Washington — If Iran was the issue that united delegates at this week’s annual conference of the pro-Israel lobby, Iraq proved the one that divided them when an American vice president and — more surprisingly — an Israeli prime minister pushed the issue.
In his speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, Vice President Dick Cheney barely mentioned the nuclear threat from Iran, which otherwise dominated the lobby’s three-day conference. He dwelled instead at length on the danger the United States would face if it withdrew from Iraq.
Chicago — Presidential candidate Barack Obama’s maiden speech to the pro-Israel lobby last week saw a man described by early supporters as an ardent dove on Israel take flight as a bird of considerably more hawkish mien.
Obama, Illinois’ Democratic junior senator, told the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) last Friday that he was committed, above all else, to “peace through security” for the Jewish state.
Brandeis University students seeking to bring a controversial critic of Israel to campus were finally granted a date and place Monday; then told an hour later the venue was not available, after all; then offered an alternative venue the next day.
The latest twists in their lengthy effort to bring DePaul University Professor Norman Finkelstein to campus have left the Radical Student Alliance and Arab Culture Club crossing their fingers that he will appear on March 6 at the university, founded as a Jewish-sponsored, non-sectarian school.
A free speech dispute over campus speakers has continued to roil Brandeis University in the wake of controversy over its hosting of former president and Israel critic Jimmy Carter.
Brandeis’ president waded personally into it this week, voicing hope that right-wing Middle East policy advocate Daniel Pipes would soon lecture there — but issuing no such statement for Norman Finkelstein, a left-wing academic students have also invited.
Major donors to Brandeis University have informed the school they will no longer give it money in retaliation for its decision last month to host former President Jimmy Carter, a strong critic of Israel.
The donors have notified the school in writing of their decisions — and specified Carter as the reason, said Stuart Eizenstat, a former aide to Carter during his presidency and a current trustee of Brandeis, one of the nation’s premier Jewish institutions of higher learning.
Tax experts this week sharply questioned a New York State Assembly member’s use of a religious charity run by a convicted tax evader to fund a campaign to get Israel’s prime minister to resign.
Brooklyn Assemblyman Dov Hikind raised some $40,000 to run full-page ads in Jewish newspapers last month calling on Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to quit and urging supporters to back his cause by writing tax-deductible checks to a charity called Yad Moshe. Both pre- and post-ad contributions were channeled through Yad Moshe.
While Duvid Feldman was attending a conference in Tehran last week that questioned the reality of the Holocaust, back home in Monsey, his 10 children were “suffering” at the hands of other ultra-Orthodox children thanks to “foolish” media coverage of the event, his wife said Tuesday.
Some 250 North American rabbis sat in rapt silence for a full minute on Monday when an Ursuline nun kidnapped, tortured and gang raped by Guatemalan soldiers halted her account of that experience in mid-sentence to turn away and weep.
American Jews and their allies ramped up a campaign this week against a British union promoting an academic boycott of Israel aimed at pressuring it to end its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza — even as some British Jews said the union’s drive was going nowhere.
Evangelical Christians, long seen as a monolith in lockstep support of Israel, publicly fractured last week as two significant evangelical factions lobbied President Bush with criticism of Israel from opposite points of view.
For the first time, Christians United for Israel, a major Christian Zionist group with strong ties to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, lobbied President Bush against the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — a solution advocated by Israel, the Bush administration and the pro-Israel Washington lobby itself.