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October 1, 2014 / 7 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Ileana Ros Lehtinen’

In-Your-Face-Obama Bill Upgrading Israel Status Above Entire World

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

My favorite Congresswoman, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL 27), along with Rep Ted Deutch (D-Fla. 21), who are the top two members on the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Middle East subcommittee, have introduced a bill on Wednesday naming Israel a “major strategic partner” of the United States, a title enjoyed by no one else on the planet, and encouraging enhanced cooperation on water, energy, homeland security, and missile development.

The bill also waives visa requirements for Israelis who visit the U.S., adding Israel to the list of countries whose citizens can visit the United States for up to 90 days without a visa, provided they registered electronically before boarding a flight.

Some other provisions: the bill expands authority for forward-deployed U.S. weapons stockpiles in Israel, providing important military equipment for either to use in a crisis. It also encourages the president to transfer essential military equipment to Israel to meet current and projected strategic threats.

Daisy Cutters, Bunker Busters, come to poppa…

The committee approved it unanimously.

“I’m pleased that this bipartisan bill to strengthen the U.S. bond with Israel passed unanimously today out of the Foreign Affairs Committee,” Congressperson Ileana said in a statement. “During this volatile time across the Middle East, this bill signals that the U.S. Congress continues to support the people of Israel and reaffirms our commitment to seek new paths to improve our bilateral relationship.”

According to an AP story from last year, the administration and some lawmakers are concerned the legislation doesn’t do enough to eliminate Israeli discrimination against Palestinians and Arab-Americans seeking to enter its borders. They also say Israel still fails to meet other legal requirements for the program.

So this has to be an in-your-face to both the White House and the State Dept. In the middle of their arm-twisting campaign to degrade Israeli security, heaping on the threats should Israel decline the offer to capitulate, our sweetheart from the Florida 27th declares:

“This important legislation, with 351 current cosponsors, declares that Israel is a major strategic partner, ensures that Israel maintains its qualitative military edge, and reaffirms our support to enhance Israel’s military systems to that it can defend herself.”

Now it’s up to the leaders of the House to let the measure go for a vote, which should actually happen, what with the 351 sponsors. We’ll see what happens in the Senate afterwards, will Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid even let the measure that has been pushed by Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) last year—The United States-Israel Strategic Partnership Act of 2013 (S. 462)—come to a full Senate vote.

Currently, the Senate bill has 45 sponsors.

Last May, when Boxer and Blunt proposed the Senate version, the organization U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation and other anti-Israel groups were working overtime to block the bill. Their main argument was that Section nine of S.462 would include Israel in the Visa Waiver Program without requiring Israel to extend reciprocal privileges to U.S. citizens.

The bill allows Israel to deny entrance to U.S. citizens for national security reasons.

“Israel has a history of discriminating against Palestinian-, Arab-, and Muslim-Americans travelers and denying them entry,” the CEO complained. Naturally, they would like to see free access for American jihadists into Israel, but it might not happen.

Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Ca) rejected the anti-Israel allegations: “Israel does not discriminate against Arab-Americans. There has been this effort by anti-Israel extremists to accuse Israel of that. We have a no-fly list, they have a no-enter list, and those associated with Islamic extremism tend to find their name on both.”

Sherman added: “My hope is that in conference this bill will be amended to help Israel achieve full participation in the visa waiver program…When they want to see Mickey Mouse, they should see the real one.”

Yes, that’s what we need, more Israelis in Los Angeles…

Congress to Obama: Time to Punish Arabs for Blowing Up Oslo and Blowing Off the US

Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

A bi-partisan majority of congressional members sent a letter to U.S. President Barak Obama late last week.  In the letter, the members insist that the time has come for this U.S. government to hold the Arab Palestinian leadership responsible for their bald refusal to comply with repeated requests from the United States government to refrain from seeking an enhanced status at the United Nations General Assembly, as is required of the Arabs under the Oslo Agreements under which it is bound.

The PLO pledged in the Oslo Agreements that it would take no unilateral actions to change the status of the disputed territories and Gaza.

Congressional leadership that has long been involved in working with Israel and the Arab Palestinians in attempts to resolve the Middle East conflict, such as U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, U.S. Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-CA), Ranking Member of the Committee, U.S. Reps. Edward R. Royce (R-CA) and Eliot L. Engel (D-NY, Chairman-designate and Ranking Member-designate, respectively, of the Committee, along with more than 230 other members of  Congress, signed and sent the letter to the President on Friday, December 21.

The letter informed the President that “we believe the United States must react strongly to the ‘Palestinian’ leadership’s failure to uphold its obligations,” and explained that in order to send a clear message of U.S. disapproval, the Arab leaders must learn that their actions are not “cost-free,” and, “at a minimum, they result in setbacks to U.S.-’Palestinian’ relations.”

Congressional members suggested that the minimal steps the U.S. should take at this time would be to close the PLO office in Washington, D.C. and to call on the U.S. Consul General in Jerusalem – who is, illogically, responsible for relations with the Arab Palestinians but not Jewish or Arab Israelis – back to Washington for consultations.

The congressional letter to President Obama points out the necessity for the U.S. government to ensure that the UNGA vote on November 29 “does not serve as a precedent for elevating the status of the PLO in other UN bodies or international forums.”

Should the PLO attempt to force its hand by seeking membership in those other UN institutions, the congressional members told President Obama that, “we should do everything possible to make sure that does not happen, including by reaffirming our commitment to maintaining and enforcing U.S. laws that require withholding U.S. contributions from any international forum that grants membership to the PLO.”

The PLO envoy in Washington, Maen Aerikat, told the Palestinian News Agency Ma’an, that the congressional letter “is an attempt by Congress to undermine the U.S. administration in any possible role it is planning to play in Palestinian affairs.”

In addition to pointing out that “punitive measures won’t pay off.  If they were effective we would have already changed our mind,” Aerikat railed at Israel, suggesting it was behind the congressional effort.  He said, “It is a political decision, a decision on the part of the Israeli government to escalate things against the Palestinian people at home and here…the U.S. is their other front.”

In a letter circulated to members of Congress by the PLO Envoy on December 14, Aerikat sought to dissuade Congress from responding to the PA provocation.  Aerikat makes several points in his letter, one of which should qualify for the Chutzpah Hall of Fame.  Perhaps he forgot that the action taken by Congress was in response to the decision by his colleagues to spurn dialogue and negotation, and instead to take unilateral action by introducing a one-sided resolution at the U.N.  This is what Aerikat wrote:

Engagement and dialogue is the only way to express the views of Congress.  Biased and one-sided resolutions cannot contribute to an atmosphere that is conducive for a political resolution to the conflict.

Not all Jews supported the congressional effort.  In the interview with Ma’an, Aerikat appreciatively listed both J Street and Americans for Peace Now as organizations that oppose the initiative to punish the Arab Palestinians for violating the Oslo Accords by seeking unilateral changes through the UN vote.  Although not mentioned by the PLO Envoy, the Union for Reform Judaism has also actively lobbied against congressional efforts to shutter the PLO Office.

S. Florida Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen Visits L.A. Jewish Community

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

Jewish community and organizational leaders gathered at the home of Sarita Spiwak in Century City, California to meet and hear from the chairwoman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, South Florida’s Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

As chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, a key committee in shaping American foreign policy, she has written and ushered through Congress innumerable pieces of pro-Israel legislation, including bills strengthening the U.S.-Israel alliance, addressing radical Islam, preventing U.S. tax dollars from supporting Hamas and Hizbullah, and most recently, legislation that increases sanctions against Iran.

(L-R) Dr. Irving Lebovics, Dr. Morry Waksberg, Sarita Spiwak, Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen, Stanley Treitel and event chair Commissioner Howard Winkler attending the event for the congresswoman.

Rep. Ros-Lehtinen In L.A.

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

Jewish community and organizational leaders gathered recently at the home of Sarita Spiwak in Century City, California to meet and hear from Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. The congresswoman, the first Cuban-American female elected to Congress, is the longest-serving Republican woman the House of Representatives.

As chair of the key committee that helps shape American foreign policy, Ros-Lehtinen has written and ushered into legislation many pieces of pro-Israel legislation. Her bills include the strengthening of the U.S.-Israel alliance; addressing radical Islam; preventing U.S. tax dollars from supporting Hamas and Hizbullah; and, most recently, legislation that increases sanctions against Iran.

(L-R) Dr. Irving Lebovics; Dr. Morry Waksberg; Sarita Spiwak; Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen; Stanley Treitel; and Commissioner Howard Winkler at the CRIC speaker series brunch.

In her talk, Ros-Lehtinen highlighted three major issues threatening Israel’s existence and U.S. interests: Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons and their (along with Syria’s) sponsorship of violent Islamist groups; the Palestinian leadership’s dangerous dual track of seeking unilateral recognition of statehood at the UN while embracing anti-Israel extremists and refusing to make peace with Israel; and anti-Semitic and anti-Israel efforts at the UN and other international bodies.

Ros-Lehtinen’s appearance was sponsored by Community Research and Information Center (CRIC), a California PAC and Jewish Community Organization (JCO) that hosts and sponsors appearances by influential speakers and government officials. This event was chaired by Dr. Irving Lebovics, Stanley Treitel, Dr. Morry Waksberg, and Commissioner Howard Winkler.

For more information on upcoming community events, you can e-mail drugcommish@juno.com or write to Community Research and Information Center, P.O. Box 480454, Los Angeles, CA 90048.

Rochelle Malek Honored As Eshet Chayil

Friday, January 27th, 2012

The Rabbi Alexander S. Gross Hebrew Academy held its 64thAnnual Event on Sunday evening, January 8. The lavish evening was hosted by local television personality Rosh Lowe and honorary event chair Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. More than $750,000 was raised for the Hebrew Academy Scholarship Fund.

Robyn Malek (right), Hebrew Academy director of development, and Rochelle Malek, Eshet Chayil Woman of Valor Award recipient.

Rochelle Malek received the Eshet Chayil Woman of Valor Award for her phenomenal dedication to the school and the Miami Beach community. Rochelle uses her talents to contribute in many ways. She is an active and involved member of many important organizations and groups.

Ms. Malek, who was married to former Miami Beach mayor Joe Malek, a”h, is a devoted mother, grandmother and sister, as well as a community powerhouse, respected and loved by all.

Other awards were presented throughout the evening. Senator Marco Rubio received the Community Service Award for his resolute support of the community. The Alumni Spotlight Award went to Tamra Fox-Meyerson for her vision and endeavors on behalf of the school. Morah Gail Davis received the Excellence in Education Award for her years of service to the school and students.

Norma Reiz and Diana Kurtzer were awarded with the Commitment to Excellence Award. These two dedicated women in the west-campus office have always been there for students, teachers and parents.

The Hebrew Academy is an Orthodox day school serving children from birth through Grade 12. RASG equips students to reach their fullest potential both academically and spiritually and instills eternal Torah values in a changing world.

US Congresswoman Urges Jordan to Appoint Ambassador to Israel

Thursday, January 19th, 2012

Speaking with Jordan’s King Abdullah in Washington on Wednesday, US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen urged Jordan to name a new ambassador to Israel.

Ros-Lehtinen, a noted Republican supporter of Israel, was quoted by AFP as saying that “Jordan has not yet appointed an ambassador to Israel in the year and a half since the previous ambassador moved on, and I would strongly encourage you to do so.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/us-congresswoman-urges-jordan-to-appoint-ambassador-to-israel/2012/01/19/

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