December 18th, 2012

President Obama…

seems to be intent on expanding his program of spiteful appointments.

My favorite line:

As he sees it, to paraphrase Jim Baker, “F#&k the Jews, they voted for us anyway.”

Yes. And I don’t think that Hagel’s appointment as Secretary of Defense would wake them up, either. Jews constitute a very small percentage of the US population, and although they’re vocal and active in the Democrat Party, and also big donors to it, I think Obama is absolutely correct in calculating that his anti-Israel stance won’t hurt him much with them. After all, where are they going to go? To the evil Republicans?

Let me just say that the majority of the Jews I know who support the Democratic Party (which is almost all of the Jews I know) are secular (“cultural” Jews) and not especially committed to the survival of Israel. Jews who happen to be both liberal and supportive of Israel do face a potential dilemma here, though, one that they didn’t face fifty years ago, when it was okay for liberals to like Israel. But my guess is that most of them will resolve their dilemma by deciding in favor of Obama and liberalism, because it’s much easier to believe that his anti-Israel stance is just false smear tactics cooked up by the right than to abandon the Democratic Party, which for so many people on the left has taken on the aspect of a religion-substitute.

[NOTE: If you’re interested in knowing more details of Hagel’s anti-Israel stances, please see this and also these posts.]

17 Responses to “President Obama…”

  1. ziontruth Says:

    Hagel had this to say in an interview with Aaron David Miller: “I’m not an Israeli senator. I’m a United States senator. I support Israel, but my first interest is I take an oath of office to the Constitution of the United States, not to a president, not to a party, not to Israel. If I go run for Senate in Israel, I’ll do that.

    It’s a smart ploy: Build a strawman by making the reasonable (my opinion too) claim that he stands for American interests, so as to be able to cry oppression if he’s called for overreach, for taking steps that are beyond mere standing for American interests.

    For the issue is not America standing for her own interests—many on the Israeli Jewish Right, especially the Religious Zionists (who tend to adhere to a doctrine of Israel’s self-reliance far more than the secular do), hold that America has every right to withdraw its aid (military equipment loans) to Israel. That’s not what’s at stake.

    The issue is appeasement. Seeking to amend its relationship with the Muslim world (a misguided endeavor in and of itself, but I digress) on Israel’s expense, by paying the Muslims with land-money belonging to Israel, is not any nation-state’s right. It would be interventionism, every bit as blatant as the now-ancient examples the Left keeps beating America over the head for.

    I have no problem with a truly isolationist American Secretary of Defense, one who would retire America from its thankless job of world cop and let the mostly ungrateful world to its own devices. But telling the Jewish nation where it may or may not build on its own land is not isolationism, and is not among the rights of any other nation.

  2. Steve Says:

    Am I right to say that American Jews were divided during WWII and that they largely ignored the plight of European Jews (perhaps out of a fear of a backlash)? Does it seem that American Jews are still divided and now ambivalent about the plight of Israeli Jews? Seems that way to me.

  3. JaneLK Says:

    Does any one remember the “Salute to Israel at 30” telethons from the ’70’s, where every liberal Jewish celebrity including Barbra Streisand showed support by performing during it? Can you just imagine a modern day version of this? To me it seems impossible. Chances are there would be Muslim protests and bomb threats and a program like this would never make it to the airways and none of my fellow Tribe members that are celebrities would ever commit to appearing on such a telethon.

  4. George Pal Says:

    Religious Jews seem to be driven by historical fear of Christianity and secular Jews by a hatred of Christianity that far exceeds any rudimentary affection for their religion or culture. To the extent the Democratic Party remains the Godless party, Jews will call it home. It remains to be seen, when the time comes that the Democratic Party becomes full bore anti-Semitic instead of ostensibly just anti-Zionist, whether Jews claiming to be good and loyal Democrats will have a more salutary effect than when they claimed to have been good and loyal Germans.

  5. Al W Says:

    Do they still say “Next year in Jerusalem” to close the Sedar? If they do what does it mean? And by “they” I mean the Jews who are “not especially committed to the survival of Israel”.

  6. Don Carlos Says:

    Just another example of Tipping Point passage.

  7. neo-neocon Says:

    Al W: secular non-religious Jews don’t have seders.

  8. neo-neocon Says:

    Steve: wrong on both counts. I’ve never seen anything that indicates Jews in the US were split in any way as a group on WWII.

    Of course, there were a few secular leftist Jews who weren’t against the Germans when the Germans and Soviets were briefly allied (1939 to June of 1941), but after that even leftist Jews were anti-Hitler.

    And in general American Jews did all they could to sponsor Jews coming to this country to escape the Nazis, and to publicize their plight.

    You may be thinking of the US government itself, which in the main did not facilitate the entrance of Jews here even in those dire times. It wasn’t easy to get in, and it required sponsors, etc., and there were strict quotas (don’t have time to look up the details now, but that’s my recollection).

    And you may be thinking of the publisher of the NY Times, who didn’t publicize the plight of the Jews in WWII very much despite the fact that he was Jewish.

  9. IGotBupkis, Legally Defined Cyberbully in All 57 States Says:

    I will, just for the heck of it, point out the blog of a rare “Republican” Jew (in Hollywood, no less!) — Seraphic Secret — this is an old article, but it goes to show you that he is a serious conservative:

    How to Get So Dead in This Town

    Here’s his latest (as I write) piece,
    Jew Without A Gun
    about his and his family’s experiences during the 1992 LA Riots.

  10. Janet Says:

    I must disagree with the idea that most secular Jews do not greatly support Israel. I and my Jewish friends are all mostly secular atheist Jews, and we all very much support Israel. we are what Bill Maher referred to as 9/11 Liberals. We may not agree on various issues inIsrael but we all support it; especially in this very anti Israel climate all over the world. also, why use the word “Zionist”? Israel is already a country.

  11. Steve Says:

    neo, this article echoes what I remember hearing about how American Jews responded during WWII:

    I was surprised because if anyone should have known what was happening to European Jews it would be their relatives in America.

  12. Steve Says:

    This article expresses my point exactly:


  13. Steve Says:

    I am not sure where that x came from. Here is the link again:

  14. neo-neocon Says:

    Steve: that linked article is mostly about official US government policy. Plenty of Jews agitated for more rescue (as it says) but some gave up after a while because the government made it very clear that their priority was to win the war, and that they would not relent about their immigration policies.

    In addition, many people were in denial about the extent of the horrors. Although some knew, the details were not widely and well known until after the war. Also, please read this post of mine. I think it explains quite a bit about why it’s difficult in general to heed warnings about such atrocities.

    I just saw that you linked another article, which describes the reluctance of some Jews to be activist about it (Rabbi Wise is discussed). I’m sure there were such people, but there were plenty of others who were very activist and were rebuffed by the administration. And as you can see by the Koestler article (which, interestingly enough, appeared originally in the NY Times magazine), even the Times was not completely silent. The point is that pleas (such as Koestler’s) tended to fall on deaf ears in general, and Koestler explains why.

  15. Ann Says:

    I read an article just before the election about why Alan Dershowitz came out with an endorsement of Obama even though he’s been highly critical of his actions with regard to Israel during the last four years.

    The author surmised that Dershowitz did that because he believes it is of the utmost importance that both political parties are on record as being pro-Israel. Hence, he has to remain in the fold and do his best to steer them in the right direction.

    I’m not giving more than a rough impression of the article. Sorry I can’t remember where I read it — maybe the Tablet or the Weekly Standard? — and I think maybe it was written by Lee Smith.

  16. Ymarsakar Says:

    Well, at least only about 75% of the Jews in the US live on Democrat fiefdoms. One should consider one’s sympathy better reserved for the born blacks in the US, who vote 99% Democrat and are 99% of the time living on Democrat fiefdoms and plantations with white Demoncrat masters.

    If people thought “democracy” wasn’t a feasible goal in Iraq, wait until they realize that America is in a worst situation than Iraq ever was in. There will be no “surges” into the inner cities to clean them out of Democrat terrorists.

  17. Ymarsakar Says:

    “the Democratic Party, which for so many people on the left has taken on the aspect of a religion-substitute.”

    A lot of things about the Leftist alliance starts making more sense when one realizes they are a religious, not political, organization. Religion is actually what binds them. Because there’s no way in hell the anti gay born blacks and the pro gay homosexual crowd share the same “politics”.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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