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 right-wing parties in Israel have been gaining traction in the run-up to next week’s election, and to our mind that is a good thing. It is crucial that the world come to appreciate the broad resurgence among Israelis of the notion of a vibrant and dynamic Jewish state in the land of its biblical patrimony.
It has to be clearly understood that Israel’s leaders cannot act on a whim when it comes to relations with the Palestinians and, by extension, the United States and the European Union. Which is why we are so encouraged by the extraordinary surge of Naftali Bennett and his Jewish Home Party and the popularity of the party’s Rabbi Eli Ben Dahan, number four on Jewish Home’s electoral list, who has done remarkable things with the Israeli religious court system for agunot. (See Naomi Klass Mauer’s interview with Rabbi Ben Dahan here.)
Taken as we are with Mr. Bennett’s rise on the Israeli political scene, we still believe it imperative that Mr. Netanyahu achieve a significant victory as head of Likud and that the resultant coalition draw as much as possible from the right.
There is much current discussion over whether President Obama has in mind for his second term a return of the ambitious plans, so much in evidence during his first two years in office, for a settlement of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians that expects way too much from Israel and comparatively little of the Palestinians.
There are conflicting signals from the president on down. And while some see his nomination of John Kerry for secretary of state and Chuck Hagel for secretary of defense as signaling a return to the early days, others suggest that domestic issues and Asia will occupy the administration and that Mr. Obama is wary of squandering any political capital with a fractious congress.
What is clear is that Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas will be trying to press the U.S. and the West to force Israel back to the negotiating table under preconditions urged by the PA. (Just recently Jordan and the European Union separately announced plans to try to persuade the U.S. to get Israel to resume negotiations and, as demanded by the PA, abandon any further settlement construction.)
Despite some similarity of policy regarding settlements and final borders, Mr. Netanyahu has far greater political heft in the international arena than any of his counterparts on Israel’s right. Naftali Bennett is saying all the right things but lacks the standing and experience the prime minister brings to the table.
To be sure, there is no shortage of Netanyahu critics on both the right and the left. Yet he is a known quantity and has a record of standing firm against the anti-settlement movement and refusing to restart negotiations on Palestinian terms. And it should go without saying that a successor to Mr. Netanyahu from the left would be a disaster in terms of Israel being able to defend its interests in an ever-hostile diplomatic and geopolitical environment.
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For a peace treaty with the PA, half the Israeli public would agree to divide the Jerusalem
As for the president’s new, softer tone vis-à-vis Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel, this is most likely being driven by the results of the recent Israeli election.
What especially appeals to us is his grand – some critics would say extravagant –view of what the borders of Israel should look like.
The establishment of Hebrew University was a cause much beloved to Einstein who in 1923, during what would be his only trip to Eretz Yisrael, delivered the university’s inaugural lecture on Har Hatzofim (Mt. Scopus) and, discussing the theory of relativity, spoke the first few sentences of his address in Hebrew.
The Golden Square wanted Germany to destroy the British and Jewish presence in their country. The Third Reich craved what was beneath the ground – oil.
Ida Nudel’s account of how the Soviets persecuted and punished her was far worse than imagined.
Swim4Sadna is an annual event benefiting Sadna, an integrative special-ed community in Gush Etzion
Prof. Wistrich, was THE foremost historian of anti-Semitism; committed spokesman & advocate of Jewry
Jewish Voices for Peace’s 2015 Haggadah is a blatant anti-Israel screed crying, “L’chayim to BDS!”
On his shloshim, I want to discuss a term I’ve heard countless times about Rav Aharon: Gedol HaDor
After obsequious claims of devotion to Israel, Obama took to criticizing Israel on peace process
Mr. Obama, Israeli voters have democratically chosen to apply Israeli sovereignty over Judea&Samaria
There was something else of great importance in play – something we would have liked to see him take into account before deciding to stand with the boycotters.
Beyond the particulars of this tragic death, however, we should all be concerned about the possibility that a criminal prosecution in a major American city is being driven by fear of mobs in the street.
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.
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