Eric Adams, Barack Obama get opposite receptions from Israeli government

Presidential approval ratings: Israel smiles on Beep as Obama, Netanyahu face off

The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Borough President Adams is getting along with Israel much better than President Obama these days.

The commander-in-chief’s tumultuous relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has hit a new low in recent weeks as Netanyahu heads into an election accusing Obama of being weak in negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program, and the president refuses to receive the prime minister when he visits Congress on March 3. Adams, on the other hand, received Israel’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Award during a ceremony before Monday night’s Nets game at Barclays Center.

The president of the only geographic entity that The Brooklyn Paper cares about said he was honored to accept the award, and that he may not have become the president of the united community board districts of Kings County were it not for King.

“I stand on the shoulders of giants like Dr. King and the trailblazers of the civil rights movement,” Adams said. “My public service is committed to furthering his legacy, advancing the welfare of every member of our human race.”

The Israeli state issues the award to individuals who it says embody King’s ideals in promoting diversity and tolerance, qualities the Beep represents, an Israeli diplomat said.

“Adams has dedicated his work to building bridges between peoples of all walks of life, upholding the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” Ido Aharoni said.

He did not say whether Obama had been considered for the award, but given that an unnamed Obama aide recently told a reporter for The Atlantic that Netanyahu is “a chicken-s---,” it seems unlikely.

Past recipients of the award include former Mayor David Dinkins, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D–Fort Greene), singer and activist Harry Belafonte, and author Toni Morrison.

Adams isn’t the only one feeling the Israeli love as Obama feels the Israeli snub.

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin visited a Christian center in East New York last month, and Mayor DeBlasio met with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat on Wednesday.

But not all Israeli visits to the borough have been welcomed, either. An exhibition game between the Nets and Maccabi Tel Aviv at the Rust Bowl in October drew Palestinian-rights protesters to the arena, and ended in a fight among attendees that left the head of the Sheepshead Bay Y with a broken nose and an activist facing criminal charges.

Israel, of course, faces international criticism for its own racial policies, which activists including former president Jimmy Carter have likened to South Africa’s program of apartheid. At issue are the disenfranchisement and restriction of movement of Palestinians in the occupied territories, segregated roads, schools, and housing, the barring of Palestinian exiles from returning, and more. Supporters of the policies counter that the measures are necessary to suppress terrorism, including military actions by Hamas, the party elected to control the Gaza Strip. Hamas’s charter calls for the eradication of the state of Israel.

Reach reporter Matthew Perlman at (718) 260–8310. E-mail him at Follow him on Twitter @matthewjperlman.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Epipany from Ex-Brooklyn says:
Israel giving an award that involves racial equality? That's a bit bizarre. That's like South Williamsburg giving an award to most ecumenical, racially tolerant community in New York.

Perlman seems basically to be trumpeting in this Adams advertisement that the black ex-cop from segregated, racially-tense Brooklyn is getting along better with the right wing divider from Israel than the black guy who leads the country.
Feb. 7, 2015, 12:44 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
So much bizarre irony in this...
Feb. 8, 2015, 1:59 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I don't see how this is an irony at all. Unlike the rest of the countries in the Mid East, Israel actually does tolerate minorities very well and they even get to have the same jobs the Jews have. If you asked how many non-Muslims get serve in the rest of the governments of the other countries in the region compared to non-Jews that are in the Knesset, you would find none. BTW, MLK, Jr was very supportive of a Jewish state such as Israel if you read what he supported not to mention that there were many Jews who marched with him when fighting for civil rights, but the anti-semites will never admit to that. Also, I suggest some of you watch Village of Peace, which is a documentary that talks about blacks coming to Israel to retrace their roots according to Christian beliefs especially in the town of Dimona, and I did see that the last year's Other Israel Film Festival.
Feb. 8, 2015, 3:21 pm
ty from pps says:
Tal... Please, for the love of all that is holy. Use the word 'irony' correctly.
Feb. 8, 2015, 6:41 pm
jay from nyc says:
yeah right Tal that is why, by Israeli law it MUST be majority Jewish,no discrimination there is there?
Feb. 8, 2015, 7:35 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Jay, minorities living in Israel make up 20% of the population. Many of them have the same jobs the Jews have not to mention have the right to vote and serve in politics there despite the fact that it has a Jewish majority. If they really do discriminate against them, please show me evidence with a reliable source that doesn't have an anti-Israel bias Also, Israel has the most diverse government in terms of culture in the Mid East. Try looking for minorities that have government positions in the rest of the region, and you will find almost none. BTW, more Arabs are serving in the Israeli military, so the might as well start getting drafted on a normal basis. Another thing is that Arabs, Bedouins, and even Druze find that living in Israel is a lot better than what their counterparts living in the rest of the region especially in having more freedom. As for your claim that the majority of Israel has to be Jewish, I don't know where you got that from, but even if it's that true, it's most likely not the case today. What do you think about the 57 countries with a Muslim majority or does just Israel, the only Jewish state in the world bother you? More importantly, try being a non-Muslim living in the rest of the region, and you'll see how much they are being discriminated compared to non-Jews living in Israel.
Feb. 8, 2015, 7:52 pm
Epiphany from Ex-Brooklyn says:
P.S. And Perlman in this ridiculous, inflammatory, myopic article is bent on keeping alive the very thing that King was seeking to eliminate: that a person should not be judged by the color of his skin, but on the content of his character. Perlman obviously finds the color of someone's skin extremely important. Why else would he care that Adams and Obama simply share the same skin color (which is obviously the whole point of the article)? And since Eric Adams is under a federal corruption probe and Obama is not (at least not yet), Perlman obviously cares little about the content of a person's character. Perlman obviously finds it acceptable to use as his focus two people who happen to have darker skin in a sensational and divisional way to attract readers. And to complete his political and geographical sucking up, since it's Brooklyn, to bring Israel into the equation.

And what would this "journalist" writing for the "only geographic entity that The Brooklyn Paper cares about" say to the the fact that "by 1987 Israel found itself the only developed nation in the world that still maintained strong, even strategic relations with apartheid South Africa, which was now entering its final throes." (Source): Byrnes, Rita M., ed. (1996). South Africa: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress

Additionally, Perlman either doesn't know (or more likely care—probably since it doesn't involve Brooklyn) that it has been suggested that: "Israeli and South African intelligence czars held regular conferences with each other to share information on enemy weapons and training. The co-ordination between the Israel Defense Forces and the South African Defense Force was unprecedented, with Israeli and South African generals giving each other unfettered access to each others' battlefields and military tactics, and Israel sharing with South Africa highly classified information about its missions, such as Operation Opera, which had previously only been reserved for the United States. (Source): Polakow-Suransky, Sasha (2010). The Unspoken Alliance: Israel's Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa. Random House.
Feb. 8, 2015, 7:57 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Epiphany, it's very likely that there were lots of countries that had relations with South Africa during the time of apartheid, but it seems that it's only Israel that gets those such as yourself off your rockers. The only difference when it comes to apartheid is that South Africa really did have it when the claim that Israel practices this goes unproven. Not that long ago, a politician that served in South Africa during the time of apartheid visited Israel and found nothing similar, and I highly doubt that it was set up to refute the claim. For those who don't know what apartheid is, it's when a minority group rules over a majority group(s) and forces segregation, and the claim that it has been in Israel has NEVER been found to be true since there aren't any laws that prohibit their minority population from living with the Jews last time I checked. Even if there were laws as such in the past, they are most likely repealed by now.
Feb. 8, 2015, 9:38 pm
ty from pps says:
The startlingly large number of lucid thoughts Tal Barzilai just spewed... well, it's just alarming. What is your mom feeding you, Tal?! Before we can say anti-semitic bike zealot, he'll be using the word 'irony' correctly. It's a modern miracle!
Feb. 9, 2015, 12:18 am
bkmanhatman from nubrucklyn says:
well at the least the Israeli's aren't going after Christians.
Feb. 9, 2015, 8:42 am
Judahspechal from Bedstuy says:
There are many videos on YouTube that show Isreali's intolerance to migrants, especially Africans.
Videos of a guy getting attacked while preaching from the bible in the streets.
As they says Google it.
Feb. 10, 2015, 9:54 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Even if those videos are real, the Israeli Jews that are doing it are mostly from a fringe. I will not deny that there are extremists on the Israeli side, but they are called out by their own kind constantly. Israel has a record of condemning such extremists be it on the streets or even within their government, and the Knesset does have a history of removing such parties that have either called for the death of all non-Jews or have them kicked out of the country. I would love to see how many Muslim extremists are called out on the Palestinian side let alone in the rest of the Muslim nations, but they are probably either ignored for the most part or just given a slap on the wrist. As for that video, it's probably done by someone who is trying to blow up something out of proportion to promote their anti-Israel propaganda.
Feb. 10, 2015, 5:59 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: