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ZOA Concerned by Jewish Groups’ Criticism of Opposition to Two-State Solution

June 30, 2013 10:09 am 18 comments

The logo of ZOA, which has regained its tax-exempt status as the IRS controversy continues to swirl. Photo: ZOA.

JNS.orgThe Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) is expressing concern about the criticism leveled by two Jewish groups at opponents of a two-state solution.

In June, following comments opposing a two-state solution made by Israeli Economy and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett and Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) called Bennett’s comments “unwelcome” and praised Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s reprimand of Danon’s comments. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), meanwhile, said opposing a Palestinian state would “add fuel to the fire” of “anti-Israel delegitimization and boycott campaigns,” and would “have destructive effects internationally.”

The ZOA on June 26 “expressed concern and puzzlement” that AJC “condemns those who oppose creating a Palestinian state under prevailing conditions yet, at the same time, rarely condemns continuing PA incitement to hatred and murder against Jews and Israel in the PA-controlled media, mosques, schools and youth camps.”

“A search for the word ‘incitement’ on the AJC website reveals only occasional press releases over the past dozen or more years which even mention the subject; and none since 2001 in which Palestinian incitement was the headline issue,” ZOA said.

AJC Executive Director David Harris said in a statement provided to JNS.org on June 28 that AJC “has consistently supported a peace agreement that would lead to Israel, the Jewish state, and Palestine, the Palestinian state, living side-by-side in peace and security.”

“We can only hope that Secretary of State John Kerry’s urgent call for courageous leadership is heeded, and the Palestinians, missing from the peace table for the past four years, will return in good faith to hammer out the tough issues successfully with their Israeli counterparts,” Harris said. “While we are under no illusions about the challenges involved in achieving a durable accord, and ensuring compliance by the Palestinians ‘the day after,’ we believe a two-state deal is the best possible outcome to strive for.”

On June 24, ZOA said the ADL was “stifling debate” by “suppressing opposition to a Palestinian state.” ZOA also questioned why ADL criticized the recent remarks opposing a two-state solution, but did not criticize January by comments by then-Israeli Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya’alon (currently the defense minister) ruling out the possibility of establishing a Palestinian state alongside Israel. ADL did not respond to a request for comment from JNS.org.

18 Comments

  • if G-d by the prophets has declared that the children of Israel will return to the land, then why are murderers murdering the children of Israel in the name of someone who is said to be “the seal of the prophets”? if one is said to be “the seal of the prophets” then one must be in agreement with the prophets; those murdering in the name of the prophets are liars. G-d is not a liar. G-d is not a thief. G-d is not a murderer. but a liar is often a thief and sometimes a murderer. and a lie is as theft is as murder. lies bring theft and theft brings murder. let us not lie, to ourselves or to others; let our deeds and words be true and honest and right. “when a man’s ways are pleasing to G-d, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” lies are not pleasing to G-d. life is upon the poor; don’t suffocate them with lies. the beauty of G-d is before the children, who see and follow; don’t blind them with lies. G-d is not mocked.

  • Herman Gershon

    Why are we considering the remote possibility of having “two states side by side, living in peace and security” when one of the two does not even recognize or accept the other as a Jewish State? When are we going to stop this charade? Palestine canot become a state and Israel does not exist as a Jewish state. So why bother kidding ourselves and the rest of the world? We are beating a dead horse and all we get is horsemeat.

  • And who is a partner for making peace with Israel ?
    Abbas who glorifies terrorists ?
    Abbas’s PA TV that features kids calling for Jews hiding behind stones and trees to be killed ?
    Abbas’s school text books showing “Palestine ” from the Mediteranian to the Jordan.?

  • a two state solution, unlikely thanks to the Arabs’ unwillingness to accept Jewish existence, is a great folly as a government policy. So-called progress toward this absurd goal only foments more violence on the part of the Arabs. If successful, like every other concession granted to these people, its consequence will be more violence and less security for Jews. If successful, it will not stop with whatever land is surrendered for a fascist state. Arabs will, soon thereafter, begin to lobby for a complete abandonment of the holyland by non-Arabs. Many Jews, guilt ridden but mostly lacking a Jewish identity, will agree. The only solution to the violent cycle that plagues Israeli-Arab relations is to allow Jews to settle anywhere in land controlled by Israel or the PA (whose authority is dependent entirely upon Israeli concessions) and to encourage Arabs to leave Israel. Finally, to treat the Palestinian organizations, including the PA, as enemy and to respond to their violence with great force. To heed the advice of Machiavelli and to disregard the advice of Peres, Kerry and their ilk.

  • David Bernshaw

    Two states may be the ideal but, I may be mistakenly (read naievely), under the impression that there already was in existence, a separate “palestinian state”, namely TransJordan or Jordan.

    So, as far as that logic seems to take me, the two state solution already exists in a “elephant in the room” kind of way, judging by some of the comments.

    Jordan, part of the palestinian mandate under both Turkish and British rule, has not only a majority of peoples derived from the old mandate era but seems to take in others, for instance those labelled as “palestinian refugees” from the current Syrian crisis as ordinary people seek safety from political terror.

    In the past, the rulers of Jordan drove out many of their own people who were presumably politically opposed to the British created hegemony, increasing the pressure on other states to house them, although these states too were also part of palestine (of which present-day Israel is only a tiny portion).
    I presume that being a subject of the mandates, however, does not give surviving palestinian jews (or their many descendants both in Israel and the Galut, such as my self and many others here in Australia) the automatic right to seek citizenship or residency in that country nor in any of the other countries carved out of “Palestine”.
    How peculiarly discriminative it is to single out those of non-jewish palestinian origin in this case, for consideration of their own state when they actually have many to choose from already.
    Of course when the world-press uses the term “Palestinian” they are inferring that jews cannot be included-how disciminatory is that?

    Of course it is probable that all but a few jews of palestian geographic origin in this category, would decline to vote with their feet in order take up residence in any of these post-Palestinian states to which they ought to be equally entitled.

    It is as if geographic fluidity in this area never existed in the past.

    There are non-jewish citizens of Israel who have continued to live in their micro-region of origin since the declartion of the state of Israel. They remain citizens of the state of Israel without prejudice of the type being claimed by Israel’s opponents (which is not to say that there is not some form of discrimination for them as there is for each of the many separate identity groups inhabiting the multi-cultural state of Israel, xenophobia being part of the human situation).
    Others chose, at the outset, to believe the propagande of the Mufti of Jerusalem and his cronies who urged flight to areas without the British determined borders of the nascent UN created state of Israel. They, living apparently in a “no-mans land” rather than a “country” now clamour for their “right of return” to their precise geographic site of “origin”, rather than to a part of what was palestine, alloted to them or to one of the other allotments made by the French and British after WW2. This would logically include any of the post-palestinian states in the region, were it not for the centrality this form of propoganda plays in the politics of “return”. However, these state did not claim the name “Palestine”.

    It is, in actuality, this form of pro-palestinian denial politics which has all the hallmarks of racism and apartheid which, by projection, seem to be the content of the catch-cries levelled against the internationally created, democratically ruled Israeli state by her critics.

  • When some Jews speak the truth of reality, it just doesn’t go down well with those who still try to promote the lie of
    fantasy: Anyone who tries to reason with those incapable of
    reason will just continue to suffer ad hominem attacks and
    to be cast out of the circle of the acceptable. Those who
    refuse to engage in a real dialogue are those who pretend
    to be “Liberal,” while demonstrating that they are anything
    but. “Fascism” comes more readily to mind when only one point of view is permissible.

  • Please delete last reply sent in error and print the following:

    The Israeli people have earned the right, through their blood, taxes, dedication and laws to make their own decisions in regard to the Palestinian Arabs and other issues
    However well meaning the AJC and ADL, neither they nor any other body, haveany right to cross the line and publicly tell the government elected by the Israeli people, what to do. A Two State solution may or may not be in Israel’s best interests, so it makes complete sense for the Israeli people to make this decision – not the US government nor American Jewish Organizations.

  • Elliot J. Stamler

    As a supporter and contributor to both the AJC and the ADL, I’d just make the observation that ZOA has become an adjunct of the Republican Jewish Coalition as well as a cash cow for Morton Klein and his relatives. While I agree with some ZOA positions it does not have nearly the degree of respectability and good judgment of the AJC and the ADL.

    • And would you care to elaborate how exactly Mr. Klein and his relatives benefit financially from this “cash cow”?

      • Elliot J. Stamler

        Yes, Dr. Zhivago, the FORWARD of which I am a long-time survivor has published undisputed articles giving Klein’s enormous salary and the big salaries of his relatives, family members whom he has put on the ZOA payroll. Check it out, “Dr. Zhivago.”

      • Elliot J. Stamler

        Yes, Dr. Zhivago, the FORWARD of which I am a long-time subscriber has published undisputed articles giving Klein’s enormous salary and the big salaries of his relatives, family members whom he has put on the ZOA payroll. Check it out, “Dr. Zhivago.”

  • Arthur D. Greenberg

    Yes, two states is the ideal. But no workable deal can happen without a real peace partner.

    Some specific facts are a must:
    1. School children need be presented with a positive view of Israel and it’s citizens, one idea would be to sponsor children’s visits to Israel and meeting Jewish and Arab Israelis.

    2. The Palestinians must prepare for peace by presenting Israel in a positive light. They should shown the statistics on how much better Israeli arabs live as compared to Palestinians and arabs in all the surrounding countries.

    3. Any deal should allow Jews to continue living in peace in the new state of Palestine.
    Why should any settlement be required to be abandoned? If Arabs can live in Israel, why could Jews not live in Palestine? We already know the failure of the settlements being removed from Gaza. And Israelis living in Palestine could retain Israeli citizenship or become citizens of Palestine or maybe a dual citizenship would work even better.

    A good beginning to this peace project would be multiple joint endeavors in business. sport and cultural activities. These relationships could be the firm foundation for a warm peace, as compared to the COLD peace with Egypt. If multiple strong relationships prosper, a peace could be a natural procedure amongst new friends.

    Let’s, for now, put aside formal peace talks and just work on becoming good neighbors and friends, then a peace contract would be easy. Compare a couple living together and then getting formally married.

    With best wishes for peace and happiness.
    Arthur David Greenberg

  • ZOA has never been a force in the USA. So what.

  • One can always count on the ZOA to speak the truth. Sadly, the same cannot be said of most other American Jewish organizations, today, when it comes to the Palestinian conflict with Israel. The so-called “peace process” is a farce. Those who continue promoting it seek only to pressure Israel into giving the Palestinians anything and everything they ask for; none of which is peace. The vision of “two states living side-by-side in peace and security” was imposed upon Israel by George Bush. No Jewish organization that cares about Israel should treat that imposed framework as if no other resolution were possible. The Palestinians (along with the rest of the Arab and Muslim Middle East) don’t give a damn about getting a state. They want revenge and restoration of their “honor.” Why not debate the conflict with open and honest eyes, as ZOA does, instead of carrying on the now pathetic charade?

  • Obama’s America deliberately decided not stop Iran.

    Once Israel attacks Iran is will cause chaos in Iran creating a power vacuum creating an opportunity to Iran neighbors. Causing regional chaos disrupting oil supply to Europe collapsing European economies creating chaos giving opportunity to the Islamic groups to try and take over Europe. Follow that American banks and economy will be affected disrupting American life.

  • The Two State Solution will lead to two or more state war with America helping the Paestinian State with Arms, solders, NGO’s and America and world volunteers to help fight the Aggressor state State Israel.

  • Kiflemariam Melake

    HAMAS has already declared no CONFERENCE, NO PEACE TALKS, NO SYMPOSIUM, NO COMPROMISE, ….It is in its program The Covenant 1988. Who is taking with whom? As far as there are groups who do not want to talk the talks will be pumping hot air. The Muslim Brotherhood’s policy is no talk. its talk is using the sword. A recently released archival document 09/06/2013 from Israel revealed how far Gold Meir had gone for a peace talk with Sadat. Then he refused giving a condition. At last just three months later the 1973 war was launched by Egypt. Still the current president is in favor of talks, but I do not understand who is talking with whom. The only organized body available there is the STATE OF ISRAEL. The people who call themselves the Palestinian Arabs didn’t accept the resolution of the UN. Is there any one who thinks everything must go back? The fault is those of Arabs who didn’t accept the resolution although Hajji Amin al-Husseini attempted to organize a state in Gaza. But, the then King of Jordan opposed his taking power and the Hajji have him killed in Jerusalem using his secret squad which was led by his relative. This is the truth.

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