Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
Like many in our community, I’ve been transfixed by the dramatic FBI arrests in New Jersey that netted prominent rabbis as well as mayors, city council presidents and other officials.
It’s both titillating and scary; first Bernie Madoff, now this. There haven’t been so many high-profile Jewish baddies since Leopold and Loeb.
And this one looks huge, involving as it does some of the leading figures in the Syrian Jewish community, money laundering and trafficking in human organs.
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, 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:
Thursday, June 18th, 2009
Over at Foreign Policy, the diligent Laura Rozen has an interesting blog item on Barack Obama’s Jimmy Carter problem.
Rozen cites a Fox News report that the former president will press the administration to take Hamas off the U.S. terrorist list; whether or not the report is true, it’s not news this administration wants to hear as it walks multiple tightropes in its intensifying Middle East diplomacy.
Jeffrey Goldberg, national correspondent for The Atlantic, has a provocative piece in the July/August issue of the magazine, entitled “How Iran Could Save The Middle East.”
His thesis, well worth considering, is that based on the Mideast cliché, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend,” key states in the region like Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt could form an alliance with Israel based on their common opposition to and fear of Iran, especially a nuclear Iran.
Thursday, June 4th, 2009
There will be plenty of commentaries about President Obama’s speech to the Islamic world in Cairo today, and Jewish groups were weighing in even before he finished speaking. There was lots of meat to chew on, and the Jewish world is going to sate its appetite on the stuff for a long time.
Despite Obama’s strong and unequivocal statement against settlements, it was the first time an Arab and Muslim audience heard a strongly pro-Israel speech from a major leader.
Wednesday, April 29th, 2009
Here’s a stunner: Jewish Democrats think President Barack Obama has done a great job during his first 100 days in office and Jewish Republicans disagree. Some Jews on the left say the new administration has become too centrist for their liking, but centrist Jewish groups that focus heavily on domestic matters couldn’t be happier.
Tuesday, April 21st, 2009
James Besser in Washington
With its annual policy conference approaching, the last thing AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby, needed was a lot of new publicity about the Espionage Act case involving two former employees.
Well, that’s what it’s getting, thanks to a controversial and bizarre story in CQ Politics – a publication of the respected Congressional Quarterly.