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Becky Johnson--Valuing Critics Whose Criticism We Despise

Critics assail Becky Johnson's opinions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
On a posting around local homeless issues, ["Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless ...Again"], Vinny, a critic of Becky Johnson's views on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, began a new topic. I felt it would be clearer if that debate were continued on a separate thread. Below I reprint the discussion, with my comments...

Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Vinny
(No verified email address) 29 May 2004
While I support *some of * the activities Becky Johnson is promoting in this particular communication, I am reserved because Becky Johnson has continuously joined in to condemn Palestinian people at every turn possible while promoting Israeli violence, neccessitating the turning of a blind eye to the horrors that society is perpetrating. I urge Becky Johnson to re-examine her villification of Palestinian people, and promote a more balanced discussion in the future.
See Also... by relink
(No verified email address) 29 May 2004
Israeli Raid on Rafah Refugee Camp Results in More than 50 Dead, and Hundreds Homeless


Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Becky Johnson
becky_johnson (nospam) sbcglobal.net (unverified) 29 May 2004
The 20 Jewish communities in Gaza have faced over 4,000 mortar shells and Kassam rocket attacks, as well as 10,000 shooting incidents, at the hands of Palestinian terrorists over the past 3.5 years

And you say I support people who promote violence?

I believe my views on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict are consistant with my views on homelessness in the City of Santa Cruz. I do not desire for the Palestinian people to experience homelessness or poverty. I don't think anyone should be homeless. But I do not blame Israel for their current condition. You shouldn't either.

The people who promote violence in the mideast are largely the people who cannot stand for one tiny Jewish country to exist. The people who promote violence have stated for 56 years that their goal was the destruction of Israel and the genocide of the Jews. They have not dropped this goal. I am against violence unless used in self-defense or the defense of others.

You claim to be in favor of non-violence and yet you constantly champion the cause of a people who promote the death of their own children. This is sick. And you are gullible enough to believe their lies and have the platform from which to spew them. The Jewish teachings place a high value on life by contrast. Shall I e-mail you a million examples?

Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Mohamed
movolo (nospam) yahoo.com (unverified) 31 May 2004
Ms. Johnson,

It seems that you are a victim of your own environment, look back in history and please tell me when any apartheid state has ever succeeded? Israel is by definition an Apartheid state that will go down just like all its other predecessors. It is very disappointing to see how a people that were persecuted by the vicious nazi ideology of "white supremacy" is now turning and using it on Palestine but now its "Jewish supremacy."

You state 20 Jewish communities that are ALL outside the boundaries of ANY recognized borders. Neither you nor I know what is truly going on in Palestine, but I can tell you the Palestinians will always continue the resistance against oppression. Israel has proven to be in a state of desperation in trying to ethnically cleanse the region by any genocidal capabilities such as the apartheid wall and the murdering of resistance fighters.

You claim these people "promote the death of their own children" I tell you, what are these kids fighting with? rocks? You are going to say they are suicide bombers, but I ask you, if they had the means to fight with F-16s and apache helicopters, do you really think that these kids would be fighting against oppression with such resilience. Look at this country and look back in records of different wars such as the civil war, and war of 1812, were there not "children" fighting those wars? The fight that is going on is one of freedom these Palestinians want to be freed from the oppression that Israel has done for 56 years.


The Jewish teachings, if you look closely at the Torah, promotes the cleansing of that region by any means necessary, even by killing and that is completely justified because you consider yourselves the chosen people, and that this area (Palestine) is given to you.

It is sad to see that the Jews are doing this to Muslims even though if you look at Jewish history, their most prosperous time was after they were persecuted from Europe and they came under Islamic Rule where they were allowed to practice their religion freely, as did the Christians. The only solution for Palestine is a one state solution, where Christians, Jews, and Muslims can live and worship the one God that connects all these religions, from Moses, to Jesus to Mohamed (peace and blessings be upon all of them).


Mohamed advocates the destruction of Israel
by Becky Johnson
becky_johnson (nospam) sbcglobal.net (unverified) 31 May 2004
Reply to Mohamed: You are either dangerously misinformed or you are part of the propaganda machine. Israel is NOT an apartheid state. Behind the green line, Israel is a pluralistic society that is 20% Arab/Muslim. In addition, Israel has Ethiopian Jews, Russian Jews, Moraccan Jews, Argentinian Jews, Christians, and the Bahai faith has its world headquarters in Haifa.

Contrast this with Jordan which does not allow a single Jew to live in the entire country!

You say the Jews in Gaza don't belong there. First, Jews have lived in Gaza for about 900 years. Jews also lived in ancient Gaza during bibilical times. After the 1967 war, UN resolution 242 gave Israel military and administrative control over Gaza, making the occupation legal under international law. The Oslo accords handed over large portions of Gaza to the Palestinian Authority. But the 20 some Jewish communities in Gaza were not handed over.

Hence NO APARTHEID and NO ILLEGAL OCCUPATION.

Then you go on to accuse Israel of practicing Jewish supremacy and genocide. What planet are you living on? Dementia? ALL people living in Israel have the right to practise whatever religion they wish openly and without reprisal. (try that in most of the Arab countries!!) As to genocide, Israel must be doing a pretty piss-poor job of it. Since the population of Gaza and the West Bank has INCREASED 3-fold since 1967. The death toll in the conflict has killed about 1000 Israelis and about 3000 Palestinians. This is NOT genocide by anyone's definition. But you are slavering with your desire to compare the Israelis to the Nazis. This is simply demonstating your own prejudice and your inability to examine facts rationally.

Hitler gassed 6 million Jews.
Hitler used military force in an attempt to subjugate all of his neighboring countries.
Israel has done none of these things.

Israel has only imposed checkpoints, security barriers, id checks, in an attempt to catch or kill the people who have attacked Israeli civilians and are planning new attacks. Any country on earth would do this.

Arafat has actually encouraged children to throw rocks at Israeli tanks. He sees the PR potential in any injured or killed child. That protest march in Rafah recently where 8 people were killed (possibly by IDF rocket fire) had children at the front of a breakaway march going into a war zone defying curfew. IT IS THE ORGANIZERS OF THE PROTEST WHO PURPOSELY AND CYNICALLY PUT CHILDREN IN HARM'S WAY TO PROMOTE THEIR OWN CAUSE.

They are not fighting against "oppression" but against the existance of a Jewish State--no matter how tiny--- anywhere in the mideast.

And don't give me your BS about the Palestinians fighting for freedom from Israel. They have turned down an independent state four or five times, the most recent time under Bush's roadmap to peace. They don't want an independent state of Palestine. They want to annihilate the Jewish State of Israel. Perhaps you do to.

As to your idea of one state ---Palestine--where all religions can worship freely (putting aside that in modern Israel all religions can worship freely already) can you give me a single example of an Arab/Muslim country where this is currently happening? No??? Well why would you advocate the destruction of the only Jewish democracy in the world to set up a state that has almost zero chances of being this free society that you have outlined?



In an unrelated article about Mayor Kennedy's sell-out of the homeless ("Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless..Again"), those upset with Becky Johnson's views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict began a new thread of discussion. Rather than have it clutter up the original thread, which was about another subject, I hope that discussion will continue here if people choose to carry it on.

I reprint below the Comments from that thread:

Comments
Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Vinny
(No verified email address) 29 May 2004
While I support *some of * the activities Becky Johnson is promoting in this particular communication, I am reserved because Becky Johnson has continuously joined in to condemn Palestinian people at every turn possible while promoting Israeli violence, neccessitating the turning of a blind eye to the horrors that society is perpetrating. I urge Becky Johnson to re-examine her villification of Palestinian people, and promote a more balanced discussion in the future.
See Also...
by relink
(No verified email address) 29 May 2004
Israeli Raid on Rafah Refugee Camp Results in More than 50 Dead, and Hundreds Homeless
Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Becky Johnson
becky_johnson (nospam) sbcglobal.net (unverified) 29 May 2004
The 20 Jewish communities in Gaza have faced over 4,000 mortar shells and Kassam rocket attacks, as well as 10,000 shooting incidents, at the hands of Palestinian terrorists over the past 3.5 years

And you say I support people who promote violence?

I believe my views on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict are consistant with my views on homelessness in the City of Santa Cruz. I do not desire for the Palestinian people to experience homelessness or poverty. I don't think anyone should be homeless. But I do not blame Israel for their current condition. You shouldn't either.

The people who promote violence in the mideast are largely the people who cannot stand for one tiny Jewish country to exist. The people who promote violence have stated for 56 years that their goal was the destruction of Israel and the genocide of the Jews. They have not dropped this goal. I am against violence unless used in self-defense or the defense of others.

You claim to be in favor of non-violence and yet you constantly champion the cause of a people who promote the death of their own children. This is sick. And you are gullible enough to believe their lies and have the platform from which to spew them. The Jewish teachings place a high value on life by contrast. Shall I e-mail you a million examples?
Re: Mayor Kennedy Doublecrosses the Homeless...Again
by Mohamed
movolo (nospam) yahoo.com (unverified) 31 May 2004
Ms. Johnson,

It seems that you are a victim of your own environment, look back in history and please tell me when any apartheid state has ever succeeded? Israel is by definition an Apartheid state that will go down just like all its other predecessors. It is very disappointing to see how a people that were persecuted by the vicious nazi ideology of "white supremacy" is now turning and using it on Palestine but now its "Jewish supremacy."

You state 20 Jewish communities that are ALL outside the boundaries of ANY recognized borders. Neither you nor I know what is truly going on in Palestine, but I can tell you the Palestinians will always continue the resistance against oppression. Israel has proven to be in a state of desperation in trying to ethnically cleanse the region by any genocidal capabilities such as the apartheid wall and the murdering of resistance fighters.

You claim these people "promote the death of their own children" I tell you, what are these kids fighting with? rocks? You are going to say they are suicide bombers, but I ask you, if they had the means to fight with F-16s and apache helicopters, do you really think that these kids would be fighting against oppression with such resilience. Look at this country and look back in records of different wars such as the civil war, and war of 1812, were there not "children" fighting those wars? The fight that is going on is one of freedom these Palestinians want to be freed from the oppression that Israel has done for 56 years.


The Jewish teachings, if you look closely at the Torah, promotes the cleansing of that region by any means necessary, even by killing and that is completely justified because you consider yourselves the chosen people, and that this area (Palestine) is given to you.

It is sad to see that the Jews are doing this to Muslims even though if you look at Jewish history, their most prosperous time was after they were persecuted from Europe and they came under Islamic Rule where they were allowed to practice their religion freely, as did the Christians. The only solution for Palestine is a one state solution, where Christians, Jews, and Muslims can live and worship the one God that connects all these religions, from Moses, to Jesus to Mohamed (peace and blessings be upon all of them).
Mohamed advocates the destruction of Israel
by Becky Johnson
becky_johnson (nospam) sbcglobal.net (unverified) 31 May 2004
Reply to Mohamed: You are either dangerously misinformed or you are part of the propaganda machine. Israel is NOT an apartheid state. Behind the green line, Israel is a pluralistic society that is 20% Arab/Muslim. In addition, Israel has Ethiopian Jews, Russian Jews, Moraccan Jews, Argentinian Jews, Christians, and the Bahai faith has its world headquarters in Haifa.

Contrast this with Jordan which does not allow a single Jew to live in the entire country!

You say the Jews in Gaza don't belong there. First, Jews have lived in Gaza for about 900 years. Jews also lived in ancient Gaza during bibilical times. After the 1967 war, UN resolution 242 gave Israel military and administrative control over Gaza, making the occupation legal under international law. The Oslo accords handed over large portions of Gaza to the Palestinian Authority. But the 20 some Jewish communities in Gaza were not handed over.

Hence NO APARTHEID and NO ILLEGAL OCCUPATION.

Then you go on to accuse Israel of practicing Jewish supremacy and genocide. What planet are you living on? Dementia? ALL people living in Israel have the right to practise whatever religion they wish openly and without reprisal. (try that in most of the Arab countries!!) As to genocide, Israel must be doing a pretty piss-poor job of it. Since the population of Gaza and the West Bank has INCREASED 3-fold since 1967. The death toll in the conflict has killed about 1000 Israelis and about 3000 Palestinians. This is NOT genocide by anyone's definition. But you are slavering with your desire to compare the Israelis to the Nazis. This is simply demonstating your own prejudice and your inability to examine facts rationally.

Hitler gassed 6 million Jews.
Hitler used military force in an attempt to subjugate all of his neighboring countries.
Israel has done none of these things.

Israel has only imposed checkpoints, security barriers, id checks, in an attempt to catch or kill the people who have attacked Israeli civilians and are planning new attacks. Any country on earth would do this.

Arafat has actually encouraged children to throw rocks at Israeli tanks. He sees the PR potential in any injured or killed child. That protest march in Rafah recently where 8 people were killed (possibly by IDF rocket fire) had children at the front of a breakaway march going into a war zone defying curfew. IT IS THE ORGANIZERS OF THE PROTEST WHO PURPOSELY AND CYNICALLY PUT CHILDREN IN HARM'S WAY TO PROMOTE THEIR OWN CAUSE.

They are not fighting against "oppression" but against the existance of a Jewish State--no matter how tiny--- anywhere in the mideast.

And don't give me your BS about the Palestinians fighting for freedom from Israel. They have turned down an independent state four or five times, the most recent time under Bush's roadmap to peace. They don't want an independent state of Palestine. They want to annihilate the Jewish State of Israel. Perhaps you do to.

As to your idea of one state ---Palestine--where all religions can worship freely (putting aside that in modern Israel all religions can worship freely already) can you give me a single example of an Arab/Muslim country where this is currently happening? No??? Well why would you advocate the destruction of the only Jewish democracy in the world to set up a state that has almost zero chances of being this free society that you have outlined?


The Becky Johnson controversy
by Robert Norse

"Important as the debate in the comments section is, it has nothing to do with the original posting. Unless and until someone challenges Becky's article (which has nothing to do with the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict) with specific facts, I'd like to see the sneers, slights, innuendos, and general badmouthing set aside.

"General character assasination--suggesting that because Becky's views on Israel suck, that therefore the rest of her work does--is horseshit, and Vinny should know that. He's letting his passions get the best of him.

"I worked with Becky on this article and can testify to the accuracy of what was written. It seems both irrelevant and divisive to suggest that her views on Israel have in any way impacted the truth and usefulness of her story.

Much as I disagree with Becky on her views on the I-P issue (often violently so), I respect the fact that she's willing to stand up and speak candidly, expressing highly unpopular views. Openly saying what she does on this website is akin to taking a dump in church.

It's actually a service because it forces those of us who regard her views as abhorrent Israeli government propaganda to back up our reaction with facts, figures, and specifics.

But again, this particular story ("Mayor Kennedy Double Crosses the Homeless...Again") is about something else entirely. Hence the comment section under it is not a good place to have this debate. Hence I am also posting this comment on a new string ("Becky Johnson--Valuing Critics Whose Criticism We Despise") and encourage those who want to continue the topic to take it there.
 
 


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Comments

Re: Becky Johnson - etc...

Hey there,

I have not read this whole post..., but I wanted to say that Vinny's comment was a bit of a joke based on what Becky commented on the interview I did with Starhawk about Reclaiming the Commons.

Here it is for you:

Re: Starhawk on Reclaiming the Commons - sf.june8
by Becky Johnson
becky_johnson (nospam) sbcglobal.net (unverified) 25 May 2004
While I support the activities Starhawk is promoting in this particular communication, I am reserved because Starhawk has continuously joined in to condemn Israel at every turn possible while promoting the Palestinian cause neccessitating the turning of a blind eye to the horrors that society is perpetrating. I urge Starhawk to re-examine her villification of Israel, and promote a more balanced discussion in the future.

- -

That comment was from this article:

Starhawk on Reclaiming the Commons - sf.june8

By the way, if you visit Starhawk.org, there is currently ('today' is 5/31/04) a link to the interview and the following text:

What's New:

* Starhawk did a radio interview about the upcoming "Reclaim the Commons" events with Indynewswire in Santa Cruz, CA on May 24. It is now available as either a download or as streaming audio.

- -

Back to Becky. She is the one that brings up the issue os Palestine and Israel all the time.
 

Chickens Come Home To Roost

Becky spews her hatred against Palestinians thus destroying her rightful defense of the homeless.

As a former homeless I can say: She represents no one.
 

Also see: "BECKY'S BRAIN!!: An Amazing 'Interview' With Becky Johnson of Santa Cruz"

"BECKY'S BRAIN!!: An Amazing 'Interview' With Becky Johnson of Santa Cruz", by JA

www.indybay.org/news/2005/02/1719944_comment.php

SHE'S A REAL CHARACTER DOWN THERE IN SANTA CRUZ!!


For more, later, see (Becky Johnson):

Examiner ad demonizes Palestinian children, shows young girl with gun
santacruz.indymedia.org/newswire/display_any/14842/index.php


Albert Einstein Condemned Israeli Nazis
santacruz.indymedia.org/newswire/display_any/15529/index.php


Elise Cohen of The Fellowship Of Reconciliation talks about upcoming delegations to Israel
santacruz.indymedia.org/newswire/display_any/14711/index.php


... YYYEP...!! SHE'S A *WACKO*!!
 

You despise Justice and Peace?

Vinny writes: "Becky Johnson has continuously joined in to condemn Palestinian people at every turn possible while promoting Israeli violence, neccessitating the turning of a blind eye to the horrors that society is perpetrating. I urge Becky Johnson to re-examine her villification of Palestinian people, and promote a more balanced discussion in the future."

BECKY: Vinny, I don't believe I am "villifying" the Palestinian people. When I report on Palestinian suicide bombers I am not reporting on all the Palestinian people. When I challenge whether a little girl was walking to school or was on a mission sent by some Jihadist group, I am not villifying all the Palestinian people.

I have said many times, I want a just and equitable solution in which Palestinians and Israelis no longer wage war, and instead live peacefully as neighbors in prosperity.

How is that "condemning the Palestinian people."
I think you want to put your label on me, and then condemn me for that label rather than address the facts and the historical context in which I address each issue.

I am a Bahai. As a Bahai, racism is considered the greatest cause of war in the world today. Bahaullah taught that until human beings conquer racism, we will not have world peace.

I do not defend any Israeli racist behavior. However, some here have called me a racist because I DO support the State of Israel --which is basically a secular democracy AND the national homeland for the Jewish people.

What Vinny calls "turning a blind eye to the horrors that society is perpetuating" is actually my debunking, one by one, the untruths being told ----e.g. That Israel is an apartheid state--its not, that the IDF machine guns children walking to school--they dont, that Israel is occupying "occupied Palestinian lands" --the record here is pretty darn murky--1500 people were killed in Jenin--Ummm only 56 were killed according to the Palestinian Authority!!
Israel is committing genocide!! -- 4000 dead in 5 years of fighting on both sides is war, not genocide. Sudan, with 1000 a week dying is genocide.

So many untruths. Israel caused the tsunami. Israel blew up the towers on 9/11, Israel runs the US govt., Israel puts baby blood in their religious wafers, etc. etc. etc.

The propaganda war against Israel and the Jews rolls forward. It makes me feel bad to see dedicated peace advocates jumping on the villify Israel bandwagon, because its headed in the exact opposite direction from the route to peace and justice!!

MOHAMED MOVOLO WRITES: "The Jewish teachings, if you look closely at the Torah, promotes the cleansing of that region by any means necessary, even by killing and that is completely justified because you consider yourselves the chosen people, and that this area (Palestine) is given to you.

BECKY: Thank you for your thoughtful questions. First, I am not Jewish. I am a Bahai. You are definitely right. There are many passages in the Torah which detail when the Hebrew people of ancient times were directed by Moses and their God to skirt around one group of people, and attack and slaughter another group of people.

This trouble me too, because I feel deeply that massive armaments and weapons are the wrong way to handle human relationships. We MUST work for a world where problems are solved through rule of law rather than might makes right.

What I think now, is that AT THAT TIME, the Hebrew people were in slavery, to travel they had to cross areas where there were lots of different tribes and people who would just kill them if they got the chance. those were very dangerous times where lots of smaller tribes would engage in raids and conquests, where the group with the most state-of-the art weapons held the most turf. Umm. We need to evolve here!

The Hebrews were the chosen people because they had chosen to follow God's law, the Torah and the Tanach. The Orthodox Jews have 613 laws which they try to follow. Non-Jews have 7 laws to follow.

God did not choose the Jews. God offered the Torah, or his law, to all the peoples of the world. Only the Jews accepted.

So according to the Torah, God promised to protect the Hebrew people and to lead them to the land he had promised them. He directed the Hebrew people, such as in Jericho, to go in and kill everyone and take over. No Jewish teaching that I know of, directs the Jews to go into any area NOW and destroy and kill everyone. No such resolution has been passed in the Knesset either.

Even Jewish teachings don't begin to try to explain what God's reasoning was, but perhaps that was the only way the Hebrew people would have survived.

Yes, the Torah describes the exact borders of Israel which are roughly where Israel is today but including the West Bank, which Jews call Samaria and Judeah, and the Gaza Strip. Ironically, even the Koran describes the land of Israel and says that God gave it to the Jews.

MEANWHILE, BACK IN THE PRESENT...

Time and time again, Israel has called for --if someone is shooting a rocket, go in, find the guy and capture him or kill him.

the decision to go after the leaders of Hamas last June came about after weeks and weeks of debate in the knesset. Thats when they got Shehada, Rantisi, and Yassin.

Look these guys up. See what bloody butchers these guys were. The guiding principal of Jewish law is to save a life. So the Jews argued that more lives would be saved than would be lost.

When Shehada was killed, there were a lot of innocent people killed including children. This was really bad. That was a serious mistake on the part of Israel. I heard that they killed him on a third attempt. The first two missions were scrubbed because he was just around too many people. Israel was wrong to not wait for a better time when there was less chance of loss of life.

Israel has the right to defend itself. I do not see Israel as perpetrating a lot of human rights violations in the process. What I report, is my best guess at the truth. I appreciate all those people who are willing to engage in a civil and fair exchange of information on this contentious issue.
 

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