July 31, 2009

Hamas Wants to Talk Peace

Israel--Not So Much.

Some encouraging news from the Wall Street Journal today:

The chief of Palestinian militant group Hamas said his organization is prepared to cooperate with the U.S. in promoting a peaceful resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict if the White House can secure an Israeli settlement freeze and a lifting of the economic and military blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Khaled Meshaal, 53 years old, said in a 90-minute interview at Hamas's Syrian headquarters that his political party and military wing would commit to an immediate reciprocal cease-fire with Israel, as well as a prisoner swap that would return Hamas fighters for kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

He also said his organization would accept and respect a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders as part of a broader peace agreement with Israel—provided Israeli negotiators accept the right of return for millions of Palestinian refugees and the establishment of a capital for the Palestinian state in East Jerusalem.


Well, I thought it was encouraging news. Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu sees things differently. Declareth a spokesman for the PM:

Anyone who has been following Khaled Meshaal's comments over the last few months sees clearly that despite some attempts to play with language in a cosmetic way to give the impression of possible policy moderation, he remains rooted in an extremist theology which fundamentally opposes peace and reconciliation.


WTF? Seriously. Meshaal says Hamas will enforce an immediate ceasefire, return a kidnapped Israeli soldier, and accept a peace agreement with Israel based on 1967 borders. And in return all he asks is that Israel enforce a ceasefire of its own, return kidnapped Palestinian soldiers, end the blockade, and take three steps (end the occupation, stop building settlements, allow the refugees to return) that are all required by international law.

Now I’m not a fan of Hamas, just as I’m not a fan of any political party, but Meshaal’s offer is reasonable and just. And Israel should have at least tested his sincerity. “You want peace?” Netanyahu could have said. “Okay, we’ll comply with your demands, but you sure as hell better comply with ours—or the deal’s off.” But instead he more or less gave Meshall the bird and in so doing allowed the world to see what he really thinks about human rights and international law.

Washington’s response was no better:

A senior White House official said Mr. Obama's administration wouldn't respond to Mr. Meshaal's comments. Mr. Obama has said the U.S. would only hold direct talks with Hamas if it formally renounces terrorism and violence and recognizes the state of Israel. U.S. officials say that to engage directly with Mr. Meshaal would undermine the Palestinian Authority.


So Obama will only talk to Meshaal if Hamas renounces terrorism and violence. But isn’t that exactly what Hamas is willing to do? Its only caveat is that Israel does the same. Ceasefire for ceasefire. You stop dropping bombs on our cities and we’ll stop firing rockets into yours.

And all this rhetoric about Hamas “recognizing” Israel is pure nonsense. As long as Hamas keeps the peace with Israel, why does it matter whether or not they recognize Israel’s “right to exist?” As a voluntarist, I don’t recognize any state’s right to exist—yet that doesn’t make me a terrorist, that doesn’t make me a threat to anyone.

And, oh by the way, Israel’s Likud party—the party which Bibi Netanyahu leads—does not recognize the right of Palestine to exist. As the Likud platform states: “The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river.” Yet the Obama administration hasn’t refused to talk to Netanyahu until the Likud platform is changed.

And who’s to say that Hamas wouldn’t recognize Israel? Yes, I’m aware of all the fiery rhetoric some of its leaders have made. But other Hamas leaders have been far more conciliatory. Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, for instance, has stated: “If Israel declares that it will give the Palestinian people a state and give them back all their rights, then we are ready to recognize them.” Yet Israel rejected Haniyeh’s overture, just as it rejected the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative, in which the Arab League offered to sign a peace agreement with Israel and recognize its right to exist in exchange for a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders and a just resolution to the refugee crisis.

What can I say, folks? It’s a sad sad sad sad world.

July 30, 2009

Rethinking the Two-State Solution

Is the two-state solution really a solution after all?

Will it really benefit Israelis -- or will it merely create a Hamastan, resulting in more terrorism?



And will a Palestinian state really benefit the Palestinians -- or will it merely create an Islamic government as oppressive as most other Islamic governments? (Thanks to Justin Raimondo for the links.)

These, I think, are good questions to ask, and ones which I haven’t seriously considered until recently. Seeing how the Israeli government has brutalized the Palestinian people, I’ve long thought that the Palestinians deserved a government of their own. Though I’m a voluntarist, I’ve thought that a Palestinian state would be, not ideal, but at least better than the current situation. But recent developments have left me feeling more and more unsure of this.

First, as IPS journalist Mel Frykberg reports:

What remains of Palestinian civil rights is rapidly being eroded by the dictatorial Palestinian governments that respectively control the divided Palestinian territories.

Palestinian civilians are paying the price as the Islamic resistance movement Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, and the Fatah-affiliated and western-backed Palestinian Authority (PA), which rules the West Bank, continue to target their political opponents as part of their bitter power struggle.

"We don’t have a police state here in Palestine. We have two police states. One in Gaza and one in the West Bank," says Rabie Latifah from the Palestinian human rights organization Al Haq.

"The abuse of Palestinian civilians by both Fatah and Hamas security forces has become systematic and is no longer the exception to the rule," Latifah told IPS.

Mysterious bomb blasts, assassinations by masked gunmen, detainees denied access to their lawyers, torture and death in detention, the random arrest of critical journalists, and the banning of peaceful demonstrations are but a few of the human rights violations sweeping the Palestinian territories.

While armed men are being arrested, politically motivated arrest campaigns are also targeting citizens suspected of merely sympathizing with the opposition.

And second, as Avi Issacharoff reports in Ha’aretz:

Senior Hamas officials had claimed, in the wake of Hamas' June 2007 Gaza takeover, that the organization did not have any intention to turn the Sharia, Islamic religious law into official state regulations. Two years later, however, it seems that the Hamas government is slowly introducing more and more
regulations in the spirit of the Islamic decrees.

The London-based newspaper Al-Quds al-Arabi reported that the organization's Gaza government had recently approved a series of laws, a Muslim code of conduct of sorts, meant to guard Muslim religion and morals. These guidelines join an increasing amount of reports from Gaza residents saying that modesty patrols were forcing women to wear head coverings, especially at Gaza's beaches, and that they were inspecting isolated cars in order to prevent unmarried couples being alone together.

Now I’m not defending the occupation. I’ll be the first to agree that Israel's occupation over the past forty years has been completely brutal and immoral. Nonetheless, these recent stories, along with Justin Raimondo’s latest column, have made me wonder whether a two-state solution is such a panacea after all.

The best solution, I believe, would be liberty—the No-State Solution—allowing everyone, Jew and Muslim alike, to live free from coercion. In the absence of that, I’m just not sure there’s a good option.

July 29, 2009

Palestinians Can Buy Apartments in West Jerusalem?

Responding to President Obama’s demand that Israel to halt settlement construction in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently reaffirmed the supposed right of Jerusalem residents to “purchase apartments in all parts of the city.” According to Bibi, “there is no ban on Arabs buying apartments in the western part of the city,” and therefore there shouldn’t be a ban on Jews from “buying or building apartments in the eastern part of the city.”

“This is the policy of an open city,” he continued, “an undivided city that has no separation according to religion or national affiliation. We cannot accept the idea that Jews will not have the right to live and purchase in all parts of Jerusalem. I can only describe to myself what would happen if someone would propose that Jews could not live in certain neighborhoods in New York, London, Paris or Rome. There would certainly be a major international outcry. Accordingly, we cannot agree to such a decree in Jerusalem. This has been the policy of Israeli governments over the years and it is also the policy of our Government.”

As usual, Bibi here sounds so righteous and sensible. And as usual, his righteous- and sensible-sounding words are blatantly absurd. Uri Avnery writes: “When Netanyahu says things like that, it is hard to know whether he is spreading lies consciously (though they can easily be exposed), or if he believes his falsehoods himself. Thus, for example, he claimed to remember the British soldiers in front of his home when he was a child—when the last British soldier left the country a year before he was born.”

It’s hard to understand how any regular follower of Israeli politics could fail to agree with Avnery. Responding to Bibi’s declaration, Nir Hasson of Ha’aretz reports that the vast majority of West Jerusalem homes and apartments have been built upon land previously expropriated by the Israeli government. Israel allows its citizens to lease state-owned land. But since Palestinians from East Jerusalem are classified as residents, not citizens, they aren’t allowed to purchase any of these homes or apartments.

And it’s not much easier for Palestinians to buy homes or apartments in East Jerusalem. After the Six-Day War, the Israeli government expropriated one-third of East Jerusalem, building settlements throughout the majority of that land. And, according to B’Tselem, Israeli “authorities have continuously implemented a planning policy that stifles development in Palestinian areas. As part of this policy, Israel makes it difficult to register land under the names of Palestinians; refrains from large-scale planning on land that was not expropriated; zones large swaths of land in Palestinian areas as green areas, on which building is forbidden (only 11 percent of the planned area in Palestinian neighborhoods is available for construction); and permits lower building percentages than are permitted in Jewish neighborhoods.

“As a result of this policy, Palestinian residents find it almost impossible to obtain permits for new construction. Many are left with no option but to build without a permit. The policy has also led to housing density almost twice that in the Jewish neighborhoods. The shortage of housing has forced many Palestinians to leave the city and move to nearby communities in the West Bank.”

July 26, 2009

Christian Sophists, Part 2

July 10, 2009
Hey Don:

I gotta say, I'm not crazy about your most recent article. Calling all Christians sophists is like calling all Jews and Muslims sophists: it isn't true. Not all faithful people are propaganda-mongering ignoramuses. I know many Christians, Jews, and Muslims who are educated and know that the Bible/Torrah/Quran were victims of the classic "after a story is passed enough times, it begins to change" syndrome. I can tell by much of your writings that you have an atheistic slant, which is fine. But such a line of thought must not be mangled with ignorance; I beg you.

Thanks for your time; hope to hear from you soon.

Sincerely, Scott

* * * * *

July 11, 2009
Scott --

I didn't call all Christians sophists. As I began the article: "Delusion. It is the lifeblood of you Christian apologists, you sophists." So I'm attacking Christian apologists, not Christians in general. In what follows, I think I do an adequate job defining Christian apologists as those who think their faith can be proven by rational argumentation. So that's my target: not all Christians, just a certain type. In the last paragraph, I contrast these apologists to "the saints of yesteryear" who were chracterized by faith and humility.

So, in other words, what I'm doing here is attacking intellectual arrogance. I'm taking a position (fideism) that Soren Kierkegaard and other great men of faith have held...

In any case, thanks for your email. I hope I've convinced you.

Don Emmerich

Doug Groothuis Responds to My Post

July 16, 2009
Dear Mr. Emmerich:

I was surprised to read your comments about me on your blog. What prompted this? Of course, I do not approve of the "murder" of Muslims. If you and I disagree about the morality of recent US Wars (with largely Muslim nations), why not contact me about it, so we can discuss it? This is the biblical way (Matthew 18), especially with someone who was your teacher.

Instead, you posted an attack on me (out of the blue with no context) on your blog and do not even leave any room for comments. I find this very strange.

Best,
Doug Groothuis

* * * * *

July 17, 2009
Dr. Groothuis,

Why haven’t I contacted you about these matters? Well, I have. Don’t you remember the email I sent ou last November? Remember how I admonished you for failing to back up your political opinions with credible evidence? Remember the numerous examples I gave?

So I tried to have a discussion with you. Your response was a brusque email. Instead of substantively addressing any of my arguments, you simply claimed that I was wrong and told me to “repent” of my “false accusations” and to “calm down and show some respect.”

Look, I don’t think you’re a bad person. But when it comes to these important issues, there’s simply no talking to you. You’re a dogmatist. You state your opinions, often without providing anything in the way of evidence. And you often refuse to respond to dissenting arguments with arguments of your own. My last email provided several examples of this, and your response to my email provided yet another example.

What troubles me is not simply that you’re a dogmatist but that you’re a dogmatist who defends so many evil practices. For instance, you support torture. Never mind that torture (obviously) goes against the teachings of the New Testament.[1] Never mind that torture is highly ineffective.[2] Dick Cheney -- a proven liar[3] -- says that torture works, so you believe him and tell your all-too-trusting readers that waterboarding “saved countless American lives.”[4] (When a reader provided two pieces of counterevidence to this claim, you responded, first, by simply reasserting that waterboarding got “needed information out of terrorists.” No argument, just an assertion. The following day, you asked your readers to “Listen to this Man” and posted a link to a Dick Cheney speech.[5] And that was it! That was your argument! That was your evidence!)

When I read in the paper that the US government is torturing defenseless human beings (some of whom are innocent), when I read that it is undertaking actions that are killing tens of thousands of innocent Muslims, I don’t just blindly support my leaders. I do some investigating. I try to get at the truth. And the truth is that, with few exceptions, the government’s actions against Muslim are atrocious. These wars are not necessary. They’re based on false pretenses, on lies.[6] As a result of these wars, innocent humans being are fleeing to refugee camps[7], many others are being blown to pieces by US bombs.[8] I find this outrageous. I find this intolerable. So I blog about it. To the best of my ability, I stand up for all innocent human beings, not just innocent fetuses. Unlike you, I make honest arguments. I give evidence. Credible evidence, not just links to Dick Cheney speeches!

So I urge you, Dr. Groothuis, to stop being such a dogmatist and to stop advocating such evil positions. I urge you to start taking Jesus more seriously.

Respectfully,
Don Emmerich

[1] http://lewrockwell.com/vance/vance170.html, http://www.lewrockwell.com/vance/vance172.html, http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2006/february/23.32.html

[2] http://donemmerich.blogspot.com/2009/05/blessed-are-thewaterboarders.html

[3] http://www.andyworthington.co.uk/2008/12/25/the-ten-lies-of-dick-cheney-part-one/

[4] http://theconstructivecurmudgeon.blogspot.com/2009/05/what-about-water-boarding-fetus.html

[5] http://theconstructivecurmudgeon.blogspot.com/2009_05_01_archive.html

[6] http://donemmerich.blogspot.com/2008/10/how-did-bush-lie-to-thee-let-me-count.html, http://donemmerich.blogspot.com/2008/09/it-was-never-about-wmds.html, http://donemmerich.blogspot.com/2009/04/adventures-in-imperialism.html

[7] http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/may/18/swat-valley-pakistan-refugee-crisis

[8] http://www.upi.com/Top_News/2009/05/12/Reparations-paid-for-Afghan-bombing/UPI-46011242170473/

July 19, 2009

The Evidence Against Israel Mounts

And the IDF’s responses grow more absurd.

Yet another human rights organization has condemned the actions of the Israeli army in Operation Cast Lead. Unlike such groups as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, however, Breaking the Silence’s report is based exclusively on the testimony of active Israeli soldiers.

The testimonies—twenty-six in all—describe the use of “the ‘Neighbor Procedure’ [i.e., using civilians as human shields] and of white phosphorus ammunition in densely inhabited neighborhoods, massive destruction of buildings unrelated to any direct threat to Israeli forces, and permissive rules of engagement that led to the killing of innocents.” (The full report can be found here, a summary by The Independent here.)

Not surprisingly, the IDF (Israel Defense Force) has condemned the report: “The IDF Spokesperson Unit regrets the fact that yet another human rights organization is presenting to Israel and the world a report based on anonymous and general testimonies, without investigating their details or credibility. Furthermore, this organization denied the IDF the minimal decency of presenting the report to the IDF and allowing it to investigate the testimonies prior to the report's publication.”

What’s so ludicrous about the IDF’s response is that it assumes that it’s capable of conducting an objective investigation of itself. Assuming no more than the principle of self-interest, it should be obvious that any internal IDF investigation would end up echoing Defense Minister Ehud Barak’s claim that the IDF is “the most moral army in the world.” We’ve already witnessed numerous examples of this.

In March, for instance, Ha’aretz obtained, and subsequently made public, the transcript of some Operation Cast Lead veterans speaking to students at the Yitzhak Rabin Military Academy. Among other things, the soldiers described how numerous homes were wantonly destroyed and how civilians were killed “under permissive rules of engagement.” After a speedy, eleven-day investigation, the IDF claimed—surprise, surprise—that “the crucial components” of the soldiers’ “descriptions were based on hearsay and not supported by specific personal knowledge.”

The following month, the IDF revealed the results of another internal investigation, this one partially prompted by a Human Rights Watch report which said that the IDF had “repeatedly exploded white phosphorus munitions in the air over populated areas [which constitutes a war crime], killing and injuring civilians, and damaging civilian structures, including a school, a market, a humanitarian aid warehouse and a hospital.” Again, the IDF absolved itself, claiming that it had only used white phosphorus in accordance with international law.

So now the IDF has the audacity to scold Breaking the Silence for not giving it enough time to conduct its own investigation into the matter?

Equally absurd to this demand is the IDF’s complaint that Breaking the Silence has based its report on anonymous testimonies. Yes, the testimonies are anonymous, but they are corroborated by numerous other testimonies and investigations. We’ve already looked at the claims made by the soldiers at the Rabin Academy, as well as Human Rights Watch. Additionally, B’Tselem, an Israeli-based human rights group, has noted that the testimonies given to Breaking the Silence are “very similar” to those given to B’Tselem by numerous Palestinian civilians. And Amnesty International has concluded that “Israeli forces repeatedly breached the laws of war, including by carrying out direct attacks on civilians and civilian buildings and attacks targeting Palestinian militants that caused a disproportionate toll among civilians.”

But, of course, no amount of evidence will make the IDF—or its intransigent apologists—admit that it’s ever done anything wrong. As Israeli journalist Larry Derfner writes, mocking his compatriots: “It doesn’t matter who tells us the truth about what we did in Gaza—we’ll deny it. If the entire IDF General Staff called a news conference and admitted that the evidence were true, we’d say they’re leftists, they’re kissing up to Obama, they’re lying. Even if our own sons tell us it’s true, we’ll tell them they’re lying. We’re telling that to another 26 of them right now.”

July 16, 2009

Muslims Have Memories, Too

Writes Doug Groothuis, former seminary professor of mine, current warmongering lunatic:

The Washington Times reports that the unborn have memories. We, the unaborted, should remember this and act accordingly. More importantly, God remembers all of it, and will bring all into account when he judged [sic] "the secrets of humanity.”
Writes Don Emmerich, former student of Doug Groothuis’, current humanitarian:

Common sense tells us that Muslims have memories. We, the un-Muslims should remember this and act accordingly. More importantly, God, if he exists, also has a memory, presumably a very big one. Moreover, God, if he exists, probably doesn’t like it when Christians murder Muslims. God probably doesn’t like it when any human being murders any other human being. Therefore, God probably gets ticked off when hypocritical shmendriks like Doug Groothuis condemn the mass-murder of fetuses yet write blog after blog defending the US military’s mass-murder of Muslims in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

July 10, 2009

Christian Sophists

Delusion. It is the lifeblood of you Christian apologists, you sophists. Wherever you go, whatever you do—you live and breathe and have your very being in delusion. You, who are always talking about “objective truth.” You, who are always speaking of “rationality” and “open-mindedness.” Always “proving” this, always “demonstrating” that.

You fools! Haven’t you heard that Zeno proved motion impossible? Yet that hasn’t stopped your lunacy from traveling the globe, from seeping into every bookstore, every internet chat room.

You always see the glass as half-full, I’ll give you that. You can look at starving refugees huddling around fires, at bullet-ridden children dying in hospital beds. “But the cosmological argument,” you tell me, “haven’t you heard? A nifty little syllogism—irrefutable.” You can look at floods and tsunamis and Alzheimer’s patients. “But the design argument,” you tell me. “Two simple premises, clockmaker analogy—so easy even a child could get it.” You can turn on the Discovery Channel and watch the animal kingdom tear itself to shreds—sharks, cheetahs, even your precious lady bugs, always looking for their next victim. “The problem of evil?” you ask, your smile broadening. “The problem of evil? Hah, yet more proof for a loving creator! Haven’t you heard? Have a seat, let me buy you a cappuccino. Chocolate topping?”

Yes, you always see the glass as half-full. Even if there’s nothing in your glass at all! I’m reminded of a young man. Bates, I believe his name was. N. Bates. A pleasant-looking lad who continued hearing from his mother even after the corpse had been ripped from his boney fingers.

But you find your arguments so convincing. And your friends do, too. “Darwin?” you say. They erupt into laughter. “Natural selection?” More laughter. “Apes?” By now they’re in stitches.

But your arguments don’t change anyone’s mind. Sure, the guys at Bible Study think they’re just wonderful, but who doesn’t look at his child’s water-painting and get teary-eyed? Of course, tell them that the picture before them was done by the neighbor’s kid. See how touched they’ll be then.

But you find it all so comforting. Just utter the words “ontological argument” and you get all goose bumpy. And who am I to separate thumb-sucking Linus from his dirty blanket? Maybe I should just leave you and your sophistry alone.

After all, who am I to interfere? Who am I to point out that you’ve become entangled in your own web of illogic. Yes, the saints of yesteryear had their faith. Yes, the saints of yesteryear had their humility. But you, you evolved men, you with your sophisticated arguments, you with your intellects of steel. Maybe I should just let you alone. Just step back, let the naked emperor continue on his stroll.

July 3, 2009

Gambino Appreciation Day

An Allegory for the Fourth of July.

It was bad enough that Saul had to hand over his hard-earned money to the Gambinos. But to be asked to celebrate this injustice? To be asked to decorate his deli in the Gambino family colors? To be told to put up that stupid banner? “Gambino Appreciation Day”? It was too much. It was just too much.

Saul had met the Gambinos several years earlier. He’d been a young man, newly married, wrapping up a pound of roast beef for old Mrs. Davidson, when in walked two behemoths, two neckless freaks of nature sporting Adidas jogging suits and slicked back hair. “What do you want?” Saul had asked once Mrs. Davidson had left. That’s right. No “How may I help you?” No “What’s going on?” Saul knew better. He knew what these momsers were after.

“Nice place you got here,” said one of the Gambinos, a fat-faced man with adult acne. “Hate for something to happen to it. You know what I mean?” He slowly surveyed the store. “Rough neighborhood here. Really be a shame if something happened to your store.”

“The neighborhood’s fine!” Saul snapped.

“Yeah,” the goon said, taking a step closer, “really be a shame if something happened to your store.” The other man stood by the door, his right hand tucked inside his coat, holding what could have only been a gun.

Every fiber in Saul’s being wanted to reach for the revolver he hid under the cash register. But what was the point? Supposing he drew the gun, supposing he pointed it at these fatsos and demanded that they get lost—then what? They’d just return. Or others just like them would return. They would return with their own guns. They would return to kill him, or, worse, to kill his family.

So Saul agreed to their demands. Three hundred dollars a week. They wanted three hundred dollars a week? Fine, it was theirs. So much for his son’s future. Every Monday, the ugly brothers would appear and Saul, having no other choice, would hand over a dirty brown envelope containing what should have been his son’s college fund.

But now they wanted Gambino Appreciation Day? It was just too much.

“Look,” one of the goons explained to him, “you know we’re the nicest crime family around. I mean, honestly, would you rather pay tribute to one of those other families? You might think we’re bad, but you ever hear of the Bonanos? Those fuckers would take six hundred a week. No joke. And the Lucheses? The Lucheses would be all over that cute little daughter of yours. Up the ass every night. She don’t like it up there? Don’t matter. The Lucheses get what the Lucheses want.” The goon took a step closer, the smell of sausage pizza emanating from his breath. “When you get down to it, Saul, you’re living under the best crime family in the city. So show a little gratitude. Make things look nice. Maybe put up a picture or two of Mr. Gambino. Maybe a few fireworks.”

Fireworks, he thought—I’ll give you bastards fireworks! But, of course, he was all talk. Because, when you got down to it, there was nothing he could do.

July 1, 2009

Call to Action: Urge Congress to end the siege of Gaza

Dear fellow peaceniks --

Please contact your congressman and senators and urge them to speak out against the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. Contact information can be found here.

(For more information on the blockade, and its devastating consequences, read Sara Roy’s “If Gaza falls…”)

Here’s the email message I sent (and, of course, feel free to copy this if you wish):

Dear Congressman Perlmutter,

I'm a Jewish-American and a supporter of much that you’re trying to accomplish. I ask you now to speak out against the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. Undoubtedly you're aware of the horrific humanitarian crisis which exists in Gaza -- and yet the Israeli government refuses to allow a sufficient amount of food, medical supplies, and building materials into the area. Just yesterday, the Israeli navy prevented a relief boat, carrying medical supplies and building materials, from entering Gaza:

http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/06/30/israel.gaza.mckinney/index.html

Congressman Perlmutter, I’m sure you agree that this is a moral outrage, and I urge you to stand up for the basic rights of the Palestinian people.

Respectfully,
Don Emmerich

Now I know things often seem hopeless. But we really can make a difference, as we demonstrated in last year’s campaign against House Resolution 362, which called for the U.S. to impose a blockade on Iran.

Yes, I really think we can make a difference here. President Obama has called for Israel to stop its illegal settlement expansion in the West Bank. And Congress knows that American support for Israeli brutality is finally beginning to wane. So the momentum just might be on our side.

So please—please—please—contact your congressman and senators and urge them to speak out against the Israeli blockade.

Peace --
Don Emmerich