Douglas Bloomfield, on the Political Insider blog, mentions the ZOA as among those organizations “which can be counted upon to oppose virtually anything the Obama administration does in the Middle East” (“Obama’s Farm Team,” Jan. 25).
This is both snide and untrue. ZOA’s support or opposition to something is determined not by the party or person in power, but by the merits of the policies they adopt, as Bloomfield would know if he actually examined our record.
When President Obama strongly supported the commemoration of the murder of eleven Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics, we praised him. When he undertook to veto a Palestinian statehood bid in the UN Security Council, we praised him. When he supported Israel’s right to defend itself against Hamas rocket attacks, we praised him. When he cut funds to UNESCO, following that organization’s inclusion of “Palestine” as a member, we praised him — prematurely, perhaps, as it later emerged that President Obama sought to have legislation requiring this waived and funding for UNESCO increased.
Conversely, the ZOA criticized George W. Bush repeatedly for invoking a presidential waiver to prevent the transfer of the U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. When he praised the PA’s Mahmoud Abbas as a courageous moderate, we criticized him. When Bush Administration officials Colin Powell and Paul Wolfowitz backed the Geneva Initiative, which would virtually return Israel to the perilous 1949 armistice lines, we criticized them.
National President Zionist Organization of America Manhattan