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November 8, 2008

Rosa sat

This message is being sms-ed all over Washington :

Rosa sat so Martin could walk
Martin walked so Barack could run
Barack ran so our children could fly

Arab Americans will be next. No longer confined to sweeping floors at the White House (see Emanuel’s father)

Obama, Emanuel and Israel


In the first major appointment of his administration, President-elect Barack Obama has named as his chief of staff Congressman Rahm Emanuel, an Israeli citizen and Israeli army veteran whose father, according to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, was a member of Menachem Begin’s Irgun forces during the Nakba and named his son after “a Lehi combatant who was killed” — i.e., a member of Yitzhak Shamir’s terrorist Stern Gang, responsible for, in addition to other atrocities against Palestinians, the more famous bombing of the King David Hotel and assassination of the UN peace envoy Count Folke Bernadotte.

In rapid response to this news, the editorial in the next day’s Arab News (Jeddah) was entitled “Don’t pin much hope on Obama — Emanuel is his chief of staff and that sends a message”. This editorial referred to the Irgun as a “terror organization” (a judgment call) and concluded: “Far from challenging Israel, the new team may turn out to be as pro-Israel as the one it is replacing.”

That was always likely. Obama repeatedly pledged unconditional allegiance to Israel during his campaign, most memorably in an address to the AIPAC national convention which Israeli peace activist Uri Avnery characterized as “a speech that broke all records for obsequiousness and fawning”, and America’s electing a black president has always been more easily imagined than any American president’s declaring his country’s independence from Israeli domination.


R. Emanuel: Repudiate this disgusting racist comment

Posted by Helena Cobban
November 7, 2008 11:09 AM EST | Link
Filed in US politics

… that was reportedly made by your father, Benjamin Emanuel, to the Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv in response to your appointment as Obama’s White House Chief of Staff:

    “Obviously he will influence the president to be pro-Israel… Why wouldn’t he be? What is he, an Arab? He’s not going to clean the floors of the White House.

(HT: B of Moon of Alabama)

In many Jewish-Israeli circles, including apparently the Irgun/Likud circles the elder Emanuel has been associated with for many decades, “Arab work” is associated with doing all the dirty or hard work, very frequently carried out by members of Israel’s substantial ethnically Palestinian (Arab) minority, that allows so many of Jewish Israelis, nowadays, to live lives of relative ease and prosperity.

But Rahm Emanuel is not just a provincial-minded Jewish Israeli. He is also a US citizen. Indeed, he’s about to rise to one of the highest positions in our country.

There is a good question as to whether anyone occupying such a sensitive position in Washington ought to also hold the citizenship of a foreign country– or whether, in the circumstances, Rahm Emanuel should lay down his foreign citizenship.


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