I was reading the Jewish Week and ran across this little ditty which said in part:
So far the Jerusalem battle is mostly confined to the Orthodox community and groups that have long been hostile to land-for-peace negotiations. The OU and Diament have emerged as primary drivers of the anti-compromise effort among Orthodox Jews. Last year, in response to the 2005 Israeli withdrawal from Gaza, which it did not protest, the group formally renounced its traditional policy of automatic support for the policies of the elected Israeli government. At the same time, Diament said, it passed a resolution “which explicitly said that we will oppose any plans to divide Jerusalem.” With negotiations on hold, he said, concern about Jerusalem receded — but came back with a vengeance this summer when Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called for a major Israel-Palestinian meeting. In the months before Annapolis, the Orthodox Union, the National Council of Young Israel and other groups created the Coordinating Council for Jerusalem. “Suddenly, it began to seem that Jerusalem was looming over everything,” said Jeffrey Ballabon, a conservative political activist and coordinator of the coalition. “Everybody knows that there is no resolution of anything without a resolution over Jerusalem. Now, with Annapolis, it is clear we will have to deal with this soon; it’s the emergent issue.” A parallel group, One Jerusalem, was created in 2000 with help from Ronald Lauder, the former chair of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Relatively inactive in the past few years, the group has been revived by the Annapolis conference and the likelihood it will trigger talks on final status issues such as Jerusalem, said Allen Roth, the group’s president (former Knesset member Natan Sharansky is its honorary chair). “When we feel Jerusalem is in crisis, we materialize,” he said. Giving up Arab neighborhoods to the Palestinians he said, would “endanger the rest of Jerusalem.” He pointed to recent riots in Paris and there would be a “similar danger” if Israel gives up control of Jerusalem neighborhoods.
The Jewish Week’s contention that the save Jerusalem efforts is just a few Orthodox organizations and a bunch of right wing crazies trying to prevent a peace deal is absurd. Just as absurd is the paper’s refusal to recognize the importance of Jerusalem to the Jewish community
As a graduate of YU Jewish Week Publisher Gary Rosenblatt should be ashamed of himself. He has totally forgotten the concept of Tikkun Olam , instead of trying to repair the world he is trying to drive a wedge between Jews. By pushing Jerusalem an issue of importance only to Orthodox Jews the paper is proving once again, that with the exception of one or two reporters (Stewart Ain, for example) the Jewish Week is out of touch with the Jewish Community.
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As one of the people involved in coordinating the Coordinating Council on Jerusalem blog effort I can tell you that most of the blogs involved including mine are NOT Orthodox and (other than mine) are not are not written by crazies.
One Jerusalem described above is not an Orthodox–And as far as the group that I am involved with the Coordinating Council on Jerusalem Many of its partner organizations are not Orthodox including:
- Israeli Groups: American Israeli Demographic Team, Ami – Chai (Zionist youth Mouvment), Galilee Institute, Hatikva – (New Party), Im Terzu – (students organization in all universities), Magini Eretz, Mate Haifa, Mate Zafon ( north), Naemani Erets Israel,Nahalal forum – (kibbutz and Moshav Members), Nir Barkat (Jerusalem),Professors for a Strong Israel, The Movement for Eretz Israel Hashlima – (founded by Nathan Alterman in 1967), Tsafrir Ronen. Yesha Concil Chomesh First
- USA Groups: American Friends of Likud, Americans for a Safe Israel, Isralight, One Israel, Reform Students for Israel, Russian Jewish Community Foundation, Secular Jews for Israel, Students for Israel, The Jerusalem Connection, Unity Coalition for Israel, Zionist Organization of America Fund
But of course Mr. Besser, the article’s author doesn’t mention the non Orthodox groups, because neither he, nor the Jewish Week’s editor Gary Rosenblatt have the desire to write about things that are outside of their narrow agenda.