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Latest Published Letter to the Editor

Why a Different Standard for Israel?

Published in the Washington Jewish Week on December 4, 2015.

French President Francios Hollande is correct to describe the barbaric attacks in Paris this month as an “act of war”. Washington Jewish Week identifies the need to confront the evil these atrocities represent (“The real fight against evil”, Editorial, Nov. 19).

The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and its affiliate, the JCRC, link the Paris attacks to the continuing carnage in Israel (“In the News”, washingonjewishweek.com, Nov. 19). As they state: “Radical Islamists are a global problem posing a threat to the entire world, as evidenced by the horrendous attacks in Paris last week and in Israel today.”

The murderers responsible for the Paris atrocities swear allegiance to the self-proclaimed Islamic State. The radical Islamist entities that promote barbarism in Israel go by many names: Hezbollah, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Hamas and, yes, even the Palestinian Authority that, through unrelenting incitement, is the driving force behind he reign of terror in Israel. What’s more, every one of the above-noted terror organizations has American blood on its hands.

The international community rightly stands foursquare with France through intensified efforts to eradicate the Islamic Sate. Yet, the free world does next to nothing to wholeheartedly support Israel in its efforts to overcome the Islamist-inspired barbarians arrayed against it. Far worse, Western nations give aid and succor to the radical Iranian state and extensive financial support to P.A. leaders — in effect subsidizing their campaign of incitement against the world’s only Jewish state.

We must ask ourselves why there is a different standard in the free world when it comes to standing with Israel. At a minimum, we must all vociferously demand an end to the world’s double standards that effectively deny the Jewish people and their nation-sate the fundamental rights and privileges that are granted to other nations.

 

Marc Caroff, President,

Louis D. Brandeis Chapter

Zionist Organization of America

 

 

Slap in the Face to NPT Nations, Published in the Baltimore Jewish Times print edition on September 25, 2015.

As you will note, my letter rebukes derogatory comments made against me and against ZOA in a letter by Saul Edelman in the September 18 issue. Edelman’s letter begins with “The ZOA’s penchant for misinformation continues”, then goes on to assert that “… in its glorification of the NPT, this letter (referring to my original letter) comes off more as a cheap shot against Israel than as an indictment of Iran.”

Mr. Edelman’s comments in his Sept. 18 Your Say letter are simply ludicrous. As a grossly distorted parody of my Your Say words (“The Iran Deal: An Outrage, Insult”, JT, Sept. 4), they are reprehensible.

 

“Slap in the Face to NPT Nations”

To set the record straight, approximately 190 nations, including Iran and the U.S., are party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). The terms of the Iran nuclear agreement that legitimize Iran’s retention of an infrastructure for the development of nuclear weapons are in direct violation of the NPT.

Edelman draws attention to the fact that three or four nations, including Israel, have not signed on to the NPT for their own reasons. That fact is simply irrelevant to the very serious issue of noncompliance by Iran with their NPT commitments. What we have here is an Obama administration that is aiding and abetting a sworn enemy of the United States (Iran) to violate an international treaty that has, until now, withstood the test of time as a pillar of stability in an unstable world. The consequences of this betrayal will be catastrophic as other Middle East nations rush to acquire nuclear weapons to counter the threat posed by an Iranian nuclear-threshold state and demand the same exemptions from their NPT commitments that have been irresponsibly granted to the radical Islamic regime in Iran.

Marc L. Caroff

Dear ZOA members and supporters,

The following letter to the editor appeared in the July 10th issue of the Baltimore Jewish Times. A slightly shorter version of the letter appeared in the July 2nd issue of Washington Jewish Week with the title “Pro-Israel community should heed Oren’s words.”

By the way, the title of Oren’s new book is “Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israel Divide.” I hope it is selling like hot cakes. Every person concerned about the dangers facing Israel, and how Obama has exacerbated those dangers, should read the book from cover to cover!

 

Oren’s Words Are a Wake-Up Call

“Oren’s Un-Diplomacy”

In a June 26 editorial (“Oren’s Un-Diplomacy”), the JT emphasizes the controversy brewing over former Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s recent revelations about President Barack Obama’s shabby treatment of Israel. The controversy itself is nothing more than a tempest in a teapot.

A focus on Oren’s substantive remarks would have better served the Jewish community. Oren had intimate discussions with Obama administration officials about all aspects of the U.S.-Israel relationship during his tenure as Israel’s ambassador to the U.S. It should be abundantly clear by now that Obama’s hostility and insensitivity to Israel’s concerns, and his disdain for its prime minister, are without precedent in the history of U.S-Israel relations. Oren’s disclosures in major news outlets, and in his new book, highlight the scope and intensity of that hostility and instances of Obama’s deliberate attempts to weaken the historically strong U.S.-Israel alliance by forsaking the core principles of “no daylight” and “no surprises”.

Oren’s book cites specific examples of Obama’s shabby treatment of Israel: snubbing Prime Minister Netanyahu, pressuring Israel to make unwarranted concessions to advance the peace process while making no substantive demands of the Palestinians, ignoring the intransigence of the Palestinian Authority and its promotion of hatred and terrorism, unilaterally discarding U.N. Security Council resolution 242 and its guarantee of defensible borders for Israel by insisting on the 1949 armistice lines (with land swaps) as a baseline for Palestinian statehood and, last but not least, pursuing a flimsy agreement with the Islamic Republic of Iran that apparently leaves it with the capability to produce nuclear weapons.

The words of truth-tellers such as Ambassador Oren need to be heard and heeded by the pro-Israel Jewish community soas not to be misled by the siren song of the Israel-bashing Obama administration. Oren’s revelations are a wake-up call for those who care to listen to the inside story of how Obama, from the very beginning of his presidency, has worked to undermine the longstanding friendship between the United States and Israel.

 

Marc Caroff

President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter

Zionist Organization of America

Silver Spring, Maryland

 

Subject: FW: Letter to the Editor

My latest letter to the editor titled “To be Pro-Israel, One Must Uphold Zionist Principles”, which appears in the May 21, 2015 issue of Washington Jewish Week.

I was shocked to read in a recent issue that the JCRC-sponsored Israel Engagement Fellowship, a seminar for local high school students, includes “Palestinian narratives” as an integral part of its education program (“Changing the way we teach, WJW, April 2). The question is: Does the fellowship program present the so-called Palestinian narrative as a credible version of events arising out of the Arab-Israeli conflict, or as the grossly distorted view of history which it is?

The fellowship was launched to teach students “there is no one way to be pro-Israel”. However, to be pro-Israel one must necessarily understand and uphold Zionist principles, the very same principles upon which the modern Jewish state of Israel was founded. Indeed, to be pro-Israel we must make sure our children appreciate that Zionism is, and has always been, a fundamental part of Judaism throughout our 3,500-year history as a people.

The essence of the Palestinian narrative is anti-Zionism: no recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, no recognition of the historical bond between the Jewish people and the land of Israel, no recognition that Jews as individuals are entitled to the same civil rights and protections as any other people.

One would hope that the Israel Engagement Fellowship arms impressionable seminar participants with the analytical skills necessary to distinguish fact from fantasy while teaching them about the Arab-Israeli conflict and what it means to be pro-Israel.

Marc Caroff

President, Louis D. Brandeis District Chapter

Zionist Organization of America

Silver Spring

 

 

The following letter to the editor was published in the January 24, 2014 print edition of the Baltimore Jewish Times. My letter emphasizes that Zionism stands at the zenith of social justice in order to counter some of the views expressed in the cited BJT article implying that”Zionism is racism.”

An Inseparable Part of Judaism

January 23, 2014

Maayan Jaffe cites discouraging figures from the recent Pew Research Center survey [on American Jews] to show there is a “stark disconnect” between the youngest generation of U.S. Jews and the Jewish state (“Somewhere In The Middle,” Jan. 3). How ironic, considering that her lengthy article is filled with the anti-Zionist views of people such as Tali Ruskin, Jacob Bogage and J Street speaker Akiva Eldar, who seem to believe that Israel is largely to blame for the Arab-Israeli conflict and for the lack of peace.

The proliferation of these misguided views is precisely what is turning off many young American Jews to the Jewish State of Israel, which was founded on the principles of Zionism. Many of these young, naive individuals apparently have an appalling lack of knowledge and understanding of what Zionism is all about and of the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. They fail to grasp that the “Jewish/ Zionist narrative” has always been grounded in hard facts and historical truths, whereas the so-called “Palestinian narrative” is primarily based on falsehood, deception and denial of historical truths. They fail to appreciate that Zionism is the epitome of social justice — a civil rights movement for the Jewish people that also affirms the fundamental civil rights of others.

Misguided antipathy toward Zionism bespeaks an urgent need for better Jewish education to foster an appreciation for Zionism as a fundamental and inseparable part of Judaism and Jewish values.

The vaccine we Jews need to inoculate ourselves against the virus of lies propagated by our avowed enemies and their fellow travelers is a better understanding of our own collective history and our own legitimate aspirations as a people rather than succumb to the lies as many young and naive Jews seem to be doing today in increasing numbers.

Marc L. Caroff President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter Zionist Organization of America

 

 

 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

“On Iran, Obama Must Change Course”

Published in the January 23, 2015 print edition of the Baltimore Jewish Times.

A similar letter was published in the January 22nd edition of Washington Jewish Week (there titled “Delusional Path”).

In a January 9 editorial, “Time to Reconsider Iran Sanctions,” the Jewish Times suggests that the purpose of new sanctions legislation would be to keep the Iranians at the negotiation table. However, we should be mindful that sanctions were originally imposed to pressure Iran to comply with a half-dozen hard-won   U. N. Security Council resolutions. These resolutions required Iran to completely end its uranium enrichment program and established rigid verification parameters to development activities.

It should be painfully clear by now that concessions already granted to Iran by the Obama administration during the present negotiation process have gutted those Security Council resolutions. According to Omri Ceren in Commentary magazine (“Enabling Iran’s Nukes,” January 2015), the president and his advisers are still clinging to hopes that these negotiations will stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons; hopes that “they have every reason to know are, in truth, delusional.”

If President Obama is looking for a foreign policy legacy worthy of praise, he would do well to abandon his present course of appeasing Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Instead of continuing down that delusional path, he should insist that Iran immediately and unconditionally comply with all the applicable U. N. Security Council resolutions, and he should start working seriously with Congress to bring Iran to its economic knees now by imposing ever-increasing sanctions on the recalcitrant Iranian regime until it fully complies with those resolutions.

Marc L. Caroff                                                                                                                     President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter                                                                                          Zionist Organization of America

 

 

 

 

The following letter to the editor appeared in the May 23, 2014 print edition of the Baltimore Jewish Times, with the title: “Memo to JT: J Street Unworthy.” The same letter, with relatively minor differences in wording, also appeared in the May 15, 2014 print edition of Washington Jewish Week, with the title: “Attacking the Messenger.”

 

Background information:
 The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations is an umbrella group that strives to give a single consensus voice on various issues of concern to the American Jewish community. Many governments, including the U.S. government, rely on the Presidents’ Conference as the major spokesman for the Jewish community. The Conference is presently composed of 50 constituent organizations including ZOA, B’nai Brith, the ADL, the Union for Reform Judaism, the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, etc, etc, etc. Its primary, although not sole, concern is Israel.
On April 30, the Conference of Presidents, by a 22-17 vote, decided against admitting J Street as a member organization. A two-thirds vote of all outstanding members is required to be admitted as a member orgaization .    

 

 LETTER TO THE EDITOR :
   
    Shame on the JT for questioning the integrity of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and its democratic voting process (“Referendum on the Presidents’ Conference,” May 9) .

    The Conference of Presidents has sent a clear message by refusing to accept J Street as a member. The message: J Street is unworthy of being considered part of the pro-Israel Jewish community. Instead of accepting that message, the JT prefers to attack the messenger, the highly respected Presidents’ Conference.

    JT’s position is all the more reprehensible because it sows confusion and dissension within the American Jewish community at a time when unity is most needed to support Israel against its many detractors. 

    It goes without saying that J Street is an anti-Israel, anti-Zionist organization, its protestations to the contrary notwithstanding. Every one of its major policy positions and activities has been designed to defame Israel’s democratically elected government and denounce Israel’s ethically, morally, and legally sound policies.

    The JT makes the risible claim that J Street’s views “have a significant following in the Jewish community”. The real question is what impact those views and activities are having on the community and on the U.S.-Israel relationship. A case in point: J Street’s campus arm, J Street U, corrupts gullible, uninformed college students with lies, half-truths, and anti-Zionist propaganda, for instance, by bringing speakers onto campuses who promote BDS (the campaign of boycotts, divestment, and sanctions against Israel) .

     As a wolf in sheep’s clothing, J Street would do even more harm to the unity of the Jewish community if it ever were given the chance to enter the Conference of Presidents’ big tent.    

    Marc Caroff
    President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
    Zionist Organization of America
    Silver Spring

 

An  Inseparable Part of Judaism

Published in the January 24, 2014 print edition of  the Baltimore Jewish Times.

Maayan  Jaffe cites discouraging figures from the recent Pew Research Center survey [on  American Jews] to show there is a “stark disconnect” between the youngest  generation of U.S. Jews and the Jewish state (“Somewhere In The Middle,” Jan.  3). How ironic, considering that her lengthy article is filled with the  anti-Zionist views of people such as Tali Ruskin, Jacob Bogage and J Street  speaker Akiva Eldar, who seem to believe that Israel is largely to blame for the  Arab-Israeli conflict and for the lack of peace.

The  proliferation of these misguided views is precisely what is turning off many  young American Jews to the Jewish State of Israel, which was founded on the  principles of Zionism. Many of these young, naive individuals apparently have an  appalling lack of knowledge and understanding of what Zionism is all about and  of the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. They fail to grasp that the  “Jewish/ Zionist narrative” has always been grounded in hard facts and  historical truths, whereas the so-called “Palestinian narrative” is primarily  based on falsehood, deception and denial of historical truths. They fail to  appreciate that Zionism is the epitome of social justice — a civil rights  movement for the Jewish people that also affirms the fundamental civil rights of  others.

Misguided  antipathy toward Zionism bespeaks an urgent need for better Jewish education to  foster an appreciation for Zionism as a fundamental and inseparable part of  Judaism and Jewish values.

The  vaccine we Jews need to inoculate ourselves against the virus of lies propagated  by our avowed enemies and their fellow travelers is a better understanding of  our own collective history and our own legitimate aspirations as a people rather  than succumb to the lies as many young and naive Jews seem to be doing today in  increasing numbers.

Marc  L. Caroff President,  Louis D. Brandeis Chapter

Zionist Organization of  America

Silver Spring, Md.

 

 

Meaningless Negotiations

 

  The stark contrast between Obama administration dogma and the realities of the interminable Arab-Israeli conflict is reflected in the continuing debate over the Oslo Accords (“Still debating Oslo,” WJW , Sept. 19 ).
   What President Obama and others now refer to as the “two-state solution” is nothing but the “two-stage dissolution of Israel” sought by Yasser Arafat. How can anyone seriously doubt that this is what Arafat’s avid disciple, Mahmoud Abbas, seeks as well?
    It is a sad commentary on our times that our president continues to promote the oxymoronic “land for peace” formula enshrined in the Oslo Accords, while failing to appreciate that, for twenty years, this formula has brought nothing but tragedy, not peace, to the Jews of Israel. Thankfully, most Israelis now realize that meaningless negotiations, based on Obama’s formulation of handing over Israeli territory to the thuggish and anti-Semitic leaders of the Palestinian Authority, will never bring a secure and permanent peace.
   Our president defers to the machinations of men like Abbas who adamantly refuse to recognize the 3,500-year connection of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel. All the while, Obama continues to ignore the unrelenting belligerence manifested by the Palestinian Arabs toward their Jewish neighbors.  Like the satirical characters Don Quixote and his loyal squire, Sancho Panza, President Obama and his secretary of state, John Kerry, plod on, believing they can bring tranquility to a troubled region by tilting at windmills.
  The continuing debate over the merits of the Oslo Accords may be worthwhile — even though it should be clear by now that its underlying assumptions were erroneous and inevitably led to disastrous consequences — if the debate makes more people aware of the fact that making peace with your enemies is impossible when they refuse to cease being your enemies. Apparently, this simple truism has escaped those in the Obama administration who would rather continue tilting at windmills.
  Marc Caroff
  President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
  Zionist Organization of America

 

 

 

   

Anti-Semitic Boycott

The following letter to the editor by our chapter president appeared
last week in the August 8, 2013 print edition of the Washington Jewish Week,
with the title “Anti-Semitic boycott”. Note that the letter refers to our
chapter’s own unique BUYCOTT campaign which appears on our website:
www.zoadc.org :

    Letter to the editor:

    Make no mistake, the new EU discriminatory rules are anti-Semitic in
effect and intent (“EU guidelines: wake-up call or roadblock?”, WJW, July
25). These rules promote a particularly insidious form of anti-Semitism,
singling out Jews for boycott based on where they live, and turning one Jew
against another.

    This is not surprising given Europe’s sordid history of anti-Semitism,
spanning centuries, and its drift toward appeasing its increasing radical
Islamic minority.

    The fact that European animosity toward Israel and the Jews is again on
the rise is yet one more reason why all Jewish organizations and
institutions must be united in defending the fundamental right of Jews to
reside and flourish in Judea, Samaria, the Golan Heights, and in Israel’s
reunified capital of Jerusalem; especially since these areas are of critical
strategic value, and are essential for maintaining a vital link to our
shared Jewish heritage.

    As if caught in a time warp, the 21st-century Grand Inquisitors of
Europe would no doubt be delighted to see Israel again squeezed within its
indefensible 1948 “Auschwitz borders”. The more things change, the more they
remain the same. Yet, there is one real change which may prevent Europeans
from again turning back the clock of civilization – that change is the
re-establishment of a Jewish commonwealth, the state of Israel. Therefore,
we should all fully support Israel’s efforts to uphold the fundamental
rights to Life, Liberty, and Property which have long been denied to the
Jewish people.

    I am asking all members of my ZOA chapter to renew their efforts to
purchase products produced in those areas singled out by the EU boycott
(details about our BUYCOTT campaign can be found on our website:
www.zoadc.org). I hope others will do the same.


    Marc Caroff
    President, Louis D. Brandeis chapter
    Zionist Organization of America

The following Letter to the Editor by our chapter president appeared in the July 11th print edition of the WJW. The same letter, with a different title (“Bravo”) also appeared in the July 5th print edition of the Baltimore Jewish Times.

Show Due Respect

Bravo to Maayan Jaffe on her informative article about One Israel Fund and its efforts to protect and nurture Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria (“One Israel Fund’s Provisor talks about security in Israel,” WJW, June 20). Indeed, Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley, as well as Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, played a central role in Jewish history and, accordingly, are a key element of our Jewish character and identity.

This should be self-evident, yet many Jews today fail to embrace this basic fact. Sadly, there are too many Jewish organizations today which ignore, or even worse disparage, the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and the pioneering families who live in those communities.

Perhaps the fault lies in the misconception that Jewish settlements are an obstacle to peace. On the contrary, peace requires respect for the fundamental rights of all individuals. As suggested by Marc Provisor of One Israel Fund, full acceptance by the Arabs of the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria should be the litmus test of their willingness to live together in peace. The Palestinian Arab residents of this region should accept and respect their Jewish neighbors, just as Jews accept and respect the Arab citizens of Israel.

Isn’t it also time for every mainstream Jewish American organization to show due respect for the pioneering communities in Judea and Samaria, which are the living embodiment of our shared Jewish heritage?

MARC CAROFF, President, Louis D. Brandeis chapter, Zionist Organization of America, 

Silver Spring

 

The letter to the editor below was published in the May 29, 2013 online edition and the May 30, 2013 print edition of the Washington Jewish Week.
It focuses on the present sad state of U.S.policy relating to the ongoing Arab/Islamic war against Israel and the Jews. It is titled: “Worn-Out Formulas”.

Secretary of State Kerry’s peace mission is based on worn-out formulas
which have proven to be unworkable. Kerry uncritically accepts PA President
Abbas as a legitimate peace interlocutor, but Abbas is clearly no
peacemaker. Abbas, like his predecessor Arafat, has proven to be a master of
duplicity. Recognizing Abbas as a responsible elected official, when his
term of office expired years ago, lends him undeserved legitimacy.

Kerry has chosen to follow a blueprint based on what has been called a
“two-state solution”. To the extent this calls for creation of an
independent Palestinian state, it has not, and will not, work because it
will effectively deny Israel defensible borders. Furthermore, if Jews are
denied the right to reside in a Palestinian state, as Abbas insists,
anti-Semitism, not democracy, will be its guiding principle.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin clearly stated that any
Palestinian entity created on the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) would need
to be “less than a state”. Present Prime Minister Netanyahu, following a
similar theme, has insisted that any such entity be, of necessity, a
“demilitarized state”; certainly something less than an independent state.

Back to failed policies of the past will not work to establish a viable
peace between Israel and Palestinian Arabs. Instead, we will need to go back
to the drawing board. Since the Obama administration seems fixated on
resurrecting unworkable peace plans, we will need to wait awhile longer
before a semblance of sanity returns to U.S. policy relating to the
Arab-Israeli conflict.

Marc Caroff
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
Zionist Organization of America

 

 

Letter to the Editor

See the letter to the editor below; a good portion of which was published in the March 7, 2013 print edition of the Washington Jewish Week.
 
As you will note, it points out that ZOA is a Zionist organization; not particularly left-wing or right-wing. Nowadays, the English language has been manipulated and mangled to such an extent that those who wish to bring evil and chaos to our world are able to convince the gullible and uninformed that wrong is right and right is wrong – reminds one of the classic Orwellian novel “1984”. Clearly, 1984 has arrived. Noteworthy as well is that the Holocaust also began as an attempt to harness language to the cause of evil. I believe one of the most important goals of ZOA is to use language appropriately to advance, rather than retard, civilization and the twin missions of “tikkun olam” and becoming a Jewish nation which truly serves as a “light unto all other nations”. 
 
Individual note to Mara, our website committee chairperson: Please include this entire email  on the President’s Page (including my introductory remarks, the letter to the editor, and the ZOA News Release which follows the letter) .
 
Thanks,
Marc
  
Subject: Letter to the Editor
                                                       
 Neither left nor right
    In a front page article in WJW (“Hagel Circus”, February 28), ZOA is inaccurately and inappropriately labeled as a “right-wing” organization. The Zionist Organization of America is not right-wing; neither is it left-wing. It defies definition in partisan political terms. 
 
    Since its founding in 1897, the Zionist Organization of America has been on the front lines of Jewish activism, defending the rights of the Jewish people and promoting the noble enterprise of Zionism – the belief in self-determination of the Jewish nation in its ancient homeland. ZOA is the oldest pro-Israel organization in the United States. Under the leadership of such illustrious  presidents as Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, and current National President Morton Klein, it has led the battle to expose those who denigrate the Jewish people and their dreams of a Jewish commonwealth to serve as a light unto all nations.
   As the general news media informs public opinion, so does WJW inform the local Jewish community. That is why I would expect WJW to be especially diligent in not ascribing political leanings to a nonpartisan Jewish group, like ZOA, since this may have the effect, however unintentional, of detracting from a shared Zionist vision.
 
      Your readers are invited to visit our website (www.zoadc.org) to see what our local ZOA chapter is all about.
 
    I have also included a ZOA News Release (see below) which establishes, in the words of Morton Klein, that “most American Jews today hold the same positions that ZOA has held for 18 years since the Oslo Accords were signed. ZOA can now respectfully and accurately state that we may now better represent the views of most American Jews than any other major American Jewish organization.”  
 
    
    Marc L. Caroff
    President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
    Zionist Organization of America
 
 
image001  

  October 5, 2011Contact Morton A. Klein at: 212-481-1500Attn:  NEWS EDITORU.S. Jewry’s Positions in Line with ZOA

New Poll: Most U.S. Jews Oppose Pal. State, Re-Dividing Jerusalem – Disapprove Obama’s Handling U.S./Israel Relations

 

The 2011 American Jewish Committee (AJC) Annual Survey of American Jewish Opinion has found for the first time that a majority of American Jews (55%) oppose the creation of a Palestinian state, whereas only 38% support its creation. In contrast, in the 2010 AJC Survey, only 45% opposed creating a Palestinian state, while 48% favored its creation. In the 2009 AJC Survey, 41% opposed creating a Palestinian state, whereas 49% favored its creation.

 

The Survey also found that an overwhelming 76% of American Jews agree with the statement that ‘The goal of the Arabs is not the return of occupied territories but rather the destruction of Israel,’ whereas only 19% disagree with it. Also, a clear majority of 59% of American Jews oppose re-dividing Jerusalem in the context of an Israeli-Palestinian peace treaty, while only 37% favor this course. Also, a majority of 53% disapprove of President Obama’s handling of U.S./Israel relations, whereas only 40% approved of his performance in this sphere.

 

The Survey also recorded the following results:

 

  • A plurality of 48% of American Jews disapprove of President Barack Obama handling of the presidency, while only 45% approve.
  • Similarly, a plurality of 48% of American Jews disapproved of President Obama’s handling of foreign policy, while 47% approved.
  • Conversely, 54% of American Jews approved of the Netanyahu government’s handling of U.S./Israel relations, whereas only 32% disapproved.
  • Large majorities of American Jews regard anti-Semitism as a problem in the Arab-Muslim world (99%), Europe (92%) and the U.S. (84%).
  • 88% of American Jews disapprove of Palestinian efforts to unilaterally seek recognition of Palestinian statehood at the U.N. without signing a peace agreement with Israel, as opposed to a mere 9% who approve.
  • An overwhelming 73% of American Jews favor the Congress withdrawing U.S. aid to Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) if it forms a unity government with Hamas, whereas only 21% would oppose this.
  • A near-unanimous 96% of American Jews believe the Palestinians must accept Israel as a Jewish state in any final peace settlement that might be signed, with only 3% dissenting.
  • 56% of American Jews favor the U.S. taking military action against Iran if diplomacy fails to halt its march towards acquiring nuclear weapons, whereas only 38% oppose this.
  • 68% of American Jews favor Israel taking military action against Iran if diplomacy fails to halt its march towards acquiring nuclear weapons, whereas only 26% oppose this (AJC 2011 Annual Survey of American Jewish Opinion, September 6-21, 2011). 

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “The latest AJC Survey is notable for the clear erosion of American Jewish support for Palestinian statehood. In two years, support for creating a Palestinian state has fallen among American Jews by 11 percentage points to 38%, while opposition to creating a Palestinian state has risen by 14 percentage points to 55%. American Jewish organizations claiming to represent majority American Jewish opinion need to reconsider their support for creating a Palestinian state by negotiations.”

 

“It is important to note that most American Jews today hold the same positions that ZOA has held for 18 years since the Oslo Accords were signed. ZOA can now respectfully and accurately state that we may now better represent the views of most American Jews than any other major American Jewish organization.”

 

 

The following letter to the editor appeared in the February 7, 2013 print edition of the Washington Jewish Week, as well as in the February 1, 2013 print edition of the Baltimore Jewish Times. With the confirmation of Kerry and Hagel, Obama is now 2/3 of the way toward abandoning the national security of both the United States and Israel to the whims of Islamic fundamentalism, as represented by Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the Muslim Brotherhood, Hizbullah, Hamas, the Palestinian Authority, and any number of other assorted Islamic terrorist groups.

 

Head-in-the-sand policies
Why was our government so unprepared to respond to the deadly Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on American diplomats in Benghazi, Libya?

Concerning the Nov. 5, 2009, massacre at Fort Hood, Texas, why did a climate of political correctness trump common-sense vigilance?

Why does our government look the other way while the Islamic Republic of Iran continues its ongoing campaign of undermining U.S. military forces in the Middle East, and while it continues its unimpeded pursuit of nuclear weapons?

In my opinion, this inability to see the broader picture stems from the Obama administration’s penchant for ignoring the dangers posed by radical Islam. Worse yet, the current administration has put in place policies designed to expunge terms like “Islamic extremism” and “jihad” from the lexicon of our military and intelligence agencies.

Islamist-inspired terrorism represents the gravest threat to our national security. It neither begins nor ends with al-Qaida or the Taliban. It is clearly a much more pervasive movement based on precepts of intolerance, hatred and violence. To blind our security agencies to this threat, as the Obama administration has done, is unconscionable.

Now, President Obama has nominated three avid proponents of these head-in-the-sand policies to key government positions John Kerry (secretary of state); Chuck Hagel (secretary of defense); John Brennan (CIA director). What are we to make of these nominations other than that President Obama is intent on continuing down the path of sacrificing our national security to the winds of political correctness?

Given the consequences of unpreparedness already experienced by our nation in Benghazi and elsewhere under the present administration, it would appear that our nation is vulnerable to even greater calamities down the road.
MARC CAROFF
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter, Zionist Organization of America

 

 

 

 

The following letter to the editor, submitted by our chapter president, appeared in the February 1, 2013 edition of the
Baltimore Jewish Times:

         Radical Islam Ignored

Why was our government so unprepared to respond to the deadly Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attack on American diplomats in Benghazi, Libya?

Concerning the Nov. 5, 2009 massacre at Fort Hood, Texas, why did a climate of political correctness trump common sense vigilance?

Why does our government look the other way while the Islamic Republic of Iran continues its ongoing campaign of undermining U.S. military forces in the Middle East and while it continues its unimpeded pursuit of nuclear weapons?

In my opinion, this inability to see the broader picture stems from
the Obama administration’s penchant for ignoring the dangers posed by radical Islam.

Worse yet, the current administration has put in place policies
designed to expunge terms like “Islamic extremism” and “jihad” from the lexicon of our military and intelligence agencies.

Islamist-inspired terrorism represents the gravest threat to our
national security. It neither begins nor ends with Al-Qaeda or the Taliban.

It is clearly a much more pervasive movement based on precepts of
intolerance, hatred, and violence. To blind our security agencies to this threat as the Obama administration has done, is unconscionable.

Now, President Obama has nominated three avid proponents of
these head-in-the-sand policies to key government positions – Kerry
Secretary of State); Hagel (Secretary of Defense); Brennan (CIA Director). What are we to make of these nominations other than
that President Obama is intent on continuing down the path of
sacrificing our national security to the winds of political correctness?

Given the consequences of unpreparedness already experienced
by our nation in Benghazi and elsewhere under the present administration, it would appear that our nation is vulnerable to even
greater calamities down the road.

 Marc L. Caroff
 President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
 Zionist Organization of America

 

 

 

The following letter to the editor, submitted by our chapter president, appeared in the September 27, 2012 issue of the Washington Jewish Week.

                          Obama’s ‘three no’s’

 “No” to unequivocally recognizing Jerusalem as the reunified and eternal capital of Israel.

“No” to setting clear red lines on Iran’s development of nuclear weapons.

“No” to a face-to-face meeting with Israel’s prime minister.

These are only three of the most recent ways in which the Obama administration has deliberately distanced itself from the concerns of the Jewish state.

In my opinion, these three “no’s” merit an emphatic “no” in response from those who have an abiding interest in Israel’s continued survival as a thriving Jewish state:

“No” to blind acceptance of Obama’s politically motivated declarations that he “has Israel’s back”.

On the contrary, President Obama has turned his back on Israel since day one of his presidency. He has never missed an opportunity to berate and embarrass Israel and its prime minister. In his own words, Obama has attempted to put “daylight” between the United States and Israel to curry favor in the Arab world.

In this time of turmoil and chaos in the Middle East, we can only hope and pray that President Obama and his administration will give more serious consideration to the fact that Israel is America’s only reliable ally in the region and, as such, should be treated with the respect and concern it deserves.


Marc Caroff
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
Zionist Organization of America

 

 

Latest Published Letter to the Editor

The following letter to the editor, submitted by our chapter president,
appeared in the August 9, 2012 print edition of the Washington
Jewish Week, page 17:

                              Racist, anti-Semitic

Your editorial on July 19 (“Avoiding the real questions”) perpetuates
the fallacy that creation of a judenrein Palestinian state is a necessity.
No peace can be built on the notion that the homeland of the Jewish people,
or any territory for that matter, must be free of Jews. For anyone to
insinuate that no Jews should be permitted to live in any part of Israel’s
heartland is to endorse a racist, anti-Semitic policy.

To set the record straight, a commission of distinguished jurists
recently issued detailed findings and recommendations concerning the
legality of Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria, as duly noted in your
editorial. Unfortunately, your editorial totally ignores the profound
implications of the commission’s findings. The commission’s report is,
without doubt, one of the most significant legal documents to come out of
Israel since Israel’s 1948 declaration of statehood.

This landmark report by the Levy Commission shines the light of legal
clarity and objectivity on the inalienable right of Jews to settle in their
ancient homeland, a right specifically recognized under international law.

In contrast, your editorial draws us back into the dark and murky world
of deeply flawed political hypotheses, innuendo and ignorance, which has
held a significant portion of the Jewish community in its grip for far too
long.

I believe you have let down the Jewish community by failing to
adequately inform your readers about the merits of the Levy Commission
report, and by giving undue credence to political fantasies at the expense
of legal and moral truths.

Marc Caroff
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
Zionist Organization of America

 


Latest Published Letter to the Editor

The following letter to the editor, submitted by our chapter president,
appeared in the June 27, 2012 print and online editions of the Washington
Jewish Week:

                                To what end?

Regarding Ami Ayalon’s six-point plan for Israel’s coordinated dismemberment, Melvin Farber rightly asks: to what end? (” ‘Coordinated unilateralism,’ ” Letters, WJW, June 7).

Ayalon’s plan is nothing more than an amalgam of dead-in-the-water Obama administration policy proposals. Before proposing his plan, Ayalon should have first asked himself the following question: What are the essential attributes of a Jewish state? In other words, what uniquely distinguishes Israel, as a democratic and Jewish state, from all other nation-states?

If he had asked himself that fundamental question, he would have realized that a Jewish state is obligated to protect its Jewish citizens (along with their Jewish religious and cultural traditions) from the depravity, intolerance, and hatred so widespread throughout the Middle East.

By the same token, a Jewish state should champion the right of Jews to live anywhere within the Land of Israel, as recognized under international law.

More than that, a Jewish state should aggressively protect and preserve the vast collection of archaeological treasures and holy sites which bear direct witness to the 3,500-year connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel. It just so happens that most of those treasures are situated in Judea, Samaria, and eastern portions of Jerusalem – areas which Ayalon would blithely concede to those intent on willful destruction of this unique historical legacy.

In short, Ayalon should have realized that his plan is antithetical to Israel’s vital and unique mission as a Jewish state. Those who ask others to recognize Israel as a Jewish state should first do so themselves.

MARC CAROFF 
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter, Zionist Organization of America

 

                        Latest Letter to the Editor

The following letter to the editor, submitted by our chapter president,
appeared in the February 2nd print and online editions of the Washington
Jewish Week:

                          “Missed opportunity”

The Jewish community missed an opportunity to have Ambassador Dennis
Ross address hard questions about the moribund Israeli-Palestinian peace
process at the recent JCRC-sponsored Middle East Forum (“Uncertainty – lone
Mideast certainty”, WJW, Jan. 26).

Case in point: A question I submitted, which the moderator chose not to
ask of Ambassador Ross, concerning the duplicitous and anti-Semitic nature
of Israel’s Palestinian interlocutors, from Arafat to Abbas. How, in good
conscience, can any respected and influential U.S. official, Jew or non-Jew,
continue to ask Israel to negotiate with Palestinian leaders who clearly
show, by word and deed, they have no intention whatsoever of coexisting in
peace with a Jewish state?

 The attempt to barter precious land for peace has been an abysmal
failure from day one. The reason: dealing with Palestinian leaders who
harbor an insatiable desire to deny the Jewish people their just and
rightful place among the nations. Ceding territory to these unscrupulous
characters only whets their appetite for more.

It is time to abandon the sclerotic thinking which would have Israel
give up vital territory to establish one more radical Arab state. We need a
new and realistic vision which will enhance, not undermine, Israel’s
security and legitimacy. The only sensible solution to the self-imposed
plight of Palestinian Arabs will involve adoption of some form of the
Jordanian option. Israel must retain sovereignty over Judea, Samaria, and
all of Jerusalem, as well as over the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights,
to safeguard the rights of the Jewish inhabitants of those areas and the
historical legacy of the Jewish people.

Marc Caroff
President, Louis D. Brandeis  Chapter
Zionist Organization of America

Silver Spring

 

 

Letter to the Editor:

The Washington Jewish Week recently published the following “Letter to the Editor” by our chapter president, Judge Marc Caroff, a frequent contributor to the discourse on Israel advocacy.

 

                        Peace through strength

After the columns of fire and dust of the 1967 Six Day War dissipated, the final outlines of a territorial solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict emerged.

At that time, the Israelis reunited Jerusalem, but failed to annex Judea and Samaria (the so-called West Bank) as an integral part of the Jewish state. As a result, the internationally recognized right of Jewish settlement of these lands has remained in limbo.

After more than 40 years of wandering in the desert of failed peace processes, isn’t it time for Israel to assert its just and rightful claims to Judea and Samaria, the very heart of the Jewish homeland?

Of course, there will be those who will continue to insist that there is a need to create a Palestinian Arab state within the heartland of the Jewish state. What these individuals stubbornly refuse to admit is that a Palestinian state already exists within the post-1967 borders of Jordan. If the “Arab Spring” means anything at all, it means that there is a need to give the Palestinian Arab majority in Jordan more of a democratic say in how they are governed. When that happens, a democratic Palestinian Arab state will take its place among the nations.

Our collective frustration over a countless series of failed peace processes will end when we get on the right side of history, and allow truth and justice to prevail. “Peace through strength” should be our motto – with a strength based on moral clarity and determination.
MARC CAROFF
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter, Zionist Organization of America


Letter to the Editor:

The Washington Jewish Week recently published the following “letter to the

Editor” written by our ZOA Chapter President.  It is entitled “Tool Kit for Duplicity.”

WJW deserves much credit for exposing the duplicitous nature of the Palestinian Authority (“Peace Isn’t Signed in Blood”, Editorial, March 17).  More significantly, your editorial is a clarion call to action—insisting that the PA be held accountable for its continuing promotion of hatred and violence against Jews.  As you so aptly put it: “…the US and other potential honest brokers must demand compliance on the part of the PA and be willing to back that up by holding Abbas’ feet to the fire.”

Until now, we have allowed Abbas and the PA to get away with mere “lip-service” expressions of regret over the murder of Jews, while the incitement continues unabated.  Of course, these verbal ploys come straight out of Abbas’ handy tool kit for duplicity.

The ZOA believes that the only effective way to hold Abbas’ feet to the fire is for the US government to suspend all financial and military assistance to the PA unless and until it takes strong and affirmative measures to eliminate incitement against Jews and Israel from all Palestinian institutions under its control, as the PA originally had agreed to do under the Oslo accords.  All American citizens of goodwill should contact President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton, and their members of Congress, and demand that this action be taken immediately to end the incitement now.

As your editorial suggests, peace talks are nothing more than a sham as long as the PA continues to implicitly advocate the murder of Jews and the destruction of Israel.

Respectfully submitted by:

Marc Caroff
President, Louis D. Brandeis Chapter
Zionist Organization of America


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