Monday, April 15, 2024

WATCH: Anti-War Activists in Chicago Shouting 'Death to Israel' and 'Death to America' in Farsi

WATCH: Anti-War Activists in Chicago Shouting 'Death to Israel' and 'Death to America' in Farsi

AP Photo/Paul Sancya

In 410AD, the city of Rome was sacked by the Visigoths under their king, Alaric. The Germanic tribes had invaded Italy and laid siege to the Eternal City, eventually breaking in and putting Rome to the sack. Now, today, the United States faces some implacable enemies. Still, there is a difference between Rome in 410 and the U.S. in 2024: Our enemies are already within the city walls, and the civic leadership seems unwilling to do anything about it.

On Saturday, "anti-war activists" gathered in a Teamster's Union hall in Chicago. The Free Press' Olivia Reingold brings us an account, including a video of the activists shouting "Death to Israel" and "Death to America" - in Farsi. It's hard to see that as anything but a direct threat.

In her report, Reingold writes:

“It’s really inspiring to see that people are just as enthusiastic, and maybe even more enthusiastic, to march on the DNC as they are to march on the RNC,” says Omar Florez, a Milwaukee-based activist. “We can thank Genocide Joe and our movement for that.”  

But then a man stumbles to the podium, wiping sweat from his forehead. He grabs the microphone to announce that the Islamic regime of Iran has launched missiles and drones heading straight toward Israel.

“They believe that they will be in Palestinian—I don’t call it Israeli—airspace between two and four a.m., which means about two to four hours from now,” he says. “In addition, there are reports of drones having been fired on Israel from Yemen and Iraq.”

So far, we can write this off as people exercising their rights of freedom of expression under the First Amendment - but the "activism" didn't stop there.

See Related: Iranians, Palestinians Celebrate on Streets After Iran's Israel Attack—but the Hangover May Be Rough

Earlier that day, before news of the attack broke, at a “breakout session” on “the anti-war movement,” Shabbir Rizvi, an organizer with Anti-War Committee Chicago, taught participants how to chant “death to Israel” and “death to America” in Farsi. 

Marg bar Israel,” he chanted, leading a group of about 80 attendees along with him. A man draped in a Soviet flag bearing a gold hammer and sickle clapped his hands. 

A man in a full black denim outfit shouted out behind his N95—“Can we get a ‘marg bar America’?”

“We can get a ‘marg bar America,’ ” Rizvi replied. 

Then Rizvi raised his hand in the air, leading the crowd like a conductor.

Marg bar America,” they cheered. 

This is beyond the bounds of the First Amendment. I'm as staunch a civil libertarian as anyone, I'm something of a First (and Second) Amendment absolutist, but this goes beyond the bounds of freedom of expression. This is a clear and unambiguous incitement to violence; this is an incitement that must be dealt with. This is a call to kill. These are the barbarians, and they are already within the city walls. It's not just happening in Israel anymore.

 Any of these people who are immigrants should have their visas revoked - and their citizenship, if necessary - and be deported to their points of origin. Any of these people who are native-born American citizens should face charges for incitement of rebellion under 18 U.S. Code § 2383 -  Rebellion or insurrection. While a lot of Reingold's description of this event portrays the ridiculous--like the activist with a pink mask and a "Protect Trans Kids" t-shirt--too much of this is deadly serious.

Incidentally, this isn't deadly serious to anyone else, any more so than the "Protect Trans Kids" activist, who, in a fundamentalist Islamic regime like Iran, would not survive long. The cognitive dissonance here is staggering.

On her way out of the event, Reingold describes a conversation she had with a woman who was outside, smoking a cigarette:

“Iran is part of the resistance,” said the woman, who flew in that morning from New Orleans, where she’s been part of an effort to disrupt Israel-bound shipments in her hometown. “Yemen and Iran and Hezbollah, who are also a militant group in Lebanon, and the Syrian government are all parts of the arc of resistance.” 

A smile creeps across her face as she tells me: “They’re part of the arc of resistance because the enemies are Israel and the USA.” 

This, folks, is the face of the enemy. And they are already here.


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