WASHINGTON (JTA) -- J Street acknowledged substantial donations from George Soros, reversing years of claims by the group that it had nothing to do with the liberal financier.
Jeremy Ben-Ami, the director of the dovish pro-Israel lobby, confirmed to JTA a report that first appeared in the Washington Times that it had received $245,000 from Soros and his children in 2008, and added that it had received another $500,000 in subsequent years -- altogether, about 7 percent of the $11 million it says it has taken in since its 2008 founding.
As a journalist covering the Middle East beat in Washington, I've always wondered about the lack of a strong pro-Arab lobby in Washington. So I'm pretty intrigued with Mitchell Bard's new book, The Arab Lobby: The Invisible Alliance That Undermines America’s Interests in the Middle East - which argues that I'm wrong, and that there is one.
The real powerhouse Middle East lobby in Washington isn't AIPAC, Bard argues, but a diffuse but potent pro-Arab lobby run and funded by the Saudis.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Two weeks before their launch, the promised renewal of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks has already engendered a first: a joint statement of welcome by mainstream U.S. Jewish and Palestinian groups.
The other day I blogged about the sad demise of the American Jewish Congress and laid much of the blame for its protracted demise on its decision to turn away from the progressive domestic focus that was its traditional bread and butter.
A caller with long connections to the group took me to task.
During 12 days away from the news – in the middle of Iowa, if you can believe that - I was reminded of the curious bubble that those of us who live and work in the midst of the American Jewish world inhabit.
In that time, I didn't hear Israel, the Middle East or Iran raised a single time –unless I raised it.
Vacation plans mean I'm missing this year's Christians United for Israel (CUFI) Washington summit, which begins today. I'm sorry because CUFI puts on a pretty impressive show, and the Jewish community's ambivalence about the meaning of this and other “Christian Zionist” groups is endlessly interesting for journalists.
Jewish Washington was buzzing this week with the news – first reported in Politico, expanded on in the Jewish Week – that a few Republican heavy hitters have created an “Emergency Committee for Israel” to slam the