[(Continued from p.10)]even to paper over the dissensions within the Presidents' Conference, which had long operated by consensus.
Having lost their compass, it is little wonder that Jews have rapidly lost influence as an organized community promoting specifically Jewish interests. Indeed Jews are no longer even seen as a minority. In the politically correct universe they have done so much to fashion they find they are not beneficiaries of the anti-bias campus codes that apply to other minorities. Thus viciously anti-Semitic speakers, Holocaust deniers, and those portraying the Arabs as innocent victims and Israel as evil oppressor, are increasingly welcome on elite campuses.
And while traditional Jewish alliances unraveled, Jewish organizations turned a blind eye and spun their wheels. Thus anti-Semitism has become a potent force in the black community and mainline churches have grown steadily more inimical to Israel since 1967. But because their primary allegiance had come to be focused on the hot button left-wing issues, Jews refused to consider non-traditional alliances. Evangelical Christians had become the segment of the Christian community most supportive of Israel; they were becoming a political force; and a number of their leaders specifically reached out to Jews. Nonetheless, for all its efforts to cultivate interfaith dialogue, the Jewish community for the most part has been actively hostile to the evangelicals, treating their political activity as illegitimate. (So self-righteous has the Jewish community become that they apparently believe their own manifold political activities reflect self-evident "truth" and are thus not "political.")
The delusionary peace process exacerbated all the worst trends. The rot has gone so deep that the organized Jewish community rejected as "political" a recent rally in Israel for a united Jerusalem as Israel's capital, once an absolute red line. When Ronald Lauder, the Conference of Presidents' chairman, decided to participate as an individual, carefully making that clear in his statement at the rally, some of the largest organizations in the Conference excoriated him.
At their peril, American Jews have lost sight of the fact that Israel's fate is inextricably bound to the fate of Jews worldwide. They no longer recognize that a strong and secure Israel is the guarantor of the safety and well being of Jews in America and that, conversely, American Jews who pursue their own enlightened self-interest in America are the best guarantors of a secure Israel.
With the Israeli electorate repudiating the failed policies of their leaders, there is now a glimmer of hope for a new direction in Israel. Are American Jews capable of change?
Rael Jean Isaac is editor of Outpost. Ruth King is a member of the executive committee of Americans For a Safe Israel.
Another expose has hit the book lists and the windows of major booksellers. Apparently, the founder of IBM visited Hitler in 1933 and continued to do business with Germany and the Nazis. Who knows what the reasoning was among businessmen in 1933? However, the whole issue of reparations and suits against banks and corporations that did business with the Germans is beginning to gall. Lawyers who ride to work in German cars, and sip coffee from German china, and who evince such enthusiasm for dealing with Arafat, strike us a tad hypocritical and we agree with the assessment that the entire issue of reparations is begin-ning to sour.
All actual victims deserve reparations and help wherever necessary. The rescue of survivors in the years following Israeli independence remains one of the Jewish nation's major accomplishments. Hundreds of thousands arrived in Israel to the welcoming care of all its citizens. In America, rescue efforts were admirable -- hands on care included counseling, vocational training and help with shelter and money. Unfortunately, in recent years the effort to help has shifted to unbridled litigation, primarily benefitting lawyers.
Our conviction is that the only proper and lasting memorial to the martyrs of the Shoah, and the most fitting tribute to those who survived is a strong, secure Israel. A Jewish homeland in the heart of our biblical heritage in Hebron, Jericho, Jerusalem, is the only form of reparation the Jewish people should be willing to accept.
The greatest danger to the Jewish people today comes from the Arabs surrounding Israel and their cheerleaders in the rest of the world. Our imperative is to protect and support Israel. The rest is just penny-ante.
With the peace process in its death throes, it would be a good time for the new administration to step back from all previous policies and failed nostrums for ending the Arab-Israel war. For starters, President Bush should disband the section of the State Department which devotes itself exclusively to Israel and the Palestinians. Dennis Ross has already departed. It is time for Richard Haass, Aaron Miller, and Martin Indyk to follow suit.
William Rogers, Secretary of State in the
Nixon administration died in January of 2001. He had a
dis- inguished career, spanning many administrations, as
lobbyist for civil rights legislation, Attorney General from 1957
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[(Continued on p.12)]
March 2001 - 11 - Outpost