By B. Cohen
The Anti-Defamation League has blasted the left-wing lobby group J Street for running an “inflammatory and repugnant” campaign against Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu.
Though it bills itself as a “pro-Israel, pro-peace” group, J Street has actively lobbied against sanctions on the Iranian regime, devoting its energies to attacking Netanyahu almost exclusively. Its latest petition campaign, around the slogan “Israel’s Prime Minister is not the spokesman for all Jews,” is directed at Netanyahu’s forthcoming speech to the US Congress on the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
“At the height of the controversy surrounding Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s scheduled speech to Congress, J Street’s petition campaign that attempts to distance itself and American Jews from Israel’s duly elected prime minister is inflammatory and repugnant,” ADL National Director Abraham Foxman said in a statement. “It exacerbates an already heated and politicized moment for U.S. Israel relations at a critical juncture in the West’s negotiations with Iran.”
As The Algemeiner reported yesterday, J Street is currently claiming that 84 percent of American Jews support President Obama’s position on Iran over Netanyahu’s. The organization did not produce any new polling to support this dramatic assertion, with executive director Jeremy Ben-Ami telling critics that a three month-old opinion poll it conducted, in which 84 percent respondents said that they would favor a deal that definitively precluded Iran from weaponizing its nuclear program, justified its conclusion that American Jews are backing the president’s outreach to Iran.
Foxman’s condemnation of J Street comes shortly after the ADL chief himself said that Netanyahu’s speech to Congress should be scrapped, arguing that the invitation to the Israeli prime minister extended by House Speaker John Boehner “looks like a political challenge to the White House.”
Zionist Organization of America head Mort Klein was among those who angrily responded to Foxman’s appeal to nix Netanyahu’s speech. “How dare ADL’s Abe Foxman harm the U.S., Israel’s, and the world’s efforts to fight these monstrous dangers by insulting the Prime minister of the Jewish state and the U.S. Congress by demanding Speaker Boehner rescind this important invitation,” Klein said.