To Read: Aaron David Miller argues against suspending aid to Egypt-
The very last thing the United States needs right now is to be seen as punishing the Egyptian Army, because many Egyptians see its actions as an expression and agent of the popular will. By pressing the military, the United States is in effect opposing the public's mandate and the putative agent of its deliverance. If the military doesn't deliver (and it may not), there will be plenty of time to reassess, but suspending aid now makes no sense and will only further erode U.S. credibility on the streets. Egyptians would then truly believe America was in bed with the Muslim Brothers.
Quote: “There is a sense you can count less on America, that it is weaker, or has chosen not to act, or that events are out of control, or a combination”, former Israeli Ambassador to the US Sallai Meridor, talking to Michael Gerson.
Number: $250-500m, the cost of the explosives the US army needs to destroy Assad's chemical weapons stockpile (not including transportation).
To Read: Military correspondent Ron Ben-Yishai criticizes the recent American leaks about Israel's military successes in Syria-
American officials, in the heat of the domestic argument, are pitting Israel and Syria against each other. This is not a legitimate move by our closest ally and patron. After all, it is Israel that will suffer from the missile attacks, not the US.
This is not the only damage caused to Israel and other countries by the US' befuddlement and careless conduct. But everyone has to keep quiet because we have no other superpower that supports us.
Quote: “Nothing has emerged from these meetings for the American side to be able to announce that the two sides accepted to engage politically”, Palestinian Ambassador to the US, Maen Areikat, talking about the Kerry talks.
Number: 30, the percentage of Israelis who are in favor of rebuilding the temple.
The Middle East
To Read: Joseph Braude writes about the Muslim Brotherhood's more violent chapter in the gulf states-
Two years after the Arab spring, the regional landscape is a mix of enduring autocracies, battlegrounds, and transitioning states in which an only recently empowered Brotherhood faces a popular backlash. It's harder for Brotherhood elements truly committed to pluralism and civil society to make their case among fellow Islamists. In this climate, the likes of the Ummah Party are poised to gain traction -- in the Gulf states and region-wide, particularly in Egypt. A supporter of Egyptian President Muhammad Morsi, appearing on the Islamist satellite network Al-Yaqin earlier this month, couldn't have put it better: "I say to [Egyptian army chief Abd al-Fattah al-] Sisi, he should know that he has created a new Taliban and a new Al-Qaeda in Egypt ... and they will destroy you and destroy Egypt." At 809, 500 hits and counting on YouTube, the speaker appears to have hit a nerve.
Quote: “Currently, my president in Egypt is Morsi because he was elected by the people. Therefore, if we don't consider the situation like this, we would disregard the people of Egypt. Disregarding the will of the Egyptian people means disregarding yourself because in Turkey we respect the will of the people. We would respect the coup regime if they had won at the ballot box”, Erdogan shares his thoughts on Egypt's leadership.
Number: 6, the number of mediators killed by pro-Assad militants.
The Jewish World
To Read: Rabbi Sari Laufer writes about her recent experiences at the wall in light of Tisha B'av-
The first 9 days of Av are seen in traditional Judaism as days of, if not mourning, then solemnity. We do not feast, we do not celebrate; we are once again living through the days leading up to the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. And, as many have already noted, one of the most significant statements the rabbis make about that destruction is that the blame cannot be placed on Roman shoulders. Why, they ask, was the Temple destroyed? Because of sinat chinam--baseless hatred. And so Monday morning, as I looked at the faces of the Haredim crowding the Kotel plaza, as I looked at the faces of these men and women who are supposed to be my kinsmen (and women), I felt not anger and not hatred, but deep, deep sadness.
It seems that the same cannot be said from the other side. It is not sadness that compels one Jew--one human being!--to call another Jew a Nazi. It is not sadness that sent a hard-boiled egg flying through the air as a projectile, landing solidly (and not comfortably) on my neck. And it is not sadness that raised male voices to drown ours out.
Quote: "The allegations about articles dealing with a prohibition to sell lands to foreigners were examined both by you and by the Supreme Court, and were rejected due to the understanding that a rabbi must rule according to the Halacha", Chief Rabbi candidate, Shmuel Eliyahu, justifying his positions following a letter from the attorney general.
Number: 16 (out of 1000), the number of the inhabitants of Rome's ghetto who survived after being sent to Auschwitz.