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Saturday, 17 December 2016

The fact on $10 million per day to Israel

Alison Weir
If Americans Knew 

(March 6, 2016)

Local residents recently partnered with my organization to put up a billboard that informed East Bay residents: "We give Israel $10 million per day. That money could send our kids to college." The billboard has triggered common pro-Israel talking points. Let me address these false claims:

1. Claim: The message is "anti-Semitic." This accusation is used to silence legitimate criticism of the state of Israel and U.S. policies regarding Israel. As an Israeli parliament member said, "It's a trick; we always use it. When from Europe someone is criticizing Israel, then we bring up the Holocaust. When in this country people are criticizing Israel, they are termed 'anti-Semitic.' "

The billboard provides information about U.S. tax money and suggests a better use for it. When Americans believe our politicians are misusing our taxes, it is our civic responsibility to object. Voicing objections to a misguided governmental policy is not "bigotry," it is obligatory.

2. Claim: Israel and the U.S. have "shared values." This is used as an argument that we must support Israel whatever it does, whether occupying land, killing civilians or defying our own president. Israel is founded on elevating one religious-ethnic group over all others. There is systemic discrimination in its national identity, a religious symbol on its flag, and land ownership is severely restricted. It has never created a constitution and has no Bill of Rights.

The U.S., on the other hand, is based on the principle "that all men are created equal, they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights." Our Bill of Rights states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." Religious discrimination is outlawed here.

3. Claim: Giving money to Israel promotes U.S. interests; Israel protects Americans from enemies in the region. In reality, as many people have noted, Americans had no enemies in the region before Israel was created on Palestinian land in 1948.

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