Rush Limbaugh, just before his blitz on black quarterbacks, said presidential candidates claiming Jewish ancestry is ìgetting out of hand.î Limbaugh was ticked off by reports that the retired Gen. Wesley Clark is descended from five generations of rabbis before being raised as a Christian.
When Natan Sharansky, the ex-Soviet refusenik turned hard-line Israeli cabinet minister, visited several local universities here last month, he brought a pointed message: Yasir Arafat, he told students at Columbia University and New York University, is an unrepentant ìdictatorî who is an ominous presence dooming peace and must be removed.
Charges that members of the Likud Partyís Central Committee sold their votes for cash and other favors in this month's primary (and to a lesser extent allegations of voting irregularities in the Labor Party primary) have rocked the Israeli electorate, with one poll showing that one-fifth of Israelis plan to change their vote because of it.
Despite The New York Times frequently distinguished and always-considerable attention to Jewish subjects in the last 15 years (at least), more than a few Jews continue to look upon the paper with what Elvis called ìsuspicious minds.î For most of the last century, the Times has returned the suspicion, looking upon anything Jewish with squeamishness bordering on contempt.
At least it felt that way. After growing up in an area of Bensonhurst with a bare-bones Jewish community, where my brother and I sometimes faced anti-Semitism on the streets and the idea of a kosher restaurant seemed like something out of a dream, I found myself at age 12 in Midwood, the most Jewish part of Flatbush.
Here’s an update on an earlier item on the three Americans arrested and detained by Iran and the way the inaccurate story that one of them was a yeshiva student and Jewish Week writer spread across the Internet.
One of the Web sites that spread the story was DEBKAfile.com, which fashions itself a source of in-depth intelligence and security information, with a focus on the Middle East.
You can’t say the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) isn’t doing its part for their party’s embattled health care reform legislation – or, as the Obama administration has rebranded it, health insurance reform.
I’m a huge fan of the Internet – in fact, it’s a large part of my job. Obviously, I’m a blogger, and regard blogging as an essential ingredient in the newspaper of tomorrow.
But I’m also alarmed at how easily distortions and mistakes, reported as “news” by bloggers and disseminated to vast, worldwide audiences that uncritically accept their outpourings, become indelible parts of the news background.
One sure sign a politician is laying the groundwork for a future presidential bid is a sudden yearning for Israel travel. So it must be for former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who will be visiting Israel next week.