9 thoughts on “Seattle Federation Smears Canon Ateek: the Full Monty – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. Is “Kadima” the same Kadima as the Israeli party?

    It would be odd if the party that won the most seats in the latest Israeli election would then be cast as “disloyal”.

    Peace requires hearing the others’ perspective. It does two things:

    1. It makes sure that I/we/they are not engaging in denial, in self-talk. I/we can learn something.

    2. It provides a precedent for being heard respectfully. (“I sincerely listened to your perspective. Please hear mine.”)

    1. Seattle’s Kadima is a progressive Jewish spiritual/political community which long predates the Kadima party. Kadima roughly translated means “forward” or “progress” (hence, “progressive”). Naturally, the Kadima party is not progressive, but has co-opted the term.

  2. Richard,

    The sneak letters and the outright lies about a clergy person of another faith are not new in Seattle. We saw the same in Los Angeles. The same characters appeared on the scene with money to take out ads and paid professionals to devote full time to telling the lies and then celebrating them.

    Chicago has been a scene of the same kind of activity.

    I attended the Sabeel Conference in Pasadena. I didn’t agree with every one who spoke. I found the Jews who spoke the least temperate. The Christians tended to measure their words more carefully. In any case, from Rev Ateek there was opinion expressed but not anti-semitism nor anything like it. Criticism of Israeli policies but a loud call for justice. I was uncomfortable with some of rhetoric but then again it was Christian and I don’t believe in that religion.

    Silverstein seems to be asking why Ateek’s hosts did little to prepare a defense of Ateek or themselves. That is a good question. Do they really want to hear other views? Then they must be willing to take the heat. That means an added burden which then leads most busy leaders to decide that it is not worth hassle.

    The Jewish community defenders have worked very hard to quash differences of opinion. This isolation and unreality helps people to remain ignorant.


  3. Richard, can you get any of your facts right? Your record is one of mistakes, unproven assumptions and a consistent failure to check any of your allegations (as you have said to me, “Do your own research”).

    This time you have stated that “[Jewish community leaders] contemplated rewriting the Israel Accord that had been formulated after two community leaders, Rob Jacobs and Rick Harkavy, played instrumental roles in the arrest of then Kadima Rabbi Drora Setel at an Israel Day rally.”

    First of all, I not only had nothing to do with the arrest of Setel, I was not even involved in the Seattle Jewish community at that time, apart from being a member of Congregation Beth Shalom. I was teaching at the University of Washington and heading up the Center for Technology Entrepreneurship and did not attend the rally you refer to or even know about the arrest until two years later when I took over as regional director of the ADL.

    So you are flat out wrong again with yet another unfounded, unsupported, unresearched assertion.

    Second, what the heck is the Jewish community “Israel accord” to which you refer? I have no idea what you are talking about and I doubt you do either.

    Please stop creating fiction out of unsupported assumptions.

    If your belief system on Israel and the Middle East is based on the same fantasies you evidence in this discussion, no wonder you reach some of your bizarre conclusions.

    1. As far as the letter which I called an “Israel accord,” JTNews’ editor calls it a “community protocol” in describing it here. You apparently can’t be bothered to read anything that isn’t sufficiently propagandistic enough for StandWithUs standards. But do try to read JTNews as it is our community newspaper:

      When members of the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle’s Israel Programming Committee sent Adkins, who sits on the committee representing both Kadima and Brit Tzedek v’Shalom, a letter expressing its disappointment in extending Ateek an invitation to speak, he said he and the synagogue’s board were taken aback.

      “It feels to me as if the standards of community protocol were breached and I’m very disappointed about that,” Adkins said. He referred to a document signed in 2004 by several signatories of the letter and printed in JTNews that expressed parties who disagree on the best path to peace between Israelis and Palestinians should still treat each other with respect in regard to their opinions.

      Take back your claim that this is a fiction or I’ll label you a smearmonger of the first order.

      As for the issue of Rabbi Setel’s arrest it was your predecessor at the ADL, Brian Goldberg and Rick Harkavy who were responsible for this despicable act. And your predecessor was even defiant & nearly proud of the fact that Setel was arrested:

      “There is going to be no apology from the Anti-Defamation League for the actions.

      So, no I was mistaken in blaming you for this incident though undoubtedly had you been ADL director at the time, the same thing would’ve happened.

      And another thing, Rob. The Israel committee was instrumental in creating the ltr. and you were deeply and personally involved in it (though you didn’t write it). Ha-mayvin yavin.

  4. There is something widely known in the Seattle Jewish community as the “Israel Accord,” giving you grounds to accuse Mr. Jacobs of disingenuity for claiming not to know what the heck it was? The JTNews piece does not refer to it as such, quoting instead Ranier Waldman-Atkins speaking about “community protocol” rather than any formalized agreement.

    And though you admit you were mistaken to blame Mr. Jacobs for an incident for which he could have had no responsibility, you say it matters little, since you are certain (“undoubtedly”) that had he held the position he did not hold, “the same thing would’ve happened.” Wow, that’s really fairminded of you! (BTW, do you personally subscribe to that “Israel Accord,” which it seems would require respect for those in the Jewish community hold different views on how to support Israel?)

    1. It is actually called the Derech Eretz Statement & published as a full page ad in the Jewish Transcript. And whadaya know, Rob Jacobs even signed it himself! Yet he claims it as a fiction I made up myself. Perhaps Rob is having severe memory loss and needs to see his physician.

      As for whether the Derech Eretz statement requires that I respect you or Rob Jacobs, I wasn’t a signatory. But even if I were, I grant no respect whatsoever to anyone who deliberately lies about my own views and speaks untruths about his own record and actions.

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