Progressive Calendar 04.29.10
From: David Shove (
Date: Thu, 29 Apr 2010 15:54:49 -0700 (PDT)
             P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   04.29.10

1. Eagan peace vigil  4.29 4:30pm
2. Northtown vigil    4.29 5pm
3. Mexico/indep/rev   4.29 7pm
4. Indig activism     4.29 7:30pm

5. Single-payer/HCMC  4.30 10:30am
6. Palestine vigil    4.30 4:15pm
7. DailyPlanet        4.30 4:30pm
8. Workers fight back 4.30 6pm
9, RNC8 potluck       4.30 7pm
10. Living Green Expo 4.30

11. E.R. Bills     - Goebbels would have been proud
12. William A Cook - A nation born in deception
13. Jonathan Cook  - Israel's big and small apartheids
14. Dean Baker     - The coming plan to slash social security & medicare

--------1 of 14--------

From: Greg and Sue Skog <family4peace [at]>
Subject: Eagan peace vigil 4.29 4:30pm

PEACE VIGIL EVERY THURSDAY from 4:30-5:30pm on the Northwest corner of
Pilot Knob Road and Yankee Doodle Road in Eagan. We have signs and
candles. Say "NO to war!" The weekly vigil is sponsored by: Friends south
of the river speaking out against war.

--------2 of 14--------

From: EKalamboki [at]
Subject: Northtown vigil 4.29 5pm

NORTHTOWN Peace Vigil every Thursday 5-6pm, at the intersection of Co. Hwy
10 and University Ave NE (SE corner across from Denny's), in Blaine.

Communities situated near the Northtown Mall include: Blaine, Mounds View,
New Brighton, Roseville, Shoreview, Arden Hills, Spring Lake Park,
Fridley, and Coon Rapids.  We'll have extra signs.

For more information people can contact Evangelos Kalambokidis by phone or
email: (763)574-9615, ekalamboki [at]

--------3 of 14--------

From: Intermedia Arts <info [at]>
Subject: Mexico/indep/rev 4.29 7pm

The Mexican Consulate & Intermedia Arts Present:
Independence & Revolution 1810/1910/2010
A Visual Art Exhibition by Mexican Artists
April 29-May 28, 2010
Thursday April 29, 2010 from 7-10pm

This year marks two important milestones in the history of Mexico.  Two
hundred years after the Mexican War of Independence and 100 years after
the Mexican Revolution, the consulate is launching a new website and a
series of cultural events, planned by the consulate's bicentennial
committee, to celebrate these historic battles and connect all Minnesotans
- Latino or not - with traditional and modern Mexico. Participating
Artists: Martha Driessen, Veronica Jato, Sandra Felemovicius, Gustavo
Lira, Maria Cristina Tavera, and Xavier Tavera.

For details 

Intermedia Arts is proud to announce the launch of our new partnership
with Hennepin County Libraries. Over the next 15-months, Intermedia Arts
will be presenting more than 60 youth workshops at library sites
throughout Hennepin County, and will provide staff training around the
power and possibilities of art as a tool for creating positive social
change. All workshops are free and open to teens in grades 7-12. Upcoming
workshops include, B-Girl Be: Hip-Hop History, Culture & Creation; The
Power of the PSA; Project Girl: A Girl's Guide to De-Mediatizing Her Body;
Express Yourself! Creative Writing for Teens and Video Poems: Create Your
Own. Check out our online calendar
complete listings and locations.

--------4 of 14--------

From: Lydia Howell <lydiahowell [at]>
Subject: Indig activism 4.29 7:30pm

Indigenous Solidarity Activism from Black Mesa to Palestine:
A Conversation with Flo Razowsky
Thursday, April 29th, 7:30 pm, Olin Rice 150, Macalester College,
St. Paul.

This talk will focus on the role of anti-racist solidarity work in
indigenous struggles for self-determination. Flo Razowsky will speak with
us about her experience as a coordinator for the International Solidarity
Movement (ISM) based in the West Bank in occupied Palestine, where she
organized the influx of international volunteers traveling to Palestine to
directly support unarmed movements for Palestinian self-determination.
Razowsky will draw connections between her work in the occupied
territories in historic Palestine and her experiences as a solidarity
activist at Big Mountain/Black Mesa in support of Native Dine' communities
resisting unjust mountaintop removal coal mining operations and forced
relocation policies of the US government.

Our conversation with Razowsky will bring into focus critical issues
facing white/non-native solidarity organizing more generally in order to
look at tensions between ideas of sympathy versus allyship, charity versus
solidarity, and spectatorship versus participation in struggles for
justice in order to reflect on larger questions surrounding the role of
outsiders in movements for indigenous sovereignty.

Flo Razowsky is a Twin Cities, MN-based playwright, documentary
photographer, writer and grassroots community organizer.  Razowsky's most
recent play, Cafe Intifada, showed to sold out audiences in January and
February 2009. Razowsky's photographs and writings can be found in the
Minneapolis Star Tribune, Canadian-based The Dominion, The Electronic
Intifada, the Southside Pride and more.  As a grassroots community
organizer, Razowsky has supported Indegenous struggles of the Americas,
militarized border issues in the US, Ukraine and North Africa and
anti-occupation work in occupied Palestine.

Sponsored by the Macalester Peace and Justice Committee (MPJC-SDS), Proud
Indigenous Peoples for Education (PIPE), Macalester Students United for
Palestinian Equal Rights (MacSUPER), and Opposition to War & Occupation

--------5 of 14--------

From: Joel Albers <joel [at]>
Subject: Single-payer/HCMC 4.30 10:30am

Rally for single-payer at HCMC in solidarity w/ HCMC's decision to opt out
of GAMC.Friday, April 30, 2010, 10:30AM-11:30AM at HCMC, 6th street and
chicago ave plaza, purple bldg.

Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) and several other hospitals are
opting out of the system saying they can't afford to serve the "poorest of
the poor and sickest of the sick" in GAMC at the rates proposed by
Pawlenty and the MN Legislature. When hospitals can no longer afford to
serve patients or they face bankruptcy, it's time to pronounce MN's
managed care private health insurance system DEAD, and call for a
single-payer system, that's the MN Health Plan. A hospital can only cost
shift to its card shop and parking ramp for so long. We know 40% of
hospital execs (and many others, privately) are in favor of SP. We would
like all hospitals to join us in calling for a single-payer health care
system, Everybody In Nobody Out, statewide: "the rich support the poor,
the healthy support the sick and the young support the old".

See you friday the 30th 10:30am at HCMC, 6th street and chicago ave. If
you work for HCMC,pls try to attend and get others to.

joel albers Universal Health Care Action Network - MN 612-384-0973

--------6 of 14--------

From: Eric Angell <eric-angell [at]>
Subject: Palestine vigil 4.30 4:15pm

The weekly vigil for the liberation of Palestine continues at the
intersection of Snelling and Summit Aves in St. Paul. The Friday demo
starts at 4:15 and ends around 5:30. There are usually extra signs

--------7 of 14--------

From: Richard Broderick <richb [at]>
Subject: DailyPlanet 4.30 4:30pm

Two events:

On April 30th, 2006, I, along with a few other independent journalists in
the Twin Cities, launched our online news website, the Twin Cities Daily

Four years, and tens of thousands of readers later, we are still at it,
the site growing bigger and better with each passing month (and winning a
host of awards along the way, as well as financial backing from some of
the nation's most prestigious journalism foundations as well as others).
Now we'd like to invite you to a birthday celebration April 30, 2010 at
T's Place, 2713 E. Lake Street in Minneapolis. 4:30-6:30pm.

We'll serve up a birthday cake, and some big announcements about changes
at the Daily Planet. It's your chance to meet the people who make the
Planet possible. Cash bar, but T's Place has great happy hour specials --
domestic beers for $2.50; imports, wine by the glass, and mixed drinks
for $3.

T's Afro-Malaysian menu is almost as diverse as the Daily Planet -- If
you want to stick around for a group dinner afterward, message our
Executive Director, Jeremy Iggers,  a message at JeremyIggers [at]

Parking is available at meters, and in the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
parking lot, across from US Bank between 29th and 28th Avenues. Do not
park in the East Lake Public Library lot -- you may be towed.


"The Red & The Black"
Workers of the World Unite! - at the Black Dog Café in Saint Paul on May
1st at 6:30 p.m. for a spirited and informative celebration of the 120th
anniversary of the adoption of May Day as the official holiday of the
International Labor Movement. Stories, poems, songs, video, art work,
presentations about the ongoing struggle for economic and social justice
featuring: Spoken word by Anya Achtenberg, Ed Bok Lee, Kyle Chase, Diane
Jarvi, and Rich Broderick. Music by The Fantastic Merlins and Diane
Jarvi. Presentations by Dr. Stephan Peter, faculty member in political
science at Anoka-Ramsey Community College and long-time May Day
participant, and Members of the Minnesota chapter of the I.W.W. on the
attempted suppression of the Wobblies in the early 20th century and the
movement's current progress. Plus continuous video feeds of May Day
celebrations in Paris, Berlin and elsewhere.

The Red & The Black, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., the Black Dog Café, 308 Prince
St., (across from the St. Paul Farmer's Market), St. Paul. Free Admission.
On-street parking available, and off street parking behind the café, only
$1 for the evening. Call 651.228.9274 for further information.

--------8 of 14--------

From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at]>
Subject: Workers fight back 4.30 6pm

Freedom Road Socialist Organization's Annual MayDay Celebration:
"Capitalism in Crisis; Workers Fight Back"
Friday, April 30, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Waite House Community Center, 2529
13th Avenue South, Minneapolis.

Dinner will be provided as we hear stories from the front lines of the
people's struggles, celebrate our great accomplishments and honor those
who lead the way. Childcare will be provided and there will be a kid's
program. Sponsored by: Freedom Road Socialist Organization. Endorsed by:
WAMM. FFI: Call 612-823-2841.

--------9 of 14--------

From: info [at]
Subject: RNC8 potluck 4.30 7pm

April 30: Free Community Meal/Potluck in Minneapolis
Friday, April 30th, 7 pm
Walker Church, 3104 16th Ave S., Minneapolis

Join us for a FREE community meal/potluck to welcome in the spring! To
kick off May Day weekend, we're inviting the community to join us for a
delicious meal, learn about the upcoming court dates in May and how you
can help support the RNC 8, listen to some great music, and catch a
screening of "We're Getting Ready (for Court)."

We'll be bringing lots of tasty food (vegan and gluten-free options
included), but feel free to bring a dish to share. Riding with Critical
Mass that afternoon? Come refuel after a great community bike ride!

--------10 of 14--------

From: PRO826 [at]
Subject: Living Green Expo 4.30

Volunteer Sign-Up

We need YOU to volunteer at the 2010 Living Green Expo!  Volunteers are
needed to cover a variety of duties to successfully produce this great
event. Volunteers work 3-hour shifts and get a free shirt + free organic
snacks to eat and drink.

The Living Green Expo is such a success because of the hundreds of great
volunteers who come out each year and help with the event.  Visit our web
site today at or use the quick link
to the left to sign up! Thank you to those of you who have already signed
up!  Consider inviting a friend to join you.

Minnesota Environmental Partnership (MEP) hosts this year's Living Green
Expo.  The 80-organization, environmental-focused nonprofit stepped in to
put the event back on the calendar after state budget cuts last fall
canceled the 9th annual Expo.  This is just one example of how the MEP
takes a leadership role collaborating with environmental organizations to
help Minnesotans protect and defend our state's great outdoor legacy. The
Expo was previously produced by the Minnesota Polution Control Agency.


 *  Expo Set-Up - Assist with setting up the event on Friday, April 30th.
 *  Exhibitor Check-In and Support - Assist Expo exhibitors in getting
    set up on Friday, April 30th.
 *  Volunteer Check-In and Care - Check in volunteers as they arrive for
    their shift and staff the volunteer lounge to keep snacks available
    and area clean.
 *  Information Desk - Provide Expo attendees with event program, answers
    to questions and information for making the most of their Expo
 *  Front Door Greeters and Traffic - Greet Expo attendees and provide
    guidance and direction to starting their Expo experience.
 *  Attendee Counters - Count Expo attendees as they enter.
 *  Exhibitor Assistance - Be available for troubleshooting related to
    exhibitor problems during the Expo.
 *  Kids' Area - Assist with the children's education and activity area.
 *  Recycling Station - Assist Expo attentees in learning about recycling
    as they throw away their waste in the correct containers.
 *  Stage Managers - Assist in producing staged education and
 *  Evluation - Assist in gathering feedback and input from Expo
 *  General Assistance - Be available to help with whatever comes up
    during the Expo.
 *  Tear-Down - Assist in tearing down and cleaning up after the Expo.

Questions: Contact Kristi Shepherd at Kristi [at]
Interested in becoming a sponsor?
Learn more about becoming a sponsor, contact Kristi Gray Shepherd; or
call 952-920-5875.

--------11 of 14-------

Goebbels Would Have Been Proud
by E.R. Bills
April 27th, 2010
Dissident Voice

For the past month or two, I've been watching too much TV. Especially
movies on cable. It's been a regrettable lapse, but not entirely wasted.
With my fingertips on the remote controlled pulse of America, I learned
one interesting thing: Nixon is making a comeback.

I was only seven years old when President Nixon left office, but I
remember it pretty well. Even for a boy, Nixon was a suspicious character,
the kind you wouldn't accept a ride from. Unfortunately, the country took
the ride twice, and, shortly into his second term, Nixon resigned in

To be fair, my childhood recollections were later colored by Hunter S.
Thompson's Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail in '72. It was a
compelling hatchet job of "Tricky Dick" and the sinister atmosphere of the
Nixon era, and whatever suspicions I had harbored towards the man early on
were clearly magnified by Thompson's obvious contempt for him.

That being said, two movies I saw during my cable lapse altered my
perception. The first was Frost-Nixon. It was an excellent film that
explored the implications of the first televised "gotcha" moment of an
American president, but it was done very even-handedly and actor Frank
Langella brilliantly captured Nixon's stunted, yet genuine humanity. I
sincerely felt for Nixon after the movie, even if I still didn't agree
with his politics.

The second movie I watched was Watchmen. In it members of a group of
disbanded superheroes come together to save the world from nuclear
Armageddon. It takes place in the early 80s and President Nixon is in his
fourth term.

It's a crazy idea, no doubt, but it got me to thinking. What could have
happened to make it possible for Nixon to serve four terms?

In the movie it isn't explained. In the graphic novel of the same name, I
learned Nixon was still in office because the utilization of superheroes
allowed the United States to win the Vietnam War. This alternate reality,
however far-fetched, was intriguing, and it immediately spurred further

If Nixon had won the Vietnam War would it have saved his administration?

The answer is possibly yes, but only because Rush Limbaugh and Fox News
weren't around yet. If Limbaugh and Fox News had been around in the early
70s, Nixon would never have been forced to resign in the first place,
regardless of the outcome in Vietnam.

With the Limbaugh/Fox spin machinery in place, the Watergate break-in
would have been no more damning to the G.O.P. than the Bush
Administration's outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame or conservative
activist James O'Keefe's alleged tampering with the phone lines of
Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieau. The My Lai massacre in Vietnam would
have been no more damaging than Blackwater's Fallujah Massacre in Iraq,
and the invasion of Cambodia - well, it wouldn't have been anymore
questionable or unethical as our invasion of Iraq.

The murders at Kent State would have been no more unpopular for Nixon as
the failures in addressing Hurricane Katrina were for Bush. And musical
artists like Bob Dylan or Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young would have been
threatened, blacklisted and publicly disavowed for even criticizing
President Nixon just like the Dixie Chicks were after they criticized
President Bush.

In fact, if Rush Limbaugh and Fox News had been around in the early 50s,
Senator Joe McCarthy's Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations
might have burgeoned into a Department of Homeland Security, Senator Joe
McCarthy probably would have run for president and iconic newsman Edward
R. Murrow would have been forced to resign just like Dan Rather.

The crimes of the Nixon years were minuscule compared to those of
Bush-Cheney Administration and, in retrospect, it's increasingly obvious
that Nixon stalwarts Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld clearly learned from
Nixon's lack of media cover. Neither Cheney nor Rumsfeld considered
Nixon's mistakes as errors, but simply unfortunate press clippings. With
the full force of a national propaganda network behind it, the Bush-Cheney
Administration became an unstoppable steamroller until the Iraq War
dragged on too long and liberal and unbiased media outlets started
capitalizing on the lies behind the absence of WMDs in Iraq.

If you watch Fox News or listen to Rush Limbaugh and process what they're
selling, you realize it's just anti-Democratic filler wrapped around
Republican talking points. Fox News is a broadcasting subsidiary of the
Republican Party and Rush Limbaugh is the archangel of an exasperated
legion of backwards, misinformed cranks who are thrilled to hear someone
justify their innate fears, bigotry and general xenophobia.

Limbaugh and Fox News knowingly and implicitly work to create and sustain
conservative suspicion and hatefulness and incite irrational but effective
phobias and paranoia to determine local, state and national elections. Fox
News calls itself "Fair and Balanced," but to describe the work of Fox or
Limbaugh as either is like the Third Reich labeling itself peaceful and
inclusive. The latter was a fascist regime that killed millions. The
formers comprise a fascist regimen that misinforms millions.

Goebbels would have been proud.

E. Bills is a writer from Ft. Worth, Texas. His work appears regularly in
The Paper of South Texas, Fort Worth Weekly, etc. He can be reached at:
erbillsink [at]

--------12 of 14--------

A Nation Born in Deception
by William A. Cook
April 27th, 2010
Dissident Voice

As Israel attempts today to gloss over the reality of its birth 62 years
ago with a sweeping public relations campaign extolling the miraculous
"resurrection" of ancient Zion in contemporary times, a new nation seeking
only peace with its neighbors, it might be enlightening and valuable to
examine the truth.

On May 14, 1948 President Harry S. Truman received a letter from the
Jewish Agency for Palestine announcing the impending proclamation of the
independent republic of Israel.1 That date marks not only the beginning of
the State of Israel but, sub missa voce, the assumption by the State of
Israel of the calculated, systematic and determined ethnic cleansing of
the indigenous population of the land of Palestine that had been the
business of "The Consultancy" and its agents before May 14, as identified
by Dr. Ilan Pappe in his monumental The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine.2

The letter notes that the republic has been established within "frontiers
approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution
of November 29, 1947, and that a provisional government has been charged
to assume the rights and duties of government for preserving law and order
within the boundaries of Israel, for defending the state against external
aggression, and for discharging the obligations of Israel to the other
nations of the world in accordance with international law". The letter was
signed by Eliahu Epstein, Agent, Provisional Government of Israel.

The letter is notable not for what it announces, but for what it does not
reveal. Truth requires revelation of all the facts, not concealment by
omission of that which would prejudice an understanding. During the six
months between the adoption of UN Resolution 181 and the date of this
letter, and in subsequent months, the prospective state of Israel launched
a massive military incursion into territory designated by that same
Resolution for the Palestinian people, creating in its wake "three
quarters of a million Palestinian refugees," the destruction of "hundreds
of entire villages - not only depopulated but obliterated - and houses
blown up or bulldozed".3 Khalidi's massive study focuses on 418 villages,
once the homes of Palestinians, 292 completely destroyed, 90 others
"largely destroyed," the remainder re-inhabited by Jews called Israeli

In blunt terms, the Jewish Agency for Palestine lied to the American
President that it had established a provisional government that "has been
charged to assume the rights and duties... for preserving law and order
within the boundaries of Israel...  and for discharging the obligations of
Israel to the other nations of the world in accordance with international

The Agency's deception made no reference either to the President or the
international community that it had created the "Catastrophe," or as the
Palestinians termed it, the Nakba, the days of infamy that created what
has become the largest Diaspora of refugees in the world and a time of
remembrance for those killed in a series of massacres, estimated at 24 by
Benny Morris, Israel's preeminent Historian of that period. Indeed, the
Agency had acted against international law in invading Palestinian land as
designated by the very Resolution that had given them the right to a state
of Israel even as it lied without remorse to the international community
that it would live in accordance with their laws.

This letter, coupled with an earlier one to the President, dated May 10,
1948, will serve as a microcosm of political deceit characteristic of the
Zionist led forces that controlled the nascent state of Israel. This
second letter from The Nation Associates, notified the President that

Tomorrow morning the Washington Post will carry, in the form of a full-age
(sic) advertisement, the text of an open letter to you requesting the
implementation of the November 29 resolution on Palestine. I have been
requested to send you the enclosed text of this open letter by the
signators. It is our hope that in the week which remains before the end of
the British Mandate, action will be taken by you to insure the recognition
of the Jewish state as a means of maintaining the prestige of this
country, the authority of the United Nations, and peace in the Middle

The Nation Associates supported the establishment of the State of Israel
and used its publishing arm to further that goal. The "Open Letter"
referred to above argued against the moves by "the British and our own
State Department" to "sabotage" the partition resolution despite the
President's determined effort to support Israel. Indeed, the Associates
went so far as to publish "The British Record on Partition" published in
The Nation, America's Leading Liberal Weekly, on May 8, 1948 detailing
their selected reading of "British Military Intelligence Sources". This
document was simultaneously submitted to the Special Session of the
General Assembly of the United Nations. The Open letter published in the
Washington Post amounted to a synopsis of this larger document including
its primary argument that "there was no reason why the Jewish state could
not be set up (if the Arabs resisted partition) and the Arab area turned
over to the Trusteeship Council". Note that this argument is being made
even as the Jewish Agency and its affiliates have driven hundreds of
thousands of Palestinians from their homes and villages and massacred
untold thousands in the area designated for the Palestinians recommended
to be turned over to the Trusteeship Council.

The open letter cited an amendment to the resolution inserted by Truman's
representative, Herschel Johnson, "the Security Council should determine
as a threat to peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression, in
accordance with Article 29 of the Charter, any attempt to alter by force
the settlement envisaged by this resolution". Yet no mention is made here
of the invasion by the Jewish forces of the towns and villages in the area
designated for the Palestinians. Rather, the Associates allege that it is
the British Mandate government that has supported the Arab League against
Israel since 1945, "under the direction of Foreign Minister Bevin, {who}
(has) resisted every American proposal for a decent settlement of the
Palestinian question". "This was true," the letter continues, "in 1946
when he refused to accept the proposal of the Anglo-American Committee and
your own, for the admission into Palestine of 100,000 Jews". What is left
unsaid by the Associates is the British promise to the Arabs in the
Balfour Declaration that they would maintain a strict ratio of Jews
entering Palestine to the indigenous population, the second of the Balfour
Declaration promises never referenced as the companion piece to the
establishment of a home for the Jews in Palestine.5

So now we see the strategy of the Zionists as they manipulate the
President: (a) advance publication of a major document detailing British
subterfuge in eroding the possibility of establishing a Jewish state sent
to the United Nations, thereby placing blame for the deterioration of
conditions in Palestine on the British; (b) a subsequent letter to the
President informing him that a public "open letter" will be published in
the Washington Post detailing subversion of the Jewish people, placing him
in the unenviable position of not aiding the "victims" of this subversion
or carrying through with recognition of the Jewish state "as a means of
maintaining the prestige of this country"; (c) and, finally, another
letter, this from the Jewish Agency for Palestine, on the 14th, seeking
his recognition by "welcoming Israel into the community of nations" with
no reference to the breaching of international law by the very Agency
seeking his support.

Control and manipulation of the events coming out of Palestine has been
and continues to be the modus operandi of the Zionist leaders of the state
of Israel. The above letters to President Truman offer insight into this
manipulation. Moreover, Truman was acting on behalf of the American people
in recognizing the State of Israel on the 15th of May 1948. What the
American people knew was the suffering of the Jews under Hitler and the
apparent logic of the United Nations partition plan to provide a state for
the two peoples residing in Palestine. What they did not know was the
Zionist entity that had different goals and the will to deceive the
citizens of America to achieve them. But the American people were not
alone in being deceived. More importantly is the deception kept from the
British people about these "disappeared years," as Robert Fisk terms them.
What's missing is the perspective of the Palestinians and the British
Mandate government.

The United Kingdom had mandatory authority from the League of Nations to
govern the area with the establishment of the Palestine Mandate in 1922,
an action that imposed a western colonial and national mindset on an area
familiar with tribal and imperial authority. Prior to the official
implementation of the Mandate, the British Government had enunciated a
"declaration" concerning the desirability of His Majesty's Government in
the "establishment of a national home for the Jewish people," called the
Balfour Declaration.

Discussions that resulted in the final text of the Balfour Declaration
clarify the intention of its wording. The use of "national home" was used
intentionally instead of "state". Additionally, the first draft of the
declaration referred to the principle "that Palestine should be
reconstituted as the National Home of the Jewish people".

In the final text, the word that was replaced with in to avoid committing
all of Palestine to the Jews only.6

Between 1939 and 1947, the mandate Government found it more and more
difficult to maintain its position as the responsible governing force
servicing the Arab population and the growing Jewish population,
determining by 1947 that these two populations could not coexist. As a
result, the British Government placed the resolution of the problem in the
hands of the United Nations. That in turn resulted in a partition plan of
the land of Palestine, proposed in November of 1947 to the General
Assembly, to be implemented in May of 1948, sixty two years ago this May.

British authority in Palestine continued under the United Nations until
the implementation of the Partition Plan in May 1948. Consequently, the
mandate government had to abide by the Charter of the UN and its
Conventions. Ironically, as the Zionist forces, estimated by the Jewish
Agency personnel in documents seized by the Mandate Police at 20 to 60
thousand (see top secret file of Sir Richard C. Catling, The Plight of the
Palestinians) , continued their massacres of Palestinians into 1948, the
UN debated the adoption of a Convention defining "genocide" based on
Nuremberg principles, a definition approved that same year.

In 1944 the term "genocide" appeared in Raphael Lemkin's Axis Rule in
Occupied Europe created out of the conditions that allowed for the Nazi
action against those suffering in their concentration camps. Therefore
once the State of Israel was created by the Jewish leaders of the area by
declaration May 14, 1948, and, subsequently, was recognized for membership
in the UN in 1949, it was expected to abide by the UN Conventions. The
United Nations does not appropriate to itself the authority to create
states. The United Nations only authorizes itself to recognize states for
membership, states that are formed or proclaimed by the people of said

What should be obvious now, after the carefully researched and scholarly
work of Dr. Ilan Pappe in his Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine and the
equally well-researched work of Dr. Benny Morris in his Righteous Victims,
both based on recently released evidence from the Israeli archives and
those of the Israel Defense Forces Archives, complemented now with the
materials preserved by Sir Richard C. Catling, to be made available in The
Plight of the Palestinians from Palgrave Macmillan in June, is the truth
about the creation of the state of Israel: acceptance of UN Resolution 181
by the Jewish Agency Provisional Government as the designated Jewish state
was not done with intent to abide by the goal of the UN General Assembly,
to provide a state for two peoples in the land of Palestine, but rather to
use it as a means of subterfuge to gain eventual control of all the land
and cleanse that land of its indigenous people to whatever extent
possible. Put bluntly, what was true then is true today; the current
government in Israel continues the practices of past Israeli governments,
cleanse the land of its rightful inhabitants to make that land part of the
Jewish state. This is what is termed, "slow motion genocide," not, one
would hope, a civilized policy to be extolled either by the Israelis or
the international community.

1. Eptstein, Eliahu. (1948). Agent, Provisional Government of Israel.
Letter to President Harry S. Truman. May 14, 1948. Filed August 22, 1949.
Truman Library. 12/15/2008. [.]

2. Pappe, Ilan. (2006). The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine. Oneworld:
Oxford.  [.]

3. Khalidi, Walid. All That Remains. Institute for Palestinian Studies:
Washington, D.C. xv. [.]

4. Kirchwey, Freda. (1948). President, The Nation Associates. Letter to
President Harry S. Truman. May 10, 1948. Filed May 11, 1948. Truman
Library. [.]

5. Prior, Michael. (1999) Zionism and the State of Israel: A Moral
Inquiry.  London: Rutledge. [.]

6. Stein, Leonard. (1961). The Balfour Declaration. New York: Simon and
Shuster, 470. [.]

7. Harb, Jim. (2009). The UN did not create Israel, 6-11-2009. [.]

Dr. William A. Cook is a professor of English at the University of La
Verne in southern California. His books include Tracking Deception: Bush
Mid-East Policy, The Rape of Palestine: Hope Destroyed, Justice Denied,
Expathos (2008) and The Chronicles of Nefaria (novel, 2008). He can be
reached at: cookb [at] ULV.EDU.

--------13 of 14--------

Israel's Big and Small Apartheids
The meaning of a Jewish state
by Jonathan Cook
April 26th, 2010
Dissident Voice

Below is the text of a talk delivered to the fifth Bilin international
conference for Palestinian popular resistance, held in the West Bank
village of Bilin on April 21

Israel's apologists are very exercised about the idea that Israel has been
singled out for special scrutiny and criticism. I wish to argue, however,
that in most discussions of Israel it actually gets off extremely lightly:
that many features of the Israeli polity would be considered exceptional
or extraordinary in any other democratic state.

That is not surprising because, as I will argue, Israel is neither a
liberal democracy nor even a "Jewish and democratic state", as its
supporters claim. It is an apartheid state, not only in the occupied
territories of the West Bank and Gaza, but also inside Israel proper.
Today, in the occupied territories, the apartheid nature of Israeli rule
is irrefutable - if little mentioned by Western politicians or the media.
But inside Israel, itself, it is largely veiled and hidden. My purpose
today is to try to remove the veil a little.

I say "a little", because I would need far more than the time allotted to
me to do justice to this topic. There are, for example, some 30 laws that
explicitly discriminate between Jews and non-Jews - another way of
referring to the fifth of the Israeli population who are Palestinian and
supposedly enjoy full citizenship. There are also many other Israeli laws
and administrative practices that lead to an outcome of ethnic-based
segregation even if they do not make such discrimination explicit.

So instead of trying to rush through all these aspects of Israeli
apartheid, let me concentrate instead on a few revealing features, issues
I have reported on recently.

First, let us examine the nature of Israeli citizenship.

A few weeks ago I met Uzi Ornan, an 86-year-old professor from the
Technion university in Haifa, who has one of the few ID cards in Israel
stating a nationality of "Hebrew". For most other Israelis, their cards
and personal records state their nationality as "Jewish" or "Arab". For
immigrants whose Jewishness is accepted by the state but questioned by the
rabbinical authorities, some 130 other classifications of nationality have
been approved, mostly relating to a person's religion or country of
origin. The only nationality you will not find on the list is "Israeli".
That is precisely why Prof Ornan and two dozen others are fighting through
the courts: they want to be registered as "Israelis". It is a hugely
important fight - and for that reason alone they are certain to lose. Why?

Far more is at stake than an ethnic or national label. Israel excludes a
nationality of "Israeli" to ensure that, in fulfilment of its
self-definition as a "Jewish state", it is able to assign superior rights
of citizenship to the collective "nation" of Jews around the globe than to
the body of actual citizens in its territory, which includes many
Palestinians. In practice, it does this by creating two main classes of
citizenship: a Jewish citizenship for "Jewish nationals" and an Arab
citizenship for "Arab nationals". Both nationalities were effectively
invented by Israel and have no meaning outside Israel.

This differentiation in citizenship is recognised in Israeli law: the Law
of Return, for Jews, makes immigration all but automatic for any Jew
around the world who wishes it; and the Citizenship Law, for non-Jews,
determines on an entirely separate basis the rights of the country's
Palestinian minority to citizenship. Even more importantly, the latter law
abolishes the rights of the Palestinian citizens' relatives, who were
expelled by force in 1948, to return to their homes and land. There are,
in other words, two legal systems of citizenship in Israel,
differentiating between the rights of citizens based on whether they are
Jews or Palestinians.

That, in itself, meets the definition of apartheid, as set out by the
United Nations in 1973: "Any legislative measures or other measures
calculated to prevent a racial group or groups from participation in the
political, social, economic and cultural life of the country and the
deliberate creation of conditions preventing the full development of such
a group or groups". The clause includes the following rights: "the right
to leave and to return to their country, the right to a nationality, the
right to freedom of movement and residence, the right to freedom of
opinion and expression".

Such separation of citizenship is absolutely essential to the maintenance
of Israel as a Jewish state. Were all citizens to be defined uniformly as
Israelis, were there to be only one law regarding citizenship, then very
dramatic consequences would follow. The most significant would be that the
Law of Return would either cease to apply to Jews or apply equally to
Palestinian citizens, allowing them to bring their exiled relatives to
Israel - the much-feared Right of Return. In either a longer or shorter
period, Israel's Jewish majority would be eroded and Israel would become a
binational state, probably with a Palestinian majority.

There would be many other predictable consequences of equal citizenship.
Would the Jewish settlers, for example, be able to maintain their
privileged status in the West Bank if Palestinians in Jenin or Hebron had
relatives inside Israel with the same rights as Jews? Would the Israeli
army continue to be able to function as an occupation army in a properly
democratic state? And would the courts in a state of equal citizens be
able to continue turning a blind eye to the brutalities of the occupation?
In all these cases, it seems extremely unlikely that the status quo could
be maintained.

In other words, the whole edifice of Israel's apartheid rule inside Israel
supports and upholds its apartheid rule in the occupied territories. They
stand or fall together.

Next, let us look at the matter of land control.

Last month I met an exceptional Israeli Jewish couple, the Zakais. They
are exceptional chiefly because they have developed a deep friendship with
a Palestinian couple inside Israel. Although I have reported on Israel and
Palestine for many years, I cannot recall ever before meeting an Israeli
Jew who had a Palestinian friend in quite the way the Zakais do.

True, there are many Israeli Jews who claim an "Arab" or "Palestinian"
friend in the sense that they joke with the guy whose hummus shop they
frequent or who fixes their car. There are also Israeli Jews - and they
are an extremely important group - who stand with Palestinians in
political battles such as those here in Bilin or in Sheikh Jarrah in
Jerusalem. At these places, Israelis and Palestinians have, against the
odds, managed to forge genuine friendships that are vital if Israel's
apartheid rule is to be defeated.

But the Zakais' relationship with their Bedouin friends, the Tarabins, is
not that kind of friendship. It is not based on, or shaped by, a political
struggle, one that is, itself, framed by Israel's occupation; it is not a
self-conscious friendship; and it has no larger goal than the
relationship, itself. It is a friendship - or at least it appeared that
way to me - of genuine equals. A friendship of complete intimacy. When I
visited the Zakais, I realised what an incredibly unusual sight that is in

The reason for the very separate cultural and emotional worlds of Jewish
and Palestinian citizens in Israel is not difficult to fathom: they live
in entirely separate physical worlds. They live apart in segregated
communities, separated not through choice but by legally enforceable rules
and procedures. Even in the so-called handful of mixed cities, Jews and
Palestinians usually live apart, in distinct and clearly defined
neighbourhoods. And so it was not entirely surprising that the very issue
that brought me to the Zakais was the question of whether a Palestinian
citizen is entitled to live in a Jewish community.

The Zakais want to rent to their friends, the Tarabins, their home in the
agricultural village of Nevatim in the Negev - currently an exclusively
Jewish community. The Tarabins face a serious housing problem in their own
neighbouring Bedouin community. But what the Zakais have discovered is
that there are overwhelming social and legal obstacles to Palestinians
moving out the ghettoes in which they are supposed to live. Not only is
Nevatim's elected leadership deeply opposed to the Bedouin family entering
their community, but so also are the Israeli courts.

Nevatim is not exceptional. There are more than 700 similar rural
communities - mostly kibbutzim and moshavim - that bar non-Jews from
living there. They control most of the inhabitable territory of Israel,
land that once belonged to Palestinians: either refugees from the 1948
war; or Palestinian citizens who have had their lands confiscated under
special laws.

Today, after these confiscations, at least 93 per cent of Israel is
nationalised - that is, it is held in trust not for Israel's citizens but
for world Jewry. (Here, once again, we should note one of those important
consequences of the differentiated citizenship we have just considered.)

Access to most of this nationalised land is controlled by vetting
committees, overseen by quasi-governmental but entirely unaccountable
Zionist organisations like the Jewish Agency and the Jewish National Fund.
Their role is to ensure that such communities remain off-limits to
Palestinian citizens, precisely as the Zakais and Tarabins have discovered
in the case of Nevatim. The officials there have insisted that the
Palestinian family has no right even to rent, let alone buy, property in a
"Jewish community". That position has been effectively upheld by Israel's
highest court, which has agreed that the family must submit to a vetting
committee whose very purpose is to exclude them.

Again, the 1973 UN Convention on the "crime of apartheid" is instructive:
it includes measures "designed to divide the population along racial lines
by the creation of separate reserves and ghettos for the members of a
racial group or groups - [and] the expropriation of landed property
belonging to a racial group or groups or to members thereof".

If Jewish and Palestinian citizens have been kept apart so effectively -
and a separate education system and severe limits on interconfessional
marriage reinforce this emotional and physical segregation - how did the
Zakais and Tarabins become such close friends?

Their case is an interesting example of serendipity, as I discovered when
I met them. Weisman Zakai is the child of Iraqi Jewish parents who
immigrated to the Jewish state in its early years. When he and Ahmed
Tarabin met as boys in the 1960s, hanging out in the markets of the poor
neighbouring city of Beersheva, far from the centre of the country, they
found that what they had in common trumped the formal divisions that were
supposed to keep them apart and fearful. Both speak fluent Arabic, both
were raised in an Arab culture, both are excluded from Jewish Ashkenazi
society, and both share a passion for cars.

In their case, Israel's apartheid system failed in its job of keeping them
physically and emotionally apart. It failed to make them afraid of, and
hostile to, each other. But as the Zakais have learnt to their cost, in
refusing to live according to the rules of Israel's apartheid system, the
system has rejected them. The Zakais are denied the chance to rent to
their friends, and now live as pariahs in the community of Nevatim.

Finally, let us consider the concept of "security" inside Israel.

As I have said, the apartheid nature of relations between Jewish and
Palestinian citizens is veiled in the legal, social and political spheres.
It does not mirror the "petty apartheid" that was a feature of the South
African brand: the separate toilets, park benches and buses. But in one
instance it is explicit in this petty way - and this is when Jews and
Palestinians enter and leave the country through the border crossings and
through Ben Gurion international airport. Here the facade is removed and
the different status of citizenship enjoyed by Jews and Palestinians is
fully on show.

That lesson was learnt by two middle-aged Palestinian brothers I
interviewed this month. Residents of a village near Nazareth, they had
been life-long supporters of the Labor party and proudly showed me a
fading picture of them hosting a lunch for Yitzhak Rabin in the early
1990s. But at our meeting they were angry and bitter, vowing they would
never vote for a Zionist party again.

Their rude awakening had come three years ago when they travelled to the
US on a business trip with a group of Jewish insurance agents. On the
flight back, they arrived at New York's JFK airport to see their Jewish
colleagues pass through El Al's security checks in minutes. They,
meanwhile, spent two hours being interrogated and having their bags
minutely inspected.

When they were finally let through, they were assigned a female guard
whose job was to keep them under constant surveillance - in front of
hundreds of fellow passengers - till they boarded the plane. When one
brother went to the bathroom without first seeking permission, the guard
berated him in public and her boss threatened to prevent him from boarding
the plane unless he apologised. This month the court finally awarded the
brothers $8,000 compensation for what it called their "abusive and
unnecessary" treatment.

Two things about this case should be noted. The first is that the El Al
security team admitted in court that neither brother was deemed a security
risk of any sort. The only grounds for the special treatment they received
was their national and ethnic belonging. It was transparently a case of
racial profiling.

The second thing to note is that their experience is nothing out of the
ordinary for Palestinian citizens travelling to and from Israel. Similar,
and far worse, incidents occur every day during such security procedures.
What was exceptional in this case was that the brothers pursued a
time-consuming and costly legal action against El Al.

They did so, I suspect, because they felt so badly betrayed. They had made
the mistake of believing the hasbara (propaganda) from Israeli politicians
of all stripes who declare that Palestinian citizens can enjoy equal
status with Jewish citizens if they are loyal to the state. They assumed
that by being Zionists they could become first-class citizens. In
accepting this conclusion, they had misunderstood the apartheid reality
inherent in a Jewish state.

The most educated, respectable and wealthy Palestinian citizen will always
fare worse at the airport security check than the most disreputable Jewish
citizen, or the one who espouses extremist opinions or even the Jewish
citizen with a criminal record.

Israel's apartheid system is there to maintain Jewish privilege in a
Jewish state. And at the point where that privilege is felt most
viscerally by ordinary Jews to be vulnerable, in the life and death
experience of flying thousands of feet above the ground, Palestinian
citizens must be shown their status as outsider, as the enemy, whoever
they are and whatever they have, or have not, done.

Apartheid rule, as I have argued, applies to Palestinians in both Israel
and the occupied territories. But is not apartheid in the territories much
worse than it is inside Israel? Should we not concern ourselves more with
the big apartheid in the West Bank and Gaza than this weaker apartheid?
Such an argument demonstrates a dangerous misconception about the
indivisible nature of Israel's apartheid towards Palestinians and about
its goals.

Certainly, it is true that apartheid in the territories is much more
aggressive than it is inside Israel. There are two reasons for this. The
first is that the apartheid under occupation is much less closely
supervised by the Israeli civilian courts than it is in Israel. You can,
to put it bluntly, get away with much more here. The second, and more
significant, reason, however, is that the Israeli system of apartheid in
the occupied territories is forced to be more aggressive and cruel - and
that is because the battle is not yet won here. The fight of the occupying
power to steal your resources - your land, water and labour - is in
progress but the outcome is still to be decided. Israel is facing the
considerable pressures of time and a fading international legitimacy as it
works to take your possessions from you. Every day you resist makes that
task a little harder.

In Israel, by contrast, apartheid rule is entrenched - it achieved its
victory decades ago. Palestinian citizens have third or fourth class
citizenship; they have had almost all of their land taken from them; they
are allowed to live only in their ghettoes; their education system is
controlled by the security services; they can work in few jobs other than
those Jews do not want; they have the vote but cannot participate in
government or effect any political change; and so on.

Doubtless, a related fate is envisioned for you too. The veiled apartheid
facing Palestinians inside Israel is the blueprint for a veiled - and more
legitimate - kind of apartheid being planned for Palestinians in the
occupied territories, at least those who are allowed to remain in their
Bantustans. And for this very reason, exposing and defeating the apartheid
inside Israel is vital to the success of resisting the apartheid that has
taken root here.

That is why we must fight Israeli apartheid wherever it is found - in
Jaffa or Jerusalem, in Nazareth or Nablus, in Beersheva or Bilin. It is
the only struggle that can bring justice to the Palestinians.

Jonathan Cook is a writer and journalist based in Nazareth, Israel. His
latest books are Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the
Plan to Remake the Middle East (Pluto Press) and Disappearing Palestine:
Israel's Experiments in Human Despair (Zed Books).

--------14 of 14--------

The Coming Plan to Slash Social Security and Medicare
The Flight of the Deficit Hawks
April 28, 2010

The deficit hawks are going into high gear with their drive to cut Social
Security and Medicare. President Obama's deficit commission is having a
big public event on Tuesday in which many of the country's most prominent
deficit hawks will tout the need to reduce the budget deficit. The next
day, Wall Street investment banker Peter Peterson will be hosting a
"summit on fiscal responsibility," which will feature more luminaries
touting the need to get deficits under control.

What will be missing from both of these events is any serious debate on
the extent of the deficit problem and its causes. These affairs are not
about promoting a real exchange of views on issues like the future of
Social Security, Medicare, and public support for education, research and
infrastructure. The purpose of these events is to tell the public that
everyone agrees, we have to cut the deficit. And, this means cutting
Social Security and Medicare. This is argument by authority.

Many public debates in the United States take this form. The issue is not
what is said, but rather who says it. A few years ago all the authorities
said that there was no housing bubble. The large body of evidence showing
that house prices had hugely diverged from the fundamentals did not matter
when the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, the President's Council of
Economic Advisors and other leading lights of the economic profession
insisted that everything in the housing market was just fine.

Going further back to the mid-90s, many of this same group of deficit hawk
luminaries tried to use argument by authority to cut Social Security. They
came up with the story that the consumer price index (CPI) overstated the
true rate of inflation. After workers retire, their Social Security
benefits are indexed to the CPI. This crew (which included then Sen. Alan
Simpson, a co-chair of President Obama's commission, and Peter Peterson)
argued that Social Security benefits should lag the CPI by 1.0 percentage
point a year. In other words, if the CPI shows 3.0 percent inflation, then
Social Security benefits will only rise by 2.0 percent.

That may seem a small cut, but it adds up over time. A worker retired for
10 years would have their benefits reduced by approximately 10 percent. A
worker retired for 20 years would have their benefits cut by almost 20

To push this agenda, they put together a panel of the country's most
prominent economists, all of whom blessed the claim that the CPI
overstated the true rate of inflation by at least 1.0 percentage point. In
addition to this panel, the Social Security cutters also pulled in other
prominent economists, including Martin Feldstein, formerly President
Reagan's top economist and the head of the National Bureau of Economic

The Social Security cutters were so successful in rounding up the big
names that virtually no economists were prepared to publicly stand up and
question their claims about the CPI. They had near free rein, running
around the country with the "all the experts agree" line.

As events unfolded they were not able to get their cut in Social Security
benefits. (Ted Kennedy and Dick Gephardt deserve big credit on this.) But
what is really interesting for the current debate is what happened to the
experts' claim on the CPI. There were some changes made to the CPI, but in
the view of the expert panel, the major causes of the biases in the CPI
were not fixed. They concluded that even after the changes the CPI still
overstated the true rate of inflation by 0.8 percentage points annually.

If this claim is really true then it has enormous ramifications for our
assessment of the economy. It means, for example, that incomes and wages
are rising far more rapidly than the official data show. It means that
people in the recent past were far poorer than is indicated by official
statistics. If the claim about the CPI being overstated is true, then we
would have to re-examine a vast amount of economic research that starts
from the premise that the CPI is an accurate measure of inflation.

However, almost no economists have adjusted their research for a CPI's
overstatement of inflation. In fact, even the members of the expert panel
don't generally use a measure of inflation that adjusts for the alleged
bias in the CPI. In other words, when they are not pushing cuts to Social
Security, these economists act as though the CPI is an accurate measure of
the rate of inflation. This could lead one to question these experts'

This history should give the public serious grounds for being suspicious
about the latest efforts to cut Social Security and Medicare. A serious
discussion of the deficit will show that in the short-term the deficit is
not a problem and that the longer-term deficit problem is really a problem
of a broken U.S. health care system. The public should not allow the
deficit hawks to derail a more serious discussion with their argument by

Dean Baker is the co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy
Research (CEPR). He is the author of Plunder and Blunder: The Rise and
Fall of the Bubble Economy and False Profits: Recoverying From the Bubble

This column was originally published by The Guardian.


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