Lara Friedman is the president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace. Previously she was the director of policy and government relations at Americans for Peace Now.
Since she clearly love peace so much, you would think that she would be against anything that promotes violence.
But as with many Middle East topics, words like “peace” do not mean what you might think they mean.
Friedman wrote in The Nation last month:
[F]unding for families of those killed or imprisoned by Israel represents a critical social safety net. Removing it would amount to collective punishment, illegal under international law and viewed by most of the world as immoral.
Yes, Friedman is saying that demanding that the PA stop paying terrorist families is “collective punishment” and therefore illegal.
That is too stupid for words. To take away something that the families don’t deserve to begin with is not punishment – it is basic justice.
Friedman tries to justify her position by claiming that so many Palestinians have been imprisoned, so therefore these payments are really more like social programs than rewarding terror:
It is a fact that Israeli military forces detain an extraordinary number of Palestinians, often for long periods without any due process. Many are convicted in military courts that have nearly a 100 percent conviction rate. According to Palestinian sources, Israel has arrested 40 percent of the male Palestinian population since 1967. This is in addition to Palestinians killed while attacking, or accused of attacking, Israeli targets.
First of all, her sources for “40 percent” of male Palestinians being arrested is a complete and utter lie that Addameer has been pushing for years. They have absolutely no polls, studies or statistics to support this lie. It is pure lying propaganda.
Secondly, the Palestinian payments are for families of current prisoners – of which there are only around 6000 – plus the families of “martyrs” who have been killed while trying to kill Israelis. In addition they pay salaries to prisoners who have been released.
When the US, EU and Israel oppose payments to families of prisoners, they are not speaking about a small percentage of the total Palestinian population, not the 40% she pretends. And we know this because we know how many families get the benefits. And she only embraces the 40% number in order to make it look like the program is more like a social security program than a program to pay for people convicted of terror related activities.
Indeed, the Palestinian law to pay salaries to families of prisoners defines prisoners as “anyone incarcerated in the occupation’s prisons for his participation in the struggle against the occupation.” They aren’t claiming that these prisoners are imprisoned for no reason, as Friedman implies in her article. They are proud of their “struggle,” which is a code word for “terrorism.”
Friedman’s arguments are fundamentally pro-terror. Which is a curious position for someone who pretends to be pro-peace to take. But when anti-Israel activists pretend to be pro-peace, they are really saying they support Palestinians only – and they therefore support and defend a sick and perverted Palestinian society where murderers are at the top of the social pyramid.
Lara Friedman is not pro-peace. She is a fraud who tacitly condones enabling and praising the murderers of Jews.
(h/t Noah Pollak via Ian)
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