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December 8, 2016 / 8 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Bret Stephens’

Israel’s Ambassador to the US Focuses on Iran in CUFI Speech

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

Monday night, July 13th was the evening Gala of the 10th Annual Christians United with Israel D.C. Summit. With thousands in attendance, many of the celebrated speakers focused on the negotiations between the world powers and Iran, and all agreed the emerging details of what is considered to be an imminent deal could be catastrophic for Israel, for America and for the entire world.

During the day, several of the Republicans competing for the Republican nomination for the presidential race were present to talk about Israel and the Middle East. Those present were Florida’s former Governor Jeb Bush, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, Minnesota’s former Governor Mike Huckabee, New York’s former Governor George Pataki, and Pennsylvania’s former Senator Rick Santorum.

Before the dinner break there was a Middle East briefing by experts Erick Stakelbeck, Malcolm Hoenlein, Bret Stephens and Dr. Yoram Hazony, which was followed by a satellite address from Jerusalem by Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Following the dinner, the formal celebration, “A Night to Honor Israel” took place. Speakers included the Pastor John Hagee, founder and national chairman of CUFI, radio talk show host Dennis Prager, and Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer.

Ambassador Dermer’s speech was very much focused on Iran.

He includes lots of zingers such as “Last year I asked you to stand with Israel during war, tonight I ask you to stand with Israel to prevent war.” Another one: “That deal will not block Iran’s path to a nuclear bomb. It will pave Iran’s path to a nuclear arsenal.” And here’s a particularly significant one which could not have been lost on the American audience: “I’ve got a newsflash for you. Israel is on the same continent as Iran. So those intercontinental ballistic missiles are not for us. They’re for you.”

The whole thing is worth reading. Here it is:

Happy 10th Anniversary, CUFI.
Thank you for a decade of standing with Israel.
Thank you, Pastor Hagee and Diana Hagee.
Thank you for founding this great organization and for decades of unwavering support for Israel.
Thank you CUFI students for standing up to lies and for speaking truth.
Thank you CUFI for providing a voice to the thousands of supporters of Israel who are here tonight and to the millions of Christian friends of Israel across America.
Today, more than ever, Christians stand united with Israel.
And today, more than ever, Israel stands united with Christians.

As the Middle East continues its descent into barbarism and chaos, life for Christians there has become nasty, brutish and short.
A century ago, 20% of the region’s population was Christian.
Today, Christians account for less than 4% of the population.
As the forces of militant Islam sweep across the region, ancient Christian communities are being decimated and Christians are being decapitated.
Israel is proud to be a light in the darkness – a shining city on a hill with a growing and thriving Christian community – five times as large it was in 1948, the year the modern state of Israel was born.

Israel will continue to stand up proudly for Christians in the Middle East, just as I know that Christians will continue to stand up proudly for Israel right here in America.

Ladies and Gentleman,
Today, Israel needs the voice of its Christian friends more than ever.
Last year, as Hamas missiles rained down from Gaza on Israel, I stood at this podium to ask you to stand with Israel during war.
Tonight, I ask you to stand with Israel to prevent war.
That’s right, to prevent war.

Because the deal that is being finalized with Iran in Vienna will not lead to more calm. It will lead to more terrorism.
That deal will not block Iran’s path to a nuclear bomb. It will pave Iran’s path to a nuclear arsenal.

That deal will not stop nuclear proliferation in the Middle East. It will spur nuclear proliferation in the Middle East.
That deal will not bring peace closer. It will bring war closer – making conventional war more likely today and the horrors of nuclear terrorism more likely tomorrow.

Though Iran has made its intentions perfectly clear, few people have been paying attention.

Last year, when Iran’s charming foreign minister Zarif laid a wreath at the grave of Imad Mugniyah, the terrorist mastermind who killed more Americans than any terrorist besides Osama Bin Laden, few people paid attention.

A few months ago, when Iran’s navy blew up a mock American aircraft carrier, few people paid attention.

On Friday, when President Rouhani went to a rally in which American and Israeli flags were burned, few people paid attention.

And on Saturday, when the Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, said that Iran plans to continue its struggle against an “arrogant” America, few people paid attention.

Many people have eyes that do not see and ears that do not listen.
The truth is they do not see and listen because they do not want to see and listen.
In the name of peace, and with the best of intentions, they are determined to avoid confrontation at all cost.

We have seen this happen before.

Let us hope that future historians will not once again have to ask themselves why so many were so blind to what was so clear in hindsight.

Ladies and Gentlemen,
So many red lines have already been crossed.

The promise of anytime, anywhere inspections looks more like sometime, somewhere inspections that will enable Iran to continue the cat and mouse game that it has played with IAEA inspectors for years.

The promise of phased sanctions relief looks more like a one-time jackpot for the Ayatollah regime.
In a few months, this deal would give Iran 150 billion dollars.

Iran has a 300 to 400 billion dollar economy. A 150 billion dollar infusion of cash into Iran’s coffers is like 8 trillion dollars flowing into the US treasury.

But don’t worry. We’ve been promised that this money will go to fund Iran’s domestic needs.
Yeah, right. I’m sure the Ayatollahs will soon announce a GI bill for returning members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.

The truth is that billions of dollars will be used to replenish the Iranian regime’s ATMs in the region.

Those ATMs are the Ayatollah Terror Machines – the Shiite militia in Iraq, Assad’s regime in Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Houthis in Yemen, Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza, and the many other Iranian’s terror proxies throughout the region.

Billions of dollars will also go to strengthen Iran’s vast global terror network that is used to perpetrate terror attacks on five continents and 30 countries – from Buenos Aires to Burgas to Bangkok.

Watching the breathtaking collapse of the positions of the P5+1, it is hard to believe that two years ago we were promised that the sanctions regime would only be dismantled if and when Iran’s illicit nuclear program was dismantled.

Instead, this deal dismantles the sanctions regime in exchange for partial and temporary constraints on Iran’s nuclear program.
Partial, because Iran will be allowed to continue R&D on advanced centrifuges and will continue to develop ICBMs, whose sole purpose is to carry nuclear payloads.

I’ve got a newsflash for you. Israel is on the same continent as Iran. So those intercontinental ballistic missiles are not for us. They’re for you.

The constraints on Iran’s nuclear program are only temporary because the most important ones will be removed in a decade.
And those constraints will be removed whether or not Iran changes its behavior.

In ten years, Iran could be even more aggressive, an even greater sponsor of terror, an even greater threat to Israel and America, and the constraints on Iran’s nuclear program would still be removed.

Think about that. In a decade, Iran could remain the world’s preeminent terror-sponsoring regime and have a completely legal, industrial scale uranium enrichment program that is capable of producing many nuclear bombs.

In 13 or 14 years, Iran’s breakout time would be “almost down to zero”

Those are not my words. Those are the words of President Obama. And that candid statement is all you need to know about why this deal is so bad.

But it gets worse.

Because Sunni Arab states in our region know that this deal ultimately paves Shia Iran’s path to the bomb, those states will rush to get nuclear weapons of their own.

So a good faith effort to stop one very dangerous regime from getting nuclear weapons could result in many regimes having nuclear weapons in the most dangerous region on earth.

If you think hooded-men running around the Middle East wielding knives and Kalashnikovs is bad, wait till they get their hands on nuclear weapons.
I know people are focused on the dangers of ISIS. And they should be.

But Iran’s regime is a thousand times more dangerous than ISIS.
Not because Iran is more fanatic than ISIS, but because Iran has more centrifuges than ISIS because Iran has more enriched uranium than ISIS.

For many years, Prime Minister Netanyahu has warned that the greatest danger facing our world is the coupling of militant Islam with nuclear weapons.
This deal could become the marriage certificate for that nightmare – and our children and grandchildren will never forgive us.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let us not repeat the mistake that was made with North Korea 20 years ago.
Back then, all sorts of sincere statements were also made about creating a safer world, about ending the threat of a nuclear-armed rogue state, and about bringing North Korea into the community of nations.

But despite all the promises and all the hopeful rhetoric, North Korea got the bomb.
And in a few years, North Korea may have a hundred nuclear bombs – to use for themselves, to sell to the highest bidder, and to threaten the world.

There are many differences between North Korea and Iran.

Unlike North Korea, Iran operates a global terror network.

Unlike North Korea, Iran is led by religious fanatics driven by apocalyptic fantasies.

Unlike North Korea, Iran vows to overturn the entire international order.

But there is also a profound moral difference between the North Korean deal and this deal being negotiated with Iran.

In the case of North Korea, there were six party talks. But two of those six parties were the South Koreans and the Japanese.
Two of your closest allies in the region – allies who would be the most vulnerable and most endangered by any potential deal – those allies were at the negotiating table with you.

So it is hard to fault the United States and others for doing a deal that their South Korean and Japanese allies strongly supported.
Yet today, the world’s powers are finalizing an agreement that will threaten the survival of Israel and the security of Arab states across the Middle East — and your allies are not there.

Israel is not there. Your Arab allies are not there.

Those who are the most vulnerable, those who would be the most endangered by any deal – we are not at the negotiating table.
And as the old saying goes, if you’re not seated at the table, then you’re probably on the menu.

Israelis across the political spectrum are united in their view that this deal is a disaster. Now for a country where every two Jews have three opinions, that’s saying something.

Your Arab allies also think this is a very bad deal.
And when Israel and the Arab states are on the same page – which happens about once a century – pay attention.

Ask yourself why Israel and its neighbors are so opposed to this deal.
After all, we have the most to gain by peacefully resolving the Iranian nuclear issue.
We have the most to gain by a deal which truly blocks Iran’s path to the bomb.

The reason why we oppose this deal is because it doesn’t resolve anything, Because it doesn’t block Iran’s path to the bomb.

It makes Iran’s illegal nuclear program legal.

It provides billions in sanctions relief for Iran to fuel the fires of war that it is spreading across the Middle East.

And it rolls out the red carpet for Iran to become a military nuclear power – a power that would threaten Israel with annihilation and threaten the peace and security of the entire world.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

You are meeting in Washington in the middle of a three-week mourning period for the Jewish people.

This period begins every year on the 17th day of the Jewish month of Tamuz, when the walls of the ancient city of Jerusalem were breached by the Romans.
It ends on the 9th of Av, the most infamous day on the Jewish calendar, when the Babylonians destroyed the first Temple and when the Romans destroyed the Second.

History has not been kind to the Jewish people during these three weeks.

So today, as we look around a dangerous Middle East, as we hear the daily calls of Iran’s rulers to destroy Israel, as we marvel that the leading powers of the world are desperately trying to make a deal with the world’s greatest terrorist regime, it is easy to be disheartened about our future.
Don’t be.

In Washington, there is no Ambassador of Bablyon. There is no Ambassador of the Roman Empire. There is no Ambassador of the Third Reich.

But there is an Ambassador of Israel.

And I have the privilege of representing not only the 8 million citizens who live in the 67-year old thriving, democratic state of Israel.
I also have the privilege of representing a nearly 4,000 year old people, who have overcome every evil that history has thrown our way.

So rest assured that the we will survive the storm ahead.

But we will not do it by bowing our heads and shutting our mouths.

We will do it by standing tall and speaking up.

We read in Kohelet, the Book of Ecclesiastes, that to everything there is a season – a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time for war and a time for peace, a time to keep silent and a time to speak up.

This is not a time for silence.

This is a time to speak up.

This is a time to stand up.

And I ask all of you to stand with Israel.

The enemies of civilization think that the winds of destiny are at their backs.
Show them they’re wrong.

Show them that America stands proudly and firmly in their way and by Israel’s side.

Show them that their chants of Death to America will not be met by more concessions at the negotiating table, but by the iron will of a free people in the most powerful nation on earth.

Show them that America and Israel will continue to stand together to defend our common civilization.
God Bless you all.
God Bless Israel.
And God Bless the United States of America.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Misplaced Rage

Monday, September 8th, 2014

The news coming out of the Middle East is about as grim as could be. I do not remember a time where I have witnessed such barbarism since the Holocaust. Only this time it is not against the Jewish people. It is Muslim against Muslim in Iraq and in Syria. Images like the one of people kneeling before a shallow grave with guns pointed at their heads – about to be executed en masse have flooded the media. ISIS, an Islamist Fundamentalist group has been carrying out these terror attacks against its own people and showing it to the world proudly as it has advanced in Iraq.

But yesterday this savagery was brought back home. Steven Joel Sotloff, a Jewish freelance reporter with dual American Israeli citizenship was beheaded by this group. He is the 2nd American to have suffered this fate. The entire civilized world is disgusted by this and has condemned it – the United States obviously being first in line.

ISIS is a religious fanatic group bent on ultimately making Islam rule the world via Sharia law (Muslim Halacha) in a type of government called a Caliphate. This is an Islamic state led by a supreme religious and political leader known as a caliph. The members of ISIS are true believers. In the immortal words of Malcom X they believe in achieving their goals by ‘any means necessary!’

That is what they believe God expects of them. And their tactics prove it. Their ‘Godly’ ends justify their frighteningly murderous means. They thus proudly record those beheadings and make them public. Their purpose is to strike fear in the hearts of man and to recruit people who might be motivated by what they see as ISIS’s adventurism. ISIS has in fact achieved that to some extent. There are Americans that have joined them. That makes the United States vulnerable to attack by their own citizens who will surely one day return newly indoctrinated with Islamist ideals – bearing American passports and making their re-entry into the US relatively simple.

I don’t think there is any greater danger to America right now than ISIS. If I were the President I would be enraged at what they have been doing. Enraged!

The President has actually expressed such rage recently. But not at ISIS. His rage is directed at Israel. That’s right you read that correctly. Why, you may ask, was he enraged with Israel? No one explains this better than Pulitzer Prize winning Wall Street Journal columnist, Bret Stephens. The President is upset with…

“Its actions and its treatment of his chief diplomat (Secretary of State John Kerry).”

Think about this. Enraged. Not “alarmed” or “concerned” or “irritated” or even “angered.” Anger is a feeling. Rage is a frenzy. Anger passes. Rage feeds on itself. Anger is specific. Rage is obsessional, neurotic.

And Mr. Obama—No Drama Obama, the president who prides himself on his cool, a man whose emotional detachment is said to explain his intellectual strength—is enraged. With Israel. Which has just been hit by several thousand unguided rockets and 30-odd terror tunnels, a 50-day war, the forced closure of its one major airport, accusations of “genocide” by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, anti-Semitic protests throughout Europe, general condemnation across the world. This is the country that is the object of the president’s rage.

I too am upset by this seeming double standard. Why is it Israel that gets far worse (by miles) treatment than other countries and groups with far worse behavior?

To be fair, I can understand why Israel may be more scrutinized than them. It is because Israel is considered ‘one of the good guys’. They are expected to be more enlightened and civilized. The world expects them to behave better than the terrorists of ISIS. Israel is held to a higher standard. And it should be. (In the case of the recent war with Gaza, that criticism is way off. Israel acted with a very high standard of morality – given the circumstances.)

Harry Maryles

Sen. Leahy: Obama Secretly Suspended Egypt Military Aid

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

The office of Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), head of the Appropriations State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee, told The Daily Beast that military aid to Egypt has been temporarily cut off.

“[Senator Leahy’s] understanding is that aid to the Egyptian military has been halted, as required by law,” said David Carle, a spokesman for Leahy.

If it’s done as required by law, why is the U.S. government keeping it a secret that it believes the regime change in Egypt was a military coup? If it is, indeed, temporarily suspending most of the military aid to Egypt, where is the public announcement that we don’t send money to governments that were installed by a coup?

After skewering Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hard—through the good services of the NY Times—for his attempts to preserve stability in Egypt and the integrity of the peace treaty, now the administration is attempting to punish the naughty Egyptian generals, but without making a big deal out of it.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki was asked on Monday about the suspended aid, and told reporters the aid is not officially suspended.

I suppose the Egyptians can use the officially unsuspended aid money the same way Israelis can live in the officially unfrozen homes in East Jerusalem…

“After sequestration withholding, approximately $585 million remains unobligated. So, that is the amount that is unobligated,” Psaki said.

I looked up “unobligated” and means funds that have been appropriated but remain uncommitted by contract at the end of a fiscal period. In other words, an I keep, you don’t get kind of relationship.

“But it would be inaccurate to say that a policy decision has been made with respect to the remaining assistance funding,” Psaki clarified.

In other words, I keep, you don’t get, but it’s not forever.

The Daily Beast quotes two Administration officials who explain it was the government lawyers who decided it would be more prudent to observe the law restricting military aid in case of a coup, while not making a public statement that a coup had taken place.

Bret Stephens, a deputy editorial page editor of The Wall Street Journal, wrote on Monday (A Policy on Egypt—Support Al Sisi):

“What’s realistic and desirable is for the military to succeed in its confrontation with the Brotherhood as quickly and convincingly as possible. Victory permits magnanimity. It gives ordinary Egyptians the opportunity to return to normal life. It deters potential political and military challenges. It allows the appointed civilian government to assume a prominent political role. It settles the diplomatic landscape. It lets the neighbors know what’s what.”

By taking the opposite approach, making it harder for the new Egyptian government to bring the internal conflict to a conclusion, the Obama Administration is promoting and prolonging chaos in yet another country. Which is why, I suspect, Senator Leahy has spoken to the Daily Beast in the first place, to stop this blind march over the cliff.

Middle East analyst Brian Katulis from the Center for American Progress, told the Beast he thought the Administration was “trying to maintain maximum flexibility,” but he suggested that this horse is long out of the barn. “Egypt’s struggle has become so intense, polarized, and violent, and I worry that no matter what move the United States makes now, the competing power centers in Egypt might continue down the dangerous course they’ve headed.”

Unless, of course, the U.S. is making clear, with loud noises and a light show, that it supports stability in Egypt, and in order to hasten new elections, it will not suspend military aid to Egypt. In fact, with its financial and military might, the U.S. will do everything it can to restore stability and democracy in Egypt.

But that would require President Obama to get over the insult of the Egyptian nation ignoring his wishes and dethroning his favorite Muslim Brother president.

Yori Yanover

‘Judeophobia’ Asks: Why Do They Hate Jews?

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012

For those tired of hearing that Jews are in danger and that Israel-hatred is only the latest form of Jew-hatred, this movie, Unmasked Judeophobia: the Threat to Civilization is for you.  That’s right, those really are the people who need to see this movie, but they need to see it only if they are willing to cleanse their minds of the countless layers of sediment that the New York Times, Haaretz, television network news, and Hollywood party chatter has built up over their eyes and stuffed into their ears.  Because for those crumbling pillars of western civilization, truth is false, big is little, careful is belligerent and right (and the right) is always wrong.



But everyone else should see it too.  There are three reasons why.

First, the film carefully and concisely packs into 81 minutes the birth, metamorphosis and metastasization of Jew-hatred.  It shows how the early anti-Semitism of the Catholic Church was fueled forward by the angry sense of betrayal of Martin Luther and the other Protestants, which was then transmogrified into racial hatred by the Nazis, which in turn was embraced and transformed into the hatred of the Jewish nation-state, or anti-Zionism, by the Arab Nazi-acolyte al-Husseini, which is now being fed back to the far left, the far right and much of Europe, as the loop is replayed and reinforced.

This film carefully and clearly reveals that process, through the use of expert testimony and documentation, explained by the leading thinkers in the field. And in it you will learn why Greenfield believes Judeophobia is a more accurate and more powerful term than is anti-Semitism, which, like the former universal guilt over the Holocaust, has lost its teflon-like ability to protect Jews from further harm.

The second reason why this film needs to be seen is that its very existence proves its thesis true.  The location of most of the screenings in England could not be advertised because of serious security concerns.  If a movie about Jew-hatred cannot be seen in 21st Century England without fear of physical assaults and mayhem, Houston, we have a problem.

And finally, the completely obtuse responses by the major movie critics of the English language – in the New York Times , in Variety, and The Hollywood Reporter make clear that the refusal to understand Jew-hatred is almost as powerful an affliction as is Jew-hatred itself.  It is hard to find another explanation for the fact that what appear to be otherwise intelligent people can watch a movie and then criticize it for proving what it sets out to prove.  Indeed, the mainstream critics simply refuse to acknowledge there is a problem, and instead prefer to blame the victim – for acknowledging they are victims!  Read on.

“Unmasked Judeophobia: the Threat to Civilization,” is Gloria Z. Greenfield’s second documentary.  The first,  released in 2008, was “The Case for Israel,” which showcased Israel as democracy’s outpost in the Middle East. Earlier in her career, Greenfield was deeply involved in the field of radical feminism.  But when, over time, the radical feminists made it clear to Greenfield that support of Israel would not be accepted within the fold, Greenfeld left the fold.

As she watched audiences respond to her first film, it dawned on Greenfield that whether or not Israel is a shining democracy in a sea of tyrannies, for most people the only issue that mattered was the conflict between the Arabs and the Israelis, and that for such people the conflict was about territorial policies.  The widely held belief – conscious or not – was that it is in the control of the Israelis to end the conflict – all they have to do is give up some (more, of course) of the land, and the problem would go away.  And everyone wants the problem to go away.

That way of thinking about the conflict has several advantages: it means there really can be a solution; it allows cursory observers to read and listen to the mainstream media with a nod and a flip of the page; and it allows what should be ancient history to remain buried.

But, Greenfield believes, it isn’t true.  And there still are people out there who want to know the truth who will, if you can make the solid case, comprehend the situation and begin to make a move towards addressing the problem.

Greenfield realized that she needed to produce a documentary that would educate “the good and decent people, provide them with the context for the hatred that was being expressed towards the nation-state of the Jewish people, and that would also give some context to the global resurgence of lethal Jew-hatred – this hatred towards the Jewish people and towards Israel as the collective Jew.”

Greenfield means for this film to be a modern “tekiyah gedolah” – the mighty shofar blast that warned the ancient Israelites of danger.  Because, she says, once again, the Israelites are in real danger.

In this documentary, Greenfield set for herself a mighty task.  She divided the eighty minute film into several different “chapters,” so that it can be stopped at various points in order to facilitate discussion, or simply to help viewers organize and understand the different permutations of  Judeophobia.  It is a disease that has traveled and adapted through time and space, shrinking in the wake of the Holocaust, adapting and transforming to the needs of whoever wished to vilify the Jews at whatever moment they most needed a convenient scapegoat.  Greenfield shows how Jew-hatred builds upon the evil lies of the past to create a new and detested monster that can be hated anew in the present.

How does she do this? Greenfield weaves together testimony from the most knowledgeable analysts of the day, people like Robert Wistrich, Ruth Wisse, Manfred Gerstenfeld, Natan Sharansky, Elie Wiesel and so many others who examine Jew hatred through the lens of human history.  This enable us to understand the moments of transformation and distribution, guided by those who have spent lifetimes and filled volumes meticulously reviewing the evidence.  But Greenfield is able to keep the narrative flowing with skillful editing and an ever-ready ability to snip out extraneous information under which the enterprise would otherwise collapse.

We also hear from contemporary commentators who share the view from their perspectives, people like Bret Stephens and Prof. Alan Dershowitz and Amb. John Bolton.  These are people with ringside seats – at the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Law School and the United Nations – to today’s attacks on Jews and on the Jewish State.

People who saw the film during its recent screenings throughout England were all wildly enthusiastic about its strengths.  Clyde Hyman is a Scotsman who has lived for many years in Golders Green, a Jewish suburb north of London.  Hyman was unabashed when he told The Jewish Press that the film, “scared the [deleted expletive] out of me.”  Hyman is an activist who generally denounces fellow pro-Israel Brits whom he describes as “practitioners of dynamic apathy,” but, he said, this film “really put all the pieces together in a wonderful way, like a jigsaw puzzle pulls together what look like unrelated bits.”

Simon Barrett is a British television journalist and Christian Zionist.  Barrett interviewed Greenfield last week on his show, “The Middle East Report,” a weekly current affairs show on Revelation Television.  Barrett is a skilful interviewer and on his show he allowed Greenfield to talk frankly about her hopes and plans for “Unmasked Judeophobia,” interspersed with extended clips from the movie.

When Barrett spoke to The Jewish Press, he expressed dismay that the people who hosted screenings of the movie in Manchester and in Birmingham would not publicly disclose the locations.  As he put it, “the haters have already won if people are too afraid to publicize this film.”  While Barrett acknowledged that it is very different for him to sit in a television studio and not have to live with the possible negative consequences of public attacks, “they’ve got to overcome that spirit of fear, or we really will all watch as the world goes mad.”

Even the film’s score is worthy of note.  Sharon Farber created a subtle musical accompaniment that never overpowers the visual, but rather weaves in and out, ominously rising where the drama increases and then fluttering to a whisper when more sensory stimulus would be a distraction.

One of the few criticisms this reviewer heard from knowledgeable pro-Israel activists such as Helene Fragman Abramson, of Princeton, New Jersey, is that the documentary lays out the problem, but then viewers are left without a game plan. Abramson saw the documentary last year in New York City, at an event hosted by the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America.  Senior leadership at CAMERA are co-producers of the film.

As if in answer to Abramson’s complaint, just last week Greenfield’s production company, Doc Emet Productions, released With Clarity and Courage – An Activist’s Guide as a companion to the film.  The publication is available here.  It was written by Anna Kolodner, former executive director of the David Project Center for Jewish Leadership, and contains detailed information on how to combat Judeophobia.   So in addition to delivering an absolutely first rate, must-see documentary, Doc Emet Productions has now provided a follow-through game plan, or at least the tools for activists to use to create their own.

Upcoming Screenings

Newton, Massachusetts
January 6, 2013
Read more

Orange County Internatlonal Jewish Film Festival, California
January 16, 2013
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Port Elizabeth, South Africa
January 20, 2013
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Durban, South Africa
January 21, 2013
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Cape Town, South Africa
January 24, 2013
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Modi’in, Israel
January 27, 2013
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New York, New York
February 6, 2013
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New York, New York
February 7, 2013
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Dallas, Texas
February 10, 2013
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Winchester, Massachusetts
April 21, 2013
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Scarsdale, New York
May 6, 2013
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New Hyde Park, New York
May 11, 2013
Read more

To rent the movie for public events or private screenings, or to see where the film is being shown in  your area, go to www.unmaskedthemovie.com.

Lori Lowenthal Marcus

Admitting the Mistake of the Disengagement

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

On Sunday, Wall Street Journal editor and columnist Bret Stephens did what too many need to do: own up to the mistake of supporting the Disengagement Plan.

At the time, Stephens was editor-in-chief of the Jerusalem Post.

In his WSJ column Stephens wrote that on each of the points he argued regarding the Disengagement plan he turned out to be wrong. He writes:

My error was to confuse a good argument with good policy; to suppose that mere self-justification is a form of strategic prudence. It isn’t. Israel is obviously within its rights to defend itself now against a swarm of rockets and mortars from Gaza. But if it had maintained a military presence in the Strip, it would not now be living under this massive barrage.

Or, to put it another way: The diplomatic and public-relations benefit Israel derives from being able to defend itself from across a “border” and without having to get into an argument about settlements isn’t worth the price Israelis have had to pay in lives and terror.

Put simply, Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza yielded less security, greater diplomatic isolation, and a Palestinian regime even more radical and emboldened than it had been before. As strategic failures go, it was nearly perfect.

He also makes a recommendation about not accepting a ceasefire, citing Netanyahu’s analysis as opposition leader during Operation Cast Lead, but I don’t want to spoil the article, so check it out yourself.

Daniel Tauber

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/admitting-the-mistake-of-the-disengagement/2012/11/21/

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