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TERROR CONFERENCE AT GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY

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Submitted by FERN SIDMAN (United States), Feb 19, 2006 at 17:37

TERROR CONFERENCE HELD AT GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY
BY: FERN SIDMAN

In the midst of much controversy and after weeks of planning, preparation and debate, administrators and organizers have put the final touches on the Palestine Solidarity Movement Conference to be held at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. The conference is expected to have 500-600 attendees. Georgetown has resisted calls from pro-Israeli activists to cancel the conference on the grounds that the conference promotes terrorism. The conference is being hosted by a campus group called Students for Justice in Palestine.

University President John J. DeGoia said at a meeting with students last month that university-sponsored groups like SJP have the right to host peaceful meetings on campus regardless of their viewpoints. The PSM has received criticism from some groups for advocating divestment of US business investments in Israel and for its' members reluctance to openly condemn Palestinian terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens.

According to a letter published in The Washington Post (February 12, 2006) from two noted academics, Eric Adler and Jack Langer, they assert that the PSM certainly is controversial and also dangerous.

"The purported aim of the PSM is to encourage divestment from Israel. To this end, its conferences boast a cavalcade of anti-Israel speakers whose speeches often degenerate into anti-Semitism. At the 2004 conference at Duke University in North Carolina, for example, keynote speaker Mazin Qumsiyeh referred to Zionism as a "disease." Workshop leader Bob Brown deemed the Six Day War "the Jew War of '67." Not to be outdone, Nasser Abufarha praised the terrorist activities of Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

The PSM maintains that it is a separate organization from the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), which sends foreign students to the West Bank and Gaza to foment anti-Israeli sentiment. All the same, the two groups seem to have intimate ties. At the 2004 PSM conference, for instance, the International Solidarity Movement ran a recruitment meeting called "Volunteering in Palestine: Role and Value of International Activists."

In that session, the organization's co-founder, Huwaida Arraf, distributed recruitment brochures and encouraged students to enlist in the ISM, which she acknowledged, cooperates with Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Another co-founder, George Rishmawi, told the San Francisco Chronicle in a July 14, 2004, news story why his group recruits student volunteers.

"When Palestinians get shot by Israeli soldiers, no one is interested anymore," he said. "But is these foreign volunteers get shot or even killed, then the international media will sit up and take notice."

The group got its wish in 2003, when ISM member Rachel Corrie 23, was killed while trying to block Israeli bulldozers from demolishing Palestinian houses in Gaza. The Israelis said the houses were covering tunnels used to smuggle weapons to Hamas.

In another letter published by Lee Kaplan of Front Page Magazine, it states, "Please note the following recruitment and training seminar given at this event this Saturday to be hosted by Huwaida Arraf and Joseph Carr. Titled, "Supporting Palestinian Non-Violent Resistance to Occupation: Volunteering with the International Solidarity Movement."

The above session will be to recruit students to go to the West Bank and stand as human shields for terrorists and stone throwers who will attack the Israeli army, try to remove the Security Fence built to keep out terrorists and to interfere with checkpoints set up to interdict suicide bombers. In addition, Israel recently deported all Jews from Gaza last year, and 98 percent of the Palestinian population in the West Bank is under Palestinian Authority.

"Occupation" at this conference refers to Israel's existence as a Jewish state, albeit a pluralistic democracy and ally of the USA, and calls to end Israel's "occupation" are in fact calls for the end of Israel. The Conference seeks to do this also by openly promoting the Arab League boycott of Israel that is illegal under US law. Please note that Noura Erekat, another guest speaker at this event, has openly stated in e-mails that Israel within 1948 borders is "occupied Palestine."
It is now a matter of record that the Palestine Solidarity Movement, also known as the International Solidarity Movement, has contacts with Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs) as defined by the U.S. State Department. The fact that the collaboration is nonviolent may not matter, as US law prohibits any material support (other than medical supplies and religious items) to Foreign Terrorist Organizations.

There is no question that the Palestine Solidarity Movement calls for the complete eradication of the State of Israel. If there is one thing you can say about Hamas is that they are honest. Unlike the other "Palestine" oriented organizations who couch their rhetoric is more palatable or subliminal ways, Hamas states their truth and the other "Palestinian" organizations feel the same way, but don't have the courage to say it, in the fear it will alienate their Western supporters, particularly liberal, leftist Jews.

Here is what Hamas had to say this week. The Hamas web site this week presented the parting video messages of two Hamas suicide terrorists, according to Palestinian Media Watch. The first said: "We are a nation that drinks blood, and we know that there is no blood better than the blood of Jews. We will not leave you alone until we have quenched our thirst with your blood, and our children's thirst with your blood."

The second said: "We will destroy you, blow you up, take revenge against you, [and] purify the land of you, pigs that have defiled our country." Let's not kid ourselves. Fatah, Hizbullah, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, Islamic Jihad, the PFLP, and other more upscale intellectual Palestinian organizations concur with this vociferous, vitriolic, hate filled speech. When are we going to get it? THEY DON'T WANT PEACE !!!

The issues surrounding the controversial conference to be held at Georgetown University are not about free speech, but rather, about a conference which promotes terrorism. Any conference which seeks to, "recruit students to go to the West Bank and stand as human shields for terrorists and stone throwers who will attack the Israeli army, try to remove the Security Fence built to keep out terrorists and to interfere with checkpoints set up to interdict suicide bombers", is plainly advocating terrorism.

President Bush stated during his recent State of the Union address that if people are talking to Al Qaeda or promoting terrorism, he wants to know about it. This conference is a platform for all kinds of Islamic terrorists to promulgate their beliefs. Of course, they are organizing this conference under the banner of "academic freedom" and "freedom of speech". How easy it is to whitewash terrorism under such innocuous labels. This conference deserves to be condemned by all those who claim that global terrorism will not be tolerated or supported.
Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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