Monday, June 15, 2009

Curious, George

An interesting event on tap in Brooklyn Center on June 30th:

VIVA PALESTINA : A lifeline from the U.S. to Gaza

Not a lot of details on the contents of the evening's program or why Spanish revolutionary exhortations are being employed to name programs to delivery supplies on behalf of the Palestinians. But you probably have an idea what's in store when you see who the headliners are:

George Galloway and Osama Abu Irshaid

Yes, good ol' George, Member of Parliament representing Mecca, to this day an unapologetic supporter of the Soviet Union, and star of U.K. media. Last time we heard George's name in these parts he was being investigated for being on the receiving end of some rather dubious financial transactions as part of the Oil for Food scheme. While his supporters trumpet that he was exonerated, the jury is still out on the extent of Galloway's involvement in any illicit activity and we will likely never know the whole truth of the matter.

He's also been the victim of some strange "attacks" including the infamous stress ball incident:

On 22 April 2008, Galloway was campaigning in London from an open-top bus. While touring central London ahead of the next week's elections the MP was knocked unconscious by a rubber stress ball which was thrown at him from a first floor window of a nearby office building by an office worker. The ball, around the size of a tennis ball, hit Galloway on the side of the head which caused him to become dazed.[48]

Not really the kind of event likely to immortalized in protest song. And it probably didn't do much to build his revolutionary street cred.

Another aspect of Galloway's visit to Minnesota is that he's recently been banned in Canada:

On 20 March 2009, Galloway was advised by the Canada Border Services Agency he was deemed inadmissible to Canada on "security grounds" due to his involvement in the Viva Palestina aid convoy to the Gaza Strip following the 2008-2009 Israel-Gaza conflict.[131] The Gaza Strip is governed by Hamas, which is on Canada's list of terrorist organisations.

But hey, one country's terrorist organization is another appeaser's freedom fighters, right? That's a point I'm sure Galloway will revisit during his appearance here.

In case you're wondering who's behind bringing Galloway to the Twin Cities:

Endorsed by: AlMadinah Cultural Center, Muslim Student Association at the UoM (MSA), Women Against Military Madness (WAMM), Committees for Palestinian Rights (CPR), Palestinian Institute, The International Jewish anti-Zionist Network, Twin Cities (IJAN TC)

Pretty much what you would call the usual suspects.

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