Before the parade marches…

Before the parade marches…

The Jewish Standard can always be counted on for conveying information on Jewish events. That is why it is very disappointing that you have not reported on the scandal that is occurring with this year’s Israeli Day Parade. For the past several weeks, it has been known that extremist anti-Israel organizations are being allowed to march in the “Celebrate Israel Parade” on June 3 in Manhattan. These groups – including such as the New Israel Fund, B’Tselem, Partners for Progressive Israel and Rabbis for Human Rights – promote the boycott of Israeli products produced over the so-called “Green Line.” B’Tselem has publicly called for “effective sanctions” against Israel and has also been featured in videos that were shown at “Israel Apartheid 2012” events being held at universities and colleges worldwide.

Answers should be demanded of parade organizers as to why this is happening. All of the positive things that this parade accomplishes will be compromised by the presence of such organizations.

I hope that the Jewish Standard’s readers will demand that parade organizers reverse their decisions. If they do not, then people should donate their hard-earned money to organizations that actually promote Israel.

The Jewish Standard responds: E-mail boxes throughout the country are being filled with Spam-like messages regarding the inclusion of such groups in the annual Israel parade in Manhattan. Actually, it is the New Israel Fund that is participating, as it did last year, and other groups are marching under its banner, as they did last year. These are not “anti-Israel” groups, but they do oppose Israel’s continued presence on the west bank. Last year, in a letter to the editor of the New York Jewish Week, Rabbi Yitz Greenberg and Blu Greenberg wrote that the inclusion of such groups in the parade “make clear that the tent of our pro-Israel community is wide enough to encompass many groups striving to make Israel even more democratic and pluralist than it is. Their statement also signals to those on the left that they are welcome and needed in the total effort to uphold Israel; and it signals to those on the right the folly of excluding any group that has such strong Zionist feelings.” We second their sentiments.