The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog

Report on Beth Israel vigil 09-21-13

Posted on September 26th, 2013 at 3:16 pm by

Falsehoods and Twists of Truth

PeaceMonger deconstructs Steve Friess’ article on JWPF’s 10th anniversary and exposes at least eleven instances of outright falsehoods and twisted truths in his article in the Jewish publication, the Tablet. Here are a few examples identified in “1,443 Words of (Mostly) Balderdash”:

1. Friess writes “Herskovitz, for his part, first called on Beth Israel to denounce Israel’s existence, and now promises they’ll stand down if Dobrusin removes the Israeli flag from the sanctuary.”

Not true, Steve. I have neither first called on Beth Israel to denounce the Jewish state’s existence, nor have I ever made that demand. While I personally believe “Israel” has no right to exist (can anyone defend Netanyahu’s claim?), it was made clear that JWPF will terminate the vigils if Beth Israel works towards – among other demands by Palestinian civil society – returning displaced Palestinians to their homes, a human right enshrined in the International Declaration of Human Rights.

2. Friess: “protesters … wave doctored Israeli flags, with red lines crossing out the Star of David in the middle, and solicit honks from passing motorists.”

We all know what eternal victims Jews claim to be, but this statement from Friess really distorts the truth. The truth is that JWPF has become (June, 2012) an anti-Israel peace group, and have decided to express that statement via the graphic, internationally recognized “NO” sign placed over the Israel FLAG. We had no input in the design of the Jewish state’s flag which happens to have the hexagram centered on it. Had the flag’s creators decided upon a Christian cross to be placed there, our international “NO” circle would have slashed through that as well.

3. Friess: “Such commentary [my offerings to explain why Jews were feared and hated in WWII Europe - HH], while historically suspect and abhorrent to most Jews, has made Herskovitz a celebrity of the anti-Israel fringe.”

PeaceMonger really goes after this false accusation and provides us with at least eight sources showing that my brief history lesson was more accurate than “suspect”:

Now, let’s sum up what we have learned in this … section. Contra Friess, there is nothing “suspect” about Herskovitz’s “commentary” about attempting to understand the rational basis for German antipathy to Jews. This is not to excuse the irrational imputation of collective guilt to all Jews qua Jews but to point out that there is evidence that Jews, a tiny minority, exercised disproportionate power in Russia, Germany, and elsewhere. Jews used power in their perceived self-interest and in a manner which alienated and angered members of the majority populations of these countries. Jews may find this truth “abhorrent” but they do no one, least of all themselves, any favors by refusing to wrestle with it.

Please spend the time to review Friess’ gaffes and distortions by reading the full entry on the ZionistsOut blog. The comments serve as excellent instruction in the science of exposing Jewish Hasbara.

Venue Found for Discussion of Jewish Power Friday (9/27)

As reported last week, Dan McGowan and Paul Eisen, co-directors of Deir Yassin Remembered, will be in Ann Arbor to discuss the sometimes corrosive influence Jews in leadership positions in the Palestine peace movement wield. A list of those who’ve expressed interest in our topic has been created, and those people invited. Readers of this report who have not been contacted, but would like to attend this meeting should contact this writer by Friday afternoon.

President Obama Draws the Line; Will Jewish Activists Respond?

US President Barack Obama, the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize recipient, addressed the United Nations General Assembly this week and perhaps gave away his hand. The following paragraph is lifted from Israel Hayom (Israel Today) a relatively new Israeli newspaper:

Obama reiterated that his administration is “determined to resolve a conflict between Palestinians and Israelis. I have made clear that the United States will never compromise our commitment to Israel’s security, nor our support for its existence as a Jewish state … the state of Israel is here to stay.”

We note with some curiosity that he did not say “the state of Japan is here to stay”, or “the state of South Korea is here to stay”. We wonder why he would single out the Jewish Apartheid state for such an unwarranted and strange expression, and we conclude that he recognizes Israel’s vulnerability and asks the world to “pay no attention to the man behind the curtain”.

Israel’s existence – its own Declaration of Statehood self-defines as a Jewish state – is indeed the core issue that is begging to be addressed. All other atrocities, walls, white phosphorus bombings, attacks on the Al-Aqsa Mosque this week, stem from this basic assertion: that Israel claims a “right” to exist as a Jewish state. Seems like President Obama has bought in …

So which group, other than Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends, will stand up and ask “Mr. President, we respectfully question Israel’s existence despite your assurance that it is ‘here to stay’. On what moral basis do you support Jewish supremacism in Palestine? By what right can Israel claim to exist, as you say, ‘as a Jewish state’?”

Will Jewish Voice for Peace ask these questions of the President? Will Code Pink be the second to ask? What about the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network? Will the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation step up? There’s a London based peace group, Jews for Justice for Palestinians. Will they offer up a foreign Jewish voice to question Mr. Obama?

The President has set the stage. Who will walk upon it?


Note: there was no Vigil Report for 09-14-13, but there were 13 vigilers
8 vigilers on 09-21-13
Remember Deir Yassin
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Report on Beth Israel vigil 09-07-13

Posted on September 15th, 2013 at 7:40 pm by

Jewish Power to be Discussed in Ann Arbor

Time to circle the calendars for an open discussion of Jewish Power in Ann Arbor on the evening of Friday, September 27th. Deir Yassin Remembered is an organization dedicated to memorializing the village of Deir Yassin, which suffered perhaps the most notable terrorist attack by Jewish gangs six weeks before al Nakba, the catastrophe that befell Palestinians on May 14, 1948. The US and UK directors of this group – Dan McGowan and Paul Eisen – will be in town to raise and field questions, such as: How are some Jewish leaders in the peace movement harmful to the goal of liberating Palestine? Choice of venue is underway.

Get Back! Peacemonger Exposes Zionist “Humanitarianism”

In the front page article published by the Ann Arbor News (Aug. 25) about our 10-year vigils, author Ryan Stanton interviewed Dr. Barry Gross (infamous for his Tony Soprano-esq letter of 2004) as the person who “helped organize a system whereby congregants pledge to donate money to humanitarian causes for every protester who shows up on Saturdays.” Magen David Adom (MDA), the “Israeli” Red Cross and Neve Shalom/Wahat al-Salam (NSWAS), a co-operative village in Palestine, are listed as the two organizations bearing Gross’ “humanitarian” stamp.

Peacemonger examines these two organizations for us and exposes a rather seamy side. For instance, she quotes for us the words of MDA’s head of its “rabbinical committee” – Shmuel Eliyahu – who spoke about the need for “national revenge” in 2008 and sang the praises of “a revenge that is so painful, it will burn into their souls the message of all our enemies that Jewish blood is more valuable than gold and platinum.”

Nice guy, right? Humanitarian? Puh-leeze!

Then there’s the facetious NSWAS: Peacemonger uncovers the words of a non-Jewish (OMG) writer in the Palestine Liberation movement, the Lebanese Mulham Assir, who explains what we’ve always suspected:

Neve Shalom is a fraudulent propaganda construct created (like the Wall of Shame itself, on stolen land) to fool the world with the slogan ‘peaceful coexistence is possible.’ The subtext is ‘if only Palestinians would accept the occupation, the dispossession, our refusal to allow the refugee to come home even as we import people from all over the world to man our “Jewish state” machine, if they accepted their “métèque” and wog status in their own land, but above all, if only most of them would go away voluntarily so we wouldn’t have to allay our demographic fears by using tanks, missiles and bulldozers that put a crimp in our image abroad.’

If Barry Gross were truly interested in making contributions to humanitarian groups, he might consider tossing a few bucks to Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends.

Jewish Publication Highlights JWPF Vigils

Freelance reporter and Ann Arbor resident Steve Friess has written an article for the Tablet, an on-line Jewish publication. JWPF has just requested Peacemonger to deconstruct this article for us, but in the meantime, try and see how many false statements you can find contained. Feel free to comment to the article directly, and our answers will be supplied next week.


X vigilers
Which side are you on?
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Report on Beth Israel vigil 08-31-13

Posted on September 9th, 2013 at 9:14 am by

Jewish Power Discussed on Moral Politics

During July’s absence from Ann Arbor, Bill Alford interviewed this writer in Seattle. Alford is the founder of Moral Politics TV and this segment of his show was aired on August 30. Bill writes an introduction:

Guest Henry Herskovitz, in a timely encore Moral Politics appearance, warns about Jewish Power. He frames it the “core threat” – not Zionism, which flourishes because of Jewish Power.

Jewish racism and Jewish brutality are twins championed by Jewish Power. Criticism, guest Henry Herskovitz emphasizes, is legitimate.

Yet, Lame Stream Media – a fief of Jewish Power –cheerleads rather than holds Jewish atrocities & connivances in check. He hopes Christians will rally and deliver a BIG kick in the ass to Jews and their Power.

There is a BACKLASH coming, he fears. Majority Americans will react someday – severely – to Corrosion of their Democracy and Brash Exploitation committed by Jewish Power.

“Jewish Power ensures Jewish Power is not much discussed!”

Link to video at

Vigiler Assaulted (Again)

Vigiler T was filming our weekly vigil last Saturday, when he was accosted verbally and physically by neighbor Alexander Clay of 1915 Austin Avenue. Mr Clay used profanity, threats and actually spat upon Vigiler T. This assault was captured on film and shown to responding Ann Arbor Police Department officers. It was also used as a discussion item in this weeks Ann Arbor City Council meeting.

Swearing Oaths to Uphold What?

This writer addressed City Council this week to remind Council members of their commitment to uphold the Michigan and US Constitutions, both of which provide for freedom of speech. This commitment was not in evidence in remarks by the Mayor and some Council members in the front-page article that appeared in the local newspaper August 25. Specifically, Council was asked:

All this makes me wonder whether this group of elected officials swore an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States, or an oath to uphold the sensibilities and comfort of the local Jewish community.

Readers can click here and advance to 00:31:38 to view commentary and also read the full text following signature.

Media Coverage of Council Presentation

Dave Askins of the Ann Arbor Chronicle reports on Council meetings and writes:

7:41 p.m. Herskovitz cites two news articles about the protests in front the Beth Israel Congregation on Washtenaw Avenue. He notes that at the previous council meeting, the council had been asked to express its displeasure about the protests. He objects to comments made by mayor John Hieftje and other councilmembers. Herskovitz reports that three days ago, someone had spat on a protestor. A police officer had come out to investigate and to view video of the incident, he says.

Last Reminder for Eat-a-Cheeseburger Day

The 4th annual Bill Henry International Eat-a-Cheeseburger Day will occur, inshallah, next Saturday. Celebrate with us outside Beth Israel Congregation on September 14, then join us for a tasty burger at a local Ann Arbor restaurant.


What Right to Exist as a Jewish Supremacist State?
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends
Speech to City Council

September 3, 2013 [392 words]

Good Evening,

Two major news articles have recently appeared concerning our peaceful, weekly vigils in front of Beth Israel Congregation on Washtenaw Avenue. One concerned last month’s appearance here by Pastor James Rhodenhiser, who asked Council to “go[ing] on record supporting the congregants of Beth Israel, who might feel their burden will go unremarked”

Now, Pastor Rhodenhiser is free to ask that the 10-year exercise of our First Amendment rights be abrogated, but our elected officials have presumably sworn an oath of office before assuming public duties.

These newspaper articles contain some chilling remarks by those in office and I’d like to bring some of them to your attention.

Our Mayor is quoted as saying that he and other council members share many of the same concerns of Pastor Rhodenhisers’s and they wish the protests would stop… “Anything new we could do, I think, would be good,”

Also “picketing a local place of worship is the wrong way to get anything done.”

Our Second Ward Council representative chimes in with apparent agreement. She wants the city to continue exploring possible solutions and says “I’ve got to believe there are some incremental things we can do ….”

All this makes me wonder whether this group of elected officials swore an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States, or an oath to uphold the sensibilities and comfort of the local Jewish community.

When the mayor of this town says “Without overstepping our bounds on the freedom of speech rights of those who protest, there’s nothing we can do about it legally,” one wonders if others could read into his words that something ILL-legal could be done.

Three days ago a resident of nearby Austin Avenue took it upon himself to do something ILL-legal. Mr. X approached our group using extremely profane language and spat on one of our peaceful protestors. The Ann Arbor Police Department was notified and officers came out to review the film of this assault and make a report. Charges against Mr. X may be filed.

Now it is conjecture on our part to connect the dots between the Mayor’s words and Mr. X’s actions, but I would again appeal to Council to heed the words of this country’s Constitution and not of those who support a country that does not recognize the political rights of its inhabitants.

Thank you

Report on Beth Israel vigil 08-24-13

Posted on August 27th, 2013 at 1:56 pm by

Front Page, Above the Fold

Reporter Ryan Stanton visited our vigil on August 24, and his 2,000-word article received front page prominence in the Sunday print edition of Mr. Stanton visited my home earlier in the week and conducted a 45-minute interview there. He also interviewed Beth Israel’s rabbi and congregants, as well as a few other vigilers. His diligence produced a story that is very revealing: the comments from our side includes information focusing on the suffering of the Palestinian people under the boot of Israeli might, while the comments of our opponents are uniformly self-pitying. If they were truthful, they would admit that it’s not our presence that causes them anguish, it’s our message that exposes truths they would prefer remain locked in their closets.

Front Page

Local Opinion of JWPF Rising

Apparently not satisfied with last year’s plea to have Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends terminate our peaceful, weekly vigils, the Rev. James Rhodenhiser of the St. Clare of Assisi Episcopal Church made an appeal to Ann Arbor’s City Council to “publicly denounce” the vigils on “the 10th anniversary of the protests”.

He submitted a letter signed by him and supported by 31 other religious leaders of various faiths in Ann Arbor, Saline and Ypsilanti, but his attempt to bring opprobrium upon our witness might have backfired. Among the 250+ comments the article generated, many were complimentary towards our efforts, including this one from Lolly:

I live three doors from the spot where the protests are held. They are quiet, polite, and express a view that is reasoned and thought-provoking. They have every right to be there expressing their opinion, and everyone else should just stay out of it.

… and another from robertalanhaber:

In my opinion, the Beth Israel Synagogue, as well as the whole Jewish Community, and its other institutions would all do well to welcome this discussion, and declare themselves supporting equal rights for Palestinians. They should have done so 10 years ago.

In the past, the ad hominem commenters had their way unchallenged, but as you review the comments from this article, you might note a political shift in how people are perceiving our dedication to exposing Israeli crimes and the local Jewish power that supports them.

Associated Press Picks Up JWPF Story; Other News Outlets Join In

An article ran this week in the Detroit News, which featured an Associated Press byline. Coverage of the City Council meeting at which Rhodenhiser made his request was originally presented by the Ann Arbor Chronicle. Reporter Samer Hijazi submitted an excellent article in the Arab American News.

King of the Jewish Gate Keepers

Max Blumenthal wants to “completely clean the movement out of these kind of people”. Here he is referring to Gilad Atzmon and others who openly question collective Jewish behavior, Jewish Power, Jewish identity politics, etc. Here he is interviewed by Paul Jay of The Real News, who serves up a softball question and lets Blumenthal thrash away at an absent Gilad with nothing but baseless ad hominem comments. Check your household cats for the tongue of Mr. Jay, who has yet to schedule a rebuttal from Gilad, nor return a phone call from this writer and others. Try it yourself: 917-463-3599

Readers of this report will remember a shocking personal exchange with Blumenthal at the University of Michigan last spring. It went like this:

Me: I was wondering why you signed that document against Gilad Atzmon
Max: Are you a supporter of Gilad Atzmon?
Me: Yes, I’m his friend
Max: Then I have nothing to say to you

Start Honing Your Cheeseburger Appetites

The 4th annual Bill Henry International Eat-a-Cheeseburger Day is right around the corner. Celebrate with us outside Beth Israel Congregation on September 14, then join us for a tasty burger at a local Ann Arbor restaurant.

Note: There was no vigil report for 08-17-13


August 17: 10 vigilers
August 24: 13 vigilers
Challenging Jewish Power for 10 years
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Report on Beth Israel vigil 08-10-13

Posted on August 19th, 2013 at 8:40 am by

Flagpole Destroyed

Near midnight on August 12 a vandal crept onto my front lawn and attempted to physically remove the anti-Israel flag that hangs from the tree there. What once was




in less than one minute. This trespass and malicious destruction of property has been reported to the Ann Arbor Police Department and we are anticipating reviewing evidence – including surveillance film footage – with AAPD’s Detective Department.

Looking Ahead (1)

Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends will celebrate ten years of standing up to Jewish Power in Ann Arbor on September 14. We are planning a belated private party due to some long-deserved vacations being planned by our regular vigilers.

Looking Ahead (2)

September 14 is also the date of the 4th Annual Bill Henry International Eat-a-Cheeseburger Day “when we honor Bill Henry (né Herskovitz) for a decision that quite possibly saved an eight-year-old boy from a life of “Jewish chauvinism and exclusivism”.” This event coincides with Yom Kippur and JWPF anticipates a larger than normal crowd attending services at Beth Israel. Please help us meet this increased presence at a Zionist synagogue by standing with us that day.

Looking Ahead (3): Road Trip

Two directors of Deir Yassin Remembered will visit Ann Arbor and vigil with us on September 28. Dan McGowan and Paul Eisen will join our ranks and help protest inordinate Jewish Power on that date. We plan then to load the vehicles and pay a visit to free speech advocate Ingrid Zundel in Pigeon Forge, TN, followed by a visit to the Washington, DC offices of [ital]The Washington Report on Middle East Affairs.

We are also trying to acquire a venue where Messrs. McGowan and Eisen may address interested members of Ann Arbor’s peace community on Friday evening, September 27. Stay tuned for details.

Alice Walker Succumbs to Jewish Power

It’s now all over the internet that the University of Michigan invited author Alice Walker to speak at the Center for the Education of Women’s 50th anniversary event, then – based on threats from donors to withdraw funding – rescinded the invitation. Our Pinocchio Award has been issued to center Director Gloria D. Thomas who later denied that donors had any bearing on the decision.

That’s like denying the threat of funding loss had anything to do with the firing of former vigiler Dr. Catherine Wilkerson from the Packard Community Clinic in 2007. Or like the threat of funding loss was not a factor in the decision of the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice to terminate its own Middle East Task Force. And one should not forget the brandishing of this Jewish Power in Dr. Barry Gross’ political threat to the Mayor and City Council members of Ann Arbor in his 2004 letter complaining of political inaction over his wish to have our vigils terminated.

Those who are insisting that it’s “Zionist Power” and not “Jewish Power” would do well to recall that, based on [ital]The Jewish State by Theodor Herzl, “Israel” was created and is maintained today as a “Jewish” state. They are also referred to Tony Martin’s book [ital]The Jewish Onslaught, in which the Jewish community of Wellesley, MA subjected him to the most outlandish ritual defamation over a subject that had nothing to do with Zionism.

Note: There was no vigil report for 08-03-13


August 3: 7 vigilers
August 10: 10 vigilers
“Israel” Out of US Government
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Report on Beth Israel vigil 07-27-13

Posted on August 4th, 2013 at 9:50 am by

The Party Never Ends

…and neither does the work. Wearing the “colors” on a cross-country motorcycle ride, this writer found many opportunities to initiate discussion of Jewish supremacism in Palestine and the Western world in general. An interview on the topic of Jewish Power with Bill Alford on his Moral Politics cable TV show will be aired August 16 in Seattle. Hopefully, we will be able to view the 28-minute segment soon.

Motorcycle Trip 2013 - sm

Bumper stickers were requested on two occasions and an interesting conversation occurred after a man at the fuel pump offered a biblical warning against promoting the “destruction of Israel”. It occurs that this is an area where activists could make great inroads: this man listened – perhaps didn’t accept – that the Jews of the Bible were not the ancestors of Zionist Jews from Europe who decided to invade Palestine and evict its people. He politely accepted the brochure “How Palestine Became Israel”, and hopefully will entertain a change of position.

Certainly, there were negative encounters. The most humorous was a woman from Paonia, Colorado who demanded I move my motorcycle from its legal parking spot because she didn’t want to have it “parked in [her] back yard” with that political “crap on the back”. Ah, the openness of American minds …

Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day Celebration in Dearborn

Two members of Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends attended Dearborn, Michigan’s Al Quds Day political celebration Friday, August 2, and shared our signs and flag with a modest crowd of about 150 people. The International Day of Quds calls for “people of conscience [to] express solidarity with the oppressed of the world, particularly the innocent of Palestine. We invite all the peace-loving people to voice their opposition against the unjust occupation and the usurpation of Palestine by the oppressive Zionist regime.”

Al Quds Day -sm


July 13th – 4 vigilers
July 20th – 6 vigilers
July 27th – 5 vigilers
Israel: No Right to Exist
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Report on Beth Israel vigil 06-22-13

Posted on June 30th, 2013 at 8:48 am by

Richard Siverstein: Fox Guards the Henhouse

An associate passed along an invitation to hear Richard Silverstein speak in Seattle this week. Silverstein operates a blog called Tikkun Olam, meaning “to heal the world“, although it appeared through our email exchange that Richard, with many other Jewish leaders in the Palestinian solidarity movement, refuses to countenance the single method to truly bring some healing to the Middle East: the end of the Jewish supremacist state in Palestine.

Not knowing this at the time, I asked this associate, “Does Richard support Israel’s claimed right to exist as a Jewish state in Palestine?”, and rather than answer my question, the associate passed it along to Richard, who did answer the question: “The short answer is that I support Israel’s right to exist”

The answer was wrapped in obfuscating jargon, including criticism of my alleged use of “complicated terms which can’t be unraveled in one sentence”. Now what is so complicated about rejecting Benjamin Netanyahu’s demand that Palestinians accept Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state?

I thanked Richard for answering the question but suggested that the answer wasn’t very satisfactory. He wants Israel to exist, but not necessarily as a state that “privilege[s] Judaism over non-Jewish religions”. But how can Richard overlook the fact that Israel defines itself as a Jewish state as Zionist forefather Theodore Herzl envisioned in his book The Jewish State (Der Judenstadt)?

Well, that opened some wounds that Richard quickly started dressing. He transmuted my word “elimination” into “bloodshed” and physical destruction. Then came the name calling: My “extreme position” of eliminating a state that didn’t even exist when I (and Richard?) were born; the “hubris” of my critical thinking; his ability to be “humored by people like you who know best” [challenging my call for Israel's elimination]. He found my original question “irrelevant” to the issue of the Syrian crisis. He objected to my use of the term “Jewish power” and my assertion that its influence on US foreign policy can help us understand the Syrian crisis.

But Richard was clear: “No, I don’t call for the elimination of Israel,” he writes, and we imagine a slave-owner who has attained a following in the abolitionist movement and proclaims that he “does not call for an end to slavery.”

What credibility would we offer such a Trojan Horse? Wouldn’t we expect him to be thrown out of the abolitionist movement in a heartbeat? Yet here, in the thoroughly Judaized Palestine solidarity movement, we have opinion leaders such as Silverstein who openly support the continued existence of a Jewish supremacist state in Palestine.

And after, in Joel Finkel fashion assuring me that “But whatever [the solution] will be, Israel will exist in some form”, Richard makes it clear: “I am a Zionist and not afraid of the label”.

And there we have it: A Zionist in the peace movement. How many Zionist shills like him, and before him, have helped weaken the movement to liberate Palestine? How much longer will we tolerate these apologists for the role that Jewish identity politics play in Israel’s war crimes and human rights violations?


4 Vigilers
“Israel” exists because Jews want the land
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends
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