Ms. Majorie Dove Kent , Executive Director of Jews for Racial & Economic Justice (JFREJ) in New York (supported in part by the UJA Federation),
has decided to get into the Israel-Palestine debate and writes in support of Sanders’ campaign suspended Simone Zimmerman in a Haartez op-ed on Apr. 15, 2016.
Her main point:
There is a growing community of Jews in this country who understand that nobody is free until everybody’s free. Simone Zimmerman embodies this emerging vision. But the fist of the Jewish establishment is clenched too tightly to allow for this direction to a viable, just, and dignified Jewish future…Sanders should have known that the Jewish community is one place that’s not ready for a political revolution.
Zimmerman represents a new generation of Jewish leaders and a new Jewish politics — deeply committed to the Jewish community and equally committed to justice: white Jews and Jews of color, Mizrahim, Sephardim, and Ashkenazim, working for a just future for all…Groups like Jewish Voice for Peace,If Not Now, and JStreet U are growing in numbers and strength as thousands of Jews decide to recommit to the Jewish community and fight for justice and equity, in the United States, in Israel and Palestine, and throughout the world…
…Will Jewish leaders loosen their clenched fist enough to recognize the grounded vision of safety and freedom that the next generation of Jews is fighting for? Will the American Jewish establishment heed the call of our domestic and global Jewish social justice movement that increasingly connects the dots between racial and economic justice here at home and a just peace in Israel and Palestine?
There is a lot I could write especially about the false victimization portrayal of this line of thinking as being persecuted, muted and shut down. Never has a breakaway minority within religious, political or social spheres of activity within the Jewish community been so pampered, supported and tolerated by establishment Jewry.
But that appeal to “justice” caught my eye.
Here is Ze’ev Jabotinsky before the Peel Commission as per Walter Laqueur and Barry Rubin (eds.), The Israel-Arab Reader (N.Y.: Penguin Books, 4th revised and updated edition 1984), at 58-61 in his Evidence Submitted to the Palestine Royal Commission at the House of Lords, London on February 11, 1937
I have the profoundest feeling for the Arab case, in so far as that Arab case is not exaggerated. This Commission have already been able to make up their minds as to whether there is any individual hardship to the Arabs of Palestine as men, deriving from the Jewish colonisation. We maintain unanimously that the economic position of the Palestinian Arabs, under the Jewish colonisation and owing to the Jewish colonisation, has become the object of envy in all the surrounding Arab countries, so that the Arabs from those countries show a clear tendency to immigrate into Palestine. I have also shown to you already that, in our submission, there is no question of ousting the Arabs. On the contrary, the idea is that Palestine on both sides of the Jordan should hold the Arabs, their progeny, and many millions of Jews. What I do not deny is that in that process the Arabs of Palestine will necessarily become a minority in the country of Palestine. What I do deny is that that is a hardship. It is not a hardship on any race, any nation, possessing so many National States now and so many more National States in the future. One fraction, one branch of that race, and not a big one, will have to live in someone else’s State: well, that is the case with all the mightiest nations of the world. I could hardly mention one of the big nations, having their States, mighty and powerful, who had not one branch living in someone else’s State. That is only normal and there is no “hardship” attached to that. So when we hear the Arab claim confronted with the Jewish claim; I fully understand that any minority would prefer to be a majority, it is quite understandable that the Arabs of Palestine would also prefer Palestine to be the Arab State No. 4, No. 5, or No. 6 — that I quite understand; but when the Arab claim is confronted with our Jewish demand to be saved, it is like the claims of appetite versus the claims of starvation. No tribunal has ever had the luck of trying a case where all the justice was on the side of one Party and the other Party had no case whatsoever. Usually in human affairs any tribunal, including this tribunal, in trying two cases, has to concede that both sides have a case on their side and, in order to do justice, they must take into consideration what should constitute the basic justification of all human demands, individual or mass demands — the decisive terrible balance of Need. I think it is clear.
Incidentally, Jabotinsky was obliged to present his remarks in London because the British Mandate power had banned him from reentering Eretz-Yisrael since the end of 1929 when he left for a speaking engagement abroad. Talk about justice.
Ms. Dove, there is no real link between the two foci you desire to link. If there is any possibility of Arabs achieving justice, it can only be through the structure and facilities of the Jewish state. Violence must be rejected as their main tool.
But worse, if there is any movement that is racist, unjust and oppressive in our area here along the banks of the Jordan River and the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, it is that which is called “Palestinianism”.
And not only to we Jews and Zionists who for the past century have suffered riots, and murder, and rape and theft and torching and terror but also the Arab residing in our homeland ever since the PA took over and from before, when the Mufti’s forces murdered thousands of his opponents among his Arab community, who truly deserves a better life, but will not get it from the leadership of Palestinianism.