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World Jewish Congress Refuses to Defend Award for Joe Biden

The World Jewish Congress (WJC), which describes itself as “the international organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries to governments, parliaments and international organizations,” announced Tuesday that it will honor Vice President Joe Biden with its annual “Theodor Herzl Award.”

The award “recognizes outstanding individuals who work to promote Herzl’s ideals for a safer, more tolerant world for the Jewish people,” according to a press release from the WJC.

Breitbart News contacted the WJC and asked why it chose to honor a senior member of the Obama administration in the wake of the controversial Iran deal. The deal was not only rejected by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as an ‘historic mistake,” but has also provided hundreds of billions of dollars to an antisemitic regime bent on the destruction of the Jewish state and engaged in ongoing terrorism against Jewish communities throughout the world.

The WJC did not like the question.

“It’s way too early for us to be discussing that at this time,” said WJC spokesperson Aliyana Traison on Tuesday. “We are not going to discuss that at this time. We’re not answering questions about that. Thank you.” Traison also declined to comment on whether the award was appropriate given a string of public controversies between Biden and the current Israeli government.

In 2010, Biden condemned Israel when a junior Israeli government official announced new plans for apartments in a Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem during Biden’s visit to the country. Biden’s comments triggered an international controversy that saw Secretary of State Hillary Clinton berate Netanyahu on the telephone for 45 minutes and caused the Palestinians to adopt more extreme demands before they would agree to peace negotiations.

In April this year, Biden against set off another dispute with Israel when he told the radical left-wing J Street organization that Israel was heading in the “wrong direction.”

Theodor Herzl was the founder of modern Zionism and inspired the creation of the State of Israel. As a journalist during the Dreyfus Affair in France, Herzl was convinced by the antisemitism he saw that Jews needed a state in their historic homeland.

The WSJ press release does not say what Biden did to earn the award. The statement quotes WJC president Ronald S. Lauder: “[Biden] has stood out over the last eight years in his devotion to ensuring that America and Israel remain close allies.”

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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