Federal anti-discrimination law being used to shut down criticism of occupation

Israel/Palestine
on 56 Comments


More at The Real News

The Real News Network episode “Shutting Down Critique of Israel on Campus” interviews Michael Ratner, President Emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR). Ratner provides an overview of how Title 6 is used through the Department of Education to shut down critics of Israel and Zionism, then explains how Israel’s supporters have turned the situation “upside down” for Israel’s critics, suppressing free speech rights.

Alex Kane has been covering the escalation of events on California campuses, including the launch of CCR’s  Palestine Legal Support Project– so for regular readers of this site, there are no surprises here. But Ratner makes these complex legal issues simple. Just watch the video, remember to reference the Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and you too can explain this to anyone!

But of course as this thing has heated up and the critiques of Israel have gotten stronger ..and as obviously there’s been more support for criticizing Israel in the world and particularly in the United States…the so called Zionist lobby is breaking apart to a certain extent (there’s more diversity in it) as that’s increased. The Department of Education, which is where Title 6 complaints go to, expanded the definition that basically say that anti Semitism could be considered an attack on national origin in some way or on race.. they call it ethnicity. So they expanded it so complaints under Title 6 could be filed. And why they’re important– is that every educational institution that gets federal money is subject to Title 6. ….so complaints are taken seriously. Federal funding can be cut off if it’s found to be violating Title 6….. the complaints are essentially complaints that are critical of Zionism.

Ratner then explains how the investigations are intimidating, universities get frightened and suppress free speech because they are afraid of the complaints.

There’s a climate of, hostility is created for students who want to speak out on Israel at these campuses; they’re criticized by their professors, they’re yelled at and given names, their speech is suppressed.  What’s really happened here if you look at the political, the legal and the climate that’s created is, the people who don’t want to hear any criticism of Israel or its practices have actually done the exact reverse of what’s really going on.

What’s really going on here is people who speak out on Israel, people who oppose the occupation, people who support BDS, boycott divestment and sanctions, the people who talk about the Zionist lobby in the US as being powerful, those people’s speech are being suppressed. The people who are speaking in favor [of Israel] without any criticism– that’s the speech that’s allowed, that’s the speech that’s printed. And so they basically turned this upside down. The reason that we at the Center founded this project,  The Palestine Legal Support Project, [is] because we think that free speech particularly around contentious issues like Israel and Palestine is an absolute necessity in this country.

At 12:30 the host talks about criticism of Israel and some of the “very anti Semitic racist comments” they get on Real New’s YouTube site. Ratner responds with a wonderful point: solid criticism of Israel isn’t anti Semitic, it’s critique; and just because there are racist  people out there doesn’t mean you suppress speech altogether.

Zionists have really equated criticism of Israel with anti Semitism and that’s just not right, it’s not fair and really suppressing and important conversation that has to happen.

This is a great little video. Thanks to Real News.

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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56 Responses

  1. DICKERSON3870
    March 31, 2013, 1:17 pm

    RE: Ratner provides an overview of how Title 6 is used through the Department of Education to shut down critics of Israel and Zionism, then explains how Israel’s supporters have turned the situation ‘upside down’ for Israel’s critics, suppressing free speech rights.” ~ Annie Robbins

    MY COMMENT: This suppression of free speech rights by Israel’s Likudnik supporters in the U.S. is yet another reason I fear that Revisionist Zionism and Likudnik Israel (specifically by virtue of their inordinate sway over the U.S.) might very well be an “existential threat” to the values of The Enlightenment [like "the right of free speech"] ! ! !
    “Down, down, down we [the U.S.] go into the deep, dark abyss; hand in hand with Israel.”

    OTHER EXAMPLES OF ISRAEL’S VALUES TRUMPING (OVERRIDING) THE VALUES OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT HERE IN THE U.S.
    “How We Became Israel”, By Andrew J. Bacevich, The American Conservative, 9/10/12
    LINK – link to theamericanconservative.com
    “America Adopts the Israel Paradigm”, by Philip Ghiraldi, Antiwar.com, 7/05/12
    LINK – link to original.antiwar.com
    “Report: Israeli model underlies militarization of U.S. police”, By Muriel Kane, Raw Story, 12/04/11
    LINK – link to rawstory.com
    From Occupation to “Occupy”: The Israelification of American Domestic Security, By Max Blumenthal, Al-akhbar, 12/02/11
    LINK – link to english.al-akhbar.com OR link to informationclearinghouse.info
    “The Second Battle of Gaza: Israel’s Undermining Of International Law”, by Jeff Halper, mrzine.monthlyreview.org, 02/26/10
    LINK – link to mrzine.monthlyreview.org
    “The Trial of Israel’s Campus Critics”, by David Theo Goldberg & Saree Makdisi, Tikkun Magazine, September/October 2009
    LINK – link to tikkun.org
    “Brooklyn College’s academic freedom increasingly threatened over Israel event”, by Glenn Greenwald, guardian.co.uk, 2/02/13
    LINK – link to guardian.co.uk
    “Peter ‘Powder Keg’ Beinart is disinvited from gig at Atlanta Jewish book festival”, by Annie Robbins, Mondoweiss, 11/05/12
    LINK – link to mondoweiss.net
    ‘Israelis are helping write US laws, fund US campaigns, craft US war policy’, by Philip Weiss, Mondoweiss, 6/30/12
    LINK – link to mondoweiss.net
    “David Yerushalmi, Islam-Hating White Supremacist Inspires Anti-Sharia Bills Sweeping Tea Party Nation”, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 3/02/11
    LINK – link to richardsilverstein.com
    “Boston airport security program rife with racial profiling has Israeli links”, by Alex Kane, Mondoweiss, 8/14/12
    LINK – link to mondoweiss.net
    “Obama’s kill list policy compels US support for Israeli attacks on Gaza”, By Glenn Greenwald, guardian.co.uk, 11/15/12
    LINK – link to guardian.co.uk

    P.S. AND HERE’S ANOTHER THREAT TO THE VALUES OF “THE ENLIGHTENMENT” (THIS TIME IN AFRICA):
    “US Religious Right Propelling Homophobia in African Countries”
    , by Common Dreams, 7/24/12
    LINK – link to commondreams.org

    • DICKERSON3870
      March 31, 2013, 1:22 pm

      P.P.S. ALSO SEE: “The Trial of Israel’s Campus Critics”, by David Theo Goldberg & Saree Makdisi, Tikkun Magazine, September/October 2009

      [EXCERPT] . . . It is an extraordinary fact that no fewer than thirty-three distinct organizations – including AIPAC, the Zionist Organization of America, the American Jewish Congress, and the Jewish National Fund – are gathered together today as members or affiliates of the Israel on Campus Coalition. The coalition is an overwhelmingly powerful presence on American college campuses for which there is simply no equivalent on the Palestinian or Arab side. Its self-proclaimed mission is not merely to monitor our colleges and universities. That, after all, is the commitment of Campus Watch, which was started by pro-Israel activists in 2002. It is, rather (and in its own words), to generate “a pro-active, pro-Israel agenda on campus.”
      There is, accordingly, disproportionate and unbalanced intervention on campuses across the country by a coalition of well-funded organizations, who have no time for — and even less interest in — the niceties of intellectual exchange and academic process. Insinuation, accusation, and defamation have become the weapons of first resort to respond to argument and criticism directed at Israeli policies. As far as these outside pressure groups (and their campus representatives) are concerned, the intellectual and academic price that the scholarly community pays as a result of this kind of intervention amounts to little more than collateral damage. . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE – link to tikkun.org

    • DICKERSON3870
      March 31, 2013, 1:34 pm

      RE: “Ratner provides an overview of how Title 6 is used through the Department of Education to shut down critics of Israel and Zionism, then explains how Israel’s supporters have turned the situation ‘upside down’ for Israel’s critics, suppressing free speech rights.” ~ Annie Robbins

      MY SNARK: So, who ya gonna call? No, not Ghostbusters™. Call that “avid supporter of free speech”, Ambassador Michael Oren! He is so proud of Israel’s “democratic values”!

      SEE: “Israel’s US envoy: ‘Gatekeepers’ hindering PR efforts”, By Yitzhak Benhorin, Ynet News, 3/17/13
      Although he is an avid supporter of free speech, advancement of local film industry, Ambassador Michael Oren believes documentary in which Shin Bet officials slam Israel’s West Bank policy hurting country’s international image

      [EXCERPTS] WASHINGTON – Standing at the forefront of Israeli PR, Israeli Ambassador to the US Michael Oren has felt in recent weeks that he is being undermined from within.
      “The Gatekeepers” – former Shin Bet heads who were interviewed for an Oscar-nominated documentary – are the ones Oren believes are hindering the efforts made by Israel, which is “already in a war of sorts.”
      Oren contemplated for a long time whether or not to make this claim publicly for fear that it will relay a message that he is trying to silence freedom of speech and democratic values of which he is so proud and the amazing cinematic advancement Israel has seen.
      In his youth, the ambassador was an assistant to Orson Welles, so he appreciates a good film. However, Oren disclosed his thoughts on the subject to Ynet, and not just so that former officials would think twice before giving interviews such as those given by the six former Shin Bet directors.
      Appointed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – who himself said he does not intend to watch “The Gatekeepers,” Oren is first and foremost an historian. . .

      ENTIRE ARTICLE – link to ynetnews.com

      ● P.S. YET SOME MORE GOOD TOE TAPPIN’ MUSIC:
      “Tippy’s Demise”, by Stars Of The Lid on the CD ‘And Their Refinement Of The Decline’ (2007) [VIDEO, 08:21] – link to youtube.com

    • susan1
      March 31, 2013, 2:39 pm

      Once again , THE POT CALLING THE KETTLE BLACK . From Annie R and M.W. The usual demand for free speech for anti -Israel people , the usual denial of the right of free speech for those that are pro- Israel, or at least people who can see both sides of the argument ( in other words most folks ,who know there is always a counterargument to be made , two sides to every story ) a set of people the anti- Israel bandwagon jumpers would like to deprive free speech, plus the usual screeching complaints from anti Israel bandwagoners who feel deprived of THEIR free speech.

      • MK_Ultra
        March 31, 2013, 3:03 pm

        Sheeeeeeeeeee’s baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!

        Susie, do y’all every realize that the Hasbara techniques you use (i.e. use of hostile semantics to label all those you don’t approve) is hardly a creation of your Hasbara machine but, rather, one used by the worst and biggest despots on the face of the planet (from the Nazis to the totalitarians Communists)? What do you think that says about y’all that you have to resort to Fascist techniques in order to quash descent? Do you feel proud about it or do you think that no one will notice?

      • Cliff
        March 31, 2013, 3:17 pm

        False dichotomy.

        You support colonialism and religious fanaticism.

        We do not support either. We support equal rights and an end to war, war crimes, apartheid and discrimination.

        You want to perpetuate it so you gain more land for Jewish colonialism.

        In America, Israel Lobby groups attempt to stifle and censor their political opponents.

        Their efforts are concentrated on changing the goal posts in the debate so that all criticism of Israel is defined as antisemitic.

        In short, you and your cult are trying to redefine the criticism itself rather than counter it.

        Your attempt to redefine the criticism is underhanded, cynical and a threat to democracy.

        Israeli anti-democratic values are polluting our country.

      • Avi_G.
        March 31, 2013, 3:40 pm

        or at least people who can see both sides of the argument ( in other words most folks ,who know there is always a counterargument to be made , two sides to every story

        Yes. There is always a counter argument to be made for Ethnic Cleansing, for massacres like Sabra and Shatila or for the rounding up of 29 Samouni family members in Gaza in 2009 and then leveling the building to the ground.

        Those “counter arguments” are usually the creation of a sick, demented, criminal, fascistic, tribalist mind.

        If you want a platform to spread that manure, there are a thousand and one outlets that cater to your taste, including but not limited to NPR, the Associated Press, Reuters, BBC, CNN, etc.

        Does anyone know a good “counter argument” for the slaughter of Jews in Nazi Germany? I’d sure like to hear it.

        susan, this isn’t meant as a personal insult, but out of concern for your own health and well-being, have you considered consulting a psychiatrist about your state of mind?

      • Ecru
        March 31, 2013, 5:19 pm

        Oh give it a rest your bleating is pathetic. Yes we’re ALL denying your free speech – that’s why your comment’s just been posted, that’s why in the entire article there wasn’t ONE mention of denying Pro-Israel, Pro-Ethnosuperiority, Pro-Bigotry agitators their rights to just continue spewing out the lies. You know the ones – like the one you just made about denying rights of free speech.

        We’ve all seen the pro-Israel crowd definition of “free speech” and we’ve been seeing it for decades – “let us say whatever hateful bigoted nonsense and lies we like while we do our best to shut up any and all opposing voices with false accusations, destruction of careers and economic blackmail. And if they don’t work we’ll drag out the victims of the holocaust for another encore

        Gods you lot are noxious.

      • Shingo
        March 31, 2013, 5:47 pm

        in other words most folks ,who know there is always a counterargument to be made , two sides to every story

        The usual Hasbara crap. This is false argument that that truth is to be found by taking both sides of the debate and dividing it by half. The fact is that until recently, the debate has been entirely one sided – pro Israel – and now that the other side has a voice, pro Israeli shills are indignant.

        The fact that Susan1 completely ignores is that this legislation is intended ti completely shut down criticism of Israel.

        So no, it’s not pot calling kettle black, it’s calling a spas a spade.

      • Bumblebye
        March 31, 2013, 5:48 pm

        @susan1
        “THE POT CALLING THE KETTLE BLACK . From Annie R and M.W.”

        Straighten up your undies, dear, you won’t be comfy if they’re in a twist.
        If you actually read the article, and listen to the Professor, you *may* understand that it’s about the misuse of the law by pro-Israel people to shut down the right of free speech and any debate about the wrongs that Israel itself is committing.

      • German Lefty
        March 31, 2013, 5:57 pm

        people who can see both sides of the argument (in other words most folks ,who know there is always a counterargument to be made , two sides to every story)

        Okay, if you think that we should always consider both sides, then tell me about the “second side” of the Holocaust.

      • Sumud
        March 31, 2013, 6:17 pm

        What proof can you offer that zionist’s free speech is being denied? What proof can you offer that people opposed to Israeli apartheid are seeking to deny zionists free speech? None, I’ll bet.

        Personally, I want more zionists speaking out more often. Invariably they make a more convincing case for anti-zionism than I ever can, just by opening their jewish supremacist mouths and spouting their racist crap and flimsy hasbara.

      • MLE
        March 31, 2013, 6:47 pm

        How is their a denial of free speech for pro Israel people? Nobody is saying you can’t speak, just that we have a right to counter any of your mistruths. Nobody is banning Hillel or standwithus from campus.

      • justicewillprevail
        March 31, 2013, 7:08 pm

        I don’t think you have understood the article at all, have you? You just flipped the switch, and pow! another litany of hysterical scattergun ranting.

      • Hostage
        March 31, 2013, 9:13 pm

        Susan1, the University of California has Judaic Studies Programs which are supposedly dedicated to researching and teaching all facets of Jewish culture and history, not just Zionism.

        The Midrash regarding The Three Oaths has been part of Jewish ethnic culture for a much longer period of time than the State of Israel or Political Zionism. It’s risible for Jews to attempt to claim that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitic, when it’s an integral part of their own ethnic culture. The question arises as to whether anti-Zionism can even be addressed under Title VI and to what extent.

        • susan1
          March 31, 2013, 9:26 pm

          Hostage, where exactly in my comment do I refer to anti – Semitism? where is the quote you can supply from my comment were I mention anti -Semitism?

        • Hostage
          March 31, 2013, 10:27 pm

          Hostage, where exactly in my comment do I refer to anti – Semitism?

          That’s the subject of the article we are discussing, i.e. “Federal hate speech regs are being used to shut down criticism of occupation.”

          See Kenneth L. Marcus, “Anti-Zionism as Racism: Campus Anti-Semitism and the Civil Rights Act of 1964″ William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal, Volume 15, Issue 3, Article 4 link to scholarship.law.wm.edu

          Even that author, who adopted these policies, admits that they cannot be applied to cases involving religious beliefs. Quite obviously no one can be compelled to accept the proposition that Jews have a legally protected or metaphysical right to exercise sovereignty over the Christian and Muslim inhabitants of the region of Palestine. The same thing applies to Jews who reject Zionism on religious grounds.

          Marcus goes so far as to claim that Title VI doesn’t even prohibit religiously inspired anti-Semitism:

          Until late 2004, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) largely avoided anti-Semitism cases based on two concerns, both of which have strong intuitive appeal. First, Jews are not considered to constitute a distinct “race” as that term is used in contemporary social science or in common public usage. Second, Congress elected not to prohibit religious discrimination in Title VI, and anti-Semitism is, among other things, a form of religious discrimination. Until 2004, OCR did not recognize that Jews also form an ethnic or ancestral group and that the scope of legislatively prohibited “racial” discrimination may not be limited by either social scientific or colloquial use of that term. In late 2004, OCR finally determined that Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits anti-Semitic harassment at federally funded public and private universities, except to the extent that the harassment is exclusively based on tenets of the student’s religious faith. In other words, OCR policy now treats anti-Semitic harassment as prohibited racial or ethnic harassment except when it is clearly limited to religious belief rather than ancestral heritage.

          So it’s doubtful that you could even use these regulations to combat the religious anti-Semitism of the so-called Christian Identity Movement, like the Aryan Nations. It’s ludicrous then to use them to try and silence groups who base their agenda on Jewish cultural and religious values, like Jewish Voice for Peace.

          Marcus also noted that the OCR regulations cannot be used to suppress legitimate political speech regarding foreign policy or criticisms of the practices and policies of the State of Israel – although he buried those particular details in the footnotes.

        • Sumud
          April 1, 2013, 12:20 am

          Once again susan1:

          What proof can you offer that zionist’s free speech is being denied? What proof can you offer that people opposed to Israeli apartheid are seeking to deny zionists free speech? None, I’ll bet.

          Your failure to respond so far makes me think you are simply trolling.

        • justicewillprevail
          April 1, 2013, 5:14 am

          So you haven’t got any answers to the points made to you, other than fail to understand one of them?

      • kma
        March 31, 2013, 10:19 pm

        glad that susan1 feels intimated by the free speech of others. and yes, there are two sides. whenever an uninformed American says to me, “I thought the settlers were the Palestinians”, I LOVE giving them the “other side”. it’s one of my favorite sports, and I’m not intimidated by my government or susan1′s – even on campus!

      • talknic
        April 1, 2013, 1:49 am

        @ susan1 ” those that are pro- Israel, or at least people who can see both sides of the argument ( in other words most folks ,who know there is always a counterargument to be made , two sides to every story )”

        A) It isn’t “most folks”. It is in fact a tiny, very vocal, minority.

        B) When one side of the story never quite adds up, it’s propaganda.

        For example: In the declaration of the Establishment of the state of Israel it says:

        WE APPEAL – in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months – to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions.

        Are we to believe the Jewish People’s Council were un-aware of Plan Dalet launched weeks earlier? Of Arab homes, farms, entire villages being cleansed of “the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel ” in and outside of territory slated for the Jewish State?

        Are we to believe that had “the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel ” NOT fled the violence they would not have been a demographic threat to Israel yet, were they to return some weeks later they would be a demographic threat?

        When one side of the story is proven to be false, but is never retracted, it’s propaganda. Tthose who keep propagating it after they’ve been shown irrefutable evidence, are propagandists

        When one side of the story is proven to be blatant lies, it’s propaganda.

        When one side of the story purposefully omits and/or distorts the most important elements, it’s propaganda.

        When one side of the story keeps attempting to justify Israel usurping people in non-Israeli territory with reasons that are completely irrelevant to the Internationally recognized legal status of Israel’s sovereign extent and what Israel has been doing outside of Israel’s sovereign extent, it’s propaganda.

      • Blake
        April 1, 2013, 8:28 am

        susan1 said the usual denial of the right of free speech for those that are pro- Israel

        If you read that from a very easy to understand explanation from Mark Ratner then you are turning the truth on it’s head or upside down which ironically which is also a point Mark Ratner makes in the video.

        Palestinians, real semites, are not even playing the semite card and never have. They are not twisting laws or statutes for their cause.

        Irrationality is a way of life amongst the zionist cult.

    • Don
      March 31, 2013, 5:31 pm

      Fear not, Dickerson!

      Brett Stephens, fearless defender of Western values, is riding to the rescue…
      link to speakersaction.com

  2. Krauss
    March 31, 2013, 1:25 pm

    Speaking about student activism on campus…

    link to haaretz.com

    “One of Canada’s largest student associations endorses BDS against apartheid”.

    • MK_Ultra
      March 31, 2013, 2:55 pm

      And if you want to see unleashed, unabashed racism, hatred and vitriol, visit the same article at the JTA and read the comments. Still, they can’t understand why they’re not liked. And hint: it ain’t the gentiles pouring the hatred and racism on as thick as syrup. Wonder if the Internet police would consider shutting down the site due to hate speech.

      link to timesofisrael.com

  3. Citizen
    March 31, 2013, 1:26 pm

    It’s time Dick and Jane got a new children’s book in their hand. The manipulative Zionists, coupled with the best intentions of the 98% non-jewish population of America, need a new Good Night Moon. Let’s quit the Jesuitical notion, so true, regarding children, the same one Bernays, and his student Goebbels, turned into an equal medication for adults. No more Zioncaine injected at bed side!

  4. Nevada Ned
    March 31, 2013, 2:47 pm

    Thanks to Mike Ratner and the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) for this eye-opening piece.

    Ratner and the CCR have long been a champion of the poor and oppressed. But Ratner himself ignored the Palestinian issue for a long time. Finally, Israel’s 2008/2009 assault on the refugees of Gaza was just too much, as Ratner himself explained on his Chelsea Green blog.

  5. MK_Ultra
    March 31, 2013, 2:50 pm

    Aaaaaah…I ain’t worried. My fellow Americans are very patriotic and have lots of guns which they will not hesitate to use to defend their Constitutional rights. As soon as they realize that this is happening, they will take up arms and march straight into the occupied territory of DC and demand a stop be put to this infringement and that the Republic be restored.

    • MK_Ultra
      March 31, 2013, 3:11 pm

      Here are a few examples of the love gems expressed by the Semitic readership:

      People really need to start waking up to this stuff. It isn’t about Israel, it’s about making Canada adopt a more Islamic culture; full of anti-blasphemy laws, lynchings, ‘honour’ killings, and of course, anti-Semitism.

      Regardless of motivation, it needs to be stringently opposed by all freedom-loving peoples, not just Jews. ~ Israel, Politics, & The World

      Canada is the ONLY country 100 per cent behind Israel.These snot nosed punks are fascisti in mufti and York University is the rectum of ALL Canadian Universities.Completely infiltrated by Islamo-Nazis.When the whip comes down we’ll be there.The USSA won’t but the real protector of Freedom will. – Gordon Campbell

      what a bunch of racists. ~ Nikita Derugin

      Let them rot in hell. They are hypocrites, because they would never say no to computers, cellphones, ICQ or many gadgets, that Jews invented. Looks like Muslims trying to oppress Jews and Israel around the world. And they called Israel apartheid? If Israel is apartheid, they are Nazis. Somehow they didn’t boycott Syria, which killed more people, than Israel killed in all the Arabs-Israel wars together. I hope Jews can do their own boycott and cross this University, from the list, where they would want to study. I don’t know why Jews want to go to this racists anti-Semitic Universitys. Let them take just Muslims, and see how much they would pay. I would also propose all Jewish companies to boycott any University or Collage, which is racist and anti-Semitic. Why give their own money to this people, who disrespect you and want you to die? ~ Rina Gray

      Now, try to say anything like that about them and watch what happens.

  6. susan1
    March 31, 2013, 2:54 pm

    Whining about Israel ” gagging everyone who dares criticize it” whilst supporting Boycott, Sanction Divestment , a bandwagon cause which is underpinned by DENYING free speech and free association, is THE contradiction. What is your EVIDENCE that Israel is harming Europeans, Americans ? What a ridiculous hysterical statement. I am European ( Scots British , European ) and Israel is doing me no harm whatsoever ! You are so prone to hyperbole! Apparently , you don’t consider Israel’s brutal military occupation is bad enough, you have to make a ridiculous claim that Israel is harming people on whose lives Israel does not impinge on at all. How illogical. How silly.

    • RoHa
      April 1, 2013, 12:15 am

      Israel harmed Australians by misusing Australian passports. It increases the risk of Australian travellers being suspected of being Mossad assassins.

      • kalithea
        April 1, 2013, 4:39 pm

        And it used British and French passports too!

      • lysias
        April 1, 2013, 5:29 pm

        And they also misused Irish, Canadian, British, and New Zealand passports. As well as impersonating American CIA officials.

    • pjdude
      April 1, 2013, 1:59 am

      where has BDS ever attacked freedom of speech or freedom of association. your lying is just another strike against zionism. this kind of behavior is pathological in your movement.

      and what evidence that ISrael is a threat well the US spook comunity views Israel as the number one national security threat in the middle east.

    • Taxi
      April 1, 2013, 3:31 am

      ‘And heroine isn’t harming me or anyone else in Scotland!’, said the junkie to the mirror.

    • justicewillprevail
      April 1, 2013, 5:12 am

      Hyperbole? Pot, kettle, black. lol. Any chance of a coherent statement, as opposed to a block capital rant and rave. You are incapable of understanding any of the arguments here, apparently. Are you a bot, which randomly spews forth hasbrat memes?

    • kalithea
      April 1, 2013, 4:44 pm

      Americans are harmed by Israel in many ways. They’re forced to pay billions in taxes to fund Israel; they get blowback from American government support for Israel’s policies; the Lobby bullies anyone in Congress who doesn’t support Israel ignoring the fact that the representative is an officially elected voice for the people, Israeli spies have done harm to American interests; Israelis killed and murdered Americans: USS Liberty, Rachel Corrie, Furkan Dorgan and maimed other American activists smashing tear gas canisters into their heads and ON AND ON…

      • susan1
        April 2, 2013, 12:44 am

        So then, its all about your self interest as an American? Oh poor you.

    • libra
      April 1, 2013, 6:40 pm

      susan1: I am European ( Scots British , European ) and Israel is doing me no harm whatsoever !

      Maybe so, but one squirt from a SodaStream will ruin a good Scotch.

  7. Blank State
    March 31, 2013, 3:24 pm

    What opens the door to this kind of legislation?

    Simple. The irrelevent and diversionary debate about judaic history, the holocaust, historical claims to the land, “jewishness” being ethnic or religious, what it means to be a “jew”, etc..

    If we would confine our disdain and debate to the policies and actions of ISRAEL, the timeworn fallacy of our “anti-semitism” could not be used as a club to beat us into submission. Instead, daily, I see those such as Hophmi suck so many of you into a debate that can only be described as a diversion, a path through which he can employ the accusation of anti-semitism. You are being played like fiddles, just as our politicians are, led down a path that enables this kind of legislationary tactics as described above. I am sick to death of hearing the term “jew” used everytime we argue the latest Israeli atrocity. It becomes a debate about the jews, and the actual atrocity becomes lost in the philosophical or historical context of the debate.

    Fact is, Israel’s actions and policies would be despicable no matter the ethnicity or religion of the perpetrator. George Bush, Adolph Hitler, Idi Amin, Benjamin Netanyahu, or Barack Obama. It matters not their ethnicity or faith, it is thier ACTIONS that define them, and they all deserve to be standing on the same gallows.

  8. judithbell
    March 31, 2013, 7:44 pm

    I would leave a full reply but I am usually censored on this site. I have to say though this is very funny. Oh well, poor M.W. Annie Robbins et al. Maybe one day they will be able to take over and put people like you and me in some sort of reeducation camp. They can only dream.

    • Cliff
      March 31, 2013, 9:01 pm

    • Taxi
      April 1, 2013, 3:35 am

      There’s money to be made in a chain of ziodetox clinics, that’s for damn sure!

    • susan1
      April 1, 2013, 4:58 pm

      Judith, you must try posting more often.Your comments are good. ( – ” I would leave a full reply but I am usually censored on this site. I have to say though this is very funny. Oh well, poor M.W. Annie Robbins et al. Maybe one day they will be able to take over and put people like you and me in some sort of reeducation camp. They can only dream.”-
      )

  9. dbroncos
    March 31, 2013, 7:49 pm

    Ratner clearly illustrates the need for more student solidarity action. University presidents, sheriffs, governors and any and all arms of the law that crack down on Palestine activists on behalf of their Zionist paymasters will only bring the Palestinian struggle into sharp focus for the greater American population. At stake is not only the cause of justice in I/P but also free speech rights here in the US which priviledged, antvantage seeking Zionists want to change in support of their sympathies for Israeli fascism. Even those Americans who aren’t impressed with Palestinians or their cause
    will see the abrogation of free speech rights as a bridge too far. These cases can’t be brought to court fast enough. I’d relish the spectacle of Alan Dershowitz standing before the Supreme Court, and the American people, explaining how criticism of a foreign, demonstrably fascist country amounts to anti-semetism. Bring it on, Zionists!

  10. MRW
    March 31, 2013, 9:17 pm

    Excellent video. Michael Ratner is dead on.

  11. Basilio
    March 31, 2013, 11:08 pm

    Trying to suppress freedom of speech won’t work. That kind of thing backfires. Not allowing people their right to speak is unacceptable. What’s this country coming to?

  12. IL1948
    March 31, 2013, 11:48 pm

    Such hypocrisy… Compare this article to the collective applause given to the UC Berkeley condemnation of speech critical of Muslims.

    link to mondoweiss.net

    • Sumud
      April 1, 2013, 12:18 am

      Such hypocrisy… Compare this article to the collective applause given to the UC Berkeley condemnation of speech critical of Muslims.

      There is no comparison.

      One case involves hate speech – islamophobia in this case. The other involves zionists making FALSE accusations of anti-semitism to prevent debate over Israel’s crimes.

    • talknic
      April 1, 2013, 1:53 am

      IL1948 “Such hypocrisy..”

      Please explain why knowing right from wrong is hypocrisy.

    • Cliff
      April 1, 2013, 5:32 am

      Not ‘critical’ of Muslims.

      More like lumping all Muslims together, spying on Muslim Americans by undercover FBI, perpetuating stereotypes of Muslims in movies by writing the same bullshit 1980s Reagan era action flicks, perpetuating lies about the Iraq war while never addressing the Iraq sanctions.

      Etc. etc.

      There is no comparison, as usual, between antisemitism – which is cookie cutter memes like ‘Jews control the world’ – and the pervasive and common and matter of fact Islamophobia – ‘Muslim terrorist cells homegrown in Merica’ .

      If not for the moderation, ILNESS48, I am positive your views about Muslims would be vile.

      You are the type to randomly cite some passage from the Quran and say, ‘see the Koran is violent’ as ‘proof’ that ‘the Muslims’ are uniquely aggressive. Like inherently so. It’s in their DNA!

      It’s the same as the Zionist meme that Palestinians worship death

  13. Taxi
    April 1, 2013, 4:54 am

    “Pope Francis on Maundy Thursday declined to address enormous crowds. Instead he went to a prison to emulate Jesus’s act of humility before his crucifixion in washing the feet of his 12 disciples. The pope washed and kissed the feet of 12 inmates, two of them women and two of them Muslim (one of the women was Muslim). It is reported that some of the prisoners broke down in tears.” CNN report.

    “So when will we see Rudy Giuliani, Sean Hannity and the others go to a prison to comfort inmates, and serve the Muslims among them? When will we see them kiss a Muslim’s feet? Or are they cafeteria Catholics, parading only the values that accord with their Ayn Rand heresy?” Juan Cole.
    Dear Rightwing Catholic Islamophobes:
    link to readersupportednews.org

    • kalithea
      April 1, 2013, 5:01 pm

      I’m hoping next year Pope Francis visits the oppressed Palestinians in the refugee camps, but the sight of the Pope at the feet of Palestinians is liable to induce Zionists to fits of hysteria and convulsions complete with exploding heads. So I know that should he do so, Zionists will run to a well-known family-tree ancestry search site and find some way to link him to the Holocaust through guilt-by-lineage. It’ll go something like this: his parents were Italian and his parents’ parents were friends of individuals who were later in with Mussolini and the latter was in with the German guy…and no doubt they’ll find a way to tear him down no matter how low they have to dig. Maybe they’ll strike oil with all the digging, but my bet is they’ll dig straight into hell first.

      • Taxi
        April 3, 2013, 1:32 am

        Yeah Kalithea, I’d love to see ANY catholic wash the feet of ANY downtrodden – without wearing sanitary gloves.

  14. Ellen
    April 1, 2013, 5:00 am

    Makes the US look exactly like Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood Egypt:

    link to touch.latimes.com

  15. kalithea
    April 1, 2013, 5:13 pm

    It’s the Occupation, stu…. No, it’s worse; it’s the progressive morphing of America towards Israelification/Zionisation.

    But have faith; we shall overcome – this too.

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