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August 23, 2014 / 27 Av, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘anti-zionist’

Obama’s Campaign Against Israel

Friday, August 15th, 2014

It’s getting harder and harder for even diehard apologists to make a case that the Obama administration supports Israel. The latest news comes after a very rocky period in which the administration tried to do an end-around to coerce Israel into a bad ceasefire deal with Hamas, while experimenting with an unseemly and embarrassing (and short-lived) flight ban to Israel’s international airport, and straightforwardly mouthing the false Hamas narrative about an Israeli attack in southern Gaza.

Now administration officials have disclosed, in a leak-blast full of astonishing quotes, that a shipment of arms to resupply Israel after the recent operation in Gaza was stopped when senior officials became aware of it.

But they aren’t just disclosing that the shipment was halted, and that other shipments will be getting a closer look. They are concocting an entire narrative about the Israelis “outflanking” the administration, running off on their own, and being unreceptive to U.S. influence.

Obama is transparent, if you read his oracular signs with the right key. Most responsible observers have been reluctant up to now to use that key. But there’s really nothing else left to do. We’re beyond the point at which the damaging implications of tailored “leaks” from the Obama administration can be explained away.

The most positive interpretation of the administration’s posture, as revealed in the incendiary WSJ article, is that it is ideologically committed to a radical-left view in which Israel figures as the villain. From this ideological motive, Obama hopes to use American influence to limit and confound Israeli policy. Think of the policy the typical flotilla activist would adopt toward Israel, and that’s the thematic pattern in Obama’s executive-branch campaign. The campaign can’t be waged too overtly, because of the inevitable blowback from Congress.

Tending the “BASE

Characteristically, the latest escapade with the halted arms shipment is being disclosed in a way that will gratify Obama’s radical-left political base. Right away, the disclosure has the Obama signature on it (emphasis added):

White House and State Department officials who were leading U.S. efforts to rein in Israel’s military campaign in the Gaza Strip were caught off guard last month when they learned that the Israeli military had been quietly securing supplies of ammunition from the Pentagon without their approval.

Is Obama ever not caught off guard? This opening sentence explains to his base that he and his top officials weren’t responsible for seeming to approve of the IDF’s operation in Gaza by providing supplies to it.

But the sentence also flat-out lies – by implying that there was something sneaky about Israel’s procurement of ammunition. In fact, Israel was reordering ammunition under Foreign Military Sales cases for which reordering is already authorized, without the need for renewed approval. This is not uncommon with foreign military sales (and is actually acknowledged later in the same article, as Jeff Dunetz points out). Depicting a reorder of ammo as “adroit bureaucratic maneuvering” is worse than tendentious, and can have only one purpose. The purpose is clarified here:

But Israeli and U.S. officials say that the adroit bureaucratic maneuvering made it plain how little influence the White House and State Department have with the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu —and that both sides know it.

Certainly this can be read as the Obama administration distancing itself from Israel in a diplomatic and geopolitical sense. But don’t discount the reality of who Obama is as a politician. He’s equally invested in distancing himself, in the minds of his most loyal supporters, from whatever outcome Israel is able to secure from the current conflict. The narrative crafted by this very tailored “leak” is perfectly designed to appeal to those supporters, who at this point are virtually certain to be disappointed in Israel’s outcome.

Rabbis Equate BDS Movement with Biblical Theft, Murder

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

The Rabbinical Alliance of America – a major American mainstream rabbinic organization – has equated support for the BDS movement with being an accessory to Biblical theft and murder.

The organization urged fellow Jews to reject absolutely the ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions’ movement against Israel rather than risk transgressions of those and other Biblical prohibitions.

The 800-member organization warned in a statement issued at its recent rabbinic convocation there is a “rising tide of anti-Semitism worldwide and [the] anti-Jewish rhetoric associated with the BDS movement against the people and the State of Israel.”

In addition, the RAA said the goals of the BDS movement are so toxic they actually contravene Biblical standards for anyone who considers themselves ‘People of the Book,’ be they Jewish or not.

The movement “contravenes Biblical scripture and undermines the very foundations that assure a just and moral society for all people,” said the RAA.

“The Rabbinical Alliance views this movement as being malevolent in calling Israel an apartheid state as it utilizes inflammatory language to delegitimize the basic human rights of the Jewish people for self-determination and to live amongst its neighbors in security and safety.

“The Rabbinical Alliance calls upon members of the Jewish faith and all people of good will to reject the BDS movement in all of its variations as its goal is to harm the safety and security of the Jewish people in Israel, as well as impact its hard working Jewish citizens and Arab residents from earning their livelihood and being able to export their products to other regions of the globe.

“Any action in support of the … movement is tantamount to transgressing numerous Biblical prohibitions of theft, denial of gainful employment, the utilization of unjust weights and measurements and is considered to be a contributing factor to the very serious transgression of the shedding of blood (murder) of a fellow human being,” the rabbis wrote.

Arab Media Salivate Over Jewish Squabbles About Israel

Monday, June 9th, 2014

Israel’s internal politics have finally become delicious gossip of the day for the Arab media.

‘Once a unifying cause for generations of American Jews, Israel is now bitterly dividing Jewish communities,” the Associated Press reported this morning (Monday) on the Al Arabiya website.

The report was one of the site’s top stories of the day. Worse, it happens to be true.

American college campuses are described as “ideological battle zones over Israeli policy in the Palestinian territories.” The “Open Hillel” movement of Jewish students is challenging speaker guidelines developed by the decades-old Hillel movement, according to the report, and planning its first national conference in October. Even the scuffle between J Street and the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations is covered.

Isn’t it lovely? All of the House of Israel’s dirty laundry out there for public review in living technicolor, to be examined minutely by all of her enemies one by one.

To be fair, the same article reported – albeit in the very last line – that a Pew Research Center survey found that only 12 percent of U.S. Jews believe Palestinian Authority leaders are making a sincere effort to resolve the conflict between the PA and Israel; 38 percent said the Israeli government is actively pursuing peace.

But more to the point, what is abundantly clear is that Jewish actions are news wherever we are, and Jewish news is of interest to Arabs, wherever they are. It’s an important point to remember; one hopes that Israel’s politicians bear it in mind when formulating policy and opening their mouths.

Sharansky Supporting Rabbi Avi Weiss vs. Rabbinate, RCA

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel Natan Sharansky has released the following statement regarding the debate surrounding Rabbi Avi Weiss:

“Rabbi Avi Weiss is a prominent leader of the Modern Orthodox Jewish world. By his teachings and his personal example, he has inspired and raised generations of Jews in the spirit of kol yisra’el arevim zeh la-zeh (the principle that all Jews are responsible for one another) and with a deep commitment to the Jewish people and the State of Israel.

“Rabbi Weiss’s commitment and integrity are beyond reproach, which is why I find the ongoing discussion about his Rabbinic credentials absurd.

“As Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency, I would like to state clearly that our shlichim (emissaries) will continue to honor Rabbi Weiss’s certifications and recommendations, as we have been proud to do up until now.”

Rabbi Weiss complained recently that the Israeli Chief rabbinate and the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) were in cahoots to disqualify “Liberal Orthodox” rabbis by the Rabbinate refusing to honor their recommendation of their congregants as proper Jews.

As we wrote here earlier, this created a situation in which the largely anti-Zionist Rabbinate, comprised of wall-to-wall Haredim, was collaborating with the RCA, catering mostly to Orthodox Jews who are comfortable staying in New Jersey – to block Zionist Orthodox American Jews from making aliyah.

Hopefully, this madness will be corrected now, possibly with some additional help from Minister of Religious Services Naftali Bennett, who dropped the ball this year on electing a National Religious Chief Rabbi.

Academic Group Hosts BDS, Bars Pro-Israel Groups at Panel on Israel

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

The pro-Israel campus groups Hillel International and the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC) have been denied the right to present a discussion on Israel at the Jan. 9-12 Modern Language Association (MLA) convention in Chicago, JNS.org has learned.

MLA’s convention includes a roundtable discussion that will feature supporters but no opponents of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

The discussion – titled “Academic Boycotts: A Conversation about Israel and Palestine “– is seen as a possible precursor to an MLA academic boycott of Israel, which would mirror recent boycotts by the American Studies Association and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.

The MLA convention will consider a resolution that condemns Israel for alleged “arbitrary denials of entry to Gaza and the West Bank by U.S. academics who have been invited to teach, confer, or do research at Palestinian universities.”

Hillel and the ICC asked the 30,000-member MLA for the chance to present what they called an “open discussion featuring MLA members regarding academic freedom in Israel, its territories, and Gaza,” but MLA said the deadline to book a meeting at the convention had passed.

“The MLA convention has procedures for its members to organize sessions, and that deadline was 1 April [2013],” MLA Executive Director Rosemary G. Feal, the MLA’s executive director, wrote in an email to ICC Executive Director Jacob Baime. “We do not rent space at our convention for nonmembers to hold discussions.”

The existing MLA session’s speakers will include BDS movement co-founder Omar Barghouti; University of Texas professor Barbara Jane Harlow, who has stated her support for the ASA boycott of Israel; University of Southern California professor of English David Lloyd, a well-known BDS activist; and Wesleyan University professor Richard Ohmann, who signed a 2009 letter that described Israeli treatment of Palestinians as “one of the most massive, ethnocidal atrocities of modern times.” University of Texas professor Samer M. Ali, who publicly defended the ASA boycott, organized the roundtable.

“We believe the members of the MLA deserve to hear a far more diverse set of perspectives on the issue of academic freedom in Israel and nearby countries. The MLA members, as academics, certainly can appreciate the value of multiple perspectives on what is a very controversial issue,” ICC’s Baime said.

ICC and Hillel said they are now considering organizing a “balancing panel” discussion at a nearby location during the MLA convention. The panel would feature MLA members who oppose the anti-Israel resolution being considered at the convention.

Ali, the organizer of the convention’s roundtable on BDS, told The Chronicle of Higher Education that the roundtable assumes that Israel violates the rights of Palestinians, and that the debate will center on what to do about it.

“If people want to come and debate occupation, I think it will be a waste of their time, because that’s not what the roundtable is about,” Ali said.

American Studies Association Votes to Boycott Israeli Universities

Monday, December 16th, 2013

A one-third turnout of American Studies Association (ASA) members have voted to endorse its national council’s call for a boycott of Israeli universities, the ASA announced Monday, a day after the deadline for voting.

There were 3,853 eligible voters, but votes were cast by only 1,252 members, two-thirds of whom approved the boycott, according to the ASA announcement. The resolution applies to ASA as an organization and targets institutions but is not binding on individual members.

The membership-wide canvas was unprecedented and was undertaken in part at the behest of boycott opponents, who said at a session during the ASA annual conference in Washington last month that the matter was too sensitive to leave up to the 20-member national council, which unanimously endorsed the boycott.

ASA describes itself as “devoted to the interdisciplinary study of American culture and history.”

Mass. Transit Authority To Restore Ads Critical of Israel

Sunday, October 27th, 2013

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority said it was restoring dozens of ads critical of Israel to its transit system that had been taken down following public complaints.

The transit system said the 80 ads would be put back in the Greater Boston area and that there had been a “miscommunication” with its advertising contractor Titan, according to the Boston Globe. The ads, which went up on Oct. 21, were removed several days later by Titan following the complaints.

“There was a breakdown in our established procedures for handling complaints about specific ads,” according to a transit authority spokesperson.

The ads are comprised of four maps that show what is called “Palestinian loss of land – 1946-2010.” A message alongside the maps reads “4.7 million Palestinians are Classified by the UN as Refugees.” Connecticut resident Henry Clifford, chairman of the Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine, paid for the $40,000 campaign.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/mass-transit-authority-to-restore-ads-critical-of-israel/2013/10/27/

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