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Palestine | East Bay

Rabbi Michael Lerner's Home Attacked by Right Wing Zionists
by R. Wilson
Monday May 3rd, 2010 11:24 PM
From a press release issued by Tikkun Magazine comes news that Rabbi Michael Lerner's home was attacked during the early morning hours of May 3 (or possibly late May 2) by right-wing Zionists.
According to a press release issued by Tikkun Magazine, Berkeley police have confirmed that an attack on Michael Rabbi Lerner's home is being investigated as a crime.

Posters attached to the rabbi's door and on his property attacked him personally. They also berated liberals and progressives as being supporters of terrorism and "Islamo-fascism." A bumper sticker affixed on the property read "fight terror--support Israel". On it was a caricature of Judge Goldstone, whose UN report on Israel's human rights violations in its attack on Gaza last year has been denounced as pro-terrorism by right wingers in Israel and the U.S.

According to Tikkun's press release, the vandalism followed on a week of hate mail directed at Rabbi Lerner and the Tikkun staff, and was apparently prompted by Tikkun's announcement that they will give an award to Judge Goldstone because of his courage in standing up for human rights in Israel/Palestine.

According to Tikkun, the announcement of the organization's support for Judge Goldstone "has intensified anger against Lerner and Tikkun among those who seek to perpetuate the Occupation, and great support among those who realize that the Occupation is really hurtful both to Israel and to the Jewish people world-wide."

Tikkun's statement went on to say that this attack has certain particularly worrisome elements. Law enforcement has told Tikkun that by seeking out the rabbi in a place he is vulnerable, his private home, the perpetrators are communicating that they do not want their threats ignored.

Also of deep concern to Tikkun is that "by linking Lerner to alleged terrorism, they provide for themselves and other extremists a 'right-wing justification' to use violence against Lerner, even though Lerner has been a prominent advocate of non-violence."

Rabbi Lerner regularly decries Palestinian acts of violence when they occur, including the shelling of Israeli towns by Hamas, as WELL as criticizing the violence of the Israeli Occupation. He is a critic of the US war in Iraq and Afghanistan, the occupation of Chechnya by Russia, the occupation of Tibet by China, and the human rights violations against their own people by the rulers of Iran. Amongst other statements in support of peace and humanity, Rabbi Lerner has been a critic of the genocide in Darfur and he decries violence against Jews that continues to this day in some parts of Europe.

http://www.tikkun.org/tikkundaily/2010/05/03/right-wing-zionist-threat/

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by WTF!
Saturday May 8th, 2010 6:32 AM
Michael learner is a Zionist- his son serves in the IDF
by ???
Tuesday May 11th, 2010 4:00 PM
Comment one says it all. How was this promoted to a leading story on the indybay homepage?
by dr.taz
Monday May 17th, 2010 9:50 PM
do we judge people based on what they're children do? michael lerner believes in a two state solution with east jerusalem as the capital of palestine. whether or not he is a zionist, zionism encompasses lots of different things. perhaps we should differentiate lerner from people who do not support palestine's right to statehood and who support israel's brutal military tactics, no? what do we gain by conflating the two positions?
by of Israel's apartheid policies!
Wednesday May 19th, 2010 2:46 PM
This just shows that the debate process has fallen by the wayside, as right wing Zionists can no longer successfully defend their case so they resort to attacking people's homes. If Israel stopped their apartheid ways, then maybe the Hamas groups would calm down some. Rabbi Lerner understands that nothing exists in a vacuum, and therefore speaks out against Israeli policies. This angers the pro-Zionist mafias who resort to physical attacks because their position lack substance.

What Rabbi Lerner's son chooses to do with his life has no bearing on the choices his father made in the past, present or the future. We all make our own choices!!

BTW - This is NOT the first incident where anti-Zionist Rabbis were physically attacked by pro-Zionist mafias;

"Anti-Zionist Orthodox Jews protesting the desecration of graves by a highway construction project near Haifa were attacked and brutally beaten by private security guards hired by the Ministry of Transportation.

The group, known for being outspokenly critical of the State of Israel and its very existence were peacefully demonstrating at the time. This attack follows a long history of violence against the Orthodox Jewish community.

Consistent with fundamental Jewish beliefs, some of these protesters often take part in demonstrations, side by side with Palestinians, against the State of Israel and its inhuman policies toward the Palestinian people." The apparent strategy of using organized violence through private security personnel against these peaceful protesters is only one of many tactics used by the State of Israel to intimidate and discourage further protests. The police were nowhere to be found at the time or even hours after the melee. Several Rabbis and children were attacked with electric stun gun devices and knives, requiring some to be hospitalized.

Among the injured were Rabbi Leibl Deutsch and Rabbi Yisroel Rothchild, both of Jerusalem who were stabbed in the lower back and leg respectively. The Jewish cemetery at the heart of the incident dates back to the Second Temple era, over 2000 years ago.Some of the caves that comprise the cemetery have been destroyed as a result of the ongoing highway work and there are heightened fears of further desecration as the highway project continues unabated."

above text found here;
http://www.nkusa.org/activities/demonstrations/April1705Regavim.cfm

Let's not forget the influences of the Christian Zionists, led in part by Rev. John Hagee (Cornerstone Church, San Antonio, TX) who preaches that "Armageddon" will occur in Israel once all the Jews are returned there. This dispensationalism urges continued conflict between Palestinians and Israelis as a needed component to usher in Armageddon, so any potential peace processes are derailed by these illogical armchair generals who view military conflict as the ONLY solution.

Some background on Christian Zionism;

"The Armageddon Lobby:
Dispensationalist Christian Zionism and the Shaping of US Policy Towards Israel-Palestine"
1
Rammy M. Haija

Doctoral Candidate in Sociology
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Virginia Tech, 560 McBryde Hall - 0137
Blacksburg, VA 24060, USA
rhaija [at] vt.edu

Abstract

"This article investigates the history of contemporary Christian Zionism in the United States and the impact of this movement on US policy issues related to Israel-Palestine. Dispensationalist Christian Zionists, often described the 'Armageddon lobby', make up the largest voting bloc in the Republican Party and have become a mainstay in US politics. More recently, the Christian Zionist lobby has had a profoundly damaging impact on the Israeli-Palestinian 'peace process' as well as creating a conspiracy of silence regarding Israeli offensives in the occupied Palestinian territories. Though the 'Armageddon lobby' has been successful in its efforts as a pro-Israel lobby, its influence is in fact counterproductive to Israel because the lobby hinders the prospect of Israel living in peace because of their policy of deterring the progression of negotiations."

1. Introduction to Christian Zionism

While the alliance between America's Christian Zionists and the pro-Israel lobby has been in existence for decades now, more recently it has become critical to examine this dynamic relationship because of the current volatile state resulting from the current Palestinian Intifada (uprising). With nearly 10 per cent of US voters declaring themselves as Zionist or dispensationalist [End Page 75] Christians, and another 35 per cent constituting mainstream Christianity, the Christian Zionist lobby has targeted both voting pools for its purpose of assembling a pro-Israel constituency among American voters through the promotion of biblical and dispensationalist doctrine.

There are many names and titles for the Christian Zionists in the United States. Some call them the 'Armageddon Lobby', others have referred to them as the 'Christian AIPAC'. These nicknames are minor examples of the motives and unconditional support for Israel among the Christian-Right, which have made it an instrumental actor in a pro-US policy towards Israel. This position has been especially solidified among the powerful elites in US policy. An article published in Time magazine following the aftermath of the Israeli Defense Force's infamous incursions into the West Bank in 2002 states: 'Today the most influential lobbying on behalf of Israel is being done by a group not usually seen as an ally of the largely Democratic Jewish community: Evangelical Christians' (Ratnesar 2002: 26).

In the late 1970s, Israel was desperately trying to improve its image in the international arena, but wanted to do this without yielding much in the way of territorial or political concessions. Israel had drawn a large amount of international support by its participation in the Camp David Peace Accords with Egypt in 1978. However, the State was still experiencing a negative international disposition from the 1975 United Nations Resolution 3379 that concluded: 'Zionism is a form of racism and discrimination' (United Nations 1975: 84). It was also around this same time that the formal Christian-Right was established and Jewish organisations began understanding that an alliance with the Christian Zionists in the US could bolster their image and prominence on the international level through a stronger influence in US politics.

The fervency of the Christian-Right towards the State of Israel coupled with its strong American presence captured the attention of Israeli interest groups. Though aware of their diametric social and religious views, Jewish political organisations saw an alliance with the Christian Zionists as a crucial element in promoting a positive image of Israel in US politics and among the American mainstream. Jewish-American leaders were initially opposed to an alliance with the Christian-Right and perceived the movement as a possible adversary (Brownfield 2002: 71). However, when the formal establishment of the Christian-Right solidified this movement as an influential political bloc in the US, these feelings of trepidation were soon dissipated and Israeli groups recognised that an alliance with this bloc would be advantageous to their political interests. [End Page 76]

read entire report here;
http://muse.jhu.edu/demo/holy_land_studies/v005/5.1haija.html

It appears that anyone successful in their critique of Israeli's apartheid policies should watch their back (or learn self defense!!) as there's no way of knowing when they'll be considered targets for physical attacks by the pro-Zionist mafia thugs..