E-1 move threatens to become the first major stumbling block between Israel and the re-elected Obama.
Maaleh Adumim, West Bank — The hilltop range to the northeast of this sprawling suburban Israeli settlement is barren save for a fortress-like police station, a multilane access route, electric lines, and water mains — infrastructure for a new neighborhood.
The exit sign from the highway points the way to “Mevaseret Adumim,” envisioned as an expansion of Israel’s third-most populous Jewish settlement, but the world knows it as “E-1,” a highly sensitive tract of land some believe could determine the fate of a two-state solution.
“Well,” we imagine Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu telling his worried supporters this week, “we’ll always have Palau.”
It may well be true, but we’d rather have Paris.
Certainly we appreciate that in the United Nations vote that gave the Palestinian Authority (now “Palestine”) upgraded status last Thursday, the government of Palau cast one of nine votes in Israel’s favor. It’s just that we would have preferred the support of the European continent over the citizens of that small island in the Pacific, population 21,000.
On the second day of Rosh Hashanah (which seems now like one hundred years ago, so much has happened since then), I delivered a sermon about the uniquely critical dangers facing Israel in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, and the ongoing turmoil in Syria.
Social media changes the zeitgeist in ways we couldn't have imagined. As we saw with the recent presidential election, opinions and attacks now travel at the speed of light. And so it should be no surprise that the ongoing Middle East conflict in Gaza between the Palestinians and Israelis has escalated into a Cyber war.
Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, an influential ultra-Orthodox rabbi, says it is forbidden for religious Jews to own an iPhone and has instructed his followers to burn the device if they own one. It’s not that Kanievsky sides with Android in the smartphone war, but that he’s concerned about what observant Jews will see with such a device. Burning ones iPhone seems a drastic measure, but Kanievsky wasn’t the only Jewish leader with angst against Apple’s iPhone this week.
Director Dan Wolman's 2010 film "Gei Oni" (Valley of Strength), now being released in the U.S. interweaves a unique love story with the harsh realities of the first wave of Jewish European migration to the Ottoman-ruled Palestine of the 1880's. The film is based on Shulamit Lapid's 1982 novel.