May 6, 2011

Hedy Epstein

Join me in DC to Move Over AIPAC!
Washington, DC
May 21-24

Plus hear from:
John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, authors of
The Israel Lobby

Laila El Haddad,
"Gaza Mom" Blogger
Nadia Hijab, Palestinian analyst and writer
Noura Erakat, Palestinian attorney and activist
Anna Baltzer, National Organizer, US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, Director of Shomer Shalom
Ret. Col. Ann Wright
Phyllis Bennis, policy analyst
Rebecca Vilkomerson, Director, Jewish Voice for Peace
… and many more!

Be part of massive creative actions including:
People-powered Freedom Flotilla, Moving Billboards, Erecting and Tearing Down a Wall, Dialogue Booths
… and more!

Full Schedule

Read Hedy's Op Ed Here




As a Holocaust survivor, I am sensitive to people's suffering, including the plight of the Palestinians. That is why I am so opposed to the powerful Jewish lobby AIPAC (The American Israel Public Affairs Committee), which unconditionally supports Israel. And that is why I'll be attending the Move Over AIPAC gathering in Washington DC, May 21-24, timed to coincide with the AIPAC's own policy conference and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu's meetings in Washington. I hope you will join me.

I have traveled to the Israeli Occupied West Bank Middle East several times. On one trip I saw the Israeli police turn a water cannon on our nonviolent protest near Der Beilut in the West Bank, I recalled Birmingham, Alabama in 1963, and wondered why an ostensibly democratic society like Israel responded to peaceable assembly by trying, literally, to drown out the voice of our protest.

In Mas'ha, also in the occupied West Bank , I joined a demonstration against the locked gate in the fence which prevented farmers from tending to their land, and witnessed Israeli soldiers firing at unarmed Israelis, Palestinians and international protesters. I saw shrapnel lodged in the leg of Anne Farina, one of my traveling companions from St. Louis. And I thought of Kent State and Jackson State, where National Guardsmen opened fire in 1970 on protesters against the Vietnam War.

This is the legal system and security state AIPAC and its keynote speaker, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, will defend at their annual policy conference in Washington, DC. And, despite this grim reality, members of Congress will converge to hail AIPAC and Israel. In contrast, CODEPINK and a coalition of over 100 organizations will meet to call for a new, even-handed policy. Our gathering will include a summit, cultural events, and bold, creative actions you don't want to miss. Be part of creating a huge mock wall, a people-powered Gaza freedom flotilla, and more. You can view the full schedule to see just how packed this long weekend will be.

AIPAC implies that it speaks for all Jews, but it certainly does not speak for me or other members of the Jewish community in this country who are committed to equal rights for all. By lobbying for $3 billion of our tax dollars to be spent on the Israeli military, AIPAC does a disservice to the Palestinians, the Israelis and the American people. It helps to keep the Middle East in a perpetual state of war.

If AIPAC doesn't speak for you either, then please join me in DC May 21-24!

Yours in peace,
Hedy Epstein

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