Five heroes of 2016


In some respects, Election 2016 has not been American Jewry’s finest hour. 

Many of the major Jewish organizations that purport to represent the larger community  have not said a word in opposition to Donald Trump’s statements barring Muslims from entering the United States, or demeaning Mexicans, or groping women as a matter of entitlement.

These groups claim that they don’t want to be perceived as getting involved in politics — even though these same organizations and their leaders had no problem taking sides in the Iran nuclear debate.  This is shameful, but it also is myopic.  If a Trumpian candidate were to come along and say nasty things aimed at Jews, these same groups would clamor for the support of organized minority groups — who may then rightly point to the “official” Jewish silence over Trump.  So while these groups do a lot to help the needy and strengthen the Jewish community, what good is a Jewish community if it doesn’t stand up to defend fundamental Jewish values?

But there are bright spots.  One is that in less than three weeks, American Jews will vote overwhelmingly against the forces of prejudice and hate. And  from the start of this campaign, there have been individual and organizational heroes.

By heroes I mean quite simply the people and institutions who stood up against demagoguery and misogyny — and did so at some risk to their livelihoods.

I’m talking about people whose base is Republican, who themselves tend to only vote Republican and who had to take a stand against their own crowd, their own economic interest, their own past. It takes courage to do that, and before this election is over, they deserve credit.   

1. Michael Medved

Syndicated conservative radio host Michael Medved has been merciless in his opposition to Trump, and Medved’s biggest fans have in turn attacked him with the kind of vitriol only those who feel betrayed can muster.  

They call him, “idiotic,” “traitor,” “little weasel” and “little worm.” They vow to lead a boycott of his show. But Medved’s conservative critique of Trump has been unswerving from the start: Trump is no conservative. 

“Worst of all,” Medved wrote, “Trump’s brawling, blustery, mean-spirited public persona serves to associate conservatives with all the negative stereotypes that liberals have tried for decades to attach to their opponents on the right.”

2. The Columnists  

I’ve singled out these people before, but since they haven’t let up, they’ve earned more kudos.  Bret Stephens, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Wall Street Journal columnist, has been relentless in attacking Trump’s foreign policy credentials.

Just this week he wrote, “it’s utterly unwise for politically conservative Jews to make common cause with Mr. Trump, on the theory that he’d be a tougher customer in the Middle East than Mrs. Clinton. Leave aside the fact that Mrs. Clinton called privately for bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities in one of her leaked Goldman Sachs speeches, while Mr. Trump has found public occasion to praise both Saddam Hussein and Bashar Assad.”

Early on, Jennifer Rubin, who writes for The Washington Post, threw down against Trump as well. The vitriol she receives as a staunch conservative and as a woman makes you understand just how deep the misogyny in the Trump forces runs.

Stephens and Rubin are the head of the spear. But a phalanx of reliably conservative pundits has opposed Trump, including John Podhoretz, Charles Krauthammer, Bill Kristol, Jonah Goldberg, David Frum, Ben Shapiro, Max Boot and David Brooks. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more pro-Israel, anti-Iran, anti-Obama group — and yet, for them, Trump is beyond the pale.

3. The Jewish Week

The Jewish Week has been the paper of record for New York’s Jewish community since the 1970s. In all that time, it has never endorsed a presidential candidate. Unlike the Jewish Journal, which as a nonprofit cannot endorse political candidates, The Jewish Week is a for-profit paper and had the ability to take sides; its owners just didn’t see an upside in dividing the community.   

Then, last week, The Jewish Week endorsed Hillary Clinton. 

The move was risky — many of the paper’s readers are traditionally minded and Republican. Gary Rosenblatt, the editor and publisher of The Jewish Week, is himself Orthodox. But in an unsigned editorial, The Jewish Week explained its position this way: “In his long career, Trump has embodied only the first half of our sage Hillel’s famous adage: ‘If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself, what am I?’ ”

The endorsement continued:  “Most seasoned political and strategic experts in Israel are more comfortable with Clinton, who showed strong support for the Jewish state as a U.S. senator, has in-depth knowledge of the region – its leaders and its problems — and is more openly compassionate toward Jerusalem than either Obama or Trump. Experts have always insisted that a strong U.S. means a strong Israel, and they worry that Trump would be a loose cannon whose recklessness could incite even more instability and anti-U.S. attitudes, and violence around the world.”

“Hillary Clinton is no amateur when it comes to public service. Well before her experience as first lady, U.S. senator and secretary of state, she was known for her deep knowledge of issues and empathy for the underdogs of society. She has faced Trump’s torrents of invective, like calling her “the devil” to her face, with self-restraint, dignity and tenacity. She, too, is a flawed politician. But her faults pale in comparison to the consistent boorish behavior and mean-spirited ramblings of Trump, who has proven to be an embarrassment even to Republican leaders.”

“This newspaper has not endorsed political candidates in the past. But this election is an exception. It’s not just about politics. It’s about character, competence and compassion. It’s about values that are American, and rooted in the Bible: Seeing all men and women as created in the image of God, having empathy for “the other” among us, recognizing the power of community, building bridges rather than walls.”

According to Rosenblatt, the endorsement generated some cancelled subscriptions and angry letters, but also “hundreds of letters” in support.

4. Howard Stern

If it weren’t for the brilliant interviewing skills of Sirius XM radio host Howard Stern, we wouldn’t have Trump on tape, on the record, being Trump:  demeaning women (including his own daughter) and supporting the Iraq War. 

Stern alone asked the kind of questions that exposed the real Trump.  He knew exactly who he was speaking to, and he opened him up with the kind of questions that revealed Trump at his truest.  And that truth — that Trump is a man who reduces women to numbers, who has zero problem sleeping with married women, that he enjoyed walking in on teenage beauty contestants while they were changing, and that no matter how much he denies it, that he supported the Iraq War.  If not for Howard, we wouldn't have a public audio record of all this.   In other words, Howard did the job that mainstream journalists failed at — exposing the man behind the Cheeto-colored mask.

As Howard explained on his show last week, he didn't do this as a Trump enemy– they are friends, though Howard has made clear since 2008 he is a Hillary supporter. There simply is no smarter interviewer in broadcast media than Howard Stern, and he knew whom he was dealing with — and he is fearless.  

5. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) 

Under its new leader, Jonathan Greenblatt, the ADL has publicly denounced Trump’s tirades against Muslims and Mexicans as well as his campaign’s anti-Semitic tropes and wink-winks to the alt-right. Alone among big-tent Jewish organizations, it has held Trump accountable for the claptrap that comes out of his mouth.

“In a place where there are no men,” the rabbis teach us in “Ethics of the Fathers,” “strive to be a man.” When the stench of this election has cleared, these people and groups will be able to say they didn’t let down their party, their country or their community.


ROB ESHMAN is publisher and editor-in-chief of TRIBE Media Corp./Jewish Journal. Email him at robe@jewishjournal.com. You can follow him on Instagram and Twitter @foodaism and @RobEshman.

Poll: American Jews and Muslims share common values


Muslim and Jewish Americans share common values on key questions, according to a Gallup poll.

The poll, released Tuesday, found that the Muslim Americans exceeded Jewish belief in religious pluralism and in the fairness of elections, and also in support of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict—81 percent for Muslims, 78 percent for Jews.

Jews and Muslims also were the only religious groups surveyed in which a majority backed President Obama.

Jews were the least likely group, besides Muslims, to question the loyalty of Muslims, with 70 percent of Jewish Americans denying that Muslim Americans sympathize with the al-Qaeda terrorist group and 80 percent agreeing that Muslims are loyal to the United States. They disagreed, however, on whether Muslims spoke out enough against terrorism, with 28 percent of Muslims and 65 percent of Jews saying that Muslims were not vocal enough. The 65 percent put Jews in the middle of the religious groups surveyed.

Interestingly, Jewish respondents were slightly more likely than Muslims to believe that Muslims face prejudice in American society.

The poll included results from the Gallup Heathways Well-being index conducted from Jan. 1, 2010 to April 9, 2011, as well as two independent studies of the Muslim-American population conducted from Feb. 10 to March 11, 2010 and Oct. 1-21, 2010, by a Gallup-affiliated research group based in the United Arab Emirates. According to researchers, the poll had a margin of error of 6.6 percent for Muslims and 7.3 percent for Jews.

The study also found that Muslims were the least likely religious group to agree that there is ever justification for individuals or small groups to attack civilians, that the generation that came of age post-9/11 are more likely to report feelings of anger than their peers, but that anger is reported less among those that regularly attend religious services.

“As children of Abraham, Jews and Muslims recognize that we don’t just share a common faith but also a single fate,” Rabbi Marc Schneier, president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, an organization devoted to outreach between the Jewish community and other ethnic groups, said in an interview with JTA.

“People will be overwhelmed by these findings. The perception is that the Muslim Jewish relationship in the U.S. is one of conflict, not of cooperation. This is just the opposite of what we’ve found in the field.”

Rabbi Gary Greenebaum takes national leadership position; Survival of Jews in Iran is a paradox, pan


Rabbi Gary Greenebaum takes national leadership position

Rabbi Gary Greenebaum, a key figure in Los Angeles civic and ecumenical relations for the last 16 years, has been appointed national director for interreligious affairs by the American Jewish Committee (AJC).

As director of AJC’s Los Angeles chapter and Western region since 1990, Greenebaum has worked closely with leaders of the city’s varied ethnic and religious communities to further mutual respect and understanding.

He plans to project the same skills and goals on the national scene in his new post, succeeding David Elcott, who has joined the Israel Policy Forum as executive director.

“I realize now more than ever how strongly religion affects American society,” Greenebaum said.

Greenebaum played another crucial role when Mayor Richard Riordan appointed him president of the Los Angeles Police Commission in 1993, in the wake of the previous year’s riots, sparked by the acquittal of police officers involved in the Rodney King beating.

“I think that my appointment to the Police Commission and my work there helped alleviate a sense among African Americans that Jews didn’t care any longer about their community,” he said. “I also believe that we have established a tremendous relationship with the Latino community over the years.”

In a different arena, Greenebaum and his chapter have spearheaded Jewish communal relations with some 45 countries represented by consulates in Los Angeles. In recognition of this work, he was recently awarded the National Order of Merit by the French government.

Greenebaum, 57, will retain his family residence in Los Angeles and expects to spend one week each month in New York.

Among highlights of his California tenure, Greenebaum recalled taking several delegations of Protestant and Catholic leaders to Israel and the 2003 AJC mission to Salt Lake City to meet with top Mormon leaders.

“Gary is a wonderful judge of people,” said Sherry A. Weinman, president of the Los Angeles AJC chapter. “He knows exactly when to lead with his rabbinical side and when with his statesman side.”

Debbie Smith Saidoff, who serves on the national AJC board of governors, praised Greenebaum’s sensitivity in dealing with representatives of other faiths.

“Gary is a multidimensional leader of great insight, but he is never afraid to speak truth to power,” she said.

In his new position, Greenebaum will work closely with Jerusalem-based Rabbi David Rosen, AJC’s international director of interreligious affairs.

— Tom Tugend, Contributing Editor

Survival of Jews in Iran is a paradox, panel shows

On Oct. 20, the Women of Vision chapter of the Iranian Jewish Women’s Organization, presented a panel discussion on “The Jews of Iran: Will This 2,700-Year-Old Community Survive?” to a standing-room-only crowd at the Museum of Tolerance.

At present, 25,000 Jews live in Iran, 15,000 of them in Tehran, making Iran’s Jewish population the second largest in the Middle East, outside of Israel. In the years following the 1979 revolution, approximately 75 percent of the Iranian Jewish population fled the country, some to New York but many more to Los Angeles, which now boasts the largest Iranian Jewish population in the world.

Speakers at the conference included Sam Kermanian, secretary general of the Iranian American Jewish Federation, as well as Hamid Sabi, former chairman of the Iranian Jewish Centre in London. They were joined by Tel Aviv University professors Meir Litvak, an expert in Shi’ii and radical Islamic movements, and David Menashri, director of the Tel Aviv University’s Center for Iranian Studies; television producer and poet Roya Hakakian, author of “Journey From the Land of No” (Crown), about growing up as a Jewish teenager in post-revolutionary Iran; Shirin Taleh, a relatively recent immigrant to Los Angeles from Tehran, where she was a Jewish preschool and kindergarten schoolteacher; and Israel Radio personality Menashe Amir, who hosts a regular program listened to by Iranians the world over. The panel was moderated by Sharon Baradaran, a professor in UCLA’s Israel studies department.

The conference presented a complex look at the recent history of Jews in Iran. Amir made clear that over the last century, the condition of Jews in Iran had gone from bad to better (under the shah) to worse, prompting Baradaran to ask whether the better times under the shah were more of an aberration than had been thought.

Hakakian and Sabi both spoke of the role of Jews in the revolution and post-revolutionary period, time of great intellectual ferment and hope. Hakakian, in particular, still hopes a democracy will emerge in Iran, and she is encouraged by reports that average Iranians are losing interest in Iranian government-produced Palestinian propaganda and are showing interest in Israel.

By contrast, Litvak was vocal in pointing out that Iran only tolerates Jews living under Muslim rule — not as people living in an independent state. Iran has become the world leader in Holocaust denial, Litvak explained, as part of a political strategy to undermine support for Israel’s existence.

The panelists agreed that today’s Iran presents a paradox. In many ways, as Hakakian, Sabi and Taleh made clear, life for Jews in some ways has never been better. They are a “protected minority,” allowed to drink wine for their rituals, while Muslims are not allowed alcohol; Jews may allow men and women to mix, while Muslims cannot.Nonetheless, Jews are barred from government jobs, and under Muslim laws, their rights in criminal and civil courts are not equal to other Iranian citizens.

Iranian Muslims consider Jews “filthy” and impure. Yet Jews in Iran have the right to passports and to travel abroad and could leave if they choose.

Litvak suggested that Iran’s Jews have little future living as a minority in Iran and will not likely be able to improve their place in society. Kermanian recommended that the remaining Jews of Iran leave as soon as possible, in case conditions should change.

Menashri suggested that all Iranian Jews should move to Israel, while Hakakian argued that Iran’s Jews should remain and will flourish under a future regime. Taleh believes that there always will be a Jewish Iran, as long as parents teach their children about Judaism.

— Tom Teicholz, Contributing Writer

Book Review: Tools to fight terror: big dreams, good friends


“Prisoners: A Muslim & a Jew Across the Middle East Divide,” by Jeff Goldberg (Knopf, $25).

The full title of Jeffrey Goldberg’s new book, “Prisoners: A Muslim & a Jew Across the Middle East Divide,” immediately conjures up notions of a Pinteresque power struggle between two people. Yet “Prisoners” is far from the tale of sadomasochism and role reversal of Pinter plays like “The Night Porter” or screenplays like “The Servant.” Goldberg was a military policeman at Ketziot, an Israeli prison, where he and Rafiq, one of the inmates, developed a friendship that never truly revolved around power dynamics. Their relationship began because Goldberg recognized a “stillness” and a shared sense of irony in Rafiq.

Despite the tragedy of the Middle East and the moral dilemmas facing Goldberg as an Israeli soldier at a prison, Goldberg lightens the memoir with that irony and, at times, belly-chortling humor. For instance, in the wake of the massacre of two Israeli reservists, Goldberg describes being held captive by a terrorist cell in Gaza, where he defends his usage of the word “lynching” by saying to his captors, “Well, that was Ramallah…. What do you expect?”

He then writes, “Jokes at the expense of the West Bank usually go over well in Gaza. Not this one, however.”

Goldberg, who will appear in a public conversation with author and essayist Jack Miles on Oct. 18 at the Skirball Cultural Center, finds that, unlike American Jews, Israelis seem to lack a sense of humor.

That is not his only criticism of both Israelis and Palestinians.

After a bus explosion that killed three Jewish children, he says to a follower of Sheik Ahmed Yassin, Hamas’ founder, that the Sheik’s “preternaturally calm” statement that Israel “was created in defiance of God’s will” is “pathetic.” He also admits to being disillusioned by the kibbutzniks at Mishmar Ha Emek (where I must disclose I met the author many years ago), when they tell him not to clean three feet of coagulated hatchling droppings and blood in the chicken coop. They are saving that job for Arabs.

Goldberg has spent the past 15 years writing primarily about terrorists, yet in an interview from his home in Washington, D.C., where he is a correspondent for The New Yorker, Goldberg dismissed the notion that his work is so dangerous:

“The murder of Danny Pearl is the tragic, horrible exception, not the rule. All terrorists believe they’re doing something good and useful. Most of these groups are happy to explain themselves to people.”

In spite of his obvious courage, Goldberg writes in the book, “I am not brave, in the fuller meaning of the word.”

He says that, as a military policeman, “I should have done more to try to change things I didn’t like,” instead of being a “get-along, go-along kind of guy.”

Yet, more than once, he defied his fellow soldiers, as well as his commanding officer, whom he remembers as one of the dumbest Jews he ever met, by allowing the prisoners to shower in the kitchen and by restraining a guard from beating a helpless inmate.

Goldberg recently won the Anti-Defamation League’s Daniel Pearl Award and goes so far as to suggest that being Jewish has benefited him in his dealings with terrorists.

“I’ve always found it to my advantage. I use my Jewishness as a tool.”

He adds, “There’s an attraction-repulsion quality to these encounters.

Anti-Semites spend most of their time thinking about Jews; they spend more time thinking about Jews than Jews do.”

Goldberg’s interest in Zionism may have been sparked as a boy in the Long Island town of Malverne, where he was subjected to games of “Jew Penny.” Catholic boys, primarily Irish ones, would throw pennies at him and force him to pick them up.

If he didn’t stoop to retrieve the coins, they would throw nickels and dimes at him. Either way, he would be beaten. Goldberg felt that fighting wasn’t in his wiring, and he never actually defended himself until an African American friend told him to hit one Irish boy back. Even though his tormentor left him alone afterward, the wounds remained.

In “Prisoners,” he characterizes his upbringing this way: “I didn’t like the dog’s life of the Diaspora. We were a whipped and boneless people.”

By the end of the book, though, Goldberg, who immigrated to Israel in the late 1980s, has returned to America, a country he praises.

“If America had not taken in my ancestors three generations ago, we wouldn’t exist,” he says, pointing out, “Nothing makes you more patriotic as an American than spending three weeks in Pakistan. America with all its flaws is still a wonderful idea.”

Likewise, he found that though Israel may not be a utopia, its prisons, which he says “were not nice places, especially in the first uprising,” are far more humane than those in the rest of the world. At a time when prisoners in Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo have been tortured and denied habeas corpus, Goldberg argues that the prisons in the West Bank and Gaza “became worse for Palestinians when Palestinians were running them than when the Israelis were running them.”

He states without hesitation that the “baroque cruelty” and “sexually charged sadism” of Abu Ghraib did not and could not happen in Israeli prisons.

While Goldberg works on a book on Judah Maccabee for Schocken and Nextbook’s “Jewish Encounters” series, he remains hopeful about the Middle East. He bookends “Prisoners” with references to the story of Isaac and Ishmael, both sons of Abraham, who join hands in burying their father. As Goldberg writes, “This might be the single-most hopeful image in all the Bible, a palliative against the despair that has seeped into all of us.”

Jeffrey Goldberg will appear in a conversation with Jack Miles at the Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, on Wed., Oct. 18, at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, call (866) 468-3399.

On Winning the Terror War


Readers’ Quiz No. 2: Test your knowledge of Middle East terrorism. Simply identify the following incident:

It was one of America’s most controversial “victories” against international terrorism: a negotiated settlement with a gang of Arabic-speaking hijackers who were holding American hostages. After military action proved ineffective, a U.S. diplomat in the region decided — apparently without authorization — to pay off the hijackers. The hostages were released, but, in the ensuing furor, the diplomat, a Jew, lost his job.

Pencils ready? Name the year, the place, the terrorists and the diplomat, for five points each. For extra credit, explain the lessons for future terrorist confrontations.

Time’s up. Figured it out?

Answers: The year was 1815, the place Tunis. The hijackers were seagoing bandits known as the Barbary pirates. The diplomat was Mordecai Manuel Noah, U.S. consul in Tunis and the first Jew ever to head an American diplomatic mission abroad.

Extra credit: If you said nothing much ever changes in the Middle East, add five points. If you said things have a way of changing without seeming to, add 10 points. Fifty points if you said nothing is as it appears in the looking-glass war of terrorism.

A lot of water has passed under the bridge since Noah went to Tunis. America’s relations with the Moslem world have risen and fallen many times over. Jews have moved from center stage to the margins and back. America has become a world power. The Middle East has gone through independence, Arab nationalism, Islamic revolution and the discovery of oil. Yet here we are again, caught in another looking-glass war against shadowy Middle Eastern thugs who play by their own rules, or no rules. And, as always, Washington and the West are divided over how to respond.

The tactical dilemmas vary from case to case, but they boil down to one basic question. Should the fight against terrorism follow the niceties of civil society, or the cruder rules of the battlefield? Put differently, is terrorism a matter of statecraft or simple law enforcement? Are terrorists an international enemy, or common criminals?

It’s not clear-cut. Criminals enjoy elaborate protections from the moment of arrest, while battlefield foes are shot on sight. But enemies can sit down after the fighting and negotiate for their position. Criminals don’t get to have a position.

The United States today is fighting the shadow war on a half-dozen fronts, from interdicting terror at home, to chasing the Saudi-born terrormaster Osama Bin Laden, to making Libya give up the suspects in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.

Critics say the war lacks a clear vision. “The Clinton administration and, to some extent, the Bush administration basically look at terrorism as a law enforcement problem, but it doesn’t really work,” says Vincent Cannistraro, former chief of anti-terrorism operations at the CIA. “On the other hand, the sporadic attempts at some kind of military response don’t really work either. You’re not going to destroy a terrorist infrastructure by bombing their barracks.”

Still, there have been victories. Just last week, the U.N. Security Council rejected a bid to lift the sanctions imposed on Libya after the Pan Am bombing. Some Europeans wanted the decade-old sanctions lifted because Libya has agreed in principle to surrender the suspects under a compromise deal. Washington wanted the sanctions kept in place until the suspects are actually delivered. The council backed Washington.

It was the second victory inside a week. Two days earlier, the Supreme Court upheld the Justice Department’s 12-year struggle to deport eight members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, detained in Los Angeles in 1987 for fund-raising for the terror group. The eight claimed that they were singled out for deportation because of their beliefs, violating their First Amendment rights. The administration replied that since they were in America illegally, they had no First Amendment rights. The Supreme Court ruled for the administration.

Victories like these send a firm message to terrorists and their supporters: You can run, and maybe you can hide, but the long arm of American justice will eventually reach you, if you don’t die of old age first.

The problem is that terrorism doesn’t really fit either a military or police mold. Military strikes are too blunt a weapon. Traditional police work is too polite and too slow. Terrorists slip across borders, kill with abandon and don’t mind dying. What’s needed is a third way.

Some experts say the answer is to rescind the mid-1970s executive order that bans assassination by U.S. agents. “We’re caught in this ridiculous position,” says conservative scholar Michael Ledeen, of the American Enterprise Institute. “If somebody kills an American and runs away, you have a choice of bombing them or asking Interpol to arrest them. What you can’t do is go out and shoot them.”

Washington hasn’t returned to assassinations, but it has moved toward finding that third way. The solution: unconventional legal doctrines. One is extraterritorial jurisdiction, the startling notion that the United States can punish crimes committed on others’ soil. Another is the 1996 Omnibus Anti-Terrorism Act, which limits the rights of terror suspects to lodge appeals, view the evidence against them, even talk to lawyers. Civil libertarians howl about the erosion of democratic rights. So far, the courts haven’t agreed.

The new law plays a key role in Washington’s current hunt for the Bin Laden gang. Indictments were drawn up last fall against 11 members, including Bin Laden himself. Six are in custody so far. Over the last three months, they’ve filed countless pretrial motions, claiming infringement of their rights in jail. The courts haven’t agreed.

The bottom line, then, is that for all the screaming headlines, we’re not losing the terrorism war. The Palestinians have largely abandoned terror in favor of negotiations. As for Libya, “it hasn’t directed terrorist actions against the United States in recent times, because the sanctions are working,” says Cannistraro. “The answer is a coherent, integrated approach that combines diplomacy and politics. You can’t let law enforcement drive the train.”

As for the remaining terror, get used to it. “Terrorism is a chronic phenomenon,” Cannistraro says. “But it’s not a serious threat to our national security. Someone like Bin Laden kills people, but he’s not going to cause the destruction of the United States.”

Cannistraro’s sanguine view, common among professionals, isn’t popular with politicians or the public. “The problem is that everyone wants to treat the symptoms and not the causes,” he says. “It’s a common problem in terrorism-expert circles.”


J.J. Goldberg writes a weekly column for The Jewish Journal.

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