Thursday, December 31, 2009

With Only 0.4% of AIPAC's Budget...

In 2008, the totl revenues for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)-the leading organization in the United States supporting Israeli occupation and apartheid-amounted to $70,676,421.

In that same year, the total revenues for the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation-the leading coalition in the United States working to change U.S. policy toward Palestine/Israel to support human rights, international law, and equality-amounted to $276,747, or just 0.39% of AIPAC's revenues. In some ways, this is a depressing statistic. In other ways though, it is inspiring as it shows how much we've been able to accomplish with less than 1/200th of AIPAC's budget.

Even Howard Kohr, AIPAC's Executive Director (whose salary alone, by the way, is nearly double our annual operating budget) agrees that the movement we are helping to lead is having a profound impact. Consider our accomplishments and his concerns about them delivered in remarks at AIPAC's last annual conference:

Help Us Catch Up w/ AIPAC

Donate $50 or more to the US Campaign and we'll send to you or a friend a copy of Steering Committee member Phyllis Bennis' updated book:

* Our public education campaigns against Israeli occupation and apartheid have helped to dramatically shift the discourse on Israel/Palestine in a much more favorable direction over the past few years
Kohr: "I'm not saying that these allegations have become accepted. But they have become acceptable. More and more they are invading the mainstream discourse, becoming part of the constant and unrelenting drumbeat against Israel."

* Our national advocacy campaigns have brought attention to the terrible human costs of U.S. military aid to Israel and our grassroots lobbying campaigns are starting to have an effect in opening up debate on Capitol Hill

Kohr: "This is a conscious campaign to shift policy, to transform the way Israel is treated by its friends to a state that deserves not our support, but our contempt; not our protection, but pressured to change its essential nature."

* Our national boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaigns against corporate giants such as Caterpillar and Motorola-companies which literally profit from Israeli occupation and apartheid-are taking off and negatively impacting their public images

Kohr: "Incredibly there now is even an Israel Apartheid Week [cosponsored by the US Campaign] conducted in cities across the globe. Its aim, to build boycott, divestment, and sanctions campaigns as part of a growing global movement."

* Our coalition has grown to more than 325 organizations, making us the largest and most diverse coalition ever assembled in the United States to challenge our country's support for Israel's occupation and apartheid policies toward Palestinians

Kohr: "But the campaign doesn't stop there. It is coming home right here to the United States. We see it already on our college campuses, America's elite institutions of higher learning, the places we've entrusted with the education of our children."

* Our presence in the media has skyrocketed, with the US Campaign appearing this year in mainstream media outlets such as NBC News, Reuters, Forbes, the Wall Street Journal, BBC Radio, Al Jazeera, Democracy Now!, the Detroit Free Press, and more

Kohr: "No longer is this campaign confined to the ravings of the political far left or far right, but increasingly it is entering the American mainstream: an ordinary political discourse on our T.V. and radio talk shows; in the pages of our major newspapers and in countless blogs, in town hall meetings, on campuses and city squares.

We're proud, and apparently AIPAC is very concerned, that we've accomplished all of this and more with only 0.39% of AIPAC's budget. Please consider making a year-end tax-deductible contribution today to support our work by clicking here. Because we've been able to accomplish so much with so little, it's clear that our movement is not lacking in determination, commitment, sophistication, or effectiveness. What we are lacking are the resources needed to counteract the work of AIPAC and other similar organizations and achieve our mission of changing U.S. policy toward Palestine/Israel to support human rights, international law, and equality. Please consider making the most generous year-end tax-deductible contribution you can today to support our work in the New Year and bring us closer to achieving our goal by clicking here. As our thanks to you, if you donate $50 or more, we'll send you or a friend a copy of US Campaign Steering Committee member Phyllis Bennis' new, updated edition of her book "Understanding the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: A Primer".

Just click here, make a secure on-line donation of $50 or more, and tell us where and to whom you'd like the book sent. The US Campaign will also gratefully accept a donation of any amount, so please give whatever you can today by clicking here. And if you can help us with a regular contribution, even just $5 or $10 or $15 every month, join our Olive Branch Club by clicking here. For a year-end newsletter detailing the US Campaign's many accomplishments this year, please click here. Thank you for your generous support of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation and our best wishes to you for a New Year of peace and justice!

PS: If you'd prefer, you can also make a tax-deductible contribution via credit card by calling our office at 202-332-0994 (we'll be open until 6PM Eastern New Year's Eve) or via check made out to US Campaign, PO Box 21539, Washington, DC 20009.