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Friday, November 19, 2010

US State Department makes itself arbiter of Judaism, condemns Israel

For the second year in a row, Hillary Clinton's State Department has issued a report castigating Israel for a lack of religious freedom, placing us in a category with countries like Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Somalia.

The U.S. State Department under Secretary Hillary Clinton claims that Israel violates religious freedom at the same level as Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Afghanistan and China.

“Religious freedom can be restricted in a variety of ways, from the overt to the subtle,” explains the department's annual International Religious Freedom Report on 198 countries and territories surveyed by its foreign service personnel, released Wednesday for the period July 1, 2008 - June 30, 2009. A wide spectrum of efforts are used to undermine such rights, extending to multilateral, regional and global arenas, the report continues.

Part I of the Executive Summary discusses overall conditions during the reporting period in countries where “violations of religious freedom have been noteworthy.” Israel is listed among 30 nations selected for this category -- including Afghanistan, China, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen -- due to the emphasis of the Jewish State on maintaining the status quo with regard to respect for Jewish legal standards.

Israel's adherence to specific Jewish legal (halakhic) strictures are the basis for some of the American claims, though the State Department report does not note that non-adherence to these would violate Jewish religious freedoms. (For last year's State Department denunciation of Israel and responses, click here.)

The report complained, for instance, that three Messianic Jews were denied the right to immigrate to Israel during the reporting period. Other issues of contention included Israel’s unwillingness to recognize conversions performed in the country which do not meet criteria under Torah law, identification cards (Teudot Zehut) that differentiate between Jews and non-Jews, and the authority over marriages and burials exercised by the Chief Rabbinate, which is Orthodox.

All religions have freedom of worship in Israel -- unlike the other countries mentioned above.
What is the State Department trying to tell us? That they know better than the rabbis what Jewish religious law requires? This is the only country in the region in which minority religious rights are protected and where people are free to worship however they choose. And she classifies us with Iran and Saudi Arabia where women are property and cannot go out in the streets without a male escort? Outrageous. Simply outrageous.

Read the whole thing.

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At 6:25 AM, Blogger HaShaliach said...

And, folks wonder why the U.S. is in such a mess here at home? If one does not agree with the establishment, they are classified as enemies of the state, or at the very least, placed on the possible (suspected) terrorists list.

Have we gone too far to reverse the trends? I pray not!

At 8:44 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

And this is the same State Department Netanyahu insists delivered a good deal for Israel.

What planet is he living on?

Go figure!

At 9:18 AM, Blogger yzernik said...

Maybe Hillary is upset that her half-Jewish grandchildren will not be accepted as Jews. Hillary is known to be resentful. Not to mention Monica...

At 12:35 PM, Blogger Emmanuel said...

It isn't the second year in a row that the State Department puts Israel in the same category as Iran, NK, Saudia Arabia and Somalia. It's just the second year in a row that you (or rather, your source, Arutz Sheva) are reporting about the same report - the one released in October 2009. In the 2010 report released on Wednesday, Israel is not in the category of the most serious violators. The State Dept. made a serious error in judgment last year, and now it has corrected itself.

See my blog post on the matter for more details (and links).

At 3:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Meanwhile the State Department sends Islamic to Islamist scholars of various shades of American residency and citizenship on globetrotting outreach missions to demonstrate America's shaaria-friendly bona fides. Oh well, Saudia Arabia, sponsor of those beloved agents of influence is here too.


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