Public Comment

New: Please Stop Picking on John Gertz

By Paul Larudee
Monday July 09, 2012 - 04:29:00 PM

The appointment of John Gertz to the Berkeley Peace and Justice Commission corrects a gross inequity, just as the appointment of John Bolton as US Ambassador to the United Nations and Daniel Pipes to the U.S. Institute of Peace corrected inequities in those institutions. This is because these institutions have no counterpart. There is no Berkeley War and Injustice Commission, Divided Nations or U.S. Institute of War. As a result, there is no appropriate place to appoint such individuals. For that reason, the only alternative is to appoint them to the existing institutions. 

There have been a few attempts to create counterpart institutions in the past, but they have been rather clumsy. In 1949, for example, the Truman administration created the Defense Department. Unfortunately, it abolished the War Department at the same time. It could have left the War Department in place and created a Peace Department, or created an Offense Department to go with the Defense Department. Because it did not, however, the Defense Department has been doing double duty ever since (and in fact mainly offense). 

Given the lack of fair and balanced institutions in government, however, the only solution is to put the foxes in with the hens. Accordingly, I wish to suggest the appointment of Jamie Dimon as Chairman of the SEC, Bernie Madoff as Secretary of the Treasury and Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. 

In the meantime, please give a fair hearing to the credentials of John Gertz. He asks for Israel only the same rights as for the United States: the right to remove or exterminate the existing indigenous population and replace it with immigrants of the right ethnicity. In addition, the U.S. has had two hundred or more years of institutionalized racism, and Gertz asks no less for Israel. Until Berkeley institutes a Racism and Genocide Commission, therefore, I think it is only fair to place him on the Peace and Justice Commission.