Sunday, April 5, 2009

Misdirected Anger

On March 26, The New Haven Register published a typical example of an Israel hater's missive railing at Israel for defending itself while deliberately ignoring the crimes of the Palestinian Arabs.

This particular screed is among the more extreme examples in that the writer claims anger about what were in reality two accidental injuries incurred by anti-Israel activists in the course of violently supporting Arab terror while he totally ignores the dozens of deliberate murders of innocent Americans by Palestinian Arab terrorists.

This entry includes the article published along with two responses, one published by The Ledger and one submitted but not published.

[This was the screed published by The New Haven Register on March 26. The photograph is one taken of the author and another Israel-hater who courageously covered his face while they were picketing a speech given at the Yale Institute for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism. ]


How much violence against Americans overseas will U.S. accept?

By Stanley Heller

Stanley Heller produces the TV news magazine 'The Struggle.' He can be reached at or MECC, Box 3626, Woodbridge 06525.

HERE'S a riddle. When is an American not an American? Answer: When he or she opposes crimes committed by Israel.

Tristan Anderson of Oakland, Calif., stood in a Palestinian village, Ni'lin, taking photographs March 13. He was shot in the head by a special high-velocity tear gas grenade and is grievously injured.

He wasn't hurt by an Arab 'terrorist.' He was shot by someone in the Israeli army, which the United Nations says is illegally occupying the West Bank of Palestine.

Anderson was in the village taking part in a demonstration against theft of land. The Israelis intend to take a quarter of the village land and give it to Jewish-only settlements.

Now, you might think our government's leaders would be screaming bloody murder about what was done to an innocent American. Think back to 1994, when an American who committed vandalism in Singapore was to be caned on his buttocks. Practically every politician in the country was outraged, and said so. Even President Bill Clinton made a statement.

When Israel is involved, it's all different.

On March 16, 2003, Rachel Corrie of Washington state was run over and killed by a bulldozer in the Gaza Strip while trying to prevent Israelis from knocking down a Palestinian's house. American and British eyewitnesses saw the bulldozer operator watch Corrie as he plowed over her, yet the Israeli investigation ruled it was an accident. No Israeli was
punished in any way for the killing. The U.S. government did
nothing for her family.

Now, it's Tristan Anderson's turn to face abandonment by his government.

He suffered a large hole in his forehead. Part of his brain had to be removed. An eye is severely damaged.

The tear gas grenade that hit him from less than 60 meters is a new-generation weapon. It can be shot over 500 meters because the grenade is self-propelling.

What are American politicians saying about this outrage? U.S. Sen. Christopher J. Dodd says nothing. U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro says nothing. U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman? You might as well expect it to snow in Stamford in July.

What about the State Department, which is charged with protecting American citizens overseas.?

On a TV show, Andrew Parker, U.S. consul general in Tel Aviv, said the State Department was 'concerned,' that it was awaiting an Israeli government report and that the United States had issued travel warnings about Israel.

That's it. After all, the United States is a powerless country. It only gives Israel billions of dollars every year and every advanced weapon in the book. What's the United States to do to protect its citizens against Israel.?

I videotaped a similar West Bank demonstration in 2007. It was in Bil'in, which is fairly near Ni'lin. Palestinians, international supporters and more than a few Jewish Israelis walked with banners toward the separation wall, or as some Palestinians call it, 'the Annexation Wall.' Before they got anywhere near it, Israeli armed forces started shooting hundreds of tear gas grenades and rubber coated bullets. A Palestinian was shot in the head with a rubber bullet.

The violence being used against demonstrators is getting worse.

In Ni'lin, demonstrators are met with live bullets. One was shot in the leg the same day Anderson was injured. Four Palestinians have been killed in the last year, the youngest 11 years old. Demonstrators face being shot at with 'skunk,' which is described in the Jerusalem Post as a 'foul-smelling liquid' and is believed to be sewage water. 'A terrible stench - the smell of a rotting, dead animal,' said Dr. David Nir, an Israeli peace campaigner. 'Like jumping headfirst into a sewer.' Ni'lin actually made it to the news in the United States last July. An Israeli soldier shot a Palestinian protester who was under arrest, handcuffed, blindfolded and standing next to him.

This would have been ignored except for a youth with a camcorder, who caught it all and put it on YouTube.

The guilty soldier got a slap on the hand, eventually.

Anderson is 37 years old. He faces the possibility of many operations, loss of the eye and permanent disfigurement.

Will some American in government speak up for him? Are you listening, President Barack Obama?

[The following letter in response was published by The New Haven Register on April 4.]

Palestinian killings don't spark outrage

Forum columnist Stanley Heller's outrage over an American's accidental injury in Israel is hypocritical and misplaced.

Heller expresses no outrage for the numerous Americans murdered by brutal Palestinian terrorism who, like Israelis targeted every day, were eating in restaurants, studying at university, riding the bus or enjoying an evening out when killed in cold blood.

Instead, Heller focuses on Tristan Anderson, injured by Israeli soldiers during a volatile demonstration. Anderson put himself in harm's way by participating in clashes that included masked demonstrators and stone throwing.

Anderson was working with the International Solidarity Movement, whose conduct and objectives involve much more than nonviolent protests. It is well-organized and spreads propaganda and misinformation about Israel and expresses vocal support for violent resistance.

In 2002, its co-founders wrote that they 'accept that Palestinians have a right to resist with arms' and that Palestinian resistance 'must take on a variety of characteristics - both nonviolent and violent.'

In March 2003, Israeli troops raided its offices in Jenin and captured a senior member of Islamic Jihad hiding in the office who had planned foiled attacks on Israelis.

When faced with such threats, Israel has the right to respond. Israel's response to the demonstrations at Ni'lin and elsewhere has been remarkably restrained, and use of tear gas and 'skunk' gas underscore the lengths to which Israel goes to minimize injury.

The Israeli government fully investigates every rare instance of injury to demonstrators, expressing regret in each case and condemnation where appropriate. In contrast, Palestinian terrorists are championed and celebrated.

David Waren

Editor's note: David Waren is Connecticut regional director of the Anti-Defamation League.

[The following letter was submitted to The New Haven Register but has not been published.]

To the editor:

With his March 26 op-ed, "How much violence against Americans overseas will U.S. accept?," anti-Israel activist Stanley Heller demonstrates he suffers from a severe case of misplaced and selective outrage.

Heller rails about the largely self-induced injuries of Rachel Corrie and Tristan Anderson but remains silent about the deliberate murder of dozens of innocent Americans by the same Palestinian Arab terrorists Corrie and Anderson were heartily supporting.

As far back as 2003, when "militants" murdered John Branchizio, Mark Parson and John Martin Linde while they were riding in an American diplomatic convoy trying to provide Fulbright Scholarships for Arabs living in Gaza, Palestinian "freedom fighters" had already murdered 51 innocent Americans in a ten year period.

Corrie had recently burned a mock American flag at a Hamas rally when she apparently slipped and was crushed under a pile of rocks while trying to protect the tunnels being used by Hamas to smuggle weapons and explosives into Gaza. (The explosives used to murder Branchizio, Parson and Linde were probably smuggled in through those tunnels.)

Anderson was accidentally injured by a tear gas canister as police tried to contain a violent protest in which he was participating.

These self-induced accidents are regrettable, but it is the deliberate murder of dozens of innocent Americans by Palestinian Arab terrorists which merits outrage and the question "How much violence against Americans overseas will the United States accept?"

Alan Stein

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