U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has reportedly asked Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to free imprisoned terrorist Marwan Barghouti. Her argument, it would appear, is that the Tanzim leader remains very popular among the Palestinians, and that he is the only Fatah representative who could successfully supplant the Hamas-led government.
The deplorable state of Middle East Studies on college campuses has been a topic of grave concern for many of those who follow the declining fortunes of American scholarship. That an entire field of academic study has grown up in the last quarter-century that seeks to delegitimize Zionism and Israel is not news. But efforts to do something about it are worth mentioning.
There are ill winds of change hovering on the horizon. Washington is signaling its intention to distance itself from Israel. Pressures are being imposed on Israel to make further unilateral concessions to Mahmoud Abbas, most of which would directly impact on its security.
I'm hooked. Truly hooked. Not on drugs, thank goodness, or cigarettes or alcohol. But hooked I most definitely am, and that makes me dependent after a wonderful life of carefree indifference. Fate's ultimate payback. So what am I hooked on? What addiction is this?
The Monitor never quite understood the good feelings Condoleezza Rice managed to inspire among so many conservatives for what seemed like the longest time. The woman never uttered a single word on foreign policy – her alleged area of expertise – that could even remotely be described as original, inspiring, or just plain memorable.
On the eve of her expected reelection victory, New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton met with the editorial board of The Jewish Press.
We Jews have experienced so much pain in our long and arduous history that the pain of Islamic terrorism seems to be just another episode of indescribable suffering. To an extent, this is certainly true. For the moment, we must endure, and - in the end - we shall prevail. So it has been before; so it will be again.
An exhibit commemorating the Jewish community of Czestochowa, which has been traveling the world for the past two years, culminated in the gathering of more than 200 people who went there for a special reunion during Sukkot. These remnants and descendants of a community of more than 30,000 came from the U.S., Israel, South America, Australia and Europe.
In March 2004 Al Qaeda won its first parliamentary election in Europe. It installed the trailing candidate José Luis Zapatero as prime minister of Spain. It clinched this victory just three days before the election by exploding 10 bombs causing the death of 191 people and the wounding of 1,700 others.
In April 2001, I visited my daughter Ali, then a fifteen-year-old student at Phillips Academy in Andover, near Boston. We went to the Holocaust Memorial near Quincy Market in downtown Boston, and I was taken aback by a seemingly innocuous but in fact outrageous statement engraved in stone: "By late 1942, the United States and its Allies were aware of the death camps but did nothing to destroy them."
If most of the public opinion polls are to be believed, the Republican Party is careening toward a shellacking of historic proportions in next month’s midterm elections. Given the state of the Iraq war, a series of scandals involving Republicans, and the general mood of discontent that seems to have settled over the country, few will be surprised if the polls prove accurate.
There is no easy answer to the question of ongoing Iranian nuclearization. All options are unappealing, and all will have very substantial costs. For the moment, diplomacy still seems to be the preferred path to crisis remediation, but only because polite conversation and empty threats protect all parties from taking easily identifiable risks.
During Chol Hamoed Sukkot the sound of singing in a sukkah was heard in Czestochowa for the first time since the Shoah.
The loudest debate going on in the American Jewish world the last couple of months seems to revolve, believe it or not, around ads in Jewish weekly newspapers.
Thanks to Fred Lebow, founder of the New York City Marathon, some 500,000 Americans will run in marathons this year. In my book Anything for a T-Shirt: Fred Lebow and the New York City Marathon, the World's Greatest Footrace (Syracuse University Press, 2004), I show how Lebow, a Holocaust survivor, changed the notion of this 26.2 mile race, which this year will be held on Sunday, Nov. 5, from a grueling, sweaty showcase for elite runners into a people's competition.
Professor Rashid Khalidi, who directs the Middle East Institute at Columbia University, is currently on a multi-city book tour for his new book The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood (Beacon Press) - aided by a favorable New York Times review from an unlikely book reviewer.