Time for Jews to Take On the President

Obama wrote a letter to Alan Solow of the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations, which reads in part:

“As for our relations with Israel, let me be very clear: we have a special relationship with Israel and that will not change. Our countries are bound together by shared values, deep and interwoven connections, and mutual interests. Many of the same forces that threaten Israel also threaten the United States and our efforts to secure peace and stability in the Middle East. Our alliance with Israel serves our national security interests.”

This is, quite bluntly, nonsense coming from this president and an insult to the intelligence of Jewish voters. The appropriate response to Obama is: “Mr. President, you’re not fostering the special relationship; you are undermining it. You are not confronting the most lethal of those ‘forces that threaten Israel [which] also threaten the United States,’ namely Iran. You have resigned yourself to a nuclear Iran and eliminated the most feasible tactics for preventing a nuclear Iran. When, Mr. President, you ‘condemn’ Israel, you do not demonstrate that our commitment to Israel’s security is unshakable. Instead, you sow doubt about our willingness to defend the Jewish state. And, Mr. President, no American president has ever driven a larger wedge between the U.S. and Israel than you have. You have not treated Israel as a close ally, but rather as a pariah and an impediment to your effort to cozy up to the ‘Muslim World.'”

As for his additional representation to Solow that “he would not impose ‘peace from the outside; it must be negotiated directly by the leaders who are required to make the hard choices and compromises that take on history,'” Solow would be well advised to demand that Obama therefore publicly rebuke his advisers who have suggested otherwise and announce there will be no further consideration of an imposed peace deal.

But, of course, Solow is not likely to say any of those things in public, and certainly not in writing. And this is precisely what is wrong and entirely dysfunctional about American Jewish officialdom these days. Jewish “leaders” privately grouse and express horror over Obama’s Israel attacks, but they are unwilling to declare that the emperor has no clothes when he says the most ludicrously disingenuous things. In doing so they actually harm the Israel-U.S. relationship and only encourage Obama’s anti-Israel gambit. When they politely nod — and worse, tout the letter as an accomplishment — they give cover to the president’s anti-Israel animus. If the Conference and other Jewish organizations won’t call them like they see them and take on this president, they risk becoming irrelevant and counterproductive. Really, isn’t it time to risk losing precious “access” to the White House in order to deliver a full-throated and candid condemnation of the administration’s Israel-bashing?