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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 25, 2011 21 Iyar, 5771

How Obama has empowered Netanyahu

By Dana Milbank




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Lawmakers gave Binyamin Netanyahu 59 rounds of applause as the Israeli prime minister addressed a joint meeting of Congress Tuesday. But more revealing was the whisper I heard while watching the speech from the House gallery.

It came as Netanyahu repeated his rejection of the notion, floated by President Obama last week, that peace talks with Palestinians should be based on Israel’s smaller, pre-1967 borders.

“Israel will not return to the indefensible boundaries of 1967,” Netanyahu thundered. “Jerusalem must never again be divided,” he roared.

“Go, Bibi!” the woman next to me said, sotto voce.

It was the voice of Inna Graizel, my daughter’s 21-year-old Israeli au pair, who is spending a year with my family, learning about America.

I, too, am learning. I took Inna to see her prime minister speak this week, first at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and then before Congress, and I saw through her eyes how badly Obama bungled his Middle East speech. He unwittingly strengthened Israeli hawks such as Netanyahu and made the already remote prospect of peace that much more distant. Of this, Inna herself is evidence: Though she’s a moderate who was suspicious of the uncompromising Netanyahu, the episode turned her into a supporter.

Inna, whose family emigrated from the former Soviet Union when she was an infant, comes from the north of Israel but from the center of its politics. Middle class and non-religious, she went to high school on a kibbutz before she learned how to fire an M-16 and became an army officer. She voted for the centrist Kadima party in the last election because she didn’t share the militant views of Netanyahu’s Likud.

Inna is fiercely patriotic, and when I asked her to assign blame for the conflict, she assigned 80 percent of it to the Palestinians. Twice in her young life, Hezbollah rockets rained on her neighborhood; the last time, she fled to Tel Aviv.


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But she also sees her own country’s culpability. She thought the Israeli raid on the Gaza-bound aid flotilla was “stupid,” and she thought Netanyahu’s expansion of settlements was unwise. She describes her country as “arrogant” and has some sympathy for the Palestinians: “We did invade their home. You can’t deny that.”

What distinguishes Inna and other Israelis is their deeply pessimistic outlook. She fully understands that things could get worse in Israel without a peace deal, but she has no expectation that there will be peace in her lifetime. “It’s like an equation too big to be solved,” she said. This sense of hopelessness, confirmed by the recent resignation of the American envoy to the region, George Mitchell, has hardened Inna’s generation. “We are very cynical and we don’t trust anybody,” she said.

Unfortunately, Obama encouraged that cynicism last week, when he offered his now-infamous suggestion that “the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps.”

Obama and his defenders argued that this wasn’t really a new policy, but, as The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler expertly documented, the statement “represented a major shift.” Later, after the damage had been done, Obama qualified his statement, saying the border should be “different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967.”

Inna was stunned. “Jerusalem, the Golan Heights and the West Bank, the 1967 lines? It’s crazy,” she said. “It’s impossible.” Holding her thumb and forefinger an inch apart, she added, “They’ll be this close to Tel Aviv.” The phrase about “agreed swaps” changed nothing.

To Inna’s ears, Obama had issued an existential threat to Israel, and it put her in an unfamiliar place: in lockstep with Bibi. When he told Obama in the Oval Office that the 1967 lines were “indefensible,” Inna celebrated. “Now, he’s our guy,” she said. “He’s the voice of Israel.”

She’s aware that Netanyahu isn’t about to strike a peace deal. After she listened on Tuesday to Netanyahu’s list of requirements for a Palestinian state — a list one Palestinian official called a “declaration of war” — she knew it was a nonstarter. “I can’t imagine it on a map,” she said.

But that was less important to Inna than Netanyahu’s firm rejection of Obama’s frightening proposal. “It’s a big thing to say ‘no’ to the president of the United States,” she said. If there were an election now, she said, “I would vote for Bibi.”

This is why Obama’s speech was such a blunder. By pushing an Israeli moderate such as Inna into the arms of Netanyahu, Obama has strengthened the hard-liners.

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Previously:



05/24/11 Pawlenty bends his truth-telling
05/20/11 Default deniers say it's all a hoax
05/18/11: Gingrich gives voice to moderation
05/17/11: Donald Trump and the House of Horrors
05/16/11: The medical mystery of Mitt Romney
05/12/11: The body impolitic: Schock photos should tempt lawmakers to cover up
05/10/11: Muskets in hand, tea party blasts House Republicans
05/09/11: The GOP debate: America -- and the party -- needs the grown-ups
05/05/11: Mitch Daniels, an alternative to scary
05/03/11: Obama's victory lap
05/02/11: How the journalist prom got out of control
04/28/11: Obama's birther day: Why did he lower himself by appearing in the briefing room?
04/27/11: Obama, lost in thought
04/24/11: Andrew Breitbart and the rifts on the right
04/22/11: Ten Commandments for 2012
04/21/11: Obama likes Facebook. Facebook likes Obama.
04/18/11: Without Nancy Pelosi, Obama is adrift
04/15/11: If progressives ran the world
04/14/11: Faith in political apostasy
04/13/11: One man's revolution is another's political expediency
04/11/11: Shutdown theatrics
04/06/11: Paul Ryan's irresponsible budget
04/05/11: Robots in Congress? Yes, we replicant!
04/04/11: Robert Gibbs, Facebook and the White House corporate placement service
04/01/11: Haley Barbour, the fat cats' candidate
03/31/11: Republican freshmen in House shut down compromise, and possibly the government
03/30/11: Coburn and Durbin, the dynamic duo of the debt crisis
03/28/11: The Obama doctrine: A gray area the size of Libya
03/24/11: Dems as Weiners
03/23/11: Obama's quick trip from tyrant to weakling
03/17/11: Who's afraid of Elizabeth Warren?
03/15/11: The underwear flap over Bradley Manning
03/10/11: In Senate's debt debate, talk isn't cheap
03/09/11: With Obama's new Gitmo policy, Administration officials had some 'splainin to do
03/02/11: Issa press aide scandal is like bad reality TV
02/25/11: Jay Carney: Mouthpiece for an inscrutable White House
02/14/11: The Donald trumps the pols at CPAC
02/09/11: Arianna Huffington's ideological transformation


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