Advice for J Street

From Natasha Mozgovaya, the Ha'aretz correspondent in Washington:

J Street needs to make a clear decision - if they want to be truly inclusive, as they claim to be - they shouldn't be afraid to be so, despite the price they may have to pay. By continuing their current modus operandi - trying to dodge controversy - they are actually creating more controversies and might lose credibility even among their left-wing supporters. If they want to become a unique voice, they should say: "We do not agree, but we listen to all voices - and not under the table."

Also, as Mozgovaya suggests, J Street should stop lying to reporters. Jeremy Ben-Ami, the president of J Street, is spinning madly these days, trying to convince his supporters that this scandal is the product of a right-wing conspiracy. It is not -- the scandal flows from a series of decisions made by J Street to cover-up facts it deemed unpalatable. Let me put this another way: If it were discovered today that AIPAC, J Street's nemesis, received more than $800,000 from a Hong Kong-based "business associate" -- Ben-Ami's words -- of a prominent horse bettor, the people at AIPAC would be undergoing, by tomorrow, a journalistic colonoscopy like they've never experienced.


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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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