Rabbi Michael Lerner Salutes “Amazing” 9/11 Truth Efforts

From: Andrew Johnson

Date: 2006-08-25 11:19:12

Rabbi Michael Lerner Salutes “Amazing” 9/11 Truth Efforts Rabbi Michael Lerner Salutes “Amazing” 9/11 Truth Efforts
Calls for Spiritual Covenant, Social Change
By Kevin  Rabbi Michael Lerner, the prominent progressive Jewish activist and founder of Tikkun , has offered a powerful statement of encouragement and advice to the exploding 9/11 truth movement . Rabbi Lerner’s call for turning 9/11 truth into a force for  social change, and not just a forum for theorizing, offers a welcome note of inspiration to the upcoming international 9/11 truth conference in Chicago, 9/11: Revealing the Truth, Reclaiming Our Future , June 2nd to June 4th, 2006: 911truth.org/Chicago… In an essay entitled “What If We Succeed in Exposing 9/11 as a Fraud…What Next?” Rabbi Lerner writes: “…I salute the people in this collection of articles who are doing an amazing job of exposing what may prove to be one of the most perverse conspiracies in the history of democratic governments.” The essay will be published in 9/11 and the American Empire: Jews, Christians and Muslims Speak Out (Interlink, fall 2006). Rabbi Lerner’s statement echoes the sentiments of the late, great Christian activist William Sloane Coffin, who shortly before his death offered a ringing endorsement of the 9/11 truth movement . Lauding the research of the prominent theologian and 9/11 truth advocate David Ray Griffin , Coffin concluded his statement: “9/11 TRUTH IS A VERY IMPORTANT ISSUE WITH THE POWER TO BRING LASTING CHANGE TO OUR COUNTRY.” Rabbi Lerner shares William Sloane Coffin’s focus on the power of 9/11 truth to bring positive, lasting change. In his essay, the Tikkun founder and veteran activist urges the 9/11 truth movement to develop a framework including “specific suggestions for how to repair the damage done by these crimes, or else risk the debate being defined by the media that are more concerned to prove the viability of the system than to change it.” If we do not develop a program for positive change, Rabbi Lerner worries that a 9/11 truth triumph could prove a pyrrhic victory: “We risk throwing one tyrant out of office only to find that the system of tyranny has actually survived and even been strengthened in the process. That is why the time is now, even as the courageous writers in this volume are still trying to obtain a forum for this important public discussion, for others of us to be developing a positive vision of what to do next once the details of what happened are exposed and those involved are being brought to trial.” Rabbi Lerner’s vision of 9/11-truth-triggered social and spiritual change is ambitious and provocative: “In my new book The Left Hand of God: Taking Back Our Country from the Religious Right, I present a Spiritual Covenant with Americans which shows a very different way to challenge the power of war- and violence-oriented ideologies. Instead of showing the evil intents of those who propose them, I provide an account of the fears that make those worldviews plausible to millions of Americans, and then present an alternative, spiritual-based worldview that provides a coherent alternative. I argue for a strategy of generosity that would commit the US to lead the G8 countries to use 5% of the Gross Domestic Product of each of those countries every year for the next twenty years, starting with the US, to eliminate global poverty, homelessness, hunger, inadequate education, inadequate healthcare and to repair the damage done to the global environment by 150 years of irresponsible forms of industrialization. Winning support for this kind of thinking requires a very different kind of argument and focus than “could the towers have fallen as a result of strikes by airplanes.” Rabbi Lerner wisely cautions 9/11 activists to keep their eyes on the prize—a positive vision of a post-9/11-truth world—and to avoid focusing too narrowly on the evil people responsible for 9/11. The point of 9/11 activism, in this view, is to contribute to building a better world by discrediting aggressive war, fascism, and global injustice, rather than simply prosecuting a few criminals while leaving the corrupt system that produced them in place. Rabbi Lerner strongly suggests that the prosecution of American architects of the 9/11 attacks could provide an opportunity for positive social change: “In fact, the kind of psychic trauma that would happen were the charges of intentional involvement in 9/11 by the president, vice president, and other high office holders or leaders of our security apparatus ever proved in a court of law would almost certainly open up political space for a serious discussion of the kinds of radical changes I’m suggesting in the direction of our approach to foreign policy and homeland security.” Rabbi Michael Lerner’s essay “What If We Succeed in Exposing 9/11 as a Fraud…What Next?” represents the most forthright and visionary 9/11 truth statement yet by any prominent American Jewish leader. It is also a critically important contribution to the “Reclaiming Our Future”  conversation in the 9/11 truth movement. Along with the already-mentioned statement by William Sloane Coffin , and the soon-to-be-published collection of 9/11 truth essays  by respected religious thinkers from across the denominational spectrum, Rabbi Lerner’s statement shows that a growing interfaith 9/11 truth alliance  is well on the way to healing the wounds of hatred and bigotry that the 9/11 covert operation inflicted. Those inspired by Rabbi Lerner’s vision of an interfaith spiritual covenant for positive change may wish to attend the Tikkun-sponsored Spiritual Activism Conference in Washington, D.C.: May 17-20, All Souls Church, Unitarian, 1500 Harvard St NW, Washington, D.C.: www.tikkun.org/commu… , as well as the upcoming Chicago 9/11 truth conference June 2nd-4th: 911truth.org/Chicago…   

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