A Kingdom Too Weak To Let Fail

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The Kingdom of Jordan has made a virtue of its weakness. Ruled by a canny monarchy that manages to balance competing forces within the country and kept afloat by international aid, Jordan has always seemed fragile. Yet, Jordan is pro-Western and a close and reliable friend of the United States (the notable exception being Jordan’s… Read More

A Draft For The Greater Good

To a small group of the reported hundreds of thousands of haredi protesters that demonstrated in the streets of Jerusalem this week, the prospect of a law drafting haredim into military service is no different than what the Nazis subjected Jews to in the Holocaust. That a thinking person could even compare the two is… Read More

The morning after AIPAC

The list of high government officials who will speak at the AIPAC Policy Conference, which opens Saturday night in Washington, is long and impressive. It includes Secretary of State John Kerry, Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.). The presence of these and other notables… Read More

Fragile hope for Ukraine

With breathtaking speed last weekend, the embattled Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych’s agreement to enter a national unity government with the opposition was swept aside by his country’s Parliament. The legislative body then quickly dismissed Yanukovych from office, ending, at least temporarily, the popular uprising set in motion by the president’s rejection of a trade deal… Read More

An escalating stalemate in Syria

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The second round of Syrian peace talks ended in Geneva last weekend with very little progress reproted. In recognition of that failure, the U.N.’s Arab League mediator, Lakhdar Brahimi, sent an apology to the Syrian people: “I am very, very sorry, and I apologize to the Syrian people, [whose] hopes were very, very high,” that… Read More

After Abe Foxman

Abe Foxman’s announcement last week that he was planning to retire as national director of the Anti-Defamation League was inevitable. Yet, it somehow came as a surprise. For years, Foxman watchers suggested that he needed to groom a successor and, with that heir in place, step down. The fact that Mr. Foxman seemed to take… Read More

The Presbyterian problem with Israel

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The conciliation between Christians and Jews in recent decades has been so remarkable that, although most Jews can’t explain the differences between, say, the Lutheran church and the Methodist church, the general feeling is that all is well, or at least doing better. This era of good feeling does not extend to Israel, however. Ironically,… Read More

Washington JCC draws a red line

The story of David Harris-Gershon goes a bit of the way toward answering the perennial question of whether a tree makes a sound if it falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it. In 2012, Harris-Gershon, a Pittsburgh Jewish day school teacher, “came out” about his support of the boycott, divestment… Read More

Cloudy skies in Sochi?

As much as the Olympic Games are about athletic excellence, they are also about pride: national pride for the host country and pride for the teams representing their homelands. No doubt there is pride among smaller groups, as Jews can attest. We wonder how the Israeli team will do at the 2014 Winter Games, which… Read More

Scarlett Johansson takes a stand

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The skirmish over actress Scarlett Johansson’s relationship with the Israeli company Soda-Stream seems to have ended in a draw — although a largely satisfying one — with some short-term winners and losers but no real change in the fundamentals that are driving the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign against Israel. The big winner was SodaStream,… Read More