Oren Rejects J Street Invitation

By Natasha Mozgovaya (Haaretz)

Published October 20, 2009.
  • Print
  • Share Share

The Embassy of Israel in the United States on Tuesday announced that it would send an “observer” to the left-leaning lobby group J Street’s first national conference next week, in place of Ambassador Michael Oren.

“In response to the question about J Street’s invitation to participate in its conference, the Embassy of Israel has been privately communicating its concerns over certain policies of the organization that may impair the interests of Israel,” the embassy said in a statement.

“Accordingly, the embassy will send an observer to the conference and will follow its proceedings with interest.”

J Street responded to the statement by saying it was still awaiting a direct response from Oren on the matter.

“J Street still looks forward to receiving a direct response from Ambassador Oren to our invitation to speak at the conference,” spokeswoman Amy Spitalnick.

“We believe the Government of Israel will be missing an opportunity should it choose not to engage with the over 1,200 pro-Israel activists who will be in attendance at the J Street conference next week,” she added.

“The invitation to address the conference’s participants remains open, and we look forward to working with the Embassy to secure Israel’s future as a democratic homeland for the Jewish people.”

Since his appointment, Oren has repeatedly snubbed the young and energetic “pro-peace and pro-Israel” Washington lobby, J Street, and refused to meet its members.

Oren has eluded questions over the last few weeks regarding whether he planned to attend the October 25 conference in Washington.

In a recent address at the Washington Hebrew Congregation, Oren was asked about his conflict with J Street, but would not say whether he would attend the conference.

He said that the American Jewish community’s strength was always in its diverse opinions. He praised the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations as an appropriate framework for representing American Jews. He just did not mention that J Street is not included in that organization.






Find us on Facebook!
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.