WASHINGTON – the Jewish community in the west coast city of Seattle managed to thwart a media campaign against Israel, which calls on the US administration to halt all financial and defense aid to the Jewish state.
The campaign organizers spent thousands of dollars to place ads accusing the Israel Defense Forces of committing war crimes on sides of buses, but massive pressure from the Jewish community led the Transportation Department of King County to cancel the campaign at the last minute, claiming that it might incite violence.
The anti-Israel campaign, initiated by The Seattle Mideast Awareness, was scheduled to run for four weeks, and organizers rented ad space on 15 buses that travel through downtown Seattle.
The large ads feature Palestinian children standing next to a demolished structure, alongside the text: "Israeli war crimes. Your tax dollars at work."
In addition to many private complaints by local Jewish residents, King County Councilmember Peter von Reichbauer sent a letter to the department of transportation in which he warned that the campaign might endanger the city's Jewish community.
Seattle has already been targeted by terror organizations. In July 2006, a Jewish community building was attacked and a woman was killed during the incident.
The human rights group Stop Islamization of America (SIOA), a program of the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), announced that it will run king-sized ads to counter the anti-Israel campaign, reading: "In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Islamic jihad."
Concerns over a possible clash between the two sides also led to the decision to retract the permit for the campaign.
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