Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The failure of the Flytilla/ Flotilla Follies. Is Infighting at Fault?

Could infighting be one of the contributing causes of the failure of the flotilla/flytilla follies ? There is much whining and finger pointing on various anti-Israel sites implying as much. Bay area activist Paul Larudee appears to be at the center of this firestorm.

From one commenter, in reference to an open letter from Lubna Masarwa of the "Welcome to Palestine " campaign:
"It is a shame that opportunists like Paul exist in our movements for social change but it has always been this way. The best way to deal with people like this is to expose and isolate, not to enable them to continue. Paul's actions over the past six months have been a tremendous drain of energy for the organizers of this effort."

Lubna's letter follows
Date: Fri, 8 Jul 2011 02:44:16 +0300

From: lubnna@gmail.com
To: larudee@pacbell.net

I regretfully send you this second letter and will publish it publicly
as you have left us no choice.
You have appeared in the media over the last week, often stating that
you organized the Welcome to Palestine campaign. All statements you
have made in regards to this campaign were false.
As organizers, we were surprised by your statements as you were never
part of this campaign. Sadly, your declarations about our campaign
being about the right of return have confused the media and brought on
damage to our basic plan.
We appreciate your will to work for Palestine but trying to take over
any activity has profoundly affected the trust we have in you and we
would be very surprised if any respectful organization in Palestine
will be willing to work with you.
We urge you to stop giving statements to the media in the name of the
Welcome to Palestine campaign.

Lubna Masarwa
On behalf the "Welcome to Palestine" campaign

I don't know about you all, but I don't think I'll take sides in this battle. I'll just pour myself a beer, and sit back and watch the fireworks....


Anonymous said...

This isn't new- the split goes back to 2009

"Dear Friends,

It is with deep regret and sadness that we have to announce a separation within the Free Gaza Movement.

Free Gaza Movement was formed in the fall of 2006 by five individuals: Eliza Ernshire, Greta Berlin, Mary Hughes, Paul Larudee, and Sharon Lock. A year later, a non-profit called the Association for Investment in Popular Action Committees (AIPAC) was created in California as a means of accepting U.S. tax-deductible donations on behalf of Free Gaza. Both Greta Berlin and Mary Hughes were on the steering committee of that non-profit as founding members, and Mary Hughes was on the Board of Directors. With volunteers from AIPAC, and others, we were responsible for the first, successful voyage to Gaza in August 2008.

In November 2008, all of the original founders of Free Gaza met in London with 16 other organizers from the United States, Europe, and the Middle East in order to elect a board of directors for the Free Gaza Movement and discuss our future plans and organization. After considering several proposals for structure and several nominations for a board, we elected Huwaida Arraf, Greta Berlin, Eliza Ernshire, Derek Graham, Fathi Jaouadi, Ramzi Kysia, and Vaggelis Pissias as our interim board (iB) of directors.

Since then the International Free Gaza Movement has organized every other voyage without AIPAC's assistance either financial or through providing volunteers.

For the last, several months, we attempted to negotiate an affiliate and funding agreement with AIPAC. Unfortunately, this has not been successful, and we have decided to separate.

AIPAC has decided to call itself "The Free Gaza Movement." They have reserved the new URL "www.freegazamovement.org" for themselves, and have set up a new email address, "friendstogaza@gmail.com," for their use.

Our web address is the original "www.freegaza. org," and our existing email address is "friendofgaza@ gmail.com." Please make a note of these distinctions.

Also, please note that we do not have a funding agreement with AIPAC. Any donations made to California since September 2008 have not and will not be sent to us in order to run boat missions out of Cyprus.

Anyone wishing to make U.S. tax-deductible donations to the Free Gaza Movement should do it through our U.S. fiscal sponsors by making a check out to: The American Educational Trust LE, (publishers of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs) and putting FOR FREE GAZA in the subject line. Please see our website for details.

We wish our sisters and brothers at AIPAC well, and hope that their unique efforts to break the siege of Gaza from California will be successful.

Thank you for your continued support for the people of Palestine.

Huwaida Arraf
Greta Berlin
Eliza Ernshire
Derek Graham
Fathi Jaouadi
Ramzi Kysia
Board of Directors, Free Gaza Movement"

Anonymous said...

It's not entirely clear what Lubna's complaint is with Larudee: is it that Larudee is insists on making delegitimization of Israel (via the non-existent, fictional "right" of return) the centerpiece of anti-Israel activity (in which case he is just following the diktats of Omar Barghouti and the rest of the BDS leadership)? Or is it that he is quite public about their underlying goal, when they would prefer to keep this under the radar?

The smart money is on the latter, but I'd be happy to be disproven.

Shlomo Ben Hungstien said...

looks like paul larudees over sized ego finally got him into some hot water with his fellow islamonazi collaborators. that's pretty sweet. speaking of Jew hating leftists who are narcissists i'd like to share this video of the lovely kate raphael from queers undermining Israeli "terrorism" (QUIT). oh i'd so wish i could have seen the look on her face when she saw this vid. the first time: