Look for Jihad’s Union Label
SUMMARY: “Progressives,” including those in the labor movement in the U.S., are rapidly aligning themselves with Islamic political radicalism. Within unions that are historically pro-Israel, support is growing for the anti-Israel program known as BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions). In public schools, members of teachers’ unions are pushing partisan positions in favor of Islam. This is an emerging “red-green alliance”—red being the traditional color of the Left and green the traditional color of Islam—and it should alarm all mainstream Americans.
On September 24, 2010, FBI agents, investigating support for terrorist groups like Hamas, raided the Chicago home of Joe Iosbaker, chief steward of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 73. SEIU is a major political force in the United States—it was the union most closely allied with President Barack Obama—and the raid provided a troubling reminder of the drift of America’s labor unions into a “red-green alliance” with radical Islamism.
SEIU Local 73 pledged solidarity with the subjects of the raid, which included Iosbaker, his wife Stephanie Weiner, and former SEIU Local 73 Executive Board member Tom Burke. These individuals were “seeking peace and justice for workers and other oppressed people throughout the world,” according to the union’s resolution in solidarity with Iosbaker, Weiner, and Burke. The resolution noted an additional union connection, that Weiner is a member of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).
Iosbaker was a staff adviser for the University of Illinois-Chicago chapter of Students for a Democratic Society; SDS is the radical group best known for its violent offshoot, the Weather Underground. Iosbaker has described his wife as an “activist in the Palestine solidarity movement.” And he has spoken favorably of the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, declaring the farcical June 3, 2014, election to be a triumph for the Syrian people. At a press conference at the United Nations headquarters in New York, he said, regarding participation in the election, that the “Syrian people are an inspiration.” The election was a “defeat for the United States, for NATO, for the Zionists and the Gulf States.”
Contrast his views on Syria with his opinion of Israel. Iosbaker told PressTV, an Islamic Republic of Iran front, that Israel is a “racist” and “terrorist regime.” Although supported by “US imperialism…Israel is living on borrowed time and stolen land.” And, in 2016, “Israel’s occupation of Palestine has led to a third heroic Intifada.” (Intifada is an Arabic word meaning tremor or “shaking off” as with dirt. Figuratively, it means an uprising, particularly the violence by Islamist Palestinians against Israel.)
Widespread anti-Israel activism
The anti-Israel Iosbaker is not alone in the American labor movement, as indicated by the website of Labor for Palestine (LFP), a group that “endorses the 2005 Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) picket line.” LFP’s December 1, 2004, founding statement declared that “Israel’s war on the Palestinian people reflects imperial domination throughout the Middle East,” which the “Palestinian people have courageously resisted.” (For more on the BDS movement, see “Progressivism’s New Hate on Campus,” Organization Trends, January 2016.)
Various American union chapters have heeded this “picket line.” The list includes International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) Local 10. As announced on Facebook, ILWU Local 10 participated in the October 25, 2014, “Block the Boat” campaign to prevent the offloading of an Israeli Zim line cargo ship in Oakland, California. “Join the BDS movement to end Israeli apartheid!” and “Zionism is simply not welcome on our coasts,” ILWU Local 10 announced.
To read full article from Jihad Watch, click HERE.