Category Archives:
US Politics

Many Clinton Foundation donors oppose BDS– and so does Clinton

Philip Weiss on
Saban and Clinton, on an earlier occasion

Hillary Clinton has become a zealot against BDS in the last year, evidently in part because many large donors to the Clinton Foundation oppose BDS. These supporters suggest the new lineaments of the Israel lobby under Clinton, in which liberal Zionists and rightwing Zionists are merged.

Progressive foreign policy missing from revised Sanders revolution

Wilson Dizard on
Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders on Wednesday delivered a speech from Burlington, Vermont to his die-hard fans nationwide, calling on them to continue to support progressive politicians to achieve goals like campaign finance reform, universal healthcare and fixing an unfair criminal justice through the new Sanders-backed non-profit, Our Revolution. Absent from his address was any mention of Israel/Palestine or American foreign policy in the Middle East. “I think it shows a lack of courage,” said Robert Akleh, co-founder of Arabs for Bernie, a Brooklyn-based grassroots group.

ADL took US cops to Israeli prison, occupied Hebron and settler winery during counter-terror seminar

Alex Kane on
Police in Orlando

The Anti-Defamation League brought a delegation of American police officers to an Israeli prison, occupied Hebron and a settler winery in the Golan Heights as part of their 2016 counter-terrorism seminar in Israel, according to an itinerary of the trip obtained by Mondoweiss. Trips like these have come under withering controversy from Palestine solidarity activists and Black Lives Matter protesters. In an age of police militarization and a growing movement to combat police brutality, critics see these trips as potentially fueling harmful police tactics.

Pro-Israel groups close in on anti-BDS victory in California legislature

Alex Kane on
Activists call for boycotting Israel. (Photo via BDSMovement.net)

For months, pro-Israel and Palestine solidarity groups have been locked in a fierce debate over legislation in California against the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. Now, to the chagrin of Palestine solidarity activists, the California State Senate is set to consider the bill that would require state contractors to certify that a boycott of Israel they were engaged in does not violate laws against discrimination. Jewish Voice for Peace activist Estee Chandler says it’s likely it will pass, which would make California the 13th state to pass anti-BDS legislation.

A look at Breitbart’s ‘Alt-Right Lite’ plan for Israel/Palestine

Wilson Dizard on
Stephen Bannon, the executive chairman of far-right news and opinion site Breitbart. (Photo: DANNY MOLOSHOK/INVISION/AP)

Breitbart News head Stephen Bannon has replaced Paul Manafort as Donald Trump’s primary campaign adviser. Bannon describes his site as a “platform for the Alt-Right,” referring to the growing white nationalist movement, and noted pro-Israel Islamophobe Pamela Geller has praised Bannon in heroic terms. What this revamped campaign means for Trump’s take on the middle east remains to be seen, but alt-right leaders are already imagining a future where they are directly influencing foreign policy.

Let’s talk about Russian influence

Philip Weiss on
Neera Tanden and Netanyahu at Center for American Progress

Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager says the “hand of the Kremlin” has been working in US elections, but no one talks about the hand of Israel, which is on everything from pushing the Iraq war to censoring any reference to the “occupation” in the Democratic Party platform. The system is rigged by the Israel lobby, and everyone knows it, even if they can’t talk about it.

The omnipresent hawks-in-waiting of the Clinton administration

James North and Philip Weiss on
Retired admiral James Stavridis is now a dean of international school at Tufts and a neoconservative darling

Stephen Cohen and Juan Cole say that Russia and Iran are trying to defeat ISIS with attacks in eastern Syria. A. Trevor Thrall says US attacks on Assad would lead to another endless war. But the media are ignoring leftwing, realist and libertarian voices in favor of the hawks-in-waiting of the Clinton administration.

Jill Stein defends BDS in CNN town hall

Wilson Dizard on
(Screenshot: CNN)

Green Party Presidential Candidate Jill Stein on Wednesday night provided an alternative vision for U.S. policy with Israel that questioned whether Washington was doing “Israel any favors” by dumping money into warfare and occupation.

Trump and Clinton campaigns both send message that Muslim loyalty to US hinges on condemning terrorism

Wilson Dizard on
Donald Trump speaks at a campaign event in Fountain Hills, Arizona,   March 2016. (Photo: Gage Skidmore/ Wikimedia)

Donald Trump received his first classified briefing from U.S. intelligence officials on Wednesday, two days after laying out his vision for foreign policy that measures the worth of alliances by whether countries oppose the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Although there are big differences in Trump’s and that of the White House, there are significant similarities, analysts say. For one, both Trump and President Barack Obama are willing to look the other way when it comes to human rights violations committed in campaigns against the ISIS. More than that, both Trump and Hillary Clinton talk about a world where Muslim loyalty to the United States hinges on their condemnation of terrorism.

The politics of Jewish ethnocentrism

Yakov Hirsch on
Bret Stephens (Photo: Jason Smith)

How can Bret Stephens, who is so sensitive to any slight he perceives against Jews, use the phrase “disease of the Arab mind” when writing about an Egyptian Olympian, and hundreds of millions of other people, in the Wall Street Journal no less? The answer is that a group of ethnocentric spokesmen for the Jewish people, including Jeffrey Goldberg and Benjamin Netanyahu, exercise an Orwellian influence over what can and cannot be said out loud.

‘The Forward’ fails to find source of anti-semitism hoax that its reporter concocted (Updated)

Phan Nguyen on
"Pro-Palestinian Student Group Accused of Compiling List of Jewish Student Dorm Addresses"

The Jewish Daily Forward’s Laura E. Adkins reported Israeli Knesset Member Anat Berko as saying that Students for Justice in Palestine is “collecting information on where Jews live at New York University among others.” What Adkins fails to mention is that Berko’s claim likely originated from a hoax conceived by Adkins herself when she was a student at NYU.

‘NYT’ and Sen. Murphy have a double standard on Yemen and Gaza slaughters

Philip Weiss and Adam Horowitz on
New York Times headquarters

A New York Times editorial calls for cutting off military aid to Saudi Arabia because of indiscriminate civilian killings in Yemen that have the U.S.’s “imprint”. Israel did the same thing in Gaza with the U.S.’s imprint, without a peep from the Times. This is a glaring double standard, which is evident to average Americans. That is why we see such burgeoning grassroots support for the idea of boycotting Israel and ending military aid to the country.

NYC Bengali community mourns imam’s murder amid climate of fear

Wilson Dizard on
A crowd of mourners and protesters gather Saturday. (Photo: Wilson Dizard)

Hundreds of New Yorkers gathered Monday in Queens to say goodbye to a Bengali American imam and his assistant who were shot down by a gunman in broad daylight on Saturday. Police charged a suspect in the killing, 35-year-old Oscar Morel of Brooklyn. The man’s brother told The New York Post that Morel felt “hatred” against Muslims after the September 11 attacks and many in the Ozone Park immigrant community fear the murder was a hate crime. The funeral and the neighborhood rallying with cries of “Justice!” all took place in the midst of unprecedented racist and xenophobic election-year rhetoric.

Beinart calls anti-Zionists ‘revolutionaries’

Philip Weiss on
Journalist and author Peter Beinart. (Photo: Center for American Progress/Flickr)

Peter Beinart wrote a column for Haaretz last week in which he characterized anti-Zionists, along with the Black Lives Matter movement, as revolutionaries, warning that anti-Zionists want to upend the Israeli system. This is an important assertion, and needs to be addressed. Equal rights, and not Zionism, is the only sane political future in the 21st century. Changing the American Jewish mind is the most important step toward accomplishing this revolution bloodlessly.

Imam gunned down in NYC, authorities ‘investigating as a hate crime’

Annie Robbins on
"Residents believe #OzonePark shooting a #HateCrime. Blaming #DonaldTrump." Credit: Freelance reporter Samantha Liebman

In what witnesses describe as a targeted attack, Imam Alauddin Akhonji of Al-Furqan Jame Masjid Mosque in Ozone Park, Queens, was killed this afternoon walking home from afternoon prayers. The New York Post reports authorities are investigating it as a hate crime, and some residents are blaming Donald Trump.

White Jews and uppity blacks

Abba Solomon on
Keith P. Feldman's book, A Shadow Over Palestine

U.S. Jewish support for the civil rights struggle has sometimes been patronizing to blacks; and the growing identification of Jews with a state perceived as colonial and racist, Israel, has often strained the bonds of the relationship, as exemplified by the anger over the Black Lives Matter platform’s support for the Palestinian struggle.

Hundreds of Jews march for ‘Black Lives Matter’ in New York

Wilson Dizard on
Julia Carmel, back to police, is arrested ahead of April Baskin, in white top, and Jason Salmon, in white tshirt. Photo by Wilson Dizard

Led by Jews of color and their allies, and by the organization Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, nearly 300 marchers calling for greater police accountability wound their way through downtown New York on Thursday night, ending in the arrest of seven activists for civil disobedience.