ZOA’s Klein Says Jewish Leaders Called Him to Stop Opposing Hagel

February 14, 2013 11:13 am 4 comments

A screenshot from an anti Hagel ad.

American Jewish leaders have pressed the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) to stop publicly opposing the nomination of Chuck Hagel for defense secretary because making that a “Jewish issue” is “bad for the Jews,” the Jerusalem Post reported.

“I was called by major Jewish leaders, personally called, and [they] told me to stop our campaign against Hagel,” ZOA President Mort Klein told the Post.

ZOA was “the only major Jewish group to publicly oppose Hagel and [John O.] Brennan [for CIA head]” besides the Republican Jewish Coalition, according to Klein, who explained that such was the case because Jewish organizations are “frightened of making an issue seem more important to Jews than others.”

Klen said on Tuesday that “AJC, AIPAC, ADL [and] the Conference of Presidents never came out and said we oppose this man [Hagel] because he is horrible on Iran, he is horrible on terrorism, horrible on Israel, horrible on fighting radical Islam.”

Hagel chairs the Atlantic Council think tank, which in December published a column titled “Israel’s Apartheid Policy” as well as a policy paper predicting that Iran “should be viewed as a potential natural partner” for the U.S. He did not sign various pro-Israel letters backed by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) while he served in the Senate, but did sign a 2009 letter asking Obama to directly negotiate with Hamas. But in his Senate confirmation hearing, Hagel said “No one individual vote, no one individual quote or no one individual statement defines me, my beliefs, or my record.”

4 Comments

  • Where is the conscience of the United States Senate? Where is the conscience of US Jewry? With Iran biting at the bit of a Hagel Secretary of Defense and a Brennan at the helm of the CIA, Israel is left in the lurch. “It takes strength to love,” once said Martin Luther King, Jr. Those who support AIPAC, the ADL, and the ZOA–do you have the moxie to support your brethren in Israel who are on the front lines of terror? Do you have the courage of your convictions? Do you stand up to adversity or whimper in retreat when your voice is most needed? Stand up and be counted for Heaven’s sake!

  • “According to Klein….Jewish organizations are frightened….” How pathetic is that?

  • Let us not hold back on speaking the truth, even it rattles the cage a little bit! Blocking Chuck Hagel is in the better interests of the American people and the United States of America.

  • Hagel’s becoming the Secretary of Defense is more important to American Jews than to any other ethnic or religious group in the United States. To have a Secretary of Defense who “chairs the Atlantic Council which published a report about Israel’s apartheid policy, who consider Iran to be a potentially natural partner for the United States, and who signed a letter requesting that President Obama directly negotiate with Hamas” altogether speaks tomes about the morality, generosity, kindness, understanding, perspective, and insight regarding Jews in the United States as well as Jews in Israel. The two communities are connected at the hip, so to speak, with only about 13.5 million Jews in the world, 6 million in Israel, 5.5-5.75 million in the US. This assessment is not to discount the fact that someone who wants to make friends with an extremists, fanatical, odious theocracy as is Iran is unfit to run the US Defense Department. This is not to say that someone who who wants to make nice with terrorist organizations, such as Hamas and Hizbullah, would be a defender worthy of the American people holding a value system honoring life, not sanctioning death. Senator Harry Reid and those senators supportive of Chuck Hagel’s nomination need their heads examined! And those who agree with them–Democrat, Republican, or Independent–are also in need of psychiatric assistance big time!

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Jewish Identity Sports Cycling the Desert: New Israel Bike Trail Connects Mitzpe Ramon to Eilat

    Cycling the Desert: New Israel Bike Trail Connects Mitzpe Ramon to Eilat

    As the popularity of cycling continues to increase across the world, Israel is working to develop cycling trails that make the country’s spectacular desert accessible to cyclists. The southern segment of the Israel Bike Trail was inaugurated on Feb. 24 and offers for the first time a unique, uninterrupted 8-day cycling experience after six years of planning and development. The southern section of the Israel Bike Trail stretches over 300 kilometers in length and is divided into eight segments for mountain biking, [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Theater Forthcoming Major Action Movies Inspired by Jewish Comic Artist Jack Kirby

    Forthcoming Major Action Movies Inspired by Jewish Comic Artist Jack Kirby

    JNS.org – With the recent Oscars in the rearview mirror, Hollywood’s attention now shifts to the rest of this year’s big-screen lineup. Two of the major action films coming up in 2015—Avengers: Age of Ultron, which hits theaters in May, and the third film in the Fantastic Four series, slated for an August release—have Jewish roots that the average moviegoer might be unaware of. As it turns out, it took a tough Jewish kid from New York City’s Lower East [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity When Torah Teaches Life and Life Teaches Torah (REVIEW)

    When Torah Teaches Life and Life Teaches Torah (REVIEW)

    JNS.org – Rabbi Gordon Tucker spent the first 20 years of his career teaching at the Conservative movement’s Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) and the next 20 years as the rabbi of Temple Israel Center in White Plains, N.Y. I confess that when I heard about the order of those events, I thought that Tucker’s move from academia to the pulpit was strange. Firstly, I could not imagine anyone filling the place of my friend, Arnold Turetsky, who was such a talented [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Oscars 2015: Reflecting on Love at First Sight

    Oscars 2015: Reflecting on Love at First Sight

    JNS.org – I’m in love, and have been for a long time. It’s a relationship filled with laughter, tears, intrigue, and surprise. It was love at first sight, back when I was a little girl—with an extra-terrestrial that longed to go home. From then on, that love has never wavered, and isn’t reserved for one, but for oh so many—Ferris Bueller, Annie Hall, Tootsie, Harry and Sally, Marty McFly, Atticus Finch, Danny Zuko, Yentl, that little dog Toto, Mrs. Doubtfire, [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Book Reviews Examining America’s First Foray into the Middle East (REVIEW)

    Examining America’s First Foray into the Middle East (REVIEW)

    At the turn of the 21st century through today, American involvement in Middle Eastern politics runs through the Central Intelligence Agency. In America’s Great Game: The CIA’s Secret Arabists and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East, historian Hugh Wilford shows this has always been the case. Wilford methodically traces the lives and work of the agency’s three most prominent officers in the Middle East: Kermit “Kim” Roosevelt was the grandson of president Theodore Roosevelt, and the first head of [...]

    Read more →
  • Relationships US & Canada Seniors at Los Angeles Jewish Home Give Witty Dating Advice Ahead of Valentine’s Day (VIDEO)

    Seniors at Los Angeles Jewish Home Give Witty Dating Advice Ahead of Valentine’s Day (VIDEO)

    Residents of the Los Angeles Jewish Home give dating advice to a young Jewish man in a comedic video posted Monday on YouTube just in time for Valentine’s Day. Jonathan, an associate at the Jewish home, quizzes the senior citizens on an array of topics including having sex on the first date, kissing a girl, who should pay for dinner and whether online dating is a good idea. When the 28-year-old asks a male resident named Lee about his experiences [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish History Kutsher’s Documentary an Amazing, and Tragic, Look at the Past (REVIEW)

    Kutsher’s Documentary an Amazing, and Tragic, Look at the Past (REVIEW)

    Anyone who spent time in the Jewish Catskills hotels – especially those like me, who returned for decades – must see the new documentary,”Welcome to Kutsher’s: The Last Catskills Resort.” Not only will the film transport you back to the glory days of your youth and thousands of memories, but it will also make you long for a world that is now lost forever. I returned to Kutsher’s one last time in the summer of 2009, but by then, the [...]

    Read more →
  • Education Jewish Identity Lifestyle Riding the Wave of Change in Part-Time Jewish Education

    Riding the Wave of Change in Part-Time Jewish Education

    JNS.org – Amid the numerous studies and analyses regarding Jewish American life, a simple fact remains: part-time Jewish education is the most popular vehicle for Jewish education in North America. Whenever and wherever parents choose Jewish education for their children, we have a communal responsibility to devote the necessary time and resources to deliver dynamic, effective learning experiences. The only way we can do this is by creating space for conversations and knowledge-sharing around innovative new education models. That also [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.