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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

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 July 9, 2007 / 23 Tamuz, 5767

Pandering Won't Be Enough

By Jonathan Tobin



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The endless presidential campaign should lead to sharp questions on Iranian nukes


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | If there were any doubts about the fact that one-time Tennessee senator and actor Fred Thompson was about to run for the Republican nomination for president, it was not due to his recent tiff with filmmaker Michael Moore, appearances on Fox News or various other public appearances.


It was the fact that he used a radio commentary spot, the text of which was subsequently published in the online version of National Review magazine, which articulated his stout support for Israeli counterattacks against Palestinian missile attacks on the city of Sederot, his firm opposition to Hamas and his skepticism about the Palestinian desire for peace.


Good for Thompson for stating such views. But we are all entitled to notice that articulating these positions (which make him hardly unique among presidential contenders) is a function more of his desire to win support from friends of Israel for his presidential ambitions than anything else.


After all, who remembers Thompson ever taking a leadership position on support for Israel during his eight years in the Senate? Not that he was ever counted among Zion's foes, but there's something about having your name mentioned as a possible presidential candidate that seems to bring out Zionists in the most unlikely places.


There are many questions yet to be answered about Thompson's possible run. But his desire for Jewish support and contributions for his campaign is not in doubt.

UNLIKELY FRIENDS
Election-year conversions are nothing new. Who can forget Sen. Robert Dole (R-Kan.), never previously identified as a friend of Israel, who sought to bolster the appeal of his doomed presidential campaign in 1996 by pushing through legislation to move the U.S. embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The odds of the embassy actually being moved were even than Dole's chances of actually beating Bill Clinton that November. So, too, were the chances that many Jews would take the bait and back him.


But as the desperate search for campaign dollars is in full swing, it is worthwhile pondering what exactly it is that friends of Israel should be asking the many men and the one woman who stand a chance of actually taking the oath of office on Jan. 21, 2009.


Before answering that question, it should be stipulated that the majority of Jews will never vote for a candidate based on his or her stands on Israel. As has been proven again and again in recent electoral history, many, if not most of us, are as rigidly partisan as any American with loyalty to the Democratic Party among Jews being second only to that of African-Americans. Anyone who discounts either the loyalty of most Jews to the Democrats, and thus their hostility to religious conservatives in the GOP, hasn't been paying attention the last 20 years.


But to recognize this fact is not to discount the possibility that any candidate can win or lose critical campaign funding, as well as eventually some votes by their stands on Middle East issues.


On Israel itself outside of fringe candidates like the wacky right-wing libertarian Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) and the leftist Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), there isn't too much daylight between the candidates on support for Israel's right of self-defense, as well as on their disdain for Hamas.


Democrats have uniformly scorned the Bush administration for its lack of "engagement" in the process. Dovish groups like the Israel Policy Forum have echoed that theme. But while bashing Bush is good politics at the moment, nobody in either party can point to what, if anything, could actually be accomplished with a repeat of the kind of close engagement in the peace process that characterized the Clinton-administration's policy in the 1990s.


No amount of encouragement or bribery from Washington is going to change the corrupt and violent nature of Fatah. Despite U.S. help, Fatah's forces were easily routed by Hamas in Gaza. No one — including Republicans like Rudy Giuliani, who endorsed more aid for Fatah — should expect either half of the Palestinian political spectrum to do what needs to be done to end terrorism or to begin to build a rational state.


Some honesty on that from the candidates would be refreshing. But in the meantime, what we should really be asking them to do is to avoid falling into the trap of looking to Israel to bail out Hamas with concessions that will only lead inevitably to more terrorism.


Another point on which there is seeming consensus is opposition to the Iranian drive to acquire nuclear weapons. Both Democrats and Republicans have addressed the dangers of such a development and expressed support for a strong policy seeking to head it off. But the tricky part is not to say that you don't want Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to have his finger on a nuclear button, but how to make sure it doesn't happen. Most Republicans have been eager to say that they won't take the military option off the table. Is such a threat credible? That's uncertain given both the military situation in Iraq, as well as the inherent difficulties of such an operation under even the most ideal circumstances.


Democrats have wavered on that point (John Edwards has come down, at times, on both sides of the question), but given the determinedly anti-war stands of all the Democrats, it isn't clear how any of them can win Democratic primary votes while contemplating using force against Iran.


And that, like the rest of the rhetoric about fighting the war on Islamist terrorism, is the crux of both parties problems in coping with the Middle East.

WHAT WILL THEY DO?
It is easy for all of them to wave the flag of devotion for Israel. And it is just as easy for candidates of either party to criticize the conduct of the war in Iraq.


But the crucial question facing the eventual winner in November 2008 is what they are going to do about Iran.


For now, like Bush, they can all pray that the Europeans and Russia will unite around a tough sanctions protocol that will turn the tide in Tehran. They can also hope that internal divisions in Iran will convince the mullahs who hold the power behind Ahmadinejad that they must turn back from a policy of confrontation.


But if none of that works and the day dawns some time in the next president's term in office when Iran will actually have the nuclear capability that they have pledged to use to destroy Israel and to threaten the rest of the West, then we must ask what these would-be presidents will actually do.


Will any of them have the mettle to face up to the challenge and to act to forestall catastrophe? Or will they weakly sit back and wait for futile diplomacy to defuse a crisis that will already be out of control?


And it is on that point — and not the usual pandering to pro-Israel sentiment — that friends of the Jewish state should judge the candidates. Heaven help us all if we choose incorrectly.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in Washington and in the media consider "must reading." Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Jonathan S. Tobin is executive editor of the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent. Let him know what you think by clicking here.

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