Welcome!

News Feed Item

AJC Responds to New York Times Op-ed on U.S. Jews and Hagel

NEW YORK, Dec. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- AJC is dismayed by today's New York Times op-ed article, available online, "Don't Let Pro-Israel Extremists Sink Chuck Hagel." The author is James Besser, a former Washington correspondent for the New York Jewish Week.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100816/AJCLOGO)

AJC Executive Director David Harris issued the following statement in response:

This op-ed is so replete with glaring errors of omission and commission that it's hard to know where to begin. Indeed, the very conceptual, or actually ideological, premise on which it is constructed is without foundation.

Essentially, the author argues that a group of wealthy right-wing zealots now call the shots in American Jewry. They have either taken over or, at the very least, intimidated mainstream groups like AJC into supporting, openly or quietly, their extremist agenda. This includes settlement expansion and seeking to silence anyone who doesn't yield to their political orthodoxies.

To be blunt, this is absolute and total rubbish.

First, AJC does not have such donors. Our donor list is made public in each annual report. I invite anyone to review the list. 

Second, those who know us understand that we would not begin to yield to the will or whim of any such donors, be they of the doctrinal right or, for that matter, the left.

In fact, I can cite the cases of donors on both sides who dropped out of AJC in recent years precisely because we were not right-wing or left-wing enough for their taste.

Decision-making and direction are determined by AJC's Board of Governors through discussion and debate, involving close cooperation between lay leadership and staff. We welcome different points of view among our leaders and outside speakers who inform our thinking, a long-standing hallmark of AJC.

Third, our stance on Israel-related issues is staunchly centrist and non-ideological. An incredibly long paper and voice trail underscores that point, as do the daily examples of our diplomatic and political advocacy.

We fully support Israel's right to exist free of boycotts, divestment and sanctions, and the moral and political hypocrisy of double standards.

We steadfastly defend Israel's right to protect itself and its citizens.

We speak up for the special U.S.-Israel link, as serving the highest interests of both nations.

And we belabor under no illusions about the immense dangers Israel faces in a hostile, arms-laden region -- from Syrian chemical weapons to Iran's nuclear ambitions; from the deadly arsenals of Hamas and Hezbollah to the growing strength of political Islam.

At the same time, we have consistently, and over a long time, advocated for a two-state Israeli-Palestinian agreement.

We supported the Egyptian and Jordanian peace treaties, as well as Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts and Israel's unilateral withdrawals from southern Lebanon and Gaza.

We have expressed concern about settlement expansion (and settler-initiated violence) on multiple occasions dating back years, indeed decades.

Project Interchange, AJC's educational initiative bringing leaders from different sectors in the U.S. and other countries to Israel, visits Ramallah regularly to meet with the Palestinian Authority. AJC's Board of Governors, during its upcoming visit to Israel, also will meet with PA leaders, as it has consistently done on previous trips.

And no Jewish organization in the world has come close to our time spent, and relationships built, in the Arab or, for that matter, Muslim worlds.

Fourth, to begin the op-ed by using the possible nomination of Senator Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense as a case study is wrong-headed, to say the least. The author's attempt to sanitize Hagel's world view is mischievous at best, malicious at worst.

There are good reasons to be concerned about Hagel in the Pentagon, and one need not be a "zealot" or "extremist" to hold such views.

The Washington Post editorial board opposes his nomination.  LGBT spokespersons, women's groups, and those worried about climate change also have voiced concern.

Hagel's voting record and statements on Iran-related issues alone should give pause to anyone who wonders what message his appointment could send to Tehran.  

Fifth, to seek to draw a parallel with the NRA is particularly offensive, especially to those who have opposed the group's agenda.

We wish the NRA were remotely open -- say even one percent -- to the pluralistic views of Americans on gun rights and gun limits that organizations like AJC are to the direction of American Jewry and Israel.

Why the New York Times chose to publish such an off-base, politically motivated piece chock full of errors and distortions is beyond us.

SOURCE American Jewish Committee

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Enterprise networks are complex. Moreover, they were designed and deployed to meet a specific set of business requirements at a specific point in time. But, the adoption of cloud services, new business applications and intensifying security policies, among other factors, require IT organizations to continuously deploy configuration changes. Therefore, enterprises are looking for better ways to automate the management of their networks while still leveraging existing capabilities, optimizing perf...
Join us at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2016 – June 7-9 at the Javits Center in New York City and November 1-3 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – and deliver your unique message in a way that is striking and unforgettable by taking advantage of SYS-CON's unmatched high-impact, result-driven event / media packages.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, will provide an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in Embedded and IoT solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/Big Data, HPC and ...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, will explore the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences betwee...
As cloud and storage projections continue to rise, the number of organizations moving to the cloud is escalating and it is clear cloud storage is here to stay. However, is it secure? Data is the lifeblood for government entities, countries, cloud service providers and enterprises alike and losing or exposing that data can have disastrous results. There are new concepts for data storage on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive data around the world. ...
In the rush to compete in the digital age, a successful digital transformation is essential, but many organizations are setting themselves up for failure. There’s a common misconception that the process is just about technology, but it’s not. It’s about your business. It shouldn’t be treated as an isolated IT project; it should be driven by business needs with the committed involvement of a range of stakeholders.
SYS-CON Events announced today that BMC Software has been named "Siver Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. BMC is a global leader in innovative software solutions that help businesses transform into digital enterprises for the ultimate competitive advantage. BMC Digital Enterprise Management is a set of innovative IT solutions designed to make digital business fast, seamless, and optimized from mainframe to mo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MobiDev is a software company that develops and delivers turn-key mobile apps, websites, web services, and complex software systems for startups and enterprises. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business managers to a full-scale mobile software company with over 200 develope...
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, will discuss the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to fo...
Companies can harness IoT and predictive analytics to sustain business continuity; predict and manage site performance during emergencies; minimize expensive reactive maintenance; and forecast equipment and maintenance budgets and expenditures. Providing cost-effective, uninterrupted service is challenging, particularly for organizations with geographically dispersed operations.
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device. For more information, please visit https://www.mangoapps.com/.
SYS-CON Events announced today TechTarget has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TechTarget is the Web’s leading destination for serious technology buyers researching and making enterprise technology decisions. Its extensive global networ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EastBanc Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EastBanc Technologies has been working at the frontier of technology since 1999. Today, the firm provides full-lifecycle software development delivering flexible technology solutions that seamlessly integrate with existing systems – whether on premise or cloud. EastBanc Technologies partners with p...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tintri Inc., a leading producer of VM-aware storage (VAS) for virtualization and cloud environments, will exhibit at the 18th International CloudExpo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.