Friday, August 28, 2009

BFUU - sorry, so sorry, so very very sorry! Sorry!

On Monday June 8, 2009, the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists hosted Gilad Atzmon, an ex-Israeli who writes and promotes classically anti-Semitic opinions.

[Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, 1924 Cedar Street at Bonita, Berkeley.]

Gilad Atzmon is, fortunately, the best representative of Gilad Atzmon

"Throughout the centuries, Jewish bankers bought for themselves some real reputations of backers and financers of wars, and even one communist revolution. Though rich Jews had been happily financing wars using their assets, Alan Greenspan, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve of the United States, found a far more sophisticated way to finance the wars perpetrated by his ideological brothers Libby and Wolfowitz."

While this statement is in many ways a classic anti-Semitic canard, the modern-day accusation that Alan Greenspan somehow has an agenda straight out of the Protocols is utterly bizzare.

"I would suggest that perhaps we should face it once and for all: the Jews were responsible for the killing of Jesus who, by the way, was himself a Palestinian Jew. …..Why is it that the Jews who repeatedly demand that the Christian world should apologise for its involvement in previous persecutions, have never thought that it is about time that they apologised for killing Jesus?"

Gilad Atzmon and his patrons at the BFUU should perhaps reread the New Testament. There were four witnesses who avered that the Romans executed Jesus, using a particularly Roman method. Of course, those four witnesses (Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John) were Jews, so perhaps they cannot be believed.....
Certainly they would not be lent an ear at the BFUU, which instead prefers to listen to Converted Jews, Wiccan Jews, Gone Pagan Jews, Bizzaro Jews, and Self-hating Jews.
Oh, and anti-Semites.

"I'm not going to say whether it is right or not to burn down a synagogue, I can see that it is a rational act."

It is likely that Gilad Atzmon would prefer that the synagogue be burned down with the Jews still in it, but he'll probably settle for burning empty synagogues if he has to.

Sources for the quotes above were mister Atzmon's own writings, which can be found like a cancer all over the internet.
As if that's not enough, Atzmon also supports a holocaust denier in the UK named Paul Eisen, as well as the notorious Swedish fascist writing under the pen name "Israel Shamir", who insisted that the Jews indeed slaughtered Christian children for their blood, and claimed that "Auschwitz was an internment facility, attended by the Red Cross" - Atzmon called Shamir "a unique and advanced thinker".
Much like he himself no doubt is.

The BFUU "concert" was co-sponsored by the church's Social Justice Committee and two anti-Israel groups: Bay Area Women in Black and International Solidarity Movement. The BFUU claimed not to have been aware of Atzmon's promotion of hate speech when they agreed to host the event, but they were made aware of all of it more than a week before the date and they refused to cancel.

The spirited protest in front of the church that evening remained peaceful, except for several supporters of Gilad Atzmon - who may have been members in good standing of the church. As I am not privy to the inner machinations of Israel-bashers, church-related or otherwise, I cannot say.
One of the Atzmon supporters carried a Hamas banner and wore a Sheikh Nasrallah t-shirt, potent testimony to his peaceful nature and desire for an equitable solution to the Jewish question.

More about the blessed event can be read here:
Also here:
And here:
As well as here:
And here as well:

Since that evening, a dialogue event was held between members of the Church and the pro-Israel element, at which a talking stone was passed around and several people spoke of how hurt they were by the negative publicity.

We feel their pain.

This totally opportunistic re-hashing of the entire ghastly mess should serve to indicate how sorry this particular writer feels about it all.


You may go ahead and turn your other cheek any time now.


Robin Edgar said...

Well we never had a meeting to pass a "talking stone" around but I get the distinct impression that *some* members of the Unitarian Church of Montreal would speak about how terribly hurt they were by the negative publicity they reaped, and continue to reap, as a result of allowing their "fundamentalist atheist" "Humanist" U*U minister Rev. Ray Drennan and other intolerant and even outright bigoted "fundamentalist atheist" "church" leaders verbally defecate all over my monotheistic aka *Unitarian* religious beliefs. They were given plenty of opportunity to avoid the negative publicity that they eventually reaped in Montreal newspapers, TV news, and talk radio shows when I publicly protested against the anti-religious intolerance and bigotry that I encountered in their alleged Unitarian Church but trying to talk to these and other willfully ignorant Unitarian*Universalists aka U*Us is kind of like talking to um stones. . .

By the way just what cheek(s) do you want these members of The U*U Movement to turn? :-)


Robin Edgar

aka The Emerson Avenger

P.S. You might find this recent Emerson Avenger blog post to be of some interest

LanceThruster said...

One of the Atzmon supporters carried a Hamas banner and wore a Sheikh Nasrallah t-shirt, potent testimony to his peaceful nature and desire for an equitable solution to the Jewish question.

International law allows for force to be used against an armed invador. Israel has a predictable response towards any aggression directed at it. Why shoud others be denied that same approach?

Gilad Atzmon is a caring, thoughtful activist and when peace finally does come to the region it will be because of people like him. I don't have to agree with his every utterance to know that he is on the side of justice. Look at quotes by Zionists and some of the other Israel leadership. Does that mean anyone who supports Zionism supports those extreme statements?

Anonymous said...

"Gilad Atzmon is a caring, thoughtful activist"

Not according to many members of the Berkeley fellowship of Unitarian Universalists who walked out of his talk- some in tears. What an embarrassment for the local community, and for Unitarians throughout the world. I understand the Berkeley Fellowship deeply regrets the decison to give him a venue.

" and when peace finally does come to the region it will be because of people like him. "

Gilad Atzmon is not a seeker of peace- he is a purveyer of hate. He is an extremist, an anti-Semite and a hate mongerer.

"I don't have to agree with his every utterance to know that he is on the side of justice."

Thats what the Berkeley Fellowship thought until they actually heard him speak.
"What part of "burning sunagogues is arational act" leds you to believe that justice motivates Atzmon at all? He is as hateful as David Duke.

"Look at quotes by Zionists and some of the other Israel leadership".

Quotes like these?

Palestine must be built up without violating the legitimate interests of the Arabs.. Palestine is not Rhodesia... 600,0000 Arabs live there, who before the sense of justice of the world have exactly the same rights to their homes as we have to our National Home. [Chaim Weizmann, addressing the Fourteenth Zionist Congress in Vienna, 1925, quoted in Tessler, Mark, A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 1994 p. 181]


"There must not be one law for the Jew and another for the Arabs....In saying this, I do not assume that there are tendencies toward inequalirty or discrimination. It is merely a timely warning which is particularly necessary because we shall have a very large Arab minority. I am certain that the world will judge the Jewish State by what it will do with the Arabs, just as the Jewish people at large will be judged by what we do or fail to do in this state where we have been given such a wonderful opportunity after thousands of years of wandering and suffering." (Chaim Weizmann, Trial and Error, Page 566 - written in December 1947)

I support these.

"Does that mean anyone who supports Zionism supports those extreme statements?"

Does supporting peaceful co-existence make me an extremist? Then I'm proud to be an extremist!!!!

Miranda Bliss

LanceThruster said...

We'll have to agree to disagree then. I've seen too many lies in support of Zionist abuses to put much stock in the campaigns against those bringing them to light. I envy you that you were there in person. I've seen Dr. Norman Finkelstein speak to college crowds on several occasions and he is able to support his assessment of the conflict quite admirably. The students and others in opposition used some pretty transparent rhetorical techniques but he responded to them respectfully but convincingly.

Mr. Atzmon makes me think. He is one of the many valued Jewish voices that were part of the beginnings of my revised understanding of the I/P conflict.

Re: Mr. Weizmann from Chaim Weizmann-A Brief Biography & Quotes

In 1914, Chaim Weizmann attempted to lay down the foundations of realizing Zionism, and began by asserting that Palestine was empty and that its current inhabitants have no say in its fate. He stated:

"In its initial stage, Zionism was conceived by its pioneers as a movement wholly depending on mechanical factors: there is a country which happens to be called Palestine, a country without people, and, on the other hand, there exists the Jewish people, and it has no country. What else is necessary, then, than to fit the gem into the ring, to unite this people with this country? The owners of the country [the Ottoman Turks] must, there for, be persuaded and conceived that this marriage is advantageous, not only for the [Jewish] people and for the country, but also for themselves." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 6)

Note how Weizmann didn't claim that the country was empty (see the quote below), but he denied that there was a people which deserved the right of self-determination. The selective definition of "who are a people, and who are not" was crafted to serve Zionists' agenda for the following reasons:

To lure European Jewry to immigrate to Palestine,
To secure international legitimacy for the emerging "Jewish state", and
To deceive the Yishuv, the Jews who were residing in Palestine before 1948, into believing that they were robbing no other people's rights.
Repeatedly, Zionists argued that Palestinians could be "transferred" to neighboring Arab states without infringing their right, and such "transfer" would be beneficial to both communities. Click here if you wish to read our response to this argument.

Just prior to the British conquest of Palestine, Chaim Weizmann wrote describing the Palestinian people as:

" the rocks of Judea, as obstacles that had to be cleared on a difficult path." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 17)

Note how Weizmann referred to the Palestinian people, as rocks. Usually Zionists use similar dehumanizing language to refer to the Palestinian people, such as rocks, primitive, naive, ignorant, savage, demographic problem, ticking time bombs, question, 5th column, obstacles, "transfer solution", " should be cleared", "should be broomed", etc.


This does not come across as someone who places too much importance on the interests of the Arab residents of Palestine.

I thank you for your contributions to the discussion. I hope the dialog continues to grow worldwide.

Robin Edgar said...


Since you are a Unitarian*Univeralist and apparently attended the event, or at least know about what actually happened in some detail, could you please fill us in more about this matter? Can you tell us why some people left in tears?

Anonymous said...

The Berkeley Fellowship is now hosting Kathleen and Bill Christison, authors of such charming articles as "Zionism as a racist ideology" and "Neo-con Zionist threat to America".

I think its time to admit that the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists have an anti-Semitic orientation.