Peter King: George Bush right on waterboarding

Posted by Seung Min Kim on November 10, 2010

Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) on Wednesday defended the Bush administration’s use of waterboarding and said a Democratic colleague was “entirely wrong” to call for an investigation into the interrogation method sanctioned by the previous White House.King, the presumptive next chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, pushed back against demands by Rep. Jerrold Nadler  (D-N.Y.) for a probe into Bush-era waterboarding and asserted that President George W. Bush’s authorization of the practice “saved many, many lives.”

“Jerry and I are friends, but he’s entirely wrong on this,” King said in an interview with POLITICO’s Arena. “There would’ve been...

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James Zogby, a Catholic of Lebanese descent, works to dispel myths about Arabs

Posted by Monica Hesse on October 20, 2010

In the early days after 9/11, employees of the Arab American Institute huddled in their modest K Street offices, afraid to leave the building. Police downstairs guarded the entrance, serving as protection from those who might deliver on the death threats sent to the nonprofit's founder and president, James Zogby. Raghead, they had said. I'll slit your throat.

This is not the story that Zogby likes to tell. He prefers the one that happened next, the one where, in the middle of the threats and the police and the fact that the world had suddenly gone pear-shaped, he heard a...

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Arab-Americans favor Democrats, poll shows

Posted by Denver Post Wire Report on October 05, 2010

WASHINGTON — Arab-Americans, once considered a political swing group, are now solidly Democratic, according to a poll released Monday.

The survey conducted for the Arab American Institute by Zogby International indicates that Arab-Americans prefer Democratic candidates in the Nov. 2 midterm elections and that they overwhelmingly favor a Democrat-controlled Congress.

The survey found that the controversy over the proposed New York mosque and community center reinforced Arab-Americans' Democratic leanings because many critics of the plan were Republicans.

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Losing Iowa

Posted by on September 10, 2010

Iowa may be the Achilles' heel in the fabled power of the Israel lobby. Unfortunately, Jews are losing the state.

There are about 6,000 Jews in Iowa according to the latest Statistical Abstract of the United States. That means only one in 500 Iowans is Jewish. By comparison, New York, California, and Illinois have 1.6 million, 1.2 million, and 278 thousand Jews, representing 8.3 percent, 3.3 percent, and 2.2 percent of their respective state populations. The challenge to maintain basic religious services in Iowa leaves little leadership to defend Israel and the Jewish people.

And yet, contrary to the coastal...

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Muslim congressional staffers respond to mosque controversy

Posted by Christina Wilkie on August 30, 2010

Members of the Congressional Muslim Staff Association (CMSA) will convene a panel discussion on Tuesday in response to the recent controversy over a proposed Islamic cultural center in lower Manhattan.Billed as a discussion of "Muslims in America: Myths and Realities," the three-member panel will be made up of Arab American Institute president Dr. James Zogby, Muslim Public Affairs Council president Salam Al-Maryati, and Dr. Azizah Al-Hibri, founder of KARAMAH: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights.The panel will be moderated by a former member of the Bush administration, Suhail Khan, now a fellow at the Institute for Global Engagement.According to a...

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Miss USA Rima Fakih with AAI Executive Director Maya Berry on Riz Khan Show

Posted by Al Jazeera on June 05, 2010

AAI Executive Director Maya Berry joins the newly crowned Miss USA, Rima Fakih to talk about her recent win and the strange response it has generated from some in the neocon community.

Part One

Part Two

"Was it affirmative action, political correctness, a plot to conceal a radical agenda or just a simple beauty pageant?The new Miss USA, Lebanese-born Rima Fakih, has sparked headlines around the globe for becoming the first Arab-American Muslim to win a major beauty contest. Those who see something more sinister at work than beauty...

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Arab-American Group Bestows Gibran Awards

Posted by Victor Shiblie on June 03, 2010

Special to the Diplomatic Pouch contributed by Victor Shiblie

Khalil Gibran was a 19th-century Lebanese poet, philosopher and artist whose work continues to inspire millions of people many years after his death. In his memory, the Arab American Institute (AAI) Foundation recently bestowed its annual Khalil Gibran Spirit of Humanity Awards at a dinner marking the foundation’s 25th anniversary.

The April 21 gala, held at Washington’s Renaissance Hotel, attracted 700 people from across the nation.

The Corporation for National and Community Service received AAI’s Award for Institutional Excellence, while Chicago Mayor Richard Daley was honored...

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The 2010 Kahlil Gibran Spirit of Humanity Awards

Posted by Kate Oczypok on May 24, 2010

The 2010 Kahlil Gibran Spirit of Humanity Awards were held on Wednesday evening at the Renaissance Hotel on 9th St downtown. The black-tie affair honored Hon. Richard M. Daley, Hon. Rosemary Barkett and Juma Al Majid. The Corporation for National and Community Service was also honored for their institutional excellence.

Sponsors enjoyed a reception before the gala, where Reps. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), Brian Baird (D-Wash.) and Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) among others attended.

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U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice Speaks at AAI’s Spirit of Humanity Awards

Posted by MoroccoBoard on May 23, 2010

On April 21, 2010, the Arab American Institute (AAI) held its 12th annual Kahlil Gibran “Spirit of Humanity” Awards in Washington, D.C. Ambassador Susan E. Rice, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations delivered the key speech for the event.

Ambassador Rice recognized the honorees of the evening, among them: Mayor Daley, Judge Barkett, Mr. Zeitoun, Juma al-Majid, and the Corporation for National Community Service for their commitment to advancing the common good initiative. “This year’s honorees remind us of the importance of some great American ideals: service, responsibility, inclusion, and equality. Citizenship grants us great blessings,...

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