Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Coming on the heels of an election that had all the hallmarks of an orchestrated fraud, and a crackdown on peaceful protestors that included mass arrests, torture and firing on unarmed civilians, all done in the looming shadow of the mushroom cloud that Iran seeks to unleash upon Israel, Europe and America, one might think that InterContinental might not want their presidential suite befouled by the presence of this thug. But one would, unfortunately, be wrong.
A group called United Against Nuclear Iran, which includes among its co-founders Dennis Ross and Richard Holbrooke, has started a campaign to call upon InterContinental to refuse to host Ahmedinejad and his delegation. You can go here to send a message directly to the Barclay's management.
And while I would venture that most of my readership doesn't stay at an InterContinental Hotel too often (I certainly haven't), it turns out that InterContinental also owns one of the best-known midrange hotel chains: Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express. So, think about it-- the next time you're on the road and want to spend the night somewhere, do you really want to stay with the people whose company does business with Mahmoud Ahmedinejad?
InterContinental has a corporate website comment form here.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Court Jews were so named because they were Jews who did favors for noblemen in exchange for prestige, social influence, and various privileges not available to other Jews. They were often more concerned with preserving their status and fortunes than in promoting the welfare of their less fortunate co-religionists, who usually faced severe bigotry, were mired in poverty, and walled into ghettoes. Because they so often rejected their brethren in order to achieve personal advantage, the term “court Jew” has become one of opprobrium.
This phenomenon has existed all through history. In more recent times, Jews in the
In the widening divide between American and Israeli Jews over concern for the future of
In part, this was the motivation behind the establishment of the American Council for Judaism (ACJ), founded by prominent and wealthy Jews in 1942 as an anti-Zionist organization. It was directed by Elmer Berger, a Reform rabbi and court Jew aspirant, who identified with Arab causes and condemned
Barack Obama has also needed court Jews. The President, clearly committed to liberal-left solutions to our national problems, campaigned as a strong advocate for
Once he was elected Barack Obama found governing to be more difficult than campaigning. The choices that he has made have led to erosion of support, especially among centrists who had supported him. To be successful Obama needed to retain his base, including those who gave him not only votes, but large numbers of workers, financial assistance, and intellectual heft. This means that he cannot afford to lose the American Jewish community.
Obama’s view of the conflict in the Middle East has been shaped by those with an imperfect understanding of
Given the gaps in knowledge and sophistication indicated by these blunders, it is not surprising that he thinks that he can talk
But the President needs to be sure that in the process of leaning on
Ben-Ami has a long career in government and politics. Positions with the New Israel Fund, as Policy Director for Howard Dean’s Presidential Campaign, and as a domestic policy advisor to President Bill Clinton , have solidified his attachment to left-liberal causes. Along with others, including George Soros, Ben-Ami founded
When applied to AIPAC, it is difficult to find any evidence for the right wing label, since it is non-ideological, and bipartisan. In fact, AIPAC represents Jews from the entire political spectrum, and makes no policy decisions nor does it endorse or fund candidates. Its sole role is to educate and lobby elected officials to adopt measures that will promote cooperation between
During its short history,
They have lobbied Congress to oppose an initiative calling on Obama to pressure Arab governments to normalize relations with
On the domestic front, they have endorsed the anti-Semitic play, “Seven Jewish Children”. And when the President awarded the Medal of Freedom to Mary Robinson, a poorly chosen action causing many to wonder why the President would further court the ire of Jewish organizations, it was
But their most controversial action relates to Operation Cast Lead. Last December, after several months of deadly rocket and mortar attacks from
This Orwellian deception permits Obama to take steps inimical to the security of
The J Street Advisory Council is composed largely of individuals who are unambiguous in their defamation of
The continuing effectiveness of
As its motives were becoming suspect, and as critics were becoming increasingly skeptical over its claim to represent a pro-Israel point of view, a major setback undermined
These include Richard Abdoo, a Lebanese-American businessman and board member of Amideast and of the Arab American Institute, and Genevieve Lynch, a member of the National Iranian American Council board, a group that supports the repressive and anti-Israel regime in Iran. . The group has also received funding from Nancy Dutton, an attorney who at one time represented the Saudi Embassy. Other donors include leaders of Muslim student groups, Saudi- and Iranian-born Americans, and Palestinian and Arab-American businessmen.
In addition, donations came from at least two State Department officials connected to Middle East issues, Nicole Shampaine, director of the State Department's Office for
Several weeks ago, the mainstream Jewish organizations requested a meeting with the President. The administration found itself in the position of wanting to ignore or neutralize these groups, and so they were initially put off. After repeated requests, a meeting was scheduled but its existence was kept very quiet; the ground rules ruled out any reporters.. For the meeting, the President took it upon himself to decide who the representatives of the Jewish community should be, eliminating pro-Israel stalwarts such as ZOA, and including
The claim by
For Obama, J Street permits him to create the illusion that he has the support of the American Jewish community, that he is maintaining his promise to be a friend to Israel, and by doing exactly what a pro-Israel Jewish organization is recommending, he is acting in Israel’s best interests, When challenged he is able to state with some credibility that it is Israel that needs to do some “serious self-reflection”. All Obama needs in order to continue this is for the other two parties to follow their scripts
The final party, the organized Jewish community and supporters of