The Antidefamation League Makes Common Cause with a Notorious Anti-Semite

Last week, Jonathan Greenblatt, the director of the Antidefamation League (ADL) appeared on Al Sharpton’s political talk show to promote its participation in an initiative to ban “hate speech” from Facebook and other platforms. Sharpton, who is spearheading the initiative, has a long history of indulging in anti-Semitic rhetoric, and in the 1990s instigated acts of anti-Jewish violence that left several dead. To Jonathan Tobin, the campaign for social-media censorship is merely wrongheaded, but the embrace of Sharpton makes a mockery of the ADL’s mission:

Greenblatt’s predecessor Abe Foxman was a child survivor of the Holocaust, and he took the job of granting absolution to those who were guilty of anti-Semitism in the past seriously. . . . Greenblatt, however, hasn’t required Sharpton to confess his role as a race-baiting inciter of anti-Semitic violence. Instead, he treats Sharpton as a valuable political ally whose support for ADL’s ventures is a gift for which he is truly grateful.

To be fair to Greenblatt, he’s not alone in this respect. Last year, the Union of Reform Judaism played the same game with Sharpton when its Religious Action Center granted its seal of approval to him. That was particularly painful for many in Crown Heights and the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, whose adherents were the victims of [the 1991 Crown Heights] pogrom that Sharpton helped start. In that case, as with this one, both groups judged politics—in the form of an anti-Trump alliance—as having far greater importance than holding Sharpton accountable for his past.

Greenblatt, a veteran of the last two Democratic administrations, moved the group away from its nonpartisan stance into one in which it has become a faithful auxiliary of the Democratic party. That has been made painfully obvious repeatedly as Greenblatt has taken openly partisan stances on issues like Supreme Court nominations. . . . Greenblatt has already so trashed ADL’s reputation . . . that it may be hard to gin up much outrage about his embrace of a figure as disreputable as Sharpton. But it is no less outrageous for being so predictable and servile.

Read more at JNS

More about: ADL, Al Sharpton, Anti-Semitism, U.S. Politics

Why the White House’s Plan to Prevent an Israel-Hizballah War Won’t Work

On Monday, Hizballah downed an Israeli drone, leading the IDF to retaliate with airstrikes that killed one of the terrorist group’s commanders in southern Lebanon, and two more of its members in the northeast. The latter strike marks an escalation by the IDF, which normally confines its activities to the southern part of the country. Hizballah responded by firing two barrages of rockets into northern Israel on Tuesday, while Hamas operatives in Lebanon fired another barrage yesterday.

According to the Iran-backed militia, 219 of its fighters have been killed since October; six Israeli civilians and ten soldiers have lost their lives in the north. The Biden administration has meanwhile been involved in ongoing negotiations to prevent these skirmishes from turning into an all-out war. The administration’s plan, however, requires carrots for Hizballah in exchange for unenforceable guarantees, as Richard Goldberg explains:

Israel and Hizballah last went to war in 2006. That summer, Hizballah crossed the border, killed three Israeli soldiers, and kidnapped two others. Israel responded with furious airstrikes, a naval blockade, and eventually a ground operation that met stiff resistance and mixed results. A UN-endorsed ceasefire went into effect after 34 days of war, accompanied by a Security Council Resolution that ordered the UN Interim Forces in Lebanon (UNIFIL) to assist the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) in disarming Hizballah in southern Lebanon—from the Israeli border up to the Litani River, some 30 kilometers away.

Despite billions of dollars in U.S. taxpayer support over the last seventeen years, the LAF made no requests to UNIFIL, which then never disarmed Hizballah. Instead, Iran accelerated delivering weapons to the terrorist group—building up its forces to a threat level that dwarfs the one Israel faced in 2006. The politics of Lebanon shifted over time as well, with Hizballah taking effective control of the Lebanese government and exerting its influence (and sometimes even control) over the LAF and its U.S.-funded systems.

Now the U.S. is offering Lebanon an economic bailout in exchange for a promise to keep Hizballah forces from coming within a mere ten kilometers of the border, essentially abrogating the Security Council resolution. Goldberg continues:

Who would be responsible for keeping the peace? The LAF and UNIFIL—the same pair that has spent seventeen years helping Hizballah become the threat it is today. That would guarantee that Hizballah’s commitments will never be verified or enforced.

It’s a win-win for [Hizballah’s chief Hassan] Nasrallah. Many of his fighters live and keep their missiles hidden within ten kilometers of Israel’s border. They will blend into the civilian population without any mechanism to force their departure. And even if the U.S. or France could verify a movement of weapons to the north, Nasrallah’s arsenal is more than capable of terrorizing Israeli cities from ten kilometers away. Meanwhile, a bailout of Lebanon will increase Hizballah’s popularity—demonstrating its tactics against Israel work.

Read more at The Dispatch

More about: Hizballah, Israeli Security, Joseph Biden