Monday, November 15, 2010

Jewish Voice for Peace and bully tactics

Yesterday evening there was a fracas at a Jewish Voice for Peace event, in which a middle-aged woman was victimized by several people. Jewish Voice for Peace has already come out with a press-release in which they desperately seek to put their spin on matters.

Truth, as is so often the case when JVP and similar groupings are involved, is not part of their narrative.


Here’s the victim’s account:

"Jewish Voice for Peace" has issued a press release that I attacked several people attending one of their events with pepper spray. They also go on to make absurd allegations regarding my politics and intentions at the meeting.

This is completely bizarre. I am a DISABLED WOMAN (see the legal notice on my car). I carry pepper spray as my only means to defend myself. It IS true that on the evening of November 14, at a JVP meeting, I needed to defend myself. I was physically attacked.

The JVP meeting at Berkeley Senior Center was advertised to the public. I attended this meeting as an individual and not as a member of any organization, in order to deepen my understanding of their perspective on the Middle East conflict.

Ironically, a stated goal of the meeting was to HONOR activists that had recently PHYSICALLY DISRUPTED a speech by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. Perhaps I should have understood that as a warning.

THE ATTACK: Around 20 minutes into the meeting, I tried to photograph a woman speaking in support of Israel. Almost immediately, several JVP members surrounded me and tried to take my camera from me. Then they attacked me. They took hold of my arms and would not let me go. They also pushed their chests into me many times and knocked me against a wall. I yelled at them 20 to 30 times to let go of me. They refused to let go of my wrists and forearms and continued to bang their chests into me. They banged me into the wall over a dozen times. Their faces were red from hatred and exertion. As a result of their violence, my wrists and arms are bruised and I am currently suffering serious pain in my lower back. I am unable to work this afternoon and I must take medication for pain relief.

I am a large woman but I am physically frail. As I said, I am disabled.
- I see a pain management physician regularly for chronic back pain. I am unable to move without severe back pain. I have had major surgery on my back. I am unable to stand for more than a couple of minutes without unrelenting back pain and sciatica pain.
- I also have had nine surgeries on my knees which are another main source of pain.
- I have asthma, and I use inhaled steroids daily; the anti-Israel activists’ attack on me exacerbated my asthma and I had to take medicine while at the senior center.
- I also have a serious blood disorder that weakens me. I am currently under treatment by a hematologist/oncologist, and I am on daily chemotherapy.

I am 58 years old. I have a Disabled Person’s license plate for my car. I am physically incapable of overpowering or attacking anybody! The people who attacked me were physically fit and at least 20 years younger than I;

While pleading with the attackers to let me go, I tried to get away but they followed me and kept grabbing my arms. At one point they knocked my camera out of my hand. I bent down to pick it up and tried to walk away. They followed me and continued to grab my arms and shove me into the wall. They isolated me from the rest of the crowd. Because they were beating me up and because I am disabled and could not defend myself otherwise, I sprayed pepper spray into one woman’s face. As soon as I did that, they all backed off from me and let me go.

I resorted to the pepper spray because I feared for my safety and my life!!! I believe that had I not used pepper spray, I would be in the hospital today suffering far more serious injuries. Pepper spray causes extreme discomfort but is unlikely to cause permanent injury. The purpose of pepper spray is to temporarily disable an attacker, to allow time for escape. It worked.

The JVP press release is an outright lie. I cannot and did not attack anyone. I was attacked!


------------------------------

PLEASE NOTE:

The event was open to the public, and advertised as such. Public, in JVP terminology, may mean people who agree with distortions and untruths. Or violent psychopaths.
They're rather picky.


Crossposted here:
http://grantpatel.blogspot.com/2010/11/jewish-voice-for-peace-and-bully.html

GP

25 comments:

The back of the hill said...

Wow. That's pretty damned nauseating.
Proves once again that Jewish Voice for Peace are naught more than a bunch of hatefilled hypocrites.

Steffy said...

It's already going around on the internet. People are justifiable appalled at the behavior of the thugs of Jewish Voice for Peace.

By the way, who is funding JVP?

Anonymous said...

Isn,t it revealing that the supposedly "progressive" JVP actively supresses dissenting viewpoint, and then lies about their brown shirted tactics? In much the same way, why were the police called? What kind of progressive activist calls the cops to supresses dissent? The woman that attacked the disabled woman appeared very athletic, and half of the other ones age. Why should able bodied, young thugs be permitted to intimidate older disabled people because they can?

Anonymous said...

Jewish Voice for Peace members Alexei Folger and Glen Hauer cornered then attacked the victim, violently shaking her hand until her camera dropped. The woman, probably twice their age was helpless and screamed leave me alone a dozen times and no one came to her aid.
It was a frightening thing to watch

Anonymous said...

Alexei and Glen were waving their fists at Robin, threatening her. Moments later Alexie grabbed Robin's wrist, and the a bunch of them came running over.

Nice. Healthy people assaulting a cripple. Very typical of Jewish Voice for Peace.

Bob said...

I witnessed the assault on Robin Dubner on 11-14-10. I heard a fracas to my left and behind me. I turned and saw a blonde woman with short hair and a man with glasses pushing Robin backwards, toward a wall of windows and a plaster wall-- a corner, essentially. Robin had both hands above her head and the two JVPers were shoving her backward and grabbing at Robin's hands. Another two persons were behind the two assailants, all moving forward on Robin, who was retreating backward from them. Robin was screaming words to the effect of: "Don't touch me; let go of me." I didn't catch the JVPers' words, but several people were yelling at Robin at once.

I saw Robin's camera fly out of her hands and the attack on her let up for a moment. When Robin picked up her camera from the floor, the attack started again, with more pushing, grabbing and screaming at Robin by multiple people. Robin took out her pepper spray and sprayed the blonde woman; I didn't notice her spray the man but I understand he was also sprayed. At that time, Robin was able to move away.

I can testify in court that this was a brutal attck by multiple cowards on a disabled person (Robin) and that Robin was justified in protecting herself with pepper spray. The spray was used solely in self-defence. Even I feared for Robin's safety at the hands of these thugs who unjustifiably, physically attacked Robin.

Bob

Bob said...

I witnessed the assault on Robin Dubner on 11-14-10. I heard a fracas to my left and behind me. I turned and saw a blonde woman with short hair and a man with glasses pushing Robin backwards, toward a wall of windows and a plaster wall-- a corner, essentially. Robin had both hands above her head and the two JVPers were shoving her backward and grabbing at Robin's hands. Another two persons were behind the two assailants, all moving forward on Robin, who was retreating backward from them. Robin was screaming words to the effect of: "Don't touch me; let go of me." I didn't catch the JVPers' words, but several people were yelling at Robin at once.

I saw Robin's camera fly out of her hands and the attack on her let up for a moment. When Robin picked up her camera from the floor, the attack started again, with more pushing, grabbing and screaming at Robin by multiple people. Robin took out her pepper spray and sprayed the blonde woman; I didn't notice her spray the man but I understand he was also sprayed. At that time, Robin was able to move away.

I can testify in court that this was a brutal attck by multiple cowards on a disabled person (Robin) and that Robin was justified in protecting herself with pepper spray. The spray was used solely in self-defence. Even I feared for Robin's safety at the hands of these thugs who unjustifiably, physically attacked Robin.

Bob

Anonymous said...

People with disabilities that are not readily visible but which leave them fragile, are naturally concerned about their personal safety. It is unconscionable that these JVP'ers deep desire to keep their clandestine agendas secret, motivated them to attack a grandmother aged disabled woman. Its no surprise that when assailed by multiple, much younger more able people, that a person might use some non-lethal means to defend themselves or their property. What the heck was the JVP trying so hard to hide?

Anonymous said...

From JTA: A fairly neutral assessment- they do mischaracterize the group as "Stand With us", however.

http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/11/16/2741776/fight-breaks-out-between-jewish-voice-for-peace-and-stand-with-us

Fight erupts between Jewish Voice for Peace, StandWithUs

A dispute between right-wing and left-wing Israel activists in Berkeley, Calif., resulted in a physical altercation involving pepper spray, police and paramedics.

On Sunday, activists from San Francisco Voice for Israel/StandWithUs disrupted a meeting of Jewish Voice for Peace at the South Berkeley Senior Center, heckling speakers. One StandWithUs activist, Robin Dubner of Oakland, used pepper spray against two Jewish Voice for Peace members. The Jewish Voice for Peace members said the spraying was unprovoked, but Dubner said she sprayed because she was physically attacked.

Berkeley Police and paramedics were called to the scene, but no arrests were made.

More than 50 people were in attendance at an evening meeting featuring as speakers Bay Area residents Rae Abileah and Matthew Taylor, two of the five Jewish Voice for Peace protesters who heckled Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at last week’s General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in New Orleans.

Michael Harris, a leader with San Francisco Voice for Israel/StandWithUs, said the disruption of a Jewish Voice for Peace meeting was something he and his colleagues had never done before, but chose to do so “because they were having this celebration of heckling Netanyahu. Since they decided this was acceptable political discourse, we decided to do the same thing."

Harris said that he and his nine fellow protesters acted as individuals and not as part of an organized StandWithUs action.

Jewish Voice for Peace is a Berkeley-based national organization that describes itself as a pro-peace group, but which critics say works to undermine the State of Israel. Last month, the Anti-Defamation League included Jewish Voice for Peace on its list of the 10 most influential and active anti-Israel groups in the United States.

BBJ said...

Grant, thanks for posting this.

Anonymous said...

I attended the meeting on Sunday eve. where Robin instigated an UNPROVOKED attack on Alexei and Glen. While Robin's account asserts that she was the 'victim', that is not what I witnessed; she was clearly the aggressor. There was absolutely NO justification for her violent action of using pepper spray on JVP members.

The back of the hill said...

With all due respect, my dear anonymous, I will assume that like the vast majority of members and sympathisers of JVP et al, you are not adept at telling the truth, nor even recognizing it.

Daniel from San Jose said...

Totally outrageous. JVP anti-Semitic thugs physically attack an older, sick woman, just because she is Jewish. JVP Shame on You! This is action in the time honored spirit of the Nazi Germany.

Anonymous said...

Well, I'm not in JVP or StandWithUs, but there's somthing fishy about Dubner's story. So apparently she was brutally attacked and beaten in a room with 50 or 60 people in it and, and not one person came to her aid? All accounts say that there were about 10 StandWithUs members there; why did they stand by and do nothing while she screamed for help? Not the kind of friends I'd like to have.

The back of the hill said...

Probably too flabbergasted to do anything while it happened. Such things are sudden, and people often don't know how to react.

Aside from which, the average age of the pro-Israel activists in that room was over fifty.

The average age of the anti-Israel crowd there was probably much younger, and they would've wholeheartedly approved of beating up a pro-Israel cripple. Had they had instant reflexes, they would've joined in.

The back of the hill said...

And at that point, the JVP'ers hadn't agreed on their story yet, so despite the pro-Israel activists being so hugely outnumbered, there was indication to the police that Ms. Dubner was in any way to blame. They did not arrest her, they did not see a reason to arrest her. Even in famously Israel-hating Berkeley.

Clearly and obviously it was self-defense on her part.

thoushaltnotlie said...

Well, I'll say this: SWU has lots of friends on this blog who are willing to spread the lies. I was there Sunday night and if you're interested in the truth, please watch this video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=jL02xKcYDwc.
As for our ages, our speakers were in their 20's, but the rest of us are 40's - 70's.

Cindy said...

As someone who was present at the meeting, I can say that the description of what happened by Ms. Dubner is total fantasy. In her statement in the Political Blotter article, (www.ibabuzz.com/politics/2010/11/15/jewish-groups-clash-in-south-berkeley/)
Ms. Dubner says that she didn’t don the Israeli flag until after she had been attacked, had pepper-sprayed the two JVP members, and was trying to leave. How can this be? It is directly contradicted by the video which is embedded in the blog page. One can clearly see Ms. Dubner walking around the room reading with the Israeli flag draped over her and no one attacking her or even paying any attention to her. At the end of the video, we watch Ms. Dubner leaving under her own steam without duress and waving to the camera as she walks by one of the people she has pepper sprayed all the while refusing to tell us or the Berkeley Police what she sprayed on two JVP members. It was the Berkeley EMTs who confirmed that the substance used was pepper spray.
If Ms. Dubner was injured, the question must be asked why she did not ask for any medical attention by the Berkeley EMTs who had come to help those who had been pepper sprayed.
Ms. Dubner was not arrested because the Berkeley Police said that it could only be done through a citizen's arrest by either of the two JVPers who had been pepper sprayed. Ms. Dubner made it clear that she would then make a citizen's arrest of both the JVP members for attacking her. In the end, it was decided not press charges as there was no confidence that anything would come of it.

Other links of interest are: www.jvp.org/blog/right-wing-israel-advocacy-group-pepper-sprays-jewish-voice-peace-jvp-members

http://peacenow.org/entries/post_25

Anonymous said...

Were the first words spoken by the JVP'ers,after this incident,"Hey, we all better get our stories straight before the cops come?" It seemed that the one called "Cecelie" was somehow the "shot caller". The JVP'ers seemed furious that someone wanted to photograph them and had no qualms about trying to take this person's camera or to break it. The carefully selected and edited JVP video clips do not depict the incident, or really anything relevant, just the things that the JVP wanted to depict AFTER the incident. Its obvious that the JVP knew that they had crossed the line and so seems to have determined to defend their actions by covering them up by mounting an offensive internet campaign, mis-characterizing the incident and libeling the victim. Had the JVP'er not arrogantly decided that they and only the JVP is privileged to disrupt a speech, nothing would have happened.

Diana said...

I was present for the entire Jewish Voice for Peace meeting on Sunday evening, November 14, at the South Berkeley Senior Center. Robin Dubner was not attacked by anyone – younger or otherwise. The two people whom Robin Dubner attacked with pepper spray – Glen Hauer, a retired attorney, and Alexei Folger – are 54 years old and 46 years old, respectively.

As I read through the comments on this blog, I am puzzled and outraged. I am puzzled that so many people would brazenly lie about what happened, and in so doing defend an attacker while at the same time verbally attack an organization, JVP, which has as its goal the peaceful coexistence of two peoples – Jewish and Palestinian. I am outraged at the malicious mischaracterization of Jewish Voice for Peace as anti-Israel. JVP is NOT anti-Israel; JVP is ANTI-OCCUPATION. http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/.

Finally, I am flabbergasted by Michael Harris’ contention that the monthly meeting of JVP’s Bay Area chapter was intended as a “celebration of heckling Netanyahu.” http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/11/16/2741776/fight-breaks-out-between-jewish-voice-for-peace-and-stand-with-us. The young people who spoke out at the Federation General Assembly in New Orleans had two goals in mind. One goal was to publicly assert that the oft-referred-to “de-legitimation” of Israel is caused by Israeli policy itself, as expressed by (1) the Occupation, (2) the Settlements, (3) the Separation Wall, (4) the Siege on Gaza, (5) the loyalty oath and (6) the silencing of dissent, among other policies. The second goal was to claim inclusion in the general Jewish community, which has an obligation to allow all voices and opinions. http://www.youngjewishproud.org/

The purpose of the Young Jews’ actions in New Orleans was not to “heckle” Prime Minister Netanyahu. The purpose was to publicly identify those policies of the Israeli government which are not in Israel’s best interest, and which themselves only serve to “de-legitimize” Israel.

Anonymous said...

Diana-
Dop you really think your organization best serves the cause of co-existence by screaming and interupting opposing opinions?

JVP is using the heckling of Netanyahu as part of a fundraising campaign. They are celebrating and exploiting rudeness and innapropriate behavior, and encouraging others to follow.
Its time you learned that your choices have consequences. Maybe the community is fed up having our speakers and our events hijacked by your screaming tantrums, and you are just going to have to learn to deal with the consequences of your actions.

Its your choice.

Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

Rae Abileah is a fairly close relative of Joseph Abileah, one of the first professional Israeli "peace activists" going back many years. I always wondered where Joseph Abileah got the money to travel around the world in the service of "peace activism."

Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

Diana and her cohorts at JVP operate under false premises. The label "occupation" does not fit Israel's situation in Judea-Samaria under international law. Judea & Samaria are parts of the ancient Jewish homeland. In fact, in the heyday of the Roman Empire, all of the Land of Israel, grosso modo, formed the Province of Judea [used in its wider sense]. That is, the Galilee, Samaria, Sharon, the Golan Heights, the land along the east bank of the Jordan, were included in Provincia Iudaea, until Emperor Hadrian came along, defeated the Jewish Bar Kokhba revolt, and renamed Judea "Syria Palaestina."

In 1922, the League of Nations recognized all of Roman Judea as the Jewish National Home, although using the geographic name "palestine." In 1939-1940, the British illegally violated their mandate, curtailing the number of Jews allowed into the Jewish National Home when the Jews most needed a home [the UK's contribution to the Holocaust]. The UK also forbid Jewish land purchase in most of the country. Otherwise hundreds of thousands, if not millions, more Jews could have found refuge from the Nazis in the Land of Israel, including the areas now called Judea and Samaria.

Anonymous said...

Being a Jew in the San Francisco Bay Area is always a fascinating experience. In my expansive, long time inter-action with members of the "Jewish Voice for Peace" on many levels, as a rule, they are far leftists, some, but not all of Jewish heritage (local members of the ISM and SJP are members) but always devoid of even a scintilla of knowledge of Jews, Judaism, Israel, Jewish history or the Arab-Israeli conflict. These naive "Jewish Oreo Cookies", are used as "Jewish human shields" by some truly hateful, Anti-Israel organizations in order to attempt to dispel accurate chargess of genuine Anti-semitism. In essence, the JVP's subtle, but completely racist, implied message is,"see, if I have Jewish ancestry, I can't POSSIBLY be an "Anti-Semite", as if genes dictated one's political knowledge or prejudices. Matthew Taylor, with his self obsessed phallic, fore skin oddness, and his rejection of a Jewish State (any psych professionals out there?) make him the JVP Jewish Uncle Tom"Poster child of the year. JVP represents the naive being mislead by the malevolent, and they need to be investigated with a full audit.

Anonymous said...

Rae abileah was abandoned by her Jewish ( and Israeli ) father, and has never gotten over it. She is a deeply troubled young woman. I am not saying this to excuse her attention seeking behavior. I am saying this so you can understand where she is coming from. She deserves compassion and pity, not ridicule. I'm not surprised to read that she was involved in this fiasco.