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Apr-04-2011 09:30printcomments

What Martin Luther King, Jr. Could Have Said to Netanyahu and US

MLK: Prime Minister, Bibi, baby, I have got to tell you that Israel’s publicity campaign aimed at stopping the International Freedom Flotilla set to sail this spring is dead before arrival.

Audacity of Hope
Courtesy: encyclopedia.com

(CLERMONT, Fla.) - Last Friday Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to put an end to an audaciously hopeful flotilla setting sail to the Gaza Strip this May.

Among the 15 boats that will sail to Gaza with people from over 22 countries is the American craft aptly named, The Audacity of Hope. Crew and supporters are calling for an end to the occupation of Gaza Palestine which has become more a siege on universal rights and a chronic dependency on humanitarian aid.

The Audacity of Hope could also be navigating in the same international waters off of Gaza where 44 years ago this June 6th the USS LIBERTY was attacked by Israel at the start of the Six Day War.

On 25 March 2011, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu told the UN Chief that “the flotilla is being organized by extreme Islamists that are interested only in provocation…the ship's key goal is to fuel tensions, particularly in light of the fact that the Gaza Strip is open to all types of goods brought in via land…”[1]

Because King read his Bible along with his newspaper, in this season of MLK reflections, I imagined that King could have had the following ‘conversation’ with Prime Minister Netanyahu, and so, I have taken the LIBERTY to interweave the news of today with quotes from King’s speeches:

MLK: Prime Minister, Bibi, baby, I have got to tell you that Israel’s publicity campaign aimed at stopping the International Freedom Flotilla set to sail this spring is dead before arrival. Look who you are calling terrorists now:


The Audacity of Hope: U.S. Boat to Gaza: New York City Fundraiser






B. D. S. (Jackson 5) Chicago Flashmob

Israel recently passed a law to punish Israelis who call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions on Israel until Israel ends the occupation.

Bibi, c’mon, these activists are also committed citizens of conscience and the Americans onboard The Audacity of Hope will strengthen the ties of civil society and human rights groups whose bottom line is justice for the coastal strip and that equates to nothing less than full freedom and universal rights.

Bibi’ c’mon, you have 1.5 million Palestinians and 800,000 of them are under the age of 16, packed in Gaza. The Arab Revolutions are being driven by the youth of the region and they will not sit back down or be pushed around anymore.

“Oppressed people cannot remain oppressed forever and if repressed emotions are not released in nonviolent ways, they will seek expression through violence; this is not a threat but a fact of history.”

 

So what; you took down the Facebook page, Third Palestinian Intifada, which called for another uprising on May 15th and was ‘Liked’ by more than 350,000 people before it was banned.

You cannot ban an idea and an idea whose time has come is more powerful than bullets and bombs.

So what; that the Israeli Defense Force has special units to ‘monitor’ foreign nationals opposed to its policies, including the flotilla. The flotilla illuminates the collective punishment of the Israeli blockade and siege upon the people of Gaza. The people of Gaza are neither Hamas or Fatah; they are mothers, fathers, children all enduring under brutal conditions that are aided and abetted by USA foreign policy and American’s tax dollars, and thus I cannot be silent in the face of another train wreck!

Let us recall that the First Intifada (1987 to 1993) began nonviolently but lead to a death toll of 2,162 Palestinians and 164 Israelis.

The Second Intifada (2000 to 2005) rang up a death toll of 5,513 Palestinians, 1,115 Israelis, and 64 foreigners.

The Third Palestinian Intifada called for 1 million supporters to unite after Friday prayers on May 15, 2011. So what; you banned them from Facebook. They all have cell phones and TWITTER and more powerful than bombs and bullets is a will wed to desire to be free and equal.

In 1967, I called the United States "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today." In 1967, I also wrote, “Peace for Israel means security, and we stand with all our might to protect its right to exist, its territorial integrity. I see Israel as one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy. Peace for Israel means security and that security must be a reality.” [2]

It was also in 1967, on the 6th of June, that out of a crew of 294, thirty-four Americans were killed, 171 wounded and all scarred for life because the USA Government failed to support those troops.

The LIBERTY will not-cannot fade quietly away and the flotilla will dredge up many memories. Such as the fact that a few years back, Lieutenant Colonel Shmuel Kislev, the chief air controller at general headquarters in Tel Aviv, confessed that he knew the U.S.S. LIBERTY was an American ship as soon as an Israeli pilot radioed in its hull numbers.

Two months before the sailor's mass burial at Arlington Cemetery, Navy analysis also uncovered that the Israeli torpedo boat gunners targeted the spy ship with 40-mm tracer rounds and they were MADE IN THE USA!

Did you know that in 1967, a voice of wisdom rose up in strife on the floor of The House, but he was shot down by cowardly silence.

Republican representative from Iowa, H.R. Gross asked, "Is this Government now, directly or indirectly, subsidizing Israel in the payment of full compensation for the lives that were destroyed, the suffering of the wounded, and the damage from this wanton attack? It can well be asked whether these Americans were the victims of bombs, machine gun bullets and torpedoes manufactured in the United States and dished out as military assistance under foreign aid." [3]

By November 1967, lawmakers were willing to spend six million USA tax dollars to build schools in Israel and during the debate, Representative Gross again spoke the voice of conscience and introduced an amendment that "not one dollar of U.S. credit or aid of any kind [should] go to Israel until there is a firm settlement with regard to the attack and full reparations have been made [and Israel] provides full and complete reparations for the killing and wounding of more than 100 United States citizens in the wanton, unprovoked attack…I wonder how you would feel if you were the father of one of the boys who was killed in that connection-or perhaps you do not have any feelings with respect to these young men who were killed, wounded and maimed, or their families." [IBID]

Gross’s idea is another whose time has come.

While I lived the FBI placed wiretaps on my home and office phones and bugged my hotel rooms. By 1967, I had become the country's most prominent opponent of the Vietnam War and a staunch critic of U.S. militaristic foreign policy that has aided and abetted Israel’s lust for land and control over the other.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, you are cognizant of the interrelatedness of all communities and states. Are you also aware you stand at the crossroads of Statesmanship or Status Quo Obscurity?

I cannot sit idly by and not be concerned about what happens in Israel Gaza Palestine, for I pay my taxes and they go to continue the occupation of an indigenous people and in good conscience I cannot do that. In good conscience I admit America has never been an honest broker for Peace with Justice in the so called holy land which is in pieces!

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Never again can we afford to live with the narrow, provincial ‘outside agitator’ idea. Anyone who lives in the world can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds. In any nonviolent campaign there are four basic steps: collection of the facts to determine whether injustices exist; negotiation” and I now add examining one's motives and acting on conscience with direct action.

“Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored I am not afraid of the word ‘tension.’ I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth.”

Too long has The Peace Process been bogged down in a tragic effort to live in monologue rather than dialogue.

“Lamentably, it is an historical fact that privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily. We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed. We must come to see that ‘justice too long delayed is justice denied.’

“There are two types of laws: just and unjust. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws. One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that ‘an unjust law is no law at all.’

“A just law is a man made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas: An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal law and natural law. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust.

“Segregation [Translates to Apartheid in Afrikaner] distorts the soul and damages the personality. It gives the segregator a false sense of superiority and the segregated a false sense of inferiority. Segregation, to use the terminology of the Jewish philosopher Martin Buber, substitutes an ‘I it’ relationship for an "I thou" relationship and ends up relegating persons to the status of things.

“Hence segregation; apartheid, conscription and military occupation is not only politically, economically and sociologically unsound; it is morally wrong and sinful. Paul Tillich has said that sin is separation. Is not segregation an existential expression of man's tragic separation, his awful estrangement, his terrible sinfulness?

“An unjust law is a code that a numerical or power majority group compels a minority group to obey but does not make binding on itself. This is difference made legal. By the same token, a just law is a code that a majority compels a minority to follow and that it is willing to follow itself. This is sameness made legal.

“One who breaks an unjust law must do so openly, lovingly, and with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law. Everything Adolf Hitler did in Germany was legal and it was illegal to aid and comfort a Jew in Hitler's Germany.”

So, Bibi, did you see Mordechai Vanunu’s comment regarding the law the Knesset passed last week to strip particular Israelis of citizenship?

 

Vanunu wrote, “Israel's parliament has passed a law that allows courts to revoke the citizenship of anyone convicted of spying, treason or aiding its enemies. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12897456 No loyalty no citizenship, Freedom Now! Now they can take my citizenship and send me totally free from Israel. Freedom Now!” [4]

On 28 March 1988, Mordechai Vanunu was convicted by an Israeli court for treason and espionage, and sentenced to 18 years in prison. Under your new law Vanunu should be the first deported back to Morocco.

On April 21st it will be 7 years that Vanunu has been denied his right to leave Israel. The longer Israel holds him the greater his legend will grow, and as Dylan sang, “you don’t need a weather man to see which way the wind blows.”

Bibi, the cover is blown on Israeli authorities who are intent on silencing dissent from within and without. Gandhi said; first they ignore you- then they laugh at you-then they fight you-then you win- but that takes time.

The good news is that the times have a’changed and nobody and no government can stop a train of values rooted in international law and human rights driven by the power of nonviolent people seeking universal rights and freedom for all.

LEARN MORE: http://ustogaza.org/

 

 

1. http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/netanyahu-to-un-chief-upcoming-gaza-flotilla-must-be-stopped-1.353536

2. A testament of hope: the essential writings and speeches of Martin Luther King [Jr.] Page 670.

3. http://www.wearewideawake.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1289&Itemid=220

4. http://www.youtube.com/user/vanunuvmjc

_________________________

Eileen Fleming is the Producer of "30 Minutes with Vanunu" and "13 Minutes with Vanunu" Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org, Eileen is a Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com, Author of "Keep Hope Alive" and "Memoirs of a Nice Irish American 'Girl's' Life in Occupied Territory" and the soon to be released "BEYOND NUCLEAR: Some of my Experiences of Mordechai Vanunu and the Holy Land: 2005-2010" youtube.com/user/eileenfleming. Eileen is a unique leader in her state and she intends to run for a Florida Congressional seat in the future, to help speed the process of change that is so demanded today. Like many who walk in similar steps, Eileen, like other writers at Salem-News.com, is an outspoken advocate for humanity and she has no tolerance for the oppressive forces of the world.

You can send Eileen Fleming an email at this address: ecumei@gmail.com




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Useful idiot April 5, 2011 6:27 pm (Pacific time)

Oh yeah, by the the way - The Palestinians invented airplane hijacking. They hijacked over 200 planes in the course of their terrorist career. They wrote the book on hijacking planes.

Editor: Right, Israel's occupation has driven people to do terrible things.   But don't act like you don't know why they did it.  Just this week Israel was killing civilians with their F-16', of course you gloss over that.

 Without the Pals, Al Qaeda never would have even dreamed of flying planes into buildings.

Editor: You are so disrespectful, if you write another comment and call Palestinian people Pals you are gone like the wind.  Same goes for anyone else, I won't read it, I won't comment over it and I won't publish it.  And thanks for revealing that you think a bunch of Arabs were behind 911, you really need to go back to square one, when the passports of 'terrorists' (many of whom are alive and well today and nowhere near the scene of the attacks) were conveniently fluttering down into the hands of the FBI within the opening act; less than an hour.  Man what a bunch of idiots they made Americans into.    


Useful idiot April 5, 2011 6:26 pm (Pacific time)

"Dude, you are connecting the PLO to al Queda.."

Dude, you know jack squat about the PLO or Israel or the Middle East. your manic obsession with liberty is baffling and still has nothing to do with the 40+ years Israel has aided the USA.

Editor: Aided the USA, by 'accepting' billions and billions in hard earned tax money from the working sweat of Americans, you mean that 'aid'? Yeah wasn't that nice of you Israelis.  Well, sorry we didn't drop down and praise you for accepting our money, aw gee.

Contributed more to our defense than all NATO allies combined? Who trains our FBI? Where do you think US soldiers went to before Iraq? UH?

 Editor: Wow, you, who makes light of the tragic death of dozens of U.S. servicemen aboard the USS Liberty that was attacked for hours by Israel, are an American?  I caught that 'we' in there, that really blows me away.  Do you suppose your disregard for dead Americans is a fairly good representation of other Zionist Americans?  I imagine the answer is yes.  I suspect you are the one who needs to move to Israel.  And by the way, I would love to live in Palestine and probably will someday.  

The USA sold 4x as many weapons to the Arabs than to Israel up until 1967.

"Truman" did not support Israel. the USA didn't care about Israel until Israel threatened Arab oil.

Editor: Without the support of  Truman Israel would not have happened.  Without Truman's support of the re-introduction of French colonialism of Vietnam, the two wars there would not have happened.  Had Roosevelt lived, Israel never would have become what it is.  Plus, let's be clear, the British were hands on directly responsible for Israel's existence, and then we must consider how the Israelis turned around and attacked the British.  Grateful lot eh?

Thousands of Israelis died because of pro-Arab US foreign policy.

Editor: Right, and that is sad although it is not the fault of the US, but thousands did die establishing Israel, that is true.

Israel is a relatively righteous state, resisting US imperialism and pan-Arab nationalism.

Editor: Sucking up US tax dollars while pillaging the people whose land they stole in the first place.

And all you whine about is LIBERTY? WHO CARES? Over 200 Americans murdered by Hezbollah, does that not bother you? Or Abigail little? Little child murdered by Palestinians? UH?  NO.

Editor: I was a US Marine when that happened to my brothers but go back and read what led up to it.

Please put your head in some cold water and move to Palestine. They need propagandists like yourself.

Editor: Like I said, maybe some day.


Useful idiot April 5, 2011 2:25 am (Pacific time)

Boom, bam, you are persuasive. Your words include zero facts and NO TRUTH. Ad-hom attacks don't negate the reality of US-Israel relations which is ironclad.

"Palestinians never lifted a solitary finger.."

As you dubiously deleted from my comment, I explained quite plainly the thousands of innocent people murdered by the PLO - the first terrorist organization btw that later spawned Al Qaeda - including American diplomats, in Sudan. And Robert F. Kennedy.

Editor: I did not delete any aspect of your comment, sometimes the system does that.  I am not saying I wouldn't but I'm saying that I didn't.

As far as liberty goes, as I said - this is something that happened in 1967, well before the US was an "ally" of Israel.

(Editor: You are making yourself cannon fodder, you are simply not correct as the U.S. was a solid player in the establishment of Israel back in the 40's.  Ever heard of Truman?)

 France was Israel's main ally, Kennedy had an embargo on weapons sales to Israel up until then.

Editor: Kennedy survived WWII, he knew the horrors of war, he tried to stave it off.

So yeah, I'm totally a paid shill - or I have access to the internet and 10 minutes of free time debunking your garbage.

Editor: Well you at least admit you are paid to do this, what you needed before embarking on this journey is an education. 

Yeah, not likely to see this comment posted. I take screenshots BTW, will distribute openly.

Dude, you are connecting the PLO to al Queda... which was created during the Afghan Soviet invasion to assist he Mujahadeen in their fight against the occupiers.  There is not a connection to the PLO and that is so widely known that I will let you discredit yourself and call this a day.  And when you screen shot us and in turn promote us, don't forget the 'dash' in Salem-News.com, cool?  


Useful idiot April 4, 2011 11:18 pm (Pacific time)

Enough with this nonsense. Israel is a solid US ally.

 Editor: Israel is a rogue illegal state headed by religious fanatics and it has been and continues to practice genocide. 

Gaza gets plenty of aid, too much in fact while millions starve in Africa and the Middle East.

Editor: You know absolutely nothing, you a hasbara agent of dishonesty or your IQ is close to zero, which is it?

If you love Palestinians so much PLEASE MOVE THERE! They have murdered countless americans, assassinated an American presidential candidate (google it BEOTCH) and sparked civil wars in two countries.

Editor: I have never heard of that in all this time and if so, does it equal for example, Israel's hours long attack on the USS Liberty?  My brother Americans were killed by Israeli fighters and boat that attacked and tried very hard to sink this US ship during the Six Day War in 1967.  Palestinians have never lifted a solitary finger toward Americans, you know you burn in hell for lying like this right?

 Do your research on the PLO.

Editor: The PLO is a non matter at this point, God bless them.

As far as liberty goes, get over it. The US was spying on Israel, Israel responded. It's history. 40 years ago.

Editor: Why don't you post your physical address here, I know a few Liberty survivors who would like you to say that to their face.  They hate fascists like but honestly, most of all, they are against people who casually dismiss the murder of Americans in uniform.  Send that address, and include the motel room number eh?.

Doesn't negate the decades of cooperation and mutual respect, unlike the racist and homicidal Pals who preach genocide and buddy up with Saddam Hussein and Hitler.

Editor: You really are a mental midget, simply a paid shill who can't speak a single word of truth.  You are  a joke and your blatherings are countered... BOOM!


john April 4, 2011 8:10 pm (Pacific time)

before imagining a conversation with king maybe you should read his views on zionism and israel. he was a strong supporter

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