Just as the IDF works constantly to keep a small patch within Gaza clear of terrorists, so, too, Hamas makes efforts every day to get through, over or under the fence -- and to engage the IDF. Hamas' success rate has been minimal, he says, and their casualties significant, "but they're still coming, still trying, every day."
The Jews of Shanghai, fleeing Nazi persecution, thousands of Jews journeyed halfway around the world to the sanctuary offered by Shanghai's unique status as a free trade city.
"The Israel Lobby," a paper by Stephen Walt of Harvard University's Kennedy Center and John Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago charged supporters of Israel with undue influence on American policy. At an Aug. 28 Washington forum hosted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the two accused Israel of working in concert with the U.S. government to find a pretext for war with Hezbollah. Reports of the forum prompted Los Angeles City Councilman Jack Weiss, a former student of Walt's, to pen this letter to his one-time mentor.
Just one year ago, we had proudly taken our first family vacation in Israel. The places where my kids had the most fun -- Haifa, Nahariya, Rosh Hanikra, Safed, Kiryat Shemona -- were bearing the brunt of the Katyusha attacks.
Ziplining with the Orthodox. Digging for Maccabean relics with archaeologists. Off-roading on the Golan. We planned our family trip to Israel on the theory that our kids would learn more if they were happy and engaged than if they were bored and bedraggled.
On the morning of Rosh Hashanah last fall, Antonio Villaraigosa accompanied my family and me to services.
While most of the images of Israel presented to the American public are of military conflict, a recent mission to Israel sponsored by The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, which included City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, City Council President Alex Padilla, Cesar Chavez Foundation President Andres Irlando and myself, revealed something very different. We saw a multiethnic democracy full of citizens, with jaw-dropping stories of survival, demonstrating incredible resilience.
Halfway around the world, we encountered a small nation confronting many of the same challenges we face in Los Angeles and returned convinced that increased contact between Los Angeles and Israel can facilitate the solution of many complex problems at home.
For the past several months, the issue that had not been raised (by non-Jews, at least) in Sen. Joe Lieberman's campaign for the presidency was his religion. Lieberman has been poised to prove that a Jew can stand for president as a patriotic American and be judged solely on those terms.
The question has been posed to me frequently over the past several months: Is Valley secession "good for the Jews?"
Truthfully, it's a difficult question to answer. Other current matters are easier to address. Is President Bush good for the Jews? Prime Minister Ariel Sharon certainly thinks so. Are the Dodgers good for the Jews? Shawn Green's 42 home runs certainly say so.
But secession? Does it really matter for the Jews of Los Angeles whether they live in one city of 3.35 million people or two cities of 2 million and 1.35 million each?
Any experienced law-enforcement professional knows that coordination and communication make all the difference in a complex case or threat situation.
I had not intended to go to New York. Instead, after having helped launch Los Angeles's Threat Preparedness Task Force, my focus for the past several weeks had been on practical measures that our city can implement to be better prepared in the event of a catastrophe. My brother, who now lives in Brooklyn, had suggested that I travel to New York and visit Ground Zero to develop a firsthand understanding of the urgency of my work. Although I believed that the media had made me well aware of the scope of the devastation in the financial district, I followed his advice and flew to JFK.