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Join other Muslims in calling the State department
Hundreds of Muslims from this country and around the world have contacted the U.S. Department of State to demand an end to blind American support for Israel’s brutal policies against Palestinian Muslims and Christians. There are signs that efforts of this kind are paying off. United Press International reports that the United States has canceled a regularly scheduled live-fire training exercise with Israeli forces. A Pentagon spokesman said he wanted to make it clear that America does not endorse Israel's tactics against Palestinian populated areas. (UPI, 5/23/2001)
“Khatibs should ask every Muslim who attends Friday prayer tomorrow to call the State Department. Even a two-minute call can make a big difference,” said CAIR Board Chairman Omar Ahmad.ACTION REQUESTED: (As always, be FIRM, but POLITE.) Contact the State Department’s Office of Israeli-Palestinian Affairs at 202-647-3672 to demand that American officials:
E-MAIL: [email protected]
TEL: 202-647-3672 FAX: 202-261-8577 (202-647-4000 is the main State Department phone number.)
SUGGESTED TALKING POINTS:
2001 congressional and media guide for Muslim now available
CAIR announced today the publication of its new 2001 “Congressional and Media Directory” for Muslims. “This is a must-have 'who’s who’ guide for any Muslim who wishes to have an impact on issues that affect the Islamic community in this country and worldwide,” said CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad. The directory, available free with a donation to CAIR of $50 or more, includes:
Muslim leaders' sit-in sends message to state department
Leaders of prominent national Muslim organizations* today staged a first-of-its-kind act of civil disobedience outside the State Department in Washington, D.C., to protest America’s uncritical support for Israel’s “Apartheid-like” policies against the Palestinian people. (No arrests were made.)
Follow-up events are being scheduled outside both the State Department and the White House. “We will keep reminding our government officials that their uncritical support for Israel has compromised America’s interests and damaged its reputation worldwide,” said CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad, who took part in the sit-in.A statement released at a news conference, attended by many national and international media outlets, just prior to the sit-in read in part:
“We, the undersigned national American Muslim organizations, are compelled to carry out this act of civil disobedience because of our country's continuing and uncritical support for Israel's immoral, illegal and unjust policies toward Palestinian Muslims and Christians.
“These brutal policies include sieges of Palestinian towns and villages, political assassinations, forced expulsions, home demolitions, land confiscation, discrimination, humiliation, harassment, torture, ethnic segregation, and denial of basic human and religious liberties.
“As Americans, we opposed these same policies when they were imposed on the people of South Africa, Kosova, Bosnia, Cambodia, Rwanda, East Timor, and in many other areas of the world. Why is it that the Palestinians are the only people on earth who deserve to live in an Apartheid-like state of perpetual occupation and humiliation?...
“...The U.S. has indicated consistently that achieving peace in the region is a priority and a matter of national interest. That peace can only be achieved with justice. U.S. interests will be served and our credibility enhanced when we accept the role of a true honest broker and impose a level of responsibility on Israel consistent with the billions of American taxpayer-funded aid Israel receives per year.
“Before there can be any lasting peace in the region, America must finally come to terms with the real sources of violence, namely: 1) The brutal Israeli occupation of Palestinian land, 2) The continued expansion of settlements, 3) The denial of the right of return for Palestinian refugees, 4) The billions of American taxpayer dollars that help finance Israel's occupation. Any other course of action is a recipe for unending strife and instability.”
The statement also called on the Bush administration to publicly condemn Israeli aggression, stop using America’s veto power in the U.N. to support illegal Israeli actions, seek an immediate cut off of all military aid to Israel in accordance with the U.S. Arms Export Control Act, call for an international force to protect civilians in Palestine, and to meet with American Muslim leaders so that they can participate in shaping policy toward the Islamic world.
* Signatories included: American Muslims for Jerusalem (AMJ), Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), American Muslim Council (AMC), Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP), Muslim American Society (MAS)
Columnist recommends ethnic cleansing of Palestinians
CAIR today called on Tribune Media Services (TMS), one of the nation’s leading information syndicators, to drop a column by commentator Cal Thomas after he recommended the ethnic cleansing of all Palestinian Arabs from Israel.
Thomas’ most recent column states: “It should now be clear that Israel cannot tolerate a huge Arab population within its borders, so a political decision must be made. Most Arabs and Palestinians appear to be nonviolent but it can be difficult to tell the difference...Israel should declare its intention to transfer large numbers of its Palestinian residents to Arab nations...Eviction is a better avenue to stability. Will it happen? Probably not. Should it? Yes.” SEE: http://jewishworldreview.com/cols/thomas.html (If article has been replaced, go to “Cal Thomas Archives.”)
In a letter sent to TMS President David Williams, CAIR’s spokesman Ibrahim Hooper wrote that those views “would be more at home in the Nazi-era publication Der Sturmer than in newspapers subscribing to Tribune Media Services.”
Hooper also wrote: “Perhaps Mr. Thomas will next recommend avoiding the costs and drain on resources associated with the elimination of a racial minority by instead setting up cheap and efficient extermination centers. After all, it seems Thomas believes Palestinians are a genetically inferior stock that must be prevented from polluting Israel’s racial and religious purity.
“Thomas’ racist and quasi-genocidal scenario raises some interesting issues. Is he recommending the transfer of his fellow Christians along with Muslim Palestinians? What about the children of a Jewish mother and an Arab Muslim father? Will the “one drop” rule apply? Some of these details could no doubt be worked out by obtaining a copy of Germany’s Nuremberg Laws...”
Hooper told TMS that this is not the first time Thomas has offended the sensibilities of his readers. In the past, he questioned the honesty of the Prophet Muhammad and even called Islam itself “murderous.” (Los Angeles Times Syndicate) “Unfortunately, when we challenged those bigoted views, we were told that no action would be taken because of the revenues generated by Thomas’ column. This is no longer a matter of money, but of moral duty,” wrote Hooper.
Along with the demand to drop Thomas’ column, CAIR called on TMS to issue a public apology for distributing the writer’s “fascistic” views.
National Muslim groups condemn ADL "Anti-Muslim McCarthyism"
A coalition of American Muslim political organizations today condemned what it called “anti-Muslim McCarthyism” by a Jewish newspaper and a prominent Jewish organization. The American Muslim Political Coordinating Council (AMPCC),* issued a statement criticizing attacks on New Jersey Republican gubernatorial hopeful Bret Schundler for speaking at a meeting of the American Muslim Alliance (AMA), an AMPCC member group. (Schundler is currently the mayor of Jersey City, NJ)
Shai Goldstein, director of the New Jersey chapter of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), told the New Jersey Star-Ledger that he found Schundler's attendance at the AMA meeting “troubling” because of unspecified statements challenging policies of the state of Israel made by group leaders. The newspaper quoted Schundler as saying that he would be caving in to anti-Muslim bigotry if he shunned AMA representatives. According to the Star-Ledger: “Schundler said 'most’ Muslims have anti-Israel sentiments and that if he ruled out talking to anyone with such views, he would isolate an entire community.” (The controversy was sparked by a recent article in the New Jersey Jewish News.)
In its statement, the AMPCC wrote: “We denounce the anti-Muslim McCarthyism now being used by the New Jersey Jewish News and the Anti-Defamation League in their apparent attempt to politically marginalize the Muslim community in New Jersey by equating legitimate opposition to Israeli brutality with anti-Semitism. In this and similar Islamophobic smear campaigns, ethnic and religious stereotypes, distorted information, partial citations, and complete fabrications are used as tactics of intimidation. Mr. Schundler deserves to be congratulated for his courageous stance in the face of such defamation.
“We believe this attempt at political exclusion is being prompted in part by the pro-Israel lobby's alarm at the increased presence of American Muslims in this country's political process. The ADL must end its campaign of vilification and apologize to the Muslim community in New Jersey.”
The attack on Schundler and on the AMA is similar to one that came during last year's New York Senate race between Rick Lazio and Hillary Clinton. A Washington Post writer called those attacks “political pornography.” Lazio lost the election to Clinton.
“Our response, as always, should be increased political mobilization to support those who stand for justice,” said CAIR Board Chairman Omar Ahmad.
* The AMPCC is made up of: America Muslim Alliance (AMA), American Muslim Council (AMC), Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)
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