When the Synagogue Council of America — the only national rabbinic group representing Orthodox, Conservative and Reform Jewry — broke up in 1994 after 68 years, observers said it underscored the growing rift between Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews.
“Maybe it has outlived its usefulness,” mused member Rabbi Fabian Schonfeld of the Young Israel of Kew Garden Hills at that time.
While Evangelical Christians are capturing headlines for their fervent support of Israel, going virtually unnoticed is how the nation’s “mainline” Protestants have been strongly advocating an anti-Israel/pro-Palestinian position during the current Middle East crisis.
Campus battles over the Middle East conflict and rising anti-Semitism are heating up on several fronts:
# A national pro-Palestinian student conference declaring that “Zionism is racism” is slated for Oct. 12 at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, with plans to increase pressure on college officials to drop investments in Israel.
Carole Basri stood in the bright sunshine in front of the Isaiah Wall, only blocks from the United Nations headquarters. She clutched a black-and-white picture of her white-bearded great-grandfather — the former chief rabbi of Baghdad.
“I come here as a Jew and an Arab,” she told a small gathering of reporters and Jewish officials Monday. “My family had lived there for 2,500 years, before the rise of Mohammed and Islam. I want to see Iraq someday, see the home of my parents and my legacy.”
Representatives for a powerful roster of academics and writers this week rejected the Anti-Defamation League's invitation to meet and discuss their charge that the ADL applied pressure to shut down a prominent critic of Israel's New York lecture.
Professors Mark Lilla and Richard Sennett, organizers of a protest letter to ADL signed by 113 intellectuals, rejected ADL's denial that it had not, in fact, threatened or pressured the Polish Consulate to deny a platform to New York University historian Tony Judt.
New York University historian Tony Judt sought to claim new ammunition this week for his charge that pro-Israel groups use their influence to stifle debate about their activities.
Less than three hours before he was due to give a talk about the Israel lobby at the Polish Consulate Tuesday night, Poland's consul general abruptly canceled the event after being contacted by Jewish and non-Jewish organizations.
But the question of whether Jewish groups (in particular, the Anti-Defamation League) pressured Consul General Krzysztof Kasprzyk remained in sharp dispute.
Those folks at the Anti-Defamation League keep churning out reports, and sometimes they're downright terrifying.
This week the ADL released a report on the growing mood of rage and suspicion gripping the nation since President Barack Obama's election a year ago, fueled by “theories about gun confiscations,” anti-government “tea parties” ' and a “resurgent militia movement.”
Thursday, November 19th, 2009
Those folks at the Anti-Defamation League keep churning out reports, and sometimes they’re downright they’re downright terrifying.
This week the ADL released a report on the growing mood of rage and suspicion gripping the nation since President Barack Obama’s election a year ago, fueled by “theories about gun confiscations,” anti-government “tea parties” ‘ and a “resurgent militia movement.”
Evangelical Christians, long seen as a monolith in lockstep support of Israel, publicly fractured last week as two significant evangelical factions lobbied President Bush with criticism of Israel from opposite points of view.
For the first time, Christians United for Israel, a major Christian Zionist group with strong ties to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, lobbied President Bush against the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — a solution advocated by Israel, the Bush administration and the pro-Israel Washington lobby itself.
On the eve of his first U.S. visit since becoming deputy prime minister of Israel, Avigdor Lieberman, who calls for stripping Israeli Arabs of their citizenship, has received a provisional pass from much of the Jewish establishment — and a stamp of approval from one leader who denounced him just last May.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Jewish Week this week, “I don’t see anything extremist since he became part of the government.”