Tuesday, September 12, 2017


1. The JFNA Third International Negev Summit is being held....today, September 12. What were the JFNA-cited "highlights," you ask:
  • "Keynote from Jamie Bennett, executive director of ArtPlace America, a U.S.-based partnership among 16 foundations, eight federal agencies, and six financial institutions working to position art and culture as a core sector of community planning and development by investing in, researching, and supporting those who lead and execute creative placemaking projects.
  • Tour Philadelphia, an award-winning city in placemaking and urban innovation, and share an interactive experience hosted by the Drexel University Innovation Hub, which connects academic excellence to community engagement."
I don't make this stuff up; only JFNA does; only JFNA possibly can. I remember a day about a decade ago when a JFNA leader suggested that "virtual Missions" take the place of Missions to Israel; this Negev in Philadelphia thing is of the same ilk. Brilliant stuff.

2. Someone -- I think we can guess who (yes -- at JFNA) -- released its mailing list to The Israel Trauma Coalition (the latest overseas "partner" apparently added by JFNA-Israel) which sent out its fully transparent report to the entire JFNA Board. http://israeltraumacoalition.org/sts/ Does any federation release its Board list to a beneficiary? I can think of no one who does not admire the work of the ITC but...really? Then how about releasing the same list to JAFI, JDC, WorldORT. Or how about to the national agencies JFNA has abandoned?

3. I rarely do this but the following screed from ZOA's Morton Klein must be read in full to be believed. I found what follows to be hysterical and frightening. Seeing as we all need a good laugh, read this and weep (the underscoring is exactly at it appears in the original):

ZOA's Klein Agrees to Amb. Friedman's Request- Listen to Concerns About ZOA Opposition to McMaster/Tillerson Policies and Actions

For more information contact Morton A. Klein 212-481-1500 
Follow @mortonaklein7 on Twitter 
NEW YORK, August 14, 2017

Supporters of McMaster include the radical Islamic anti-Israel group CAIR, left wing, Trump-hating, Soros-funded anti Israel group Media Matters, anti-Israel TV commentator Van Jones and others. CAIR was formally an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land  Foundation trial and Hamas financing case that resulted in the FBI discontinuing working with CAIR. CAIR has tried to end any discussion by calling those opposed to McMaster  “Islamophobes and White Supremacists,” while stating nothing of substance. Van Jones has been harshly critical of Israel. He signed a letter calling on Pres. Obama to “impose a final settlement” on Israel backed by sanctions. Van Jones supports the “right of return of the Palestinian people” which would destroy Israel as a Jewish State. And he  clearly opposes Israel’s very existence by condemning in 2002 its “occupation for 54 years,” meaning since Israel’s reestablishment in 1948! Moreover, Jones also, on CNN, tried to end any discussion of criticism of McMaster by calling his critics “the dirty right” without offering any substantive issues. And Democrat Dan Shapiro, far left wing Obama appointment as Ambassador to Israel, has defended Trump appointee McMaster by going on a name calling rampage of McMaster critics with virtually no facts. Yet, he never defended David Friedman when his nomination was bitterly attacked by extremists. One should recall that Shapiro, as a top Aide to Senator Feinstein strongly urged and supported including a security waiver in the 1995 Jerusalem Bill to move the Embassy there- thereby making it possible to stop this most appropriate relocation even when passed by overwhelming numbers in the House and Senate. (In terms of full disclosure I must state that because Dan Shapiro, with whom I had many long respectful debates on Obama’s harsh policies on Israel, pleaded with me to endorse him for US Ambassador, I reluctantly agreed with the qualification in a strong public statement that I disagreed with most of his Israel positions.)
OMG!! This was not a Purim spiel -- but it could have been.

4. The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington announced that the EVP of  Boston's CJP has been hired as its new CEO. This was an Executive Search come full circle inasmuch as D.C. had offered this position to this same professional (And, we are advised he had accepted until CJP promised him that he would succeed Barry Shrage upon Shrage's retirement and he chose to remain there> Guess that didn't work out.) before hiring Steve Rakitt. We wish Gil Preuss well.

5. Finally, last month JTA reported that "Marijuana may Revive the Kibbutz Movement." Someone should send some to 25 Broadway...immediately."



Anonymous said...

If Phily is NOW the Virtual Negev (Negev Now), how about setting up a Virtual Jerusalem in Alaska and moving the Israel & Overseas Office there? Nobody would notice any difference.

Negev Now was created with Operation Edge "emergency" funds, so maybe some Harvey or Irma emergency funds could be used to fund the Israel Trauma Coalition - our newest overseas partner (partner until we decide to screw them too), or maybe to pay some of those top secret consultants that are runnning around out there or perhsps to hire some new staff for the new Alaska office?

Or maybe we should just stop fighting it and accept the fact that we have hopelessly lost our way and that our system is way beyond repair?

Or maybe the time has come to do something about this fiasco?

Anonymous said...

Makes you wonder why the professional is not staying in Boston? Maybe not right person there? Maybe underlying issues in Boston we donot know about? Or feels needs new community and challenge?

Anonymous said...

Maybe for the professional taking over the DC Federation he realized it would be much harder to follow the legacy of Shrage than the failed tenure of Rakitt?

Anonymous said...

Such evil lashon hara. I sure hope you're proud, Richard. This is on you.

Anonymous said...

It will take more than marijuana to revive the Kibbutz Movement and it will take a necrophiliac to get a rise out of JFNA

Anonymous said...

To Anon 3:44. You have no right to anonymously claim that Rakitt’s tenure was a failure. You are implying that you know something that others do not. Do you have frst hand information why Rakitt left? Do you also have information as to the reason that Gil chose DC over Boston? Was he in fact offered a position in Boston? How did the salaries compare? Does he have family in DC that he wanted to be closer to? One can only assume that there are many factors that go into any decision a person makes about choices such as these. To make the implications that you do are outrageous and should never have been allowed to be printed.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Anon 1:00 for your appropriate defense of two quality and dedicated professional leaders.