ZOA Criticizes Obama’s Counter-Terror Adviser Brennan For Calling Jerusalem By Arabic Name Al-Quds
May 21, 2010

Brennan wants U.S. to speak to Hizballah ‘moderates’





The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has drawn attention to remarks by John Brennan, Deputy National Security Adviser for Homeland Security, in a speech in which he referred to his favorite city as “al-Quds, Jerusalem.” Al-Quds is the Arabic name for Jerusalem and an “Al-Quds Day,” originally started in Iran under Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in 1983, is cause for annual anti-Israeli demonstrations throughout the world.


In the same speech, Brennan also spoke of his time at the American University in Cairo in the 1970s, referring to the common aspirations of his former Egyptian, Jordanian and Palestinian classmates, including the freedom “to practice our faith freely … In Saudi Arabia, I saw how our Saudi partners fulfilled their duty as custodians of the two holy mosques at Mecca and Medina” (‘Top Obama Officials Now Calling Jerusalem “Al-Quds,”’ YouTube, may 199, 2010).


Also, in another recent speech, Brennan referred to Hizballah – the Lebanese Iranian proxy terrorist group that seeks Israel’s obliteration, as a “very interesting organization” that is evolving from “purely a terrorist organization” to a militia to an organization that now has members within the parliament and the cabinet. Brennan said, “There is certainly the elements of Hezbollah that are truly a concern to us what they’re doing. And what we need to do is to find ways to diminish their influence within the organization and to try to build up the more moderate elements” (‘U.S. wants to build up Hezbollah moderates: adviser,’ Yahoo News, May 18, 2010).


Hizballah has called continually, as does the Iranian regime that created and directs it, for the elimination of Israel. In 2002, its leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, said at a graduation ceremony in Haret Hreik: “if they [Jews] all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.” (Daily Star [Beirut], October 23, 2002).


ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “These comments by John Brennan are as outrageous as they are deeply troubling. Jerusalem has been known by the name Jerusalem for centuries. No one refers to Jerusalem in the English language as Al-Quds unless they have a specific political, anti-Israel agenda, in this case, pandering to Israel’s enemies, who will draw comfort from the use of the term Al-Quds by a senior U.S. government official.


“It is also disgraceful that Mr. Brennan’s pandering is taken so far that he speaks of some supposed shared goal of freedom of religious practice and then immediately refers in complimentary words to Saudi Arabia, a country that is notorious for its harsh denial of freedom of religion, in which even non-Wahhabi Muslim mosques are prohibited, let alone churches and synagogues.


“Worse, Brennan give unwarranted legitimacy to the recognized terrorist group Hizballah, thereby undercutting past U.S. efforts to isolate this murderous outfit.


“John Brennan is yet another hand-picked Obama adviser who shows a distinct animus against Israel and partiality for its enemies. It is unsurprising that, when Barack Obama is advised by people like these, quite apart from the President’s own troubling history of friendships with vicious critics of Israel and having belonged for two decades to an anti-Israel, anti-American black supremacist church, the Obama Administration has ignited major tensions in its relations with Israel while not holding accountable and penalizing the Palestinian Authority (PA) for continuing terrorism and incitement to hatred and murder.”


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