Last week I delivered a sermon based on the Torah portion of the week and which compared Moses, the great Jewish redeemer, with Abraham Lincoln, the martyred American emancipator.
Former presidents hold a place like no other politicians in a democracy. Regardless of their politics, they are honored for their service. And their choice of activities after their presidencies immediately raises the profile of the debate and calls us to arms for good causes.
The throngs of tourists passing Big Ben are unaware of the tunnel beneath their feet, which connects the parliamentary committee rooms in Portcullis House to the British House of Commons. When the division bells ring, members of parliament sprint along the passage to cast their votes in the chamber. It was in one of those committee rooms last Thursday evening that a group of MPs met with foreign lawmakers to discuss boycott, divestment and the indictment of a sovereign nation with the arrest of its officials for breach of international law.
Following the Iraq Study Group report, it seems clear that legally-binding non-proliferation expectations for Iran may soon be abandoned, and that Israel - once again - may be offered as a convenient sacrifice to civilization's irremediable enemies.
Reading Rabbi Saul Berman’s moving front-page essay (“Martin Luther King and the Exodus Narrative”) in last week’s Jewish Press struck an emotional chord. Particularly since earlier in the week I’d attended an “Evening of Solidarity in Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” which took place at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale in association with Reverend Roger Hambrick and the Green Pastures Baptist Church.
Moshe understands that even though none of the parties to this conflict are Jews, and that he could stand aside and not risk being accused of having caused the evil, his Jewish responsibility is to do what he can to prevent the perpetration of injustice.
From the beginning, Israel's policy on its nuclear weapons and doctrine has been to keep the bomb quietly in the "basement." To be sure, this deliberate policy of nuclear ambiguity has done very little to deter "ordinary" conventional enemy aggressions or acts of terror. But it does seem to have been entirely adequate in keeping Israel's foes from mounting existential attacks.
A recent Gallop Poll found that 56% of Americans think the media’s coverage of events in Iraq is inaccurate, nearly two-thirds of those believing that the media portray the situation as worse than it is. A biased, always bad-news-baring mainstream media trying to discredit our war effort is a disgrace. But worse is the blatant manufacturing of news through editorials disguised as reports.
The war started last July with Hizbullah’s cross-border attack on an Israeli patrol and the kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers. The daring move, across the internationally recognized, UN-ratified border with Lebanon, gave rise to an immediate sense of purpose to most Israelis in uniform, both regular army personnel and your average citizen-soldier like me.