The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog

Report on Beth Israel vigil 07-13-19

Posted on July 13th, 2019 at 5:11 pm by

City Attorney’s Office: 1, Hired Lawyer: 0

“I represent a number of congregants who belong to Beth Israel Synagogue (sic) located at 2000 Washtenaw Ave. For approximately 16 years, beginning in 2003, on every Sabbath during those 16 years, several protesters in varying numbers have been picketing the Synagogue, both directly in front of the Synagogue as well as across from the Synagogue on Washtenaw Ave.” writes attorney Marc M. Sussleman to Ann Arbor Assistant City Attorney Kristen Larcom.

Marc M. Susselman, J.D., M.P.H.

Susselman’s four page letter builds his “case” around the assumption that Washtenaw Avenue is a “street” and he stretches the definition of street to include the sidewalk.* Thus, he concludes, a permit is required to attach our signs to chairs (an agreement Witness for Peace reached with the City Attorney’s office in 2010), and “Therefore, the protesters are violating the [City] Code by engaging in their activity without a permit” and concludes “If you disagree with any portion of the Code, please advise me which section(s) I am misinterpreting and how I am misinterpreting them.”

Ms. Larcom’s Complete Response

“We write in response to your letter of May 16, 2019, having reviewed the ordinance you cite and your interpretation of them. We disagree with your interpretation. The ordinances you cite do not require one to obtain a permit to engage in the activities you describe. Moreover, the First Amendment right to freedom of speech is a critical consideration in the application of ordinances under these circumstances.”

Readers are welcome to view the documents here, including the reprimand Susselman received when he apparently attempted to circumvent correct communications channels in the City Attorney’s Office.


Witness for Peace is grateful to the Freedom of Information Act of 1967, and for the efforts of Vigiler C in exercising our rights to obtain these public documents.

*This is our interpretation of Susselman’s 4-pager. Readers are free to interpret the document differently.


Henry Herskovitz
Between 3-5 vigilers June 22, 29 July 6, 13
Thumbs: 17, Fingers: 5 on July 13
Resist Jewish Power
Witness for Peace

Report on Beth Israel vigil 06-15-19

Posted on June 21st, 2019 at 4:27 pm by

Lawyering Up in Ann Arbor

The screenshot above depicts our regular Beth Israel antagonist, Victor Lieberman, and attorney Marc Susselman. In this video, you can see Susselman calling the camera shots for Lieberman. In this other video, you can hear Lieberman telling us peaceful vigilers that “you better start saving your money”

General Complaints

Assistant City Attorney Kristen Larcom visited our vigils on June 1. When asked what brought her to our public sphere, she replied that “We’ve been getting complaints again”. She was unable to provide specific charges about the nature of the complaints.

So What’s Going On?

We were able to overhear the conversation between Ms. Larcom and Susselman, and the discussion appeared to be slightly combative. Asked whether her office was going to reply to the letter Susselman sent, she didn’t offer a direct answer. And when we asked to see a copy of that letter, she advised issuing a FOIA request.

As of this writing, we are unaware of any legal proceedings against Witness for Peace, nor do we anticipate any. As I said to Ms. Larcom: “We’re doing nothing wrong.”

And we haven’t for fifteen straight years.


Henry Herskovitz
Between 3-6 vigilers through May 25, June 1, 8, 15
Thumbs: 41 , Fingers: 10 on June 15
Resist Jewish Power
Witness for Peace

Report on Beth Israel vigil 05-18-19

Posted on May 24th, 2019 at 1:11 pm by

Doing the Right Thing

Seven members of our group have passed away during the fifteen years of our peaceful vigils. As numbers declined, Witness for Peace maintained our messages and presence by leaning signs against trees, posts, fire hydrants, etc. To prevent the wind from knocking them down, we tied the signs to these objects, and all was good.

Until the Jewish congregants of Beth Israel complained to the City, that is. Seems like the congregants convinced members of the City Attorney’s Office that the City was promoting our messages by having signs affixed to City property. My goodness! Our practice was quickly banned, and a City Ordinance was cited.

Fortunately, the solution was simple: bring privately owned chairs and affix the signs to private, not city property. Easy peasy. Concurrent with this action was our adoption of “America First Not Israel”, and we hoisted the US flag on a nearby utility pole to highlight our loyalty to only one country.

A Slight Wrinkle

Congregant Victor Lieberman called the cops on us on April 27, and again May 11 to complain about attachments to City Property, claiming flags were part of our protest (They are!). Now, we can understand that the City of Ann Arbor might not support a message like “Stop US Aid to Israel”, but why would they object – being an American City – to the American flag being flown on their property?

The ordinance in question is vague in regards the flag. You can witness here an Ann Arbor police officer verbally struggling with protesters as to the meaning of the ordinance on May 11.

Eye on the Prize

During WfP’s debriefing session, we agreed that arguing with the police was not in our best interests; nor did it advance our goal of bringing awareness of Israel’s crimes and Jewish influence over US foreign policy to the general public. So we penned a letter to the officers involved [reprinted below signature] and they wrote back indicating appreciation for our efforts and willingness to compromise. We are happy to report there was no police presence this Saturday.


Henry Herskovitz
Five vigilers
Thumbs: 31, Fingers: 6
Witness for Peace

#Letter to Ann Arbor Police Department officers:

Dear Officers …,

This email is to inform you that our Saturday morning protest group (Witness for Peace) will NOT be affixing American flags to either trees nor utility poles this week (May 18); instead we will hold the flags and create stands from which to fly them as part of our protest. We plan to continue this practice in the future.

Although we are not in unanimity about this decision, we recognize foremost that the relationship between our group and the AAPD has been mutually respectful and we plan to do our part to keep it that way. There are many ways to interpret the ordinance in question, and we recognize that the many calls the AAPD has received from congregants of Beth Israel places the AAPD in an awkward position of trying to enforce a vague ordinance.

And since our vigils protest the Congregation’s support for the state of Israel, we see no need to create an unnecessary rift with the AAPD, with whom we’ve always enjoyed good relations.

Please feel free to communicate our decision to anyone in the Department, and contact us with any questions you may have. Our doors are always open.

Henry Herskovitz
Witness for Peace

Report on Beth Israel vigil 04-20-19

Posted on April 23rd, 2019 at 4:44 pm by

Journalistic Integrity?

In three separate issues* of the Washtenaw Jewish News, Witness for Peace has been maligned with the false statement that Jews “deserved” all that came to them during WWII. Former editor Susan Ayer refused to print our clarifying, one-sentence letter during her tenure:

“To clear up any misunderstanding between our group and the local Jewish community, neither I nor anyone in our group believes that Jews “deserved” the suffering they experienced during World War II in Europe.”

When we heard that Ayer was being replaced with Clare Kinberg earlier this year, we got excited about the possibility that Kinberg would “do the right thing” and publish our letter.

Not so fast, said Clare during our April 15th phone conversation. She said didn’t want to print our views in the newspaper, and I agreed that the WJN should not be used as an outlet for our views, which we knew differed from those of her paper. However, when I pressed that, for the sake of honest journalism, the errors contained in the three issues be corrected, her response was that, if we felt maligned by the Jewish News, we would have to find other publications to print the letter.

A free press: when you own one, you’re free to do what you want.

Do NOT Say “Jewish Power”

Brad ** is a local entrepreneur in Ann Arbor, offering bicycle-powered coach rides throughout our downtown and campus. A sponsor of his was Bank of Ann Arbor, distinguishable by its unique colors and many billboards around town.

Brad also tows a smaller rig which appeared to be a small, rolling billboard. “Your ad here” read this small chariot, and I called the announced phone number.

How much, I asked? $1,000 per month was the reply. Would you take a political statement? That depends … what would it say? It would say “America First Not Israel”

“Let me think about that. I lost a contract with Bank of Ann Arbor recently, and have become wary of certain kinds of political statements”

Back Story

Last September 11, the Michigan Diag (main campus commons) is the annual setting for the “Never Forget” display reminding folks of the government’s story of 9/11: that hijackers rammed passenger aircraft into the World Trade Center towers, which alone caused their free-fall collapses onto their own footprints.

Our friend Larry takes to the Diag with his own version of events that day– specifically that Israel and the CIA had a hand in the events of 9/11 – and is quite knowledgeable about the topic. To advance his physical presence, this writer rented the above pictured trailer from which Larry spoke his mind.

On the phone this month, Brad told me a Jewish woman made a call to Bank of Ann Arbor to complain that she felt “threatened” when Larry was speaking, and within a day Brad was informed that his contract with the Bank was cancelled; he would receive no more payments. This writer observed a woman making a phone call just as Brad described.

Brad refused our $1,000, and who could blame him?

Jewish Power at work, or not? You decide.


Four vigilers
Thumbs: 19, Fingers: 5
America First, Not Israel
Witness for Peace
Henry Herskovitz

*“An open letter to an Ann Arbor hate group”, WJN Sept. 2015
“It’s official: picketers are pro-Nazi “Hate Group”, WJN April 2017
“Ann Arbor picketers and the Charlottesville Nazis”, WJN October 2017

** Alias

Report on Beth Israel vigil 04-06-19

Posted on April 8th, 2019 at 10:55 am by

Springtime Arrives in Ann Arbor

Vigiler G returned to the lineup Saturday after taking a winter’s break, as Witness for Peace celebrated the first warm day of 2019. The day coincided with Ann Arbor’s annual Hash Bash, which might have contributed to our Official Scorekeeper’s report of 46 “thumbs” vs. 10 “fingers”.

Our weekly counter-protester carries a sign, reading “God Bless Israel”. Wfp responds with the above sign, and just cannot imagine a God who would condone dropping white phosphorus bombs on civilian populations, merely to insure Jewish theft of Palestinian land.

Leo Frank and the Holocaust

(Repeated from my post on Facebook)

Banned books are quite attractive, so when Amazon deep-sixed “The Leo Frank Case – The Lynching of a Guilty Man” (The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews, Vol. 3) I ordered a copy from its publisher, the Nation of Islam.

Wikipedia is quick to charge “anti-Semitism” in its page on Leo Frank as one of the “racial concerns” related to his lynching.

Not true, explains the book, and if you don’t have time to reads its 500 pages, Ron Unz has provided an excellent summary at

According to both book and article, “anti-Semitism” played no part whatsoever in Frank’s trial, 13 appeals, and subsequent upholding of the guilty verdict by the Supreme Court.

It was only AFTER the trial, when Jewish elites Albert Lasker, Adolph Ochs, Jacob Schiff and others wanted to take the case to the court of public opinion, that false charges of “anti-Semitism” arose. The creation of the Anti-Defamation League was one of the results of this effort.

Here’s the connection to the Holocaust:

Two facts in the Leo Frank case: (1) He was a Jew, (2) He was lynched. The rest was concocted to portray Jews as victims in order to cement their claim to eternal victimhood, and reap possible benefits.

Two facts of the Holocaust: (2) Adolf Hitler made no bones of not liking Jews. (2) Jews were sent to concentration camps; many died. The rest (written orders from Hitler to exterminate Jews, building homicidal gas chambers, and claiming 6 million victims) was concocted to portray Jews as victims in order to cement their claim to eternal victimhood, and reap possible benefits.

Half-baked or not? You decide


Four vigilers
America First, Not Israel
Witness for Peace
Henry Herskovitz

Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-23-19

Posted on March 24th, 2019 at 12:24 pm by

A “Dangerous Path”

Three WfP members were joined by a vigil supporter from nearby Dearborn (MI) and attended a Westland Town Hall Meeting with Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib and two Michigan Congressmen on March 16. Vigiler C had a few things to say and the following are excerpts:

Incredibly disappointed today. Just got back from hearing Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib speak at a town hall meeting in Westland. I had such high hopes, but they were dashed within the first five minutes. I can now only describe her as a “career politician”.
My friend, and fellow Palestinian Rights Activist, asked the first question. He put to the panel, “Is there a law at the state or federal level that forces Dual Citizens to declare their status or is there a list that we can see who these individuals are?”

… Ms. Tlaib said, “That’s a dangerous question. We don’t want to go there because that leads down the road to HATE.” She went on, but the rest was blather, and the moans, groans, and dirty looks from those around us, after he raised the question, spoke volumes.

The “elephant in the room”, that Ms. Tlaib so artfully tiptoed around, is the question of Jewish Power and corruption. Until the people of the world force our governments to END the Apartheid Nation-State, the Palestinians, and all who care for equality and the spirit of Peace and Brotherhood, will continue to suffer.

Gideon Levy once said that the Jews will never fix the situation, and after 80 years of occupation and barbaric oppression, I must agree with him.

Rashida Disappoints Another Activist

Vigil Supporter D also attended the Town Hall Meeting and shares these thoughts:

I was not only disappointed in Rashida’s response to Henry’s very generic question about dual citizenship, but I was unhappy with her reply to my own question about military spending. I pointed out that total defense spending–including pentagon, war budget, homeland security, VA, etc–is well over $1 trillion per year.

I said that a mere 10% or 20% cut in this could go a long way toward universal health care, free college tuition, a green economy, infrastructure upgrades, and so on. In reply, however, Rashida would have none of this. She showed neither an understanding of this situation nor any sympathy with my concern.

This puts her firmly on the side of the Israel-firsters, who love nothing more than a powerful, global US military machine that can take on Muslims, Arabs, and any other enemies of the Jewish State. Very disappointing.


Four vigilers
Support Scoreboard: 33 Thumbs up v. 8 negatives
America First, Not Israel
Witness for Peace
Henry Herskovitz

Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-09-19

Posted on March 13th, 2019 at 5:39 pm by

WfP Supports Rashida and Ilhan

US Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib will be co-hosting a Town Hall meeting with Michigan State Senator Erika Geiss and State Congressman Kevin Coleman this Saturday March 16 at John Glenn High School in Westland, Michigan (10:30 – 12:00).

Witness for Peace is excited about this opportunity to support Rashida (and US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar) as they appear to be the only elected officials who understand the corrosive impact the Israel Lobby has on US Foreign Policy.

As a result, Witness for Peace announces a CHANGE of VENUE for this Saturday’s protest to the parking lot of John Glenn in Westland (See map here). We then plan on attending the Town Hall meeting and offering fliers to interested citizens. Ergo, there will be NO scheduled vigil at Beth Israel Congregation this week.

Please join us: we will gather at 10:00 am near the entrance to John Glenn, holding signs in support of these brave women, and challenging the Lobby’s influence on our government.


Acting upon his own initiative, Vigiler C has started compiling the number of supporting gestures we receive from passing motorists (thumbs) and opposing gestures (fingers). His data follows:

(Date, Thumbs, Fingers)

Feb. 8           11 –   1

Feb. 16         16  –  3

Feb. 23         18  –  8

Mar.  2         21 –  7

Mar.  9         12 –   4

We report, you decide.


America First, Not Israel
Witness for Peace
Henry Herskovitz
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