B'nai B'rith International was featured on JBS (formerly Shalom TV), denouncing United Nation Secretary General Ban Ki-moon for ignoring violent extremism as “root cause” of Palestinian-Israeli hostilities.
The comments were made while speaking at the Cairo conference on reconstruction in Gaza on Oct. 12, where Ki-moon unfairly asserted, "we must not lose sight of the root causes of the recent hostilities: a restrictive occupation that has lasted almost half a century, the continued denial of Palestinian rights and the lack of tangible progress in peace negotiations.”
Hear B'nai B'rith's response in the video below (3:36 mark):
B'nai B'rith celebrated its 171st birthday on Oct. 13, reviewing its first 17 decades at the forefront of Jewish advocacy in the United States and around the world.
Here is an infographic detailing the major achievements in the organization's history:
Anti-Semitic graffiti and rhetoric has proliferated in Uruguay since the start of the most recent Gaza conflict, inspired in part by rhetoric from the nation's president and foreign minister.
B'nai B'rith International condemned President José Mujica's anti-Semitic remarks, who responded by suggesting that his administration, which employs three Jewish ministers, could therefore not be anti-Semitic.
More constructive progress was made with foreign minister Luis Almagro, who met with B'nai B'rith to clarify his comments.
The meeting was covered in Iton Gadol and in Subrayado, excerpts of which can be found below (Spanish):
Writing in a blog post the following day, Forman cited specific examples that moved the department to convene the meeting. Specifically, the looting of Jewish-owned stores and protestors lobbing a Molotov cocktail at a synagogue in Paris; a group of teenagers in Sydney, Australia, boarding a school bus for a Jewish primary school and shouting anti-Semitic epithets; and various other incidents just this past summer.
“These and other incidents are of deep concern to the United States government,” wrote Forman, adding that Kerry “emphasized that monitoring and combatting anti-Semitism is a global State Department priority, and reaffirmed our commitment to speaking out against this scourge whenever and wherever it exists.
“For Secretary Kerry, whose own grandparents came to the United States escaping anti-Semitism in what is today the Czech Republic – and whose own ancestors who stayed behind lost their lives in the Holocaust – this cause is very personal.”
Prior to his appointment as a special envoy, Forman was the executive director of the National Jewish Democratic Council from 1996 until 2010, and served as the Jewish Outreach Director for President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign.
His current post – which is uniquely tasked to represent U.S. policy on anti-Semitism globally – was created as part of the Global Anti-Semitism Review Act of 2004.
Some of the other high level State Department officials participating in the meeting included Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jacobson and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for European Affairs Paul Jones.
B'nai B'rith International spoke unequivocally against those that shouted down Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) while he expressed pro-Israel sentiments at an "In Defense of Christians" (I.D.C.) dinner.
The fallout from the speech was covered in an article on Algemeiner, which referenced B'nai B'rith's statement.
Read highlights from the article, below:
Major American Jewish groups rushed to defend Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) on Thursday after he was booed off stage at a gala dinner on Wednesday night for voicing solidarity with Israel and Jews.
Leaders also criticized attendees at the event, a Washington, D.C. fundraiser for a suspected Iran aligned group called In Defense of Christians, for heckling Cruz, a darling of the evangelical Christian community.
Speaking on stage, Cruz said Israel and the Jewish people face the same threat from radical Islam as Christians in the Middle East, adding that Christians “have no greater ally than Israel.”
Audience members then booed and shouted protests, leading the senator to walk off stage and leave the event.
“Those who hate Israel hate America, and those who hate Jews hate Christians, and if this room will not recognize that, then my heart weeps that the men and women here will not stand in solidarity with Jews and Christians alike who are persecuted by radicals who seek to murder them,” he said. “If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, then I will not stand with you.”
B’nai B’rith International expressed similar sentiments, saying it was troubled that the gathering was “overshadowed by a display of animosity toward Israel.”
“Just as the entire international community must rally to protect the fundamental rights and dignity of Christians in places like Iraq and Syria, Christian leaders and faithful, along with others, are morally obliged do the same for Jews in the Middle East.
"There can be no condoning or belittling the Islamist extremists doctrinally committed to the violent destruction of the Middle East’s democratic Jewish state,” B’nai B’rith said. “If efforts for peace, and to protect Middle Eastern Christians, are to succeed, there must be recognition that ‘love your neighbor as yourself’ applies to the people of Israel as much as to any other human beings.”