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Carl Levin accused of war crimes, then hit with a pie

August 17, 2010

It is being reported on many news outlets that Michigan Senator Carl Levin was confronted today by antiwar activists while speaking to Democrats in Mecosta County.

Some reports state that a young man read a statement to Senator Levin that accused him and other Senators of committing war crimes, specifically “Israeli war crimes against the Palestinian people.” Other news sources said that the woman who pied the Senator stated, “Carl Levin is one of the most respected senators in Congress. People tend to blame the war on Republicans, but we wanted to target Levin today to send a message that liberals and Democrats are just as implicated in the violence as the Republicans.

We have not come across the actual statement read by the student who confronted Senator Levin, nor have we found any additional comments from the woman who pied him. The mainstream news coverage seems to be uninterested in the motives of the two people involved, instead they report it like a typical crime story.

Regardless of what people think about the tactic of hitting an elected official with a piece of pie, the claims that Levin supports war crimes should be investigated. It has been well documented for several years now that Senator Levin has voted for the funding of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. At times Levin has been critical of the US occupation of Iraq, but Levin has consistently voted to fund that occupation and the US/NATO occupation of Afghanistan.

When it comes to Israel, Levin’s voting record has been one of the most pro-Israel in all of Congress. Levin has voted to provide $3 billion of US aid to Israel annually for the past 30 years. Levin voted to support Israel’s bombing of Lebanon in 2006 and the Israeli assault on Gaza at the end of 2008 and early 2009. On this last point one could argue that Israeli’s assault on Gaza was a war crime as has been supported by the Goldstone Report.

None of this should be a surprise, since Senator Carl Levin has been one of the largest recipients of pro-Israeli PAC money over the past 20 years. According to Opensecrets.org, Levin has received $1,649,962 from pro-Israel groups.

This superficial coverage is similar to that of the action that two people took against Senator Levin last December just hours before President Obama made the announcement of sending 30,000 more US troops to Afghanistan. Some local news media reported that two men were arrested for refusing to leave the Senator’s office, but they failed to report their motives even though they had all been provided a statement explaining their actions.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. August 19, 2010 5:14 am

    I object to the statement that Levin votes “pro-Israel.” If you read Ha’aretz, a mainstream Israeli newspaper, the Americans are not pro-Israel, they are pro-settler movement.
    The policies supported by Levin and others are not “pro-Israel” they are in support of the right wing in Israel and many Israelis and many progressive Zionists believe US policy places Israel at greater risk and have interfered with progress towards reconciliation. We need to stop referring to support for hard line right wing policies as pro-Israel. The US could support the voices of moderation, instead they consistently support the right wing of Israeli politics.

  2. August 19, 2010 1:16 pm

    Barry, I used the term Pro-Israel in this posting because when Levin votes for the $3 billion in US aid every year it is for the State of Israel. When Levin voted for the Israeli assault on Lebanon in 2006 or the Israeli assault on Gaza last year the language of the bill said Israel. I don’t disagree with you that the more right-wing elements in Israel drive much of the politics, but the State of Israel acts out the policies.

Trackbacks

  1. Update on anti-war protesters arrested for confronting Senator Levin « Grand Rapids Institute for Information Democracy

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