The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog

Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-20-10

Posted on March 28th, 2010 at 9:52 am by

Netanyahu Challenges Jewish Peace Activists

As the Jewish state punishes and punishes again an essentially unarmed, indigenous people simply for existing on land coveted by European settlers, “Israeli” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains unsatisfied. He wants Arabs, particularly Palestinian Arabs, to now bend to his demands to accept a Zionist “right” that simply doesn’t exist. At least Alan Hart doesn’t think so. To his credit, Netanyahu’s not bashful about identifying the elephant in the room:

“For 62 years the Palestinians have been saying ‘No’ to the Jewish state. I am once again calling upon our Palestinian neighbours – say ‘Yes’ to the Jewish state. Without recognition of Israel as the state of the Jews we shall not be able to attain peace… Such recognition is a step which requires courage and the Palestinian leadership should tell its people the truth – that without this recognition there can be no peace… There is no alternative to Palestinian leaders showing courage by recognising the Jewish state. This has been and remains the true key to peace.”

Of course, his words are not only directed to the neighbors he wishes didn’t exist; they are directed to the world, most of which recognizes such boastful, arrogant demands as coming from the frightened captain of a sinking ship. The question in this writer’s mind is: Will Jewish peace activists seize upon this opportunity to reject the position very clearly stated by the leader of the Jewish state, or will they, with their silence, give tacit approval of Netanyahu’s claim?

Will IJAN (International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network) be equally clear in a soon-to-be-released statement denying – for all the world to see – this specious claimed “right” to exist “as the state of the Jews”? Will they point out how “Israel’s” position is absolutely contrary to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? Will they say “Hell, no” to such a racist position? Will they state, “We are different. We oppose Jewish supremacism in Palestine. We stand for equal rights for all persons, not a selected few. We think Jewish exceptionalism and privilege are the ingredients that by necessity results in a militarized and punitive state, certainly the wrong ingredients for any just and lasting peace”? Readers are directed here for our critical analysis of IJAN.

But let’s not allow IJAN to struggle on this hook alone. What about other Jewish-identified peace groups? Jewish Voice for Peace, your local spokesperson Barbara Harvey dropped the ball when similarly challenged by Zionist Don Cohen. Will you now pick it up and challenge the Zionist Netanyahu? How about Gush Shalom? Will that Israeli-based organization join with their Palestinian brothers and sisters who have said “No” to the Jewish state, or will they remain silent? What about Code Pink, Women in Black, J-street (oops, sorry – I got carried away there)? And local groups, the same challenge goes out to you: Michigan PeaceWorks, Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice. Where are your unified voices challenging this unabashed demand? Take the reins of leadership; let your voice be heard, and our non-Jewish brothers and sisters will follow. Basic human rights demand that you speak up now, and clearly… as Nancy Reagan instructed us twenty-five years ago: Just Say NO! to Netanyahu and his racist state. Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends have been saying “No” for well over six years.

Double Digits

In spite of some health issues that prevented Vigiller S from taking her normal place in our line, we report eleven activists holding the torch of freedom for Palestine, including a new face or two.

JWPF Members Hear Alison Weir

At least a half dozen JWPF members attended a presentation by If Americans Knew founder Alison Weir at Washtenaw Community College this week. As usual, Ms. Weir gave an outstanding talk, airtight in its delivery and conclusions. A friend to this writer was moved by Weir’s presentation to draft a letter to Ann Arbor’s local NPR affiliate, WUOM, and redirected one-third of her contribution from that radio station to the coffers of [WUOM has denied sponsorship to her organization – see last week’s report for details] It was suggested that – as an information delivery tactic – JWPF produce and carry a sign giving motorists the URL to her website.


To all those who claim “Israel” is merely the tail of the U.S. imperialist dog, we have General David Petraeus telling us au contraire – that support for a Jewish state actually undermines U.S. interests:

“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 Area of Responsibility. Meanwhile, Al-Qaeda and other military groups exploit that anger to mobilize support.”

Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends
Two States: An Apartheid “Solution” to an Apartheid Problem

One Response to “Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-20-10”

  1. The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog » Blog Archive » Report on Beth Israel vigil 03-27-10

    […] Last week we reported that “Israeli” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a challenge to the Jewish peace community – indeed the watching world – to respond to his demand that Palestinians recognize Israel as “the state of the Jews”. Now the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) likewise issues a warning to their flock of a “new plan of attack” which seeks “to delegitimatize [sic] Israel’s very right to exist”. Methinks the Lobby doth protest too much. […]
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