The crisis continues. Recognizing the significance of the movement questioning the policies of Israel inside American and Jewish life now , the Anti-Defamation League has compiled a list of the “top ten anti-Israel groups” in the U.S. It includes many good organizations, among them the Council on American-Islamic Relations, Students for Justice in Palestine, Friends of Sabeel, Al-Awda, the Int’l Solidarity Movement, If Americans Knew, the US Campaign to Stop the Occupation, and Jewish Voice for Peace. “They stand out in that they are able to organize a significant number of events, have a national reach… attract people to their cause and affect the mainstream discussion about Israel.”
Jewish Voice for Peace responds nobly and bravely:
We do not hold Zionism as a litmus test for membership. Some of our members are Zionists, some are anti-Zionists, and some are non-Zionists. We believe you can define yourself in any of these ways as long as you support an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank — including East Jerusalem — and Gaza, and you advocate for human rights, which naturally apply equally to Israelis and Palestinians. We stand by Israelis that hold these views, such as Israeli conscientious objectors and Israeli actors refusing to play in illegal settlements in the West Bank. We stand by Palestinians that hold these views, such as Palestinian activists protesting the Israeli confiscation of land in the West Bank town of Bil’in. We stand by internationals that hold these views, such as students pressing for divestment from occupation and war crimes or activists trying to break the siege of Gaza.
Justin Elliott has a great post on the smear campaign at Salon.
Here’s a recent statement of JVP-organized artists in support of prominent Israeli actors and directors who refused to perform in the settlements. It is signed by the likes of Cynthia Nixon, Frank Gehry, Stephen Sondheim, Vanessa Redgrave.
If this is what “anti-Israel” looks like, which side will most American Jews choose?