As we enter the year 5763, the mood of the Jewish people is justifiably dark indeed.
It has been a year of increasing violence in the Middle East, growing anti-Semitism in Europe, hostility toward Israel, and a general air of crisis and ominous headlines -- a shared misery of collective despair.
Trying to figure out the results of the Israeli election? Here's something that might help: compare and contrast what happened this week in Israel with what happened last November in Florida.
As Israel faces a continuing crisis, people who reach different conclusions about what course the country should take seem to agree on one point: not enough people, Jews and non-Jews, know the basics about Israel, the Palestinians, and the conflict in which they are locked. For answers, The Journal turned to Steven L. Spiegel, a professor of political science and associate director of the Burkle Center for International Relations at UCLA. He is also chair of the policy advisors to the Israel Policy Forum and chief research consultant for the Center for Policy Options of the University of Judaism.
Anger over the stalled Mideast peace process has clearlycontributed to Arab states' reluctance to help the United Statesdeter Saddam Hussein. That is one reason the United States is nowpressing Israel for a serious and credible plan for withdrawing fromthe West Bank, it has been widely reported. Yet the Israeligovernment and some hard-line American supporters not only mistakenlydeny the connection between the peace process and the maintenance ofan effective anti-Saddam coalition, but they also neglect the factthat such a coalition is in Israel's vital interests.