committed to:
1) Convene and build a popular Palestinian national conference in Chicago in Summer 2008 in order to empower our community, unify our voice, and affirm the right of Palestinians in the Shatat (exile) to participate fully in shaping our joint destiny. We established various committees to carry on the functions needed for this.
2) Holding a larger preparatory meeting in 2007 that would further empower and build support among all our community members and organizations.
3) Continue empowering our community by exchanging projects, ideas, and campaigns done by the many local and national organizations and build upon them by providing fora for communication and positive collaboration.
We are calling on fellow Palestinians in the US to join us as we empower our community (individuals and organizations) and build for the Palestine National conference reflecting the will of ALL Palestinians in America. We believe strongly that our community can and must rise to the challenges facing us, as they do in Palestine.
Preparatory Committee for the US Popular Palestinian National Conference
Nightmare in Beit Hanoun, How Gaza Offends Us All, By JENNIFER LOEWENSTEIN
A simple road to Middle East Peace, by Zaki Khouri
Palestinian Art Calendar for 2007
U.S. vetoes (Yet another) U.N. resolution condemning Israel
Videos on Gaza massacre
Prof. Norman Finkelstein on Jimmy Carter's book Peace Not Apartheid (New York: 2006)
(includes excerpts from book... must reading)
ACTION ALERT from the US Campaign to End the Occupation
Jimmy Carter on Apartheid in Palestine
On November 14, Simon & Schuster is scheduled to release President Jimmy Carter's latest book, tentatively entitled "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid".
The US Campaign has not reviewed an advance copy of the book and cannot speak to its content. However, the fact that a former US president is using the term "apartheid" to describe Israel's policies toward Palestinians represents a fundamental shift in the discourse on Israel/Palestine in the United States and has the potential to dramatically shift US policy for the better.
The US Campaign urges its individual supporters and member organizations to take action around President Carter's book release to increase awareness in the United States of Israel's apartheid policies toward Palestinians.
1. Organize or participate in an event during the US Campaign-endorsed Fourth Annual International Week of Action against the Apartheid Wall, called for by Stop the Wall: The Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign. Click here for an action alert and suggested ideas.
2. Contact your local bookstore and ask them to stock this book. Ask your friends, colleagues, and family to purchase the book and host a book club to discuss the issues raised in President Carter's book and what you can do change the situation.
3. President Carter's book is likely to generate significant media attention and debate. Call your local talk radio programs and write a letter-to-the-editor to your local paper affirming that Israel's policies toward Palestinians are apartheid. Click here for contact information for your local media. ttp://www.congress.org/congressorg/dbq/media/
4. Democratic Party leaders such as Reps. Nancy Pelosi and John Conyers and DNC Chair Howard Dean have criticized President Carter for using the term "apartheid" to describe Israel's policies. Pelosi denied that Israel "institutionalizes ethnically based oppression" and Dean "fundamentally disagrees and does not support his Carter's analysis of Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict." Conyers even called on Carter to change the title of his book. Send a message to your Members of Congress and the Democratic Party stating that you support President Carter's use of the term "apartheid" to describe Israel's policies. Click here for contact information for your elected officials.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Experts Available to Speak on Israeli Apartheid Policies as Pres. Carter Releases New Book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid"
Washington, DC (November 13)-The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation is making available to the media experts who are available for interviews to discuss the apartheid nature of Israeli policies toward Palestinians.
Tomorrow, former President Jimmy Carter is releasing a new book, entitled "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid". In conjunction with the book release, the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, a national coalition of more than 200 organizations, issued an action alert urging its supporters to use the book release as an opportunity to raise awareness in the United States about Israel's apartheid polices toward Palestinians. The action alert can be viewed by clicking here.
Contact information and pull quotes from US Campaign experts are below.
Noura Erakat, National Grassroots Organizer/Legal Advocate, US Campaign
"Palestinians endure a system which denies them access to work, hospitals, and schools; restricts their freedom of movement; expropriates their land; forces them to live in separate reserves; imprisons them without trial; and frustrates their national self-determination--this system is also called Apartheid according to the International Convention of the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid."
Bill Fletcher, Jr., labor and international writer and activist, US Campaign Advisory Committee Member
Bill Fletcher, a former organizer with the Massachusetts Labor Committee for a Free South Africa and former president of TransAfrica Forum, stated: "The world is coming to view the Palestinian dilemma as a 21st century version of apartheid. The theft of land; the marginalization of the population; and the not-so-subtle effort to drive the Palestinian people from their lands, makes this a continuously unfolding crime. Those of us who participated in the supporting the South African anti-apartheid struggle are morally obligated to raise the call for Palestinian freedom. Silence is impermissible."
Mark Lance, Professor, Georgetown University, US Campaign Steering Committee Member
Mark Lance, a former organizer with Students for a Free South Africa at University of Pittsburgh, stated: "The dark history of South African apartheid stands as a stark example of the human consequences of forcible separation of peoples, and of systematic discrimination. The proud history of international resistance to South African apartheid stands as a shining example of what people of conscience can accomplish when they stand in solidarity. The system of occupation, walls, military blockade and legal discrimination set in place by the Israeli state is a system of apartheid, and one that will be defeated by the same coalition, with the same nonviolent power, that led to a free South Africa."
Dr. Nancy Murray, US Campaign Advisory Committee Member
Nancy Murray, a former organizer of the South African anti-apartheid movement in the United Kingdom and Kenya, stated: "The fragmented West Bank resembles, in miniature, the archipelago that was the homeland of Bophuthatswana. The international community refused to recognize the South African homelands as independent states. Will it accept Palestinian Bantustans as the basis of a "two-state solution?"
US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
PO Box 21539 Washington, DC 20009 phone: 202-332-0994 http://www.endtheoccupation.org
Alert From the The Palestinian American Congress http://www.pac-national.org
Since the Israeli "redeployment" from Gaza on August 20, 2005, Israeli occupation troops killed 694 Palestinians and wounded four thousand. Israel also took advantage of media preoccupation with midterm elections to commit new war crimes including large scale home demolitions and indiscriminate firing on peaceful demonstrators. The atrocities of the last few days could intensify unless we focus attention on them and insist they be covered by the media and stopped immediately. Palestinians have also called for an international week of action against apartheid, against the wall, and against the ghettoization of Palestine for November 9-16 (see http://stopthewall.org/worldwideactivism/1328.shtml )
Please write about this subject to all national and local media outlets as well as to all elected officials (including newly elected officials). Some
media contacts can be found here: http://www.pmwatch.org/pmw/contact/media.asp or using this link
Background to use in your letters/communications:
Electronic Intifada reports on the situation
Beit Hannoun women show the way http://www.thepencil.org/index.php?categoryid=18&p2003_articleid=41
Gideon Levy on Israel’s actions
Amy Goodman Interview with Jennifer Lowenstein from Gaza. Casualties Mount in New Israeli Attack on Gaza, Thursday, November 2nd, 2006
"No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main....Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee." John Donne
It is sometimes hard to be a witness to the increased regressive trends around us. How so many people who normally think of themselves as democratic and pluralistic are misled by special interests into believing in "us here, them there", "pre-emptive" wars of domination, torture and flaunting of international law, support for Israel's ethnic cleansing, denial of rights of self determination, racist lies about Muslims etc. There is even apathy with increased presidential powers unchecked by Congress and giving the president powers not only to arrest people and hold and torture them without charge but to spy on Americans and to even declare marshal law (see http://www.rinf.com/columnists/news/bush-moves-toward-martial-law ). Some argue that such a trend was inevitable considering the history of slavery and treatment of natives going back to the founding of America. Others believe the increased lying and intensified attacks on others is a more recent phenomenon. Some argue that a solution is to elect those who supported war but belong to the "other party" (i.e. Democrats); the lesser of two evils. Some believe in going to third parties not beholden to special interests (Greens). Others argue for pressure on ruling parties (whether Democrat and Republican) similar to the pressures that gave women the right to vote, pushed for civil rights, ended the war on Vietnam, ended US support for Apartheid South Africa etc. Some think they can get away with ignoring the large elephants in the room (special interests that shape elections including one of the biggest the Political Zionist lobby). But activists around the country are taking matters into their own hands, showing up at candidate rallies, candidate debates and other places shining a light on this precise issue. The Zionist influenced mainstream media is frantically and desperately trying to suppress any leakage of those events and trends. Yet, many good activists write and object and continue to push for truth and justice.
What gives us hope is that unlimited money and resources are needed to suppress the truth and we need only limited energy and resources to speak truth to power. So please continue to speak truth to power, think globally and act locally, and live as humans were meant to live. Doing so is not easy but it is always the right thing to do.
Any successful project for (or person/group doing) outreach for peace with justice would be attacked by those who promote war, violence, and racism. The Wheels of Justice Tour http://wheelsofjusticetour.org is no exception. So far we spoke to literally hundreds of schools (including elementary, middle, and high schools) in 48 states in the US. In two schools, we had opposition from the usual suspects. Below is one report on one of such attacks. The racist and misnamed ADL leads the attacks on us; this is the same group that spied on Arab and African Americans and is famed for its support of racism (see http://www.adlwatch.org/). Yet, again we have an edge: truth. And good people: the ACLU is involved in defending us as are teachers, and over 200 students signed a petition in support of our rights at North Andover High School (and that is only within the first few hours). But we need you:
TO PLAN OUR FUTURE EVENTS, WE COULD USE ANY TESTIMONIALS FROM YOU ON OUR BUS TOUR AND/OR SPEAKERS. Please email me briefly stating where you saw us or heard about us, feedback from you or feedback you heard from others attending, impressions of the event/s you attended, and why you think it is important. Please also let us know if we can use your full name or just first name (or just your comments without attribution). Having a good long list of testimonials would help us get into many more venues and successfully challenge racist groups like the ADL to go back to the two schools where they temporarily blocked students from hearing eyewitness accounts to occupation and oppression. Truth will be heard with your help. If you have not heard us speak, you can still help (see http://www.wheelsofjusticetour.org/ and http://www.qumsiyeh.org/whatyoucando/ )
The mission and platform of the WOJ are very clear and while articles like the one below fail to mention it, the material is readily available on our website (http://www.wheelsofjusticetour.org/the-wheels-of-justice-tour-platform ).
Anyway, please do send your testimonials about the bus and/or its speakers to firstname.lastname@example.org
PS The situation is dire but never hopeless. Here is an example of how dire it is getting with just one of the Palestinian villages being ethnically cleansed using US tax money
(http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,,329613773-103552,00.html ). But only dead fish swim with the current so as long as we have hundreds of projects and actions speaking truth to power (like the WOJ), we have life! Look around you and you will see lots of fish swimming upstream :-)
"School is hit for canceling speeches: War critics were invited to speak"
By Maria Sacchetti
Boston Globe, October 31, 2006
On the Web at: http://stopcrucifyingpalestine.blogspot.com/2006/10/zionists-force-cancellation-of.html
The president of Andover's teachers union and the ACLU of Massachusetts are accusing school officials of stifling free speech by abruptly canceling a talk by critics of the US and Israeli governments.
Tom Meyers, the union president and a social studies teacher at Andover High, said he and five other social studies teachers had invited Hassan Fouda and Joe Carr of Wheels of Justice, a group of peace activists touring the nation in a converted school bus, to speak to about 200 students on Friday.
But Meyers said the principal canceled the talk Thursday, after several people complained about the group. Wheels of Justice offi- cials came to campus Friday and asked the principal to reconsider, but a police officer told them to leave, Meyers said.
He said it was the first time the school has canceled a talk in his 21 years of teaching there. Wheels of Justice planned to speak about its criticisms of the war in Iraq and Israel's treatment of Palestinians.
"I find it highly problematic that a few people, because they don't like the ideas of the speaker, feel they have the right to shut that person down," Meyers said yesterday.
He is working with the American Civil Liberties Union to have the talk proceed.
Leonard Kesten, a Boston lawyer representing the School Committee on this issue, said school of- ficials postponed the talk to make sure the discussion would be appropriate for high school students.
The principal could not be reached, and School Superintendent Claudia Bach refused to comment.
"They have not been forbidden to speak," Kesten said. "There's some legitimate questions being raised by some parents."
Refusing to allow the speakers wouldn't violate the First Amendment, he said.
"A high school is not a soapbox in the park," he said. "Not everybody can just come in and say what they want."
But Sarah Wunsch, a staff lawyer with the ACLU of Massachusetts, wrote to Kesten last week that the First Amendment does not permit the government, including public school officials, to discriminate against speakers because of their views.
Rabbi Robert S. Goldstein of Temple Emanuel in Andover said he urged school officials to cancel the talk. Goldstein said he is not opposed to airing pro-Palestinian views.
But Goldstein said he felt that Wheels of Justice's views were extreme.
"No one is trying to suppress a point of view," he said. "It's just how it's done."
Dan Pearson, Wheels of Justice bus manager, said the organization presents speakers with a variety of views.
"We make it very clear, especially when we're talking to young people . . . that they don't just take our word for it," he said.
Ron Francis, an Andover High physics teacher, helped arrange the talk in his capacity as a pro- Palestinian activist off campus. He called the school's decision "political discrimination tinged with racism."
"The Zionists, by that I mean people who support a Jewish privileged state, the Zionists don't want people to be educated about the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians," Francis said.
Maria Sacchetti can be reached at email@example.com
-- END --
Many are silent as fascists who openly call for ethnic cleansing join the highest levels of Israeli government (http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5874.shtml ), as even Palestinian-Americans are being turned back at the borders while Israel starves the remaining Palestinians (http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=776037 ), and as the genocide continues in Iraq. Will history keep repeating itself because of apathy or will you/we take a stronger stand for peace with justice?
Below are upcoming public events of the wheels of justice bus tour and brief bios on those on the bus now. We need you to: a) contact us to arrange other events, promote existing events, and/or to ask about non-public events at classrooms in high schools etc. and b) donate to this, the most effective outreach peace project in the US (see http://wheelsofjusticetour.org )
Wednesday October 25, 7 PM
Faculty Staff Dining Room, Main College Bldg, Simmons College, MA
Thursday Oct 26, 7 PM
Bldg 35, room 225, Massachussets Institute of Technology, Cambridge
Friday 27 October and Saturday 28th Sommerville, and Andover MA
Sunday October 29, 2-4 PM Harvard University, (include speakers from Palestine/Israel via teleconference: Rabbi Arik Asherman, Palestinian Ismail Al-Khatib who donated organs of his Israeli murdered son to Israeli children)
Wed Nov 1 Mt Holyoke College 50 College Street, South Hadley, Massachusetts
Thursday November 2, 7:30 PM Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT
Saturday November 4, 3 PM Public presentation Smith College, Northampton, MA
Monday Nov. 6, 7 PM, Public Event, Danbury, CT
(Western Connecticut State University)
Tuesday November 7th 6:30-8 PM Marcus White Hall, Central Connecticut State University, New Britain, CT
Wed. November 8 and Thursday Nov 9: Essex, NY, Adirondack region of upstate
Friday November 10, SUNY Albany, NY
November 11-13 Harrisburg and Gettysburg, PA
November 17-19 Philadelphia, PA and Camden, NJ
Bring your questions and challenges (and hopefully energy to do something). The WOJ bus tour has been to 48 states in the past few years bringing compelling speakers to over 1000 academic Institutions. On this leg of the tour (some only through November 2nd):
Bill Hill (Bus Driver): Bill served in Vietnam for 27 months in the 1960s and has become a peace activist including driving buses for Pastors for Peace and others.
Dan Pearson (Bus Manager): Dan was in Palestine working with the Israel Committee against Home Demolitions to rebuild Palestinian homes demolished by Israeli authorities.
Joe Carr (Iraq and Palestine Speaker): Peace activist and performance artist from Kansas City, Missouri. Organized with direct-action movements such as Earth First, Food Not Bombs, and Arts in Activism. In the last three years, he’s worked with the International Solidarity Movement in Palestine and Christian Peace Makers in Iraq. He witnessed Israeli soldiers murder international activists Rachel Corrie and Tom Hurndall. He is friends with those CPT members held hostage in Iraq (three subsequently released, one killed). More at http://www.lovinrevolution.org
Dr. Hassan Fouda (Palestine/Lebanon speaker) is former Assistant Director at Global Research and Development, Pfizer, Inc. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolition (ICAHD-USA: www.ICAHD.org). He was a member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Right to Return Coalition and served as the Connecticut chair. He is also active in several educational and interfaith peace advocacy groups including the Council for National Interest (CNIonline .org), If Americans Knew (IfAmericansKnew.org) and the Connecticut based We Refuse to be Enemies (Jews, Moslems and Christians in Coalition for Peace). In January 2006, Dr. Fouda was a member of a delegation from the Council for the National Interest that participated as international observers to the recent Palestinian elections. The delegation which included two former U.S. ambassadors, met with President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and President Emile Lahoud of Lebanon, with Amr Mousa, Secretary General of the Arab League, with other officials, Islamist and other opposition leaders and opinion makers in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Palestine-Israel. Dr. Fouda returned to Israel-Palestine in February 2006 with an American interfaith delegation seeking to find and amplify voices of hope and accommodation among Israelis and Palestinians.
I was sleepy and my hybrid car hit the road railings hard Monday when I took a break from the Wheels of Justice bus tour* to go to my clinical lab to sign out cases (>4 hour drive each way Upstate NY to Hawthorn NY). I am OK and the car just needs some bodywork (I was very lucky). Yet, it was another sobering reminder to think more of how best to use what remains of our lives (which could be a few days or a few decades!). News and tragedies around the world came into sharper focus as I rejoined the tour (Tuesday and Wednesday in Corning, NY). One of those is the coincidentally just published research report from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, that calculates that as many as 655,000 Iraqis have died from war-related causes since the illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003. These are not abstract numbers but real people each with a real story and life like yours and mine.
In fact this is the largest recent genocide in the world since Rwanda (800,000, killed; BTW Darfur 200-300,000) and we should not be afraid to use this term. It is actually worse since we should add the 1.5 million Iraqis who died as a direct result of the US/UK led sanctions (1991-2003) and the one million who died in the Iran-Iraq war (which was also US POLICY; as Henry Kissinger put it “our policy was to get them to kill each other”). Silence means complicity with this ongoing genocide especially for us living and paying taxes in the US. The Palestinian catastrophe also continues and we are equally responsible. Some 7 million Palestinians are refugees or displaced people, some 5000 were murdered in the past six years alone, and some 9,000 political prisoners languish in Israeli jails. And Lebanon had 1.2 million cluster bombs dropped on it, half in the less than three days between the UN approval of the cease fire and its final implementation). Over 1400 Lebanese civilians were killed in one month and thousands lost their homes. Due to depleted Uranium use, cancer rates in Southern Iraq are at many folds the normal rate. 75 young US Soldiers were killed in the past two weeks alone and thousands will suffer from the effects of Depleted Uranium (both a teratogen and a carcinogen). I could go on and on but these are the symptoms of the underlying disease of colonialism, greed, and racism. Therapy and prognosis are areas we should also focus on.
I was inspired and my spirit uplifted by the reaction of the hundreds of young people we met at schools, colleges, universities, churches and more over the past two weeks on the bus. One student at a class at Corning Community College made our day when she stated how she was always nagged by many questions about why we are in the Middle East, why we support Israel etc and that for the first time she hears logical answers and facts (and wished there were more time to ask more questions). The young people are the future and they will inherit the trillions of debt incurred by the Bush/Clinton generation. I was inspired by groups like Corning Peaceworks, teachers and professors, retired and unemployed young people, and people of all other walks of life who decided to take things into their own hands, to be the leaders, and to do what needs to be done.
More and more citizens are awakening everywhere to reclaim their rights and duties as citizens (and not mere consumers of news and "things"). America had few times when real democracy (literally "people power") manifested itself with glory: from the rights of women to vote, to the civil rights movement, to ending support for Apartheid South Africa, to ending the war on Vietnam and much more. All were real people movements regardless of who was in the white house or congress at the time. Ditto for other parts of the world where all positive change comes from the people (grass root). Now we are in the midst of another people power campaign to end Israeli apartheid and challenge the war profiteers and the war mongers (be they Democrats or Republican).
I have been and continue to be on the road, my emails have become far rarer and so this one might include a bigger list of items than usual (plus the ramblings above):
(*WOJ new website: http://wheelsofjusticetour.org but note that events are not updated, email me for update).
Even Palestinian-Americans are being turned back at the border By Amira Hass Haaretz 18 October 2006 "I have no complaints against Israel," said S. "It's an occupying nation. My complaints are directed at the U.S. We are citizens and they the U.S. fail to defend us from a discriminatory policy. We wouldn't have these problems - split families and being barred from returning to our homes - if we were Jews."
Palestine Right to Enter Campaign (action needed to challenge Israel's policy of denial of entry and denial of residency rights in Palestine)
Plans for the Olive Harvest Campaign 2006 by the International Solidarity Movement http://www.palsolidarity.org/main/2006/10/07/oh-plan-2006/
A new poll commissioned by the Council for the National Interest Foundation shows that a significant number of Americans are wary of the power of the Israel lobby, and believe it is behind the invasion of Iraq and the current belligerent tone of the White House and Congress toward Iran.....The poll suggests that the espionage charges against two employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the publicity given to a new study of the power of the Israel lobby by two mainstream academic professors has had an affect on people's awareness of the lobby.....Among ethnic groups, Hispanics (53%) believed that the lobby's role was influential. Among age groups, 50% of those between the ages of 18 and 29 agreed that the Israel lobby had a hand in forming the current pro-war policy. ....Some 1,035 people participated in the poll, which was conducted in every part of the country. For a full presentation of the data, see
Israel Lobby Initiates Hispanic Strategy: "Invadimos a Iran" Grant Smith | Institute for Research: Middle East Policy | 10/4/2006. The Israel lobby has recently begun strategizing how to influence the Hispanic vote in the United States. Already a $760 billioni powerhouse consumer market, the Hispanic share of US voters will reach 8.6% in 2006 according to the Pew Hispanic Center. Hispanics accounted for 50% of the US population between 2000 and 2004 but only 10% of the increase in the total votes cast.ii In the event of amnesty or other citizenship initiatives for undocumented immigrants, this segment of voters will become even more significant as population gains translate into voting power.
Israel Lobby Congressional Junkets – as Usual.
PoliticalMoneyLine, a watchdog group that follows money in politics, reported on its website that while congressional travel spending has significantly dropped this election year from levels attained in 2003, the American Israel Political Affairs Committee (AIPAC) continues to spend freely on congressional junkets it runs to Israel. The junkets are underwritten by the American Israel Education Foundation (AIEF), which is the 501(c)(3) wing of AIPAC. In the period between July 2005 and July 2006, it spent $583,131 in travel expenses, sponsoring 62 trips to Israel for lawmakers, their relatives, and congressional staff. This was about one-third the entire amount spent on congressional travel that was reported for the whole year.
Zionist lobbyist Jack Abramof's emails show he knew of the attack on Iraq to benefit Israel a year earlier than the actual attack.
This happened through Zionist Wolfowitz who also tipped British officials (Downing Street meeting minutes of March 2002 prove this "Downing Street Memo" http://www.downingstreetmemo.com/docs/meyermemo.pdf )
Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign against Israeli Apartheid Moves Forward; Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid, October 9, 2006. (Toronto, October 9, 2006) – Over 600 people attended the landmark conference, Boycotting Israeli Apartheid: The Struggle Continues, held from 6-8 October in Toronto, Canada. The conference represents a watershed moment in the Palestinian solidarity movement, with leading anti-apartheid activists from Palestine, South Africa, Canada and England addressing the way forward in the global campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions.
U of M-Dearborn student government demands divestment from Israel, The Arab-American News, October 2006. Dearborn Student Government (www.umdsg.com) adopted General Assembly Resolution 2006-001 at its September 26th General Assembly meeting. The Resolution is in response to the growing call to demand that the University Of Michigan administration "cease all investment in companies that financially benefit from the actions of the Israeli military in illegally occupied territories." http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=A380_0_1_0_M
Ilan Pappe: Israeli academia deserves to be boycotted, Irish Times, Oct 03, 2006 - Israeli academia is guilty as charged by the Palestinian academics. By not raising their voices in protest, Israeli academics allow the atrocities to continue. Moreover, Israeli academia is providing the moral infrastructure for the occupation and key members of it assist in its daily praxis. http://www.kibush.co.il/show_file.asp?num=16602
Iraq under occupation: Government Death Squads Ravaging Baghdad By Dahr Jamail With Ali al-Fadhily, Inter Press Service 20 October 2006
Death squads from the Ministry of Interior posing as Iraqi police are killing more people than ever in the capital, emerging evidence shows. (US involvement is well known as US "experts" train Iraqis, the same ones who trained death squads in Honduras and El Salvador)
We were four people with diverse experiences on a decorated bus with a tight schedule giving over 20 talks in one week in a rural upstate part of New York (at four high schools, three colleges, six public events). Below are some notes from the bus tour to give you a flavor of why I believe this is the most important outreach effort we have been engaged in over 20 years. I ask you to get involved and at the end I list places we plan to visit in the next few weeks that YOU can help with
On the bus beside myself for this leg of the Fall tour: Lysander Pucchio (bus manager, ISM member, visited Palestine, great company, great organizer), Joe Mueller (CPT Iraq, excellent speaker), and Bill Hill (Bus Driver, Vietnam Veteran, person who spent the longest time on the bus of the over 100 people who have been on the bus crew). The colorful bus brought its message of justice and peace to upstate New York, a conservative area very different from NY City.
One is always struck by the imposing (and sprawling) physical and psychological structures of American educational institutions. We visited four high schools, three had superb facilities and one was somewhat lacking (that one was the one with right wing strict supervision preventing free exchange of information). Yet all have far more resources than available for example to Iraqi or Palestinian students. The numbers of students per class was always one third to one half that in those countries directly being destroyed using our tax money. But tax money and resources are not being used to help US schools or people either (witness lack of money to shore up the levees in New Orleans and lack of National Guard to help our citizens; they were instead in Iraq shooting Iraqis). I am always amazed at what information is allowed and what is not allowed in US schools. You can tell this by asking questions and seeing where students are on issues like geography and knowledge of the world. Here are some questions:
- How many Muslims are in the world today? Range few thousand to few million (correct number is 1.3 billion)
- I am introduced as a Palestinian, what religion do you think my family is? Muslim is the uniform answer (many students could not imagine there are Palestinian Christian or that Jesus was born in Palestine and hence is a Palestinian).
- When Christians in the Middle East refer to God, what word do they use? (Correct answer is Allah).
- Why are we in Iraq? This gave mixed responses: 9/11, terrorists, WMD, bringing “them” a government like ours, oil (but not one thought it has anything to do with Israel, documents show otherwise).
- What percentage of Americans are your age or younger? Correct answer about 20%
- What percentage of Iraqis or Palestinians are your age or younger? Correct answer 50-60%
- Oldest civilization? Mesopotamia. Where is it? Much less knowledge.
This is not their fault. When we flip through assigned textbooks written or edited by those who hold Straussian and/or Zionist ideologies, we find such statements as “the struggle over Jewish land claimed by Palestinians” (Imagine if it was “the struggle over white land claimed by Bantu people in South Africa” or “the struggle over Christian land claimed by American Indians”).
How does one explain reality of life to a white audience inundated daily with misinformation, lies, and outright racism against Arabs and Muslims? Why should they care about Hiam, a 7 year old Palestinian girl who was hit by an Israeli rubber coasted steel bullet in her eye while walking with her mother on a quiet street to visit a friend? (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/hiamsstory/) Both sides of the family are refugees from the ethnic cleansing of 1947-1949, ancestors having worked the land for hundreds of years. Grandfather forced to find jobs in agriculture in the Gaza strip that is until Israel occupied that area and settlements took away the land and the water. He and Hiam’s father both then worked for Israelis (on stolen Palestinian land) then that stopped in 2000 (Israel forbade such work for most Palestinians). With 12 brothers and sisters, Hiam and her family rely on food aid and charity (which got more restricted this year because of the blockade and siege of Gaza).
Of the nearly 700 people we met and talked to in the last six days (ranging in age from 12-82), we found lots of backgrounds and lots of political views. Why is it then that the media and the educational system have a reductionist attitude when it comes to “Arabs” and “Muslims”? Why is it that there is so much misinformation being deliberately fed to an unsuspecting public?
We try to tell our own stories (Joe of Iraq, I and Lysander of Palestine, Bill of Vietnam) in hope that people start to dust off their thinking cap. Few resist and merely want to regurgitate what they heard on CNN, Fox, or their teachers. We can only tell our stories (mine is posted at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/thecucumberandthecactus/ ) and hope for the best. But how much control do Americans have over their daily life? How much do Palestinians and Iraqis? How many finally realize that they have been deceived. In the meantime a new study came out from John Hopkins in the Lancet which showed as many as 650,000 Iraqis died since the US invasion of 2003. That is more than three times those in Darfur. Yet no one dares call the US policy in Iraq genocidal. It was of course including the application of sanctions that for 10 years killed 5000 Iraqi children every month. With our taxes and government support, 70% of Palestinians were made refugees and displaced people over the past 6 decades. Israeli professor Baruch Kimmerling called it “politicide.”
There is so much to be thankful for every day. From beautiful Fall scenery to great sunsets to great people living life to the fullest. We are also grateful for programs like the Wheels of Justice bus tour because of its educational ripple effect. So many people learn so many new things, get brochures, books, links, exchange emails and phone numbers, plan other events, and feel more connected. Those of us who have the privilege of being on the bus for an extended period of time consider it the best and most productive times of our lives. This is for so many reasons but most of all for the enrichment of our lives by meeting and working with the best people in America. It is not an exaggeration to say that those who spend their time trying to help others and to educate fellow citizens are usually the brightest, most interesting, and most courageous people one will ever meet. From a group that protests weekly at a street corner to those who regularly right letters to editors and to their congressmen to those who organize events and speeches to student activists etc. etc. From people like Kath Buffington, ex-safety and traffic coordinator in this area who has dedicated the last few weeks to make this leg of the tour so busy that we were literally running from event to event. From people like our hosts for four nights: Doug and Mary Jo (and their three beautiful children). From those who bravely grasp the moment to do acts of kindness at the spur of the moment. One example is an impromptu invitation to join the Islamic Center of Olean to break the fast on Saturday capped the week. The fellowship of great people (over 60 including several Christians who joined us to meet their Muslim neighbors some for the first time and over great food (cooked by three families of Bangladish background). This Iftar raised $760 to help with the bus expenses. (total income on the bus this week >$1600 but we have a number of expenses including new brakes nearly $500, biodiesel, train and bus tickets, and cost of books; to donate visit ).
Another example is Barbara and Barry who invited us to speak to their group and stay at their home at a chilly night of unplanned staying in Olean. They also offered us the chance to break our routine by watching a sobering documentary on the machinations of International bankers, the scam of the “Federal Reserve Bank” (private banks that rule our economy), the IMF and the World Bank. And those like Robert who helped us in libraries and internet cafes to stay connected. They are all heroes in the real sense of the word: they put their neck on the line for a good cause and provide an inspiring example of what dedicated individuals can do. They are ordinary people doing extraordinary acts to challenge systems of oppression and disinformation.
Media Coverage for events of the week in Allegany County:
- Wellsville Daily Reporter (10/4/06 and 10/5/06, pre-event stories, 10/11/06 after event story by Kathryn Ross)
- Olean Times Herald (10/4/06 and 10/6/06, pre-events, on e post event)
- Cuba Patriot and Free Press (10/4/06 and 10/5/06, pre-events, one post event)
- One radio station
(All media coverage was good except for one picture caption added by someone who was not there and did not take the picture).
(Note: The proliferating nuclear weapons and the misinformation around its origin and causes illustrate that the peace movement a) was right in all its predictions about US and Israeli government designs and outcomes, and b) has a lot of work to do. Thankfully, for the next two weeks I will be on the wheels of justice bus tour http://justicewheels.org speaking to high schools, colleges, universities and others about our challenge to be peacemakers. I may have spotty email access both to send and read emails.)
How US tortures (official documents on methods etc)
Another little reported Washington scandal: Zionist Michael Chertoff awards contracts worth billions for US border security to the Boeing group including key Israeli company Elbit and its US subsidiary Kollsman Inc. Losing competitors were All-American teams Lockheed Martin Corp., Northrop Grumman Corp. and Raytheon Co., as well as Sweden's Ericsson group. More US jobs lost to special interest lobbies (not to mention security risks).
http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=13845 (background on other teams)
Iraq: Palestinians Targeted With Death Threats, Human Rights Watch, 5 October 2006
"Shi'a armed groups have threatened to kill Palestinian refugees living in Baghdad if they do not leave Iraq within 72 hours, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch urged the Iraqi government and the Multi-National Forces to investigate these threats and provide greater security to Palestinians in Iraq."
Universal instincts. By Azmi Bishara, "The West, served by Arab "moderates", is attempting to take the Arab world back to the Stone Age"
The Kansas City Sabeel Conference, October 20-21, is a two-day educational and advocacy conference featuring outstanding experts on the Palestine-Israel conflict. Please join us. For biographies and photos of speakers, and information about how to register, please visit http://www.kcsabeelconference.org
For activists who are Palestinian Americans: If you have not registered to attend the Palestinian American planning meeting in Cleveland scheduled for November 11, 2006 (for planning the large conference in 2007 and/or 2008), please do so ASAP. For info contact PalestineConferenceUSA@yahoo.com
The New York Times ran the following commentary by Palestinian American Sam Bahour today. It is important that they hear from us so they will continue to run honest pieces like this. Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Letters should be 150 words or less and include your name, address and telephone (for identification purposes only).
We Can't Go Home Again By SAM BAHOUR Published: October 7, 2006
Yesterday (Sept 4th) was the International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian Political prisoners. see
and this article I wrote 2 years ago
Palestinian Reality: The Need for an Urgent Alternative Political Programme by Dr Haidar Eid
Saving Darfur: Zionist Conspiracy?
Green Party resolution http://gp.org/cgi-bin/vote/propdetail?pid=247
Palestinian Heritage exhibition of the Munayyer collection sparks controversy and understanding
The Gaza Economy by Dr. Sara Roy
Habeas Corpus, R.I.P. (1215 - 2006): With a smug stroke of his pen, President Bush is set to wipe out a safeguard against illegal imprisonment that has endured as a cornerstone of legal justice since the Magna Carta.
by Molly Ivins http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0928-20.htm
Operation peace for the winery: Israel does not want peace with Syria by Gideon Levy
FDR, Ruth Gruber and me: Zionists stymie WWII rescue plan, by Ronald Bleier October 2006
The Palestinian people are not cheap, Khalid Amayreh Oct 2, 2006, 00:24
Students want U-M to divest from Israel: Dearborn student government group wants the school to cease interaction with firms doing business with Israel.
Paul J. Balles voices his shame at the silence of world civic leaders - professors, ministers, attorneys, medical professionals, judges - in the face of the crimes committed by Israel and its patron, the USA. http://www.redress.btinternet.co.uk/pjballes34.htm
- The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs is tentatively planning to host their Gaza Correspondent, Mohammed Omer, on a U.S. Speaking tour from November 28th to December 16th. The tour plans to reach the West Coast, Midwest, East Coast, and possibly the South. Born in Rafah, Mohammed is the youngest journalist in Gaza, Founder of RafahToday.net, and frequent contributor to international press on all issues Gazan. Given the ongoing siege and the difficulty for people to travel to the United States, Mohammed will provide a rare view in to current situation with presentations and discussion. To view Mohammed's articles in the Washington Report, please visit http://www.wrmea.com/ and search his name. Matt Horton, Director of Public Relations for the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs is coordinating the tour and currently in the process of setting a basic schedule and making initial contact with organizers who might be interested in taking part. Please contact him at (202) 939-6050 x103 or write to email@example.com.
- If you know US citizens or others with foreign passports who have faced difficulties in entering Palestine, please send the information to firstname.lastname@example.org (Khulood Badawi, field researcher with Association for Civil Rights in Israel) with a copy to email@example.com
- The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and the Boycott Israeli Goods Campaign (BIG) called on activists nationwide to join a Boycott Day of Action on October 7 against Israel. The PSC and the BIG campaign are responding to calls from Palestine and calling for a boycott of until it complies with international law and universal principles of human rights. The call for an international boycott has been signed by 180 civil society organisations in Palestine. (Similar actions in the US can be carried out) http://www.pacbi.org/boycott_news_more.php?id=379_0_1_0_C
In the past few days we had some really good events ranging from the speech by the Israeli and Palestinian bereaved family members to a major Islamic Taste of Ramadan Iftar attracting nearly 300 people to a joint rally for immigrant rights and peace (money for jobs and education not for war and
occupation). The number of upcoming events around the country is mushrooming this fall and the wheels of justice bus tour also keeps on trecking (coming to a city near you, see http://justicewheels.org).
Before I share with you the usual weekly dose of news and commentary you won't find on New York Times, CNN, NBC or Fox, I thought I would share this sample hate mail; this one sent in response to posting of Nurit's speech, an Israeli women who lost her daughter to a Palestinian suicide bombings and she blames Zionist racism for the mess (see her bio and excellent speech at
http://www.qumsiyeh.org/nuritpeledelhanan/). Note that the names in the from field and at the signature of his email do not match.
I read the article by Prof.Nurit Peled-Elhanan about the death of children. After reading this article I felt terrible that I am an Israeli.
I am disgusted at my government's handling of the whole situation. I wish that Israel would change and that the first thing would be to arrest and then hang all you traitors and impose the death penalty (without trials) of all Arabs suspected of terrorism or aid and comfort to terrorists.
Arabs can live here, but not as citizens, but as residents. Jewish traitors like you and that son of that Jewish whore Arna Khamis Mer should be shot or expelled from our holy country.
Rabbi Moshe Ben-Hod
Another $460 million of ourt taxes going to Israel thanks to Israeli occupied Congress: The increased funding by Congress is seen as a major achievement for Israel and was support by pro-Israel activists in Washington. Josh Block, spokesman for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) said that "Congress is continuing its strong support for cutting-edge defense programs, which benefit both the United States and Israel, and strengthen their strategic partnership."
Anti-Zionist Ultra-Orthodox group of Rabbis meet with Iranian president Ahmedinujad in New York (the media still chooses not to cover these realities): photos posted at
From the Jewish Forward: “If Democrats take the House, we’re going to see a huge influx” of Jewish lawmakers, said Ira Forman, the executive director of the National Jewish Democratic Council. ‘But even on a disappointing night, I think we’ll see a few more Jewish Democrats in the House.’.
Now in English: A Threat from Within: A Century of Jewish Opposition to Zionism
But we don’t need them (an article on why it is imperative to communicate directly with your neighbors and friends and family); i.e. speak truth to us the people
Israel, it's time for an apology - Ynetnews staff members tell State of Israel what they think it should ask forgiveness for, and from whom. And the list is long See:
Report on the Israel lobby debate in NY. (Lobbyists Ross and Indyk basically "lobby" against exposing them as lobbyists :-) http://www.counterpunch.org/smith09292006.html
Associated Press Story: FCC ordered to Destroy report on concentration of media ownership. WASHINGTON - The Federal Communications Commission ordered its staff to destroy all copies of a draft study that suggested greater concentration of media ownership would hurt local TV news coverage, a former lawyer at the agency says. Adam Candeub, now a law professor at Michigan State University, said senior managers at the agency ordered that "every last piece" of the report be destroyed. "The whole project was just stopped - end of discussion," he said. Candeub was a lawyer in the FCC's Media Bureau at the time the report was written and communicated frequently with its authors, he said.
If you do not read anything else today, read the speech (below, item 2) by Nurit, an Israeli women who lost her daughter to a Palestinian suicide bombing. All in the audience, Christians, Muslims, and Jews literally cried (except two known individuals out of nearly 100). Read it and judge for yourself. But it is equally sad and ironic that Nurit's relevant comments came on the eve of the shameful passage of Congressional resolutions (commented on by the American Civil Liberties Union in Item 1) that I call Zionification of America thanks to greed and racism (and AIPAC). Nurit and a Palestinian women who lost her brother will speak at the rally Sunday at 2 PM (Hartford, CT Meet at Capitol Ave and Broad St, Hartford; Rally at South Green Park; to my knowledge first rally combining immigrant rights with anti-war movement).
ITEM 1: Sliding into Tyrrany and Oppression
"If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy." James Madison, fourth US president (1751-1836)
"The American Civil Liberties Union expressed distress as the Senate adopted S.3930, the Military Commissions Act of 2006. That bill is identical to legislation adopted by the House yesterday, and removes important checks on the president by: failing to protect due process, eliminating habeas corpus for many detainees, undermining enforcement of the Geneva Conventions, and giving a "get out of jail free card" to senior officials who authorized or ordered illegal torture and abuse....Senators rejected several amendments that would have corrected shortcomings in the legislation. The bill gives the president license to weaken enforcement of the basic protections in Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions ... Additionally, the bill undermines the American value of due process by permitting convictions based on evidence literally beaten out of a witness or obtained through other abuse by either our government or other countries. Government officials who authorized or ordered illegal acts of torture and abuse would receive retroactive immunity for many of these acts, providing a "get out of jail free" card that is backdated nine years. In the closest vote today, the Senate rejected by a 51-48 vote an amendment by Senators Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) to preserve minimal protections of the courts in their historical and constitutional role as a check on the executive branch, through habeas corpus. "Nothing could be less American than a government that can indefinitely hold people in secret torture cells, take away their protections against horrific and cruel abuse, put them on trial based on evidence that they cannot see, sentence them to death based on testimony literally beaten out of witnesses, and then slam shut the courthouse door for any habeas petition," said Christopher Anders, an ACLU Legislative Counsel. "But that's exactly what Congress just approved." see http://www.aclu.org/natsec/gen/26861leg20060925.html
ITEM 2: Dr. Nurit's speech: Nurit Peled-Elhanan
Do the actions you are waiting for!
Be the leader you are looking for!
ACTION NEEDED: "The proposals being voted on this week by US Members of Congress are truly frightening. If Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist has his way, we could see a nightmare “Big Brother” bill that combines a rubber stamp for warrantless domestic spying on phone calls and emails with new torture and detention tactics that would gut the Geveva Conventions by diluting the War Crimes Act, taking away checks on the president's power..."
Go to this site to learn how to reach your elected representatives: http://tinyurl.com/r7b73
Ask five friends to call as well. Use the ACLU's 'Doonesbury' e-card alert: http://action.aclu.org/site/Ecard?ecard_id=3401
ACTION: Boycott ExxonMobile and more
ACTION: Stop the Israeli lobby http://www.stopaipac.org/about.htm
ACTION: Coalition against Israeli Apartheid (meeting in Toronto Oct 6-8) http://www.caiaweb.org
ACTION: Join/help the wheels of Justice http://justicewheels.org
Link of the week: Resource to find contact emails for hundreds of editors, publishers, media pundits etc http://www.everyonewhosanyone.com
Book review by Dr. Ludwig Watzal of: Arthur Neslen's "Occupied Minds: A Journey through the Israeli Psyche." Pluto, London-Ann Arbor 2006, 291 pp
Palestinian-Israeli conflict for beginners (and those who think they know)
Silence is complicity
Peace wheels roll into MSU: Holocaust survivor, Nobel Peace Prize nominee tour to discuss human rights issues in Israel, Iraq
This example of news coverage of the Wheels of Justice Bus tour http://justicewheels.org while not the best shows why it is an important outreach effort. The bus has booked a busy schedule for the fall in MI, OH, PA, NY, NJ, CT, MA with dozens of volunteers working hard on this. YOUR help is needed
Congressman Nye and Jack Abramoff: Justice versus lobbies . By Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD Online Journal Contributing Writer, Sep 19, 2006.
Why did prosecutors enter into a plea agreement with discredited Congressman Bob Ney even when they already struck a plea agreement with the guy who bribed him, Jack Abramoff? And why did many mainstream media outlets ignore the most crucial facts of this case?....
The Pope's remarks were dangerous, and will convince many more Muslims that the west is incurably
Islamophobic by Karen Armstrong (Author of many books including Islam: A short History), The Guardian
Chavez proposes creation of Bank of the South to challenge IMF and World Bank monopolies and destructive policies
Book review “The Lemon Tree“ http://sabbah.biz/mt/archives/2006/09/18/the-lemon-tree/
Video on Lebanese and Palestinian Political Prisoners in Israeli jails http://ifamericansknew.org/stats/cap-pris.html
Facts on cluster bombs: http://www.commondreams.org/views04/0126-04.htm
Why I Don't Live In Israel By Orit Weksler http://www.alternet.org/story/40388
New book by President Jimmy Carter "Palestine: Peace not apartheid"
Palestinians hit out as Israel tightens visa controls
The Dream Philosophy of Paranoids: Kill Arabs, Cry Anti-Semitism, By NORMAN FINKELSTEIN
Pro-Israeli editors seek to influence new Al-Jazeera English TV By Khalid Amayreh
The Electronic Intifada - Sep 15, 2006
Bush's Useful Idiots: Tony Judt on the Strange Death of Liberal America, By Tony Judt, London Review of Books 21 September 2006
More on denial of residency and entry rights http://www.zajel.org/article_view.asp?newsID=6765&cat=1
BOYCOTT ISRAEL-FREE PALESTINE
Palestinian Refugees Right of Return and Related matters
Brazilian Cartoonist under Likud attack and commentary
List of collective massacres perpetrated by Israeli Army in its attack against Lebanon in summer 2006
UN Civil Society Conference slams Israeli apartheid
US Politicians rated for their "support of Israel" (actually obediance to the Israeli lobby and support of Israeli elite interests and war mongering)
What happened to the five dancing Israelis who were happily photographing themselves with the burning WTC on 9/11
New Video on efforts to hold Israel accountable in third party jurisdictions.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dA4pwIGZEY
Few individuals claim being shocked at any comparison between what early Nazi laws and behavior (in the 1930s) and current Israeli laws and behaviors. But any deeper study will actually be shocking in the other direction: i.e. on the extent of collaboration and mimicry of Nazi and fascist behavior by the Zionist movement over the past 60 years. Lenni Brenner (who is Jewish) did significant studies ond this and you can read his book Zionist revisionism and its collaborations at
http://www.marxists.de/middleast/ironwall/index.htm His more recent book is "51 Documents: History of the Nazi-Zionist
Collaboration" Reviewes are at Amazon, here is a tiny url link to that:
Follow-up on the last action alert: More on Israel's policies of denial of entry and other policies to "cleanse" Palestine of its indiginous non-Jewish population.
Lengthy but Excellent article: Anti-Arab Racism, Islam, and the Left/Antiwar movement
"..there is indeed a certain legitimacy and respectability given to anti-Arab/anti-Muslim racism that is not found with other forms of racism. This legitimacy stems from the fact that anti-Arab/anti-Muslim racism cuts across the entire political spectrum, from right to left. It is accepted and even practiced by those who would not tolerate other forms of racism. While the anti-racist record of liberals and some on the left is not the best, it is particularly bad when it comes to Arabs and Muslims."
The Coming Collapse of Zionism: The Moral Bankruptcy of Israel's Founding Idea By KATHLEEN CHRISTISON Former CIA Analyst Counterpunch - Sep 12, 2006
Link of the week: International Middle East Media Center gives updated non-corporatist news from the Middle East http://www.imemc.org/
Christian Religious Leaders' Statement on "Christian" Zionism "We categorically reject Christian Zionist doctrines as false teaching that corrupts the biblical message of love, justice and reconciliation."
Activists in Palestine picketed Kofi Annan's visit http://www.palsolidarity.org/main/2006/08/30/kofi-visits-ramallah/
Labor actions and news from the Middle East http://www.labourstart.org/middleeast/
Butcher of Qana finds No Safe Haven on Capitol Hill, Photo Report, CJA, 16 August 2006 http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5551.shtml
Confronting the Zionists Where they Live, Kate Raphael, Electronic Lebanon, 14 August 2006 http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5549.shtml
Beirut street projections in New York City, Nigel Parry, Electronic Lebanon, 14 August 2006 http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5524.shtml
Photostory: "Evacuate" Flyers dropped over Tel Aviv, Anti-war activists Photostory from Zochrot, 13 August 2006 http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5516.shtml
Malaysians Urged to Boycott US products for support of Israel http://www.islam-online.net/English/News/2006-08/25/01.shtml
Swiss Journalist Sylvia Cattori interviews daughtor of abducted Palestinian vice-PM http://www.voltairenet.org/article143228.html
Constitutional right or fascism: Wearing T-shirts with Arabic script in airports (ADC is following up on this and activists are wearing more of those T-shirts)
Amnesty International detailed report on recent Israeli war crimes
UN denounces Israel use of cluster bombs (made in America) and death toll rises from cluster bombs in Lebanon.
Two scholars say pro-Israel lobby has warped U.S. policy, By Frank James, Chicago Tribune
(on the latest appearance by Mearsheimer and Walt at the national Press Club)
Hugo Chavez is respected by the Arab people (Arab "leaders" put to shame)
The Attack on Cynthia McKinney: American Racism, by Richard Searcy August 9, 2006 http://www.cynthiaforcongress.com/
Behind the plan to bomb Iran By Ismael Hossein-zadeh (economics professor at Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa) Asia Times, August 30 2006
"The driving force behind the neo-conservatives' war juggernaut must be sought not in the alleged defense of democracy or of national interests but in the nefarious special interests that are carefully camouflaged behind the front of national interests. ...They include both economic interests (famously known as the military-industrial complex) and geopolitical interests (associated largely with Zionist proponents of "Greater Israel" in the Middle East, or the Israeli lobby). There is an unspoken, de facto alliance between these two extremely powerful interests - an alliance that might be called the military-industrial-Zionist alliance. More than anything else, the alliance is based on a conjunctural convergence of interests on war and international convulsion in the Middle East. Let me elaborate on this point..."
From the annals of racism in the 21st Century
"You see, the probability that an Arab child will grow up and becomes an Albert Einstein, or Sigmund Freud, or even Alan Greenspan, is equal to the twelfth digit after the decimal point, to the probability that a Jewish child will grow up to become a jihad fighter. Of course, not every Jewish child becomes an Einstein, and not every Arab child chooses a brief but spectacular career of a shahid. However, Jewish children, if you don't kill them before it's too late, form Jewish communities, and Jewish communities, in addition to producing Einsteins from time to time, are known throughout the entire history of the Diaspora for bringing prosperity to every society that allows them to prosper. 'I will bless those who bless you.' Unlike Jews, Arabs do not form communities; instead, they form the 'Arab street'. The 'Arab street' has never produced an Einstein and, I am sure never will. Instead, it is producing an abundance of mass murderers....What occupation? What 'Palestinian people'? Learn some real history. The 'Palestinian people' is a blood libel, next to which the infamous Protocols look almost inoffensive. I challenge you to produce a single pre-1967 reference to the 'Palestinian people'. I challenge you to name at least one document that gives the terrorist organization you call the 'Palestinian people' the legal right to one square inch of territory in Israel or anywhere else in the world. " From Suggestions to the Crucified by Zack Lieberberg, August 29, 2006
The ignorant racism based on a sense of "tribal" superiority is obvious in such statements (just imagine if the text included African-American or "Nigger" instead of Arab or Palestinian in the above). Unfortunately for America, such ignorant and malicious thoughts are not marginal and are now at the highest levels of the US government. I will leave it to a future posting and readers' own research skills to evaluate these racist statements and their impact. For readers interested in Arab contributions to civilization, here is a concise summary http://www.adc.org/index.php?id=247
However, since the Zionist Lieberberg and other Zionists are fond of mentioning Einstein and Freud I thought I would share these quotes from those two famous non-Zionist Jews:
"My awareness of the essential nature of Judaism resists the idea of a Jewish state with borders, an army, and a measure of temporal power, no matter how modest. I am afraid of the inner damage Judaism will sustain - especially from the development of a narrow nationalism within our own ranks, against which we have already had to fight strongly, even without a Jewish state." Albert Einstein http://globalwebpost.com/farooqm/writings/other/einstein.htm
"Among the most disturbing political phenomena of our time is the Emergence in the newly created state of Israel of the "Freedom Party" (Tnuat Haherutprecursor to the Likud-MQ), a political party closely akin in its organization, methods, political philosophy and social appeal to the Nazi and Fascist parties. It was formed out of the membership and following of the former Irgun Zvai Leumi, a terrorist, right-wing, chauvinist organization in Palestine. The current visit of Menahem Begin, leader of this party to the United States is obviously calculated to give the impression of American Support for his party in the coming Israeli elections, and to cement political ties with conservative Zionist elements in the United States." From a letter signed by prominent Jews including Einstein published in the NY Times Dec. 2, 1948 http://www.qumsiyeh.org/einsteinetalonbegin/)
When approached to sign a petition to condemn the Arab revolt in Palestine and to support the settlement of Jews Sigmund Freud wrote in response: "I cannot do as you wish. I am unable to overcome my aversion to burdening the public with my name, and even the present critical time does not seem to me to warrant it. Whoever wants to influence the masses must give them something rousing and inflammatory and my sober judgment of Zionism does not permit this....I concede with sorrow that the baseless fanaticism of our people is in part to be blamed for the awakening of Arab distrust. I can raise no sympathy at all for the misdirected piety which transforms a piece of a Herodian wall into a national relic, thereby offending the feelings of the natives. Now judge for yourself whether I, with such a critical point of view, am the right person to come forward as the solace of a people deluded by unjustified hope."
Freud's Letter to Dr. Chaim Koffler Keren HaYassod, Vienna: 26 February 1930; posted at the Freud Institute in UK website: http://www.freud.org.uk./arab-israeli.html
This brief article by Amira Hass in Haaretz can't even begin to describe the ugly face of political Zionism (unfortunately justified by the supremacist attitude exemplified by Lieberberg's article) and its horrific impact on the native Palestinians:
Can you really not see? by Amira Hass, Haaretz
"Could you all be in favor of systematic discriminating laws? Laws stating that the Arabs of the Galilee will not even be compensated for the damages of the war by the same sums their Jewish neighbors are entitled to (Aryeh Dayan, Haaretz , August 21). Could it be that you are all in favor of a racist Citizenship Law that forbids an Israeli Arab from living with his family in his own home? That you side with further expropriation of lands and the demolishing of additional orchards, for another settler neighborhood and another exclusively Jewish road? That you all back the shelling and missile fire killing the old and the young in the Gaza Strip?" More at
Below is a letter I sent to firstname.lastname@example.org (please write your own letter, for quotes and background see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/thelobby/). I write two or three letters a day on various subjects (most do not get published but some do, see examples of published ones at
Pronouncing Blame on the Israel Lobby, By Dana Milbank Tuesday, August 29, 2006; A02
It was rather amazing to see the article from Dana Milbank (August 29) trashing professors Walt and Mearsheimer for simply speaking about the power of the Israel lobby in our government's disastrous foreign policy. The distortions in Milbank's article are obvious to anyone who attended or watched the event at the National Press Club on Monday. I watcxhed the event on c-SPAN and it is available for the record on cspan.org so that people can judge for themselves whether Milbank or the two professors are correct. There is indeed a significant body of evidence in support of the power of the lobby even quotes from the lobby itself. Howard Friedman, President of AIPAC, titled his letter of July 30, 2006 to friends and supporters of AIPAC "Look what you've done". He explained: "Israel is fighting a pivotal war for its life...the expected chorus of international condemnation of Israel's actions. ..only ONE nation in the world came out and flatly declared: Let Israel finish the job.. That nation is the United States of America--and the reason it had such a clear, unambiguous view of the situation is YOU and the rest of America Jewry....How do we do it? ... decades of long hard work which never ends." The viscious attack by Milbank on the two scholars merely proves the thesis that there are people in this country who are so fixated on supporting Zionism, right or wrong, even against Israeli and American public interests, that they are willing to do anything including trying to "shoot the messenger".
Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD
address and Tel. Number
Yesterday, we picketed a Waterford, CT talk by Amir Ofek, the consul for public affairs at the Israeli consulate in New York. We stood in front of the library for with signs and banners including "Stop Israel, No Trade, No Aid, No Guns" and "Stop Israeli Crimes Against Palestinians". Hundreds of cars passed by (rush hour) and a vast majority of drivers gave support. The talk itself was rather sparseley attended and we got to ask several questions and make comments. One question acknowledged that Ofek had recognized two of the five issues proving that the occupation of Lebanon had not ended (Sheba farms and sonic boom flights over Lebaanon); the other three being frequent land incursions (documented by UNIFIL), Lebanese prisoners, and 140,000 Israeli mines in Lebanon. Another talked about how the distorted picture of "Arabs Attack, Israel Retaliates" is contradicted by Israeli historians and human rights organizations (Amnesty, HRW, Israeli HR Organizations). A third pointed out the fallacy and shotsidedness of "deals with dictators" (like Mubarak and Abdullah) as "models" (peace needs to be with people based on justice and basic human rights. He failed to address the issues or even to reassure those Zionists who came to support him (one of them asked about the fate of the two soldiers that Israel claimed they went in to liberate and Ofek changed the subject).
Other events in other cities are even more inspiring including Jews of Conscience taking matters into their own hands:
Ann Arbor Jewish vigil in front of Synagogue whose leadership supports Zionsit oppression of Palestinians http://a2vigil.org/
Philadelphia banner drop http://phillyimc.org/en/2006/08/28410.shtml
San Francisco lock-down at Jewish Federation: http://freckle.blogs.com/
New York die-in at Penn Station: http://nyc.indymedia.org/en/2006/08/74947.html
Event to attend in NY Saturday, August 26th, 2:00 p.m.
End Israeli Aggression Against Lebanon and Palestine NOW
Israeli attacks and occupation continue! JOIN THE MARCH!
Athens Square Park, 30th Avenue and 30th Street, Astoria, Queens
(One block west of the 30th Avenue stop on the N/W line)
Sponsored by the Ad Hoc Coalition for Justice in the Middle East. To get involved or for more information, write to: justiceME@gmail.com
- Interesting site for good articles and global analysis http://www.globalresearch.ca
- 7 Facts You Might Not Know about the Iraq War By Michael Schwartz TomDispatch 23 August 2006
- VIDEO: Gaza After Disengagement http://ifamericansknew.org/about_us/gaza.html
- Over 120 Coalitions & Organizations Sign Open Letter to the Middle East: Groups protest indiscriminate attacks on civilians, Israel's actions, and US policy http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1255
Correction to my previous email on the Wheels of Justice bus tour: there was typographical unintended error. My apolgies. Please use the version below and discard the previous version
How would you like to be involved in one of the most exciting and effective advocacy and outreach projects in the US? There are many ways you can help. Read on, act, and forward.
John Donne wrote in the 17th century "No man is an Island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.. any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind and therefore do not send to me to know for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee". Today, we would use say human and humankind but the message would be the same.. As Anthropologist Margaret Mead said "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world..indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
Description of Wheels of Justice bus tour:
Having seen and lived with war, terror and occupation in Iraq and Palestine, participants in the Wheels of Justice bus tour offer first-hand experience irrespective of partisan politics and sound bite sloganeering. The Wheels of Justice Tour canvasses the United States with education, outreach, training, active non-violent resistance, and network/community-building. We have already spoken at over 3000 venues in 48 states in the past four years. About half of our appearances were/are at schools (including elementary, Middle, and High Schools), colleges, and universities. The impact was tremendous in a) reaching out to the US public (through events, excellent media coverage etc), and b) mobilizing communities (building support for local groups and networking between groups across the US). For more background, you can visit our website http://www.justicewheels.org and/or google using the combination “Wheels of Justice” and Iraq or Palestine (to get some stories of our activities).
Exciting speakers (http://www.justicewheels.org/speaker_bios.html) this fall will join the bus as it tours the Northeastern states. We begin in Chicago and go through Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Vermont, and New Hampshire. We are also looking for early bookings for the Spring as we head back South and then West.
How YOU can help:
- As an individual or a group you can help host and schedule events in your area or connect us with others. Events can be in public parks, schools, universities, houses of worship, community centers, restaurants and pubs (etc). Email contacts for schedule in IL, OH, MI Dan (email@example.com) and Lysander (firstname.lastname@example.org) and in PA, NJ, NY, CT, RI, MA, NH, VT Mazin (email@example.com) and George (firstname.lastname@example.org). Other suggested activities are posted at http://www.justicewheels.org/suggested_activities.html
- We welcome organizational and individual support (financially or otherwise). Organizations that donate $50 or more will be listed in promotional material. To donate, go to: http://www.justicewheels.org/donate.html
The tide is turning decisively in 2006 against the plans of permanant wars and occupation (plans that benefit elites, arms manufacturers, and supposed religious "end-of-world" profiteers). The amount of discussion, blogs, new information and leaks are getting to a point where we can see the frantic desperation of those pedaling the PR of "war on terrorism" to hide land theft and ethnic cleansing in Palestine (the root cause of much of the problems in the Middle East) and beyond. Despite US mainstream blackout, alternative media is filled with facts clearly showing the false-flag pedaling of fear and the fallacy of the idea of "security" and "self defense". They reveal such hasbara as cover for land theft and as a justification for war crimes and crimes against humanity. See for example Jonathan Cook's article on the distortions in US media. We can see the Israeli lobby begin to feel pressure enough to try to butress its sagging base with claims of successes (see article on AIPAC below). I and others predicted that 2006 will be a turning year albeit with bloodshed (see http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=107&ItemID=9467 ). It is sad that so many thousands of people are victimized to defend the bancrupt ideology (at its core it is greed and concepts of superiority to others).
IMHO, it is time for activists to begin to organize to collect documetation of these crimes to lay the groundwork for legal proceedings (nationally and internationally) to bring Israeli leaders and military personell (and their supporters e.g. in the US and Britain) to justice. One research article below for example details the US military support to Israel (in contrary to US laws barring sending military aid to countries atht violate human rights and invade their neighbors). And it is time for each of us to intensify our media work (or start it if you have not done so already) and intensify the campaign of BDS (boycotts, divestments and sanctions).
"Look What You've Done!": Israel's lobby in the US (AIPAC) Congratulates Itself on getting the US to support the Slaughter in Lebanon By JOHN WALSH Counterpunch, 16 August 2006 http://www.counterpunch.org/walsh08162006.html
Operation "Change of Location"? How Reports of the July 12th Capture of IDF Soldiers Soon Shifted From Lebanon to Israel, By TRISH SCHUH, Counterpunch, 15 August 2006 http://www.counterpunch.org/schuh08152006.html
The Beginning of the End for the Zionist State of Israel? by Alan Hart, talk at International Institute of Strategic Studies, New Civilisation debate, on Thursday, August 10, 2006. http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/article.asp?ID=4982
Washington's interests in Israel's war by Semour M. Hersch This is a very insightful article with new information about US/Isaeli planning for decimating Hezballah as a prelude and testing ground for attacking Iran http://www.newyorker.com/printables/fact/060821fa_fact
U.S. Military Assistance and Arms Transfers to Israel: U.S. Aid, Companies Fuel Israeli Military, A World Policy Institute Issue Brief By Frida Berrigan and William D. Hartung July 20, 2006 http://www.worldpolicy.org/projects/arms/reports/israel.lebanon.FINAL2.pdf
Beirut area before and after Israeli bombings: Note devastation of areas totally outside the supposed targets of Hezballah http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14252208
Lebanese deaths, and Israeli war crimes, kept off the balance sheet By Jonathan Cook, Electronic Lebanon, 16 August 2006
During Israel's war against the people of Lebanon, our media, politicians and diplomats have colluded with the aggressors by distracting us with irrelevancies, by concocting controversies, and by framing the language of diplomacy. In the fragile truce that is currently holding while Lebanon waits for Israel to withdraw, we are simply getting more of the same. One example of the many distractions during the war that neatly reveals their true purpose is the "faked Reuters photograph" affair......http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article5557.shtml
You are terrorists, we are virtuous: Yitzhak Laor on the IDF, London Review of Books http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n16/laor01_.html
Largest US Church Accuses President Bush of Being Behind 9/11 Attacks as US Military Leaders Seek Protection from War Crimes
British MP George Galloway on Skynews (owned by Zionist Rupert Murdoch) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WbmgkCiwTKo
Group Says Iran Is 'Not a Crisis': Former generals and officials seek to prevent an attack on suspected nuclear sites and to overhaul policies toward Tehran and Baghdad. By Peter Spiegel, LA Times Staff Writer
Zionist Christians - A Mossad Operation. Do Zionist Christians Know That The Name Of Jesus Was Changed In Israel?
By Reuven Schossen http://rense.com/general73/moss.htm
Nasrallah didn't mean to, By Amira Hass
" "We didn't mean to" is a mantra that is frequently recited in Israel when there is a discussion of the number of civilians - among them many children - who are killed by the Israel Defense Forces. To this, the claim that "they" (Hezbollah and the Palestinians) cynically exploit civilians by locating themselves among them and firing from their midst is automatically added. This claim is made by citizens of a state who know very well where to turn off Ibn Gvirol Street in Tel Aviv to get to the security-military complex that is located in the heart of their civilian city; this claim is repeated by the parents of armed soldiers who bring their weapons home on weekends, and is recited by soldiers whose bases are adjacent to Jewish settlements in the West Bank and who have shelled civilian Palestinian neighborhoods from positions and tanks that have been stationed inside civilian settlements."
Over half the civilian casualties of the rockets fired by Hezballah have been Palestinian Muslims and Christian in the Galilee and Haifa. The Hezbullah "rockets" are inaccurate and have resulted in limited civilian casualties (hezbollah started shelling these locations only after Israel used precision guided bombs to target Lebanese civilians). By contrast, over 50 Israeli soldiers have been killed in fighting with Hezballah fighters (the number of Hezbollah fighters killed is unknown perhaps as low as 35 and as high as 250). Hezballah is a few thousand guirillas, Israel has mandatory service (up to three years and then lifetime service) thus meaning that nearly 2.8 million are available for service (CIA fact sheet). But Israel's racism shows no bounds: There are no public shelters in any of the Arab communities in the Galilee (these are all Israeli citizens) and thus of the civilians killed in Northern Israel, over half are Palestinian citizens in the north. Palestinian citizens even complain about absence of sirens (plentiful in the Jewish areas). The articles below are selected from the past few days of items not covered in mainstream US media (for obvious reasons-- that if the US public would be allowed to hear and see things as they are, they would be up in arms).
Robert Fisk: This draft shows who is running America's policy... Israel, The INDEPENDENT (London)07 August 2006
Israeli Intellectuals Love the War by Ran HaCohen
Is Israel Good for the Jews? By Norman Birnbaum
"The vicarious bellicosity of much of American Jewry is destructive, and history will not judge kindly those who encourage it."
The real estate wars. Analysis by Israeli journalist Gideon Levy in Haaretz
Pictures from Iraq (all pictures are from period after "Mission Accomplished)
In wake of Qana, Israel and U.S. seen as terrorists By PAUL FINDLEY
Paul Findley, a member of Congress from 1961 to 1983, lectures and writes on public affairs. His book, "They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel's Lobby," was a seven-week bestseller. He is the author of four other books. He resides in Jacksonville.
Ralph Nader's letter to Abraham Foxman: Criticizing Israel is Not Anti-Semitism
Jewish petition in solidarity with Palestinian and Lebanese people
When Americans are attacked with impunity: Israeli attack on the USS liberty revisited
News feeds from Lebanon: maps and minute by minute reports
No Nation Left Behind: On the Israel lobby (part 6)
Hizballah: A Primer
Historical analysis of the Shii movement whose resistance is rattling the strongest army in the Middle East and causing them to lash out at civilians
Hiroshima and Nagazaki (deceptions, lies, and memories on deliberate targeting of hundreds of thousands of civilians 61 years ago)
When the skies rain death by Azmui Bishara
The culture of the fighter plane is the culture of annihilation, writes Azmi Bishara
A Terrible Thought Occurs to Me - That There Will Be Another 9/11
by Robert Fisk Published on Saturday, August 5, 2006 by the lndependent/UK
Fisk eloquently articulates why the Bush doctrines not only dole out state terrorism but creates resistance and violece
The War on Lebanon and the Battle for Oil by Michel Chossudovsky July 26, 2006 An article explaining how the US and Israeli governments are trying to control oil spigots http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=CHO20-060726&%20articleId=2824
6 August 2006
In June and July, 49 Palestinian children where murdered (and 200 children injured) by the Israeli occupation force. Since the attacks on Lebanon intensified (not began) July 12 after the excuse of the "abduction" of two Israeli soldiers, over 300 Lebanese Children were also murdered. When such horrible things happen, it is incumbent on us to act. Thus, over 100,000 Iraqi's demonstrated against the Israeli aggression funded and aided by the US money and diplomatic might. Huge demonstrations were held in London and Geneva and elsewhere. Even here in New Haven we had 300 people demonstrate and march Saturday against the US/Israeli attacks and occupations in the Middle East. Many individuals acted by going to unions, civic organizations, states and others and asking them to act. Venezuela recalled its Ambassador from Israel. Unfortunately, the Arab leaders who are quislings of Washington not only fail to do any similar concrete action but they actively support oppression (e.g. by repression of their own people and even brutally preventing them from demonstrating support of Palestine and Lebanon). Now France and the US want to hand Israel a diplomatic victory at the UN to compensate for the Israeli failure to challenge Hezballah (Israel instead lashes out at innocent civilians and infrastructure).
Meanwhile, the Zionskt media in the US continues to spout the non-sense about Islamofascism (a case of group psychlogical projection IMHO) relying on ignorance and prejudice as their only available fertile ground. (Afterall if tehy hate democracy and freedom why hate America and not Switzerland, we don't have it, the Swiss do!). I know it is hard for us as peace activist to stand against a ceasefire resolution at the UN but it is clearly not a fair resolution nor a fair game that is played but a game of strict power politics (law of the jungle). Yet, power changes and the end game here is not too hard to predict (afterall we are the vast majority, billions in the non-Western world, and hundreds of millions who believe in humanity and reject tribalism/Zionism in the so-called Western world).
We the people must demand and acquire power in service of fellow humans not special interests like the Israeli lobby and the arms industries. That will be important to shorten the amount and period of suffering in this transition from Zionist power (20th century) to people power (in the 21st century). Without such people power, the murderous rampage of state terrorism by the US and Israel will continue just as described in the open letter below from Salim El Hoss, Former Prime Minister of Lebanon. For those who want to act non-violently, we continue to call for sanctions, boycotts, and divestments (promoted also by letters to decision makers and media work etc). On this front there are a couple of new developments and articles listed below.
- The Case for boycotting Israel by Dr. Virginia Tilley, South Africa
" After years of internal arguments, confusion, and dithering, the time has come for a full-fledged international boycott of Israel. Good cause for a boycott has, of course, been in place for decades, as a raft of initiatives already attests. But Israel's war crimes are now so shocking, its extremism so clear, the suffering so great, the UN so helpless, and the international community's need to contain Israel's behavior so urgent and compelling, that the time for global action has matured. A coordinated movement of divestment, sanctions, and boycotts against Israel must convene to contain not only Israel's aggressive acts and crimes against humanitarian law but also, as in South Africa, its founding racist logics that inspired and still drive the entire Palestinian problem..." More at
- The Foreign Affairs committee of the Irish parliament has called for economic sanctions against Israel and for legal action against Israel for its killing of UN personnel, civilians and the destruction of facilities. Document download: http://www.oireachtas.ie/documents/committees29thdail/foreignaffairreports/Statement_Lebanon.doc
Debate in Irish Parliament
- Open letter to President Bush from Salim El Hoss, Former Prime Minister of Lebanon
- Israeli government's organized efforts to manipulate public forums on internet:Cyber soldiers: http://www.imemc.org/content/view/20525/173/
- Palestinian artists call for cultural boycott against the Occupation! Latest News, Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, August 4th, 2006
- Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. Here are photos of Israeli actions in Lebanon
Israeli Air Strikes Targeting Lebanese Red Cross
Scenes from Shelter in Qana where on July 30, Israeli air strikes killed over 60 civilians, 37 of whom were children, as they slept in a shelter.
Views of villages and roads in southern Lebanon which have been hit by Israeli air strikes. July, 2006.
Targets destroyed by Israeli air strikes in Sidon, and on highway between Sidon and Beirut. July, 2006.
Wounded Lebanese civilians, many in critical condition, crowd hospitals in Sidon. July, 2006.
Israeli air strikes destroyed 5 of 6 oil storage tanks at electrical plant in El-Jiye, leaving much of Lebanon's coast covered in oil, including the ancient harbor at Byblos.
Images of destruction south of Beirut, as well as inside Beirut, from Israeli air raids. July, 2006.
As Israeli air strikes continue, wounded Lebanese arrive at hospitals in Beirut. July, 2006.
Israeli bombings of oil storage tanks near the coast, along with an Hezbollah attack against an Israeli warship have left Beirut's beaches
covered in oil.
Approximately 75% of southern Beirut has been damaged or destroyed by a massive Israeli air assault. July, 2006.
Lebanese refugees from southern Beirut and southern Lebanon, fleeing Israeli bombs, now living in Parks in central Beirut. July 2006.
Refugees from Lebanon clog the northern border with Syria, as they flee for their lives from indiscriminate Israeli bombing of their country,
July 2006. http://dahrjamailiraq.com/gallery/view_album.php?set_albumName=album44
As Israel invades Lebanon, tens of thousands of people jam the border with Syria to escape the bloodshed in July 2006.
25 July 2006
These are the times that try human souls. Silence is complicity; no one can claim they did not know. Those who move with the flow (assimilate) or lose hope become occupied themselves (and what would one gain if they gain even the whole world and lose themselves). Those who resist/act for truth and justice, are free human beings despite the horrific events, the adversity, and the nefarious and mendacious lies and distortions used to hide the atrocities.
While the world is focused on the systematic destruction of Lebanon, the war crimes against Lebanese civilians (and crimes against humanity), Israeli occupation forces took the opportunity to intensify their war crimes in occupied Palestine. An example of the kind of atrocity is the large scale destruction in Nablus which went unnoticed by the Western media. Journalist and friend Gale Courey is an eyewitness to the massive destruction in Palestine. Her reports are eye opening.
Below are examples of herreports found at http://www.thecornerreport.com followed by links to an interview with me in German and English, an article in Spanish (please forward to Spanish speakers), and another on attack on a Rabbi for speaking out. I finish with link to notes from Lebanon by a friend (Rania Masri)
Israel's 3-day blitz leaves six dead, 85 injured, devastated public buildings
9/11 in Nablus
Open Bethlehem calls on Christian world to open Palestine
Bethlehem's Christians and Muslims build future in "the cradle of Christianity"
Lebanon, Israel, Palestine: Interview with Mazin Qumsiyeh (in German and English)
For those who read Spanish, my Noticia desde Palestinia (Traducido para Rebelión y Tlaxcala por Bárbara Maseda y revisado por Manuel Talens)
Hartford Rabbi steps out of formation and gets hammered http://www.jewishledger.com/articles/2006/07/20/news/news07.txt
Note from Lebanon by Rania Masri; July 17, 2006 http://www.zmag.org/content/print_article.cfm?itemID=10589§ionID=107
23 July 2006
Selected Images of protests around the world against the US funded and supported Israeli aggression on Lebanon and Palestine
What the US media won't show: images and descriptions from the ground in Iraq, Palestine, and Lebanon
UN appalled by devastation of Beirut (text and images)
Black Commentator: Israeli Apartheid
by Bruce Dixon, The Black Commentator Friday Jul 21st, 2006 10:21 AM
Israel's Terrorism by Gabriel Ash
U.S. Speeds Up Bomb Delivery for the Israelis By DAVID S. CLOUD and HELENE COOPER
Israel attempts to isolate and destroy Palestinians take a new twist: increased denial of entry to both Palestnians and their supporters from Western countries
See also: Human rights activist denied fair trial, to be deported as "security threat"
Green Party Press Release: Press Israel to end attacks on Lebanon http://www.gp.org/press/pr_2006_07_20.shtml
Puerto Ricans Condemn Israeli Aggression, Prensa Latina,July 21, 2006 http://www.plenglish.com
In a heavily attended press conference today at Cosatu House, the Palestine Solidarity Committee of South Africa demanded an end to the Palestinian genocide ...
A blog in the Houston Chronicle (please post comments) http://blogs.chron.com/gazawia/
Anti-Zionist Orthodox Jews activities in support of Palestinian rights and against the abomination of Zionism: http://www.nkuk.org/
New US Military Base in Israel: Cementing US-Israel military alliance against the people of the Middle East (also at the expense of US taxpayers): http://www.rense.com/general66/excl.htm
Tom Hayden: Things Come ’Round in Mideast
In this essay, veteran social activist Tom Hayden, drawing upon his own rude political awakening to the realities of Israeli and Middle East politics during the 1980s, warns that the Israel lobby in the U.S. aims to “roll back the clock” and “change the map” of the region and that its neoconservative supporters will probably try to use the current Middle East crisis to ignite a larger war against Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria and Iran.
21 July 2006
Thoughts and two poems: of sheep, stones, madness, and a night a Nablus
(this is the time to initiate/build resolutions and actions for divestment, boycotts and sanction)
Israeli children were instructed and proudly photographed writing messages on the tank shells that are destroying Lebanon and killing hundreds of civilians (leaving half a million as displaced persons). See these and other pictures of war crimes and crimes against humanity here http://fromisrael2lebanon.com/ We read the incredible description by Robert Fisk on how the Children's bodies lie like rag dolls (at http://news.independent.co.uk/world/fisk/article1187004.ece ). Azmi Bishara explains from the inside the Israeli thinking in "Blackmail by Bombs" http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2006/804/op1.htm
An Israeli soldier Arik Diamant explains how the kidnapping of Palestinians is carried out http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3271505,00.html
Such are just four samples of thousands of images and millions of words censored in many US mainstream media.
I just came back last night from the crime scenes (although only from the now forgotten West Bank). I did share with fellow Palestinians many of your messages of solidarity, news of inspiring actions around the world, prayers, and tangible support. We all look with incredulity at the non-sense spouted by the criminal gangs of Bush, Rice, and Olmert claiming the rapist and murderer has a right to "defend" himself by making more victims. We look with incredulity at a press conference for Condaleeza Rice were she claimed "the troubles started when Hezbollah kidnapped two soldiers." Does she really think that the public is that gullible to not know the history of Israeli militarism, massacres (e.g. Sabra and Shatila in 1982), kidnapping etc (actually Hizbullah was merely trying to trade the two soldiers for Lebanese held by Israel illegally, some for decades).
Many of you have written to ask specific questions about the current violence and I am sorry that I am behind in reading all the emails. Perhaps the following reflections would be of use in the mean time.
In the 1960s civil rights movement, there was this expression among African Americans: free your mind and your ass will follow. This occurred to me repeatedly in the past few days. I recalled it when I saw news of Jewish community centers hosting events to "support Israel in its fight". It also occurred to me after I saw the murdered corpses of International law and human rights used to mask the hypocrisy and the genocide. Modern day slavery is alive and well and needs its victims (both present and future) to adopt the mental chains that come with it. I also recalled this phrase after seeing demonstrations in solidarity with Palestinian and Lebanese victims barred from Jordanian streets. I recalled it when I saw how my American passport was treated like a king by Jordanian security and like a useless piece of paper by the Israeli occupation army. It is easy to dismiss such behavior as policy of states made subservient to imperialism. Reality is always more complex. Jewish leaders rally in support of murder. Arabs watch Al-Jazeera and Almanar and are well aware of the destruction wrought on three Arab countries to serve the elitist narrow interests in the US and Israel. Yet, many flood to McDonald and Burger King, drink Coca Cola, and smoke Marlboro. We must recognize the unsung heroes who daily resist (even by simply being there they resist) and those in the international community who are supporting them in deeds (e.g. by divestment, boycotts, sanctions, media work, lobbying, writing, demonstrating etc). But we must not let the complicit (by silence or direct participation in atrocities) off the hook.
One can study and challenge the racism that fuels Zionist and imperial designs on the Arab World. One can understand the anger of the victims in Lebanon and Palestine and the potential victims in Jordan, Egypt etc. We should however, have less sympathy for despair or inaction especially from those for example in Arab countries and in the west (especially when such massive human rights violations are perpetrated on such a large scale, some using our taxes).
A colleague (Anisa) reminded me of a hadith where it is reported that the prophet Muhammad sent two men to the same place. When they returned, he asked them what they had seen. The first said all of the people in the town were mean and evil, and hateful, etc., the second one said that there was love everywhere and that the people were kind and generous. The prophet said that each man had seen what was in his own heart. We must look for the goodness in our hearts and build on the goodness in the middle of pain, hate, and suffering.
Corrupt leaders thus stroke fear and racism and ignorance while leading their people like sheep to slaughter. It is precisely why Bush proclaimed to the American people right after 9/11 to be afraid, "trust us", and "go shopping". Consumers don't question and don't participate in decision-making, citizens do! But maybe we are unkind to sheep, they do baa once in a while in protest.
(this is the time to initiate/build resolutions and actions for divestment, boycotts and sanction not only from Israel but all those who support these racists)
Educate yourself on this crisis (see especially FAQs on Hizbullah) at http://www.imeu.net
Support those who stand up for the truth. We can win
Donate to Cynthia McKinney for her runoff elections http://www.cynthiaforcongress.com/donate.php
Spanish PM in scarf scandal
Madrid - Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has come under criticism for posing with a Palestinian scarf on his shoulders after accusing Israel of using force "abusively" to defend itself, press reports said on Thursday.
Zapatero commented on the Middle East conflict at an international Socialist youth festival in Alicante, which was attended by more than 3 000 people including Palestinians and Israelis on Wednesday. http://www.news24.com/News24/World/News/0,,2-10-1462_1970868,00.html
15 July 2006
I am still here in Palestine and could not imagine being anywhere else at these challenging times. I hope you will understand the delay in writing under the circumstances. Since I wrote to you nearly 10 days ago, we met and talked with hundreds of people and held several workshops and conferences on the unfolding colonial onslaught (in addition to the tours of the ongoing devastation and destruction o land and homes). It has been very, very busy and very very emotionally and physically challenging. Yet, we saw and see daily many, many hopeful signs and continue to "strive to have joyful participation in the sorrows of this world" (my favorite Buddhist saying).
Tina, the Palestinian American women beaten this week with her 17 year old son by an Israeli soldier on the border had a compelling story to tell us
(see the images and read the details at http://www.thecornerreport.com/index.php?p=638&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1#more638
As we listened to Tina's story in Beit Sahour, in my mind flashed other images:
- the US made weapon that was used to shoot 19 year old Musa (Moses), nephew of my friend and international law expert Dr. Abueid, in his house by an
Israeli sniper. The Abueid family is a highly respected Christian family whose son was guilty of only being a Palestinian in the land of his ancestors coveted by those who have learned nothing from history. The younger son Issa (Jesus) escaped. What an irony for a Jewish soldier to kill Moses and leave Issa. Yet, teh father said modestly taht the women who was shot in the head that same night in the same neighborhood was a bigger tragedy: her relatives found her nursing 7 month baby suckling the blood dripping from his mother's corpse.
- The stack of Palestinian green ID Cards held in the vest (which had the color of an unmentionable substance) of the Israeli soldier who detained a member of our group in Hebron a week ago. Such daily interactions teach us values of overcoming fear and teamwork under tough circumstances. We wondered if the show of force here and at checkpoints between Palestinian areas (that are clearly not for security) lull these land thieves into thinking that power compensates for lack of justice?
- The still unreplaced shattered glass at the home of Shaden Abuhijleh, feminist intellectual, educator, wife, mother, and grandmother. Shaden was
killed when an Israeli soldier sprayed their house with machine gun fire. Her husband (a prominent Nablus physician) and son (now public relations
director at Alnajah University) were injured. See http://www.remembershaden.org/
- The young mother with her four year old son sitting in the Nablus Cemetry in front of her martyred husband among the rows of dozens of Palestinians
killed (some of relatives, brothers, cousins, uncles and nephews, mothers and sons). Nablus is under siege with almost nightly invasions by Israeli
occupation forces (the night we were there, there was also a home demolition in the center of the city).
- The order “putting hands” on the >100 acres of olive and almond trees in the village of Aljaroshiya (Tulkarem district). The order came from the “Custodian of Absentee property” (the agency charged with cleansing and owning Palestinian properties) which is interesting since the text claims “security reasons” (unspecified). In reality, the wall was shifted and twisted to include this rich land that used to export 12 tons of olive oil and hundreds of kilos of almonds (clearly a land theft with not a single shred of security issues involved). Before they showed us the orders, the family showed us the land which is now separated from their house by the network of electrified fences. The old man had lamented once that it is worse than the death of a child because a child is buried but the land is dying every day in front of his eyes behind this monstrous fence.
The above are some of the many places we visited and stories from surviving victims told to us.
In Gaza and in Lebanon, the stories are evenmore horrific. In Gaza for example a professor, his wife and seven children were massacred this week (see Family of nine killed as they slept. The Guardian 13 July 2006 http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,,1819128,00.html The claimed target, a Hamas resistance leader in the same building, suffered injuries but was spared. But it is not just the killing of civilians that is horrific, the targeting of electric power stations (which cut off ability to pump water also) has caused a humanitarian catastrophe beyond comprehension (see Life in Rafah with photos at http://rafah.virtualactivism.net/news/06/june_06_reports.htm
and MONA EL-FARRA's My life in Gaza
Israeli state terrorism extended to Lebanon were dozens of Lebanese civilains were killed and significant civilian infrastructure (bridges, airport, apartment buildings) were destroyed since two Israeli occupation soldiers were captures. Israel holds many Lebanes captive for years and refuses to release them.
Words are so limited in any language to describe the experiences of racism and brutality that Tina went through nor the many others we witnessed over the past few days. But we also saw dozens of heroic daily acts of resistance. In fact, every Palestinian we saw is an act of resistance by his or her presence in the land of their ancestors despite the atrocious efforts of the Israeli state to uproot them. They continue to live and Thursday tens of thousands of students celebrated their success in passing
the general certificate exam (Tawjihi)/end of their highschool.
We do need to address the lack of protections for Palestinian civilians. Even American citizens of Palestinian origin in the occupied territories like Tina lack protection. Other recent violation of basic human rights involve denial of “residency rights” to US Passport holders (even those born in the West Bank) married to Palestinians with “residency rights”. The quotes here are appropriate since the decisions about who gets these rights and who does not is an Israeli decision based on Zionist racism (maximum geography with minimum demography of the natives) and is a practice contrary to International law and basic rights of native people. Thousands of Palestinian families are effected by this policy, some forced to live separately and most live in the shadow of being deported from their own homes and lands. There are estimates of some 60-70,000 people living here who cannot even get out of their town lest being confronted with an Israeli soldier who would find out they do not have proper documents to live in their own lands. But then again, many Palestinians with proper IDs can’t leave their own cities. These are cities under siege for the past several years.
It is hard to describe my feelings after so many meetings and events. There is indeed a sharp contrast between the dignified Palestinian resilience (even when they have reached near bottom- 2/3rds of them refugees and displaced people) and the brutal occupation and increased moral debasement, lies, distortions by the self proclaimed Jewish state. Zionists seem to steal and lie, steal and lie repeatedly with hardly an outrage among countries (only among their citizens). Many Palestinains asked us why is the return of one occupation army soldier demanded but not the release of the more than the 10,000 Palestinians kidnapped and jailed by the Israeli colonial state power? Till when is this double standard tolerated by the weak spines in Europe and the collaborating regimes in the Arab world? When will the governments in the US, Canada and Europe start to pay attention to interests of their own peopel instead of the Zionist elites? When will elites and misinformed people realize that the Palestinians are and have been robbed for 60 years of their lands and that that is the core of the problems and instability? No people will ever except to be ethnically cleansed on a daily basis and not resist. Peace is afterall only possible with justice.
There are a number of planned demonstrations against the brutality of the Israeli onslaught on Lebanese and Palestinian civilians:
- Tuesday July 18, 4:30 p.m. at the Israeli Mission to the UN, at 2nd Ave. between E 42nd and 43rd Sts., NY (a coalition of local and regional groups)
- Tuesday, July18, from 5-7pm in front of the White House. (called by The American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, ADC)
- August 12 at noon at the White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, DC (ANSWER Coalition)
In other activism developments and action alerts:
- The Electronic Intifada has launched http://electronicLebanon.net to provide a central location for EI's coverage of the ongoing Israeli blockade
and assault on Lebanon. Stay tuned to the site for eyewitness accounts, commentary and podcasts on the latest events
- In order to balance American news media coverage of the conflict in the Middle East, Imagine-Life will be airing several hundred more television spots in the coming week. Theunique ground breaking television public service announcements educate Americans on the ramifications of the Israeli occupation, the deteriorating human rights conditions and the roots of the current conflict in the Middle East. To donate: http://www.imagine-life.org/donate.html
- Finally, here is an alert from the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
ACTION ALERT: Stop Israel's Attacks on Gaza & Lebanon
BACKGROUND: Israel is using weapons supplied by the United States to target Palestinian & Lebanese civilians and civilian infrastructure in the Gaza
Strip and Lebanon in violation of the US Arms Export Control Act and the Geneva Conventions.
* On July 12th, Israel killed 23 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip with missiles fired from aircraft and shells fired from tanks. Israel killed 9
members of one family in a missile strike on a house near Gaza City.
* On July 12th, Israel launched a massive invasion of Lebanon. Israeli aircraft fired missiles targeting civilian infrastructure, including bridges, roads, a mosque, a community center, and the Beirut International Airport, and the Israeli navy is blockading Lebanon's ports. Israel has killed at least 50 Lebanese civilians and injured more than 100, including entire Lebanese families of 10 and 7 people killed in the villages of Dweir and Baflay.
* On June 27th, Israel launched a massive invasion of the Gaza Strip. Israeli aircraft fired missiles targeting civilian infrastructure. In illegal acts of collective punishment, Israel demolished three key bridges, the Gaza Strip's only electricity generation plant, and part of a university, thereby endangering Palestinian human rights to food, water, health, electricity, education, and freedom of movement. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert admitted that the purpose of these measures is to
"apply pressure" to the civilian population of the Gaza Strip.
* On June 20th, Israeli aircraft fired at least one missile at a car in an extrajudicial assassination attempt on a road between Jabalya and Gaza City.
The missile missed its intended target and killed three Palestinian children and wounded 15.
* On June 13th, Israeli aircraft fired missiles at a van in an extrajudicial assassination of two Palestinians in Gaza City. A second barrage of
missiles fired shortly afterward killed nine Palestinian bystanders.
* On June 9th, Israel shelled a beach in Beit Lahiya killing 8 civilians and injuring 32. At the site of the killing, Human Rights Watch found evidence
of a 155mm artillery shell consistent with those fired from an Israeli M-109 Self-Propelled Artillery.
Israel's human rights violations in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon are being committed with US weapons financed by US tax dollars:
The Israeli air force fighter squadrons are composed of Lockheed Martin F-16I Fighting Falcons and Boeing F-15Is, which fire US-manufactured AMRAAM,
Sidewinder, and Sparrow missiles. From 2000-2005, the United States licensed to Israel at least $1.062 billion of spare parts, engines, and
missiles for its F-15 and F-16 fighter planes.
From 2000-2005, the United States licensed to the Israeli navy more than $572 million worth of patrol boat, ship, and submarine components and spare
parts, torpedoes, and sonar equipment.
From 2000-2005, the United States licensed to Israel more than $348 million worth of tanks, components, and spare parts.
From 2000-2005, the United States licensed to Israel $69,163 worth of M-109 spare parts and 155mm artillery shells.
(Statistics for US weapons licensed to Israel are compiled from the State Department's annual report to Congress pursuant to Sec. 655 of the Foreign
Assistance Act. For more information, click here: http://pmddtc.state.gov/)
Israel's summer of killing civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip is a clear reminder that Israel remains the occupying power of the Gaza Strip despite last year's "unilateral disengagement". Living under military occupation, the Palestinians of the Gaza Strip are "protected persons" under the terms of the Geneva Conventions. Israel's targeting of civilians and civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon is a violation of the
Geneva Conventions and constitutes war crimes.
In addition, by using US-supplied weapons to commit these atrocities, Israel is violating the terms of the US Arms Export Control Act and Foreign
Assistance Act. The Arms Export Control Act restricts the use of US weapons to legitimate self-defense and internal policing; US weapons cannot be used
to attack civilians in offensive operations. The Foreign Assistance Act prohibits US aid of any kind to a country with a pattern of gross human
TAKE ACTION: Hold Israel to account for its killing of civilians and destruction of civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon.
1. Contact the White House, State Department, and your Members of Congress to demand that Israel is held accountable for its violations of the US Arms
Export Control Act and Foreign Assistance Act and urge that military aid to Israel be cut off as required by law. Click here to send an email:
2. Write a letter to the editor or op-ed for your local newspaper and call your local talk radio stations to protest Israel's atrocities in the Gaza
Strip and Lebanon and highlight US support for these actions. For contact information for your local media, click here:
Below is a template for a letter to the editor:
Letters to the editor should be short, punchy, and clear. They MUST refer to actual coverage of that particular paper, either naming a particular article or referring to trends (as below). Be sure the text of the letter does in fact respond to the particular article or trend you reference. Be sure to include full name, address, contact phone numbers and (for some, not for others) name of the organization.
BE SURE THAT LETTERS ARE ALL DIFFERENT, AND DO NOT LOOK LIKE CARBON COPIES OF EACH OTHER!
TEMPLATE: USE THIS AS A GUIDE, NOT A CARBON COPY!
* Ask WHY DOESN'T NAME THE NEWSPAPER ACKNOWLEDGE or DOWNPLAYS or
MINIMIZES THE FACT THAT or DOES NOT EMPHASIZE THAT
a) ISRAEL IS ATTACKING CIVILIANS or
b) ISRAEL IS DESTROYING NON-MILITARY INFRASTRUCTURE or
c) ISRAEL'S RESPONSE IS DISPROPORTIONATE
* Add YOUR READERS SHOULD HAVE ACCESS TO MORE INFORMATION, INCLUDING
a) THAT THE VICTIMS INCLUDE X, AGE XX, Y, AGE XX, AND Z, AGE XX or
b) THAT DESTROYING THE ELECTRICAL PLANT MEANS
1) 860,000 CIVILIANS WITHOUT POWER, MANY WITHOUT WATER or
2) HOSPITALS DEPENDING ON LAST WEEK OF FUEL FOR GENERATORS or
3) THE UN SAYS GAZA FACES A HUMANITARIAN CATASTROPHE or
4) ISRAEL AND U.S. HAD ALREADY IMPOSED A SEVERE BOYCOTT ON GAZA CAUSING HUGE HUMANITARIAN CRISES
* EXPRESS CONCERN FOR ISRAELI VIOLATIONS OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND INTERNATIONAL LAW,AND THE UNCRITICAL NATURE OF U.S. SUPPORT FOR THOSE VIOLATIONS.
* ASK THE NEWSPAPER TO BE MORE BALANCED IN ITS COVERAGE.
To the Editors:
I am mystified by the failure of the mainstream media to acknowledge that Israeli military actions in the Gaza and southern Lebanon are targeting civilians and other non-military targets. The destruction being wrought on the Palestinian people, and now the Lebanese, has largely been ignored while all attacks - whether on soldiers or civilians - carried out by a Palestinian militant receives significant attention.
The silence of some mainstream media and political leadership in the USA regarding Israel's actions and the blind-eye taken toward Israel's continual failure to respect the United Nations' resolutions to withdraw from the Occupied Territories, makes a mockery of any concern regarding human rights and international law.
I ask that THE NAME OF NEWSPAPER provide more balanced coverage of the situation in Palestine, and offer a forum for legitimate debate on the
issues at hand. Years after an atrocity, the people of the world look at themselves and ask '...why were we silent?' It is not too late to preempt that question.
3. Make a donaation to support humanitarian efforts to reprovision the Gaza Strip with much-needed medical supplies for Palestinian children. The Middle
East Children's Alliance and Grassroots International, member organizations of the US Campaign, are accepting tax-deductible donations to send medical
supplies. Click here to donate: http://www.mecaforpeace.org/GazaMeds.html
4. Support the efforts of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation to build a national movement to challenge US support for Israel's human rights
violations. Click here to donate to our summer fundraising drive: http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1221
END of ACTION ALERT
5 July 2006
A brief diary of Palestine:
Monday: The trip from Amman to Bethlehem, a distance of 60 miles, took 11 hours of rather hellish time. The procedures are really not about security but are still about harassment and frustration of those traveling with Palestinian documents. A few of us also were delayed and asked to wait longer than others and never told why the special selection. I was also selected to go through some unusual machine I felt bad especially about all the young children and babies in the heat of the Jordan valley. Forced to endure meaningless waiting until Israeli soldiers decide it is time to go to the next stop like herded sheep. For some reason, I kept remembering the stations of the cross. Entering Beit Sahour (my hometown) after an absence of 15 months though is always enough to make me temporarily forget all of that (as is my mother's cooking :-). I stayed late at night meeting relatives and friends and deespite the exhaustion, it was difficult to go to sleep.
Tuesday: In the morning, I filled out paper work to renew my documents (expired every three years). While I do have a US passport, Israel does not allow me in on that passport as I am also a resident of the occupied areas. These documents are sometimes mislabeled (e.g. "Palestinian Authority Passport"). Passports are issued by independent states and this is not the case here. As far as "Palestinian Authority" there is an authority but it is not Palestinian. It is still Israeli authorities who determine everything here including who gets in or out, who gets a passport and who does not, and even who gets to eat, drink, and have electricity. Yet, life goes on. I met with so many people (over 50 in the course of this day alone) exchanging information and ideas. Ofcourse current politics dominate but other subjects come up. Ofcourse the World Cup is a huge distraction here. At 10 PM over 300 people gathered to watch the Italy-Germany game. This was in the very large tent restaurant in Beit Sahour (originally designed for tourists, now few toursits come). Some Palestinians rooted for Germany but more apparently were for Italy. It was very spirited. A Palestinain young man donning the Germany flag struck a conversation with a girl donning the Italian one. Two Italian nuns drank beer and were rather animated; jumping up and down with the crowds. We smoked Argila and ate Mezza and exchanges stories (since I was at a pro-Italy tale I told them about my recent tour of Italy :-). Cars with flags and loud screams streamed out after the stunning last 5 minutes were Italy scored two goals to advance to the finals. For a few hours, all had good time. The night then settled back. I settled down to watch news after we drove home noting the lights of the settlements (Efrata and Har Homa) and that unmentionable monster called the apartheid wall. I noted few people want to talk about Aljidar Alfasil (the segregation wall) as compared to my conversations last year. It is almost like few people here also want to talk about cancer which is also becoming more common here (especially epithelial cancers like lung, liver, stomach).
Wednesday: My friend Imad Alatrash of the Palestine wildlife society (http://www.wildlife-pal.org/) took me on a tour of areas destroyed and areas threatened. We started at a place that was forbidden to us and that I personally never was able to get in: the site of the former Israeli military camp in Beit Sahour. As a child I remember seeing the Israeli soldiers there and as an adult even last year I still saw them there and we could not get close. Some of the nearby agricultural lands even outside the camp were off limits to us. It is from this camp that occupation soldiers shot at Palestinain homes about a hundred yards away. Dozens of homes were damaged, some friends and relatives injured and terrorized. The camp was cleared by the military on April 27th this year. Gone were the tanks, APCs, the military jeeps, and the soldiers. What was left were the bunkers and the ditches scarring the landscape and some of the fencing. Much of the metals (wires, fencing etc) was already taken by Palestinians for recycling. This is now a big thing here as everything of value is recycled, out of economic neccessity. The feeling I have as I stood on top of that hill videotaping the area and absorbing the schene cannot be described easily. THe area is rich in archeological sites and it is still an open area (settlements and Palestinian buildings are all growing). I thus imagined a park, hiking trails, trees and a water fountain. I imagined a plaque that would say that this is the site where an occupation army once stood and then left, where humanity was reclaimed and that many more sites followed along the path for freedom throughout Palestine. I also imagined all people here visiting in peace with no walls and no borders.
Later in the day we visited the site of the foundation for the municipality new building (which was to house a library and a museum that my grandfather had dreamed of and donated partially the land and some resources to the city to do). Unfortunately because of lack of additional money and the political circumstances, the project was frozen for the past five years. We then visited a natural site near Bethlehem where Rock Hyrax was recently discovered by the Palestine Wildlife Society. This was totally unexpected positive finding. Ofcourse there are also many devastating stories (including the yet not studied environmental impact of the segregation wall). If I ever get to work on a new edition of my book "Mammals of the Holy Land", I am sure it will reflect many distributional changes for wild mammals.
I will try to send a brief report every few days. I know ofcourse that Gaza (off limits to me as is Jerusalem) is in much more dire situation than the West Bank (and even here this area of Bethlehem/Beit Sahour is the more prosperous and stable). Below are reports from and on Gaza situation. A luta continua. The struggle continues.
From Gaza, with Love http://fromgaza.blogspot.com/
A letter from Palestine http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article13824.htm
Unbreakable spirit of Palestine http://www.thepencil.org/Palestine/2006/unbreakablespirit.htm
Gaza and the Treason of the International Community by Ahmed Amr
Gaza: 'The children wake up screaming. I am worried it will damage them' By Donald Macintyre
2 July 2006
Governments refuse to stand-up in the face of crimes against humanity and war crimes (as is evident from the arm twisting that subdued the so called G8 leadership statement to blame the victims instead of the perpetrators). . Meanwhile, on the positive side, hundreds of civil society organizations mobilized against the Zionsit aggression. Examples include ADC, Al-Awda, Gush Shalom, Jewish Voice for Peace, Jews against the Occupation, PAC, B’Tselem, Physicians for Human Rights, NCA, US Campaign to End the Occupation, ANSWER, Harvard University Employees,and dozens of orghanizations in Europe and throughout the world. There were also demonstrations in hundreds of cities (even in Arab countries were such demonstrations were prohibited by the puppet regimes). Thousands of individuals also acted in their own ways ( I personally got copies of over 200 letters written to media and politicians).
In other news about how activists do make a difference, United Church of Canada's Toronto Branch Announces Boycott of Israeli Products
And Green party activists in Ann Arbor initiated a boycott campaign at city council.
Website of the day: Today in Palestine, continuous updates on happenings you won’t see in the corporate and Zionist media http://www.theheadlines.org/
Pictures of Israeli terrorism against the Children of Palestine (click on bullet holes)
Article by Dr. Virginia Tilley worth reading on Gaza http://www.counterpunch.org/tilley06302006.html
Gaza coverage from Electronic Intifada: http://electronicintifada.net/bytopic/442.shtml
(This page is the central depository for everything being added about Gaza right now)
Of the articles, particularly recommended, for simply bringing home visually the damage, is the photo story at: http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article4866.shtml
Also recommended as textbook cases of articulate rage, are the two radio interviews (Democracy Now and Flashpoints) with Ali Abunimah at:
Weekday Press Picks list (commercial and alternative media): http://electronicintifada.net/cgi-bin/kebab/mail.cgi
For people who prefer their news via RSS newsreader, the Weekday Press Picks list RSS URL is:
and the RSS atom URL for the list is:
30 June 2006
I urge you to write to the media to challenge the barrage of propaganda and lying about the atrocities in Palestine (supported by the US). When alternative media programs allow debates and fair coverage the public is informed and human righst are advanced. A case in point is this debate between Prof. Norman Finkelstein and Josh Block (Director of Media Affairs for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, AIPAC, ranked one of the most influential lobbies in Congress) on Amy Goodman's Democracy now http://www.normanfinkelstein.com/article.php?pg=11&ar=241
(it illustrates why truth is power and hence truth being desperately blocked by Zionists in many mainstream outlets).
Israel also is destroying the Cremsan area between Bethlehem and Jerusalem while others are distracted and the media says nothing (see http://www.openbethlehem.org/pages/content/index.asp?PageID=62)
Please read Finkelstein’s debate with the racist Josh Block and use it as talking points in writing to the media, congress, etc. You may also want to write to all countries and ask them to break their diplomatic relations with Israel and proceed to apply Boycotts, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS). The
BDS campaign will also need to be intensified among civil society groups around the world. If you have contacts in the mainstream media who may be interested to get speakers on their programs, please let me know and I will send you a list.
Many people are speaking out and should be thanked. They include over 90 members of the house of commons in England who are calling for a reevaluation of EU foreign policy and even those running for office in the US (see e.g. Howie Hawkins for US Senate http://www.hawkinsforsenate.org).
Please share with me any letters you write or actions you take as I will also be in Palestine next week and would like to be able to tell the people what we are doing internationally. Silence in such cases of atrocities is complicity.
BTW, below is a declaration from the meeting held in Detroit (before the most recent wave of atrocities) presaging more proactive Palestinian actions.
June 25, 2006
Thirty-two Palestinian organizers and activists from across the U.S gathered in suburban Detroit, Michigan on the weekend of June 23rd-25th 2006, marking the first politically diverse national meeting of Palestinians in the U.S. since 1988. This grouping is NOT a new organization, and in no way intends to become one. It is a loose network of activists and preexisting groups and in no way seeks to take the place of already existing groups. The meeting participants agreed, by consensus, to issue the following statement reflecting the results of the meeting.
The Detroit meeting comes at a critical time when Palestinians are facing a political impasse and a political and economic siege. It also comes in response to a call issued by participants of the Palestinian Shataat (Exile) Conference in Geneva held in December 2005. . At the Shataat conference, Palestinians gathered from Europe, North and South America, Australia and
the Arab World to discuss the need to re-invigorate grass-roots organizing and rebuild community-based institutions within the framework of a reformed, democratic, inclusive and genuinely representative Palestinian National Council.
The Detroit meeting sought to gather Palestinians, irrespective of political affiliations or community and organizational membership, with a focus on developing ways to mobilize the Palestinian community in the US to affirm our Palestinian narrative and assert our rights to:
self-determination and equality,
return of the refugees to their original homes, lands, properties and villages (a natural right supported by international law and UN Resolution 194); and
End of Zionist occupation and colonization of Palestine, including
The participants who hailed from California, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Virginia and Washington D.C., represented the entire Palestinian political spectrum, several generations of Palestinians in the US, and a rich pool of organizing
After a weekend of intense deliberation, brainstorming, and strategizing, the participants have committed to:
1) Empower the Palestinian community and its existing grassroots organizations across the U.S. We believe that empowerment of our community hinges on its ability to live in relative security and safety. For this reason, we seek to address the communitys interest as members of the Palestinian national body as well as its particular concerns as activists, organizers, recent immigrants, youth, women, and workers who face particular challenges in the US. We seek to accomplish this by establishing a loose network of Palestinian activists and organizations at a national level and focusing on three campaigns in the USBDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions), breaking the siege, and media advocacy.
2) Build for the US Popular Palestinian National Conference to take place no later than 2008the 60th Anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba.
We seek to make the Conference as inclusive as possible --shaped by input generated amongst local Palestinian communities across the U.S. as well as a
preparatory meeting set for November 2006.
Many similar initiatives have already started in Europe, with incredibly successful results, including a conference held in Sweden in May 2006, attracting 5,000 Palestinians. We believe we have the ability to convene a similar conference in the US and that it is our duty to help shape our national ambitions as Palestinians, given our unique posture as US citizens and residents who are part of the social fabric of the immigrant community in the U.S. In addition to our national struggle, which seeks to triumph in an existential battle against Israeli colonialism and occupation, Palestinians in the U.S. are also struggling against racism, discrimination, political repression, and anti-immigrant policies. This community must rise up once again as it did in the heyday of the Palestinian American activism and organizing of the late 70s and 80s. Although we have faced serious blows and attacks, we should note the victory of Aiad Barakat as a turning point in our activism. After a lengthy 19 year court battle in the landmark case of the L.A. 8, which sought to persecute Palestinian activism, Barakat can finally live his life in relative normalcy after being granted U.S.
citizenship against all odds.
We are calling upon our community to celebrate this landmark victory by revitalizing our grassroots activism, speaking confidently for ourselves, and maximizing our potential as the agents of change in our collective struggle for justice, return, and liberation.
Join us in rebuilding Palestinian activism in the US and building for the US popular Palestinian National Conference in 2008.
For information re the proceedings in the June 23-25 Detroit meeting, please send an e-mail to Munadel al-Abed email@example.com. or Noura Erakat
Muhammad Abdullah Chicago, Illinois
Hatem Abudayyeh Chicago, Illinois
Muhsin Abu Khdair St. Louis, Missouri
Haidar Abushaqra Ellington, Connecticut
Musa Al-Hindi Omaha, Nebraska
Mahmud Awad Detroit, Michigan
Hatem Bazian San Francisco, California
Quaseem Blan Chicago, Illinois
Jamal Dajani San Francisco, CA
Ahmad Diab New York, New York
Lamis Deek New York, New York
Munadel El-Abed San Francisco, California
Noura Erakat Washington DC
Jess Ghannam San Francisco, California
Abbas Hamidah Cleveland, Ohio
Yunis Jazara Chicago, Illinois
Rama Kased New York, New York
Senan Khairy San Francisco, California
Joanne Manna Detroit, Michigan
Nadine Naber Ann Arbor, Michigan
Sufian Nabhan Detroit, Michigan
Hasan Newash Detroit, Michigan
Shereen Newash Detroit, Michigan
Majdi Odeh Chicago, Illinois
Mazin Qumsiyeh New Haven, Connecticut
Atif Said Ann Arbor, Michigan
Yasser Said Chicago, Illinois
Fayyad Sbaihat Madison, Wisconsin
Jamilah Shami McLean, Virginia
Shareef Shamroukh Detroit, Michigan
Sameer Tufaha Boston, Massachusetts
William Youmans Washington DC
20 June 2006
Refugee Fact Sheet International Refugee Day 6/20/06
18 June 2006
Chicago Tribune article titled “Palestinian issue dominates Caterpillar meeting” and other relevant articles on Israeli apartheid are posted at
The battle of Huda Ghalia - who really killed girl's family on Gaza beach? Guardian investigation casts doubt on Israeli claim that army was not to blame By Chris McGreal in Beit Lahia, The Guardian, 17 June 2006
The (Anti-) Palestinian Authority By Joseph Massad, The Electronic Intifada, 18 June 2006
(how the Oslo process was intended by the US/Israel to create permanant classes and divisions and thwart Palestinian national rights)
On Boycotts, Activism and Moral Standards, By James Brooks, The Electronic Intifada
16 June 2006 "We also see that our government's long-running support for Israel's war is connected to other pernicious trends in our foreign policy and political culture, including the destruction of Iraq and US belligerence toward Iran and Syria. In this secondary but far-reaching and sometimes fatal sense, Americans, too, are victimized by Israel's occupation."
Older but still relevant article: "Apartheid in the Holy Land" by Bishop Desmond Tutu
Lost in translation, Jonathan Steele, The Guardian June 14, 2006
Experts confirm that Iran's president did not call for Israel to be 'wiped off the map'. Reports that he did serve to strengthen western hawks.
(but still the more relevant question to ask is who is pushing for confrontation with Iran and who has called for a nuclear-weapon-free Middle East and who rejected such calls. Israel has the highest per capita stockpile of nuclear weapons in teh world and refuses to sign the NPT.... MBQ)
FBI says, it has “No hard evidence connecting Bin Laden to 9/11” By Ed Haas
How It All Began: Truman and Israel By HARRY CLARK
"The Truman Administration's policy on Palestine challenges at its start the 'strategic asset' view of the US-Israel relationship, and reinforces the 'Israel lobby' view..."
Its Origins and Growth: The Power of the Israel Lobby, By KATHLEEN and BILL CHRISTISON Former CIA analysts http://www.counterpunch.org/christison06162006.html
Websites of the week
What you can do
Yesterday in CT, we heard from two Palestinian young women from Gaza: one whose home was demolished, the other a friend who was an undergraduate leader of the student movement at Duke University when I was on the faculty there nearly 10 years ago and who does a blog from Gaza http://a-mother-from-gaza.blogspot.com/ . One event entailed over 1000 black baloons on Duke campus representing the nearly one million Iraqi civilians killed by the US-led sanctions.
Today we flyered at a rally for Senate Candidate Ned Lamont (who is running against war mongering Lieberman).
Also today, the killing of Zarqawi is being misreported in the media as if it is the killing of a major leader of the resistance in Iraq (in actuality Iraqi resistance has condemned this guy; see my letter to editor below).
The struggle for human rights continues.
Why the boycott of Israel is justified (good analytical article) http://www.dissidentvoice.org/June06/Ash06.htm
Israel Targets Palestinian Americans. US does nothing
Dr. Salman Abu Sitta on Zionists calling on Palestinians to abandon their rights
Dangerous dirty tricks in Palestine By Ali Abunimah The Electronic Intifada 6 June 2006
"The reality behind the referendum threat is that Abbas and his allies inside and outside the country are looking for a way to undermine Hamas' legitimacy which was won fair and square at the ballot box...'Fatah now is obsessed with undoing this election as soon as possible,' said Khalil Shikaki, a Palestinian pollster close to Fatah was quoted saying, 'Israel and Washington want to do it over too.'"
Book Review: A Threat from Within: Jewish Opposition to Zionism By MICHAEL NEUMANN
The Lobby and the Great Protestant Crusader: The NYT Confronts Mearsheimer and Walt--Not Quite Head On; By LENNI BRENNER
Steering Into a Third Intifada by Patrick J. Buchanan, May 26, 2006 http://www.antiwar.com/pat/?articleid=9047
Palestine: It's All Over; Population Transfers, Land Theft and Bankrupt Ghettos
By ALEXANDER COCKBURN, June 5, 2006
"the basic strategy is what it was in 1948: population transfer, to be achieved by making life so awful for Palestinians that most of them will
depart, leaving a few bankrupt ghettoes behind as memorials to all those foolish hopes of a sovereign Palestinian state."
Status of Palestinians in Europe.. Conference held in Sweden
the final declaration is here
(it is not clear what practical steps are taken to do follow-up and implement strategies etc)
- Letter I submitted for Publication on the killing of Zarqwawi (I sent letters along teh same lines specifically on coverage to major TV and radio outlets) * Media contact info: http://www.pmwatch.org/pmw/contact/media.asp
The killing of Zarqawi is neither a turning point in Iraq nor is it significant to reduce violence in this long suffering nation. Zarqawi was not a leader of the Iraqi resistance/insurgency. In fact, the leadership of the Iraqi resistance condemned Zarqawi and company. US intelligence itself believes that most of the resistance is home grown and not linked to Zarqawi/Al-Qaeda. This was intentionally obfuscated in the media parroting of government triumphalist PR. Occupation does not bring stability; on the contrary it is what creates the violence and instability which is precisely the logic needed for continued US military expansion at the expense of US taxpayers after the end of the cold war. The Iraqi people have suffered: half a million in the Iran-Iraq war (Henry Kissinger had stated that 'our policy' was to get them 'to kill each other'), over 1 million by US led sanctions, and hundreds of thousands of civilians killed in the last three years of US occupation. It is fashionable for the Bush administration to claim progress while every month, the situation in Iraq deteriorates because of the US occupation and US policy in the Middle East (favoring Israeli expansionist logic over International law and Human rights). Rich special interests in select corporations and "think tanks" who draft policy in Washington profit while playing musical chairs and occasionally ending up "serving" (themselves) in government and trampling the constitution. Orwell would not have imagined it worse.
On Saturday, there were demonstrations in Ramallah and Tel Aviv to protest the siege and starvation of the Palestinian people. We also simultaneously marched in New Haven, CT at Congresswomen DeLauro's office after letting her staff know of the reasons for our actions. We then had a get together in a hall where we discussed where to go and raised $600 for a convoy that will take medicine and food from Israelis to besieged Nablus in the occupied West Bank (see details at http://www.thestruggle.org ). Later that afternoon, we attended a local planning meeting where some 30 key activists discussed plans to respond to various immigration legislations and to mobilize for immigrant rights. Below are some news and articles followed by this week's action items especially on BDS (boycotts, divestment, and sanctions).
(BTW, if you know people in Greece, please send me their contact information as I will be visiting this summer and giving talks).
The current sanctions and boycotts on Palestinian Academics
Here's why they call it the 'Jewish state' By Jonathan Cook The Daily Star, Beirut - Tuesday, May 30, 2006
America`s Geopolitical Nightmare and Eurasian Strategic Energy Arrangements by F. William Engdahl, May 7, 2006. Part I: The disintegration of the Bush Presidency; Part II: Disintegration of US Eurasia Strategic Influence.
Why Israel cannot always rely on America's helping hand By Tony Judt, May 23 2006
Presbyterians of the World, Unite!, by Norman Finkelstein
Controversy: Did Roosevelt University Chair Fire Professor For Allowing Discussion of Religion in Religion Course?
Why Parallels with South Africa are justified
Israeli professor: UK boycott justified http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3257291,00.html
Shlomo Ben-Ami's comments in a recent Amy Goodman interview
- Donate to Middle East Children Alliance and Physicians for Human Rights to get medicine across to besieged Palestinians
- The Stop the wall actions in Bi'ilin (wrire letters to editor and t your elected officials on this issue)
- British citizen's action needed: Support EDM 2041 asking EU to reinstate support for Palestinians.
- Sign British petition to STOP STARVING PALESTINIANS
- Write with your support for the principled decision on BDS taken by Canadian and British worker/teachers:
Canadian: President firstname.lastname@example.org ; Executive email@example.com ; International Solidarity Coordinator firstname.lastname@example.org or to CUPE Ontario, 305 Milner Avenue, Suite 801, Scarborough, ON, Canada MIB 3V4 Fax: (416) 299-3480
The British NATFHE: email@example.com
Paul Mackney General Secretary NATFHE firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Hickey (Proposer of the boycott motion) T.Hickey@Brighton.ac.uk
Support the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel http://www.pacbi.org/
Four actions and Four documents/articles (including BDS workshop notes from ECCP meeting in Geneva)
Four Examples of what one or a few individuals can do
1) Appear with banners that say Free Palestine and Boycott Israel anywhere groups or individuals representing Israeli apartheid appear. A good example of this was provided when four individuals (not aligned to any group as far as we could tell) ran onto the field of the Israel-Swiss football (soccer) game with such banners last year. The pictures of this inspiring event are at bottom of this page: http://www.qumsiyeh.org/boycottsanddivestment/
2) Send emails to unions encouraging them to take a stand to end Israeli apartheid and apply sanctions and boycotts until Israel complies with human rights and International Law. You can send for example a letter of thanks to the Canadian Union of Public Employees Ontario (CUPE) thanking them for standing up for human rights which will benefit all people of the Middle East (emails email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com )
3) Donate to political campaigns of those who stand up to tell the truth regardless of which party they belong to (e.g. Cynthia McKinney http://www.cynthiaforcongress.com/donate.php , most Green Party Candidates http://www.gp.org/press/pr_2006_05_22.shtml )
4) Write letters to editors. Here are two simple example (from a Palestinain Canadian and a Jewish Canadian).
CUPE's Israeli boycott 'historic' or a 'death warrant'
As a Palestinian-Canadian whose family became refugees when the State of Israel was created in 1948, I applaud the courageous and principled stand taken by CUPE Ontario at its recent convention, for passing Resolution 50 in support of the global campaign against Israeli apartheid.
The resolution expresses CUPE Ontario's support for the international campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions until Israel meets its obligations to recognize the Palestinian people's inalienable rights, including their right to return to their homeland.
I recognize that this has not been an easy decision for CUPE Ontario and that the union will face the extreme pressure put upon the union by outside forces, including the Israeli government and the organized Israel lobby.
The vote is a historic step forward both in expressing Canadian unions' solidarity with the Palestinian people and also in helping persuade the Canadian government that it is time to cease silent complicity with the illegal acts of the Israeli state and to stand up for peace and justice in Palestine.
Khaled Mouammar, Richmond Hill, Ont. © National Post 2006
National Post, Published: Thursday, June 01, 2006
CUPE's boycott of Israel
I am writing in support of CUPE Ontario's passing of resolution 50. I am a Jewish woman and am a part of a large and ever-growing community of Jews across Canada who support this resolution and who are working for justice for the Palestinian people.
It is time the media pay some attention to these other voices out here, the voices calling for an end to the grave human, civil and social rights violations perpetrated against the Palestinian people by the state of Israel.
Naomi Binder Wall, Toronto
Published in the Star, June 2, 2006
1) Address by Paul Mackney, General Secretary, NATFHE May 29, 2006
2) The Final Solution: 46 percent of Israel’s Jewish citizens favor transferring (the remaining) Palestinians out of the territories, while 31 percent favor transferring Israeli Arabs out of the country. In 1991, 38 percent of Israel’s Jewish population was in favor of transferring the Palestinians out of the territories while 24 percent supported transferring Israeli Arabs (remaining Palestinians after the ethnic cleansing of 1947-1949)”.
3) "Birthright" kicks out young Jew for planning to hear views of others
4) European Coordinating Committee for Palestine
Workshop on Civil Society responses to violations of International Law: Boycotts, divestments, sanctions (BDS)
Moderator: Birgit Althaler (Palastinakomittee-Basel, BDS Gruppe)
Paneslists: Olivia Zemor (CAP JPO), Soetkin Desmet (Vlaams Pal Komitteee), Urs Diethelm (BDS-Gruppe), Betty Hunter (PSC, England), Jonathan Rosenhead (BRICUP), Mazin Qumsiyeh (Academics For Justice)
Other Comments: Ingrid Jaradat-Gassner (Badil), Ameer Makhoul (Ittijah), Abdelfattah AbuSrour (Al-Rowwad), Yossif Schwartz (HaKomed)
Three questions/themes were addressed:
1) How can boycott and BDS campaigns be efficiuent as measured the formulated objectives (formulation of objectives, balance sheet, widening popular support, working with media etc),
2) How to respond to critique and pressure by Zionist organizations
3) Concrete coordination between activists and campaigns based on the BDS call
France: Success with action at Paris IV University. 40,000 people vote on association agreements. Difficult situation with many Zionist groups working.
Belgium: Small groups but growing, economic boycotts under way.
England: British Commitee for Academic Boycotts. A call among academics for a moratorium on research and other collaboration with Israeli academics. Academic and cultural boycott successes mounting. Setbacks and challenges but able to get things through. AUC motion and this Monday a motion at the largest teacher union (NATFHE). Boycott calls bring pressure to educate and are a tool or tactic that gains wide media reporting.
Actions started in Britain 2001. It seems the discussion spreads. BDS spread into areas we in the BDS movement did not even anticipate. Churches such as the Church of England have taken the call.
Holland and scandinavian areas managed to get many organizations to endorse the calls. Use as a tool to defend the rights of Palestinians. Need to enlarge the groups. Challenges include need for follow-up and expenditure of resources. E.g. in one case, the BDS were illegally challenged by the Ministry of Culture and we could have gone to court but did not pursue it.
It was emphasized that we are in the beginning stages and that in South Africa, many years passed by before the International community took on the mantle of divestments.
Palestinians have put out the call for BDS in the civil society call to action on the anniversary of then ICJ ruling.
Examples from the impact of BDS actions in the US shows it is very effective in mobilizing/building support even ofd far profounder importance than the actual boycotts. Sommerville divestment campaign is a case in pointg where a handful of people went around collecting petitions for the city to divest. They collected nearly 5000 signatures very quickly and was a great educational and community moibilizing success even before it got to city hall. Another is the academic petition/pledge of acadenmic boycotts. The 500 or so professors who signed were then put on a list for actions and were able to mobilize activism for academic freedom. Caterpillar campaign is good for education about home demolitions etc.
ISM-Italia: floated a tube on the main river in Turin during the olympics that said "Free Palestine- Boycott Israel"
Resistance to BDS and charges of anti-semitism. Ideas for responses:
- the facts of Israeli poliocies, human rights violations etc.
- We boycott any business based on its support for Israel (not its ownership).
- Silencing with massive Zionist pressures would increase (not decrease) anti-Semitism (resentment etc)
- The persecuted in this case (Palestinians) are Semites
- BDS movement is actually philo-semitic because it is a tool to achieve peace with justice which is good to all the inhabitants of the Middle East (Jews, Christian, and Muslims)
- Zionism has an intimate connection with racism/fascism. From Zionist break of the boycott insituted by the Bund and other socialists on Nazi germany to mutual admiration to statements by Israeli leaders (see books by Lenni Brenner and Norman Finkelstein).
- The use in this case a cynical use of the language considering that even the remaining Palestinian minority is discriminated against in a fashion reminiscent of some European mideavel persecution of minorities including Jews.
Theme 3: Ideas for actions/programs
- Sign petitions in support of the civil society call to action
- Call on this conference to adopt the Palestinian Civil Society call for BDS (this motion was voted on and agreed to without dissent by the workshop attendees and presented to the general assembly of the conference).
- Coordinate actions for maximum impact. The organizers of the workshop should create a network for coordination.
- It helps to pick one day of action for Palestine (one suggestion was Nov 29th)
- Take up the call for 2008 focusing on refugee rights (60 years since the Nakba/dispossession of the Palestinians).
- Find and expose covert and overt governmental support (including secret military agreements)
- Study products and find specific and limited targets for maximum effect
- Hold an International conference in Europe focusing on BDS (suggestions France or Biella, Italy).
The good news keeps coming in. On the flight from Milan to New York, I saw an article by the extremist editors of the Wall Street Journal that tried desperately to malign the boycott of Israeli academics who do not disassociate themselves from Israeli apartheid policies. The editors desperately tried to paint those calling for human rights and implementation of International law as "anti-Semites" even before the vote was taken (you can write letter to editor at firstname.lastname@example.org). When we got back to the US, we learned that the motion for boycott passed by a wide margin at the 69,000 British association of teachers and professors in higher education. The actual text of the motion passed is as follows:
"Conference notes continuing Israeli apartheid policies, including construction of the exclusion wall, and discriminatory educational practices. It recalls its motion of solidarity last year for the AUT resolution to exercise moral and professional responsibility.
Conference instructs the NEC to facilitate meetings in each university and college, and to circulate information to Branches, offering to fund the speakers' travel costs.
Conference invites members to consider their own responsibility for ensuring equity and non-discrimination in contacts with Israeli educational institutions or individuals, and to consider the appropriateness of a boycott of those that do not publicly dissociate themselves from such policies." (http://www.natfhe.org.uk/?entityType=HTML&id=1184 )
We had capped our trip to Europe with attending the conference by the European Coordinating Committee on Palestine (http://www.urgencepalestine.ch/Agenda/news.html ). PACBI had asked in an open letter (http://www.pacbi.org/letters_more.php?id=195_0_3_0_C ) that ECCP adopt boycotts and divestments as called for by the Palestinian civil society call to action. The over 70 activists who attended the workshop on divestment and boycotts voted unanimously to ask the conference of ECCP to adopt the Palestinian civil society call for BDS (signed by >170 Palestinian organizations and posted at http://www.badil.org/Boycott-Statement.htm ).
More good news has transpired with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) vote to boycott Israel until it recognizes Palestinians' right for self-determination (http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3256307,00.html ). It was thus with renewed energy and lots of good contacts that we get back to try to get US organizations and unions to follow suit. In our almost three weeks in Europe we were inspired by the great work done locally. We were hosted by the International Solidarity Movement in Italy; this is the movement that managed to put a huge floating baloon at the river in Turin (Torino) DURING THE OLYMPIC GAMES and had sent so many Italians to Palestine. The float boldly proclaimed "Free Palestine - Boycott Israel". Our tour and lectures included Biella, Milano, Turino, Roma, Parma, and Varese. We also attended conferences and other events in cities like Ivrea and Geneva. We were amazed at the level of generous hospitality we were accorded. Alfredo Tradardi coordinated our trip and was truly phenomenal as are all the hosts and colleagues we met. Alfredo's father was a partisan martyr who died fighting fascists in Italy in 1945 leaving behind several very young children including Alfredo. Learning the value of resisting tyranny, these were our hosts in Italy. BTW, the way I met Alfredo is when he wrote to me immediately after he read in Haaretz about the controversy over the boycott article that I wrote and was published in magazine of the World Economic Forum at Davos (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/theworldeconomicsforumcontroversy/ ).
Ofcourse, many others were key in making this tour a success including Diana Carminati, Fillippo, Silvia Macchi, Milli, Leno, Beppe, Maria Tradardi, Teresa Tradardi, Vincenzo Tradardi, Abed, and so many others (jet lag prevents me from being organized enough to list them all). Many of them have been to Palestine more than once and did admirable work.
The situation of Palestine & Palestinians (at home and in diaspora) and the situation and strategies of the solidarity movement are interlinked at many levels (or at least should be). Prospects of growing the global anti-Apartheid movement similar to the one that challenged Apartheid South Africa are growing. Ofcourse, this is a dynamic and ever-changing landscape (politically, culturally, militarily etc) so what we conclude now may not be applicable one year from now or even six months down the road (when the Olmert plan of "convergence" could succeed in "relocating" hundreds of thousands of Palestinians).
In our tour, we exchanged information and collectively learned new lessons from activists in Italy, England, Belgium, France, Switzerland, Spain, and more. We learned that the opposition and obstacles in Europe are different than they are in America but that similar strategies apply for grassroot action and mobilization and we could learn a lot from successes (and obstacles) in all countries. More importantly we also learned top appreciate even more the value of global coordination. In the next two weeks, I will share with you someexperiences and lessons from European and other activists and where we think things will be going (shared experiences on how we may all integrate and increase our activism building on the growing momentum for divestment, boycotts, and sanctions).
As ISM-Italia likes to emphasize: Free Palestine - Boycott Israel.
(Calls many of you in the US made to your elected officials to stop the anti-Palestinian legislation did make a difference. For those in the US, please do this follow-up calling as stated in the alert below from the Council for National Interest. Hamas is no more equivalent to the Palestinian authority than Likud or Kadima are equivalent to Israel. Further, boycotting all entities connected to the Palestinian authority literally means mass starvation, boycotting government hospitals, emergency services, teachers, civil servants, etc. On the political front, why are the conditions only on one side (hypocritical): why is the Israeli government not required to allow Palestine to exist AND then recognize Palestine, why is that government not required to renounce violence, and why is it not required to accept all previous agreements (including freezing all settlement/colonial construction)? I also included below a decent article by President Jimmy Carter on this subject of collectively punishment of the Palestinians. Mazin)
Protest Slows Anti-Palestinian Legislation
Take Action Now
Due in part to your unprecedented opposition to anti-Palestinian legislation, the House leadership has unexpectedly removed H.R. 4681, the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006, from today's list of scheduled votes!
Meanwhile, the House Judiciary Committee has asserted its jurisdiction over the bill and will hold a "mark-up" session tomorrow, Wednesday, May 10th, to discuss possible amendments to it. You can watch the mark-up session live tomorrow online starting at 10 AM (EDT) using RealPlayer. The Judiciary Committee has jurisdiction over the important section of the resolution that deals with visas.
As currently written, Section 6 of H.R. 4681 states that "A visa shall not be issued to any alien who is an official of, affiliated with, or serving as a representative of the Palestinian Authority" without a special waiver issued by the President. The resolution defines the Palestinian Authority to include the Palestinian Legislative Council, meaning that even non-Hamas members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, such as Mustafa Barghouti, Hanan Ashrawi, Nabil Sha'ath, and Saeb Erakat, could be banned from entering the United States.
Current U.S. law already prohibits the granting of a visa to a person belonging to a group, such as Hamas, which the United States considers to be a "foreign terrorist organization."
TAKE ACTION: Contact the House Judiciary Committee today through the Capitol switchboard at 1-800-355-3588 or directly at 202-225-3951 and tell the committee that the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act should conform to current U.S. law and only deny visas to members of a group the United States considers to be a "foreign terrorist organization." Ask the committee to amend the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act to include a provision that would continue to grant visas to Palestinian politicians who are not members of U.S.-designated "foreign terrorist organizations."
Also, if your Representative is on the House Judiciary Committee, please call them today as well with the same message.
House Judiciary Committee Members
Rep. James Sensenbrenner, Chair, (R-WI-5), 202-225-5101
Rep. John Conyers, Ranking Member (D-MI-14), 202-225-5126
Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-AL-6), 202-225-4921
Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA-28), 202-225-4695
Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA-9), 202-225-3861
Rep. Chris Cannon (R-UT-3), 202-225-7751
Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH-1), 202-225-2216
Rep. Howard Coble (R-NC-6), 202-225-3065
Rep. William Delahunt (D-MA-10), 202-225-3111
Rep. Tom Feeney (R-FL-24), 202-225-2706
Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ-6), 202-225-2635
Rep. Randy Forbes (R-VA-4), 202-225-6365
Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ-2), 202-225-4576
Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-CA-24),202-225-5811
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX-1), 202-225-3035
Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA-6), 202-225-5431
Rep. Mark Green (R-WI-8), 202-225-5665
Rep. John Hostettler (R-IN-8), 202-225-4636
Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL-6), 202-225-4561
Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC-4), 202-225-6030
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA-49), 202-225-3906
Rep. William Jenkins (R-TN-1), 202-225-6356
Rep. Ric Keller (R-FL-8), 202-225-2176
Rep. Steve King (R-IA-5), 202-225-4426
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX-18), 202-225-3816
Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-16), 202-225-3072
Rep. Dan Lungren (R-CA-3), 202-225-5716
Rep. Marty Meehan (D-MA-5), 202-225-3411
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY-8), 202-225-5635
Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN-6), 202-225-3021
Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA-39), 202-225-6676
Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA-29), 202-225-4176
Rep. Debbie W. Schultz (D-FL-20), 202-225-7931
Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA-3), 202-225-8351
Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX-21), 202-225-4236
Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD-8), 202-225-5341
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA-35), 202-225-2201
Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC-12), 202-225-1510
Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY-9), 202-225-6616
Rep. Robert Wexler (D-FL-19), 202-225-3001
Punishing the innocent is a crime, by Jimmy Carter, SUNDAY, MAY 7, 2006
Innocent Palestinian people are being treated like animals, with the presumption that they are guilty of some crime. Because they voted for
candidates who are members of Hamas, the United States government has become the driving force behind an apparently effective scheme of depriving the general public of income, access to the outside world and the necessities of life.
Overwhelmingly, these are school teachers, nurses, social workers, police officers, farm families, shopkeepers, and their employees and families who are just hoping for a better life. Public opinion polls conducted after the January parliamentary election show that 80 percent of Palestinians still want a peace agreement with Israel based on the international road map premises. Although Fatah party members refused to join Hamas in a coalition government, nearly 70 percent of Palestinians continue to support Fatah's leader, Mahmoud Abbas, as their president.
It is almost a miracle that the Palestinians have been able to orchestrate three elections during the past 10 years, all of which have been honest,
fair, strongly contested, without violence and with the results accepted by winners and losers. Among the 62 elections that have been monitored by us at the Carter Center, these are among the best in portraying the will of the people.
One clear reason for the surprising Hamas victory for legislative seats was that the voters were in despair about prospects for peace. With American acquiescence, the Israelis had avoided any substantive peace talks for more than five years, regardless of who had been chosen to represent the Palestinian side as interlocutor.
The day after his party lost the election, Abbas told me that his own struggling government could not sustain itself financially with their daily
lives and economy so severely disrupted, and access from Palestine to Israel and the outside world almost totally restricted. They were already $900 million in debt and had no way to meet the payroll for the following month. The additional restraints imposed on the new government are a planned and deliberate catastrophe for the citizens of the occupied territories, in hopes that Hamas will yield to the economic pressure.
With all their faults, Hamas leaders have continued to honor a temporary cease-fire, or hudna, during the past 18 months, and their spokesman told me that this "can be extended for two, 10 or even 50 years if the Israelis will reciprocate." Although Hamas leaders have refused to recognize the state of Israel while their territory is being occupied, Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has expressed approval for peace talks between Abbas and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert of Israel. He added that if these negotiations result in an agreement that can be accepted by Palestinians, then the Hamas position regarding Israel would be changed.
Regardless of these intricate and long-term political interrelationships, it is unconscionable for Israel, the United States and others under their
influence to continue punishing the innocent and already persecuted people of Palestine. The Israelis are withholding approximately $55 million a month in taxes and customs duties that, without dispute, belong to the Palestinians. Although some Arab nations have allocated funds for
humanitarian purposes to alleviate human suffering, the U.S. government is threatening the financial existence of any Jordanian or other bank that
dares to transfer this assistance into Palestine.
There is no way to predict what will happen in Palestine, but it would be a tragedy for the international community to abandon the hope that a peaceful coexistence of two states in the Holy Land is possible. Like Egypt and all other Arab nations before the Camp David Accords of 1978, and the Palestine Liberation Organization before the Oslo peace agreement of 1993, Hamas has so far refused to recognize the sovereign state of Israel as legitimate, with a right to live in peace. This is a matter of great concern to all of us, and the international community needs to probe for an acceptable way out of this quagmire. There is no doubt that Israelis and Palestinians both want a durable two-state solution, but depriving the people of Palestine of their basic human rights just to punish their elected leaders is not a path to peace.
(Former President Jimmy Carter is founder of the Carter Center, a nonprofit organization working for peace and health worldwide. )
- Action: The House of Representatives will vote on Tuesday, May 9 on HR4681, the so-called "Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006". This bill imposes draconian economic and diplomatic sanctions against the Palestinian people for exercising their democratic rights. TAKE ACTION Monday!
Call your Representative and urge a NO vote on HR4681.
Talking Points at http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1188 (scroll to bottom). To contact your Representative, call the Capitol switchboard toll free at 1-888-355-3588 and ask for your Representative.
- Action: Join and support the Joint Advocacy Initiative http://www.jai-pal.org
- Action: Attend (college credits available) Al-Quds University International Summer School http://www.alquds.edu/qiss/
- "Palestinian Christians suffer too" April 17, 2006 By syndicated and well known journalist/commentator Robert Novack
- Life behind the walls: Palestinian teenagers tell their stories http://www.lifebehindthewall.com
- Forward From The Palestinian American Congress http://www.pac-national.org :
The Palestinian American Congress successfully completed its seventh Annual Convention in Richmond, VA on April 28 - 30, 2006.
The convention included brainstorming sessions on how to move forward and workshops on conflict resolution, media, and outreach.
Elections for the Executive Committee and Directors of the Board took place with the following results:
Officer of The board
Sameer Tuffaha Chairman of the board
Osama Amin Vice Chairman and Secretary of the board
National Executive Committee:
Salah Asad President
Khairi Shadeed Vice President and Secretary of the Executive Committee
Khalid Aldemeh Treasurer
Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh Member/Media
Mohammad Elrefai Member
The convention was concluded with a banquet, featuring our distinguished guest, HE Ambassador Afif Safieh, followed by showing the documentary “The Iron Wall” directed by Mr. Mohammed Alatar.
At this critical junction in Palestinian history and with enormous challenges facing us, the delegates of the chapters and board members understood the weight of the responsibility on each Palestinian American. Towards this, we are updating you and asking for your participation.
The meeting was thus held in an atmosphere of understanding of the need for a new and revitalized PAC that will serve the needs and aspirations of ALL Palestinians in America. At two meetings by the newly elected members, we agreed unanimously to move forward in a spirit of teamwork, democracy, transparency, accountability, grass-root action, non-sectarian cooperation, and a bottom-up approach (not top-down). Towards these ideals, we agreed that each elected member will facilitate (not direct) a standing committee of dedicated members willing to serve at this critical junction in Palestinian history. These standing committees would take the ideas and concepts introduced at the convention, add to them, modify them, and engage in collective action to implement the best and prioritized ideas agreed to. This is the spirit of empowerment for our community to serve the higher goal: Palestinian aspirations for freedom, return, and self-determination.
Below are the standing committees. Grass-root activists interested and motivated to help in these areas (with both ideas and more significantly actual work) are encouraged to contact the elected member who is listed as a facilitator. You will then be included in the forthcoming discussion and planning for these committees and thus be part of building this empowered movement.
1) Bylaws, organizing, policies and procedures: Salah Asad email@example.com
2) Chapter and membership services: Sameer Tuffaha firstname.lastname@example.org
3) Finance and fundraising: Khalid Aldemeh email@example.com
4) Social Activities and national tours/coordinated national events: Mohamad Elrefai firstname.lastname@example.org
5) External affairs (building relationships with other organizations
and coalitions): Khairi Shadeed email@example.com
6) Lobbying and governmental Affairs: Osama Amin firstname.lastname@example.org
7) Media, communications and publicity: Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh email@example.com
Other committees will also be created to address ad-hoc or specific specialized issues such as Refugees, Jerusalem, Divestments and Boycotts. For these, please contact Salah Asad firstname.lastname@example.org
We also encourage you to start building local chapters in cities and universities around the country and develop local action committees. We would be happy to provide resources or assistance (contacts above).
We face enormous challenges but we will COLLECTIVELY rise to meet the challenges ahead and build our community.
The Palestinian American Congress is a national grass roots organization that defends and represents the interests of Palestinian Americans.
Actions (selected for this week):
Donate to these good causes
Oppose anti-Palestinian legistlation
1) Challenge magazine has an excellent article on the disastrous situation developing in Jerusalem written by Angela Godfrey-Goldstein and worth downloading, printing and passing around
2) (Link to a response by Mearsheimer and Walt to the barage of criticism of their paper on the Israel lobby's influence on US foreign policy)
The Israel Lobby. By John Mearsheimer & Stephen Walt, London Review of Books 11 May 2006
Also here is a good commentary on the subject that appeared in The Nation magazine
Other critiques (negaticccve and positive) are posted at
3) The country that wouldn't grow up, By Tony Judt, Haaretz, 4 May 2006
4) This week we lost two African American key supporters of Palestine unexpectedly, both at age 54: Damu Smith and Imam Qasim Sherif. I wrote this poem to commemorate them
Damu and Qasim
What legacy two black brothers who saw the world unity?
How do I remember departed friends who nurtured solidarity?
Caring for inner cities, Africa, Iraq, and Palestine
Working to free humanity they did to us shine
Speaking truth to power
And helping all empower
Both die two days apart
Both reside in my heart
One a Christian who made allies with all,
One a convert to Islam who made allies with all,
One founded Black Voices for Peace,
One founded other organizations for Peace
Both died young at fifty four years
Both mourned in a multi-faith sea of tears
Both thousands have been touched over the years
Those who will carry the torch of truth speaking
Can never forget the ultimate moral power of acting
When the divine speaks to us in His ways
We are told "Those who believe..on them shall be no fear"*
"If you believe, you will receive what you ask for in prayer"**
We are told many things
We hope we know where we are standing
We hope we know where we are going
(and how to get there... in your footsteps)
Goodbye with a tear
gratitude with a tear
To fallen beacons of inspiration .. steadfast we must stay
honoring you missed comrades ... thanking you, along our way
*Quran saying: "Verily! Those who believe and those who are Jews and Christians, and Sabians, whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day and do righteous good deeds shall have their reward with their Lord, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve." Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #62
More on Damu Smith and Imam Qasim Sherief
5) I will be giving talks and touring in Europe from May 11-29. A conference in Biello, Italy May 12-14 includes Tanya Reinhardt, Nur Masalha and many others and they also will feature the play "My Name is Rachel Corrie" (details at http://www.frammenti.it/seminario_qualefuturo/english/news.asp ). I will then give some talks and book signings in Rome and other European cities before I head to Geneva, Switzerland for a very interesting European conference on divestments etc (see http://www.urgencepalestine.ch). My schedule is listed below but there is some flexibility so let me know if we can hook up in Europe.
Giorno/day Città/town Reference
Lunedì 15 Milano Barbara
Martedì 16 Torino Caterina
Mercoledì 17 Trieste Giorgio
Giovedì 18 Parma Vincenzo
Venerdì 19 Bologna Patrizia
Sabato 20 Brindisi o Bari o Lecce Ester and Tonia
Domenica 21 Rest
Lunedì 22 Roma Daniele e Silvia
Martedì 23 L’Aquila Valentina
Mercoledì 24 Firenze o Pisa Claudia
Giovedì 25 Varese Filippo
Venerdì 26 Departure to Geneva
Sabato 27 Geneva
Domenica 28 Geneva
Lunedì 29 Departure to US
Building continues apace on the nearly $600 million city-within-a-city/central operations US city in the Arab world (also euphemistically called the US "embassy" to Iraq). It is the only infrastructure supported by our taxpayer that is on track in Iraq: a complex of 21 buildings on 104 acres in central Baghdad to house 8-10,000 Americans with offices, shopping areas, restaurants, its own security, electricity, water supply etc. It is to be the center of operations of US hegemony on the Middle East. Still some people believe the lies about US military presence in Iraq is now "for democracy". http://www.democrats.com/node/8574
New York Time covers up reality in Jerusalem
Gaza hospital fights for life, Agence France Presse, 24 April 2006
(On the recent Israeli elections and Zionist preoccupation with demographic "threats".) Ingathering, By Ilan Pappe London Review of Books, 20 April 2006
Another people denied their right to return to serve interests of an imperial power (US military base on the main island of Diego Garcia): Chagossias. "Islanders expelled from their Indian Ocean homes in the Chagos archipelago nearly 40 years ago, have spoken about their emotional first journey back to the islands." http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/4909264.stm
Caterpillar responds to critics with image campaign. This is good news, it means we are winning. We need to up the ante on Caterpillar and other companies that support Israeli violations of basic human rights
The Touchables and untouchables by Jeffrey Blankfort
(on different treatment for Congressman Lantos vs Congresswomen McKinney)
Israel's Elections: A Decisive Vote for Apartheid, By Omar Barghouti, The Electronic Intifada
ACTION 1: Sign petition to support academic freedom (especially for those connected to academia or university graduates)
ACTION 2: EVENTS
A) March for peace and justice on April 29 in New York City
Bring signs etc on Palestine and visit Palestine Tent
B) The Palestinian American Congress seventh annual convention in Richmond, VA on April 28-30, 2006 http://www.pac-national.org/convention_7.html
ACTION 3: Three opportunities to visit/volunteer Palestine this summer
1) Palestine Summer Encounter 2006
Volunteer - Study Arabic - Live with a Family - Be a Witness for Peace! Live with a local family, study Arabic and volunteer with a local church, school, hospital, nonprofit or humanitarian organization. They also have an opportunity to visit sites of historic, political and religious significance such as Jerusalem, Jericho, the Galilee, Hebron, Nazareth and the Dead Sea. Participants can join the program for 1, 2 or 3 months. Learn more at: http://www.middleeastfellowship.org/pse2006
2) Journey for Justice 2006: 27th June – 6th July
For young YMCA and YWCA leaders to joint this year's Journey For Justice 2006 (4)
Application form are downloadable from http://www.jai-pal.org/content.php?page=163
For more information, questions, and reservation, please contact: Ibrahim Hannouneh. E-mail: email@example.com Tel/Fax: + 970-2-2774540
3) Birthright Unplugged Summer program (Jewish activists) http://www.birthrightunplugged.org
El Pueblo unido ...Jamas Sera Vencido
Follow-up events to attend if you live in CT: Thursday 4/27, 7 PM Potluck dinner with Palestinian guest Suha Aljurf, niece of martyred victim Shaden Abu Hijleh, Orange, RSVP 203-397-0067. Sunday May 7, 2 PM community-wide meeting and elections at Family Auto, 371 Main Street, Manchester, CT.
"The international media and our government are not going to tell us that we are effective, important, justified in our work, courageous, intelligent, valuable. We have to do that for each other, and one way we can do that is by continuing our work, visibly." Rachel Corrie, in a letter from Palestine, February, 2003
On April 21, 2005, we were honored to hear readings of Rachel's letters to her Parents by two young people (Rachel Kobasa and Melissa Hutton). Over $500 was also raised for the Rachel Corrie Memorial Foundation. At that event, we were also lucky to hear a reflections on Rachel and on the concepts of solidarity from Dr. Afif Safieh, Palestinian Envoy/diplomatic representative to Washington. Dr. Safieh was with us for teh weekend of activities. A nice discussion that proceeded till 2 AM that night and then lunch in New Haven and then the main event: a community banquet Saturday evening. After the evening Muslim prayer, Hassan Kaddoumi welcomed people and introduced the MCs: Gale Courey-Toensing and Haidar Abushaqra. The MC's led us in a Moment of Silence to remember all victims of oppression and wars. A brilliant Sketch involving 15 Palestinian Children then opened the events. Khalid Omer presented a powerpoint presentation of Palestinian Community Accomplishments in CT over the past year (see list below for a glimpse of our accomplishments and some photos). Children enjoyed activities in an adjacent room to the banquet hall.
This was followed by our award presentations. The following awards were given:
1) Jerusalem Lifetime Achievement Award: Dr. Abdullah Alwajeeh was born in Iksal in 1936 and went to school in Nazareth and then got higher education in Wayne State University in Mathematics and Math Education. He taught Math at Macomb College in Michigan. He is a member of the Palestinian National Council. He was a cofounder of the Palestinian American Congress and the United Holy Land Fund.
2) Rachel Corrie Award: Stanley Heller Is a Jewish American School teacher in West Haven. He founded the Middle Crisis Committee in 1982. This group became the bedrock of activism for Palestinian human rights in Connecticut. The Website for the group is http://thestruggle.org. Most recently Stan produced a TV show "The Struggle Video Network" shown on many public access TV stations. He got the support of over 400 Jews in support of the Palestinian Right of Return. He is also active in the print media with many letters to the editor and op-ed pieces published locally and nationally. The award is given in honor of Rachel Corrie, a 23 year old student who joined the International solidarity Movement and who was murdered by an Israeli soldier driving a Caterpillar bulldozer (US-made and paid for by our taxes).
3) Palestine Activism Award: Dr. Hassan Fouda is an Egyptian-American retired scientist (Pfizer Pharmaceutical company) who lives in Groton, CT. He was a cofounder the Palestine Right to Return Chapter in CT and our media campaign in CT and beyond. He became the anchor for Palestinian activism especially in the Eastern part of the state. He was also a cofounder of CT chapters for the Council for National Interest and If Americans Knew. He helped organize tours by CT residents to Palestine. His latest trip to the area included a delegation with CNI leaders to meets with key decision makers in Palestine and the Arab World and seperately over 30 delegation members in a tour organized by an Old Lime Church.
We also recognized a number of key activists in the community: Dr. Fatma Antar, Imam Dr. Ali Antar, Dr. Reza Mansour, Colleen Keyes, Haza' Aburabie, Chris Towne, Dr. Justine McCabe, Dr. Sadu Nanjundiah, Liz and Peter Viering.
We then had an introduction of Ambassador Safieh (introduction posted at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/introductiontodrsafieh/ ). The keynote speech by HE Dr. Afif Safieh was inspiring. Dr. Safieh reminded us in his gentle way of telling history of the fact that despite all odds, Palestine will be freed and justice will be served.
Al-Amwaj band capped the evening with traditional Palestinian music and the audience danced the Dabka led by a professional dabka group who came from Massachussets.
99 Photos of the banquet are posted at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/banquet/
Achievements of our local community over the past year
May 29, 2005 First Community Picnic in Wickham Park, Manchester. Over 150 people attended. http://www.qumsiyeh.org/wickhampicnic/
June 4, 2005 Held a fundraiser for Al-Rowwad theater group
June 11, 2005 Tabling at AFSC dinner in Harford http://www.qumsiyeh.org/afscdinner/
June 23-27 Community hosted Al-Rowwad Children theater tour (pictures at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/alrowwad/ ):
June 24 Housatonic Valley Regional High School Performance
June 25 16th annual Grove Festival, Town Grove, Lakeville/Salisbury,
June 26 Charter Oak Center, 21 Charter Oak, Hartford, CT
June 26 Palestinian-American community potluck hosting of Al Rowwad
June 27 Falls Village, CT community picnic
July 4, 2005 Second community Picnic organized and held with over 150 people attending.
July 12, 2005 Participated in Immigrant rally in Watertown
July 18, 2005 Organized visit of Salim Alzaanoun, Speaker of the Palestinian National Council
September 14, 2005: Panel at Manchester, CT on connections between Iraq and Palestine (Stan, Chris, Mazin and Haider Panelists)
20 October 2005 Organized Lecture for Dr. Norman Finkelstein
November 1st, 2005 Potluck iftar and screening of film "Hifawi", about life of Palestinians inside Israel followed by a discussion with the producer, Ms. Sahera Dirbas.
November 5, 2005 Tabling at Statewide Ramadan Iftar and celebrations
November 5, 2005 Statewide conference. Took lead in organizing and mobilizing. http://www.qumsiyeh.org/nov05/
November 11, 2005 Tree of Life Conference in Old Lyme, CT (Speaker and Tabling)
November 2005 Six members from CT attended the fundraiser for United Holy Land Fund held in New Jersey. In addition to banquet tickets, we donated an additional $500 on behalf of PAC-CT.
November 24, 2005 Hosted/organized Thanksgiving dinner for the community including film showing (70 people attended).
January 15, 2006 Table and children activities at Martin Luther King Jr diversity events at the Peabody Museum
January 19, 2006 Picketed and flyered at Benny Morris event at Yale University.
February 25, 2006 Activism 103 workshops to build skills in media, lobbying, divestments, communications, organizing etc (cosponsors, organizers).
February and March: Jerusalem Photo Exhibit at CCSU and University of Connecticut (publicity and support)
March 8, 2006 International women's day celebration of Palestinian women. Showing Film by Mai Masri "Children of Shatila", Palestinian Poetry reading, and more.
March 18, 2006 1500 people gathered with our support (donation $500, outreach, media, other work) for an anti-war rally that featured Palestine as one of the key demands of this statewide rally. we had a speaker and we flyered and passed out rachel corrie CD http://www.qumsiyeh.org/march18
March 19,2006 Labor led state rally. We flyered and passed out CD on Rachel Corrie and collected Petition signatures
Sold 100 Palestine Calendars. Proceeds used for activities (see above for donations etc)
Our members give frequent talks. PAC-CT member Stanley Heller who was honored at the banquet developed a TV Program that is now broadcast in many cities in CT and in Cambridge, MA. Dr. Qumsiyeh gave a series of talks on the Wheels of Justice bus tour and other venues both in state and in other states (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/invitedtalksgiven/ ). He also published in the past year over 30 op-eds/longer articls and 25 letters to editor. His article in the magazine of the World Economic Forum in Davos titled Boycott Israel created a huge media campaign (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/theworldeconomicsforumcontroversy/).
Members helped found the Palestinian Orthodox Church in Connecticut
Members supported each other in both community celebrations as well as in cases of need, illness, or death.
We built strong working relationships with other human rights activist groups, unions, and religious and ethnic communities including mosques, hispanic communities, African Americans etc..
I will be giving talks in Europe from May 11-29. A conference in Biello, Italy May 12-14 includes Tanya Reinhardt, Nur Masalha and many others and they also will feature the play "My Name is Rachel Corrie". I will then give some talks and book signings in Rome and other European cities before I head to Geneva, Switzerland for a very interesting European conference on divestments etc (see http://www.urgencepalestine.ch)
Spring is here and hopes for a better world are growing like the spring flowers and the first buds of vegetable plants in our gardens. The ranks of those who light the candles in the darkness of ignorance, weed the hatred and fear (within and without), and challenge the wars of profit and special interests are growing. Others have seen the light and decided to join with those of us who live in hopes rather than fear. Humanity is on the march. French workers succeeded to show what the power of mass movement can do. So did immigrant marches in America. We live in historic times.
On Monday, April 10, some 2500 people rallied in Hartford and >2500 people rallied in New Haven CT for immigrant rights and tens of thousands more in cities around the US. I and others from CT United for Peace (CTUnitedForPeace.org) spoke at the New Haven event. While the rally was predominantly hispanic (rightly so since this represents the largest immigrant community in CT), there were a few of us Arabs and Muslims (I wish there were more). We did have a table and do some flyering on Iraq and Palestine. We also helped with marshal and media work. The CT Coalition for Immigrant rights and especially Unidad Latinos en Accion and Latinos Contra La Guerra should be commended for their organization and mobilization. Pictures of this event and links to selected stories on CT April 10 mobilization in CT are posted at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/april10/
Now the antiwar movement would do well to heed this rising power of human rights activists and especially people of color (in America 45 million hispanic, 10 million Muslims and Arabs most immigrants etc). It is especially wise to heed the call of real human rights activists and not isolate the war on Iraq from its organic connections to the liberation of Palestine, the upcoming attacks on Iran, Muslim and Arab rights, etc. Stanley Heller writes in Counterpunch "Lessons from Connecticut: Time to Shake Up the Peace Movement" about our local experience:
I would add and clarify that COW was not a single issue march and rally but included many issues, it was missing the three most relevant issues: Iran, Palestine, and attacks on Arabs and Muslims. Also the March 18 rally got extensive media coverage, see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/march18 for details and photos. Now we are mobilizing for Monday May 1st (A day without Immigrant workers) where all Americans will realize the value of immigrants.
In other news:
Ultra Orthodox Jewish Rabbis visited Iran shattering the myths of Iranian anti-Semitism
Israel's plan to finalize apartheid will cost US taxpayers $billions more
Cost of Israel to US economy maybe $1.6 TRILLION
Professor Sami Al-Arian to be deported (shameful governmental persecution and attempts to prosecute ending)
(background on this case posted at http://www.freesamialarian.com )
Reports from the Occupied West Bank (in English and Hebrew)
Commentary: "The Lobby and the Bulldozer: Mearsheimer, Walt and Corrie", by Norman Solomon
ACTION 1: The Southern Poverty Law Center claims it is to protect civil and human rights but has not once defended civil and human rights of Arab and Muslim Americans. SPLC also hosts a website tolerance.org that features the ADL and the American Jewish Committee as "social justice organizations." Ofcourse ADL and AJC have now become hate groups that are concerned only with protecting Israel (and its violations of basic human rights) and attacking Arabs and Muslims. They are now focusing their energy on pushing for confrontation with Iran (after they pushed the confrontation with Iraq). I find it curious that SPLC does not address attacks on Arab and Muslim Americans while highlighting ADL and AJC (groups that have attacked cvil rights of Muslims and Arab Americans). For some background on ADL attacks on Arabs and Muslims, see
http://www.counterpunch.org/adlspying2.html and http://www.qumsiyeh.org/assaultontruth/
You can write to them (respectful but factual letters) at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
ACTION 2: Join in donating to the Council for the National Interest Foundation putting full page ad on the Israeli lobby in the NY Times
Nuclear advertisement highlights influence of Israel lobby in US April 10 2006, Financial Times (UK)
America's war on the web http://www.sundayherald.com/54975
(Israeli war crimes continue using US taxpayer money and with support of a Israeli occupied Capitol Hill) Gaza families watch in awe and fear as Israelis pour in 300 shells a day, By Conal Urquhart in Beit Lahiya, Gaza, The Guardian, 12 April 2006
On Tuesday April 11 20 young Jewish people gathered in Boston to challenge the organized Jewsh community to drop their support of violation of Palestinian Human rights this passover season. The event was held outside the building that houses the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and Boston's Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC). Photos at
This involved the same good folks that brought this great educational program: http://www.birthrightunplugged.org
"There is No Remedy Against the Language of Truth" By ROBERT FISK, The Independent, April 6, 2006
"..the head of the Iranian Jewish Committee, Haroun Yashayaie, wrote to Ahmadinejad provided part of the answer. 'The Holocaust is not a myth any more than the genocide imposed by Saddam (Hussein) on Halabja or the massacre by (Ariel) Sharon of Palestinians and Lebanese in the camps of Sabra and Chatila,' Yashayaie--who represents Iran's 25,000 Jews--said."
The uber-wardens, By Amira Hass, Haaretz, 12 April 2006 (how Israeli occupation is choking the last reminants of life in the remaining Palestinian ghettos/cantons)
Iran Showdown Tests Power of Israel Lobby By Jim Lobe, Inter Press Service, 12 April 2006
Israeli forces storm the headquarters of the Greek Orthodox Church
Some facts in response to the usual attacks on immigrant rights
Jeff Blankfort comments on the Israel's lobby influence in DC
'First they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist, so I said nothing. Then they came for the Social Democrats, but I was not a Social Democrat, so I did nothing. Then they came for the trade unionists, but I was not a trade unionist. And then they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew, so I did little. Then when they came for me, there was no one left to stand up for me.' Rev. Martin Niemöller on the Nazi regime
10 Years Later: Commemorate the Qana Massacre and Demand Israeli Accountability.
On April 18, 1996, Israeli Armed Forces shelled a United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon (UNIFIL) Compound in Qana, Lebanon, killing 106 civilians and wounding hundreds of others. Israeli and American pressures shelved a UN investigation, but legal actions are now being taken in the US under US law in an effort to redress this injustice. This provides a unique opportunity for US citizens to urge their Government to uphold human rights and international law. More at http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1201
US Financial largesse to Israel 1949-2004 as reported by the US Embassy to Israel (there are billions more that are not listed here including "spare" equipment transfers, tax deduction for assistance to Israel etc but even this sanitaized report is eye-opening)
Deep within the Pentagon, technologies are being deployed to wage the war on the internet, in newspapers and even through mobile phones. Orwell move over, not in your wildest dreams would you have imagined this. America's War on the Web, by Neil Mackay, 2006 Scotland Sunday Herald http://www.sundayherald.com/54975
Scott Ritter on the future of the anti-war movement
Cindy Sheehan on the future of the anti-war movement
Seymour Hersh, well connected journalist who exposed atrocities in Vietnam writes in the New Yorker this week on the plans to attack Iran. Excerpts:
"The Bush Administration, while publicly advocating diplomacy in order to stop Iran from pursuing a nuclear weapon, ha increased clandestine activities inside Iran and intensified planning for a possible major air attack. Current and forme American military and intelligence officials said that Air Force planning groups are drawing up lists of targets, and teams o American combat troops have been ordered into Iran, under cover, to collect targeting data and to establish contact wit anti-government ethnic-minority groups......A key ally with an important voice in the debate is Israel, whose leadership has warned for years that it viewed any attempt by Iran to begin enriching uranium as a point of no return. I was told by several officials that the White House’s interest in preventing an Israeli attack on a Muslim country, which would provoke a backlash across the region, was a factor in its decision to begin the current operational planning. In a speech in Cleveland on March 20th, President Bush depicted Ahmadinejad’s hostility toward Israel as a “serious threat. It’s a threat to world peace.” He added, “I made it clear, I’ll make it clear again, that we will use military might to protect our ally Israel.”" http://www.newyorker.com/printables/fact/060417fa_fact
Briton shot by Israelis was murdered, says inquest jury; By Vikram Dodd, The Guardian 7 April 2006
I will not be silenced, By Fadi Kiblawi, The Electronic Intifada, 7 April 2006
(Hillel leader lies intended to silence the truth and scuttle any efforts at divestment)
JAMES PETRAS has worked with the Brazilian Landless Workers Movement for the last eleven years in addition to his work with the unemployed workers' movement in Argentina. He is coauthor, with Henry Veltmeyer, of Globalization Unmasked: Imperialism in the 21st Century (Zed Books, 2001), which won the 2002 Kenny Prize in Marxist & Labour/Left Studies. He is also author of a collection of short stories, Andando por el mundo (Altamira Publishing Group, 2001). Here are two articles of his that may be of interest to current events:
on the U.S. Offensive in Latin America: Coups, Retreats, and Radicalization http://www.monthlyreview.org/0502petras.htm
on Noam Chomsky and the Israeli lobby http://www.uruknet.info/?p=m22210&hd=0&size=1&l=e
The architects of the war on Iraq based on lies and distortions: Where are they now? http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/040606P.shtml
Howard Zinn on America's blinders http://www.uruknet.info/?p=m22148&hd=0&size=1&l=x
See the cost of the war on Iraq (and on your comunity) http://nationalpriorities.org/index.php?option=com_wrapper&Itemid=182
Journalist Charley Reese speaks about the attack on the scholarly paper authored by Prof. Walt (Harvard) and Prof. Mearsheimer (Chicago) and analyzing the Israel lobby and its impact on America:
I think the detail and meticulous scholarly work is likely the reason Zionists and their allies saw this paper as more threatening than previous work along the same line (by a series of commentators starting from Prof. Edward Said over 25 years ago). To date, I have not seen a single scholarly refutation of the work (the work itself is 82 pages nearly half in footnotes and documented sources). The statement (not a rebuttal) by Chomsky and Massad were regrettable since they also failed to bring evidence for their off-the-cuff remarks and dismissal of the research paper. The original abridged version without footnotes was published in the London Review of books (a copy is at http://www.ifamericansknew.org/us_ints/lrblobby.html ). The full version which I highly recommend to all activists who want a deeper understanding of politics can be downloaded here:
More on this controversy: US professors accused of being liars and bigots over essay on pro-Israeli lobby By Julian Borger in Washington The Guardian 31 March 2006
Here is another evidence of the lobby's reach admitted to by the lobbyists themselves:
Arab TV Station Put on U.S. Terror List, By MARC PERELMAN, Forward, 31 March 2006
(Hizballah is a legal political party in the Lebanonese parliament. It formed after it succeeded as a resistance movement in ending nearly three decades of the Israeli illegal occupation of South Lebanon).
The Iran crisis and economic and political background
Some people asked me about Land Day which I referred to in my last message. This Q&A explains the significance of Land Day:
On Land Day this year dozens of demonstrations were held in occupied Palestine (and beyond).
A just peace or no peace: Israeli unilateralism is a recipe for conflict - as is the
west's racist refusal to treat Palestinians as equals, By Ismail Haniyeh, The Guardian
31 March 2006 (Haniya is the new Prime Minister of the so called "Palestinian authority", the body that represents the jailed Paestinians in the remaining and shrinking ghettos/cantons in the West Bank and Gaza)
Killing Women and Children: The “My Lai Phase” Of The Iraq War
The bodies are piling up By Cindy Sheehan
Actions before news and views
-Israel Occupation Forces implement a policy of starvation against Palestinians (http://pchrgaza.org/files/PressR/English/2006/34-2006.htm ) Write to media outlets, write to your congressman, call the Whitehouse.. as thousands of us speak truth to power, we can make a difference (perhaps there ought to be an effort to break the blockade of Gaza by mass movement of people from both sides of the borders; civil disobedience).
-Israeli and Palestinian voices in US op-ed pages; disparity in access and failure to allow narrative of the oppressed/colonized. Contact editors.
-Associated Press sloppy and unfair journalism on issues of Israel/Palestine. Erasing a video is just the tip of the iceberg. Call them.
-Consumers for Peace urges boycott of ExxonMobile products and buying Citgo products
(endorsed by Cindy Sheehan and Howad Zinn)
NEWS AND VIEWS
Killing women and children -- what possible excuse for this "My Lai" -style slaughter by our U.S. soldiers? If we are to be routinely misled by our government, could it at least do so with a modicum of skill? http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article12404.htm
List of Palestinian cabinet lineup submitted by Hamas consists of highly educated people (many from US universities), six independents, one woman and one Christian
An article about proper political analysis and the failure of the political left in the US to challenge Zionism and the Zionist lobby
Too Hot for New York, By Philip Weiss, The Nation, 16 March 2006. On the censorship of a play on Rachel Corrie http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060403/weiss
Free Fraud Zone; corruption at mega scale in US Occupied Iraq. "Iraq was awash in cash. We played football with bricks of $100 bills" By Callum Macrae and Ali Fadhil, The Guardian, 20 March 2006
Edward Said on "the Price of Camp David". This article was published in Al-Ahram newspaper in July 2001 but it is relevant today and was indeed predictive of future developments five years later
Christian groups for peace with justice proliferate despite efforts of the lunatic Christian Zionists http://www.qumsiyeh.org/exhibit12/
Anti-Palestinian Legistlation moving in Congress. Take action today http://endtheoccupation.org/
Anna Baltzer, a young Jewish women who wrote a book on Palestine is speaking around the country on her experiences. She spoke in Guilford, CT yesterday and the audience was very impressed (hosted by Guilford Peace Coalition). You may want to check her speaking schedule to see if she is speaking near you and attend and publicize her appearance. Detailed schedule and info at
Video of Rally in CT now on The Struggle Video Network (ten TV stations in CT and MA) and also available streaming on the web: http://thestruggle.org
Still photos/pictures and links to stories at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/march18/
Why Israeli Apartheid and South African apartheid are so similar by Prof. Mohamed Elmasry
The New York Times Covers Up Discrimination Against Palestinian Citizens of Israel by Patrick O'Connor http://www.dissidentvoice.org/Mar06/OConnor29.htm
Damage Control: Noam Chomsky and the Israel-Palestine Conflict by Jeffrey Blankfort
The Gruesome Reality of Operation Swarmer by Eman Ahmad Khamas (she was our gues in CT earlier this month) Published on Friday, March 24, 2006 by CommonDreams.org
Palestinian Orthodox Church formed in Connecticut
Israeli civil libertarian's introduction to German edition of Beyond Chutzpah, Norman Finkelstein's epic book that is shaking a racist establishment
Charlie Sheen's Statement to the London Guardian: Challenges Press to Stop Slinging Mud, March 27 2006
Media, Pictures, and follow-up
In New Haven, Connecticut Saturday 1500 people marched calling for bringing the troops home now, for no attack on Iran, for justice for the Palestinian people, for nuclear disarmament, and for no attack on immigrants, muslims, and Arabs (official rally demands). We received very good media coverage which I summarize here.
Five TV stations (channels 3. 8, 12, 30, and 61), at least six radio stations, and at least four newspapers (Waterbury Republican Americvan, New Haven Register, Hartford Courant). Significantly the Associated Press carried the story. The AP reported "1000 attended." This is an under-estimate but is better than the Hartford Courant which advanced the preposterous notion that 600 were at the beginning of the march (although they allowed for the idea that more joined the march along the way). The HC also had its own story while the New Haven Register and Waterbury Republican American merely carried the AP story with some pictures (here is an example from the Waterbury newspaper http://www.rep-am.com/story.php?id=4365 ). However, the Register had other stories about us published earlier (when we were inistsing on teh city to issue the permits and when we got an Iraqi women jouralist visit and give a pre-rally press conference).
The Hartford Courant while underestimating our numbers (to less than 50%) had great pictures including a very large one of a young Muslim women (we had about 100-150 Muslims join us). On the Courant website they had eight good photographs (excellent material – which was available at http://www.courant.com/news/local/ under “war protests” photo icons I have put these pictures on my website at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/march18/; please send me your pictures and I will upload them there for others to view)
The Yale Daily News carried an article today also: http://www.yaledailynews.com/article.asp?AID=32202
A good report (with some pictures) is posted at The Corner report
Our political message was very clear and loud and reverbated throughut New Haven and throughout Connecticut. More importantly it helped us build momentum and organizational abilities. The organizational work that took place from so many groups (latinos, muslims, Palestinians, left, right and center politically) sets the stage for even more growth in our local movement in CT. This was already evident as on Sunday, many of us went to Hartford and flyered and collected many petition signatures. We passed out at least 250 flyers on the connections between Iraq and Palestine (we only had two people reject/return the flyer).
For those in Connecticut, you might want to write to the media on this story (praise, clarification, additional information or just to say you were there or wished you were there). You can find some media contact info locally at http://thestruggle.org . You may also wish to join us in Connecticut United For Peace as we plan more events and get even better organized (our next meeting is April 16, see http://CTUnitedForPeace.org). Kudos to all who participated in various capacities. Congratulations to all the organizers for excellent organizing. Fruits of this action are certainly more than the good media coverage (it was especially good for our networking and capacity building, over 70 groups and ver 1000 individuals endored giving us a significant boost).
For those in other states, I am sure similar things have happened with varying lessons learned so it is also important to keep at it especially with better media and organizing work everywhere.
Finally an article by two respected professors (Harvard and Chicagho) on the Israeli lobby is generating ots of discussion in anti-war circles. It is worth reading it. The short version of it was published by the London Review of books at http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n06/mear01_.html
(at the same site you will find a link to the longer version with extensive footnotes)
No weapon can defeat a people decided to be free
A luta continua
"In our age, there is no such thing as 'keeping out of politics.' All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia" George Orwell
Hundreds of Individuals and 60 organizations in CT sign petition to endorse march and rally calling to bring troops home, government accountability, no attack on Iran, Justice for the Palestinian people, and more
Hot Zone brings remarkable stories from Palestinians and Israelis http://hotzone.yahoo.com/
Israelis afraid to travel abroad for fear of indictments/arrest for war crimes (we need to do more legal actions against Israelis who served with the colonization/occupation army especially those who engaged in war crimes
Why are the words of murdered 23 year Old American being censored
Amnesty says Iraq abuses continue, BBC News 6 March 2006
“Amnesty International has said that thousands of detainees held by the multinational forces in Iraq are still being denied their basic rights.”
Israel's security barrier and a forbidden road hem in a Palestinian family
By Laurie Copans ASSOCIATED PRESS 5 March 2006 http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/world/20060305-0833-palestinians-trappedathome.html
Another War for Israel; The amen corner howls for war with Iran By Justin Raimondi, Antiwar, 6 March 2006
Accusations of anti-semitic chic are poisonous intellectual thuggery By David Clark, The Guardian, 6 March 2006 “If the past few weeks have demonstrated anything, it is the frequency with which allegations of anti-semitism surface in modern political debate. Ken Livingstone, the Church of England and the Guardian (over articles comparing Israel and apartheid) are the most recent to find themselves in the firing line.”
Islam is the enemy the West needs
ACTION: what you can do
I am always amazed at how many people let the powers-to-be get away with and profit from controlling the discourse, manufacturing dissent (not to mention wars), and obfuscating reality. A typical example is the manufactured "crisis" about the change in operations of some US terminals (not ports) from one multinational corporation that only cares about profit to another multinational corporation that only cares about profit. The public is duped again into "taking sides" and wasting energy and resources to distract us from the real criminality. The Democratic and Republican party establishments (with the exception of a few conscientious objectors like Congresswomen Cynthia McKinney and Senator Byrd) have now been reduced to two puppets on the left and right hands of the same corporatocracy (John Perkins word in "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man"). Thus, I am amused when I see a Senator Shumer (bought and paid for by elitist interests) engage in the theatrics of questioning a Bush administration official (also bought and paid for by the same elite interests). I am amused when I hear Congressmen and Senators quote Israelis and Israeli lobbyists/apologists on BOTH sides of the "port issue" (ADL against while Israeli shipping company Zim and many Israeli leaders for it). Ironic since an Israeli company has control of sensitive information on most Americans (footnote 1) and the Israeli government did more damage to US National interests than most countries, and more than most people realize (2). I might add also more damage to Israeli public interest than most people realize (some 1/3rd of Israeli children live below the poverty line while CEOs of Israeli companies and people like Netanyahu bask in their millions and their government spends billions to build walls around Palestinian population centers).
Some free speech in Europe and America is not allowed unless it bashes Muslims and Arabs. Only outside the corporatocracy media, there can be any questioning of Zionism, of Israeli ethnic cleansing, of neoconservative hold on this administration, and of complicity in war crimes and crimes against humanity. Even a simple play about the death of an American hero is censored (3). Rachel Corrie, bulldozed to death by an Israeli soldier driving a machine made here and paid for by our taxes (4).
Meanwhile, people are still dying in Iraq and Palestine every day. The killing is made possible thanks to roughly $500,000,000,000 (that is half a trillion or $500 billion) of our taxes that were spent so far almost equally to support the war and occupation of Iraq and the war and occupation of Palestine.
Those in the corporatocracy (and their puppets in governments) create or at least support and stoke far more other distractions and divisions. Here are just a few more examples: 1) the so called sectarian strife in Iraq, 2) the old Iran/Iraq war for which Henry Kissinger said that our policies were "to get them to kill each other", 3) the efforts by servants of the empire to create a clash of civilization (witness the Daniel Pipes—Rose connections and the editorials on "free speech" when free speech is not allowed on other topics), 4) now that the public opinion supports both ending the war on Iraq and ending US partisan role in supporting Israel (with all its ramifications of instability and mayhem), the effort by some to separate the issues of Iraq and Palestine. There are many other examples and they go as far back as the rigged confrontation with Spain in 1898 (that benefited very rich people as US took control of old Spanish colonies (including Cuba) to the "war on Drugs" to the "war on Terrorism." Manufactured wars that only make the rich richer and the poor poorer.
Here are two relevant messages from conscientious human beings that address the issues:
1) from Henry Lowi (Israeli who now lives in Canada) on the Iraq and Palestine issues and the upcoming March 18:
"The fact is that the non-stop turmoil caused by the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and the US-led occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan -- and the non-stop incitement against the oppressed and the downtrodden, and the threats of more wars and more uprisings and less civil liberties – has produced a volatile situation in most countries. In the face of this volatility, and turmoil, good people need to be reminded of the essentials of political action leading to empowerment of our fellow human beings…." More at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/henrylowi/
2) Free speech in Europe and in Teaneck, NJ by Rich Siegel
"A patriotic American uses free speech to express objection when he sees his country going down the wrong path. A good Jew follows the strong Jewish tradition of pursuing social justice, and does not cease to do so when he finds the Jewish community to be in error. I claim to be both a patriotic American and a good Jew. And I claim my right to free speech, guaranteed me as an American. I demand my right to express my opinions unmolested, and to do so in this community. Anyone who thinks I'm a lunatic can avoid me. Anyone who wishes to express opposing views can do so in any number of fora. Anyone who wishes to engage me in a calm and respectful conversation will find me willing. Anyone who wishes to punish me for my views by taking a crow-bar to my car in the middle of the night again will likely find the police there the next time." More at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/freespeech/
In other NEWS and Commentaries
Arab World Geographer publishes a form on one vs two state solutions and makes it available to the public. Go to http://users.fmg.uva.nl/vmamadouh/awg and then enter the forum entitled “The Viability of a Two-State Solution to the Israel/Palestine Conflict and Possible Alternatives”
US Christian Leaders apologize for and lament the Iraq war
This website has lots of material and articles of interest. Checkout Bill Templar's article on Hamas
For news and life in Palestine, visit http://www.thisweekinpalestine.com/
In this week's news, Israeli occupation forces continue their assault on the native Palestinians killing many civilians (an average of nearly two Palestinians per day for the last two months), demolishing homes, and destroying infrastructure. All of this is done with our (US) taxes to teh tune of billions per year (also shielded from accountability by US hegemeony at teh UN). Israel also took taxes collected from products sold to Palestinians and refused to hand the money back to its legitimate owners (the Palestinian People). A Haaretz reporter called this theft in broad day light. The Palestinians will not be able to pay for healthcare, schools, and retirees (my mother included). Yet, Palestinians continue to show resiliency and determination to return to their lands from which they were expelled, to achieve their freedom, and to live in dignity and security. They continue to work hard to achieve a just peace and a future where people of all faiths will live together not separated by religions (as Zionist ideologues want).
An article in the New Haven Advocate disparages the large CT statewide effort against the war on Iraq called for by the coalition of peace groups (CT United for Peace represents many local peace and justice organizations). It is not unexpected for the powers to be to attack, divide, and target successful mobilization and then claim those who do not follow their ways are extreme. What is unusual in this case, is that the NH Advocate will end-up looking foolish as their false statements minimizing the huge mobilization in CT and smearing our collective efforts will come back to haunt them. For the record, over 550 diverse people endorsed the rally already as did >50 diverse groups in CT. For the record, the vast majority of the anti-war movement voted clearly (including with signing on to this march) and are not divided (just a scan of names shows the variety of agendas and people supportive). I am not sure what the author wants to say by using the term "sublimated anti-Semitism" after speaking of Palestine. All I could say is that of those who signed the petition in support of the rally and its minimalist demands (including Justice for the Palestinian People) include at least 70 Jewish supporters in CT (this is just by looking at recognizable names, probably many more). What is really anti-Semitic is this relentless attack on and marginalization of the Semitic people (Palestinians, the Arabs of the Middle East and those here in America) stoked by racist Zionists in positions of political power. Here is the article: http://newhavenadvocate.com/gbase/News/content?oid=oid:144920
More on the rally and march at http://ctunitedforpeace.org and http://thestruggle.org
Feel free to write letters to: firstname.lastname@example.org (contact information needed) and cc me on any letters you write. Mobilization for the rally is incredible. Already dozens of meeting and actions have happened including canvassing door to door, and activism training set of workshops, media work and much more.
A Hamas leader responds to challenging questions: 'We Do Not Wish to Throw Them Into the Sea' (very interesting and worth reading including on issue of recognizing Israel) http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3220875,00.html
On the issue of pushing people into the sea, one should note that Palestinians were the ones pushed literally into the sea, see picture and read text a
Bill Moyers writes in "Restoring the Public Trust" on the machinations of the elites who are attempting to run the world and if left unchecked could result in far more catastrophic destruction of our planet than a mere "clash of civilization"
Neoconservatism, the Israeli Lobby, and other Power Relations: Chapter 3. From the PhD Thesis of QFG member, Andrés Perez-Alonso
Abramoff's White Man's Burden by Danny Schechter
(Jack Abramoff, the lobbyist who funneled money not only to politicians but to Israeli colonial settlers in the West Bank was far more involved than people think)
Church of England does not accept Zionist pressures
The 2006 Third Annual New Orleans International Human Rights Film Festival (including Palestine :-) http://www.nolahumanrights.org/
Post-Katrina, New Orleans Louisiana Palestine Solidarity continues the Struggle for Justice and Human Rights, around the world, and in New Orleans http://www.nolaps.org
"This House believes that Zionism is a danger to the Jewish people" Report on a debate at Cambridge University http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article4507.shtml
John Perkins, author of 'Confessions of an Economic Hit Man' interviewed on Democracy Now February 15, 2006
Palestinians are being robbed by Israel, Los Angeles Times. By Amira Hass. AMIRA HASS is the Ramallah correspondent for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.
They just wanted to go home together, By Amira Hass, Haaretz
"A comparison between flourishing Pisgat Ze'ev on the lands of Hizma and Anata with Hizma and Anata, hemmed in and suffocating behind a horrendous cement wall, proves that the policy of separate development began long before the suicide bombings and the rise of Hamas." http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/685675.html
And an Israeli human rights group B'Tselem debunks the idea that the wall is for security
(Objective analysis) Hamas: The Perils of Power By Hussein Agha, Robert Malley, NY Review of Books http://www.nybooks.com/articles/18789
Take time to visit and volunteer in Palestine this summer. Highly rewarding experience http://www.middleeastfellowship.org/pse2006
Jimmy Carter speaks against collective punishment of Palestinians in the occupied areas for electing Hamas http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/022106Z.shtml
Frontpage Magazine again publishes lies and distortions. But it is good to see that they are very most concerned with success of human rights advocates in divestment actovities.
Zionists and allies gathered Feb 17-20 to plot more destruction and attacks on the US public interests
speakser include fakes like Waliud Shoebat and many Israeli war criminals who have terrorized Palestinians http://www.intelligencesummit.org/speakers/
sponsors included Israeli and US corporate thieves and misled groups who seem to not know who is behind these efforts to delve the US into never ending war against Islam o what their true motives are http://www.intelligencesummit.org/sponsors.php
Ali Abunimah and Michael Oren debate the Hamas issues on PBS http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/middle_east/jan-june06/hamas_2-20.html
A meta narrative on the ills of Liberal Zionism http://www.palestinesolidaritymovement.org/mkabed.htm
An actin suggested by a reader
I recommend that you urge your list members to write/call (its free within the US!)/fax the Wiesenthal Centre re:building museum of "tolerance" on a Muslim cemetery in west Jerusalem. Their contact info:
The International headquarters are based in Los Angeles, California.
1399 South Roxbury Drive
Los Angeles, California 90035
800 900.9036 (toll-free from within the U.S.)
310 553.4521 (fax)
I think letters to media are also warranted. Background on this story at
Mobilizing for March 18
This time I list actions before news and articles :-)
Action 1: In last week's email I sent you teh Guardian's second article on Parallele's between Israel and Apartheid South Africa and the intimate relationship between the two governments in the Apartheid era of South Africa. Zionist groups like the deceptive and lying group called "HonestReporting" have targeted the Guardian and flooded it with letters. Please take time to write letters to the Guardian Newspaper encouraging them: email@example.com
Original article in the Guardian
Action 2: Have your organization sign on to the National Campaign against anti-Palestinian Legislation
ACTION 3: Plan to attend and/or support the Palestine Solidarity Movement 5th annual conference in Washington DC Feb. 17-19
I personally will not be able to attend PSM this year as I will be in Boston for a fundraiser for Palestine Children Relief Fund (my favorite musician Simon Shaheen will perform). THose of you in the Boston area who are not going to PSM may consider attending this:
The American Friends Service Committee nominates Jeff Halper and Ghassan Andoni for the NObel Peace Prize. http://www.afsc.org/israel-palestine/news/nobel-peace-nomination.html
(BTW, Ghassan is from my hometown of Beit Sahour :-)
New book by Navy Commander Gavin Menzis and other research documentation show that under the leadership of a Muslim Chinese Admiral, the Chinese landed both on what became South and North America in 1421 while circumnavigating the globe. Some 72 years later, Columbus began the
chain of European genocide of Native Americans and the rest is history. See
Developing apartheid: Israel cuts off the fertile Jordan valley from the rest
of the occupied West Bank
Forget Iran, Americans Should be Hysterical About This: Nuking the Economy
(Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions)
UN Inquiry Demands Immediate Closure of Guantánamo by Con Coughlin
CIA Chief Sacked for Opposing Torture, by Sarah Baxter and Michael Smith, The Sunday Times UK
Palden Jenkins from Glastonbury, England wrote:
"The world's going through an immense historical process, and it seems that crises are a way that movement is accelerated. Western people are going through a humbling process, in which we get reduced to a more equal place amongst the world's population. And Muslims are going through a process of taking back their future, their culture and fate - but in the process these are transforming too. It's all rather a wrench, rather painful. We need to cool it a bit so that too much damage is not done, but I think this is all very valid as a part of this longer-term process - catharsis and outbursts of uncomfortable truth.
It's so ironic that Scandinavians, often regarded as some of the more harmless folks on this Earth, have suddenly hit the button! Whoops! Their problem is that they actually have little experience of multiculturalism - the North is not a central place, and they were not significant imperialists in the colonial period - so they're on a rapid learning process. But as human groupings go, they're also quite fair minded, and I think this will be good for improving their relations with Muslim countries, and vice versa.
In a sense, culturally and psychologically, they're a contrast to Israeli Jews: Denmark has roughly the same size and population as Israel, yet Danes impact very differently on the world. Danes will accommodate, acknowledge and correct their behaviour, and this is perhaps quite good for many of the more anti-Western Muslims to get to grips with. Allah/God is busy teaching his children some new lessons. Let us hope humans get the message! Here's a great quote from a mad rabbi I know: God is too big to squeeze into just one religion!." (Peters website is www.palden.co.uk)
I think readers can get different perspectives on this controversy and its impact. I think personally there are lessons for ALL Jews, Christians, and Muslims). Peace with justice in the Middle East=Peace with justice around the world? "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere"?
Perhaps the best explanation of the anger IMHO is captured by this Bendib Cartoon on the cartoon controversy:
Many Muslims supsect that these attacks on their religion have connections to Israel and Zionism even before they collect any evidence for it because they perceive the promotion of a "clash of civilization" as benefitting those who want the localized racism and ethnic cleansing in Palestine to be forgotten and they may profit from war and conflict. In this case unfortunately there is actual evidence for the connection between Mr. Rose and Zionists like Daniel Pipes (who once claimed me and Noam Chomsky and others are "Professors who hate America") and others now pushing attacks on Iran and Syria. Background on the origin of the offensive cartoons show connections with those who aspire to dominate and oppress:
Israel plans to build 'museum of tolerance' on Muslim graves
Church withdraws investments in Caterpillar (used by Israel for home demolitions)
Hizbullah and Lebanese Christian leader forge alliance
The second part about the secret collaboration between apartheid Israel and the apartheid regime of South Africa. "During the second world war the future South African prime minister John Vorster was interned as a Nazi sympathiser. Three decades later he was being feted in Jerusalem. In the second part of his remarkable special report, Chris McGreal investigates the clandestine alliance between Israel and the apartheid regime, cemented with the ultimate gift of friendship - A-bomb technology"
A new review of my book "Sharing the Land of Canaan: Human Rights and the Israeli Palestinian struggle" (by Peter Harley, Middle East Window)
more on my book and other reviews at Sharing the Land of Canaan
Why followers of Jesus should not visit Israel http://www.whtt.org/index.php?news=2&id=708
According to the "Jewish Telegraphic Agency" (Feb 5), the president of the World Economic Forum Klaus Schwab will shut down its magazine Global Agenda after it published my article calling for a boycott of Israel (see http://www.qumsiyeh.org/theworldeconomicsforumcontroversy/ for background, stories, and attacks ). To quote JTA "An economics magazine will be shut down after running an anti-Semitic article (sic). The promise to shut down Global Agenda was made in a Feb. 3 letter from the head of the World Economic Forum, Professor Klaus Schwab, to the head of the American Jewish Committee, David Harris. Schwab said the article, which called for an international boycott of Israel, was 'inflammatory and venomous.' It will be replaced in the reprinted Global Agenda with an editorial by Schwab about the values of the forum. He added that it will be the last issue of the magazine." The "values of the forum" seem to be to host war mongers like Paul Wolfowitz and Henry Kissinger and engineer globalization to serve the wealthy at the expense of the poor and the environment.
It is ludicrous for such groups as the American Jewish Committee, JTA and other non-Semitic arms of Israeli colonialism to hurl the term "anti-Semitic" at any Semite who challenges occupation, oppression, and apartheid or calls for adopting non-violent methods (boycotts and divestments) to challenge oppressive systems. Coincidentally, Ronnie Kasrils, who was born into the Jewish faith and is South African minister of Intelligence wrote an article about this titled "Myths of Zionism (Mail & Guardian Online). In it he states that "The danger of labelling as 'anti-Semitic' anyone critical of Israel and Zionism is that the term degenerates into a hollow cliché, and will be ignored when the real alarm is sounded." Here is the article:
Another article titled "Worlds apart" assesses the comparison of South African and Israeli systems of apartheid. The Guardian newspaper published this with this forward: "Israelis have always been horrified at the idea of parallels between their country, a democracy risen from the ashes of genocide, and the racist system that ruled the old South Africa. Yet even within Israel itself, accusations persist that the web of controls affecting every aspect of Palestinian life bears a disturbing resemblance to apartheid. After four years reporting from Jerusalem and more than a decade from Johannesburg before that, the Guardian's award-winning Middle East correspondent Chris McGreal is exceptionally well placed to assess this explosive comparison. Here we publish the first part of his two-day special report" Text at http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,,1703245,00.html
In this Orwellian world, free speech is used to insult a religion of 1.3 billion people (Islam) while insisting that no one can question a political movement that has hijacked the media discourse, has ethnically cleansed and stole the land of the Palestinian people (political Zionism, not a religious movement), and continues to engage in gross violations of basic human rights to this day (see latest report from the Palestinian Human Rights group Al-Haq for October-December by going to http://asp.alhaq.org/zalhaq/site/eDocs/txtDocs/MDU%20reports/MDU-0101-2006.pdf ). And any questioning of the fabricated history of this fascist movement is not allowed. In 1947, Albert Einstein and prominent Jews wrote a letter criticizing the terrorist Zionist movement Herut (forerunner of Likud and then run by a murderer who was to become prime minister of Israel). That letter published in the New York Times (see copy at http://www.qumsiyeh.org/einsteinetalonbegin/ ) would not be allowed today in the New York Times. In fact the NYT refuses to publish any letters that question political Zionism.
Proposed Policy Guidelines for "the National Institutions of the Jewish People," by Avraham Burg, Chairman of the Executive of the Jewish Agency and the World Zionist Organisation
Michael Ruppert and From the Wilderness exposes US government corruption and CIA profitteering from drugs and much more http://www.fromthewilderness.com
Action 1: Support Request for War Crimes Report on the Attack on the USS Liberty. Contact Congress and the Pentagon Now!
Action 2: There are many opportunities for you to organize speakers in your area at Churches, schools etc (many can suggest local or national speakers to you). In the continental US, you can also invite the wheels of Justice bus tour with its speakers (http://justicewheels.org)
Action 3: Organize in your city by getting a group together and do something or join existing groups (google search can help you locate these). In Washington DC, protest government spying and the shadow government: AIPAC's Policy Conference is scheduled to be held on March 5-7 '06 at the Washington, DC Conference Center. Around the nation, organize for the third anniversary of the war on Iraq (March 18-19 events). In CT, we are planning a huge rally and march and expecting thousands to attend (see CTUnitedforPeace.org).
A thought for the week: ”Yakrah ul-Munker” is a saying in Islam meaning “hating the evil deeds”. Note that like in Christianity it is not hating those who do bad things/evil but the evil ACTS. Love your enemies does not mean love their acts of injustice. In all other religions (Buddhism, Judaism etc.) you find similar sayings. The tradition of Mahatma Ghandi and other pacifists also state the same: challenge bad deeds but leave the option and the door open for those who do bad things.
ACTION: Contact congress and ask that they not cut off aid to the Palestinian people
More articles published on The World Economics Forum Controversy
Senator Lieberman’s misplaced loyalties to shady characters and ideologies becoming more and more obvious. Time to elect people who will represent the
public not special interests. http://www.forward.com/articles/7237
Taboo broken: Hamas op-eds in the Guardian and the Washington Post (write letters and contact editors. List of contact info at http://www.pmwatch.org/pmw/contact/media.asp)
Khalid Mish’al: We will not sell our people or principles for foreign aid. The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,,1698702,00.html
What Hamas Is Seeking By Mousa Abu Marzook, Washington Post, Tuesday, January 31, 2006; A17
DAMASCUS, Syria -- A new era in the struggle for Palestinian liberation is upon us. Through historic fair and free elections, the Palestinian people have spoken. Accordingly, America's long-standing tradition of supporting the oppressed's rights to self-determination should not waver. The United States, the European Union and the rest of the world should welcome the unfolding of the democratic process, and the commitment to aid should not falter. Last week's victory of the Change and Reform Party in the Palestinian legislative elections signals a new hope for an occupied people.......
ACTIONS: SUPPORT THE WHEELS OF JUSTICE
There is no better way to materialize "think globally, act locally" than by helping the WHEELS OF JUSTICE BUS TOUR this Spring. We are looking for hosts, networking, activists, and/or donors. Bringing eyewitness accounts to occupation in Iraq and Palestine, the colorful biodiesel bus has been to hundreds of cities and spoke at thousands of venues over the past three years (this includes over 1500 middle schools, high schools, colleges, and universities). Would you consider helping arrange bookings in your area. With your help, we will continue to speak and mobilize at more high schools, more colleges, more churches, and more community centers and to a wider audience. If you live in the areas along the upcoming spring route (see below) or know people there, then please facilitate venues/hosting. We can accommodate speaking to audiences of varied background and adapting to circumstances. We speak to faith groups, to classes dealing with a variety of issues, to activist groups, to community organizations, and basically to any gathering of people who will hear us (we even spoke at a naval academy). So spread the word: call and email people you know along the present route or people/organizations you think might be interested. Also hold fundraising events and raise needed funds. To help along the route contact our new booking agent Jeff Lepper at firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel. 208-883-4814.
It also takes money to operate this educational platform to cover speaker travel costs, biodiesel, food, literature, mailing, logistics etc. To donate send checks made out to Wheels of Justice, 740 Roundlake Rd., Luck, WI 54853 (if you want your donation tax deductible, please make out check to Progressive Foundation instead of WOJ). You can use the enclosed addressed envelope to mail your check. Online donations via Paypal at http://www.justicewheels.org/donate.html
March 1- May 20th tentative route:
Iowa (Waterloo, Ames, DesMoins)
Nebraska (Lincoln, Omaha)
Kansas (Kansas City, Topeka, Lawrence, Wishita etc)
Oklahoma (Oklahoma City, etc)
Texas (Dallas/Ft. Worth, Waco areas)
Arkansas (Conway/Little Rock, Fayetteville etc)
Missouri (Joplin, Springfield, St. louis, MO
Tennessee (Memphis, Nashville)
Georgia (Atlanta and Northeast GA)
South Carolina (Columbia)
North Carolina (Asheville/Hickory, Knoxville)
Ketucky (Lexington, Louisville)
West Virginia (Charlestone and nearby)
Virginia (Roanoke, Lynchburg, Richmond)
up I-95 to end in baltimore
Pickup in the Northeast/New England in the Fall
Visit http://justicewheels.org where you will also find more information.
The Wheels of Justice All-Volunteer Team http://justicewheels.org
The The World Economics Forum (WEF) brings thousands of world political and business leaders to Davos to exchange information. Condoleeza Rice addressed the conference today via satellite uplink. After complaints from some who do not believe in free speech (because the truth is to their disadvantage), Klaus Schwab Founder and Executive Chairman of the WEF apologized for publication of my article asking for a boycott of Israel in the WEF Global Agenda Magazine distributed to all attendees (http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/675281.html ). The article in the glossy magazine was also originally posted at their website but subsequently pulled (original link http://globalagendamagazine.com/2006/Qumsiyeh.asp). This is a clear violation of free speech and very unfair since none of the other articles were pulled (some of them like that of Michael Leveen clearly advocating violence). Please read my article Boycott Israel and then write to them with your thoughts. You could write to:
The World Economic Forum: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
cc: Will Goodhart, Managing Editor email@example.com
cc: Margaret Doyle, Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
US public interest and the Palestinian elections (print and web publication venue sought)
Under the watchful eye of the jailers and the suffocating walls and hundreds of checkpoints between these cantons, the prisoners/occupied people are holding elections for a body with limited if any powers. In the Oslo agreements, it is stated (Article 18) that "Legislation, including legislation which amends or abrogates existing laws or military orders, which exceeds the jurisdiction of the Council or which is otherwise inconsistent with the provisions of the Declaration of Principles, this Agreement, or of any other agreement that may be reached between the two sides during the interim period, shall have no effect and shall be void ab initio." On the positive side, and despite these incredible limitations, the Palestinians permitted to vote showed an incredible internal democratic diversity and varied perspectives.... (Read more about US role, Fatah, Hamas, and others and how this relates to the larger chess game at): US public interest and the Palestinian elections
The story that will not die: more Abramoff connections http://waynemadsenreport.com/
US pressures Europe to deny visas for people who could educate on US torture http://peacepalestine.blogspot.com/
ACTION: Please continue to write and call the media. I also received the following request for action. I suggest that as you write to these Israeli officials about this case of injustice, you also express your opinion with regards to the demolition of Palestinian homes in Jerusalem (see House demolitions in Jerusalem continue unabated, Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, January 16th, 2006 at http://stopthewall.org/latestnews/1082.shtml)
I'm writing to you in the hopes that you will share the following story with your listserves. I am a law student at Penn law school and have met you at a few events on palestine over the last few years. This summer, I was working at Al-Haq, an organization with which i'm sure you're familiar. Shortly after i arrived, a fieldworker of theirs, Ziyad Hmeidan, was detained by the Israelis at Qalandia checkpoint on May 23, 2005. A husband and father of two, Ziyad was in the process of getting his master's degree in sociology from Birzeit and about to sit his exams, when he was arrested. He was soon placed in administrative detention and transferred to the the Naqab (Ansar III detention center). Most recently his detention was extended yet again by the IDF in January of this year.
Relatively speaking, Ziyad is one of the lucky ones---Al-Haq has provided him with attorneys and shared his case with international organizations such as Amnesty International (which has featured his story on their website, see web.amnesty.org/pages/isr-action-detention). Unfortunately, NGOs can sometimes be very insular, communicating their projects and causes almost exclusively amongst themselves. Given the number of people i am sure are on your list-serve, i thought it might be a good vehicle to get Ziyad's story (and by extension that of the many other Palestinians in his situation) out on the grassroots level in the U.S.. If there's anything Israel cannot abide by, it's bad press in the U.S. It is my hope that you will share Ziyad's story, as a symbol of so many similar stories, and encourage those on your list-serve to write,call, and generally do whatever they can think of to register their protest against Ziyad's continued detention.
The Amensty International website, where Ziyad's story is featured, makes a similar request. Who knows if more than a handful of people ever really head such calls---but i thought i would echo it in the hope that you might pass it along.
For further information on Ziyad's case, please visit the Al-Haq website (www.alhaq.org) and go to "Updates" on the main page. If you are interested in finding out the more specific of his case, I can put you in touch with the appropraite people at Al-Haq. In addition, I am including addresses for those so inclined to send letters etc.:
Ambassador Daniel Ayalon, 3514 International Dr., N.W. Washington, DC 20008 Tel: 202-364-5500 Email: email@example.com
Ehud Olmert, Acting Prime Minister, Office of the Prime Minister, 3 Kaplan Street, P O Box 187 Kiryat Ben-Gurion, Jerusalem 91919, Israel Fax: +972 2 670 5475 or +972-2-566 4838 Telex: 25279 MPRES IL E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tzipi Livni, Minister of Justice, 29 Salah al-Din Street, Jerusalem 91010, Israel Fax: +972 2 628 7757 E-mail: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Mr. Gideon Ezra Minister of Internal Security, P.O. Box 18182 Jerusalem 91181 ISRAEL
Fax: +972 2 581 1832 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Menahem Mazuz, Attorney-General, Ministry of Justice, 29 Salah al-Din Street Jerusalem 91010, Israel, Fax: +972 2 628 5438 / +972 2 627 4481
Brigadier General Avihai Mandelblit, Judge Avocate General, 6 David Elazar Street, Hakirya Tel Aviv, Israel, Fax: +972 3 569 4370 E-mail: c/o email@example.com
Thank you for taking the time in reading this email. I hope to hear from you soon.
High ranking Pentagon official Mr. Larry Franklin was sentenced today to 12 years for passing US top secrets to Israel. Under espionage laws, this is a low sentence because he is supposedly collaborating; although I am sure pressures are exerted to drop these investigations. Franklin worked for then third highest ranking Pentagon official: neocon Zionist Douglas Faith who pushed for the war on Iraq with. another neocon Zionist, Paul Wolfowitz. Wolfowitz is now head of the so called World Bank. Together with the IMF, these two institutions are charged by millions of activists around the world with helping destroy third world economies and transferring ownership of natural resources in the third world to multinational corporations (see http://www.justpeace.org/wbimf.htm ).
Few Israeli papers and the New York Times posted something about this on their websites (it will be interesting to see where this would appear in their printed addition). CNN, FOX, NBC etc had nothing as far as I could tell!! This should be a front page story in the print media and should be highlighted in TV/radio news around the world. It is extremely important especially when people understand the connection with indicted lobbist Jack Abramoff (a friend of these other neocon Zionists and a major contributer to Israel's colonial settler movement in the occupied Palestinian areas).
Letters to the media are encouraged as are posts to blogs and email lists (communications). It has been shown before that when activists press on issues, they get addressed and the public eventually turns (e.g. movements for civil rights, against the war on Vietnam, against Apartheid South Africa, etc.. more recently in public opinion on the illegitimate war on Iraq). Let us not let narrow special interests whitewash this scandal and keep it out of the public eyes. Demand in the media and from your elected officials to force AIPAC (Israel's lobby) to obey the law and register as a foreign lobby under congressional laws on operations of foreign lobbies. It is the only foreign lobby not following US laws. If there is any needed proof that AIPAC acts as a foreign lobby, this is it. Also this is timely in discussion because the same neocons who pushed for the war on Iraq are pushing to besiege Iran. The distortion of US foreign policy to serve narrow and short term Zionist interests is harmful to US public interests. Because issues of Iran and leaks in government are prominent, it is an excellent opportunity to wrote, call, fax, and speak on these issues.
You can find media contact information to write at this link:
More Background information and resources
Finally here is an excellent article that explains reality on the ground: "It's the occupation, stupid!" By Geoffrey Aronson, Haaretz, 20 January 2006
Not dealing with Zionism is like a King Kong movie without the Ape: The War within the Antiwar Movement BY LENNI BRENNER (Brenner summarizes the struggle between ANSWER and UFPJ coalitions and the direction of the anti-war movement) http://www.qumsiyeh.org/thewarwithintheantiwarmovement/
Op-ed submitted to The Day but not published on lack of Palestinian voices in these newspapers. When discussing the Middle East, the voices and narrative of the victims are silenced.
US Neocons Accuse Chavez of Anti-Semitism, By Jim Lobe, Inter Press Service, 16 January 2006
SHARON – THE END OF AN ERA? By Henry Lowi*
A veteran of the October 1973 "Yom Kippur" war ("Harb Ramadan"), Henry Lowi writes: "Sharon wantonly sacrificed his young soldiers and officers in crossing the Suez Canal, for the glory of Arik Sharon and to preserve the conquests of Zionism... I will always remember Arik Sharon as the son-of-a-bitch general for whom his own soldiers were truly only cannon fodder." He observes that Sharon "successfully used propaganda to serve the goals of his tactical maneuvers", and concludes with: "Down with Sharon-style brutality, lies and oppression!"
Birthright unplugged in the news (this is a story about how some young Jews take the free trip offered to them by the Zionist PR machine and turn it upside down by working for Palestinian human rights) http://search.csmonitor.com/search_content/0112/p03s03-lire.html
Why an economic boycott of Israel is justified, by Prof. Norman Finkelstein
Racist Attacks by some Rabbis on the idea of mixed schools (Jews and non-Jews) in Jerusalem
(Israeli public schools are segregated)
Palestinian Comedians sattire their assigned roles as "Arab Israelis"
Action: Buy your gas at CITGO and support the poor
Two letters to the editor, one from me and one from Rev. David Good. Locals in CT can write to these two newspapers Letters@theday.com and letters@NHregister.com; and you can write to your own local newspaper. We must keep bringing these issues to the public attention.
'Dressers Of Sycamore Trees' Needed Now (The Day)
The letter titled “There are nonviolent activists in Mideast,” published Jan. 11, was very encouraging and reminded me of the prophet Amos, “a dresser of Sycamore trees,” who admonished the people of Israel for their injustices. The letter reminds me that the Jewish voice of conscience is alive and well, and is a welcome change from the lies perpetrated by others — those who purport to be for “fairness in Middle East reporting” and yet claim that the illegal wall is really “only” a fence, and those who argue that the wall is for the purpose of security, when even the most ardent supporters of Israel know and know full well that the wall is really a unilateral imposition of a National border that confiscates even more land and resources from the Palestinian communities.
I have seen the prophetic spirit of Amos in such organizations as B'tselem: The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, Rabbis for Human Rights, Machsom Watch, Women in Black and The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions. Far from
being haters of Israel, those who represent these organizations love what Israel can and should be, but cannot be if it continues its misuse of power.
“You shall not covet your neighbor's house.” I assume this a universal commandment, but maybe there are those who would claim that it doesn't apply if your neighbor happens to be of a different faith or nationality. Maybe we need more “dressers of Sycamore trees” to enlighten us on this issue.
The Rev. David W. Good, Lyme
Editor's note: This writer, and the author of the letter to which he refers, titled, “There are nonviolent activists in Mideast,” are members of “We Refuse to be Enemies,” an interfaith organization of
Muslims, Jews and Christians. In April 2005, both letter writers traveled with the group to the occupied West Bank.
Abramoff money funneled to extremists (New Haven Register Letter)
The indictment and plea bargain of lobbyist Jack Abramoff maybe the tip of the iceberg. It is now well established (though not well publicized) that Abramoff used his connections to Congressman DeLay to get special interests to donate money to a charity he set up. He did not tell donors that money was being funneled for military aid to extremist Jewish settlers living on Palestinian lands and terrorizing native Palestinians. Further, it is known that Abramoff lobbied congressman Nye to award a government contract of $3 million dollars to an obscure Israeli company. And this maybe only two of many revelations to come. Part of the reason for the large bail set for Abramoff -$2.2 million- is that he was likely to flee to Israel as did some of his associates. Like all Jews (including converts), he is entitled to automatic citizenship in the state of Israel. Ironically, criminals like Abramoff can go live in Israel while Palestinian refugees are not given the right to return to their homes and lands.
Mazin Qumsiyeh, Orange
Sunday and Monday the Peabody Museum of Natural History in New Haven, CT held the annual "Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Legacy of Environmental and Social Justice". Community groups were allowed to have tables and the accent is on materials for children and young people. Over 6000 people attended. The Middle East Crisis Committee and Al-Awda-CT sponsored a table with games, literature and Middle Eastern objects. Pictures at MLKJR Peabody
The question is asked what would MLK Jr think about discrimination against Palestinians and what would he think about the war on Iraq. Here are some relevant articles:
MLK Jr in his own words illustrate clearly that he would be against the so called PATRIOT act and any discrimination, ewars and oppression:
http://www.almaz.com/nobel/peace/MLK-jail.html (Letter from Birmingham Jail)
http://www.hpol.org/transcript.php?id=72 (I have a dream speech) or simply
"I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government.... There is something strangely inconsistent about a nation and a press that would praise you when you say, 'Be nonviolent toward Jim Clark,' but will curse and damn you when you say, 'Be nonviolent toward little brown Vietnamese children!' There is something wrong with that press...." -- Martin Luther King, Jr.
Fraud fit for a King: Israel, Zionism, and the misuse of MLK by Tim Wise http://www.zmag.org/Sustainers/content/2003-01/20wise.cfm
Desperation and Drastic Measures: The Use and Abuse of Martin Luther King Jr. by Israel's Apologists http://www.counterpunch.org/kiblawi01172004.html
Martin Luther King, Jr., Democratic Socialist By Paul Street http://www.zmag.org/Sustainers/Content/2006-01/14street.cfm
Gabriel Ash: Rev. Jackson -- Pissing on the Graves of Civil Rights Heroes http://dissidentvoice.org/Jan06/Ash15.htm
- Write a letter to your newsspaper and call/email your TV and radio station (I am sure lies will be told - see articles above to refute them)
- Citizens for Fair Legislation Action Alert: Israel Cantonizes West Bank http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizations/CFLWeb/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=2133
Correction: In my last message, I included an article by Miko Peled. I apologize for sending my note without checking which indicated he is son of Shasron. It is obvious from reading his article that he is son of legendary Israeli general Matti Peled. My sincerest apologies to Miko and the readers for the slip.
Thanks to those of you who wrote letters to editor and also those of you who shared their letters with me. Here are a few more articles and tidbits of news.
Israeli history 101. What do you know about Israeli leaders including Sharon. http://www.qumsiyeh.org/israelihistory101/
Abramoff and the Israeli Connection By Justin Raimondo. Antiwar 11 January 2006 http://antiwar.com/justin/
Hamas drops call for destruction of Israel from manifesto. By Chris McGreal in Jerusalem. The Guardian, 12 January 2006 http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,3858,5372294-103681,00.html
Might the Arabs Have a Point? By Patrick J. Buchanan, The American Conservative 16 January 2006 http://amconmag.com/2006/2006_01_16/buchanan.html
Study: Cost of war on Iraq likely to be 1-2 TRILLION
Jerry Falwell admits he and Netanyahu conspired to use the Lewinsky affair to force Clinton to abandon pressure on Israel
Israeli Jews meet to plan more ethnic cleansing http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/667581.html
Jewish Telegraphic Agency: As Abramoff case plays out, his Jewish ties come to fore. By Matthew E. Berger
See our streaming video 24/7 on http://www.TheStruggle.org
You will find things like Nadia McCaffrey on her son’s death in Iraq and government efforts to prevent publicity, Lenni Brenner on his book “51 Documents” about collaboration by imporatant Zionist leaders with fascists in the ‘30’s and even into the ‘40’s, Kathy Kelly talks about what it was like to be in Baghadad during the Shock and Awe invasion, and Angela Goldstein talks about the desperate conditions of Palestinians in her home for 24 years, Israel
Making human drama out of a political crisis, By Rachel Shabi, The Guardian. As Jewish settlers were evacuated from the Gaza Strip in August, the media caught every tearful, defiant move on camera. But how much was real and how much stage-managed?
Palestinian cave dwellers in occupied Hebren area face the might of the Zionist colonization project. Israeli Human Rights Group B'Tselem
National week of campus action against the war
Write letters to the editor to publish in NY Times (firstname.lastname@example.org) to respoond to their constant stream of nonsense. Most recently teh published articles by Benny Morris and Thomas Friedman praising Sharon. Friedman today went as far as to ask for a "Palestinian Sharon". Also write and call their public editor (email@example.com, Tel 212 556-7652) to complain about using a racist Benny Morris for a contributor twice. Benny Morris wrote a NYT op-ed both after Arafat's death
http://www3.baylor.edu/American_Jewish/everythingthatusedtobehere/resources/Arafat/Arafat-NYT-Morris.htm and after Sharon's illness (praising Sharon). Here are more relevant material on Sharon
Gabriel Ash on Benny Morris and the NY Times "Imagine all the people living like mindless lambs"
Miko Peled is son of legendary Israeli general Miko Peled. Here is his reflections on the Legacy of his father's colleague http://www.qumsiyeh.org/peledonsharonlegacy/
Ariel Sharon by Robert Fisk
Israel's Prime Minister was a ruthless military commander responsible for one of the most shocking war crimes of the 20th century, argues Robert Fisk. President George Bush acclaims Ariel Sharon as 'a man of peace', yet the blood that was shed at Sabra and Chatila remains a stain on the conscience of the Zionist nation. As Sharon lies stricken in his hospital bed, his political career over, how will history judge him? http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article11479.htm
Support the Christian Peace Maker Teams, visit http://cpt.org
Bush may decide to rename Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to "Men of Peace day" to allow inclusion of Ariel Sharon (“Man of Peace”) in a national holiday. But seriously, Bush does have selective memory and chooses to forget that:
- This government and Sharon’s government both violated International law and the United Nation’s charter and continue to do so
- MLK,Jr against militarism and war is forgotten
- Bush family history supporting Nazi economy in the 1930s
- Bush family consistent work against civil rights at home
- Sharon's long history of war crimes and crimes against humanity.
On the good news, there is significant media interest in alternative views on Sharon and the politically induced coma of the overextended pacification process (mistakenly labeled "peace process"). I myself was interviewed six times already and have four more scheduled interviews (TV, radio, newspapers) this weekend. I will be on WABC radio this afternoon with Ron Insana (Saturday, in the first hour 2-3 PM EST) if you want to listen live http://www.wabcradio.com/showdj.asp?DJID=21334
Also with abundant editorials to respond to, you have ample opportunity to bring up issues of human rights and justice. Having resources and links is always helpful. Here are these week’s links.
History and links on Ariel Sharon not seen on fox and CNN or some mainstream newspapers http://electronicintifada.net/bytopic/people/110.shtml
and an excelent article by Dr. Karma Nabulsi http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/comment/0,10551,1680976,00.html
The article I shared with you two days ago on Sharon and media coverage is now posted at http://www.palestinechronicle.com/story.php?sid=010506234601
Citizens for Fair Legislation Action Alert: TELL YOUR REPRESENTATIVES TO SUPPORT REAL DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS IN PALESTINE.
Good news: Morales and Chavez consolidate ties http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/americas/01/03/morales.chavez.reut/index.html
Human Rights Watch asks US to cut off aid to Israel (please write your
member of Congress)"The Israeli newspaper Haaretz found in an investigative report they conducted last month that Israel spends about $550 million alone for the non-military aspects of settlement maintenance and expansion. The Israeli Knesset, meanwhile, estimates that Israel will spend about $3.4 billion on the separation wall, 80% of which is to run inside the occupied West Bank."
Photos: Checkpoints, Gates and Terminals – Driving racist ghettoization in the 21st century (in a “Holy Land”) http://stopthewall.org/photos/1078.shtml
Bush Pulls the Plug on Iraq Reconstruction: $18 Billion in Funding to Stop at End of Year http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1676911,00.html
Apartheid in the Middle East by Kristoffer Larsson http://www.marwenmedia.com/articles_images/IsraeliApartheid.html
Registration is now available for the 5th Annual Palestine Solidarity
Movement Conference February 17-19, 2006, Georgetown University, Washington DC You may register at:
'Don't buy fruits of Occupation' Activists remove Apartheid Israel goods from supermarket shelves In Flanders, Belgium, the Flemish Palestine Solidarity Committee has stepped up its boycott campaign of Israeli goods http://stopthewall.org/worldwideactivism/1071.shtml
Get Bush regime OUT in 2006 http://worldcantwait.net/