Tag Archives: Tom Segev

Hasbara? Leave it to the Canadians

Senior Editor Mandy Katz reports from Israel:

Rather than presenting its case to foreigners, Israel should save its breath, a leading Israeli diplomat asserted last week. “Yes to public diplomacy, no to apologetics,” former U.S. Consul-General Alon Pinkas told an audience assembled at Jerusalem’s Begin Center to review new projects aimed at improving Israel’s international image.

“Let the Canadians defend their right to exist,” asserted Pinkas. “Not us.”

His comments, reported in HaAretz, poured a surprisingly cold bucket of water on 150 fresh-faced university students finishing up StandWithUs, a year-long program in improving Israeli outreach. “Hasbara,” he told them—using the term for Israel advocacy, propaganda or public relations—”is not a policy, but a Jewish state of mind.” Continue reading