Boycott Watch  
November 25, 2010
Confirmed: Detroit Jewish Federation is working with Hamas Front Group
Summary: The Jewish community is not exempt from having laughing stock leadership.
    While Boycott Watch busts many Internet claims, sometimes they are true. Such is the case with a November 15, 2020 report by Debbie Schlussel titled "Jewish Officials Host, Promote Israel Boycott Supporter, CAIR Official"

    Let's face it; the claim is so outlandish that people may dismiss it outright. The report, however, came from Debbie Schlussel who is known for uncovering major stories, thus making this worth looking into, so we did, at least to get both sides of the story.

    In her report, Debbie discussed an Interfaith Health Fair event sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, which sounds like a wonderful event. The only problem is, as Debbie points out, one of the participants was Doctor Muzammil Ahmed, a board member of CAIR, a group which has been linked to the Hamas terrorist organization. Once again an outlandish claim which should be looked into for fairness, so Boycott Watch did.

    Disclaimer: While Debbie is a friend, it does not negate the fact that Boycott Watch will investigate claims we determine warrant investigation for facts, no matter who makes the claims.

    Boycott Watch stated our investigation by simply calling the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, or JFMD, and speaking with Robert Cohen, the director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, the committee responsible for the event in question. Mr. Cohen responded "Our policy is not to comment about anything from Debbie Schlussel." Boycott Watch then asked if the JFMD was aware of Dr. Ahmed's connection with CAIR. Robert Cohen responded "We are not aware of any connection with Dr. Ahmed and CAIR." Since Robert Cohen was clearly aware Debbie exposed Dr. Ahmed's connection to CAIR since he asked if my call was concerning her article, we asked what the JFMD would say if they discovered Dr. Ahmed was in fact a board member of CAIR. Robert responded "We are comfortable working with him and don't see any problem with it" but refused to answer questions if they would issue a statement if DS report is true, further stating "We don't deal with CAIR.

    Almost from the beginning, Robert Cohen was being argumentative. He was aware of the Debbie Schlussel report but preferred to play both sides, as if he was not aware of the report he mentioned first. Boycott Watch stated we hope the Debbie Schlussel report was not true, but all we received was grief, even after stating we wanted to get their side of the story out. After receiving several personal attacks, it soon became clear Robert Cohen was more interested in blaming the messenger than wanting to get any truth out. As a result of getting nowhere, we told Robert Cohen to have his boss call us and we hanged up on him. After all, there is no reason for us to stand for any abusive comments and he was certainly not helping himself. Boycott Watch just wanted to get their side of the story out.

    The abusive comments from Robert Cohen sparked a further and more detailed investigation into the story. After all, people who have nothing to hide talk to media and those who have something to hide obfuscate, which is exactly what we saw from Robert Cohen. We started our detailed investigation with a simple search, and soon cam across Dr. Ahmed's profile, which Dr. Ahmed surely created himself. The profile clearly stated he is in fact a board member of CAIR-Michigan, confirming Debbie Schlussel's report. That entire search took under two minutes, ending our expected detailed investigation. Being that the information is so readily available, Boycott Watch therefore believes there is no way the Detroit Federation could have missed Ahmed's profile, especially if they are having him as an integral part of a presentation. Ahmed's bio and public profile must have been presented and reviewed for his introduction, so there is no possible way the JFMD can honestly say they do not work with CAIR.

    Major events within the JFMD do not just happen in a vacuum, and all organizations, big and small, perform basic research about the people they are going to be on a panel with. Furthermore, Robert Cohen's comment of "As far as anyone was concerned, they were proper for the event" indicates the JFMD must have been aware of who Dr. Ahmed is and his credentials in advance of the event, especially considering the JFMD deals with Islamic threats, including those from groups like CAIR which have been linked to the Hamas terrorist organization.

    BW must conclude, therefore, that the JFMD must have had full knowledge of the event participants in advance and approved it. Furthermore, the statements by Robert Cohen "We are comfortable working with him and don't see any problem with it" indicate the Federation is either grossly incompetent or really wants to work with people who support Hamas and the destruction of Israel.

   After this report was complete, Boycott Watch President Fred Taub received a call back from Robert Cohen, conferencing in Richard Nodel who identified himself as the President of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit. We were later told he is the President of the Jewish Community Relations Council of the JFMD. Richard Nodel therefore misrepresented his own position, something we only learned later. The conversation was pleasant at first; not revealing anything new, then Nodel suddenly became a mud slinger when he said "If you read the Debbie Schlussel site, you must be one of these anti-Israel types."

    Fred Taub says: "This was beyond insulting for several reasons. First, it was a classic Three-card Monte ploy, trying to distract me from the ball, but it was too late. Thanks to Robert Cohen, I not only found information proving Debbie Schlussel was right, but his own statements proved he had prior knowledge about Dr. Hamed and his connection to CAIR. Richard Nodel, in the process of his absurd accusation, confirmed the JFMD just wanted to distract me to cover-up the facts."

    Fred Taub continued: "Second, Debbie is unquestionably pro-Israel. For that matter, so am I. In his statement calling all of Debbie Schlussel reader's anti-Israel, Nodel called Debbie and all her readers anti-Semitic. As Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. stated, anti-Israel is anti-Semitism."

    Boycott Watch must conclude, therefore, that not only did the JFMD blatantly violated their own policy of not dealing with CAIR, but they also tried to cover up and block any and all inquiries into this serious matter. No Jewish organization has any excuse to have any dealing with CAIR which has been kinked to Hamas.

    In the process of their cover-up, just as with Watergate, the people in charge wanted to silence reporters rather than to allow the truth to surface. The reason in both cases is fear of the truth coming out. That fear is real. Robert Cohen and Richard Nodel must be feeing the pressure after Debbie Schlussel exposed their direct dealing with CAIR.

    Do Cohen and Nodel really represent the best interests of the Jewish community of Metropolitan Detroit? Hardly. The only honorable thing left for them to do is resign.

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