"Cynthia McKinney: Oh What a Day!"
From: updates-bounces@... [mailto:updates-bounces@...] On Behalf Of HQ
Sent: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 1:29 PM
Subject: [hq2600] From Cynthia McKinney: Oh What a Day!
December 30, 2008: Oh What a Day!
I'm so glad that my father told me to buy a special notebook and to write everything down because that's exactly what I did.
When we left from Cyprus , one reporter asked me "are you afraid?" And I had to respond that Malcolm X wasn't afraid; Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wasn't afraid. But little did I know that just a few hours later, I would be recollecting my life and mentally preparing myself for death.
When we left Cyprus , the Mediterranean was beautiful. I remember the time when it might have been beautiful to look at, but it was also filthy. The Europeans have taken great strides to clean it up and yesterday, it was beautiful. And the way the sunlight hit the sea, I remember thinking to myself that's why they call it azure. It was the most beautiful blue.
But sometimes it was rough, and we got behind on our schedule. We stayed on course, however, despite the roughness of the water and due to our exquisite captain.
There were no other ships or boats around us and night descended upon us all rather quickly. It was the darkest black and suddenly, out of nowhere, came searchlights disturbing our peace. The searchlights stayed with us for about half an hour or so. We knew they were Israeli ships. Who else would they be?
They were fast, and they would come close and then drop back. And then, they'd come close again. And then, all of a sudden there was complete blackness once again and all seemed right. The cat and mouse game went on for at least one half hour. What were they doing? And why?
Calm again. Black sky, black sea. Peace. And then, at that very moment, when all seemed right, out of nowhere we were rammed and rammed again and rammed again the last one throwing me off the couch, sending all our food up in the air; and all the plastic bags and tubs--evidence of sea sicknesses among the crew and passengers--flew all over the cabin and all over us. We'd been rammed by the Israelis. How did we know? Because they called us on the phone afterwards to tell us that we were engaging in subversive, terroristic activity. And if that if we didn't turn around right then and return to Larnaca , Cyprus , we would be fired upon. We quickly grabbed our lifevests and put them on. Then the captain announced that the boat was taking on water. We might have to evacuate. One of my mates told me to prepare to die. And I reflected that I have lived a good and full life. I have tasted freedom and know what it is. I was right with myself and my decision to join the Free Gaza movement.
I remembered my father's parting words, "You all will be sitting ducks." Just like the U.S.S. Liberty. We were engaged in peaceful activity, a harmless pleasure boat, carrying a load of hospital supplies for the people of Gaza , who, too are sitting ducks, currently being bombarded in aerial assault by the Israeli military.
It's been a long day for us. The captain was outstanding. Throughout it all, he remained stoic and calm, effective in every way. I didn't know how to put my life jacket on. One of the passengers kindly assisted me. Another of the passengers pointed out that the Israeli motors for those huge, fast boats was U.S. made--a gift to them from the U.S. And now they were using those motors to damage a pleasure boat outfitted with three tons of hospital supplies, one pediatrician, and two surgeons.
I have called for President-elect Obama to say something. The Palestinian people in the Gaza strip are seeing the worst violence in 60 years, it is being reported. To date, President-elect Obama has remained silent. The Israelis are using weapons supplied to them by the U.S. government. Strict enforcement of U.S. law would require the cessation of all weapons transfers to Israel . Adherence to international law would require the same. As we are about to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, let us remember that he said:
1. The United States is the greatest purveyor of violence in the world, and
2. Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent about things that matter.
I implore the President-elect to not send Congress a budget that contains more weapons for Israel . We have so much more to offer. And I implore the Congress to vote "no" on any budget and appropriation bills that provide more weapons transfers, period.
Israel is able to carry out these intense military maneuvers because taxpayers in the U.S. give their hard-earned money to our Representatives in Congress and our Congress chooses to spend that money in this way. Let's stop it and stop it now. There's been too much blood shed. And while we still walk among the living, let us not remain silent about the things that matter.
We really can promote peace and have it if we demand it of our leaders.
2008 Candidate for President
Green Party of the U.S.
The shock, awe and heart attacks that followed Madoff's confession that he was 'running a Ponzi scheme' drew as much anger for the money lost and the fall from the moneyed class as for the embarrassment of knowing that the world's biggest exploiters and smartest swindlers on Wall Street, were completely 'taken' by one of their own. Not only did they suffer big losses but their self-image of themselves as rich because they are so smart and of 'superior stock' was utterly shattered: They saw themselves as suffering the same fate as all the schmucks they had previously swindled, exploited and dispossessed in their climb to the top. There is nothing worse for the ego of a respectable swindler than to be trumped by a bigger swindler. As a result, a number of the biggest losers have so far refused to give their names or the amount they lost, working instead through lawyers fighting off other losers.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Green Party condemns Israel's massive air attack on Gaza, calls on U.S. to rein in Israel and seek a ceasefire
GREEN PARTY OF THE UNITED STATES, http://www.gp.org
Green presidential candidate McKinney is safe after the SS Dignity, carrying relief to Gaza , is rammed by an Israeli gunboat in international waters
Greens challenge Obama to press Israel to comply with international law and end the illegal occupation of Gaza and other Palestinian lands
WASHINGTON, DC -- The Green Party of the U.S. calls for an immediate end to Israel 's bombing attacks on Gaza , which in the past four days has already caused at least 364 deaths, including Palestinian women and children, with hundreds more wounded.
"It's clear that President Bush gave a green light for Israel 's massive and disproportionate display of force. The Green Party demands that the U.S. seek a bilateral ceasefire, with immediate pressure on Israel to stop the bombardment and end the occupation," said Rosa Clemente, the Green Party's 2008 candidate for Vice President of the U.S. , http://www.rosaclemente.com.
Cynthia McKinney, the Green Party's 2008 presidential candidate, had joined the Free Gaza Group, http://www.freegaza.org, on the SS Dignity, which sailed from Cyprus to deliver three tons of medicine and humanitarian aid to Gaza in defiance of an Israeli blockade. McKinney was safe after Israeli gunboats attempted to intercept the Dignity last night and one gunboat illegally rammed the vessel in international waters, 90 miles off the Gaza coast, http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/dec/30/israel-gaza-aid-ship. Despite damage sustained in the encounter, the Dignity has docked safely in Lebanon , and McKinney is on her way to Beirut .
In an interview on CNN, http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2008/12/30/am.lebanon.aid.boat.mckinney.cnn, McKinney said, "What we have gone through pales in comparison to what the people of the Gaza Strip are suffering." McKinney is challenging President-elect Barack Obama to condemn Israel 's attacks on Gaza .
Greens noted that Hamas, the target of Israel 's aerial bombardment, was democratically elected in 2006, and that Israel and the U.S. have been trying to remove Hamas from power, especially by attempting to spark a civil war between Hamas and Fatah.
Since its election, Hamas has repeatedly offered to talk with Israel , but Israel has rejected all such overtures. Hamas had observed a five-month truce that was broken on November 4 when Israeli Defense Forces killed five Palestinians. In retaliation, Hamas responded with missiles which over the last month have injured one Israeli and caused property damage. The Green Party categorically condemns all violence visited on unarmed civilians.
"Palestinians are living under an occupation that has continued despite numerous U.N. directives ordering Israel to withdraw. Israel 's latest lethal assault will only intensify the crisis and inflict further suffering on the Palestinian people. Two thirds of Gazans are refugees -- some doubly so, from 1948 and 1967 -- and all Gaza residents are living in conditions comparable to a medieval siege. Israel must comply with international law and ends its illegal military occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, dismantle the illegal separation wall, make restitution to Palestinians whose lands have been seized, and recognize the Palestinian right of return. If President Obama wants to make history by resolving the Middle East conflict, he must press Israel to take these steps," said Hajja Romi Elnagar, Louisiana Green and member of the Green Party's International Committee, http://www.gp.org/committees/intl.
"The current assumption in the U.S. media that this is a symmetrical conflict between equals is as absurd as the claim that Israel 's bombs are not threatening women and children. Israel is the world's fourth most powerful military nation, a nuclear power that enjoys support from the U.S. , while Palestinians are impoverished, with many living without electricity, water, food, and medicine for weeks," said Elnagar.
As a result of the Israeli blockade, 80% of Gazans live on less than two dollars a day. Unemployment hovers at 50-60% in Gaza , with only 195 factories, reduced from 3,900 in 2005. Israel has barred the delivery of U.N. relief to Gazans.
The Green Party has called for an end to U.S. military aid to Israel and supports the movement for international boycott, divestment, and sanctions against Israel until Israel ends the occupation, obeys international law (including Geneva Conventions and the U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights), and guarantees full human rights for Palestinians. The party supports efforts by Palestinian and Israeli peace groups towards a nonviolent negotiated resolution to the conflict.
The Green Party also endorses complete regional (and, ultimately, global) nuclear disarmament to remove the threat of a nuclear exchange in the Middle East and Asia . Greens have expressed concern that Barack Obama will bow to demands from AIPAC and other pro-Israel lobbies and maintain the Clinton and Bush administrations' uncritical support for Israel 's military objectives and human rights violations.
Green Party of the United States , http://www.gp.org
Cynthia McKinney/Rosa Clemente 2008 'Power to the People' Campaign for the White House
Green Party press releases:
"Greens call the 60th anniversary of Israel an occasion to affirm international law, enact human rights, and end the illegal occupation of Palestinian territories," May 19, 2008, http://www.gp.org/press/pr-national.php?ID=61
"Greens: Obama's AIPAC speech reveals he has embraced Bush propaganda on Iran , may support an attack," June 12, 2008, http://www.gp.org/press/pr-national.php?ID=67
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