The Celebrate Israel Festival on May 31 at Pier 94, slated to be the largest gathering to date of Israeli-Americans in New York.
The Russian incursion into Ukraine is proof positive that Russian President Vladimir Putin really is trying to revisit the glory days of the old Soviet Union. How the U.S. and the West deals with it will plainly have a major impact on international affairs in the years to come.
Given that reality, we were startled by Secretary of State Kerry’s almost whiney public reaction to the Russian action. But after seeing President Obama’s responses in an interview with Jeffrey Goldberg of Bloomberg News, it is painfully clear that U.S. foreign policy is in the hands of people who haven’t a clue about the dynamics of power.
On Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” Secretary Kerry had this to say about Mr. Putin’s foray:
You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pre-text. It is serious in terms of sort of the modern manner with which nations are going to resolve problems. There are all kinds of other options still available to Russia. There still are. President Obama wants to emphasize to the Russians that there are a right set of choices that can still be made to address any concerns they have about Crimea, about their citizens, but you don’t choose to invade a country in order to do that.
One can almost imagine a shocked Mr. Kerry thinking to himself, “How could he?” Yet not only did Mr. Putin do what he did, China, one of the three major international players along with the U.S. and Russia, agreed with him, not with Mr. Kerry.
Here is what a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman had to say about the Russian operation:
China has always upheld the principles of diplomacy and the fundamental norms of international relations…. At the same time we also take into consideration the history and the current complexities of the Ukranian issue.
Then came President Obama’s Bloomberg News interview with its revelations about the his troubling mindset on the Middle East:
Question: [Mahmoud Abbas leads] a weak, corrupt and divided Palestinian entity that is already structurally semi-powerless. Do you think he could deliver anything more than a framework agreement? Is this the guy who can lead the Palestinian people to say, “OK, no more claims against Israel, permanent peace, permanent recognition?”
Obama: Look, I think it has to be tested. The question is: What is lost by testing it? If in fact a framework for negotiations is arrived at, the core principles around which the negotiations are going to proceed is arrived at, I have no doubt that there are going to be factions within the Palestinian community that will vigorously object in the same way that there are going to be those within Israel who are going to vigorously object.
But here’s what I know from my visits to the region: That for all that we’ve seen over the last several decades, all the mistrust that’s been built up, the Palestinians would still prefer peace. They would still prefer a country of their own that allows them to find a job, send their kids to school, travel overseas, go back and forth to work without feeling as if they are restricted or constrained as a people. And they recognize that Israel is not going anywhere. So I actually think that the voices for peace within the Palestinian community will be stronger with a framework agreement and that [Abbas’s] position will be strengthened with a framework for negotiations.
There would still be huge questions about what happens in Gaza, but I actually think, Hamas would be greatly damaged by the prospect of real peace….
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We take a whole person approach, giving our people assistance with whatever they need.
During my spiritual journey I discovered G-d spoke to man only once, to the Jewish people at Sinai
20 years after the great Ethiopian aliyah, we must treat them like everyone else; no better or worse
Many Black protesters compared Baltimore’s unrest to the Palestinian penchant of terrorism & rioting
She credited success to “mini” decisions-Small choices building on each other leading to big changes
Shavuot 1915, 200000 Jews were expelled; amongst the largest single expulsions since Roman times
Realizing there was no US military threat, Iran resumed, expanded & accelerated its nuclear program
“Enlightened Jews” who refuse to show chareidim the tolerance they insist we give to Arabs sicken me
Somewhat surprisingly, the Vatican’s unwelcome gesture was diametrically at odds with what President Obama signaled in an interview with the news outlet Al Arabiya.
The recent solid victory of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party produced something very different.
The reaction is so strong that nine times out of ten, parents engage in some form of coping mechanism before arriving at a level of acceptance of a special-needs diagnosis.
“…his neshamah reached out to us to have the zechus of Torah learning to take with him on his final journey.”
“Let’s get something straight so we don’t kid each other…[the Iranians] already have paved a path to a bomb’s worth of material,” said Mr. Biden. “Iran could get there now if they walked away in two to three months without a deal.”
The president is unwilling to cede any of what he considers his exclusive powers in the area of foreign policy and has struggled mightily to keep the Senate away from any role in the kind of deal to be negotiated.
A committed Religious Zionist, he was a sought-after adviser on Zionist affairs around the world.
More important, Mr. Obama is simply acceding to Iran’s position on the timing of the lifting of sanctions.
For our community, Mrs. Clinton’s foreign policy record will doubtless attract the most attention. And it is a most interesting one.
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