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New low: Israeli conference boos and heckles Obama’s treasury sec’y when he says US looks out for Israel

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Treasury Secretary Jack Lew never mentioned “Palestine,” “Palestinians,” occupation, settlements, or even the two-state solution in his speech yesterday; and still he got booed and heckled at an Israeli-organized event in New York city. It’s the air of entitlement that really ought to disturb Americans in this report.

Haaretz article by Chemi Shalev:

U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew was booed loudly and consistently on Sunday by an irate audience at the annual Jerusalem Post Conference in New York that rejected his affirmation of U.S. President Barack Obama’s commitment to Israel’s security and his pledge to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

Politico’s report:

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew was repeatedly booed and heckled Sunday as he spoke in New York City at a Jewish-themed conference sponsored by The Jerusalem Post…

Cries of “nonsense” were heard during his talk.

“I would only ask that you listen to me as we listen to you,” Lew said to the crowd at one point amid the heckling.

Here are some of Haaretz’s Chemi Shalev’s comments on twitter during the speech:

Treasury’s Jack Lew greeted with overwhelming boos at JP conference in NY when talking of Obama’s contribution to Israel’s security

I have never seen a surlier reception to a senior Administration official as the audience showing to Jack Lew at Jerusalem Post meet

Jack Lew deserves a Purple Heart or something for braving hostile JP audience

JP Editor Steve Linde apologizes to Lew for audience’s behavior

Damage controlling, Yuval Steinitz [minister in Netanyahu government] lauds Lew, says without his help Israel would never have been accepted to OECD. “Real friend of Israel”

And you thought the US bends over backwards for Israel? Vetoing Security Council resolutions for Palestine, sending billions of aid to Israel, refusing to criticize the country when it massacres 500 Palestinian children. Maybe this is a gamechange?

Read Lew’s affirmation of the special relationship in this Jerusalem Post transcript, missing the impromptu comments:

In these difficult times, the President has reaffirmed for the world time and time again that the United States of America stands with the State of Israel. This commitment began with a promise at Israel’s founding that has been continued by every President and every Congress since. And like those American leaders before us, protecting the homeland of the Jewish people is something we are proud to honor and uphold. As the President said in Jerusalem, “America’s commitment to the security of the State of Israel is a solemn obligation, and the security of Israel is non-negotiable.” The United States stands with Israel because a strong and secure Israel is vital to America’s strength and America’s security. And our two nations do not just help each other – our vibrant and deep partnership has made the world a better place.

We recognize that the threats to the State of Israel’s existence today are real, they are complex, and they must be taken seriously. That is why the Obama administration has done so much over the past six years to advance Israel’s security. ..

The simple fact is this: No administration has done more for Israel’s security than this one.    Under President Obama, and with the support of Congress, America has provided $20 billion in military support to Israel. This assistance has not only enabled Iron Dome, which has saved countless lives, it will lead to the delivery of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter to Israel next year. With this stealth fighter, Israel will be the one and only country in the Middle East to have the next generation of technologically advanced fighter jets.

We are serious when we say Israel must maintain its qualitative military edge against its opponents. And we are equally serious when we say Israel must be able to defend itself.

To that end, the United States has been steadfast in its determination to support Israel’s economy. Since Israel’s founding, the United States has provided more than $120 billion in bilateral assistance to Israel.

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21 Responses

  1. amigo
    amigo on June 8, 2015, 2:16 pm

    “Since Israel’s founding, the United States has provided more than $120 billion in bilateral assistance to Israel. ”

    Yeah and it is time the donors of these hand outs should be told what the recipients think of Americans.Give us your money and keep giving but keep out of our business.

    • James Canning
      James Canning on June 9, 2015, 1:07 pm

      America’s national security is America’s interest. Even if fanatical “supporters” of Israel try to suppress this fact.

  2. StanleyHeller
    StanleyHeller on June 8, 2015, 2:20 pm

    and who could not forget the U.S. this month junking five years of efforts to advance work on nuclear non-proliferation because Netanyahu objected to having a conference next year to discuss a nuclear-free Middle East

    BTW today is the anniversary of the 1967 Israeli attack on the U.S.S. Liberty. 34 killed, 172 injured. For an archive including what Chomsky said about it a couple of years ago see: http://www.thestruggle.org/USS%20Liberty.htm

  3. amigo
    amigo on June 8, 2015, 2:21 pm

    Maybe Lew should ask the gathering to make a list of what it is that they want Obama to do to satisfy them.

    Better order some food .It,s going to be a long night.

    • Bornajoo
      Bornajoo on June 8, 2015, 5:45 pm

      “Maybe Lew should ask the gathering to make a list of what it is that they want Obama to do to satisfy them.

      Better order some food .It,s going to be a long night”

      That was funny!

      I don’t believe that you can ever satisfy people like this. They only know how to take and then take some more (and then even more)

  4. StephenKMackSD
    StephenKMackSD on June 8, 2015, 3:09 pm

    Even Lew’s groveling isn’t quite enough! Perhaps a full kowtow is what is needed from the President and his underling?
    StephenKMackSD

  5. just
    just on June 8, 2015, 3:24 pm

    To be honest, these rude ingrates are only mimicking their bosses.

    There have been no consequences to the terrible behavior and actions by Netanyahu and his crew toward this administration and, by extension, the citizens of the US.

    “As the President said in Jerusalem, “America’s commitment to the security of the State of Israel is a solemn obligation, and the security of Israel is non-negotiable.” The United States stands with Israel because a strong and secure Israel is vital to America’s strength and America’s security. And our two nations do not just help each other – our vibrant and deep partnership has made the world a better place.”

    If I were a rude and heckling kind of person, then that’s where I would boo ~ loud and long.

    • just
      just on June 8, 2015, 3:35 pm

      Related to my point about mimicry:

      Chemi Shalev has a new piece up:

      “Jack Lew skirmish highlights danger of right-wing incitement against Obama
      Politicians and pundits foment fury and are then surprised when people take them seriously, just as they did when Rabin was alive.

      Barack Obama is stabbing Israel in the back, selling it down the river, throwing it under a bus. He is like Franklin Roosevelt abandoning the Jews, like Neville Chamberlain appeasing the Nazis. He sucks up to Muslims, kowtows to Arabs, hates Jews with a vengeance. As for his real birthplace and true religion, well, there’s no smoke without a fire.

      Worse, perhaps, are the lily-livered, knee-jerk, self-hating leftist Jews who work for Obama. By aiding his drive to give Iran a bomb and by abetting his efforts to force Israel to give up Judea and Samaria, they are no better than collaborators, not to mention kapos, perhaps even mosers and rodefs of Talmudic times.

      Such accusations and their derivatives, blunt or subtle, should sound familiar to anyone who’s lived on earth during the past six years and has come into contact with Jews or other self-proclaimed Israel-lovers. You can hear and read them, in one form or another, from Israeli leaders and Republican politicians, in right-wing media and settler bulletins, on tweets and blogs and Facebook, from the aisles of Evangelical churches through the benches of Brooklyn synagogues to the salons of Manhattan’s richest and most famous. “Tell me, is he really in the Muslim Brotherhood?” one worldly and well-known New York asked me recently, and he wasn’t joking.

      In that sense, then, the most surprising thing about the unfriendly reception accorded Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew at the Jerusalem Post conference in New York this week was that people were actually surprised. The boos, jeers, and catcalls directed at Lew by many if not most of the participants at the conference were mild – when one takes into account the deep-seated suspicions and pent up rage prevalent in Orthodox and right-wing circles towards the Obama administration. In fact, because he is not completely identified with the other “court Jews” in the Obama administration, as they were again described this week, Lew probably got off easy.

      True, Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz, Jewish Agency chief Natan Sharansky and Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid all went out of their way to placate the flustered Lew …

      …But that’s known in the Talmud as “immersing in the mikveh with vermin in his hand”, or, possibly, in this context, the pot calling the kettle black. Steinitz seemed quite oblivious to the significant role played by right wing Israeli politicians, from his party leader Benjamin Netanyahu on down, in creating the kind of atmosphere that has incited and inflamed right wing opinions, Jewish or otherwise, against Obama. It’s not only Obama’s policies that are protested, as is right and proper, it is his character and motives that are often maligned.

      The onslaught from Jerusalem is compounded by the increasingly venomous discourse in America itself. Many of Obama’s Jewish detractors take their cue from the harsh attacks directed at Obama by his GOP rivals, not only on matters concerning Israel but on his liberal agenda as well. In one ear they hear that he is throwing Israel under the bus, on the other that he is destroying the American way of life. Given that research shows that conservatives are much more likely than liberals to reside inside their isolated media echo chamber, they tend to dismiss accounts of Obama’s unprecedented defense assistance to Israel or view them as a ruse meant to conceal his evil designs.

      As in Israel and perhaps even more so, in America, the Jewish right wing naturally gravitates towards a worldview that is always on guard against an onslaught of anti-Semitism, a catastrophe just around the corner, a Holocaust lurking in the wings. Politicians in Israel and organizational leaders in the US tend to promote this pessimism and to portray Obama’s role in it, not only out of genuine concern but also as a cynical ploy aimed at getting more votes or extracting more donations. They are then shocked, horrified and appalled when it turns out that their words have consequences.

      The people who booed Lew on Sunday do not represent American Jews, of course. They don’t represent right wing Jews either. Nonetheless, the incident, so uncharacteristic of Jewish American norms of behavior, is not detached from what can only be described as incitement against Obama and his administration. It momentarily got out of hand, but ended in mere boos and a turning of backs. Israelis who lived through the period preceding the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin cannot be blamed, however, for fearing that it might have been, and could still be, very much worse.”

      http://www.haaretz.com/blogs/west-of-eden/.premium-1.660297?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

      • HarryLaw
        HarryLaw on June 8, 2015, 4:37 pm

        Just @ “There have been no consequences to the terrible behavior and actions by Netanyahu and his crew toward this administration and, by extension, the citizens of the US”. Unfotunately there has been. More uprated weapons systems including the iron dome, increased US funds to Israel and an ‘I love Israel more than you’ contest amongst US politicians, the bottom line is, the more they whine, the more US politicians [probably through gritted teeth] try to placate them. There’s method in their madness.

      • MRW
        MRW on June 10, 2015, 12:57 pm

        How about stating the obvious: racism against a black leader. That’s how a lot of non-Jews are reading this.

      • hophmi
        hophmi on June 10, 2015, 1:47 pm

        “How about stating the obvious: racism against a black leader. That’s how a lot of non-Jews are reading this.”

        Which ones? The community of stupid people? The people who booed Jack Lew oppose the policy of the Obama Administration. They would have reacted no differently if the President was a white man.

  6. aloeste
    aloeste on June 8, 2015, 4:50 pm

    not sure why you care. this is the segment of the Jewish community that you will be fighting until you are cold in the grave—- the religious jews. no wonder you hate judaism so much—those who practice it stand in your way to eliminate the jewish state. in fact , the haredi community as well realizes that as non-orthodox jewry bleeds away assimilates and converts to the Leftist religion , they are the only bulwark against the Enemies, foreign and domestic

    • Mooser
      Mooser on June 8, 2015, 8:09 pm

      “the part you ignore is that those who leave israel are secular/leftists, the natural increase in religious/haredi/eidot hamizrach will unify the country against its enemies, foreign and domestic….” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/aloeste#sthash.t7ESkMSZ.dpuf

      Yeah, you just keep counting on the haredi birth-rate. And getting rid of the “secular/leftists”. That’ll work out good.
      I won’t open a pet store in Tel Aviv, tho.

  7. wondering jew
    wondering jew on June 8, 2015, 6:17 pm

    The JP Conference booed Dershowitz last year and booed Lew this year. It’s a place where people to the left of Caroline Glick get booed.

    Obama is trying to reach a deal with Iran that raises concern and fears galore. Obama is threatening to not veto a new UN SC resolution. Of course an Obama representative is going to get booed at the JP Conference.

    On the question of the UNSC resolution which France will offer in September, what are the odds that Obama goes through and doesn’t veto?

    Personally I consider resolution 242 a failure regarding the West Bank and a new security council resolution might undo that failure. But don’t pretend that the threat to let a new SC resolution through is not something that is thoroughly new and thoroughly threatening to those who support Bibi or to the right of Bibi. Get real.

    • echinococcus
      echinococcus on June 8, 2015, 9:44 pm

      I’d agree with Mr Fredman that there’s nothing to see here: tiffs among “right” and “righter” and “liberal”, etc. Zionists are totally insignificant as long as the Zionist genocide continues.
      Nothing but diversionary fireworks. Mr Fredman is right, nothing to see here.

  8. hophmi
    hophmi on June 8, 2015, 6:41 pm

    It’s a right wing crowd, just like the ones that booed Congresspeople during the Town Halls on the ACA a few years ago.

    Most Jews outside this right wing fringe were horrified by it, and your Coughlin-like claim that Americans, who inhabit a country with a dysfunctional political culture, should be “disturbed” by it is beneath contempt.

    • Mooser
      Mooser on June 8, 2015, 8:03 pm

      “Most Jews outside this right wing fringe were horrified by it, and your Coughlin-like claim that Americans, who inhabit a country with a dysfunctional political culture, should be “disturbed” by it is beneath contempt.”

      That’s it Hophmi, now hit ’em with the “easily accessible sociological data” about Jewish self-hatred.

    • MRW
      MRW on June 10, 2015, 1:00 pm

      Hophmi, why shouldn’t Americans be disturbed by it?

      • hophmi
        hophmi on June 10, 2015, 1:48 pm

        “Hophmi, why shouldn’t Americans be disturbed by it?”

        Why should they? I’m sorry, but is America a country with a respectful debate on controversial issues like these? No. This is our political culture now.

  9. Boo
    Boo on June 9, 2015, 10:35 am

    “beneath contempt”

    Ah yes, the arrogance of certitude.

  10. RobertHenryEller
    RobertHenryEller on June 9, 2015, 11:45 am

    Why do we give these smarmy spoiled Zionist brats a dime, let alone billions? Cut these juvies’ allowances, and take away their car keys.

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