B'nai B'rith

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Newly elected president Charles O. Kaufman addresses the 2018 B’nai B’rith International Leadership Forum: Just back from New York City, where he was elected to serve at the helm of B’nai B’rith, Charles O. Kaufman eagerly chats about the future of the 175-year-old organization and why if there is to be peace in the Middle East “the Palestinians need to do more with less.” [...] In Texas he testified at the state legislature on behalf of anti-BDS legislation, which overwhelmingly passed both houses and was signed into law. During that period Kaufman said he was dismayed, but not surprised, that opposition to the legislation primarily included Jewish Voice for Peace and other progressive Jewish groups. “It shows some of the challenges we have facing us and it’s disconcerting to see this disconnect over support for Israel,” he said. [...] It’s not just the US. European countries are also having a difficult time. Germany is struggling with 1.2 million refugees, many of whom don’t want to assimilate. Britain is facing this too. [...] As far as the US is concerned we have some real challenges ahead of us. There is a great divide among the rabbinates and among congregants about Zionism. Zionism has become a bad word. It’s been politicized.[1]

The B'nai B'rith (Hebrew literally meaning "Children of the Covenant") is a Jews-only, pro-Jewish, and Zionist organization with similarities to Freemasonry.


The organization was founded in New York City in 1843. "Despite its fraternal and local beginnings, B'nai B'rith spoke out for Jewish rights early in its history and used its growing national chain of lodges as a way to exercise political influence on behalf of world Jewry. In 1851, for example, it circulated petitions urging Secretary of State Daniel Webster to demand the end of Jewish disabilities in Switzerland, during on-going trade negotiations.

Into the 1920s the B'nai B'rith continued in its political work by joining in Jewish delegations and lobbying efforts through which American Jews sought to influence public policy, both domestic and foreign. B'nai B'rith also played a crucial role in transnational Jewish politics. The later spread of the organization around the world made it a nerve center of intra-Jewish communication and mutual endeavor."[2]

The controversial Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 as a branch of the B'nai B'rith, although now stated to be independent. The B'nai B'rith is affiliated with the World Jewish Congress.

Gold medal for "humanitarian services"

German Chancellors Helmut Kohl (1996) and Angela Merkel (2008) as well as various other European political leaders have received the "Europe Award of Merit-Medaille" from B'nai B'rith for their semitophile activities. In no way does the fact of beeing awarded mean that the recipient is Jewish or member of B'nai B'rith. Many world leaders have received the highest B'nai B'rith Award, the "Presidential Gold Medal", including John F. Kennedy, George H. W. Bush, Stephen Harper, former Austrian chancellor Franz Vranitzky, Australian Prime Minister John Howard and former U.S. presidents Harry S. Truman, Gerald R. Ford and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

See also

External links

  • Website
  • B'nai B'rith - Less politically correct description of origins, stated to be based on an official history book