Tags: jimmy carter | israel | jewish | middle east

Jimmy Carter and Israel: Jewish Reaction to Former President's Stance on Middle East

By    |   Sunday, 14 Dec 2014 07:28 PM

The Jewish community has been highly critical of what members describe as former President Jimmy Carter’s biased characterization of the conflict involving Israel and Palestine, as well as his support for recognizing the terrorist group Hamas as a legitimate political actor.

Carter's 2006 book, "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid," outraged Jewish leaders who blasted the former president for what appeared to be his likening of Israel's settlement practices to apartheid and his seeming to place most of the blame for a lack of peace on Israel, according to Jewishchronicle.com.

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The Anti-Defamation League responded on its website by reporting that scholars and experts on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict had been critical of the book for its distortions, misrepresentations, and one-sided arguments that blamed Israel for the conflict while giving Palestinians a pass.

“Writers in newspapers across the Arab and Muslim world have used the book’s reception in the West as a means to further conspiratorial views of Jewish power, with some citing Carter’s accusation that the ‘Israel Lobby’ in the U.S. stifles debate as an affirmation of their belief of ‘Jewish control’ of the U.S. government," the website said. "Many of the commentaries are virulently anti-Semitic, focusing on the alleged power of Jews by claiming that Zionists are able to suppress criticism of Israel and questions about the reality of the Holocaust.”

The ADL site added online white supremacist forums lauded Carter's comments for their anti-Israel, conspiratorial and anti-Semitic propaganda nature.

The Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center reacted to the book by launching a petition that resulted in thousands of signatures being sent to Carter in protest, Fox News reported. Carter replied by accusing the international Jewish human rights group of “falsehood and slander,” saying he didn’t mean to offend anyone.

Carter and Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland, then jointly recommended last August that the West recognizes the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas as a legitimate "political actor" that represents the bulk of the Palestinian population.

Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz, who is Jewish, told Newsmax TV the statement showed Carter to be "an all-out supporter” of Hamas. Dershowitz added that if Carter’s advocacy turned into material support he would be committing a crime.

The statement from Carter and Robinson was akin to seeking to legitimize the Mafia, al-Quaeda or the Taliban, Dershowitz told Newsmax TV.

He blamed Carter for formerly advising then-PLO leader Yasser Arafat to reject peace deals that would have changed the course of life in Gaza and the West Bank.

"Jimmy Carter advised Yasser Arafat to reject the offer of statehood in 2000, 2001, saying that if he did it, he'd be killed,” Dershowitz said. “So when you look at Jimmy Carter, he has blood on his hands for having advised Arafat to turn down the deal.”

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The Jewish community has been highly critical of what members describe as former President Jimmy Carter’s biased characterization of the conflict involving Israel and Palestine, as well as his support for recognizing the terrorist group Hamas as a legitimate political actor.
jimmy carter, israel, jewish, middle east
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2014-28-14
Sunday, 14 Dec 2014 07:28 PM
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