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McKinney on MidEast Crisis * Jenin Stinks * Peace Initiatives

25 April 2002

1) Rep. McKinney's 4/20 remarks to peace rally in Washington, DC
2) Jenin: Something Stinks
3) America Can Persuade Israel to Make a Just Peace - Jimmy Carter
4) Bush's Speech - A Vision of Permanent War

Editor's Notes:

Resolution of the Middle East Crisis is Critical for Everyone. Cynthia McKinney's speech at the April 20th 2002 peace rally in Washington, D.C. follows in item 1 Her remarks cover a broad spectrum for peace and for saving our failing democracy in the US. Item 2 is a report on the literally stinking situation in Jenin. The US really needs to do something constructive for peace, and in item 3 Jimmy Carter outlines real solutions in an Op-Ed NY Times article. Please read this and call your elected representatives in support of such a US peace initiative. The US Congressional switchboard number is (202)224-3121. The White House Comment Line is 202-456-1111. Item 4 is a commentary on Bush's vision for permament war.

1) Rep. McKinney's 4/20 remarks to peace rally in Washington, DC

We Come For Peace
By Rep. Cynthia McKinney
[Remarks to April 20, peace rally in Washington, DC]

We come here today from the four corners of this nation.

We are blacks and whites, Latinos, Asians, and Native Americans; Christians, Muslims, and Jews; gay, lesbian, and straight; immigrants and native-born Americans; rich and poor. Here today are representatives of all sections of society: students, union members . . . union members on strike . . . homeless veterans . . . and everyday warriors on the battlefield for justice.

But despite all our differences, we are here today . . . one community with one thing in common: a desire to see the restoration of the true ideals of America. America -- where fundamental rights to vote, speak, and practice religion mean something. A country that has a democratic form of government, a democratic way of life and a nation in which all can participate freely in political activity and share in the abundance of its harvest. But America today is still a far cry from the noble Republic founded upon those words: "All men are created equal."

We have not dealt well with our diversity and too many of our citizens suffer needlessly. Each day millions of Americans suffer poverty, hunger, the sting of discrimination . . . arbitrary arrest, racial profiling, and brutality from rogue police . . . inadequate health care, drug abuse, and unemployment.

For the millions of poor Americans, ours is not a just society. More than 31 million Americans live in poverty. One in every six of our children live in poverty. Some of our nation's poor even sleep each night on the steps of the buildings just visible from the bedrooms of the White House. And sadly, many of those who sleep on America's streets are our veterans from US wars . . .

Sadly, nor is ours a democratic society. In November 2000, the Republicans stole from America our most precious right of all: the right to free and fair elections. Florida Governor Jeb Bush and his Secretary of State Katherine Harris, created a phony list of convicted felons--57,700 to be exact--to "scrub" thousands of innocent people from the state's voter rolls. Of the thousands who ultimately lost their vote through this scrub of voters, 80% were African- American, mostly Democratic Party voters. Had they voted, the course of history would have changed. Instead, however, Harris declared Bush the victor by only 537 votes. Now President Bush occupies the White House, but with questionable legitimacy. But however he got there, his Administration is now free to spend one to four billion dollars a month on the war in Afghanistan . . . free to cut the high deployment overtime pay of our young service men and women fighting in that war . . . free to propose drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve National Park . . . free to stonewall on the Enron and Energy Task Force investigations . . . free to revoke the rules that keep our drinking water free of arsenic . . . free to get caught in Venezuela . . . and free to propose laws that deny our citizens sacred freedoms cherished under the Constitution.

We must dare to remember all of this. We must dare to debate and challenge all of this. And that is why we are here today. We come here today to chart a new course for our communities and for America. To fight against bigotry, we stand together as one and we must. To fight against injustice, we stand together as one and we must. To fight against poverty, we stand together as one and we must. To fight against the destruction of our environment, we stand together as one and we must. To wage peace instead of war, we stand together as one and we must. Because, through our efforts, I believe we can once again, make America a force for good in the world.

We, as the world's most powerful nation have a responsibility to act in defense of the weak and to protect them from harm.
We failed in Rwanda.
We failed in Srebrenica.
We failed in East Timor.
And now, as we speak, we fail in Jenin.

Let us dedicate ourselves here today, to join together as one. When one person stands up and speaks out for the suffering of the weak, a tiny ripple of hope is created. When numerous people stand and demand justice for the multitude who have been forgotten, a strong current of possibilities is created. When an entire community stands up and demands change a mighty wave of freedom and justice is created. We gather here today and we speak with one voice . . . And let us remember, that one person can make a ripple. One ripple can make a movement. One movement can make a voice. And one voice can make mighty change.

Let us leave here today and make the change this country needs to be loved and respected around the world once again.
And remember one thing: Register and Vote!

Cynthia McKinney represents Georgia's Fourth Congressional District
Please consider writing or calling in support of this courageous person.

Congresswoman Cynthia Ann McKinney
124 Cannon Building Washington, DC 20515
ph 202 225 1605 fax 202 226 0691
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Cynthia Mckinney is one of the seven congressional co-sponsors of H.R. 3616
SPACE PRESERVATION ACT OF 2002 - Sponsored by Dennis Kucinich (D-OHIO)
Additional co-sponsors include: Bob Filner, Joseph M. Hoeffel, William "Lacy" Clay Jr., Maurice Hinchey, Barbara Lee, Pete Fortney Stark -- Source as of 4-9-02:

2) Jenin: Something Stinks

Jenin: Something Stinks
By Uri Avnery

There is fill agreement between all those who were in the Jenin refugee camp on only one thing. A week after the end of the fighting, foreign journalists and IDF soldiers, UN representatives and hired hacks in the Israeli media, members of the welfare organizations and government propagandists all report that a terrible stench of decomposing bodies lingers everywhere. Apart from that there is no agreement on anything. The Palestinians speak about a massacre amounting to a second Sabra and Shatila. The IDF speak about hard fighting, in which "the most humane army in the world" did not intentionally hurt even one single civilian. The Palestinians speak about hundreds of dead, the Minister of Defense asserts categorically that exactly 43 were killed..

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Preliminary findings of Amnesty International delegates' visit to Jenin

Israelis to Delay U.N. Fact-Finders

A Massacre by Degrees

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A Protest and Peace March is scheduled Saturday, April 27, starting at 7 p.m. from Cinematheque Square, Tel-Aviv, along Karlibach, Ibn Gvirol and Shaul Hamelech streets and culminating with a rally at the Tel Aviv Museum Plaza.

3) America Can Persuade Israel to Make a Just Peace - Jimmy Carter

Excerpted Op-ed article by Jimmy Carter

"America Can Persuade Israel to Make a Just Peace"

"..The situation is not hopeless. There is an ultimate avenue to peace in the implementation of United Nations resolutions, including Resolution 242, expressed most recently in the highly publicized proposal of Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Abdullah. The basic premises of these resolutions are withdrawal of Israelis from Palestinian lands in exchange for full acceptance of Israel and Israel's right to live in peace. This is a reasonable solution for many Israelis, having been accepted in 1978 by Prime Minister Menachem Begin and ratified by the Israeli Knesset. Egypt, offering the greatest threat to Israel, responded by establishing full diplomatic relations and honoring Israeli rights, including unimpeded use of the Suez canal. This set a pattern for what can and must be done by all other Arab nations. Through constructive negotiations, both sides can consider some modifications of the 1967 boundary lines.

East Jerusalem can be jointly administered with unimpeded access to holy places, and the right of return can be addressed by permitting a limited number of displaced Palestinians to return to their homeland with fair compensation to others. It will be a good investment for the international community to pay this cost.

With the ready and potentially unanimous backing of the international community, the United States government can bring about such a solution to the existing imbroglio. Demands on both sides should be so patently fair and balanced that at least a majority of citizens in the affected area will respond with approval, and an international force can monitor compliance with agreed peace terms, as was approved for the Sinai region in 1979 following Israel's withdrawal from Egyptian territory.

There are two existing factors that offer success to United States persuasion. One is the legal requirement that American weapons are to be used by Israel only for defensive purposes, a premise certainly being violated in the recent destruction of Jenin and other villages.."

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Please call your elected representatives in support of such actions for a peace initiative. The US Congressional switchboard number is (202)224-3121. The White House Comment Line is 202-456-1111.

You can read the complete article at either of the following url postings:

4) Bush's Speech - A Vision of Permanent War

The following was published on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 by the Electronic Intifada

Bush's Speech - A Vision of Permanent War
by Ali Abunimah

CHICAGO -- George Bush's much-anticipated speech on how to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, weighed in at 1,867 words. By my count, more than one thousand words were devoted to criticizing and making demands of the Palestinians, while just 137 words dealt with what Israel should do. And if you look for any criticism at all of Israel, you will not find it. The few remaining words were taken up with cliches and platitudes.

The content of few statements can have been leaked in advance as much as this one, and yet Bush's pronouncement still managed to surprise by its sheer breathtaking unfairness and unwillingness to address a reality which is clearly perceived by the rest of the world.

"The future for Palestinians and Israelis is as grim as it has ever been. What Bush has offered is not a formula for provisional or any other kind of Palestinian statehood, but a vision of permanent war."

For the complete article, see:

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