J-Street: A Shame of American Jewry!
By Gad Nahshon
Itzhaq Ben-Ami (1913-1986) was a dear friend of mine who lived in the upper Westside of Manhattan. He used to show me his unique archive. He gave me copies of Zeev Jabotinsky's European speeches. He had one son who became a lawyer. Ben-Ami dedicated himself (1937-1949) to saving Jews from the Holocaust. He dedicated hmself to challenging the terrible silence of Jews and gentiles alike in this country during the Holocaust era.
He also fought against Nazi Germany. Ben-Ami was a leader and an activist: he was the first member of the Irgun: (Etzel), the anti-British underground's delegation to the USA (1937-1949). It was known as the Bergson Group. Bergson, who was actually Hillel Kook, was its commander. Ben-Ami first tried to save Jews via illegal Aliya or immigration to Palestine.
Many experts ignore the fact that the Nazi 'gates' were opened until October 31, 1941. The Nazis prepared the 'final solution' at Berlin's Wannsee Conference on January 20, 1941. As I pointed out, Itzhaq Ben-Ami's mission was to mobilize America and FDR's government against the Holocaust and minimally, to decrease its effect by saving some of its potential victims.
Recently, Jews and Israelis celebrated the 50th anniversary of the national trial of Adolf Eichmann in Jerusalem. Ben-Ami met Eichmann in Vienna from March 1938 to November 1939, in order to save the Jews of Austria that were annexed to Hitler's Germany. The details of Ben-Ami’s activities from 1937 to 1949 are documented in his autobiography: "Years of Wrath, Days of Glory - Memories from the Irgun," published in 1982. The book was also translated into Hebrew.
This excellent book tells you the first chapter of Eichmann dealing with Nazi's 'Jewish question' in Vienna. An office to deal with Jews was opened in Vienna with Dr. Langa. Eichmann was only his assistant at that time, but became his replacement. Ben-Ami met Eichmann because the 'gates' were opened and Ben-Ami used boats on the Danube as a means to save Jews.
Eichmann contributed to the success of Vannsee Conference. He became a leader in the Nazi hierarchy, and the murderer of six million Jews. Ben-Ami knew him personally and wrote: "Only in my later dealings with him did I become aware that this mousey looking man was an unpredictable, vicious, psychotic whom one dared not cross… But, not even in my last encounters with him on the pier at the Danube in November 1939, did I foresee the crucial and terrible role this former traveling salesman would play."
I will never forget Ben-Ami. His legacy was his belief in the eternal survival of Israel! There are many who argue that there was a link between the Holocaust and the founding of Israel, on November 29, 1947, with the passage of a UN resolution. The second mission of Ben-Ami was to establish a Jewish state in Palestine. The Bergson Group dedicated itself, after the Holocaust, to the victory of the Hebrew nation. It opened a Hebrew embassy in Washington, DC.
Ben-Ami was the executive director of the Bergson Group's agency, the 'American League of Free Palestine.' He contributed to the establishment of Israel on May 14, 1948. This second mission was as a disciple of Zeev Jabotinsky's ideas. Ben-Ami met Eichmann in order to save the Jews, and therefore, the Jewish nation from Hitler's dream of the 'final solution.’
Unfortunately, Ben-Ami's son, Jeremy, is openly ignoring the very survival and security of Israel. Jeremy has become a son who ignored his father's legacy and dreams, his father's devotion to Israel's sixty-three years as a nation and a Jewish state. The son met recently Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, who became a partner of the terrorist organization Hamas which, from the Gaza Strip, declares, day and night, that its prime target is to destroy and kill Israel and Israelis.
This, shockingly, is the latest, 21st century’s final solution, which may very well lead to a call for the genocide of Israel. Apparently Itzhaq Ben-Ami's son does not care about or truly understand, the new reality in the Middle-East:
- The future of the Middle East's new uprisings or revolutions;
- Israel's reality now is to be a small island inside the Muslim-Arab world surrounded by masses who hate Israel and dreaming of all kinds of final solutions;
- The Iranian government and its terrorist allies, such as Hezbollah in Lebanon;
- International anti-Semitic pressures on Israel for a so-called peace agreement. One should remember the 1938 Munich Agreement's 'peace with honor'. Democracy should not be a drug for suicide;
- Egypt signed a new peace with Hamas. In Cairo, Abbas and Hamas signed their agreement of cooperation and integration.
Israel is now trying to balance the pressures of the entire world with its own need for defense, security, and future survival. Itzhaq Ben-Ami's son cannot see, through his father's eyes, the dangers of a new Arabic dream of a final solution for the Jews. The son sent his delegation to Abbas, ignoring the timing. His visit took place during Israel's Holocaust Memorial Day (Yom Hashoa), the memorial of all the soldiers who died in Israel's wars, and Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel's Independence Day celebrations. According to the press, the son and his delegation are anxious to continue American aid to Abbas and to restart peace negotiations.
Itzhaq Ben-Ami's son, Jeremy Ben-Ami, established a lobby called J-Street. It is an anti-Jewish establishment, anti-Israeli lobby. It is a lobby for so called peace. Ben-Ami does not have experience in Middle Eastern affairs. He tends to express the wishes of Obama's administration since he was asked to become a broker for peace. Does he have enough knowledge of Hebrew or Arabic to understand what is going on? Who finances his lobby? Ah, yes: Soros… a Jew who never visits Israel. No one argues that AIPAC, the pro-Israel camp, or lobby, is a monolith, a dictatorship. J-Street presents itself in the media as a unique new lobby, a pioneer of challenging the Jewish pro-Israel camp. In reality, they are nothing but a fifth-column.
One can find various opposition in the history of Zionism. For example, in 1973, Brera Henry Zigman, Rabbi Micael Lerner (Tikkun) and there were few others who met Arafat. Today, we must take the promises of the Arabs with a great deal of skepticism. This notion has nothing to do with left or right. Arabs and Muslims seem to be looking for a modern final solution in order to eliminate Israel as a Jewish-Hebrew state, to eliminate the linkage between Israel and Diaspora Jews, to push Israel to become a small ghetto under Palestinian control… (especially under Abass' desire for Israel to absorb millions of Arab refugees which would make Palestinians the demographic majority in a future Israel.
It is hard to imagine that Itzhaq Ben-Ami, who sacrificed his youth for the Jews and the Israelis, would believe that his son, Jeremy Ben-Ami, and the J-Street lobby, would betray Israel, a country which faces so many new problems of survival. Itzhaq Ben-Ami fought against the 'shoah' and would always fight against a second shoah, a final solution. Jeremy Ben-Ami should follow his great father's legacy. He should not let his J-Street lobby become a distraction to Israel, directly or indirectly. Right now, J-Street is the shame of American Jewry!