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anti-racism

ARA forum ends on a sour note

allison weir, founder of "if americans knew," an organization founded to educate people about the plight of the palestinian people, was the victim of a vicious, personal attack at the "anti-racist" commuity forum last night.
last night an "anti-racist" community forum was held at the unitarian church. throughout the evening, people spoke about their concerns about racist, neo-nazi violence in their community. it was a great opportunity for people to express themselves in a safe space and maybe come up with a plan about what to do about the apparent rise in violence by racists in the pacific northwest.

sadly, towards the end of the evening, a woman attending the event was the victim of a vicious, personal attack by the other participants.

allison weir, a free-lance american journalist, attended the forum to invite others to attend a protest against the nation of israel's policy of ethnic cleansing of palestinian people in their country.

ms. weir is founder of the non-profit organization "...if americans knew."

 http://www.ifamericansknew.org/

according to their website, the group "...was originally founded by an American freelance journalist, Alison Weir...who traveled independently throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip in February and March of 2001. Ms. Weir found a situation largely the reverse of what was being reported by the American media. Upon further examination of this issue - she read dozens of books on the topic - she found that the U.S. press portrayal was significantly at odds with information being reported by media throughout the rest of the world."

when ms. weir asked people to attend and show solidarity for the palestinian people by attending a protest against pro-israeli zealots aipac - a lobbying group infamous for their unwavering support of israel. - she was denounced as being anti-semetic, then shouted down by the crowd when she tried to defend herself.

aipac is one of the wealthiest, most influencial lobbying groups in the u.s. their favorite tactric is to denounce anyone who questions isaeli policy as being anti-semetic in order to discredit and marginalize them. it is truly sad that this tactic worked so successfully last night.

today there will be a rally to support the struggle of the palestinian people at 6651 sw capitol hwy, beginning around 4 pm. anyone who wishes to demonstrate that not everyone in portrland are easily misled by mob mentality and knee-jerk politics should attend - but anyone who attended last night's forum and did not come to ms. weir's defense should not feel they will be welcomed there.

not true 25.Apr.2010 13:39

Working Class Mama

I was there. This is partial truth & exaggeration. First of all, Ms. Weir used the Q & A as a soap box and went on for a really long time. No one interrupted her. She handed out piles & piles of fliers to the audience. No one stopped her. Another person in line for Q & A announced when it was his turn that his affinity group would be present to protest AIPAC but that Alison Weir's writing did not represent them because he felt that some of her writing had been racist against Jewish people rather than critical of the Israeli government. After him another person announced that their group would not be attending this year's AIPAC protest because last year the racist factions were not asked to leave the protest by organizers. Several others spoke on various topics after that. Then people were asked to keep their questions short & told that only those who haven't spoken already would have the chance to speak because the time was running short. Ms. Weir disregarded this & stayed in line. When it came to her, she was reminded that only those who hadn't spoken would be allowed to speak because of the short time. She refused and began shouting at the room. The room shouted back that she needed to sit down and stop being rude and reminded she had had her turn (a very long one) already. A man with a 911 shirt on got up and started shouting at the room calling everyone in attendance Pro-Israel among other nonsense baseless accusations. He was asked to sit down and many from the room shouted their various feelings about Israel(which were overwhelmingly unfavorable to its policies). After the event ended, Ms. Weir approached my partner with no provocation or welcomed interaction & rudely confronted them based on her assumption of their position on Israel without asking them what it was or having any reason to believe as she did about them. It felt like Ms. Weir & the 911 guy had arrived with some sort of chip on their shoulders that was completely irrelevant to this event or the people present.

More rewriting history - this did not happen. 25.Apr.2010 13:50

Randy Blazak blazakr@gmail.com

I was there and I thought Ms. Weir's comments were warmly received. She was not shouted down or called anti-Semitic. In fact she received some applause from supporters of the Palestinian cause. Just goes to show you can't believe everything you read on portland indy media,

Thank you and additional info 25.Apr.2010 14:20

Alison Weir contact@ifamericansknew.org

I've just been forwarded this article. Thank you to whoever wrote it.

I was truly surprised when one of the organizers of this gathering launched into a personal attack on me, replete with false accusations.

Normally, I feel that when someone is personally attacked, they deserve a right to answer their accuser. However, when I waited in line to do this and my turn finally came up, another organizer quickly announced that "only those who haven't already spoken can speak." Since I had already announced today's protest - the action that caused the attack on me - this precluded any opportunity to correct her fellow organizer's false statements about me; not an unintentional consequence, I suspect.

I'd like to add, though, that afterward some people did tell me that they oppose Zionism and plan to come to today's event. A few people even asked for some of the information I had brought along.

Others, however, told me that Palestine was somehow "my" issue and that bringing it up was inappropriate.

I found this perplexing, since I had thought this was a gathering to oppose all racism in Portland, and I was specifically announcing an event to oppose one of the most racist organizations in the country holding an event in Portland the very next day. I would have thought that would have been relevant.

In fact, I was surprised that in all the mentions of racism and anti-Semitism, none of the panelists or organizers even mentioned some of the most victimized groups today, Arabs and Muslims, who have endured humiliation, defamation, cruelty, profiling, physical attacks, murder, and wide-spread incarceration throughout the US. In fact, I would have thought that in their very long presentations, the organizers would have, at least briefly, announced today's event.

(And I don't see how this is "my" issue. I would hope that we all oppose injustice, oppression and bigotry of all kinds. I applaud those who are actively focusing on the many other aspects of oppression and would certainly not allow them to be defamed or silenced.)

On the other hand, some audience members told me they simply felt that I was speaking out of turn in trying to defend myself, since the organizers had ruled that I was not to speak again, and perhaps they have a valid point; many people feel it's important to follow the rules in order to keep things moving along (though I'm not sure they would find this so easy to do if one of the organizers of the event had announced falsehoods against them).

However, apart from all this, the main thing I'd like people to know is that I welcome EVERYONE to come to today's protest!

Many of you by now have seen what it's like in Gaza and the West Bank; it's urgent that we end the financing and support for this ruthless ongoing cruelty, and everyone is welcome - and needed - to join in.

And for those who are curious about me and what I stand for, or who are concerned about what's happening in Palestine, please come to my talk at the main library on May 18th at 6 pm.

I hope to see you there.


correction 25.Apr.2010 14:28

correction

@ randy blazak: i saw you walk out of the event before allison weir went up again to speak, the Q&A went on until almost 9:40. you weren't there for this.

i didn't notice a single audience member disagreeing that the israeli state is committing atrocities. what people were addressing was allison weir's anti-semitic (and factually untrue) use of "blood libel" against jewish people. look it up. people also took issue with previous anti-aipac demonstrations that left people feeling unsafe when there were straight up nazis in attendance that the organizers didn't ask to leave.

"Rob los Ricos"? 25.Apr.2010 14:33

DangerGnome

"Rob los Ricos" is a moniker regularly used by a well-known Oregon-based radical. This person was not at the Saturday event.

Thanks for the correction 25.Apr.2010 14:42

Randy Blazak blazakr@gmail.com

I did leave about 9 so I guess I missed her second attempt to rally support. I appreciate the correction. I think the Palestinian issue is an important one and it sucks that the issue has been hijacked by neo-Nazis (who tend to operate on the the "enemy of my enemy is my friend" principle). It's sad that people (Weir?) fall into that trap. There were good people in that room that understand the complexity of our struggle.


I used to do a lecture on the damage done by AIPAC when I taught at a university with a large Jewish student population (Emory). It was always tricky.

also 25.Apr.2010 14:44

ps

allison was not trying to "defend herself" against charges of anti-semitism, she was saying that none of the audience cared about justice in palestine and shoving photos of maimed children in people's faces who agreed that the israeli state sux, but the key difference being that nearly everyone (except the guy in the 911 shirt and allison) agreed that anti-semitism also sux.

sheesh.

... 25.Apr.2010 14:45

...

I was there too, yes the 1st long winded speech was met with polite applause, it was the second time speaking when Ms. Weir was shouted down. Not because of her politics, but because she was taking public time to deal with personal issues. Ms. Weir, having some one disagree with you, say that you or your organization is not representing them is not an attack. Its a point of view, not an attempt to personally hurt you. It probably has very little to do with you personally. It is not vicious, even if your name was used. Not everyone is going to agree with you, and if you are given the message that your organization is not representing everyone, well... maybe its not meant to. Or maybe you can take a look at what the apparent problem is and try to fix it. Are people being alienated by hostile presences at your events? Is there a reason that groups would choose not to associate themselves with yours? I ask this with gentleness and love.

Not an "attack" 25.Apr.2010 14:57

Attendee

The first person that spoke regarding Alison's plug said that many people may be attending the anti-AIPAC event with genuine concern for peace and justice in Palestine, while others would be attending because of their anti-Semitic beliefs. The only piece that was critical of Alison specifically was his assertion that she was invoking the blood libel with her emphasis on, and images of, bloody children. The blood libel harkens back to the Middle Ages and is the charge that Jews (among other enemies of the Catholic Church) use human sacrifice & blood in their rituals, most often of gentile children. This arcane idea still gets used in anti-Semitic rhetoric, albeit in updated forms.

The second speaker related his persona experience with the anti-AIPAC organizing. He said he had attended on of their prior events and there were outright racists there which the organizers refused to eject. He expressed a commitment to the issue of Palestinian liberation, but a lack of faith in the integrity of the organizers.

information links 25.Apr.2010 15:02

DG

The following links give context as to why Alison Weir was criticized for anti-Semitism at the meeting. (I do not agree with the author of the below linked articles on everything, but his writings concerning Alison Weir's use of the "blood libel" against Jewish people are well-documented and argued.)

Articles by Adam Holland:

Friday, September 11, 2009
Blood Libel promoted by Counterpunch, Alison Weir
 http://adamholland.blogspot.com/2009/09/blood-libel-promoted-by-counterpunch.html

Sunday, October 11, 2009
Alison Weir continues to promote blood libel
 http://adamholland.blogspot.com/2009/10/alison-weir-continues-to-promote-blood.html

Then you misunderstood the purpose of the event 25.Apr.2010 15:12

Working Class Mama

The event was billed as a discussion on what to do specifically about the violent Neo Nazi organizing and what Portland can do about it. People are being shot and attacked right here in our own sand box. AIPAC, while it is a racist lobby, is not a neo nazi organization. There are many political forums in Portland and organizing resources are easily available to everyone. There is no need to exploit & hijack other peoples' events that they have worked hard for. That is lazy, rude, & sloppy organizing. It would have been far more appropriate to ask the host organization for a table and ask for a few minutes time to present your topic. That way the host organization can let you know if it is appropriate to the event focus. It was very frustrating to have so many soap boxers derail the focus and go on and on and on without regard for everyone else. You weren't the only one, but you took up way more time in your speech than anyone else. It was just too much that you wanted even more audience time to engage in an a tit for tat argument that you clearly needed to take up with the individuals you were conflicting with. No one else in that room was interested in your conflict with this person. I was not there to see an argument between a handful of people on some tangentially related issue and I was sick of hearing about it already. I support peace & freedom for Palestine and have done some organizing for that. I was not there for that last night. The reaction to you the second time around had nothing to do with the Israel/Palestine conflict and EVERYthing to do with your bad manners.

The individual that criticized you announced that he would be protesting AIPAC also. He announced that you did not represent him and he gave the reason that some of your writing has been too anti-Jewish people instead of critical of the Israeli government. Another individual from a different group said that he was not attending the protest this year because last year racist groups were allowed to stand with the protest. These 2 people could have been chatted with after the event. You didn't need to time burgle the audience for that.

Speaking of personal attacks... 25.Apr.2010 15:25

anti-wingnut

Alison Weir called the person that accused her of blood libel of being an Israeli agent at the end of the event. LULZ.

Alison Weir 25.Apr.2010 15:50

Response and info on organ theft and trafficking contact@ifamericansknew.org

My responses don't appear to be showing up on this site; I hope I'm not doing something technical wrong here.

Anyway, in regard to WorkingclassMama and others: your criticisms may have some validity, though I feel you overstate things a bit, perhaps quite a bit. However, to the extent that you're right, I apologize. I can see things your way, and I hope you'll make an effort to see them mine. Perhaps we could have tea sometime and talk things over! It would be great if you'd contact me for this, which is why I give my contact info. In fact, this invitation extends to others as well.

Regarding DG: It is upsetting to see someone posting articles from a Zionist website. This is akin to using articles from a KKK website. No, these articles are not correct. As I wrote in a previous posting, I urge people to read all my articles for yourself -- not interpretations by Zionists! They're available at  http://www.ifamericansknew.org/about_us/alisonweir.html

The particular topic misconveyed on the Zionist website, organ theft, was actually the subject of two articles I wrote (out of the many dozens). A few months after these were published, and were attacked by Zionists such as the website referenced by DG, Israeli TV broadcast an interview with Israel's chief pathologist, Yehuda Hiss, in which he admitted taking Palestinian organs.

The AP story about this (buried) claimed that he had stopped this in about 1989. However, as usual, AP didn't get it right. Recently the Israeli media reported that Hiss had also taken and retained, without permission, body tissue from Rachel Corrie. I don't believe this was reported in mainstream US media.

Is this an extremely unpleasant topic? Yes. Do I enjoy writing about it or even knowing about it? No. However, Palestinians deserve to have their accusations taken seriously -- especially when it turns out they're true. My two articles can be read at:  http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/sweden.html
 http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/sweden.html

These are extremely long articles and contain considerable research. I hope people will read them in their entirety.


No, I did not make this accusation 25.Apr.2010 16:06

Alison Weir c

I suspect you're all getting as tired of this conversation as I am. I'm leaving for the protest now and don't expect to write more on this topic. People will just have to look into future anonymous accusations for themselves. However, before I leave I will correct the anonymous poster claiming I charged that the organizer in question was some sort of agent. Perhaps he and/or other people think that. If they have evidence I hope they'll produce it. I neither said nor suggested it.

My invitation to have coffee or tea stands. I'm leaving town tomorrow but will be back in a week.


Weir and the broader issue 25.Apr.2010 16:46

DG

The articles linked to are well-documented and thoroughly demolish Weir's arguments, her reliance on extreme anti-Semitic sources, and her own anti-Semitism. Before Weir uses hyperbole comparing her critics to the Klan, she may want to remember that Jew-hatred was and is a key component of KKK ideology.

Adam Holland's own beliefs regarding the Israeli state--which I do not agree with--do not affect the quality of his argumentation in the above pieces.

I highly recommend April Rosenblum's "The Past Didn't Go Anywhere: Making Resistance to Antisemitism Part of All of Our Movements" for those who wish to think about the problem of anti-Semitism:
 http://www.pinteleyid.com/past/

authorship... 25.Apr.2010 17:35

zumbi

is the same rob los ricos who was in prison? now free? or writing from inside?

okay... 25.Apr.2010 19:00

rob los ricos

i was concerned about what i heard about the event from a media activist who was present. not being from portland, i felt i was in a better position to start a dialogue about the event and what i felt was an egregious wrong done to the palestinian people and woman who has advocated for them for a long time.

first of all...i was not present. i heard this from a media activist who i trust. i felt the account was well-informed and accurate because the name she passed along was indeed connected to an organization that has a long-standing reputation of advocating for the rights of the palestinian people. also, i was still in awe of DAM - a palestinian hip-hop group - and the amazing film about hip-hop in palestine shown at reed college, Slingshot.

has nit occurred to anyone that someone might not feel comfortable confronting a nazi who shows up at their event? take some initiative and confront the bastards yourself instead of leaving it to some authority figure. what was she to do if the people in question were to become violent or otherwise confrontational, call the police? if there had been some sort of confrontation, would the police have been standing by, looking for an excuse to shut the demo down? i'm not going to suggest what motivations may have caused inaction to the presence of nazis, but it's not an easy problem to deal with under any circumstance. in eugene, there are weekly forums at the university of oregon by the pacifica forum which is hosted by neo-nazis. one of their recent presentations was a denial of the holocaust, claiming to prove that a concentration camp was not a place of slaughter. i can think of no reason that the UofO continues to allow these fascist to use their facilities, except that phil knight and some other alums are in agreement with them - which wouldn't surprise me at all, being the racist piece of shit that he is.

also - i just want to make it clear that confronting fascists and racists in our communities is not an easy matter, and it is damn difficult to do anything about it if people arenot willing to make sacrifices and put in hard work to do so. it's not something that can happen in brief statements, and if some people have something valuable to share, they need to be given time to do so. sticking to rigid timelines might help more people feel like they have a chance to have their voices heard, but having to confront a serious, on-going problem that may be endangering people's lives is not something that can be done in soundbites and in a short amount of time. fighting fascism and racism needs to be important enough to devote hours of time and effort. you may even have to give up going to a certain show or missing a chance to hang out with your friends in order to work things through. if this is some sort of part-time hobby in a long list of other causes someone wants to half-assed support, then leave it to the people who are passionate enough about it to do the hard work and tell you what is happening and support their efforts when they have something organized. i guarantee you that the fascists and racists are working to spread their message 24/7, using every conversation as an opportunity to spread their message and making petty violence seem like some heroic deed.

i don't know if anyone around here has noticed it, but we are getting our asses handed to us on every front these days. our economy is in a shambles and none of us can feel assured of economic viability - not in the future or even in the present. fascists are becoming emboldened by veiled and not-so-subtle racism from the rightist media. arizona recently enacted legislation that makes latinos second-class citizens. and don't even get me started on the environment.

i don't want to go on ranting here. i feel like this has been a valuable discussion and though i do not regret posting the article, i promise not to pass along second-hand information in future posts.

btw - what does "blood libel" mean?

Yeah. 25.Apr.2010 19:48

J.(A).

Thanks WCM and DG, I appreciate your responses.

I am a staunchly anti-Zionist Jew and I have spent time in Palestine. While Middle East issues are very, very close to my heart, I also felt like Weir was inappropriately monopolizing the forum.

I attended the event to learn as much as I could about the history and current realities of Neo-Nazi / White Supremacist organizing in Portland and greater Oregon. It is unfortunate that a few audience members treated the "Q&A" portion of the event as an opportunity for soap boxing, rather than honoring the hard work and expertise of the organizers and seizing the chance to discuss their presentations in greater detail.

I am also deeply saddened that these wingnut Judeophobes are among the most visible advocates of Palestinian liberation in Portland. I spoke with several allies who did not want to protest AIPAC because they knew a bunch of creeps would be there.

While the AIPAC protest included lots of genuinely down people, the wingnut contingent was out in force. (Thankfully, no blatantly anti-Jewish signs were displayed this year.) I guess it was an opportunity to fight bigotry on two fronts. . . both Zionism and anti-Jewish prejudice need to be confronted.

PS: The "blood libel" is explained in the links posted by DG. It is a classic anti-Jewish myth. Supporters of AIPAC and folks who are just misinformed can easily write off Palestine solidarity activists as "anti-Semites" when they are mixed up in this bullshit.

I hope this post will show up in the main section 25.Apr.2010 21:29

Alison Weir contact@ifamericansknew.org

[I posted this earlier but for some reason it seems to be buried, so I'll try again.]

My responses don't appear to be showing up on this site; I hope I'm not doing something technical wrong here.

Anyway, in regard to WorkingclassMama and others: your criticisms may have some validity, though I feel you overstate things a bit, perhaps quite a bit. However, to the extent that you're right, I apologize. I can see things your way, and I hope you'll make an effort to see them mine. Perhaps we could have tea sometime and talk things over! It would be great if you'd contact me for this, which is why I give my contact info. In fact, this invitation extends to others as well.

[Actually, now seeing this person's response to my friendly invitation, I have a considerably different opinion; I'm beginning to suspect that whoever this person is, s/he has a Zionist agenda and is using the pose of 'anti-racism' to further this. I expect that DG shares this posture.]

Regarding DG: It is upsetting to see someone posting articles from a Zionist website. This is akin to using articles from a KKK website. No, these articles are not correct. As I wrote in a previous message that doesn't seem to be up here, I urge people to read all my articles for yourself -- not interpretations by Zionists! They're available at  http://www.ifamericansknew.org/about_us/alisonweir.html

The particular topic inaccurately conveyed on the Zionist website cited by DG, organ theft, was actually the subject of two lengthy articles I wrote (out of the many dozens). A few months after these were published, and were attacked by Zionists such as the website referenced by DG, Israeli TV broadcast an interview with Israel's chief pathologist, Yehuda Hiss, whom I had named in my story, in which Hiss admitted taking Palestinian organs.

The AP story about this (buried) claimed that Hiss had stopped this in about 1989. However, as usual, AP didn't get it right. Recently the Israeli media reported that Hiss had also taken and retained, without permission, body tissue from Rachel Corrie. I don't believe this was reported in mainstream US media.

Is this an extremely unpleasant topic? Yes. Do I enjoy writing about it or even knowing about it? No. However, Palestinians deserve to have their accusations taken seriously -- especially when it turns out they're true. People may remember hearing me interviewed about this on KBOO.

My two articles can be read at:  http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/sweden.html
 http://www.ifamericansknew.org/cur_sit/sweden.html

These are extremely long articles and contain considerable research. I hope people will read them in their entirety, as well as my other articles.


guy in the 911 shirt 25.Apr.2010 22:05

Brian McManus

Working Class Mama wrote -
"A man with a 911 shirt on got up and started shouting at the room calling everyone in attendance Pro-Israel among other nonsense baseless accusations."

I did not shout at the room. I asked if Israel is immune to criticism.

 http://theinfounderground.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=20882

PS wrote -
"everyone (except the guy in the 911 shirt and allison) agreed that anti-semitism sux."

For you to assume that I am anti-semitic because I am willing to criticize Israel is no more respectable
than for someone to throw names if I criticize the United States` foreign policies.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCrhoXBQCeY

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ur3zyKztQ3g

I wish i had arrived to the event much earlier than 8:30 pm, because i realize it was tailored to local racism
but when i felt that the Israeli racism toward Palestinians was being undermined by some in the audience
i felt inspired to say something.
The simple fact of the matter is that those who choose to avoid criticizing Israel
are no different than those who choose to avoid criticizing the United States.

Contribution/Discussion Comments Explained 25.Apr.2010 22:23

Portland IMC volunteer

Contribution section is for first hand accounts, facts, reports, research, photos, directly relevant experiences.

Discussion section is for opinions, compliments, feelings, tangents, rants, blog stuff, everything else

Portland Indymedia is a news site. It is meant for local original reporting by citizen journalists. Prior to the creation of the Discussion section, comments not fitting the Contribute description were removed. This became an overwhelming task after the creation & popularization of blogs, when people who were new to the internet were mostly familiar with that format. Some did not understand this and assumed more sinister motives. A few felt they'd like to have a little bit of blog style comments & enjoyed "discussions" & online flame wars. So the compromise was to create a special section for that so that it could be visible but not ruin the rightful format of Indymedia as a news website.

Some posts & comments are removed if they violate the editorial policy:  http://portland.indymedia.org/en/static/edpolicy.shtml

If you have any questions or need further explanation of editorial policy feel free to email us.

Epic Fail from Brian McManus 25.Apr.2010 22:57

Hmmm

Brian McManus provides links to videos featuring Ernst Zundel. Zundel is a "Hitler sympathizer determined to propagate the neo-Nazi movement" according to  link to www.ctv.ca and many other sources (check his Wikipedia entry.)

Not exactly disproving allegations of anti-Semitism...

to be clear 25.Apr.2010 23:33

*

I was the person who first criticized Alison Weir's anti-Semitic politics at the event. When she approached me later, I was told that I was "working in Israel's interests" or some similar wording. The agent bit was therefore implied rather than stated outright. What I got was a fairly typical canned response from an anti-Semite who had her poisonous propaganda challenged. I oppose agent baiting--and Weir's statement was right on that line--but the much bigger issue is the overall anti-Semitic tenor of Weir's activism, most strongly evidenced in her "blood libel" articles, criticism of which is already linked to above.

Thanks to the RoseCity AntiFa folks & a suggestion 26.Apr.2010 00:07

JustMe

I thought that this timely event was well organized, with a really nice turn-out and decent audience participation. I was particularly happy to see security handled in what appeared to be a discrete and professional manner. Hopefully people will seize this opportunity to expand organizing and outreach efforts!

One particularly valuable area of action is the offering of free / low-cost training classes focused on personal and community defense for activists and others who are at heightened risk of attack. The Left tends to ignore or minimize this critical matter while more than a few of our ideological opponents are quite literally preparing to kill us! Something to consider and act upon...

more information on Weir 03.May.2010 01:12

Hmmm

Here's a bit more info about Alison Weir's "evidence" for her blood libel material...

Weir's original article is largely based on the writings of Jöran "Israel Shamir" Jermas, a Sweden-based anti-Semite who Weir incorrectly describes as an "Israeli writer." Jermas/Shamir is mentioned in Weir's footnotes for the original Counterpunch article a couple of times, but his influence appears to actually go significantly beyond this.

There are a couple of interesting articles about Jermas/Shamir available online, one here:
 http://www.searchlightmagazine.com/index.php?link=template&story=6
... and one here:
 http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/04/309818.html?c=on#c138838

There is a photo of Jermas/Shamir alongside German neo-Nazi Horst Mahler accompanying Jermas/Shamir's sympathetic interview with him at:
http://www [dot] israelshamir [dot] net /Contributors /Contributor74.htm (link intentionally broken, copy to navigation bar and remove spaces etc. to visit this creep's site.)

And here is an article giving background on Jermas/Shamir's friend Mahler:
 http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/2653115.stm

One letter condemning Shamir's anti-Semitism--from 2001, before several revelations about his identity became known--may be found here:
 http://nigelparry.com/issues/shamir/originalletter.html

The above letter is from Electronic Intifada co-founder Ali Abunimah, someone who it would be hard to accuse of having Zionist sympathies...

One has to wonder why Weir would give any credibility whatsoever to someone such as Jermas/Shamir, let alone basing entire
parts of her "journalism" on his findings.

Also, regarding Weir: she has appeared on the Hesham Tillawi's "Current Issues" radio show. This show has provided a platform for an alarming number white nationalist and anti-Semitic interviewees--e.g. Willis Carto, Tomislav Sunic, Kevin MacDonald, Ingrid Zundel, and Michael Collins Piper--as well as hosting a number of leftist figures who presumably didn't know better. "Current Issues" provided sympathetic coverage of Iran's 2006 Holocaust-denial conference, with an account supplied by none other than white supremacist David Duke (a guest multiple times on "Current Issues" who also attended the Iran conference.)

Several of Weir's articles are also featured on David Duke's website. Weir seems to have made no concerted effort to have the articles removed; it appears as though she is happy for her message to go out to the Duke audience without any clarification. There is a certain irony, therefore, in Weir likening those who criticize her to the Klan...

With these things in mind, it is certainly reasonable to ask what Weir was doing at an anti-racist event, thrusting images of wounded Palestinian children into the faces of attendees--ignoring that most had leftist sympathies surrounding the Israel/Palestine conflict--and then denouncing these attendees as "Zionist."