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August 22, 1986 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-08-22

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

LETTERS

`Unholy Alliance'
Holier Than Thou?

In his article, "Unholy Al-
liance" Robert Kuttner seeks
to condemn the practice of
single-issue politics by
American Jews. In doing so,
he appears less concerned
about the effects of such a
practice than with the fact
that American Jews are be-
coming disillusioned with the
particular brand of liberalism
he espouses.
Kuttner seems to believe
that liberalism and Judaism
are extensions of each other
and that Jews can no more
align themselves with Repub-
licans than can Zionists with
radical Palestinians. As a re-
sult, Kuttner attempts to
gloss over the differences that
Jews have with liberal
Democrats and to exaggerate
those they have with conser-
vatives and Republicans.
For example, we read noth-
ing in Kuttner's article about
the refusal of the 1984 Demo-
cratic National Convention to
condemn anti-Semitism in
the wake of racist remarks
made by Jesse Jackson and
Louis Farrakhan. Nor do we
read about the growing sup-
port among liberal Democrats
for affirmative action quotas,
a position which, I venture,
• most American Jews consider
hostile to their interests. We
learn only of a "perception
that . . . George McGovern
and Jimmy Carter tilted
towards the Arabs," as if
McGovern's strong pro-Arab,
pro-PLO bias, or Carter's at-
tempts to rewrite the history
of the Arab-Israeli conflict in
his recent book are in doubt.
Kuttner does provide, how-
ever, a simplistic assessment
of Sen. Alfonse D'Amato as
being "a magnificent suppor-
ter of Israel" who has "a vot-
ing record on social issues
that parallels Jesse Helms'
on social and fiscal questions.
We are expected to under-
stand that the only "correct"
social and fiscal positions are
those supported by liberal
Democrats. What we do not
learn, is that Sen. D'Amato's
support among New York
Jews is based on more than
his support for Israel alone. It
is based on D'Amato's efforts
to preserve Jewish interests
on a wide range of other is-
sues, including terrorism and
Soviet Jewry, but also on the
recognition that the fiscal
and foreign policies he sup-
ports benefit all Americans,
Jew and non-Jew alike.
Kuttner's assertion that
Jews, by supporting GOP
candidates and incumbents,
are engaging in single-issue
politics, is the product of his
belief in the antagonism be-
tween Judaism and Repub-
licanism or conservatism.
There cannot, he assumes, be
any reason for Jews to sup-
port Republican or conserva-
tive candidates other than
the latter's support for Israel.
Likewise, Kuttner's attempts
to disparage the National
Jewish Coalition are the re-
sult of his inability to believe

that Jews can support con-
servative positions or Repub-
lican candidates out of con-
viction.
And yet, American Jews
are increasingly supporting
these candidates precisely be-
cause they recognize that the
policies that help preserve
the security of the United
States and promote economic
growth are today pursued,
not by liberals and Demo-
crats, but by conservatives
and Republicans. They recog-
nize that, in contrast to the
liberal foreign and defense
policies of the Democrats, the
conservative and Republican
policies dedicate America to
the defense of her allies and
to the preservation of free-
dom worldwide — goals that
are certainly close to the
hearts of Jewry in America
and overseas.

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Continued on next page

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National Chairman,
National Jewish Coalition

Referring to the article in
the Detroit Free Press, "Israel
Is Troubled — And Troubling
As Well." The only one trou-
bled and troubling as well is
the writer, Mr. Rosen. His
lack of understanding is in-
deed saddening.
He questions the whole
trend of Israel's actions such
as the bombing in Tunis, the
supposed cover-up of the
"murder" of two Palestinian
bus hijackers, "unauthorized"
use of cluster bombs and
Orthodox-secular prob-
lems.He wonders if Israel's
justified security concerns are

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Richard J. Fox

Robert Kuttner's "The
Perils of Single-Issue Poli-
tics" - (Aug. 8), is quite in-
teresting and informative,
though somewhat lop-sided.
One might conclude that the
government of this country is
amenable to certain interests
rather than to elected offi-
cials and their due *appoin-
tees. Furthermore while the
author's leanings are in the
direction of . the title's impli-
cations, though maintaining
consistent objectivity, this
caption, and the illustrative
monster you chose to
enlighten the theme is not
borne out by the inside of the
article. In point of fact, the
enforced. version you would
give to it might be char-
acterized as a new hairdo to
an old bogeyman physiog-
nomy: the anti-Zionists of two
generations ago.
It should be recalled that
the leading reformists of
former days stood aghast at
the Zionist idea, and in their
mind, the implication of dual
loyalty. They proclaimed
their aversion in no uncer-
tain terms ...





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