Just who is this Dorothy M Zellner
Who is Dorothy M Zellner?
“I know in the Zionist circles they speak of Tutu as an anti-Semite. But it’s getting harder and harder to get away with that. They can call a nebbish like me an anti-Semite.” These are the words of one of US’ most dangerous anti-Zionist Jews according to the Anti-Defamation League’s 2013 Top-10 anti-Israel groups in the US, Dorothy M Zellner.
Dorothy Zellner has been a fighter her whole life. She is a former staff member for the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, who is today active in the Palestinian solidarity movement as a member of the board of the Friends of Jenin Freedom Theatre, a founding member of Jews Say No! and is a member and volunteer with the Jewish Voice for Peace organisation – one of the ADL’s Top-10.
In her youth, Zellner was a staffer of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) from 1962 to 1967 and remains an editor of “Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts by Women in SNCC.”
Zellner, who was in SA as the guest of Jewish Voices for Peace (JVFP) and BDS two months ago, has links to a myriad of anti-Israeli organisations such as BDS, Partners for Peace in Israel and a host of others.
Zellner signed this petition in her personal capacity in 2009 calling IDF members to: “use all measures possible to stop these atrocities against the Palestinian people. Flagrantly illegal orders must not simply be disobeyed, but actively and effectively opposed.” The associated video was removed by Youtube which closed the account of the poster. That in itself speaks volumes – ever tried to have a social media site take something down?
Judge folk by the friends they keep…
Among her co-signatory organisations were the following anti-Zionist groups: American Jews for a Just Peace. European Jews for a Just Peace, ICAHD-USA, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions and the Italian Network of Jews against the Occupation (Rete-ECO).
Then there were Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), (JVP) Chicago, Jewish Women for Justice in Israel/Palestine (Boston), Jews Against the Occupation (Central NJ), Jews Against the Occupation (NYC), Jews Against the Occupation Australia and Jews for Israeli-Palestinian Peace (JIPF) Sweden.
As if that wasn’t enough of the anti-Zionist acronyms, there were also signatures from: Jews for Justice for Palestine Britain, Los Angeles Jews For Peace, New Profile Movement for the Civilisation of Israeli Society, Not In My Name South Africa, Not In Our Name-Canada, People of Faith US, Portland Peaceful Response Coalition, Tikkun Community Chicago, Tucson Women in Black, Visions of Peace with Justice in Israel/Palestine, Women in Black Union Square NYC, and Yesh Gvul Israel. Nice company she keeps.
But that is just the start of things
In Why the BDS Movement Is Effective and Right on Jewish Currents.org, co-authors Dorothy M. Zellner and Donna Nevel write: “As Jewish activists working to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine, we take exception to (Australian) Philip Mendes’ criticism of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) in “Why BDS is Ineffective and Worse: But the Issue of Palestinian National Rights Will Not Go Away”.
Check out the Tumblr page on “TODAY’S JEWISH HEROES” which lists Zillner among a motley crew of anti-Zionist Jewish groups. They laud “American Jews for a Just Peace (AJJP) is an outstanding, progressive organization which strongly supports the BDS and Palestinian voices in the US, including the excellent journalism of the Electronic Intifada. Their website states: “American Jews for a Just Peace (AJJP) is an alliance of activists in the United States working to ensure equal rights, safety, and dignity for all the people of historic Palestine”. The same website refers to this 2010 Haaretz story: ‘Jews for Justice’ aid boat sets sail for Gaza.
Another colleague of Zellner’s in her anti-Zionist efforts is Jewish American Stanley Heller, creator of TheStruggle.org, which describes itself as: “An online and TV media journal of the Middle East Crisis Committee (which he is chair) giving voice to the Palestinians and social activist efforts within the US. He has been involved in encouraging Jewish American activism since 1982, and involved in Middle East justice work for over 30 years.”
In short, Zellner, PICTURED AT LEFT is a Jewish bigot who is focussed on the destruction of Zionism.
Yet another associate organisation of hers is European Jews for a Just Peace (EJJP) – which focuses on American Jews. Others, like The Philadelphia BDS Coalition, American Jews for a Just Peace (AJJP), Los Angeles Jews for Peace, Jews Against Zionism and MoveOverAIPAC have names that make no bones about their objectives.
One of the prime evils which she regularly contributes to, is MuzzelWatch – a blog created by her and her friends at Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) – remember them, they were on the Top-10..
JFJFP – another in a kingdom of acronyms
Last month, Zellner spoke at a JEWS FOR JUSTICE FOR PALESTINIANS conference in the US. Here is what was reported: “Dorothy Zellner, an activist with Jewish Voice for Peace and Jews Say No! on New York’s Upper West Side, spoke on a plenary Monday afternoon about how the experience of being SNCC organizer during Freedom Summer relates to her activism for Palestinian rights. Warning students that speaking out against oppressive Israeli policies will incur real pushback, her voice choked up, and she said: “You need to have a long-term vision: What you are doing by speaking out is a mitzvah that will live on long after you do.
“This is why I am here.
“The security of a Jewish future will depend, not on the might of the Israeli military, but on the empowerment of young Jews to grapple with and act on urgent questions of social justice. We are here, we care, and we want to have these conversations without boundaries and red lines.
“Jewish communities keep asking themselves over and over again, “How do we engage young Jews?” Well, here is your answer: Drop the policies that alienate students and attempt to police thought and opinion. Be accountable to student voices, not just donors’ political agendas. Empower student leaders and decision-makers, don’t infantilise them.”
Click here to read the JEWS FOR JUSTICE FOR PALESTINIANS Conference Declaration of Independence by Young American Jews. Wow! It’s mind-blowing for South Africans.
Then, Zellner & Co’s friends get scary
Readers might also find it interesting, on the same website, to read: US activists must raise the political cost of defending the occupation. That Jews can be so rabidly anti-Zionist is really scary.
Follow the conference tweets on what Zellner and others posted from the HILLEL CONFERENCE – WARNING: be ready for shock!
A YAHOO GROUP to which Zellner, JVP and JEWS SAY NO! belong, is revealing as to where these Jews stand. Check it out.
Dorothy Zellner penned an op-ed piece on her pet organisation’s website, AJC.com, called (Martin Luther) “King’s words live on in Palestinian City”. Heck, I couldn’t demonise her any more than she does herself, no matter how hard I tried.
“Zellner writes that: “As a veteran of the 1960s civil rights movement, I hope this year’s Martin Luther King Day will be more than the usual constant repetition of his “I have a dream” speech. … This great movement of African-American civilians and their white allies lacked an army or air force, yet we imprinted our freedom demands on the national consciousness for the following decades and presumably, for decades to come.”
But, she continues, “There are other movements of civil society in every continent of the world. The one I have seen with my own eyes is the movement of Palestinians resisting Israel’s occupation… More civil society actions to highlight Palestinian dispossession are being planned, probably the most spectacular of which will be the next flotilla planned to take place a few months from now. Ordinary civilians from the U.S. will embark on “The Audacity of Hope,” a U.S.-flagged boat, to sail the Mediterranean and bring the world’s attention to the Israeli siege of Gaza.
“The Israelis have threatened snipers and attack dogs against unarmed people but ultimately, the worldwide effort to end this siege will succeed”.
I couldn’t demonise them more if I tried
According to Rebecca Vilkomerson of JVP, an organizer of a National September 11 Memorial Museum vigil on the opening of the museum (which JVP didn’t seem to like) wrote on their website that the event: “will play a unique and invaluable role in educating the public about September 11. But we are concerned that many people who come from all over the world, and who are not well informed about Muslims and Islam, will come away with inaccuracies and misconceptions. That would do an injustice to the Muslim community and to all our communities.
RIGHT: Dorothy Zellner
“The Jewish groups gathering in front of the Museum honour the memory of those who perished on that date and also call upon the Museum to take seriously the concerns expressed by its own multi-faith advisory council, scholars, leading Muslim American and Arab American organizations, and community leaders. According to a letter signed by 400 scholars world-wide, ‘Labels to describe organisations such as al-Qaeda are heavily disputed among academics’, and in a public environment, without proper explanation and historical context, these terms could easily mislead and assign collective responsibility to Muslims and Islam.”
Opening the 9/11 museum
Co-sponsored by Zellner’s “Jews Say No!” and “JVP” organisations, JEWSAGAINSTISLAMAPHOBIA.com ran a protest in May 2014 ahead of the opening of the 9/11 Museum in which they said: “As we honour the memory of those who perished on 9/11, please join us to call upon the Museum to edit a six-minute video, The Rise of Al Qaeda, that contains disturbing terminology linking Islam with terrorism and that fails to contextualize al-Qaeda”.
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Marjorie Dove Kent, another of Dorothy Zellner’s cohorts from Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, and another of the vigil’s co-sponsoring groups, made clear that they wanted a video not to be shown because: “The video’s current script will reinforce a dangerous falsehood at the heart of a post-September 11 narrative: that all Muslims are responsible for the attacks on September 11. Connecting Islam as a religion with the September 11 attackers has helped drive a national backlash against Muslims and those assumed to be Muslims – Arab Americans, Sikhs and other South Asians.” This backlash has included individual anti-Muslim hate crimes and government policies and actions, such as the New York Police Department (NYPD) program that has targeted Muslims because of their religion, not because of indicators of criminal activity – a program that, according to a prominent NYPD official, “never generated a lead or triggered a terrorism investigation.”
At the vigil, Zellner herself said: “Jews have long resisted the idea of ‘collective guilt’ as applied to Jews. Editing this video for fairness will prevent the acts of a small group from being associated with an entire world religion. We are standing here today as Jews, together with our allies, to reflect our profound commitment to dignity and respect for all.”
The “Palestine: Information with Provenance” database lists the WORKS & DEEDS OF DOROTHY ZELLNER – another interesting insight into just who and what Zellner represents.
It is hard to believe these Jews are Jews
The JVP’s will be holding a conference in 2015 “Gaza Will be Free.” Click to see the “quarterlyish” JVP SEPT 2014 NEWSLETTER which carries this advert for their 2015 conference
RIGHT: The ad for the 2015 JVP conference on their newsletter
Support for Israel in the U.S. Jewish community continues to erode, according to another of the anti-Israel organisations Dorothy Zellner co-founded. On Nov 19, 2014 Marilyn Kleinberg Neimark and Donna Nevel of JUST SAY NO! – a pet project of Zellner’s – wrote the following on their website: “Since the inception of the Zionist movement at the end of the 19th century right on up to today, there have always been Jews who took issue with particular aspects of –or even the very idea of– a Jewish nation-state in historic Palestine. The recent Israeli bombardment of and incursion into Gaza – what Israel called “Operation Protective Edge” – saw a new surge in Jewish-American opposition to Israeli practices and policies. While this activism stands on a many-layered foundation of more than half-a-century of organizing in the US – especially from 1967 forward –it reveals some new and heartening trends.”
Writing on Tikkun.org on August 26 2014, WHAT ELLA BAKER TAUGHT US ABOUT FERGUSON AND GAZA proved to be another opportunistic means for Dorothy Zellner to keep her toxic anti-Israel feelings on the agenda. “In order for us as poor and oppressed people to become a part of a society that is meaningful, the system under which we now exist has to be radically changed” wrote Zellner, quoting Ella Baker.
Needless to say, DOROTHY ZELLNER’S SIGNATURE features on this recent petition to the US Congress, entitled: “We Jews Oppose Calls for the U.S. to Bomb Syria. We are appalled that (AIPAC) is sending hundreds of people to lobby Congress to approve a resolution to bomb Syria. The media also reports that Sheldon Adelson and the Republican Jewish Coalition are pushing hard for war. We don’t want it to be known that Jews stood silent as the powerful Israel lobby helped push the U.S. into a war in defiance of international law and American public opinion.
“The Israeli government should stop pointing the finger and admit its own abuses of chemicals. It used white phosphorus in its terrible 2008 attack on Gaza. Over the years it has used tear gas recklessly and killed and sickened many, many Palestinians.
“The Israeli government’s apparent belief that Jews are better off if Arab or Muslim countries are devastated one after another must be challenged and repudiated.”
Divest from the Israeli occupation
Another project close to our Dorothy’s heart is divestment. BDS is good. The JVP WEBSITE is full of it.On DemocracyInAction they had a petition against investors – à la #BoycottWoolworths. “We are participants and investors in TIAA-CREF funds who are deeply concerned that TIAA-CREF invests in many companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of the Gaza strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Some of these companies provide weapons and covert surveillance supplies that maintain the occupation by force. Others take or exploit Palestinian resources, including scarce water and even the land itself. All are profiting from Israel’s violations of international law and international human rights standards.
They then go on to list companies and how they are profiting – and demand the investment house divests from all the companies.
Did it ever occur to these loony-Jews that they could simply move their investments away from TIAA-CREF if that would make them feel better?
That the Grande Dame of these toxic anti-Jewish Jews could have been invited to South Africa by BDS, StopTheJNF, JVJP and the likes was bad enough. But not for them.
The anti-Zionists then proceeded to take it upon themselves to try and create a chink in the armour of SA Jewry’s fervent Zionist policies by conning, yes, I said CONNING, certain upstanding and respected members of our community into participating in their anti-Israel campaigning – and almost cause a split in the proudly-Zionist Progressive community – that was disgraceful!
From now on, we had better keep our eyes wide open. We need to spot these toxic forces before they grow. Just how the seemingly three-member-strong local Jewish anti-Zionist organisation, JVJP, can have penned and published Thou shalt not bear false witness is beyond this writer. WE can only hope they stay a three-member-strong friend of BDS/StopTheJNF and their ilk!
Related recent reads on SAJR.CO.ZA
- Disunity over BDS plagues SA Progressive Jewry
- Bet David Rabbi pitches in on Progressive/BDS issue
- A very skewed view of what Beit Emanuel stands for
- Thou shalt not bear false witness
- “I am not the BDS/StopTheJNF Allan Horwitz”
- JVJP disingenuous on BDS, JVP stance says Coetzee
Previously published on SAJR.CO.ZA
BDS’ Desai: The uber-spin-doctor – blog on “Shoot the Jew” by Ant Katz
Most grievous Jew-hatred in SA for 50 years – column by Board’s Chuck Volpe
BDS justify legitimacy of “Shoot the Jew” – by Board & Fed national chairs
Political anti-Semitism threatens SA Jewry – “Shoot the Jew” op-ed by Chuck Volpe
Wits’ Habib draws line on protest vs. BDS hooliganism – by Ant Katz
BDS-SA “Shoot the Jew” et al an abject failure – by Fed Cape chair Ben Levitas
BDS do damage control in wake of “Shoot the Jew” – by SAJBD’s David Saks
TOP TEN ANTI-ISRAEL ORGS – SEE PG 12 OF
ADL LIST FOR JVFP’S ANTI-ISRAEL ACTIVITIES