The news that Barack Obama will accept an award Tuesday from filmmaker Steven Spielberg for his humanitarian work on behalf of the Jewish people is evoking a strong reaction from Israel supporters and critics of the president.
Spielberg’s decision to honor Obama shows he is out of touch with the problems the Jewish people face, according to commentator and author Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs.
“With all the work Steven Spielberg has done in increasing awareness of the Holocaust, and not just ‘Schindler’s List’ but his Shoah project as well, he just doesn’t get it. It’s astonishing,” she told WND.
She contends Obama has allowed Iran, which has vowed to wipe out Israel, to continue to pursue its nuclear-weapon ambitions, “paving the way for the next holocaust.”
Her comments, and others joining her perspective, came after it was announced that Spielberg, through the USC Shoah Foundation, will honor Obama with its Ambassador to Humanity Award.
The Hill reported the foundation was created by Spielberg after he finished “Schindler’s List.” The organization collects and preserves the video testimonies of survivors and witnesses to the Holocaust.
Nearly 52,000 such testimonies already have been recorded.
Spielberg was one of the top donors to Obama’s political advancement, with $1 million given in 2012.
“President Obama’s commitment to democracy and human rights has long been felt,” he said. “As a constitutional scholar and as president, his interest in expanding justice and opportunity and all is remarkably evidence.”
Geller said the attitude “is illustrative of the willful blindness of liberal Jews.”
“They have traded their religion for their politics. They have traded G-d (and their morality) for whomever is carrying the torch for human secularism. And now it is Obama,” she said.
She warned that Obama, through his action, or inaction, regarding Iran, is “single-handedly paving the way for the next holocaust.”
“Iran has vowed to wipe Israel off the map. When Iran goes nuclear, it’s not a question of whether there will be a war against Israel and the West, it’s only a question of when,” she said.
And yet, she said, Obama has made it possible for Iran to openly pursue its nuclear objectives.
“Obama got nothing from Iran at the Geneva summit, but Iran got everything. Netanyahu said of the agreement with Iran that it ‘is a bad deal. It’s a very bad deal. Iran is not required to take apart even one centrifuge. But the international community is relieving sanctions on Iran for the first time after many years. Iran gets everything that it wanted at this stage and it pays nothing,’” she said.
“One Iranian nuke can take out 6 million Jews. And Speilberg thinks that Obama deserves an award for this?” she said.
Geller cited libertarian thinker Ayn Rand said, who said “evil is made possible by the sanction you give it. Withdraw your sanction.”
“This is good advice for Mr. Speilberg,’ she said. “Withdraw your sanction.”
Geller said for the Jewish people, it’s “the late ’30s all over again.”
“Then too, the record of the establishment American Jews was shameful,” she said. “Then, too, Jewish leadership in America went along with the delusion that keeping the Jews out of Israel was the best course – because FDR said so. The American Jews went along then and they are going along with Obama now. Shame on Steve Speilberg for rendering ‘never again’ an empty slogan, devoid of meaning.”
Several Jewish organizations declined to respond to WND’s request for comment.
Joseph Farah, a former Middle East correspondent and now CEO of WND, WND Books and WND Films, wrote in a commentary, “Not since Yasser Arafat won the Nobel Peace Prize have I been so outraged about an award.”
Farah said that in making the announcement, Spielberg “seemed consciously to avoid making a connection between Obama and his work in fostering Holocaust remembrance or even a commitment to the Jewish people.”
“It’s no wonder. Obama has no track record of accomplishment in those areas. In fact, I would argue he has not been a friend to Jews or the state of Israel,” Farah wrote.
“It’s difficult to image a more inappropriate person than Barack Obama to receive an award associated Holocaust remembrance. The other names that come to mind for me would be John Kerry, Obama’s secretary of state, who recently characterized Israel as an ‘apartheid state,’ perhaps the mullahs in Iran who constantly call for Israel’s destruction, perhaps Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority or the leaders of terrorist organizations like Hezbollah or Hamas.
Farah said no U.S. president since Israel was reborn in 1948 has been less of a friend to Israel or the Jewish people than Barack Obama.
“He seeks to redraw the nation’s borders in a way that would leave Israel unable to defend itself. He has sought to freeze building by Jews in and around Israel’s capital. He seeks a so-called peace agreement that would involve ethnic cleansing of Jews in a future Palestinian state. Obama is not operating in the spirit of Oscar Schindler. On the contrary, he is operating in the spirit of those who appeased Adolf Hitler in the 1930s. He is operating in the spirit of those who looked the other way as six million Jews were exterminated.”
He pointed out that Obama has supported the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and Syria, demanded Israel continue to divide the miniscule amount of land in holds among the vast stretches of the hostile Middle East, pushes Israel to make peace at any cost with neighbors who are sworn to the Jewish state’s destruction and “he sat in the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s pews for 20 years and never noticed that he was a raving anti-Semite bigot.”
Laurie Cardoza Moore of Proclaiming Justice to the Nations called the honor “absolutely outrageous.”
“One need only look at Obama secretary of State John Kerry’s pathetic leadership and comments since his appointment,” she said.
Moore said Kerry “has a record of inciting ‘terrorist attacks’ against innocent Israeli’s and, just last week, suggested that in the absence of a two-state peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority, Israel would become an ‘apartheid state.’”
“The very notion that Israel should be forced by the Obama administration to negotiate with the PA after they signed a ‘reconciliation agreement’ with Hamas, a terrorist organization, is ludicrous,” she said. “Obama never publicly condemned Kerry’s comments.”
Moore said that only are Spielberg’s comments “an insult to Jews around the world, but they are also an affront to the thousands of Christians and Muslims in the Middle East who are being slaughtered as a result of Obama’s failed foreign policy.”
“In giving this award to Obama, Spielberg and the Shoah Foundation have been shown to be both contemptible and irrelevant,” she said.
Evangelist Ray Comfort, whose projects include “180 The Movie,” said it’s “a tragedy beyond words that a man who produced ‘Schindler’s List,’ a producer who said ‘I ‘was put on this earth to tell the story of the Holocaust,’ would now honor a president that has done more than any other president to further the American holocaust of the killing of babies in the womb.”
“Such misdirected esteem reminds me of the words of Scripture: ‘For what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination in the sight of God,’” he said. “The butchery of millions of children in the womb is the result of man’s greatest and yet the most obscure of sins: idolatry. It opened the door to the Nazi holocaust.
Comfort said Hitler “created his own image of God and then killed in his god’s name, and idolatry has opened the door to the taking of 60 million lives.”
Obama’s list is not like Schindler’s by Joseph Farah