Israeli Ambassador to Accept Award From Frank Gaffney’s Anti-Muslim Hate Group
That Ron Dermer, Israeli’s ambassador to the United State, is a right winger is not news at all. While still a student, he worked alongside Frank Luntz in the 1994 campaign for the GOP to take over the House of Representatives. He also helped arrange Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign visit to Israel.
One might assume that joining the diplomatic corps in 2013 would have curtailed Dermer’s partisan activity, but this has not been the case. First, he made the bizarre decision to participate in the so-called “Adelson Primary” in 2014. This was an event organized by Sheldon Adelson’s Republican Jewish Coalition for prospective GOP presidential candidates to beg for financial support from the casino billionaire.
Even worse, Dermer played a key role in orchestrating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s controversial speech to the US Congress in 2015. This was regarded as both a campaign stunt for the PM and an affront to President Obama.
All of this pales in comparison to what Ron Dermer is about to do, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The anti-Muslim think tank Center for Security Policy (CSP) announced that it will present the current Israeli ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, with its highest award at a Dec.13 ceremony in New York City.
The decision by the ambassador to accept CSP’s Freedom Flame award not only further legitimizes this organization, but could be read as an endorsement of anti-Muslim hate by the Israeli government. The CSP and its founder, Frank Gaffney, are known for alleging Muslim infiltration of the U.S. government, suggesting that “creeping Shariah” law is threatening American democracy and more. Donald Trump at one point cited a bogus CSP “poll” that alleged that 25% of American Muslims support violence, a claim that serious polls show is ludicrous.
SPLC’s Hatewatch reached out to the Israeli Embassy in Washington DC for comment. A spokesman made this baffling contention:
Ambassador Dermer is not aware of any anti-Muslim views held by the Center for Security Policy and certainly would not endorse any such view.
Perhaps the Israeli Embassy could have spent a moment on the SPLC’s website before Ambassador Dermer agreed to accept the award?
Gaffney is known for his accusations that the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated all levels of government and warnings that “creeping Shariah,” or Islamic religious law, is a threat to American democracy. He has called for congressional hearings along the lines of the notorious House Un-American Activities Committee that investigated supposed “reds” during the Cold War. The CSP was banned for a time from the Conservative Political Action Conference, a high-powered annual gathering of leading conservatives, after it accused two prominent American conservatives of being agents of the Muslim Brotherhood. Last year, Gaffney hosted a notorious white nationalist, Jared Taylor, on his radio show. Taylor has written that black people are not capable of sustaining civilization, among other insults.
Israel has far too many problems to be compounding them by climbing into bed with the professional hate industry. Dermer has a history of behavior unbecoming a diplomat, but this would be a dangerous new low for him and his country.