Albuquerque Billboard Calls for End to Military Aid to Israel

IOA Editor: See also Billboards calling for end to military aid back up in Albuquerque


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New Albuquerque billboard

For Immediate Release

December 10, 2009

LOCAL HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP CALLS FOR

END TO MILITARY AID TO ISRAEL

New Billboard Says We Should Spend Our Money at Home Instead

Similar billboards were erected in April, but were unilaterally removed by company after

being pressured by persons who didn’t want Israel held accountable for its war crimes

Contacts:

Bernadette Garcia home (505) 293-3365 email: [email protected]

Rita Erickson cell (505) 228-9151, home (505) 828-0546

What: Billboard

Who: Sponsored by Albuquerque-based Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel, a

grassroots coalition of 14 groups from the Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim

communities of New Mexico, and from local veterans and human rights communities.

www.stop30billion.com

Where: Billboard is located at 7918 Central Ave SE (just east of Pennsylvania St) in

Albuquerque, New Mexico. It will be moved to another location soon.

How: Billboard is funded by donations.

Why: Because American tax dollars are better spent at home and because we want to

ease the suffering of the Palestinian people.

History: Our first billboards (“Stop Killing Children!”) were erected last spring, and

called attention to the 350 children massacred by Israel during their attack on Gaza in

January 2009, using sophisticated airplanes and missiles supplied by American tax

payers.

After opponents pressured the local billboard company, the signs were taken down after

only three weeks of a two-month contract.

The war crimes committed by Israel were painstakingly detailed in a UN report (the

Goldstone Report). Even though most members of the U.S. House — under heavy

pressure – voted to condemn the report, we are proud that New Mexico Representatives

Martin Heinrich and Ben Ray Lujan refused to go along.

Our Mission: The Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel seeks a justice-based peace for

both Israelis and Palestinians. We seek to end the occupation in the West Bank, East

Jerusalem and Gaza; to support self-determination for the Palestinian people and equality

for Palestinians living inside Israel; we urge Israel to lift the blockade on Gaza and to

enable refugees to return to their land or receive fair compensation.

The Coalition has received many statements endorsing our billboard and its

message:

“I thank the Albuquerque coalition for putting a billboard up to remind everyone that the

U.S. will give $30 billion to Israel in the next 10 years– and that Israel in its 22 day

attack on Gaza used U.S. weaponry bought with U.S. money to kill 1440, wound 5,000

and make 50,000 homeless–we must end military support to Israel, the most powerful

military in the Middle East.”

–Ann Wright, retired US Army Reserve Colonel

and former U.S. diplomat who resigned

in opposition to the war on Iraq.

“The Albuquerque based Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel had ten billboards taken

down back in the Spring due to pressure from people who refuse to hold Israel

accountable for its human rights record. This little group of volunteers was knocked

down but they’ve obviously gotten back up again–the proof is that they managed to get

their message back up on a billboard again. Their message is crucial–that a better use of

our taxpayer dollars is to provide for our people back home, here in the USA rather than

provide military aid to a country that has consistently violated international law and

oppresses the Palestinian people. Kudos to the Coalition for continuing to advocate for a

justice-based peace in the Middle East. I congratulate them on their achievement and

hope New Mexicans flood their members of Congress with phone calls asking for an end

to military aid to Israel.”

–Cindy Sheehan, mother of Casey Sheehan who was killed

in the Iraq War, has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and is

the host of her own radio show: Cindy Sheehan’s Soapbox

“The billboard speaks eloquently about the horrible situation in Palestine and the

culpability of Israel and the US. It is time for American citizens to make a stand against

financing the excessive military might of Israel and its use against Palestinians. I

commend The Coalition to Stop $30 Billion to Israel for this action.”

–Paul Stokes, Former IAEA nuclear weapons inspector in

Iraq, and resident of Corrales, NM

“We commend the New Mexico community for erecting this important billboard calling

for an end to military aid to Israel. Hopefully their project will become a model for

persons in other parts of the country who are increasingly recognizing the link between

American security and ending the shipment of weapons to a state with a highly repressive

agenda.”

–Kathleen and Bill Christison, former CIA analysts, now

living in Santa Fe, NM

“The key to peace in the Middle East is stopping our country’s military and political

support for Israel’s occupation. Let’s hope this billboard begins to awaken the citizens of

New Mexico to our responsibilities to act for peace. Call our congressional delegation

immediately!”

–Mark Rudd, member of Another Jewish Voice

(Albuquerque, NM), and well-known activist

“The $30 Billion aid to the IDF is the worst, most destructive support the US can be

providing in Israel. Please support Grassroots organizations building foundation for

Justice, Human Rights and realistic Peace.”

–Micha Kurz is a former IDF soldier, co-founder of Breaking the Silence

(http://www.shovrimshtika.org/index_e.asp), and Founder and Director of

Grassroots Jerusalem (http://www.grassrootsjerusalem.org/) and resides in

Taos, NM

“With more than 46 million Americans without health care and ongoing domestic

economic hardship, there is no reason to be funding and arming Israel’s system of ethnic

and religious segregation and oppression, fundamentally contrary to American values and

basic human rights. I join hundreds of other Jewish Americans who know that we will

never achieve security for Americans, Israelis, or Palestinians through US-sponsored

Israeli Apartheid against Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land.”

–Anna Baltzer, granddaughter of Holocaust refugees,

author of Witness in Palestine: A Jewish American

Woman in the Occupied Territories

“Almost 30 years ago, my father, the late Israeli General Matti Peled, was asked how the

U..S can help the peace process in Israel/Palestine. He said “stop all military aid to

Israel.” Today this is even more true. The way to advance the peace is to stop funding the

war.”

–Miko Peled, an Israeli writer and peace activist living in San Diego, CA

“Americans have ideas on how to spend $30 billion dollars. We need to focus on our

needs at home– to keep people in their homes, affordable health care, mass

transportation, job creation and the resources to fight global warming. It is immoral to

give billions of dollars in military aid to Israel, a country with a booming economy that

brags about investment opportunities; a country with nuclear capabilities and the

strongest army in the Middle East. Bravo to those who get informed and speak out!”

–Iris Keltz, author, retired Albuquerque Public Schools Literacy

Specialist, founding member of Arab-Jewish Dialogue group and

Another Jewish Voice.

“We Americans give Israel $12 million a DAY…. It is up to us to stop it by insisting that

not one more dollar goes to an occupier.”

–Greta Berlin, cofounder, Free Gaza Movement

________________________________________________________________________

PLEASE HELP KEEP OUR BILLBOARD UP!!

Keep the truth in front of the American people!

With your help, we hope to keep our sign up for as long as we are financially able.

Send your donation to: Coalition to Stop 30 Billion, POB 10,856, Albuquerque, NM

87184. THANKS!!

________________________________________________________________________

ERECT A BILLBOARD IN YOUR COMMUNITY!!

Individuals in San Francisco and Seattle are already mobilizing to erect billboards in their

cities based on our experience.

Feel free to use our graphics — or use your own.

Please contact us for assistance.

www.stop30billion.com


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