July 7, 2000
This is a response to your brutal attacks against me ("Wild About Harry," June 14, 2000).
It is easy to create lies about your enemies from the comfort and security of your website. There you have the nerve to call me a terrorist and ask the Libertarian Party to exclude me from membership. Evidently, you have deluded yourself into thinking you are some sort of erudite philosopher vis-a-vis Libertarianism. However, you lack even the common decency to provide an e-mail address so I could respond to you in a forthright, Libertarian manner. You take shots at me and try to convince the average Libertarian that I have no place in this party due to my "violent reputation," which you incorrectly label as terrorist. The fact of the matter is I am not a terrorist; I am a Jewish activist. I have never attacked the innocent. I have never thrown a punch without being attacked first. I have never vandalized anyone's property. Although I have been arrested on numerous occasions, I am extremely proud of all the arrests that I have experienced as a result of my activism.
You make light of recent shootings of Jews. In a few days from now, we will mark the first-year anniversary of the violent rampage of Benjamin Smith, a member of the World Church of the Creator, a neo-Nazi organization. Smith's shooting victims included six Jews walking home from synagogue and Ricky Birdsong, the beloved basketball coach of Northwestern University. This particular event -- along with the Buford Furrow incident (the invasion of the Granada Hills, California Jewish Community Center), the recent murder in Pennsylvania by Richard Baumhammer (another self-styled Nazi who is an attorney), and a half dozen other incidents of violence against Jewish targets -- should provide enough evidence to anyone who is half awake that threats exist out there to Jews and other minorities.
You also make light of JDL's advocacy of the Second Amendment. You say we have a secret agenda, that we support the Second Amendment only to acquire and use guns. Foolish boy, anybody who has studied our movement will surely know JDL has provided training in weaponry for the last thirty years. Our slogans, "For every Jew a .22" and "Keep Jews alive with a .45," are obviously not just rhetoric to us. I can assure you of one fact: we in JDL do not wake up in the middle of the night and look under the bed for neo-Nazis. We are secure in this country, and, indeed, our position is so secure that Jew-hatred serves only as a reminder to the most assimilated Jews that there is still a threat out there called "anti-Semitism." Sadly, JDL is a minority within a minority. What are you worried about? The vast majority of our co-religionists probably agree with you, BUT that does not make them right.
The strength of the Libertarian Party is that it allows for all political thought. While you cherish the pledge that I took, and had no problem talking of "never initiating violence," your use of JDL's Five Principles, including "barzel," to make me look like a liar is a total distortion. For your information, barzel not only means JDL will do anything and everything to ensure the survival of the Jewish People, but also that no JDL member can punish innocent people.
The truth is, one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. Hundreds of thousands of Jews fortunate enough to immigrate to Israel and the U.S. have only the JDL to thank. We took on the Soviet Union while you and other do-nothing Jews sat back on your collective apathy. Yes, JDL militant activists vandalized property belonging to the Soviets. This put the cause of Soviet Jews on page one. Before JDL became involved in the issue, it was buried behind the sports pages. Rabbi Kahane, our dearly beloved leader who became so compelling the Arabs had to assassinate him, thought so highly of me that he appointed me to take his place in 1985. I have led the JDL internationally ever since. While it is true, and there is no denying it, the Feds briefly had us on their list as "terrorists" as a result of my refusal to cry over the death of some PLO apologist, we have long since been removed.
All the notoriety this handful of people has garnered over the years helped change the image of the Jew. If all the allegations were true concerning terrorism, one would believe our country's prisons would be filled with JDL members. Yet no one is incarcerated today as a result of JDL activity. If you believe all the propaganda- including that from the FBI (who, by their own admission, screwed up at Ruby Ridge, Waco, and, in this case, once tarred and feathered a small group of people who had nothing but good intentions) and believe we are a group of terrorists (and there is no convincing you of the true facts), then why on earth has our all-powerful government with its incredible intelligence agencies not neutralized us many years ago? Are you saying that we are incredibly lucky? That the government is short sighted? That the JDL is more powerful than the Federal government? Are you not willing to give us the same benefit of the doubt you seem so willing to give Pat Buchanan, your current political hero (who is, by the way, an outrageous Jew-hater)?
You scoff at JDL tactics, which you imply are anti-Libertarian because we publish names, telephone numbers and addresses of our political enemies on our website. Is this not legal in your view? Is it truly un-Libertarian, no matter how disgusting you think it is, to not shed tears over an Arab who died in a 1985 bombing; a man who, not 24 hours before his untimely demise, appeared on ABC's local Eyewitness News to urge the U.S. government to reestablish relations with Arafat and his PLO marauders- after these Arab terrorists slaughtered Leon Klinghoffer, a 69 year old, wheelchair bound man? Arafat's disciples fired a bullet into his head and threw him in the ocean, wheelchair and all. You may wonder why I had no tears for the aforementioned Arab (who, indeed, served as a whitewasher for all Arab acts of terror), but most other people do not.
As a Buchanan supporter, I understand fully your motivation for your attack against me and my organization. JDL has been tremendously effective with one of our ad hoc groups, Jews Against Buchanan. Indeed, one could probably count pro-Buchanan Jews in America on two hands. Buchanan believes the U.S. had no moral imperative to fight the Nazis in WWII. He praises Hitler as "a man of great courage," and states there was not enough carbon monoxide in Europe to poison Jews during that era. Interestingly, Buchanan never met a Nazi war criminal he didn't fall in love with. Did you know that Pat allegedly had an uncle who died at one of the concentration camps -- when he fell off a guard tower? You see, there's a little bit of humor, even in me.
Every Jew who understands Jew hatred should be considered armed and dangerous. That's in keeping with the Constitution of the United States. If there were only more Jews like JDL in the 1940's, we wouldn't be talking about a Holocaust today. You blame us for a whole litany of terror, but how will you, and whoever else believes the lies, prove it in a court of law? As a libertarian, have you ever heard the phrase "innocent until proven guilty?" We were never convicted of any of the acts you describe in your diatribe. As an alleged libertarian, you ought to be giving other citizens the benefit of the doubt. While the above stated admissions regarded property, you suggested we are a deadly terrorist organization, who's only goal is to eliminate innocent people. If there were any excesses in the past, they were the result of the few loose cannons who exist in any group that has militancy as one of its hallmarks. However, it has been almost two decades since any act or incident regarded as remotely militant was laid at our doorstep. Can we change? Has the political climate changed? Can a JDL personality get involved in Libertarian ideology? Recently, Arafat (who is directly responsible for the murder of two American diplomats) received a White House welcome. Other terrorists are freed daily by the Israeli government. You seem to have a particular fixation with dredging up ancient history.
My primary goal in joining the LP, after a lifelong affiliation with the GOP, was to give full expression to the Libertarian principle that the government that governs least governs best. Today, as I speak, we have received pleas of help from politicians in the state legislature of New Mexico (which has a Republican governor who is more Libertarian than Republican).
I'm glad you left the LP. I'm elated you have no influence within the party. I believe a self-hating Jew like yourself, who supports Pat Buchanan, who has no idea what a true freedom fighter is all about, will ultimately fail in trying your very best to have the LP kick me out. In the very short period of time I have been affiliated with the LP I have brought it a good measure of publicity -- something you were never able to do. Your dreams of becoming the Libertarian philosopher and writing speeches for its political candidates have apparently been rejected. Your fanatical misinterpretations of the anti-violence pledge begs this question: If the year were 1942 and Raimondo the Jew were alive with the knowledge of exactly what Adolf Hitler was doing, and somebody came to Raimondo with the suggestion that there was a way to take out Hitler and save the lives of the 50 million people who died in WWII, would Raimondo the Jew (who seems violently opposed to violence) turn down the opportunity because he took an abstract pledge to never initiate violence? Would that even violate the pledge at all?
Your sentiments of sympathizing with the Jewish community concerning the recent attacks have made light of a terrible situation. You know damn well that if you were in the Jewish Community Center of Granada Hills with a weapon on your person and did not fire it into the head of Buford Furrow, you would probably be considered not immoral, but amoral. If there is a God, and I bring to the LP a spiritual quality that I do believe the universe had a creator and that, to quote Albert Einstein, "God did not play dice with the universe," I swear by everything that is holy to come to the aid of each and every Libertarian if he or she is attacked, to defend the principles upon which this great republic was built, and to uphold the Constitution and all its amendments.
On Judgement Day, when I stand before the throne of God, alongside Raimondo (because we will all be judged on that day), when the Judge of Judges asks us what we did to combat evil, I'll proudly hold my head up high and say to God Almighty that I did not misinterpret any pledge or any promise to turn my back on evil. The pledge my fellow Libertarians take has to be tempered with each and every changing situation. When he asks what you did with your life, you'll have to say, "I gave lots of advice, and judged Irv Rubin and Harry Browne."
I want to take this opportunity to thank Mark Selzer for all his advice and friendship, and especially for his invitation to join the LP. He is truly a wonderful friend, and I will always take his advice. Also, I would like to express my thanks to Aaron Biterman and all my Libertarian friends who choose to stand with me against this vicious attack. I am sure that if it were not for our effort against Buchanan, this attack would not have occurred. With the utmost seriousness, I have a final thought concerning that pledge every Libertarian is supposed to take. A few months ago, Mark told me about a Libertarian mayor who was terrorized by one of his constituents in the city of Bellflower, California. The mayor's name is Art Olivier. My advice to him would be to defend yourself, and if your interpretation of the pledge stops you from safeguarding your person and property, then renege on the pledge.