[Marxism] Please sign petition against US weapons to Saudi Arabia and Israel

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Oct 1 13:17:17 MDT 2007


(From Leni Brenner)

> Hi Sisters and Brothers,
> 
> Please look at the petition below, opposing the US sending weapons to Saudi 
> Arabia and Israel. If you agree with it, return the petition to 
> BrennerL21 at aol.com, with your name and email address in the spaces provided at the end. Each 
> week's collection of names will be sent to the majority and minority leaders 
> of Congress, etc. The petition is the first step in building a coalition 
> against weapons to all theocratic states. You will be informed as it develops a 
> democratic structure.
> 
> Domestic separation of church and state is profoundly important to many 
> educated American believers and skeptics. But there is no organization primarily 
> devoted to demanding that the US, constitutionally secular at home, stop arming 
> anti-egalitarian religious states. This has been disastrous in the Middle East 
> and will get worse if it continues. 
> 
> Naturally the coalition would be part of the broader anti-war movement, 
> opposed to US involvement with anti-egalitarian regimes, atheist or religious, 
> everywhere. But given the centrality of arming religious states to Washington's 
> imperial strategy since 1945, the coalition would be mandated to provide factual 
> material, historical and contemporary, via the internet and campus teach-ins, 
> on an issue already of growing concern not only to the broad peace camp but 
> to even vaster religious and secularist publics. 
> 
> Bush's renewed arming of Saudi Arabia and Israel forces the issue. But we can 
> turn his scheme against him and the Democrats, equally guilty of such 
> outrages. The old saying is 'a mountain only stand out because of the flatness of the 
> surrounding ground.' They have gotten away with their crimes because no 
> movement focused on confronting our educated with the complete range of their 
> international religious demagoguery. They built European Christian Democratic 
> parties vs. Stalinism, patronized the creation of an Orthodox Jewish state, 
> organized an Islamic front on the Soviet Union's borders, culminating with the arming 
> of such terrorists against the pro-Soviet regime in Afghanistan. 
> 
> If we resolutely challenge Bush now, we can generate enough discussion of the 
> potentially disastrous consequences of the deal that, even if we can't stop 
> congress from funding it, we can continue, confident that we will convince 
> enough people in reasonable time. We can indeed build a broad movement for a 
> secular US in a secular world, and stop Washington from arming Israel, Saudi Arabia 
> and other such fanatic regimes.
> 
> Lenni Brenner
> 
> BrennerL21 at aol.com
> www.smithbowen.net/linfame/brenner
> 
> ***
> 
> PETITION AGAINST WEAPONS TO SAUDI ARABIA AND ISRAEL
> 
> We the people call on the Congress of the United States to oppose President 
> George Bush's scheme to sell $20 billion worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia and 
> five other Persian Gulf states, and increase US military grants to Israel by 
> 25%, to $30.4 billion over 10 years. 
> 
>>From the beginning of the cold war, Washington's strategy, arming religious 
> fanatics against 'godless' Communists and anti-imperialist nationalists, has 
> been catastrophic for the people of the Middle East. Bush's latest maneuver only 
> guarantees more disasters for them and for Americans. 
> 
> In 1979, Democrat Jimmy Carter secretly armed Afghan Sunni fundamentalists 
> against the Soviet-imposed regime in Kabul. The terrorists won under Republican 
> Ronald Reagan, allied with Saudi Arabia. But Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 
> 1991, and our President's father sent troops to Saudia to protect the regime. 
> Osama bin Laden, a leader of Reagan's Saudi allies in Afghanistan, realized 
> that the Saudi dynasty was an American dependent. He broke with them and their 
> 'Crusader' backers and ultimately blew up the WTC, murdering thousands. "Blow 
> back" is CIA slang for negative consequences of its plots and 9/11 was the 
> unforeseen but inevitable result of US use of religious fanatics in its imperial 
> machinations.
> 
> Post-9/11, Saudi Arabia is immensely unpopular here. Fifteen of the 19 plane 
> hijackers were Saudi citizens. Informed Americans see them as inevitable 
> end-products of the regime's fundamentalist indoctrination. 
> 
> Saudi women must wear veils in public. They can't drive cars. They need their 
> father or husband's approval to leave the country. Christian churches are 
> forbidden. There is blatant discrimination against Shia Muslims. 
> 
> Israel backs US arms sales to Saudi Arabia as an armed Sunni buffer against 
> Shia Iran's nuclear threat against the Zionist state. But when Israeli crimes 
> are denounced, Zionists typically respond by asking 'Why aren't people also 
> crying out against Saudi Arabia's crimes?' Israel shouldn't be singled out. 
> Americans must oppose arms going to all governments violating human rights. 
> 
> Moshe Katsav just resigned as Israel's President. His own Attorney General 
> announced sufficient evidence to indict him for raping his office manager. He 
> pled guilty to committing an indecent act under coercion. This is usually 
> punished by up to 10 years imprisonment but he got a one-year suspended sentence. 
> 
> Katsev was President of an Orthodox Jewish state. Every morning an adult 
> Orthodox male thanks God for "making me a man, not a woman." Women thank him for 
> "making me what I am." They are segregated in Orthodox synagogues. Wives can't 
> divorce their husbands in the country's religious courts and there is no civil 
> divorce. If their husbands won't divorce them, they can't remarry. There are 
> thousands of women in this situation. 
> 
> "Reform Judaism" is America's largest Jewish sect. "Conservative Judaism" its 
> 2nd largest. Reform and Conservative Israeli rabbis can't perform legal 
> marriages or grant divorces. Only Orthodox rabbis can. As there is no civil 
> marriage, even an Israeli supreme court judge had to go to Cyprus to marry a 
> Conservative woman. 
> 
> Theoretically, Israeli male Jews must serve in the military. Some Orthodox 
> become regular soldiers. But others serve in Orthodox-only units, shielded 
> against contact with Jewish women soldiers who might be menstruating. Another 11% 
> of 18 year olds are exempt from the military so they can study theology, while 
> atheist, Conservative, Reform and female soldiers fight for a state rooted in 
> their legal inequality. 
> 
> Orthodox superiority over rival Judaic sects is superimposed on massive 
> colonial inequality for native Palestinian Muslims, Christians, Druze and atheists. 
> In 1948, Israel drove hundreds of thousands from their homes. According to 
> Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's Memoirs, published after his 1995 assassination 
> by a Zionist: 
> 
> "'Driving out' is a term with a harsh ring. Psychologically, this was one of 
> the most difficult actions we undertook. The population of Lod did not leave 
> willingly. There was no way of avoiding the use of force and warning shots in 
> order to make the inhabitants march the ten to fifteen miles to the point where 
> they met up with the legion. The inhabitants of Rami watched and learned the 
> lesson. Their leaders agreed to evacuate voluntarily, on condition that the 
> evacuation was carried out by vehicles."
> 
> Religious inequality went further after Israel's 1967 victory. All 'Israeli' 
> settlements in the West Bank are Jews-only, even though 1.4 million of 
> Israel's 7.1 million citizens are Palestinian. Some of these, male members of the 
> Druze sect, Muslim Bedouins, and some Christians, fight in Zionism's wars. Yet 
> none can live in the settlements. And some Jews-only settlements are 
> Orthodox-only. 
> 
> Bush recently signed an "Advance Democracy Act," requiring the State 
> Department to develop strategies helping tyrannies turn into democracies. But the 
> Saudi deal means the end of pressure on the regime. And neither Bush nor the 
> Congressional Democrats will apply the law to Israel, with its legal ethnic, 
> religious and sexual inequalities. 
> 
> Every July 4th, Americans, religious or unbelievers, remember Thomas 
> Jefferson, a deist who separated church and state in his new republic. Calling for an 
> immediate end to arming Saudi Arabia and Israel, we act in the spirit of his 
> last words about the Declaration of Independence, written 10 days before his 
> death, on July 4th, 1826:
> 
> "May it be to the world, what I believe it will be, (to some parts sooner, to 
> others later, but finally to all), the signal of arousing men to burst the 
> chains under which monkish ignorance and superstition had persuaded them to bind 
> themselves, and to assume the blessings and security of self-government. That 
> form which we have substituted, restores the free right to the unbounded 
> exercise of reason and freedom of opinion. All eyes are opened, or opening, to the 
> rights of man.
> 
> The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every 
> view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles 
> on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them 
> legitimately, by the grace of God."
> 
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