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Reid “can’t afford not to [support israel]”
When was the last time you heard a US senator say that he or she can't afford not to support US?
As a young lawyer struggling to make a living in Las Vegas, Harry Reid never failed to buy Israel bonds to benefit the United Jewish Appeal.
“I’d say, ‘Harry, you can’t afford to give that much,’ ” close friend Neil Galatz recalls. “He’d say, ‘I can’t afford not to.’ ”
Now, don't get me wrong - Reid is perfectly entitled to donate his own personal money to whatever cause he deems fit.
It's what he 'donates' from the United States Treasury as Senate Majority Leader that matters to me.
Reid, 67, is not Jewish, but his wife, Landra, was born Jewish. The couple converted to Mormonism shortly after they were married more than 40 years ago.
They raised their five children as Mormons but Galatz and others say Reid is fully aware that if they had lived in a different time and place — say, Nazi Germany in the 1940s — the family could have been targeted because of its Jewish roots.
The article wouldn't be complete without a staple reminder of their 'unique' history of persecution - the raison d'etre for israel's belligerent little existence.
Those close to Reid say it’s this realization that has prompted the Democratic senator’s longtime support for Israel.
As the newly elected majority leader in the U.S. Senate, Reid will play an instrumental role in crafting U.S. policy in the Middle East.
Friends and political observers are confident his position on Israel won’t change.
Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.), who is Jewish, can attest to this.
I wonder if she can say the same about his dedication to US . . .
“He had a passion and a commitment not only to the Jewish community, but to the survival of the State of Israel,” she says.
Reid helped start Nevada’s first Jewish political action committee in the 1980s,she recalls.
He’s “always been part and parcel of our community [i.e., tribe],” says Art Marshall, a past president of the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas and a close friend of Reid’s. “He’s a good guy.”
* * *
Meyer Bodoff, president of the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas, also praises Reid. Bodoff says the federation gave Reid its highest honor two years ago, an award that has been given out only three times.
Bodoff lauded Reid for helping the federation receive its first federal grant for a retirement community. He also praised his support for Israel.
Sounds like nepotism to me.
I wonder, how many federal grants Reid 'helped' secure for non-Jewish retirement communities?
Galatz, a Las Vegas lawyer . . . describes Reid, a former boxer and runner, as a “workaholic” with a “good heart.”
Reid has a healthy respect for Judaism and likes to honor his wife’s past, Galatz says: When his mother-in-law was still alive, Reid and his wife would light Shabbat candles on Friday nights, and the couple still has a mezuzah on the front door of its home.
As Senate majority leader, Reid may face pressure from Arab organizations and other political groups to stop supporting Israel, arguing that it would ease other crises in the Middle East, Galatz says. While that concerns him, Galatz is confident Reid will use his skill as a consensus builder to secure Israel’s future [to hell with America's] and be a successful majority leader.
* * *
Reid’s unassuming demeanor may make people think he’s a pushover, but that’s far from true, Goodman says: “When you do business with him, he’s hard as nails.”
That’s exactly what the pro-Israel community has come to count on.
In May 2005, before a meeting of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Reid told of his recent trip to the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem. There, Reid said, he and his wife learned the fate of her father’s family, the Goldfarbs.
Landra’s father, Israel Goldfarb, immigrated from Ukraine to the United States in the early 1900s, but family members who remained in Europe weren’t so lucky: Seven of them were killed by the Nazis, and their names are listed in Yad Vashem’s book of martyrs and heroes.
Ahh! - the good old zionist double standard.
Jews are martyrs and heroes for being murdered by racial supremacists - Arabs are terrorists and collateral damage.
Reid told the group of what a “difficult yet moving and inspiring moment” that had been. And on one particular point, the consensus-builder vowed to give no ground.
“The people of Israel have a right to live in peace,” he said. “On this point there can never be any compromise.”
Nevermind how many hundreds of thousands of Iraqi, American, Lebanese, Canadian, Palestinian, and Iranian lives they destroy in the process.
According to Newt Gingrich, it's worth it!