Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
I confess: because of other assignments, I didn’t get down to the Christians United for Israel Washington summit this week, the first one I’ve missed. But based on past years events and interviews with several folks who attended this week’s, I’ve reached one new conclusion about the group.
From the beginning, CUFI has embraced the Israeli settlers movement in a way no major Jewish group has.
Friday, July 17th, 2009
Pretty much every Jewish reporter was focused this week on President Barack Obama’s meeting with 16 Jewish leaders at the White House – a presidential performance described as masterful even by some participants uneasy about his evolving Middle East policies and his determination to speak bluntly to Israel about issues such as settlements (read the Jewish Week story on the meeting here).
Thursday, July 16th, 2009
Christians United For Israel (CUFI) will be in town next week for its annual Washington Summit, and one thing I’ve noticed: the media hoopla that surrounded the group’s first few big Washington gatherings seems to have died down.
Thursday, June 25th, 2009
As this blog reported last week, longtime U.S. Middle East peace negotiator and pro-Israel think tanker Dennis Ross is going over to the White House; as numerous blogs have reported, it’s something of a promotion for Ross, who had a nebulous role at the State Department as a special envoy to something or other.
Here’s what the NSC spokesman had to say:
Sunday, May 31st, 2009
The political insider is back from vacation, but even the shores of Tuscany weren’t far enough away to block out a faint buzz about President Barack Obama’s upcoming speech to the Muslim world, scheduled for next Thursday in Cairo.
Friday, May 15th, 2009
Take a look at today’s Israel Policy Forum (IPF) ad in the New York Times if you want to see how some Jewish pro-peace process groups are adopting a bolder strategy.
Do you see Benjamin Netanyahu’s name anywhere in the ad? I didn’t think so.
It’s traditional for Jewish groups to welcome prime ministers with friendly ads even if they couple that with some pokes at Israeli policy.
Monday, May 11th, 2009
If you thought the issue of school vouchers for parents whose kids attend private and parochial schools would fade away now that the Democrats control both the White House and Congress, guess again.
Last week President Obama announced a proposal that would allow a controversial Washington, DC voucher program that has divided Jewish groups to keep its funding for now but not provide money for new students.
Wednesday, May 6th, 2009
President Obama is getting pounded by the religious right for not holding a “National Day of Prayer” event at the White House tomorrow, but he is getting support from a key Orthodox group.
In his Institute for Public Affairs Blog, OU public policy director Nathan Diament reviews the history of the event, which began in 1952 and which “has been marked in various ways by all presidents since then.”
Diament goes on to say this:
Tuesday, May 5th, 2009
Is the legendary AIPAC “roll call” getting old?
In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, here’s the story: at every year’s policy conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, leaders of the group read out the names of all the congressional, administration and diplomatic officials attending. Reporters keep count, hometown delegations cheer for their representatives and the message has the subtlety of a good sock in the jaw: this is a lobby with real clout.