Sunday Reads: Jewish terrorism in Israel, Turkey goes to war with ISIS

August 2, 2015


Richard Goldstein tries to explain why his Democratic friends in Congress should vote against the Iran deal:

I’m really disappointed that I oppose this deal. I hoped, naively I suppose, that negotiations resulting from the sanctions for which my friends and I in the pro-Israel community lobbied, would result in a good deal. After all, the president and secretary of State repeatedly said “no deal is better than a bad deal.”

Maureen Dowd discusses the possibility of a 2016 Biden candidacy:

It could be awkward for President Obama, who detoured from the usual route — supporting your vice president — and basically passed the torch to Hillary. Some in Obama’s circle do not understand why he laid out the red carpet for his former rivals. “He has no idea how much the Clintons dislike him,” said one former top White House official.

But the president has been so tender and supportive to his vice president ever since learning that Beau was sick, it’s hard to say how he will react. Since the funeral, Obama has often kept a hand on Biden’s back, as if to give him strength.


Avi Issacharoff writes about the gruesome act of violence that took place in Israel on Friday:

Early Friday morning, a family was targeted for no reason. This is a foul crime, and is regarded as a foul crime by the most of the Jewish settler population. But the silent majority has allowed these despicable people to grow and flourish. And the state has demonstrated untenable tolerance and turned a blind eye, time after time.

And this won’t be the last time that Jewish terrorists seek to murder Palestinians simply for being Palestinians.

Nahum Barnea believes that official Israel has to do much more than simply condemn acts of Jewish terrorism:

The truth is inconvenient, but we must admit it: The lower courts, which right-wing culprits are brought to, are filled with judges who show understanding towards these criminals. A series of justice ministers have made certain to prefer candidates from this sector as judges. This process was reinforced by the current government, in which the justice minister and head of the Judicial Selection Committee is Ayelet Shaked (Bayit Yehudi) and the opposition's representative in the committee is a member of the nationalistic right. Shaked is an honest and decent politician, in her own way, but that's her job.

Middle East

David Kenner examines the complexities of Turkey’s upcoming campaign against ISIS:

Turkey has simultaneously launched a crackdown against both jihadis and Kurdish activists on its own soil, and it has also launched airstrikes against Kurdish insurgents in northern Iraq. Both the United States and Turkey agree that the Islamic State should be driven from its territory along the Turkish border, though U.S. officials only speak of an “ISIL-free zone” while Turkish officials describe a vision for a “de facto safe zone” where displaced Syrians could find refuge from both regime and jihadi attacks.

Gardiner Harris discusses the place of the Iran deal in the Obama administration’s bigger Middle East strategy:

So while much of the debate over the next two months will be about centrifuges, inspections and whether Iran is actually prevented from getting a nuclear weapon, the administration’s larger strategy is likely to get far less attention. But for administration officials, that long-term strategic bet is at least as important as the short-term nuclear deal, officials said.

Jewish World

Following the stabbings at the Jerusalem Pride Parade, Jay Michaelson takes a look at the raging anti-gay animus in Israel's ultra-orthodox community:

It’s not just the same would-be murderer who brandished a knife at the parade. It’s also some of the same rabbis, making the same comments. It’s the same posters plastered on the walls of Ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods. It’s the same newspapers – including The Jewish Press, Hamodia, Yated Neeman, and Yeshiva World Publications – the last of which, even today, described the parade as the “Abomination Parade.” “Abomination,” by the way, is actually a poor, hateful translation of the Hebrew word Toevah, which is used in the Bible to describe not only male anal sex but idolatry, the eating of shellfish, and Israelites and Egyptians having a meal together. A better translation is “taboo.”

Dave Rich examines the place of Europe’s fight against anti-Semitism in Europe’s fight for its new identity:

However, the new politics of anti-anti-Semitism run much deeper than the immediate need to confront the jihadist challenge. In essence, it represents a version of the postwar European settlement, in which nationalism and militarism have been renounced and Holocaust remembrance has become a vehicle for transmitting core European values of tolerance and pluralism to the next generation .

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