Articles by David Harris

Who Needs “Denazification”?
Russian President Vladimir Putin justified his current invasion of Ukraine by asserting the country needed to be denazified. It was a rather odd assertion, to say the least. Ukraine is led by a proud, democratically-elected Jew, Volodymyr Zelensky, chosen by nearly three-quarters of the voters in 2019. Meanwhile, Ukrainian Jews were enjoying a vibrant religious and communal life until the Russian assault, and the government had adopted one of the toughest measures anywhere against antisemitism.
Ironically, this was a perfect example of “the pot calling the kettle black.” Indeed, it was Putin’s regime drawing from the Nazi playbook, not Ukraine.
Putin’s Act Of War: How We Got Here And What To Do
With the brazen Russian invasion of Ukraine, it is important to try to understand how this happened and how to respond. This act of war didn’t occur in a vacuum. Russian President Vladimir Putin had said as early as 2005 that the “collapse of the Soviet Union was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century.”
AJC CEO David Harris at Ukrainian Congress Committee of America Press Conference
AJC CEO David Harris called out Russia’s brazen act of war against Ukraine and reiterated American Jewish Committee’s long standing commitment to an independent Ukraine.
Ukraine and the Meaning of Israel in 2022
There are as many as 300,000 Jews living in Ukraine today. Whatever happens in the weeks and months ahead, they know they don’t have to face the prospect of homelessness. And that’s because, thankfully, Israel is a reality.
Refugees, Rights And Peace In The Middle East
AJC CEO David Harris, responding to a Wall Street Journal essay by Israeli historian Benny Morris, points out that the mission of UNRWA, set up in 1949, made no reference to refugee resettlement, and its definition of a Palestinian refugee included future generations without any time limit. Question is why Unrwa is not under the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Amnesty International Claim That Israel Is An Apartheid State Is Recklessly Ill-Informed
The fundamental problem with the Amnesty International report is that it is disconnected from reality. Israel has nothing to do with apartheid, and apartheid has nothing to do with Israel.
Holocaust Remembrance Day – Why We Must Never Forget
January 27 has been designated by the United Nations as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The Holocaust defies imagination. Its aim was the Endlösung, or Final Solution, of the Jewish people. In pursuit of this goal, a new alphabet of genocide was created — from A for Auschwitz to Z for Zyklon-b, the nerve gas used in the gas chambers. Every Jew was a target, including 1.5 million children. The Jews were pursued for one reason— they were Jews and, according to Adolf Hitler’s demented worldview, all Jews had to be eliminated. Seventy-seven years after the war’s end, why should these events still matter?
We Stand With Ukraine
American Jewish Committee David Harris remarks on the Ukraine crisis.
Why Germany’s Iran Policy is Dangerous
In his latest interview with Germany’s BILD, the most-read newspaper in Europe, AJC CEO David Harris discusses Germany-Iran ties, Germany-Israel relations, COVID-19 conspiracy theories, Holocaust relativization and other current issues.
Time to Affirm Jewish Pride
Surveys reveal a disturbingly large number of American Jews who feel disconnected from their Jewish identity. How painfully sad! In response, let me share the essence of what being Jewish means to me.
An Open Letter to Ban Ki-moon
As United Nations secretary-general, you said more than once you were a friend of Israel. But then I read your oped in the Financial Times on June 29th. Could this really be the same Ban Ki-moon writing such a one-sided assault on Israel, raising questions about whether you truly are a friend or, still worse, if you are even committed today to Israel’s very existence.
To Antisemites, a Jew is a Jew is a Jew
All Jews ignore at their peril rising antisemitism.
Ilhan Omar Has a Problem With Jews
Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has a Jewish problem. Despite her repeated denials and the rush to circle the wagons from some left-wing Jews, there's an undeniable pattern.
Where's The Outrage?
There’s an entire global industry dedicated to vilifying and isolating Israel, the world’s only Jewish-majority nation. It’s time to wake up and take careful notice. And it’s time, yes, to unleash the outrage and act. The stakes couldn’t be higher.
Letter From A Forgotten Jew
AJC CEO David Harris’ "Letter from a Forgotten Jew" revisits an often-forgotten history of Jewish refugees from the Arab world.
A Jewish Call to Action: Ten Ways to Fight Back
Seemingly overnight, anti-Israel, anti-Zionist, and antisemitic incidents are being reported near and far. Many American Jews, who not so long ago thought these were threats faced by Jews elsewhere in the world but not here at home, are suddenly waking up to new realities.
An Open Letter to Nicholas Kristof
Nicholas Kristof, the well-known New York Times columnist, wrote a piece this week entitled “Were My Criticisms of Israel Fair?” As he put it, he experienced “pushback from readers” who questioned his earlier thoughts on “the recent Gaza war.” This column was a response to those readers. I have considerable respect for Kristof, although I don’t always agree with his views on Israel. In this case, I thought his argument fell short in several important ways.
Why History Still Matters: The 1967 Six-Day War
Without an understanding of what happened in the past, it’s impossible to grasp where we are today — and where we are has profound relevance for the region and the world. On June 5, fifty-four years ago, the Six-Day War broke out. While some wars fade into obscurity, this one remains as relevant today as in 1967. Many of its core issues remain unresolved.
Hamas Then, Hamas Now
It was exactly 20 years ago. My wife and I were attending a Shabbat dinner in Madrid on June 1st when someone gave us the news. A suicide bomber had struck a seaside discotheque, the Dolphinarium, in Tel Aviv. There were reportedly many casualties. It seems there’s no more understanding or, worse, concern among many today about what Hamas actually is than there was that unforgettable Friday evening in 2001.
15 Israel-related Whoppers
As Hamas fired deadly missiles at Israel for 11 straight days, Israel’s critics fired one verbal salvo after another. Unable or unwilling to distinguish between a terrorist organization, Hamas, seeking Israel’s destruction, and a democratic country trying to deny the group’s wish, they went for the jugular. Here are 15 of the most memorably outrageous accusations.