Letters | Signs and Sides


Reader Appreciates L’Shana Tova Signs

What a pleasant surprise to see “L’Shana Tova” emblazoned on several billboards while driving to and from work on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Thank you, Jewish Federation.

Bob Altman | Yardley

RJC Turns Israel Into a Partisan Issue

According to Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.), “Israel should never, ever be a partisan issue. Support for Israel should never be political or partisan” (“Fitzpatrick Hosts Bipartisan Roundtable on Israel,” Aug. 23).

Indeed, traditionally, U.S. support for Israel has been bipartisan; however, during the second Bush and Obama presidencies, the Republican Jewish Coalition assiduously sought to turn it into a wedge issue. Keep in mind that the RJC is not a Jewish advocacy/defense group that happens to vote Republican; it’s a GOP organization that targets Jews for outreach. In other words, the objective of the RJC is not to raise Republican awareness of a Jewish community consensus on a given issue, but to persuade Jews to accept the Republican consensus.

According to none other than the late veteran Republican consultant and GOP insider Arthur J. Finkelstein, “The political center has disappeared, and the Republican Party has become the party of the Christian right more so than in any other period in modern history,” as reported in The New York Times on Nov. 11, 2004.

And who, you might ask, is Finkelstein, and why does his opinion matter? Because he is the individual whom no less estimable a source than the Jewish Exponent’s sister publication, the Washington Jewish Week, identified as the RJC’s exit survey pollster in a Nov. 14, 2012, piece, “Is 70 percent enough?”

As to his conservative bona fides, Finkelstein has served as a pollster for both Ronald Reagan and Benjamin Netanyahu. And he is the individual credited for turning the word “liberal” into a political slur.

Interestingly, Jews for the Christian Right yields the acronym JCR, which is an anagram of RJC. Coincidence? Hardly. 

Stas Cohen | Newark, Del.


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