This little Ditty appeared on Laura Rozen’s Politico Column Today:
UPDATE: A top candidate seems to be Hannah Rosenthal, former head of the Jewish Council on Public Affairs and former executive director of the Chicago Foundation for Women. She has a track record of involvement in countering anti-Semitism in the international context. Rosenthal, currently community outreach director at a Wisconsin firm, was traveling and could not be immediately reached to comment.
UPDATE II: An administration official said this sounds right, regarding Rosenthal
This is the ultimate cynical move by Obama. Even as the executive director of JPAC, found herself in positions to put down the Israeli government. Maybe this has been exasperated by her feelings that while at JPAC she was avoided by the heads of other Jewish Organizations.
Hannah finally found a place to fit in, Rosenthal is now a member of the advisory council of the sham Pro-Israel organization J-street, formed by George Soros and mentored by President Obama in order to give his administration a false appearance of being pro-Israel.
Rosenthal has accused the Major American Jewish Organizations of not supporting the two state solution, a libelous statement. For example if you search the AIPAC site you can find documents of support of the two-state solution going as far back as their archive allows (2004), but Rosenthal said:
“For too long the ‘pro-Israel’ politics of the Jewish organizational world have lagged far behind the consensus of the people they claim to represent, the majority of whom believe that a negotiated two-state solution is in Israel’s best interest, ”said advisory council member, Hannah Rosenthal, the former executive director of the Jewish Council on Public Affairs. “J Street represents a concrete opportunity for us to bridge that gap; it is a vehicle for expressing the belief shared by the majority of American Jews and Americans alike that to be pro-Israel is to advocate for vigorous American leadership role in bringing peace and real security to the Middle East.
To celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Israel and the birth of J-street Ms Rosenthal wrote an article accusing the American Jewish Community and Israel of not wanting peace, and non progressives as anti-Israel:
Six years ago this week, JCPA was one of many organizations that helped bring thousands of Jews, and hundreds of our friends and allies, to Washington to support Israel at a National Israel Solidarity Rally. It was an historic occasion, and I recall much of that day with fondness and pride. I also recall the many rally attendees who pulled me aside to ask why the word “peace” was so absent from the proceedings. How could we talk security without talking peace? Where were the voices representing the will of the broader American Jewish community? Why were there no speakers giving voice to a pro-Israel vision of a secure Israel living side-by-side in peace with its neighbors?
Throughout this day of speeches and rallying cries, I began to ask myself the same questions: Where was the pro-Israel, pro-peace message? Why was the voice of so many American Jews absent from this rally?
How did we arrive at a place where pro-Israel events had come to be dominated by narrow, ultra-conservative views of what it means to be pro-Israel?
…..As American Jews, we pride ourselves on our liberal values — and rightfully so. For decades, we have heeded the call of tikkun olam — repairing the world — and been leaders on a range of social justice issues, from civil rights to poverty; from the Deep South to Darfur. Recently, we have traveled in the thousands (thanks in great part to the leadership of the JCPA) to the Gulf Coast to help rebuild areas affected by Hurricane Katrina.
Yet when it comes to Israel, the voices that are heard are so often at odds with these same values.
The progressive voice in our community has been far too quiet on Israel for far too long.
Perhaps out of fear, perhaps out of timidity, we have failed to stand up to those who favor military solutions to political problems or oppose peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian and Arab-Israeli conflicts in the name of promoting Israel’s best interests.
Six years after I stood with thousands of other American Jews in Washington in support of Israel, Israel remains mired in conflicts with its neighbors. There is no security. There is no peace. And there is no real political leadership here in the United States that is prepared to change this reality and engage in meaningful and consistent diplomacy.
….To me, this is an ideal moment for a new political movement to emerge, rooted among American Jews who love Israel, to express loudly and forcefully that it is pro-Israel to press for more active American leadership role in bringing peace to the Middle East. That it is in the best interests of Israel for us as American Jews to stand up and say what we believe and reclaim the pro-Israel mantle from those who purport to be pro-Israel, but whose policies and politics are far from it.
Fellow liberal progressive, ADL Chairman Abe Foxman ripped Rosenthal in this op-ed:
An Open Letter To Hannah Rosenthal
By Abraham H. Foxman
National Director of the Anti-Defamation League
This article originally appeared in The New York Jewish Week on May 1, 2008
Dear Hannah Rosenthal,
In “Reclaiming The Pro-Israel Mantle” (Opinion, April 25) you reflect on your experience at a National Israel Solidarity Rally in Washington six years ago during your tenure as executive director of the JCPA. You recall a day of speeches in which you heard only the constant drumbeat of “narrow, ultra-conservative views of what it means to be pro-Israel…” You found yourself asking, “Where was the pro-Israel, pro-peace message? Why was the voice of so many American Jews absent from this rally?”
I was also there with you and tens of thousands of other proud American Jews on that uncommonly hot April day in 2002, less than three weeks after the horrific suicide murder of 30 Israelis celebrating Passover at the Park Hotel in Netanya.
My memory of what happened at the event that day is quite different from yours.
I remember many of the speakers delivering “pro-peace” messages. There was Rep. Richard Gephardt (“We must not waver in our commitment to those — Israelis and Arabs alike — who have chosen the path of peace”), as well as Sen. Harry Reid (“I call on all who share our vision and hopes to continue to spread a message of peace: shalom, salaam, peace”). There was also Paul Wolfowitz, representing the Bush administration (“Peace in the Middle East is the only way to end the suffering of Palestinians and Israelis, of Arabs and Jews”), as well as Natan Sharansky (“Real peace, dear friends, depends on us”). And there was Mayor Rudy Giuliani (“All of us, all of you good people who have come here today, all of us wish for peace. We pray for it.”). I remember you introducing Hugh Price, then president of the National Urban League, and I remember Mr. Price closing his remarks with a call to world leaders “to give lasting peace a chance in the Middle East.”
So I ask: Why are our perceptions of that historic outpouring of support for Israel so jarringly dissimilar? Of course, there were also speakers who focused only on Israel’s right to defend herself against violent murderous terrorist attacks; those who spoke in anger or in pain. And there were those who had a particular political point of view that did not reflect the politics of some in the Jewish community. Why did I hear a variety of views expressed at the rally six years ago while for you, the event triggered a six-year-long period during which you questioned why you did not hear the pro-peace voices in our community?
In the American Jewish community — today as well as yesterday — there have always been diverse opinions on a whole range of social, economic, political and religious issues. Throughout my experience as a leader in the Jewish community I have appreciated and welcomed the broad range of views and the variety of forums in which members of our community can participate to express themselves. Our community has never been lacking in public self-examination, robust debate and vocal advocacy of the many ideas, beliefs and opinions we all have, including about Israel and Israeli government policies. One of the great strengths of the Jewish people is our willingness to question and reassess and re-evaluate those ideas, beliefs and opinions.
Israel’s 60th anniversary offers a focal point for deepening our understanding of the role and relationship of American Jewry to the future of Israel. But it also offers us, as American Jews, the opportunity to deepen our understanding of one another, whatever side of the pro-Israel fence we find ourselves on. I am confident that all of the voices in our community will continue to have an outlet and hopefully will continue to be heard, just as I heard them in April 2002 at that historic gathering in Washington in support of the most significant common element of our heritage, the modern State of Israel.
The appointment of Hannah Rosenthal is more proof of how our President is trying to push ahead an anti-Israel agenda. This move is just a little more cynical than his normal Israel-trashing move.