Thursday, November 30, 2006
The Federation comprises the local cadre of the Zionist state terrorist infrastructure and this is its single largest fundraising event of the year. In the 2004-2005 funding cycle, the Federation gave approximately $300,000 to an organ of the Israeli government--the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI). The main function of JAFI is to facilitate the settlement of Jews from all over the world on land that has been ethnically cleansed of its indigenous Arab inhabitants but the agency also funds international Zionist propaganda or hasbara campaigns, too. Tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of other Federation dollars make their way to the apartheid state through grants to the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, birthright israel, Israel Scholarships, etc. Money not sent to the genocidal "Jewish State" stays here and is spent, in part, on indoctrinating local Jews in Jewish chauvinism, which brings us to this year's keynote speaker: rabbi Joseph Telushkin.
Although the Ford Motor Co. is paying to bring Telushkin to Ypsilanti, he is representative of the Zionism and Jewish chauvinism promoted by the Jewish Federation of Washtenaw County. Telushkin co-authored The Nine Questions People Ask About Judaism with Dennis Prager. Prager is a Right wing talk show host, lecturer, etc. who still supports the 2003 US invasion of Iraq and he argued last summer that "Israel's fight for existence against the primitives, fanatics and sadists in Hezbollah and Hamas and elsewhere in the Arab/Muslim world who wish to destroy it" is "the most clarifying moral litmus test of our time" and "Anyone on the Left who cannot see this is either bad, a useful idiot for Islamic terrorists, anti-Semitic or all three." But, I digress.
In The Nine Questions, Telushkin (and his co-author) write (all quotes are from the 1986 edition):
First, violent crime is virtually unknown among observant Jews, and this is as true in societies where Jews constitute the majority of the population (as for example, in Israel) as where Jews constitute a minority. This abhorrence of bloodshed among Jews is historically attributable to Judaism and its laws. Kashrut, for example, has over the past three thousand years generated in Jews a reverence for all life. ... "Consider the one circumstance that no Jewish mother ever killed a chicken with her own hand and you will understand why homicide is rarer among Jews than among any other human groups." [p. 69]This would be hilarious if it were not such an appalling lie. Jews have shown themselves to be at least as murderous as any other people. One is reminded of the Jewish prominence in Murder, Inc. and other gangs. Can you say Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel, Meyer Lansky, Louis "Lepke" Buchalter, and Dutch Schultz (born Arthur Flegenheimer) to name a few? Yigal Amir, the assassin of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, was a devout Orthodox Jew. Perhaps, the problem is these killers' mothers slaughtered their own chickens. Then, there are the tens of thousands of Germans murdered by Jews after WWII. Not to mention 30,000-90,000 Christians murdered by Jews in 614 A.D. after the Persian conquest of Jerusalem. This is, by no means, an exhaustive list.
And as most Palestinians--and many Israeli Jews--will tell you, the most observant Jewish settlers are typically the most violent. The notorious Baruch Goldstein, a Jewish Defense League alum, comes to mind. According to the Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem, the soldiers and citizens of the "Jewish state" have killed 3,997 Palestinians--including many children and other unarmed noncombatants--during the approximately six years of the second Intifada. Then there's the one thousand or more Lebanese killed by Israelis last summer, again mostly innocent civilians.
In fact, even leaving out the Palestinians killed by Israelis and vice-versa the homicide rate in the "Jewish state" isn't that great in international comparison. The Israeli rate of "Intentional homicide, completed" per 100,000 population was 3.01 and 2.62 in 2003 and 2004, respectively. For example, the corresponding figures from Germany were 0.99 and 0.98; Ireland, 1.12 and 0.91; Iran, 2.64. and 2.93; and from the United Arab Emirates, 1.12 and 0.63. During 1990-1995, Israel had the world's third highest firearm-related homicide rate among children less than 15 years of age.
Furthermore, one wonders if Rabbi Telushkin is either appallingly ignorant or a bald-faced liar when he claims "abhorrence of bloodshed among Jews is historically attributable to Judaism." Judaism and the Tanakh/Old Testament are rife with Jewish-perpetrated slaughter of other peoples--at God's command and otherwise--and/or the celebration of same. Even Isaiah prophesied against Judah: "Your hands are full of blood".
The Passover commemorates the night that "the Lord struck down all the first-born in the land of Egypt, from the first-born of Pharaoh ... to the first-born of the captive who was in the dungeon ... there was a loud cry in Egypt; for there was no house where there was not someone dead" (Exod. 12:29-30). But the Lord passed over the houses of the Israelites and none of them were killed.
According to Aaron J. Tapper ("Towards a Jewish Theology of Nonviolence," Tikkun, March-April 2005) "in traditional homes" Jews recite a prayer known as the Shfokh Chamatkha during the Passover seder:
Pour out Your fury against the nations who do not know You and upon the regions where they do not invoke Your name because they devoured Jacob and desolated his home. Pour out Your wrath on them and may Your blazing anger overtake them. Pursue them with anger and destroy them from under the heavens of Adonai.In the ninth chapter of book of Esther, which the festive holiday of Purim is based upon, we read:
15And the Jews that were in Shushan gathered themselves together on the fourteenth day also of the month Adar, and slew three hundred men in Shushan; but on the spoil they laid not their hand. 16And the other Jews that were in the king's provinces gathered themselves together, and stood for their lives, and had rest from their enemies, and slew of them that hated them seventy and five thousand--but on the spoil they laid not their hand-- 17on the thirteenth day of the month Adar, and on the fourteenth day of the same they rested, and made it a day of feasting and gladness. [Text is from the 1917 Jewish Publication Society translation]As Tapper points out, "the text clearly refrains from stating that the tens of thousands of 'assailants' [those killed by Jews] were armed." To state otherwise, i. e. that "assailants" [sic] were armed, "is not the pshat/literal meaning of the passage." In other words, the text gives no indication that the Jews' victims were armed.
As a result of the legacy of violence in Judaism it is not uncommon to find pronouncements from the government-funded Israeli rabbinate sanctioning the killing of non-Jews by Jews. The late Israel Shahak documented several such instances. Thus, at the above mentioned Baruch Goldstein's funeral, Rabbi Yaacov Perrin declared that "1 million Arabs are not worth a Jewish fingernail."
Continuing from the passage cited above, Prager and Telushkin claim, "Second, ethically excellent behavior is expected from observant Jews." Perhaps, they are thinking of people like the Federation's keynote speaker last year: Alan Dershowitz, an acclaimed liar--oops, I mean lawyer--and torture advocate.
Elsewhere in The Nine Questions we learn why Jews shouldn't marry non-Jews. This chapter starts off from an epigraph from Herman Wouk:
These people [Jews who assimilate] ... are lost from Judaism, that is all; lost down a road which has swallowed many more Jews than the Hitler terror ever did. Of course they survive as persons. But from the viewpoint of an army, it makes little difference whether a division is exterminated or disperses into the hills and shuck off it uniforms. [p. 145; italics in original]The issue we are told is "values, not ethnicity" (p. 146). You see, "Judaism is a superior system" (p. 143) and if your potential spouse shares your concerns and values then "marry that person. Judaism welcomes converts" (p. 146). Otherwise, you're messin' with "the centrality of the Jewish role in the world" (p. 146).
In accordance with Judaism's 3,200-year-old directive (Exodus 19:6) ["ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation"], the Jews must form an army of tender, caring, strong, moral people to combat the hordes of bored, aimless people and the religious and secular totalitarian and nihilistic ideologies to which they are prey. ... It is time--if there is time--to proceed with the world-transforming event which began 3,200 years ago at a mountain in Sinai--the Jewish revolution. [p. 119]If you marry that "shiksa bitch" then you're doing Hitler's work and messing with the army and the revolution. Oh, and, by the way, Israel is Judaism's "model state ... Now nationally, as well as individually, the Jewish people have the capacity to show the world the moral power of the Jewish ideal" (p. 119). Indeed, they have and Israel is truly a "light unto the nations"--a flashing red light.
Finally, on the marriage topic, there is this gem: "In our personal experiences, we (the authors) have been involved in relationships with Jewish women which were eventually ended because to these women Judaism was likely to remain a peripheral concern" (p. 147). I would love to hear what the women have to say about that; Prager has reportedly been divorced twice.
I'll close with one last nugget of Jewish wisdom from The Nine Questions. Question 6 is "Is There a Difference Between Anti-Zionism and Antisemitism?" In the epigraph to this chapter our demonic duo repeat a quote falsely attributed to the Rev. Martin Luther King: "When people criticize Zionists, they mean Jews" (p. 120; italics in original). Prager and Telushkin also assert: "Unless the Nazis are to be considered the only antisemites in history, anti-Zionists are as antisemitic as every other type of antisemite. Only their motivation may differ. Like all other antisemites, anti-Zionists are at war with nearly every Jews (nearly every Jew has some sense of Jewish national identity and supports Israel's right to exist)" (p. 122).
Here's what Norman Finkelstein says in Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History:
As already noted, Jewish elites in the United States have enjoyed enormous prosperity. From this combination of economic and political power has sprung, unsurprisingly, a mindset of Jewish superiority. Wrapping themselves in the mantle of The Holocaust ["an ideological representation of the (actual) Nazi holocaust"], these Jewish elites pretend—and, in their own solipsistic universe, perhaps imagine themselves—to be victims, dismissing any and all criticism as manifestations of "anti-Semitism." And, from this lethal brew of formidable power, chauvinistic arrogance, feigned (or imagined) victimhood, and Holocaust-immunity to criticism has sprung a terrifying recklessness and ruthlessness on the part of American Jewish elites. Alongside Israel, they are the main fomenters of anti-Semitism in the world today.See you next Wednesday.
- Juan Cole on Prager: Muslims and the 5 Questions
- The Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends protest leaflet here.
- "We killed Jesus, we'll kill you too!"
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
No to Genocide!
No to Ecocide!
For more information on the reasons behind this protest, see Israel Kills; Beth Israel Celebrates, Honors Gelman
Sunday, November 12, 2006
On Sunday, the Israeli Occupation Forces killed a 16-year-old Palestinian boy in an airstrike on Gaza. This comes less than a week after an Israeli artillery massacre of 18 Palestinian civilians in Beit Hanoun, including 17 members of the al-'Athamna family.
In the face of this, the avowedly Zionist Beth Israel Congregation of Ann Arbor is preparing to celebrate its 90th anniversary (see below for schedule). Because of its support for Israel, the Conservative synagogue has been the subject of weekly protests by Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends for more than three years.
Apparently, Beth Israel's Zionist roots run deep. According to the Washtenaw Jewish News (Nov. 2006):
The history of the congregation goes back to 1913, when a sick rabbi from Palestine was in the University of Michigan Hospital because of a serious accident. Osias Zwerdling was called upon to interpret for the doctors. As Rosh Hashanah approached, the rabbi wanted to celebrate the holidays. Hannah Zwerdling opened their home to a minyan (a group of 10 Jews) rounded up by her husband, Osias, and thus the seeds of Beth Israel Congregation were sown.According to Jewish Ann Arbor by Richard and Ruth Adler, the visting rabbi was from Jerusalem and named Joseph Slomon. He was in the US "to solicit funds for Jewish institutions" and was injured while on his way to Detroit. Then, as now, Detroit hosted a nest of Jewish racists--a.k.a. Zionists.
A prominent Detroit businessman, Max Jacob, attended the Second Zionist Congress in Basel in 1898, according to "Zionism in Detroit Before the State: The First Fifty Years, 1898-1948" by Aimee Ergas in Michigan Jewish History (vol. 38). In 1903, Dr. Noah E. Aronstam established Detroit's Young Men's Zion Association in order to promote Zionism. A Detroit branch of the "early Zionist socialist group Poale Zion" was formed in Detroit in 1905 and it hosted the organization's national convention in 1910.
Rabbi Abraham M. Hershman, of Congregation Shaarey Zedek in Detroit was:
[A]n ardent Zionist ... In 1908 he organized the Kadimah Zionist Society, whose membership included business and professional men, and shortly thereafter founded the enduring Zionist Organization of Detroit. Through social activities, lectures, classes, and general publicity, the members under Hershman’s leadership actively spread the ideas of Zionism in the Detroit community. Hershman, who also was a pioneer in establishing the Conservative movement in 1913, continued his strong and dedicated leadership as a Zionist until his death in 1959.Around 1916, Detroit Jewish women organized a chapter of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America. "Miriam Hershman, wife of Rabbi Hershman, was a founder of the Detroit chapter and was elected its first president." Not long after, "more than twenty Detroiters put their Zionist beliefs into action by joining the Jewish Legion, established by the British government in 1917."
And, as Aimee Ergas notes: "The Executive Director of the Zionist Organization of America was the highly regarded Detroiter, Simon Shetzer, who in 1942 called Detroit a 'model Zionist community.' " Ergas continues:
An almost-forgotten chapter in the participation of Detroiters during the pre-State days was their role in an underground ["underground" because it was illegal and committed terrorist acts such as the Haifa and Jerusalem bombings of Arab markets on July 6, 1938 and the King David Hotel bombing] international network for supplying materiel and arms for the inevitable defense [sic] of Palestine that began in 1947. As described in Louis [sic] Slater's book, The Pledge, many Detroiters were among the American Jews instrumental in collecting "souvenir guns," machinery, and trucks—an estimated $10 million worth from Detroit alone over approximately five years—in an effort to support the Jewish homeland.Meanwhile, in Ann Arbor, although he had "never suffered anything because of the observance of his religion," Osias Zwerdling--Beth Israel Congregation's first president--joined the Jewish supremacist bandwagon to steal Palestine from its majority Arab inhabitants. According to a 1974 profile of him in the Ann Arbor Sesquicentennial Journal, Zwerdling "worked tirelessly for anyone who needed and asked for help ... " including the "State of Israel."
Zwerdling and Beth Israel Congregation were early sponsors of the University of Michigan Hillel, which "was the 3rd Hillel Foundation in North America, established in 1926." Hillel "helps students find a balance in being distinctively Jewish and universally human by encouraging them ... to support Israel ..." Zwerdling was connected to Detroit Zionists through Conservative Judaism, his presidency of the Michigan Synagogue Council, and his wife's membership in Hadassah.
As if to underscore their moral decrepitude, Saturday's frivolities will include the dedication of "A special plaque ... to Charles and Rita Gelman to honor their numerous contributions to Beth Israel Congregation." Charles Gelman founded Gelman Sciences (now under the ownership of Pall Corp.) in 1958 and moved the company to Ann Arbor in 1963, where he proceeded to pollute the ground and surface water near his plant--including drinking water sources for the City of Ann Arbor--with tens of thousands of pounds of1,4-dioxane, a known carcinogen.
According to a 2002 article in the Ann Arbor News:
The first well contamination was discovered in 1986, two years after a University of Michigan graduate student discovered dioxane in Third Sister Lake. But it would be more than a decade later - the late-1990s - before a full cleanup got under way, as the environmental, municipal and company officials sparred in court over the details of the pollution and the cleanup.The eventual result was "the largest U.S. groundwater cleanup east of the Mississippi River." Gelman is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Science and Environmental Policy Project, a group which is to ozone depletion and global warming what the Tobacco Institute was to lung cancer and emphysema. Two Charles Gelmans signed a 1998 Global Warming Petition declaring:
"Really, no cleanup happened over all those years," said Pall's vice president of corporate environmental affairs, Farsad Fotouhi. "All the while, dioxane was coming out and expanding with the groundwater."
We urge the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December, 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind.When Gelman retired from Gelman Sciences in 1996, the company had two wholly-owned Israeli subsidiaries--Gelman Sciences Technology, Ltd. and Gelman Research and Development, Ltd.--according to the company's 1996 FEC 10-K. "Gelman Sciences has been doing business in Israel for close to 30 years, according to Bob Roszell, Director of Marketing Research" (see "Cooperation Between Israel and the State of Michigan").
There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.
Some of the money that Gelman accumulated while poisoning the environment and trading with the apartheid state of Israel was used to fund the Gelman Educational Foundation, "to help with the education of the Jewish community and its children." The foundation--sole officers: Charles and Rita Gelman--had assets valued at $5.6 million, according to its 2005 IRS 990 form.
As detailed above, Charles Gelman is hardly a model citizen. Of course, Beth Israel is hardly a model faith community and then there is the small matter of the Gelman foundation's $100,000 donation to Beth Israel in 2005--"numerous contributions," indeed!
Check back on this blog for upcoming protest details.
- Assault at Beth Israel Congregation
- More Violence Against anti-Zionist Dissidents
- CDC's Toxicological Profile for 1,4 Dioxane
- Ann Arbor News Special Series on Gelman-Pall Cleanup
7:30PM Friday Night Service in Honor of 90th Anniversary, featuring BIRS students in 2nd - 5th grades in "Fitting the Pieces of the Puzzle Together."
09:30AM-1:30PM 90th Anniversary Celebration. 9:30 a.m. Shabbat Services. A special plaque in the lobby will be dedicated to Charles and Rita Gelman to honor their numerous contributions to Beth Israel Congregation. A special Kiddush Luncheon will follow.
7:00PM Gala Celebration in honor of Beth Israel's 90th Anniversary. Dinner is catered by Emily. Music and dancing, the fabulous Yiddishe Cup. $120 per person.
Room: Social Hall
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
- On "Victory to the Iraqi Resistance"
- Is the Worm Turning on Neocons?
- Waxman, AIPAC on US Elections: No Sweat for Israel
See also: AAPAC Disappoints; Vote for Smith for Congress, 15th Dist., Michigan
Sunday, November 05, 2006
During his interview with AAPAC, Bouchard was asked many questions about the "Republican" issue and the fact that many members of our community today are skeptical towards the Republican Party because of the failed policies of the Bush Administration. Bouchard stated that while he is a committed Republican, he is "his own man" and that he has no problem departing from his party's line if he disagrees with it. He did not give specifics on some foreign policy issues stating that he still needs to learn more about these issues. He stated several times that he would be receptive to listening to this community and taking our input when dealing with foreign policy issues that affect our community and our families.The fact is that Bouchard has steadfastly refused to depart "from his party's line" on the Iraq war, its support for Israel, etc. His refusal to "give specifics on some foreign policy issues" is a dodge--plain and simple. On his web site Bouchard states: "As your U.S. Senator, I will work to secure our borders, improve emergency response planning, and ensure we have an unconditional victory in the War on Terror."
Here's Bouchard's response to a question from the Detroit News:
Q: Do you support the idea of leaving Iraq by a date certain?Anyone who believes Bouchard would change his tune once in office simply because his grandfather came from Lebanon is probably dreaming. When Lebanon was brutalized this summer by Israel and thousands of Arab Americans and others protested in the streets of Dearborn and Detroit, Bouchard was missing-in-action. Below are the apparent entirety of his public remarks.
A: I have a problem with (that). A date certain is going to be an arbitrarily concluded date. ... Is that because that's when we feel we have to be out of there because we no longer think we can be there politically? Or have we met any benchmark-driven goals that relate to either the safety of America or Iraq? That's where you have to step up sometimes and admit that the boots on the ground, the generals and commanders have a better idea in terms of what we need to do to stabilize the situation. It may even require us to move our troops around or do something different.
From his campaign web site:
"I have had several conversations with leaders in Washington over the last few days about the need to expedite the evacuation of American citizens, many of whom are from Michigan, from the dangerous situation in Lebanon. I was relieved to learn that the evacuation process is moving forward and that the State Department is waiving fees for those in harm's way.From the Arab American News:
"I am grateful for the immediate and effective action taken by U.S. Senator John Sununu, Representative Ray LaHood, and Representative Nick Rahall on behalf of the American citizens in Lebanon, many of whom are from Michigan. This bipartisan effort to meet with high level officials from the State Department was the best way to ensure that American citizens are brought home safely and without delay."
Bouchard said: "When war is the choice, all sides lose, especially when it is preventable. The recent conflict in Lebanon was due, in part, to the fact that the United Nations did not properly enforce U.N. Resolutions. Had these resolutions been properly enforced, both Lebanon and Israel would have been able to avoid the deaths of innocents on both sides. I have numerous family members living there and I support a free, sovereign and independent Lebanon.Bouchard also got the thumbs up from James Zogby's Arab American Institute (AAI). These are the same people who were behind Madeleine "We think it's worth it" Albright's controversial visit to Dearborn last May on Nakba Day. The AAI profile of Bouchard mentions his service on an FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force. Ann Arbor Muslim leader Rabih Haddad was arrested with aid of a JTTF.
On the Albright visit, see also:
Saturday, November 04, 2006
Green Party challenger, Aimee Smith (pictured right) has campaigned aggressively--albeit with very limited resources--against Dingell on his record of disrespect for Arab Americans and his support for Israel. With more than $20,000 in its coffers at the end of September, the Dearborn-based Arab American Political Action Committee (AAPAC) could have given a significant boost to Smith's fledgling campaign. Even a simple endorsement would have been a great help.
Instead, without even interviewing candidate Smith, AAPAC chose to endorse Dingell even though according one AAPAC insider Dingell didn't even bother answering the AAPAC candidate questionnaire (see Smith's answers at bottom). AAPAC's November 2006 newsletter (page 7) claims:
Congressmen Conyers and Dingell have been long-time friends of our community. They serve us in the 14th and 15th Districts which cover Dearborn, downriver, and parts of Detroit. Both congressmen have been there whenever we needed them, especially in the difficult days following the 9/11 attacks. Both voted against H.R. 921 last summer, a lopsided piece of legislation that completely endorsed the massive Israeli attack on Lebanon. They were two of only eight to do so. Our community is very thankful for both congressmen. Our community has always supported them and will continue to do so.Let's examine Dingell's recent record. Below, from May 22, 2006, are excerpts from Dingell's remarks to Congress concerning the Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006 (see Cong. Record 152: H2998-9) . My emphasis appears in italics.
I yield to no man in my support for Israel. I have voted for hundreds of billions of dollars for it over the years I have served here. And I yield to no man my position to terror and terrorism and terrorists. But that is not what is at issue here tonight. ...Late last July, AAPAC president and Arab American News publisher Osama Siblani touted the Congressman: " 'Today [July 31, 2006] Representative John Dingell refused to characterize Hizbullah as a terrorist group,' noted Siblani, to cheers from the crowd. 'That's 434 to go until they are all on our side.' " What Siblani said was untrue.
Think about it. The needs of Israel are not served by this resolution. The needs of the United States are not served by this resolution. The needs of the Palestinian people are not served by this resolution. ...
Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to the resolution on the floor. I oppose Hamas. I oppose what they stand for. I oppose their use of violence, their targeting of civilians; their vision for the Palestinian people; their rejection of Israel; and most of all I deplore their rejection of peaceful reconciliation.
For all these reasons, and many more, I do not think that Hamas is a true partner for peace. But while Hamas may not be, the Palestinian people are. The vast majority of Palestinians want peace. The vast majority value peace, follow the law, oppose violence--and legislation like this only hurts the vast majority we need for peace.
I understand the House's desire to ostracize Hamas. ...
If we destabilize Palestine we will destabilize Israel. If we help create chaos we weaken the chance for finding peace between Israel and her neighbors--and even threaten the very viability of the Jewish state.
If this legislation is signed into law we will lose once and for all the Palestinian people. Our rejection of them will create one clear victor--the government of Iran. If we pass this legislation, Iran will win by default. Instead of textbooks for Palestinian children being written by USAID they will be written by the Iranian Revolutionary Council. Schools will be built with Iranian oil money and our ability to influence peace will be weaker as a result.
What I find so strange is that this legislation is being championed by people who believe themselves to be the staunchest supporters of Israel. Mr. Speaker, in order to strengthen Israel peace needs to prevail in the region. In order to guarantee Israel's survival the Palestinians need to find prosperity and view the United States as a friend. This bill will only stymie those efforts. I ask my colleagues to vote no.
During the interview in question Dingell said, "Now, I condemn Hezbollah as does everybody else, for the violence ..." Below, is an excerpt from a letter issued by Dingell reiterating his opinion of Hizbullah. Again, my emphasis appears in italics.
August 2, 2006Below are excerpts from an op-ed piece that was published in the Detroit News on August 2, 2006, and in the Arab American News on August 4, 2006. Again, my emphasis appears in italics.
Mr. Rush Limbaugh
1270 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020
Your comments about me and my position on the terrorist organization Hezbollah during your program on August 1 and 2 were dishonest and misleading.
I am consistently on the record saying that I believe Hezbollah to be a terrorist organization dedicated to the elimination of Israel. The world community must come together to work to eradicate Hezbollah and their power. They unilaterally provoked this conflict, they use civilians as human shields, and they generally have no regard for the loss of either Israeli or Lebanese civilian lives. The sad and unfortunate events of the past few weeks have reinforced this belief.
Here are the facts:
In March 2005, I voted for a resolution calling on the European Union to list Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.
In June 2006, I voted for a resolution urging the Organization of American States countries to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.
On July 28 of this year, I signed onto a letter again reiterating the request for the EU to regard Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.
You also disregarded my continued support of the State of Israel including:
* A July 19, 2006 statement in which I said on the House floor "Israel's right to defend itself is absolute."
* A statement two days earlier on July 17 on the House floor in which I said: "The actions of Hezbollah have been wrong and counterproductive. They violated Israel's borders, they have continually targeted civilians, and they have endangered Lebanon's promising future."
* And, the fact that during my 50 years in Congress, I have proudly supported more than $300 billion dollars in aid for the State of Israel. ...
Only U.S. can bring sustainable peaceIn late August, under pressure from the Detroit Jewish News, Dingell removed links to the Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the Arab American News from his congressional web site " 'because they are voicing sentiments about the conflict in the Middle East that Congressman Dingell strongly disagrees with and that are offensive to Mr. Dingell and to other constituents of Mr. Dingell's district,' Dingell press secretary Adam R. Benson said."
Change Mideast dynamic so reach of Hezbollah terrorists doesn't increase
by U.S. Rep. John D. Dingell
Two weeks ago, I took a very tough vote on a resolution that I believed was not in the best interests of Israel and Lebanon. My vote against a resolution expressing congressional solidarity with Israel's response to Hezbollah's unjustified attack caused a mixed reaction in our diverse community.
I understand the passionate response from partisans on both sides of this conflict; but that vote was made out of grave concern for peace, not passion.
I believe the United States has no truer friend in the Middle East than Israel. I have been in Congress for 50 years, and during my tenure I have proudly helped to move more than $300 billion worth of American aid to Israel. I believe our continued commitment to Israeli security and democracy is not only smart policy, but also a moral imperative. ...
There is no doubt that Hezbollah is a terrorist organization. It kills with impunity -- from U.S. Marines in 1982, to Argentines at a Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires, to the attacks on Israelis that continue today. There is no room in politics, in Lebanon or anywhere, for groups that use violence and terror to achieve political ends. ...
How to end conflict
First, the United States should push for an immediate cessation of hostilities. Some will argue that this will allow Hezbollah to survive. I counter that that outcome is probably inevitable, and what we need is a disarmed Hezbollah that denounces the use of terror and that is no longer a threat to Israel. ...
As an Iraqi friend notes, Dingell "has also voted in favor of $78 billion for the current war on Iraq and Afghanistan, voted for the 1990 war on Iraq, and then for imposing sanctions on Iraq." On November 7th, the choice is clear: Vote for Dingell for more of the same craven kowtowing to the Zionist lobby or vote for Aimee Smith and vote Green to tell the Democrats that Arab Americans and their friends will no longer be taken for granted. Vote Smith and build the Green Party for the next election.
- AAPAC's Bizarre Bouchard Endorsement
- Statement of the Honorable John D. Dingell on the Situation in Lebanon (July 17, 2006)
- Dingell Drops Links To Arab-American Websites (WDET)
- The Israel lobby at work (Kabobfest blog on web links controversy)
- Vote Green – and good riddance to the Democrats! (Op-ed in the Arab American News)
- Chomsky, Free Arab Voice On Hizbullah
- Poll on Lebanese Support for Hizbullah
Questions for Candidates
1- Describe the parts of your background, education, and experience which make you the best candidate for the position you are running for.
I completed my PhD at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the field of Materials Science. My thesis research was on solar cell materials. This background prepared me to deal with data analysis, critical thinking, and assessment of technical feasibility. It has also helped me to understand that the barriers to progress for our society are political and not technological. Addressing critical problems like global warming and the threat of nuclear conflict will not be solved by a scientific fix. Instead, it will take the manifestation of political will of all those who hope to preserve the earth for future generations. As a mother of a small child, I am constantly reminded of my responsibility to help bring about this political shift. I joined the Green Party in 2000 and ran for Cambridge City Council in 2003. I'm a member of the national Green Party Peace Action Committee, an officer in the Green Party of Michigan, and Co-chair of the Huron Valley Greens.
2- Describe your past and current involvement with issues of importance to the Arab American community (including involvements with community organizations)
I have been active in protesting the US war and sanctions against Iraq for many years. I was a founding member of the New England Committee to Defend Palestine, a group founded to advocate for full rights of Palestinians, including the right of refugees to return and the right to resist occupation. I worked on campaigns to defend Arab and Muslim immigrants from detention and repression, including the Amer Jubran Defense Committee and distributed “know your rights” cards to immigrants facing special registration with the US government. While a graduate student, I worked with Arab and Muslim students on divestment from Israel, Palestine awareness, and against a ban on visas for students from Iran, Libya, Syria, Sudan, and Cuba. Shortly after 9/11/01, I started wearing the hijab in solidarity with Muslims targeted by hate crimes and racial profiling. While I can't say that this action has had much positive impact for the treatment of Muslims in our society, it has been an eye-opening experience for me. Since moving to Michigan, I helped start Defend Palestine, an Ann Arbor-based group that has organized protests of Israel Day and does other work focused on exposing Zionism.
3- For legislative candidates, discuss any new law you would like to propose if elected
I would introduce comprehensive legislation to end the US military presence in Iraq and other Arab countries; end military and financial support of Israel; end economic relations with Israel; make major reparations to the people of Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine, Sudan and other Arab countries for the harm caused by US foreign policy; pursue enlightened policies toward Hamas, Hizbullah, and other Arab resistance movements and governments; and, lift US sanctions against the Palestinian authority and Palestinian NGOs. I would also propose legislation directing the Justice Department to initiate broad investigations and prosecutions of American citizens and resident aliens guilty of terrorism and other crimes in support of the Zionist occupation of Palestine.
Furthermore, I would introduce legislation repealing the USA PATRIOT Act, the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996, and other repressive laws that threaten fundamental civil liberties. I would also propose legislation for universal healthcare. Rather than an impersonal, centralized bureaucracy, a network of locally based collective, non-profit organizations would best empower practitioners and patients and deliver the best quality health care. Health care must not be tied to employment and we must address the crisis in escalating costs, which are deterring job creation in Michigan.
4- Why should AAPAC endorse you and not any of the other candidates for the same position?
My main opponent, John Dingell, is proud of the $300 billion in US aid he has helped send to Israel. That money has caused untold harm and suffering in Palestine, Lebanon, and other parts of the Arab world. US support for Israel has also harmed people in this country, too. The harm comes in the form of the excessive military spending—hundreds of billions of dollars—needed to protect the beneficiary of US aid—Israel—and to protect the US from the opponents and justifiably angry victims of Israeli and US policy. It also comes in the form of domestic repression against those who would support a just foreign policy in the Middle East and against those who would support the just resistance of Arab people against US and Israeli violence. An endorsement of my campaign by AAPAC would send a powerful message to Mr. Dingell that he cannot take the votes of the Arab American community for granted and $300 billion in blood money to Israel is nothing for him to be proud of.
5- Additional Comments
The Green Party is part of a movement that believes we need an entirely different way of doing politics. Green candidates are not for sale, we take no corporate or PAC money, and we commit to promoting our values of social justice, nonviolence, grassroots democracy and ecological wisdom.
As a Green Party member I am deeply committed to nonviolence—one of our ten key values—however, I believe that nonviolence is a value to be practiced by we who hold to it and not one to be used as a cudgel with which to condemn oppressed people here or elsewhere. For an American, the greatest demonstration of a sincere commitment to nonviolence is not only to practice it in one's own life but also to work diligently to change the policies of this country. As Martin Luther King, Jr. once observed, the United States government is "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today."