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Posted on: October 24th, 2007

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For students of America’s response to the Holocaust, it is a familiar scenario: a small group of dedicated activists try to bring about the rescue of persecuted Jews, only to find themselves obstructed by cold-hearted bureaucrats, jealous organizational professionals, and an indifferent news media.

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Posted on: October 17th, 2007

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For years many of us believed the Nobel Peace Prize could not possibly be debased any worse than it was when Shimon Peres and mass murderer Yasir Arafat were honored for plunging the Middle East into an endless cycle of terrorist aggression against Israel and for putting Israel's very survival in jeopardy.

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Posted on: October 17th, 2007

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I have always been disturbed by the fact that while millions upon millions of dollars are poured into the construction and programs of synagogues, the support received by our yeshivas and day schools is so meager in comparison.

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Posted on: October 17th, 2007

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Germany needs an Israel Lobby. That was the thrust of Alan Posener’s commentary on Deutschland Radio in late May. Posener, chief columnist for Germany’s largest circulating Sunday newspaper, Welt am Sonntag, attended the yearly AIPAC conference in Washington and posits U.S pro-Israel solidarity as a model for Germany, where “Israel’s Lobby’s consists of six million dead Jews.”

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Posted on: October 17th, 2007

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Not many countries celebrate defeat. Syria does. Not many countries want to be reminded of grossly embarrassing encounters. Syria is celebrating Israel’s victory in the 1973 Yom Kippur War. It’s a celebration with a twist. While the rest of the world records Israel’s October 1973 victory over Syria and Egypt, Syrian historians, Syria’s military and most importantly Syria’s president, Bashar Assad, tell another story. The Syrians have rewritten history. And in their version, Syria emerged victorious against Israel.

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Posted on: October 10th, 2007

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The next president of the United States will need to address the crumbling social fabric of this great nation.

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Posted on: October 10th, 2007

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With the first of the 2008 caucuses and primaries only months away, the endless presidential campaign is about to be clarified as the long list of candidates without a prayer are winnowed down to the few viable contenders.

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Posted on: October 10th, 2007

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Back in the early 1970’s I served as an Air Force intelligence officer at Udorn Air Base in Thailand, home of the 432nd Tactical Fighter Reconnaissance Wing. Most of the bombing in 1970 and 1971 focused on Laos, especially the Ho Chi Minh Trail logistical network down which Hanoi funneled troops and supplies onto South Vietnam’s battlefields. Occasionally, the 432nd’s F-4 Phantoms would “go North,” striking targets inside North Vietnam.

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Posted on: October 10th, 2007

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In an essay published in the Jewish magazine Tikkun last January, Bertell Ollman, one of the world’s best-known Marxist theorists, recounted how, on his way into the operating room, he realized that if he did not survive his surgery, he would die a Jew. The prospect was so unsettling that, once healed, he wrote his letter of resignation from the Jewish people. The reasons were Zionism, Israel, and the support its policies enjoy from other Jews.

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Posted on: October 2nd, 2007

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In an amazing development, archeologists digging in the campus grounds of Harvard University near the statue of John Harvard have uncovered a forgotten buried document about a long-defunct organization of professors and students operating on American campuses in 1937.

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Posted on: October 2nd, 2007

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I was at an employee leadership conference the other day, speaking from the podium and telling Environmental Protection Agency colleagues about my views on leadership. Eventually, my formal remarks were done and we opened the floor to questions. That’s when it really became interesting.

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Posted on: October 2nd, 2007

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Professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt were in Los Angeles last month, speaking to an overflow crowd of more than 300 people at the Armand Hammer Museum – part of a speaking tour with appearances at World Affairs Councils in San Francisco, Dallas and Washington, D.C., the City Club in Cleveland, forums at the University of Chicago, MIT and Columbia University, the Cambridge Forum in Harvard Square, and media slots on NPR, the Colbert Report, and WTTW-TV in Chicago.

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Posted on: October 2nd, 2007

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It came to pass that the shamash in a little shtetl passed away, leaving an elderly widow. The community volunteered to support her, but she refused to take a “handout.” So an agreement was reached whereby she would receive a good wage for doing her deceased husband’s work of awakening the townspeople for Selichot before Rosh Hashanah. She was given the wooden gavel used for the task and set off at three in the morning to awaken the men of the community.

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Posted on: October 2nd, 2007

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When in the spring of 2006 two professors from distinguished institutions, the University of Chicago and the Harvard School of Government, published a paper in the London Review of Books called “The Israel Lobby,” it raised alarm bells about the spread and impact of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in America.

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Posted on: September 25th, 2007

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Dan Rather has been out of the anchor chair at The CBS Evening News for more than two years. There is wide agreement that the story that led to his departure, a report on George W. Bush’s Air National Guard service, was based on fraudulent, or at least unverifiable, documents. CBS commissioned an extensive investigation into the matter, Rather left the network, and the affair seemed over.

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Posted on: September 25th, 2007

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Part of the standard liturgy of Jewish prayer is the pronouncement that “we were exiled for our sins.” The victories of the Babylonians and the Romans were not ascribed to the imperialist aggression of those predatory powers. Nor did our tradition assign blame for those defeats to the weakness of the Jewish forces, or even to the stupidity of both the strategic and tactical decisions made by Jewish leaders.

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Posted on: September 25th, 2007

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Let me state what is painfully obvious. Despite our most hopeful illusions, people are not really good, nor do they really practice peace. While power corrupts, absolute powerlessness corrupts absolutely, and there is no safe place, neither high nor low, for the most vulnerable of our citizens.

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Posted on: September 25th, 2007

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It seems everyone is in a mighty tizzy about young Jews who fail to identify with Israel and don’t much care to visit there. How do we inspire these young folks to develop some feelings for the Holy Land, and attract them to visit Israel?

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Posted on: September 19th, 2007

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“And you shall rejoice in your festival” says the pasuk at the end of Parshas Re’ei (16:14), and this is actually a mitzvah. I suspect this is not intended to be one of the more difficult mitzvot for us to fulfill, yet for many hard-working Jews the Yomim Tovim are far greater sources of stress than joy.

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Posted on: September 19th, 2007

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In my former life as a school psychologist, I spent a great deal of time doing intelligence testing. Occasionally, I had the agonizing task of breaking the dreadful news to parents that a child was severely developmentally disabled. Whether or not I packaged the term in soft euphemisms like “cognitively depressed” or “mentally deficient,” most parents eventually caught on that I was just searching for other words to mollify that unbearable label.

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