|Has ANCI Become a Gang of Intimidation and Bullying?: A Call for Oversight|
- Tuesday, July 17 2007, 19:12:41 (CEST)|
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Has ANCI Become a Gang of Intimidation and Bullying?: A Call for Oversight to Halt Abuses of Power by the Assyrian National Council of Illinois
My fellow Assyrians:
It is with great sorrow and a very heavy heart that I inform you that some members of the Assyrian National Council of Illinois (ANCI) have achieved a new low in their endeavor to control and manipulate ALL Assyrians living in Illinois. To accomplish this, these individuals have adopted a new approach to deal with those Assyrians who do not abide by their rules or — God forbid— disagree with and or criticize them.
Sadly, it appears that some members of the ANCI Executive Committee and Board of Directors members have evolved themselves into another entity, one well beyond the original humanitarian scope of the Assyrian National Council of Illinois. Instead of working on behalf of Assyrians, this new group, which might more accurately be dubbed the "Gang of Intimidation and Bullying of Illinois," has created its own set of bylaws. These appear to read: "As an Assyrian living in Illinois, you agree to submit to the Executive Committee's control by following them blindly. If you fail to do their bidding, the Gang of Intimidation and Bullying will whack you… in strong-arm Mafioso style."
To give the respected reader an example of such an incident, I refer you back to last month's so-called "peaceful" march, sponsored by ANCI. The main objective of this demonstration was to denounce and condemn the recent escalation of the brutality and atrocities that our Assyrian and Christian brethren living in Iraq are facing. This cause, of course, is an extremely noble and righteous one. However, the Gang of Intimidation and Bullying overlooked some important details in organizing this event: First, they ignored the "peaceful" intent of the march. Or, rather, they decided that the rules, regulations and policies apply only to the peasants. It seems that these individuals have come to the erroneous conclusion that the ANCI Executive Committee and Board members are "above" compliance with rules and regulations. After all, "they" make the rules as "they" see fit and to suit "their" own selfish purposes — all under the guise of advancing Assyrian welfare.
The second and most important detail that the ANCI Gang has overlooked is that we live in America, the land of democracy and free speech. We live in this great country that is leading the world in the fight against dictatorships and brutal rulers, such as Saddam Hussein, in order to spread peace, democracy and freedom throughout the world.
Yet, here in our own backyard, in America, Assyrians are being harassed by members of the ANCI Gang. The reason? Because there are some Assyrians who have the audacity to exercise their freedom of speech and voice opinions that happen to be in disagreement with those of the Gang members! So, how does the Gang deal with such unruly and defiant peasants, you ask? But, of course: by teaching them an unforgettable lesson to demonstrate what happens to an Assyrian-American living in the land of democracy and freedom of speech, who defies the ANCI Gang’s control and disagrees with its opinions.
Maybe we should not be surprised that the ANCI Gang members have utilized cruel and intimidating techniques— the same techniques that Saddam Hussein used to tame his real and imagined enemies. After all, a few of the ANCI Gang members are byproducts of Saddam’s brutal regime, and they have been well-trained in such methods of oppression.
Case in point: When a hard-working Assyrian family man living in Illinois (with three very young children), dared voice his opposing opinion, some ANCI Gang members immediately put their cruel plan to destroy his livelihood into motion. First, they repeatedly telephoned his place of work and harassed the switchboard operator. When that did not produce the result they were looking for, nine of these "gangsters" showed up at this man's workplace and demanded that he be immediately dismissed from his job! Still not satisfied, they personally threatened the company’s owner with lawsuits and other terrorizing actions. Under the face of this overwhelming pressure, the man lost his job.
Now I ask you, respected reader, is this not an act of terrorism? Are not these ANCI Gang members hurting the very people they are supposed to help? Are they not contradicting the same ANCI Constitution and Bylaws that this organization was founded upon, i.e., "The Council shall be purely humanitarian, cultural and educational and shall, at all times, manifest the essential and genuine needs of the Assyrian community." Are not their actions an act of hypocrisy?
Such extreme acts of malice and desperation have led me to question the motives of the individual members of the ANCI Executive Committee and Board of Directors. Apparently, they have much to lose. Perhaps they have such little tolerance for having their opinions challenged and their ways of conducting business criticized because they might get voted out of office. But, why would they be so distraught over losing an unpaid seat on a non-profit board? Their actions reveal that something more sinister must be at work. I am now convinced that they stand to lose much more than their seats on the Council: They stand to lose "their" livelihood from the tax dollars that the State of Illinois has designated for this organization, along with the generous donations of citizens committed to the Assyrian cause. Could it be that for the past few years, the ANCI gang members have used these public monies as "their" personal funds? Do they manage these funds as "their" personal pocketbook? For years, I have heard rumors about mismanagement of ANCI funds, but I had always dismissed these allegations. Now, in the face of these recent actions, I am sufficiently alarmed to call for immediate action.
My fellow Assyrians of Illinois and the world, we must not stand aside and be silent in the face of such actions of intimidation and cruelty. We have struggled and suffered for many centuries and have come too far to let petty bullies such as the ANCI gangsters intimidate us. It is time to turn the tables and teach "them" a lesson. They are supposed to be working on behalf of all Assyrians, not the other way around. I urge my fellow Assyrians to unite together and address this issue by demanding the following actions:
1) That the State of Illinois conduct an immediate financial and operational audit of the Assyrian National Council of Illinois.
2) That the Assyrians of Illinois demand the resignation of the current members of the ANCI Executive Committee and Board of Directors. If these members fail to resign, then voters must initiate a recall election and vote them out of office before they harm other innocent victims.
3) That Assyrians express their dissatisfaction with the ANCI Executive Committee and Board to influential Assyrian leaders and Assyrian businesses that support ANCI. Further, we should boycott any business or organization that refuses to support this call for greater oversight of the Assyrian National Council of Illinois.
In closing, I have this to say to those individuals now serving on the ANCI Executive Committee and Board of Directors: Shame on you for stepping so low as to harm and jeopardize the livelihood of an Assyrian father of three young children! You are a disgrace to the Assyrian people and to the Assyrian Nation. You are a disgrace and an embarrassment to me and to every decent and upright Assyrian in Illinois and around the world. Shame on you, members of the ANCI Executive Committee and Board of Directors; shame on you! If you have any shred of devotion left for our people, I urge you to resign from your positions immediately. The days of gangster control are over! It is time to allow more upstanding citizens, who understand the fundamental principles of democracy, to lead the Assyrian National Council of Illinois in fulfillment of its important mission.
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