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House Majority Leader Armey advocates ethnic cleansing of Palestine

On the evening of Thursday, May 2, 2002, on MSNBC's "Hardball," host Chris Matthews had the following dialogue with Republican Unitied States Congress Representative Dick Armey, from the 26th district in Texas.

Mr. Armey is the Majority Leader of the U.S. Congress - the most powerful member. We post these comments here because, like so many embarrassing news items, this one will disappear from other web sites after a short while. It should be remembered. This is the thinking of our national leaders.

Now, you might learn that Mr. Armey has apologized. He has not. The statement on his web site does not apologize. Here is his statement.

"In my exchange with Chris Matthews tonight, I left the impression that I believe peaceful Palestinian civilians should be forcibly expelled from the West Bank and Gaza Strip. This does not reflect my views. I was merely trying to convey my strong belief that Israel should yield no further territory until its security is assured and that the individuals who support terrorist acts may properly be exiled from the area.

Judge for yourself.

ARMEY: I'm content to have Israel grab the entire West Bank.

MATTHEWS: Well, where do you put the Palestinian state, in
Norway? Once the Israelis take back the West Bank permanently and
annex it, there's no place else for the Palestinians to have a
state.

ARMEY: No, no, that's not -- that's not at all true. There are
many Arab nations that have many hundreds of thousands of acres of
land and -- and soil and property and opportunity to create a
Palestinian state.

MATTHEWS: So you would transport -- you would transport the
Palestinians from Palestine to somewhere else and call it their
state?

ARMEY: I would be perfectly content to have a homeland, just as
-- most of...

MATTHEWS: But not in Palestine?

ARMEY: Most of the people who now populate Israel were
transported from all over the world to that land and they made it
their home. The Palestinians can do the same, and we're per --
perfectly content to work with the Palestinians in doing that...

MATTHEWS: Right, no. No, that's not the question and that's not
your answer. The question here is: What is the future of the
Palestinians who are fighting Israel right now? You say there
future is somewhere besides Palestine. That runs in the way of U.S.
policy going back to 1948. It runs -- it runs completely against
the president's policy and every policy I've heard a president
take, which is that Israel has to give up its settlements on the
West Bank and give it back to the Arabs in exchange for peace. You
say the deal should be the Palestinians leave?

ARMEY: That's right...I happened to believe that the
Palestinians should leave.

MATTHEWS: Have you ever told George Bush, the president from
your home state of Texas, that you think the Palestinians should
get up and go and leave Palestine and that's the solution?

ARMEY: I'm probably telling him that right now.

MATTHEWS: Well, just to repeat, you believe that the
Palestinians who are now living on the West Bank should get out of
there?

ARMEY: Yes.

Judge for yourself. We will leave this page posted here.

My opinion is that Armey was told by advisors to George Bush that he had to change his statement. He was told that he cannot publically say what he and other national leaders actually believe and are working towards. And, being a good team player, he proceeded to issue a weak denial. Now it will be swept under the rug and forgotten by a cooperative national news media.

But for a brief moment, the truth was out. We will keep the record here.


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