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Monday, April 23, 2018 

Natalie Portman's ultra-leftism comes to a head

She couldn't have chosen a worse time to make a fool of herself by refusing to attend an awards ceremony in Israel because she despises the government:
In a 70th-anniversary present to the State of Israel, Portman announced that she would not come to accept this year’s $2 million Genesis Prize, which would then be directed to the charities of her choice, because according to a post on her Instagram feed, she “did not want to appear as endorsing [Prime Minister] Benjamin Netanyahu, who was to be giving a speech at the ceremony.”

In clarifying her reasoning for turning down the award, Portman noted that “like many Israelis and Jews around the world, I can be critical of the leadership in Israel without wanting to boycott the entire nation. I treasure my Israeli friends and family, Israeli food, books, art, cinema and dance. Israel was created exactly 70 years ago as a haven for refugees from the Holocaust. But the mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities is simply not in line with my Jewish values.”

America and Israel are both vibrant democracies—at least, in terms of basic freedoms of speech—and Portman’s decision is most certainly within her right. And, of course, with that right to protest comes the right to counter-protest from across the Jewish and Israeli political spectrum.

Portman’s comments raise several concerns. While Portman says that her “decision not to attend the Genesis Prize ceremony has been mischaracterized by others,” if she believes that Israel was created to be a safe haven for Jewish Holocaust refugees, then her belief undermines the legitimate right of the Jewish people to live in Israel—the indigenous home of the Jewish people for nearly 3,000 years. Her statement ignores more than 1 million refugees from Arab lands absorbed into the Jewish state in the years shortly after its founding, and the whopping 1 million refugees from the former Soviet Union in the 1980s and 1990s.

If Portman honestly believes that if whatever “today’s atrocities” might be that they can rank high enough to be mentioned in the very next sentence after a reference to the Holocaust, then she has severely “mischaracterized” current events. While Portman emphatically states that she is “not part of the BDS movement and [does] not endorse it,” she echoes the mistruths mouthed by Israel’s fiercest enemies.

When Israel’s enemies stage theater to mischaracterize Israeli aggression, the term for such propaganda is called “Pallywood.”
And now that she's opened her big, dumb mouth, rather than win over Israelis, she's won over the very BDS activists she's supposedly against including Peace Now. I don't buy that she's against them at all. In fact, as noted at the Algemeiner:
Israeli Culture Minister Miri Regev hit the nail on the head, noting, “Natalie Portman fell into the hands of the BDS supporters, [and presented the story of Israel as] a tale of darkness.”

As Hillel Neuer of UN Watch told Portman, “If 30,000 rioters were at your borders & approaching your family in Los Feliz, and they were orchestrated by a terror group that advocates the murder of all Jews, I believe you would ‘in good conscience’ support officers doing their best to protect you.”
The organization shouldn't even have offered her the prize. Certainly not without scrutinizing her record. She's been like this for over a decade or so, supporting leftist positions, and I recall one time she apologized to Haredi moonbats in 2005 or so for angering their belief there shouldn't be kissing at the Western Wall for them to see as she was filming a scene for a movie. It goes without saying her "cultural sensitivity" to the ultra-Orthodox is just as bad as kowtowing to Islam.

Caroline Glick says the US Jewish community has to shoulder some blame for Portman's betrayal, and:
Indeed, if her hatred for Netanyahu drove her to boycott the prize, the Genesis Prize Foundation should sue her for fraud since it means that she never intended to accept the prize and she deliberately sabotaged the foundation’s work.
I think that's a great idea, if they're willing to consider it. Glick also adds the same points as the JNS article makes clear:
Portman’s statement also bespeaks an amazing contempt for Israel itself – in two deeply distressing ways.

First, her claim that Israel was created “as a haven for refugees from the Holocaust” is a dangerous lie. It is a lie Israel’s most murderous enemies propagate as a means of denying Israel’s right to exist. The Iranians and the Palestinians say the Jews have no ties to their ancestral homeland and that Israel is no more than a sop to Europe’s guilty conscience over the Holocaust.

The truth — which Portman is supposed to know as a proud “Israeli” — is that Zionism, the millennial movement of Jewish return to the land of Israel, and Zionist Jews created Israel. By the time the Holocaust began in 1938, the Jewish pioneers in the land of Israel had already built the foundations of that state. The Holocaust’s practical impact on Israel’s establishment was that it annihilated millions of Jews who wanted to immigrate to Israel.

As if that weren’t enough, Portman went on to reject Israeli democracy. Netanyahu is not a dictator. He and his government were elected by Israel’s voters. When Portman said she thinks Netanyahu is illegitimate, she effectively said the Israeli public which elected him is illegitimate.

Portman’s behavior isn’t surprising. She has been railing against Israel for the past three years in precisely the manner that she assaulted it last week.
And to be sure, for far more time than even I might think. Besides, as I noted before, she apparently thinks ultra-Orthodoxy is the only valid form of Orthodoxy in Judaism.
Which brings us to the real problem with the entire episode. Given her savage criticism of Israel, spanning years, Portman should never have received the Genesis Prize in the first place. The fact that she did, and the fact that neither the Genesis Prize foundation nor the American Jewish leadership has yet condemned her since she betrayed her word so viciously, is a testament to the political stupidity of American Jewish leadership.
Of course. She's sadly not a "prize" for Israel as an actress who was born here. It's best to boycott her films and TV programs at this point to let her know this is just unacceptable, and the Genesis foundation had better part ways with her for good. It's going to be pretty hard watching the Star Wars movies she appears after this, unless she's willing to apologize and stop wasting time in politics.

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