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Friday, April 15, 2005


Just Another Zionist For Peace: Scholars for Peace in the Middle East

Scholars for Peace in the Middle East Scholars for Peace in the Middle East [thanks, Inge] is an independent, faculty-driven, not-for-profit [501 (C) (3)], "big-tent" grassroots organization with over 550 members, representing 200 campuses worldwide; 19 of these campuses now have their own SPME Chapters.
The peace we seek in the Middle East is consistent both with Israel's right to exist as a sovereign Jewish state within safe and secure borders, and with the rights and legitimate aspirations of her neighbors.

Our mission is to inform, motivate, and encourage faculty to use their academic skills and disciplines on campus, in classrooms, and in academic publications to develop effective responses to the ideological distortions, including antisemitic and anti-Zionist slanders, that poison debate and work against peace.

[How could one possibly slander Zionism? That's like slandering "slavery," or "apartheid," or "racial supremacy." Well, at least they haven't equated anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism. Yet.]

SPME believes there is room for negotiation.
[How white of you.]

SPME is trying to counterbalance the well-documented and increasing anti-Israel and anti-Semitic forces that have made their way to the college campuses today, as SPME believes they do not contribute to peace for anyone affected.

SPME agrees with Thomas L. Friedman who wrote, "Criticizing Israel is not anti-Semitic, and saying so is vile. But singling out Israel for opprobrium and international sanction out of all proportion to any other party in the Middle East is anti-Semitic, and not saying so is dishonest." Campus Hypocrisy

[Ah, that's right, it should be treated as was treated Iraq for violating one UN resolution, and just unilaterally go in and export democracy and international legality... but should first send the gas masks to the Palestinians, who will need them.](thanks,cutter)

On September 17, 2002, Harvard President Lawrence Summers said, "....Where anti-Semitism and views that are profoundly anti-Israeli have traditionally been the primary preserve of poorly educated right-wing populists, profoundly anti-Israel views are increasingly finding support in progressive intellectual communities. Serious and thoughtful people are advocating and taking actions that are anti-Semitic in their effect if not their intent."

[Lawrence Summers is a college president? "Poorly educated right-wing populists" don't know the difference between Palestine and Pakistan, and comprise the bulk of the looney Christian Zionists that advocate annihilating Palestinians to facilitate their longed for rapture. " . . . In their effect if not their intent"? What anti-Semitic "result" has been effected? To what specifically is he referring? The purpose of this drivel is to confuse and obfuscate.]

On October 7, 2002, an ad appeared in the New York Times signed by over 300 College Presidents decrying anti-Semitism on campus and calling for ethnically "intimidation free" campuses.

On November 8, 2002, Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger criticized a faculty-sponsored petition calling for the university to divest from Israel. "The petition alleges human rights abuses and compares Israel to South Africa at the time of apartheid, an analogy I believe is both grotesque and offensive, Bollinger said in a statement. As president of Columbia ... I want to state clearly that I will not lend any support to this proposal."

[Money talks. Boycott ended apartheid in South Africa, and South African activists attest that conditions in the occupied territories are worse than in apartheid South Africa Of course, since Palestinians are terrorists, since Palestinians don't love their children, since Palestinians aren't Palestinians because there's no such thing as a Palestinian it's O.K. to deny them their human rights.]

On November 13, 2002 the United Nations Security Council condemned "acts of terror" against Israeli targets in Kenya and deplored the claims of responsibility by the Al-Qaida terrorist network.

By a vote of 14-1, the council urged all 191 UN member nations "to cooperate in efforts to find and bring to justice the perpetrators, organizers and sponsors of these terrorist attacks.

Commenting on Martin Luther King's view of anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism, Dr. Seymour Martin Lipset, the noted sociologist and political analyst, wrote in "The Socialism of Fools: The Left, the Jews and Israel," a booklet published by The Anti-Defamation League in 1969 wrote: "Shortly before he was assassinated, Martin Luther King, Jr. was in Boston on a fund-raising mission, and I had the good fortune to attend a dinner which was given for him in Cambridge...He wanted to find out what the Negro students at Harvard and other parts of the Boston area were thinking about various issues,...One of the young men present happened to make some remark against the Zionists. Dr. King snapped at him and said, "Don't talk like that! When people criticize Zionists, they mean Jews. You're talking 'anti-Semitism!' " "

[O.K., I think that this statement by King has been discredited, and I'll look for documentation. But in the meantime so what? It's wrong no matter who said it. It's an old propaganda ploy to have the support of a famous person no matter what the message is.]

SPME has formed task forces to examine issues of:

1) anti-Semitic or anti-Israel biases in the mandatory multicultural religious and ethnic teachings on campus and in the community;
2) working to maintain "intimidation free" campuses;
3) dealing with academic integrity with respect to fabricating and falsifying data when discussing the Middle East;
4) Responding to anti-Israel and anti-Semitic incidents on campus as they arise, especially in classrooms and university sponsored events. SPME is working closely with and being encouraged by major organizations such as, but not limited to:
American Association of Academics for Israel
American Jewish Congress
AntiDefamation League
Anti-Semitism Task Force of American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists
Caravan For Democracy
Hasbara Fellowships
Hillel Foundation
International Academic Friends of Israel
Jewish National Fund
North American Jewish Students Association
United Jewish Communities of North America

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