Sunday, October 1, 2017

“Tears of Gaza”

“Tears of Gaza” to be screened this Friday eve, Oct 6, at the UUCC is a film NOT to see.  It is too overwhelming to take.  The title is enough to spark recognition that we are each and all implicated in cruelty, pain and intolerable suffering inflicted through violence on women, children, on ‘the family of man.’ The looming question that was left with me upon viewing the film is:  What can I do about it – this ceaseless intolerance, ‘endless war,’ desecration of human lives?  I am open-mouthed. I do not know.  On the other hand, maybe that is a good reason TO SEE the film - so we can talk about it.  For I believe that this honest yet painful look at history is the only way towards change and creating a better world for all.

Jane Toby
Catskill, NY

Monday, August 14, 2017

Promised Land - Shattered Lives

Thanks to Greg Desylva for producing this video. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Antisemitism is the new Communism

Progressives were called Communists in the 1950's, whenever the corrupt establishment wanted to shut someone up. It happened to our Pete Seeger, who was blacklisted by the media and the record companies for years. Back then anyone who sang songs against war and racism was a subversive in the eyes of the state, whether he was in the Communist Party or not. 

Antisemitism is the new Communism. Our populist reformer, Joel Tyner, has been fighting a campaign against privatizing the city bus system, a move that would destroy jobs as well as eliminate many bus stops in the inner city of Poughkeepsie. Rather than looking at the economic racism of yet another privatization boondoggle, our local media prefers calling Tyner names, this time the amorphous charge of being an antisemite. 

There were some heated words exchanged between Joel and some other Democratic members of the Dutchess County Legislator who refused to back him on saving the public bus service. Sad to say, there are Democrats in the county quite content to be junior partners in the Republican machine. 

Now our media, as subservient to the establishment as some of our local Democrats, claim that the whole issue is antisemitism, not the rip off of public services from the Black community. It seems like the new era of slanderous innuendo is a lot like the old one, the McCarthy Era. 

Joel is not an antisemite, and did not refer to anyone's religion when he criticized local Democrats. The charge is trash.

Fred Nagel

Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner

To the Editor:

Dutchess County Legislator Joel Tyner is a courageous and  compassionate  crusader for justice in our community.  Mr. Tyner is a voice for the voiceless and speaks up for the powerless, the disenfranchised, and the “little guy.”    He supports small businesses, fiscal responsibility, prison reform, free speech, and equality for all.  He opposes cronyism, corruption, and highly questionable campaign contributions  made to the big players in Dutchess County politics.  

The political establishment (both Republicans and Democrats) are terrified by the truth telling of  Joel Tyner and they have been trying, unsuccessfully,  to silence him for years.  These political hacks fear his honesty and  despise  his integrity.  However,  “we the people”  admire and  respect  Legislator  Tyner.   

Mr.  Tyner deserves  commendation not censure.  Cooperation not criticism.  Celebration not castigation.  And to be cherished and not condemned.  In spite of these spurious and cowardly attacks on him,  Joel Tyner will continue to tell it like it is.  I would urge his detractors to focus on and  debate the  policy issues and cease the character assassination and name calling. 

Is Joel Tyner perfect?  Of course not, but he is open,  honest, and real - unlike so many of the other politicians ruling the roost here in Dutchess County.  Thank you Legislator Tyner for your years of public service and tireless devotion to improving  the lives of all.  Please keep up the good work. 

Eli Kassirer
Gardiner,  NY

Friday, June 30, 2017

The Russians are coming

Oh how the Democrats hate the Russians! The Russians caused them to lose the election. It wasn't because Hillary was so cozy with the banks, the oil companies and the rest of the billionaire lobby. Focus on how the Russians are coming and forget the rest.

If the Democratic Party was really worried about foreign countries influencing the election, it could start with Saudi Arabia, which gave Hillary 10 million before her campaign. For that tidy sum, the Saudis were given a huge military weapons deal, enabling them to bomb their neighbor, Yemen, back to the stone age. It makes no difference that Saudi Arabia regularly beheads opposition bloggers and continues to support Wahhabism, the extremist ideology that brought down the World Trade Center. 

And then there is the political influence of Israel. Millions of Zionist dollars pour into our political process, enabling this lobby to control both parties. Say the word "Palestine" and your political career is about over. 

Congress and the president routinely celebrate the most vicious attacks on Palestinian civilians, like the killing of over 500 children during the most resent slaughter in Gaza. Congress excused these war crimes, describing them as Israel's right to "defend itself." 

The Israel lobby also funds racist hate groups in the US. The David Project has extended this intimidation to college students supporting Palestine. New laws are being passed making the boycotting of apartheid products a crime. There is no more insidious foreign influence on our elections than the Israel Lobby. 

Fred Nagel

What would you call this?

Today, as I write this, power in Gaza will be cut down to two hours a day by Israel at the “request” of the puppet Palestinian Authority – comparable to the Nazi-collaborating, Vichy French. Yes, you read that right. Two hours. Twenty-two hours without refrigeration or lights, with no power even at hospitals for twenty-two hours. 

Prior to this, Israel was allowing a so generous four hours of power, and that after destroying Gaza’s only electrical plant, her water and sewage systems and other infrastructure, like schools and hospitals as well as over 500 children killed in the last Israeli attack on Gaza. And now this schmendrick, this nothing, this nebbish, Jarad Kushner, son-in-law of a clinically narcissistic imbecile, arrives “in pursuit of peace.” Give me a break. I, a Jew, have been to the West Bank more than once, I have tried without success to get into Gaza. I have experienced the wonderful hospitality, love, courage and resilience of an occupied people, the Palestinians. I have seen the check points, seen the Wall. I have seen what Israel thinks of peace. The Nazis put people in gas chambers. We called it genocide, the Holocaust. What would you call this in Gaza?

Tarak Kauff

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Salt Water Challenge

The Salt Water Challenge

Today, there are 6300 Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli prisons; this number includes 300 children and 500 administrative detainees (those imprisoned without charge or trial).

Since April 17, Palestinian Prisoners Day, more than 1500 of these political prisoners have engaged in an open-ended hunger strike. Today is Day #37. These prisoners have refused to eat food, only consuming salt water to maintain their health, until the Israeli government meets their demands for basic human rights as stipulated by the Geneva Convention. Freedom and dignity are universal rights inherent in humanity – to be enjoyed by all human beings.

The demands of these hunger strikers include:

An end to administrative detention An end to solitary confinement An end to the denial of family visits Access to proper medical care and treatment, and The right to access distance higher education On Monday, May 22, we stood with Jews Say NO! and the Granny Peace Brigade to join a growing, worldwide, social media campaign – #SaltWaterChallenge – to draw attention to the plight of Palestinian political prisoners. As supporters of these hunger-strikers, we drank salt water to stand in solidarity with those who refuse a life of humiliation.

Now, we challenge you to do the same.

Helaine Meisler and Nic Abramson