The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)
Ways AIPAC Undermines Democracy at Home and in the Middle East
By Medea Benjamin
February 29, 2012 “Information Clearing House” —The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is one of the most powerful lobby organizations in the U.S. On March 4-6, AIPAC will be holding its annual policy conference in Washington DC. The speakers include Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, U.S. President Barack Obama, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, Republican candidate Newt Gingrich and a host of other powerful politicians.
AIPAC has tremendous clout but its influence has been disastrous for U.S. foreign policy and U.S. democracy. Here are reasons (edited for space) why AIPAC is so dangerous.
1. AIPAC is lobbying Congress to promote a military confrontation with Iran. AIPAC – like the Israeli government – is demanding that the U.S. attack Iran militarily to prevent Iran from having the technological capacity to produce nuclear weapons, even though U.S. officials say Iran isn’t trying to build a weapon (and even though Israel has hundreds of undeclared nuclear weapons). AIPAC has successfully lobbied the U.S. government to adopt crippling economic sanctions on Iran, including trying to cut off Iran’s oil exports, despite the fact that these sanctions raise the price of gas and threaten the U.S. economy.
2. AIPAC promotes Israeli policies that are in direct opposition to international law. These include the establishment of colonies (settlements) in the Occupied West Bank and the confiscation of Palestinian land in its construction of the 26-foot high concrete “separation barrier” running through the West Bank. The support of these illegal practices makes it impossible to achieve a solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict.
3. AIPAC’s call for unconditional support for the Israeli government threatens U.S. national security. The United States’ one-sided support of Israel, demanded by AIPAC, has significantly increased anti-American sentiment throughout the Middle East…
4. AIPAC attacks U.S. politicians who question unconditional support of Israel.
5. AIPAC attempts to silence all criticism of Israel by labeling critics as “anti-Semitic,” “de-legitimizers” or “self-hating Jews.”
6. AIPAC feeds U.S. government officials a distorted view of the Israel/Palestine conflict.
7. AIPAC lobbies for billions of U.S. tax dollars to go to Israel instead of rebuilding America.
8. Money to Israel takes funds from world’s poor. Israel has the 24th largest economy in the world, but thanks to AIPAC, it gets more U.S. tax dollars than any other country.
From stopping a catastrophic war with Iran to finally solving the Israel/Palestine conflict, an essential starting point is breaking AIPAC’s grip on U.S. policy. The complete article by Medea Benjamin — cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK:Women for Peace can be found at the link belowhttp://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article30680.htm
No More War! Peace Now!
1. Mourn all victims of violence. 2. Reject war as a solution. 3. Defend civil liberties. 4. Oppose all discrimination, anti-Islamic, anti-Semitic, etc.
5. Seek peace through justice in Hawai`i and around the world.
Contact: Malu `Aina Center for Non-violent Education & Action P.O. Box AB Kurtistown, Hawai`i 96760.
Phone (808) 966-7622. Email firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.malu-aina.org
Hilo Peace Vigil leaflet (March 2, 2012 – 545th week) – Friday 3:30-5PM downtown Post Office