King James Meets ‘Rocky Top’

There’s no doubt that the Bible is a popular book. Jews and Christians love it (although the contents of their Bibles differ). For Muslims, too, the Bible is divine revelation. In Tennessee, some want to make it an officially recognized state symbol, along with the tomato (state fruit), milk (state beverage) and rescued dog or… Read More

Reasonable People Can Agree

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider 
Al-Abadi meets with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
(JAMES LAWLER DUGGAN/REUTERS/Newscom)

Last week, in a spirit of political compromise that has been in short supply for the past several years, the Obama administration and senators from both parties agreed to an oversight role for Congress in connection with any final deal with Iran on its nuclear program. In a unanimous vote, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee… Read More

Choosing to Remember and Act

It must have been a shock to walk by Shaare Torah Congregation in Gaithersburg last Tuesday morning and see the outer walls covered by spray-painted swastikas and other offensive graffiti. But as violated as the building appeared, there were no broken windows and the inside was untouched. By the end of the day the walls… Read More

A Real Palestinian Tragedy

Under constant siege, the Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp is still home to 18,000 residents.
(YOUSSEF BADAWI/EPA/Newscom)

The news of the Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp — like almost all news out of Syria — is grim. The camp, on the southern edge of Damascus, is under siege by both the Islamic State, which began decapitating Palestinians as soon as it took over this month, and the Syrian government, which is attacking the… Read More

Now for the Hard Part

The broad outlines of a deal on Iran’s nuclear program, reached by international negotiators last week, offers both hope and concern about whether Tehran’s ambitions can be constrained in exchange for ending crippling sanctions and instituting a robust inspection regime by the International Atomic Energy Agency. But if ever the devil was in the details,… Read More

A Friend in Trouble

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) addresses the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference in 2013.
(Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

In his support for Israel and criticism of nuclear negotiations with Iran, Robert Menendez, the Democratic senator from New Jersey, has been fearless and vocal. In his 2012 re-election campaign, he was the top recipient of donations from pro-Israel individuals and groups who gave him a total of $346,470, according to the Center for Responsive… Read More

Mixed Messages on Iran

In Yemen last week, Saudi Arabia launched air strikes against Houthi rebels. U.S. intelligence aided the Saudis. The Shiite Houthis are backed by Iran. In Iraq, meanwhile, the United States has joined Iran to beat back the nascent Sunni-run caliphate known as the Islamic State. And in Switzerland, international negotiations with Iran over its nuclear… Read More

A Troubling ‘Reassessment’ with Israel

President Obama addresses his differences with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a news conference at the White House on March 24.
(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Once again, American Jews are being forced to pick sides in an unnecessary fight between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Last month, it was over the breach of protocol surrounding Netanyahu’s speech to Congress and taking on a U.S. president over the Iran nuclear talks. Now, following Netanyahu’s re-election, the prime… Read More

Tackling Race by the Cup

Employees on the front lines of the service economy are compelled to say a lot of things to customers at corporate behest, whether it’s “Would you like to supersize that?” or by responding to “Thank you” with the unnatural “My pleasure.” As of Sunday, baristas at Starbucks will no longer have to worry about following… Read More

Netanyahu’s Victory

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, flanked by his wife and Likud Party supporters, has a lot of fence-mending to do.
(Miriam Alster/Flash90)

In last week’s election, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defied polls, surprised pundits and confounded expectations by pulling off a clear victory. We congratulate him as he negotiates a coalition for his historic fourth term as prime minister. We are concerned, however, that there was a heavy price for Netanyahu’s victory. His last-minute renunciation of… Read More