Posted by: Morton A. Klein
October 18, 2017
Op-Ed ZOA in the news

ZOA’s Mort Klein in Breitbart: Opposing Israel-Basher David Myers Appt. to Head Ctr for Jewish History.

 

“Fake history” and “big lies” are key weapons used to attack and discredit America’s close ally Israel and to incite hatred and violence against Jews throughout the world.

The relentless assault on the truth by the anti-Israel far left is downright dangerous – especially when it comes from individuals ostensibly within the Jewish community. American pro-Israel groups thus have expressed particular concern that a hostile-to-Israel propagandist, Professor David N. Myers, who is also prominently involved with a slew of extreme, radical, hostile-to-Israel groups, was recently appointed to head the world’s largest Jewish history institution outside of Israel, the Center for Jewish History (CJH), located in New York City.

The pro-Israel community is planning to protest Myers’ appointment, in front of CJH at 15 West 16th Street, Manhattan, NY, this coming Wednesday evening, October 18 (from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.). Breitbart readers are invited to come join the protest.

Myers’ anti-Israel rhetoric is extremely reckless.

For instance, Myers resorts to falsely maligning Israel as a ruthless “colonizer” of “Arab land” by using an outright fictional novella that falsely portrays imaginary Israeli soldiers brutally occupying and expelling fictional residents of an imaginary Palestinian-Arab town called “Khirbet Khizeh.” (The story is named after the fictional town.)

Incredibly, despite the fact that the entire story is admittedly a work of fiction, Myers gleefully wrote that the story’s author “painted a vivid portrait of expulsion,” and that the story “rattles this myth of the noble [Israeli] Sabra and his purity,” and “so richly deserves” expanded readership. Further, Myers’ praise of this fictional novella appears on a website dedicated to fostering the obscene view that Israel’s rebirth was a “Nakba” – the Arabic word for “catastrophe,” sponsored by the extreme anti-Israel group “Jewish Voice for Peace” (JVP) – a group that Myers serves, as “JVP Academic Advisory Board Member.”

UCLA alumnus Allan Kandel: “I’ve followed Myer’s career for years in Los Angeles at UCLA. You have no idea how many kids he has turned off to Israel and how he espoused his anti-Israel rhetoric at any opportunity. Israel is to blame for everything according to him.”

Numerous examples of Myers’ historical falsehoods can be found in ZOA’s recent investigative report. How can someone who repeatedly misrepresents Jewish history to demonize Israel lead the Center for Jewish History?

Myers’ statements on the dangerous Iran deal in 2015 are no less controversial. Myers signed a public letter falsely claiming “The deal … is grounded in rigorous inspections and monitoring.” In fact, the monitoring and inspection provisions of the Iran Deal (aka the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or JCPOA) are essentially a joke – and very far from “rigorous.”

The International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) regular access is limited to specific declared sites for a limited number of years. The deal forbids the IAEA from inspecting key sites – including military sites where weaponization is likely occurring. The IAEA is also required to undergo a lengthy process to possibly obtain access to undeclared nuclear sites. (JCPOA, Annex I, parts P & Q, paragraphs 70-78.)

Moreover, Myers’ letter was announced and published on August 12 and 13, 2015– approximately two weeks after then-Congressman Mike Pompeo and Senator Tom Cotton discovered and alerted the public to the existence of IAEA-Iran “side deals” making “inspections” of the critical Parchin site lax and virtually useless. Senator Bob Menendez explained that “side deals governing inspections of the Parchin military complex allows Iran to collect its own soil samples, instead of IAEA inspectors. That is like letting Lance Armstrong collect his own blood samples for a doping investigation.”

Myers also displays a mind-boggling refusal to squarely and objectively look at the facts of Palestinian-Arab terrorism against innocent Jews. My organization, the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) and I accurately warned that concessions – including the Oslo Accords, which established and armed the Palestinian Authority – would lead to an major increase in terrorism. We were sadly proven correct: Palestinian-Arab terrorism promptly increased fourfold after Oslo, and Palestinian Arab terrorists murdered almost two thousand Jews and wounded approximately 10,000 during the Second Intifada –  in gruesome suicide attacks, and bombings of pizza stores full of children, and a Seder dinner attended by hundreds of people.

But instead of castigating the Palestinian Arab terrorists for murdering and maiming thousands of innocent Jews, Myers directed his misplaced ire at me. Myers complained in a Los Angeles Times article that my (Morton Klein’s) concerns about ongoing Arab terrorism played on “historical” fears. Myers “bemoaned the mainstreaming of Morton Klein” when my predictions that Oslo would lead to more terrorism were sadly proven correct.

In the same vein, Myers falsely denies the rampant, hateful anti-Israel anti-Semitic incitement that permeates Palestinian Authority (PA) textbooks. Incredibly, Myers wrote in the Jewish Journal in May 2017 that Palestinian-Arab schoolbooks have “little evidence of dire demonization” towards Jews and Israelis and falsely and misleadingly asserted that “both sides” neglect or distort the depiction of the “other.” Myers based this false claim on an isolated, dishonest, highly flawed, much-criticized February 2013 “study” while ignoring that this 2013 study’s actual raw data contradicted Myers’ statement. (Also see “Whitewashing Hate.”) Myers also falsely claimed that the 2013 study was a U.S. State Department study, although an anti-Israel council authored it and the State Department refused to endorse it.

In fact, a Hebrew University study published in April 2017 (one month before Myers’ article) reproduced page after page of the vicious anti-Semitic, anti-Israel statements found in PA textbooks at every grade level and for every subject, teaching “a strategy of violence and pressure … Children are expendable … [S]ystematic hatred of all things Jewish/Israeli … Palestinian students vow to “saturate the ‘generous’ land” with their blood. Each student recites: ‘I vow I shall sacrifice my blood … will remove/eliminate the usurper from my country, and will annihilate the remnants of the foreigners.’ There is apparently no restriction on violence until the last Israeli is out of Palestine.” Even math problems in the PA’s math textbooks are based on numbers of “martyrs” to teach Palestinian Arab children to “martyr” themselves to kill Jews.

Detailed, well-documented 2015 and 2006 studies likewise found that PA texts incite the murder of Jews, falsify history, promote terrorism, invent Jewish attacks on Muslim holy sites, and promote anti-Semitic conspiracy theories from the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion.”

Israel’s detailed 2013 study response likewise provided 21 actual examples of false and vicious anti-Israel aspects of PA textbooks and related educational materials, including children’s stories holding up Hitler as a role model who killed Jews “so you would all know that they are a nation which spreads destruction all over the world,” and saying that, “if you love death … then you are a Palestinian”; Arabic language textbooks stating that “snakes [Israelis] invaded us,” and “Your enemies killed your children, split open your women’s bellies, held your revered elderly men by the beard, and led them to the death pits”; Arabic language tests asking students to punctuate the sentence “Do not view the occupier as human“; religious affairs textbooks prohibiting children from befriending Jews and Christians and calling Jews “greedy, avaricious, coward, weak, envious and humiliated” and accusing Jews of “Misery and avarice … cowardliness … Stirring up dissension and creating corruption in the land”; a language textbook celebrating martyrdom with lines such as “the flow of blood makes my soul happy”;and the PA Education Ministry’s “Foundations of Belief” textbook which urges finding Jews and killing them.

How can someone who denies, distorts, and ignores all this honorably and responsibly lead the world’s premier Center for Jewish History?

Myers also disparages the very essence of Judaism and Zionism: the belief that the State of Israel fulfills the Jewish people’s millennia of hopes and dreams. In Myers’ article “Rethinking the Jewish Nation” (and in his other writings), Myers asserts that “the ideology of Statist Zionism” (which Myers defines as “maintain[ing] that the State of Israel … represents the fulfillment of the most exalted millennial hopes of the Jewish people”) “discourages … efforts toward fortifying, the global Jewish collective.”

One must wonder: Why do we Jews pray towards Jerusalem and for Jerusalem every day, why do we sing at every Passover Seder, “next year in Jerusalem,” why have we done this for thousands of years if Jerusalem and Israel are not central to the Jewish people?

Myers never even asks the question. Ultimately, Myers’ condemnation of “the ideology of Statist Zionism” is another way to separate the Jewish people from their land and to empower far left-wing voices such as his, which want to redefine Judaism into an ideology that bears no resemblance to the faith and love for the Jewish homeland maintained by the Jewish people for thousands of years.

Myers has also severely harmed Jewish and pro-Israel student life at UCLA and other universities, according to a former UCLA colleague/professor and students at UCLA and Brandeis. For instance, UCLA alumnus Allan Kandel stated: “I’ve followed Myer’s career for years in Los Angeles at UCLA. You have no idea how many kids he has turned off to Israel and how he espoused his anti-Israel rhetoric at any opportunity. Israel is to blame for everything according to him and he’s dangerous because of his self-proclaimed “love” for the Jewish state.”

Myers was also one of the hostile-to-Israel Jewish professors who wrote a letter to the Orange County District Attorney opposing the DA’s decision to prosecute eleven members of the Muslim Student Association for their orchestrated, repeated raucous disruptions of a lecture by the Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren at UC-Irvine.

Myers also blames Israel and “Israeli occupation” (of her own land) for anti-Israel boycotts, conveniently ignoring that Arab anti-Jewish boycotts began before Israel was even a newly reborn state and long before Israel recaptured Judea/Samaria and the old city of Jerusalem from their illegal Jordanian occupiers in 1967. Myers also falsely denies that the anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS), movement’s real goal is to destroy all of Israel.

Alarmingly, Myers also disparages essential, life-saving Israeli security measures as “morally unsustainable.” As a historian, Myers should know that Israel had to establish checkpoints, intelligence, and security operations and the security fence to finally successfully put a stop to the deadly Second Intifada.

Myers is also associated with at least four of the “worst of the worst” extreme, radical hostile-to-Israel groups. Myers issued a featured fundraising appeal for the radical “If Not Now” – a group that supported “solidarity with Palestinians” during the Gaza war, while Hamas was raining rockets down on Israeli civilians; retweets anti-Semites; and demands that college Hillel house promote anti-Israel boycott events.

The notorious anti-Israel, anti-Semitic pro-BDS hate group Jewish Voice for Peace lists David N. Myers as a “JVP Academic Advisory Board Member” in JVP’s March 2016 “Strategy Brief,” which accuses pro-Israel, anti-BDS advocates and philanthropists of “Misusing Anti-Semitism Charges to Silence Free Speech.”

Myers is also listed as serving on the board of the radical New Israel Fund, a group that has funded numerous anti-Israel non-governmental organizations (NGOs) engaged in anti-israel boycott, and delegitimization campaigns. Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett recently stated that “The NIF works methodically and consistently to attack our Israeli soldiers, accuse them of war crimes, of torturing Palestinians and intentionally attacking women and children. They turn to the UN and to the committees that are most hostile to Israel and try their best to convince them that Israel is a war criminal.”

And David N. Myers is also listed as serving on the hostile-to-Israel J Street’s Advisory Council.” J Street’s co-founder has even called Israel’s rebirth in 1948 “an act that was wrong.” J Street lobbies for anti-Israel U.N. Security Council resolutions, lobbies against anti-BDS laws, and raises money to elect hostile-to-Israel Congresspersons and defeat Israel’s best friends in Congress.

The Center for Jewish History needs an honest historian or other executive at its helm – not a hostile-to-Israel propagandist such as David N. Myers. I hope that readers will attend the protest at CJH on Wednesday evening.