Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.
A new book by foreign policy pundit Peter Beinart, The Crisis of Zionism, seems certain to reignite the debate over President Obama’s feelings toward Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But the focus will be a little different this time around. It will be not on his exposure to the likes of Rev. Jeremiah Wright, William Ayres or Rashid Khalidi but rather on the prominent members of the Chicago Jewish community who took him under their wing.
Mr. Beinart writes (in an excerpt of the book that appeared in Newsweek):
The story of Obama’s relationship to Netanyahu and his American Jewish allies is, fundamentally, a story of acquiescence. Obama took office with a distinctly progressive vision of Jewish identity and state, one shaped by the Chicago Jewish community that helped launch his political career. Three years later – after a bitter struggle with the Israeli government and the American Jewish establishment – that vision is all but gone.Obama entered the White House after an adulthood spent – more than any predecessor – in the company of Jews. Most of his key legal mentors were Jews (Abner Mikva, for example); many of his biggest donors were Jews; his chief political consultant, David Axelrod, was a Jew; he lived across the street from a synagogue. And for the most part, the Jews Obama knew best were progressives, shaped by the civil-rights movement and alienated from mainstream American Jewish organizations over Israel.
Mr. Beinart goes on to say that this all accounted for the fact that
Obama’s initial statements about Israel often mirrored the liberal Zionism of his Jewish friends. Like them, he embraced the progressive aspects of Israeli society and Jewish tradition while critiquing Israel’s occupation of the West Bank…. In the words of Rabbi Arnold Wolf, an earlier supporter who ran the synagogue across the street from Obama’s house, Obama “was on the line of [the dovish Israeli group] Peace Now.”
Indeed, during his 2008 run for the White House, candidate Obama said that being pro-Israel does not mean hewing the Likud line.
According to Mr. Beinart, political reality eventually set in and President Obama abandoned his push for a settlement freeze and no longer stated publicly that any Israeli-Palestinian agreement would have to be based on 1967 lines with land swaps. Of course, Mr. Obama’s new, more restrained approach ignores the issue of Israeli retention of the major settlements in any final agreement – something that had been recognized by President George W. Bush – and thus preserves his fealty to the vision of his early supporters.
And that is precisely why many of us will continue to wonder whether Mr. Obama will revert to form should he win in November and venture into a second term unconcerned with having to face the voters again.
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The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.
Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof
What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.
Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.
The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.
Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US
No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?
For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.
It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.
For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.
Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation
Anti-Semitism is a social toxin that destroys the things that people most cherish and enjoy.
Amb. Cooper highlighted the impact of the Chanukah/Maccabee spirit on America’s Founding Fathers
It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”
Last year the Obama administration sought to minimize civilian deaths from drone strikes by generally requiring that missile attacks be limited to instances where Americans were directly threatened and there was a “near certainty” that no civilians would be killed.
If anything, Operation Protective Edge showed that Israel will not pull punches when it comes to combating terror.
Toward the end of Operation Protective Edge this past summer, the president was unusually vocal about Israel’s so-called disproportionate use of force and alleged lack of compliance with international humanitarian law.
There was no accompanying caption, but the cartoon could not help but feed the anti-Semitic canard that Israel was responsible for 9/11.
An accomplished Torah scholar and ardent adherent of Bobov chassidus, he was renowned for his self-effacing dedication and skills as an international lawyer and law professor
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/new-focus-on-obama-and-israel/2012/03/21/
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