Jews For The Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Inc.
P.O. Box 270143
Hartford, WI 53027
Phone (800) 869-1884
Fax (425) 451-3959
February 10, 2003
U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees and Rwanda
WHO REALLY WANTS TO
HELP REFUGEES AND SAVE LIVES?
THE UNITED NATIONS OR JPFO?
A surprising number of readers responded to our alert seeking photos of Rwanda
A supplier had pulled out, leaving us high and dry. Thanks to you, we now have a number of new leads to pursue.
Many people also asked, "Who was it that pulled their Rwanda photos at the last minute?" Some folks offered to intercede on behalf of "Innocents Betrayed."
We believe intercession would be futile. But you are certainly entitled to know who refused us and to know the circumstances.
In the nine months we've been working on "Innocents Betrayed," many potential suppliers have refused to work with us. For private businesses and organizations, this is their right, of course. Sometimes organizations give no reason. Other times, their reasons are all too clear. One small vendor of historic films simply wrote, "We don't do business with gun nuts."
With the Rwanda photos, it was different. The images came from the United Nations. The U.N.'s librarians supplied us with reproduction-quality photos of Rwandan refugees many months ago, naming a modest fee for use.
It goes without saying that this was one of the few times The Liberty Crew has ever been favorably disposed toward the globalist, victim-disarming U.N.!
Unfortunately, we should have known better.
When it came time for us to specify exactly which of the many images we ultimately selected for the film, Susan Hopper, from the office of the U. N. High Commissioner for Refugees
refused to let JPFO make *any* use of the photos, initially stating, "UNHCR images are licenced to various media outlets and humanitarian agencies for the sole purpose of raising refugee awareness."
DO THEY REALLY WANT TO HELP REFUGEES?
We wondered how this government-funded organization could so drastically limit the use of photos paid for largely with tax dollars (and tax pounds and marks and talas). But we also wrote back to protest that our film very definitely aims to help refugees, in the most fundamental and humane ways. Here are the key passages of our letter to Ms. Hopper:
"In addition to being dismayed at receiving a licensing refusal so many months after the U.N. freely offered us the images, we are puzzled by your lack of interest in helping to prevent genocide -- which is the aim of 'Innocents Betrayed.' We've always been told that it is one of the chief aims of the United Nations, as well. Are we misinformed? ...
"'Innocents Betrayed' in fact also 'raises refugee awareness' -- and on that basis alone should qualify for licensing of your images. Why do most refugees become refugees? Because of war or genocide or catastrophic conditions leading to genocide, of course. The Rwandan segment of 'Innocents' describes how desperate refugee men, women, and children were sometimes slaughtered before they could escape the country. Surely, no greater help could be offered to refugees than to work to prevent their murder.
"We hope you will reconsider your decision and will, after all, license our use of your images of Rwandan refugees. Millions of potential refugees will be able to remain safely in their homes and communities if those of us who care can put a halt genocide."
It was at that point that we received the final communication from Ms. Hopper, ignoring the aims and subject matter of "Innocents Betrayed" and stating, "Your website ... clearly states your main objective as the 'preservation of firearm ownership' ... For this reason, I cannot provide the images you've requested nor can I sanction the use of any UNHCR images in your possession."
Note that she neatly dodges everything about the purpose of the film -- including its goal of making life better for millions of hapless refugees and other victims. JPFO is "guilty" of trying to help victims by preserving firearms ownership, and therefore, the UNHCR will never do business with us, no matter what the goals or topic of our project.
(There's another creepy possibility as well. Our Web site clearly shows that we are JEWS for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership. The U.N. has a long record of being anti-Israel. It has promoted the view that "Zionism is racism." The U.N. is, in short, no friend of Jews. We'd like to ask Ms. Hopper how big a factor the U.N.'s historic anti-Semitism played in her refusal to do business with us. What could be scarier to the U.N. than armed Jews, fighting for civil rights for all?)
As a final irony, while we were visiting one of the Web sites where a JPFO supporter said we might find Rwanda photos, we stumbled across an interesting article
It seems that now that the Rwandan refugees -- about whom the UNHCR expresses such concern -- are being expelled from Tanzania, where many of them (both victims and possibly some perpetrators) fled during the genocide, the UNHCR flatly refuses to give them any aid whatsoever, even though they still have nowhere place to go.
The UNHCR is the same agency whose representatives (among others) were accused of forcing African refugee children to give sex in exchange for aid
The agency's report blamed poverty -- and not the child molesters themselves -- for the abuse, and the UNHCR took no action to remove any of the 70 accused aid workers.
IT'S UP TO US
Well, we wash our hands of such hypocrites. The UNHCR doesn't want to prevent millions of people from becoming refugees or genocide victims. They just want to raise awareness of their own little power structure so that they can get more PR and more tax and foundation funding.
Even though this blow was worse than some others because we were already planning to use the photos, we'll go on -- with your help.
The response to our last alert was fantastic. Now, we ask you to keep on supporting us as we come into the home stretch in production of "Innocents Betrayed."
As of February 1, we have $98,000 of the $170,000 we'd hoped to raise to produce "Innocents Betrayed." We've been able to cut many expenses, and there's no doubt that this production WILL be finished within the next few months. We're 80 percent done already.
But we can still use your help to get more exciting, moving visuals, and to enable us to distribute the film more effectively once it's done. If you haven't donated yet, or if you want to give more, visit our "Innocents Betrayed" page at
While you're there, check out the opening sequence of the production and remind yourself that video this good has the power to save lives.
The worst thing one human being can do to another is to deprive him of the ability to defend his own life. Those who promote disarmament -- like our "friends" at the U.N. -- are as responsible for genocide as those who wield the machetes or the release the toxic gas. We who help others to defend their own lives are the true humanitarians -- and the true fighters against genocide. Without our efforts, there is no one to stop the slaughter.
The Liberty Crew
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