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April 13, 2016 11:45 am

Bernie Sanders Hires Outspoken Critic of Israel for Jewish Outreach Position

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Bernie Sanders, pictured, hired an outspoken critic of Israeli government policies as his Jewish outreach coordinator. Photo: Michael Vadon via Wikimedia Commons.

Bernie Sanders, pictured, hired an outspoken critic of Israeli government policies as his Jewish outreach coordinator. Photo: Michael Vadon via Wikimedia Commons.

JNS.org – The presidential campaign of Democratic primary candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt.) has hired an outspoken critic of Israeli government policies as its Jewish outreach coordinator.

Simone Zimmerman is active in the self-described “pro-Israel, pro-peace” lobby J Street and the “Open Hillel” movement — both of which have been criticized in the Jewish community for ignoring Israeli grievances in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and whitewashing Palestinian terrorism. Open Hillel rejects the Hillel campus umbrella organization’s guidelines on shunning partnerships with anti-Israel groups, while J Street has also been scrutinized for co-sponsoring events with anti-Israel organizations. Zimmerman has also been involved with IfNotNow, a new movement of young American Jews who oppose Israeli control in the disputed territories.

In a February op-ed forHaaretz, Zimmerman outlined her views on Israel, including her perceptions on what she called “grave injustices committed by the Jewish state” and the “disastrous reality of holding millions of Palestinians under military occupation.”

“Tell the UC Regents: anti-Zionism is not racism, it’s a political belief,” Zimmerman retweeted from the Twitter account of the anti-Israel group Jewish Voice for Peace in March, reacting to the University of California Board of Regents’ adoption of a report that condemned both anti-Semitism and forms of anti-Zionism that are anti-Semitic.

The decision to hire Zimmerman comes after Sanders recently inflated the number of Palestinian civilian deaths in the 2014 Israel-Hamas war at least sevenfold — to 10,000 — in an interview with the New York Daily News.

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  • judorebbe

    How “progressive” of Bernie !!!

  • Ayatollah Ghilmeini DD

    Thanks, Bernie! Really show your colors. Simone is the classic “US out of America,” “Isreal is great if they could just get rid of those pesky Jews” leftist.

    Like all leftists, they take whatever position is most dangerous to the long term survival of the Jewish people.

    Judaism has long lost people over the centuries to attrition- those who cannot stomach the fight or lose faith and quit. Just as recent conversos were the worst torturers in the inquisition, leftist Jews turn on their own. As they did pre-WWII when they cheered for Stalin and supported Hitler’s invasion of Poland.

    Have no respect for Bernie, her deserves none for hiring this hater and have nothing but contempt for Zimmerman, she is evil in league with evil (that would be JStreet).

  • tiki

    Jewish Bernie Sanders hires an outspoken Jewish critic of Israel.

    Nothing what thousands before him haven’t done to further their career or promote themselves!

    Being anti Israel will bring you in the spotlight!
    Being pro Palestinian will bring you money & career!

    His “non logical & ignorant” swipes at Israel about the Gaza war and the “not proportional violence with the 10000 dead Palestinian victims” was a well thought out strategy as was his absence at AIPAC.

    Being accused of dual citizenship is for most US Jews as horrid
    as finding a snake in their bed.

  • E. BnZ

    Sadly, his drive for the humanitarian rights of the haters of Israel makes him passionate against his own soul.

  • Carl

    Shame on a Jewish presidential candidate for selecting such an antagonistic young rabble-rouser as his so-called emissary to the Jewish people. This girl is not “outreach” – she is an insult. I cannot see any mainstream Jewish leader engaging with such a person in a meaningful dialog. Too bad she doesn’t even understand the fundamental history and psychology of Israel and the Arabs. This conflict did not suddenly begin in 1967 with Israeli “aggression” against peaceful Palestinians. Decades of vicious Arab terrorism preceded the ’67 war. Decades of Arab terrorism preceded the establishment of Israel in 1948. Arab terrorism is not a response to Israel’s behavior, as this naïve young woman has been brainwashed to believe. Terrorism – and now political warfare and malicious propaganda – are a calculated and deliberate strategy to isolate, delegitimize, and eliminate the one and only Jewish state on the planet. Mr. Sanders surely is aware of this. His selection of this activist makes quite a statement that does not bode well for his relationship with Israel and the Jewish community.

  • Jay Lavine

    If someone is to be a Jewish outreach coordinator, then we would want to know more about that person’s commitment to Judaism. Is he or she someone who knows the Lord and who loves the Lord with all his or her heart and with all his or her soul and with all his or her might? Is he or she someone who strives to walk in His ways, considering Judaism to be not only a faith but also a way of life that guides him or her in every aspect of his or her life? Does he or she attempt to observe the mitzvot, not only according to their letter but also according to their spirit, going beyond the minimum prescribed level whenever possible?

  • Scott Rose

    This smug character Simone Zimmermann supports BDS, whose leaders have openly stated their goal of eliminating Israel.

    For Jewish outreach, Sanders would have done better to hire a baked Virginia ham.

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