It used to be that a primary goal of Israel's friends in this country was to ensure strong U.S.-Israel relations and to create a genuinely bipartisan wall of support for the Jewish state in U.S. politics.
Now, the goal seems more to take advantage of today's bitter partisanship to advance a specific vision of U.S.-Israeli relations or support a particular political viewpoint in Israel. Or to use Israel as just another wedge issue in the U.S. partisan wars.
J Street's spat with Rep. Gary Ackerman took another turn today when it apologized for its strong reaction to the New York Democrat's statement last repudiating the pro-peace process group.
But J Street isn't backing away from the statement that touched off the fracas in the first place – its request that the Obama administration consider not vetoing a pending UN resolution condemning Israeli settlement activity.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- U.S. House of Representatives leaders urged President Obama to veto a proposed U.N. Security Council resolution that slams Israel on settlements and urges a return to direct Israeli-Palestinian talks.
"We are deeply concerned about the Palestinian leadership’s decision to reject the difficult but vital responsibility of making peace with Israel through direct negotiations, and instead to advocate for anti-Israel measures by the United Nations Security Council and other international forums," says the letter sent Thursday.
(JTA) -- Heavy snow in New York caused the postponement of a special U.N. General Assembly meeting commemorating International Holocaust Day.
The United Nations building was shut down due to the bad weather. Other Holocaust commemoration events planned for Thursday in New York also were postponed, according to reports.
The General Assembly in 2005 designated Jan. 27, the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, as International Holocaust Remembrance Day, an annual day to honor the victims of the Nazi era.
What ticked off Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) so much about J Street's position on a pending UN resolution slamming Israel's settlements policies that he decided to break ties with the pro-peace process group?
According to sources in the group, J Street “reluctantly” called on the Obama administration not to veto a pending UN resolution labeling Israel's settlements in both the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem “illegal” and condemning activities “aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the territory.”