Peter Beinart, the former New Republic editor whose strong critique of the American Jewish establishment in a New York Review of Books essay continues to reverberate in the community, says he has been pleasantly surprised by the responses he has received from pro-Israel critics
Sandy Koufax at the White House? Talk about Jewish royalty.
The Obama White House is holding the first – ever reception honoring Jewish Heritage Month tonight, and the unreleased guest list suggests something new in presidential Jewish outreach. There's an interesting cross section of Jewish athletes, columnists, writers, scholars and social innovators – but a noticeable lack of big-name Jewish organization pooh-bahs.
The U.S.- Israel diplomatic firestorm continues to rage, and a lot of questions remain unanswered: exactly what did Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu know about the plan to build 1600 new housing units in East Jerusalem, announced with such devastating impact when Vice President Joe Biden headed to Israel on a make-nice mission, and when did he know it? What is the Obama administration trying to do with its tough new demands on Israel and harsh rhetoric? Where does all this lead?
Here are some interesting and very different takes on the crisis.
I remember Tom Friedman from the Madrid peace talks in Washington in the early 1990s. An up-and-coming Israeli politician named Benjamin Netanyahu was the briefer at the Israeli delegation's daily press conferences at the Madison Hotel. Dozens of reports fought to get Bibi's attention every afternoon, usually unsuccessfully, but Tom would stand in the back, seemly above the melee; the merest nod from the New York Times diplomatic correspondent would cause Netanyahu to stop what he was saying and give him the next question.