Subject: [sixties-l] Fwd: Letter to Julian Bond

From: Jeffrey Blankfort (
Date: 12/05/00

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    The following page by me appeared in the 1990 City Lights Review edited
    by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Nancy Peters. I think it makes the
    point that I've been trying to make in a somewhat different way.  There
    are those people who argue that the power of the pro-Israel lobby,
    simply known as "the lobby" in Washington, is overrated. But they are
    not the politicians who know better and who know that it is easier and
    politically safer to speak out against US policy anywhere in the world
    than publicly challenge Israel. 
    I have noticed, by the way, that there has not been a single comment on
    this list regarding my posting on Israel's attack on the USS Liberty on
    June 8, 1967 which killed 34 US sailors and wounded 171 others... and
    which led subsequent Israeli governments to correctly understand that
    they can get away with anything, including killing Americans. I guess
    there are some 60s events that are better not talked about.
    Jeff Blankfort
    If South Africa had a lobby
    as powerful as the Israeli lobby...
    * Nelson Mandela would not be free.
    * There would be no sanctions against South Africa.
    * South Africa would be the largest recipient of US aid.
    * The African National Congress would still be outlawed.
    * Congress would have endorsed the idea that apartheid is not racism.
    * Pro-apartheid forces cloaked as peace-makers would try to control
    the      anti-apartheid movement.
    * Public television would require "balanced" reporting to counter
    anti-apartheid programs.
    * Journalists. academics and others who criticized apartheid would be
    targets of character assasinations.
    * The struggle of the Boers against the British for control of South
    Africa would be considered a "national liberation struggle."
    * South Africa would ultimately be defended as the only "democracy" in
       (Fill in whatever we forgot and send to your local congressperson)
             (First of a series of Public Service Advisories)
    Jeffrey Blankfort
    Radman sent:
    > Subject:        Letter to Julian Bond
    > Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000
    > Mr. Julian Bond
    > NAACP, President
    > 4805 Mt. Hope Drive
    > Baltimore, MD 21215
    > Dear Mr. Bond and members of the NAACP,
    > I am the daughter of Palestinian refugees who were expelled from their
    > homes at gun point in 1967. I want to express my deep sadness at seeing
    > your signature in the NY Times in support of Israel, a government that
    > has systematically, for decades, oppressed and enslaved the native
    > Palestinian population.
    > Your support of Israel is a stand against a society fighting for
    > freedom. It is a stand against International law and against the will of
    > the International community. It is a stand against the principles of
    > human decency.
    > Your support of Israel is a stand FOR discrimination, home demolition,
    > land confiscation, water allocation disparity, daily humiliation of a
    > society, checkpoints, different colored ID cards and license plates,
    > segregated housing, segregated schooling, torture, imprisonment
    > without charge or trial, deportation, dispossession. and the use of
    > sharpshooters against children as a means of "riot control."
    > Your support of Israel is in contravention of the spirit of the NAACP.
    > Rather than go into history and explain my people's side of the
    > conflict, I'd simply like to list a few words from the "horse's mouth,"
    > so to speak. You might find some similarities to what was said against
    > African-Americans not too long ago.
    > "We declare openly that the Arabs have no right to settle on even one
    > centimeter of Eretz Israel... Force is all they do or ever will
    > understand. We shall use the ultimate force until the Palestinians come
    > crawling to us on all fours." -- Rafael Eitan, Chief of Staff of the
    > Israeli Defence Forces - Gad Becker, Yediot Ahronot 13 April 1983, New
    > York Times 14 April 1983.
    > "[The Palestinians] are beasts walking on two legs." --Menahim Begin,
    > speech to the Knesset, quoted in Amnon Kapeliouk, 'Begin and the
    > "Beasts"', New Statesman, 25 June 1982.
    > "We must do everything to ensure they [the Palestinian refugees] never
    > do return" -- David Ben-Gurion, in his diary, 18 July 1948, quoted in
    > Michael Bar Zohar's Ben-Gurion: the Armed Prophet, Prentice-Hall, 1967,
    > p. 157.
    > "We should prepare to go over to the offensive. Our aim is to smash
    > Lebanon, Trans-Jordan, and Syria. The weak point is Lebanon, for the
    > Moslem regime is artificial and easy for us to undermine. We shall
    > establish a Christian state there, and then we will smash the Arab
    > Legion, eliminate Trans-Jordan; Syria will fall to us. We then bomb
    > and move on and take Port Said, Alexandria and Sinai." -- David
    > Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff. From Ben-Gurion, A
    > Biography, by Michael Ben-Zohar, Delacorte, New York 1978.
    > "We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation,
    > and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab
    > population." -- Israel Koenig, "The Koenig Memorandum"
    > "If I was an Arab leader I would never make [peace] with Israel. That
    > is natural: we have taken their country." -- David Ben Gurion, quoted in
    > The Jewish Paradox, by Nahum Goldmann, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978,
    > p. 99.
    > "Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not
    > even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you
    > because geography books no longer exist. Not only do the books not
    > exist, the Arab villages are not there either. Nahlal arose in the place
    > of Mahlul; Kibbutz Gvat in the place of Jibta; Kibbutz Sarid in the
    > place of Huneifis; and Kefar Yehushua in the place of Tal al-Shuman.
    > There is not a single place built in this country that did not have a
    > former Arab population." -- Moshe Dayan, address to the Technion,
    > Haifa, reported in Haaretz, April 4, 1969.
    > "We walked outside, Ben-Gurion accompanying us. Allon repeated his
    > question, 'What is to be done with the Palestinian population?'
    > Ben-Gurion waved his hand in a gesture which said 'Drive them out!'"
    > - --Yitzhak Rabin, leaked censored version of Rabin memoirs, published
    > in the New York Times, 23 October 1979; Rabin's description of the
    > conquest of Lydda, after the completion of Plan Dalet.
    > "We shall reduce the Arab population to a community of woodcutters and
    > waiters" Uri Lubrani, PM Ben-Gurion's special adviser on Arab Affairs,
    > 1960. From "The Arabs in Israel" by Sabri Jiryas.
    > "There are some who believe that the non-Jewish population, even in a
    > high percentage, within our borders will be more effectively under our
    > surveillance; and there are some who believe the contrary, i.e., that
    > it is easier to carry out surveillance over the activities of a neighbor
    > than over those of a tenant. [I] tend to support the latter view and
    > have an additional argument:...the need to sustain the character of
    > the state which will henceforth be Jewish...with a non-Jewish minority
    > limited to 15 percent. I had already reached this fundamental position
    > as early as 1940 [and] it is entered in my diary." --Joseph Weitz, head
    > of the Jewish Agency's Colonization Department. From Israel: an
    > Apartheid State by Uri Davis, p.5.
    >    "Everybody has to move, run and grab as many hilltops as they can to
    > enlarge the settlements because everything we take now will stay ours...
    > Everything we don't grab will go to them." --Ariel Sharon, Israeli
    > Foreign Minister, addressing a meeting of militants from the extreme
    > right-wing Tsomet Party, Agence France Presse, November 15, 1998.
    > "It is the duty of Israeli leaders to explain to public opinion, clearly
    > and courageously, a certain number of facts that are forgotten with
    > time. The first of these is that there is no Zionism, colonialization
    > or Jewish State without the eviction of the Arabs and the expropriation
    > of their lands." Yoram Bar Porath, Yediot Aahronot, of 14 July 1972.
    > "Spirit the penniless population across the frontier by denying it
    > employment... Both the process of expropriation and the removal of the
    > poor must be carried out discreetly and circumspectly." Theodore
    > Herzl, founder of the World Zionist Organization, speaking of the Arabs of
    > Palestine, Complete Diaries, June 12, 1895 entry.
    > In closing, Mr. Bond, let me reiterate my disappointment. I come from
    > a proud but deeply violated people. It is a sad day when members
    > (especially high ranking ones) of the NAACP stand in support of
    > oppression and dehumanization of the Palestinians. It is a sad day
    > indeed for all of us desperately struggling to reclaim our identity, our
    > dignity, and our freedom. To fight against the unspeakable oppression
    > is our duty. But to have to combat complacency and ignorance of those
    > who claim to fight for justice is deeply disheartening. What happened to
    > you since the days you were out there fighting for justice?
    > Sincerely,
    > Susan Abulhawa
    > a Palestinian in exile

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