Palestinians light candles to honor the late South African leader Nelson Mandela as they mourn in Gaza City, Gaza, Dec. 8, 2013.
LEFT: Marwan Barghouti in Tel Aviv District Court on the opening day of his trial, Aug. 14, 2002; RIGHT: Nelson Mandela is released from prison, Feb. 11, 1990.
Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, May-June 2007, pages 66-67
AIPAC Conference Attendees Attack Rabbis
Rabbis of Naturei Karta protest outside the AIPAC conference (Staff photo M. Hall).
THE RABBIS OF Naturei Karta stood outside the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference at the Washington, DC Convention Center for a day-long nonviolent protest on March 12, including a two-hour demonstration that began at 6:30 p.m. Twice that day, various AIPAC members disrupted the vigil being held by Rabbi David Weiss and other members of his organization. One attacker, witnessed by this writer, destroyed their property and interrupted press statements. Two unidentified conference attendees tore the Naturei Karta banners away from the rabbis and ran off, forcing the Yiddish-speaking rabbis to call the Washington, DC police department. The signs were later returned, presumably by the police.
In an often-interrupted statement, Rabbi Weiss told the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs,: “It hurts us deeply to see that many people believe that AIPAC represents Judaism...when in truth it is a representation of an ideology which is antithetical to what Judaism is, which is Zionism.”
Rabbi Dovid Weiss is no denier of anti-Jewish discrimination. “My grandparents, aunts and uncles were killed at Auschwitz,” he stated. But he went on to explain that “Jews are forbidden to oppress people. It hurts Jews throughout the world to see the suffering of the Palestinian people. It should be an eye-opener for people to understand that there is a large community of Jewish people who are in opposition to the state of Israel and in opposition to AIPAC, and who pray for the suffering Palestinian people. We pray for a quick and peaceful dismantlement of the State of Israel.”