Emergency Committee for Israel Is Bad for Israel

October 24, 2011

Mainstream American Jewish Groups, Israeli Government Leaders Reject Efforts to Make Support of Israel a Partisan Wedge Issue

Taken by itself, the Emergency Committee for Israel’s (ECI) founding board member Rachel Abrams’ blog post on the release of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was inappropriate and wrong.

When combined with other statements and actions by the Emergency Committee for Israel over the last year, her blog post is just another example and proof that ECI is no friend to the State of Israel and is advocating a partisan and often bigoted agenda that is far outside the views of mainstream Jewry.

Since its founding, American Jews have been wary of ECI and believe the group’s leaders are far more concerned with defeating President Obama and Congressional Democrats than working to achieve a safe and secure Israel.[1]

But should we expect anything less from an organization whose motivation is to oppose any US action regarding Israel (even the continuation of long-standing policies) by President Obama[2] and to turn Israel into a partisan wedge issue,[3] a strategy even Israel’s government says is “bad for [Israel].”[4]

In the year since ECI was founded, the Emergency Committee for Israel has been:

  • Cited by the New York Times for falsehoods in an ad airing in Pennsylvania that was produced to scare Jewish voters into supporting the Republican US Senate candidate by falsely claiming Democratic candidate Joe Sestak raised money supporting a Hamas front group.[5]
  • Had major run-ins with mainstream Jewish groups and prominent pro-Israel voices, such as the American Jewish Committee’s Executive Director, David Harris, who called a recent ECI full-page ad in the New York Times “highly objectionable” and “counterproductive” to efforts supporting Israel.[6] Harris summed up the Jewish community’s feelings about ECI when he said, “[ECI’s ad] makes us wonder what are the true goals of [ECI].”[7]
  • Mocked by media for portraying the Occupy Movement as an anti-Israel and anti-Semitic movement highlighting an unaffiliated, bigoted individual as its poster child despite the fact his rants and individual protests were well-known in New York months before the first occupiers set up camp.[8]
  • [1] http://www.jpost.com/JewishWorld/JewishNews/Article.aspx?id=181455
  • [2] http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0710/39613_Page2.html
  • [3] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/08/05/kristols-hawkish-pro-isra_n_671998.html
  • [4] http://www.haaretz.com/blogs/focus-u-s-a/when-israel-stars-in-u-s-campaigns-is-it-good-for-the-jews-1.320883
  • [5] http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/21/us/politics/21adbox.html?_r=1
  • [6] http://www.ajc.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=ijITI2PHKoG&b=2818289&ct=11223681¬oc=1
  • [7] http://www.ajc.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=ijITI2PHKoG&b=2818289&ct=11223681¬oc=1
  • [8] http://forward.com/blogs/forward-thinking/144650