Shoshana Bryen

Israel's War Performance Comes Under Microscope

10/27/2006

Editor At Large
The earliest of what promises to be a cascade of post-mortems on Israel's military performance in Lebanon last summer are starting to come in. And the picture they paint is far from pretty. They depict military and political leaders sending soldiers to war against the Shiite guerrilla force Hezbollah with ill defined, constantly shifting goals. They speak of commanders who failed to lead their soldiers personally, in the time-honored Israeli fashion, instead staying behind the lines to monitor their units' progress on video screens.

Ground troops take over as air war falters; no endgame in sight.

07/28/2006

Editor At Large
Slowly, reluctantly and with trepidation, Israel turned to its army this week to redeem a military campaign against Hezbollah in Lebanon that its air force has proved unable to win. The ground assault took place amid rising international opposition to Israeli actions, sparked by rising civilian casualties.

Iran-Israel Linkage By Bush Seen As Threat

04/21/2006
Washington Correspondent and Editor at Large.
President Bush is risking a backlash that could injure the Jewish community — and his own cause — by repeatedly citing Israel as his top rationale for possible U.S. military conflict with Iran, Jewish leaders and Middle East analysts warned this week.

An End To ‘Apocalyptic Unity’

12/04/2007
Editor At Large
It is an irony that one of the first American Jewish groups to push the threat from Iran to the top of its agenda did so to placate a dovish Israeli leader’s demand that it reduce its involvement in Israeli-Palestinian issues. In 1993, shortly after his election triumph, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin came to Washington and told the American Israel Public Affairs Committee he did not require its services as an intermediary on Israeli-Palestinian issues, recalled a prominent Jewish activist.

A Chill In The D.C. Air as Obama, Netanyahu Meet

11/11/2009
Washington Correspondent

Speaking at Monday’s Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly in Washington, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sounded very much like a man who didn’t want to antagonize the president he was about to meet under visibly strained circumstances.

Several hours later the White House distributed a meeting “readout” that may have set a new record for brevity. Amid an almost total clampdown on leaks, the statement said only that the two leaders “discussed a number of issues in the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship” and that President Barack Obama “reaffirmed our strong commitment to Israel’s security, and discussed security cooperation on a range of issues.”

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Mitchell As Envoy Could Split Center

 Former Sen. George Mitchell is reportedly being tapped as Mideast envoy

01/21/2009
Washington Correspondent

The expected appointment of a special envoy to breathe new life into Israeli-Palestinian negotiations could split the pro-Israel center while pleasing the Jewish left and outraging the right. The schism could be particularly deep if, as was widely reported this week, President Barack Obama appoints former Sen. George Mitchell to the job.

Is ‘Nixon In China’ Scenario Likely with Netanyahu-Lieberman Government?

03/11/2009
Washington Correspondent

American Jewish leaders are increasingly jittery as Yisrael Beiteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman moves closer to becoming foreign minister in a right-wing coalition under Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu.

But most analysts say the appointment is unlikely to significantly disrupt U.S.-Israel relations, despite Lieberman’s reputation as an extremist.

And a right-of-center government with Lieberman at the foreign ministry is already producing speculation about a “Nixon in China” scenario.

As Obama Draws Closer To UN, Jewish Groups See Benefits

UN envoy Susan Rice urges active presence.

04/14/2009
Washington Correspondent

The Obama administration’s willingness to expand its involvement in the United Nations has not attracted strong criticism from pro-Israel groups, despite the longstanding belief that the international body is decidedly anti-Israel.

In recent days, Washington has signaled a new effort to try to effect change from within the UN and its agencies, and Jewish leaders here, though somewhat skeptical, seem prepared to give the administration some latitude.

Obama’s New Iran Timeline Could Force A U.S.-Israel Divide

Obama’s Iran deadline bought some time in his relationship with Israel and its leader, Benjamin Netanyahu.

05/20/2009
Washington Correspondent

While President Obama met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu halfway on the volatile issue of Iran during their inaugural meeting in Washington this week, gaps between the two allies on the issue remain wide — and could get wider still as the administration begins dealing with a palate of unattractive policy options.

Despite Iran Flux, Groups Hold To Tough Line

The unfolding drama on the streets of Tehran vastly complicates the fight for sanctions against Iran. getty images

06/24/2009
Washington Correspondent

On Monday AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby group that has been at the forefront of efforts to impose and stiffen sanctions on Iran, distributed to reporters an interview with an Iranian demonstrator calling on the international community to apply “much more sanctions” on the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

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