Criticizing Israel Does Not Make You A White Supremacist!

The ugly head that conflates the criticism of Israel’s actions towards the dislodged people of Palestine with anti-Semitism, has risen again. And most of it surrounds a few statements from a Muslim-refugee, who wears a head scarf within the Capitol building, representing Minnesota’s 5th District, Rep. Ilhan Omar.

Rep. Omar is a freshmen Rep who has joined the caucus of new female House members setting the U.S. political and cultural norms on fire. Along with others, such as Rep. Alexandria Ocazio-Cortez (D-NY), and Rep, Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich), she supports new progressive proposals like the Green New Deal and the BDS movement. But what really caught the ire of Republicans and most Democratic leaders, are a few comments that Omar made recently criticizing Israel. For example, referring to AIPAC,


“I want to talk about the political influence in this country that says it is okay for people to push for allegiance to a foreign country. And I want to ask, Why is it ok for me to talk about the influence of the NRA, of fossil fuel industries, or Big Pharma, and not talk about a powerful lobby … that is influencing policy


(PHYLLIS BENNIS, In These Times, March 4th, 2019,
Why False Accusations of Anti-Semitism Against Ilhan Omar Are So Harmful )

Statements like these have people screaming anti-Semitism. They say Omar is reinforcing anti-Semitic tropes, such as that Jews have dual-loyalty to both America and Israel, and that Jews are controlling the world with their money. But this couldn’t be more untrue. A criticism of lobbying groups such as AIPAC, and America’s fanatical loyalty to Israel, are true concerns. In the U.S., if you say or do anything out of line regarding Israel’s foreign policy, you are labelled as a bigot towards Jews.

Now, we know that the blind allegiance to Israel is based on three reasons:

  1. Zionism (Jewish nationalist movement that has had as its goal the creation and support of a Jewish national state in Palestine, the ancient homeland of the Jews (Hebrew: Eretz Yisraʾel, “the Land of Israel”) is exceptionally strong among American Christians, and especially Evangelicals. They believe that the second-coming of Christ will not take place until Jews return to their homeland in Palestine.
  2. Secondly, according to In These Times, America got mixed up in the Cold War in the region when most Arab states were loyal to the U.S.S.R.
  3. And lastly, according to Chomsky (Who Rules The World, 2016), Israel serves as an available landing station for American forces if their were to be a catastrophic conflict in the Mid-East.

It has nothing to do with all that nonsense about being the only democratic state in the Middle East, or having some sort of special relationship between us and Israel.

In conclusion, another quote from the ITT’s March 4th piece sums it up in one statement:


“…(F)alse accusations of anti-Semitism—usually linked to criticism of Israel or Israel’s supporters in the United States—are on the rise as well. And we need to be clear: It is not anti-Semitic to support Palestinian rights, demand a change in U.S. policy towards Israel, expose the kind of pressure that the pro-Israel lobby brings to bear on elected officials, or call out Israel’s violations of human rights and international law.­­ “


PHYLLIS BENNIS, In These Times, March 4th, 2019,
Why False Accusations of Anti-Semitism Against Ilhan Omar Are So Harmful )

So get out there to support Rep. Omar, support the BDS movement, and form an activist group in your locality to contribute to the cause. And remember, critiques of Israeli crimes against humanity do not equate you with being anti-Semitic. That’s just a convenient and false construction used to silence the cries of the Palestinians. Don’t let it stop you. You are not a white supremacist.

Maduro Critic Even Argues A U.S. Coup Attempt is Occurring in Venezuela

A great Democracy Now! interview with a Caracas professor who, though being a Maduro critic, explains how U.S. aid is an attempt to incite the Venezuelan publics support for a Guaido/U.S. coup.

Also explains how U.S. sanctions are true cause for Venezuelan economic crisis.

Plus, for good measure, they have snippets of Trump spewing lies at one of his rallies calling Maduro a “Cuban Puppet.”

www.democracynow.org/2019/2/22/this_is_not_humanitarian_aid_a

“Pelosi and Democratic Leaders Condemn Omar Statements as Anti-Semitic”: How Criticism is Quashed

nyti.ms/2E4hBlN

Any time someone expresses any criticism of Israel’s criminal actions towards the Palestinians, they are labeled as anti-Semite.

This is how AIPAC wants to keep it, too.

“AP Explains: Venezuela’s humanitarian aid standoff”: Where’s the sanctions part?

From the AP: https://apnews.com/6c66de0a22944b58b276d43eef91c093

The suffering of the Venezuelan people is heartbreaking. But:

A) This is not a result of a failing socialist system but rather an economic strangling committed by the U.S. and the International community, who are in our pocket, through strong sanctions, and,

B) If Maduro lets in the U.S. aid, it would be seen as a gift from Guaido which would strengthen him immensely. And Guaido would be a U.S. puppet.

The only thing that should solve this is the delivery of aid by Russia or China. Where are they at?

GOP Refuses Funding for Border Children Projects

JPBORDER-master675A humanitarian crisis unseen before at our borders is becoming more and more urgent everyday at Rio Grande Valley, TX, and other Southwest locations. And yet the GOP is arguing over numbers.

Yesterday President Obama requested an amount of $3.7 billion from Congress to help aid the 57,000 unaccompanied minors who illegally crossed the border from the Mexico side since October. They are mostly from violence-ridden Central American countries, like El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras (Honduras has the world’s highest murder rate, according to the CIA World Factbook) and were mostly transported here by human traffickers.

The problem here is that our usual laws and resources cannot handle this number of illegal immigrants as current immigration law stands. It’s just like what Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate said in front of Congress yesterday, “Although we have made progress, that progress is oftentimes disrupted when we see sudden influxes of kids coming in faster than we can discharge them, and we back up.”

Now the President has asked for funds to add more judges and Border Patrol Agents, increase detention facilities, conduct more aerial surveillance, help care for the kids, and pay for programs in Central America to try to keep them from coming. This would be a good initial, and multi-pronged attempt to help these children who have suffered extreme trials and often unnameable abuses to reach here. They should not have to suffer any longer in the world’s wealthiest nation mythologized as “The Land of Immigrants.”

But the GOP is fighting against these humanitarian efforts with claims that it is too much money and would not solve the problem. I just keep hearing the phrase from the Republicans that we need to “secure the border” first, like House Majority Leader Rep. John Boenher said to reporters yesterday,

“If we don’t secure the border, nothing’s going to change. And if you look at the president’s request, it’s all more about continuing to deal with the problem”

I simply do not know what all “securing the borders” entails for the Right-wing. Should our Mexican border look like the coast of Normandy in June, 1943, before the D-Day invasion? Should we shoot at the small boats, rafts, inner tubers, and single children floating across the Rio Grande who get too close to the American shore? What does it mean?

We need to provide the aid Pres. Obama needs and cut it away from the real wasteful programs that Washington spends on, say, on a few more drones in Afghanistan.

 

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Climate Change Report Destined to Become Politically Charged

07climate1_now-master675The NYT reports on the National Climate Assessment that was released today which concludes present and future catastrophic weather events in the U.S. are the effects of climate change

The article reports that the NCA reads:

“Summers are longer and hotter, and extended periods of unusual heat last longer than any living American has ever experienced,” the report continued. “Winters are generally shorter and warmer. Rain comes in heavier downpours. People are seeing changes in the length and severity of seasonal allergies, the plant varieties that thrive in their gardens, and the kinds of birds they see in any particular month in their neighborhoods.”

(Read Here.)

Now what will happen here is that the GOP will wrap this report up in partisan politics and anti-enviornmentalism speech. Just take this quote from the article:

Some Republican members of Congress have contended that the science of global warming is a hoax perpetrated by a global conspiracy of climate scientists, a point of view Mr. Obama has mocked as comparable to belief in a flat earth.

Yet, on the other side, the article reports that Pres. Obama has interest in the NCA’s promulgation:

The administration hopes to use the report to shore up public support for the president’s climate policies as he seeks to put new regulations in place to limit emissions. A major political battle over the rules is expected this summer, with Republicans already accusing Mr. Obama of plotting a “war on coal.”

But notice the wide swathe of scientists and even businessmen who were involved in this Assessment:

The report was supervised and approved by a large committee representing a cross section of American society, including representatives of two oil companies.

Hopefully the press this report is getting will let some of the included information get-through.

And just because the NCA is supported by the White House doesn’t mean that the information is some partisan ploy. This fact is exemplified by the fact that these NCA’s are to be conducted every four years no matter which party is in power.

Now we’ve got to get to the fact that why only three have been conducted (they have been missed by both Pres. Clinton and Bush) when the Congress ordered the NCA be compiled every four years.

 

 

 

 

Sign-Up GOP, Win A Gun

17GOP1_now-tmagSFAn article in the NYT reports that GOP candidates for Congress are conducting “gun sweepstakes,” i.e., running “gun giveaways” (like raffles) for those who sign up on their website with names, e-mail addresses, mailing addresses, etc.

It’s an attempt by far-Right politicians to reach gun nuts who are insane about protecting their second amendment rights.

It reports that the NRA has been conducting these “giveaways” since the 80’s but it is a new phenomenon amongst political candidates.

Unbelievable…

Read Here.

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“Imperial Presidency”?

leadA piece in the NYT about how the slogan, or whatever you want to call it, “imperial presidency” is being used by the Right to describe the Obama administration. It’s in an effort to sway voters to their side proposing that Pres. Obama is overreaching his presidential powers.

But as the article points out, the GOP is one day saying that the President doesn’t lead, and then claims this “imperial presidency” idea the next day.

Read Here.

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“Morning Joe” Attacks Viewers

pdv_morningjoeI enjoy watching “Morning Joe” on MSNBC with Republican Joe Scarborough and co-host Mica Brzezinski despite our differences regarding ideological point of views. But this morning they’ve gone too far.

First, both Scarborough and Brzezinski claim NJ Gov. Chris Christie as a personal friend. A true journalist should never befriend a political figure for it’s the press’ job to be in opposition to those in power.

Second, Scarborough has come out as against all critiques of Christie as too strong in comparison with press coverage of Obama’s problems with the Benghazi attack (GOP smoke and mirrors) and the supposed IRS scandal (also GOP smoke and mirrors.)

Third, Scarborough is just protecting his GOP friend he has invested in with personal sponsorship. Scarborough bet on that horse and now he must stick with it, so he is critical of anyone who voices even a half-way dissenting opinion.

And lastly, Scarborough has criticized bloggers and twitter users this morning as being unemployed, living in their parents basements, and being overweight with Cheetos all over us in an attempt to throw a cheap shot at all those online who question Christie’s shutting down of the George Washington Bridge out of political spitefulness.

Shameful and just the games the GOP, and even mainstream political figures in general, play through the mainstream media.

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The “Nuclear Option”

fd489c51fA good piece in The Atlantic on the filibuster change in the Senate lead by Democratic majority leader Harry Reid.

It will be interesting to see if, in time, this bold measure will comeback to bite the Senate Democrats when, someday, the GOP is in control. Changing the rules after decades of existence could change Washington forever, and not necessarily for the better.

Read Here.

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