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Ear to the Ground

Congressman Walks Gaza, Urges Massive Aid

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Posted on Feb 20, 2010
AP / Adel Hana

U.S. Reps. Keith Ellison, left, and Brian Baird take photos of the rubble of the American International School in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip in early 2009.

U.S. Rep. Brian Baird, D-Wash., has criticized the White House, Israel and even his congressional colleagues after three trips to the Gaza Strip, commenting on the lack of action by the international community and the ignorance that most U.S. politicians have toward the plight of the Palestinians.

Baird is calling for a Berlin Airlift-style aid effort for the people of the Gaza Strip, where a 2008-09 war left 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead. —JCL


After visiting twice last year, Rep. Brian Baird is returning from his third trip to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, giving the Washington state Democrat the unusual distinction of having spent more time in Gaza than any other current member of the U.S. Congress.

He said he was discouraged by much of what he saw.

It’s a journey that only two other members of the U.S. government have made since Hamas took over the coastal territory in 2007 and since the end of Israel’s three-week offensive just over a year ago against Gaza militant groups firing rockets across the border.

Some 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed in the fighting and wide swaths of Gaza were left in rubble.

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By rollzone, February 21, 2010 at 3:46 pm Link to this comment

hello again. full disclosure is necessary. somehow Israel cannot see the similarity of a nation of peoples without any land to call their own. the photo op was just alarmist idiocy about a small block of destruction. but the interest for peace is universal. i do not understand why the Israeli people covet exclusive ownership to the promised land of Jerusalem. not sharing dislodges the foundation cornerstone of their beliefs. i do not understand where their God promised this land to only them. my understanding is that they will have ownership of it. how are they able to interpret this as exclusive?

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By nemesis2010, February 21, 2010 at 3:12 pm Link to this comment

Yes Congressman, that’s what the impecunious U.S. should be doing; spending more money building up the infrastructure of populated places, artificial states, and foreign nations! How many more generations of yet-to-be born Americans do you congress critters intend to indenture?

Altruism is easy when you’re passing the costs on to others! When will the poltroons of the U.S. Congress publicly condemn Israel for its opprobrious conduct and demand that they cease and desist with their oppression of the Palestinians? When will the U.S. demand that they strive in good faith—if that is even possible with Israelis—for a solution to their occupation of Palestinian lands?

Rather than increasing your countrymen’s indenture in a ludicrous attempt to rebuild what Israel has destroyed—only to be destroyed anew—why not oppugnation of Israeli policy with a moratorium on all Israeli and Palestinian foreign aid until a peaceful resolution is reached?

Relax Congressman, it’s a rhetorical commentary; we all know that Likud’s AIPAC owns the U.S. Congress when it comes to the U.S.’s Middle East foreign policy!

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, February 21, 2010 at 11:07 am Link to this comment

54 politicians who should be commended for advocating aid to Gaza and are being targeted by the gang of AIPAC sponsered lobbys in the upcomming elections.

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By Jean Gerard, February 21, 2010 at 10:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What does anyone—someone—think about the phrase in my previous
comment:  “...the degrading power of hatred, fear and violence”...?

Is it a significant factor worth considering in the behavior of people and nations
today—or not?  Is it evident in these comments, or not?  Do we need to do
anything about it, or not?

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By scotttpot, February 21, 2010 at 9:08 am Link to this comment

Boycott Israel.

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Arabian Sinbad's avatar

By Arabian Sinbad, February 21, 2010 at 7:39 am Link to this comment

By american worker, February 20 at 7:37 pm #
(Unregistered commenter)

Some of you seem to be forgetting that (government backed) rockets were flying from Gaza into Israel. They got what they asked for.Israel should have stopped when they reached the ocean and Egypt.
American worker?! You should call yourself “American bullshit.” It’s because this world has screwed up mental cases like you that the world will never experience real peace. Not only your senseless words made me like throwing up, but your total ignorance in display made me furious when you talk about the so-called “ocean;” there is no such ocean beyond Egypt, for beyond Egypt there is a sea called the Mediterranean!

Furthermore, your talk of “government backed rockets” flying from Gaza is another aspect of your total ignorance. For your information there is no such thing as “a government” in Gaza which Nazi Israel and the US made sure it never exists. What is there in Gaza is a band of freedom-fighters, who, against all odds, continue to make sure that their just cause will not be buried alive by the Nazis and fascists of this world and their collaborators in evil.

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By omi saide, February 21, 2010 at 7:11 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The 3 religions of the “open book” are at war with each other, and they have believers of these faiths fighting blindly. Its strange how a spinoff of 3 storybooks was created to control the conscious of man have created numerous wars, slavery, bigotry against blacks, women, gays and its benefactors possess most of the money and power in the world. If you get rid of these 3 entities, the world probably can heal itself. We have do something because these 3 religions are trying to bring us to a created illusion (apocalypse) to support their mythical creation.

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By elisalouisa, February 21, 2010 at 4:48 am Link to this comment

By Ed Harges, February 21 at 1:09 am #
“I’m very grateful for this Congressman’s courage. But I assume that now he’s ?
toast. Israel, the true ruler of America, will destroy him, through its lobbyists and ?
through its control of our major “news” media. That’s just the way it is.”

Sooner or later your prediction shall be realized. It might be more correct to say that Israel and America are in concert. I hope that is not your real name

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By ardee, February 21, 2010 at 4:29 am Link to this comment

american worker, February 20 at 7:37 pm

I would urge you to actually read and research before you embarrass yourself further.

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By NZDoug, February 21, 2010 at 1:08 am Link to this comment

Dont buy Izy/USA products,
More “OKMUD JIMMY” translations, less Micheal Jackson….

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Kanamachi's avatar

By Kanamachi, February 21, 2010 at 1:05 am Link to this comment

A voice in the forest, but an important voice!
It never fails to amaze me that too many Americans, along with the US
Government, never tire of speaking about the evils of terrorism but hardly ever
mention its underlying cause. One major one is Gaza. The US has supported
Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine while continuing to thumb its nose at more
United Nations resolutions then Saddam Hussein could ever have dreamed of, all
with the help of the US. Yet any time anyone says anything critical of Israel, they
are called Jew haters. Real convenient for the Israel lobby. Justice for the
Palestinians has to wait for the US to wake up and stop being the problem.

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Ed Harges's avatar

By Ed Harges, February 20, 2010 at 9:09 pm Link to this comment

I’m very grateful for this Congressman’s courage. But I assume that now he’s
toast. Israel, the true ruler of America, will destroy him, through its lobbyists and
through its control of our major “news” media. That’s just the way it is.

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Robert's avatar

By Robert, February 20, 2010 at 7:49 pm Link to this comment

CrossTalk: Norman Finkelstein vs. Israel

02.17.2010 | YouTube


Click on link to watch this debate between Ariel Sharon’s press secretary & Norman Finkelstein. Watch Gissin play the “victim’s card” and deny the destruction & massacre that Israel’s IDF “child killers” committed in Gaza in December 2008/Jan. 2009:

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By George, February 20, 2010 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Brian Baird is resigning his congressional seat this year. It will be interesting to see which lobbying shop he lands at. I wonder if he would be criticizing Israel if he was running for re-election.

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By omygodnotagain, February 20, 2010 at 7:37 pm Link to this comment

Time for Israelis and Jews of conscience to tell their compatriots to get off their high horse and join the rest of mankind, and start by acting like civilized human beings. They are a disgrace to the human race

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MarthaA's avatar

By MarthaA, February 20, 2010 at 6:37 pm Link to this comment

I wish the UN would make a decision on a Palestinian State, so the Palestinians will have a place they can rightfully be, and not be killed and run off all the time, it’s inhumane.

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Arabian Sinbad's avatar

By Arabian Sinbad, February 20, 2010 at 4:18 pm Link to this comment

What Gaza, and by extension all Palestinians need is a basic level of justice and human rights, denied to them by Nazi Israel in collaboration with the US and its tax-payers morons!

Though U.S. Reps. Keith Ellison and Brian Baird are to be commended for their efforts to bring attention to the plight of the Palestinians, pouring money on the Zionists’ destruction will not right the wrongs the Palestinians have been suffering at the hands of Nazi Zionists.

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By american worker, February 20, 2010 at 3:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Some of you seem to be forgetting that (government backed) rockets were flying from Gaza into Israel. They got what they asked for.Israel should have stopped when they reached the ocean and Egypt.

Report this

By jean gerard, February 20, 2010 at 3:16 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Any time 1400 are killed on one side and 13 are killed on the other, you now
something is very wrong indeed.  It’s called imbalance, unfair odds, unequal,

People who could allow this to happen not once, but over and over for decades
are completely without human sympathy.  That would be us, by the way, not just
Israelis though they are clearly the perpetuators of the misery.

That the same situation could persist for decades is an indication of the
degrading power of hatred, fear and violence.

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By diamond, February 20, 2010 at 2:41 pm Link to this comment

And always right near the end of a story like this comes the Israeli Lie: Hamas did not take power in a bloody coup and I doubt very much that any of them use bayonets, even when they’re REALLY REALLY ANGRY. As the Israeli Minister for Lies knows, Hamas won an election. The coup was started by Israel and America who backed Fatah (the devil they know)in an attempt to overthrow the elected government. How surprising that America would be involved in overthrowing an elected government. This is the classic move of divide and conquer. So now the people of Gaza live amongst the ruins, the way Europeans did after WWII and Fatah are getting special treatment and may even be allowed to continue to live with their buildings intact under Israeli rule in the West Bank. The people of Gaza are being punished for exercising their right to vote and electing a group Israel hates. The question is how much longer is this murderous shit going to go on while the West is silent and does nothing? No one with a conscience can see what’s happened to Gaza and not be moved to indignation. So I’m assuming Mr. Baird and his colleague are men of conscience. Rare on the ground these days.

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By Commune115, February 20, 2010 at 2:36 pm Link to this comment

Future generations will look back at Gaza and will be horrified, wondering why the U.S. collaborated with Israel in something so bestial and savage.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, February 20, 2010 at 1:52 pm Link to this comment

Unrelenting collective punishment for the people who simply elected a government outsiders did not like… now that is what is called “eyeless in Gaza”. The slaughter of the ordinary citizen and a life of dignity. seems a reasonable sacrifice to those hell-bent on assuring American-Israeli hegemony, no matter what.

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By rollzone, February 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm Link to this comment

hello. we gave them all that money and they built the area up, then they bombed it down, and you think we need to give them more money. solve the political problem first, and then rebuild.

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