The Durban Review conference is officially underway in Geneva, and, predictably, it started with a bang; the BBC is reporting that Western delegates walked out of a speech by Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attacking Israel as a “racist” state and criticizing its creation, and that the speech was briefly disrupted by demonstrators wearing clown costumes.
It looks like President Obama has, in one stroke, disappointed the international left and the Jewish right, both of which were expecting, hoping or both that he would change his mind and send a delegation to this week’s Durban II conference. (Read the full State Department statement here)
The cherry blossoms have come and gone, which means it must be spring meeting season for Jewish groups.
Next week it’s the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, which has a star-studded program for its annual “Consultation on Conscience.” As usual, the focus will be on domestic and social social justice issues, with a strong focus this year on the impact of the global economic downturn and its economic implications.
Is the Barack Obama administration planning a serious push for an Israeli-Palestinian agreement that could produce some real pressure on Israel, not just the usual wrist-slapping on issues such as settlements? And could that ignite genuine conflict with the new right-of-center government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu?
Return to Jewish Week Home PageFollow the Jewish Week on Twitter
And check out the Jewish Week’s Facebook page and become a fan!
Reading Gary Rosenblatt’s interesting column about the film Waiting for Armageddon, I was struck by how much we don’t know about the beliefs and motives of the evangelical Christians who ardently support Israel.