Jewish Journal


April 30, 2012

April 30, 2012



Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his father Benzion Netanyahu, who died April 30, 2012. (Photo: GPO)

Benzion Netanyahu, historian, Israeli Prime Minister’s father, dies at ‎‎102

Alan Abbey of the JTA rounds up the eulogies to Benzion Netanyahu, the historian ‎and Zionist activist who, along with two of his sons, has formed an integral part of ‎Israel’s history. ‎

Benzion Netanyahu was born in Warsaw, Poland, to writer and Zionist activist Nathan Mileikowsky. ‎The family moved to pre-State Palestine in 1920, and lived in Jaffa, Tel Aviv, and Tzfat before moving ‎to Jerusalem. He studied at David Yellin teachers’ seminary and then Hebrew University. He became ‎active in Revisionist Zionist activities while at Hebrew U.and wrote and edited their publications. He ‎worked for Jabotinsky in New York and later received a Ph.D. at Dropsie College in Philadelphia. The ‎family returned to Israel in 1949 after the State was established.‎

Is the Arab Spring over?

While the wave of revolutions that swept across the region seems to have failed in ‎its aims, the Arab Spring has still been a positive force for change, writes Abdel-‎Moneim Said in Al-Ahram. ‎

Many things have changed and irreversibly so, even if there remain certain causes ‎and problems that do not fade away with the onset of a spring or autumn, or even ‎with the passage of all the seasons of the year, if not many years. For one, we can no ‎longer accept the Arab systems of government as they currently exist. Regardless of ‎whether the ruling elites themselves realise this and are in a quandary as to how to ‎change them and to what degree, these were the regimes that bred the passion for ‎more radical change that now pervades large segments of Arab societies. It is ‎impossible to put that genie back into its bottle.‎

Understanding Iran’s diplomatic strategy

Iran is not seeking to obtain nuclear weapons, writes Gareth Porter in Al Jazeera, ‎but rather aiming to strengthen its position in negotiations with the US. ‎

For Obama’s advisers, assuming Iran was simply “playing for time” justifies a heavy reliance ‎on “coercive diplomacy”, which combines a boycott of the country’s crude oil exports and ‎hints that an Iranian failure to come to agreement would open the way for an Israeli attack on ‎Iran’s nuclear sites. But that conventional wisdom, which the Obama administration inherited ‎from the Bush administration, ignores the accumulated evidence that Iran’s diplomacy ‎strategy is to accumulate centrifuges, not in order to support a weapons programme, but ‎rather to negotiate a larger bargain with the United States.‎


Iran and Obama’s Syria Hesitation

Writing in the Wall Street Journal, John Bolton argues that Obama’s reluctance to ‎intervene in Syria stems from his desire to dodge a direct confrontation with Iran. ‎

Washington needs to acknowledge that effectively challenging Assad means moving ‎beyond sanctions and diplomacy, and toward regime change in Tehran. Mr. Obama ‎seems unable or unwilling to understand that Iran is an enemy of the U.S. and that its ‎nuclear and regional hegemonic ambitions must be thwarted, or the ayatollahs ‎overturned. Such an uncertain leader cannot handle a critical confrontation effectively. ‎Unfortunately, we may have to wait for a more resolute president rather than proceed ‎and fail in Syria with a weak one.‎

What is Good for the Jews?

The election of Ken Livingstone as London mayor and Francois the loss of Nicolas ‎Sarkozy as French president could be bad news for the Jewish communities and good ‎news for anti-Semites, writes Ronn Torossian in Algemeiner. ‎

The second Jewish generation following the Holocaust often tied their voting agenda ‎to the answer of one simple question: “Is it good for the Jews?” While in the ‎increasingly globalized, complex, multi-cultural world we live in today, for many ‎Jewish communities around the world, this is no longer necessarily the first question ‎that is asked, the next few weeks will see two high-profile European elections whose ‎outcomes have the potential to significantly impact Jewish and Israeli sensitivities. ‎

London Olympic website reinstates Jerusalem as capital of Israel

The official website for the London Olympics has had to correct a few factual errors when it comes to the geography of the Middle East, writes ‎Aaron Kalman for the Times of Israel. ‎

The official website of the London Olympics restored Jerusalem’s status as the ‎capital of Israel Monday morning, a day after publishing country profiles naming ‎Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine and leaving Israel with no seat of power.‎


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