Commentary Magazine


Re: Time for Honesty

Well here’s a dose of honesty for you:

Israel’s Ambassador to the US Michael Oren has decided not to attend the J Street conference being held next week, the Israeli embassy said Tuesday. … “In response to the question about J Street’s invitation to participate in its conference, the Embassy of Israel has been privately communicating its concerns over certain policies of the organization that may impair the interests of Israel,” the embassy said in a statement.

It seems not even disinviting the Queer Intifada poet was enough to hide J Street’s tracks. Now we can expect the J Street crowd to collectively stamp their feet and declare they are too pro-Israel. But really, who are they kidding? Poetry reading or not, J Street will have trouble grabbing the legitimacy mantle as long as its policies are consistently antagonistic toward Israel and its rhetoric muted when it comes to Israel’s enemies.

For those congressmen who accepted the hosting invitation on the premise that J Street was “pro-Israel,” they might want to get going on that due diligence. (Lenny Ben-David has some excellent questions for those who’d like to know more about just who’s behind J Street.) If Israel doesn’t buy the label, why should they?