One side effect of the current showdown between Washington and Jerusalem is that it has provided an opportunity for American diplomats and Mideast experts to step back and reassess the situation, and the results have been fascinating. Several key figures long involved in pushing the Oslo/land-for-peace equation are now saying quite bluntly that it doesn’t make sense, at least for now, and that the Obama administration should back off.
J Street’s Hadar Susskind is reported as saying that only those who wish to stall and make concessions “don’t want to see a serious U.S. plan” (‘Buzz Over U.S. Peace Plan Sparking Jitters,’ April 16).
If that is the only conclusion Susskind can draw about the motives of those with whom he disagrees, then it’s no surprise that Susskind ignores Arab hostility to Israel’s existence and prefers to substitute the fiction that conflict persists because Israel doesn’t make still more concessions to the Palestinians.
This letter is being written in support of Rabba Sara Hurwitz. We are two 13-year-old Jewish girls who heard her speak and were extremely moved by her cause (“RCA Set To Rule On Women’s Roles,” April 23).
I was delighted to be contacted by Stewart Ain for his article, “U.S.-Israel Tensions Now Hitting Pulpits” (April 23), since I do not believe in the 12 years I have served as rabbi at West End Synagogue: A Reconstructionist Congregation, I have ever been asked to comment on current issues for a piece in the paper.
Stewart Ain’s article “U.S.-Israel Tensions Now Hitting Pulpits” (April 23), illustrates a high degree of ambivalence among American rabbis over President Barack Obama’s unprecedented serious, forthright and evenhanded efforts to achieve a lasting two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This is entirely understandable after eight years of totally laissez-faire U.S. diplomacy, which left the parties to their own devices, resulting in today’s virtually intractable stalemate, with the positions of both sides moving even further apart.
By characterizing President Barack Obama’s policy towards Israel (“U.S. Israel Tensions Now Hitting Pulpits,” April 23) as “tough love,” Rabbi Andrew Bachman advances the mindless drivel typical of those who have no real interest in the well-being of Israel or her people.
I found the article by, and Gary Rosenblatt’s interview of, Elie Kaunfer to be very interesting (April 2). I agreed with a number of Kaunfer’s points but disagree with his de-emphasis on Jewish experiences. In fact, the success of Chabad around the world is an example of meaningful Jewish experience being an important gateway to learning.
A young woman looks at me from her hospital bed and confesses that grappling with her illness has helped her understand what her bat mitzvah Torah portion — which concerned isolating people with certain afflictions from their community and welcoming them back in once health was restored — was really all about.