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On April 27th, actress/activist Mia Farrow began fasting in solidarity with the people of Darfur, who face even worse suffering since Sudanese President al-Bashir expelled numberous aid organizations from the country.  Since then, numerous elected officials, activists, and celebrities from over 35 countries have joined the fast.  Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism (RAC) and Newsweek Magazine's most influential American Rabbi, will be undertaking a three day fast to spotlight the grave humanitarian situation in Darfur.  This week, the RAC sent out an Action Alert for its members to ask their Rabbis to join Rabbi Saperstein on the last day of his fast, Thursday June 18th.

As a Jewish person who is supportive of equal and just treatment for all peoples, I commend Rabbi Saperstein and his fellow Rabbis for their concern towards the people of Darfur.  However, I feel that there is a hypocritical nature to their altruistic actions.  In my opinion, these Rabbis have a religious, moral, and ethical obligation to focus an equal, if not larger, amount of energy on improving the humanitarian crisis of the people of Gaza.

Since the Palestinian elections of 2006, which saw Hamas win a majority of seats and the international response of sanctions, there had been a significant reduction in supplies and aid sent into Gaza.  The recent War In/On Gaza has greatly worsened this situation.  Since the end of the War, there has been an inadequate response by the Israeli government in allowing appropriate amounts of humanitarian and reconstructive aid into Gaza.  As a result of these actions, many religious figures, political leaders, and ordinary citizens have asked the Israeli government to increase the amount of products allowed in and open up the borders for aid delivery.

I have recently written to Rabbi Saperstein asking him to take time during his upcoming fast to highlight the humanitarian conditions affecting the people of Gaza.  (Please note that all emphasis in the letter are mine.)

June 12, 2009

Rabbi David Saperstein
Director and Counsel
Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
Arthur and Sara Jo Kobacker Building
2027 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

Dear Rabbi Saperstein:

It has been announced that you will be undertaking a fast for the people of Darfur from June 15-18, 2009 in order to hightlight the grave humanitarian situation and to urge Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir to return aid organizations to his country.  Also, according to a recent Action Alert from the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (RAC), there is a request for RAC members to contact their Rabbis to have them join your fast on its final day, the 18th.  As a religious Jewish person who is concerned for the equal and just treatment of all of God's children, I applaud your actions to bring assistance to the suffering people of Darfur.  However, I feel that you should also show empathy, concern, and direct action for the suffering Palestinians of Gaza.

After the Palestinian elections of 2006, in which Hamas won a majority of seats, many nations sanctioned this democratically elected Palestinian government.  As a result, vital supplies and materials for Gazans were greatly decreased leading to a humanitarian crisis.  The recent War moved a humanitarian crisis into a catastrophe.  Whether one believes that the actions of the Israeli government and military were just or not, the end result was the significant destruction of life, land, and infrastructure.

Following the War, many nations, including the United States, pledged humanitarian and reconstruction aid to the people of Gaza. Senator Kerry, Secretary Clinton, and Envoy Mitchell noted during their February and March trips to the Middle East that there has been a unacceptable limitation in the types and amounts of aid material allowed into Gaza by the Israeli government.

In March, Dan Sadowsky of Mercy Corps, stated that "Hospitals and power plants are functioning at reduced levels, but basic needs - including food, shelter, and access to clean water and sanitation - remains at critical levels.  The recovery and rehabilitation process in Gaza has been slowed by a lack of access for the kinds of humanitarian and commercial goods needed to rebuild."

Earlier this week, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed his serious concern over the humanitarian conditions in the Gaza Strip.  Said the Secretary General, "Nearly five months after the end of hostilities, nothing beyond basic needs such as food and medicine is allowed in.  I call on Israel to allow in the fuel, funds, and materials that are urgently required to repair destroyed and damaged schools, clinics, sanitation networks, and shelters and to restore a functioning market."

And on June 10th, the Israeli human rights organization GISHA: Legal Center For Freedom Of Movement released a report titled "Two Years Of Gaza Closure By The Numbers".  These are their findings:

June 2007- June 2009: Crossings Closed;
Supplies Restricted

*Percentage of goods permitted to enter Gaza, relative to demand: 25% (approximately 2,500 truckloads/month instead of 10,400/month prior to June 2007).

*Supplies of industrial diesel permitted to enter Gaza, relative to need: 63% (2.2 million liters/week rather than the 3.5 million liters/week needed to generate electricity).

*Average length of power outages in Gaza: five hours per day.

*Current number of people without access to running water in Gaza: 28,000.

Compare and Contrast:

*Number of food items Israel's Cabinet Resolution promised to permit to enter Gaza: Unlimited.
*Number of food items actually permitted into Gaza: 18.

*Amount of money pledged for reconstruction aid at the March 2009 Donors Conference: $4.5 billion.
*Quantity of building materials permitted to enter Gaza: Zero.

*Unemployment rate in Gaza in 2007, the year the closure was imposed: 30%.
*Unemployment ratein Gaza in 2008: 40%.

No development, no prosperity, only "minimum humanitarian" items allowed:

*The Israeli military permits margarine in individual packets to enter Gaza, but margarine in buckets is banned, because it could be used for industry (i.e. by factories producing food and providing jobs).

*The Israeli government clarified that its March 22, 2009 Cabinet decision authorizing the "unrestricted" supply of food into Gaza "has been given a restrictive interpretation" and that the government "did not intend to remove the restrictions, which were imposed in the past, on the entrance of food and supplies into Gaza".  Translation: Food supply continues to be restricted.

*Among the food items banned from entering Gaza: Halva, tea, juice powder.

*Among the nonfood items banned from entering Gaza: soccer balls (footballs), guitars, paper, ink.
 
People trapped:

*Number of days Rafah Crossing has been open for regular traffic: Zero.
*Number of people unable to travel through Rafah each month: 39,000.
*Criteria for passage through Erez Crossing: exceptional humanitarian cases.

Rabbi, it is my concern that the RAC's lack of public outcry and advocacy regarding this crisis removes your legitimacy to discuss humanitarian concers elsewhere in the world.  If you, the RAC, and the URJ (Union for Reform Judaism, the largest Jewish religious movement in North America), cannot, or will not, use your power and significant influence with the Israeli government to alleviate the suffering that they have assisted in creating and maintaining, why would citizens or international leaders consider listening to your requests with respect to the behavior of other govenments.

In the most recent edition of Moment Magazine, Rabbi Haim O. Rechnitzer, Assistant Professor of Jewish Thought at Hebrew Union College (the main Reform Judaism seminary), responded to the question: "How Should Jews Treat Their Arab Neighbors?"  Rabbi Rechnitzer stated:

The sages recall that redemption comes only for "He who walks righteously, speaks uprightly, and who despises the gain of oppression..."(Isa. 33). For "what does the Lord require of you, but to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?" (Mic. 6). I do not know of any more fundamental imperative than this, especially as Israeli Jews consider the Palestinian "other."

I respectfully ask you, Rabbi, to look into your heart and soul, and help all people who are "others".  I am requesting that you and any additional Reform Rabbis (via an updated Action Alert statement), undertake next week's fast in solidarity of the people of Darfur and Gaza, to spotlight the present lack of humanitarian aid for both peoples, and the need for President al-Bahir and Prime Minister Netanyahu to open up their borders for the resumption of necessary quantities and qualities of aid.  Then, you will truly be following the adage found in Psalms 34:15, "Seek Peace And Pursue It".

b'shalom (with peace),

I am asking all those that desire to show solidarity with the people of Gaza, as well as the people of Darfur, to:

  1. Write to Rabbi Saperstein about this issue at rac@uahc.org.  Place Attn: Rabbi Saperstein- Darfur and Gaza Fast Request in the Subject Line.  You can also call him at the the RAC, (202)387-2800.  (You can use or modify my letter if you would like.)
  1. Ask your clergy to take part in the fast, all three days or just on the 18th.
  1. Contact your elected official and ask them to take part in the fast.  You can e-mail them through their offical websites (which can be found at the House and Senate websites.)  You can also call them via the Toll-Free Captiol Switchboard, (877)762-8762 or (800)828-0498.
  1. Undertake your own fast from the 15th through the 18th or just the 18th.  The fast can be water only or a refugee rations fast (information from the Darfur Fast For Life Organization), which consists of 7 oz. of cracked wheat, 1.17 oz of farina wheat cereal, 1/6 cup of yellow split peas, 2.4 tsp. of oil, 2 tsp. of sugar, and 1/10 tsp. of salt.

Hat Tip: Adam Horowitz of Mondoweiss
Richard Silverstein of Tikun Olam

Originally posted to rbguy on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 06:39 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I'm not sure (0+ / 0-)

    this will go over well. Maybe make it Israelis and Gazans and he would do it? Seems too political imo..

    Could easily be wrong though.

    •  when I say Israelis (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      charliehall, rbguy

      How about just saying "All those who were and are affected by the Israel-Hamas war"?

      Seems less politically motivated that way.

      •  Thanks for the comment (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        capelza, sofia, thethinveil

        I agree with your thought about it being politically motivated.  In my opinion, it is politically motivated, and it is the right thing to do.

        With respect to your statement "all those who were and are affected by the Israel-Hamas war", I certainly agree that there was devastation towards the people of Southern Israel, but I am not aware of a humanitarian crisis in that area, a lack of aid and assistance, or anyone preventing that aid from getting there.  If you have any information about that, please let me know.

  •  Are you for real? (12+ / 0-)

    I commend Rabbi Saperstein and his fellow Rabbis for their concern towards the people of Darfur.  However, I feel that there is a hypocritical nature to their altruistic actions.

    Their concern and actions in support of the people of Darfur are hypocritical? Have you completely lost your mind?

    The Arab League's response to UN resolution 242 (land for peace): "No peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel"

    by Borat Sagdiyev on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:16:54 PM PDT

    •  yeah (6+ / 0-)

      I have to agree with Borat here.

      Just because he is joining a fast for the people of Darfur doesn't make him hypocritical for doing it for something that seems to be unrelated.

      It lower your respect for him(it shouldn't), but it's not hypocritical.

    •  Frankly (5+ / 0-)

      it's quite annoying how Israel haters interject themselves into every single humanitarian campaign, from anti-Iraq war demonstrations to actions in support of the people of Darfur... and end up completely discrediting and destroying these campaigns and movements.

      The Arab League's response to UN resolution 242 (land for peace): "No peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel"

      by Borat Sagdiyev on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:20:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Israel apologists do the same thing (3+ / 0-)

        ALL the time. As you know well.

        BTW, supporting humanitarian relief for Gazans is not "Israel hating".

        Many Israelis would support everything the diarist calls for - even if his or her exploitation of the Darfur event is misplaced and inappropriate.

        You were right in your initial comment that accusations of hypocrisy are insane in this case.

        But, then you go and spoil it with your own hypocrisy.

        One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

        by RandomActsOfReason on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:40:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Nah, Israel supporters don't do the same thing (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CN, DoGooderLawyer, deaniac20, charliehall

          Israel supporters don't try to take over unrelated movements and don't show up during anti-Iraq war rallies with demands to oust Hamas, disarm Hezbollah and stop rocket attacks and terrorism against Israel.

          You are absolutely right, humanitarian relief for Gazans is not "Israel hating". But every attempt to even compare or equate the situation in Gaza with the situation in Darfur (where hundreds of thousands have died and hundreds of thousands will likely die in the next few years) is a clear case of Israel hating.

          The Arab League's response to UN resolution 242 (land for peace): "No peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel"

          by Borat Sagdiyev on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:51:18 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The anti-iraq war movement is as much (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            edtastic, rbguy

            an anti-war movement as the support for humanitarian relief for Palestinians or the calls to end their oppression by Israel.

            The issue of Iraq can certain be used to further the issue of the treatment of Gazans. Just as the issue of Darfur shows us the effects of war the issue around Gaza does as well.

            I am speaking as a an anti-war organizer for the protests you reference - I pulled them in with Iraq and we talked about our principles and from there we looked to other instances where our principles related.

            They are all linked this way and are part of the anti-war movement.

            Like the issues of birth control and abortion they fall in the same category and are highly relevant.

            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

            by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:36:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  there were never (3+ / 0-)

              anything in common between the war in Iraq and the I/P conflict. A huge number of anti-war americans refused to go to anti-Iraq war demonstrations and become associated with the "Free Free Palestine" and/or "Free Mumia" fringe. One issue crowds pushing their unrelated agendas did a huge disservice to the anti-Iraq war cause at the time.

              Obviously they have not learned anything as this diary amply demonstrates. Hundreds of thousands of people are dying in Darfur, yet the diarist wants to dilute a straightforward and unambiguous humanitarian message  with his unpopular and highly controversial pet issue. Is it smart or is it stupid, is this diary going to help the people of Darfur?

              Let alone the fact that the Rabbi is not going to fast for Gazans for one simple reason - he does not share the diarist's views on the issue.

              The Arab League's response to UN resolution 242 (land for peace): "No peace with Israel, no negotiations with Israel, no recognition of Israel"

              by Borat Sagdiyev on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:59:16 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Did you organize them? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                edtastic

                There is a need for coalition building between the pet issues to discover a common thread in our principles.

                The fact that certain people have blind spots is a problem and illustrates why we should have fusions of these particular movements to create a more widespread movement.

                Simple as that.

                "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 09:20:12 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  where is the anti-war movement (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                  on Hamas and Hezbollah's actions? Where are they protesting Ahmadinejad beating the drums for nuclear war with Israel, and threatening to wipe them off the face of the map? THis is why the anti-war protests are in large part seen as umbrella meetings for far-left radicals.

                  "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                  by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:42:07 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  There is a reason for leftist to be there (0+ / 0-)

                    since the Vietnam war and the Cold War - the left has been the primary player in the anti-war movement because it was leftist that were being attacked.

                    Same goes for their involvement in the ACLU.

                    It is no secret that war has been used internally and externally by the right wing as a way to oppress the left.

                    Alien and Sedition acts anyone?

                    Imprisoning and Deporting of leftists is no joke.

                    BTW I am a proud leftist and progressive.

                    This is a Left Wing site last time I checked.

                    If you wanna check out FreeRepublic and see if you fit in there better then be my guest.

                    "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                    by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:48:14 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  where is it written in stone (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                      all posters on this site must be hard-left? Why no moderates allowed? I know conservative Republicans are not allowed, but I am not a conservative Republican, as you can see from my stances on abortion, gay rights, women's rights, economics. but not everyone has to be this doctrinaire ultra-leftist.

                      And you never answered my question. Where is the part of the anti-war movement that also protests Israel, when it comes to Hamas, Hezbollah, and an Iranian leader beating the drums for nuclear war with Israel? I am only pointing out their the movements inability to get those causes on board is why they are not seen as mainstream, which is how a movement actually catches on. Not to mention the blatant hypocrisy.

                      "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                      by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:53:18 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  By moderates you mean conservatives right? (0+ / 0-)

                        Democratic moderates are not moderate when they are in fact out and out conservatives that are fighting against any kind of proposal of a public option in Health care.

                        To your other point.

                        Mainly because the mainstream media does plenty of that.

                        All we hear about in MSM is how bad Hamas, Hezbollah, and Iran are dangerous.

                        It certainly has racist undertones and does nothing to address the Empire that we are a part of and which Israel is a part of via our military and diplomatic support for their wars.

                        Same here we can have the greatest impact by focusing on our own community - and starting here by being a good example before we start throwing stones.

                        "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                        by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:04:10 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  so is purging the answer? (0+ / 0-)

                          purging moderates, as both far-right AND far-left dictatorships have done in the past? One issue does not make one a liberal or conservative. Just because I disagree with the blog consensus about Israel does not make me a conservative. There are a good deal of others on Daily Kos, more than one would expect, who support Israel, and who stand up against the slanders and slurs we hear about "the 'Zionists.'"

                          once again, principle is principle. Just because the MSM does something, doesn't mean the opposite is good. Just because the American media will call out Hamas and Hezbollah doesn't mean the anti-war movement should not. And no, there is NOTHING racist about calling out Islamists. Just because they are not white doesn't mean they are not wrong. Non-whites can be just as bad as whites can be. And if one looks at the moral dimension, those groups use their own people's homes, mosques, schools, and hospitals for rocket launching pads on innocent Israeli civilians, something all people who dare call themselves anti-war should vehemently oppose. They also sell their kids lives for money in return for a waist size 20 bomb belt. calling that out is not racist, it is right.

                          "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                          by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:11:56 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  When you use derogatory language at the left (0+ / 0-)

                            you seem to be advocating that same purging and dismissal and the left is not going to back away from slurs such as extremists.

                            And for many Jews that is all a I-P diary is about is defending Zionism. Never have I seen you or charlie or any of the other usual characters speak out against the violence done in zionism's name.

                            That is what disgust me.  

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:18:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  when do you anti-Zionists (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                            ever call out the violence done in anti-Zionism's name? Or the overall violence done in Islam's name? Or because the MSM does those things, members of the "anti-war movement" cannot? That is the hypocrisy of some in the movement, which is why its legitimacy is lacking right now. And where is the anti-war outcry over Darfur either? Or Tibet? Or Chechnya? Do they not count?

                            yea, I'd speak out if we see an instance of Israeli settlers get out of hand. You'll never see me apologize for an Israeli settler who throws rockets at a little girl, just as you'll never see me apologize for people who want to wipe a UN Member State off the face of the map, and sell their kids to hamas to do that.

                            I don't dismiss the left. I dismiss the FAR-left, which like the far-right, is blind to facts and nuance. And only sees doctrinaire shades of black and white. And ignores everything else so it can concentrate on hitting the Jewish State, but no one else. And when Jimmy Carter calls an obvious genocide "not a genocide."

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:28:24 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  We serious have limited time and resources (0+ / 0-)

                            the anti-war movement doesn't get the funding that the environmental movements or labor movements have.

                            There are anti-war orgs that take up those other issues - my former org didn't work on Darfur because there were so many orgs already working on the issue - but it was in our minds and conversations.

                            Well, as long as you attack the so called "far-left" or more correctly the left in this country, we will continue to call out the hypocrisy of the moderates/conservatives.

                            Your attempt at claiming the left is guilty of black and white thinking while proclaiming that you represent "truth" and claiming that everyone else can't acknowledge "facts," is highly ironic.

                            I mean it exhibits NUANCE. pfftt.  

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:48:09 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I guess you're just fine (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                            having the anti-war movement, being led by groups like ANSWER be caricatured as extremists because they cannot seem to focus on anything except the Mid East and Israel, but never on Darfur, Tibet, Chechnya, Sri Lanka, etc. But I thought they had "limited time and resources." But they do have them to attack and single out the Jewish State and no one else. Thats why they're taken so seriously.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:54:06 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Its because it takes balls to stand up on the (0+ / 0-)

                            issue.

                            ANSWER is only a small portion of the anti-war movement - I support them and they have supported many of the marches I have attended.

                            There are many others that work on middle east issues - but we are not worried about people like yourself.

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:03:05 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  stand up to Hamas, Hezbollah, and Ahmadinejad (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                            already. You have not given me one good justification why the anti-war movement is so devoid people doing so.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:13:48 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Stand up to Israel already. (0+ / 0-)

                            I have given you the reasons - time, money and that it is important to have critical voices within our empire.

                            I know it may be a bit too rational for you but there it is.

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:21:59 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  why don't you, the anti-war movement (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

                            stand up to both of them, if you believe both are wrong?

                            Me, why don't I stand up "to Israel?" because frankly, I know they are generally right to protect their own citizens, as all democracies do.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:24:21 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Exactly right you have no problem with Israel (0+ / 0-)

                            murdering civilians when Hamas does the same thing in defense of its own.

                            And there are plenty of dictatorships who protect their "citizen" in just the way Israel is protecting their "citizens."

                            Like those "terrorists" in Georgia and Chechnya.

                            You are even more of an extremist than I.

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:55:29 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  You're a Hamas apologist (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Borat Sagdiyev

                            Which you apologoze for a group whose charter and agenda calls for the murder of Jews for being Jews, wiping the Jewish State off the map, and establishing a new caliphate.
                            Your veil is indeed very thin, as your username says. But under it, you cannot hide your anti-semitic eyes. God help the antiwar movement if you, a Hamas supprter is a typical ANSWER member.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 01:17:45 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Watch it jackass. (0+ / 0-)

                            I have not excused their crimes - you have been excusing the crimes of both Hamas and Israel with your underlying premise.

                            Quit it with the fucking framing of me.

                            Have a decent and honest conversation for once.

                            I am not a member of ANSWER.

                            What was all that shit talking about ANSWER there if you haven't even - attended a meeting or made an attempt at talking to them.

                            Reach out to them - maybe they will hear you.

                            Most likely not with the way you have conversations.

                            The last place the anti-war movement is going to go for tactical and strategic advice is someone who opposes their ends.

                            Kthankzbye.

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 02:31:29 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

            •  thats just sick (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DoGooderLawyer, Borat Sagdiyev

              and disgusting, if you believe the anti-war movement should just be an umbrella movement for those who try to link Iraq to support for Israel, as thats what it sounds like when you try to link the "anti-war movement" inextricably to the Pro-Palestine movement. In reality, there is no link. Sharon and AIPAC were not for Iraq, in fact, Sharon was against a war and occupation.

              The link of the anti-war movement to the Palestine movement is why the anti-war movement's credibility isn't terribly high. it has noble motives, but instead is subverted by a political agenda, while ignoring crises like Darfur which are far far worse than anything Gaza or the West Bank could ever dream of.

              If the anti-war movement wants to be balanced, they must also rail against Hamas and the war they bring to their own people. for example, we can see their violence towards other Palestinians:

              A true anti-war movement isn't one sided. A politically motivated one is.

              "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

              by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:40:40 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Sorry how much experience do you have in it? (0+ / 0-)

                The fact that I share Sharon's belief that the US doesn't belong in Iraq does not mean I will support everything else he says or does.

                The fact that I like Hamas' stance toward the poor in their country doesn't mean I support everything they say and do either.  

                You guys gotta get better arguments and stop attempting to label your opposition through the use of slurs and slander. It makes you seem unserious.

                "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:56:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  you mean the same Hamas (0+ / 0-)

                  which uses its military clout to cover economically for people, so it can indoctrinate them in jihad, even paying parents to murder their own children, so they can be martyrs in heaven with Muhammed and Allah? Exploiting the poor for political ends is not an approach I like. Kind of sounds like the Soviet Union, whose Politburo system Hamas so aptly emulates.

                  "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                  by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:01:44 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  People are in need. (0+ / 0-)

                    If Hamas can provide that support of the sick and hungry I support them doing that.

                    Surely they gain political power for it.

                    All the more reason for Israel to allow humanitarian aid.

                    And as I said already I do not support every way they use that power.

                    And how do you justify Israels murder of the Palestinian people?

                    I haven't seen you condemn those acts either.

                    "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                    by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:09:44 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  there is no "murder" (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Borat Sagdiyev

                      by Israel on the whole of the Palestinian people. In war, which Hamas wages on Israeli civilians and only civilians, civilians do die, especially when Hamas and Hezbollah launch rockets in and behind civilian homes, hospitals, schools, and mosques. What is Israel going to do? Let its citizens lose limbs and lives because it has to worry about the lives of terrorists who just happen to be using civilians homes to wage war?

                      "Murder" is killing someone for no moral reason. Not all killing is murder, as Israel does not target civilians only because they are civilians. If the terrorists who threaten Israel's citizens lives only for being civilians hide among civilians, and Israel cannot find a way to get the terrorists without some civilian casualties, well that is Hamas's fault. Israel does its best to locate military bases of its own away from its own civilian areas. Lets see Hamas, Hezbollah, and Islamic Jihad follow suit.

                      "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                      by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:16:05 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Misstatement of fact (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        thethinveil

                        Israel does its best to locate military bases of its own away from its own civilian areas.

                        That's the biggest biggest bag of bullshit I've heard here in a long time.

                        Where do you get this stuff? a 1950's propaganda brochure about the "heroic Sabra"?

                        One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

                        by RandomActsOfReason on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:32:38 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I haven't been paying attention to his "factual" (0+ / 0-)

                          support - I have had conversations before with him where I know he has attempted to mislead me.

                          But thanks for the info.

                          "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                          by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:34:10 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  they could have done to Gaza (0+ / 0-)

                            what the British and Americans did to Dresden, a town with even less full scale military defenses than Gaza, and they didn't. Hell, Germany wasn't even hitting our civilians, Hamas was hitting Israels. But does that mean the US/UK were "war criminals?" No, and neither is Israel.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:43:06 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  The bombing of Dresden was criminal. (0+ / 0-)

                            If we needed any more proof that you aren't anti-war.

                            "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                            by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:50:55 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm anti-war when war is NOT NECESSARY (0+ / 0-)

                            as I, like most rationally minded people know that there is a time for war and a time for non-war. I'm not always anti-war or pro-war. No one should always be either. Another problem with many groups like ANSWER: they don't know that in some instances, going to war, like in Afghanistan, was 100% appropriate, after harboring and training the men of the man who killed 3000 Americans on 9/11. A little different than Iraq, which clearly never attacked us after Desert Storm.

                            The point of mentioning Dresden was to prove that Israel does not blanketly target civlians, not to argue over Dresden's merits.

                            "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

                            by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:57:51 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  So, the argument was over whether (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            thethinveil

                            Gazans are worthy of humanitarian support, and you want from "Israel haters" to "Dresden" to "ANSWER", to 9/11, to Iraq, all in a series of short leaps into the unknown.

                            Remarkable display. Utterly irrational and absurd, but impressive in its sheer, Cheney-esque unabashed abandonment of reason, common sense and basic human decency.

                            One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

                            by RandomActsOfReason on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 06:04:32 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Wow. (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            thethinveil

                            The contortions you'll go to to avoid basic human decency are remarkable.

                            Is it possible to support humanitarian relief for Gazans and want them to have better conditions regardless of whether Israelis are war criminals or not?

                            Or is there no issue, no suffering by any people, no event effecting anyone, anywhere, that you will not interpret solely and cynically based on whether or not it is "good for Israel"?

                            You'll even defend the mass firebombing of civilians, if it serves your ideological agenda.

                            Incredible. Not surprising, since I've seen this kind of pathological abandonment of common morality over and over among Israel's apologists, but no less incredible.

                            One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

                            by RandomActsOfReason on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 06:02:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Most Israelis head home from a base (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            thethinveil

                            by walking out the gate and hitching a ride from a passing civilian vehicle or taking public transportation at the bus stop right outside.

                            The notion that Israel locates its bases remotely from its civilian population is absurdly antifactual (it would be rather impractical in any case).

                            One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

                            by RandomActsOfReason on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 05:57:48 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  If you think palestinians should take (0+ / 0-)

                        responsibility then first you should take Israel should take responsibility.

                        You are making the point that both side should take responsibility aren't you?

                        OR is it Israel - who is always right?

                        "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                        by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:32:39 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

          •  It's not a competition. (0+ / 0-)

            One day posterity will remember, this strange era, these strange times, when ordinary common honesty was called courage. -- Yevgeny Yevtushenko

            by RandomActsOfReason on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 11:29:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  That's a.. (8+ / 0-)

    ..beautiful and brave letter you sent to Rabbi Saperstein, rbguy.

    Thanks, as always, for your diary, and your hard work to bring the occupation, and oppression of  Palestinians, especially Gazans, during this siege, to an end.

  •  Hmm. (11+ / 0-)

    What about Tibet? Sri Lanka? Or any of the other killing fields?

    Does Saperstein need to fast for them as well? Or is it just that you want him to have your exact priorities?

    Dear republicans: teabagging is when the gogo-boy slaps his balls into your face. Thanks.

    by MBNYC on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:38:18 PM PDT

    •  Thanks for your thougths (7+ / 1-)

      You make a valid point about there being atrocities in many areas.  

      My thought is that Gaza is a necessary place for the Rabbi and the RAC to be involved with since he and his organization is Jewish and Israel is directly involved with the crisis.

      My hope is that he (and they) would become more active in trying to use their religious and political influence with a majority Jewish government to correct something that the Obama Administration, and the international community, wants remedied.

      I would also hope that their more active involvement in this issue, would give them greater national and international standing in addressing the many other crisis in the world.

      •  You don't know what you are talking about (4+ / 0-)

        religious and political influence with a majority Jewish government

        You really think Saperstein has any influence in Israel?

        You really should learn more about the political and religious situation there before you write any more comments or diaries.

        The fact is, the Reform movement is not accepted as a legitimate movement in Israel. Secular and religious Jews agree that it should have no official status, no govenment funding. Persons who have converted to Judaism through the Reform movement can't even get married in Israel.

        And you think he would have influence?

        That an American Jew of any type would "influence" the Israeli government borders on the old dual allegiance canard. That you suggest such from the leader of the movement that the Israeli government goes out of its way to deny legitimacy shows massive ignorance about Israel.

        Learn some more before you post again.

        All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

        by charliehall on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:58:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  There tends to be the argument that you take on (2+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      capelza, rbguy
      Hidden by:
      charliehall

      what you have the best chances of affecting or what you are closest to.

      It seem that while Tibet, Sri Lanka and say Niger are all places whose people are suffering - he will have the greatest impact on those who are responsible for that suffering - Israel, by way of his religious affiliation.

      Now if he were a american-chinese citizen it would make a great deal of sense that he would make an stand on the issue of Tibet.

      If he were a Buddhist American-Sri lankan then he would make an issue of the treatment of the Tamals.

      And if he were a an African Muslim it would be best for him to make an issue of Darfur.

      Sometimes we can only hear a persons suffering or understand an others suffering when it is one of our own that is speaking about it.

      No doubt more republicans would feel better about being anti-torture if there were Republican leaders who spoke out against torture.

      An issue that John McCain has sadly been silent on.

      I hope you can understand the practicality behind such an action. That the speaker matters as much as the words often times.

      "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

      by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 07:59:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks for your comment and thoughts (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        capelza, thethinveil

        You were much more succint and eloquent about this reasoning than I was.

      •  Religious prejudice here! (3+ / 0-)

        by way of his religious affiliation.

        You really think that I as an American Jew have influence over the Israeli government? Or that I should?

        This sounds like the old dual allegiance canard.

        Massive fail!

        All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

        by charliehall on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:53:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry you feel that way. (0+ / 0-)

          But it is no secret that there is an affinity between American Jews and Israel Jews.

          American Jews seem to have a preference towards Israel.

          Are you doubting such a preference exists?

          You would be foolish to.

          "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

          by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:57:05 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Preference is a lot different than influence (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            deaniac20, thebluecrayon

            and smacks of anti-Semitism.

            I'm not saying the comment is anti-Semitic, but a lot of real anti-Semites like Patrick Buchanan say similar things.

            All my IP addresses have been banned from Redstate.com.

            by charliehall on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:59:59 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I would hold that influence of one another is (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              edtastic

              also likely because of that preference.

              The american Jewish community is the largest community of Jews out there. Many american Jews have visited Israel, have contact with Israelis and identify through a shared heritage.

              Now I will use the metaphor of a family. Take for example a Rabbi who could be a stand in for a father you do not think that the father has influence over his son, you do not think that this nuclear family has influence in some way over their cousins, or brothers family or niece's family.

              This closeness and proximity or course would give some kind of influence as I said before - we tend to be more open to the people who are like us and have shared interests or histories or backgrounds.

              Now I at times wish I we could see beyond ethnic and religious identities. That we could see each other as human. But this may be one of the hardest things to do when we there exist ethnic segregation by the existence of the identity alone.

              You touch upon another issue that should be discussed but not here and I will give my position on it only briefly.

              That a statement would appeal to a group such as anti-Semites does not make it in itself anti-semitic.

              The anti-semite has different purposes for such statements i.e. to convince people to become anti-semites.  

              While the statement itself may have been said for entirely different reasons and purposes.

              This is where the speaker and the purpose of the statement is important in determining if the statement is condemnable.

              Because it is the distinction of purpose which clearly separates the

              My purpose was to underline the importance of Jews speaking on behalf of Palestinians and how that may be a practical solution to reach fellow Jews both Israeli and American.

              What is a community if there is no trusts.

              With no trust there is no community.

              And for this reason I call for people within the Jewish community especially its leaders to speak out on the humanitarian situation of the Palestinians.

              Sorry for my overlong response.

              "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

              by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 09:15:58 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Sorry left a couple lines out there (0+ / 0-)

                Because it is the distinction of purpose which clearly separates comments on the charge of religious prejudice.

                In one it clearly isn't there in another it is.

                You have to be sensitive to it.

                "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

                by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 09:24:59 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  Ha! Oh noezz a TR. (0+ / 0-)

        Gotta love a I-P diary.

        "What is the robbing of a Bank compared to the FOUNDING of a Bank?" Bertolt Brecht

        by thethinveil on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 08:54:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  would you agree that international Jewish (0+ / 0-)

        influence is what controls the actions of Bibi and Avigdor?

        "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

        by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:34:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Hi MB.. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MBNYC, rbguy, soysauce

      ..you can read here why rbguy has devoted his attention to this particular conflict.

    •  The Jewish State MUST be singled out (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Borat Sagdiyev

      always, because, er... it is the....what kind of state again?

      "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

      by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:29:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  An Apartheid State (0+ / 0-)

        All other segregationist / Apartheid states that wish to disenfranchise all or part of undesirable ethnic groups should also be called out. As it turns out Israel is a very public and gross offender of modern western values of equality.

        Netanyahu "TEAR DOWN THAT WALL"!

        •  enough with the canard already (0+ / 0-)

          Arabs are even buying settlements in disputed territories:

          So much for the apartheid canard. Not even Al-Jazeera, the most pro-Arab and pro-Islam network even close to the mainstream, can even hold that up. Not to mention, as I will do forever until people you like stop peddling lies, the purpose of which is to only embolden Hamas, Hezbollah, Israel's enemies, and thus America's enemies, Arab citizens of Israel have full rights, and even get affirmative action. Where is the affirmative action for Jewish citizens of Jordan? Oh yea, no Jew may be a citizen of Jordan, I forgot.

          Also, Palestinians in Gaza and Judea and Samaria (you used inflammatory words, so will I) do not want to be citizens of Israel. Why would Israel ever give people who didn't want to be citizens citizenship?

          "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

          by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:45:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Palestinians were born there too (0+ / 0-)

            But they don't have rights, do you have plans to grant them rights or do you believe in the Jewish majority by any means necessary strategy.  How about those in East Jerusalem, how about the Arabs being indited for beating a IDF soldier turned terrorist who sprayed a  bus full of people with bullets. How about the demands that people accept one racial group as the ruling power regardless of the real demographics. How about the history of ethnic cleansing that shifted those demographics. Al Jazeera clearly likes its commentators to deliver opinions while it focuses on news coverage, unlike a lot of our media which works like a propaganda factory.

            •  Arabs live in settlements too. (0+ / 0-)

              which is why the apartheid analogy fails when under any real scrutiny. The West Bank and Gaza are not run by Israel in matters besides airspace and military control. They are run by the Palestinian Authority. Where are they in this? Where is their responsibility? Where are the rights in Gaza for Palestinians when Israeli settlers moved out? Ask Hamas. They'll tell you how things work in the Islamic Republic of Hamastan.

              "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

              by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:56:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  American Jews don't have collective guilt (3+ / 0-)

    or blame for the situation in Israel.  At least they shouldn't.  To say that an American rabbi is being hypocritical for supporting a fast for Darfur movement supports this notion of collective guilt.  An American rabbi is not responsible for Israel's government's actions.

    I realize your work, concern and writings on I/P are heartfelt and you try not to be contentious, however your approach this time is off the mark, so I felt it necessary to speak up.

    However, I feel that there is a hypocritical nature to their altruistic actions.  In my opinion, these Rabbis have a religious, moral, and ethical obligation to focus an equal, if not larger, amount of energy on improving the humanitarian crisis of the people of Gaza.

    American citizens, of any religion, should be free to pursue their own priorities.  I'm very happy to hear Saperstein has joined the Darfur fast.  Darfur's genocide has been roundly ignored by too many, for too long.  Wish more people would not stand idly by.

    •  but didn't you know (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Borat Sagdiyev

      Darfur doesn't matter. Jimmy Carter doesn't believe that there is genocide going on there. Despite the hundreds of thousands murdered. So Darfur doesn't really matter. Only Gaza.

      Gaza, Gaza über alles
      über alles in der Welt
      wenn es stets zu Krieg und Hamas
      brüderlich Rakete fliegt

      "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

      by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:33:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Leave Jimmy Carter ALONE (0+ / 0-)

        When will you accept that right wing Zionist will never win a PR war with Jimmy Carter since he has more credibility than all them put together. He made  peace, while right wing Zionist prolong the conflict by every viable political means they can find. Be it settlements, wars, segregated roads,and the classic "we can't talk to these  people" routine.

        If Carter says there is no genocide he might be correct, the media spins everything and it is hard for anyone not on the ground to get perspective. The publicity hounds will hype anything to extremes to help their cause which are often good but the advocacy sometimes comes in the form of distorted talking points.  You got nothing on Carter so leave him alone, if we had more men like that leading America we would be far better off.

        •  No genocide in Darfur. If Jimmy Carter says it, (0+ / 0-)

          it MUST be true. Even tho everyone else knows it to be genocide, including our President. But if Jimmy Carter says it, its the word of this ultra-Baptist God. Jimmy Carter also walks on water.

          "If someone was sending rockets on my house where my daughters were sleeping at night, I would do everything to stop it"-Barack Obama

          by deaniac20 on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:59:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I find this diary disturbing (5+ / 0-)

    You seem to be suggesting that because a person is Jewish they have a moral obligation to speak out about Gaza before they can speak or act on any other injustice. I don't see how that position is justified.

    Economic Left/Right: -4.00 Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.82
    A yam.
    What a Yam!
    And that's all that - A yam.

    by AaronInSanDiego on Sat Jun 13, 2009 at 10:53:28 PM PDT

  •  this diary is a fail (5+ / 0-)

    well-intentioned, as it wants to focus people on the plight of palestinians in gaza, which i understand.  but creating the equivalence between the nuanced I/P conflict and the genocide in darfur is pretty disgusting.  

    and rabbi saperstein, who is a good man who i've met personally, btw, is doing a good thing by focusing attention on darfur with his fast, and just because he does one fast doesn't mean he has to take on every fast suggested to him by the public or risk being called a hypocrite.  esp. not one re: a conflict that has a lot more nuance than you're giving it credit for.

    It is not upon you to finish the Work, but neither shall you, O child of freedom, refrain from it.

    by DoGooderLawyer on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 12:37:22 AM PDT

  •  uck. self-righteous (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JPhurst, thebluecrayon

    palaver so early on a Sunday morning.  Rabbi Saperstein has no obligation to fast for Gaza.  As others have noted, your insistance that American Jews have some special obligation, is disturbing.  Hate it when the right insists that Muslims have some special duty to denounce Islamic fundamentalis and violence, don't care for your sanctimonious nonsense a bit more.  It's exactly the same.

    two cheers for democracy

    by ClaryinVT on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 03:39:38 AM PDT

  •  What all people.... (0+ / 0-)

    ...who care about peace should be doing, is demanding that Hamas be dismantled.  Then the people of Gaza, who do not have a single Jewish settler in their territory, can actually get down to the business of community building.

    If people want to fast, or hunger strike, or whatever, then that's fine.  Just keep your eye on the ball, which is the abolition of Hamas.

    If missiles were falling where my two daughters sleep, I would do everything in order to stop that. -- President Barack Obama

    by JPhurst on Sun Jun 14, 2009 at 08:53:13 AM PDT

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