The whole Michael Steele controversy – the latest in a long series for the foot-in-mouth-prone Republican National Committee chairman – must be making Jewish liberals very uncomfortable.
Steele is getting savaged by fellow Republicans for saying the Afghanistan war is a “war of Obama's choosing,” and that the one thing the President should know is that you “don't ... engage in a land war in Afghanistan... because everyone who's tried over a thousand years of history has failed."
Last week the big poetry news was W.S. Merwin's appointment as the U.S. Poet Laureate. It's a largely symbolic honor, but an incredibly big one all the same. And yet it was hard not to fall upon the easy story-line, which most in the press did: why him?
In a gripping new documentary that aired Tuesday night on PBS to mark National Holocaust Remembrance Week, historian and author Daniel Jonah Goldhagen makes a convincing case that genocide — the systematic effort to eliminate an entire group perceived of as deserving of death — is even more destructive than armed conflict, and yet often can be prevented.
Gone from an end table near the sofa in Ronald Lauder’s elegant Midtown office, high above Fifth Avenue, is the framed photo of him with his friend Benjamin Netanyahu. In its place, says someone who’s visited the office before, is a photo of the 55-year-old businessman, philanthropist and Jewish leader with the current Israeli prime minister, Ehud Barak.