Peace Against Truth: When Peace Movements Reinforce Evil

By The First Jerusalem Summit | by Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, ACD Director
Sunday, October 12th, 2003 @ 6:21AM

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It was not that long ago that the word “peace” was identified as a Stalinist word. In fact, the Soviets used Peace Movements and co-opted them, as part of their doctrine to undermine the West. They used Western intelligencia, academicians and the media to propagate “peace” messages that supported the communist and socialist agenda. The communist legacy survived the implosion of the Soviet Union through the secular left and radical organizations in Europe and elsewhere. Muhammad replaced Marx and Lenin; Radical Islam replaced the Socialist Nationalist doctrines of the Arab revolutionaries. But the PEACE Movements continued and were even adopted by Islamists everywhere.

In their heyday, the Soviets spent one billion dollars annually for propaganda purposes. In comparison, Saudi Arabia has been spending at least two and a half billion dollars per year to spread the Wahhabist anti-Western, anti-American, anti-Jewish and anti-Israeli messages around the world – all, we are now told by the Saudis – in the name of “equality and peace.” This campaign permitted the spread of the Wahhabist agenda and incitement against the US and Israel to go unchallenged.

It is still prevalent despite 9/11. And the Saudis have company: millions of dollars that were paid by Saddam Hussein to reporters and politicians in the West had similar results. In the meantime, the UN, host of international NGOs, and the Europeans, joined in, and in addition to spreading hate propaganda, they kept the West mislead and misinformed.

To understand the visceral aversion to the values that Western democracies hold dear, it helps to recall the roots of international terrorist organizations. The Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), for example, were created as Marxist-Leninist groups in the 1960s. The Soviet Union and its European and Latin American satellites initially sponsored all of them. Their training included indoctrination, as well as unconventional warfare, ranging from terrorism to other criminal activities, especially drug trafficking — an amalgam that all adopted early on.

Years and billions of dollars later, and the growing influence of the Peace Movements brought the Clinton Administration to go out of its way to appease some of the 20th Century’s most notorious terror groups, such as the FARC and the PLO. Both groups pursue objectives that are incompatible with free-market and democratic society. To the extent that “peace” means democratic representation — and thus a loss of the political control that keeps them in business — these groups fear it, and are determined to see these processes derailed. Yet, in the name of peace, the U.S. has pursued a risky policy of conferring the sanctioning of legitimacy on the affiliates of terrorist movements.

Of course, for a time, this appeared to pay off. Peace talks were all the rage; cease-fires seemed to follow one another and left the impression of progress. When these terrorists threatened to attack the U.S. or Western targets, the Clinton Administration chose to see these threats as internal propaganda only.

The Clinton “land for Peace” initiative failed not only in Colombia. In Israel, the Clinton Administration subsidized a multitude of radical Palestinian groups, ranging from Arafat’s Fatah branch of the PLO and its military wing, the Tanzim, to the socialist-nationalist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), headed by George Habash.

In Colombia, this erroneous policy of “land for peace” gave half the country to the Narcoterrorists. And in Israel, it not only legitimized the PLO through the creation of the Palestinian Authority (PA), it also rewarded that organization by giving it control over the West Bank and Gaza.

Motivated mostly by greed, the Colombian Narcoterrorists as well as the Palestinian terrorists, have built criminal empires that have all but obscured their respective societies. While ostensibly negotiating at the table, they have, and are filling their pockets with ill -gotten gains, while manipulating the media into portraying themselves as victims seeking justice.

The PLO helped by the Peace Movements turned this into an art form. Despite the PLO’s ongoing terrorist activities since its inception in 1964, the UN, which is created to maintain international peace and security as stated in its Charter, embraced the PLO in 1974, by granting it observer status. This legitimization enabled the PLO to open offices worldwide, to obtain financial backing and to increase its assets and income by a multiple of 16 or 17, between 1974 and 1981. Over the years, the PLO received financial and political support from the Soviet Union and its satellites around the world until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. It was also supported by Latin American and African countries, members of the Arab League and other Third World nations. The contributions to the PLO were coming while the PLO continued its terror activities, not only to promote its stated agenda “to establish a Palestinian state,” but also in the service of other countries such as Egypt, Libya, Sudan, Syria and others.

The wealth accumulated by the PLO allowed it to fund an international propaganda campaign, which contributed to its growing popularity and increased its influence. Under the guise of “fighting for peace”, the PLO was allowed to continue its terrorist and illegal activities with impunity.

In 1987 the US declared the PLO an international terrorist organization, but the PLO’s propaganda campaign was so successful that it took only a year for a presidential waiver to be issued permitting contact with the PLO. And the concessions towards this terrorist organization have not stopped since. With the international recognition of its “peaceful agenda,” the PLO was allowed to collect and launder money all over the world. Their activities were facilitated, and still are, by corruption and hypocrisy worldwide, which have made their illicit funds easy to launder and hide.

The total amount of wealth accumulated by the PLO from its inception until the Oslo Accords has been estimated by a variety of sources. In 1990, the CIA estimated that the PLO had a fortune of between eight and fourteen billion dollars and in 1993 and 1994, the British National Criminal Intelligence Services estimated that they had about ten billion dollars. The British report also noted that the PLO was, in fact, the wealthiest of the world’s terrorist organizations. This money was supposed to be distributed to the Palestinian people. Instead, Yasser Arafat used the contributions to enhance his power and expand the PLO’s terror activities, while the Peace movements kept quite.

And even though the Palestinian Authority was established under the Oslo Accords, there has never been a firm demanded for the PLO to account for the missing fortunes of the Palestinian people. Instead, the corrupt PA led by Arafat, continued to receive billions of dollars from the international donor community for the stated purpose of aiding the Palestinian people and to “enhance the peace in the region.”

The six billion dollars that the PA has received since 1993 has come from the EU, the UN, the US, Saudi Arabia and other Arab League countries, as well as organizations such as The FORD Foundation. This has done little to advance the development of a viable Palestinian state, or peace in the region. Instead, this Funding of Evil, has helped to fuel the Palestinian leadership’s terrorist agenda and kept the Palestinian people oppressed and disenfranchised. Despite all this, most international organizations and the World Community at large, continue to ignore the on going human and civil rights violations of the Palestinians. All – in the name of “Peace..”

So, when international meetings are held to find ways to stop terrorists funding, such as yesterday’s meeting of the “Group of 20” in Morelia, Mexico, it would help if not only the Hawalla systems are addressed, but also the countries and organizations that fund terrorism in the name of “peace.”

President Bush agenda to bring democracy and freedom to the Middle East is commendable. It will not happen over night and it won’t be easy. But it could be helped when the peace movements stop supporting the oppressors and concentrate their efforts to enhance true welfare and peace for ALL the people in the Middle East.

* Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, author of Funding Evil; How Terrorism is Financed – and How to Stop It (Bonus Books, 2003), is the Director of the NYC based American Center for Democracy (www.acdemocracy.org).


Categories: U.S. Policy

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