Justice4JP Responds to Criticism of:
Pollard Predicted Lieberman Flip Flops (Media Release 08/16/00)
August 17, 2000 - Media Release
Justice4JP Note: Since the information contained in the following response to a reader may be helpful to others, Justice4JP is making it available to all:
We understand that you are disturbed by the juxtaposition of an article on the candidacy of Joseph Lieberman by Michael Lerner (Tikkun Magazine) along side a similar article by Paul Eidelberg, (Jewish Press). You feel that Lerner's politics should exclude his work from consideration. You state that our choice of articles invalidates our organization and speaks poorly of its credibility in general. You also question our motive in reprinting articles dealing with Joseph Lieberman as a candidate for vice president of the United States. Here is our response:
If you familiarize yourself with the Justice4JP web site and you read our last two press releases carefully [Aug. 8 and Aug. 16] you will find the answers to what is troubling you, and much more.
Our goal, first of all, is to provide the facts so that people like yourself will understand that Joseph Lieberman's insistence that Jonathan Pollard spend the rest of his life in prison is not based on substance, but rather on politically-driven personal motives. To Lieberman, Pollard is nothing more than a means to an end. He is Lieberman's inoculation against the charge of dual loyalty. By being the only prominent voice in the Jewish community to oppose the release of Jonathan Pollard, Lieberman is attempting to present himself as more Catholic than the Pope.
To assist people like yourself, we have established the Lieberman Page. We hope that once you read it, you will understand that Lieberman has completely ignored the merits of the Pollard case, personally interfered in the case and subverted justice, and ignored the mitzvah of pidyan shvuyim - all for no other reason than to further his own political goals.
We believe that Pollard case will allow you to understand - perhaps for the first time - how eminently capable Lieberman is in subverting principle to political ends. Once you understand that, then it is not unreasonable to presume that such a man is quite likely to do the same on other matters of principle - especially matters of concern to the Jewish community and Israel - if they conflict with his personal ambitions.
In fact, as predicted in our August 8, 2000 media release, Lieberman has already begun to show his true colors. His recent flip flops on just about every issue he ever held a strong stand on, from affirmative action to school vouchers to moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem, speak volumes about the man's ability to trim his principles to fit his political needs.
According to a recent editorial (08/18/00) in the Jewish Press (NY), the thing that is so troubling is not that Lieberman has "flip-flopped", but that he is trying to convince everyone that this was his position all along. The Jewish Press writes, "...while modification could perhaps be explained away, stretching the truth cannot, certainly when it is Mr. Integrity who is the prevaricator."
As for the particular articles that we are making available to the public on the web: we are very careful to put a disclaimer on all political articles, so that people like yourself will understand that we are not taking any particular political position, nor are we endorsing the position of any author. But rather we are making various articles available as a public service so that readers can decide for themselves. You may or may not like Michael Lerner's politics, but what he has to say about Lieberman is worthy of thought. Ditto Eidelberg. Ditto Medved etc.
The reality is that the Pollard case is NOT ONLY about Jonathan Pollard, but about Israel, and the Jewish community. How a politician or public figure relates to the Pollard case is, without exception, a reflection of his much larger attitude towards Israel and the Jewish community. Bottom line: Jonathan Pollard is the miner's canary for the both the American Jewish community and the US - Israel Special Relationship.
For a snapshot wake-up call, see the latest DRY BONES cartoon on the home page. DRY BONES calls it "the carrot and stick" situation that the American Jewish community is in. Lieberman is the ever-elusive "carrot" that is held out to the American Jewish community as a picture of what the Jews can achieve if they cooperate, but if not, there is always the Pollard "stick" to beat them with.
While we have your attention, are you aware that the Pollard case has been defined by the great rabbis of the generation as the mitzvah of pidyan shvuyim, devolving upon all persons without exception? [See The Jewish Unity Page.] Just as we welcome your comments, we would also be glad to hear what are you doing to help. May we suggest that you begin by reading the web site, and in particular, the Facts Page.
Thank you for writing.