Gary Rosenblatt’s courageous piece (“Advocacy Gone Awry,” March 18) calls much-needed attention to the polarization that currently exists in discussions on the topic of what constitutes “pro-Israel” advocacy, and what is “anti-Israel.”
I read Gary Rosenblatt’s column, “Advocacy Gone Awry” (March 18), and my initial reaction was to agree with its message almost completely. The protests against the JCC in Manhattan seem absurd, for all the reasons you outlined.
But as I thought about it more, I realized that while the column is right about the JCC (and similar) protests being off-target, it also reinforces the idea that what’s at issue here is merely a communications problem, not one about an on-the-ground reality. I’m referring to the reality that even someone like Ariel Sharon
I think we’ve hit a dangerous trend in the American Jewish community “Advocacy Gone Awry,” Between the Lines, March 18). Right-wing groups are resorting to neo-McCarthyism in an effort to determine if other Jews pass their pro-Israel litmus test. These groups should not be the sole arbitrators of what it means to be pro-Israel. This would be the equivalent of saying that only one political party in the U.S. is sufficiently patriotic.
In last week’s front-page article, “Teaneck Parents Eyeing Public (School) Option,” the author discusses an increasing level of interest among Orthodox parents in exploring the once-unimaginable possibility of enrolling their children in public schools. This is primarily; though not exclusively, due to the prohibitive, and seemingly ever-increasing cost of yeshiva tuition.
Regarding “Day Schools Need New Israel Ed Approach” (Feb. 18), I was glad to see editor Gary Rosenblatt’s consideration of Alex Pomson’s research on day school students’ attitudes towards Israel and Israel education. Rosenblatt’s conclusion about schools needing to explore new approaches, while undoubtedly correct, is not news. Students today are incredibly savvy and sophisticated in their approach to Israel and Israel advocacy.
Our eighth grade recently returned from a transformational two-week Israel trip through our school and with Ramah International. As a head of school (K-8) and Israel trip educator, my dream is to start a new division of Taglit [Birthright Israel] or find a way to start an independent model with Ramah or another trip provider based on the successes we see. Your article “Boost for Birthright Funding” (Jan. 21) is inspiring me to think about liberal Jewish education in the future: it has to be Israel-centered.
In “Threats To Israeli Democracy” (Opinion, March 11), Letty Cottin Pogrebin exhorts American Jews to decry measures by the Knesset, which is trying to get better control of scores of NGOs, who are trying to undermine Israel and aid its delegitimization from within. She brands these measures as McCarthyite. She also criticizes Israel’s wish to have a loyalty pledge of allegiance to Israel as a Jewish state. She believes that Israeli democracy is being destroyed by these and other measures.
I was so pleased to read Gary Rosenblatt’s column, “Advocacy Gone Awry” (March 15). I have personally felt the anguish of being dubbed anti-Semitic and anti-Israel because in a number of recent communications I have expressed my frustration with the continued expansion of settlements in the West Bank and Prime Minister Netanyahu’s lack of pushing the two-state solution.
It is wrong for The Jewish Week to marginalize the efforts of JCCWatch.org and the growing group of Jews who refuse to allow their communal organizations to twist their support of Israel and embrace those groups who look to hurt Israel (“Advocacy Gone Awry,” Editor’s column, March 18)