* The American Jewish Congress repudiated a letter from one of its officers raising questions about U.S. Sen. Barack Obama’s candidacy. In a letter appearing Thursday in The New York Jewish Week, Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, identifying himself as the AJCongress’ Metropolitan Region’s co-president, attacks the Illinois Democrat for his “comfort with anti-Israel advocates,” citing Obama’s pastor and billionaire George Soros. Figures in Obama’s church have lauded Louis Farrakhan, the anti-Semitic leader of the Nation of Islam – a position Obama has criticized – and the pastor did reportedly tell The New York Times that Zionism has an element of “white racism,” but he’s not known for regularly making anti-Israel sentiments. It is unclear what relationship – if any at all – Obama has with Soros, who has criticized some Israeli policies but also has ties to some pro-Israel groups. Marc Stern, AJCongress’ general counsel, said Wiesenfeld’s letter was unauthorized.
“It’s simply an officer using his title without authority and improperly,” Stern told JTA, adding that AJCongress does not endorse or unendorse candidates. Stern said the organization was considering internal disciplinary measures to deal with Wiesenfeld.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.