I was just made aware about a talk on the Israel Lobby and American Policy at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. It is hosted by a group called the Promised Land Museum, who will have their Jewish Museum of the Palestinian Experience on display there (hat tip: Jackie)
So I looked into this online “museum” – and what I found was appalling.
The Jewish Museum of the Palestinian Experience was founded to provide a Jewish perspective on the Israel/Palestine conflict. The Jewish perspective is rooted in Jewish values, to treat our neighbor as we would want to be treated.
This perspective has been forged by centuries of oppression, oppression that reached an apex with murder of Jews in the events of the Holocaust. The lesson of the Holocaust was not that it is wrong to mistreat Jews, but that it is wrong to mistreat any people.
Peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a hope for many who hold the region as their Holy Land, as well as for those who have no religious attachment to the conflict. There has been a continuous Jewish presence in the Holy Land for thousands of years, and Jewish ties to the Holy Land should not be doubted. But if Palestinian Jews had been living alongside Palestinian Christians and Palestinian Muslims for centuries, how are we to understand the common belief that Jews returned to a land of empty swamps and deserts?
Another common belief is that when Israel was created, Christian and Muslim Palestinian families simply left their homes to facilitate the killing of Jews. But does this make sense when those Christian and Muslim Palestinian families had been living alongside Palestinian Jewish families for centuries? What evidence do we have for these assumptions? If Jews had returned to a land of empty deserts and swamps, how did 700,000 Muslim and Christian Palestinians become refugees in the formation of Israel? And if the goal of Muslim and Christian Palestinians was to kill Jews, how is it that a Palestinian Jewish presence remained in the Holy Land when the great, great majority of people living there were Muslims and Christians?
We hope the historical documents throughout this online museum will provide a Jewish perspective on Israel/Palestine—a perspective grounded in Jewish values of truth, justice and peace— and that this perspective will help provide a clear path to peace for what has appeared to be an intractable conflict.
It is hard to know where to start with this exercise in self-hatred, but I’ll try.
The museum was founded with the express goal of providing “a Jewish perspective on the Israel/Palestine conflict.” They reduce this to the “treat our neighbor as we would want to be treated” principle – giving it their own simplistic interpretation to coincide with their “liberal” values – conveniently ignoring other principles in our Torah, which provide the proper context, like:
- Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people
- The right and obligation of self-defense (which even extends to preemptive defensive war)
Turning the other cheek is not a Jewish value.
What makes this all the more infuriating is they do acknowledge “the continuous Jewish presence in the Holy Land for thousands of years.” More than that, they implicitly admit we have been here longer than the palestinian Arabs, who they say have “been living alongside Palestinian Jewish families for centuries.”
But apparently we have been very naughty. Just ask this Quaker Religion professor (because he apparently is an expert on Jewish values)
Yes, he really did also claim that the palestinian acknowledge our right to live here. I guess the palestinians themselves did not get the memo.
But logic and historical accuracy does not seem to a be a strong point of those behind this venture.
Their proof that the Jews did not return to a land of empty deserts and swamps? 700,000 palestinian Arabs become refugees in the formation of Israel – conveniently ignoring the fact that no-one claims that there were no Arabs here. The issue is the land was very undeveloped, and if you do not believe me, then perhaps you will believe the New York Times of the day (not to mention the plethora of other historical documents on the subject).
Their proof that many palestinian Arabs did not leave their homes to facilitate the killing of Jews (during the War of Independence)? They had been living with us alongside us for centuries. But this ignores the historical fact that many were motivated by instructions from the Arab leaders, under the assumption that they would be victorious, after which time they could return to a Jew-free land.
Their proof that the palestinian Arabs do not have the goal of killing Jews? We have lived here for centuries with them, and would all be dead by now if that was the case. Because apparently, they are incapable of developing new goals over time, and all of their statements and actions since the early 20th century (including when they have expressly stated their goal is to annihilate us and remove us from the land) are not to be believed. Including, may I add, their reaction to the Partition Plan when they had the opportunity to accept a plan to live with us, which is what our Quaker friend claims they want.
The manager of this abomination is one Dr Steve Feldman, Professor of Dermatology, Pathology and Public Health at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine where he also directs the Center for Dermatology Research. In this vile piece he wrote, which shows how he supports the so-called palestinian right of return, he writes
Some may think these words give ammunition to anti-Semites. On the contrary, the violations of our Jewish principles — the displacement of Palestinians, the killing Israel
No, Steve, your lies actually do give ammunition. After all, the antisemitic Veterans Today site loved your piece.
Steve is real, his material is real, as we all are here at Veterans Today. There is a jungle of mis and disinformation out there that can be extremely time consuming for busy people to wade through. We will continue to share what we can with you, including the raw material so you can make your own conclusions.
Enjoy meeting Dr. Steve Feldman. I personally guarantee it will be well worth your time…a peek behind the curtain.
But of course.
Steve Feldman clearly wouldn’t know Jewish values if they bit him on the tuchus. And this is reflected in his appalling online “museum”, full of lies and distortions. In other words, the stuff of wet dreams for antisemites and Israel haters.
Update: I smell a rat with Steve Feldman. Here it states he went to Israel “on a 2 week service & educational experience with a Quaker group.”
Here he talks of loving the words of Jesus
I suspect either Steve is himself a Quaker, or is being funded by them.
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