American Jewry's Organizational Crack-Up, by Caroline Glick
EVERYTHING IMPORTANT TO KNOW ABOUT THE FAILURE OF TRADITIONAL JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS.
We recommend reading Caroline Glick regularly. In a time when so many pundits run their mouths about things they know very little of, or shy away from the truth in order to score political points, Glick knows what she's talking about. And she speaks honestly. To people and organizations that depend on lies, this makes her an extremist.
In this column, Glick is sadly right-on, about American Jewish organizations.
Lob’s selection came as a complete surprise to Conference insiders. She beat out two candidates with far more organizational experience and centrist credentials. But in truth, her selection is of a piece with recent developments in other key organizations.
Her rise doesn’t reflect a major radicalization of American Jews. Rather, it is the product of a long-term effort by a small cohort of deeply radical hard leftists within the American Jewish organizational world. They are anti-Zionist and pro-anti-Semitic. They are sympathetically inclined towards the BDS campaign. They are often hostile towards traditional Judaism and Orthodox Jews.
And they are scope-locked on their goal of taking over or neutralizing the large American Jewish organizations.
Facing these activists are the leaders of the large organizations. Many are retirement age or nearing retirement age. Many have failed to cultivate or recruit competent successors. Many are simply weak. The constituents these leaders serve – or don’t serve – are largely uninvolved, and unaware of what is happening.
Six years ago, these radical activists tried to bring J Street, (the anti-Israel group that supports the Palestinians and supports the Obama administration’s nuclear deal with Iran) into the Conference of Presidents. Their efforts failed. Only 17 of the conference’s 52 members voted in favor. The activists behind the move reacted with rage to the vote. Conference of Presidents leaders and leaders of member organizations were vilified in the media. Most of them are unwilling to relive the experience. And whereas the J Street vote was by secret ballot, Tuesday’s vote will be a rollcall vote on a Zoom meeting.
So six years after their J Street defeat, not only is the anti-Israel left expected to gain a foothold in the Conference of Presidents on Tuesday. It is expected to take over the Conference of Presidents.
Glick has written a second must-read column on Lob's hostile (but disarming) takeover and the Conference of Presidents.
As JNS news service reported last week, following the announcement of Lob’s selection, 17 members of organizations that are associated with the Conference of Presidents signed a letter to the Conference’s leadership setting out numerous violations of the Conference’s bylaws that took place during the nominating committee’s deliberations. Among other things, members of the Conference were given less notice than mandated by the Conference’s bylaws to consider Lob’s nomination.
They have not been able to privately vet her.
Daroff, who played a central role in the nominating process, allegedly acted in breach of the Conference’s bylaws. AIPAC President Betsy Korn was a member of the nominating committee despite the fact that she didn’t meet the Conference’s criteria for committee membership.
The rushing of Lob's ascension to president of the Conference of Presidents is the clearest sign that the people pushing for her election are fundamentally dishonest and anti-Jewish. The fact that they themselves are Jews, only makes the situation worse. They eschew transparency in order to get their way. They can't face honest scrutiny. Their tactics are exactly the same used by campus BDS organizations that schedule their BDS votes with no lead time and around Jewish holidays when Jewish students are more likely to be at home rather than on campus.
On the face of things, the surprising move seems like a concession to the many Jewish groups and activists who vociferously oppose Lob’s selection. But upon reflection, it is no such thing. Stark, Daroff, Lob and their associates have not budged from their determination to install Lob as the next chairman. They will not acknowledge the bylaw breaches endemic to the nomination process that selected her.
Instead, they have decided to neutralize the criticism by laying low for a year. They assume that within a few months, people will grow used to the idea that a woman, who led an organization that abandoned its Jewish identity officially in 2014 and works openly with political activists that seek to deny American Jews their civil right to express their support for Israel and their opposition to anti-Semites and terrorist organizations, will now be the head of the most important American Jewish organization in the United States.
Part of the problem is that most people (with good reason) don't get involved in these political organizations. This, unfortunately leaves leadership positions wide open for people who may not have Jews' best interests at heart and are determined to force Jewish organizations into their unsavory way of thinking. These are the people who have replaced their Judaism with Progressivism. One of the tenets of Progressivism is that all must be forced to follow the Progressive agenda. There can be no debate. And as we are seeing, they work hard, quietly, behind the scenes, to force that agenda on us.
Like it or not, it's time to get involved.