In 1985 the AFL-CIO Considered Breaking Ties with Israel

In 1985 a key division of the national AFL-CIO proposed a resolution to the Executive Council. After explaining the situation the resolution demanded affiliates: "Call in their Israeli bonds immediately. Announce their refusal to purchase Israeli bonds or attend bond dinners and functions. Urge union members, officers and their families to refuse to visit Israel...''

Only after then Prime Minister Shimon Peres acted to union satisfaction was the resolution abandoned.

The resolution had nothing to do with treatment of Palestinians. It was threated because El Al, the Israeli government owned airlines, had treated International Association of Machinist union members shabbily. They struck and had been out for 15 months. Most had returned to work, but 90 or so were still hanging on and the AFL-CIO went to bat for them.

The whole resolution read

''Until the Government of Israel instructs El Al to negotiate a settlement, the A.F.L.-C.I.O.'s 96 constituent unions should do these things: Call in their Israeli bonds immediately. Announce their refusal to purchase Israeli bonds or attend bond dinners and functions. Urge union members, officers and their families to refuse to visit Israel until a contract is ratified.''

Though it had nothing to do with Palestinian worker rights it shows that 1) the AFL-CIO once had some guts and was willing to make demands on Israel and 2) that pressure worked.

So don't let them tell you that Trumka and the other sheep have no alternative other than their blind support for Israel.