Headline: Militants Seize Americans and Other Hostages in Algeria
To Read: 6 Things You Need to Know About Denis McDonough
Joshua E. Keating of Foreign Policy brings readers up to speed on the man expected to be the new White House chief of staff
McDonough, 43, is a textbook example of an "Obamian," Mann's term for the young aides who joined the administration straight from the campaign trail and whose worldview had been shaped more by the post-9/11 years than by the Vietnam war. McDonough was recommended to Obama by their old boss Daschle, one of the earliest prominent Democrats to support the campaign, and worked under Mark Lippert, Obama's main foreign-policy aide and a fellow former Daschle staffer.
Quote: "Our founding fathers were very concerned about us having separation of powers. They didn't want to let the president become a king. In this bill, we will nullify anything the president does that smacks of legislation." Sen. Rand Paul vows to fight Obama's executive actions on guns
Number: 23 The total number of executive actions Obama is taking to reduce US gun violence
Headline: PM hits back at Obama: I know what's best for Israel
To Read: What the 'Lobby' Knows About Animus for Israel
Hatred for Israel and the Jews in the Arab world is frequently a convenient cover to rally the masses for other motives, writes Ruth R. Wisse in the Wall Street Journal.
… anti-Zionism today unites conservatives and radicals in the Middle East against all that Israel represents—religious pluralism, individual rights and freedoms, liberal democracy, and Western ideas of progress. Jews and Israel are merely a convenient face or emblem for the huger bastions of those same ideals. Israel, "little Satan," is a handier target than the "big Satan."
Quote: “In the past there were prophets but even now, in our time, divinity is being revealed to everyone. We just need to open our eyes to it” Shmuel Hapartzy of the Cain and Abel School for Prophets in Tel Aviv believes anyone can be a prophet, for profit
Number: 32 The number of seats predicted for Likud Beiteinu in the latest poll by Channel 10 TV - afar cry from the 45 they were initially promised
The Middle East
To Read: The New Cold War in the Middle East
Mohammed Ayoob of the National Interest looks at the division of loyalties in the Middle East, currently being played out in the Syria conflict.
The involvement of regional powers such as Saudi Arabia and Turkey, on behalf of the opposition, and Iran, on the side of the regime, has turned the Syrian conflict into a regional affair. But it could have global ramifications as well, thanks to the Syrian regime’s strategic and economic links with Russia and the support extended to the opposition by the United States and Europe. Russia and China have so far resisted Western calls to put pressure on Assad to resign. They have also vetoed three UN Security Council resolutions seeking to impose sanctions on Syria, the most recent on July 19, 2012.
Quote: "We have to change the flow of wealth and capital into the country. Problems will remain as long as this doesn't change... 25 percent of the gross national product is concentrated in Tehran. We need to make sure that the money is invested not just in one city but all over the country" Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad takes steps to counter Western sanctions
Number: 106 The reported death toll in the latest assault on the Syrian city of Homs
The Jewish World
To Read: Jewish Life Booms in Cologne
Daniella Cheslow of Tablet discovers a new approach to Jewish engagement in the German city’s historic community
The Jews of Cologne call themselves the oldest Jewish community north of the Alps, with records dating back to 321 CE. But the Jewish community here is now better known as the place at the heart of a national—and international—debate over Jewish religious freedom last year, when a court here ruled circumcision illegal. This negative attention obscured what was, for many in Cologne itself, a revival of sorts, which has included the refurbishing of a host of Jewish communal institutions. Two years ago, the city’s mikveh, or ritual bath, was renovated. In September 2012, four new rabbis were ordained in an emotional ceremony in Cologne’s main city synagogue. The city is investing 50 million euros in building a Jewish museum.
Quote: “President Morsi assured the [US congressional] delegation that the broadcast comments were taken out of an address against the Israeli aggression against Gaza. He also assured them of his respect for monolithic religions, freedom of belief and practicing religions." Morsi’s spokesman Yasser Ali engages in damage control over a video of Morsi from 2010 shows him calling Jews "he descendants of apes and pigs"
Number: $50,000 Daily fine imposed on Russia by Washington court over the former's failure to return to Chabad a collection of Jewish books and documents of which the group claims ownership