Daniella Greenbaum (“Why the AIPAC Haters Have it Wrong,” 07/12/16) makes several unsubstantiated, inaccurate allegations about ZOA. ZOA is a 120-year old rational-centrist pro-Israel group. Being the only major group to have accurately predicted that the Oslo Accords and the Gaza withdrawal — and that dealing with Arafat and Abbas would never lead to peace, but to disaster — was not a “conservative” position. It was simply the truth. Opposing a Palestinian State, which would likely become a Hamas/Iran Gaza-like terrorist state, is a reasonable position supported by 75% of Israelis. Predicting that bringing large numbers of unvettable Muslims to Europe and America would lead to increased terrorism was not a “conservative” position — it was accurate.
Ms. Greenbaum questioned our “influence.” But the Forward itself has chosen myself or Susan Tuchman, Director of ZOA’s Law & Justice Center, over 10 times as among the fifty most influential Jews in America (the Forward 50). ZOA’s efforts caused a change in the Title VI Civil Rights protections to now include Jews. We were successful in establishing a Justice Department office to capture Arabs who murdered Americans. We have testified numerous times before Congress and the Knesset. Dozens of Congress members speak at our Capitol Hill luncheon every year. No wonder the Wall St. Journal called ZOA “the most credible advocate for Israel in America,” and the Jerusalem Post called ZOA, “One of the most influential groups.” Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Mideast Subcommittee, said, “Thanks to the ZOA, we had a record session of passing legislation.” Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “The ZOA is a bulwark of defense for Israel.” And the Forward’s own JJ Goldberg wrote, “The ZOA singlehandedly made the Palestinians non-compliance a political issue… They’ve successfully made reciprocity part of the equation.”
Morton A. Klein, President, Zionist Organization of America
This letter was published by the Forward and may be found here.