05 May 2016

Australian Jewish Leader urges friends of Israel to shun the New Israel Fund

From an Interview with Isi Leibler, Jerusalem, on J-Air radio 87.M, Tuesday 3 May 2016:

Click here to hear the full interview (Episode 96 of "Northing Left"), commencing at 1 hour, 35 minutes into the program.

Michael Burd:
...Isi, two hard left anti-Zionist organizations are trying to make inroads into Australia. J Street, which has an extremist Muslim as their leader on campus, and the NIF, the New Israel Fund, we all recognize is a major sponsor of Israel's worst enemies. The NIF supporters have even embedded themselves on the boards of some of our most prominent pro-Zionist organizations. I think they're trying to convince the Jewish community that they're mainstream. Isi, you're considered one of Australian diaspora's strongest supporter of Israel, and there are no Australian community leaders or representatives that know more about what is happening in Israel than you. What do you say to Australian potential Jewish supporters of the NIF that believe, regardless of all the harm the New Israel Fund is doing to Israel's image abroad, some of the good the NIF do within makes up for all the bad? Do you agree? Or not agree?


Isi Leibler:
No, I certainly do not agree, and I would urge anybody who has the interest of Israel at heart not to have anything to do with New Israel Fund. It is an organization which is sponsoring enemies of the Jewish people, which is sponsoring groups which are reviling and demonizing the Jewish people. It is sponsoring groups within Israel which are undermining the Zionist vision, and all I can say is you can just look at the list of where their donations go to some of these organizations. It's quite frightening.

Never mind that they may give some other money to social welfare. The fact is, this organization is a pernicious organization. It has been disowned by large sections of the community, and believe me, it's not McCarthyism. It's just outright people are disgusted with an organization that pours money into organizations which, for example, participated in the Goldstone report. They were the first ones to go and accuse Israel of war crimes and all sorts of horrible things, and they are sponsoring organizations which stood  to promote this sort of nonsense today.

I would say to you, any Australians who are committed to the Jewish people, you're not doing the Jewish people or Israel a favor by sponsoring this organization, which, as I say, whatever it may do on the side, you can do it directly.
Give it to the Keren Hayesod or give to any other Jewish organization. You know where it's going to go. But don't give it to an organization a large proportion of whose funds are going to go towards anti zionist bodies. In fact, they've even got organizations that they're sponsoring who are calling for a boycott of the territories over the green line. To have Jews supporting such a body, it's a great shame. Many of these people are stupid, and some of them are not stupid. Some of them are bad.

Michael:
Is, you wrote, "It is a somber reflection on the naivete of well-intended Jewish philanthropists that they continue donating vast amounts of money to Israel's largest NGO, the New Israel Fund." Do you think they've done their homework, thee people?

Isi:
[Yes 00:05:54]. I wrote along these lines, I think, two or three years ago. It took two or three years to see the horrible things they've been doing. There's no excuse for anybody that is committed to Israel today to be providing money to people that give money to anti-Israeli causes.

Michael:
Yes. You wrote two articles just for our listeners, and it's worth looking up. One article was called, "New Israel Fund sparks furor down under," and the other article, the second one, "The two faces of the New Israel Fund." One of the organizations the New Israel Fund sponsor is a group called the Breaking the Silence. For those listeners who are not sure who or what they are, this renegade group of Jewish extremists, Breaking the Silence, they hosted an exhibit in Sweden, introducing it with the statement, "We," (that's Israel), "are the oppressors. We are the ones that are violating human rights on a daily basis. We are basically creating terror against us." This is how they introduced themselves in Sweden, and this is a group that the New Israel Fund is sponsoring.

Isi:
I must tell you, this group is one of the worst of all the groups. You've given only one example, but they send their emissaries all over the world to try and ...demonize Israel, and accuse Israel of war crimes. Everybody has condemned them here. Everybody has condemned them. Even the Israel labor party foreign has condemned these groups...

All I can say to Australians is please, think twice before you support this group, and don't be conned by the fact that they describe themselves as progressives. There's nothing progressive about supporting elements that are against Israel, and undermine Israel. Believe me, Australia's a pretty good country when it comes to Israel, but you've still got plenty of negative elements in Australia.
You've got the ABC. You've got the Fairfax Media, and you've got quite a few other left-wing media that are doing nothing else except attacking Israel. Why on earth do you have to support an organization which is going to bring people into Israel, into Australia, that are going to help build up the anti-Israeli campaign? What's wrong with people that they can ... It's very hard to visualize and understand how people can behave in this manner.

Michael:
Yes. Finally, on the NIF they bring out a conga line of far left-wing anti-Zionist Jews. One of them they're bringing out recently, or coming, is a very prominent American journalist who happens to be Obama's favorite Jewish journalist. SO you can imagine where he's come from. His name is Roger Cohen, and one ...

Isi:
Yes. He writes for the New York Times, and he has written pernicious stuff against Israel, vicious, Vicious, Vicious stuff, and you should also, when he comes out, some people should look up and Google some of the articles he wrote about Iran, because he went to Iran and thought they weren't so bad. Quite nice people, the Iranians. They're bringing this man out to Australia. What for?

Michael:
Yeah, that's right. Cohen wrote that he said that the hospitality he received as a Jew in Iran was a sign that the country was misunderstood. I think that just sums up ...

Isi:
Exactly. Exactly. This sort of a man is being brought to Australia? That's the new Israel Fund ? That is the New Israel Fund. That sums them up.

Michael:
That's right ...

Isi
.. to say nice things about the Iranians, and to demonize Israel ... Ugh. That's all I can say.

Michael:
That's right. I think we've got enough in this country. We don't need to help their cause. Thank you very much. It was nice talking to you again, and we look forward to speaking to you again next week. Thank you very much, Izzy.

Click here to hear the full interview (Episode 96 of "Northing Left"), commencing at 1 hour, 35 minutes into the program.