Orthodox Jews, as well as vegans and allergy sufferers, know that a Kosher certification label on food means that it complies with religious dietary laws. For example a Kosher product marked as “dairy” will not have meat ingredients in it. But to the left, Kosher food represents an untapped opportunity to use as a Trojan horse for imposing their social agenda. And the vehicle for that agenda is “Tav HaYosher” a form of certification that describes itself as “Kosher,” but is actually a union label in disguise.
The group pushing this seal, Uri L’Tzedek, describes itself as an Orthodox social justice organization, but is actually a left-wing group closely interlocked with the Soros-backed Jewish Funds for Justice. Its model is to declare boycotts against Jewish companies for failing to comply with union demands while offering its political “seal of approval” to restaurants and supermarkets that are willing to knuckle under to them.
Uri L’Tzedek dresses up the thuggish tactics of the secular left in religious garb and calls its community organizers “rabbis” in order to be able to better shake down Jewish establishments, but there’s no more religion here than in the similar antics of the Reverend Jesse Jackson and the Reverend Al Sharpton.
Staging a boycott of a company for political offenses and then offering “protection” to other companies with the boycotter’s own social justice certification is an old game and it helped hucksters like Jesse Jackson build an empire. Now Uri L’Tzedek is one of several left-wing groups misrepresenting the social justice certifications from its “compliance officers” as a religious function and wrongly associating its union label with Kosher certification.
Restaurants that allow Uri L’Tzedek’s blackmailing community organizers in the door discover that they can’t leave without being subjected to a smear campaign. Its latest “victory” was won on behalf of the Industrial Workers of the World, a radical leftist union, with ugly views on Israel, against a Jewish company. There is no reason to think that this would trouble Uri L’Tzedek, whose leaders are not known for being too fond of the Jewish State.
Ari Hart, a co-founder of Uri L’Tzedek, has written several articles attacking Israel, describing the Jewish State as “responsible for the suffering and oppression of another people.”
The Rosh Beit Medrash of Uri L’Tzedek, Elisheva Goldberg, is an Anti-Israel activist who works for George Soros’ New America Foundation, as an assistant to Peter Beinart and a contributor to his Open Zion blog. The former Compliance Officer and current Director of Tav HaYosher Engagement at Uri L’Tzedek, Hadas “Dasi” Fruchter, is a J Street and Occupy Wall Street supporter. And the Uri L’Tzedek Board includes a member of J Street’s Finance Committee.
While Uri L’Tzedek is an arm of the Anti-Israel left, its focus isn’t on Israel and it has avoided highlighting its enthusiasm for groups such as J Street, though its personnel haven’t been nearly as discreet on their Twitter and Facebook accounts. A number of its personnel, including at least one of its founders, are also veterans of Encounter, another left-wing group with a pseudo-religious overlay, which seeks to undermine the Jewish State. But unlike J Street, Uri L’Tzedek is not currently focused on a campaign against Israel; rather it is at war with traditional Jewish communities right here in the United States.
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