Jewish Americans: The Next Generation

American Jews are shifting. Still liberal to left-wing on the whole, the anomaly that has been Jewish political attitudes toward the Israeli occupation has long stood out. For a long time, Jewish Americans have had a wide spectrum of views on the occupation, but politically, only one view, reflective of the center-right to right-wing side of the Israeli spectrum, has had real impact on US policy.

More and more, Jews are moving away from that stance and more of all ages are realizing that, whatever their views on Zionism and Israel, the occupation is a practically and morally intolerable phenomenon. Someday, and not too far in the future, the young Jews in this video and many others like them will be at least part of the face of American Jewish leadership. For the first time, young American Jews are organizing and standing up as Jews and within the Jewish community to oppose the occupation. Too often, the response of young Jews has been silence or alienation from the community. That, too, is changing.

Check out this video, from Young, Jewish, and Proud, the young adult wing of Jewish Voice for Peace.

Leaving America Behind

This week’s piece for Babylon Times, hosted by Souciant, looks at the aftermath of the showdown at the UN over Palestinian statehood and the decisions facing the Palestinian people as a result.

Everyone’s A Critic

My latest piece for Babylon Times, hosted by Souciant, reflects on the NY Times’ Thomas Friedman surprisingly confirming the words of Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer in their book The Israel Lobby.

Aid to the PA Supported By…Elliott Abrams?

This piece originally published at LobeLog

Yesterday, the House of Representatives’ Committee on Foreign Affairs held a hearingon the future of aid to the Palestinian Authority.

Neocon all-star and convicted perjurer, Elliott Abrams

Aid to the PA is under bi-partisan attack in Congress due to the Palestinians’ campaign to somehow upgrade their standing in the United Nations. The campaign against the Palestinians, and also against the United Nations, has already gained enough momentum that yesterday’s hearing, initially to have been held in session of the Subcommittee on the Near East and South Asia, was upgraded to a hearing of the full Foreign Affairs committee.

Leading the charge, unsurprisingly, is Committee Chair Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), who has introduced a bill threatening UN funding mainly, though not exclusively, over the issue of Israel and the Palestinians. But her predecessor as Chair, Howard Berman (D-CA) was absolutely blunt in saying: “I believe it is appropriate to point out that should the Palestinians pursue their unilateralist course, the hundreds of millions of dollars in annual assistance that we have given them in recent years, will likely be terminated.”

Four leading Democrats, Steve Israel (D-NY), Robert Brady (D-PA), Eliot Engel (D-NY) and Steven Rothman (D-NJ) have sent a bill to the Foreign Affairs Committee which would “… prohibit Foreign Military Financing program assistance to countries that vote in the United Nations General Assembly in favor of recognizing a Palestinian state in the absence of a negotiated border agreement between the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority.”

With all this, you’d think aid to the PA was doomed, would you not?

But hold on. At the hearing, there were four witnesses, with David Makovsky of the AIPAC-created Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) being the most moderate. The other speakers were James Phillips of the Heritage Foundation, Dr. Jonathan Schanzer of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (which, along with Heritage, are neo-conservative think-tanks, with more info available here) and neocon all-star Elliott Abrams. Continue reading

Crazy for Palestine

In my latest piece for Babylon Times, hosted by Souciant, I examine the hysteria in Jerusalem and Washington over next week’s vote, the precise nature of which we still don’t know, on the status of Palestine at the UN.

Our Own Worst Enemies: Fear is not a value

In my latest piece for Babylon Times, hosted by Souciant, I examine the implications of Israel’s tattered relationship with Turkey, and the Israeli mindset that is driving it into ever-deeper isolation.