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April 19, 2015 / 30 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘White House’

GOP Sen. Marco Rubio Launches Presidential Run

Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida has launched his run for the Republican presidential nomination for 2016, reinforcing the new reality in America: diversity is officially “in.”

The senator made his announcement yesterday (Monday) during a speech in Miami.

Rubio is using his heritage as the son of Cuban immigrants to counter the Democratic female wannabe “champion” of the American dream, former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Both follow a successful two-term president who ran on the themes of America’s strength in diversity, “hope” and “change” each time around.

Rubio, age 43, is the youngest candidate in the field thus far and represents the up-and-coming generation of the party. He is presenting himself as the person who can unite all the Republican party factions from one end of the spectrum to the other, and bring to the nation new economic solutions for the 21st century.

Rubio served as a member of the House of Representatives from 2000 to 2008 and rose to the position of Speaker of the House before he was elected as Senator in 2010. He is seen as a moderate in the party and serves on the Senate Foreign Relations and Intelligence Committees.

In every way, Marco Rubio stands in complete contrast to Hillary Clinton, 67, a graduate of Ivy League university and a long-standing member of the elite Establishment.

“A leader from yesterday began a campaign for president by promising to take us back to yesterday. Yesterday is over and we’re never going back,” he told supporters in his debut attack on Clinton.

Ditto with his closest GOP competitor, Jeb Bush, 62, whose brother and father both have already preceded him in the White House.

“I live in an exceptional country where the son of a bartender and a maid can have the same dreams and the same future as those who come from power and privilege,” Rubio said, with a nod towards the venerable political background of his GOP competitor.

But in both comments, Rubio also sounds surprisingly like … Bill Clinton and – yes, sadly – incumbent President Barack Obama.

Neither the talk of “change” nor the “American dream” theme were different from any other presidential rhetoric heard on previous campaign trails. Much of it may also be found in his new book, “American Dreams.”

The good news is that Rubio has already made some of his positions clear, openly slamming Obama’s “dangerous concessions” to Iran and his administration’s “hostility” to Israel. In fact, Rubio was talking about the Iranian issue back in 2013, defining it not as an Israeli problem but as one that faces the entire world. An armed Iran is not something the United States can live with or contain, Rubio said at a news conference with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during a visit to Israel that year. “We hope the sanctions work, but we’re also preparing for the possibility that they won’t,” he said.

Israel lives “in a challenging neighborhood,” Rubio commented. He made it clear that America’s commitment to the U.S.-Israel relationship was bipartisan and said “it should remain that way.”

During a meeting with then-President Shimon Peres, Rubio told reporters Jerusalem was “of course the capital of Israel.” He also said that although a two-state solution must be established, it was not clear whether Israel’s security could, in fact, be secured under such an arrangement. The solution, said Rubio, could only be reached in direct talks between the two parties themselves: no third side could force any arrangement. Nor should the United States be dictating any policy about the settlements, Rubio said; this too was an issue for the two sides in direct talks and should not involve any third parties.

IRAN: US Won’t Inspect Military Sites

Saturday, April 11th, 2015

A senior Iranian military official said that Iran’s military sites will not be open for inspection in any nuclear deal, according to Iran’s Tasnim News Agency.

Iranian officials have already announced “clearly and explicitly” their opposition to the inspection of the country’s military and defense facilities, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces Brigadier General Massoud Jazayeri said on Friday.

Jazayeri added, “The American side’s insistence on attending Iran’s military centers can be evaluated with regard to the repressed and unattainable wishes of the White House officials,” according to The Iran Project. Jazayeri also said that US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter didn’t know what he was talking about:

“Such remarks either show the low understanding of the speaker or stem from the overwhelming bias of the American negotiating side.”

Back in November 2013, Jazayeri said that the US would not attack Iran, and Iran would continue to develop its nuclear capabilities. He was right.

Someone’s confused about what was agreed on in Lausanne. It’s just not clear who that is.

Obama to Invite Bibi After Coalition Formed

Monday, April 6th, 2015

US President Obama will invite PM Netanyahu to the White House once Netanyahu’s coalition is set up, according to an Israel Channel 1 report.

The report didn’t say what Obama wanted to talk about, but one can be sure it will include a long discussion about how Israel must make progress on a two-state solution.

US President Barack Obama’s Belated Video Passover Greetings

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

Official video Passover greetings from U.S. President Barack Obama to Jews around the world were posted to the Internet Saturday night – 24 hours after the start of the holiday and too late for American Orthodox Jews to have heard his message, since the holiday lasts 48 hours outside the Land of Israel.

The video greeting also came a day after Israeli Jews had already celebrated their own Passover seders as well.

An official press statement from the president on Passover was issued by the White House on April 3, however, in time for the first night of Passover.

Obama explained Saturday night in his video message that he and his family had held a Passover seder at the White House in solidarity with Jewish families celebrating the holiday.

“This weekend is a special weekend,” he said. “It’s a chance to spend time with family … and celebrate miracles in days gone by,” he said, “and to reflect on the blessings God has granted us in our lives.”

“On Friday night, I hosted a Passover seder at the White House. Michelle and I joined Jewish families in America, Israel and around the world as we retold the story of an awesome God who liberated the nation with a mighty Hand and an outstretched arm., and set them on their journey towards the Promised Land.

“The tale that has been passed down from generation to generation and it’s given strength and courage to countless men and women over the years – to Jews facing anti-Semitism, and to the brave young civil rights leaders who led our own country’s march towards justice and equality,” he said, managing to tuck the issue of America’s race relations even into a simple Passover greeting.

He then turned to the upcoming Christian observance of Easter, noting that on Sunday, Christians around the world would be celebrating the holiday.

“Easter is a day of hope, in a season of hope,” he said. It’s a reaffirmation of our belief, not just as Christians, but as Americans, that better days are always ahead of us…

“We believe that with common effort, and shared sacrifice, a brighter future is just around the bend. And we embrace our obligation to do something meaningful; something lasting with the precious time we’ve been allotted on this earth.

“So, to my Jewish friends, Happy Passover. To all Christians celebrating tomorrow, Happy Easter. And to every American, have a wonderful weekend.”

Hillary Clinton Leases Brooklyn Heights Office for Campaign HQ

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

The Democratic campaign machine is starting to crank itself up at last, as former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prepares to join the race for the White House.

Clinton has just signed a lease in downtown Brooklyn to open a campaign headquarters at 1 Pierrepont Plaza in Brooklyn Heights.

It’s a fancy location but not too fancy; hip but not snobby and also very accessible, located near 12 subway lines and as many bus lines.

A central spot,reachable by the 90 different ethnic groups that comprise the borough, New York City’s largest.

The campaign leased two floors of the building, which is located across the street from the offices of the U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District of NY, Politico reported this weekend.

The move also signifies that the Democratic contender for the presidential race is ready to announce: the Federal Election Commission allows 15 days between the start of a candidate’s official campaign activities and filing of paperwork for the 2016 run.

Obama and Netanyahu’s Different Versions of Same Phone Call on Iran

Friday, April 3rd, 2015

The White House and the office of the Prime Minister issued two statements on a phone call between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu after the “key parameters” of a deal with Iran were announced, and it is difficult to believe they were referring to the same conversation.

President Obama called Prime Minister Netanyahu after the fuzzy agreement, as reported here, was announced, and according to the White House, Obama said:

The President emphasized that, while nothing is agreed until everything is, the framework represents significant progress towards a lasting, comprehensive solution that cuts off all of Iran’s pathways to a bomb and verifiably ensures the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program going forward.

He underscored that progress on the nuclear issue in no way diminishes our concerns with respect to Iran’s sponsorship of terrorism and threats towards Israel and emphasized that the United States remains steadfast in our commitment to the security of Israel.

The readout of the call also referred to Netanyahu’s re-election, saying that Obama told the Prime Minister “that he has directed his national security team to increase consultations with the new Israeli government about how we can further strengthen our long-term security cooperation with Israel and remain vigilant in countering Iran’s threats.”

The White House did not refer at all to what the Netanyahu had to say, a clear message that he cares about what Israel thinks about the deal as much as he cares what Congress thinks.

The difference is that he has to deal with Congress, which can ditch the agreement, if it wants.

Obama did not want to tell anyone what Netanyahu said in the conversation because it would work against public opinion that the president wants to beat back Congressional opposition.

The office of the Prime Minister said of the phone call:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to US President Barack Obama this evening and expressed Israel’s strong opposition to the framework agreement with Iran which poses a grave danger to Israel, the region and the world.

Netanyahu said, ‘A deal based on this framework would threaten the survival of Israel. Just two days ago, Iran said that the destruction of Israel is non-negotiable, and in these fateful days Iran is accelerating the arming of its terror proxies to attack Israel.

This deal would legitimize Iran’s nuclear program, bolster Iran’s economy, and increase Iran’s aggression and terror throughout the Middle East and beyond.

Such a deal would not block Iran’s path to the bomb.  It would pave it.’

Can You Name the Capital of Israel?

Sunday, March 22nd, 2015

Nothing like watching reruns of the classics on a lazy Sunday.

Somehow, they always seem so timely.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/tv/video-picks/can-you-name-the-capital-of-israel/2015/03/22/

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