The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation sent us a "cease and desist letter." The letter can be viewed at this address:
In turn, below is our response:
US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
P.O. Box 21539
Washington, DC 20009
RE: “Your cease and desist” letter:
The article of mine, that appeared on The American Thinker web log, "George Mason University to Host Next ISM Conference” (http://www.americanthinker.com/2007/07/george_mason_university_to_hos.html) that the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation refers to, as written, is neither inaccurate nor defamatory, unless you consider the activities of your organization as defaming itself. I, on the other hand, consider your letter as a threat and attempt at intimidation to my rights of free speech.
The American people are not fools, but certain organizations do seek to fool them. When an organization such as yours presents itself as seeking “peace” but in fact supports and works closely with myriad organizations that openly advocate for war on and the destruction of the democratic and pluralistic state of Israel, I feel it is my journalistic duty to alert the public to these events.
Your claims notwithstanding on your website that you only seek to end the “occupation of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem” are belied by both your organization’s actions, as well as the actions and admitted positions of your own representative leadership and close affiliates as I will expose in this letter. I submit that your leadership and organization are guilty of something known as “lying by omission,” or leaving out just enough information to convey a false impression while presenting a kernel of truth in a statement. In this regard, the authors of your letter, particularly Mr. Ruebner, do not mention they support unconditionally the Arab “Right of Return” in addition to the creation of a Palestinian state, a concept whereby 5 million Arabs would be allowed to move within Israel’s 1949 borders so as to demographically overrun the Jewish population and dismantle the state. You can read more about Mr. Ruebner here:
Responding to your bullet points:
Bullet point number 1:
You take issue with the statement that the International Solidarity Movement is “scheduling” your conference.
According to the personal explanation of Adam Shapiro, who Lee Kaplan personally interviewed at the 2003 Ohio State Divestment Conference and the husband of your chosen leader, Huwaida Arraf, both of whom are co-founders of the ISM, The International Solidarity Movement is the name used by the Palestine Solidarity Movement (PSM) when it operates in the West Bank and Gaza and is comprised of myriad anti-Israel groups (one of which is yours). The ISM and PSM are not official groups or corporations, but represent all of these groups working in unison-“solidarity” toward a common goal in opposing Israel’s existence as a Jewish state and replacing it with Arab-dominated “Palestine.” Among these groups are many who call themselves ISM, but also groups such as Al Awda, SUSTAIN, Students for Justice in Palestine, Women In Black, as well as the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation.
Shapiro explained that the ISM is an umbrella organization. As such, if one segment is closed down by the authorities, the others can continue operating. In addition, if one arm of the umbrella makes statements such as was done by Charlotte Kates (See: http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individualProfile.asp?indid=944)
who I believe is affiliated with your organization as well, and who stated that Israeli children are “fair game” for terrorist attacks, the others can deny she speaks for them. Hence, the fact this conference is an organizational meeting of the multiple layers of leadership of the ISM, be it under the name US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation or not, it is still an ISM organizational meeting according to the attendees. In fact, you bill it as a National Organizer’s Conference meeting in solidarity to promote divestment against Israel, an ISM program.
By your own admission in your letter, your elected leader and President is in fact a self-admitted co-founder and current leader of the ISM, Huwaida Arraf, who has admitted she works in cooperation with Hamas. The Hamas charter calls for the annihilation of Israel as a Jewish state and the expulsion of all Jews from what is today the state of Israel. See: http://www.mideastweb.org/hamas.htm .
Nice company you keep.
Other individuals who belong to the ISM, yet curiously are also listed as members-at- large in your organization include Ms. Kates, Abe Greenhouse, Joseph Carr and others who have been exposed as higher level activists within the ISM.
Regarding earlier conferences held by your organization: (See: http://www.adl.org/Israel/israel_protest_calendar_2004.asp )
From an announcement of a conference held by your organization in Kansas City, Mo.
Saturday, November 13, 2004 - University of Missouri--Kansas City, Missouri
Regional Conference to “End the Occupation”
Sponsored by the U.S. Campaign to the End the Occupation and the International Solidarity Movement .
Citizens for Justice in the Middle East, a regional anti-Israel group based at the University of Missouri—Kansas City, is bringing the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, the International Solidarity Movement and other anti-Israel activists together for a regional conference devoted to changing U.S. policy toward Israel. The event will feature speakers who support divestment from Israel, the elimination of U.S. aid to Israel and contesting Israeli security measures. Notable speakers include Phyllis Bennis of the Institute for Policy Studies, Huwaida Arraf of ISM and the U.S. Campaign’s Josh Ruebner.
I note the following statement from your own website about your first conference (see:
“Coordinating with the work of the ISM…” An activity your organization has done
since its alleged inception per your website.
Following are some of the activities of the ISM with whom you “coordinate”:
(1) The ISM says openly that it has direct contacts with Foreign
Terrorist Organizations (FTOs) as defined by the U.S. State Department
(2) The ISM says openly that it recruits American college students in
the hope of getting them hurt or killed in confrontations with Israeli
military forces, for propaganda purposes (e.g. Rachel Corrie).
(3) An ISM affiliate (Al-Awda) have allegedly solicited acts of
terroristic violence on the Internet: specifically the suicide bombing
of Ariel Sharon's hospital room.
(4) The ISM has provided "safe house" assistance for actual terrorists.
(1) The International Solidarity Movement has direct contacts with
Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and other terrorists. We direct your
attention to "Huwaida Arraf" on the Steering Committee of U.S. Campaign
to End the Occupation. Note that this is from their own Web site.
Current Steering Committee members of the US Campaign, followed by the
year in which their terms end, are:
* Huwaida Arraf (2007) - International Solidarity Movement
* Phyllis Bennis (2009) - Institute for Policy Studies
* Felicia Eaves (2009) - Black Voices for Peace
Now we have Huwaida Arraf's letter to the Washington Post (February 2007)
Eric Adler and Jack Langer disparaged the International Solidarity
Movement (ISM), a movement that I co-founded in the spring of 2001 in
the occupied territories of the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East
Jerusalem to help draw attention to the human rights abuses suffered by
Palestinians as a result of Israel's occupation. The ISM also is a
resource for Palestinian nonviolent resistance to the occupation. The
ISM believes that average civilians can bring about change, and it tries
to unite Palestinians, Israelis and other people in nonviolent
resistance to Israel's occupation policies.
When I "acknowledged" that the ISM "cooperates with Hamas, the
Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of
Palestine," I was offering concrete examples of the ways in which these
groups were engaging in nonviolent resistance.
Both the ISM and the Palestine Solidarity Movement advocate nonviolent
resistance to Israel's human rights abuses -- the ISM through organized
action in the occupied territories and the PSM by promoting
international divestment from companies that profit from occupation.
(2) The International Solidarity Movement recruits American college
students for the purpose of getting them hurt or killed in
confrontations with the Israeli Defense Forces. This is what happened to
Evergreen College student Rachel Corrie in March 2003. Two ISM members
stated openly that they had a motive for wanting her dead. While GMU
students are legal adults, is this an activity to which GMU really wants
to expose them?
http://www.standwithus.com/news_post.asp?NPI=85 "Recently, the Director
of the Solidarity Movement, George Rishmawi, explained to the San
Francisco Chronicle that the recruitment of American student volunteers
is useful to the Palestinian Movement because "if some of these foreign
volunteers get shot or even killed, then the international media will
sit up and take notice.""
Joseph Smith, a.k.a. Joseph Carr, who was present when Corrie died, and whose highest priority was apparently to take pictures, said
spirit that she died for is worth a life. This idea of resistance, this
spirit of resisting this brutal occupying force, is worth anything. And
many, many, many Palestinians give their lives for it all the time. So
the life of one international, I feel, is more than worth the spirit of
resisting oppression." (Rachel Corrie's life, as opposed to his own, of
course.) Read more on Joseph Smith/Carr here:
A Hamas terrorist said openly that Rachel Corrie was worth more dead
than alive. "'Her death serves me more than it served her,' said one
activist at a Hamas funeral yesterday. '...Her death will bring more
attention than the other 2,000 martyrs.'" Making of a Martyr
(http://www.buzzle.com/editorials/3-22-2003-37821.asp) by Sandra Jordan,
Guardian Newspapers. Ms.Arraf, your President, admits to working with Hamas.
(3) ISM affiliates (Al-Awda) have allegedly solicited acts of
terrorist violence on the Internet: specifically the suicide bombing
of Ariel Sharon's hospital room.
A member of Al-Awda (Right of Return), an International Solidarity
Movement affiliate, allegedly posted a solicitation for a "martyr" to
bomb the Hadassah Hospital in Israel, where Ariel Sharon is being
treated for a stroke. (This was, incidentally, forwarded to law
enforcement when we saw it.)
From: raja chemayel <email@example.com>
Sender: Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com <mailto:Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com>
Mailing-List: list Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com>; contact Al-Awdafirstname.lastname@example.org
Delivered-To: mailing list Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com
Date: Sun, 8 Jan 2006 19:35:29 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: [AL-AWDA] open letter to the next Suicide-Bomber
Reply-To: Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com <mailto:Al-Awda@yahoogroups.com>
Open letter to
Dear Abou el Fidda' ,
If you are next Martyr on the waiting list
get started and pack your heavy-stuff ,
kiss the hand of your mother
kiss goodbye you bothers and sisters
kiss the hand of your father
put on that heavy-jacket.......
Take the Express-Bus to Jerusalem-Central
and then take bus Nr. 17 which takes you to Haddasah
then step out at the Bus-Station called the :
"Hospital for War Criminal"
Show you Fake-Press-Card to the Security
and speak with an American-accent
walk slowly and do not attract attention......
Enter the main-Hall and walk straight to the VIP- elevator
tell them Mr. Wolf Blitzer has sent you.....!!
Go up to the seventh floor........
look for the room 714........ (intensive care)
and then slowly but surely hold on to that detonator
under your jacket.......
Once you reach that very-well-guarded-room # 714
stop and turn left.....
you will see a large "VIP-Waiting-Hall"
with the many Dignitaries from many countries
including ,unfortunatly, some Arab-countries......
who came to pay their respect to their dying-Hero.
Show again your fake-Press-Card and start
interviewing those "well-wishers".........
and ask them what made this man a Hero ??
and how come he became a "Man of Peace"
Then , order for yourself a cup of coffee,
sit down , rest and think for a while.......
If by then ,
you are still not convinced by the arguments you have heard
from those well wishers.....
then release that detonator !!
This man under intensive care will anyhow die,
with or without your suicide , my brother ,
your real enemies are
those who have called him a "Hero"
and could not convince you why.
( nor me)
8th of Jan.06
Al Awda’s founder, Mazen Qumsiyeh was quoted at the Duke ISM Conference as saying that Jews who live in Israel are “a disease” and “must all leave.” Qumsiyeh
is on the steering committee for the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
and, according to ex-PLO terrorist Walid Shoebat, Qumsiyeh is a former member of the PFLP, recognized as a terrorist group by the US State Department.
(4) The ISM has provided "safe house" assistance for actual terrorists.
<http://home.comcast.net/%7Ejat.action/ISM_info.htm> "Susan Barclay, the
ISM organizer deported by Israel after she hid Islamic Jihad terrorist
Shadi Sukiya in the ISM office in Jenin, told the Seattle Post
Intelligencer that, "she knowingly worked with representatives from
Hamas and Islamic Jihad— terrorist groups that sponsor suicide bombings
and exist, according to their charters, to demolish the Jewish state
entirely." (Seattle Post Intelligencer, Thursday March 20, 2003,
"Activist's death focuses spotlight on Mideast struggle," By Sam
Skolnik, Seattle Post-Intelligencer reporter.)
"Days before a British suicide bomber detonated an explosives belt in
Mike's Place, a bar in suburban Tel Aviv, the bomber and an associate
took tea with members of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), a
pro-Palestinian group that promotes non-violent resistance to Israeli
<http://home.comcast.net/%7Ejat.action/ISM_info.htm> "The immediate goal
of the ISM is to hamper the ability of the IDF to prevent terrorist
attacks on civilians." "The ISM sees itself as working in tandem with
the terrorist organizations: Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Al Aksa Martyrs
Brigade. Those organizations use violent means, while the ISM undertakes
such aggressive non-violent actions as blocking the progress of Israeli
soldiers on their way to arrest terrorists. The intention of the ISM in
these actions is to protect terrorists from interference by the IDF."
Paul LaRudee of Norcal ISM, another affiliate of your campaign, was arrested
and deported by Israel for suspected links to Hamas. LaRudee, who like Joseph Carr
has admitted to entering Israel more than once under an assumed name has boasted about sleeping in the bed of a suicide bomber and most recently was a human shield for the Hizballah in Lebanon during the last war. (See: http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/groupProfile.asp?grpid=6233 )
The suggestion that people should view your conference as a Jew Hate Fest is accurate. As part of the Boycott Israel campaign, the Palestine Solidarity Movement, of which your organization is a part, held workshops identifying various Jewish-American organizations
to be boycotted as well allegedly for their support of Israel. Since all groups and individuals participating at these conferences agree to the same points of unity and solidarity with the same goal, it certainly applies to your organization as well. I am aware the three of you, or at least two, who wrote the letter may be of Jewish descent, however, this does not mitigate activities that are targeted against Jews. The Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto were rounded up by the Nazis by the Jewish Police and many Jews were turned in by fellow Jews known as “Jew catchers” by the Nazis for money. In addition, you state your campaign is “committed to organizing an anti-racist framework and working to counteract manifestations of racism in all forms.” This flies in the face of your chosen leaders willingness to work with Hamas as she has freely admitted to. We recommend you read the Hamas Charter. It specifies the annihilation of Jews in Israel and propagates the blood libel of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. If you were unaware, then would you please write us that you condemn Hamas as a terrorist organization that should be closed down and ask Ms. Arraf to resign as the “President” of your organization? In addition, I can find no condemnations of Jews in Israel being murdered via terrorism or suicide bombings on your website.
You state that your organization was not founded by Huwaida Arraf, but others in 2002. Can you produce for me corporate documents to that effect? Ms. Arraf herself announced the opening of your offices in Washington DC as well as your new website whereas your previous offices were in New York. Prior to your receiving nonprofit corporate status in 2006, were you ever a legal entity? Please send us proof of your incorporation as a legal entity in 2002. While you are at it, can you send me your foundation’s grants records and other sources of funding?
Your organization promotes divestments and boycotts of Jews in Israel through starving them out financially. These activities of yours and your ISM and associated anti-Israel allies result in 30% of Israel’s children and the elderly going to bed hungry at night or forced to eat in soup kitchens. This is indeed hatred of Jews and the same tactic of economic boycotts of Jews was the first tactic of the Nazis in 1933 that ultimately led to the Holocaust. The code talk you use is fairly obvious and we at The American Thinker do not fall for it.
If someone using the same technique were to say Black people cannot live in Washington, DC where your offices are, yet does say they can live anywhere else in the world, and that they should be boycotted and starved until they leave, it does not make them any less racist against Black people. The same applies to your organization’s alliances and support for a campaign to starve out, dispossess or even kill the Jews residing in Israel or in the disputed territories of the West Bank, while claiming you will embrace Jews who will help you dismantle the Jewish state.
One of your authorized representatives has openly spoken out for the destruction of Israel. Noura Erekat, who is listed on your website as an official “grassroots organizer”
and legal advisor (see: http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1307 )for your campaign sent another email out recently stating that all of Israel even within the 1948 armistice lines is “occupied” and should be dissolved and asks for volunteers to help her do so. See( http://www.stoptheism.com/?M=&T=200). Do you intend to force her resignation along with that of Ms. Arraf as a result these revelations? Mr. Erekat can also be viewed on You Tube at these addresses: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lw89UDZay4M&mode=related&search and
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtsbZ8LZ0m8 where she refuses to condemn a call by Bin Laden to kill Jews and is introduced as your campaign’s “legal advisor” (also listed as such on your website (see: http://www.endtheoccupation.org/article.php?id=1307 ).
At the same time you mention Al Awda as a “member organization” of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation. Al Awda advocates nothing less than the end of Israel. In addition, Al Awda was recently revealed to have connections to the Aryan Brotherhood,
an anti-Semitic, neo-Nazi organization by me that resulted in UC Riverside canceling their “international” conference there. Do you intend to demand their removal from your “non-racist” organization? (See: http://188.8.131.52/search?q=cache:VmdIG-pddAEJ:www.al-awda.org/alert-eoc.html+US+CAMpaign+to+end+the+ISraeli+occupation+%2B+AL+Awda&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=6&gl=us ).
We also note that your elected President, Ms. Arraf, has spoken on behalf of the Council for the National Interest that is openly known to be anti-Semitic and run by Paul Findley.
Your organization has also opposed congressional action to try and stop Palestinian terrorism: (see: http://www.endtheoccupation.org/modinput4.php?modin=92 ).
Your website was indeed registered to a Nadil Ghaith from the UAE at the same time Ms. Arraf announced the organization’s offices were opening in Washington DC in 2005. Originally registered at www.endtheoccupation.com , (see: http://www.omdurman.org/columns/NidalGhaith.doc ) your organization deleted that domain name on April 7, 2005, only days before creating the new domain name www.endtheoccupation.org with Radical Designs (see: http://www.expiresoft.com/domains/available/2007-04-07-288.htm ) Mr. Ghaith lists his residence in the UAE but has also turned up in Jerusalem. If your organization was originally involved with someone in the UAE who registered the domain name, and also represents the interests of the Palestinian Authority, then you definitely should be registered as foreign agents. I speculated in my article that Suleiman Ghaith, a top level al Qaeda operative, may belong to the same clan as Nadil Ghaith .
You deny that your organization undertakes strident attempts at promoting a boycott of American Jewish groups and to economically cripple Jewish businesses. Yet on your website you single out the Estee Lauder company, Ron Lauders’ business for a boycott among several other American Jewish-owned businesses. Your “member organizations” (your own description) also held a seminar at Duke University given by Mr. Abe Greenhouse outlining American Jewish businesses to be boycotted or even infiltrated as part of a campaign against Israel.
You state in your letter to us that you respect international law, yet do not condemn terrorism against Israelis. International law per Resolution 242 does not make the Jewish communities in the West Bank illegal, yet you recommend boycotting Jews and Jewish businesses in the US and abroad to force these Jews to lose their homes as somehow being necessary per international law. Eugene Rostow who helped author the resolution has stated the Israeli communities in the West Bank and Gaza are not illegal per his own resolution. We were wondering where you all earned your degrees in International Law and if you were aware of these discrepancies?
We note you take exception to our stated opinion that the activities of your organization only serve to make the Israeli/Palestinian dispute an unending affair. We note that in his official capacity as a leader in the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, Josh Ruebner is mentioned as being on the steering committee of Leslie Cagan’s United for Peace and Justice Coalition (see: http://www.unitedforpeace.org/article.php?id=1757 ). UFPJ is in fact the revamped Communist Party USA (see: http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/groupProfile.asp?grpid=6166 ) and Mr. Rubener seems to have had more than a passing association with over the last several years. The Communist Party USA platform is against the existence of Israel and its replacement by an Arab- dominated state called Palestine.
The above information, merely scratching the surface, reveals both the inaccuracies of your letter to me and facts that you do not seem to want the American people to know.
Finally, your website and organization falsely states that Israel is an “apartheid state” like South Africa used to be. Apartheid in South Africa was based on racial laws, Blacks were forced to live in certain areas and had fewer civil rights than Whites. This is not the case with Israel where all minorities have equal civil rights by law. Israeli Arabs enjoy the same civil rights as Jews and even have affirmative action programs giving them more rights than some Israeli Jews. At the same time, in the Palestinian Authority it is a death sentence to sell land to a Jew and Sharia Law is part of the constitution the same as in Saudi Arabia or Iran. While 20% of Israelis are Arabs with equal rights, the Palestinian Authority insists the West Bank and Gaza must be “Jew-free.” That is the only true apartheid going on in the Israeli-Palestinian dispute, and your organizations twisting of these facts only further reveal an attempt at deception among those whose opinions you seek to sway against Israel. We at American Thinker find your racist attitudes against Jews residing in the Middle East objectionable and reveal deception in your alleged anti-racist platform.
Given the above information, and the plethora of other information I have, I must reject your request for an apology and retraction. However, I would like to know since given the information I have provided you, if you intend to do any housecleaning in your own organization?