EMET is focused on educating the administration, the Congress and the public-at-large. We spend a great deal of time on Capitol Hill educating members and staffers about the various moving parts that are now flexing their muscles within the Middle East, including Iran under the rule of Khamenei, Turkey under the rule of Erdogan, Syria under the rule of Bashir Assad, and all of the various terrorist groups, both Sunni and Shiite.
We are a 501(c)3, and therefore, are only allowed a limited amount of time for legislation.
Despite those constraints and despite our very small staff, EMET is proud of the following legislative successes:
Today, there are many Arab forward-thinking intellectuals, dissidents, and journalists who are languishing in prison because of their overtures of friendship to Israelis. Recently, 23-year-old Lebanese journalist Kinda al-Khatib was arrested and is languishing in prison because she tweeted to an Israeli journalist that she is “enthusiastic that one day there will be peace between our peoples” and criticized Hezbollah on social media.
EMET has worked closely with the offices of Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) in drafting the Israel Relations Normalization Act of 2021. This bill attempts to strengthen and expand the Abraham Accords, encouraging economic ties between Israel and its Sunni Arab neighbors and encouraging the teaching of education about the Holocaust and other events in Jewish history in collaboration with the US Holocaust Museum. Most importantly, it tasks the State Department to keep a record as part of their annual Human Rights Report of how Arab nations deal with dissidents who reach out to Jews and Israelis in friendship. This has never been touched on before. EMET is proud to have worked so hard for multiple years to ensure the passing of the bill, giving Israel not just the security tools, but also the diplomatic tools it needs.
For the last several years, EMET has been virtually alone on Capitol Hill speaking about the increasing hold that the radical Shiite terrorist group, Hezbollah, has had over the Lebanese Armed Forces. Up until now, the United States has given more than $100 million annually to the Lebanese Armed Forces in the hope that it will exert some leverage over Hezbollah.
Since 2005, the U.S. has given $2.3 billion in military assistance to the LAF, on top of more than $1.2 billion in US economic assistance given to Lebanon since 2006. However, we have seen that rather than counterbalancing Hezbollah, the Lebanese Armed Forces have enabled Hezbollah to take greater and greater control of the army, so much so that when Israel discovered the existence of cross border tunnels built by Hezbollah into Israel and informed the Lebanese Armed Forces, they refused to do anything to prevent this. EMET has had hundreds of meetings and at least one seminar about this issue, and has spoken to the Trump administration about this.
On Friday, November 1st, 2019, the Trump administration has decided to suspend our American aid to the Lebanese Armed Forces, since it is working in tandem with Hezbollah.
Long before founding EMET, dating back to the 1990s, EMET founder and president Sarah Stern worked with a small group of intellectuals, scholars, and activists to educate them about the strategic necessity of the Golan Heights for Israel’s survival.
In those days, there were many powerful forces in Washington, Jerusalem, and Damascus who firmly believed that the Golan Heights could be traded to then Syrian President Haffez al Assad for a flimsy promise of “peace.” There had even been plans of stationing US troops on the Golan Heights, as a way to sweeten the bitter pill of an Israeli withdrawal from that valuable, strategic high ground.
As the decades unfolded, it became increasingly clearer that there is absolutely no substitute for the topographical plateau of the Golan Heights which overlooks Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan.
After the destabilizing events of the Arab Spring of 2011, and the onset of the Syrian Civil War, it became increasingly more clear that the Golan Heights are essential for Israel’s survival, and particularly now that Syria is a failed state. EMET has never ceased to work tirelessly on this issue. We have authored letters to President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo about this issue.
We have held seminars on this issue, written articles on this issue, worked with Senator Ted Cruz and Chairman Ron DeSantis and others to sponsor a Sense of Congress Resolution about this issue, have appeared on television about this issue and have personally spoken to members of the National Security Council and the Trump administration about this issue.
On March 25, 2019, President Donald Trump officially stated that the United States recognizes Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
Since the Oslo Accords were signed on September 13, 1993, the Palestinian Authority has invested millions of dollars in the incentivization of the murder of innocent Israeli civilians. It is a part of the Palestinian Authority law that the families of those martyred or those who have been imprisoned receive generous rewards to incentivize their murders.
The Palestinians actually have a schedule of payments to the families of martyrs and the prisoners, which clearly spells out that the more people they slay, the more generous the payment. This program of inducement to murder was first uncovered by Itamar Marcus of Palestinian Media Watch, and EMET brought Itamar to Capitol Hill numerous times to speak with members of Congress about this, and have hosted him in several seminars.
In March of 2016, Taylor Force, a graduate of West Point, who had successfully served two tours of duty with the US Armed Forces, one in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, went to Israel as a graduate student with his class from Vanderbilt University, and while touring was mistaken for a Jew, and was fatally stabbed by a Palestinian terrorist. A bill, named in memory of Taylor, was introduced in the US House and Senate to deduct the amount of American aid to the Palestinian Authority that goes into the Palestinian “Prisoner’s Pensions’ Fund” and “Martyrs Fund.” EMET was there from the onset when the bill was initially introduced by Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.), Senator Lindsey Graham (R- SC) and Senator Roy Bunt (R-Mo.), and worked vociferously for its passage.
When the bill was finally passed and signed into law by President Donald Trump on March 23, 2018, EMET received an email from Taylor Force’s parents, Stuart and Robbi Force thanking us “for being there, with us, all along.”
Yet, despite the fact that this bill been passed and there is a similar one that has passed the Knesset sponsored by Elazar Stern, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has vowed to keep the payments going to the prisoners, saying, “We welcome every drop of blood spilled by our martyrs and every martyr will get his reward,” and “If we only had one penny left, we would spend it on the families of the martyrs and the prisoners.”
In 1995, EMET’s Sarah Stern worked with Senator Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), on the Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act. The act, which passed the Senate 93 to 5, and the House 374 to 37, recognizes that each sovereign nation has the right, under international law, to recognize its own capital, and that since 1950, the sovereign State of Israel had recognized Jerusalem as its capital. The law further states that the parts of Jerusalem that came under Israeli control should remain under Israeli sovereignty and that Jerusalem “should remain a united city.”
The law had a provision for “national security purposes,” that the President had the right every six months to issue a presidential waiver. From 1995 on, EMET had never stopped educating successive administrations, members of Congress and their staffers about the centrality of Jerusalem to the Jewish people, how it is the seat of the Israeli Parliament, the President’s office, the Supreme Court; that there is absolutely no way that the city would ever again be divided, and that moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem offers some sorely needed “reality therapy” and that putting an end to unrealistic expectations and fantasies, which would actually help the cause of peace.
On December 6, 2017, the American Embassy was finally moved to Jerusalem to Jerusalem, EMET’s Sarah Stern debated Ambassador Nicholas Burns on MSNBC about the move.
It begins in kindergarten. Every day, millions of children hear a barrage of Palestinian propaganda in the classroom. By third grade, they are asked to become “freedom fighters for Palestine” to end Israel’s “occupation” of their land.
K-12 textbooks are filled with the most deplorable rewrite of history that denies any Jewish connection to Jerusalem, suggests that Jews control America, and literally replaces Israel with “Palestine” on the world map. No wonder by the time these children get to the university, they are already primed to hate Israel.
This hate-filled curriculum comes from federally funded training workshops for K-12 teachers across America. Anti-Israel professors receive federal grants through Title VI of the Higher Education Act (HEA) to instruct K-12 teachers using Saudi-funded textbooks and other virulent content.
We need to stop using taxpayer money to fund biased university professors who are feeding anti-Semitic lies and one-sided political propaganda to our students.
Furthermore, research shows that many Title VI-funded National Resource Centers (NRCs) – currently at 100 institutions of higher education across the U.S. – are replete with an anti-American and anti-Israel bias. Specifically, many Middle East NRCs, including at such prestigious institutions as Columbia University, Georgetown University, Princeton University, and Yale University, among others, are replete with Title VI-supported faculty and programs that advance the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement; whitewash terrorism and radical Islam and create a false narrative of U.S. foreign policy towards the Middle East.
In 2008, EMET was instrumental in amending Title VI of HEA to require the need for “diverse perspectives and a wide range of viewpoints,” within the U.S. taxpayer-funded Title VI programs. Despite EMET’s exhaustive efforts in 2008, the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), which provides these grants to the universities, as well as the recipients of the grants themselves, have, up until now, ignored their statutory requirements to provide “diverse perspectives.”
Since 2008, EMET has been the only organization on Capitol Hill regularly raising awareness about the abuses of, and calling for legislative changes to, Title VI, through one-on-one meetings with Congressional staffers and Members of Congress, and Capitol Hill seminars. EMET has also met with the Department of Education a number of times, both under the Obama administration and under the Trump administration, and with a senior member of the White House, to discuss the issue.
Thanks to EMET’s diligent work on Title VI of HEA, the Department of Education has recently added to the grant application for the universities, that while applying for this grant, the university is to write an essay specifically on what it is doing to “promote a diversity of perspectives and a wide range of viewpoints.” However, the universities remain hotbeds of anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism and there is a tremendous amount of work that remains to be done on this issue.
For years EMET has been the voice of the silent victims of terrorism. During prior Congresses, and working on a bipartisan basis, EMET spearheaded the passage of the Koby Mandell Act in 2004, which required the DOJ to open an office to press for prosecutions of Palestinian terrorists. Unfortunately, no prosecutions occurred, prompting EMET to return to the Hill to ask for oversight.
During the Obama years, EMET worked with Congress to produce a number of bipartisan letters demanding that the Justice Department prosecute some of these terrorist murderers. In 2015, a Senate Subcommittee led by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) held a hearing on this issue. Sen. Cruz’s staff directly praised EMET’s President Sarah Stern for bringing this issue to their attention. In 2016, EMET prompted another hearing by Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), the Chairman of a National Security Subcommittee. EMET assisted the Subcommittee by providing background information, formulating questions for the DOJ, and finding witnesses for the hearing.
This included flying in – at EMET’s expense – Arnold Roth of Israel, whose daughter, Malki Roth, was an American murdered at a Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem in 2001. EMET also wrote the opening statement for Rep. DeSantis. For the first time ever, Brad Wiegmann, the Deputy Assistant Attorney General, National Security Division, who supervises these prosecutions, was called to account for the DOJ’s lack of prosecution and was forced to provide a future report to the Subcommittee.
With the change in administrations, EMET met with a new staffer of the National Security Council, Victoria Coates, to educate her about the issue. EMET also worked with Paul Teller, a Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, to put this before the White House Chief Strategist, Steve Bannon.
Tamimi orchestrated the 2001 suicide bombing at Sbarro Pizza in Jerusalem that killed 15 people and injured 122 others. She also killed two American citizens, Malki Roth, 15, and Judith Greenbaum, 31, who was pregnant at the time, and wounded 4 others. After being released in the trade for Gilad Shalit, Tamimi was paid by the PA and Hamas for her terrorism and lives in freedom in Jordan. Until EMET’s efforts pressured her to put an end to it, Tamimi hosted her own television show which openly called for violence against Israel and the U.S.
Right now, EMET is teaming up with the ADL to pressure the State Department to make her extradition a true priority. Putting Tamimi, and terrorists like her behind bars will right a moral atrocity and send a powerful message to future attackers: they will pay for their crimes.
Largely because of EMET’s efforts, in 2017 the FBI uncovered an indictment of terrorist Ahlam Tamimi and put her on the FBI’s Most Wanted List, and requested her extradition from Jordan However, Jordan denies that there has been an extradition treaty with the United States, despite the fact that there are three other known terrorists that we know of, that have been extradited from Jordan to the United States and are serving time in American prisons.
In October of 2019, the State Department acknowledged that there is an extradition treaty with Jordan, and that the Hashemite Kingdom excuse for harboring a known terrorist with American blood on her hands will not stand.
Since the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993, when the PA agreed to fight terrorism, more than 71 innocent Americans have been murdered by Palestinian terrorists in Israel or Judea and Samaria. Not one of the terrorists has been brought to justice in the U.S., and all of them or their families have been financially supported by the PA.
Help us work to ensure that our policymakers and the public receive the EMET- the Truth.