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Jewish Journal

David Landau

  • Sharon Fights Time

    March 7, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    A surge in violence this week cost more than two dozen Israelis their lives -- and put Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's political life increasingly at peril.

    A year after Sharon took office with a pledge to restore security, Israelis were besieged with terror that seemed to come from...

  • The Fate of Arafat

    January 31, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    The future of Yasser Arafat -- or of the Middle East without him -- is shaping up as the key agenda item when Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon meets President George W. Bush in Washington next week.

    With the Palestinian Authority president effectively incarcerated in Ramallah for...

  • U.S. May Be Giving Up on Arafat

    January 24, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    What a difference a year makes.

    A little more than a year ago, then-President Bill Clinton detailed a Mideast peace plan that included deep Israeli concessions and reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians.

    This week, as Clinton visited Israel for the first time since leaving...

  • Sharon: No More Words

    December 20, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Trick or treat? That slightly out-of-season challenge reflects Israeli reaction to Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat's dramatic call on his people for "a complete stop to all armed activities, especially the suicide attacks."

    Analysts noted that it was Arafat's strongest...

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  • After Arafat

    December 13, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    For the first time, Israeli political debate is focusing openly on the prospect of life after Yasser Arafat.

    This follows a marked drop in the Palestinian Authority president's international standing -- in the eyes not just of the United States but also among other key members of the...

  • One Last Chance

    December 6, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Yasser Arafat faces what may be his final chance to draw back from the brink of all-out war. After two days of heavy bombardment in retaliation for a series of bloody terror attacks, Israel paused airstrikes Wednesday to give Arafat a few hours to prove that he is serious about...

  • Invasion Pros   and Cons

    November 1, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Israel this week is weighing the interim results of the largest military operation it has mounted during the past 13 months of violence. The balance is complex, informed observers say, with both pros and cons. Israel Defense Force (IDF) troops and tanks pulled back from Bethlehem and...

  • Revenge or Restraint?

    October 18, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    As the week began, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon resolved to confront his old friend Rechavam Ze'evi, minister of tourism and leader of the National Unity faction, who had been urging the premier to get much tougher with the Palestinians.

    Sharon had just ordered the army out of...

  • Back on Track?

    September 27, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    It is too early to tell whether the long-awaited and controversial meeting between Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat will produce a true cease-fire and a resumption of peace negotiations between the two sides.

    Wednesday's meeting,...

  • Empathy in Tragedy

    September 13, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Israel's civilian and military authorities swung into full alert after the magnitude of the terror attacks against the United States became apparent.

    Prime Minister Ariel Sharon summoned an emergency session of the Security Cabinet on Tuesday, together with key defense and security...

  • War is in the Air

    August 30, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    As Israeli opposition leader Yossi Sarid noted this week, the slide into war often happens despite the fact that no one intends or wishes it.

    As the Al-Aksa Intifada entered its 12th month this week with a new and ominous surge in the level of violence, Israelis are beginning to...

  • Sharon Agrees to Let Peres Negotiate

    August 16, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's policy of "no talks under fire" is increasingly coming under fire within Israel.

    Initially, Sharon's refusal to hold diplomatic talks with the Palestinian Authority until Palestinian violence against Israel ceases completely was supported by Israelis...

  • Arafat Plays the Religion Card

    August 2, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat is making Jerusalem the focus of intensified terror in order to accentuate the religious dimension of the 10-month-old conflict with Israel.

    This was the accusation leveled at Arafat this week by top Israeli government analysts following...

  • Sharon Champions Restraint

    June 21, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, elected four months ago on a pledge to restore Israel's sense of security, finds himself holding back the dogs of war as Palestinian militants continue picking off Israelis on West Bank roads and firing mortars at residential communities.

    After...

  • Talks, Attacks, Resume

    May 31, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Lurching wildly from disaster to miraculous salvation to more death and mayhem, emotionally drained Israelis watched with little optimism this week as a new American peace envoy tried to offer hope in the eight-months-old violence with the Palestinians.

    Assistant Secretary of State...

  • Showing Strength

    April 19, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    For those worried about the credibility of Israeli deterrence, the Israel Defense Force this week delivered an unmistakable message to Syria that it is willing to fight.

    For those worried that military strength alone may not hold the answer to Israel's problems, however, the week of...

  • Taking off the Gloves

    April 5, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Six months into the Palestinian uprising, Israeli doves and hawks are displaying a rare unity in the face of repeated Palestinian onslaughts.

    Palestinian attacks in recent days on two settlement enclaves left two Israeli babies among the victims -- one, a 10-month-old girl, dead; the...

  • Waiting for Action

    March 22, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Israel seemed to be holding its breath this week in the wake of three Palestinian attacks.

    The reaction wasn't born of fear but rather a sense that the moment of reckoning is at hand as Prime Minister Ariel Sharon returns from his first trip to Washington.

    Israel didn't respond to...

  • Shrinking Confidence

    March 1, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    The public bloodletting that the Labor Party presented to the Israeli public this week has exposed the depth of disarray and confusion on the Israeli left following Prime Minister Ehud Barak's massive defeat at the polls.

    Labor's Central Committee ultimately voted by a 2-1 margin...

  • Setting Differences Aside

    February 15, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    A national unity government appears increasingly likely as envoys from the Likud and Labor parties work to overcome some snags in negotiations.

    Both Prime Minister-elect Ariel Sharon and outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Barak appear determined to forge a unity coalition that will remain...

  • Bridging the Gap

    February 8, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Israeli Prime Minister-elect Ariel Sharon may find that the worst thing about his landslide victory Tuesday over incumbent Ehud Barak was precisely his 25-point margin of victory.

    The very magnitude of Sharon's victory triggered Barak's decision, two hours after the exit polls, to...

  • Is This Really a New Bibi?

    December 14, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Just 18 months after Benjamin Netanyahu was voted out of office, public opinion polls show that he would decimate Prime Minister Ehud Barak in a head-to-head contest -- if Netanyahu can only get around the legal obstacles to his candidacy.



    Ever smooth before the cameras, Netanyahu...

  • Walking the Tightrope

    November 30, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ehud Barak has launched an election campaign amid violent conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

    He hopes to conclude the campaign some time in the spring with renewed peace hopes, or, better yet, with a draft peace agreement that he can submit to the public...

  • Balancing Acts

    October 26, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ehud Barak and opposition leader Ariel Sharon are trying to get their respective parties to join a national unity government before the Knesset begins its winter session Monday.

    They are calling it a "government of national emergency" and insisting that the ongoing...

  • New Religious Rift

    October 19, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    The desecration of holy sites, rather than atrocities committed against people, may turn out to be the most resounding disaster of the past weeks of violence in the Middle East.

    Even if the international community succeeds in dragging the Israelis and Palestinians back to the...

  • Under Attack

    October 12, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    As leaders of the world community try to bring the Middle East back from the brink of war, Prime Minister Ehud Barak is facing a mounting political challenge to get tougher with the Arabs both inside and outside Israel.



    Despite the intermittent violence that continued in the...

  • Into the Breach

    October 5, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    Jews joined the world in anguish at the video broadcast around the globe this week of a 12-year-old Palestinian boy shot to death as he crouched with his father for safety.

    It spoke to the horror that befell Israel and the Palestinians this past week as more than 50 died in days of...

  • 5760: A Year of Promise and Peril

    September 28, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    The two events that dominated the news in Israel during 5760 both divided the nation and brought it together: the peace process and the Lebanon withdrawal.

    Even though it faltered just before the finish line and its outcome is still uncertain, 5760 was a groundbreaking year on the...

  • Religious Rift

    September 21, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    The battle lines between Orthodox and secular Israelis were drawn sharper than ever this week. The nation's two chief rabbis reversed themselves and joined Orthodox politicians in the fight against Prime Minister Ehud Barak's recently announced "civic agenda."

    Dubbed by the press a...

  • Negotiating Jerusalem

    July 13, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    As Prime Minister Ehud Barak engages this week in Middle East summitry, there is one issue on which he can afford to make the fewest concessions: Jerusalem.

    Struggling to hold together the vestiges of his governing majority before leaving for Camp David on Monday, Barak assured the...

  • Deadline pressure

    June 29, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    JERUSALEM - After years of talking about it, anticipating it and preparing for it, a divided and unprepared Israel this week faced what may at last be the decisive phase of the peace process.U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright flew into the region Tuesday to determine whether...

  • Mid East

    June 22, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    Israel came close to witnessing the collapse of a government this week.The crisis came after months of fighting between two of Prime Minister Ehud Barak's coalition partners, the fervently Orthodox Shas Party and the secular Meretz Party.

    The government had long seemed an odd mixture...

  • Crumbling Coalition

    June 15, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    The coincidence could hardly have been lost on Ehud Barak: As President Hafez Assad was laid to rest in Syria, Israel's Shas Party appeared to lay the premier's "peace coalition" to rest.The fervently Orthodox party's Council of Sages, headed by spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef,...

  • Endpaper

    March 23, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    I never expected I'd write a first-hand account of my journey into interfaith marriage. As a child I attended the West Coast Talmudic Seminary (WCTS) and then Rambam Torah Institute for high school. As a teenager, my social life centered around my involvement in B'nai Akiva, an...
  • Running Low

    March 9, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ehud Barak is down on that commodity so essential to a politician -- luck.

    On Tuesday, in a screaming headline, the country's largest-circulation daily, Yediot Achronot, announced that an unnamed minister was under investigation for sexually molesting a staffer.

    Within...

  • Put On Your Happy Hats

    March 9, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Sheri Schrier, the founder of Happy Hats for Kids, emerges from the hospital office/dressing room. She is ready to romp, decked out in a four-foot-high -- and almost equally as wide -- red and white striped stovepipe hat from Dr. Seuss' "Cat in the Hat." "Anybody want a hat?" she...
  • Upping the Ante

    March 2, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak has placed his latest bet in the strange and frustrating poker game between Israel and Syria.

    Now it is up to the Syrians to either see the bet and resume the stalled peace negotiations -- or fold and walk away from the game, perhaps for many years...

  • Credibility Gap

    February 3, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ehud Barak and his closest political allies have been scrambling to limit the damage to their government following a scathing report on the financing behind Barak's election campaign last year.

    The effort at damage control comes as Barak needs all the public support he...

  • Is Barak Playing Syrians, Palestinians Off One Another?

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak did not waste any time bemoaning Syria's decision to postpone indefinitely the next round of peace talks.

    Instead, within hours of formally acknowledging the postponement, Barak and Foreign Minister David Levy met Monday with Palestinian Authority...

  • Barak’s Political Life Depends on Syria Referendum

    December 23, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    The interviewer's question to Prime Minister Ehud Barak on Israeli television over the weekend was clearly one Barak would have preferred to do without.

    Yet, as he must have known, it was one that has been on everyone's minds and lips here since the long-stalled Syrian-Israeli peace...

  • Forging Ahead

    September 23, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Prime Minister Ehud Barak's cozy late-night dinner with Yasser Arafat and some of the Palestinian leaders' top aides at a private home near Tel Aviv came as a pleasant surprise to Middle East peace watchers.

    Even Foreign Minister David Levy's public irritation at not having been...

  • A Sea Change Ahead?

    September 2, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Will 5759 be remembered as a year of radical change in the course and direction of Israel's history, or merely as a year when the government changed hands after an election and life went on much as it did before?

    The answer, as 5760 begins, is that the jury is still out. But if...

  • Is the Knesset Speaker Looking Too Far Ahead?

    August 5, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Joy pervaded the Knesset last week as news spread that a report of legislator Amnon Rubinstein's death was untrue.

    The rejoicing provided testimony to the respect and affection felt for Rubinstein, who was very much alive in a hospital after suffering a minor stroke.

    But there were...

  • Unlikely Bedfellows

    June 24, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    As the deadline draws ever closer for Prime Minister-elect Ehud Barak to present his government for Knesset approval, his coalition negotiations are taking some surprising turns.

    In the latest twist, Barak has resumed talks with a potential partner that, for several weeks now, has...

  • Israel’s Great Divide

    May 27, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    As the election dust settles and coalition-building tensions grow, religion is emerging as the single most dominant factor in Israel's current political cataclysm.

    More than the peace process, more than the economy and unemployment, certainly more than the Sephardi-Ashkenazi divide,...

  • Seismic Shift

    May 20, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Pundits everywhere are calling Israel's election results a "political earthquake." In fact, though, two distinct tremors have overturned the rules and realities that have governed the Jewish state and its policy-making these past three years.

    Labor Party leader Ehud Barak's 56 percent...

  • Unprecedented Election Choices

    May 13, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Israel appears poised to embark on a two-week period unprecedented in its political history.

    As befits a political culture drawing at least part of its mode of discourse from the Talmud, hypotheses regarding what will happen during those two weeks run the gamut of speculation.

    When...