Cynthia McKinney, Our White House, Congress and the Palestinians are Imprisoned

To the Honorable Members of the Congressional Black Caucus,

"I submit that an individual who breaks the law that conscience tells him is unjust and willingly accepts the penalty by staying in jail to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the very highest respect for law."

— Martin Luther King, Jr.

Peace and Greetings,

All of you are either soldiers, molders, or beneficiaries of the civil rights movement, a movement that will live in history as a light for freedom, justice, equality and hope for all who are denied their divine right to be free from another man’s oppression, brutality, arrogant supremacy, racism, and murder with self declared impunity. Much blood, lynching, beatings, imprisonment, and sacrifice was offered so that a black child grew up to become President. You honorable members of the House know first hand that your journey to power was paved with the flesh of the innocent. The oppressors did not voluntarily and altruistically grant you your rights, as of yet unfinished rights, but your rights were wrestled away by your just demands and rightful activism.

Much has been achieved yet much needs to be done. As America looks at Congress it sees an enduring equality where wealth and whiteness still dominate our political corridors. The Senate has only one black Senator while Jewish Americans, to their economic and educational credit, have thirteen Senators although they constitute less than two percent of the population. Both in the executive and legislative branches African American leadership is absent in matters of economics, defense, and foreign policy (not withstanding Rep. John Conyers as Judiciary Chair). Housing and urban renewal seem to the niche for Black politicians.

Give the black experience in America it is both shocking and disappointing that the CBC is deliberately absent and neglectful of the struggles of people around the world for their freedom and civil rights, especially if such has been taken away because of our own foreign policy, militarism, and our total blind subservience to Israel’s brutal military occupation of millions of Palestinians. The persecuted Jews of Europe are now the brutal persecutors of Palestinians while you, the descendants of slaves, are now by your silence toward the plight of the Palestinians who yearn to be free as they endure decades of injustice, collaborators in the tragedy and suffering of millions of Palestinian refugees, because of our support and because of your silence.

Dr. King spoke eloquently of your incredulous silence toward the imprisonment of one of your own: Former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney who for days is languishing in an Israeli jail because she believed enough, cared enough, and was moved enough as a black descendant of slaves and as a child of the civil rights movement to sacrifice herself to bring milk and medicine to the besieged children of Gaza, a siege that none of you have spoken against, although Rep. John Lewis and others have spoken publicly against Anti-Semitism and have never passed an opportunity to support all the Jewish introduced Congressional Resolutions that attack Israel’s enemies.

Dr. King wrote: "He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it."

Cynthia McKinney is truly an honorable woman with courage and principles missing in our political arena and for which sadly there are such few extraordinary role models for America’s children.

This is Ms. McKinney’s second attempt to break Israel’s two year siege of 1.5 million Palestinians whom the U.N. has repeatedly declared are living in a dire humanitarian crisis. The majority of children are malnourished and dying from preventable diseases. Their drinking water is contaminated with Israel’s sewage and military waste. The last time Ms. McKinney’s boat was deliberately rammed by an Israeli gunboat and forced to return to Lebanon in a damaged boat. This time she and other international activists including the Irish Nobel Peace Prize winner, Mairead Maguire(please see her letter to President Obama below) were aboard the ship "Spirit of Humanity" when Israel’s navy attacked the boat in international waters and took all aboard to an Israeli prison where till this day they are imprisoned and mistreated.

I cannot fathom your silence toward the imprisonment of a prominent American citizen, a former House colleague, a black woman with more courage and honor than the White House and Congress combined. Two institutions that would rather spend hundreds of billions of our dollars (during our deficits and crisis) and send our youth to fight Israel’s enemies than have the chutzpah to even "beg" for the release of Ms. McKinney. Please don’t reassure America that negotiation on her behalf is being done privately for all that does is reinforce the image that our politicians are loathe to speak publicly when it comes to Israel. Where are Reverends Jackson and Al Sharpton? Where are black radio and other media?

America knows far more than you credit it that to speak against Israel, even for the sake of American citizens, is political suicide. Perhaps a calculation has been made that Ms. McKinney, a black American, is not worth the potential political downfall, after all, no one wants to be an Anti Semite. (Semitism as you know refers to the Semitic “languages”; not to religion or ethnicity)

Have you abandoned the civil rights of Ms. McKinney to free speech, freedom to assemble and protest, her freedom to live her passion for freedom and justice for all? Does her plight immortalize Frederick Douglas’ call that July 4th does not apply to him?

I urge you to tap once again into your conscience, your historical experience, your innate belief that injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere, that all men are truly created equal and in a divinely just world deserve the inalienable rights to freedom, justice, and the pursuit of a life where equality with their fellow man is their highest calling.

I urge to demand Israel immediately release Ms. McKinney and her comrades. I urge you to follow the voice and sacrifice of Dr. King and all those who preceded you to demand Israel end its decade’s long illegal occupation of Palestinians that the entire world demands. The U.N., every International Human Rights Organizations (including those in Israel), Former Archbishop Desmund Tutu, President Jimmy Carter, Nelson Mandela, and scores of European and world leaders have described the living conditions in the occupied Palestinian territories as "Apartheid."

America’s peace and prosperity depends on freedom of the Palestinians as the surest step to end most hostilities with the Muslim world.

America is waiting for the clarion call from our leaders. Join your voices to the world’s demand for freedom and justice for the Palestinians and discover the overwhelming support Americans will be free to finally express without fear of retaliation or intimidation.

God bless you, your families, our nation, and all the huddled masses oppressed and imprisoned yearning to be free.


Mohamed Khodr, M.D.

P.S.: Cognizant of the enormous media bias toward Israel it’s understandable that the true picture of Israel’s founding, history, and militarism is slanted toward Israel’s narrative; thus, should you wish, I would be more than happy to come and speak with any of you on this matter, or share any DVDs or materials that will highlight the injustice that we support actively and by our silence.

P.S.S.: I have also sent a letter on Ms. McKinney to President Obama.

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