Obama reluctantly accepted by predominantly Jewish club

A predominantly Jewish golf club in Washington finally accepted Obama despite members’ opposition over his treatment of Israel.  

Former US President Barack Obama was accepted to the elite Woodmont Country Club, his hostile policies towards Israel notwithstanding and despite opposition by club members.

The Washington Post reported Monday that the predominantly Jewish club admitted the former US president after a fight among members over whether to grant Obama membership. Some opposed it, saying they wanted to exclude him because of actions they considered hostile and damaging to Israel.

In an email Monday, Woodmont President Barry Forman told club members that after “many hours in recent weeks considering this matter and the views of our members,” the executive committee decided to invite Obama to join.

“Political views have never been part of our membership criteria, and our members have always reflected a range of opinions on issues of the day,” Forman wrote. “In the current, deeply polarized political environment, it is all the more important that Woodmont be a place where people of varying views and beliefs can enjoy fellowship and recreation in a relaxed environment.”

Obama will be invited under the “special membership” provision of club bylaws, Forman said in the email, intended “as a means of welcoming very senior level government officials as Woodmont members.” That membership category waives the club’s $80,000 initiation fee, although Obama would still be charged for annual dues and assessments.

Woodmont was founded in the early-20th century by Jewish residents who were barred from other posh clubs in the area due to anti-Semitism.

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“We are proud of our Jewish heritage, and we are also proud that our membership is now more diverse, which reflects significant changes in our society in recent years,” Forman wrote. “Given our legacy, it is regrettable that we have now been widely portrayed as unwelcoming and intolerant, because that is not who we are.”

Forman’s email made it clear that the matter is still a sensitive one for club members.

“Can you imagine how angry I would be if I had paid $80K to have to look at this guy who has done more to damage Israel than any president in American history?” an official in a Washington Jewish organization fumed before the final decision.

“While we strongly believe this is the right decision, we understand it will be accompanied by continued discussion within our community,” Forman wrote. “So that we may find a way to learn from this, grow from this experience and move forward, the club leadership intends to hold conversations within our community in the near future to further explore our history and common values.”

By: World Israel News Staff