May 30, 2017
by Thomas Are

What kind of people would enjoy a sumptuous meal in front of a starving child and simply say, “Go away kid, you bother me.”? None that I know. What kind of people would deliberately withhold food and destroy the means of growing food in the context of abundance surrounded by children reaching out for crumbs from the table and simply say, “I don’t care?” I don’t personally know anyone so calloused because I don’t personally know any Israeli Zionists.

Next month, Israel will be celebrating its 50th anniversary of occupying Palestinian West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza. Is that something of which to be proud?

Since the Six Day War Israel has:

—Demolished over 48,000 homes in the West Bank and Gaza;
—Confiscated over 586,000 acres of Palestinian land the West Bank;
—Created 300,000 Palestinian refugees;
—Colonized the West Bank with over 600,000 Jewish settlers;
—Enacted over 50 laws that discriminate against Israel’s Arab minority, and
—Established an apartheid legal system with civil courts for Jewish settlers and separate military courts for 4.5 million Palestinians, including indefinite detention without trial and a conviction rate of over 99%.[1]

Why do we Americans, who years ago quit believing in a “superior race,” continue to support and fund a nation which brags about being a nation for a superior race? What has happened to the voice of those who believe there will be peace for all only when there is justice for all? As long as America continues to insist that the Palestinians are all terrorists and demand that our friends call them terrorists who are just out to kill Jews, there will be little hope for peace there or living with a clear conscience here. And Israel will continue to kill, imprison, torture and steal land and water from the Palestinian nation. Over 800,000 Palestinians have been arrested since the 1967 war Israel celebrates this week.[2]

And, what kind of people would look the other way in the presence of such injustice. Well, my fellow Americans, perhaps we all should look in the mirror.

[1] Fifty Years on…A Call for Liberty and Justice for All, mailchi.mp, 50 Years of Illegal Occupation. May 26, 2017
[2] Mondoweiss, Letter to President Donald Trump from Families of Palestinian Prisoners in Israeli Jails, May 24, 2017.
Posted by Thomas L. Are at 11:25 AM 17 comments:
Thursday, May 11, 2017
Friends
When I thought I had heard it all, I was jolted to read that there were nearly 700 “Friends of…” organizations operating in the United States raising billions of dollars every year for Israel.[1]. Their influence is not limited to fund raising. They bribe politicians, intimidate the media and threaten academia. They exaggerate the pain of Palestinian resistance and insist that Israel is the innocent victim. No matter what happens, the Palestinians are to blame.

One such organization calling itself “Friends of the Israel Defense Forces” states that their job is to look after the (Israeli Defense Forces) IDF:

True to that motto, the money this ‘charity’ raises benefits exclusively the soldiers of a foreign country that has not fought a war longer than 33 days in 40 years and whose primary duties have been to protect Israel’s illegal settlements, demolish Palestinian homes, make the lives of ordinary Palestinians miserable, and suppress Palestinian resistance to its ongoing ethnic cleansing by whatever means necessary.[2]

The irony of this friendship is that it actually does more harm than good. The old AA adage, “Friends don’t let friends drive drunk,” makes my point. By any measure, Israel is drunk with its own arrogance, power and sense of importance. Its future as a democratic, Jewish only state is little more than an impossible dream in desperate need of an honest friend to lift up the sober truth. The world will accept brutality and look the other way in face of injustice, but not genocide.

On the other side of the coin. In spite of what Golda Meir announced, the Palestinians exist and they are growing. They also have friends. Millions of friends. I know because I am one of them.

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