Column One: Soros moves on to Israel
Caroline Glick, THE JERUSALEM POST Oct. 12, 2006
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's speech at the American Task Force
for Palestine's inaugural dinner in Washington on Wednesday evening was but
the latest sign that America's alliance with Israel is weakening.
Rice's statement that "there could be no greater legacy for America than to
help to bring into being a Palestinian state," just about says it all. The
secretary of state of a president who was once friendlier to Israel than any
of his predecessors now claims that the establishment of a state for a
people who have distinguished themselves as the most overtly pro-jihad,
terrorist society in the world, would be the greatest thing American could
Unfortunately, unless concerted steps are taken by the Israeli government,
Israeli citizens and the American Jewish community, the downward trend in
relations with the US will only get worse. Perhaps most upsetting is the
central role that a tiny minority of American Jews has played in souring
ties between Jerusalem and Washington. That minority has undermined support
for Israel in the Democratic Party and now seeks to undermine Israel's
position in the US in general.
The Democratic Party's sharp turn leftward in recent years has been a major
factor in weakening the US-Israel alliance. The ideological transformation
of the party is the fruit of a collaborative effort by leading financiers,
radical-leftist ideologues and political activists. Together these forces
built organizations that dictate the party's agenda; finance the campaigns
of politicians who embrace this agenda; and work to defeat conservative
Republicans and Democrats who disagree with their agenda.
MoveOn.org is the most influential organization of this type established in
recent years. Its principal financiers are American Jewish billionaires
George Soros and Peter Lewis.
MoveOn.org first gained national prominence during the 2004 Democratic
presidential primaries. Howard Dean, a previously undistinguished governor
of Vermont, was an eminently forgettable also-ran with a reputation among
the few who knew of him as a political moderate who was hawkish on national
security. Then he was discovered by MoveOn.org.
As the group began pumping hundreds of thousands of dollars into his
campaign,Dean veered to the left and began roundly condemning the war in
Iraq. Caught off-balance by Dean's challenge, all but one of the other
candidates shifted left as well and joined him in criticizing the war. For
his principled refusal to disavow the war in Iraq, Connecticut Senator
Joseph Lieberman earned the enduring enmity of MoveOn.org.
This summer, MoveOn.org played a central role in Lieberman's defeat in the
Democratic primary for his Senate seat. It contributed funds to Lieberman's
opponent, Ned Lamont, and its Web site served as a clearinghouse
disseminating anti-Lieberman propaganda.
Propaganda posted on the Web site was laced with blatant anti-Semitic
attacks. Postings repeatedly referred to Lieberman as "the Jew Lieberman,"
and "ZioNazi Lieberman." These attacks were by no means unusual. Indeed,
anti-Semitic slurs against Israel and Jewish Americans, and belittlements of
the Holocaust, appear regularly in MoveOn.org Web forums.
In a representative post, a MoveOn.org member compared President George W.
Bush negatively to Adolf Hitler, writing, "Bush is no Hitler. Hitler was a
socialist and believed in something beside money. He did not dodge real
military service and he believed at least in Germany, which was a real
nation and not a corporation like the US. Moreover, Hitler did not use
depleted uranium and phosphorous to burn people alive. He did not condone
the torture of prisoners 'for fun' or 'to relieve stress.'"
According to a Jewish Telegraphic Agency report, Soros and his wealthy
Jewish American friends have now decided to aim their fire directly at
Israel. Soros has invited Lewis and other North American Jewish plutocrats
like Charles and Edgar Bronfman to join forces with him and leftist Jewish
American organizations including American Friends of Peace Now, the Israel
Policy Forum, Brit Tzedek v'Shalom, and the Reform movement's Religious
Action Center to form a political lobby that will weaken the influence of
the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC.
Many of the individuals and organizations associated with the initiative
have actively worked to undermine Israel. Soros caused a storm in 2003 when,
during a fund-raising conference for Israel he alleged that Israel was
partially responsible for the rise in anti-Semitic violence in Europe
because of its harsh response to Palestinian terrorism.
In November 2005, the leaders of the Israel Policy Forum met with Rice and
pushed her to dismiss Israel's legitimate security concerns regarding the
operation of the Gaza Strip's border crossing points at Rafah and Karni.
Following their advice, Rice aggressively and publicly pressured Israel to
make dangerous concessions to the Palestinians that involved Israel's
relinquishment of effective control over its own borders.
After Israel capitulated to Rice and an agreement was reached, Semour Reich,
one of the founders of the Israel Policy Forum, crowed, "I have no doubt
that we bolstered the secretary of state's instincts and strengthened her
opinion that aggressive American involvement was needed to achieve practical
Ahead of then-prime minister Ariel Sharon's scheduled visit with Bush in the
summer of 2003, Edgar Bronfman, president of the World Jewish Congress,
wrote a letter to Bush along with former secretary of state Lawrence
Eagleburger expressing opposition to the security barrier and asking the
president to treat Sharon in the same manner he had treated PA leader
Weeks later, Bronfman criticized the Palestinians for not limiting their
terrorist assaults to Israeli residents of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza
Strip. In a media interview he said, "If the Palestinian suicide bombers
only went to the settlements and told the whole world they were wrong, then
the whole world would have had a case against Israel and there would be a
two-state solution by now. Instead, they sent them into Israel proper, which
After Hamas's electoral victory in January, American Friends of Peace Now,
Israel Policy Forum and Brit Tzedek v'Shalom came together in an ad-hoc
coalition to shield the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority from Congressional
sanctions. Together they worked to sink the Palestinian Anti-Terror Act,
which enjoyed overwhelming support in the Congress and the Senate and was
backed by AIPAC. The legislation was designed to update US policy toward the
PA in the wake of Hamas's ascendance to power.
The bill called for the immediate cessation not only of direct US aid to the
PA but also for the cut-off of US assistance to nongovernmental and UN
organizations operating in the PA that had connections to terrorist
organizations. The bill defined the PA as a terrorist sanctuary and
consequently would have barred the entry of PA officials to and the
operation of PA offices in the US, and placed travel restrictions on PA and
PLO representatives to the UN. The bill also would have prohibited US
officials from having any contacts with officials from Hamas, the Aksa
Martyrs Brigades, Islamic Jihad and the Popular Front for the Liberation of
The bill was approved by an enormous majority in the House of
Representatives. Yet, due to the lobbying efforts of this group of Jewish
leftists, the Senate version was greatly watered down, and included a
presidential waiver that rendered the bill more or less declaratory. Since
there was little common ground between the two versions of the bill, the
Palestinian Anti-Terror Act was scuttled.
According to the JTA account, Soros would like to institutionalize the
ad-hoc coalition's success in undermining the Palestinian
Anti-Terror Act in a new lobby. Its founders all insist that theirs is a
pro-Israel group. Yet scrutiny of the groups' organizational and individual
members' actions leads to the inevitable conclusion that far from acting to
promote Israel, this new lobby will work to weaken Israel, to weaken the
Israel-American alliance and to strengthen Israel's enemies. While its
Jewish founders insist that they are pro-Israel, the fact of the matter is
that they are about to establish an American Jewish anti-Israel lobby.
To its discredit, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government took no steps to
stymie the coalition's machinations against the Palestinian Anti-Terror Act.
Indeed, since 2003, Israel's governments have gone out of their way to
applaud these groups. Olmert's now infamous speech in June 2005 where he
said, "We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are
tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies," was made at the
Israel Policy Forum's annual dinner.
BUT FOR all that, it is not too late to change course. The Jewish American
anti-Israel lobby is scheduled to be launched on October 26. Now is the time
for the Olmert government to forthrightly announce that the new lobby is not
pro-Israel, but rather anti-Israel.
Even if the government does no such thing, Israel's citizens have a
responsibility to explain to the organized American Jewish community and to
its umbrella organization, the Conference of Presidents of Major American
Jewish Organizations, that we, the citizens of the largest Jewish community
in the world, view these groups as anti-Zionist. Israeli citizens should
request an explanation for the inclusion of some of these groups in
pro-Israel umbrella organizations like the Conference of Presidents when
their goal is to weaken Israel, to weaken Israel's alliance with the US and
to strengthen Israel's enemies. Israeli citizens can and should send letters
and e-mails to this effect to the Conference at its New York offices.
One of the great strengths of the American Jewish community is its
pluralism. On a religious level, all communities - from the ultra-Orthodox
to the ultra-Reform - are recognized as Jewish communities. But there is a
line that everyone knows may not be crossed. Jews for Jesus have removed
themselves from the Jewish people and everyone knows this. There is not one
Jewish organization that accepts them as Jews.
By the same token, the vast majority of American Jews support Israel. As is
the case with religious observance, this support runs the gamut from
disciples of Meir Kahane to followers of Yossi Sarid. But everyone knows
that organizations like Not in My Name, which acts as the Jewish American
branch of the International Solidarity Movement, seeks to undermine IDF
operations and makes common cause with Israel's enemies, are not Zionist
Like Jews for Jesus, Jews who work to weaken Israel's security, undermine
Israel's relations with the US and strengthen Israel's enemies take
themselves beyond the broad tent of the American Jewish pro-Israel
Israel's alliance with the US is based on the fact that most Americans
support Israel. American support for Israel finds its roots in foundations
as diverse as religion, politics, morality, security, culture and economics.
While the alliance is visibly weakened, its foundations remain solid. To
rebuild American political support for Israel and to enhance the US-Israel
alliance, it is imperative that Israel be capable of understanding the
nature of this support. This understanding begins by making distinctions
between our many friends and our foes and acting on these distinctions. Not
all of our friends are Jews and not all Jews are our friends.