The Deir Yassin Remembered Blog

Report on Beth Israel vigil 12-24-11

Posted on January 2nd, 2012 at 12:39 pm by

Zionists Unleash New Tactics

Who would have thought to issue Christmas cards to Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends this season? This writer is in receipt of at least four such cards, issued either personally or pre-printed from “American Friends of Magen David Adom”. The purpose of issuing these greeting cards remain a mystery, except to Vigiller M, whose comments follow. Other readers are encouraged to offer their own thoughts under “Comments?” M writes:

A better paragraph heading would read “Zionists Send Un-Christlike Christmas Cards”.
The spirit of these Christmas cards is more on the order of a “F**k You” than any sincere attempt to celebrate the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, the Prince of Peace, a man who would later be slain by the Romans at the behest of Israelite religious authorities. We’ll take our Christmas inspiration from the Rev. Dr. Naim Ateek; in Sabeel’s annual Christmas message. He writes, “The message that the Gospels record about Jesus’ birth include words that ordinary people living under occupation and oppression long to hear, ‘Do not fear! There is good news that will give joy to all people, a savior is born!’ God has sent a liberator, and he is born in a humble setting.”

What the Cards Say

A hand-written note from Todd and Liz Kirshner, Ann Arbor, Michigan reads:

Dear Henry Herskovits [sic],

Thank you so much for raising money for this cause. I could not find a better cause to give money to Israel. Thanks again, Todd and Liz Kirschner

And a pre-printed card (and envelope!) from Mr. Sherman Palan of Sharon, Massachusetts reads:

A generous contribution has been made by Sherm In Memory of Your lost morals and standards – Henry Herskovitz

Well, let’s offer these goodwill ambassadors a hearty thank-you for acknowledging our work these past eight years, and to support their efforts to “Saving lives in Israel”, with our Christmas wish that they would also focus on saving lives that the Apartheid state seems intent on destroying. Local Christmas card senders received a hand-written thank you note and an offer for coffee and discussion. So far, none have replied, but we cast our eyes upon the new year with anticipation of conversations to come.

Anti-Vigil Web Site Offers Potential Unity

The source of these Christmas cards seems to come from a local website called Synagogue Protest UNACCEPTABLE! Respond Now (AASPURN). On its front page is a rather interesting comment:

“hurtful and counterproductive”
Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice [ICPJ] says end the picketing.

Is AASPURN aware that ICPJ’s steering committee (now Board of Directors) issued a resolution called “Arms Divestment and Cessation of U.S. Military Aid to Israel”, which was passed in partnership with the former Middle East Task Force (METF) and the Ann Arbor Friends Meeting Palestine-Israel Action Group (PIAG)? Are they by association also supporting an end to military aid to Israel, which of course is one of the goals of JWPF? Readers are invited to read this document following signature, and to contact ICPJ ( or AASPURN to resolve this apparent conflict.

Quote of the Week

Nahida, the Uprooted Palestinian, lambastes Jewish anti-Zionists, whom she refers to as “Anti-Zionist Zionists (AZZ)”, and who are more concerned with the welfare of “Israelis” than the liberation of Palestine in her recent blog post . She writes: “Imposing on Palestine forced marriage with a rapist monster is an obscenity.”


Seven vigilers
Defeat Israel
Henry Herskovitz
Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends


Arms Divestment and Cessation of U.S. Military Aid to Israel
A resolution of the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice and its Middle East Task Force
Adopted May 13, 2003

As persons of faith who believe in the equal worth and dignity of all people, we are distressed that Israelis and Palestinians have become locked in an escalating cycle of violence. We categorically condemn the taking of any life, Israeli or Palestinian. We are convinced that only the end of the Israeli occupation and the establishment of a geographically and economically viable independent Palestinian state can bring peace to the Middle East and achieve the goal of two nation-states — Israel and Palestine — living peaceably side-by-side, with equality and security, possibly in a confederation.

We have long been dismayed by threats to the existence of Israel. We are equally dismayed by the continual military occupation and virtual colonization of Palestinian territory by Israeli armed forces and settlers, the human rights abuses against Palestinians, and the destruction of the Palestinian economy. Devastation of the physical and social infrastructure in the West Bank and Gaza — including the forcible eviction from and demolition of homes – does not quell terrorism. It engenders more. Such actions fuel deeper hatred of Israel in surrounding countries, while causing a major humanitarian disaster among Palestinians. And they leave Palestinians continually vulnerable to expulsion from the land in which they have been deeply rooted for generations. U.S. weapons and military funding are being used in these violations of human rights and international agreements. Americans of conscience must protest.

We do not have faith that governments alone will take the necessary actions to bring about a change in the Israeli government policies described above. We therefore believe that nonviolent civilian action is needed, aiming to limit the present intense funding of Israeli military activities. Accordingly, we will develop a campaign to call on the governing bodies of our religious institutions, the City of Ann Arbor, the University of Michigan, and on our fellow citizens

(1) to use their influence to encourage the United States government end its complicity in these violations of human rights by suspending its military aid and arms sales to Israel, and
(2) to divest themselves from all companies that manufacture or sell arms and other military hardware to Israel, in order to bring about:

–Israel’s compliance with United Nations Resolution 242, which calls for “the
withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied in the recent (1967) conflict”;

–Israel’s compliance with the United Nations Committee Against Torture Nov. 2001 Report (paragraph 53), which recommends that Israel’s use of “the crime of torture and other acts of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment” must be prevented;

–Israel’s cessation of settlement building and expansion, and its vacating of existing settlements in the Occupied Territories in compliance with the Fourth Geneva Convention, which states “The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.” (Article 49, paragraph 6, 1949);

–Israel’s acknowledgment of the applicability of United Nations Resolution 194 (1948) with respect to the rights of refugees, and acceptance that refugees should either be permitted to return to their homes and property or be justly compensated for their losses.

This statement is derived from multiple sources, including several university divestment petitions; and from members of the Middle East Task Force of the Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice and the Palestine-Israel Action Group of Ann Arbor Friends Meeting.

See also

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