Unity march begins with a broiges

By Dan Friedman, April 14, 2014

The Celebrate Israel Parade is an annual show of support for the Jewish state by the largest Jewish population outside Israel — that of New York City.

Run by the UJA-Federation of New York and the Jewish Community Relations Council, the kosher carnival, timetabled for June 1, is touted as an opportunity to show unity.

But for some groups, it is an opportunity to garner publicity by arguing for the exclusion of organisations that they do not agree with.

Richard Allen’s right-wing advocacy group JCC Watch is arguing that the JCC in Manhattan, Partners for Progressive Israel, the NIF and B’Tselem support the BDS movement and should therefore be excluded.

For the third year in a row, Rabbi Elie Abadie of the Orthodox Congregation Edmond J Safra in Manhattan has reportedly threatened to pull out of the parade in protest at the inclusion of “Jewish groups [that] are financed by antisemites, anti-Israel people and Jew-haters”.

Alan Dershowitz, Abraham Foxman of the ADL and even Jeffrey Wiesenfeld — a high-profile community activist who often sides with Mr Allen — have sharply criticised any attempt at exclusion.

Last updated: 4:52pm, April 17 2014