By: Fern Sidman
On Tuesday evening December 14th, Helen Freedman, executive director of Americans For A Safe Israel (AFSI), addressed a most special gathering of pro-Israel supporters at an event sponsored by “ACT! For America” in Delray Beach, Florida. ACT! For America is a nationwide non-profit issues advocacy organization that dedicates itself to educating Americans on the existential threat that the burgeoning radical Islamist movement represents to their liberties and freedoms.
Founded by Brigitte Gabriel, a Lebanese-American journalist, author and activist who was forced out of her native Lebanon by Muslim militias during the internecine warfare that engulfed that country from 1975-1990, ACT For America engages in direct lobbying and grassroots activism in response to anti-American and anti-Israel media bias and “politically correct” apologists for radical Islam in the media, academia and politics.
Addressing over 100 people at the South County Civic Center in Delray Beach, Florida, Ms. Freedman was introduced by Alan Bergstein, a Jewish activist from Boca Raton who welcomed her and thanked her for “having the courage to speak out against those pernicious forces who seek the complete destruction of Israel and the Western world.”
Speaking on the “unmasking” of the controversial proposed mosque at Ground Zero in New York, Ms. Freedman intoned, “We strongly and unequivocally oppose the construction of a mosque at the very site that saw the heinous murder of 2,800 Americans at the hands of bloodthirsty jihadists bent on a crusade to obliterate the values and freedoms we enjoy in a democratic country. We demand a complete accounting of where the funds are coming from in connection with the building of this mosque, and thus far, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf has not been forthcoming. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has initiated a request for a congressional inquiry into funding activities of those organizations who have been consistently inveighing against the construction of the mosque, but she has remained mum when it comes to engaging in vigorous inquiry about Imam Rauf’s possible terrorist ties and whether Saudi Arabia is a benefactor in this project.”
Freedman also took issue with the current US administration’s posture toward Israel as it pertains to the peace-making initiative. “President Obama’s unyielding pressure on Israel to make territorial concessions in the name of a false peace with the Palestinians feeds into the propaganda machine of anti-Israel apologists who would have us believe that the obstacle to peace in the Middle East are Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, when in fact, nothing could be further from the truth. When will we begin to demand that the Palestinian Authority and the entire Muslim world recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state?”
Citing the unabashed opprobrium that has been cast upon Israel through the global campaign of delegitimization in the spheres of academia, the media and government, Freedman suggested that Jews take a more aggressive stance in defending their rights to Israel. “We have to stop adopting the psyche of the abused and the guilt ridden. We must cease the self-inflicted torture of incessantly assigning blame to ourselves for not conceding enough, not appeasing enough, not negotiating enough. The time is long overdue for us to stop being defendants and start being accusers. We must state to the entire world in very clear, bold and unequivocal terms that our sole legitimate right to the land of Israel does not emanate from the United Nations, the United States or the European Union, but our right to Israel comes directly from G-d as stated in our holy Torah. That is our only authentic claim to the land and we must tell those who wish to violently seize our land that it is they who are the occupiers and the thieves.”
A lively question and answer session followed Ms. Freedman’s address in which she addressed the tendentious climate that Israel finds herself in due of the repercussions of the agenda of the liberal, left-wing media. “All we need to do is pick up The New York Times and realize that Israel is facing a media lynch mob. Flagrant mendacity and outright fraud has replaced true and accurate reporting. That was clearly evidenced in Karl Vick’s cover story in Time Magazine, “Why Israel Doesn’t Care About Peace.” No matter how many efforts we make in the name of peace, no many how many Jews we remove from their rightful homes in order to ensure a longstanding peace, we will still be viewed as intransigent at best and racist, occupiers at worst.”
Ms. Freedman concluded by quoting the late Rabbi Meir Kahane. “Let us not fear the world. It is infinitely better to have a Jewish state that is hated by the whole world, than an Auschwitz that brings us love and sympathy. If we want the world’s love, we must know that we will never get it unless we earn their respect. And how do you earn respect? By having self-respect and standing up for our G-d given rights.”