WASHINGTON (Jul. 30)
Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam, calling American Jewish leadership “spiritually blind,” accused them today of having an “abnormal” power over the United States government.
In a speech to the National Press Club here, Farrakhan also said that “the Israel that is the creation of the Zionists” is “based on falsehood and cannot exist when truth comes.” He said American Blacks are the “real Israel” and the “real chosen people.”
The entrance to the National Press Building and the Club itself as well as the dinning room where Farrakhan spoke was guarded by Farrakhan’s followers. All persons entering the dining room had to go through a metal screen similar to the ones used at the airports. John Fogarty, president of the National Press Club, said the heavy security was at Farrakhan’s request.
Farrakhan based his attack on Jewish leadership on what he said was the use of its power to force the Senate and governmental leaders to condemn him after he made his speech calling Judaism a “gutter” religion and force the Rev. Jesse Jackson to repudiate him in order to gain a place at the Democratic National Convention.
He charged that white Americans “hate” the “love and friendship” between him and Jackson and “you prevailed upon my brother to repudiate me on the basis of your lies …. You forced him to apologize to a people to whom he owes no apology so that he might have a place of honor and respect among the Democratic leadership.”
WILL NOT APOLOGIZE
When Farrakhan was asked whether he feels he owes anyone an apology, he declared: “No, 1 don’t think I owe anyone any apology. Those that brought our fathers into slavery owe us more than an apology. They owe us justice.”
When someone then pointed to a group of Arab reporters to note that Arabs were slave traders, Farrakhan replied, “Jews were too.” In his speech, he said that Arabs, Jews, Africans, Europeans and Americans were responsible for bringing Blacks to North America to be slaves.
Continuing his reply, Farrakhan said, “I think it is hypocrisy, designed by those to take Black leadership and cow them down before the majesty of Jewish and white American power to force Black men with strength to apologize.”
CHARGES DEMOCRATS ‘CAVED IN’
In his prepared speech, which was greeted by applause by some of the Blacks in the audience, and occasional boos, Farrakhan charged that Jewish leaders threatened the Democratic Party, former Vice President Walter Mondale and Colorado Senator Gary Hart that “if they ‘caved in’ to Jackson’s demands, particularly where Middle Eastern policy was concerned the Jews would leave the Democratic Party en masse take their money and join Reagan and the Republicans.”
Farrakhan said that “when I made the statement that Israel has not had any peace in 40 years and she will never have any peace because there can be no peace structured on injustice, lying, thievery and deceit, using God’s name to shield your dirty religion, or practice under his holy and righteous name, this was termed to be an attempt on my part to discredit Judaism as a religion. Tremendous pressure was exerted on Mr. Mondale, the leaders of the Democratic Party, the President and the Vice President, Jesse Jackson’s staff — then Jesse Jackson, members of Congress and pressure was out on certain Black religious, civic and political leaders to repudiate Louis Farrakhan.”
Farrakhan today and since he made his remarks in June about Judaism, insisted that he referred to Judaism as a “dirty” religion, not a “gutter” religion as he has been quoted. Nevertheless, playbacks of his June speech, by the media, has confirmed that he did use the term “gutter” religion.
Continuing with his remarks today, Farrakhan said. “There must be an unwritten law that Israel and Jews cannot be criticized, particularly by Blacks.
Anyone who does so must bear the burden of being called an anti-Semite. How could Reverend Jackson be considered a serious candidate for the Presidency to the United States and not touch on the critical issue of America’s Middle East policy ….”
SAYS JEWS HOLD POWER
Farrakhan then asked, “What kind of power does this small minority of Jews hold over the government that the Senate would call an emergency session to denounce me?” He added that “this abnormal show of the power of Jewish leadership demonstrates that the American people are losing or have lost a grip over their political process and over their elected officials, for whenever a powerful lobby can force an emergency session of the Senate just to repudiate me, something is gravely wrong.”
Farrakhan also accused Black leaders who repudiated him of being “pawns of Jewish leaders and interests and therefore, cannot lead in the best interests of Black people.” Farrakhan blamed the U.S. for helping “in taking land away from the Palestinian people and giving it to the Jewish people, contrary to God’s will.”
He said the U.S. has subsidized Israel for 40 years and Israel is now “becoming an increasing burden on the taxpayers of America.” He faulted the U.S. for not repudiating Israel after the invasion of Lebanon.
Farrakhan said that neither President Reagan nor Mondale “have displayed the vision needed to take America safely through the next four years.” When he was asked directly whether he would vote for Mondale, he replied, “I don’t see anything in Mr. Mondale to vote for him,” adding the same was true of Reagan.
Although there had been rumors that Jackson would attend today’s press luncheon, he was not there. When asked about this, Farrakhan said Jackson had to officiate at the funeral of singer Aretha Franklin’s father.
UAHC CASTIGATES PRESS CLUB FOR INVITING FARRAKHAN
Meanwhile, Harris Gilbert, chairman of the Union of American Hebrew Congregation’s commission on social action, sent a telegram to Fogarty criticizing the Club’s invitation to Farrakhan to speak.
“By lending the prestige of your organization to a bigot and a hatemonger whose inflammatory racist and anti-Semitic statements have appalled the American people and brought forth universal condemnation from our country’s religious and political leaders, you have further exacerbated racial tensions in our country and further inflated the importance of the leader of a miniscule sect,” Gilbert said in his telegram.
“Mr. Farrakhan has the right to express his opinions and he has found at least one radio station to broadcast his views. For the NPC to provide him with a major nationwide platform to spew his ugly hatred is an act of egregious irresponsibility.”