J Street: Not Really So Concerned About Israel's Security
Another fun email from the NIAC treasure trove...Given that J Street blasted Sarah Palin for her support for the official policy of the government in Jerusalem, and given that even ADL chief Abe Foxman is questioning J Street's "pro-Israel" bona fides as a result, it's worth taking a look behind the scenes of J Street's campaign to scuttle new sanctions on Iran -- a campaign that the group coordinated with NIAC. Here's J Street political director Joel Rubin congratulating the legislative director of the National Iranian American Council, Emily Blout, on their successful push to defeat new sanctions legislation in late 2008:
From: Joel Rubin
Date: Thu, 25 Sep 2008 21:30:43 -0400
To: Emily Blout
Subject: Re: Hi - get together in mid-October?
I just got airtight confirmation that no 362 language will be included in the Iran sanctions subsection of the India nuclear bill. My bet is that that subsection will get dropped in conference, if it even gets that far. Of course, who knows if they'll be back in November and if the other side makes another play. In any event, you guys did great work this year. Really great
I don't think anybody would make the claim that NIAC is on the "pro-Israel" side, so when Rubin talks about "the other side," it's the genuine pro-Israel community he's talking about, right? Sanctions are the number one priority for Israel and the pro-Israel community in the United States. Why is J Street conspiring with an organization run by an Iranian national -- an organization that Congress has asked AG Holder to investigate for violations of the Foreign Agents Registration Act and lobbying disclosure laws -- to kill that legislation?
Parsi was invited to speak at J Street's conference last month. At the time, I asked Hadar Susskind, J Street's director of policy and strategy, what he was doing there. "Some people say Parsi is the regime's man in Washington," I told him. "Those people are wrong," Susskind said. He insisted that Parsi "supports the Iranian people, he is not here on behalf of the regime." Maybe, but that isn't the way the Iranian people see it. When Eli Lake first broke this story, he closed with a quote from Mohsen Makhmalbaf, the unofficial spokesman for Iran's Green Movement. "I think Trita Parsi does not belong to the Green Movement. I feel his lobbying has secretly been more for the Islamic Republic," Makhmalbaf said. It seems J Street isn't just redefining "pro-Israel" -- they're redefining "pro-Iran" as well.