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Tag: James Besser

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  • Latest poll bad news for Jewish Republicans

    By James D. Besser

    October 26, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    The Republican Party continues to lavish money on Jewish voters, arguing that only their candidates are reliable on critical questions like support for Israel and terrorism. Jewish Democrats are firing back, blasting their GOP counterparts for undermining the longstanding...
  • Pressure on Israel Grows After Summit

    By James Besser

    August 7, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    If you're confused about this week's developments in U.S.-Israel diplomacy, don't worry; you're not alone.

    Only days after Prime Minister Ariel Sharon seemed to score a decisive victory in the Battle of the Mideast Summits, reports emerged that the administration is cranking up the...

  • Domestic Attention Deficit Disorder

    By James D. Besser

    May 8, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    Last week's release of the Israeli-Palestinian "road map" signaled the start of a new round of U.S. Mideast diplomacy and a new challenge for the pro-Israel groups that don't like some interpretations of the plan.

    It signaled something else, as well: It will be even harder to get...

  • Democrats Facing Fight For Jewish Soul

    By James D. Besser

    March 6, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    The Democratic Party may be about to experience a battle for its Jewish soul. Less than a year before the first primary, the field for the 2004 Democratic presidential nomination has turned into a crowd, but two names have special significance for Jewish voters and the politicians...

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  • The Right’s Secret Weapon: Red Ink

    By James D. Besser

    March 6, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    Students of political irony are having a banner year. A Republican president who campaigned against "nation building" is on the brink of a war intended to rebuild not just a nation -- Iraq -- but an entire region. And conservatives, long the archenemies of deficit spending, are...

  • Jewish Silence on Tax Plan Deafening

    By James D. Besser

    January 16, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    Washington is buzzing about the Bush administration's huge new tax cut proposal, but the silence from Jewish groups is deafening -- and revealing.

    Many activists believe big, new cuts that don't immediately stimulate the faltering economy will have a devastating impact on...

  • The Power of the Swing Vote

    By James D. Besser

    September 26, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    Last week's Gallup Poll on Jewish political affiliations had some good news for both Democrats and Republicans, but most of all, it had good news for the Jewish community.

    Jewish Democrats reacted gleefully to one finding -- that approximately 50 percent of Jews identify themselves...

  • Zeidman’s Challenges

    By James D. Besser

    March 14, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    Fred Zeidman is coming to Washington to straighten out the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, and a lot of people wish him well. But it will take more than good wishes to help the spectacularly successful, periodically troubled council and the Holocaust Museum it runs.

    Zeidman,...

  • Security vs Civil Liberty

    By James D. Besser

    February 28, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    As the United States intensifies its war against terrorism at home and abroad, the Jewish community may be poised to serve as a bridge between the Bush administration and some of its critics in the civil liberties community.

    That was evident at last week's Jewish Council for Public...

  • In Israel’s Interest

    By James D. Besser

    February 7, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    President George W. Bush fired the first volley in the second phase of his anti-terror war last week when he used the annual State of the Union message to gird the nation for the challenges ahead.

    But the biggest challenge may be the domestic one facing his administration: how to...

  • Clueless In Jerusalem

    By James D. Besser

    January 31, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    It's one thing you can take to the bank: Every time a new Middle East crisis explodes on the world's front pages, there's another hue and cry in the Jewish world about the need for better hasbara (public relations).

    Commissions study the issue, politicians blame their rivals and...

  • Big Questions for a New Year

    By James D. Besser

    January 3, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    It is a new year, but the world and nation are still agonizing over a lot of old problems. President George W. Bush has promised that the long, hard fight against terrorism has just begun, but it is far from clear exactly what the next phase in that war will be. At home, a faltering...

  • Moments of Truth

    By James D. Besser

    December 6, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    On Sunday, with crews still collecting body parts and shredded flesh after three horrific explosions in Israel, Secretary of State Colin Powell said it is the "moment of truth" for Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

    He was wrong; that moment has come and gone numerous times, and...

  • Worrysome Headlines

    By James D. Besser

    November 1, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    If ever a president went into a period of national crisis with a surplus of good will, it was George W. Bush.

    The nation responded positively to his leadership after the Sept. 11 terror attacks. There were promises the White House and Congress would now pull together toward a great...

  • Diplomatic Train Wreck

    By James D. Besser

    October 25, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Israeli officials were stunned by Monday's stern State Department rebuke over Israel's stepped-up military effort against the Palestinian Authority. And the fact they were surprised hints of deeper trouble to come along the U.S.-Israel axis.

    Put simply, the government of Israeli...

  • Arab, Muslim Leaders Want Linkage

    By James D. Besser

    October 4, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    A parade of Arab and Muslim leaders is passing through Washington, promising support for the U.S.-led effort against terrorist kingpin Osama bin Laden -- but also urging the administration to press harder for a cease-fire and new negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

    This...

  • New—and Risky—Game for Mideast

    By James D. Besser

    September 20, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    The devastating terrorist attacks in Washington and New York changed everything in America, and the repercussions of what President George W. Bush is calling the "first war of the 21st century" will be felt throughout the Middle East, as well.

    Already, the crisis has knocked the...

  • Israel-Bashing Feared at Racism Conference

    By James D. Besser

    July 12, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Israel-Bashing Feared at Racism Conference

    Jewish groups and Israeli diplomats met in London last week to map out strategies for fighting Arab and Muslim efforts to hijack an upcoming international conference on racism that is shaping up as the biggest bash-Israel session ever.

    ...

  • Fighting the Israel Bash-a-Thon

    By James D. Besser

    June 7, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Critics of the United Nations have been handed a big load of new ammunition as the international body careens toward a high-profile conference that could be the biggest Israel bash-a-thon ever.

    The Bush administration is working to thwart the hijacking of the World Conference against...

  • Senate Shocker

    By James D. Besser

    May 31, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    The stunning change in the U.S. Senate triggered by Sen. James Jeffords' switch from GOP to independent status means a seismic shift in the war over a host of domestic issues, including the church-state skirmishes that have preoccupied Jewish groups.

    The change is less likely to...

  • Tax Plan Could Endanger Services

    By James D. Besser

    May 24, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    This week congressional Republicans tried to put the finishing touches on a compromise version of President George W. Bush's giant tax cut that some Jewish leaders say could ravage a wide range of health and social service programs serving the community's neediest citizens.

    But few...

  • Opportunities Ahead—Maybe

    By James D. Besser

    February 8, 2001 | 7:00 pm

    Talk to Jewish Republicans these days and you hear a palpable sense of coming out of the wilderness.

    After an agonizing eight years -- with Bill Clinton in the White House and Jews snapping back to their traditional allegiance to the Democrats -- things may be changing, they believe....

  • ADL reports on Hate Group

    By James D

    September 24, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    Hate groups have been out of the news in recent months, but that doesn't mean they are not exploiting recent events--including the tumult on the stock market and the Monica Lewinsky scandal--to expand their base.

    That was the message in a new Anti-Defamation League report on the...

  • Yeasty Mix at UJA Conference

    By James D

    March 26, 1998 | 7:00 pm

    It was a moment that almost perfectly defined thisweek's United Jewish Appeal young leadership conference inWashington. In one section of the vast Washington Hilton ballroom,hundreds of young Jews were intently listening as special U.S. peaceenvoy Dennis Ross and Israeli Ambassador...