16, 2015 "Information
Clearing House" - "Dissident
- In August, 2015, 57 brand new members of
the U.S. House of Representatives bowed their heads
and promised to obey their Israeli overlords. They
allowed themselves to be taken to Israel, plied with
good food and propaganda. They then returned home to
do Israelís bidding in the Congressional seats that
Israel helped them win. Sixty were invited, but only
three decided not to go, for unknown reasons.
But isnít there a more innocent explanation?
Perhaps they just wanted to learn more about the
issue and would equally have accepted an invitation
to visit Palestine and see it from a Palestinian
point of view. Nothing wrong with giving equal
opportunity to both sides.
The Free Palestine Movement tested this theory
and found it wanting. We sent a personalized
invitation to exactly the same members of Congress
to come to Palestine at our expense. Not a single
one accepted. Although we sent a followup to those
who did not respond the first time, the vast
majority never responded at all. A few said that
they could not make time in their schedule, not even
when we suggested that they could wait as long as
their next term. Only one, Brad Ashford of Nebraska,
said that he was working with some of his
constituents to visit Palestine. (We have been able
to find no evidence of such an initiative.)
Israel, through its US Lobby, has of course been
doing this for more than half a century. There are
hardly any members of Congress that have not
accepted an invitation at least one time during
their career, often more. Can you name any other
country with such a devoted following in the U.S.
The reason, of course, is that the Israel Lobby
has a reputation of making or breaking congressional
careers, and that members of Congress are x-rayed to
assure that they possess no detectable spine before
they take office. There is more pushback from some
Israeli newspapers than from the US Congress.
And why not? There has never been any price to
pay for obeying Israel. In fact, candidates compete
to do favors for Israel and to get donations managed
by Israelís Lobby, with little or no consideration
of how much they are robbing their constituents.
But this time itís different. We may not be able
to persuade members of Congress to look at both
sides of the Israel question, nor to ask why US
taxpayer money is supporting an Israeli ethnic
cleansing campaign against Palestinians, nor why our
roads are not paved nor our bridges repaired nor our
children educated. But we can show the depravity of
our elected officials. We can demonstrate their
hypocrisy and their bias and dishonest treatment of
US foreign policy, which results in war, death and
destruction for all but the tiny number of
super-wealthy profiteers whose hands are covered in
Thatís why the Free Palestine Movement is running
the ad below on the sides of buses in San Francisco.
It is why we are making the same ad available at
cost as a 3″ x 9″ sticker to anyone who wants to use
it. Itís why weíre ready to share the cost of a
display ad on buses or anywhere else with any group
that wants to run the ad anywhere in the US, for as
long as our funds last.
It is only a start, but we can at least begin to
hold our elected officials accountable. We can make
them begin to pay a price for selling out both the
American and the Palestinian people to Israel.
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