Monthly Archives: January 2009

2009.01.13: Legal Aid NYC Union Members: Stop Israel’s Massacre in Gaza and End the Siege Now

Legal Aid NYC Union Members: Stop Israel’s Massacre in Gaza and End the Siege Now
By 44 Union Members at the Legal Aid Society in New York City*
January 13, 2009

“For the sake of the hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.” -Martin Luther King Jr., Beyond Vietnam (April 4, 1967)

The undersigned members of the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW Local 2325 and 1199SEIU join millions around the world – many of whom are Jewish – to condemn, in the strongest possible terms, Israel’s ongoing massacre of hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza.

Already, the Palestinian death toll is nearly 1000; thousands more have been injured. Under international law, the vast majority are civilians.

Israel’s massacres are carried out with F-16s, Apache helicopters and other advanced U.S. weapons – part of $30 billion in military funding for Israel that will be paid for by our tax dollars over the next ten years.

We cannot turn a blind eye.

We ask all who agree with this statement to participate in upcoming protests.

*Signers (list in formation; affiliations listed for identification only)
–Noha Arafa (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; ALAA Alt. Vice-President)
–Julie Fry (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; ALAA Vice-President)
–Michael Letwin (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; former ALAA Pres.)
–Azalia Torres (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; former member, ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Bahar Mirhosseini (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Mimi Rosenberg (Civil-Brooklyn)
–Patrick Langhenry (Civil-Brooklyn)
–Antonia Codling (Criminal Defense-Bronx; former member, ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Lucy Herschel (Criminal Defense-Queens; 1199 delegate)
–Steve Terry (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Rebecca Kurti (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; 1199 delegate)
–Kate Fitzer (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Andrea Ibrahim (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Roslyn Morrison (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Jamie Kauget (Juvenile Rights-Queens)
–Daniella Korotzer (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; former member, ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Bharati Narumanchi (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Tajuana B. Johnson (Juvenile Rights-Bronx)
–Steven Wasserman (Criminal Defense-Special Litigation; ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Richard Blum (Civil-ELU)
–Laurie Dick (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Sigmund Israel (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Clarissa M. Gomez (Harlem Community Law Office)
–Mia Eisner-Grynberg (Criminal Defense-Bronx)
–Reda Woodcock (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Jessica Goldthwaite (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Ellen S. Sacks (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Joseph Lavine (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Teresa Engst (Civil-HLU)
–Hollis Pfitsch (Civil-ELU)
–Warren Deans (Criminal Defense-Central Admin.)
–Susan Olivia Morris (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Janet Forrester (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Aida Ferrer Leisenring (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Claire Nicolay (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Marisa Benton (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Helene Busby (Harlem Community Law Office; former ALAA Vice-President)
–Eric Meggett (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Ivan Pantoja (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn; ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Aisha Mohamedi Richard (Criminal Defense-Queens; ALAA Alt. Vice-President)
–Lisa Pitts (Criminal Defense-Brooklyn)
–Magda Rosa-Rios (Harlem Community Law Office; Attorneys of Color Rep. to ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Lisa Edwards (Harlem Community Law Office; former member, ALAA Executive Bd.)
–Florence Morgan (Criminal Defense-Queens)

2009.01.08: Report on January 5, 2009 NYC Jewish Press Conference Against Israeli Massacres

Report on January 5, 2009 NYC Jewish Press Conference Against Israeli Massacres
January 8, 2009
On Monday, January 5, about 30 Jewish activists participated in a 1 p.m. press conference at Union Square to condemn the Israeli massacres in Gaza. They called for an immediate end to all U.S. aid to Israel, and expressed support for the overall campaign to Boycott, Divest and Sanction Israel.


On behalf of the protesters, Marty Goodman, Adalah-NY; former Executive Board member of Transit Workers Union Local 100, read the statement below.*

Other speakers included:

–Michael Kramer, an Israeli army veteran and member of Veterans for Peace.

–Michael Letwin, Co-Convener of New York City Labor Against the War (NYCLAW); Labor for Palestine; and former President of the Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW Local 2325.

–Aaron Levitt of Jews Against the Occupation.

–Michael Gimbel, Local 375, DC 37 AFSCME and Delegate to the New York City Central Labor Council.

Media Coverage

The press conference received coverage, all of it favorable, from:

–Channel 4 TV News


–Metro New York

–WBAI Radio



January 4, 2009

“For the sake of the hundreds of thousan
ds trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.”
Dr. Martin Luther King, Riverside Church, 1967As Jews, we join millions around the world in condemning Israel’s ongoing murder and maiming of hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza. Israel does not speak for us!

The dead in Gaza represent a greater portion of Gaza’s population than the percentage of New Yorkers who died on 9/11.

This is the “bigger Shoah” against Gaza threatened by Israel’s Deputy Defense Minister Matan Valnai on Feb. 29, 2008. The U.S. stands behind Israel’s war on Gaza, providing weapons and political support.

By carrying out indiscriminate bombing that targets civilians, Israel is practicing collective punishment on the 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza. This war crime violates the Fourth Geneva Convention. It is part of a US-Israeli campaign to punish Gazans for democratically electing Hamas.

Long before these attacks, Israel had turned Gaza into the world’s largest open-air prison and shooting gallery, assassinating activists, and cutting-off essential goods, jobs and services. Conditions have brought Gaza to the brink of mass starvation.

Only as a result did Hamas abandon a unilateral two-year ceasefire and subsequent truce. Since that time, it has repeatedly offered to cease all rocket fire in exchange for an end to U.S.-Israel blockade and other military attacks.

In the past ten years alone, U.S. military aid to Israel was $17 billion; over the next decade, it will be $30 billion. As in Afghanistan and Iraq, it is U.S. aircraft, cluster bombs and bullets that kill and maim on behalf of the occupiers.

As a result, violence is overwhelmingly one-sided against the Palestinians, who — as an occupied people — have no aircraft, artillery, tanks or ships. While rockets launched from Gaza since 2000 have killed 17 Israelis, Israel’s modern arsenal has killed more than 400 Palestinians — including many children — since December 27 alone.

We are against Israeli military occupation, for the right of Palestinian refugees to return, and for the elimination of apartheid throughout historic Palestine.

We say: End the massacre in Gaza, end the siege now, and end all U.S. Aid to Israel, and support Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel.

Please join us as many Jewish New York City activists gather to speak out against the crimes that are being carried out in our name.