Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat, vetoed Republican-authored legislation last month that would make it a misdemeanor for the feds to attempt to enforce any federal gun regulations that “infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms.” Despite shutting down the bill, however, lawmakers are expected to override his veto in the coming days and let the measure go on the books.
If passed, the law will also force journalists who publish identifying information about gun owners to pay a $1,000 fine and spend a year in jail. Gov. Nixon said it could start a precedent that would erode some First Amendment rights for the media if his veto is rejected.
In a letter to the New York Times, Nixon said the bill would make it a crime for a local newspaper to publish “photos of proud young Missourians who harvest their first turkey or deer.” According to some estimates, however, local lawmakers will likely make it impossible for the law to be vetoed anytime soon.
When the bill was originally passed in the State House, 108 of the 109 Republicans voted in favor of it, as did 11 Democrats. In the Senate, the Times reported, two-dozen Republicans and 2 Democrats signed on in support. In order for the veto to be rejected, the legislature will need 109 votes from the House and 23 from the Senate.
State Representative T. J. McKenna (D-Festus) told the Times he voted for the bill even though he doesn’t favor it because the repercussions could have been dastardly.
“If you just Google my name, it’s all over the place about what a big coward I am,” he told the paper. “I can’t be Mr. Liberal, St. Louis wannabe,” he said. “What am I supposed to do? Just go against all my constituents?”
Speaking to Fox News, McKenna added that the bill would violate constitutional law and will likely be thrown out, even if the veto override receives enough votes.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama is hoping he can advance reformed gun rules on a federal level that, if the Missouri legislature has its way, will be null and void in The Show Me State —until, of course, a court intervenes and opines otherwise.
Months after the White House announced plans to reform laws in the wake of the Newtown shooting, Biden on Thursday said the administration is looking to tackle firearm crime by launching two new front lines in their war against guns. The vice president proposed a White House plan to stop letting military weapons be re-sold to people in the US or allied countries, as well as another that would close down a loophole that currently lets Americans who are ineligible to own a firearm bypass restrictions by registering weapons in the name of a corporation or trust.
“It’s simple, it’s straightforward, it’s common sense,” Biden said.
(1)All federal acts, laws, orders, rules, and regulations, whether past, present, or future, which infringe on the people’s right to keep and bear arms as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I, Section 23 of the Missouri Constitution shall be invalid in this state, shall not be recognized by this state, shall be specifically rejected by this state, and shall be considered null and void and of no effect in this state.
(2) Such federal acts, laws, orders, rules, and regulations include, but are not limited to:
(a) The provisions of the federal Gun Control Act of 1934;
(b) The provisions of the federal Gun Control Act of 1968;
(c) Any tax, levy, fee, or stamp imposed on firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition not common to all other goods and services which could have a chilling effect on the purchase or ownership of those items by law-abiding citizens;
(d) Any registering or tracking of firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition which could have a chilling effect on the purchase or ownership of those items by law-abiding citizens;
(e) Any registering or tracking of the owners of firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition which could have a chilling effect on the purchase or ownership of those items by law-abiding citizens;
(f) Any act forbidding the possession, ownership, or use or transfer of any type of firearm, firearm accessory, or ammunition by law-abiding citizens; and
(g) Any act ordering the confiscation of firearms, firearm accessories, or ammunition from law-abiding citizens.
It would also prohibit background checks and publication of any information about a gun-owner.
Federal agents, on the other hand, would be persecuted to the fullest extent of the law – for trying to uphold federal law.
The National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA) imposes a tax on the making and transfer of machine guns and certain other weapons, as well as a special occupational tax on persons and entities engaged in the business of importing, manufacturing and dealing in those weapons. (The NFA distinguishes between “making” a weapon, and “manufacturing” a weapon. Only a registered NFA manufacturer can “manufacture” a machine gun; other persons who construct machine guns are “making” them, according to the NFA. (26 U.S.C. § 5845(i); 27 C.F.R. § 479.11) ) As detailed below, the law also requires the registration of all machine guns.
While the NFA was enacted by Congress as an exercise of its authority to tax, the underlying purpose of the law was to curtail, if not prohibit, transactions in machine guns and certain other weapons. (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, U.S. Dept. of Justice, National Firearms Act Handbook 9-15, June 2007) Congress found these firearms pose a significant crime problem because of their frequent use in crime, and the $200 making and transfer taxes were considered quite severe at the time and adequate to discourage or eliminate transfers in these firearms. The $200 tax has not changed since 1934.
Probably one of the most offensive consequences of federal law is that “Any machine gun involved in a violation of the NFA is subject to seizure and forfeiture. Forfeited machine guns cannot be sold at public sale, but may be destroyed or transferred within the federal government, or to a state or local government.”
Today, the Missouri legislature will vote, in essence, to secede from the Union, as they meet to override Gov. Nixon’s veto. The bill’s proponents raise all sorts of bizarre defenses of the bill, claiming it does not add guns to the street, and CNN quotes one gun owner as saying, “There are people saying this is the same as seceding from the Union. Missouri did not secede from the Union in 1862, and it does not do so by passing this law.”
Missouri may not have seceded but it supplied soldiers to both the Union and Confederate armies just as it provided men to both the pro- and anti-slavery movements, and the guns wielded by lawless men then and through the Civil War and beyond.
The brief argues that theNational Security Agency’s phone records collection program could “allow identification of NRA members, supporters, potential members, and other persons with whom the NRA communicates, potentially chilling their willingness to communicate with the NRA.”
The ACLU’s lawsuit — which names as defendants the heads of national intelligence as well as the agencies they lead, including the National Security Agency, the FBI, the Department of Defense and the Department of Justice — argues the phone record collection program disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden is unconstitutional.
The suit, filed in federal court in New York in June, asks the court to halt the datamining effort and purge phone records collected under the program, claiming the government action violates the First and Fourth Amendments of the Constitution
The NRA argues in the brief that it would be “absurd” to think that Congress would take steps to prevent the creation of a national gun registry while simultaneously allowing the NSA to gather records that “could effectively create just such a registry.”
“If programs like those currently justified by the government’s interpretation are allowed to continue and grow unchecked, they could also—contrary to clear congressional intent—undo decades of legal protection for the privacy of Americans in general, and of gun owners in particular,” the brief states.
President Obama and Army Gen. Keith B. Alexander, the NSA’s director, have defended the program. Alexander explained at a computer systems analysts conference in August how how government methods used to collect telephone and email data helped foil 54 “potential terror plots” since 1993.
Most of the “plots” were foiled by surveillance of foreigners overseas, the kind of spying the NSA has done since it was created in 1952 to monitor communications and other so-called signals intelligence.
They keep talking about how critical the NSA stopped “more than 50” terrorist operations. However, every time they’ve described any, the details have shown that the surveillance programs often had little to do with uncovering the plot, and were clearly not a key component of stopping anything. It appears that there story is rapidly falling apart.
The ACLU claims standing as a former customer of Verizon, adding that the government likely has much of its metadata stored in its databases.
The suit also alleges the government’s program exceeds the congressional authority provided by the Patriot Act and singles out a particular provision that has given the government more leeway in obtaining various records for intelligence investigations.
Obama is getting dangerously close to signing the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. If he signs this treaty and the Senate ratifies it, the Second Amendment is toast. And your guns will be in the control of dictators around the world.
This sounds like a bad movie or a conspiracy theory, and I wish it were, but it is possible. 130 bipartisan members of Congress signed a letter that Rep. Mike Lee wrote to President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry.
The 13-pageletterasks Obama and Kerry NOT to sign the Arms Trade Treaty and instead listen to the American people for once. If you are a gun owner, you should express this same sentiment to all of your elected officials. Ask them to oppose the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT)
Bureaucrats from 150 nations are ramping up efforts to impose gun control through international pact. Here in the United States, the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty has become the vehicle to drive an agenda that is deeply controversial because once a treaty is ratified by the Senate, it becomes the supreme law of the land.
John Kerry – no friend of the Second Amendment — announced support for the treaty, which calls for international regulations on firearms, including personal firearms as well as military weapons. During the presidential campaign, President Obama was evasive about his position on the treaty. Now that he has fully “evolved” on the Second Amendment, he has the “flexibility” of not having to face voters again, and is pushing for the treaty.
There are plenty of reasons to be concerned about what’s being cooked up in Turtle Bay. Proponents say the treaty is only meant to crack down on illegal gun-smuggling, and the only people who ought to be concerned are military strongmen looking for a good deal on black-market rocket launchers. Of course, there’s more to the story. The exact wording of the agreement, and more importantly, how vague passages can be interpreted and twisted by the courts, will determine what the treaty actually means. It could, for example, force America to implement a national gun-registration scheme, ban importation of weapons and impose burdensome regulations on transfers.
The “Review Conference on Illicit Small Arms Trade” adopted a “consensus outcome document” that states in Article 2, Paragraph 4 that signatories to the treaty would “establish or update, as appropriate, and maintain a national control list that shall include the items that fall within paragraph A1 .” Paragraph A1 includes small personal firearms.
Under Article 6, Paragraph 3, signatories (including the United States) would be required to set up an “effective, transparent and predictable national control system regulating the transfer of conventional arms .” Once again, “conventional arms” would include civilian firearms protected by the Second Amendment.
Article 8, Paragraph 2 requires countries to “put in place adequate measures that will allow them, where necessary, to monitor and control imports of items covered by the scope of this Treaty.” This could prevent U.S. gun owners from buying foreign guns and parts. Other provisions of the document “underscored efforts in marking, record-keeping and cooperation in tracing small arms .” Tracing weapons is legalese for the creation of a gun registry.
The administration pretends that ratification of this deal would do nothing to undermine constitutional rights. “We will not support any treaty that would be inconsistent with U.S. law and the rights of American citizens under our Constitution,” says Mr. Kerry. The secretary forgets that we can read, too. The written provisions of the treaty and the administration’s domestic agenda on these issues make such reassurance hollow, indeed.
In the wake of the Newtown, Conn., school massacre, Mr. Obama unleashed his all-out effort to ban “assault weapons” — the most popular type of rifle sold in America today. The White House proposals, however, should be doomed in the Republican-dominated House of Representatives. Use of the treaty process is a way to bypass that uncooperative body and accomplish many of the same gun-control goals with only 67 Senate votes.
If proponents of the arms-trade treaty are honest about their intentions, they should have no problem amending the draft treaty to explicitly limit the agreement to large, military weapons and exclude all civilian firearms that fall under the protection of the Second Amendment. The National Rifle Association has offered language that would amend the treaty to eliminate any exploitable ambiguity. Unless such corrections are made, the Senate should stand strong against international deals to trash the constitutional rights of Americans.
In simple terms, here’s how the Arms Trade Treaty threatens gun owners, freedom, and the 2nd Amendment:
A ‘National Control List’ Would Be Established
Article 5 of the Arms Trade Treaty creates a “National Control List.” Global leaders around the world who sign the treaty: “shall establish and maintain a national control system, including a national control list.”
Obama promised us he was not going to establish a national gun registry. “He’s not seeking a registry,” White House Spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters on March 25, 2013.
Obama told the truth but not the whole truth. He didn’t want a national registry. He wanted a global registry. He wanted foreign governments to know whether you own a gun. That way, if you even think about jumping ship and leaving the United States to seek freedom elsewhere, there will effectively be an asterisk next to your name. Probably something like:
Name: Jimmy Brown
Criminal Activity: None
Gun Owner: Yes.
Notes: Watch out for this dude; he’s a duck hunter. He shoots lots of waterfowl in the fall. No criminal record. But, be alert. Could be a terrorist.
United Nations Would Control All Guns and Ammo
The New American also reports that Articles 2, 3 and 4 of the Arms Trade Treaty give the UN the authority to apprehend the right of private citizens to: “own, buy, sell, trade, or transfer all means of armed resistance, including handguns.” Ammunition, parts and components also fall under UN purview.
They DO HAVE the authority to take away our rights. A bully with a pack of international bullies backing him up can only use force to extort your “natural rights.” That’s what Obama’s administration is trying to do; extort decent and law-abiding Americans like you.
The U.S. Congress will effectively break for their annual August recess TODAY! Your support is needed NOW since they won’t return until the sixth of September.
While it’s true that the U.S. Congress will be inactive these next few weeks, for Obama it’s “business as usual.”
In fact, according to Obama mouthpiece Jay Carney, the President has a very big item on his agenda this month – he is planning to stand with the globalists and sign the United Nation’s Arms Trade Treaty.
In June, Carney confirmed that Obama will sign the anti-gun treaty “before the end of August.”
We know that Obama has long been an enemy of privately-owned guns held by free, law-abiding individuals – the type of gun ownership that the Second Amendment expressly protects – which is why he continues to do all he can to regulate them out of our hands.
Through 23 Executive Actions – some of which are starting to materialize – and urging Congress to pass “common sense” gun-control legislation, we have seen Obama ramp up his anti-gun agenda since January.
Knowing this, Obama’s willingness to sign the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty comes as no surprise whatsoever, as it is a major component of the global organization’s disarmament agenda.
The fact is: Obama could add his signature to the Arms Trade Treaty at any moment.
In order to prevent the globalists from trampling on us and our Constitution, we need to contact U.S. Senators right now demanding that they stand against this Treaty when they return to their offices early next month.
Nations Lining Up
After years of preparation, the U.N. Treaty was approved by a vote of 154 to 3 on April 2, and on June 3rd the doors opened for U.N. member nations to ratify it! Eighty nations have signed the treaty so far, and, sadly, our “leaders” have us in line to do the same, despite the Constitution.
However, the good news is that Obama’s signature is only symbolic without the consent of the United States Senate. This is to say that even if Obama were to add his signature to the treaty today, the United States will not yet be bound by its language.
The real battle is in the United States Senate – the body that does have power ratify and adopt international treaties. If the Upper Chamber of Congress accepts the Arms Trade Treaty then, and only then, will our country be bound by the globalist language that the treaty contains.
If we want to remain a sovereign and independent nation under Constitutional rule, it is absolutely imperative that the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty be rejected.
Should Barack Obama’s August signing spark Majority Leader Harry Reid to bring the treaty to a vote when the Senate returns from their break, we must urge Senate right now to prepare to vote against it!
Let’s make sure that Senators return to offices filled with our demands – send your personalized faxes,emails, calls, petitions, etc. now!
Dangerous and Unconstitutional
Just like the United Nations Small Arms Treaty, this Global Treaty is incompatible with the Second Amendment to the Constitution… despite what its advocates claim.
Senator Mike Lee of Utah, one of thirty-four Senators who voted on a resolution in April opposing the Arms Trade Treaty, says that he will block the anti-gun U.N. effort “as long as [he is] breathing in the U.S. Senate.”
In a statement, Sen. Lee said:
“I have great concerns that this treaty can be used to violate the second amendment rights of American citizens, and do not believe we should sign any treaty that infringes on the sovereignty of our country.”
Likewise, Senator James Inhofe has committed to oppose this treaty’s ratification. The Oklahoma Senator says:
“The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty that passed in the General Assembly … would require the United States to implement gun-control legislation as required by the treaty, which could supersede the laws our elected officials have already put into place. It’s time the Obama administration recognizes it is already a non-starter, and Americans will not stand for internationalists limiting and infringing upon their Constitutional rights.”
In order to prevent the Arms Trade Treaty from carrying any force in the United States it must be rejected by the upper house of the United States Congress. We must make sure that we are making clear our demands and securing as many pro-gun advocates as we can to defeat this supranational attack on our Second Amendment!
Take action and tell U.S. Senators that you oppose the ratification of the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty!
Senate gun-grabbers are not a small minority – in fact, we have already witnessed their full-fledge assault on our right to keep and bear arms this year! We know that there are plenty of lawmakers on both sides of the aisle that seem to think that increased gun-control is “common sense” and that ignoring the Constitution.
When the “Safe Schools, Safe Communities” gun-control bill was tabled in April, Mr. Reid said that “it’s only a matter of time” before he brings gun-control legislation back to the Senate floor.
The fact is: Senate gun-grabbers are far from retiring their agenda, and this dangerous U.N. treaty – which so many falsely claim is innocuous – would greatly aid them in their illegal and unconstitutional cause.
The Senate needs a 2/3 majority to adopt this treaty, and as Barack Obama adds his signature of approval we must make sure that we are doing all we can to stop the Senate from doing the same.
Marginalia: Proponents of the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty claim that the international agreement would only regulate arms as they cross international borders and that the treaty has no power over arms within each nation state itself. This cannot be believed as governments always seek to expand their powers.
This is a very controversial clause within the Constitution, as far as what its boundaries are, i.e. how much power the Federal government has. The powers of the Federal government, according to the Constitution are limited to only ones specifically given, while the 10th Amendment states that all powers NOT specifically enumerated to the Federal Government are given to the States.
The United States must not ratify this treaty as it would violate the Second Amendment and property rights.
Pay close attention to this group: International Action Network on Small Arms
The International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA) is the global movement against gun violence – a network of 800 civil society organisations working in over 120 countries to stop the proliferation and misuse of small arms and light weapons
IANSA seeks to make people safer from gun violence by securing stronger regulation on guns in society and better controls on arms exports. It represents the voices of civil society on the international stage and in the UN process on small arms, drawing on the practical experience of its members to campaign for policies that will protect human security.
IANSA is composed of a wide range of organizations concerned with small arms, including policy development organizations, national gun control groups, women’s groups, research institutes, aid agencies, faith groups, survivors, human rights and community action organizations.
Members of the IANSA Women’s Network are working to stop gun violence in the home, on the streets and on the battlefield. They are using United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 “to increase women’s participation in disarmament processes and in the development of small arms policy and practice.” They “ensure” that women’s interests are served by these policies and campaign to break the link between violence and masculinity. The network produces a quarterly bulletin called Women at Work: Preventing Gun Violence.
The obvious attack on the 2nd amendment may be the main topic on your mind, but the problem goes much deeper than gun control or any of these other surface issues.
Our government is now seeking to exploit the Sandy Hook massacre to further their long-standing agenda of disarming the American people. Their first target will be high capacity magazines (e.g., clips that hold 25 rounds of ammunition), but their ultimate goal is to ban and confiscate all privately owned guns.
Would passing a ban on large bullet clips prevent the next Sandy Hook? No. There are already lots of such ammunition clips in circulation, and they are not hard to make. A new law would not stop criminals and crazies that want such items from obtaining them.
The current battle over gun control is not about preventing another Sandy Hook incident. It is about panicking the American people into taking the next step on the road to serfdom.
The idea of an armed citizenry is abhorrent to our government.They know that at some point, their utopian schemes will exceed the consent of the governed, and they don’t want “We the People” to be capable of resisting the kind of tyranny that would be required to impose the progressive dream of “government of the people, by the credentialed experts, and for the progressive elites”. The powers that be want us to have no choice other than to “go quietly into that good night” or disappear.’
Please start educating yourself by looking into the wonderful plans our lords in the “public/private partnerships” (formerly the United States of America, a constitutional republic) have in store for us — and more importantly — have in store for the little boys and girls in our nation whose parents prefer to watch TV and sports and live in a state of deep denial instead of standing up and defending their rights.
July 25, 2012 – In the tragic aftermath of the Aurora, Colorado shooting which has all the earmarks of a staged “false flag” event, a follow-up false flag now appears imminent. To be effective in achieving its political aim, it will have to be orders of magnitude larger and more deadly than what took place in Colorado.
serving retired and former Special Forces soldiers and friends, the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), located at Ft Carson, Colorado, and the 19th Special Forces Group (Airborne), with units throughout the United States.
This site contains hundreds of photos and documents located under the Situation link, a Quartermaster – under Service and Support, along with other useful links and tidbits throughout.
Did you know DHS actually had a drill practicing for this over the 2 years before it took place only hundreds of feet away from the Sandy Hook Elementary School? Another DHS drill comes true!
The governor also met with Eric Holder 2 weeks prior to this happening. Mr Fast and Furious who said publicly in 1995 we need to brainwash our children against guns?
Obama Death Squads Kill Top Gun Activists As New Massacre Fears Rise
EU Times, 1/9/2013
A new Federal Security Forces (FSB) report updating their 4 January “urgent action” memorandum to President Putin circulating in the Kremlin, today, states that the “death squads” unleashed upon America by President Obama have claimed their first two victims and warns that “another massacre” in the United States is “much nearer than first believed.”
Source: ABC News
Connecticut School Shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary: Gov. Dan Malloy…
SANDY HOOK ~ “I’m Sorry Governor, WHAT DID YOU SAY ???”
Eric Holder and Connecticut Governor Dan Malloy met on November 27th to unveil ‘Project Longevity’. “
The initiative, known as Project Longevity, will send new federal grant money to Connecticut and involve agents, academics and social workers working for or with the FBI and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.”
This particular phrase really caught my attention:’
“The community needs to show a little more outrage on these things and demand that it be a top priority,” Pinciaro said. “That will be more useful than another law right now.”
Project Longevity: Justice Department, Connecticut State Officials Target Gun Violence.
“With the launch of Project Longevity we’re opening a new chapter in the fight against crime,” Holder said.
Holder said these were wake up calls.
“We’ve seen that traditional enforcement, prosecution, and incarceration strategies simply aren’t enough,” Holder said.
That’s why the data driven strategies and service organizations will play a big role in the project offering help to those in and associated with gangs.
“In New Haven, 19 groups composed of more than 600 people are in fact responsible for almost all of the violent crime in New Haven, but to achieve our goal we must win the suppose of key members in the community,” Gov. Malloy said.
According to the project’s strategy, to reduce gun violence, members of the community and law enforcement must join together to communicate a message against violence. They must make the consequences of gun violence known and offer help for those who want it.
Project Longevity is first being launched in New Haven followed by Hartford and Bridgeport. The project is being funded by different sources federally and locally.
The overall crime rate in Connecticut is at a level since Lyndon Johnson was president, but gun violence is still a problem in the cities.
Below is the official news release for “Project Longevity.”
PROJECT LONGEVITY LAUNCHED TO REDUCE
GANG AND GUN VIOLENCE IN CONNECTICUT’S CITIES
Government Officials, Community Members, Service Providers and Law Enforcement Join Forces in Statewide Anti-Violence Initiative
New Haven, Conn. – Attorney General Eric Holder, U.S. Attorney David Fein and Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy joined members of law enforcement, public officials, social service providers, community leaders and researchers in New Haven today to launch “Project Longevity,” a comprehensive initiative to reduce gun violence in Connecticut’s major cities. Project Longevity uses a strategy that has shown violence can be reduced dramatically when community members and law enforcement join together to directly engage with these groups and clearly communicate a community message against violence, a law enforcement message about the consequences of further violence and an offer of help for those who want it. To accomplish this, law enforcement, social service providers and community members are recruited, assembled and trained to engage in a sustained relationship with violent groups. “Project Longevity will send a powerful message to those who would commit violent crimes targeting their fellow citizens that such acts will not be tolerated and that help is available for all those who wish to break the cycle of violence and gang activity,” said Attorney General Holder. “Today’s announcement underscores our commitment to working together – across levels of government and jurisdictional boundaries – to protect the American people from the crime that threatens too many neighborhoods and claims far too many innocent lives.” Project Longevity is based on a model that has been successful in reducing gun violence in multiple neighborhoods across the country and represents the first time the strategy is being implemented statewide.
“On the state level, I have directed my administration to focus our criminal justice resources on urban violence,” Governor Malloy said. “We agree that no strategy will be effective without the support of the community. This means parents, clergy, neighborhood leaders, grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles – everyone working toward one goal. We are working to regain the trust of the African American and Latino communities. We need their help. The lives of these young people are too valuable not to act.”
Funded by federal, state and local sources, Project Longevity is being launched initially in New Haven and next in Hartford and Bridgeport.
“After more than a year of hard work and preparation by so many public and private partners, I am pleased to announce Project Longevity, our statewide anti-violence initiative,” said U.S. Attorney Fein. “Many dedicated people and organizations have come together to support this proven strategy to reduce gang and gun violence through focused deterrence.”
Project Longevity is based on the Group Violence Reduction Strategy developed by the Center for Crime Prevention and Control at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. The research behind the strategy, which was first implemented in Boston as “Operation Ceasefire” in the mid-1990s.
Analysts and political scholars agree that if the president goes through with his threat to circumvent Congress and issue executive orders, he is likely to face an expensive uphill legal battle – on the taxpayers’ dime.
But while pro-gun lobbyists have vowed to challenge President Obama’s constitutional authority on the issue, that doesn’t mean the president won’t attempt executive action. A unilateral move to ban assault weapons could be legally perilous, but analysts say there are other measures the president could at least attempt.
“Much of what the Obama administration can get done will depend on” how far they try to stretch the bounds of executive power, law.” Professor David Prince.
Legally, Obama can use his executive powers to act alone on some gun measures, but his more controversial options on the proposals opposed by well-funded, politically powerful advocates like the NRA are limited without Congress’ cooperation.
Prince, a professor at the William Mitchell School of Law, said if Obama uses an executive order to ban assault weapons, it is likely the NRA will sue the government and the case could be tied up in the legal system for years.
“Some helpful lessons can be learned from recent experience about how an aggressive president can use his power for appropriate and beneficial purposes, and these lessons can help guide the current and future presidents of the United States in making executive decisions,” Todd Gaziano, director of Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at the Heritage Foundation, said.
In the end, the constitutional separation of powers supports both sides of the argument over a president’s proper authority.
It reinforces a president’s right to issue an order to carry out a particular power that truly is committed to his discretion by the Constitution or by a lawful statute passed by Congress.
“I can’t think of a better advertisement for gun control than Alex Jones’ interview last night,” Morgan told CNN on Tuesday. “It was startling, it was terrifying in parts, it was completely deluded. It was based on a premise of making Americans so fearful that they all rush out to buy even more guns … the kind of twisted way that he turned everything into this assault on the Second Amendment is exactly what the gun rights lobby people do.”
Morgan had chosen well if his intention was to discredit the pro-gun movement.
Morgan make everybody who has guns and who believes the Second Amendment to be a deterrent to an out of control government look like a madman. So now he immediately books the madman and makes him look like a conservative
Gee, thanks for that Alex! You had the opportunity to represents Truthers but instead made the case against us by reinforcing the general MSM (Mass Media Murderers) theme that we’re off our rocker!!!
Biden’s gun control task force to meet with victims groups.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, having become a spokesperson for governmental legislative restrictions on gun ownership has a direct influence on Biden’s future proposals to Obama by sending his staff members to Capitol Hill to advise the TFGC on exploratory measures to ensure that the 2nd Amendment is finally stripped of our US Constitution by making current legislation so encompassing as to render it ineffectual.
Bloomberg sees his intrusions doing “everything we can to help Joe Biden.”
Taking the drafting process into his own hands, Bloomberg has drafted a policy document that outlines:
• Federal control of gun trafficking
• Gun sale regulations
• Stricter prosecutions of gun owners who break the law
• All-encompassing background checks
• Restrictions on gun sales at shows and online
• Restricting “military-style” frearms
• Restricting high capacity magazine clips
• Felony prosecutions for those who fail background checks due to lying
Assembly Bill 48 requires purchasers of bullets to provide identification, dealers be licensed and report all sales to the US Department of Justice (DoJ). The “bullet bill” will restrict converter kits and high capacity ammunition magazines.
While the US government figures out how to control the 1 out of 3 households that are registered gun owners, Bank of America (BoA) has frozen funds in a private account for American Spirit Arms (ASA), a gun manufacturer.
“We can’t tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end. And to end them we must change.” – Barack Obama in Newton, CT.
The only event in the past 20 years that reshaped the gun control debate at all was the Columbine school shootings.
Support for Stricter Gun Laws:
As this chart from Mark Blumenthal illustrates, the percentage of Americans who wanted stricter gun control measures spiked by about five to 10 percentage points after Columbine. A similar jump after Newtown would result in a revived majority of Americans wanting stronger measures.
Keep in mind, though, that there have been many mass shootings since 1999, and none of them resulted in Americans changing their opinions on gun control. This includes a number of school shootings, and the mass killings carried out at Virginia Tech in 2007. Columbine’s ability to change opinion may merely have been unique.
Richard Feldman, the president of the Independent Firearm Owners Association said that Biden left the group with the “clear implication” that the president would pursue an assault weapons ban in addition to other regulatory measures.
“It is unclear if there was more than one gunman at the school.”
Law enforcement sources told CBS News senior correspondent John Miller that preliminary and unconfirmed information indicates that the shooter was the father of a student.
A person believed to be a shooter is dead. Earlier reports of a second shooter are unconfirmed.
ABC News reported through federal, local officials that more than a dozen people, including children, were shot and killed.
Police were still searching the school at 11 a.m., and police dogs had been brought in. Around noon, the triage area was broken down, stretchers were taken away and the SWAT team left the building.
Shortly after 9:40 a.m., police reported that a shooter was in the main office of the school. A person in one room had “numerous gunshot wounds,” police said.
Update: The New York Post is reporting that the shooter’s name is actually Adam Lanza and that his brother, Ryan Lanza, is the one being questioned by police. Additionally, it appears that Lanza’s mother, who was a kindergarten teacher at the school, may have been the initial target in that nearly all the deaths took place in her classroom. Also, there appears to be a dead body at the mother’s home in Newtown and the suspect’s home in Hoboken.
He has been an adjunct faculty member at Northeastern University in Boston since 1995 and also teaches a partnership tax class in the master’s in taxation degree program at Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut, according to CNN.
After fatally shooting his mother in the face, investigators say Adam Lanza took three of his mother’s legally-owned weapons which he ended up using in yesterday’s assault, including a Glock, a SIG Sauer, and a .223-caliber Bushmaster rifle.
In addition to those three weapons, cops also recovered a .45-caliber Henry repeating rifle, a .22-caliber Marlin rifle, and a .30-caliber Enfield rifle, a law enforcement source told CNN. “We’re investigating the history of each and every weapon and we will know every single thing about those weapons.”
So when police get there, his work, he acts like he doesnt know anything and the police allow him to take a bus? And yet he says he thinks his mother is dead? How would he conclude that if she wasnt a teacher?
TIMELINE OF A MASSACRE: HOW THE INVESTIGATION UNFOLDED
Friday morning Adam Lanza leaves his home in his mother’s car after ‘shooting her dead’
9.30am Classes begin at Sandy Hook Elementary School
9.35am First 911 calls that a shooting is underway; police arrive within minutes
9.40am Shooting underway at the school’s main office and a kindergarten class
9.45am SWAT team arrives; checks building
10am Reports of deaths begin to trickle out; Obama is briefed
10.30am Police announce the shooter is dead; later revealed he died from a self-inflicted gun wound
12.10pm First reports mistakenly naming killer as Ryan Lanza, 24
2.47pm President Obama orders flags to fly at half-mast
1.08pm Reports that the death toll is at 27; at press conference, police say deaths include staff and students
2pm Authorities announce a body was discovered at killer’s Newtown home
2.40pm Reports of investigation at Ryan Lanza’s home in New Jersey; he writes on Facebook that he was not involved and is later led away for questioning
3.17pm President Obama addresses the nation and struggles to contain his emotions
5pm Adam Lanza is named as the shooter
7pm Prayer vigil held at St Rose of Lima Catholic Church in Newtown; hundreds attend, including Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy
At least one parent said Lanza’s mother was a substitute teacher at the school. But her name did not appear on a staff list. And the official said investigators were unable to establish any connection so far between her and the school.
Authorities found two handguns inside the school, a Sig Sauer and a Glock, along with a “civilian modification of an M-16,” U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal told reporters. A fourth firearm was found in a car in the parking lot, he said.
President Barack Obama’s advance team was circling Newtown in helicopters, Mark Boughton, mayor of Danbury, Connecticut, wrote on Twitter today.
*check twitter account of Mark Broughton
Detectives uncovered “some very good evidence in this investigation that our investigators will be able to use in hopefully painting the complete picture as to how, and more importantly, why this occurred,” said Vance. The sole survivor of the attack will be “instrumental” to authorities, he said, adding that she was “fine” and being treated for injuries.
Louise Tambascio, 70, a friend of Nancy’s and the owner of My Place, a restaurant where the suspect’s brother used to work, described Adam Lanza as intelligent, quiet and awkward. He had Asperger’s syndrome, she said. He had a personality disorder, AP reported, citing a law-enforcement official briefed on the investigation.
Lanza’s older brother, 24-year-old Ryan, of Hoboken, N.J., was being questioned, but a law enforcement official said he was not believed to have had a role in the rampage. Investigators were searching his computers and phone records, but he told law enforcement he had not been in touch with his brother since about 2010.
Robert Licata said his 6-year-old son was in class when the gunman burst in and shot the teacher. “That’s when my son grabbed a bunch of his friends and ran out the door,” he said. “He was very brave. He waited for his friends.”
He said the shooter didn’t utter a word.
ODD he let the children go isn’t it and never said anything. Just mechanically shot the teacher and students but not the 6 year old or his friends?
Lanza, 20, described by friends as a “nerd”, a “genius” and a “Goth”, spent his school days doing everything he could to avoid attention
AndUS TV said that the day before the massacre Lanza had had an “altercation” with four teachers. He went on to kill three of them. The fourth, who was not at school on Friday, was being interviewed by police yesterday
REALLY NEVER MENTIONED BEFORE ALSO NEVER MENTIONED HE HAD TRIED TO BUY A GUN
Lanza’s aunt Marsha Lanza said he was raised by kind, nurturing parents who would not have hesitated to seek mental health help for him if he had needed it. She said: “If her son had needed counselling, Nancy wasn’t one to deny reality.”
*Dorothy Hanson, 78 too upset to comment…check her out
Mother of nancy Lanza
Brett Wilshe, a friend of Ryan Lanza’s, said he sent him a Facebook message on Friday asking what was going on and if he was OK. According to Wilshe, Lanza’s reply was something along the lines of: “It was my brother. I think my mother is dead. Oh my God.”
Adam Lanza attended Newtown High School and several local news clippings from recent years mention his name among the school’s roll of honour for students.
Lanza’s parents filed for divorce in 2008, according to court records. His father, Peter Lanza, lives in Stamford, Connecticut, according to public records, and he reportedly works as a tax director for General Electric.
Gordon Duff is a Marine Vietnam veteran, a combat infantryman, and Senior Editor at Veterans Today.
1. Adam Lanza was found with his older brother’s ID, and it was not stolen. However, older brother Ryan – whom officials say is very cooperative – claims not to have even seen his brother since 2010. Where would Adam get this ID? And why does such use not qualify as a theft?
Despite not seeing his brother, he apparently remained close to his mother. His Facebook page showed he had recently been in Newtown, and he reportedly travelled to New Orleans with her for a concert.
2. Adam Lanza was wearing a black outfit with a mask and bulletproof vest. Why would he want to hide his identity, and why would he wear a bulletproof vest if he planned to kill himself?
3. The medical examiner asserts that all wounds were caused by a rifle or other long weapon, and police/FBI say that the school was littered with 223 (rifle) casings. However, Adam Lanza was found dead at the school with only handguns – a rifle was found in the trunk of his car. Then he could not have possibly been firing the rifle, and could not have committed the murders. Who did then?
Law-enforcement officials initially said an assault rifle had been discovered in a car in the school’s parking lot. In fact, said Mr. Carver, the medical examiner, it had been the primary weapon used in the killings.
4. According to the official story, the killings was tightly confined to two classrooms. Then why were so many children told to close their eyes while leaving the building?
5. Joanne Didonato, the principal’s secretary, called in sick on Friday – something she rarely does. So presumably, she must have been awfully ill. Yet she then felt well enough to give an interview. “Of all days,” she said, emphasizing the strange coincidence.
6. Why were there such persistent reports that Mrs. Lanza was a kindergarten teacher, and that she died at the school when the new official story is that she was not connected to the school and was killed at home?
A former school board official in Newtown called into question earlier reports that Nancy Lanza had been connected to Sandy Hook Elementary School, possibly as part of the teaching staff.
“No one has heard of her,” said Lillian Bittman, who served on the local school board until 2011. “Teachers don’t know her.”
7. What happened to the report that Adam Lanza’s girlfriend and another friend were missing in New Jersey?
8. What happened to the woodsman in a black jacket and camo pants who was arrested and handcuffed outside the school? He actually shouted to parents, “It wasn’t me.” Who was he and what was he doing there?
9. What happened to the dark van or SUV that the police surrounded in the parking lot or the maroon sedan with a blown-out back window they were on the lookout for?
10. The official story is that Nancy Lanza was a gun collector, who obeyed the law. But since 20-year-olds are not permitted to buy guns or ammo or carry guns in Connecticut, why would she give her “autistic” son access to both guns and ammo?
11. A child asserts that he/she heard someone say, “Put your hands up,” followed by the reply, “Don’t shoot.” This indicates that the police took a suspect into custody inside the school. But if that was Adam Lanza, how did he kill himself after that point?
12. Another child asserts that he/she saw a man pinned down to the ground with handcuffs on. Again, this indicates that the police took a suspect into custody. If that was Adam Lanza, how did he then kill himself?
13. Is it reasonable for a geeky 20-year-old to carry two pistols and hundreds of rounds of ammunition while wearing a bulletproof vest and a mask?
14. Did the school have one or more security cameras? What do they show?
15. Why did a police officer specifically mention on radio that “they’re coming at me through this wood” followed by a fellow officer saying, “This is it”?
16. One officer at the school said, “We’ve got one suspect down.” Who was that? Down in this situation generally means in custody (on the ground and cuffed) not dead.
17. Why is Adam Lanza reported to be a loner when a teenager said (oxymoronically), “[Lanza and his friends] always gathered alone in a corner in school”?
18. Why are Ryan Lanza and his roommates still in custody, and why are the police pretending that it is for their own benefit?
19. Is it a coincidence that Nancy Lanza’s brother is Kingston Police Officer James Champion, who lives next door to the former Lanza home?
This is only a small percentage of the irregularities noted in what now seems to be more of a cover-up than investigation.
In truth, the public may well just be sick of hearing stories about “lone gunmen.” Of all possible horrors, this one, even more than the Benghazi killings, is loaded with political implication, not just “gun control,” but a clear attack on the security of every American family.
There are others including a Florida professor who are taking a serious look into this event. Claudine Zap writes;
A media professor at Florida Atlantic University who is questioning the Sandy Hook massacre has caused controversy with his conspiracy claims.
James Tracy, who writes a personal blog about conspiracy theories, believes the events that unfolded at Sandy Hook did not happen as reported.
The professor writes on his blog, Memory Hole, “While it sounds like an outrageous claim, one is left to inquire whether the Sandy Hook shooting ever took place—at least in the way law enforcement authorities and the nation’s news media have described.” He suggests that there were multiple shooters and that the number of dead is incorrect. The blog post was published on the Global Research site, where it caught the attention of the Web.
The academic, who is known for his conspiracy theories on 9/11 and the Oklahoma bombing, believes—as he claims on his blog and recently stated on a radio show—that trained “crisis actors” may have been employed by the Obama administration to shape public opinion on gun control.
The 47-year-old, who holds a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa in mass communication, wrote on his blog, “ As documents relating to the Sandy Hook shooting continue to be assessed and interpreted by independent researchers there is a growing awareness that the media coverage of the massacre of 26 children and adults was intended primarily for public consumption to further larger political ends.”
According to his faculty profile, the professor “teaches courses examining the relationship between commercial and alternative news media and socio-political issues and events.” He also lists his recent work in “Censored 2013: Sourcebook for the Media Revolution. The Top Censored Stories and Media Analysis of 2011-2012.”
Hey!!! Fellow conspiracy theorists made the news!!!!!! CNN’s Anderson Cooper – ‘Believe it or not, there are actually people out there who are convinced that last month’s horrific shooting in Newtown, Connecticut was staged. Anderson Cooper opened his show tonight taking on these conspiracy theorists. He said that ordinarily, he wouldn’t give much thought to insane conspiracies, but one of the people pushing them is a Florida professor who raises doubts as to whether the shooting “ever took place” in the way that the media described, and the whole thing was just a huge conspiracy to get the country behind gun control. And as if that wasn’t unbelievable enough, he also suspects that some of the parents of the children were really actors.
I’m presenting serious facts here Anderson and we the people, ya, many of us, millions, are asking serious questions that that the msm is clearly not. I understand part of your job description is “misinformation,” I get it, but we’re not buying it anymore.
There is an ever growing list of questions that we the citizens demand to be factually accounted for.
If the president goes through with his threat to circumvent Congress and issue executive orders, he is likely to face an expensive uphill legal battle – on the taxpayers’ dime. The very least you can do is present the real facts since we’re paying for it one way or another.
However the CNN page linked from the fundraiser that was posted four days prior to the shooting has an issue as the URL has been altered and the (day) date code is missing thus possibly signifying a covert operation to hide the actual dates posted of the following timeline, which reads like a play-by-play sports report (undated);
Woman claims she is mother of “Sandy Hook victim” who is alive and well.
Here is the post allegedly from the mother of Lily Gaubert who is incorrectly identified as Allison Wyatt. http://instagram.com/p/TS1VEhSC_U/
If you cursor over the photo, the post from the mother appears.
I find no MSM correction, and even more odd, I find no parent of Allison objecting to having the wrong photo posted of their daughter.
Newtown Police: ‘Two Occupants with Ski Masks, One May be Wearing a Nun Outfit’
Note: On December 14, 2012, Shepard Ambellas reported the following;
A caller on the Alex Jones show Friday (the day of the shooting) gave a report from Newtown that he was in a bowling alley before 10 AM (before the shootings took place) signifying that the school population was possibly held artificially low Friday as a possible militarized operation took place.
The caller has also stated that an unverified rumor is circulating amongst the school staff that the shooters were described to be disguised ”organized group of nuns”infiltrated the school property to carry out the shootings leaving at least 26 dead at an elementary school Friday.
Now evidence has come forth that correlates with school staff claims that the shooters were “disguised group of nuns” in a shocking audio capture of Newtown Police operations on the morning of the shooting.
NEWTOWN, CONECTICUT — It has now been verified in an audio clip reviewed bytheintelhub.com that, at the very least, police officers on the day of the shooting believed that there were multiple suspects fleeing the scene in a purple van wearing ski masks and, possibly, nun outfits.
UPDATE: January 9, 2013 — The following police audio (YouTube) has been pulled along with a plethora of other videos (in the last 24 hours) which show in a massive coordinated effort to fool the American people as the Sandy Hook shootings were likely staged.
On the very day of the shooting, the Chicago Tribune posted the following headline reading simply, “Elementary School Shooting”.
What kind of headline is this? What could this article be about? It sounds more like an optimized search engine term rather than an article headline on a popular mainstream newspapers website. But even more creepy was what the body of the article read and the photo it contained.
Two unidentified nuns leave the scene of the aftermath at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. At least 27 people, including 18 children, were killed.
It literally reads “Two unidentified nuns leave the scene…”. However what stands out to me the most is the fact that the nuns look very official. In fact they look so official they even have blatant identification badges.
( Don Emmert, Getty Images / December 14, 2012 )( Don Emmert, Getty Images / December 14, 2012 )
And of course we can’t forget about this brilliant performance!
The USA has been deliberately dumbed down our kids. Our educational system is not a failure; it has completely succeeded in achieving the goals it was designed to meet. Read Isserbt, “The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America.”
Thanks to the fact that much of the western media deliberately avoids exposing Israeli criminality, probably for fear of being accused of anti-Semitism, much of the brutal ugliness of the Jewish state remains unknown to millions of Europeans and North Americans.
This is the reason that many people in the west are still buying the big, obscene lie that Israel is a western democracy which upholds basic human rights and civil liberties. But the facts on the ground are much uglier than many people think, irrespective of how vociferous and dogged Israeli Hasbara operatives get when defending and justifying Israeli misdeeds and crimes.
The truth of the matter is that institutionalized oppression, racism and terror against the Palestinians have always constituted and continue to constitute Israel’s modus operandi.
Israeli propaganda will concoct a thousand lies and point to a thousand red herrings to divert attention from the subject. They would invoke the holocaust, Auschwitz, Bergen Belsen, Treblinka, the Jewish origin of Christianity in an effort to justify or more correctly distract attention from the real issues.
The misinformed and often gullible westerners believed that Israel has to behave the way it does because otherwise its very survival would be in danger.
But the truth remains sufficiently plain for anyone willing to call the spade a spade. The task is certainly not easy, but not quite impossible, provided one maintains a respectable degree of honesty.
There is no refuting the fact that Israel has illegally invaded Palestinian land, demolished their homes, destroyed their villages, burned their fields and then expelled them to the four winds.
The presence of Jewish settlers violates the requirements of the Fourth Geneva Convention regarding protection of civilian populations under occupation. International Humanitarian Law – Treaties & Documents Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War. Geneva, 12 August 1949. http://www.icrc.org/ihl.nsf/full/380
Jewish nationalist ideology, Zionism, led to claims on Palestine for the Jewish people. Zionism began in Europe, in reaction to pogroms in the east and assimilation in the west. Early in the 20th century, Zionist leaders began planning for Jewish settlement in Palestine, and the removal of the indigenous population. After Britain captured Palestine from the Ottomans in 1917, UK Foreign Secretary Balfour made a declaration promising to facilitate the establishment of a Jewish national home in Palestine. This pledge was enshrined in the UK’s Mandate for Palestine under the League of Nations, which granted to the Jewish Agency the task of Palestine’s economic development.
The Holocaust transformed international attitudes on Palestine by creating substantial sympathy and support for the aspirations of surviving European Jews. In November 1947 the United Nations partitioned Palestine, awarding Jews – who were then only one-third of the population – over half of the territory. Arabs rejected the plan and fighting erupted almost immediately. Jewish forces were better organized and equipped; they quickly prevailed, expelling a majority of the Palestinian population in the process.
Israel’s Jerusalem Post newspaper published an article calling Israel “The New Golden Country” for young people from around the world. It reports that Israel boasts an ever-increasing GDP, a strong currency, and “a lower unemployment rate than the U.S.”
WOW!!!! How nice for them!
The article fails to mention the well over $3 billion a year that American taxpayers have given Israel for years, nor the fact that some of this money has been used to develop industries that compete with U.S. companies, costing thousands of American jobs and adding to the American unemployment rate.
The story also omits the fact that Israel has periodically stolen U.S. technology, hurting the U.S. economy still more, and fails to note that support for Israel has cost Americans in the range of $3-$6 trillion and that these costs continue to escalate. US taxpayers have contributed more to the Israeli defense budget than Israeli taxpayers. American taxpayers give Israel more to them than any other nation, despite the fact that Israel is smaller than New Jersey and is in the top 30 richest countries in the world.
The article reports that many young Jewish American singles “are realizing that their future is in Israel. Since 2002, over 7,000 students and young professionals have made aliyah from North America and the UK … bringing with them their skills.”
Many of these new Israeli citizens, the article reports, then “telecommute to their home countries, commute to Europe, or consult globally,” adding to Israel’s economy.
The Israeli story states: “Many students and young professionals are drawn by the incentive of free tuition for a bachelor’s or master’s degree,” comparing this to the United States, where obtaining a degree can put many into significant debt.
According to the article, “Israel sits, quite literally, at the nexus of the world.” The newspaper reports: “This tiny nation is not only in the geographical heart of the globe and at the center of international attention. Israel is also at the very core of innovation, a leader in global commerce and technology.”
Again, the story fails to report the U.S. subsidy of such “innovation.”
In the past 10 years alone, Americans have given Israel the equivalent of approximately $200,000 per Israeli family of five. In addition, there have been weapons subsidies, loan forgiveness programs, special trade preferences, and other generous gifts from American taxpayers to Israel. In fact, despite being one of the world’ smallest nations, Israel receives more U.S. tax money than any other country.
On top of this, a multitude of organizations contributing money and assistance to Israel have been given tax-deductible status in the U.S., removing still more money from the American economy. For example, donations to the “Birthright Israel” program that takes Jewish American students on fun-filled holidays to Israel, convincing many to then “ascend” to Israeli citizenship, are deducted from taxes owed to the U.S.
When Americans become Israeli citizens they retain their U.S. citizenship, allowing them to continue to vote in U.S. elections. Such dual citizenship used to be illegal in the U.S., where it was felt that a citizen could have only one primary national loyalty (for example, in a war or other situations where interests diverged between two nations, an individual would have to choose which to support). It was only after Israel became a nation and many Jewish Americans wished citizenship in both countries that a 200-year American tradition was changed.
The Jerusalem Post article also neglected to mention Israel’s attack on a U.S. Navy ship that killed and injured approximately 200 Americans and caused the ship to be scrapped. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Israel termed this a “mistake” and gave the U.S. $6 million “compensation” for a ship valued at $40 million.
While U.S. news media, which are highly Israel-centric in their coverage of the Israel-Palestine conflict and portray Israelis as victims, the Jerusalem Post reports that “a recent Gallup survey on global well-being ranked Israelis seventh in the world in terms of happiness and satisfaction with their lives” (well ahead of the U.S.).
In considerable contrast, the Palestinian Territories, where the population has been living under Israeli occupation for almost 45 years, is listed as the 12th-lowest population in this well-being survey.
Miami Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the extremely pro-Israel head of the House Foreign Affairs Committee who has just introduced yet another bill on Israel’s behalf, has proposed that the U.S. end assistance programs to the Palestinian population, despite considerable poverty among Palestinian families, while continuing the American dole to Israel, even though Israel is listed among the world’s wealthiest nations.
The Jerusalem Post crows, “The back pages of daily newspapers are overflowing with last-minute vacation deals within Israel and abroad, and it is completely normal to find that your friend or coworker has just found a great deal to fly off to Europe for a long weekend.”
Meanwhile, the U.S. continues to suffer a growing economic crisis, numerous Americans have lost jobs and homes, schools are being closed, businesses have gone bankrupt, and many military families are subsisting on food stamps.
An increasing number of Americans are calling for an end to U.S. taxpayer subsidies to Israel. Some go even further, suggesting that it is time to reverse the money flow and demand that Israel begin sending back some of the billions of dollars it has received from American taxpayers over the past 60-plus years.
According to the CIA World Factbook, Israel’s current account balance is 29th in the world; the U.S. comes in at 196th.
The London-based human rights organization, Amnesty International, published its 2012 report about the status of human rights all over the world.
Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories
The Israeli authorities continued to blockade the Gaza Strip, prolonging the humanitarian crisis there, and to restrict the movement of Palestinians in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). In the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, the authorities continued to construct the fence/wall, much of it on Palestinian land, and to expand settlements, breaching international law. They demolished Palestinian homes and other facilities in the West Bank, and homes of Palestinian citizens inside Israel, especially in “unrecognized” villages in the Negev. The Israeli army frequently used excessive, sometimes lethal force against demonstrators in the West Bank and civilians in border areas within the Gaza Strip. Israeli military forces killed 55 civilians in the OPT, including 11 children. Settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank increased, and three Palestinians were killed by Israeli settlers. Israeli settlers and soldiers accused of committing abuses against Palestinians generally escaped accountability. The authorities failed to conduct independent investigations into alleged war crimes by Israeli forces during Operation “Cast Lead” in 2008-2009. The Israeli authorities arrested thousands of West Bank Palestinians. More than 307 were administrative detainees held without charge or trial; others received prison terms following military trials. Israel held more than 4,200 Palestinian prisoners at the end of 2011. Reports of torture and other ill-treatment of detainees continued.
International efforts to restart negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) failed. Israel opposed the PA’s application for full UN membership and temporarily withheld tax revenues due to the PA after Palestine became a full member of UNESCO.
Palestinian armed groups in Gaza fired indiscriminate rockets and mortars into southern Israel, killing two Israeli civilians (see Palestinian Authority entry); Israeli forces carried out attacks targeting Palestinians they deemed responsible. An Israeli high-school student was fatally injured in April when a missile fired from Gaza struck a school bus in the Negev. Eight Israeli settlers were killed by Palestinians in the West Bank, including one by PA security forces. Seven other civilians were killed in Israel, including six by armed militants who entered Israel from Egypt in August.
In October and December, Israel released 1,027 Palestinian prisoners, including some sentenced for killing Israeli civilians, in exchange for the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit on 18 October. He had been held captive in Gaza and denied access to the ICRC by Palestinian armed groups since 2006. Israel also released 25 Egyptians in October in exchange for the release of an Israeli-US national imprisoned in Egypt.
From July to October, hundreds of thousands of Israelis participated in peaceful protests calling for lower housing costs and improved health and education systems.
Israel maintained its military blockade of Gaza, imposed in 2007, and closed the Karni crossing in March, leaving Kerem Shalom as the only entry point for goods, despite its lack of capacity. The blockade prolonged the humanitarian crisis faced by Gaza’s 1.6 million residents, more than 70 per cent of whom were dependent on humanitarian aid. A near-complete ban on exports continued, stifling the economy, and severe restrictions on imports fuelled shortages and high prices. The blockade constituted collective punishment – a breach of international law – and particularly affected children and the sick. The Israeli authorities hindered or prevented hundreds of patients from leaving Gaza to obtain medical treatment.
Egypt opened the Rafah crossing to Gazans in May, but strictly controlled movement into and out of Gaza. At least 36 Palestinians were killed in accidents in or Israeli air strikes on tunnels used to smuggle goods between Egypt and Gaza.
Israel’s navy blocked several international flotillas seeking to break the Gaza blockade. In September a UN Panel of Inquiry ruled that the naval blockade of Gaza was lawful but did not address the legality of the overall closure regime imposed on Gaza.
More than 500 Israeli military checkpoints and barriers continued to hinder Palestinians’ access to workplaces, schools and hospitals in the West Bank, and Israel continued its construction of a 700km fence/wall, mostly on Palestinian land within the West Bank, separating thousands of Palestinian farmers from their land and water sources. West Bank Palestinians with Jerusalem entry permits were allowed to use only four of the fence/wall’s 16 checkpoints.
Palestinians were denied access to areas surrounding Israeli settlements, established and maintained in breach of international law. The construction of settlements increased. Settlements in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, had more than 500,000 residents at the end of 2011.
Movement restrictions compelled some 200,000 Palestinians from 70 villages to take detours between two to five times longer than the direct route to reach the closest city, undermining their access to basic services.
The Israeli authorities generally withheld construction permits from Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem and Area C of the West Bank, where Israel retains full authority for planning and zoning, impeding their right to adequate housing. The Israeli authorities intensified their demolition of Palestinian homes and other facilities in the West Bank that had been built without permits, demolishing more than 620 structures during 2011. Almost 1,100 Palestinians were displaced as a result, an 80 per cent increase over 2010; more than 4,200 others were affected by demolitions of 170 animal shelters and 46 cisterns. Vulnerable Bedouin and herding communities were particularly affected, with some at risk of permanent displacement due to severe restrictions on their movement, repeated demolitions and violence by settlers.
In June, Israeli forces carried out repeated demolitions in Hadidiya, a herding community in the northern Jordan Valley, destroying 33 structures and making several families homeless. An appeal to the High Court of Justice resulted in a temporary injunction against further demolition orders that were issued in November.
The authorities also intensified demolitions of Palestinian homes inside Israel, particularly in officially “unrecognized” villages, where all construction is banned. In September, the cabinet approved plans to regulate “illegal” Bedouin construction in the southern Negev region; if implemented, these could lead to the forced eviction of thousands of Palestinian citizens of Israel.
Shacks and other structures in al-‘Araqib, an “unrecognized” village in the Negev, were demolished at least 20 times in 2011, following other demolitions in 2010. In July, the Israeli authorities brought a legal claim against the village residents seeking 1.8 million NIS (approximately US$500,000) to meet the costs of the repeated demolitions and evictions.
Israeli forces used live fire and other excessive force against Palestinian demonstrators in the West Bank and protesters at the Lebanese and Syrian borders, and to enforce the “exclusion zone” within Gaza and along its coast. They killed 55 Palestinian civilians in the OPT, including 11 children. Among them were 22 civilians, including nine children, killed by Israeli fire in Gaza’s land and sea restricted areas. The army initiated internal investigations into some of these incidents, but these were not independent or transparent.
Up to 35 people were reportedly killed and hundreds injured when Israeli soldiers fired at thousands of Palestinian refugees and others who protested on 15 May and 5 June at the Lebanese border with Israel and the Syrian border with the Israeli-occupied Golan. Some protesters threw stones and some crossed the border in the Golan Heights, but demonstrators did not have firearms and did not appear to pose a direct threat to the soldiers’ lives. Israel disputed the numbers killed and the circumstances.
Israeli soldiers regularly used excessive force against Palestinians demonstrating against the fence/wall, and those demonstrating against settlement expansion in the West Bank village of al-Nabi Saleh. On 9 December, they fatally injured Mustafa Tamimi, aged 28, who was struck in the face with a tear gas grenade fired at close range, in violation of military regulations, after he threw a stone at a military jeep.
In January, Israel’s Turkel Commission concluded that Israeli forces had not violated international humanitarian law when they attacked a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in May 2010 and killed nine Turkish nationals, but failed to account for the nine deaths.
The authorities again took no steps to conduct credible, independent investigations into alleged war crimes and possible crimes against humanity committed by Israeli forces during Operation “Cast Lead” in 2008-2009, in which hundreds of Palestinian civilians were killed, although a few military police investigations into specific incidents continued.
Israeli settlers and security forces accused of abuses against Palestinians generally escaped accountability. The Israeli authorities routinely opened investigations, but these rarely resulted in prosecutions. Yesh Din, an Israeli NGO, reported that almost 90 per cent of official investigations into alleged settler violence that it had monitored since 2005 were closed, apparently because of investigatory failures, and that only 3.5 per cent of complaints to Israeli military authorities made by Palestinians alleging rights violations by Israeli soldiers between 2000 and 2010 had resulted in indictments.
The Israeli authorities held at least 307 Palestinians from the OPT without charge or trial during 2011, under renewable administrative detention orders based on secret information withheld from the detainees and their lawyers. Three women administrative detainees were among the Palestinians released in exchange for the release of Gilad Shalit by Hamas.
Writer and academic Ahmad Qatamesh was arrested in April and held under a six-month administrative detention order which was renewed in September; he was still detained at the end of 2011. He was a prisoner of conscience.
The Israeli authorities continued to bar families from visiting Palestinian prisoners from Gaza held in Israeli prisons, maintaining a policy in force since June 2007. Although more than 200 prisoners from Gaza were released during 2011, some 440 remained in Israeli prisons at the end of the year. Relatives of West Bank prisoners were also frequently denied visitor permits by the Israeli authorities on unspecified “security” grounds.
Palestinians in the OPT continued to be tried before military courts and routinely denied access to lawyers during pre-trial interrogation. On 27 September, Military Order 1676 raised the age of majority for Palestinians being tried before Israeli military courts from 16 to 18. Previously, 16 and 17 year olds had been tried by these courts on the same basis as adults. The new order failed to require that child detainees be provided with access to legal counsel during interrogation or that children over 16 be held separately from adults.
Allegations of torture and other ill-treatment, including of children, continued to be reported. Among the most commonly cited methods were beatings, threats to the detainee or their family, sleep deprivation, and being shackled in painful positions for long periods. Confessions allegedly obtained under duress were accepted as evidence in Israeli military courts.
Islam Dar Ayyoub, aged 14, was arrested at his home in the West Bank village of al-Nabi Saleh at around 2am on 23 January. Blindfolded and handcuffed, he was transferred by military jeep via the nearby settlement of Halamish to the police station in the settlement of Ma’ale Adumim, where he was interrogated for hours without the presence of a lawyer; he was not allowed to rest, eat, or go to the toilet. Information obtained from him during interrogation was used to incriminate al-Nabi Saleh protest organizer Bassem Tamimi (see below).
In February, Gazan engineer Dirar Abu Sisi was forcibly transferred to Israel from Ukraine and held at Shikma Prison, near Ashkelon, where he was denied access to a lawyer for 25 days. In April, he was charged with developing rockets for Hamas’ military wing; the Israeli authorities said he had confessed but his lawyers alleged that his confession had been obtained under torture. He was still held, reportedly in solitary confinement, at the end of the year.
The Knesset, Israel’s parliament, passed laws restricting freedom of expression and association, including one which made it an offence to advocate a boycott of Israeli individuals or institutions in Israel or Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Another penalized commemoration by institutions or municipalities of the Nakba (catastrophe), a term used by Palestinians to describe their dispossession in 1948. The Knesset also discussed, but by the end of 2011 had not passed, proposed legislation to limit or prevent the receipt of funds from foreign governments by Israeli human rights NGOs, particularly those that provided information to the 2009 UN Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict.
Palestinian activists in the West Bank who mounted protests, some peaceful, against the fence/wall and the presence of illegal Israeli settlements continued to face arrest and trial before Israeli military courts. The Israeli authorities arrested at least 14 Palestinian journalists, two of whom were held as administrative detainees.
In January, a military appeals court extended the sentence of Abdallah Abu Rahma, a non-violent activist against the fence/wall from the village of Bil’in, from one year to 16 months. He had been convicted of incitement and organizing illegal demonstrations on the basis of statements made by children under duress. He was a prisoner of conscience. He was released in March after serving his full sentence.
Bassem Tamimi, a long-standing activist and peaceful critic of Israeli policies, was arrested on 24 March and later charged with organizing protests in the village of al-Nabi Saleh. He remained in custody as his military trial continued at the end of 2011. He was a prisoner of conscience.
The Israeli authorities continued to deny access to refugee-determination procedures to Eritrean and Sudanese asylum-seekers, who comprised about 80 per cent of the approximately 45,000 asylum-seekers in Israel. They were provided only with temporary documents and were not allowed to work or access public health and welfare services. Only a small number of asylum-seekers from other countries were granted refugee status.
Tough new measures to deter future asylum-seekers progressed through parliament. In March, the Knesset approved the first reading of an Anti-Infiltration Bill under which undocumented migrants and asylum-seekers would be liable to imprisonment for three or more years. In September, the National Council for Building and Planning published plans for a 10,000-bed detention centre for asylum-seekers near Israel’s border with Egypt. Despite an Israeli army decision in March to suspend the practice of “hot returns” of asylum-seekers entering Israel from Egypt without first checking their asylum claims, NGOs documented further cases of forced returns to Egypt until July.
At least three Israeli conscientious objectors were imprisoned during 2011 for refusing military service because they opposed Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories.
The group accused Israel of a long list of violations, including torture, restricting movement, limiting freedom of speech, detaining people without charge or trial for prolonged periods as well as maintaining a siege that strangles 1.6 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
The truth of the matter, however, is that quasi-academic reports of Israeli human rights violation, even those published by respectable human rights groups, remain quite insufficient to fully communicate the ugly reality of the Israeli state. In the final analysis, Israel is sinking in a sea of racism, fascism (it doesn’t matter if it is blunt or insidious racism), oppression and terror. One Israeli cabinet minister declared that “we are already a fascist state.”
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Jewish circles, such as the Bnai Brith organization left no stone unturned, protesting a local Baptist minister who claimed that God didn’t hear prayers of Jews since Jews didn’t recognize Jesus as their personal lord and Savior. After an avalanche of protests, the priest apologized.
Today in Israel, there are prominent politicians and religious leaders who shamelessly claim that non-Jews are donkeys in human shape, whose lives have no sanctity and who are not entitled to human dignity. There are rabbis who issue fatwas or edicts allowing Jewish doctors to let non-Jews injured in a car accident die of their wounds rather than give them medical treatment.
Unfortunately, such scandalous abominations raise very few eyebrows in Israel. This happens at a time when Jewish leaders routinely, even innately, hurl the charges of hate and immorality at anyone and everyone who mentions Israeli criminality.
But so what? Israel and Jews have nothing to fear or worry about as long as the US, its government, congress, and media, are in the Jewish pocket. The fact that the powerful and intimidating Jewish lobbies have succeeded in morphing most American politicians into absolutely docile political WMD’s (whores of mass destruction) readily at Israel’s beck and call.
Interestingly, this had a profound insolent effect on Israel. It was rumored that former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon sought to silence Shimon Peres, then foreign minister, telling him “don’t worry about American pressure on Israel. We control the American people and the stupid Americans know it.”
Besides, the ruling elite in Israel seems to have discovered that the more extremist and the more criminal and murderous Israel becomes, the more support and backing it receives from a disgracefully pliant Washington.
It is difficult to explain this strange phenomenon from the point of view the political sociology or political psychology. The only plausible explanation is that Jewish money and power have thoroughly corrupted American political culture so much that the U.S. is sinking down the drain, definitely though no dramatically.
The Palestinian people may never be able to deliver themselves from the clutches of Zionist Israel as long as America remains thoroughly enslaved, beguiled and manipulated by world Zionism.
Zionism might soon switch alliance to China the moment China’s ascendancy to the helm of the world and America’s demotion to the status of second or third-class global power is asserted.
In any case, the peace and stability of the world depends to a large extent on the world community’s willingness and ability to check the cancerous growth and lebensraum of Zionism.
To be sure, Zionists will not raise the white flag upon the first clash with a determined world community that is serious about justice and peace; they are too powerful and too arrogant to do that.
However, a meaningful transformation in the willingness of the international community to check the Nazi-like Zionist hegemony and supremacy will definitely make Zionism think twice before pursuing it genocidal drive toward world domination.
Zionist Israel is based on oppression. It carries the seeds of its own destruction.
Israel/Occupied Palestinian Territories: Amnesty International’s updated assessment of Israeli and Palestinian investigations into the Gaza conflict
This document presents Amnesty International’s updated assessment of the Israeli and Palestinian investigations into allegations of crimes under international law committed during the 22-day conflict in Gaza and southern Israel between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009. It analyses some of the flaws in Israel’s system of investigations which are relevant to all the Israeli investigations conducted to date. Amnesty International concludes that both the Israeli government and the Hamas de facto administration have failed to conduct investigations that are credible, independent and in conformity with international law.
General Assembly Security Council
Tenth emergency special session
Agenda item 5
Illegal Israeli actions in Occupied East Jerusalem and the
rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territor:
United Nations addressed to the
Secretary-General and the President of the Security Council Oct. 8, 2012
I regret to inform you that Israel, the occupying Power, is continuing its military campaign against the Palestinian people in the besieged Gaza Strip, in grave breach of international law, including international humanitarian law and the relevant provisions regarding the protection of civilians in armed conflict and the prohibition of reprisals and collective punishment against the civilian population under occupation. The intensification of Israel’s aggression against the Gaza Strip threatens to further destabilize the situation on the ground and to fully ignite yet another round of deadly violence. This demands the attention of the international community, particularly of the Security Council, which is duty-bound to act to maintain international peace and security.
The present letter is in follow-up to our previous 434 letters regarding the ongoing crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, since 28 September 2000. These letters, dated from 29 September 2000 (A/55/432-S/2000/921) to 6 September 2012 (A/ES-10/562-S/2012/689), constitute a basic record of the crimes committed by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people since September 2000. For all of these war crimes, acts of State terrorism and systematic human rights violations committed against the Palestinian people, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators must be brought to justice.
To date, the United States has provided Israel $115 billion in bilateral assistance. It is currently the second largest recipient of aid worldwide, with Afghanistan now first.
The fiscal year 2013 budget request “includes $3.1 billion in Foreign Military Financing [FMF] for Israel and $15 million for refugee resettlement. Within the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s FY2013 budget request includes $99.8 million in joint U.S.-Israeli co-development for missile defense.”
In January 2013, if the provisions in the Budget Control Act of 2011 hold and 8.5% of most discretionary spending is cut, the annual aid to Israel, if not exempted, would be reduced by roughly $263.5 million.
In 2007, the Bush Administration signed a 10-year, $30 billion military aid package that raises Israel’s annual FMF grant from $2.55 billion to $3.1 billion.
“The United States and Israel announced in 2010 that Israel will purchase 19 F-35s, the fifth generation stealth aircraft considered to be the most technologically advanced fighter jet ever made, at a cost of $2.75 billion. They will be paid for entirely using FMF grants…. As part of the F-35 deal, the United States agreed to make reciprocal purchases of equipment from Israel’s defense industries estimated at $4 billion.”
In 2012 Israel’s portion of the total FMF account of the U.S. was 60%. Sixteen separate annual FMF grants to Israel represent 18-22% of the overall Israeli defense budget.
The value of the U.S. materiel stored in Israel increased to $800 million in 2010 and is expected to rise to $1.2 billion. By agreement, Israel may ask for permission to use these arms and equipment, and the country drew on these reserves in its 2006 conflict with Hezbollah.
“Over the past several years, the United States has sold Israel several variants of smart, ‘bunkerbuster’ bombs that could be used to strike buried targets, including the GBU-28 Hard Target Penetrator, a 5,000 pound-class smart bomb that can penetrate up to 20 feet of concrete.”
In non-military aid, between 1973 and 1991, the United States gave $460 million for resettling Jewish refugees in Israel. Annually, this figure has been between $12 million and $80 million.
Headline News! “Obama makes a purchase of Jewish Votes with borrowed American Money.”
We now have more poverty, more hunger, more homeless in our own country and the numbers are incresing daily. We face cuts to our military, our social programs, our educational system and even Social Security and Medicare – and yet our federal government can give Israel $700 MILLION of our tax dollars?
And, yes, the timing is very suspect – on the very day that Romney visits Israel our president signs over $700 MILLION to the Israeli government for a short-range rocket shield!
Israel’s nuclear weapons render it ineligible for US aid
September 24, 2012
The Israel lobby’s biggest and longest-running Washington boondoggles are the massive annual weapons and economic packages to Israel. Tightly coordinated campaign contributors (both individuals and political action committees) and the Israeli government’s own quiet demands manifest themselves within AIPAC-drafted foreign aid legislation. The U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012 forces Americans to fork hard-earned tax dollars over to Israel’s coffers on the pretext that it is in eminent danger. Yet declassified documents reveal that even the current prime minister once worked inside the state’s clandestine nuclear arms smuggling rings. Transferring foreign aid to the Middle East’s sole nuclear weapons state — which can obviously take care of itself — is not just unseemly and unnecessary. It is illegal.
AIPAC’s publicly available tax return [.pdf] reveals it has now become as seamlessly linked to its foreign principal as its parent organization — the American Zionist Council — was when it was finally ordered by the Kennedy administration to openly register as an Israeli foreign agent in 1962. AIPAC spent $1,541,572 maintaining its Jerusalem office. The office, led by Wendy Senor Singer, is described as the official location for daily meetings with senior Israeli government officials. It is also used to coordinate the visits of supplicant U.S. politicians with funding from a mysterious captive charity of no employees claiming to be an educational organization [.pdf]. The Israeli government’s desires are seamlessly transcribed into legislation at AIPAC’s headquarters in Washington — raising the perennial question why AIPAC is not registering as Israel’s foreign agent.
In relation to the sheer volume of American taxpayer dollars it transfers to Israel, on paper AIPAC is a rather thinly-funded and top-heavy organization. In its latest schedule of contributors, filed in late April and just obtained by special request from the IRS, AIPAC reported that only 1,949 individual contributors provided 61% of its $64 million in total contributions and grants.* The top-tier donors each gave on average $20,206, with the top donor chipping in an impressive $6,610,181. Although contributions to 501(c)(4) organizations like AIPAC are not tax-deductible, corporations and partnerships can write off contributions as a business expense. One AIPAC donor, an attorney in New York City whose confidential data the IRS didn’t successfully scrub, presumably paid AIPAC with funds from his law partnership, which AIPAC listed as the contributor’s address.
AIPAC claims in mandatory disclosures filed with the clerk of the House of Representatives over the same time period that it spent approximately 4% of its total budget on actual lobbying. AIPAC’s core lobbying mission hasn’t changed much since AIPAC’s founder left his Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs post in New York in 1951. Isaiah Kenen’s mission was to obtain U.S.-taxpayer-funded weapons and aid by lobbying from a Jewish Agency funded front group of “concerned Americans” rather than working openly as Israel’s officially registered foreign agent. In Kenen’s day, Israel first obtained massive amounts of surplus WWII conventional weapons simply by stealing or purchasing [.pdf] them to be scrapped and instead smuggling them from the United States in violation of the Arms Export Control and Neutrality Acts. The smuggling networks were established and funded by small numbers of wealthy Zionists who were curiously immune from criminal prosecution. When less enfranchised citizens later demanded warranted prosecutions, the Justice Department simply ignored them, establishing a policy that has held fast to the present day.
The AIPAC-sponsored U.S.-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012, signed into law by President Obama on July 27, 2012, makes unprecedented demands on U.S. taxpayers and diplomats. It mandates American economic largess to Israel via high technology, agriculture, medicine, health, pharmaceutical, and energy transfers. It demands funding for Israel Aerospace Industries (a corporation only recently linked to Israeli espionage activities against the U.S.) missile-defense programs and air-refueling tankers and munitions Israel could use to unilaterally set off a wider war with Iran. Israel even won a detour of used weapons from U.S. forces departing Iraq. The aid law extends already generous loan guarantees to Israel.
However, the package also requires the U.S. president to issue to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and House Committee on Foreign Affairs a report on the status of Israel’s “qualitative military edge” by Jan. 23, 2013. It is finally time for some hard truths. An honest presidential response to this AIPAC-mandated reporting rider would wipe clean all current and future U.S.-taxpayer-funded obligations to Israel. A truthful presidential assessment would finally tell the American people the following: “Israel has deployed a clandestine nuclear arsenal with some components and materials stolen from the United States. Our foreign aid laws therefore make Israel ineligible for further taxpayer dollars.”
Such a truthful declaration would turn the tables on AIPAC and its small group of donors now pushing Americans to steal from themselves by systematically violating the Symington and Glenn amendments to U.S. foreign aid laws. Ending aid would disentangle unwitting Americans from Israel’s unending conflicts, illegal settlements, systematized abuse of Palestinians, and clandestine nuclear proliferation in the Middle East.
*As reported in 2011, in previous years AIPAC filed contributor schedules with the IRS that improperly listed only two donor entries. After numerous complaints were made to the IRS, AIPAC has apparently been forced to again file proper schedules listing every contributor donating more than $5,000. by Grant Smith
Unconditional U.S. military assistance to Israel has contributed to this deterioration, sustaining the conflict and undermining the long-term security interests of both Israelis and Palestinians. This is made clear in the most recent 2011 State Department Country Report on Human Rights Practices covering Israel and the Occupied Territories, which details widespread Israeli human rights violations committed against Palestinian civilians, many of which involve the misuse of U.S.-supplied weapons.
“Continued U.S. military assistance to Israel offered without conditions or accountability,” the signers conclude, “will only serve to sustain the status quo and Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinian territories.”
The full text of the letter, dated Oct. 5:
Dear Member of Congress,
We write to you as Christian leaders representing U.S. churches and religious organizations committed to seeking a just peace for Israelis and Palestinians. Our organizations have been deeply involved in this pursuit for decades, inspired by the call and promise of Jesus Christ who said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”
In response to our Christian call to be peacemakers, we have worked for decades to support both Israelis and Palestinians in their desire to live in peace and well-being. We have worked alongside our Palestinian Christian sisters and brothers to help build a peaceful and resilient Palestinian civil society by supporting hospitals, schools, clinics, and social service agencies. These ministries include cooperative efforts with Israelis and Palestinians as well as with Jews, Muslims, and other neighbors here in the United States. Through our presence in the region, and regular visits to our partners there, we see first-hand the impacts of the conflict on both Palestinians and Israelis and hear from them directly about the reality of their lives.
We have also witnessed widespread Israeli human rights violations committed against Palestinians, including killing of civilians, home demolitions and forced displacement, and restrictions on Palestinian movement, among others. We recognize that each party—Israeli and Palestinian—bears responsibilities for its actions and we therefore continue to stand against all violence regardless of its source. Our stand against violence is complemented by our commitment to the rights of all Israelis, as well as all Palestinians, to live in peace and security.
It is this experience and these commitments that lead us to write to you today to express our grave concern about the deteriorating conditions in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories which threaten to lead the region further away from the realization of a just peace.
Unfortunately, unconditional U.S. military assistance to Israel has contributed to this deterioration, sustaining the conflict and undermining the long-term security interests of both Israelis and Palestinians. This is made clear in the most recent 2011 State Department Country Report on Human Rights Practices covering Israel and the Occupied Territories, which details widespread Israeli human rights violations committed against Palestinian civilians, many of which involve the misuse of U.S.-supplied weapons.
(Weapons in this instance include “crowd control” items such as tear gas. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2012 (P.L. 112-74) which is included in the US Foreign Military Financing regulations stipulates that “not later than 90 days after enactment of this act and 6 months thereafter, the Secretary of State shall submit a report to the Committees on Appropriations detailing any crowd control items, including tear gas, made available with appropriated funds or through export licenses to foreign security forces that the Secretary of State has credible information have repeatedly used excessive force to repress peaceful, lawful, and organized dissent.” )
Accordingly, we urge an immediate investigation into possible violations by Israel of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act and the U.S. Arms Export Control Act which respectively prohibit assistance to any country which engages in a consistent pattern of human rights violations and limit the use of U.S. weapons to “internal security” or “legitimate self-defense.”
(While this letter focuses on US-Israel relations and the Israel-Palestine conflict, these are laws that we believe should be enforced in all instances regardless of location. All allegations regarding the misuse of US supplied arms should be investigated.)
More broadly, we urge Congress to undertake careful scrutiny to ensure that our aid is not supporting actions by the government of Israel that undermine prospects for peace. We urge Congress to hold hearings to examine Israel’s compliance, and we request regular reporting on compliance and the withholding of military aid for non-compliance.
In addition to specific rights violations, we see a troubling and consistent pattern of disregard by the government of Israel for U.S. policies that support a just and lasting peace. Specifically, repeated demands by the U.S. government that Israel halt all settlement activity have been ignored. Since 1967, every U.S. administration has decried Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories as obstacles to peace. Despite this stance, Israel continues to expand its settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, claiming territory that under international law and U.S. policy should belong to a future Palestinian state. The Oslo peace process, which began in 1993, was publicly promoted as leading Israelis and Palestinians to a just peace based on a two-state solution. Instead, since 1993, the number of Israeli settlers in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, has more than doubled. Rights violations resulting from Israeli settlement activity include separate and unequal legal systems for Palestinians and settlers, confiscation of Palestinian land and natural resources for the benefit of settlers, and violence by settlers against Palestinians.
According to the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem and the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, there has been a dramatic rise in settler attacks against Palestinians this year. They report that these attacks are often intended to drive Palestinians from areas the settlers wish to take over, and that Israeli authorities have failed to take significant action to stop the violence or hold the perpetrators accountable. We believe that these actions directly undermine peace efforts and threaten, rather than support, Israel’s long-term security interests.
We want to be clear that we recognize that Israel faces real security threats and that it has both a right and a duty to protect both the state and its citizens. However, the measures that it uses to protect itself and its citizens, as in the case with any other nation, must conform to international humanitarian and human rights law.
As Christian leaders in the United States, it is our moral responsibility to question the continuation of unconditional U.S. financial assistance to the government of Israel. Realizing a just and lasting peace will require this accountability, as continued U.S. military assistance to Israel — offered without conditions or accountability — will only serve to sustain the status quo and Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinian territories.
We request, therefore, that Congress hold Israel accountable to these standards by making the disbursement of U.S. military assistance to Israel contingent on the Israeli government’s compliance with applicable U.S. laws and policies.
As Israel is the single largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid since World War II, it is especially critical for Israel to comply with the specific U.S. laws that regulate the use of U.S.-supplied weapons. We also encourage Congress to support inclusive, comprehensive, and robust regional diplomacy to secure a just and lasting peace that will benefit Israelis, Palestinians, and all the peoples of the region, and the world.
With respect and gratitude, we offer you our prayers.
In addition to Parsons, the letter was signed by Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; United Methodist Council of Bishops President Rosemarie Wenner; Peg Birk, transitional general secretary of the National Council of Churches; Shan Cretin, general secretary of the American Friends Service Committee; J. Ron Byler, executive director of the Mennonite Central Committee U.S.; and Alexander Patico, North American secretary for the Orthodox Peace Fellowship.
Also, Diane Randall, executive secretary of the Friends Committee on Legislation; American Baptist Churches General Secretary A. Roy Medley; United Church of Christ General Minister and President Geoffrey A. Black; the Rev. Sharon Watkins, general minister and president of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ); the Rev. Julia Brown Karimu, president of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Division of Overseas Ministries; the Rev. James A. Moos, executive minister for the United Church of Christ’s Wider Church Ministries; Eli S. McCarthy, justice and peace director for the Conference of Major Superiors of Men; and Kathy McKneely, acting director of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns.
The central piece denied and evaded by Israel is the Nakba(“catastrophe” in Arabic) of 1948, when Palestinians were ruthlessly attacked, massacred and driven from their homes into refugee camps by Zionist terror groups, and never allowed to return in violation of international law. This is the deeply flawed foundation upon which Israel was established and upon which its entire subsequent society remains structurally unsteady, morally corrupt, legally culpable, and psychologically damaged. Israel has inevitably suffered from a “spoiled identity” (a concept of sociologist Erving Goffman) against which it defends by outright lies, hysterical accusations of “anti-Semitism” and other transparent defense mechanisms, and the consequences to its Palestinian victims remain tragic and ruinous.This pathological system has been aided and abetted by the United States, which stands alone in the world as a supporter and defender of Israel. Without understanding this pathological relationship, leading to an alteration in US policies toward Israel, no just or enduring solution will be possible.
This conflict is typically framed as a contest between “two sides” or “two narratives” that either blames the Palestinians as “terrorists” or implies a non-existent symmetry: equivalence of violence, blame for the conflict, suffering, legitimacy of claims, and responsibility for finding a solution.
In truth, the Palestinians are an invaded, dispossessed, occupied, brutalized, blockaded, and segregated people who have the right to resist under international law and have steadfastly done so for many decades in largely non-violent ways.
1948 refugee in UNRWA camp
1948 UNRWA refugee camp
Separated by barbed wire from their home
A fictitious account omitting Israeli lawlessness and ignoring the lonely and rightful Palestinian struggle for justice has been relentlessly recited and perpetuated by the American press and entertainment media under influence of the pro-Israel lobby and social influence network.
Rachel Corrie was a 23-year old American peace activist who was run over and killed by an Israeli on a bulldozer, on March 16, 2003 in Nablus, Palestine. Corrie was protesting Israel’s systematic destruction of Palestinian homes. http://www.israelvworld.com
Footage from Rachel’s interview conducted by Middle East Broadcasting Company on March 14th, 2003, two days before she was murdered by the Israeli Defense Forces.
The Israeli army’s chief of staff states that in the past three years, “US taxpayers have contributed more to the Israeli defense budget than Israeli taxpayers,” according to a report in the Jerusalem Post, a prominent Israeli newspaper.
According to the report,Lieutenant-General Gabi Ashkenazi made the statement during a speech on September 11th. In it he emphasized: “We must preserve ties with the United States. I believe this is a security necessity.”
According to the newspaper the speech was at the Calcalist Conference, which appears to be an annual event in Tel Aviv sponsored by the Calcalist newspaper, an Israeli Hebrew-only daily financial newspaper. It is is part of the group that publishes Yedioth Ahronoth, the largest circulation newspaper in Israel.
American taxpayers give Israel over $3 billion per year (over $8 million per day), more than to any other nation, despite the fact that Israel is smaller than New Jersey and is in the top 30 richest countries in the world.
Per capita, Israelis receive $10,000 more U.S. tax money than average.
Some of the other top recipients of US tax money, Egypt and Jordan, were provided this assistance in return for diplomatic recognition of the Israeli state.
According to the Congressional Research Service, Israel is given this money in a lump sum at the beginning of the fiscal year. Americans then pay interest on money they have given to Israel, while Israel makes interest on it.
Ashkenazi’s statements are extremely significant, since this is the first time that an Israeli leader has pointed out that American taxpayers pay more to Israel’s defense budget than do Israelis.
If the costs of the Iraq war, which was largely pushed by Israel partisans in the Bush administration, were added into the equation, the American tax money on behalf of Israel would quite likely dwarf the amount paid by Israeli taxpayers.
Some top economists predict that the cost of the Iraq war will be $3 trillion.
Israel has a population of about 7 million people.
IN 2010 Turkey issued an arrest warrant for Ashkenazi for Israeli forces’ killing of 9 civilians, including one who held American citizenship.
In 2008 a complaint was filed at the Hague accusing Ashkenazi of war crimes. Accusers stated:
On 27th December 2008, the suspect, Chief of Staff, ordered the Israeli army to attack densely populated areas in the Gaza Strip. For three weeks, 1,500 tons of bombs were dropped from the air on residential neighborhoods in Gaza and tens of thousands of artillery shells were fired from tanks. For 3 weeks, the army damaged and destroyed houses, schools, hospitals, infrastructure, water and electrical plants, killed more than 1,300 people, hundreds of them children, and injured about 5,300 people. Thousands of houses were bombed or shelled and 50,000 residents were made homeless, without shelter.
Prior to this, the suspect was part of a group, which implemented a siege on 1.5 million people in the Gaza Strip, denying them a regular supply of food, water, medicine, fuel and electricity for 18 months.
According to international law, it is absolutely prohibited to bomb residential areas in a way that interrupts the lives of civilians; to carry out executions without trial, to collectively punish; to destroy or damage hospitals, schools and homes. The prohibitions against collective punishment were enshrined in the Geneva Conventions after the behavior of the Nazis in Europe during World War II when they destroyed entire villages to punish residents for sheltering the resistance. 194 countries agree with the prohibitions of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
In December 2008, a complaint was filed in the Hague against the suspect, on suspicion that he had committed war crimes and crimes against humanity for ordering the siege of Gaza.