WATCH: In major address in Jerusalem, Charles Jacobs described the failure of the American Jewish establishment to defend a community now under assault
On May 21, 2023, Charles Jacobs launched the just-published book Betrayal: The Failure of American Jewish Leadership at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem.
The speech is riveting. The ZOA’s Morton Klein called Jacobs’ address “extraordinary and compelling.”
Betrayal is composed of 22 essays — some by distinguished authors and activists including Alan Dershowitz, Mort Klein, Caroline Glick, Richard Landes, Jonathan Tobin, and Thane Rosenbaum — and others by unsung Jewish activists who describe how their local Jewish leaders ignore or explain anti-Semitism away when it comes from “inconvenient sources.”
This may be the first book about the failure of the Jewish establishment to respond effectively to the rapid rise in anti-Semitism in America.
Jacobs explained that Jewish leaders fail to understand the nature and extent of modern-day Jew-hatred, which extends well beyond traditional white supremacists, to more “sensitive” sources: leftists, anti-Zionists, black anti-Semites, and radical Muslims. Jewish leaders, he said, are stifled by these “inconvenient” founts of anti-Semitism.
The Jewish establishment “left us practically defenseless” and “is now fully trapped in a corner,” Jacobs said. “Our leaders are flummoxed and confused. They need to be pressured, convinced, humiliated, shamed to do a massive re-think.”
Jacobs demonstrated how the Jewish “legacy institutions” (the one exception being Mort Klein’s Zionist Organization of America) have failed to take media defamation of Israel seriously, protect Jewish students on campuses, speak the truth about anti-Semitism from the left and protected minorities, and to educate the community about the toxic ideologies threatening Jews.
The book has been praised by prominent Jewish thinkers and writers, including Dennis Prager, Daniel Pipes, Ken Levin, Liel Leibovitz, and Gil Troy.
Watch Jacobs’ groundbreaking speech here.
You can now also watch the full program, which includes excellent speeches by Richard Landes and Melanie Phillips.
The book, Betrayal: The Failure of American Jewish Leadership, is available on Amazon for $17.09.
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