When the New York Times reported on the growing controversy over Yeshiva University’s Cardozo Law School giving an award to Jimmy Carter — with the headline Law School Group Incites Fury With Choice to Honor Carter — it became clear that this was no small disagreement among Jewish groups.
The anger is real, and the controversy and the history of Jimmy Carter’s anti-Israel campaigns are the story.
Now Jewish groups are making their views known.
YnetNews reports that Young Israel Calls to Rescind Invite to Jimmy Carter:
“The National Council of Young Israel strongly urges Yeshiva University, the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, and the school’s Journal of Conflict Resolution to do the right thing and rescind the invitation that has been issued to former President Carter,” said Farley Weiss, the president of the National Council of Young Israel. “We believe that honoring President Carter as an International Advocate for Peace Award may be consistent with this organization’s past of honoring another demonizer of Israel, Bishop Desmond Tutu, but it does not mean that bad decisions should be repeated over again; rather, they should learn from the past and honor those who truly deserve to be honored.
Meanwhile, The Algemeiner reports ADL, Simon Wiesenthal Center Blast Cardozo’s Jimmy Carter Honor
Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s National Director, told The Algemeiner: “The students were wrong – they are entitled to be wrong and inappropriate and we are entitled to say that honoring former President Carter is wrong, especially for a Jewish institution…and indeed for any institution. Desmond Tutu, who is more problematic than Jimmy Carter when it comes to issues relating to Israel, was also honored. I wouldn’t do it. I wouldn’t vote for it, I wouldn‘t support it. We need to do a better job educating – wrongly stigmatizing Israel does not help to resolve the problems. Hopefully if we instill those values, future mistakes like this will not be made.”
Foxman added that “the University responded properly,” to the controversy.
Likewise Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, told The Algemeiner that the students did not “exercise due diligence .”
“Had they done so,’ he added, “they would have discovered that Mr Carter has never resolved his conflict with the Jewish state. His serial bias against Israel is well-documented. That alone should have led tomorrow’s lawyers, whatever their ethnicity or religion, to conclude that President Carter should not receive such an honor.”
Jimmy Carter will nonetheless get his award.
Still, while the students will honor Carter, the Jewish community has had the opportunity to highlight Jimmy Carter’s actual record, his hostility towards Israel and legitimization of terrorist groups like Hamas.
And one more thing: Jews Still Planning to Sue Jimmy Carter over Anti-Israel Book:
Asserting that no individual has done more than former President Jimmy Carter to defame Israel and to challenge its right to exist, a group of readers filed a class action suit against Carter and the Simon and Schuster publishing company, back in February, 2011, alleging that Carter’s book, “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid,” contains numerous false and knowingly misleading statements intended to promote the author’s agenda of anti-Israel propaganda and to deceive the reading public instead of presenting accurate information as advertised.
The suit, Unterberg et al. v. Jimmy Carter et.al (11 cv 0720), filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York in February, 2011, sought compensatory and punitive damages against the defendants.
The five plaintiffs named in the lawsuit are seeking at least $5 million in compensation.
It’s the least the Jewish community could do to let Jimmy Carter know what we really think of him.
Not exactly what Yglesias is talking about. I don’t think Yglesias knows WTF Yglesias is talking about.
The existence of Christian Zionists is, of course, not new. But what is new is that Israeli politics has drifted toward the hawkish right over the past ten years even as Jewish Americans remain on the progressive left. That change in Israeli politics, meanwhile, has been in part driven by a demographic shift away from the kind of secular ashkenazi Jews who predominate in the American population. At the same time, Christian Zionist sentiment has boomed in America and the Palestinian cause has never been less popular among America’s overwhelmingly non-Jewish population.
This is all part of what I’ve called the trend toward post-Jewish Zionism. That’s not to say that there are no Jewish Zionists in the United States (or Canada, etc.) but merely to observe that Jews as such are decreasingly relevant to the politics of Israel. In Europe, too, we’re seeing a boom of far-right parties (True Finns, Geert Wilders’ Freedom Party, the Danish People’s Party) with strong pro-Israel stands.
But look at whom he is defining as ‘post-Jewish.’
Daniel Levy’s article on Israeli demographics is also relevant to this. If you’re a typical Jewish American, this is quite literally not your father’s Israel. The Palestinian, Haredi, “national Orthodox,” and Russian immigrant shares of the population have all grown substantially.
While it’s true that the Haredi, national Orthodox (by which I assume he means National Religious) and Russian immigrant (by the way, most of whom are not religious and many of whom are not Jewish at all) populations have grown, that does not explain why Israelis have become what Yglesias calls ‘hawkish right,’ nor does it explain why fewer and fewer Israelis are sympathetic to the ‘Palestinian’ cause.
The Likud gets very few Haredi votes and probably not a whole lot of National Religious votes or Russian immigrant votes either. What’s driven Israel to the right is not changing demographics but changing perceptions of the possibility of peace (without scare quotes) with the ‘Palestinians.’ Most Israelis have realized the truth over the last 6-11 years (look up those dates): That it’s not peace or a state that the ‘Palestinians’ want. It’s that they want to destroy the Jewish state. We won’t roll over and play dead for them.
Some people would call that kind of shift democracy.
And by the way, those Haredim and National Religious Jews are more Jewish (in practice) than Yglesias will ever be. I would definitely not call them ‘post Jewish.’ That’s absurd.
Matt Yglesias, at Think Progress, writes about the Daily Caller op-ed in which Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Gevalt) castigates American Jews for not being his kind of American Jew. (Next up: Joe Walsh wishes wimmin were still ladies!)
I won’t pile more on Walsh — it seems gratuitous at this stage — but Yglesias seems to have contracted Walsh’s unseemly “they’re all alike” affect in this passage:
Israeli politics has drifted toward the hawkish right over the past ten years even as Jewish Americans remain on the progressive left. That change in Israeli politics, meanwhile, has been in part driven by a demographic shift away from the kind of secular ashkenazi Jews who predominate in the American population.
Say what? Ashkenazim have a genetic predisposition toward liberal democracy?
Let me put it this way: Vus?