Archive for Keith Ellison

Itamar Gelbman: Israeli Candidate Running for Congress in Texas Pledges to ‘stop Islamization of America’

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2012 by loonwatch

Itamar Gelbman

He grew up in Israel, served in the IDF as a lieutenant and is running for Congress, one of his main goals is to ‘stop the Islamization of America.’

What if a Turk who was born in the US but grew up in Istanbul came to America and said one of his primary goals was to end US funding to Israel? You can bet that he would be accused of stealth jihad and Islamization of the US:

Israeli candidate running for Congress in Texas pledges to ‘stop Islamization of America’

(Islamophobia-Watch.com)

Itamar Gelbman was born in New York 30 years ago and as a child moved with his parents to Herzliya, where he was raised. He studied business management and computer science at Tel Aviv University and served as an undercover reserve officer in the Tel Aviv Police District.

After graduation, Gelbman joined the IDF where he was a lieutenant in what he calls the “army special forces.” He said he could not be more specific about what he did in the army but that he received multiple awards, including a commendation from the IDF chief of staff.

Eight years ago, he moved to Texas. After US President Barack Obama was elected in 2008, Gelbman decided to get involved in politics.

Gelbman is running in the May 29 Republican Primary in Texas’s Sixth Congressional District, which is outside Dallas. “I’m the only candidate for the seat who is pro-Israel,” Gelbman said.

Gelbman said he believes American politicians need to give Israel the benefit of the doubt. He does not believe the US should involve itself in the settlement issue and he would work to block foreign aid to Islamic countries that act against Israel and the United States.

“I would defend Israel and be their voice in the House,” he said. “Israel should be allowed to do whatever it needs to do. The Palestinians need to change their education system and accept Israel as a Jewish state with Jerusalem as its capital.” Gelbman said he would work to make sure a law requiring the US to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem would be enforced.

He received national attention when Muslims in his district were offended by his campaign flyer in which vowed to “fight the Islamization of America.”

Gelbman recently came to Israel to spend Passover with family. While he was in the country, he met with MK Danny Danon and other Likud politicians.

Jerusalem Post, 7 May 2012

Not so sure about the “national attention” bit. The only report I can find of Gelbman antagonising the Muslim community is by a local TV station.

Pro-Israel Hawks Steering Debate on Iran

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , on March 19, 2012 by loonwatch

Tell us something we don’t know:

Pro-Israel Hawks Steering Debate on Iran

By and  (NYTimes)

WASHINGTON — Even before President Obama declared this month that “I have Israel’s back” in its escalating confrontation with Iran, pro-Israel figures like the evangelical Christian leader Gary L. Bauer and the conservative commentator William Kristol were pushing for more.

In a slickly produced, 30-minute video, the group that the two men lead, the Emergency Committee for Israel, mocked Mr. Obama’s “unshakable commitment to Israel’s security” and attacked his record on Iran as weak. “I’ll be brutally honest: I don’t trust the president on Israel,” Mr. Bauer, who unsuccessfully sought the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, said in an interview. “I think his record on Israel is abysmal.”

With Israeli leaders warning of an existential threat from Iran and openly discussing the possibility of attacking its nuclear facilities, pro-Israel groups on all sides have mobilized to make their views known to the Obama administration and to Congress. But it is the most hawkish voices, like the Emergency Committee’s, that have dominated the debate, and, in the view of some critics, pushed the United States closer to taking military action against Iran and another war in the Middle East.

“It’s not about Israel,” said Representative Eric Cantor, Republican of Virginia, the House majority leader and a key Congressional ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel.

“It’s about the U.S.,” Mr. Cantor said in an interview. “It’s about our interests in the region. There have been a lot of conflicting messages coming out of the White House.”

Among those advocating a more aggressive approach toward Iran are prominent Republicans in Congress, like Mr. Cantor and Senator John McCain of Arizona; the party’s presidential candidates; groups like the Emergency Committee and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or Aipac; the so-called “neocons” from the George W. Bush administration who were strong proponents of the war in Iraq; pro-Israel evangelical Christians like Mr. Bauer, who is also active in the group Christians United for Israel; and many Democrats.

Urging diplomacy are liberal groups like J Street, which is helped by $500,000 a year in contributions from the liberal philanthropist George Soros, and Tikkun, a Jewish journal that has begun running newspaper advertisements here and abroad that urge, “NO War on Iran and NO First Strike!” Tikkun, based in Berkeley, Calif., is hoping to link its antiwar message with the Occupy protests.

“A lot of people talk about the ‘Israel lobby’ as if it’s a monolithic thing,” said Dylan Williams, head of government affairs for J Street. “It’s a myth. There is a deep division between those who support military action at this point and those who support diplomacy.”

Clear fissures have developed among pro-Israel groups — not only between hawks and doves over whether to use military force against Iran, but among hard-liners themselves over just how aggressively to confront it.

Sheldon Adelson, a billionaire casino owner who is a staunch supporter of Israel, was once a major donor to Aipac. But because of Aipac’s support for American aid to the Palestinian Authority, he has broken from the group. This year, Mr. Adelson has given at least $10 million, along with his wife, to support Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign.

Like Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum, Mr. Gingrich has pushed for stronger support of Israel and attacked Mr. Obama’s policies on the Iranian issue as weak. He also described the Palestinians as an “invented people.”

The disagreements over what to do about Iran reflect the divisions among Jews themselves. In a survey of American Jews last September by the American Jewish Committee, an advocacy group, 56 percent of those polled said they would support American military action against Iran if diplomacy and sanctions failed, while 38 percent opposed it. Support was down slightly from a year earlier.

Rabbi Michael Lerner, a leader of Tikkun and an affiliated antiwar coalition of religious groups, said backers of diplomacy want to slow what they have seen as a “drumbeat to war” in recent weeks. Rabbi Lerner and other opponents of military action say the debate over Iran echoes the political climate in 2002 before the United States-led invasion in Iraq.

Representative Keith Ellison, a Minnesota Democrat who opposes military action against Iran, said, “The rhetoric is overblown.”

Those advocating military intervention “whip up fear and whip up doomsday scenarios,” Mr. Ellison said in an interview. “It has an effect. If nothing else, they’re making Obama talk about military options with regard to Iran.”

But Mr. Ellison is in the minority on Capitol Hill, where the debate over Israel and Iran was largely settled long ago.

Peter King Defends NYPD Monitoring, Plans More Hearings on Islam

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2012 by loonwatch

This should come to no surprise that Peter King will defend the NYPD monitoring. He must be really proud.

Peter King Defends NYPD Monitoring, Plans More Hearings on Islam

by George Zornick

Appearing on WCBS in New York this morning, Representative Peter King offered a strong defense of NYPD’s spying on mosques and Muslim businesses and student groups in several states. Criticism of the recently revealed program has intensified in recent days, but King said he was proud of the police department.

“[Police Commissioner] Ray Kelly and the NYPD should get a medal for what they are doing,” he said. “This is good police work. If you are going after radical Muslims you don’t go to Ben’s Kosher Deli.”

This is perhaps not surprising coming from the man who held highly controversial Capitol Hill hearings into Muslim Americans last year, which many people saw as essentially profiling by public relations; his colleague, Representative Keith Ellison invoked the specter of Joe McCarthy in criticizing King’s efforts and said they served to “vilify” Muslims.

But, alas, King announced last week that he would hold more hearings into domestic radicalization among Muslim Americans in the coming year. “The series of radicalization hearings I convened last March has been very productive,” King said in a statement. “I will definitely continue the hearings in 2012.”

This is a good time to flag a recent study by Charles Kurzman, a sociology professor at the University of North Carolina and member of the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security. His comprehensive examination of crime statistics found that terrorism-related incidents by Muslim Americans has declined markedly, and that Muslim-Americans represent “a minuscule threat to public safety.” He wrote:

The limited scale of Muslim-American terrorism in 2011 runs counter to the fears that many Americans shared in the days and months after 9/11, that domestic Muslim American terrorism would escalate. The spike in terrorism cases in 2009 renewed these concerns, as have repeated warnings from U.S. government officials about a possible surge in homegrown Islamic terrorism. The predicted surge has not materialized.

Repeated alerts by government officials maybe issued as a precaution, even when the underlying threat is uncertain. Officials may be concerned about how they would look if an attack did take place and subsequent investigations showed that officials had failed to warn the public. But a byproduct of these alerts is a sense of heightened tension that is out of proportion to the actual number of terrorist attacks in the United States since 9/11.

If King calls Kurzman to testify at his hearings I’ll eat my hat, but it’s possible Democrats on the committee could arrange for his appearance. He would provide a substantive counterweight to King’s typically anecdote-driven hysteria. Last week the FBI foiled a plot in which a Moroccan man wanted to bomb the US Capitol—you can bet King will give that episode a prominent role at his hearings.

Keith Ellison Challenger’s Anti-Muslim Ad Pulled From YouTube

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2011 by loonwatch

(via. Islamophobia-Today)

Keith Ellison Challenger’s Anti-Muslim Ad Pulled FromYouTube

A challenger to Muslim Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) had his web ad, which featured graphic images of murdered non-Muslims and the House member swearing to the Koran, pulled from YouTube for violating the site’s terms of service last week, Hopkins Patch reports.

“Congressman Ellison swore an oath to uphold the Constitution,” says Ellison’s Democratic challenger Gary Boisclair, “on a Koran.” He continues, “The Koran says Christians and Jews are infidels. The Koran says Christians are blasphemers who should have their hands and feet cut off and that they should be crucified and killed.” He asks, “Do you really want someone representing you who swears an oath on a Koran, a book that undermines the Constitution and says you should be killed?”

(You can watch the ad here, via the Minnesota Independent.)

Boisclair, who works for the anti-abortion group Society for Truth and Justice, told Patch that one of the “sub-goals” of his candidacy is to allow the airing of graphic anti-abortion ads.

Ellison was indeed sworn in using a Koran — a copy owned by Thomas Jefferson.

“I’d like to thank YouTube for removing the ad because it violated the company’s ‘policy on shocking and disgusting content,’” said Ellison in a statement. “The people of Minnesota’s Fifth Congressional District elected me to uphold our Constitution, which guarantees freedom of religion for every American.”

One of Ellison’s opponents in 2010 — and possibly 2012 — independent Lynne Torgerson, attacked Ellison for his Muslim faith. She wrote that Islam advocated “criminal behavior,” adding “we simply went too far with Keith Ellison. Keith Ellison simply is not a proper person to have in our federal government.”

Ellison’s constituents in Minneapolis and its environs, however, have consistently voted for him. He has been re-elected twice, winning by over forty points each time.

Kilmeade: If Rep. Ellison Is Worried About Extremism, “Maybe He Can Focus On Getting The Burqa Off” Muslim Women

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , on July 12, 2011 by loonwatch

 

(Via IslamophobiaToday)

Using the religion card when it is irrelevant to the topic is unprofessional and bigoted, but that doesn’t phase Fox News Channel television personality Brian Kilmeade. He thought it was important to bring up the issue of the burqa and somehow connect it with Keith Ellison.

Kilmeade: If Rep. Ellison Is Worried About Extremism, “Maybe He Can Focus On Getting The Burqa Off” Muslim Women

 

Bill Maher and Keith Ellison Spar Over the Qur’an and Islam

Posted in Anti-Loons, Loon Media with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2011 by loonwatch

Bill Maher is anti-Religion, everyone knows that, well at least anyone who know who Bill Maher is, but as we have documented on our site Maher has a special bias against Islam, Muslims and Arabs. For Maher the Qur’an is a “hate filled Holy book,” and Islam presents a “unique” threat to us all as opposed to other religions which he says are merely “superstitious” nonsense but essentially not violent. He even had the temerity to say that the Bible has less violent passages than the Qur’an. A ridiculous claim that we have utterly debunked.

In this encounter, Bill flings these charges at Rep. Keith Ellison, who in my opinion did a pretty decent job in pushing back against Bill’s claims even though he could have done better:

For instance Rep. Ellison could have attacked the statement that the Qur’an is a “hate filled Holy Book” with more than just verses about peace and justice. But I understand that such a short time is really only good for soundbites and that real intellectual and thorough discussion requires a lot more time. He should have at the very least addressed the idea that Islam was somehow a “unique” threat because that is patently false.

Rep. Keith Ellison’s Historic Testimony during House Hearings

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , on March 10, 2011 by loonwatch

Just as our children today read in their history books about the internment of Japanese-Americans and about the McCarthy Hearings, a time will come (not too far in the future hopefully) when our children’s children will read about how there was a generation of Americans who stood by idly as an elected member of public office–a United States congressman no less–held anti-Muslim hearings.

That future generation will marvel at our complacency.  But, we will not just be accused of apathy, but of wholesale bigotry.  And many of us will be disgraced and shamed–just like those police officers captured in 1960′s footage hosing down black Americans will forever live in infamy for what they did.  Mostly those who will be remembered will be the villains–Peter King, Glenn Beck, maybe Barack Obama (the president who did nothing to stop it–the guy who made it seem like it’s a smear to be called a Muslim)…

But there will be one good guy we’ll read about, and one testimony that we’ll remember.  It will be one of those defining moments in history. His testimony is hardly eloquent…but Ellison has captured the moment beautifully. He has shed a tear for us all, for America’s lost soul. Here it is: