This is astonishing. An Israel lobby group came up with a questionnaire for American Jews and Israeli Jews living here that asks a question that supposedly only anti-Semites ever ask, about the degree of loyalty Jews would have for Israel if the two countries were at odds. An other questions about the importance of the Jewish lobby.
The Israeli government had distributed the surveys to tens of thousands of people, Haaretz says, but Netanyahu has now scotched the survey, which was undertaken by a nonprofit, the Israeli American Council (which is funded by both Sheldon Adelson (Republican giver) and Haim Saban (Democratic)).
Haaretz’s original story:
One question in the survey asks specifically which side the respondents would support publicly if there was a crisis in the relationship between the United States and Israel. The respondents are also asked to what extent the presidential candidates or Congress members’ attitudes toward Israel impact their voting decisions.
Haaretz follow-up– Netanyahu kills the poll:
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday ordered Israel’s immigrant absorption and foreign ministries to cease distribution of a controversial questionnaire already sent to tens of thousands of Israelis living in the United States and Jewish Americans, asking them to indicate where their allegiance would lie in the case of a crisis between the two countries.
Netanyahu also instructed all official government agencies from promoting the questionnaire. News of the questionnaire, reported in Haaretz on Sunday, promoted an uproar in the Jewish media.
The survey was commissioned by the Israeli American Council, a private nonprofit group based in Los Angeles. Its mission is “to build an active and giving Israeli-American community in order to strengthen the State of Israel, our next generation, and to provide a bridge to the Jewish-American community,” according to the IAC website.
Two sensitive and potentially explosive issues that have always clouded the relationship between the Jewish community in the United States and the State of Israel related precisely to the issues raised in the survey: firstly claims of “dual allegiance” to both Israel and the United States; the other concerns the pro-Israel, American “Jewish lobby.” Many of those raising such claims against American Jewry have themselves been accused of anti-Semitism.
P.S. I have long maintained that the dual loyalty issue is inherent in Zionism, and have compiled statements by American supporters of Israel that directly raise the issue. By the way, here is liberal Zionist Eric Alterman saying that he is dual-loyal and that if the U.S. had to take a hit for Israel, it can take it.
‘s worth it.