Reports that the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt is called for Egpyitan President Muhammed Morsi to sever all ties with Israel as a result of the Israeli operation against Gazan terror. Morsi’s office to hold press conference within the hour. (Ehud Yaari, Channel 2 TV)
Posts Tagged ‘conference’
Brooklyn Democratic State Senator-elect Simcha Felder has decided to caucus with the GOP, placing doubt over the Democrats’ ability to control the Senate, the NY Daily News reported.
Felder, who represent a new, mostly Orthodox Jewish district, announced the switch following a Tuesday meeting with Senate GOP Leader Dean Skelos.
Felder said that by joining the Republicans, who are in the majority until the new Senate goes into session next year, he will be able “to serve the people who elected me, and advance a legislative agenda that best meets their needs.” These include economic development, jobs and tax relief.
His move leaves Senate Democrats with a 32-31 majority come January. Two races have not been decided yet, and the Democrats are leading in both.
If the Republicans take either of those seats, they will have the majority, thanks to Felder’s defection. And that would be without factoring in breakaway senate Democrats who formed their own conference and have worked closely with the Republican majority the last two years.
The Independent Democratic Caucus, comprised of four Senators who worked with the Republicans this session, are yet to announce whose wagon they’d be riding come January.
Senator Skelos was delighted to welcome Felder to his ranks. “Senator-elect Felder will be a valuable member of our conference as we work to address the concerns raised by his community and continue to move this state forward,” the Republican Boss from Nassau County said.
According to the Daily News, Senate Democrats still expect Felder to return to his roots once their party wins the two disputed seats.
“The voters sent a clear message on election night that they want the Senate led by a Democratic majority,” said Senate Democratic spokesman Mike Murphy. “We are confident that when the Senate convenes in January, there will be a Democratic majority and we look forward to working with Gov. Cuomo to achieve the progressive agenda he has laid out.”
In that case, it could mark the final demise of the NY State GOP, with both houses and the governor’s office residing in Democratic hands, as well as both U.S. Senate seats and a majority of the House delegation.
Some 4,000 Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries and communal leaders from more than 75 countries gathered in New York for their 29th international conference.
Many of the rabbis attending the conference over the weekend brought relief supplies and funds from their communities around the world to help victims of Hurricane Sandy, and volunteered their time for relief efforts.
Highlights of the conference included a visit to the gravesite of the last Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson; a group picture in front of the Chabad-Lubavitch worldwide headquarters in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn; and the annual banquet featuring an international roll call.
Conference workshops included topics such as helping people through the global economic crisis; expanding the horizons of college campus outreach; and multi-sensory approaches to Jewish education.
Despite the verbal confrontation between Israel and Iran over Tehran’s nuclear program, Israeli and Iranian officials participated this week in secret talks in Brussels, Belgium, on dismantling both countries’ arsenals of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction, Julian Borger reported in the Guardian.
Participants included Jeremy Issacharoff, the Foreign Ministry’s Deputy Director for Strategic Affairs. The chief Iranian representative is Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran’s ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna. The meetings are moderated by Finnish diplomat Jaakko Laajava, whom the UN secretary general appointed to organize the planned conference in Helsinki.
The talks, conducted in a seminar format, were held under the auspices of the EU. A media blackout was imposed on the discussions and participants have pledged not to publicize even the fact that the talks are being held, much less anything about their content.
In sharp contrast with the saber rattling of both sides’ leaders, Mark Fitzpatrick, a non-proliferation expert from the International Institute for Strategic Studies and former state department official, told the Guardian that “there were no fireworks and no denunciations” at the conference.
Delegates to the Jewish People Policy Institute conference proposed a new model for Jewish communal fundraising and stressed the importance of cooperation between Israel and Diaspora Jewish communities.
At a conference session on how the global Jewish community spends its funds, former CBS executive and Fox News founder Mark Pearlman suggested that the community shift in part from focusing on umbrella Federation funding, and instead emphasize funding based on causes — though he noted the importance of Federations to American Jewish communal life.
He also said that Jewish communities should develop better online fundraising, and set up an organization that can monitor fundraising groups and direct donors to specific causes.
“It’s not about auditing,” he said. “We need to continue to support the federated system but we need to promote a marketplace like this to get funding to solve causes.”
The conference, taking place Tuesday and Wednesday in Jerusalem, is called “The Conference on the Future of the Jewish People” and brings together more than 120 Jewish leaders and experts from around the world. The Institute is a think tank focused on developing policy for the Jewish world.
Israeli President Shimon Peres also addressed the delegates on Tuesday.
Aside from the Jewish communal budget, the conference’s sessions dealt with Israeli and Jewish identity and geopolitics.
Tuesday’s keynote speaker, French Jewish public intellectual Bernard-Henri Levy, praised increased unity between Israel and Diaspora Jewish communities, as compared to Israel’s early days as a state.
In earlier years, “there was the feeling in French Jewry that Israel was a reality that had to be accepted but that it would probably create more problems than it would solve,” he said. “This whole debate seems over. Today it seems the Diaspora and Israel are like the two pillars of the Jewish world and one cannot work without the other.”
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat and Natan Sharansky, chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, JPPI’s parent organization, also appeared at the conference on Tuesday.
Former Mossad chief Meir Dagan’s condition is improving after contracting an infection following a liver transplant in Belarus.
Dagan is still being kept sedated and on a respirator, and is being kept in isolation to minimize his chances of additional infections.
US, German and Swedish hospitals refused to operate on Dagan, according to Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko, who gave a press conference on Tuesday. “No one wanted to conduct this operation on a former head of the Mossad,” Lukashenko said. Israeli officials decried Lukashenko’s conference as an attempt to get publicity for Belarus.
In an effort to nudge New York Jewish students and young professionals considering aliyah to take the plunge, Nefesh B’Nefesh and the Jewish Agency for Israel will be hosting a special conference at the UJA-Federation of new York in Manhattan on October 21.
The event will feature workshops on getting jobs and higher education in Israel, serving in the army, and other topics, and will include an Israel Fair where job hunters and potential job employers from Israel can meet. A special workshop will also be included for medical doctors.
A special webinar emphasizing Nefesh B’Nefesh’s Go North program will also highlight the benefits of living in Israel’s Galil and Golan regions.
Two free tickts to Israel will be raffled off, and a Tweetup on Twitter can be followed at #thinkIsrael.