Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert this week won German support for sanctions against Iran aimed at ending its nuclear program and flew to Italy to receive similar support there. But at home the buzz was all about his apparent acknowledgement of Israel’s own nuclear arsenal.
In anticipation of possible Israeli withdrawals from the West Bank, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America voted in Jerusalem last week to empower its leadership to issue statements critical of the Israeli government.
The action, taken after much debate, came after what many viewed as the organization's tepid response two years ago to the planned Gaza disengagement.
When Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert promised on Monday to work towards a peace agreement resulting in a Palestinian state with territorial contiguity, some viewed it as a bold new initiative, while others dismissed it as nothing new.
The speech, made at the burial site in Sde Boker of David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, came just one day after a cease-fire went into effect in Gaza to end five months of conflict in which more than 300 Palestinians and five Israelis were reportedly killed.
by Larry Cohler-Esses and James D. Besser |
Editor at Large and Washington Correspondent.
On the eve of his first U.S. visit since becoming deputy prime minister of Israel, Avigdor Lieberman, who calls for stripping Israeli Arabs of their citizenship, has received a provisional pass from much of the Jewish establishment — and a stamp of approval from one leader who denounced him just last May.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, told The Jewish Week this week, “I don’t see anything extremist since he became part of the government.”
by Larry Cohler-Esses |
Editor At Large
In a surprising move, a leader of Brooklyn's large, generally hawkish Syrian Jewish community has lambasted Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert for refusing to talk with Syria, as pressure built on multiple fronts on Washington and Jerusalem to dialogue with Damascus.
Jack Avital, a longtime confidante of Ariel Sharon and chairman of the Sephardic National Alliance, told The Jewish Week last week he planned to publish an open letter to Olmert laying out his case against Israel's rejection of such talks to the Syrian Jewish community.
Gary Rosenblatt |
Editor and Publisher
Los Angeles — The month-long war with Hezbollah this summer left Israelis feeling vulnerable and depressed, but it did reassert and solidify the bonds between the Jewish state and diaspora Jewry.At a time when the relationship between the two communities seemed to be growing apart, the war reminded many diaspora Jews of their deep connections to and spiritual dependence on Israel.