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(L-R) Chuck Hagel, John Brennan, John Kerry

We do not “describe our enemy as jihadists or Islamists,” asserted Brennan, “because jihad is holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam meaning to purify oneself of one’s community” – a fashionable spin on a doctrine that has historically denoted the use of force to extend and perpetuate the dominion of Islam over non-Muslims.

With President Obama and his three wise men who likely will supervise U.S. foreign defense and intelligence policy toward the Middle East, we can expect more “engagement” with radical Islamic and jihadist movements, several of which have ascended to power during Obama’s first term; no deterring of Iran from crossing the nuclear threshold; and more “daylight” between Washington and Jerusalem.

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Morton A. Klein is national president of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA). Follow him at and @mortonaklein7. Dr. Daniel Mandel is director of the ZOA’s Center for Middle East Policy and author of “H.V. Evatt & the Establishment of Israel.”