J Street deceives others in order to falsely represent and promote itself.
Lori Lowenthal Marcus
The Weekly Standard
10 February '10
The "new," "progressive" voice of the "pro-peace and pro-Israel" lobby known as J Street has had its "pro-Israel" label questioned by many observers, and even some of its own have shed that label. J Street has now also revealed it doesn’t keep its word to trusting Jewish organizations.
On Thursday, February 4, 2010, J Street launched a new "grassroots" division—J Street Local—with an event at the University of Pennsylvania, which was webcast to twenty other locations.
The event involved a deception by J Street leadership on the local Hillel and the surrounding Jewish community. When it was discovered that J Street planned to have its new division roll-out from the Penn Hillel, many Israel supporters were concerned that the outside world would assume that Hillel had endorsed J Street, especially because J Street would be webcasting live from there to cities across the country. Not to worry, said J Street to the local Hillel leadership: We promise not to mention that we’re using your facility, and to make clear in our written and oral statements that Hillel does not endorse us. That condition was agreed upon—it was "not just a promise, it was an agreement"—according to Rabbi Howard Alpert, the executive director of all the Philadelphia area Hillels. On the strength of that essential agreement, Hillel went ahead and rented J Street its space.
And then? J Street’s Ben-Ami said exactly what he’d promised not to say—that he was speaking "here at Penn Hillel"—and failed to say a word about what he’d promised solemnly to make clear: that Hillel does not endorse J Street or its message.
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