As obscene as Lemrick Nelson's admission that he killed Yankel Rosenbaum most certainly is, what it says about how our criminal justice system is failing the Jewish community willperhaps be more enduring. In dramatic fashion, by highlighting the truth of something a jury in 1992 declined to acknowledge despite overwhelming evidence, it underscores something thatshould have been apparent for more than a decade. While crimes against victims who happen to be Jewish may not regularly go unpunished, the high profile, notorious ones, those whichhighlight the Jewishness of the victim, are a different matter altogether.
It was not for nothing that last June, President Bush declared that for any progress towards Palestinian goals, there must be a "new and different Palestinian leadership ... not compromised by terror." Plainly the President had enough of Arafat's duplicitousness and deceit.
There are many things that come to mind as Israel marks 55 years since it won its independence in 1948. If nothing else, Israel has demonstrated that Jews, given even less than half a chance, can collectively rise to the very peak of human achievement. We Jews have always contributed to mankind in much greater proportion than our numbers would suggest,wherever we found ourselves. But it is in Israel, where Jews have organized a state, which after a mere 55 years, has fostered wondrous achievements in virtually all areas of humanendeavor, that what we are capable of is so obvious.
Cybercast News Service (CNSNews.com) reported this week that Peter Jennings actively shaped news coverage in the 1980's so that a communist dictatorship could be portrayed in a more flattering light.
Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum's point about a pending Supreme Court case challenging state anti-sodomy laws seems hardly remarkable. The senator said: "If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual [homosexual] sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery, you have the right to anything."
A letter published in last week's issue as well as several others slated for publication in the coming weeks, are critical of our editorial comment several weeks ago regarding Agudath Israel of America's Avi Shafran's penchant for addressing religious issues in non-Orthodox publications. Our comments were triggered by a particular Shafran piece in the March 21 issue of such a publication, The Jewish Week, entitled "What Da'at Torah Really Means," in which Shafran addressed the seeming rejection by so-called Modern Orthodoxy of the notion of general deference in decision-making to Torah authorities.
It would seem that Bismark, Metternich and even Machiavelli have nothing on Britain's Tony Blair. Having stood firm with President Bush on Operation Iraqi Freedom, it is widely reported that the President feels he "owes him one." And Blair is skillfully - and ironically - using that chip to ingratiate Britain in the Arab world and reverse the negative reaction engendered by the war against Iraq!
In the months prior to Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Bush Administration grappled with the dilemma of determining when enough was enough and military force had to take over where UN inspections left off. In a revealing interview in February, Secretary of State Powell gave us a window into his and the President's thinking. Here is Secretary Powell's response to Ted Koppel's question about how much more time would be appropriate to give Hans Blix and his inspectors:
It is not well understood to what a great extent the Israeli Left was radicalized by Israel's 'Peace for Galilee' invasion of Lebanon in 1982. This radicalization was very similar to the radicalization of the American Left over Vietnam.
We recognize that in the high-stakes, often take-no-prisoners budget negotiations in Albany, leverage is at a premium. And we also appreciate the particularly exquisite dilemma now facing Governor George Pataki with the advent of both houses of the legislature having united against him and their probable ability to override his vetoes of their budget proposals.
The Palestinian Authority's call for the United States to release captured Achille Lauro thug Abu Abbas is not only the height of cynicism but is also a virtual declaration that they are free to target anyone and anything, at a time and place of their choosing, in the name of Palestinian nationalism.
Following the first Gulf War, which left Saddam Hussein in power, most everyone outside of Hussein and his fellow travelers in the Arab world acknowledged the necessity of imposing sanctions against a Hussein-led Iraq to force him to disarm. Unfortunately, although the sanctions were aimed at Hussein, it was undeniable that the sanctions would also visit great suffering on the Iraqi population, especially since Hussein could be expected to - and did - divert whatever resources were available to himself and the effort to maintain his power.
The president's apparent change of heart is more than puzzling.
Of all the developments in Israel over the past couple of years, I find the very scariest and most dangerous to be the emergence of a new form of historic revisionism that should becalled Oslo Revisionism. Like Holocaust revisionism, the fashionable term for Holocaust Denial, this is a nefarious attempt to rewrite history and invent a false narrative regarding the history of the Oslo peace process. It is just the latest manifestation of the totalitarian nature of Israel's Left.