President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu agree, at least in principle: Keep the talk on what to do about Iran behind closed doors. But once they’re behind those doors, they can’t agree — and they can’t seem to resist bringing their disagreements into the open.
The European Union expanded its sanctions against Syria and Iran. The new sanctions imposed Monday target Syrian leader Bashar Assad and other top Syrian officials, and designate an additional 100 Iranian individuals and entities believed to be fronting for Iran's nuclear weapons program.
Within hours of President Obama's Middle East policy speech, Israeli leaders and Jewish groups on the left and right were picking through his remarks on Israel, alternately praising, fretting and criticizing. The big news was that Obama called for negotiations based on the pre-1967 borders, with land swaps.
The path to international recognition of Palestinian statehood by September — when the Palestinians plan to bring the matter before the U.N. General Assembly — seems clear. The question before Israel and its supporters who oppose such recognition is how to create a detour.
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni nominated Sallai Meridor on Oct. 4 to be Israel's next ambassador to Washington.
Top Democrats are mounting a furious counterattack against claims by Jewish Republicans that the GOP is likelier to favor Israel.
The call for a Palestinian national unity government has unified just about everyone except the Palestinians.
When Joshua Muravchik, perhaps the pre-eminent expert on the interventionist foreign policy that has become known as neo-conservatism, was looking for non-Jewish neo-cons to prove that the movement isn't pervasively Jewish, he naturally included Lewis Libby.
The United States turned down offers of expert assistance from Israel and other nations in the crucial first days after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans.
Instead, the United States solicited material assistance from Israel that was probably superfluous by the time the shipment arrived on the evening of Sept. 8.
The reasons behind the decisions are unclear. Experts have offered a number of explanations, including the bureaucratic difficulties involved in absorbing thousands of foreign first-responder personnel, the belief that the existing first-responder infrastructure in Louisiana and Mississippi was well equipped to handle the crisis and the potential political fallout from asking foreign nations to help the world's greatest power save lives on its own turf.
The public resurrection of a federal investigation involving Washington's top pro-Israel lobby has done little to shake Jewish confidence in the group -- but some organizations worry about the long road that now appears ahead.
FBI investigators searched the Washington headquarters of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) on Dec. 1, the second search in five months.
Call it the tale of two Mellmans.
Mark Mellman, one of John Kerry's top four advisers, launched a talk with Jewish Democrats in Boston last month with a drasha (short sermon) on the meaning of Tisha B'Av, the Jewish fast day that happened to fall during the party convention. Then, with nary a comment from the crowd, Mellman glided into the case for the Massachusetts senator.
Contrast that with the introduction this Sunday for Bush-Cheney campaign manager Ken Mehlman at a similar Jewish event.
"One of us, Ken Mehlman -- let me repeat that, one of us, Ken Mehlman -- is running the Bush-Cheney campaign," said Morris Offit, a Republican and the president of the New York federation, barely containing his grin as he emphasized Mehlman's Jewishness.
Rep. Porter Goss' distance from Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking was likely a plus in securing the nomination to lead the CIA.
In fact, Goss (R- Fla.), President Bush's choice to succeed George Tenet as intelligence director, is about as far from the CIA's peacemaking efforts in the Middle East as Tenet was close to it.
Ronald Reagan's presidency was a time when U.S. Jewish power grew to new levels of influence -- and when Jews learned of its limits.
Thanks to Reagan, who died Saturday at age 93 after a long struggle with Alzheimer's, the years 1981-1989 saw the consolidation of bipartisan support for the causes Jews held dearest: a secure Israel and the freedom of Soviet Jews.
A Kerry administration would avoid the pressure other presidents have used to nudge Israel in peace negotiations, and would consult closely with the Jewish state before launching any new Mideast peace initiative.
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, outlined his approach to Middle East peacemaking in an interview with JTA on Monday, the same day he launched his campaign to win Jewish votes with a major policy speech to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).
Ariel Sharon is already reaping political dividends from last week's historic exchange of letters with President Bush, but the U.S. president's payoff depends a great deal on what Israel does next.
The death of Sheik Ahmad Yassin will pave the way to Palestinian moderation, Israel and its friends in Washington say.
But others, including Bush administration officials, are worried that the road just got a lot bumpier.
Mohammed Abu Abbas, the terrorist whose botched ocean-liner hijacking in 1985 ended in the murder of an elderly American Jew and set back the Palestinian cause, has died in American custody.
Now that he's running for president, Sen. John Kerry's openness to a broad range of Jewish opinion is making some in the pro-Israel community nervous -- and others hopeful.
Worried by signs of President Bush's soaring popularity among Jews, Democrats launched a coordinated campaign 18 months ago to win back Jewish votes.
A grass-roots petition for Israeli-Palestinian peace, chugging along slowly for months, took off last week when a powerful and surprising name was attached to it.
Israel is plotting each meter of its security fence with great care and consideration, Israeli officials say -- not just to keep terrorists out, but to keep the United States on Israel's side.
Raised a Southern Baptist who later converted to Roman Catholicism, Gen. Wesley Clark knew just what to say when he strode into a Brooklyn yeshiva in 1999, ostensibly to discuss his leadership of NATO's victory in Yugoslavia.
"I feel a tremendous amount in common with you," the uniformed four-star general told the stunned roomful of students.
"I am the oldest son, of the oldest son, of the oldest son -- at least five generations, and they were all rabbis."
The incident could be a signal of how Clark, who became the 10th contender in the Democratic run for the presidency on Wednesday, relates to the Jews and the issues dear to them.
Apparently Clark, 58, revels in his Jewish roots.
In September 1982, an Israeli sniper in Beirut had Yasser Arafat's head in his gunsights, and he waited for an order from Ariel Sharon, who in turn was awaiting word from Jerusalem: Kill him or set him free?
Sharon, then defense minister, soon got the order from Prime Minister Menachem Begin: Let Arafat board the boat evacuating the PLO leadership from Beirut.
More than 20 years later, Arafat is once again in Israeli sights, only this time Sharon is in Jerusalem calling the shots.