Category Archives:
American Jewish Community

Burke and Lincoln would have hated the special relationship

Philip Weiss on
David Brooks

Glenn Greenwald’s latest revelation, that three former Treasury officials are involved in a neoconservative Zionist lobbying outfit, combined with David Brooks’s apparent belief that he’s an Israeli parent, shows how commingled the Israel interest is in our political culture, the type of sinister influence Lincoln and Burke both warned their democracies against

Schumer is obnoxious

Philip Weiss on
Schumer

From the New York Times August 19th, just brought to my attention, an article on declining bipartisanship even inside the Senate dining room. Reported by Ashley Parker. Nice work Ashley, getting the word bellow in there. This was about the time Israel was slaughtering civilians in Gaza: One morning last month [July], Senator Mitch McConnell,

No Surprise Dep’t: David Brooks’s son is in Israeli army

Philip Weiss on
David Brooks

From the Jewish Journal two days ago. “David Brooks’ son is in the Israeli army. Does it matter?” One of the more interesting nuggets buried in a long, Hebrew-language interview with New York Times columnist David Brooks in the recent Ha’aretz magazine is the revelation, toward the very end, that Brooks’s oldest son serves in

Goldberg tries to police view that Israel’s actions fuel anti-Semitism

Philip Weiss on
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Two weeks after a Yale chaplain lost his job for saying that Gaza has fostered anti-Semitism in Europe, Ken Roth of Human Rights Watch refers to “anti-Semitism that flared in Europe in response to Israel’s conduct in Gaza war,” and is slapped by Jeffrey Goldberg for doing so. But Israel itself has promoted the confusion of Zionism with Judaism.

Rabbi in Ohio U. controversy leads group that denies there’s an occupation

Philip Weiss on
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Rabbi Danielle Leshaw has called on Ohio U. student leader Megan Marzec to resign because her action for Palestine allegedly made Jewish students feel “unsafe.” But Leshaw is administrator of a pro-Israel group that in its logo denies the existence of Palestine or an occupation.

On the use of provocative analogies (Nazism, fascism)

Jerome Slater on
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Soon after Israel’s sweeping victory in the 1967 war with Egypt and Syria, it became clear that rather than returning the territory it conquered, Israel intended to occupy the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza, and much of the Golan Heights. Foreseeing where occupation might lead, Yeshayahu Leibowitz, one of Israel’s most prominent and acclaimed public

Ohio University filibuster: harangue or free speech?

Susie Kneedler on
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Observing the confrontation Wednesday night between filibustering pro-Israel students at Ohio University and Student Senate president Megan Marzec, who has stood up unapologetically for Palestine, Susie Kneedler saw a lot of charged confrontation, and many minutes granted to four pro-Israel students to hand a script from one to another before they were arrested, but little evidence to support claim that the demonstrators were denounced as Nazis and fascists.

J Street can’t tie Israel’s latest ‘illegal land grab’ to cutting US aid

Philip Weiss on
J Street founder Jeremy Ben-Ami speaking at the group's conference in 2012. (Photo: J Street)

Jeremy Ben-Ami of the liberal Zionist group J Street says that the latest Israeli settlement “landgrab” should be the “straw that broke the camel’s back in Washington.” Like maybe the U.S. should stop giving money to the settler state? Nope. The US should undertake a “thorough review” of its policy on Israeli settlements

Freed by Gaza, Spiegelman calls Israel out as a batterer

Philip Weiss on
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The Gaza slaughter has fostered a crisis among American supporters of Israel. Art Spiegelman is the latest to speak out, calling Israel a battered child that has grown up to batter others. Roger Cohen at the Times asks why the US media are not questioning the tales about responsibility for the abducted teens’ deaths that Israel told to justify its invasion of Gaza.

‘The Hill’ is to the left of the ‘New York Review of Books’

Philip Weiss on
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When was the last time The New York Review of Books ran a piece by a Palestinian? Lots of Israeli writers, including lately Assaf Sharon, who ignores the BDS movement and advocates for democracy in Israel and Palestine, when saying the Israel’s choice is between the extreme right and the two-state solution. An inherently conservative piece. The Hill actually tries to publish Palestinian opinion

Gaza ‘fractured’ Rabbi Rosen’s spiritual home

Marc H. Ellis on
Rabbi Brant Rosen

Is the professional rabbinate’s role to reconcile Jews to violence in Israel and the U.S. Marc Ellis reflects on the post-mortems in the Jewish press describing the split in Brant Rosen’s Chicago-area Reconstructionist synagogue between left and right on Israel that broke out over the Gaza slaughter

Joan Rivers’s Palestinian finale

Philip Weiss on
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Joan Rivers is being remembered for crossing lines others respected. Sadly, her finale during the Gaza massacre of this summer were rants against Palestinians that political people are not likely to forget.

Brant Rosen’s prophetic voice elevated him beyond the rabbinic politics of our day

Marc H. Ellis on
Rabbi Brant Rosen

Marc Ellis writes: “Reading Rabbi Rosen’s letter of resignation and the Tribune article I can’t help but think of the Biblical saga. Out of the blue the prophets arise, are shot down, then reappear. It hasn’t changed much in thousands of years. The prophetic is too deeply ingrained in Jewish life to pass quietly into our newly embraced colonial night. Apparently, synagogues are not for prophets. Those who practice the prophetic and attend synagogue, should take note. Your expulsion is inevitable.”

Rabbi Brant Rosen steps down from Jewish Reconstructionist Synagogue saying his activism on Israel/Palestine has been ‘lightning rod for division’

Marc H. Ellis on
Rabbi Brant Rosen

The Jewish Reconstruction Synagogue in Evanston, Illinois is looking for a new rabbi. Rabbi Brant Rosen is moving on. In a letter to the congregation Rosen wrote: “it has become clear that my [Israel/Palestine] activism has become a lightning rod for division at JRC. This crisis has taken an increasingly emotional toll on our community – and it has taken a considerable toll on my own well being as well. Given the current environment in our congregation, I believe my decision to resign is the healthiest one for all concerned.”

Alvin Rosenfeld’s Holocaust complaint

Marc H. Ellis on
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Alvin Rosenfeld accuses anti-Zionist Jews of being “Jew-haters.” Isn’t he showing some ageism when he seeks to discredit Hedy Epstein by citing her age, 90, as alleged evidence against her rationality? Marc Ellis at Mondo

Richard Cohen says he married Israel and has been faithful during ups and downs

Philip Weiss on
Richard Cohen

Longtime Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen has a book coming out in two weeks called Israel: Is It Good for the Jews? a question that Cohen answers in the affirmative. From his publisher, Simon and Schuster: A very personal journey through Jewish history (and Cohen’s own), and a passionate defense of Israel’s legitimacy.Richard Cohen’s book is