WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Obama administration is “deeply disappointed” with a decision by UNESCO, the United Nation’s cultural arm, to cancel the opening of an exhibition on the Jewish presence in the land of Israel and is seeking its placement “as soon as possible.”
Although I truly believe President Barack Obama has had good intentions in his policies toward Israel, and has accomplished much in the region, there are several key respects where he could have been — and still can be — a greater friend to Israel.
Talks in D.C., French proposal come amid nonviolent Palestinian strategy as September statehood bid looms.
James D. Besser
With the September target for Palestinian statehood action at the United Nations looming ever larger and new border clashes hinting of a change in Palestinian tactics, the pace of diplomacy aimed at restarting stalled Israeli-Palestinian negotiations picked up this week.
On Monday Israeli and Palestinian negotiators were in Washington for separate talks with U.S. officials in a last-ditch effort to find a formula for resuming direct negotiations before a UN vote officials here fear will further isolate Israel and undermine U.S. interests.
(JTA) — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he is concerned over Israel's plans to build hundreds of housing units in eastern Jerusalem.
Ban and Netanyahu met Monday night in New York. The leaders also spoke about efforts to restart peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, as well as the decision by a United Nations body to refer to Rachel's Tomb and the Cave of the Patriarchs as mosques.
If diplomacy is the art of accenting the positive, the distinguished speakers at a formal dinner Tuesday evening commemorating the 50th anniversary of Israel’s admission to the United Nations deserved the highest diplomatic marks. One would hardly have known from listening to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Israeli Foreign Minister Ariel Sharon, former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, or former Israeli Ambassador to the UN Abba Eban that for most of the last five decades Israel has been treated as a pariah in the world body.
It’s easy to see why John Bolton, the controversial U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, was the honoree at the annual Zionist Organization of America dinner Sunday night.In a straightforward speech to the 1,000 attendees — announced as the largest ZOA dinner ever — he pledged to “try for a new standard of honesty and truthfulness” at the United Nations regarding its treatment of Israel, and asserted that an underlying sense of anti-Israel, anti-Zionism and anti-U.S.