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Monday, July 16, 2012

Say it ain't so: 40 prominent US Jews urge Netanyahu to bury Levy report

If you're wondering the extent to which the 'two-state solution' has become an article of faith, I was shocked to find Daniel Gordis among 40 'US Jews' (that's in scare quotes because Gordis is technically an Israeli, and the letter also included Edgar Bronfman, who is Canadian) who signed a letter urging Prime Minister Netanyahu to bury the Levy report.
More than 40 prominent American Jewish leaders and philanthropists sent a letter to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Sunday in which they implored him not to approve the judicial report that says Jews may settle freely in Judea and Samaria.

"As strong advocates for Israel’s security and well-being as a Jewish and democratic state, we are deeply concerned about the recent findings of government commission led by Supreme Court Justice (Ret.) Edmond Levy,” the letter said.

"We fear that this report, if approved, will place the two-state solution, and the prestige of Israel as a democratic member of the international community, in peril.”

The letter's signatories letter include philanthropists Charles Bronfman and Lester Crown; Marvin Lender, Former National Chairman of UJA; Rabbi Daniel Gordis, President of the Shalem Center; Deborah Lipstadt, an expert on Holocaust studies at Emory University; Bernard Nussbaum, former White House Counsel; Thomas Dine, a former executive director of AIPAC; E. Robert Goodkind, a former president of the American Jewish Committee; Richard Pearlstone, former chairman of the Jewish Agency; and Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism.

The Levy Committee's report determines that Israel cannot be characterized as "an occupier" of Judea and Samaria because the territory never legally belonged to Jordan before Israel regained it in 1967.

The letter was initiated by the Israel Policy Forum (IPF), which was attacked in 2007 by veteran Jewish leader and columnist Isi Liebler as a group that "delegitimizes" Israeli policies.
I'm deeply disappointed to see Gordis on there, but while many of these people are considered prominent 'thinkers' I wouldn't characterize most of them as leaders of the Jewish community (unless being wealthy makes you a leader).

JPost adds:
But in their letter to Netanyahu on Sunday, the US Jewish leaders said they were concerned that approval of the report would “place the two-state solution, and the prestige of Israel as a democratic member of the international community, in peril.”

The letter added, “At this moment, it is more critical than ever that Israel strengthen its claim in the international community that it is committed to a two-state vision, which is, in turn, central to Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state.”


In their letter, the US Jews called on Netanyahu to take a stand against the report. “Securing Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state requires diplomatic and political leadership, not legal maneuverings,” they said.

They asked him to “ensure that adoption of this report does not take place,” the letter stated.

Signatories to the letter included: Michael Berenbaum, former Project Director of the US Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC; Charles R. Bronfman, philantrhopist; Lester Crown, Chairman of Henry Crown & Co.; Thomas A. Dine, Former Executive Director of AIPAC; Rabbi David Ellenson, President, Hebrew Union College –Jewish Institute of Religion; Peter A. Joseph, Chairman, Israel Policy Forum; and Richard Pearlstone, Former Chairman, Jewish Agency.
Again, most of these people are not recognized leaders of the Jewish community.

What this letter shows is how wedded the American Jewish community is to the 'two-state solution' and how they have lost any ability to think of alternatives outside the box. When the community's supposed original thinkers have a knee jerk reaction of rejecting anything that varies from the conventional wisdom, something is really wrong.

At the President's Conference last month, Caroline Glick mentioned that she is working on a book that argues in favor of Israel annexing all of Judea and Samaria. While some people may fear that solution (because they have bought into the demographic lies that claim that annexing all that land would mean that we would either no longer be a Jewish state or no longer be a democratic state), Caroline's book probably will stand a chance of being the first to prompt a serious reevaluation of the two-state paradigm since the 90's. The sooner she can get it out, the better.

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At 4:58 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Untransformed Lawless Democrats

At 5:16 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

BTW You notice that these people haven't written any letter like this regarding their own government, the Obama Team, pushing guns to gangbangers in Mexico, resulting in hundreds of dead people. They are lawless and deadly.

At 5:29 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

While the report was a no brainer, I believe Israel needs to use it a political tool in their back pocket for now. After Iran is dealt with and the elections here are over.

If the west bank erupts in response to a war with Iran then use it to send those who dont want to become Israeli citizens sweating a loyalty oath to Jordon. Until then keep building but don't upset the status quo.

At 2:35 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Unless there was more, now the next day, I'm realizing that these high end political Jewish leaders are not saying that the analysis is mistaken or wrong. They are just saying that they don't want Israel to say it out loud. We've worked through a lot of the agreements, international documents, etc. here on Israel Matzav, and came to conclusions similar to the Israeli analysis.

This is one reason that, even if it has to be done by the IDF on a compartmentalized IT system to protect people in some areas, the title info should be compiled in GIS layers, by year (to show history), with annotations, relevant links to legally binding documents, videos of compiled info...

The question for these letter signatories is this: The Palestinians have had almost two decades to accommodate themselves to having their own country. Their response has been to bomb busses and restaurants and to shoot rockets onto Israeli civilians from Gaza. Q: Are the signatories trying to coerce Jews to accept Judenrein areas in the region in which legal treaties call for Jews to be allowed to live (as I keep saying, if they buy the land). And these so called "leaders" don't think that they would be setting up a precedent that will limit the futures of the next generations of Jews in the U.S., by coercing the implementation of NO GO AREAS FOR JEWS? Ugh.

At 5:18 PM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Sorry I keep coming back to this... but the think tank people I know who are 2-staters and sort of ok with the poor poor Palestinians chucking bombs onto Israel or blowing them up in busses or restaurants... whatever.... can be stalled in their headlong effort to put Israel into an undefendable solution by bringing up the idea that by doing this uprooting of Jewish owners, the U.S. (and they themselves!) are aiding in setting up an available policy of JudenRein areas. Do they then want to expel Arabs from their land? (Of course, no) These intellectuals get *extremely* confused and uncomfortable when you make them answer these ideas.

So I guess we'll have to THANK these "Jewish leaders" for taking away that ONE AND ONLY effective argument. And undermining the idea that Jews may not be discriminated against, transferred, or have their property confiscated as a matter of U.S. policy. These people (the letter signatories (AIPAC?!?!? Ugh) are saying that, even if the law says Israel is Israel, it is ok to use politics to pick and choose and end up with dead Jews. They are just a bunch of marcuse new left marxists. That takes priority over EVERYTHING else.

At 7:36 PM, Blogger Daniel Greenfield said...

This is an Israel Policy Forum letter, part of their post-CAP revival. Why Gordis chose to sign on to an IPF letter is an interesting question.


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