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May 26, 2016 6:25 am

Why Is Reform Movement Leader Rabbi Rick Jacobs Hosting an Anti-Israel Agitator?

avatar by Paul Leslie

Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) President Rabbi Rick Jacobs speaks at the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) General Assembly. Photo: Robert A. Cumins for JFNA.

Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) President Rabbi Rick Jacobs speaks at the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) General Assembly. Photo: Robert A. Cumins for JFNA.

Aymen Odeh, the leader of the Knesset’s Joint Arab List, generally uses moderate language to create the deceptive image of himself as a peacemaker — unlike the pathologically Israel-hating Haneen Zoabi.

But we shouldn’t be fooled. The Joint Arab platform calls for “concessions” that would destroy the state of Israel, including a “just solution to the Palestinian refugee problem that would guarantee the right of return according to United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194.” The party also calls for the release of jailed terrorists who have freely admitted to murdering Israelis.

Odeh is an admirer of the terrorist mass murderer Marwan Barghouti, and has shown repeatedly that he can be as dangerous an agitator as Zoabi. All throughout the so-called “knife intifada,” he has expressed no unqualified sympathy for the victims, and always resorts to playing up the lies about Israel’s supposed evil intentions concerning the Temple Mount.

There are very brave and admirable Israeli Arab citizens who have repeatedly intervened publicly to defend Israel’s legitimacy — like Father Gabriel Naddaf or Muhammad Zoabi (an Israeli-Arab teenager who is a cousin of Israel-hating Haneen Zoabi).

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Yet instead of actively supporting these defenders of Israel, who are often the the target of serious physical threats, various American Jewish leaders, such as the Reform movement’s Rabbi Rick Jacobs,  have been wooing the likes of Ayman Odeh.

Jacobs, is, of course, a somewhat dishonest critic of Israel,

Last year, the Conference of Presidents cancelled a meeting with Odeh following Odeh’s refusal to participate in a meeting in a building that housed offices of the Jewish Agency. Yet this did not deter Rick Jacobs from receiving Odeh on December 8, or praising Odeh as has having “an inspiring vision for a brighter future for Israelis and Palestinians.” Jacobs stated, “we were delighted to host MK Odeh in one of our leading houses of worship, to share with him the beauty, history, and activism of our Reform Movement and to discuss together our shared commitment to a vision of Israel that draws from the prophets of justice and righteousness for all.”

What is wrong with Rick Jacobs? And when will he be held accountable?

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