Peace Now, Baseball then


 I just spoke to the ZOA’s Mort Klein for a story on the Knesset looking into J Street, and he told me he debated my favorite "Realistic Dove," Dan Fleshler, last week at Temple Sinai in Simmit, N.J.

The moderator was Mark Rosenblum, Americans for Peace Now’s founder. "Why didn’t they just give me a gun, so I could shoot myself," Mort joked. (In fact, Mort says Rosenblum gave him room to get across his points in the debate, entitled "Is Obama good for Israel?")

Mort says he and Rosenblum share a love for Israel, albeit from different perspectives — and, as it turns out, a love for baseball, and a past with it.

Temple Sinai’s rabbi told the audience that Rosenblum was a shortstop on the University of Wisconsin team, and played Second Tem All American. He scored two homers off of Ken Holtzman, who pitched 15 years in the majors, and turned down a job with one of the Baltimore Orioles farm teams to pursue a career in academia.

Mort couldn’t resist sharing his own shining moment: He was All-City third baseman in the Philadelphia Little League.

UPDATE: Dan rightly excoriates me for not checking with all participants about this critical issue (pro-Israel advocacy and a past in baseball.) "I was a very good shortshop in high school, and some of my most cherished memories are diving grabs of grounders "in the hole." But I couldn’t hit the breaking stuff, alas," he writes.

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