Say What You Will About Cynthia McKinney…

But no matter what one thinks of Ms. McKinney, she backs her convictions not just with her own money but her very skin: she went as a human rights advocate aboard a Gaza relief boat. And this morning, that boat was rammed three times by an Israeli patrol vessel, leaving it damaged and forcing it to take a detour in Tyre, Lebanon.

Sometimes former US Rep. and recent Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney comes across a little…ah…wild-eyed. I do happen to agree with most of her foreign policy positions, and she even seems to prefer a hands-off approach to Zimbabwe and, surprisingly, liberal cause célèbre Darfur. I do find her positions on trade to be poorly informed but this isn’t kookery — most politicians hold similarly dirigiste views.

But no matter what one thinks of Ms. McKinney, she backs her convictions not just with her own money but her very skin: she went as a human rights advocate aboard a Gaza relief boat. And this morning, that boat was rammed three times by an Israeli patrol vessel, leaving it damaged and forcing it to take a detour in Tyre, Lebanon.

“I would call it ramming. Let’s just call it as it is,” McKinney said. “Our boat was rammed three times, twice in the front and once on the side.

“Our mission was a peaceful mission, but our mission was thwarted by the Israelis, the aggressiveness of the Israeli military.”

No other current or former US Congressperson has done something similar, as far as I know. Dennis Kucinich is calling for a United nations inquiry, and I suppose that’s a nice gesture. But Ms. McKinney got herself on board a ship to steward relief supplies to the suffering civilians of a war zone beseiged by weapons her own country financed. Maybe it takes a little wackiness to get us some real activism.

One thought on “Say What You Will About Cynthia McKinney…”

  1. Although I don’t believe the US government should be taking sides in any war, I do have great respect for individuals who stand up for what they believe in. All of the people out there who choose to take the Palistinian side of this conflict should take note of Cynthia McKinney. Please don’t ask for my support in any war, but I would never suggest that you as an individual should not take action. The palistinian people need help and if that is where you think your money and effort are best spent go for it. For myself, I’ll spend my time and money helping the people who are having trouble in my own neighborhood.


    1. I completely agree we should not be taking ANY Sides in these matters. What really gets me is that the U.S. government takes the Israeli side not out of deeply held convictions or a firm belief that its cause is more “just” but simply due to the power, money organizational skills and political and media influence of the Israeli lobby. There is no Palestinian equivalent of AIPAC, for instance.

      1. The U.S. Congress is the best that money can buy. Everyone in it, with the exception of Representative Ron Paul, is on the Israel Lobby’s “payroll,” so to speak.

        About Cynthia McKinney’s relief boat: She’s lucky the Israeli bastards didn’t give her the pasting they gave U.S.S. LIBERTY!

  2. As a Zimbabwean, I am offended that Cynthia takes a hand-off position on Zimbabwe. All I can get from that is that she must think it’s okay for black people to suffer such unspeakable abuse under a dictator who retains power through the barrel of a gun. As an African, I find it sickening to read this as it reek of double standards.

    1. Mr. Mangwende:

      Please accept my sincere condolences on Zimbabwe’s current plight. I cannot imagine how anyone abides life under a despicable, murderous thug like Robert Mugabe. However, in Congresswoman McKinney’s defense, I believe that her position stems from the belief that Zimbabwe’s woes can only be fixed by Zimbabweans themselves and that any political interference by a foreign power, especially one with America’s current global reputation, would only be counterproductive, leading only to more suffering as the paranoid and murderous Mugabe, faced with new foreign-backed opposition, purges his population of those whom he suspects as “agents of American imperialism.” (I don’t believe that Ms. McKinney has any objections to Americans as individuals or privately organized groups providing their own relief efforts to help the Zimbabwean people, to the extent that they’re able to do so). The Palestinians, on the other hand, are under the oppression of a foreign invader, the yoke of whom they are unable to fully remove by themselves. Perhaps Ms. McKinney’s sojourn in this case was made as a statement to demonstrate to the world that not ALL of America’s criminal ruling class is the chattel of Israeli interests.

      1. I agree with your sentiments precisely. I would also extend condolences to the people of Zimbabwe, but I cannot see how McKinney’s “hands off” approach could be seen as racially biased considering she is an African-American.

        I believe that individuals, such as McKinney and others, should be empowered to take action themselves outside of government auspices. This could be in regard to numerous issues – in particular I believe all foreign aid should be eliminated and the money saved given back to the taxpayers. Those same people who wish the U.S. government to intervene in every crisis around the globe can then work with others and contribute to causes they feel are just instead of putting that choice in the hands of government bureaucrats who will make that decision based on political/ideological biases or the whims of special interest groups.

        I think it is to the great credit of many Americans that they wish to ease the suffering of those in far off lands, but they need realize that the U.S. government is not the best vehicle by which to bring about relief and often either fails miserably or causes unintended – and often deadly – consequences.

      2. Good response, but you neglected to mention “The Peace of Westphalia.” It was primarily a religious agreement but has since been extended in international politics to say that one country has no right to meddle in the affairs of another. The US has frequently violated it, but the idea is sound – would you like Zimbabwe or Saudi Arabia or some of the other pestilential hellholes in the world dictating their views on your country?

        I would like to modify this concept to the degree that if your country is not governed by democratically-elected people responsible to the population then other countries are allowed to interfere (and this has happened in recent years, although such intervention was really about oil and other natural resources with no real concern for the people involved). But other countries would insist that “Dear Leader” is chosen by Gawd and their system is loads better than democracy. Such disputes can only be resolved by inter-country warfare, which is usually worse for the populations of those countries than their own leadership (Zimbabwe and the Sudan are notable exceptions).

        Westphalia was the international law equivalent of John Stewart Mill’s “On Liberty:” just because you think the other guy is behaving stupidly you have no right to stop him unless his actions harm others. Just because you think a country is wrong you have no right to intervene unless it’s harming other countries. This is a concept I am far from comfortable with, but I realize that the alternative would be much worse. Most of the time you have to go with the least worst choice, knowing that in an ideal, Panglossian world, things would be different.

        BTW, the reality is that Zimbabwe and the Sudan don’t have much in the way of natural resources that the US wants to steal, so they’re not going to get any serious attention from anyone in the US Government. If Kuwait’s only export had been cabbages, Bush 41 would never have lied us into that war. I don’t like that this is the way things work but I acknowledge that they do work that way. When Zimbabwe is the last

        1. Aaargh! PEBCAK error, caused by much vodka.

          When Zimbabwe is the last source of some natural resource the US deems essential, then the US will intervene. I wish things were otherwise, but we’re dealing with human nature here. McKinney and Kucinich are bucking the tide. I think they’re morally right, but I have no expectation that they will succeed.

    2. What would you want for Zimbabwe? An Iraq-style liberation by the U.S.? Mugabe is not Kagame, an imperialist proxy facilitating the West’s plunder of Africa, hence all U.S. could bring is bombs and destruction of Zimbabwe. Consequently, “hands off” approach is by far the best thing one can hope for.

    3. As an American, how is it my problem that the people of Zimbabwe (and most other Africa nations) allow themselves to be ruled by a gang of thugs? Gangs like Mugabe’s are a small minority in every country. They only exist because about half the people want to live in some type of slavery and refuse to do anything about these gangs. If choose to feel offended, then that is just too bad. I don’t care one iota. What is a keyboard jockey like you doing about Mugabe?

      1. The problems of Zimbabwe (and other countries) must be solved by the people there and not by America. This idea (a very dangerous idea) that America has some “magical solution” to all the world’s problems is VERY WRONG and has caused no end of trouble.

  3. I’m really sorry that Mr. Sapienza feels compelled to qualify his remarks about former Congresswoman McKinney, an American patriot and compassionate world citizen, perhaps on the basis of her libelous depiction by the same “mainstream” media that for years has given the world a prejudiced view of events in Palestine. I suggest he and his readers take a look at the award-winning documentary, “American Blackout”, which makes it clear that Ms. McKinney’s tarnished reputation is the direct result of her taking on powerful forces who successfully traded on old racial and sexual stereotypes to make sure the public interpreted her direct style as lack of sophistication and her passion as hysteria. No one needs to be embarrassed to admire this woman!

  4. What the Israelis are doing is pure thuggery.

    My friend’s theory: Israel can’t have any viable government on their
    borders. They need them all (Lebanese, Palestinians etc…) to be weak and easily threatened. They may make motions about creating a Palestinian state (even creating a pseudo
    border with their wall –another thing they learned from the Germans, beside
    thuggery), but we all know a sovereign state with its own police & military
    will never be acceptable.”

    First of all GOOD FOR Ms. McKinney. I wish I had the courage to do what she is doing. Everytime an American steps in to help the Palestinian they are IMMEDIATELY THWARTED. Ms. Rachel Corrie is also a victim. Ms. Corrie tried to keep a bulldozer from tearing down a Palestinian family’s home and she was UNARMED and extremely visible yet the Israeli spinned the her death to make it was an accident. THIS IS AN OUTRAGE!!! DOWN WITH MURDERING ISRAELIS AND THE AMERICANS SUPPORTING THESE TERRORISTS.

    1. Israel will not condone a viable and stable government in their neighborhood, because they apparently feel threatened by it. Which, in my opinion, is why they ordered George Bush to invade and destroy the country of Iraq. It is why they invaded Lebanon in 2006 (where, much to their surprise, they got their asses kicked) and is also why they have been clamoring for an attack on Iran. I have been saying for many years that if Israel were not allowed to squat on land stolen from the Palestinian people, the rest of the world, and especially the MIddle East, would stand a good chance of enjoying a measure of peace and security.

  5. Shades of the Liberty? You know, the ship the Israeli attach on which the Johnson Administration sat traitorously still?

    Is there no violence by this nation that is off limits? They would seem to be so exempt from the constraints of any kind of law that they are in a class by themselves. Constantly kvetching about Iranian nuclear development they conceal the existence of their own nuclear capacity and are held to absolutely no international standard thereon.

    While still very much intact, a significant leak has sprung in recent years in the system that makes this very exceptional status of Israel possible. When the American people find themselves faced with nuclear war as a consequence of their government’s uncritical support of this nation – and that could happen sooner rather than later when it comes to the Georgia/Russia contretemps owing to Israeli interests there – perhaps enough attention will be paid to the ownership of Congress to put an end to this on-going outrage. Can we hope?

    1. John

      Everyone “knows” that the USS Liberty attack was a mistake !!
      The mistake being that Israel was supposed to “sink” the boat and failed.

      I think Israel is running out of PR “free spins”. Not a whole of lot of credibility there past or present.

  6. Lets call it like it is. Cynthia hates Jews. She could care less about black people and Arabs. She just hates Jews cause her daddy is an antisemite. Are the Anti-war folks so desperate as to make friends with racists to further their cause? Man has been fighting man for thousands of years. Give it up and stop making friends with racists!

    1. How come every time anyone who critisize israel is accused of hating the jews?Israel
      is a state terrorist,it’ present and past leaders are war criminals,always picking on the weak.What a bunch of COWARDS.

    2. Man has been racist for thousands of years. Why should we accept war and reject racism? Whether McKinney hates Jews or not has no bearing on the fact that what Israel is doing is wrong and should stop.

  7. “I would call it ramming. Let’s just call it as it is,” McKinney said. “Our boat was rammed three times, twice in the front and once on the side.”

    I am inclined to think that the ship wasn’t rammed… it sounds like the time she was “assaulted” by a police officer passing the metal detector on Capitol Hill…

    ‘I’m just going to drive my boat towards Gaza and if you get in the way… it’s you fault’

    1. Hey D!

      You may be inclined to think that the ship wasn’t rammed but there were quite a number of credible witnesses saying it was, for SURE! One of them was a CNN journalist who I’ve admired for years. There were also 2 Greek parlimentarians, doctors and other professional assistants as well as the entire crew. The ship was fully inspected and approved by the Greek police before it left for see and had excellent certification that only medicine was being transported. I don’t know for an absolute fact but I find it extremely doubtful that the Israelis weren’t informed beforehand of the ship’s purpose and they rammed it for that reason alone! Their hatred of humanitarians is beyond belief. Just a slight bit harder and the ship would have sunk within seconds easily killing all on board. Cynthia is truly a hero of the finest sort!

      Btw, I got all of this information from highly credible news sources.


  8. As to the first comment that states that we (the US) should not be taking sides in any conflict…well, let’s think on this…WE ALREADY HAVE! Our government gives Israel millions and billions of dollars in aid and that includes armament of all kinds and weapons of mass destruction. So we have already taken sides…Cynthia McKinney was the only statesperson/diplomat with enough balls to actually GO THERE DURING THE FIGHTING!

    1. Im sure Bush is golfing or down at the ranch clearing brush. Who is the president till Jan 20 GM??.

  9. We need alot more Cynthia McKinneys.

    Compare her to the worthless AIPAC-owned lickspittles that comprise 99.9% of our government.

  10. Watched a fascinating account tonight on PBS’s Frontline of the developing situation in the so-called tribal areas of Pakistan. The report paints a very grim picture of the future there for present – and likely future – US policy. As only the most credulous fail to appreciate, Taliban strength and loyalty there is growing by leaps and bounds, so much so that their reconquest of Afghanistan from bases there seems quite possible at some point.

    Of much greater interest, however, was the take the report had to offer as to why the government of Pakistan seems so incapable of assisting American war aims in those sanctuaries. It would seem that there is real concern among Pakistani officialdom that the American undertaking in Afghanistan is aimed at furthering an Indian presence there, thus encircling them. A Taliban government in Afghanistan precludes this possibiity, hence only a half-hearted attempt to control the Taliban or none at all. For its part, the Taliban has begun to extend its influence and power into the areas of Pakistan immediately adjacent to the tribal areas and now poses a real threat to the Pakistani government itself.

    Unless memory fails me, mention has been made at this site in the past of Israeli attempts to secure a military alliance of sorts with India out of fear of the Pakistani nuclear capability. We know, for example, of Isreali attempts to reach the Kurds diplomatically so as to provide a counterweight to a Shiite dominated Iraq so this general kind of strategy wou;d not be foreign to them. But is there any evidence of Israeli or American tampering with the situation in Afghanistan so as to promote Indian interests there? Something is justifying the Pakistani government’s concerns about the future of an Indian dominated Afghanistan. Does anyone have an idea as to why?

  11. John, any alliance between India and Israel is likely to be associated with the sale of military hardware. As for intelligence co-operation or diplomatic ties, Israel is probably using the ‘terrorist threat’ card to open up more high technology military hardware opportunities. India is a large market.

    If there are other issues, I am unaware of them.

    All the best.

  12. Why oh why is that America cannot have third and fourth parties actually represented in the Senate and Congress? (I know the answers)

    Having some Green Party members with more pull right now would certainly help get America back on the right track and away from one-sided support of state terrorism. Right now with the rare exception all America has is two parties with one voice – Israel’s. And the blathering idiots will still ask “why do they hate us” when Americans are again targeted by terrorists.

    1. The two establishment parties are basically indistinguishable from each other. America has a ‘permanent’ foreign policy. Both parties are bought and paid for by entrenched and powerful special interest groups. The only way you could really have viable third or fourth parties is to have a parliamentary style system of government. The best way to currently weaken the lobbyists would be to adopt Canadian-style electoral financial reforms.

    1. I read this article – it’s garbage. It claims the attacks on Gaza are “carefully targeted” responses to Hamas’ strategy of insinuating itself into communities full of women and children and then firing rockets from them into Israel.

      The reality is these Israeli massacres have no more to do with Hamas’ rockets than the Iraq invasion had to do with Saddam’s “WMD”. Or the Lebanese invasion had to do with two captured Israeli soldiers. Those are just the excuses. The attacks on Gaza have been planned for almost a year. See

      When a Palestinian kills and Israeli civilian or soldier, that’s “terrorism.” When the Israelis kill hundreds of Palestinian civilians, including many children, that’s “self-defense.”

  13. I’m impressed. Bravo, Representative McKinney! (Hey, if we still have to call Gingrich “House Speaker Gingrich” then we can still apply the honorific to McKinney.) Compare her guts to those yellowbellies on Capitol Hill who have been evacuated several times the past few years for such things as lost Cessnas and cloud formations.

    It’s amusing, no? to see the same warmongers bellowing for more hell and death to be dumped on the victim country of the year while they scatter like barnyard chickens under a shadow every year or two for no good reason.

  14. If israel were named yahooland they would be in the HAGUE for war crimes! The name is absurd, bunch of murdering,racist dogs.

  15. Cynthia Mckinney has integrity and just plain guts that the rest of the slime bags in Washington
    can only dream about. Thats why she had to be removed from her seat, she set the bar at a level
    the rest of them couldn’t even see let alone touch.

    Fred in Boston

  16. There is nothing ‘wacky’ about Cynthia McKinney. What is ‘wacky’ however, is a post on a site like that apologizes for supporting her efforts on behalf of Palestinians in Palestine, regurgitates the MSM distortion of her character and does not recognize or acknowledge that the US has taken the side of the Israelis already.

    Oh’ and any unthoughtful posters who insist that she is an anti-semite based on what they believe her father said should learn just who is semitic. Here is a hint:

    Palestinians are semites, thus she cannot be anti-semitic at the same time as she fights for their fundamental right to live autonomously and peacefully on their own land.

  17. Cynthia McKinney was the only true antiwar candidate in the 2008 election, yet she is still being subjected to snotty pieces like this on She’s “wild-eyed” for giving credibility to eyewitness accounts of murder-by-mercenaries in New Orleans. She is allegedly “poorly informed” on trade issues. Ok, but she’s not “kooky.” Treat her with the respect she deserves and which she has earned. This is not a joke, and she does not deserve this kind of backhanded praise for her “wackiness.” Before any of us starts taking pot shots at her, get on a goddamn boat to Gaza and try to dodge the Israeli navy in the US-supplied ships. provides a great service, but some of you are obnoxious, self-righteous pricks.

    Bombs rain down on Gaza and St. Obama plays golf and defers to Bush. His Chief of Staff is a Mossad agent, his Secretary of State is the former Senator from Tel Aviv, and his Secretary of Defense is a long-time Likudite and long-time co-conspirator with the Zionist state. These are the people to whom you want us to appeal? Get a grip. It is only through grass roots organizing that we can uproot this repressive system that loots our national treasury and pauperizes the population while spreading death and destruction in the name of imperialism. Ms. McKinney understands this, but too few on this site do.

  18. You anti-Israelis had better watch out! Okay, maybe you fooled Senta Cless, but WE know who’s been naughty ot noce and who should have an onion growing in their pupik!!

    I put you on notice that my local synagogue is arming itself and will become a local outpost of the IDF! So far we have a dozen SUVs and about 250 paint guns of various capacities.
    We intend to assist the IDF here in this country. Later this year Israel is shipping us an atom bomb, which we will make sure it has a Star-of-David on the sides, and will erect the launcher right in the front yard. We will see who will support the Palistinians then, schmendricks!

    Going from a religion to an armed sovereign state was the best idea us Jews ever had! You Goyischer bullies better think twice before you kick sand in my face at Jones Beach again. TOBAY is strictly Zionist territory!

    And all you Jewish guys who married non-Jewish goils! We are coming for you next! And your kids? Just remember that Hannukah has EIGHT DAYS and Christmas only one lousy morning to get presents.

    And that study which says that Zionism produces the exact same symptoms in American Jews as does toxic psychosis from over-indulgence in cocaine is all nonsense!

    1. Later this year Israel is shipping us an atom bomb, which we will make sure it has a Star-of-David on the sides

      That’s all that will be needed for it to clear customs and go on its merry way. Heck, given “Homeland Security’s [sic]” single-digit success rate in finding smuggled weapons at airports and seaports, it probably won’t even need that.

  19. If helping the victims in Gaza is anti-semetic, then count me in. Helping Palestinian civilian victims of air strikes is a crime in the AIPAC playbook. Speaking ill of the government of Israel should be a US federal crime in their viewpoint. Did Mossad know McKinney was on that vessel? Probably not, otherwise she would have been abducted to answer for her crimes against Israel.

    The bigger question is whether the “Israel First” crowd will hold any influence in the Obama administration? So far, AIPAC has nothing to worry about.

  20. Hey guys, I’m seeing many comments about the US and you as individuals not taking sides. I agree, but there is one big problem. We, as Americans, are already taking sides through our support of Israel. Seven million per day while we supply the weapons. The much bigger issue is that Israel, through AIPAC, etc. own us. To the rest of the world, we dumb downed Americans are already equally guilty through our complicity.

  21. if anyone doubts that the silence in congress about the current massacre in gaza, and the silence of normally eloquent barack obama (he of “only one president at a time” bullshit) isn’t the result of the unparalleled power and influence of the israel lobby, let them read the book by mearsheimer and walt entitled “the israel lobby and u.s. foreign policy”.

  22. McKinney – Risks neck taking medical supplies to wounded civilians.

    Obama – “Now watch this drive.”

    You figure it out.

    1. Yet more confirmation of the chokehold the Establishment has on the Oval Office and the aspirants to it. As I’ve said before and will say again as often as necessary, the only “change” Obama represents is the skin color of the puppet figurehead the Establishment has chosen this time to sit behind the Oval Office desk.

  23. Good for Cynthia McKinney! My opinion of her has gone up a hundredfold, especially since she didn’t make a publicity stunt out of it; the first news articles had her listed at the very bottom of the ship’s list of supplies and voyagers.

  24. Cynthia McKinney voted against the Patriot Act, FISA Act, and Iraq war while she was in congress. She was also strongly against the $700 billion dollar bailout and wants to audit the Federal Reserve. She is trying to save our economy. I think she is a true patriot.

    1. AND don’t forget she wanted some answers about 911. How dare she!! She is vastly superior to the majority of the current leeches in politics.

  25. Cynthia McKinney makes me proud to have voted for her this November. Quixotic I know, but in today’s US what more can we mere peons do but take symbolic stands?

  26. The Cynthia McKinney’s of integrity and guts are few and far between. A hero of our time. Now, as to Chris Baker’s reply to the reader questioning Zimbabwe: As an American, why is it that you, Chris Baker, have allowed yourself to be ruled by a bunch of thugs that ship your hard-earned money to Israel and in addition bombs a defensless population?. This situation only exists because half the people in your country want to live in some kind of slavery and refuse to do anything about this gang in power. MsMcKinney has done something about it. What have you done, aside from insulting another reader?

  27. Cynthia McKinney’s actions highlight a larger problem: as long as Americans’ tax dollars support militarism in Israel and around the world, we will not be safe.

    If you support reinvestment of our money from military spending into real priorities like education and healthcare, check out the petition for a Secure Green Future from

    We’re telling President Obama to drastically cut military spending and invest the savings into education, healthcare, preventing home foreclosures and developing green energy.

    More military spending will only lead to more violence. True security comes from living peacefully, within Earth’s limits, and ensuring that everyone’s basic needs can be met.

    Take a minute to sign the petition:

  28. “she even seems to prefer a hands-off approach to Zimbabwe”

    Sure, Zim must be such an embarrassment for black pols in the US trying to be accepted into the “civilised” humanist western elite circles. But essentially Zim is a mess created by Carter/Young/Thatcher/Carrington and they should fix it. And perhaps they can try and contact those 250000 whites who were ethnically cleansed from Rhodesia. These liberals better hope the real story of Zim never hits the airwaves.

  29. And she even favors getting rid of all the punitive measures against Zanu-PF! What a great woman. She should really be commended for that. Robert Mugabe deserves a second chance at running Zimbabwe, this time without restrictions on the ability of Zanu-PF to purchase luxury items and embezzle money from Zimbabwe's treasury. Zanu-PF should be free to sell out Zimbabwe's resources to western mining companies for pennies on the dollar whilst putting the proceeds into the personal bank accounts of a few corrupt party loyalists while the rest of Zimbabwe starves and dies from dysentery. McKinney deserves a lot of credit for standing up for the "right" of Mugabe and Zanu-PF to engage in these great practices.

    Also, she's willing to allow Zanu PF to move forward with their sham land reform which does nothing for 99.9% of Zimbabwans whilst expropriating the land from productive white farmers and giving it to Zanu-PF party loyalists who then strip the farms of all valuable material and sell it on the black market, leaving the former employees of said farms to starve and the land lie fallow. What a green policy!! All that land is being returned to nature. And you're taking property away from white people, a win win! (Starving black people don't enter into the equation). Optimally, all the people in Zimbabwe would starve to death, then it could be turned into a giant nature park where white westerners could go on eco-tourism junkets.

    All around, a truly amazing women. What a great "non-interventionist" policy. It's the same sort of amazing non-interventionism FDR practiced when Hitler began the Holocaust – one of our proudest moments I think!

    1. Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia) kicked all of the white farmers off the farms (many times not peacefully) when the natives took over. Now the country cannot feed itself.

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