Monday, July 01, 2019



While I have occasionally critiqued specific people and policies connected to a political party or wing of the political spectrum, I’ve made it a point to try to illuminate what’s behind the Left-Right divide on Israel, rather than contribute to it. 

With that as backdrop, the following critique of someone running for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States should not be seen as an endorsement of anyone else in that race, nor support (or condemnation) of those who don’t have a (D) after their name.

But the rise and (likely) fall of US Senator Cory Booker should be a cautionary tale for those who think they can betray their principles, then “pivot” back to integrity after the damage has been done.

Booker has been on my radar ever since I attended my first AIPAC event where the young and rising political star gave what was possibly the most powerful and inspiring speech on Israel I ever heard. His talk drew from his experience interacting with the Chabad community while he was a Rhodes Scholar in Oxford, notably how his relationship with their Rabbi Shmuley Boteach helped him appreciate both Judaism and the centrality of Israeli to Jewish life.

Since then I’ve kept track of Booker’s rise of the cursus honorum, hoping for the opportunity to vote for the man I saw all those years ago for President.  Unfortunately, now that the chance to do so has arrived, the person I was so impressed with is no longer there.

I suspect that the turning point for Booker came when he had the opportunity to vote against President Obama’s Iran deal, a vote that might have eventually earned him a Profiles in Courage award, but which would have cost him support of a popular president and the enmity of the most powerful people in his party at a time when a presidential run was clearly in his future.  Sadly, Booker took the expedient route and voted for something he probably knew was not right.  Even more sadly, in justifying that vote, had had to justify moving away from all he said – and I suspect believed – as a younger, wiser man.

Given the dynamics of the current presidential race, where dozens of candidates have to go to extreme measures to stand out from the crowd, Booker seems to be playing the game of saying the right things to the Jewish community, while acting against Israel’s interests (by, among other things, voting against federal anti-BDS legislation) and justifying those choices with stale talking points I can’t believe he really buys. 

Booker’s path has cost him the support (although not the friendship) of his old friend Boteach, and his current two-step regarding whether or not he will meet with Louis Farrakhan simply illustrates more of the same triangulation calculated to signal to Left wing primary votes that he is one of them, while trying not to alienate the Jewish community so much that he loses their long-term support.

Unfortunately for him, all of this calculated pandering does not seem to have budged him in the polls. Part of this is the sheer difficulty breaking through all of the noise, especially with the most aggressive members of the Democratic pack out-Lefting him at every turn.  But I also suspect that primary voters with little involvement or even interest in Jewish or Middle East issues recognize inauthenticity when they see it.

The sad thing is that even Booker’s switch to a “balanced” position between Israel and her would-be destroyers has not earned him substantial or lasting support from Israel haters who are only too ready to not just abandon but punish anyone who deviates even an angstrom degree from their ever-changing list of demands. 

Demands for fealty by the BDS crowd stands in sharp contrast to large swaths of the Jewish community not ready to abandon Booker even when he acts against their interests.  Perhaps this longing for friendship (especially by a rising African American political star) represents weakness on our part, although it could also represent hope that the man who spoke so eloquently at AIPAC way back then is the real Cory Booker, who is just playing the cards he’s been dealt in a strange political era.

Maybe they are right and in five years we’ll be watching Cory Booker accept the nomination of his party for a second term in office.  But I suspect that what we are really watching is a man sacrificing both his soul and his dreams by walking away from what he believes in order to achieve what he wants.  


If Cory ends up an also-ran, with nothing to show for all he’s sacrificed, that should serve as a lesson not for just him, but all of us.  In ways large and small, we are asked to (and often make) compromises to get through life, but our integrity – that which makes us truly us – is something that must never be put up for auction.  Living an inauthentic life has a high cost, which Booker is currently paying.  But his sacrifice might have value if it teaches the rest of us not to make the same mistake.



We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.

EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

Support EoZ by shopping!

search eoz

comments

Speaking

follow me

Follow by Email

translate

Share on Whatsapp


E-Book

For $18 donation








Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts in recent years

Hasbys!

Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون



This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

Donate!

Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options


One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!

Tweets

Interesting Blogs

Categories

Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria Alice Walker American Jews Amnesty analysis anti-semitism antisemitism apartheid Arab antisemitism arab refugees Arafat archaeology Ari Fuld art ASHREI B'tselem bahrain Balfour bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz Bernie Sanders Birthright book review Brant Rosen breaking the silence Campus antisemitism Cardozo cartoon of the day Chakindas Chanukah Christians circumcision Clark Kent coexistence Community Standards conspiracy theories Cyprus Daled Amos Daphne Anson David Applebaum Davis report DCI-P Divest This double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada Embassy EoZ Trump symposium eoz-symposium EoZNews eoztv Erekat Erekat lung transplant EU Euro-Mid Observer European antisemitism Facebook jail Fake Civilians 2014 Fake Civilians 2019 Farrakhan Fatah featured Features fisking flotilla Forest Rain Forward free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros German Jewry gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian guest post gunness Haaretz Hadassah hamas Hamas war crimes Hananya Naftali hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hasby 2018 hate speech Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor huor Hypocrisy ICRC IDF IfNotNow Ilan Pappe Ilhan Omar impossible peace incitement indigenous Indonesia international law intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Joseph Massad Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Judean Rose Kairos Karl Vick Keith Ellison ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Know How to Answer Lebanon leftists Linda Sarsour Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Malaysia max blumenthal Mazen Adi McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Michael Ross Miftah Missionaries moderate Islam Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco Mudar Zahran music Muslim Brotherhood Naftali Bennett Nakba Nan Greer Nation of Islam Natural gas Nazi Netanyahu News nftp NGO NIF Noah Phillips norpac NYT Occupation offbeat Omar Barghouti Only in Israel Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peace Now Peter Beinart Petra MB poetry Poland poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist Puar Purim purimshpiel Putin Qaradawi Qassam calendar Quora Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals reference Reuters Richard Falk Richard Silverstein Right of return Rivkah Lambert Adler Robert Werdine rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Rutgers Saeb Erekat Sarah Schulman Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians settlements sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shelly Yachimovich Shujaiyeh Simchat Torah Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Speech stamps Superman Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman TOI Tomer Ilan Trump Tunisia Turkey UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc UNICEF United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA unwra Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks work accident X-washing Y. Ben-David Yemen YMikarov zahran Ziesel zionist attack zoo Zionophobia Zvi

Blog Archive