2006 ADC Board Resolutions
The Arab American community and its supporters gathered at the 23rd Annual Convention of the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), marking the 26th anniversary of the nation’s largest Arab-American membership organization, held in Washington D.C. from June 15 to 18, 2006. At the Convention, the ADC Board of Directors adopted and committed the organization to the following resolutions:
1. Whereas ADC is our nation’s premier civil rights organization dedicated to protecting and promoting the civil rights and liberties of people of Arab descent; and whereas the ADC membership strongly believes that the erosion of civil rights and liberties undermines the foundations of American democracy; be it resolved that ADC will continue to strengthen its alliances and coalitions with all who share its civil rights commitments and continue to work vigilantly to oppose provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act, and any other legislation or regulation that are harmful to American civil rights.
2. Whereas ADC firmly believes that nuclear weapons represent a threat to the security of the Middle East; and whereas the presence of nuclear weapons in the Middle East may fuel a nuclear weapons race in the region; and whereas the ongoing threat of the development and potential use of nuclear weapons in the region endangers the lives and welfare of the peoples of the Middle East and undermines international peace and security; and whereas joining the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is an obligation incumbent upon all states; and whereas all states in the Middle East with the exception of Israel are signatories to the NPT; be it resolved that ADC calls for a totally nuclear free Middle East, including Israel, with a permanent ban on research, development or proliferation of nuclear weapons by any state in the region, the immediate and unconditional accession of Israel to the NPT, the total disarmament of all existing nuclear weapons arsenals and the immediate cessation of all nuclear weapons- related programs in the region.
3. Whereas ADC is a founding member of the Rights Working Group and an active member of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights; and whereas ADC together with those coalitions has actively sought termination of the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) and the fair resolution of NSEERS-related cases through passage of the Civil Liberties Restoration Act (CLRA); be it resolved that ADC will advocate the fair resolution of all immigration enforcement cases that have used or will use NSEERS as the sole reason for deportation as enumerated in the CLRA and will continue strong support for the passage of the CLRA.
4. Whereas the invasion and ongoing U.S. occupation of Iraq has and is continuing to cause irreparable damage to Iraq and to U.S. interests; and whereas Iraqi society, which has been profoundly destabilized by rampant insecurity and violence since the 2003 invasion, is now being threatened with disintegration and sectarian civil war; and whereas civil conflict in Iraq would endanger the lives and welfare of all Iraqi citizens while destabilizing the entire Middle East; and whereas the continuing American military presence in Iraq is a contributing factor to the ongoing violence; and whereas ADC opposed the invasion of Iraq and continues to oppose the U.S. military presence in Iraq; be it resolved that ADC calls on our government to: adopt an immediate plan to initiate an orderly withdrawal of American troops from Iraq within months not years; abandon any plans to establish permanent military bases in Iraq; provide financial and other material support to the Iraqi government to rebuild Iraqi civilian infrastructure; and provide the necessary post-withdrawal support to assist the Iraqi government in maintaining the territorial integrity of Iraq.
5. Whereas ADC has been an active member of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and instrumental in the post-September 11 redrafting of legislative language for the End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA); and whereas ADC has identified and reported numerous incidents of racial or ethnic profiling targeting the Arab-American community by law enforcement agencies; and whereas the present Administration has repeatedly maintained that it is against the use of racial profiling; be it resolved that ADC will continue its efforts to support the passage of the ERPA.
6. Whereas ADC strongly believes that the Israeli occupation of Arab territories has fomented ongoing unrest in the Middle East; and whereas such occupation is contrary to international law; and whereas U.S. interests in the Arab world would be better promoted if the United States were an objective and consistent supporter of the rule of law and international legitimacy; be it resolved that ADC calls on our government to use its considerable influence to require the Israeli government to withdraw immediately from all occupied Arab territories in compliance with international law and United Nations resolutions.
7. Whereas ADC is deeply concerned by the humanitarian emergency that is developing in the occupied Palestinian territories and believes that the United States must show leadership in resolving the current impasse; be it resolved that ADC calls on our government to take immediate measures to relieve the humanitarian suffering in the Palestinian territories by permitting the resumption of international assistance and convening a high-level international conference to re-establish aid delivery and financial transactions in the West Bank and Gaza.
8. Whereas ADC is committed to a just and lasting peace in the Middle East; and whereas any peaceful resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict requires: the dismantlement of the Israeli Wall which is being constructed through the illegal annexation of Palestinian lands, an end to the collective punishment imposed on the Palestinian population as a result of Israeli occupation policies as well as the current international financial embargo, respect for the exercise of democratic rights of Palestinians in electing their government, the creation of a viable and independent Palestinian state and the upholding of the rights of Palestinian refugees under international law; be it resolved that ADC will continue to advocate the rights of the Palestinian people to freedom, equality and self-determination in an independent and fully sovereign Palestinian state.
9. Whereas ADC condemns terrorism and all acts of violence against innocent civilians whether committed by states, groups or individuals; and whereas ADC believes that the eradication of terrorism requires a comprehensive approach taking into account the root causes of such acts; and whereas ADC strongly believes that effective counter-terrorism efforts must include undertakings to address injustices that breed desperation and the breakdown of security; be it resolved that ADC will urge our government to take a more comprehensive approach to fighting terrorism which includes adopting a fair and even-handed foreign policy towards the Middle East.
10. Whereas October 11, 2006, will mark the twenty-first anniversary of the terrorist attack on ADC’s West Coast office and the assassination of its regional director, Alex Odeh; be it resolved that ADC will continue its efforts to compel our government to bring the perpetrators of this terrorist act to justice.
11. Whereas this year marks the nineteenth year since the initiation of deportation proceedings against seven Arab-American activists and a Kenyan woman designated the “LA 8”; and whereas ADC has taken a leadership position in the defense of the LA 8 from this act of unconstitutional selective enforcement; be it resolved that ADC expresses its outrage at efforts by the U.S. government to retroactively apply provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act in the continuing proceedings against the LA 8 and that ADC strongly reaffirms its demand that these proceedings be terminated.
12. Whereas two years have passed since the historic Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which found the Wall built by Israel on occupied Palestinian territory to be illegal; and whereas Israel continues the construction of the Wall without regard to the ICJ Advisory Opinion; and whereas Israel continues to illegally colonize the territories that it has occupied for the last thirty-nine years, including the Palestinian West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Gaza Strip and the Syrian Golan Heights; and whereas Israel’s ongoing colonization and annexation of these territories along with its occupation policies entail persistent and continuous violations of international law; and whereas Palestinian civil society has issued a call for international civil society organizations to implement boycott and divestment initiatives against Israel comparable to those applied against South Africa during the apartheid regime; be it resolved that ADC endorses and fully supports the Palestinian civil society call for the implementation of boycott, divestment and sanctions against the state of Israel until such time as Israel shall dismantle its illegal settlements in the Occupied Territories, dismantle the Wall, recognize the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, and recognize the fundamental rights of all Palestinians, including the rights of Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality.
13. Whereas ADC strongly supports comprehensive, realistic and balanced immigration reform to fix our nation’s broken immigration system in a way that is respectful of the rule of law as well as the rights of immigrants living within the United States; and whereas ADC believes that American immigration policies should be enforceable, enhance security, promote citizenship and civic participation, reunite families, and bring immigrants out of the shadows; and whereas ADC strongly supports a balanced immigration policy that strengthens due process rights of immigrants, maintains restraints on the government’s detention powers and provides safe and legal alternatives for the many immigrants that arrive in this country each year to meet the needs of American employers; and whereas ADC opposed harsh enforcement-only immigration bills that are unrealistic and undermine immigrants’ rights through increased detention and deportation; and whereas ADC strongly supports the recent statement by U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner W. Ralph Basham that building a wall along the 2,000-mile long U.S.-Mexican border “does not make sense” because it will not stem illegal immigration into the United States nor solve our nation’s immigration problems; be it resolved that ADC will urge our government to adopt realistic, balanced and comprehensive immigration reform that creates safe and legal channels for immigrants to arrive in the country while providing new pathways to citizenship for immigrants already here, and ADC strongly opposes, and will urge the government to oppose, the building of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.