Tag Archives: Free Gaza Movement

39 Congressmen advocating for release of convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard

ACTION ALERT

AMP urges supporters to take action and denounce latest Israel-first policies

(CHICAGO 11/22/2010) – Thirty-nine Democratic U.S. Representatives have signed a letter asking President Barak Obama to grant clemency to convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard. The elected officials are working in tandem with several Zionist and religious Jewish organizations, including the Zionist Organization of America, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, B’nai B’rith International, and the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism.

The American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) urges its supporters to take action and call on the congressmen to uphold America’s interest and stop these Israel-first policies. Freeing Pollard is unpatriotic and harms America’s long-standing interests.

Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1986, after he confessed to spying for the state of Israel. Pollard, who was a civilian research analyst with high security clearance for the U.S. Navy, had agreed to spy for Israel for 10 years in exchange for more than $500,000. According to a January 1999 article in the New Yorker by Seymour Hersh, Pollard “betrayed elements of four major American intelligence systems.”  Pollard caused extensive damage to U.S. intelligence and U.S. national security because of the nature of the highly sensitive documents he sold to Israel.

In many cases, Israel bartered top-secret U.S. intelligence documents it received from Pollard with the Soviet Union, in exchange for Soviet Jewish colonial emigration to historic Palestine, Hersh wrote.

Recently, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has hinted at Israeli concessions in the stalled peace talks if Pollard is released, according to the Jerusalem Post. This is not the first time he has used the American Jewish traitor as a bargaining chip in Middle East peace negotiations. As prime minister in October 1998, Netanyahu also tried to gain Pollard’s release in exchange for concessions during the Wye River, Maryland, talks with then-President Bill Clinton.

The American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) is outraged that 39 U.S. representatives care more about the state of Israel than they do for American security. It is time for our elected officials to put U.S. interests ahead of Israel’s.

TAKE ACTION

Below is the letter, initiated by U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-MA, to President Barack Obama as well as the names of the 39 representatives who have put Israel’s interest ahead of America’s by signing the letter.

  • AMP urges you to contact the signatories to say that their support of someone who has done incalculable damage to the security of the United States is reprehensible and unacceptable.
  • If your representative did not sign the letter, please write and thank him or her. AMP also asks you to urge them to resist pressure from their Israel-first colleagues.
  • Write a letter to President Obama to express your disapproval of this letter and to stress that Americans deserve and demand that U.S. policymakers put our interests ahead of a foreign country’s.

November 18, 2010

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

We write to urge you to use your constitutional power to extend clemency to Jonathan Pollard, thereby releasing him from prison after the time he has already served. Mr. Pollard committed serious crimes and he has expressed remorse. Such an exercise of the clemency power would not in any way imply doubt about his guilt, nor cast any aspersions on the process by which he was convicted. Those who have such views are of course entitled to continue to have them, but the clemency grant has nothing to do with that.

We believe that there has been a great disparity from the standpoint of justice between the amount of time Mr. Pollard has served and the time that has been served — or not served at all — by many others who were found guilty of similar activity on behalf of nations that, like Israel, are not adversarial to us. It is indisputable in our view that the nearly twenty-five years that Mr. Pollard has served stands as a sufficient time from the standpoint of either punishment or deterrence.

In summary, we see clemency for Mr. Pollard as an act of compassion justified by the way others have been treated by our justice system. We urge you to use the clemency power in this case.

Sincerely,

Barney Frank (D-MA)

Gary L. Ackerman (D-NY)

Robert E. Andrews (D-NJ)

Shelley Berkley (D-NV)

Robert A. Brady (D-PA)

Danny Davis (D-IL)

Theodore E. Deutsch (D-FL)

Eliot L. Engel (D-NY)

John J. Hall (D-NY)

James A. Himes (D-CT)

Maurice D. Hinchey (D-NY)

Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX)

Patrick J. Kennedy (D-RI)

John Lewis (D-GA)

Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY)

Michael E. McMahon (D-NY)

Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY)

Jerrold Nadler (D-NY)

Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC)

John W. Olver (D-MA)

Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ)

Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ)

Donald M. Payne (D-NJ)

Charles B. Rangel (D-NY)

Laura Richardson (D-CA)

Janice D. Schakowsky (D-IL)

Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA)

Brad Sherman (D-CA)

Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS)

Edolphus Towns (D-NY)

Niki Tsongas (D-MA)

Henry A. Waxman (D-CA)

Anthony Weiner (D-NY)

To find the addresses and phone numbers of elected officials, click here.

To send an email to President Obama, click here.

For more background information on Jonathan Pollard, go to these resources:

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 19, 2010.

Seymour M. Hersh, Annals of Espionage, “The Traitor,” The New Yorker, January 18, 1999, p. 26 ($5.99 fee)

Ian Williams, “A Tale of Two Spies,” July/August 1993 Washington Report, p. 13.

The American Muslims for Palestine is a national, grassroots organization, whose mission is to educate the American public about issues relating to Palestine and its rich, cultural heritage. For more information, go to www.ampalestine.org, call 888.404.4AMP, or email info@ampalestine.org.

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Raw, unedited video smuggled off the Mavi Marmara by flimmaker Iana Lee

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EXCLUSIVE: New Video Smuggled Out from Mavi Marmara of Israel’s Deadly Assault on Gaza Aid Flotilla

EXCLUSIVE: New Video Smuggled Out from Mavi Marmara of Israel’s Deadly Assault on Gaza Aid Flotilla.

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God Bless Helen Thomas

Ari Fleischer: Quit your whining!

You gotta love Helen Thomas, the 89-year-old newsroom maven, who’s covered every president since Dwight Eisenhower. She has the guts to ask the questions real reporters should be asking if they weren’t too scared of getting shut out of the elite glam social functions in Washington.

From Fox News:

Former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer said that Hearst reporter Helen Thomas should be fired for saying that Israelis should “get the hell out of Palestine.”

“She should lose her job over this,” Fleischer, President George W. Bush’s secretary, said in an e-mail to the Huffington Post that he posted on his Twitter account. “As someone who is Jewish, and as someone who worked with her and used to like her, I find this appalling.”

Fleischer suggested a double standard for Thomas, the 89-year-old White House Press Corps dean who has covered every president since Dwight Eisenhower.

“She is advocating religious cleansing. How can Hearst stand by her? If a journalist, or a columnist, said the same thing about blacks or Hispanics, they would already have lost their jobs.”

At a Jewish Heritage Month celebration at the White House last week Thomas, who is of Lebanese descent, said the Palestinian people “are occupied and it’s their land” and that Israelis should “go home” to Poland, Germany, America “and everywhere else.”

Helen is right. The majority of the Jews in Israel, particularly the Zionists in leadership, are descendants of Europeans whose ancestors converted to Judaism centuries ago. The ruling class in Israel and most of its Jewish residents are not descendants of the Biblical Hebrews, despite what AIPAC, the ADL and other Zionists groups would have you believe.

Helen Thomas just has the balls to say so.

Yay Helen! You go girl!

~ Kristin Szremski 6/6/2010

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Call Out for nationwide rallies Monday and Tuesday

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

AMP demands US hold Israel accountable for deadly attacks on flotilla
Protest rallies taking place Monday and Tuesday throughout the country

(CHICAGO 05/31/2010) – In response to Israel’s deadly aggression in international waters against a flotilla of civil resistance volunteers bringing humanitarian and medical aid to besieged Gaza, the American Muslims for Palestine has organized protests across the country.

The rallies and demonstrations will take place Monday and Tuesday in Chicago,Detroit, Sacramento, San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Washington DC, Boston, Miami and New Haven, CT.

On Sunday, while most Americans were enjoying a holiday weekend, Israel commandeered five humanitarian aid vessels, killing 16 unarmed volunteers and wounding more than 50, according to published reports.

In international waters, Israel attacked the Freedom Flotilla, which was taking 10,000 tons of donated humanitarian and medical supplies, such as motorized wheelchairs, to the Palestinians of Gaza, which Israel has held under total siege for more than three years.  People of conscious across the globe were horrified at the scene that played out before them on a satellite feed direct from the deck of the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara.

The American Muslims for Palestine condemns Israel’s actions in the strongest possible terms. Israel attacked the flotilla even though the five ships had changed course to avoid a night-time confrontation, according to organizers of the effort.

“Israel’s actions increases Arab and Muslim mistrust the United States, thus further eroding our standing in the world at this critical time in our nation’s history,” said Dr. Hatem Bazian, AMP Chairman and Professor of Near Eastern and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. “Israel’s actions prove once again that it is a strategic liability to the United States and only complicates U.S. relations with the rest of the world.”

Israel will continue its illegal, inhumane and aggressive actions as long as the United States continues to send it more than $3 billion in unconditional military aid. It is time for President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and members of Congress to put U.S. interests before Israel’s.

It is imperative for the United States to finally stand up for the values upon which this country was founded and to tell Israel it has gone too far. AMP calls on the White House and Congress to hold Israel accountable by cutting off foreign aid. AMP calls on President Obama, Secretary Clinton and members of Congress to release the flotilla prisoners they captured illegally in international waters, to lift the siege on Gaza and to end the illegal, unjust and inhumane occupation of Palestine.

Interviews available. Contact:

Dr. Hatem Bazian
Chairman, AMP
Professor of Near Eastern and Ethnic Studies
University of California, Berkeley
510.914.6722
hatemb@berkeley.edu

Munjed Ahmad, Esq.
Vice chairman, AMP
Attorney at Law, Milwaukee
414.467.5452
ahmadlaw@sbcglobal.net

Awad Hamdan
AMP Chicago Chairman
National Programs Director
773.951.2020
awad.hamdan@ampalestine.org

The American Muslims for Palestine is a national, grassroots organization whose mission is to educate the American public about issues relating to Palestine and its rich cultural heritage. For more information, contact Kristin Szremski, director of media and communications, at 708.717.4180 or media@ampalestine.org.

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NOT THIS TIME, Isreal

I have been on the Internet literally for 13 hours now following these developments.

We know one of the people on board – Fatima Mohammadi. Many of you worked with her last year at various events. I saw her interviewed on the livestream coming from the Turkish ship. She and I also exchanged a few personal emails today.

Now, two people on her ship are dead and more than 50 are wounded. I heard a woman screaming in English, “Stop shooting at us. We are civilians. We have critically wounded people here.”

And I don’t know what has become of Fatima. Kevin, from the Free Gaza Movement, who has been in contact with the ship, does not know either,

These people are risking their lives for Gaza and Palestine, while we are enjoying a holiday weekend. If we don’t turn out for rally in Chicago Tuesday  then how can we call ourselves supporters of Palestine?

Take off  school. Take off work. There are rallies going on around the world. We must stand up and be counted.

We must say to Israel: NOT THIS TIME. NOT THIS TIME.

Rally info: 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 1 in front of Israeli Consulate, 111 E. Wacker Drive, Chicago. Buses leaving from Mosque Foundation, ICCI. For more info, go to http://www.ampalestine.org.

~ Kristin Szremski 5/30/2010

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Language shift in mainstream media? #flotilla

Check out this headline in an Associated Press article

Israel ships STALK pro-Palestinian aid flotilla

And the lede is a bit more accurate than how they are usually crafted:

“”Israeli warships stalked a flotilla carrying hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists, including a Nobel laureate and a Holocaust survivor heading for the Gaza Strip on Monday, edging closer to a naval showdown on the high seas.”

Is it possible the media is finally getting the message? Has Israel finally, finally backed itself into a corner, where no matter how its MisInformation Ministers try to spin it, it will all backfire?

Let’s hope so.

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