From:   Martin Kaminer <martin.kaminer@gmail.com>
Sent time:   Wednesday, October 12, 2011 3:30:43 PM
To:   september17@googlegroups.com
Subject:   Re: [september17discuss] Zionist speaker at OWS outreach training
 

On Wed, Oct 12, 2011 at 4:35 PM, Layan Fuleihan <lsfuleihan@gmail.com> wrote:
But does that mean that it shouldn't be discussed? 

Should for sure be discussed!!!  Which is why the impulse to censor an Israeli organizer/activist strikes me as hypocritical.  And just to demonstrate the strong linkage to OWS precepts, the much-ballyhooed multi-billion dollar annual support the US provides for Israel is principally in the form of gift cards redeemable at US defense contractors.  It's corporate welfare of the highest order.
Over the last 20 years, the U.S. has been slowly phasing out economic aid to Israel and gradually replacing it with increased military aid. Beginning in 2007, the U.S. has increased military aid by $150 million each year. By FY2012, we will be sending Israel $3.09 billion a year (or an average of $8.5 million a day) and will continue to provide military aid at that level through 2018. U.S. tax dollars are subsidizing one of the most powerful foreign militaries. According to the CRS report, “[current U.S. military aid] grants to Israel represent 18.2% of the overall Israeli defense budget.”
This arms overdose distorts not only the economies but also the societies of both the US and Israel and is driven in large part by a familiar foe: corporate greed.  What appears as American support for a colonialist aggressor is just as much a sop to the US military-industrial complex.  A key point of the J14 protests was that in Israel the inflated level of investment in defense and military comes at the expense of social welfare and social institutions.  Israel is addicted to weapons and we're the drug dealer.  If you ask Lockheed Martin, peace is bad for business, in the Middle East or anywhere else.  But I don't see how this justifies assailing the integrity of Israeli activists anymore than someone opposing the policies of the US government would hold an OWS occupier accountable for them . . . 
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