CODEPINK Protester Victorious Over AIPAC Assailant

Medea Benjamin
NationofChange / News Report
Published: Tuesday 31 July 2012
“So Abileah did what most people would never have the courage to do. She got up and shouted: "No More Occupation! Stop Israeli War Crimes! Equal Rights for Palestinians!" And she unfurled a banner that read: “Occupying Land is Indefensible!”
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It is not every day that the voices for justice triumph over the actions of the rich and powerful, especially when it comes to the Israel-Palestine debate. That’s why it is so important to acknowledge and celebrate the settlement just negotiated by CODEPINK activist Rae Abileah and her lawyers after suing American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) volunteer lobbyist Stanley Shulster.

It all started on May 24, 2011, when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was in Washington, DC speaking before a joint session of Congress. Abileah, a 29-year-old Jewish woman who has traveled to the West Bank, Israel and Gaza, was in the audience. She became more and more appalled as she listened to Netanyahu’s speech and watched our congresspeople giving him a stream of standing ovations. “I couldn't watch this hero's welcome for a man who supports the continued building of illegal settlements, won't lift the siege of Gaza, and refuses to negotiate with the Palestinian unity government,” said Abileah. 

So Abileah did what most people would never have the courage to do. She got up and shouted: "No More Occupation! Stop Israeli War Crimes! Equal Rights for Palestinians!" And she unfurled a banner that read: “Occupying Land is Indefensible!”

She was immediately grabbed, violently pulled toward the floor, and gagged—not by the Capitol Police but by a member of the audience, Stanley Shulster, a retired attorney from Ashland, Oregon, who had traveled to Washington DC to attend the yearly conference of the Israel lobby group AIPAC.  An online bio for Shulster revealed that he was an unpaid lobbyist, a volunteer in the Israeli Defense Forces, and a Navy veteran.  In his bio Shulster bragged that he “grabbed the woman who heckled the Prime Minister while he was speaking.” 

Abileah was rushed to the hospital, where she was treated for neck and shoulder injuries. She subsequently had to undergo months of physical therapy, chiropractic care and other treatments to heal from these injuries.

But Abileah was also determined to pursue her attacker. She pressed charges and got a warrant for his arrest, and she filed a civil suit for damages. Thanks to the tenacity and generosity of her attorneys, they just reached a settlement in which Shulster was forced to pay her medical fees and issue an apology.  In the joint statement issued by Shulster and Abileah, Shulster acknowledges that he “respects the right of Ms. Abileah to hold a different view on the Israel-Palestine conflict and believes she holds this view in good faith,” and Abileah does the same.  Both Abileah and Shulster recognize “the right, as Americans, to agree to disagree peacefully.”  This might sound like a common sense statement but coming from a man who works with the IDF and AIPAC, which routinely categorizes any critique of Israel as anti-Semitic, this is extraordinary. 

It is indeed a rare victory, as there is a history of attacks against US nonviolent activists defending Palestinians rights and most of the time, the attackers face no consequences. In 2007, a peaceful protester outside an AIPAC Conference in Washington DC was attacked and put in a chokehold. In this case, the police arrested the assailant, but they also arrested the woman who was attacked! In 2010, while standing on a public sidewalk, I was hit in the face by an AIPAC conference attendee, and the police refused to even take a police report.  A few months later a protester and I were slugged with a book bag by an attendee at another pro-Israeli government conference, and the police once again refused to help.  Students at the University of New Mexico were hit by audience members during a non-violent protest, and in November 2010, members of the pro-Occupation group Stand With Us (SWU) pepper-sprayed several members of Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP). Video footage of the 2011 AIPAC Annual Gala shows the assault of a young woman who held a banner reading “Silencing Dissent Delegitimizes Israel.”

“This time, the justice system worked for me,” said a triumphant Abileah, “I hope it sends a message to aggressive Israeli Occupation supporters around the country that they don’t have the right to assault us; we have the right to express our views peacefully.  Just as violence is not the answer to the Israel-Palestine conflict, it won’t work to silence critique and outcry in the US.  This is a bittersweet victory—no one should suffer from a violent attack for just speaking up for equality and human rights.”

Of course, for the Palestinian people who live under Israel’s 45-year-old military occupation, violence dominates everyday life. The brutal 2008 invasion of Gaza left 1,400 people dead and crushed homes, schools, businesses—even hospitals. In the West Bank, peaceful protesters are regularly tear-gassed, shot, beaten, thrown into prison without trials. 

“My neck pain was a small price to pay compared with the sacrifices made by Palestinian, Israeli, and international nonviolent protesters who’ve risked their bodies and lives to defend the basic human rights of the Palestinian people,” said Abileah. “But with this victory over an AIPAC volunteer lobbyist, perhaps more Americans will be encouraged to speak out and stand up for human rights and free speech.”

Ms. Abileah will donate a portion of the funds from Shulster to legal and medical aid for peaceful Palestinian protesters in the West Bank.



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ABOUT Medea Benjamin

Medea Benjamin is an American political activist, best known for co-founding Code Pink and, along with her husband, activist and author Kevin Danaherfair trade advocacy group Global Exchange. Benjamin also was a Green Party candidate in 2000 for the United States Senate.

The author of this article

The author of this article about the courageous Rae Abileah, winning a court decision, based on a 2011 vicious assault, vs. an unbridaled zionist, failed to mention that she, too, was assaulted, the previous year, 2010, at the AIPAC Convention.
Medea Benjamin, another Jew who stands for Justice in Palestine, was the victim of a 2010 AIPAC attendee's fore arm smash, which he delivered to Medea's face, at the 9th & "L" St, NW, corner of the Convention Center. He then ran into the AIPAC Convention, and hid among the 7,000 rabid zionists.

These cowardly attacks were followed by many ignorant AIPAC attendee's attempts to stifle peaceful demonstrators' First Amendment rights at this years' 2012 AIPAC Convention.

I'll be at my 4th AIPAC Convention, in 2013, to witness more of AIPAC's atrocious behavior, here in the USA.

We sincerely hope the zionist violence at the 2010, 2011, and 2012 AIPAC conventions will be successfuly abated with this court decision

Imagine the indignities & atrocities the Palestine people have to endure, on a daily basis

The author of this article

The author of this article about the courageous Rae Abileah, is also a fierce anti-zionist, Pro-Palestine Jew.
Rae was assaulted by a dangerous clown who was attending the 2011 AIPAC Convention.
At the 2010 AIPAC Convention, many of us witnessed an AIPAC attendee deliver a fore arm smash, to the face of Medea Benjamin, at the 9th & "L" St, NW, Convention Center, then run into the AIPAC Convention to hide.
We sincerely hope the zionist violence at the 2010, 2011, and 2012 AIPAC conventions will be successfuly abated with this court decision

The headline is yellow

The headline is yellow journalism. It's obvious first effect - so obvious on a second reading that apparently it was deliberately so designed - is to identify AIPAC with Schuster and make you think that just because Schuster was a volunteer for AIPAC that therefore his action was AIPAC policy - which is doubtful.

Then there's a part of the article which speaks (presumably for the writer Ms Benjamin, because it is not presented as a quote) of a 'brutal' invasion of Gaza. This too is biased yellow journalism, as nothing is said of incessant provocations by the Hamas Gaza regime which had made a point of firing rockets nonstop at civilians.

And there's more yellow journalism too in speaking of a '45 year occupation' which in fact has been over for years not only in Gaza (after all, if in 2008 Gaza was still 'occupied', how and why did Gaza then get 'invaded'?) but also for the majority of folks in the West Bank too, pursuant to the Israel-PLO Oslo deals.

I do agree that the legal settlement was a notable victory for basic justice. The settlement was due Abileah because Schuster reacted too violently and too soon and not because Abileah necessarily had her facts right. And the matter of timing was key. No matter how true or false or relevant or irrelevant its actual content, if Abileah's outburst had continued beyond a few seconds it would have materially infringed on the right of many people, the great part of the audience who were there to hear what the speaker had to say. In recent years there have been various well-organized and prolonged anti-audience-rights actions perpetrated 'for Palestine' - both in USA campus lecture halls and in UK concert halls. Recollection of these may well have provoked Schuster's running amok.

This "gentile" hadn't

This "gentile" hadn't realised that there were this many Jew haters reading NationofChange. Almost all of the comments are way past being anti-Zionist or anti-Semitic, they are just coded Jew-hating rants.

richard: Are you so out of

richard: Are you so out of touch with reality you dont understand that GAZA and the WEST BANK are under OCCUPATION! Brutal occupation by the zionist state of Israel, with those settlers who are so extreme and crazy they brutalize women, shoot kids in the head. Do a friggin google Palestinans have no army, navy, airforce, no weapons of mass destruction. But zionist Israel who spies on the US Government everyday and steals our secrets are the vermin of the earth. bibi himself has now been tainted with stealing US secrets along with the spy Pollard. Israel has been given over one trillion $ by US taxpayers and still not satisfied.NO president can satisfy or satiate the vile hatred of these crazed, paranoid zealots. They Israelies are the terrorists on the face of the earth and will never be satisfied until they control all the oil and resources of the earth. They control the US government, our congress, state dept and they fill the US agencies. Why should any Israeli have a vote in the US election? Choose a country vermin. Either stay in Israel or stick with the US, pick a country and stay the hell out of the rest of the worlds affairs. Israel is on its way to being reigned in by the world as the truth comes out as to who they really are, what they are all about...and lets not forget they already declared war on the US, when they viciously attacked the USS Liberty.

I had a long talk with God

I had a long talk with God about this the other day and according to the Almighty those claims by the Jews to be God's chosen supreme master race and that the lands they occupy based on the claim that God gave that dirt to them is total BS. God said that he made it clear in the beginning that all people are created equal and are supposed to "share" this paradise called Earth that he created for everybody. That's what God said. So choose who you want to believe, God or the Jews.

The Jewish Talmud is not from

The Jewish Talmud is not from God. It's from corrupt, wicked Jewish rabbis who have twisted and distorted Bible Scriptures endlessly to support their own wicked agenda of world domination based on a set of hideous lies.

It was the rabbis and their Talmud and occult Kaballah-believing followers who had Jesus crucified - not bona fide descendants of the 12 Hebrew tribes. Those Ashkenazi Zionist criminals who stole Palestine from the Paestinians with British, American and UN collusion in 1948 are the most wicked criminals our world has ever seen. They stole the name of Israel from the true descendants of the Hebrew tribes: white Europeans, known as Causasians because of the Caucasus Mountain range through which they migrated from their exiles in Assyria and Babylon 500 years before Christ.

So who they hell are these frauds and usurpers? Descendants of the Turko-Mongolian nation of Khazaria located north of the Caucasus Mountain range in what is today the nation of Georgia, largely owned and controlled by George Soros through a set of underhanded dealings, I understand. Their king and nobles converted to Judaism (Talmud and Kaballah based - not Old Testament based) from paganism in 740 A.D. for reasons of political expediency. It appears that this race has it in their DNA to be scheming and conniving... Tell us something we didn't already know!

The Old Testament makes reference to God's chosen people, who were manifested in the Hebrew nation of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Individually, a vast number of the Hebrews rebelled against God and His blessing was removed from the entire nation for their disobedience. That's why God permitted the Assyrians in about 750 B.C. to defeat and take the 10 Hebrew tribes of the northern kingdom of Israel into exile and in 586 B.C. God permitted the same thing to happen to the 2 Hebrew tribes of the southern kingdom of Judah. Only 40,000 exiles from the Babylonian exile returned to jerusalem 70 years later and they intermarried and were corrupted by the pagan Canaanites who infiltrated and corrupted the Hebrew priesthood before Jesus showed up on the scene. Jesus exposed them for who they really were and that is the real story of why they had him killed. They were sons of the devil 2000 years ago and they remain that today.

God's chosen people are the descendants of the anceint Hebrews - white Europeans. That's why the Jews hve a not-so-secret plan to breed or kill all whites out of existence through mass migrations of third world peoples and oppressive and discriminatory policies that reward everyone but whites!

God clarifies in His New Testament that he chose individuals, not nations, from before the world began, to become his adopted children, through a saving faith in the work and person of His son Jesus Christ that God would initiate in His way and His timing for each one of His chosen or elect sons and daughers. This is what grace is - God does it all as He pleases so that no man may boast that he did or deserves anything. God places His Holy Spirit in a person's heart and then sees to it that they hear the bad news of our sinful depravity and the good news of the gospel of Jesus bearing the price we deserved to pay so that His righteousness is imputed to His followers preached and believe it. Romans 10:17 teaches this. Virtually all Christian chruches have been infiltrated and corrupted and you seldom hear the doctrine of election taught anymore, but this is what God's Chosen People refers to. The Zionists are clearly of the devil and not of God or Jesus.

Sorry, there is no GOD who

Sorry, there is no GOD who would choose one people over another. God never wrote a word in the Bible...it was written by the scribes to put fear into the uneducated, uninformed people thousands of years ago. If the fundamental evangelicals in this country actually know what they believe about Mary, they would turn there backs on these nuts. They believe that Mary was a whore, that Jesus was a bastard. The truth is that Mary and Joseph had to travel from Nazareth (Palestinan) to Bethelem to pay their tax. Thats why the pregnant woman couldnt find a place to stay but a barn. And yes, they did kill Jesus. He threw them out of the Temple and told them "to spread to the four corners of the earth" why do you think the Hasids DO not support Israel. They know the wrath of God is upon them.

Sorry, but you need to go

Sorry, but you need to go deeper. God did indeed choose the nation of the 12 Hebrew tribes to be a fore-runner and bearer of the Word of God to the rest of the world. This gives true descendants of the ancient Hebrews (white Europeans) a special privilege, but no rights over other nations.

God inspired every word in the Bible from beginning to end. I know how He did it, because He does it with me quite often too. I write in my own style, but His Spirit in me gives me the words and they flow out miraculously. It is a sheer delight when it happens! It doesn't always happen. For example, this does not appear to be one of those times. God did this with the writing of each one of the 66 books of the Bible and the entire book hangs together with supernatural clairty and wisdom for those who are blessed enough to be one of God's elect or chosen. If you have not had this experience, you don't know what you're talking about to claim otherwise. It just means that God did not choose you to be one of His elect since before the world began. Romans 9 makes it very clear that God is sovereign and He decides who He will love and who He will hate. "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated," He says there. Who is the creature to question the sovereign Creator? God opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble. James 4:6 Your demeaning terms concerning the Hebrew nation of 2000 - 3500 years ago proves that you think more highly of yourself than you ought and this is how God defines pride - which He opposes.

Mary is not someone to worship, contrary to what the pagan Catholic cult teaches, in conflict with Bible Scripture.

You are correct that evangelical pastor John Hagee and other false teachers who falsely claim to be followers of Christ, but who are clearly deceived, embrace Zionist Israel as a legitiamte nation whom America should bless with unending foreign aid (think of it as tribute paid to the heathens who have enslaved us), they are doing the work of the devil. There teachings violate God's Word and intent in the Bible and the facts of history.

You are also correct that the Jewish Talmud teaches some hateful things concerning Mary, Jesus, Christ, Christians and all non-Jews, some of which you cite here. The Talmud and the Kaballah form the high holy books of the manmade Satanic cult of Judaism and are filled with lies and hateful teachings.

The truth that our Jewish controlled media and educational system seeks to suppress from knowledge is that white Europeans are the true descendants of the 12 Hebrew tribes who were sent into exile 500 - 750 years before Christ and after their exiles, migrated north and west into Europe through the Caucasus Mountain range in central Asia. That's why ever since they have been referred to collectively as "Caucasians." This is why Jews seek to breed or kill all whites out of existence. In reality, 90% of the 18 million Jews on the planet are Ashkenazi Jews who descended from the Turko-Mongolian nation of Khazaria in Central Asia in what is now the nation of Georgia.

I disagree. This is not the

I disagree. This is not the outcome I would have wanted. These right-wing, savage, war-mongering, Teapublican, bastard Morlocks need to be ground back into the slime they crawled out of. Instead of just her medical bills, she should have claimed all kinds of mental distress and taken this mutherfukker for everything he is worth. These bastards are driving the rest of us closer and closer to insurrection or revolution. I'm ready, fukkers! I hate every festering, malignant one of you.

While the assault on this

While the assault on this woman was unconscionable, her lies would certainly feel provocative even were they not intended to disrupt the free speech of the victims of her unjustifiable outburst. The reality is that much of such braying about "illegal occupation" - an absolutely erroneous but constantly repeated slander - and the "siege of Gaza". as though the Gazans haven't fired thousands of mortars & rockets at Israeli civilians, and as though there is no back door in and out through Egypt, and the idiotic notion of the Israeli "refusal to negotiate", which is absolutely and demonstrably backwards from the truth, since it has been Abbas and the Gazan terrorist leaders who repeatedly & consistently refuse to negotiate. But just because she's full of crap, that doesn't give her the right to interrupt the listeners of a public speech with her meretricious lies. Way too many people are busy echoically spewing such non-truth while proclaiming their commitement to Justice. First she & they ought to learn the truth, then perhaps they might have some claim to be in support of justice.

Your characterizing her

Your characterizing her claims as lies is what is deceitful. every last one of her claims is true and you know it. No criminal who seeks to advance still further crimes is a "victim" of anything and that applies to all human beings equally on this planet.

If Ashkenazi Jews wish to return to their real homeland in central Asia, I suggest you take that up with George Soros, since I understand he owns it through endless manipulations and trickery. I am referring of course to the ancient nation of Khazaria which is now known as the nation of Georgia.

Ashkenazi Zionists, in collusion with America, Britain and the Marxist UN conspired to steal the Holy Land from the Palestinians whose ancestors lived their ever since the Roman General Titus burned Jerusalem in 70 A.D. The Nabka in 1948 that amounted to genocide and ethnic cleansing that drove 800,000 Palestinains from their homes and villages inside the UM mandated borders for the Jewish State is well documented in Israeli historian Ilan Pappe's book, "the Ethic Cleansing of Palestine." But I sincerely doubt that the truth of any interest to you.

No Palestinian leader in his right mind would negotiate with the Zionist terrorists who killed his people and drove others from their homes and villages. You don't engage with evil. You either contain it or kill it. Your calm soothing words are all lies! They are a complete abomination to God and of the devil himself. Your lies are finally being exposed for what they have been for decades. Just as Jesus promised us they would be in Matthew 10.

Bullshit...

Bullshit...

"...her lies would certainly

"...her lies would certainly feel provocative even were they not intended to disrupt the free speech of the victims of her unjustifiable outburst."
Are you f****ing kidding me? To challenge lies in the public arena is always justified. You are certainly entitled to your opinion but facts always trump incorrect opinions.
The rightwing parties in Israel and their American supporters are determined to start a war with Iran, as soon as they can get the U.S. to sign on and supply the bodies. Americans should agree to this fantasy right after you and yours complete Basic Training and suit up.

Standing Ovation Coach. The

Standing Ovation Coach.

The Israeli government and Israelis (who I hold as separate from the many Jewish citizens who are demanding peace, returning land, and insisting on human rights for Palestinians) have been warmongering for nearly all of Israel's existance. The new settlements are illegal. The Israeli government has honed apartheid into an ugly art form that would have even made Mandela's jailors go pale. These Israeli extremist terrorists even killed a great man Yitsak Rabin, who wanted peace, humanity, and safety for all.

Every little bite counts

Every little bite counts

I am very glad, indeed, that

I am very glad, indeed, that the Jewish folks have their own god, and just like every other religion, they probably think their god is the only one also.. If they are following its laws in treating the Palestinian's like they have, and protester's, like they do, it just shows that their god is, either not worth worshiping, or their readings of their own bible are way, way, way, off course. Belief in anything is a trap set by a very weak mind, by its own over inflated ego, for itself: just so it can speak and act like it has all of the answers...when in reality it has no answers at all other than its silly beliefs.
It has always been man's tremendous fear of death that promotes religious insanity!

DUANE ALFORD's picture

Punitive award should have

Punitive award should have been in the hundreds of thousands,this was an empty slap on the wrist & will happen again & again.

What a courageous woman! If

What a courageous woman! If Abileah were an American citizen of Palestinian descent (instead of being Jewish) she would have had the chance of a snowflake in hell to prevail in her case. Congress is so servile to Israel and hence Israel has the audacity to do whatever it wants.

Hopefully the outcome of the

Hopefully the outcome of the lawsuit of this brave and tenacious woman will shame our servile congresspeople, but I doubt it.

They, like Mitt RoMoney, know

They, like Mitt RoMoney, know where the money is and it ain't in Palestine!

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