Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Other Powerful letters written to Jewish Week ignored by Washington Jewish Week


To the Editors of the Jewish Week:

Just in case you missed these other letters I am resending them to you.

Re: Awful op ed by Sidney Schwartz describing Israel Day Concert:

Sara Lehman's letter actually got posted on the online Jewish Week in letters to the editor.  It was an excellent letter  but I don't have the link.

Here are some of the other excellent letters that were written

letter from Tova Abady to Jewish Week
"Tova Abadi Media Liason Manhigut" <>,

It is a truly sad ironic that "Rabbi" Sidney Schwartz is the head of Panim, an organization that professes to teach Jewish values and leadership. Apparently "Rabbi" Schwartz is the wrong person to lead this organization considering he fabricated a song (noone heard anyone singing it) and bashed a concert that actually was one of the only truly wonderful events that actually FOCUSED ON JEWISH VALUES AND LEADERSHIP. This is a sorry situation for the students of Panim. The message at the concert was that the Land of Israel is our Biblical inheritance and not just another piece of real estate- therefore No to any division of the Land, No to a PLO State. The organizers brought wonderful speakers and great music and it was truly a Kiddush HASHEM and a beautiful, inspiring day not to be forgotten.
Tova Abadi
Media Spokesperson
Manhigut Yehudit

Letter from Elizabeth Berney to Jewish Week

My letter to JW:

"Human rights Zionist Rabbi" Sidney Schwartz seems to have forgotten that the most basic human right which Jews have struggled for, for centuries, is to be allowed to live in their homes in their land.  It was entirely appropriate for me to criticize Congressman Ackerman for arrogantly telling Jews in the sovereign state of Israel that living in their homes is a "destructive dynamic."  Ackerman's other charges, including accusing Israelis of perpetrating "pogroms" and obstructing peace with "illegal outposts," etc., etc. are similarly outrageous.  The impediment to peace is unrelenting Palestinian terrorism.  Uprooting Jewish communities is a humanitarian disaster and will not bring peace. 
Rabbi Schwartz's distorted portrayal of the Salute to Israel Day Concert also neglected to mention that the concert's featured speaker was Gilad Shalit's heartbroken father, who movingly spoke about how his son has been held in communicado and tortured by Hamas terrorists for the past 1,071 days.  He pleaded with us to help his son.  I then spoke briefly about how Obama (with Congressman Ackerman's support) has pledged $900 million to Gaza -- the territory of the same group which is holding Gilad hostage.  I urged everyone to write letters and make phone calls demanding that if Obama and Ackerman want to give such huge amounts of our tax dollars to Gaza, the first condition must be that Gilad Shalit is freed, and the second condition should be that every rocket in Gaza is dismantled and destroyed.  A "human rights Zionist rabbi" should have described the concert's focus on the human rights of Israelis held hostage by terrorists.  None of the concert speakers, musicians, organizers or sponsors promoted killing Arabs. 
Moreover, when I walked around the concert audience area for several hours after leaving the stage, I saw people enjoying a beautiful day and beautiful music, munching on falafel, and quietly speaking about how frightened they are for Israel's fate in the face of the pressures from the Obama administration.  I never heard the revised "Am Yisrael Chai" which Rabbi Schwartz spoke of.  If this occurred, it was an isolated incident which did not reflect the actions and words of the thousands of others present.   
Rabbi Schwartz also neglected to mention the horrible sign held up by a Palestinian next to the parade route: "Close GITMO, Re-open Auschwitz," and the other hateful Palestinian signs strategically placed so that everyone marching in the parade had to walk by and view them.  Many groups, including the one I marched with (SHAI - Sephardic Heritage Alliance) responded to the signs by singing the original "Am Yisrael Chai."  The real "Am Yisrael Chai" of both the parade and the concert was the human right of Jews to simply live in their land. 
Elizabeth Berney, Esq. worked on the human rights Holocaust cases against the Swiss and German banks.  She specializes in prosecuting securities fraud and consumer fraud matters.  She was Ackerman's opponent in the 2008 Congressional race for New York's 5th Congressional District (northeast Queens and northern Nassau County) and may run against him again in 2010.

letter by Rabbi Algaze

this is the letter that I wrote to the Jewish Week
David Algaze

To the Editor:

Rabbi Schwarz's long tirade against the Concert is in reality a political statement disguised as an emotional "shock." His assertion that all joined in  singing that dastardly phrase is false. I was there and I did not hear those words at all. They do not represent the philosophy of the organizers nor of any thinking person, even if they hold views different from R. Schwarz's.  The Concert was a festive occasion designed to celebrate all the pioneers of Israel both from the past and the present, the release of Israeli MIA's  and Jonathan Pollard and the view that Jerusalem should not be divided again. Apparently, R Schwarz was unhappy with these opinions and he resorted to a "straw man argument" that is fallacious. His characterization of the audience was unfair and biased and it belies the noble sentiments of the "prophetic ideals" he professes to uphold.

If he reads the Torah without distorting its meaning, he would certainly know that the inheritance of the Land by the Jewish people involved wars of self defense and protection of its own people. The prophets spoke of justice but they were always "patriotic" and protective of their people. Advocating policies designed to save Jewish lives or deter our enemies from obliterating the Jewish people's presence in the Land of Israel should not be labeled as "prejudice and hatred."  Rabbi Schwarz's idyllic and na├»ve view of the conflict has been proven wrong many times, both in the incitement in Palestinian schools, the glorification of suicide bombers and the constant bombardment hailing from Gaza after the Jews left. If he cannot defend his position except with baseless slander by painting all his opponents with the brush of the puerile behavior of a few, then it becomes clear that his point of view lacks any intellectual depth. 

Rabbi David Algaze

Forest Hills, New York

Pres. World Committee for the Land of Israel

Robin Ticker's letter to the Jewish Week:

Dear Editors of the Jewish Week:

I am a proud activist for Eretz Yisroel for many years.  I lived in Kiryat Arba for approximately 7 years and now living in Brooklyn.  I am totally involved with activism on behalf of the Jews in Judea and Samaria. I was shocked to read Rabbi Schwartz's opinion piece which said that the people at the concert were singing "Am Yisroel Chai,  All the Arabs must die".

I was at the concert and I didn't hear this song being sung.  I heard speaker after speaker and entertainer after entertainer and I did not hear this message from them. It is amazing to me to believe this report when after being so involved for over 30 years with the people that live in Kiryat Arba and Judea and Samaria I have NEVER EVER heard them sing this song!  The fact that Rabbi Schwartz was so quick to condemn the people at the concert and make it appear as if they were consumed with baseless hatred for the Arabs is very disturbing.   This is slander and a lie. 

I am in their circles and I can testify that their motivation is a love of the Land, the love of the Jewish people, a love for the commandments of the Torah and yes a love of humanity.  They have a clear understanding for the mission that G-d has ordained for the Chosen People in the Land,  which will ultimately benefit all of humanity.   We too want  Tikkun Olam.  We believe that the Arabs living in our land must accept Jewish Sovereignty because that is G-d's will.  The nations of the world will be blessed when we observe the commandments in the Land.  

Rabbi Schwartz,  Do the Palestinians have the mandate, inclination or desire of observing commandments of the Torah in the Land?  If not, why should we give them Our Land? Can they bring forth the Kedusha, the holiness that will permeate humanity?

When we Pledge Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America does it mean that we wish all non American's to die? Doesn't it say in the 2nd Bill of Rights, that Americans have the right to defend themselves and a right to bear arms?  Does it mean we wish to kill every non American?

Rabbi Schwartz has turned his back on the Jewish faith when he promotes a Palestinian State.  He has turned his back on the Torah and will have to answer to His Creator about why he was Motzei Shem Ra, lied, about the true intentions of the Jewish People, those like myself who attended the concert,  who love the Land and  wish to support those that live on the Land as per their entitlement in Judea and Samaria. 

The Jewish Week, did a great disservice by printing this Lashon Hara and spreading baseless hatred and lies about a deserving Jewish population.

Posted By Robin to Shemittah Rediscovered at 6/24/2009 12:22:00 AM

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