We've heard from many Israelis who feel demoralized and abandoned due to the lack of any strong and meaningful statements or vigorous public demonstrations sponsored by major Jewish organizations in support of Israel's position on Jerusalem.
In February, Yachad/the National Jewish Council for Disabilities, an agency of the Orthodox Union, presented NAIM -- North American Inclusion Month - as a national initiative to develop sensitivity and knowledge of what it means to live with disabilities and to educate communities on how they can do their part to make sure all Jews are properly included in all aspects of Jewish life.
Last month, I took a quick, five-day trip to the Unites States to visit my grandfather at the Miami Jewish Home and Hospital, an assisted living facility in North Miami Beach where he is (hopefully) recovering from several strokes. While I was pleasantly surprised by the generosity shown to my grandfather by complete strangers (staff members and volunteers) and the extreme emotions exhibited by our family's usually unflappable patriarch, I was simply stunned by my own feelings toward the "Old Country."
The American Jewish Committee's annual survey of Jewish public opinion has been released and the numbers do not lie. Down from the stratospheric 78 percent of Jews who voted for him in 2008, President Obama currently enjoys a 57 percent approval rating in the larger Jewish community.
Earlier this month, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told a forum of Jewish leaders that "sometimes friends need to tell each other the hard truth." I'd like, on behalf of my people, to return the courtesy with the following words directed to President Obama.
President Obama's nastiness toward Prime Minister Netanyahu would be alarming even it were merely a matter of style to impress the Muslim world. But Obama's motivation is much more substantive. He seeks to impose a solution - whether it leads to peace or it doesn't - that will return Israel essentially to the 1949-1967 armistice lines, including a loss of Jewish sovereignty in the Old City of Jerusalem.
Let's remember the facts here. Jerusalem is hardly some far-off outpost. It is the capital of a sovereign nation that happens to be our strongest ally in the Middle East and perhaps the world. And this housing decision was months in the works as part of a transparent process that is followed by dozens and dozens of building proposals each year. Think of it as a decision by a local zoning board. This was hardly war and peace.
It was even before the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin by Yigal Amir that the Israeli Left, led by the Haaretz newspaper, chanted in unison what has become one of its fundamental political axioms: political violence is a congenital inclination of the Israeli Right and is committed exclusively by right-wingers.
For American taxpayers, the devil is in the details of the new health care law. But for the Jewish people and the State of Israel the devil is in the comparison between Barack Obama's steamrollering of health care legislation and his developing Middle East policy.
While it's not too early for Republicans to start feeling optimistic, they need to realize this kind of resurgent mood isn't unlike the ebullience of markets bouncing off a bottom. As market pundits like to say, even a dead cat will bounce when it's tossed from a great height. After having fallen so low in public esteem during the last days of the Bush administration, it only makes sense Republicans' spirits would surge at an impending reversal of fortune.
Israel's prime minister, Benamin Netanyahu, wants peace and is interested in negotiations with the Palestinians. The Netanyahu government enjoys popular support because a large majority of Israelis agree with this view. All polls show Israelis deeply desire peace and this influences their voting behavior.
Noam Chomsky, who spoke at Boston University's Jacob Sleeper Auditorium on March 2 as part of the noxious Israel Apartheid Week and a guest of Students for Justice in Palestine, clearly lives in an academic netherworld of political fantasies, conspiracies, and intellectually imbecilic distortions of history and fact. As a result, the MIT professor emeritus of linguistics has become a widely known, eagerly followed superstar of the Israel-hating, America-hating Left.
Anyone who has been to Israel is familiar with the countless religious, spiritual, and aesthetic attributes the land holds. The country is rich in Jewish tradition and historical significance abounds. There are awe-inspiring sights that leave indelible marks in our minds and souls. Israel is a land that has a special place in all of our hearts.
Growing up, I was taught the value of self-reliance. Dire straits may force a person to ask for financial assistance from his family, friends or community, but ordinarily, a self-respecting individual should not accept charity. "Better that one's Shabbos meals resemble one's weekday meals than to rely on others for help," the Talmud quotes Rabbi Akiva as saying (Shabbos 118a).
I consider the Obama administration's recent actions against the Israeli government to be outrageous and a breach of trust.
They're usually especially friendly and charming. They often do plenty of public acts of chesed. This is done in order to look good and gain respectability and positions of authority - and unquestioned access to potential victims. And the fact is, they can do really nice things because they may actually be kind and intelligent people in some ways. But not in other ways.
Let's face it: it's unusual and even somewhat bizarre nowadays to encounter a family with more than two children. It is almost as if a war is launched against the unborn after a "red line" of two or three children has been reached.
Soap opera-like debacles have stunned, stupefied, and dismayed our community. We have witnessed a prime minister, governors, and men of stature plummet to the depths of scandal and ignominy. Especially disconcerting and the epitome of paradox is when revered men, charged to exemplify God's Word, purportedly disgrace His Word instead. Why do great men fall?
Very soon we will sit around the Seder table and tell the story of the Exodus. We have arrived at Z'man Cheiruseinu, the Season of our Freedom. The Children of Israel are about to leave Mitzraim. What a story. But it's not a story. It's reality.
Late last year in Oslo, a team of three American, British and Israeli scientists received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for work that was done at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York. This isn't a case of geographic happenstance, but rather a symbol of the remarkable success we've seen from the bilateral scientific collaboration programs that exist between the United States and Israel.