December 13, 2009

Broadcast Date: 
Dec 13 2009

How Americans fund pro-settler Israeli troops; the Family has its fingerprints all over Uganda's draconian anti-gay law; plus what do Williamsburg's Hassidim have against bike lanes?

Episode segments
  • U.S. Tax Exempt Organizations Pay Israeli Soldiers For Supporting Settlers
    Israel/Palestine, Occupation
    Akiva Eldar is a senior political commentator for Haaretz newspaper and the co-author, with Idith Zertal, of Lords of the Land: the war over Israel's settlements in the occupied territories, 1967-2007.
    Marilyn Kleinberg Neimark and K.E. Feldman

    For decades successive U.S. administrations have said that Jewish settlements in the Occupied Territories threaten any peace between Israel and the Palestinians.  At the same time, the U.S. government encourages Americans to support settlers by allowing tax deductions for contributions to organizations that fund them. In a recent article in Haaretz, Akiva Eldar describes how U.S. taxpayers are funding an organization--SOS Israel and its U.S. arm, a tax exempt entity called Machanaim--that rewards IDF soldiers who refuse orders to demolish illegal settlements, evacuate settlers, and often stand by while settlers attack Palestinians and their property.

    For a report from the International Crisis Group on Israel's Religious Right and the Question of Settlements, click here.  Go to page 31, for information about some of the U.S. based tax exempt organizations that fund settlers.

    To listen to our interview with Akiva Eldar about Lords of the Land, click here.

  • Uganda's Draconian Anti-Gay Legislation
    Global Justice, Christian Right, International Politics
    Jeff Sharlet is the author of The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power and a contributing editor to Harpers and Rolling Stone..
    Marilyn Kleinberg Neimark

    Beyond the Pale talks with Jeff Sharlet about the role of the Christian right, and the Family in particular, in inspiring the draconian anti-gay legislation now making its way through the Ugandan Parliament.  While many members of the Family, and the Christian right, both in the U.S. and in Uganda, have said they are appalled by the proposed bill, their opposition has for the most part been too little too late, and two of the bill's main supporters in Uganda may be coming to the Family's National Prayer Breakfast in the U.S. early next year.

  • Bedford Avenue Bike Lane Brouhaha
    New York Politics, Electoral, Jewish Communities, Jewish
    Gersh Kuntzman is the editor of The Brooklyn Paper
    K.E. Feldman

    On December 1st, New York City's Department of Transportation sandblasted away the painted bike lane on Williamsburg's busy Bedford Avenue, much to the dismay of bike commuters.  When a group of cyclists tried to repaint the lane in an act of civil disobedience, two of them were arrested.  Beyond the Pale talks with Gersh Kuntzman about rumors that the local Hasidic community was behind the bike lane's removal.