IT IS NOW ‘KOSHER’ TO OPPOSE AIPAC AND COMPANY

1stopaipac

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Organizations like the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation and Jewish Voice for Peace have both taken advantage of and pushed forward this discourse shift. The real challenge now is how to use this change, how to use the near-normalization of criticism of Israel to broaden the work, to engage with organizations and institutions and—gasp!—even members of Congress who have never touched this issue before and who still assume it’s political suicide to criticize Israel. We know now it certainly isn’t, and we have to figure out how to move to the next, far more difficult stage of turning discourse shift into real policy change.

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Why Opposing the Israel Lobby Is No Longer Political Suicide

IF IT LOOKS LIKE APARTHEID, WALKS LIKE APARTHEID AND QUACKS LIKE APARTHEID, IT’S APARTHEID!

 

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What a miserable secretary of state, up to his neck in denial. And how unfriendly to Israel he is to retract his frank, genuine and friendly warning merely for fear of the lobby. Now millions of ignorant Americans, viewers of Fox News and its ilk, know that Israel is in no risk of becoming an apartheid state. They believe the power of Hamas and the sophistication of Qassam rocket pose an existential danger to Israel .

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The naysayers can find countless differences between the apartheid of Pretoria and that of Jerusalem. Pretoria’s was openly racist and anchored in law; Jerusalem’s is denied and repressed, hidden beneath a heavy cloak of propaganda and messianic religious faith. But the result is the same. Some South Africans who lived under the system of segregation say that their apartheid was worse. I know South Africans who say that the version in the territories is worse. But neither group can find a significant difference at the root: When two nations share the same piece of land and one has full rights while the other has no rights, that is apartheid. If it looks like apartheid, walks like apartheid and quacks like apartheid, it’s apartheid.

Is this not apartheid?

With friends like John Kerry, who retracted his true and well-meaning warning under pressure from the U.S. Jewish lobby, Israel doesn’t need enemies.

By Gideon Levy writing IN
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Kerry speaking at the AIPAC annual conference.

Kerry speaking at AIPAC’s annual conference in Washington D.C., March 3, 2014. Aggressive Jewish lobby, weak Obama administration. Photo by AFP
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Is Israel at risk of becoming an apartheid state, as John Kerry said on Friday, or not, as he said on Tuesday? Who knows? Given his feeble performance as U.S. secretary of state and his disgraceful apology, maybe it no longer matters what Kerry thinks or says. Given the aggressiveness of the Jewish lobby and the weakness of the Obama administration, which capitulates to every “pro-Israel” whim, Israel doesn’t need enemies with friends like these. Look what happened to its genuine friend, who was only trying to warn it from itself.

What a miserable secretary of state, up to his neck in denial. And how unfriendly to Israel he is to retract his frank, genuine and friendly warning merely for fear of the lobby. Now millions of ignorant Americans, viewers of Fox News and its ilk, know that Israel is in no risk of becoming an apartheid state. They believe the power of Hamas and the sophistication of Qassam rocket pose an existential danger to Israel .

But Kerry’s vacillations do not change the reality that shrieks from every wall. From every West Bank Palestinian village, from every reservoir and power grid that is for Jews only; apartheid screams from every demolished tent encampment and every verdict of the military court; from every nighttime arrest, every checkpoint, every eviction order and every settlement home. No, Israel is not an apartheid state, but for nearly 50 years an apartheid regime has ruled its occupied territories. Those who want to continue to live a lie, to repress and to deny are invited to visit Hebron. No honest, decent person could return without admitting the existence of apartheid. Those who fear that politically incorrect word have only to walk for a few minutes down Shuhada Street, with its segregated road and sidewalks, and their fear of using the forbidden word will vanish without a trace.

The history of the conflict is filled with forbidden words. Once upon a time, it was forbidden to say “Palestinians” was forbidden, after that came the prohibitions against saying “occupation,” “war crime,” “colonialism” or “binational state.” Now “apartheid” is prohibited.

The forbidden words paralyze debate. Did you let the word “apartheid” slip out? The truth is no longer important. But no political correctness or bowdlerization, however sanctimonious, can conceal reality forever. And the reality is an occupation regime of apartheid.

The naysayers can find countless differences between the apartheid of Pretoria and that of Jerusalem. Pretoria’s was openly racist and anchored in law; Jerusalem’s is denied and repressed, hidden beneath a heavy cloak of propaganda and messianic religious faith. But the result is the same. Some South Africans who lived under the system of segregation say that their apartheid was worse. I know South Africans who say that the version in the territories is worse. But neither group can find a significant difference at the root: When two nations share the same piece of land and one has full rights while the other has no rights, that is apartheid. If it looks like apartheid, walks like apartheid and quacks like apartheid, it’s apartheid.

Israel is an incipient apartheid state, just as Kerry I said on Friday. Kerry II, on Tuesday, merely tried to blur and hide the truth for fear of the lobby. But apartheid is in our future. If there won’t be two states, there will be only one. If there won’t be a democratic, egalitarian state, a state of all its citizens, then there will be an apartheid state. There is no other option. With its actions, Israel is saying a firm “no” to the two-state solution. With its fear of a non-Jewish state, Israel is saying no to a democratic, binational state. Where does that leave us? With an apartheid state. As Naomi Shemer said in her optimistic song “Mahar” (“Tomorrow”): If not today, then tomorrow, and if not tomorrow, then the day after.

“YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE JEWISH TO LOVE LEVY’S RYE”

OR THE JEWISH VOICE FOR PEACE

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billboard

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Help JVP beat AIPAC’s Facebook ‘Likes’ by Friday, and a donor will match $1 per Like!

Take Action!



JVP or AIPAC: Who do you like more?

 

 

Help JVP beat AIPAC’s Facebook ‘Likes’ by Friday, and a donor will match $1 per Like!

Take Action!

AIPAC, the political powerhouse that ensures unconditional U.S. support for Israel’s most egregious policies, has suffered a string of embarrassing defeats: Visa waivers. Syria. Iran.

With a few simple clicks, you can help us add one more to the list: Facebook.

Last week we launched a campaign to surpass AIPAC’s Facebook follower count, and today we’re fewer than 4,000 “Likes” away from our goal of 48,000. We also just got word from a generous donor who will contribute one dollar for every new Facebook “Like”, through Friday!

Click here to help us meet our goal of 4,000 “Likes”—and to help us raise $4,000.

Already “Like” our page? We still need your help. To beat AIPAC— an organization with a $60 million annual budget— we’re going to need you to spread the word by taking this simple action.

Although we’ve had fun with it, this campaign is no laughing matter.  A bigger social network means our pro-justice, pro-peace perspective spreads even further.

Plus, funds we receive from this campaign will help us to confront AIPAC on its own turf.

Click here to ensure AIPAC loses this round, and that JVP has the resources we need to make AIPAC lose even bigger in the future.

JVP has a relatively small budget, but we have more social media followers than organizations with budgets that are 10 and 50 times our size. Defeating AIPAC on Facebook shows the size of the pro-justice constituency, compared to AIPAC’s shrinking pro-war base.

We’ve got a way to go before defeating AIPAC online translates into the ability to defeat them in Washington. But with your help, we are getting there.

Let’s show AIPACand the worldthat peace and equality will always get more “Likes.”

Onward,

Abe Greenhouse
Director of Technology

TARGETING BDS AT AIPAC

In an attempt to gain favour among American zionists, Netnyahu lauched his most brutal attack against the BDS Movement at AIPAC’s annual meeting … declaring that BDS is the greatest threat facing Israel today. Could this mean that Iran is no longer on his agenda?

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In recent months, top ministers in Netanyahu’s government have repeatedly declared that BDS is the “greatest threat” Israel faces.

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At AIPAC, Netanyahu launches “desperate” attack on BDS movement

 Ali Abunimah

BDS movement “will fail,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told cheering AIPAC delegates. (Screenshot)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today launched a frontal assault on the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement.

“One movement that’s definitely on the wrong side of the moral divide is the movement to boycott Israel, the so-called BDS,” Netanyahu told the cheering delegates, in his keynote speech to the annual gathering of the powerful Israel lobby group AIPAC in Washington, DC.

“That movement will fail,” Netanyahu predicted.

While claiming that people were “flocking to Israel” for its technology from all over the world, Netanyahu warned, “I don’t want you to get complacent – because the fact that they’re going to fail doesn’t mean that the BDS movement shouldn’t be vigorously opposed.”

“Anti-Semites”

Netanyahu proceeded to defame supporters of Palestinian human rights in the crudest terms: “Throughout history, people believed the most outrageously absurd things about the Jews, that we were using the blood of children to bake matzos, that we were spreading the plague throughout Europe.”

Those who support BDS today are just as bad, Netanyahu asserted: “Those who wear the BDS label should be treated exactly as we treat any anti-Semite or bigot. They should be exposed and condemned. The boycotters should be boycotted.”

This speech is Netanyahu’s highest profile attack on BDS, although last summer, he put responsibility for fighting against the movement for Palestinian rights into the hands of the “Ministry of Strategic Affairs.”

Israel is also placing dedicated anti-BDS operatives in its foreign embassies.

In recent months, top ministers in Netanyahu’s government have repeatedly declared that BDS is the “greatest threat” Israel faces.

Desperate

Responding to his remarks, Rafeef Ziadah, a spokesperson for the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee, the Palestinian civil society coalition that leads the BDS movement, said in an emailed statement:

“Netanyahu’s desperate attack on the BDS movement comes as European pension funds are blacklisting Israeli companies and banks, as Israeli concert organizers find it increasingly difficult to persuade artists to perform in Israel and as governments begin to take action to hold Israel accountable for its violations of international law.”

“At its core, the BDS movement is a movement against Israel’s systematic discrimination and apartheid policies. The BDS movement is opposed, as a matter of principle, to all forms of discrimination, including anti-semitism and Islamophobia. The world is growing increasingly weary of Israel’s attempts to conflate criticism of its violations of international law with anti-semitism.”

Ziadah is right. It’s hard to see how people who are not already on board with Netanyahu will be swayed by his invective.

If Israel’s only answer to people all over the world who are horrified by its oppression of Palestinians and ongoing theft of their land, is to call them “bigots,” then Netanyahu should fully expect the BDS movement to grow.

 

Written FOR

THE HOPEFUL DEMISE OF AIPAC

But amid all the celebration AIPAC’s leadership knows that it can no longer produce a napkin and have the signatures of 70 senators on it within a day. Nor does its steady flow of “information memos” sent to the legislature and the media command the same respect they once did. 

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Is AIPAC Doomed?

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual conference begins on March 2.
The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual conference begins on March 2.

By Philip Giraldi*

 

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual conference begins on March 2 and will conclude with an address by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on March 4. The organizers boast that the meeting of “America’s Pro-Israel Lobby” will attract “more than 14,000 pro-Israel Americans, more than two-thirds of Congress, [and] more than 2,200 students from 491 campuses”.

There will be speeches by Senator John McCain and by Secretary of State John Kerry.

As part of the group’s lobbying effort, the attendees will descend en masse on the Capitol Hill offices of Senators and Congressmen, delivering the message that AIPAC is alive and well in spite of some recent very public setbacks.

They will demand that the United States continue to pressure Iran with new sanctions even as the White House is searching for a way to avoid another potentially catastrophic war in the Middle East.

They will argue that Iran is a danger to the entire world and must be reduced to a level where it cannot even contemplate either offensive or retaliatory defensive action against Israel, to include the dismantling of its nuclear program and destruction of its ballistic missiles with a range exceeding 500 km.

AIPAC will claim record levels of fundraising and grassroots support. Indeed, its endowment totals $100m, its annual budget is nearly $70m and it has more than 200 employees, making it the most powerful and best funded foreign policy lobby in the US. But largely invisible amid the self-congratulating and lobbying process will be any sense of what the actual US vital interests might be vis-a-vis Israel.

The powerful Israel lobby, of which AIPAC is a part, has long argued that the foreign policy and security interests of Washington and Tel Aviv are identical, or to use the currently fashionable expressions, there is no space between the two and the US will always “have Israel’s back”.

A Tiny Client State 

Washington’s political class has wholeheartedly and uncritically adopted both the Israel-centric jargon and also Tel Aviv’s skewed perceptions of Middle Eastern realities, producing the unique spectacle of a great global power doing everything possible to placate a tiny client state. Pandering to Israel will be on full display at the AIPAC conference.

But amid all the celebration AIPAC’s leadership knows that it can no longer produce a napkin and have the signatures of 70 senators on it within a day. Nor does its steady flow of “information memos” sent to the legislature and the media command the same respect they once did.

Recent US engagement in Iraq, Libya, and Egypt, all supported by Israel and its supporters for various reasons, are increasingly being regarded as in no way beneficial to the US, quite the contrary.

AIPAC can no longer draft legislation favorable to Israel, send it over to Congress and expect a finished bill to emerge, passed with a unanimous vote. It has suffered major defeats through its open support for bombing Syria and for legislation increasing sanctions on Iran, the former opposed overwhelmingly by an aroused war-weary public and the latter stalled in a suddenly nervous Congress.

AIPAC also opposed the appointment of Chuck Hagel as Defense Secretary due to his alleged “anti-Israel record”, though it did not do so openly and only lobbied the issue quietly on Capitol Hill. It was, nevertheless, a defeat.

Even The New York Times is taking note that AIPAC is now very much on the defensive, forcing it to respond to the Times commentary with an op-ed of its own defending its position on Iran, an uncharacteristic move for a group that is accustomed to operate in the shadows.

The rift has come about because reality and illusion have parted company. The reality is that the US cannot afford another war in the Middle East, either financially or in terms of the unintended consequences that wrecked the Iraqi and Afghan interventions.

It has only one compelling vital interest in the region and that is to keep energy resources flowing and a war with Iran would instead deliver a shock to a world economy that is still in recovery. Against that is the illusion that Israel is some kind of strategic asset or global partner for the US.

Apart from the pressure being exerted by groups like AIPAC, Americans are becoming increasingly aware that Washington has no compelling reason to sacrifice its own interests to sustain the freedom for Israel to behave as it wishes.

Nor does it have any justification to protect it from its neighbors, any more than it has a responsibility to do so for any other country in the Middle East. And there is a growing understanding that the lopsided relationship, not only hugely expensive in dollar terms, motivates terrorist groups like al-Qaeda to attack Americans.

This is not to say that the US cannot play a positive role and act in support of the best interests of all its friends in the Middle East, which it would accomplish by becoming genuinely an honest broker with a demonstrated interest in regional stability rather than in regime change.

AIPAC’s tunnel vision only permits it to see one “closest ally” and that must be Israel. Every other country is therefore reduced to a second rate player whose interests must coincide with those of Tel Aviv or be disregarded.

Wrong Side of History 

The persistence of the AIPAC argument, which also idealizes Israel’s rather flawed and corrupt democracy to help make its case for a “special relationship”, has done grave damage to US interests throughout the Muslim world. As has sometimes been noted, Washington had no enemies in the post-colonial Middle East before Israel was founded in 1948. Now it has few friends.

Washington’s close embrace with Tel Aviv has been fostered by a mainstream media unwilling to be too critical of Israel’s actions. But this long established unanimity of viewpoint involving both media and its symbiotic punditry is beginning to erode as alternative sources of information continue to proliferate, which is why the leadership of AIPAC must seriously be concerned.

The shift in opinion is both permanent and growing in magnitude, including numerous younger Jews and Jewish liberals who have been speaking out to tell AIPAC that it does not speak for them, particularly given its record of uncritical support for increasingly hard line Israeli governments.

A better informed American public increasingly averse to foreign military adventures is becoming aware that issues formerly seen in Manichean terms are actually a good deal more complicated and then there is the experience factor. Recent US engagement in Iraq, Libya, and Egypt, all supported by Israel and its supporters for various reasons, are increasingly being regarded as in no way beneficial to the US, quite the contrary.

This explains the lack of fervour for a repeat performance in Syria or against Iran. It also means that AIPAC has found itself on the wrong side of history in terms of the desires of the American people, surely not a good place to be for a Washington lobby.

 

* Philip Giraldi is a former military intelligence and Central Intelligence Agency officer who has worked on counter-terrorism in Europe and the Middle East. He is currently Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest and is a regular contributor to a number of websites and magazines. (This article was first published in Al Jazeera – http://www.aljazeera.com)

 

Source

THE VIDEO AIPAC IS TRYING TO HIDE FROM YOU

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

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Isn’t it bad enough that AIPAC controls Congress? Now they want to control YouTube as well …

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Is AIPAC trying to stop you from seeing this video?

Submitted by Ali Abunimah
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YouTube shut down the account that posted the original video. A new copy of the video should has appeared online and is viewable above. CODEPINK tweeted the new instance of the video:

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See Tweets at SOURCE

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Original post

The anti-war campaign group CODEPINK says the powerful Israel lobby organizationAIPAC is threatening to sue it over this video clip, a satirical version of an AIPAC policy conference promotional video.

“On 25 February, an AIPAC [American Israel Public Affairs Committee] member called a CODEPINK staffer threatening legal action in response to a controversial video clip that he alleges was made by the peace group CODEPINK,” a CODEPINK press release states.

The video features real footage from AIPAC conferences interspersed with images of Israeli abuses of Palestinian rights, and voiceovers from supposed conference-goers.

One of the voices says “It’s exciting to see so many people together who understand that sometimes you have to violate other people’s human rights if you want to take their land.”

CODEPINK does not say if it made the video but the group’s co-founder Medea Benjamin commented:

It is absurd for AIPAC to threaten legal action over such an obviously satirical video. It is interesting that they are reacting so strongly to the clip, though. Perhaps it’s because the content is really an accurate reflection of AIPAC’s dangerous foreign policies. AIPAC does, in fact, advocate for bombing countries such as Iran and Syria; it fails to condemn Israel’s continued building of settlements and its human rights abuses against Palestinians; and it lobbies Congress to send billions of taxpayer dollars to Israel to continue the occupation of Palestine. … What are they trying to hide by silencing this video?”

CODEPINK spearheads annual protests at AIPAC’s policy conference. The Electronic Intifada sent an inquiry to AIPAC’s media office and this post will be updated if a response is received.

NEW YORK MAYOR; “BACKING ISRAEL IS MY JOB”

All right, look – I said something that was personal. I said something that was about my belief that we have to defend the state of Israel. And I think that has everything to do with the alliance that we have with Israel, the history we have, particularly as New Yorkers, the deep, deep connection we have, personally, to Israel.

And I think it’s also a matter of protecting democracy. I think Israel stands as a pluralistic society that deserves respect, and it’s been under attack. And I think it is our job to support it.

So that’s me speaking as the mayor of a city that is the closest to Israel of any city on earth and has one of the largest Jewish populations of any city on earth. And I think it is a fair role for me to play.

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And here’s what he said ….

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De Blasio on Backing AIPAC: Yes, It’s My Job

By J.J. Goldberg

 

New York City mayor Bill De Blasio just appeared on MSNBC’s “All In With Chris Hayes” and was asked in the last few minutes about his January 23 speech to an AIPAC gathering at the New York Hilton, where he told the pro-Israel lobby he would “stand by you” whenever he’s needed “’cause that’s my job.” His response to Hayes was pretty eloquent. (The show is rebroadcast at 11 p.m. Eastern; look for this segment around 11:57.)

My transcription of the exchange, enabled through the magic of DVR, appears below.

The mayor’s 6-minute AIPAC speech (audio recording after the jump) drew some pretty sharp criticism from the left (and, less noticed, from the right as well). It even got Jon Stewart in trouble with the left for interviewing De Blasio and not grilling him about it.

Hayes, a former Washington editor of The Nation, makes it fairly plain in the way he poses the question that he sympathizes with the critics. But De Blasio stands tough: It’s not just that Israel deserves support as a “pluralistic society” that’s “been under attack.” Perhaps just as important—and legitimate—he’s the mayor of a city that “has one of the largest Jewish populations of any city on earth.”

New York City has had a foreign policy of its own for more than a century, going back through the legendary Fiorello LaGuardia and police commissioner Teddy Roosevelt, representing the interests and values of the peoples that make up this melting pot. And an immigrant metropolis, like a nation, has underlying overseas interests and commitments that can transcend the personal views of an individual chief executive. Yes, that’s part of Hizzoner’s job.

Hayes:

Final question. I want to ask you how you see your job. You gave a speech to AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. The speech wasn’t on the schedule, it was off the record, but the contents were reported. And one of the things you said was that it was part of your job description to be a defender of Israel.

Obviously we’re not going to resolve the very complicated issues vis a vis Israel and Palestine, but I gotta say, as a New Yorker I thought, I don’t know if that’s true. I voted for this guy and I don’t know if it’s part of the job description for him to be the defender of Israel. He’s got enough on his plate.

I mean, is he the defender of Ukrainians in the streets who are crying out for their rights? Is he, you know, the defender of the Taiwanese against the One China policy? Is it – is it really your job? Is that your job description?

De Blasio:

All right, look – I said something that was personal. I said something that was about my belief that we have to defend the state of Israel. And I think that has everything to do with the alliance that we have with Israel, the history we have, particularly as New Yorkers, the deep, deep connection we have, personally, to Israel.

And I think it’s also a matter of protecting democracy. I think Israel stands as a pluralistic society that deserves respect, and it’s been under attack. And I think it is our job to support it.

So that’s me speaking as the mayor of a city that is the closest to Israel of any city on earth and has one of the largest Jewish populations of any city on earth. And I think it is a fair role for me to play.

Source

 

JEWS SAY NO TO NEW YORK’S MAYOR

BE OPEN TO ANOTHER VIEW FROM THE JEWISH COMMUNITY
  • Petitioning Bill de Blasio

BE OPEN TO ANOTHER VIEW FROM THE JEWISH COMMUNITY

Jews Say No!

Dear Mayor de Blasio:

 

We are New York Jews who are dismayed by your speech to AIPAC and the unqualified support you offered them, especially since you ran your campaign as a progressive. There is nothing remotely progressive about AIPAC. We do not believe that AIPAC’s unconditional support for the Israeli occupation is consistent in any way with the values of fairness and justice that you articulated during your campaign—values that led to your receiving an overwhelming election mandate.

 

AIPAC is a right-wing organization that strong-arms elected and other government officials to support brutal Israeli government policies and actions that are dangerous for Palestine/Israel, the Middle East, and the United States.  These policies are also in violation of international law, including of the Geneva Convention, which prohibits an occupying country from moving its citizens into the occupied area as residents.

 

As a result, more and more Jews are questioning and opposing AIPAC and Israeli government policies. Indeed, many Jewish groups in New York City, across the U.S.A., and in Israel have organized with Palestinian and other groups–through such non-violent means as Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS)–to forge a more just, equitable, and yes, progressive future for Israel and Palestine. This would also mean a very different kind of relationship between Israel and the United States, which now funds Israel and its military occupation to the tune of at least $3.1 billion a year.

 

Many of us have crossed the Israeli borders into the areas of military occupation and have seen with our own eyes the conditions of Palestinians living there. We have met parents in Gaza and the West Bank who have faced attacks by the Israeli military, which uses missiles, drones, tanks, helicopters, tear gas grenades, “stink” bombs, and sound bombs.

 

•Do you know that Israel holds nearly five thousand Palestinian prisoners, many not charged with any crime and without access to legal assistance?

 

•Do you know that Israel has created hundreds of checkpoints, where Palestinians are routinely harassed and humiliated?

 

•Do you know that the Israeli government’s occupation policies, involving roughly half-a-million settlers, have involved extensive expropriation of Palestinian land, demolition of Palestinians’ homes, and uprooting of their olive trees?

 

•Do you know that roads exist that only settlers and other Jewish Israelis—but not Palestinians—can use?

 

•Do you know that many Palestinian children are arrested in their homes in the middle of the night by armed Israeli soldiers, typically without being told where they are being taken or for how long?

 

Further, AIPAC’s support of virulent Islamophobia does not represent those of us who work for a city and country in which members of the Muslim, Middle Eastern, and South Asian communities can be safe and respected. We support your announced plan to stop the NYPD program that has long engaged in secret surveillance, including the use of informants in mosques, that target people because of their religion, ethnicity, or native language. Do you know that AIPAC supports such anti-Muslim programs? AIPAC has, for example, repeatedly included anti-Muslim speakers at its annual Policy Conferences, including one who claims that Islam “sanctions genocide, planned genocide, as part of its religious doctrine.”  These views are totally inconsistent with the values expressed by your administration.

 

Do you also know that veterans of the Civil Rights Movement in this country have condemned Israeli policies that make such legal disparities possible and have likened them to the conditions that African Americans in the South experienced for many generations? The story of Israel and Palestine is, without question, a tale of two different realities—with its inequalities fully supported by the power of the Israeli government, the disproportionate political influence of AIPAC, and the U.S. government.  We believe these fundamental inequalities should resonate with you, who campaigned against the idea that NYC should no longer be “a tale of two cities.”

 

We look forward to the opportunity to meet with you and discuss the issues raised by your statements about Israel and AIPAC.

 

To:
BE OPEN TO ANOTHER VIEW FROM THE JEWISH COMMUNITY

Sincerely,
[Your name]

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NEW YORK IS NOT THE CAPITOL OF ISRAEL!

 

Please send out far and wide….  

 

  “You have a friend and an ally at City Hall.

That City Hall will always be open to AIPAC.

When you need me to stand by you in

Washington or anywhere, I will answer the call and

I will answer it happily, because that’s my job.”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

Meeting with AIPAC, January 23, 2014

 

 

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s promise to defend Israel, made to AIPAC behind closed doors,

is inflammatory and an affront to all people who defend the human rights of the Palestinian people. 

 

Many New Yorkers are speaking out

in response to what is deemed an unacceptable, pandering relationship to AIPAC. Read one letter from New York Jews

 

 

We will let Bill de Blasio know

he is on the wrong side of history…

 

Stand together in NYC…

   Wednesday, February 5, 2014

City Hall, NYC

Broadway and Chambers Street

3:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Signs will be provided.

Facebook Event Page

“Part of my job description is to be

a defender of Israel…”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

Meeting with AIPAC, January 23, 2014

WE WILL NOT BE SILENT is an artist/activist collective that has been in existence since 2006. Through the creative use of language embodied on shirts and emboldened on signs held up in public spaces, we respond to current social justice issues, encouraging creative, direct public-actions where many people can participate. 

 

 

OPEN LETTER FROM NEW YORK JEWS TO MAYOR ~~ ‘AIPAC DOES NOT SPEAK FOR US’

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An Open Letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio:

We are Jewish residents of New York who read, in the leaked transcript of your private speech to a meeting of AIPAC leaders, the following:

“City Hall will always be open to AIPAC. When you need me to stand by you in Washington or anywhere, I will answer the call and I’ll answer it happily ’cause that’s my job.”

We understand that the job of mayor of New York is a complex one that often calls for your participation on the international stage, and we would not presume to define your job for you. But we do know that the needs and concerns of many of your constituents–U.S. Jews like us among them–are not aligned with those of AIPAC, and that no, your job is not to do AIPAC’s bidding when they call you to do so. AIPAC speaks for Israel’s hard-line government and its right-wing supporters, and for them alone; it does not speak for us.

Sincerely yours,

Ruth J. Abram
Karen R. Adler
Arlene Alda
Anita Altman
Esther Ann-Asch
Emanuel Ax
Peter Beinart
Andrew Berger
Loren Bevans
Martin I. Bresler
Kenneth David Burrows
Howard Clyman
Rabbi Rachel Cowan
Barbara Deinhardt
Barbara Dobkin
Eugene Eisner
Laurel W. Eisner
Daniel Engelstein
Eve Ensler
Danny Goldberg
Sally Gottesman
Linda Gottlieb
Laurence Greenwald
Jane Hirschmann
Erica Jong
Peter A. Joseph
Alice Kessler-Harris
Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum
Gil Kulick
Martha Weinman Lear
Bobbie Leigh
Jonathan Leigh
Alan H. Levine
Rabbi Ellen Lippmann
Rabbi J. Rolando Matalon
Marilyn Kleinberg Neimark
Donna Nevel
Kathleen Peratis
Letty Cottin Pogrebin
Bertrand B. Pogrebin
Michael Ratner
Anne Roiphe
Betty Rollin
Al Ruben
Marlene Sanders
James Schamus
Dan Silverman
Beverly Solochek
Carla Singer
Rabbi Felicia Sol
Alisa Solomon
Gloria Steinem
Herbert Teitelbaum
Rebecca Vilkomerson
Rabbi Burton Visotzky
Peter Weiss
Jack Willis
Eugenia Zukerman

Originally posted AT

NEW YORK’S ‘LIBERAL’ MAYOR SPEAKS ~~ AT AIPAC

Another one that promised ‘change’ …..

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New York “City Hall will always be open to AIPAC. When you need me to stand by you in Washington or anywhere, I will answer the call and I’ll answer it happily ’cause that’s my job.”

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Sounds just like Bloomberg …. where’s the ‘change’?

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Especially if they are zionists …

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De Blasio’s AIPAC speech causes row 

Newly elected NY Mayor de Blasio tells AIPAC the ‘his door is always open,’ because of his obligation to ‘defend Israel,’ but causes storm for hiding events from press

Ynet

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New York Mayor Bill de Blasio caused a furor Friday after failing to inform the press of his attendance in a conference with AIPAC.

According to Capital New York, which first broke the story, “at the event hosted by the powerful lobbying organization, de Blasio gave a pro-Israel speech entirely devoid of his usual rhetoric about income inequality.”

Capital questioned De Blasio about his failure to disclosure the comments after it obtained a recording of his AIPAC speech, leading De Blasio to promise to provide a “clearer understanding” of his schedule and speeches.

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He noted that AIPAC wanted the dinner to be closed to the press, yet said he should have informed the press regardless, Capital reported.

According to the recording, de Blasio gave an impassioned speech in which he said: “There is a philosophical grounding to my belief in Israel and it is my belief, it is our obligation, to defend Israel, but it is also something that is elemental to being an American because there is no greater ally on earth, and that’s something we can say proudly.”

De Blasio took things one step forward and said that New York “City Hall will always be open to AIPAC. When you need me to stand by you in Washington or anywhere, I will answer the call and I’ll answer it happily ’cause that’s my job.”

“There is no deeper connection across boundaries than this connection we share,” the New York mayor also said.

AIPAC’S NEW YEAR’S GIFT TO THE WORLD ~~ WAR IN SYRIA

As the Jewish world celebrates its New Year with hopes and prayers for peace, AIPAC continues to push for war in Syria …..
SAY NO TO AIPAC!
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AIPAC Details ‘Major’ Lobbying Push on Syria

Flood of Activists Will Hit Capitol Hill

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All-Out Push: Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) arrives for a briefing on Syria. AIPAC plans a major push to convince Congress to back President Obama’s request to authorize use of force.
GETTY IMAGES
All-Out Push: Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) arrives for a briefing on Syria. AIPAC plans a major push to convince Congress to back President Obama’s request to authorize use of force.

By Reuters

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The influential pro-Israel American Israel Public Affairs Committee will deploy hundreds of activists next week to win support in Congress for military action in Syria, amid an intense White House effort to convince wavering U.S. lawmakers to vote for limited strikes.

“We plan a major lobbying effort with about 250 activists in Washington to meet with their senators and representatives,” an AIPAC source said on Saturday.

Congressional aides said they expected the meetings and calls on Tuesday, as President Barack Obama and officials from his administration make their case for missile strikes over the apparent use of chemical weapons by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government.

The vote on action in Syria is a significant political test for Obama and a major push by AIPAC, considered one of the most powerful lobbying groups in Washington, could provide a boost.

The U.S. Senate is due to vote on a resolution to authorize the use of military force as early as Wednesday. Leaders of the House of Representatives have not yet said when they would vote, beyond saying consideration of an authorization is “possible” sometime this week.

Obama has asked Congress to approve strikes against Assad’s government in response to a chemical weapons attack on Aug. 21 that killed more than 1,400 Syrians.

But many Republicans and several of Obama’s fellow Democrats have not been enthused about the prospect, partly because war-weary Americans strongly oppose getting involved in another Middle Eastern conflict.

Pro-Israel groups had largely kept a low profile on Syria as the Obama administration sought to build its case for limited strikes after last month’s attack on rebel-held areas outside Damascus.

Supporters of the groups and government sources acknowledged they had made it known that they supported U.S. action, concerned about instability in neighboring Syria and what message inaction might send to Assad’s ally, Iran.

But they had generally wanted the debate to focus on U.S. national security rather than how a decision to attack Syria might help Israel, a reflection of their sensitivity to being seen as rooting for the United States to go to war.

Source

ISRAEL; SOVEREIGNTY OR TYRANNY?

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As Israel gets ready to celebrate 65 years as a state, Palestine gets ready to take its place in the sun. Many of the same progressive forces that helped establish the Jewish state are now supporting the Palestinian cause. Throughout the world we see the growing successes of the BDS Movement, especially on US campuses. We also see support growing daily in European countries. The Palestinian Spring is not far off …
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Our Associate, Khalid Amayreh offers the following in light of President Obama’s upcoming visit;
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Trying to revive a false hope
By Khalid Amayreh

President Obama is due to arrive in occupied Palestine in less than two weeks in a much-heralded visit aimed, according to American sources, at reinforcing the Israeli- American alliance.

Obama is also expected to cajole the weak and pliant Palestinian leadership of Mahmoud Abbas to give “peace” an additional chance by returning to manifestly futile negotiations with Israel while the latter continues to steal more Palestinian land and build more Jewish colonies for fanatical Jewish settlers.

Several regional leaders, including the King of Jordan, have voiced hopes that Obama will help stir up the stagnant waters of the moribund peace process.

However, a thorough and honest examination of the facts pertaining to the Palestinian question shows that the chances of reaching a real breakthrough that would lead to real peace in the region are nearly zero.

According to some American pundits, Obama will make one last attempt to save Israel from itself by getting the recalcitrant Israeli leadership to agree to allow for the establishment of a viable and territorially contiguous Palestinian entity.

However, there is a very little chance that the extreme right-wing leadership in Israel, including the soon-to-be formed coalition government, would agree to pay the price for peace, given the ideological and political extremism permeating through the Israeli Jewish society.

In addition, the tight Jewish stranglehold on the American government, especially congress, would nip in the bud any audacious and genuine American effort to force Israel to walk in the path of peace. Israel and its numerous tentacles have the U.S. held by the throat, so much that the U.S. is simply not free to even speak its conscience or even protect America’s interests in the Arab world. This is what makes virtually all America’s politicians from the President in the White House down to lowest ranking politician grovel rather sheepishly at Israel’s feet and sing Israel’s hymns. If they don’t act as they are expected to act, they will lose Jewish money as well as their jobs. Moreover, the Jewish-controlled media will demonize them to the point of making them look as if they were carbon copies of Adolph Hitler!!

There are several cool facts that one must consider when raising hopes about the so-called peace process.

Fact 1: Thanks to the total impunity meted out to Israel by the American-led international community, Israel has been able to kill the two-state solution. Israel has built so many Jewish colonies in the West Bank that no room has been left for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state. This writer is living in the West Bank and can honestly attest to the fact that under present circumstances it is next to impossible to be able to establish a real state worthy of the name on the remaining areas uncovered by Jewish colonies in the West Bank. This is not to mention Occupied East Jerusalem, whose Arab-Islamic identity has been nearly completely obliterated thanks to a rabid, unrelenting Judaizing process, resulting in ghettoizing the Palestinians of the city and forcing numerous thousands of them to leave in order to fulfill Israeli demographic designs.

Fact 2: Given the ideological panorama of the Israeli Jewish society, it is utterly unlikely that any prospective Israeli government would agree to dismantle Jewish settlements, a sine qua non for salvaging a possible political settlement.

The soon-to-be formed Israeli coalition government will include Ha-bayt ha-yehudi, the settlers’ party par excellence, which is vehemently opposed to any peace arrangement with the Palestinians involving partial or complete Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank.

Even the most leftist Israeli Jewish parties are opposed as a matter of principle to the notion of repatriation of Palestinian refugees to their former homes and villages in what is now Israel.

In light, it hard to even imagine a successful narrowing of the gaps between the two sides, especially under current circumstances.

Fact 3: It is true that the U.S. might be able to pressure the weak and pliant Palestinian leadership of Mahmoud Abbas to accept, even begrudgingly, a deformed and utterly unjust deal that would perpetuate Palestinian grievances, e.g. a deal excluding the implementation of the right of return and without East Jerusalem in its entirety.

However, there is a likelihood of 99.99% that such a deal would be rejected by the Palestinian people. Yes, the U.S. and some of its demoralized puppets in the Arab region might successfully bully or cajole their agents to celebrate the “peace deal” as the greatest Arab victory since Saladin (Salahuddin). Well, as the adage goes, those who pay the piper, call the tune. None the less, such a deal would have a zero chance of survival even if a thousand TV stations and a thousand newspapers tried incessantly to make the deformed, ugly deal look attractive and acceptable.

Fact 4: There is no doubt that Israel is fighting a losing demographic battle with the Palestinians. Today, Jews between the Mediterranean and the River Jordan are already a numerical minority. This minority status will be reinforced further and further as there is virtually no hope that Israel will be able to undo or reverse the outstanding demographic facts.

According to Sergio DellaPergola, a Hebrew University professor and expert on Israeli population studies, the dreaded tipping point-which advocates of the two state solutions have been warning about for years-has finally arrived.

DellaPergola argues that even if we took Gaza out of the equation, and if the current fertility rates among Jews and Arabs continue, by 2030, Jews will constitute only 54 percent of the population.

“By May 2048, when the state of Israel turns 100 years old, the population of this area will be approximately 55 percent Arab and 45 percent Jewish”

It is unlikely that Zionist policy-makers are not aware of these demographic facts and forecasts.

It is also true that these Zionists might be devising nefarious designs, even at the level of an afterthought, for the purpose of neutralizing the “existential” Arab demographic peril, including adopting apartheid, or at least a benign form of it. (in fact, the current Israeli occupation is far worse than apartheid).

Israel could also resort to all forms of expulsion and deportation of Palestinians especially upon finding or inducing a “pretext.”

This is a possibility that Palestinian leaders and Arab strategists must take very seriously.

In the final analysis, the Zionists can be so rationally genocidal that they would embark on the unthinkable. They would be willing to go to any extent to prolong the life-span of Zionism.

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AIPAC and their supporters want us to look at Israel in a different light as can be seen in this article from The Forward …

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As Obama prepares for his visit, Netanyahu prepares his briefing ….
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AIPAC Tries to Brand Israel as Liberal Cause

Israel Lobby Tries To Look More Like Obama’s America

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After many years of outreach to conservative evangelicals, the pro-Israel lobby in Washington, facing a liberal ascendance, is now striving to make the case for Israel as a cause for progressives.
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You can read their report HERE

EXPOSING AIPAC

 During the Israel lobby, AIPAC’s, annual policy conference, CODEPINK and other activist groups took to the streets outside the DC Convention center to protest Israeli war crimes and segregation and to end US military aid to Israel.
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AIPAC

 

What They Say About Themselves:
AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee [“America’s pro-Israel Lobby”], identifies itself as “a 100,000-member grassroots movement of activists committed to ensuring Israel’s security and protecting American interests in the Middle East.” It’s self-defined mission “is to strengthen the ties between the United States and its ally Israel.
As America’s leading pro-Israel lobby, AIPAC works with Democrats, Republicans and Independents to enact public policy that enhances the U.S.-Israel relationship.””AIPAC urges all members of Congress to support Israel through foreign aid, government partnerships, joint anti-terrorism efforts and the promotion of a negotiated two-state solution—a Jewish state of Israel and a demilitarized Palestinian state.”
THE REALITY:Despite AIPAC’s contention that it is a “Public Affairs Committee” it is, in fact, a “Political Action Committee” whose real purpose is to lobby Congress and the Executive Branch, dispense not education but propaganda about Israel and to raise money to ensure that its message and agenda are communicated to Americans especially the policy makers who determine U.S. foreign policy. 

As Forum Speaker Stephen Walt has pointed out, “The most influential groups in the Israel lobby consistently advance policies that are harmful to nearly everyone, including Israel itself.”

AIPAC, supported by millions of dollars donated by people like those at the Donors’ Summit, has become a superbly organized propaganda machine that has managed to insinuate itself into virtually every segment of U.S. government and policy-making institution.

AIPAC continues to claim that its main purpose is to strengthen ties between Israel and the U.S. when, in reality its main purpose is to lobby for the interests of the State of Israel. Despite the ongoing attempt to compel AIPAC to register as a a foreign lobby, it has managed to skirt the lawsabout foreign entities and political contributions through a network that includes its American Israel Education Foundation and some 30 political action committees.

It’s time that AIPAC’s true agenda is finally exposed.

AIPAC has created an atmosphere of coercion and intimidation in our country’s political system that corrupts at the highest levels. Today, AIPAC directs pay offs to members of our Congress to ensure allegiance to an agenda of endless war, Israeli occupation and apartheid, and rampant racism and Islamophobia.

Do You Ever Wonder?:

WHY over 20 years of peace negotiations brokered by the U.S. have produced no resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?

WHY the U.S. continues to give Israel $3 billion in aid every year while Israel defies the US demand to stop building settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories?

WHY the U.S. was 1 of only 6 countries in the ENTIRE WORLD voting AGAINST the opinion of the international court demanding that Israel dismantle the Wall built in the occupied Palestinian territories (the other 5 were Israel, Australia, Micronesia, Palau, and the Marshall Islands)?

WHY Congress consistently approves legislation related to Israel with overwhelming bipartisan majorities (410-11 in a recent vote regarding Iran)?

WHO is is pushing the United States hard to start a war with Iran that is not in the United States’ interest?

HOW AIPAC OPERATES- ACCORDING TO AN AIPAC STAFFER

The following video shows an AIPAC staffer explaining AIPAC tactics on university campuses. The “divestment resolution” at UC Berkeley he is referring to was a student-led and student-organized effort to demand the university “divest from two American companies—General Electric and United Technologies—which produce aircraft for the Israeli Army designed to bomb and kill civilians.”

A few weeks before the vote, this AIPAC staffer explained how the organization would respond to the grassroots resolution:

“How can we beat back an anti-Israel divestment resolution at Berkeley? We’re gonna make sure that pro-Israel students take over the student government! This is how AIPAC operates in our nation’s capital. This is how AIPAC must operate on our nation’s campuses.”

Watch the video here:
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Other protests and pages that have strive to expose AIPAC’s practices can be find here:

Occupy AIPAC

STOP AIPAC

Stop AIPAC for Peace

Source

SUBLIMINAL ZIONISM

 
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The message you hear from the news media in the West is one sided … in fact, in most cases, the other side does not exist. I am speaking specifically about news reports from the Middle East, all pro Israel despite whatever atrocities which might have been committed by them. Palestine is assumed to be the bad guy no matter what the situation might be.
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The recent atrocities committed against the people of Gaza are the latest example of what the Western News Media wants you to see or hear. You mustn’t allow this to continue. Demand to know the truth!
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How and why is this possible? Is there not Freedom of the press in the United States? Are the people not allowed to see or hear the truth?? Not with organisations like AIPAC and the ADL running their campaigns of fear against those supposedly responsible for presenting the news as it really is. For over 60 years these groups have been conducting a campaign of fear against all news outlets. Fear of losing funding via advertising, fear of losing readership via vicious campaigns where charges of anti-Semitism go flying off the wall.
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But, did you ever stop to wonder how they achieve such power? It starts when a young person enrolls in a university. Every major university in the United States is ‘policed’ by agents of Hasbara. The subliminal message of zionism is guaranteed to be taught on those campuses. If anyone dares try to rock the boat they are silenced by a Dershowitz or someone of his ilk. There is room only for the pro Israel view on any situation. Cases in point were the denial of tenure to a Norman Finkelstein at DePaul University, the firing of  Kristofer Peterson-Overton at Brooklyn College  (later reinstated). Despite the reinstatement  the fear factor remains, few dare to speak the truth as unemployment is imminent.
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On the other hand, zion gets its message out loud and clear. Roaming agents such as David Horowitz grace the halls of many a university, reaping a grand fee for his presentation of evil …. protested by many, but continuing nevertheless.
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Today we see a new breed of Hasbaraniks spreading their message… this time on the Internet itself in the name of a university, thereby giving it credibility. Again, the message is one sided and again nothing less than that of subliminal zionism …
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The other side of the message, the true side is out there ready to be seen or heard but it is virtually impossible unless you yourself seek it out…
Also on the Internet are marvelous sites just waiting to be clicked on. If you glance through the links on the left side of this page you will find many of those sites, including Blogs, News Agencies, etc … take a few minutes and visit those sites.
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Don’t be a victim of evil!

‘THE ONION’ TAKES A LOOK AT ZIONIST LITERATURE

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The Onion, one of America’s most prestigious news outlets, has outdone themselves with the publication of the video presented below. Although they specialise in presenting a satirical view of daily events, this video hits it right on …. you must see it before AIPAC and Foxman pressure YouTube into deeming it unfit for public viewing.
It’s a MUST watch! You must see it to the very end.
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The above was brought to our attention by a regular reader, Thanks Redpossum :)

IF AIPAC INDEED BROUGHT PETRAEUS DOWN, WHY IS ISRAEL WEEPING?

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The ‘game’ we call politics is very often a tricky one … with few winners and many losers. Petraeus is one of the latter, but why? Was it his extramarital affair (no worse than the one President Clinton engaged in) or was it AIPAC’s meddling in his political life? (which makes more sense than the sexmails)
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That being the case, why is his resignation a “loss for Israel”? AIPAC best get their cards in order or they  will be seeking new funding resources for their ‘game’ as well.
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Petraeus also understood both Israel’s security needs and the need to advance peace with the Palestinians, the absence of which causes problems for America as well. His resignation from the CIA will thus be a loss for Israel, too.
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Petraeus’ resignation will be a loss for Israel, too

A hero of the kind America loves, the outgoing CIA chief also understood both Israel’s security needs and the need to advance peace with the Palestinians.

By Amir Oren

 

Petraeus with his wife
CIA chief David Petraeus with his wife last year. Photo by AP

The downfall (not necessarily final) of Gen. David Petraeus, who resigned this weekend as head of the CIA after confessing to an extramarital affair, is a classic American melodrama, more fascinating even than the presidential election: sex and politics, defense and the media, the army and hypocrisy, public morality and personal conduct, a super-achiever who trips because his Achilles’ heel is located a bit higher than his heel.

Petraeus was the foremost hero, perhaps the only one, of the Iraq War – the commander who turned a costly and humiliating defeat into a relative victory. That, at least, is his popular image, as burnished by the military reporters who covered him. Creative, a deep thinker, someone who challenged accepted wisdom, he first dusted off counterinsurgency doctrine and then proposed a surge instead of a withdrawal. And, most important of all, it worked – at least temporarily, thus permitting a withdrawal without humiliation.

A son of Dutch immigrants, an outstanding cadet marked for promotion from the first, Petraeus, who married the daughter of the superintendent of West Point military academy, was someone who used every opportunity to acquire both education and connections, to meet politicians and journalists. Iraq boosted him from a mere division commander, one of a dozen, into the national consciousness.

America, which had been disappointed in its generals for the last 60 years, suddenly found an officer after its own heart. He was frequently compared to Dwight D. Eisenhower, the last general to become president – also after presiding over a war conducted by a multinational alliance full of diplomatic and personal sensitivities.

Petraeus didn’t rush to make political hay of his military fame; he wanted first to ascend to the top of the military pyramid. But the very qualities that charmed the public made him a threat to ambitious politicians: When U.S. President Barack Obama’s aides surveyed the field and wondered whom the Republicans could run in 2012 that could constitute a real threat, Petraeus headed the list.

American law imposes a 10-year cooling-off period before an officer can become secretary of defense, but there’s no such barrier to running for president. Eisenhower was still in uniform, as the first commander of NATO, when he answered the Republican call.

Since then, the army hasn’t supplied any successful presidential candidates. Gen. Wesley Clark ran for the Democratic nomination in 2004, but lost handily.

Keep your friends close …

However, Petraeus seemed far more dangerous.

Thus, Obama’s team sought to keep him in the administration, but far from the limelight. Had he been named chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, he could easily have overshadowed Obama as commander in chief. So instead, he was asked to head the CIA – an important job, but one in the shadows.

One of the U.S. Army’s permanent hypocrisies relates to its officers’ marriages. The wife is always lauded as the partner without whom the commander couldn’t achieve his goals, regardless of the couple’s real relationship. This hypocrisy has an organizational purpose: to tell soldiers they can look forward to a normal family life. And the punishment matches its purported value: Anyone caught straying is ousted without mercy.

Air Force Gen. Joseph Ralston was President Bill Clinton’s preferred candidate for chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, but because he had an affair with another woman (whom he later married ) while separated from his wife but still married to her, Clinton didn’t dare nominate him. The hypocrisy is clear: Clinton’s own affair with Monica Lewinsky didn’t lead to his ouster. But the rules are different for elected officials.

Petraeus was a valued interlocutor for Israel’s military and intelligence communities. As head of the U.S. Central Command, which is responsible for the Arab countries and Iran, he greatly increased contacts with the Israel Defense Forces. It was a far cry from the 1980s and 1990s, when fear of Arab reactions caused CENTCOM to refuse to deal directly with Israel, insisting that all contacts be conducted via Washington or the European Command, which is responsible for Israel. Less than 25 years ago, when then-IDF Chief of Staff Dan Shomron visited the Special Operations Command’s headquarters at MacDill air force base in Florida, CENTCOM officers, who share the officers’ mess with SOCOM, were terrified lest Shomron cross the line that divided their halves of the mess and thereby anger the Saudis.

Petraeus also understood both Israel’s security needs and the need to advance peace with the Palestinians, the absence of which causes problems for America as well. His resignation from the CIA will thus be a loss for Israel, too.

But 21st-century America, with all its insistence on exacting a price from those who err, also knows how to forgive. It’s four years until the next election. Petraeus can write his book on defense and statecraft, get rich from giving lectures, and then bow to public demand and return.

 

Written FOR

WAS PETRAEUS BROUGHT DOWN BY HIS SECRET LOVE-LIFE OR BY AIPAC?

Some have lamented, via social media, that wars, occupations, assassinations are not reasons to lose one’s job in the United States government. Indeed, such service gets you praised and promoted, while an extramarital affair will kill your career.

But what also struck me was the total absence in the extensive media coverage of another way Petraeus made a little history: by publicly criticizing Israel and enraging the Israel lobby.

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When former CIA chief David Petraeus enraged the Israel lobby

Submitted by Ali Abunimah 
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Gen. David H. Petraeus, Commander, US Central Command, carves a turkey prior to serving Thanksgiving dinner to sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in 2009 (source).

 (Petty Officer 2nd Class Joseph Moon)

There has beeen fulsome praise for General David Petraeus since he resigned yesterday as head of the CIA after the FBI discovered he was having an extramarital affair.

President Barack Obama lauded Petraeus’s decades of “extraordinary service,” which includes his time as general in charge of US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and as head of the CIA, where Petraeus would have been in charge of Obama’s “secret” drone program which kills children and other civilians in several countries with no oversight or control from anyone.

Some have lamented, via social media, that wars, occupations, assassinations are not reasons to lose one’s job in the United States government. Indeed, such service gets you praised and promoted, while an extramarital affair will kill your career.

But what also struck me was the total absence in the extensive media coverage of another way Petraeus made a little history: by publicly criticizing Israel and enraging the Israel lobby.

Israel, a liability to the US?

In March 2010, when Petraeus was still head of the US Central Command, he gavetestimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee which included this observation about one of the “challenges to security and stability” faced by the United States:

The enduring hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors present distinct challenges to our ability to advance our interests in the AOR [Area of Operations]. Israeli-Palestinian tensions often flare into violence and large-scale armed confrontations. The conflict foments anti-American sentiment, due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel. Arab anger over the Palestinian question limits the strength and depth of U.S. partnerships with governments and peoples in the AOR and weakens the legitimacy of moderate regimes in the Arab world. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support. The conflict also gives Iran influence in the Arab world through its clients, Lebanese Hizballah and Hamas.

Abe Foxman, National Director of the Anti-Defamation League, one of the leading American Zionist lobby groups, was so alarmed he issued a statement condemning Petraeus’ testimony, asserting in part of it:

Gen. Petraeus has simply erred in linking the challenges faced by the U.S. and coalition forces in the region to a solution of the Israeli-Arab conflict, and blaming extremist activities on the absence of peace and the perceived U.S. favoritism for Israel. This linkage is dangerous and counterproductive.

What Foxman and other Israel lobbyists understood correctly was that Petraeus was articulating a view that is increasingly common within the US establishment, but is an absolute taboo when it comes to stating it publicly: that US “interests” and Israeli “interests” are not identical, and that Israel might be a strategic burden, rather than an asset to the United States.

Of course Obama appointed Petraeus as CIA director after he made his Senate statement about Israel. And that too might have been a count against Obama in the false Republican and ultra-Zionist narrative that Obama threw Israel under the bus.

Petraeus was not speaking from any love of the Palestinians, nor any position of principle or concern for justice – no one should make that mistake. He was speaking from the same cold calculation of how to maintain and advance US imperial domination that allowed him to oversee – on behalf of the president – wars, occupations and murders of children and teenagers and other civilians all over the world using drones. That is precisely what scared the Israel lobby.

 

 

Written FOR

MERGING OF THE RIGHT IN ISRAEL IS JUST PLAIN WRONG!

 Israeli PM Netanyahu (R) and Israeli FM Lieberman shake hands after they announced that their parties will unite for polls. EPA photo

Israeli PM Netanyahu (R) and Israeli FM Lieberman shake hands after they announced that their parties will unite for polls. EPA photo

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In any given election, the voters should be given a choice. In Israel, this is not the case. Political parties and candidates change their appearance and loyalties by habit, not to please the public, but to gain support for themselves and themselves only.
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The idea of Netanyahu, probably Israel’s most right wing Prime Minister ever, merging forces with Lieberman is just plain sick. It is merely a tactic to insure that the million or so immigrants from the former Soviet Union vote for the Likud ticket in the next election, and they probably will. Smart move on the part of Netanyahu, but bad move as far as Israel is concerned.
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At a crucial time when a Just Peace should be the major issue, war and hatred takes its place. Lieberman’s record speaks for itself. His former involvement as a member of kahana’s outlawed Kach Party speaks volumes. His personal ideology has not changed to this day. More about him can be read HERE.
A short video exposing his extremism can be seen in the following…
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Palestinians will suffer even more than Israelis if this new union meets with success. The dream of Palestinian Statehood will not only be placed on the ‘back burner’, it will be delayed indefinitely. War with Iran will surely become a reality as the two champions of evil con their ways through the coridors of AIPAC’s offices, guaranteeing that the new US Administration will support any and all whims of Israel. So, in reality, the entire world will suffer from this merger.
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What I said earlier about these moves not being made to please the public but to get support for themselves will become apparent. We will witness the ultra orthodox parties, Shas in particular, kiss the asses of these two secular ‘leaders’ to gain entrance to the newly formed government. Opportunism par excellence on all sides.
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Truly, the so called ‘light unto the nations’ grows dimmer with each passing day.
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There were some who had doubts about a recent poll in Israel showing that 59% of the Jewish citizens supprt living in an apartheid state. A victory resulting from this political merger will prove them wrong. Let us hope we will not see that become a reality.

CAN AIPAC RUN THE ‘RED LIGHT’ PUT ON ISRAEL’S ROAD TO WAR?

 Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff
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AIPAC over the years has literally bought the souls and controlled the actions of American politicians since 1953. They have been successful in getting unlimited support for the crimes and misdemeanors committed by the zionist state with eyes closed to them. Suddenly those very souls are having second thoughts and are trying to prevent Israel from going to war with Iran.
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What went wrong??
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Netanyahu said the following on camera… Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says no country has right to demand Israel hold its fire against Iran;
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No country has the right??? Even those that support Israel’s very ‘right’ to illegally exist? Have they no say??
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Stephen Lendman had the following to say about AIPAC’s position for war with Iran;
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AIPAC Wants War on Iran

by Stephen Lendman

 

AIPAC is an unregistered foreign agent. It calls itself “America’s Pro-Israeli Lobby.” It’s represented Israeli interests since 1953. 

 Virtually no one in Congress confronts it. Doing so is a career-ender. It has enormous influence over US Middle East policies affecting Israel, including war and peace.

 It disseminates disinformation, lies and hate. It viciously attacks opponents. It calls Iran “the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism and is racing toward a nuclear weapons capability.” 

 It manufactures threats to promote fear. It wants the Islamic Republic destroyed. It targets other regional states. It wants unchallenged Israeli regional dominance.

 James Petras says its sole purpose “is to ensure Israel’s unchallenged military and political power over a huge region from North Africa to the Persian Gulf.”

 Its annual meeting “is the most outrageous public display of Zionist-Jewish power as it shapes US foreign policy.”

 It threatens “to drag the US into another major war in the Middle East – this time against Iran.” Doing so is lawless, madness, and self-destructive.

 Its web site says “While the World Talks, Iran Enriches; More Pressure Needed.” A litany of disinformation and lies followed.

 Negotiations failed. Iran got more time “to advance its nuclear program and cleanse a suspected nuclear site.”

 The international community “must dramatically” increase pressure.

 Iran “is believed to have carried out experiments on nuclear explosives.”

 “Satellite images indicate Iran has been working to cleanse (a suspect) site by removing buildings and soil.”

Iran’s nuclear capabilities have advanced. It fuel stockpile approaches nuclear weapons production capability.

 “America must make clear that it will act to prevent Iran from achieving the capability to build a nuclear weapon at a time of its choosing.”

 Contain(ing) a nuclear Iran” is inadequate. US policy must reject any possibility of Tehran developing nuclear weapons. All options must be considered, including “military action.”

 Economic sanctions must be “accelerated” and “crippling.” Washington should do whatever it takes to prevent a nuclear Iran.

 AIPAC is a destructive, malevolent, evil force. It’s heading Washington for war. Waging one on Iran assures losers, not winners. Israel may self-destruct in the process. Catastrophe will affect the region. America won’t escape harm.

 War on Iran may go nuclear. Weapons of mass destruction may be used against a nonbelligerent state. The potential economic and human consequences are staggering. At issue is either stopping this madness or be consumed by it. 

 Nuclear war leaves no middle ground. General Omar Bradley said the only “way to win an atomic war is to make certain it never starts.” It may be closer than most imagine. 

 Congressional and administration sentiment reject containment. Preventing an Iranian nuclear capability is prioritized. Doing so heads America closer to war. Timing alone is unknown.

 In mid-August, Foreign Policy featured a debate of sorts. David Rothkopf headlined “The Drums of August.” He’s Foreign Policy’s CEO and Editor-at Large. Earlier he served as Kissinger Associates managing director and US Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Policy.

“Israel is not bluffing,” he said. The punch line about a boy crying wolf is that “the wolf shows up.” Reasons for attacking Iran are “clearly growing more compelling for Israeli leaders.”

 A litany of canards followed, including:

 Diplomacy isn’t working. Sanctions alone aren’t enough. Iran’s nuclear program is accelerating. It’s advancing closer to weapons capability. Tehran threatens to destroy Israel. It “murder(ed) five Israeli tourists in Bulgaria. (It’s) hard for Americans to grasp (its) existential threat.” 

 Failure to confront Iran is “imprudent.” He implies might equals right as the bottom red line.

 Stephen Walt‘s view differs. He headlined “Another reason the US shouldn’t go to war with Iran,” saying:

 Washington should avoid war. It’s not in America’s interest. Diplomacy should be prioritized, not conflict. Policy makers mustn’t “get buffaloed into a war by Israel.” He urges reengaging Iran directly.

 It “makes so much sense,” he stresses, even though AIPAC and other hardliners reject it. Together with Netanyahu, they’re heading America for war. They’re “paint(ing) the United States into a corner.”

 Why is “simple.” Israel can’t go it alone. It lacks enough power. It can’t sufficiently damage Iran’s nuclear facilities without US help. Israel understands. It’s pushing Washington into a war it shouldn’t wage.

 Notions about “closing windows,” “red lines,” “zones of immunity,” and other rhetoric are political ploys to “stifle diplomacy, strengthen sanctions,” and pressure Washington to use force. Israel needs America for its “heavy lifting.”

 Netanyahu/Barak war talk is “bluff, but one can scarcely blame Israel for employing a tactic that keeps working so well. It’s our fault we keep falling for it.”

 Walt’s argument falls short. Vital issues too important to ignore weren’t discussed. No evidence suggests an Iranian nuclear program. Nations with them don’t lob them at each other or non-nuclear states. Aggressive war is lawless.

 Iran threatens no one. It urges peace, not war. It wants a nuclear free Middle East. Claiming an alleged nuclear threat is red herring cover for regime change. 

 Attacking Iran may go nuclear. Doing so assures mass casualties. Israel will be affected like Iran. So will America, other regional nations, and Western ones.

 Anytime war is waged, it’s hell. Potential nuclear war is madness and self-destructive. Netanyahu and Barak allegedly set a September 25 deadline. Obama’s got until then to commit to military action or Israel will go it alone.

 Israel’s US ambassador Michael Oren said Israel will attack even if destroying Iran’s nuclear facilities entirely isn’t possible. “Diplomacy hasn’t succeeded,” he said.

 “We’ve come to a very critical juncture where important decisions do have to be made.” He added it won’t be “in the too far distant future.”

 Oren also raised the bogus issue of an alleged Syrian chemical weapons threat. He suggested dealing with it might have to be prioritized. Earlier, Israel threatened to attack Syrian facilities where chemical weapons are stored. Doing so increases the likelihood of full-scale war.

 Israel is spoiling for a fight. Ideally it wants Washington to do its heavy lifting. Either way, it wants regional rivals removed. War is its final solution.

 A Final Comment

 Last March, Occupy AIPAC said “AIPAC wants war with Iran. We don’t!” Its open letter to Congress said “AIPAC is on the warpath – this time with Iran. They say the US should be willing to attack Iran or support an Israeli attack.”

 “AIPAC pushed our government into the catastrophic war in Iraq by exaggerating Saddam Hussein’s threat and lying about weapons of mass destruction. Now they are repeating history, with AIPAC lobbyists vastly exaggerating Iran’s nuclear threat and eschewing negotiations.” 

 “AIPAC continues to lobby for policies that prohibit a just peace for Israelis and Palestinians and support violations of international law. AIPAC’s views do not represent the values and interests of the majority of the American people who voted for you, who pay the taxes that fund our government, and whose family members serve in the U.S. military.”

 “The majority of Americans do not want another war in the Middle East and the US can’t afford a war during the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.” 

 “The Iraq war left thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis dead. We implore you not to repeat this tragic mistake. Say no to AIPAC, no to war with Iran and yes to diplomacy.”

 Wars don’t solve problems. They create them. War with Syria and/or Iran may cross a line too potentially catastrophic to risk. Priority one is stopping leaders willing to chance it.

Source

 

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Ther question now remains, will AIPAC find a way to run the red light put on Israel’s road to war?

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