Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

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. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Features As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    JNS.org – Sonnenallee, a street in Berlin’s Neukölln district, looks like it comes straight out of an Arab city — so much so that it goes by the nickname “Gaza Strip.” Kebab and bakery shops are advertised in Arabic; men sit in men-only coffee shops; and bridal shop windows showcase glittery, not-so-stylish gowns. But take a random turn, and you’ll find a swath of bars, burger joints, and Indian restaurants where hip Berliners announce that they have arrived to urban coolness. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot engages in fierce action sequences in the new Wonder Woman trailer, which Warner Bros. premiered during the San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday. The nearly 3-minute trailer, the first to debut for the superhero film, shows scenes of Diana, princess of the Amazons, fighting alongside men in the battle against the world’s toughest enemies. The first shot of the video shows Wonder Woman discovering a man, Steve Trevor (played by actor Chris Pine), washed ashore. The clip then takes viewers to the all-female island where Wonder Woman was born. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    Is diplomacy worthwhile, even if the end result isn’t what we hoped for? That is the question, among many others, posed by the new play Oslo, by J.T. Rogers. Making its New York debut at Lincoln Center, the play examines the secret diplomatic process that led to the historic 1993 peace accords. The character of Shimon Peres makes an appearance onstage — and he, along with Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, tower over the proceedings. But they mainly do so in absentia. Instead, […]

    Read more →
  • Spirituality/Tradition Sports Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    JNS.org – Other than being part of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, Sandy Koufax and Dean Kremer have something else in common: a respect for Jewish tradition. Koufax — who was recently ranked by ESPN as the best left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball (MLB) history — decided not to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series because the game fell on Yom Kippur. “I would do the same,” Kremer said in an interview. Last month, the 20-year-old Kremer became […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    The famed lead guitarist of British rock band Queen, Brian May, encouraged Jewish singer-songwriter Adam Lambert to perform in Hebrew during their upcoming joint concert in Israel, an entertainment industry advocacy organization reported on Tuesday. During a recent interview with Israeli television personality Assi Azar, May was played a 2005 video of Lambert singing the popular song Shir L’Shalom, (Song for Peace). May was so impressed by Lambert’s singing of the Hebrew track that he told the American singer, “We have to do that. Let’s […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    JNS.org – Kenyan-born marathoner Lonah Chemtai is expected to compete for Israel at the Olympics Games in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil next month after gaining a last minute approval. “I am very proud [to represent Israel] and I hope to achieve a new personal best time,” Chemtai told Reuters. Chemtai, who grew up a rural village in western Kenya, first came to Israel in 2009 to care of the children of her country’s ambassador to Israel. The 27-year-old runner recently gained […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    To date or not to date? That is not the question for most Modern Orthodox singles in New York. The question is when will they find their future spouses, and when will their families stop nagging them about having babies? Inspired by the success of the Israeli show “Srugim,” Leah Gottfried, 25, decided she would create and star in her own show, “Soon By You.” “Dating is so serious already,” Gottfried said. “We wanted to take a lighter approach and laugh at the […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Israeli Actress Says Playing Muslim Character in ‘Tyrant’ Has Made Her More ‘Hopeful, Humble’

    Israeli Actress Says Playing Muslim Character in ‘Tyrant’ Has Made Her More ‘Hopeful, Humble’

    Israeli actress Moran Atias said that playing a Muslim woman in the hit FX series Tyrant has changed her outlook. “Educating myself about a different culture has made me more hopeful and humble, that we’re all the same,” the Jewish actress, 35, said during an interview with AOL Build. Atias plays Leila Al-Fayeed, the strong and politically minded wife of the president of Abbudin, a fictional Middle Eastern country run by a dictatorial family. The Israeli-born former model, who earned the title of Miss Globe International […]

    Read more →