Senator Dianne Feinstein,
Senator Sherrod Brown,
Representative Tammy Baldwin,
Representative Martin Heinrich,
and the 55 other House members or candidates receiving endorsements from J-Street
Dear Senators and Representatives:
Sixty-eight years ago this week, US and allied forces stormed the beaches of Normandy. On D-Day, more than 9,000 allied soldiers were killed or wounded, but the war turned in our favor. The conclusion of World War II led to the foundation of the State of Israel as a homeland for Jews, and the creation of Jordan as yet another homeland for Arabs.
For the Jewish people, this monumental decision formalized the villages and towns Jews had been creating on the land for 100+ years, and nationalized the historic, emotional and biblical ties our people have had to the land for over 4,000 years. For Arabs, the decision added Jordan (formerly TransJordan), which constitutes one the 50 predominately Muslim states we have today (Pew Forum, 2009).
Sadly, since November, 1947 when the United Nations approved Israel’s establishment, nearly 23,000 Israelis have been killed and tens of thousands more wounded, all to defend their homeland from constant attack. For a country with a total population less than New York City, this is a colossal loss.
Since its founding, Israel has been our greatest ally in an otherwise unstable region. In the Middle East, Israel is the only true democracy, with equality for all of its citizens regardless of race, religion, gender or sexual preference. Unlike their neighbors, Israelis enjoy a free press and freedom of speech, including speech against the government.
I’m sure you accepted the recent endorsement from J-Street with excitement. After all, J-Street bills itself as an organization of American Jews who are pro-Israel and pro-Peace. They share your vision for a “secure and democratic Israel.” And certainly American Jews have been staunch supporters of candidates who take a stand for Israel.
Unfortunately, you made the wrong choice by aligning your interests with J-Street. This was a decision that was likely ill-informed and could greatly hurt your campaign and your political future.
As someone who has spent years working online toward a better shared understanding of Israel, I can assure you that J-Street is NOT the benevolent pro-Israel group it purports to be. Their true goal is the eventual destruction of Israel as a Jewish state, and a willingness to support organizations that enable terrorist activities such as Hamas. Your acceptance of J-Street’s endorsement gives them legitimacy and a public forum to spread their message, and that may disenfranchise your constituents and potential supporters.
J-Street is funded primarily by leftist billionaire George Soros. Perhaps embarrassed by this, J-Street publically denied any Soros involvement until their hand was forced. Additional identified funders for this “pro-Israel” organization include a major Palestinian businessman, a board member of the Iranian lobby, a “Stop the Occupation” activist, the PR Director for an Islamic center (who was once nearly deported), and a Syrian-American who blogs on a site called “Arab-American Warrior Prince.” The motivations of these supporters seem quite clear.
J-Street’s record of actions, public (and private) commentary and most tellingly their donor list suggest they are disingenuous and are actually focused on the eventual destruction of the Jewish state. When Israeli citizens were hiding in bomb shelters daily from barrages of missiles from Gaza, J-Street encouraged 54 members of the House to send a letter to President Obama to put pressure on Israel, not the terrorists. The organization has publicly supported the now-discredited (by the author himself) UN-sponsored Goldstone report on Israeli actions in Gaza. Their vision is for a state of Israel with far less strategic defenses, surrounded by millions bent on her destruction. There is certainly a time and place for peace and love – but Israel’s enemies are not planning on it anytime soon. J-Street’s vision could lead to the catastrophic collapse of Israel as a Jewish nation-state.
Noted civil liberties attorney and Middle East expert Professor Alan Dershowitz had this to say about J-Street:
“It is a fraud in advertising to call J Street pro-Israel. An organization that calls for the US to censure Israel at the UN is not pro-Israel. An organization that praises Goldstone is not pro-Israel. An organization that calls for taking any military measure against Iran off the table is not pro-Israel. It should stop defrauding the public.”
Senators, Representatives… it’s not too late. You can make a strong statement to American Jews and to Israel by denouncing J-Street’s endorsement and refusing its contribution. This is not a partisan appeal. I don’t care if you are Blue or Red and neither does Israel. But by accepting support from J-Street, you are heading into a black hole from which your campaign and perhaps Israel as we know it will find it difficult to recover.
Act For Israel