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Tuesday, July 08, 2003

True Nature of the International Solidarity Movement

Letter to the JPost Editors:
"The IDF vs. the ISM" (June 16) follows the same pattern as the rest of the mainstream media in swallowing whole the International Solidarity Movement’s claim to be a non-violent, peaceful organization dedicated to justice for all parties in the Middle East conflict. The group’s own literature (its manifesto is readily available at its website) as well as interviews with its members, show that ISM categorically denies Israel’s right to exist. It is after peace not through a two-state solution, but through the extermination of the Jewish state. One ISM member recently stated: "To say Israel has a right to exist is to say Israel has a right to discriminate." The fact that this statement is couched in pseudo-humanist language does not negate its obvious meaning: Israel’s existence is evil and it ought to be destroyed.

Nor does the ISM reject violence in pursuit of this goal. As Westerners, they see non-violence as being a more effective tactic, but this is not a moral decision: They categorically endorse the use of violence by factions of the Palestinian nationalist movement.

Benjamin Kerstein, Brookline, Massachusetts