Israel Project “Intellicopter” with top-tier foreign journalists
Today I got the fundraising letter below from the Israel Project where it claims credit for this February story in CNN on “Israeli hospital treats wounded from Syria.” If you read the article, there is no mention of the rightwing lobby group in the story.
The fundraising appeal also states that the Israel Project took 38 journalists and 38 diplomats on helicopter trips in Israel, presumably to show them how vulnerable Israel is to its tough neighborhood (which includes a lot of refugees in Syria Israel won’t allow to return).
The appeal is signed by Josh Block. As Nathan Gutmann at the Forward recently reported, this excellent gentleman is relaunching the lobby group with an aim at American journalists, lest they be influenced by a “well-…financed, albeit fringe echo chamber” of anti-Zionist conspiracy theorists and apologists for Iran. The Israel Project is sorely in need of funds because Block lately gathered a bunch of journalists and policy wonks at a “fancy hotel in Washington,” according to the Forward, where he stood in front of an ice sculpture carved in the shape of the group’s logo and described a new TIP publication as Vanity Fair crossed with Foreign Affairs. Ice sculptures and helicopter trips can get pricey.
The Israel Project’s Intellicopter is above. You’ll see at the link that it flies over Palestine, not just Israel.
From Block to me today [excerpted]:
It was an important time of reflection, but it was also an important time for looking ahead: We have to keep doing all we can to secure Israel’s future.
That’s what drives us at The Israel Project (TIP). We are the go-to source for credible, factual information on Israel and the threats it faces in the Middle East. We are the indispensible resource for educating the media and leaders about Israel’s history and ongoing struggle for peace.
The best way we know to celebrate Israel’s independence is by recommitting our efforts to protecting it. The critical work we do to educate journalists and policy makers depends on your support. Will you donate now to ensure we can keep up all our work?…
Our impact on Israel is tangible and meaningful. Here are some highlights of the work we’ve done recently:
- Throughout the Israeli elections, TIP helped journalists see the robust nature of Israel’s democracy and countered a well-publicized campaign to depict Israel as an extreme, right-leaning country.
- As the conflict in Syria threatened to spill over its borders, TIP drew attention to the care Israel provided for Syrian refugees, culminating in CNN publishing a story headlined, “Israeli hospital treats wounded from Syria.”
- Not a week has gone by that TIP’s communications team in Israel has not placed a story or expert in U.S. and international media.
- We organize helicopter tours for journalists and diplomats to accelerate their understanding of Israel and the complex issues affecting its security. In 2012, we took 38 journalists and 38 diplomats on helicopter tours.
All of these things are important for keeping Israel secure. But we can’t continue to carry out all of these important efforts without the help of committed individuals like you. Right now, as we reflect on Israel’s past and dream of its future, we need you. Can I count on your support today?
[signed Josh Block]