Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Wrong, ANSWER--again

The folks over at International ANSWER appear to have gone off their medication again. You remember them-- the "anti-war" group that cheers Hamas and Hezbollah rocket attacks against Israel; the self-proclaimed commissars of rallies against the US war in Iraq that have managed to shrivel the public turnout at their events down to a few thousand at a time. Basically now irrelevant except to the hard core cadres who show up because of ANSWER's other agendas--Israel-bashing, China-excusing, Darfur-denying and so on. They have now gone as far as to admit that they have accepted dhimmi status with regard to their radical Moslem constituency. Having been instructed by their Moslem groups that they would be offended by public nudity, ANSWER begged the "nudes for peace" contingent not to show up at their recent rally. Of course, ANSWER doesn't view as offensive the "Palestine is our land and the Jews are our dogs" chants or the sonorous voice of Hatem Bazian chanting "intifada, intifada" like some kind of crazed jihadist mantra (wait, that actually IS a crazed jihadist mantra!), or the signs at its rallies displaying naked anti-Semitism. They ignore the fact that the Islamists whose boots they lick are homophobes who excuse "honor killings" and the genocide in Darfur.

We also were able to find out that at least one group allied with ANSWER places its racial/ethnic agenda even ahead of its core political position--opposition to the war in Iraq. Witness these e-mails received by Direct Action to Stop The War about last week's anti-war actions in San Francisco which were aimed not only at US Government offices but also those businesses who were deemed complicit in the war effort:
"Hey all,I just got a call from S---- S---, the owner of the Sprint store at --------, which is on our direct action menu. He told me that that store is an authorized Sprint dealership that's owned by him - it is*not* owned by Sprint. He said that he strongly opposes the war and strongly supports what we're doing, and hopes that we won't target his business.Please make whatever decision you see fit based on this information.(Personally, I think we should let the poor guy off the hook.)Thanks,Adrian"
"I just got an e-mail forwarded to me from someone re: the sprint storeowned by S---- S---- he is a Palestinian who's grandfather passed away 3 days ago, so PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE drop this off your target list. I understand the need to target war profiteers, but i wish more research had been done on the targets. some people are just trying to feed their families, and have almost no choice but to partner with companies such as Sprint. thank you, M----- S---- (S----- is my cousin)"

How did we get these e-mails? Maybe somebody on the inside took offense at not holding Palestinians to the same moral standards? Maybe this person felt that just because you're Palestinian or other "oppressed" Moslem that you can be held accountable for the choices you make, same as everyone else? Naaahhhhhh..... Palestinians are excused for celebrating the cold-blooded murder of yeshiva students so why should a little war profiteering be an issue between friends?

What's next-- is ANSWER going to insist that all women wear burkas to its next rally?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Help! Police! Zionists Are Looking At Us!

When Bay Area Women in Black (BAWIB) decided to do anti-Israel vigils at the corner of Grand and Lake in April of 2007, San Francisco Voice For Israel knew that we had to come and counter. As we stood with them that day, April 7th, 2007, they started what became a recurring theme. They called the police.

Oakland Police sent tactical negotiator Sgt. Hookfin (badge #276) came to deal with the situation. He told us that BAWIB felt threatened by our presence and he demanded that we separate the groups. If we did not, he stated, we would not be having as nice a conversation as we were having at that moment. His initial suggestion was for us to stand in front of the Kentucky Fried Chicken on the next block. This was unacceptable to us. What we did agree at the time was to stand on opposite corners of Grand and Lake, alternating the corners weekly.

Since that time, BAWIB have called the police repeatedly, both in Oakland and in San Francisco. The most notorious incident was when they called the police on Rabbi Bloom and his contingent from Temple Beth Abraham because they crossed by where BAWIB were standing on their way back to their synagogue.

With their attempts at harassment failing to deter our presence, they turned to a new tack, facing away from us. On February 9, 2008, instead of facing the Grand Lake Theatre, they decided to face towards Grand Avenue. Adapting to their new strategy, we came up with a new one of our own, we stood on the median island on Grand Ave. We had previously stood there once before, on December 1st, 2007 that would have been without incident had not Felice of BAWIB not come to collect a flyer from us and she was followed by a notoriously hostile and violent BAWIB activist, Ms. Stoller to harass us.

In February, BAWIB decided that our standing in the median, separated from them by 4 lanes of traffic was somehow “violating the agreement,” and furthermore, illegal. They threatened to call the police. On each occasion that BAWIB stood on the corner with the Farmer’s Market, a couple people stood in the median island. No incidents stemmed from this until March 22nd.

Apparently, they had called the police 2 weeks ago for the same reason but by the time police arrived, both groups had gone. It is Oakland, after all, and police have better things to do than rush over at the whim of someone feeling threatened by 3 people standing on a median looking at them. On March 22nd, Sgt. Hookfin arrived in time and came over to talk to both groups. Now, rather than the agreement being about keeping the groups separated, BAWIB and Sgt. Hookfin claim it is about being on different corners. Now they claim they are threatened by us standing on a median island separated by only 4 lanes of heavy traffic. Sgt. Hookfin tried to suggest that it was like militarily “flanking” them by standing in the median.

This time, we were in no mood for appeasement. We have already appeased them several times. We have changed our flyers when they complained, we allowed ourselves to be separated from them. We try to keep our people from interacting with them. We have allowed them to interact with us without calling police. We have allowed them to pass by us multiple times as they bring materials back and forth from their vehicles. This time, we felt that we no longer had any reason to appease. We agree to separation. We did not agree to stay off the median. BAWIB representatives Sharon, Felice, and Ron Klein (who had previously given his name as Ralph) adamantly refused and said this could void the agreement. Felice even yelled at me for filming the conversation. Sharon tried to yell that her son was a police officer who refused to work on Shabbat.

After BAWIB stormed off, we did agree with Sgt. Hookfin to allow whoever got to the median first to have exclusive use of it. We fully expect BAWIB to object, but clearly their issues are not about their feeling “threatened” as separation should have dealt with that and they no longer even feel an agreement is needed for their safety. Their issue is in a countering message being present. This is the reason for the harassment, for the continual calling of the police and for wasting an hour of police time to attempt to muzzle our counter-protest.

Sunday, March 9, 2008


Last week's terror attack against students at the Mercaz HaRav yeshiva in Jerusalem shows that really, the "peace process" has changed nothing on the Palestinian side, whether it be in their own leaders or their supporters around the world. Their goal in 2008 remains the same as it was in 2000, in 1972, and in 1948: the elimination of Jewish self-determination in our homeland. Their methods remain the same: the random slaughter of as many Jews as possible, especially those going about their daily lives in schools, in restaurants or on buses, to spread terror among the civilian population. Their reaction to these atrocities remains the same: the Palestinian street's celebration of mass murder and the near-deification of the murderers as "martyrs", and their apologists around the world blaming the victims and excusing the perpetrators.

Mahmoud Abbas gave his usual condemnation of the attack. However, expecting him to actually take any steps against Hamas in the West Bank, or even to stop official PA incitement of terrorism, is clearly out of the question. After all, the official PA daily Al Hayat Al Jadida gave the murderer front-page coverage and declared him a "shahid". And Abbas himself got a little careless when speaking in Arabic to the Jordanian newspaper Al-Dustur, boasting about his pride in having "fired the first shot" for Fatah against Israel in 1965 (2 years before Israel took the West Bank from Jordan in the Six Day War) and having taught other terror groups how to conduct "resistance". He did reiterate his position against armed conflict with Israel--"because we are unable. In the future stages, things may be different."

Of course, in Hamas-stan, there's no need for any type of pretense. The scenes of joy caught on camera would suggest something benign and cheerful like a victory in a World Cup soccer match. Despite the supposed dire humanitarian condition in Gaza, there's always candy to hand out and weapons to fire into the air when Jews are killed, and always enough material to make more rockets to launch at Sderot and Ashkelon. It's impossible to watch these without wondering how this raw hatred and addiction to violence will ever be overcome. None of these people are under the illusion that acts of terrorism like this will lead to a Palestinian state alongside Israel, because these are not people who are interested in living alongside a Jewish state. If anyone doubts that, read the Hamas Charter. And to anyone who wishes to claim that this is all just part of a "cycle of violence", try to find a film of Israelis celebrating deaths of Palestinian civilians, or articles in the Israeli press cheering Palestinian civilian deaths (I mean REAL civilians, not the apparent BBC definition of a civilian as an armed fighter in a ski mask who doesn't happen to have an official militia card in his pocket) .

The apologists for Palestinian terror of course had to try to explain this atrocity away as being the fault of the Israelis; I suspect the same people who are so dedicated to "peace and justice" would react in utter horror to a rapist blaming his crime on the victim. Some will undoubtedly claim a similarity to Baruch Goldstein, who was correctly and widely condemned by all but a fringe element of Israeli society (and the worldwide Jewish community), as opposed to being officially lauded as a hero and his murderous acts publicly taught to schoolchildren as an example of heroism. The bleating voices at "Jewish Peace News" managed to talk out of both sides of their mouths at once, condemning the violence and admitting that "Hamas' praise for the operation is both contemptible and chilling" yet then going on to say that "terrorist violence like this is almost always a symptom of Israel's expansionist policies and is unlikely to end until the occupation is over." It makes me wonder; what part of Article 11 of the Hamas Charter don't they believe? "The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf consecrated for future Moslem generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it, or any part of it, should not be given up."

Palestinian terror existed before the state of Israel was established , it existed before the West Bank and Gaza were under Israeli control (as Abbas himself proudly pointed out), it existed before the Oslo Accords, and it exists now. The goal now is the same as it was then: "itbach el-Yahud" (slaughter the Jews). Those who think that this appetite for blood will stop when Israel withdraws from the West Bank, as it has already withdrawn from Gaza, are naive at best and fraudulent at worst.

If Israel reacted the way other countries around the world would respond, then Gaza City would look like Grozny after the Russians were through with it, or the Old City of Hama, Syria which Hafez Assad paved with asphalt after eliminating the Muslim Brotherhood (as well as thousands of other citizens) there. The fact that Israel is still willing to conduct talks with Mahmoud Abbas, and that Israel has shown incredible restraint not only after terror attacks like this but also during the daily shelling from Gaza, stands in stark contrast to the bloodlust shared by too many Palestinians and excused by too many of their supporters around the world.

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Please contribute to ZAKA or Magen David Adom. Now more than ever.


American Friends of Magen David Adom:

BREAKING NEWS: Terrorist strike at Yeshivat Mercaz HaRav.
Six dead, three dozen wounded. Ambulances and Zaka are on the scene.

Please consider contributing to the Yeshiva:

There was public celebration in Gaza - a feu de joie, cheering, and candies to passersby.
This attack comes one day after Condoleeza Rice "persuaded" the Palestinians to re-commit to the path of peace.