Saturday, July 17, 2010
Liberating America From Israel.....
Liberating America From Israel...?
By Former Congressman Paul Findley
Nine-eleven would not have occurred if the U.S. government had refused
to help Israel humiliate and destroy Palestinian society. Few express
this conclusion publicly, but many believe it is the truth. I believe
the catastrophe could have been prevented if any U.S. president during
the past 35 years had had the courage and wisdom to suspend all U.S. aid
until Israel withdrew from the Arab land seized in the 1967 Arab-Israeli
The U.S. lobby for Israel is powerful and intimidating, but any
determined president - even President Bush this very day - could prevail
and win overwhelming public support for the suspension of aid by laying
these facts before the American people:
Israel's present government, like its predecessors, is determined to
annex the West Bank - biblical Judea and Samaria - so Israel will become
Greater Israel. Ultra-Orthodox Jews, who maintain a powerful role in
Israeli politics, believe the Jewish Messiah will not come until Greater
Israel is a reality. Although a minority in Israel, they are committed,
aggressive, and influential. Because of deep religious conviction, they
are determined to prevent Palestinians from gaining statehood on any
part of the West Bank.
In its violent assaults on Palestinians, Israel uses the pretext of
eradicating terrorism, but its forces are actually engaged advancing the
territorial expansion just cited. Under the guise of anti-terrorism,
Israeli forces treat Palestinians worse than cattle. With due process
nowhere to be found, hundreds are detained for long periods and most are
tortured. Some are assassinated. Homes, orchards, and business places
are destroyed. Entire cities are kept under intermittent curfew, some
confinements lasting for weeks. Injured or ill Palestinians needing
emergency medical care are routinely held at checkpoints for an hour or
more. Many children are undernourished. The West Bank and Gaza have
become giant concentration camps. None of this could have occurred
without U.S. support. Perhaps Israeli officials believe life will become
so unbearable that most Palestinians will eventually leave their
Once beloved worldwide, the U.S. government finds itself reviled in most
countries because it provides unconditional support of Israeli
violations of the United Nations Charter, international law, and the
precepts of all major religious faiths.
How did the American people get into this fix?
Nine-eleven had its principal origin 35 years ago when Israel's U.S.
lobby began its unbroken success in stifling debate about the proper
U.S. role in the Arab-Israeli conflict and effectively concealed from
public awareness the fact that the U.S. government gives massive
uncritical support to Israel.
Thanks to the suffocating influence of Israel's U.S. lobby, open
discussion of the Arab-Israeli conflict has been non-existent in our
government all these years. I have firsthand knowledge, because I was a
member of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee in June
1967 when Israeli military forces took control of the Golan Heights, a
part of Syria, as well as the Palestinian West Bank and Gaza. I
continued as a member for 16 years and to this day maintain a close
watch on Congress.
For 35 years, not a word has been expressed in that committee or in
either chamber of Congress that deserves to be called debate on Middle
East policy. No restrictive or limiting amendments on aid to Israel have
been offered for 20 years, and none of the few offered in previous years
received more than a handful of votes. On Capitol Hill, criticism of
Israel, even in private conversation, is all but forbidden, treated as
downright unpatriotic, if not anti-Semitic. The continued absence of
free speech was assured when those few who spoke out-Senators Adlai
Stevenson and Charles Percy, and Reps. Paul "Pete" McCloskey, Cynthia
McKinney, Earl Hilliard, and myself-were defeated at the polls by
candidates heavily financed by pro-Israel forces.
As a result, legislation dealing with the Middle East has been heavily
biased in favor of Israel and against Palestinians and other Arabs year
after year. Home constituencies, misled by news coverage equally
lop-sided in Israel's favor, remain largely unaware that Congress
behaves as if it were a subcommittee of the Israeli parliament.
However, the bias is widely noted beyond America, where most news media
candidly cover Israel's conquest and generally excoriate America's
complicity and complacency. When President Bush welcomed Israeli Prime
Minister Ariel Sharon, sometimes called the Butcher of Beirut, as "my
dear friend" and "a man of peace" after Israeli forces, using
U.S.-donated arms, completed their devastation of the West Bank last
spring, worldwide anger against American policy reached the boiling point.
The fury should surprise no one who reads foreign newspapers or listens
to BBC. In several televised statements long before 9/11, Osama bin
Laden, believed by U.S. authorities to have masterminded 9/11, cited
U.S. complicity in Israel's destruction of Palestinian society as a
principal complaint. Prominent foreigners, in and out of government,
express their opposition to U.S. policies with unprecedented frequency
and severity, especially since Bush announced his determination to make
war against Iraq.
The lobby's intimidation remains pervasive. It seems to reach every
government center and even houses of worship and revered institutions of
higher learning. It is highly effective in silencing the many U.S. Jews
who object to the lobby's tactics and Israel's brutality.
Nothing can justify 9/11. Those guilty deserve maximum punishment, but
it makes sense for America to examine motivations promptly and as
carefully as possible. Terrorism almost always arises from deeply-felt
grievances. If they can be eradicated or eased, terrorist passions are
certain to subside.
Today, a year after 9/11, President Bush has made no attempt to redress
grievances, or even to identify them. In fact, he has made the scene far
worse by supporting Israel's religious war against Palestinians, an
alliance that has intensified anti-American anger. He seems oblivious to
the fact that nearly two billion people worldwide regard the plight of
Palestinians as today's most important foreign-policy challenge. No one
in authority will admit a calamitous reality that is skillfully shielded
from the American people but clearly recognized by most of the world:
America suffered 9/11 and its aftermath and may soon be at war with
Iraq, mainly because U.S. policy in the Middle East is made in Israel,
not in Washington.
Israel is a scofflaw nation and should be treated as such. Instead of
helping Sharon intensify Palestinian misery, our president should
suspend all aid until Israel ends its occupation of Arab land Israel
seized in 1967. The suspension would force Sharon's compliance or lead
to his removal from office, as the Israeli electorate will not tolerate
a prime minister who is at odds with the White House.
If Bush needs an additional reason for doing the right thing, he can
justify the suspension as a matter of military necessity, an essential
step in winning international support for his war on terrorism. He can
cite a worthy precedent. When President Abraham Lincoln issued the
proclamation that freed only the slaves in states that were then in
rebellion, he make the restriction because of "military necessity."
If Bush suspends U.S. aid, he will liberate all Americans from long
years of bondage to Israel's misdeeds.
Mr. Paul Findley, who served as a Republican congressman from Illinois
for 22 years, is the author of 'They Dare to Speak Out' and a member of
the American Educational Trust's Foreign Relations Committee....