Even as they wade through a swamp of unresolved controversies on their interim peace agreement amid distrust exacerbated by a terrorist murder, Benjamin Netanyahu and Yasir Arafat face the threat of that agreement’s broader collapse at their summit near Washington this week.
The throngs were still cheering the marching bands and flag-waving yeshiva children snaking up Fifth Avenue last Sunday at the Israel Day Parade. But at the ornate Essex Hotel on Central Park South, just blocks from the reviewing stand where he had hailed the crowd two hours earlier, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seemed for just a moment uncharacteristically reticent.
I haven't spoken to Michael Oren, Israel's current ambassador in Washington, more than a handful of times, but he's always struck me as smart and sophisticated. So I can't help but wonder why he continues to pick needless fights with J Street, the pro-peace process lobby and political action committee.
Monday, December 14th, 2009
I haven’t spoken to Michael Oren, Israel’s current ambassador in Washington, more than a handful of times, but he’s always struck me as smart and sophisticated. So I can’t help but wonder why he continues to pick needless fights with J Street, the pro-peace process lobby and political action committee (see a JTA story on his latest comments here).
Things were getting worse for the Palestinians, Haggai Matar said earnestly. Innocents were being killed, beaten, starved and made homeless: all under the heel of the Israeli Defense Forces.
Matar, 17, reed thin and red ponytailed, was outraged by Israel's growing military operations last summer.
So with the intifada that began in September 2000 growing more violent and no end in sight to Israel's occupation, he took action.
Jerusalem: Sitting in a converted bomb shelter in the basement of the hotel at the Ramat Rachel Kibbutz here, about 40 American Jewish college students are sharing their anxiety.
Like a group therapy session, they talk about their frustration, fear and anger over the recent rising levels of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish sentiments on their campuses by pro-Palestinian activists, as violence continues unabated in the Middle East.
Efrat, Israel: Standing at an empty bus stop on Hebron Road under a bright hot sun, an American traveler leaving Jerusalem for the West Bank community of Efrat suddenly feels his senses turned up a notch.
Waiting for the 167 bus heading south, the traveler watches four Israeli soldiers at a makeshift military checkpoint stop taxis, passenger cars and commercial trucks, delaying the Friday "have to get home for Shabbat" rush hour traffic.
I have no doubt that if the Maccabees, heroes of the Chanukah story, were around today, they would be leading the West Bank settlers’ current protests, decrying the Jerusalem government for abandoning its Zionist and religious imperative to claim
Editor and Publisher
I have no doubt that if the Maccabees, heroes of the Chanukah story, were around today, they would be leading the West Bank settlers’ current protests, decrying the Jerusalem government for abandoning its Zionist and religious imperative to claim all of the land of Israel as holy and non-negotiable.
With preparations under way for Pope John Paul's historic Millennium visit to Jerusalem next March, the question of the Vatican's political position on the future of the Holy City takes on greater significance.Some Jewish leaders may not like what they hear. Talking to Jewish interfaith leaders at recent conference in Washington, D.C., Vatican Foreign Minister Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran advocated that all the "holy places" in Israel be put under "international guarantees" of access.
The poster advertising the first Palestinian film festival at Columbia University seemed innocuous: a map of Israel with four white doves perched on tree branches and the numbers 1-9-4-8 running the length of the map.
But in the Middle East, and on college campuses these days, little is simple or innocuous, least of all a map.
On closer inspection, the map promoting last week's festival, called "Dreams of a Nation," was in the colors of the Palestinian flag: red, black and green. And there was no West Bank: all of Israel was symbolically Palestinian.