Secretary of State John Kerry and National Security Adviser Susan Rice briefed Jewish leaders on resumed Palestinian-Israeli peace talks.
The meeting Thursday evening in the White House lasted 90 minutes, participants said, and was characterized mostly by Kerry’s enthusiasm for the resumed talks, and the serious commitment he said saw from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
More than 400 American Jewish clergy asked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to go ahead with new construction in a corridor connecting eastern Jerusalem to the West Bank settlement of Maale Adumim.
Economy and health care were top issues for Jewish voters; Iran, Israel low down on list; Obama seen better on Israel.
American Jews would like to see former President Bill Clinton named a special Middle East peace envoy, and they support an active United States role in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — even if it means publicly pointing out U.S. differences with Israel and the Palestinians.
Those were some of the findings from a post-election national survey of 800 Jews by independent pollster Jim Gerstein for the liberal pro-Israel lobby group J Street. (J Street favors an active U.S. role in the Middle East peace process.)
Totals down from ’08; Israel issue not seen moving big numbers of Jewish voters to GOP column.
In winning re-election Tuesday, President Barack Obama beat back a strong challenge from former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who tried to woo Jewish voters by painting Obama as an untrustworthy ally of Israel.
At 7:30 am on a recent Sunday, I spoke to more than 100 Presbyterians at their General Assembly in Pittsburgh. I was one of two Jewish voices opposing their divestment resolution. I had been urged to attend by colleagues in the organized Jewish community. My voice, I was told, would be particularly helpful because of my work at J Street, advocating for a two-state solution.
The decision by Temple Israel of Miami to cancel an invitation to Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D) to speak at Friday evening services appears to be in response to the objections and threats of an influential Republican congregant. This sideshow may have signaled the beginning of the 2012 political campaign within the Jewish community.
When our Brooklyn synagogue recently hosted two former State Department veterans, Elliot Abrams and Robert Malley, a few congregants and even a local merchant objected to our having invited Mr. Abrams, a known “war criminal.”
Similarly, when our synagogue hosted Columbia professor Rashid Khalidi, a Palestinian academic, others claimed our pulpit now had “Jewish blood on its hands.” Another congregant asked, “How can you invite Malley? He and the president hate Jews.”