Josef Olmert
Josef Olmert

Princeton Hillel and Hotovely-it is anti Mizrachi racism

The latest chapter in the saga of how Hillel International, an organization which, as been exposed in MIDA.ORG, GETS 7 MILLION $US from the Israeli government, whereas it deserves to get not even 7 US CENTS, is the decision by Julie Roth, the head of CJL in Princeton [Center for Jewish Life -the Hillel ] to prevent the appearance of Deputy FM Hotovely. This piece though is not about the double standards of Hillel International, approving the invitation to Breaking The Silence to their Columbia University chapter, because of the sacred First Amendment, while keeping silent about the Hotovely incident. Nor is it about the procedural arrangements of Princeton Hillel, which claims that all they did was to refer the invitation to Hotovely, to a committee which was supposed to vet it[yes, what they said, not a joke…], neither it is about the personal politics of Mrs. Roth, whom I do not know, never met, and have no personal animosity towards.And lastly, it is also not about Mrs. Hotovely’s politics, which I am not in agreement with on many issues and whom I never met.It is all about one element of this story,and it is RACISM. To be concrete, it is about the deep-seated Progressive anti Mizrachi approach, which was exposed yet again with this Princeton Hillel caving in to AJP [THE ASSOCIATION OF PROGRESSIVE JEWS THERE-it is how they call themselves, not what they really are].

Mrs. Hotovely, could and, in fact, should be a model Progressive Israeli politician, if what the Progressives were interested in was really to promote Progressive values, rather than to participate in the ideological Jihad against Israel. She is a member of the Georgian Jewish community in Israel, one of the greatest Jewish communities of the world, a community which preserved its Judaism for two thousand years, and was one of the first to raise the banner of Zionist rebellion against Soviet repression. Who can forget the letter of the 18 Georgian Jews demanding the right to return to Zion. They returned almost to a man and woman, were absorbed in Israel, contributing so much to every aspect of life in Israel, while maintaining, by large, a very traditional way of life, being religious, conservative and yes, they have only one collective sin attached to them. They tend to vote almost without exception to Likud and Shas. What a sin… enough however to rule them out in the eyes of Progressives, or those who pretend to be such, in Israel and in the US. Let us be frank about that-what does the average American Progressive Jew, Rabbis, students and others know about the glorious traditions of this wonderful Mizrachi community? what do they know about other Mizrachi communities?. Morover, what do they care about them, other than picking up some disgruntled Mizrachi individuals and use their personal grievances against Zionism and Israel?. Do they, for example, realize that almost half of the Jewish population of Israel are Mizrachim, mostly second generation descendants of refugees from Arab and Muslim countries? For them, refugees are only Arabs, Palestinians and Muslims. The ”Progressives” still live in the past, in the good old days, when the Zionist Left Wing, mostly Ashkenazim from Eastern Europe dominated Israel, and then it was ”their” Israel, but the very notion, that a democratic revolution happened in Israel, propelled mostly, though not exclusively, by the Mizrachim who switched to Likud, never sat well with them. The Mizrachim are different, many of them are Mezuza kissers[Oy vey…], they happen to be more traditionalist Jews, more nationalistic, so they do not run away from Judaism, opposite completely to the ”Progressive ” Tikkun OLAM cult which is all about running away from Judaism.

Let us put it in some historic context. The German Reform Movement run away from the hated OST JUDEN [THE EAST EUROPEAN IMMIGRANTS-EAST IS MIZRACH], who were too Jewish, looking Jewish, dressed Jewish and speaking the” Jargon” language Yiddish, in short, compromising the attempt by the Reforms to run away from Judaism, from Zion, and to be only good Germans. So it was in the Lower East Side of New York, in late 19th Century, early 20th Century, when the Reforms then went to great lengths to dissociate themselves from the ”strange” looking, different, East European Jewish immigrants, their OST JUDEN. Today these are the Mizrachim of Israel who are the modern-day OST JUDEN, the people whom the ”Progressives”, mostly in the Reform Movement, but not only there, despise because they happen to vote mostly for the Right Wing in Israel. so, let us get back to Tzipi Hotovely. A woman who broke with the tradition of her wonderful community, religious and nationalist but also visible and outspoken, but not ”one of us”, and will never be, so not inviting her to talk is a good answer to who she represents and what she has to say. Ignore her, pretend she does not exist and continue to be a good”Progressive”.

About the Author
Dr Josef Olmert, a Middle East expert, is currently an adjunct professor at the University of South Carolina