Paul Eisen

Paul Eisen

Monday, 14 January 2013

From outside Beth Israel 05/01/2013


Readers of this blog will know in what high regard I hold Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends and their lonely years outside the Beth Israel Temple in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Those that don't, just look at a couple of examples Here and here.

Every week Henry Herskovitz publishes his "Report on Beth Israel" and I'm going to start posting at least some of those reports. The first is below.

P.S. I've just added a report from Boulder.


A Peep from City Council
Newly elected Ann Arbor City Councilman Chuck Warpehoski lashed out at our vigils at Council’s January 7th meeting after fielding some critical remarks from vigil supporters B and M. He falsely accused us of displaying a swastika painted over the star of David, and distorted our claim that Beth Israel Congregation takes innocent children on purposeful trips to “Israel” where they are indoctrinated into an ideology that monstrously kills Palestinians, steals their land and claims a mythical “right” to their actions. It is some, but not all, of these vulnerable children who are twisted into monsters, who may grow up to embrace a viewpoint exemplified by Ovadia Yosef.

Yosef is the former Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel – a government employee – and the founder and current spiritual leader of the Shas political party. Shas is Israel’s fourth largest party in terms of Knesset seats and four of its members currently hold posts in Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet. In 2010, the Jerusalem Post reported on Yosef’s claim that “Goyim were born only to serve us [Jews]. Without that, they have no place in the world – only to serve the People of Israel”. Then there’s another government employee, Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira, who wrote “The complete guide to killing non-Jews”. And another former Sephardic Chief – Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu – said in 2008: “… it is important to make one thing clear – the life of one yeshiva boy is worth more than the lives of 1,000 Arabs.” Pretty monstrous, wouldn’t you say?

Old Tactic, Same Results

Over a year ago we reported that the tactic of Zionist Jews was to make donations to the American Friends of Magen David Adom, and to send small Christmas cards to this writer facetiously encouraging our peaceful weekly vigils. This year I received a similar, but larger congratulatory document suitable for framing from Helen and David Aminoff of Ann Arbor.

No time was wasted calling the Aminoff household to thank them for this award, and to invite them for coffee so that our similarities and differences could be openly and discussed in a friendly atmosphere. Helen called back immediately, corrected my pronunciation of “Magen David Adom”, and said:

Good evening Henry Herskovitz, this is Helen Aminoff returning your call … thank you for your good wishes but neither my husband nor I feel that it would serve any useful purpose to sit down with you at this stage.

Last week we reported that our voice – and more importantly the voice of Palestine – had been once again denied a radio audience by our friends at WEMU, a local NPR affiliate station. Now we get a one-on-one invitation similarly refused. But we take heart in the fact that our nine-year-long venue at Beth Israel Congregation is the one media source within our control, and we continue to receive overwhelming support from passing traffic. Perhaps it is this reason that our friends and opponents fear our message so much that we are denied these opportunities for communication.


Five vigilers, Sixteen Degrees Fahrenheit

Remember Rachel Corrie

Henry Herskovitz

Jewish Witnesses for Peace and Friends

Boulder, Colorado
Les Miserables: Report on Bonai Shalom Vigil Jan 12

In Victor Hugo’s novel the downtrodden of Paris stood in solidarity against the tyranny of the royals and the aristocracy for social justice and human rights. On Saturday in front of synagogue Bonai Shalom, persons of conscience in Boulder Colorado at the beginning of the new year 2013 stood up to the intimidation of the Jewish lobby – in bitter cold – asked congregants of Bonai Shalom to stop supporting the awful crimes of the Jewish state of Israel.

 It was so cold I thought about wearing my ski mask but figured the Sheriff (who was called by Bonai Shalom) to protect the synagogue from the terrorists might actually profile us as terrorists. But after about 10 minutes even the Sheriff figured out that we were no threat and departed, apparently to real work in the interest of public safety and probably hot chocolate.

One of our complaints to the Jews of Bonai Shalom is that supporting Israel supports the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. And having just returned from Gaza I can testify that Israel’s strategy of ethnic cleansing to remove the indigenous people of Palestine is in high gear. Israel has diabolically poisoned the water supply – it’s irreversibly ruined, and the impending humanitarian disaster will unfold over the next few years. Les Miserables – let them drink SodaStream!.

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Michael T. Rabb | CU-Divest! Don’t Invest in Israeli Apartheid | | 2002 18th Street, Boulder CO 80302 | 720-837-9674 |


Michael Rabb | | 2002 18th Street, Boulder CO 80302 | 720-837-9674