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Sarah Bard, Hillary Clinton’s director of Jewish outreach, will headline a fundraiser in Tel Aviv, Israel on May 17. https://t.co/CEa4UrFyi3
— Dan Merica (@danmericaCNN) April 21, 2016
There’s been a lot of Israel news in the primary process lately, and I’m going to play catchup on it here.
First, this just in. Hillary Clinton is going to have a fundraiser in Tel Aviv. Her Jewish outreach director will hold it. Remember that Clinton has pledged Haim Saban to fight the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement aimed at Israel, so she’s putting her moneyraising where her mouth is.
Back to Dems. Michael Tomasky has a good piece of analysis at the Daily Beast headlined, “Bernie Sanders brought NY Dems to their senses on Israel.” Tomasky seems to believe that by “anti-pandering,” Sanders may have effected a sea change in the discourse, in line with younger Democratic voters’ attitudes.
An acknowledgement that Palestinians are human beings—during a New York primary, no less!
Clinton could have—and 12 or so years ago, undoubtedly would have—responded by saying something like until the Palestinians get better leaders and stop teaching hatred to their children, my posture won’t change. Not only did she not do that, but Sanders forced her to acknowledge the point…
Sanders is to be commended for this anti-pandering—it could herald the start of a positive change in the way Democrats at least talk about the Middle East. But he was also able to get away with it because New York has changed so much. In 2011, Ed Koch came from seemingly nowhere to hijack the special election to replace Anthony Weiner in the House, turning it into a nationally viewed referendum on Obama’s Israel policies and costing Democrats what had seemed like a safe seat in the process. That was his last hurrah, and may have also been the last one for the staunchly pro-Israel Jewish Democrats who were once a dominant force in the party’s politics.
The Jews who remain in the party, especially those younger than 40 or so, are much more anti-Likud than the generation that’s been dying off (if Koch were still alive, he’d probably have popped off about Sanders’s comment, and we’d have stormed our way back to 1988 again).
On that one, Sanders showed that he’s more in touch with the current mindset of a crucial New York constituency than Clinton is.
Tomasky’s piece is a reminder of the power of individuals. Ed Koch and Abe Foxman. Foxman caused Sanders to have to fire Simone Zimmerman as Jewish outreach director. There are beneficent individuals, too. On the other hand, Foreign Policy has a long piece on Linda Sarsour’s support for Bernie Sanders, and the marvel of an aging Jewish politician bringing together people from so many different walks of life.
One last thing. Zionist speechwriters. My old boss Jared Kushner, owner of the New York Observer, wrote the speech that Trump delivered by Teleprompter to AIPAC last month– in which Trump said President Obama was the worst thing ever to happen to Israel– and it turns out that Kushner consulted with Israeli ambassador Ron Dermer to do so– the same Ron Dermer who lobbied on Capitol Hill against the Iran deal and managed to keep his diplomatic credentials!
Israeli Ambassador to Washington Ron Dermer briefed Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner on Israel’s diplomatic and security issues days before Trump delivered a speech written by Kushner to the AIPAC conference last month, Haaretz reported on Sunday…
Haaretz said Trump’s AIPAC speech sounded in part like it was “taken verbatim from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s talking point sheet” thanks to this assistance.
(The Observer’s national political reporter, Ross Barkan, quit the newspaper because of the newspaper’s coziness with the Trump campaign. It must have cramped his style.)
Kushner is in a fine new American tradition. Gary Ginsberg, who is an executive at Time Warner, wrote several speeches for Benjamin Netanyahu of all people in recent years
Ginsberg is on the board of the Newseum in Washington. I was outside that institution the other day and took this shot. Notice that the limestone facade of the building has the Bill of Rights’ establishment clause. And meantime Gary Ginsberg, a member of its board, is writing speeches for the leader of a foreign, religious state surely in large part out of religious affinity. If this were the Christian right, not the Jewish right, it would be a scandal.
Thanks to Jewish Insider.
– See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/04/clinton-will-hold-fundraiser-in-tel-aviv/#sthash.3IutHw2c.dpuf
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