Nina Mayorek

Nina Mayorek


* Believes that Israel alone caused the conflict with the Palestinian Arabs, and that it should cease to exist as a Jewish state
* Crisscrossed the U.S. in the spring of 2005 in the annual speaking tour organized by Partners For Peace
* Officially signed a letter supporting soldiers who refuse to serve in the Territories
* Supports the International Solidarity Movement’s (ISM) efforts to obstruct the Israeli Defense Force’s operations
* Spoke at a memorial service for ISM member Rachel Corrie
* “Roadblocks are not designed to improve the security of Israelis, but rather, to oppress Palestinians.”
* Calls for the right of return of Palestinian Arab refugees

Mayorek was a good choice for PFP. Though she and her husband fled to Israel in 1968 to escape Polish anti-Semitism, she is blind to the anti-Semitism in the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the larger Arab world. She vehemently opposes all of Israel’s counter-terrorism measures and presents them as Israeli techniques to oppress Palestinians. She opposes administrative detentions and road blocks. She officially signed a letter supporting soldiers who refuse to serve in the Territories. She supports the International Solidarity Movement’s (ISM) efforts to obstruct the Israeli Defense Force’s (IDF) operations, and she spoke at a memorial service for Rachel Corrie, the ISM activist who became the poster child of the anti-Israel movement when she was accidentally killed by an IDF bulldozer.

Mayorek is an activist for Machsom Watch, a group of Israeli women who organized in January 2001 to monitor the IDF at checkpoints to “ensure that the human and civil rights of Palestinians attempting to enter Israel are protected.” But the Machsom Watch website is silent about the reason for the checkpoints — the terrorist war unleashed against Israeli civilians and their right to be protected from mass murder. It is silent about the fact that terrorists use ambulances, women, and young children to transport their suicide belts. One Machsom Watch member even admitted that the female suicide bomber at the Erez crossing in Gaza in 2004 “did a big disservice to her people and her own gender. It’s the same as when they transported military equipment in ambulances.”

Mayorek’s one-sided, anti-Israel views were spelled out in the “Olga Petition” she signed in 2004. Its central statement simply rehashed Palestinian propaganda: “We are united in a critique of Zionism, based as it is on refusal to acknowledge the indigenous people of this country and on denial of their rights, on dispossession of their lands, and on adoption of separation as a fundamental principle and way of life.”

Mayorek ignores context. She distorts history. And she has sympathy only for Palestinians, never for Israel and Israelis. Among the distortions she has stated are the following:

  • “Israeli politicians succeeded [in convincing] most Israelis, and in particular Israeli soldiers, to view every Palestinian as a potential terrorist. Israeli soldiers believe it, earnestly: A pregnant woman is a suspect. An ambulance bringing a sick person is suspect.”
  • “Roadblocks are not designed to improve the security of Israelis, but rather, to oppress Palestinians.”
  • “Since its foundation, Israel has lived by its sword. An incessant succession of “retaliations,” military operations, and wars has become the life-support drug of Israel’s Jews.” (quoted from the Olga Petition)
  • “The State of Israel was supposed to tear down the walls of the ghetto; it is now constructing the biggest ghetto in the entire history of the Jews.” (quoted from the Olga Petition)
  • ”The State of Israel was supposed to be a democracy; it has set up a colonial structure, combining unmistakable elements of apartheid with the arbitrariness of brutal military occupation.” (quoted from the Olga Petition)
  • “We are united in the belief that peace and reconciliation are contingent on Israel’s recognition of its responsibility for the injustices done to the indigenous people, the Palestinians, and on willingness to redress them. Recognition of the right of return follows from our principles.” (quoted from the Olga Petition)
  • “The Israeli policies are not a way to reduce terror; rather, they promote it, as evidenced by the dramatic increase in terror acts during the last two years. The terror acts are then cynically used by Prime Minister Sharon as a pretext to inflict more damage and hardships on the Palestinians, and to further de-legitimize their existence in the occupied territories in the perception of the Israelis.” (quoted from Gush Shalom letter that Mayorek signed in April 2003)


**Nina Mayorek knows anti-Semitism first hand. Her aunt and grandmother perished in Treblinka during the Holocaust. Her family nonetheless stayed in Poland after World War II. But anti-Semitic policies continued to haunt the family. Hounded by Stalin’s dictatorship, her grandfather died in one of Stalin’s prison camps. In Poland, the increasing anti-Semitism of the communist regime cost her parents their faculty positions. In 1968, she and her husband fled this anti-Semitism that had re-erupted (even though few Jews still remained in Poland) and moved to Israel. Ironically, the Mayorek story confirms one of Zionism’s primary goals: to be a haven and homeland for Jews persecuted around the world. Mayorek went on to have a successful career as a biochemist in the Department of Human Nutrition and Metabolism at the Hebrew University. In this respect, too, she confirms the Zionist vision of creating a land where anti-Semitism would not exist and where being Jewish would never be an obstacle to living a full life and realizing one larger human potential.

The irony is that despite the fact that Israel’s existence as a Jewish state allowed Mayorek to get refuge and to pursue her career and private life without the scourge of anti-Semitism, she does not support the continued existence of a Jewish state. She calls for the right of return of Palestinian Arab refugees. She attacks the Jewish state for creating insecurity for Jews: “The State of Israel was supposed to grant security to Jews; it has created a death-trap whose inhabitants live in constant danger, the likes of which is not experienced by any other Jewish community.” She insists the land belongs to all the people and condemns Israel for its “tribalism.”

Mayorek has worked to help Palestinians. Between 1996 and 1998 she was the coordinator of Israeli volunteers at a Palestinian school in El Khader. She lectured on Women and Family Health at the Ibda Community Center in Bethlehem’s Deheisheh refugee camp. She joined Machsom Watch to monitor IDF behavior at checkpoints. She supports leftwing fringe groups, such as Gush Shalom, and their views.  Like so many on the post-Zionist or anti-Zionist left fringe in Israel, Mayorek is convinced that if Israel simply withdrew from the Territories and allowed the right of return, Arab hatred against Israel, and Arab efforts to destroy that nation and to kill Jews, would cease. In part, she is correct because there would no longer be a Jewish nation; such a state of affairs has been the goal of Arab nations since 1948. But she never explores the repercussions for Jews of such a policy, in part because she turns a blind eye to the realities of Palestinian society under the PA — the incitement, anti-Semitism, corruption, anarchy, and the power of Hamas which wants to claim all of Israel as Islamic land where sharia should be imposed. In part, too, she seems to suffer from guilt over any actions the Jewish state uses to defend itself.

Nor does Mayorek confront reality. Her work for Machsom Watch has focused on the Nablus checkpoints, including the Huwarra checkpoint. She never mentions the many terrorists the IDF was able to stop at the roadblocks and checkpoints around Nablus. The IDF prevented three terrorist attacks in November 2002 alone. Soldiers found a suicide belt hidden at the bottom of a box of jeans; a suicide belt hidden inside two computer cases; and two terrorists armed with assault rifles and suicide belts in a taxi. At the same checkpoint, the IDF discovered that the terrorist group Tanzim had persuaded an 11-year-old boy to carry a suicide belt in his book bag as he crossed the checkpoint on March 15, 2004. B’Tselem denounced the terrorists’ callous use of children as a “war crime.” A week later, on March 25 2004, the IDF discovered a 14-year-old boy hiding a suicide belt under his sweater.

But Mayorek refuses to give this side of the story.

This profile is adapted, with permission, from

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