Cory Booker and the OU
I read “Booker holds meetings for Jersey Jewish leaders”( September 11) and I would like to address the comments made by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.
Rabbi, I was on the phone calls with the OU and Corey Booker. You are categorically wrong about the OU’s motives. It was not to maintain access but rather to give Corey the space to make the right decision.
Like you, we were shocked that a man of Cory’s character would come to the conclusion that he did. His betrayal opened my eyes to the fact that he is a loyal lap dog to his party’s president, rather than a man of true convictions, and he proved me right by voting to filibuster.
Unlike you, I cannot and will not forget or forgive. If he did not have the courage to stand up for his convictions at such a pivotal time in history, he can never be trusted in the future. Furthermore, I went with AIPAC and the OU to visit him in person, not to hear his hollow justifications but to plead with him to do the right thing. I can assure you that the 100 people in the room gave him a very cold reception, and he felt our anger and disappointment. As a matter of fact, when he used the lame excuse that it was the Republicans who were forcing the filibuster, 25 of us, including Rabbi Genack, got up and walked out. The optics were great, even though the reason we left was to catch our bus.
Finally, Rabbi, I hate to burst your bubble, but Corey is turning out not to be the man that you believe he is. His heart may be in the right place, but he has decided to back his party no matter what his heart feels. I believe he is not angry at you because you speak out vocally, but rather he is keeping his distance because, as a Democrat, the optics of him associating with you are not good. Why did he not come to your Values Network dinner this year? Was it because you were honoring Cruz, Christie, Gingrich, and Sheldon Adelson, men who are anathema by the president and his party?
Cory has become a man whose sole purpose is to rise in the Democratic party, and he has sold his soul to achieve that goal.
Helen Mintz Ickowicz,
Turning away refugees
I am an American Jew and have always been a strong supporter of Israel and very proud of its accomplishments. However, Israel’s position on not accepting refugees from the ongoing war in Syria leaves me ashamed. It puts me in mind of the Swiss government during World War II refusing entry to Jews fleeing France and Italy with the slogan “The boat is full.”
Most of the Jews denied entry died in the camps. I hope that Israel does not allow this to happen to the women and children of Syria
Israel’s U.N. problem
The future development of an Iranian nuclear weapon is the least of Israel’s problems in the short term. The immediate problem is really the U.N. and the president. President Obama probably views the Palestinians as he does blacks in the Reconstruction period after the US Civil War — a segregated and oppressed people needing assistance. Also, Netanyahu’s speech before the House of Representatives didn’t help much. I believe the U.N. Security Council will issue a resolution declaring boundaries for the West Bank and thus forming a de facto Palestinian state, and this time the United States will not veto it. Such a resolution, issued by the UNSC, carries the force of implementation.
Do not be surprised if Israel faces the brunt of economic sanctions in the near future, and with the number of friends Israel has in the world — they’ll be knocking themselves over in the rush to sign on. Any entity or individual breaking the sanctions can be in serious legal trouble.
Barry J. Schwartz,