David Harris & AJC: Lay Off the Peace Pipe

Ronn Torossian

OpEds Ronn Torossian
Ronn Torossian

It’s either a peace pipe with funny-smelling smoke, or some mean ol’ LSD left over from the ‘60’s, but it seems to me, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) and their director David Harris are undergoing a fierce moment of delusion.

As the Jewish Forward has said, the AJC has positioned themselves as the “State Department of the Jewish People,” a self-proclaimed foreign affairs arm of the Jewish community. Indeed, much like in the State Department, there is clear political bias.

Last year, a few months before the 2012 Presidential election, the AJC co-sponsored a speech in a synagogue by Susan Rice, the US Ambassador to the UN and an Obama cabinet member, at which a group of about two dozen pro-Israel people were escorted out by police for waving little Israeli flags.  Numerous right-of-center Jews were placed on a blacklist and banned from the event for supposedly being anti-Obama.

More recently, the AJC criticized Israeli government Minister Naftali Bennett for daring to support the right of Jews to live anywhere in Israel.

Today, rather than continue with the sha-shtil (don't rock the boat, ed.) mentality of the AJC, they published an op-ed entitled “Give The Peace Process A Chance” in The Huffington Post.  This liberal organization, which recently shut down most of their operations in Israel, including firing the Jerusalem office director and three other staff members, didn’t support the Jewish State in the article, as one might expect of a Jewish organization.

The op-ed didn’t mention repeated Palestinian Arab rocket attacks on the south of Israel, nor did it call for peace talks among the citizens of Syria or Egypt who are killing one another. No, the Jewish organization called on Israel to take all chances for peace.

Harris erroneously claimed that Tzipi Livni is a “minister with the Likud Party” and then claimed, when talking about his support of the peace process, “…I don't say so as a partisan, since I'm most assuredly not.”

Mr. Harris – you support a Palestinian State - that would be a partisan position.  Your recent comment which said “Minister Naftali Bennett’s remarks, rejecting outright the vision of two states for two peoples, are stunningly shortsighted.” makes you partisan – and partisan at the expense of AJC polls, which show that for two years less than half of U.S. Jews support a Palestinian state, 38% and 43%, respectively.

Mr. Harris - as CEO of 5WPR, I support a real peace and think you and the AJC leadership would do better to take a flotilla to Syria to solve the issues there. Then go to Tahrir Square.  And perhaps that is time better spent as a Jewish leader, for "tikun olam.".

AJC liberals care about democracy everywhere in the world – except for Israeli democracy where they seek to undermine the Netanyahu government with their extreme liberal viewpoints.

Ze’ev Jabotinsky many years ago wrote in his essay “Peace”: “A noisy whining is now being set up by a chorus of ‘peace seekers’ who aim to achieve (by preaching exclusively to Jews) conciliation with the Arabs. It is difficult to free oneself from a feeling of disgust.”  His words remain vitally relevant today.

Connect with Ronn on LinkedIn