January 5, 2011

Dawn Treader: Applying for the next flotilla to Gaza

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Jane Stillwater @ 12:32 pm

On New Years Day, me and my family all trudged off to see “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” and once again got inspired to take sword in hand and fight against Injustice and the Bad Guys. I wanna be Queen Lucy! (But non-violently of course).

And now I just may get my chance.

Sometime in April of 2011, many American and European peace-and-justice organizations plan to join together and launch yet another humanitarian flotilla of boats and ships to Gaza, in an effort to bring food, medicine, books and building supplies to the illegally-besieged men, women and children there — trying to relieve their suffering under the Dark Lords who have kept them chained and imprisoned. How heroic is that! I wanna go!

But, unfortunately, I won’t be able to do anything that involves fighting giant sea monsters and dueling with dragons — because of my sore foot and bad knees.

“But Jane — maybe you won’t have to fight any dragons,” you might say. “I hear that this voyage is going to be completely nonviolent. All they are going to do is sail to Gaza, drop off humanitarian supplies and leave. Think school notepads. Think penicillin. Think toothbrushes.”

Yeah, okay, but — what will happen if we DO come under attack? How the freak will I be able to inform the Bad Guys (who will be coming after me with battleships and helicopters and ski masks) to just leave me alone because I’m the next Gandhi — as they violently charge at me with tear gas, crowbars, assault rifles, hand guns and vicious mean dogs!

How did Gandhi manage to remain nonviolent in the face of all that — when even Queen Lucy couldn’t do it? Snaps for Gandhi. Any fool can fire a machine gun, drop a bomb, plant a roadside device — or even use a sword. You really gotta be a real hero to be as brave as Gandhi.

PS: I really liked “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,” which took place at a time before guns were invented and all fighting was done hand-to-hand. It may not have been as nonviolent as I would have liked it to be but at least when you are locked in swashbuckling combat, you at least get to see your enemy up close and personal before you kill them or they kill you. Now the whole thing is just done with artillery and drones.

PPS: Wanna go sail on the “Dawn Treader” flotilla to Gaza yourself? Here’s a link to instructions on how to submit your application:

PPPS:  According to the Huffington Post, Wikileaks just announced that, “Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip was meant to push the area’s economy ‘to the brink of collapse,’ according to a U.S. diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks on Wednesday, signaling that Israel was well aware that the policy was taking a heavy toll on the area’s civilian population.”

Isn’t that illegal?  And immoral?  But, hey, at least it’s not fattening — that is, if you are a malnourished three-year-old living in Gaza


September 3, 2010

“The men behind the wire”: Comparing Belfast & Gaza

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 2:22 pm

Belfast Mural

Someone I know just pointed out to me that there are many similarities between the brutal assault on Palestine and Gaza last year and the brutal assault on Guernica during the Spanish Civil War — but I think that if comparisons are going to be made, then the Gaza tragedy would probably be more similar to what happened in Belfast back in 1980.

I’ve seen Pablo Picasso’s famous painting of Guernica and, sure, that could have been a painting of Gaza — as bombs were repeatedly dropped on its civilian population. But the analogy between what happened in Belfast and what is happening in Palestine and Gaza is even more applicable.

As one Belfast resistance ballad put it, “Armoured cars and tanks and guns came to take away our sons. But every man must stand behind the men behind the wire.” Like the heroic Belfast hunger-strikers who languished in The Maze prison back in 1981 in protest of the loss of their civil rights solely because of their religious preferences, how many Palestinians are languishing behind the wire in the occupied West Bank and Gaza today? Just listen to this haunting melody and try not to think of Gaza.

“Being Irish means they’re guilty.”

If you listen to the words of “The Fighting Men of Crossmaglen,” you can practically imagine Palestinians singing this song to themselves as they bury the dead children of Gaza and try to deal with “The Troubles” in Palestine. “I’d sing a song of the bravest men…the patriotic flame will never die.”

When I was visiting Belfast’s Falls Road a few years after “The Troubles” there ended, I saw people trying to put their lives back together again and working together to rebuild their community after being brutally assaulted by the British year after year after year. The people of the Falls Road were trying to send their sons and daughters to college, trying to sooth their children’s fears — and trying to do whatever they could to make sure they would never again experience the horror of being under the British thumb.

That sounds like Palestine and Gaza to me.

When I was in Bethlehem several years ago, I saw students at the university there diligently attempting to get an education despite the fact that the University of Bethlehem’s library had been shelled. Who the freak in their right mind shells a university library? “We just covered the holes with plexiglass and turned them into windows.”

The people of Belfast identify strongly with the people of Palestine. They know exactly what Palestinians are going through now. “Been there. Done that.”

PS: Speaking of “Been there, done that,” Scottish journalist and Middle East expert David Pratt has just filed a report on the current batch of Israel-Palestine peace talks. “Like most people, I feel a real sense of deja vu. How many times have we been here before?” Is he referring to Oslo and Camp David? Or is he referring to Guernica and Belfast?

Pratt then suggests a three-point plan for finally conducting real, functional, successful peace talks regarding “The Troubles” in Israel-Palestine.

According to Pratt, “Whether Washington or anyone else likes it or not, three things are urgently needed if any toe-hold is to be gained in establishing the basis for a continuing peace process. First, bring Hamas into the diplomatic dynamic and negotiations. Secondly, encourage change within the Palestinian leadership” [and within the Israeli leadership too!] “to bring forth leaders with a genuine strategy for the future, rather than their own self-interests. And, thirdly, the international community must pile pressure on Israel to halt its illegal settlement expansion and hold it accountable for its failure to respect Palestinian rights….

“As Palestinian-American journalist Ali Abunimah put it recently: ‘No serious analyst believes that peace can be made between Palestinians and Israelis without Hamas on board, any more than could have been the case in Northern Ireland without Sinn Fein and the IRA.’”

June 30, 2010

Screw Iraq, Afghanistan & Gaza: Let’s invade Detroit!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 2:36 pm

Returning from the 2010 Social Forum in Detroit, I saw several soldiers at the DTW airport, waiting for their flights. And once again I was struck by the thought that every American soldier seems to be a whole autonomous unit unto himself or herself. Every American soldier truly IS an “Army of One”. Highly trained, efficient, skilled, confident and respectful — these men and women in uniform are just the kind of people that Detroit really needs to get itself out of its slump. And every other city in America needs this caliber of person too.

So please tell me why, exactly, are these walking human resources being wasted way over on the other side of the world when their dedication and skill sets and — let’s face it — salaries and healthcare benefits are so desperately needed here at home?

No, we don’t need our soldiers’ weapons skills in places like the Gulf Coast states or the Rust Belt. But we do need their dedication and heart.

We need the Marine Corps’ skill sets. “The few, the proud.” We really do. And we need that kind of bravery and willingness to get the job done here rather than there.

Second Marine Regiment in Al Anbar. Tarawa. “Keep Moving.” I was there. I saw for myself what our Marines can do to help re-build a country.

We need our soldiers’ ingenuity, dignity and courage here at home, helping to put America back on track — not over in Afghanistan, not over in Iraq and not even over in Gaza — where the corporatists who run America pay the cream of Israeli youth to do their dirty work for them, wasting their young lives being thugs to the brutal Occupation instead of being honorable men who refuse to shoot babies at point-blank range.

When I see a soldier at an airport, I just want to go up and hug him. Or her. You think that our boys aren’t doing a good job? Then go see Sebastian Junger’s new documentary movie “Restrepo” ( That’s the kind of ability and dedication I saw demonstrated again and again and again when I was in Iraq.

These guys are good.

But we need these men and women’s dedication and skills here at home, not over on the other side of the world.

And we need to be paying these men and women to be using their skill sets here, in America, in civilian life — in a job corps as well as a Marine Corps.

Screw bailouts for bankers, oil executives, Wall Street schemers and global corporations with no ties or loyalties to our country. They have done nothing with the money that Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Obama gave them except to use it to rip us off even more.

Let’s take back all that money — and give it to our returning soldiers instead. Let’s fill up ALL of our airports with returning soldiers. We truly need this lost generation’s abilities here at home. Now.

PS: While I was at the Social Forum representing the Free Palestine Movement, my booth was next to a booth manned by Peggy Logue and her husband. Logue is another dedicated Marine Mom. And she was selling her new book, “Skin in the Game,” all about her Marine son’s experiences in Haditha and her conflict between wanting to support her son’s efforts and her moral obligation to try to stop the needless bloodshed caused by global corporate wars. “Intense, raw, and profoundly honest, ‘Skin in the Game’ illustrates the human side of war and the daily struggle for peace.”

At the Social Forum, I also talked with Kyle Kajihiro, a representative of the American Friends Service Committee ( in Hawaii, and he told me how the entire Pacific Rim area has become just another highly-militarized “American Lake” — to the benefit of global corporatists, not us.

Screw that.

We need skilled men and women here at home, not hunkering off somewhere in faraway places like Guam or Okinawa, defending rich people’s interests — not ours — because that’s the only job that our young men and women can get.

PPS: The Detroit airport is the only airport I have ever seen besides, of course, the Norita airport near Tokyo, where all signs are printed in both English and Japanese.

June 1, 2010

“Pirates of the Mediterranean” alert: One more ship is still sailing to Gaza

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Jane Stillwater @ 1:30 am

Question: “When the Israel’s navy forcibly boarded an international fleet carrying humanitarian goods to Gaza last week, was this a justifiable military action or was it simply a case of hijacking on the high seas?”

Answer: “I don’t know. I’m not Captain Jack Sparrow. If you want to know about the finer points of piracy, you had better ask him. But to a mere land-lubber such as myself, it does seem to be a bit dicey that Israeli commandos attacked a humanitarian fleet in international waters, killing ten people and injuring a lot more in the process.”

Perhaps the answer to this question lies in the fact that the boarding attempt took place in international waters? Israel’s violent invasion of a ship sailing in international waters seems an awful lot like piracy to me. One would think that Israel’s navy could have at least waited until the fleet entered the territorial waters of Israel or until the fleet posed some sort of threat to Israel itself. Israel’s premature action has pretty much led the rest of the world to begin to think in terms of hijacking and piracy — and that’s just not cool.

Let’s leave hijacking to Somalia, okay?

However. We may soon have an instant replay of this whole event — wherein Israel may be getting a second chance to show that it is or is not still acting like Bluebeard or flying the Jolly Roger. An Irish cargo ship, the “Rachel Corrie,” is still steaming full speed ahead toward Gaza and it also contains humanitarian aid in its hold. So. What will the Israeli government do this time? Will it negotiate with the Rachel Corrie? Will it let the good ship Rachel Corrie go through? Or will it repeat last week’s disaster?

We’ll soon see.

But whatever happens during this instant-replay drama on the high seas coming up and whatever the government of Israel decides to do to the “Rachel Corrie,” all of this “Pirates of the Mediterranean” behavior on behalf of the Israeli government is still rather short-term stuff — and perhaps it’s time for the Israeli government to look at what is happening over the long run as well.

Perhaps it is time for the Israeli government to look at the big picture here, back off on its ill-conceived siege of Gaza and get OVER the fact that Hamas actually did win the 2007 Gaza elections fair and square. Perhaps it’s time for the Israeli government to forget about “Talk like a Pirate Day,” stop pretending that a country approximately the size of New Jersey has the same power, resources, invincibility and chutzpah as Russia or China or America — and to stop alienating all of its neighbors and more than a few of its friends.

At some point in time, Israel’s government may need to finally realize that it is NOT Johhny Depp or even Erroll Flynn, and does not have the wherewithal to indefinitely keep up all this swagger and booty-hunting — without pissing a whole bunch of people (and nations) off.

May 25, 2010

I (heart) New York!: The 2010 Book Expo, Lower East Side & Gaza

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 1:35 pm

New York is absolutely throbbing with energy and excitement! When I get back to Berkeley, I’m gonna have to hide under the bed for WEEKS just to recover from this trip. The very first thing that you do after landing at JFK is to get lost on the subway at least twice. Then I stayed at the Gershwin Hotel’s conveniently-priced youth hostel — with three Swedish girls and an Argentine science major. None of them snored. And just TRY to get hooked up to the free wi-fi at McDonalds. Not happening. No.

I really wanted to get an internet connection so I could find out what’s happening to my friends who are sailing to Gaza with hundreds of tons of humanitarian relief stuffed into a bunch of cargo ships. They were supposed to sail on Saturday. And then Tuesday. What is happening? Have they sailed yet? Or not.

Finally, around 10 pm last night, I located an internet cafe. Nope, they haven’t sailed yet. But they had better do it soon if they plan to get there any time soon. The Israeli navy has already promised to give them a Warm Reception — and it might be impolite of them to miss that. Joe Meadors, a survivor of the USS Liberty disaster, is also on board the same ship as my friends. Perhaps he is hoping to do one of those veterans’ reminiscence thingies and relive another Israeli attack? Let us sincerely hope that THAT doesn’t happen!

Anyway, bright and early this morning I ran, er, hurried up to the Jacob Javits center to get my Barbra Streisand ticket. Score! And there’s a photo of her on the ticket, all in blue velvet and sitting on a blue velvet couch next to a fluffy little white dog. Her new book is called, “My Passion for Design”. I hope they give out free copies. My apartment could really use a face-lift.

Here’s a quote from Barbra’s editor at Viking: “She devoted as much time to this project as to anything else she’s done in her life. You can really hear Streisand’s voice when reading it. It’s as much fun to read as it is to look at.”

I’ll report back to you later, after I’ve seen her speech. No photographs are allowed, however. Rats.

Now for the fun stuff. After registering and checking in at the Book Expo, I jumped on the crosstown bus and transferred to the Second Avenue bus down to the Lower East Side. I used to live on the Lower East Side! Back in 1965. B&H Dairy is still there, still selling rice pudding.

Then I went to see my old neighbor, Ben Treuhaft. He has a piano repair shop down on Ridge Street, down past Orchard Street. And, boy, has Orchard Street changed too. Insead of all those old funky stalls and pushcarts, it is now officially New York’s “Bargain District”. And Alphabet City, which used to be a notorious junkie heaven where you took your life in your hands just to walk down the street past 8 pm, is now all co-op apartments, Yuppie daycare centers and designer boutiques.

I was almost raped on the corner of Houston and Second, back in the day. My, times have changed.

Anyway, it’s just no longer “Second-hand Rose, from Second Avenue….”

Ben, my ex-neighbor, caught me up to speed fast. “I’ve married and had two children since I saw you last….” That long ago?

“What about your Piana to Havana program?” Ben used to collect hundreds of used American pianos and ship them off to Cuba so that school children could take lessons on them.

“I’m not so involved in that any more. And besides, I’m leaving for Japan in four days.” His wife Olga, a biologist, will be working on a brain-study program over there for a few years.

“Wow! That’s exciting!” Then I volunteered to let his wife study MY brain too — free of charge. Anything to have an excuse to go visit Japan.

Then I asked Ben if he knew anything about how the huge oil spill disaster was effecting Cuba, but he didn’t know. However, he did say that Cubans are highly innovative in matters like that and could probably have the equipment and know-how to plug the leak ASAP. But we all know that asking Cuba for help just isn’t going to happen — just like what happened in Haiti, all that cutting-off-one’s-nose kind of stuff.

Then I jumped onto the Chambers subway line at Essex Street and scooted back up to the Javits Center again, to see if they were handing out any more free books. No luck so far but the Book Expo doesn’t officially kick off until tomorrow.

I just love New York


To see photos of Ben and my Barbra ticket, click here:

May 18, 2010

Berkeley’s Grassroots House helps send a boat to Gaza

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 12:40 pm

The Berkeley Barb used to be my home town’s most famous “newspaper of record,” and we also had another hometown rag called “Grassroots”. However, both these papers have been out of print for more than 40 years and now most of our local Berkeley newspapers have gone digital — except for “Grassroots,” which has bucked that trend and simply gone “residential”. It has changed from being a newspaper into being, er, a building?

Located on Blake Street just below Shattuck, Berkeley’s Grassroots House still does all that crusading-against-injustice type of stuff that the newspaper it was named after used to do — only now it does it with shingles, wood and windows instead of with newsprint. According to a 2009 article by Lydia Gans in the Berkeley Daily Planet, “Grassroots House…is a community building that provides office and meeting space for a number of social justice organizations.” And one of those social justice organizations is the Free Palestine Movement — which is currently helping to financially sponsor one-half of the cost of a boat in an international flotilla sailing from Greece to Gaza with medical supplies at the end of May.

Does this make Grassroots House “The place that launched a half a ship”?

Local Free Palestine Movement members Janet Kobran and Paul Larudee will be on board the FPM-sponsored half-boat when it — and seven and a half other boats — leaves Greece for Gaza in a flotilla meant to break Israel’s four-year-long siege of Gaza by providing Gaza with various much-needed humanitarian supplies. And Ehud Barak, Israel’s Minister of Defense, has promised to send almost the entire Israeli navy out to intercept this small flotilla.

Has Berkeley’s Grassroots House once again gotten itself into hot water?

Like its namesake, the original Grassroots newspaper, it looks like the Grassroots House has once again assumed the role of a biblical David by attempting to take on a very formidable Goliath — one who has threatened to use whatever force necessary to stop this humanitarian relief effort.

Oh well. That’s Berkeley for you — home to a whole bunch of us latter-day Davids. And although we may not win every round against the world’s many Goliaths, we still keep on trying. And perhaps this time the FPM’s half-a-boat will be successful in helping relieve the siege of Gaza.

(Here’s a link to the FPM, where you can actually track the flotilla’s progress via a coolness spot-locator:

PS: The City of Berkeley also recently announced that, within our city limits, a corporation is still NOT a person. Yaay!

PPS: When China successfully invaded America about a decade ago and established a strong beachhead in almost every town in the USA, it couldn’t conquer Berkeley! To this day, Berkeley still does NOT have a WalMart.

May 8, 2010

Gaza or bust: Hey, that’s my Promised Land too!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — Jane Stillwater @ 12:32 pm

Author’s note: For years and years now, it’s been really hard for me to write anything in favor of Palestinians because there are always so many repercussions. Sure, I don’t receive death threats any more like I used to but there are still all those nasty e-mails to deal with. Bummer. Why bother? Why should I stick my cyber-neck out again and again for people who are living way over on the other side of the world? There are too many injustices here at home for me to object to. Why bother looking for them elsewhere?

And who wants to be unpopular? Who wants to buck the tide? Who wants to alienate the majority (once again)? Not me!

But now I’ve just learned that Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh, a former Associate Professor of Genetics, director of Clinical Cytogenetic services at Yale University School of Medicine and a professor at Bethlehem University (and also a Palestinian Christian), was just arrested by Israeli occupation forces for peacefully protesting land seizures and home demolitions in the West Bank near Bethlehem.

Here’s Dr. Qumsiyeh’s account of the incident:

And you can just bet that if someone who has been a professor at the prestigious Yale School of Medicine can get arrested for standing up for justice, then who can guarantee that anyone else is safe from arrest — either in the occupied West Bank or even here in America, the country that basically pays for the West Bank’s occupation.

So I decided to go ahead and post my latest blog essay on Palestine anyway. Screw the weirdos who send me threatening e-mails. A person’s gotta do what a person’s gotta do. Justice is on my side!

Gaza or bust: Hey, that’s my Promised Land too!

I’m all scheduled to go see Barbara Streisand and John Gresham at the 2010 Book Expo in New York City on May 25. This is a terrible thing. Rats!

“And why, exactly, are you complaining about that?” you might ask. “Seriously, Jane. There are a whole bunch of people out there who would give their right eye-tooth to be able to see Barbara Streisand live and in person!” And I might even be one of them — but my big problem is that now I’ve just developed a disasterous scheduling conflict.

“Guess what, Jane?” e-mailed my friend Janet. “An extra place has just opened up on the European boat flotilla that’s sailing from Greece to Gaza soon, and I think they can fit you in. You’d be leaving for Greece on May 19. Can you do it?” Rats and double-rats! This means that I’m going to have to chose between Barbra Streisand and taking a boat trip from Greece to Gaza, where people are trapped and dying. Gaza today is like how things used to be during World War II. Everyone there is either busy reenacting the results of Nazis’ siege of the Warsaw Ghetto or else the Nazis’ siege of Dunkirk — only without all those little English sailboats to the rescue, except, hopefully, for this new European Flotilla.

Plus this flotilla will set sail on the 70th anniversary of the relief of the siege of Dunkirk. How historic is that!

Who could possibly make a choice between Barbra Streisand and and the relief of Gaza? Not me!

So. What should I do??? Should I be getting my freak on with Barbra? Or is it time to go off to Gaza, fight against injustice, get a hot scoop for my blog — and get a once-in-a-lifetime chance to regenerate my Muslim roots as well?

One of my pet peeves in life these days is when people keep sanctimoniously telling me what I can and cannot do. “Jane, you need to start going along with the crowd more,” they say. That’s not gonna happen. I’m too old for that.

I hate it when people tell me that I can’t write about the Kennedy assassination or all those holes in the official 9-11 story. But even more than that, I really hate it when people keep telling me that I can’t even MENTION stuff about injustice in Palestine and/or that individual Muslims all over the world are being demonized collectively.

Heck, I’m even afraid to even hint gently that perhaps — just perhaps — I might be a Muslim too. Why? Because whenever I do mention that fact, then people start pouring out of the freaking WOODWORK in order to call me a baby-killer or a communist or a terrorist or Lord-knows-what other kind of social or political leper. Well. Despite all this pressure to conform, every once in a while I become contrary enough to want to flaunt my Muslim-ish-ness — if for no other reason than to remind myself that I’m not just one more mindless Teabagger sheep.

So get over it. I’m a Muslim. Burn a cross on my lawn if you must. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I even wrote a book about Islam. “Mecca & the Hajj: Lessons From the Islamic School of Hard Knocks”. Order it here: You can’t get much more Muslim than that. Humph.

Not only that, but the various fundie wingnuts who now run the Israeli government with an iron hand are always ranting and raving on about wanting to seize what small bits of land that are now left to Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem and Old Jerusalem — and how these small bits and pieces now lived on by Palestinians need to be absorbed into the Israeli wingnuts’ Promised Land too.

I hate to burst your bubble, guys, but, as a Muslim, that area you are trying to grab up is actually MY Promised Land. That’s MY property you’re talking about. Your claim to that particular patch of real estate has been invalidated by a more recent deed to the property. Doesn’t anybody around here ever read the Talmud, the Bible or the Quran?

As a Muslim, my deed to the Promised Land is newer than the Israeli wingnuts’ deed. My deed was written later. And any real estate broker will tell you that a newer deed always holds precedence. And that means that my deed to all this section of the Promised Land trumps theirs. Get over it.

Not only that but Old Jerusalem is a UNESCO World Heritage Site — MY world heritage site. As a member of the United Nations, I get possession of Old Jerusalem too. You think not? Read the fine print.

So. Should I go over to Gaza and set everyone over there straight — or should I just go see Barbra Streisand instead? I’m completely torn. What would YOU do?

PS: Someone from the Free Palestine Movement recently suggested the perfect solution to my dilemma. “All you have to do is just ask Barbra Streisand to come on the boat flotilla to Gaza with you.” Works for me.

PPS: And while we’re on the subject of Teabaggers and wingnuts, the wingnuts in Arizona all have a lot in common with Israel’s wingnuts. First of all, both are in control of governments that have enacted laws that clearly support violence, intimidation and racism over democracy and the right of all human beings to be free.

Second, Palestinians owned the West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem and Old Jerusalem before the Israelis arrived — and Mexicans owned Arizona before the Americans arrived. Both Americans and Israelis then seized possession of “disputed” territories by force. And now both American and Israeli wingnuts are all complaining and whining because the people that they originally seized all this land from still want it back.

Third, both the Israeli wingnuts and the Arizona wingnuts use false rhetoric to bolster their claims. If you disagree with Teabagger wingnuts, they won’t argue the facts with you but rather will simply call you names — claim that you are un-American or, shudder, socialist or whatever.

And if you disagree with the Israeli wingnuts, they will simply call you antisemitic. End of discussion. Well, here’s what I’ve got to say about that. “If the wingnuts, fundies and Mossad agents who currently run the Israeli government want to stop whining about the rise of antisemitism, then they had better stop acting in ways that endanger their reputations and actually encourage antisemitism. They had better stop acting like murderers and liars. Nobody likes a murderer or a liar, no matter what religion they profess — be they Jews, Christians or Muslims. And lying and murdering with impunity in the Holy Land is giving Judaism a very bad name.”

I would hate to see Jews worldwide become shunned and avoided solely because of the tricks that Netanyahu’s wingnuts are up to. Plus don’t you just hate it when hypocrites whine?

It’s like when Sarah Palin advocates hunting wolves from helicopters and then whines about being slurred by environmentalists. Or when Palin goes to Arizona, stirs up a shipload of racism and then whines that she is being misunderstood by the press.

It’s like when Bush and Cheney claimed to be goody-goody Christians and then set off a firestorm that eventually killed over a million people in the Middle East — and then Bush and Cheney started whining that we Americans who advocated for peace were acting anti-Christian.

It’s like when the Taliban burned down all those girls’ schools in Afghanistan and then whined about Americans all being anti-Muslim when we objected.

You can’t have it both ways, guys. Either you always take the moral high ground no matter what the cost — or you don’t. You can’t just PRETEND to take the moral high ground. People have a way of eventually finding out the truth. Plus being able to master the art of being fair, moral and just, even if it kills you, is what separates human being from animals. And it is also the goal of ALL of our religions.

PPPS: And, no, I’m still not done venting about religious hypocrisy. Here are even more ventilations from me:

Just because some idiot Saudis may or may not have blown up the World Trade Center, I’m supposed to hate all Muslims? That doesn’t make sense.

Just because some idiots in Israel blew up Jenin, Nablus, Lebanon (twice), Gaza and parts of Bethlehem, I’m supposed to hate all Jews? That doesn’t make sense.

And just because some idiots in Washington who claim to listen to Jesus blew up Iraq and Afghanistan, I’m supposed to hate all Christians? That doesn’t make sense either.

PPPPS: And while I’m still in tell-all mode, I might as well confess that I am even more of a pariah than just being a good Muslim in a time when all too many Americans consider Muslims to be terrorists. I am also a good Jew, a good Christian, a good Buddhist and probably even a good Hindu — I take yoga one a week!

But what aggravates me most about Americans today is that, even after our great country has flourished and bloomed for the past 200 years under democracy and religious freedom, when the going starts to get tough for this generation all too many of us ignore both democracy and religion completely — and turn to fascism.


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