Analysis

US resolution to aid Holocaust survivors won't help

By Paul Berger, December 9, 2010

Finding a consensus in Washington is nothing short of miraculousthese days.

So it was noteworthy that a resolution to support care programmes for Holocaust survivors was approved by a unanimous 407-0 vote in the House of Representatives last week.

The resolution, which comes at
a time when North American organisations warn they have insufficient funds to care for survivors, was
lauded by members of the US-Jewish community.

But the absence of a single dissenting vote in the House underlines what little effect, in real terms, the resolution may have.

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Peace talks are failing and it's Obama's fault

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 9, 2010

Two weeks ago we were prophesying that a deal on a second freeze of settlement building and a return to direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority was a matter of days away. But on Tuesday, the White House unofficially admitted that there was no hope for a settlement moratorium and that it would return to pursuing peace through indirect talks between the sides.

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If God sent the fire, he owes us firemen

By Geoffrey Paul, December 9, 2010

Citing halachah in support of outrageous religious discourse has long been a speciality of the former Sephardi Chief Rabbi of Israel, 90-year-old Ovadia Yosef, spiritual mentor of Shas, the strictly-Orthodox political party with 11 members in the Knesset and a major role in Binyamin Netanyahu's government coalition.

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Israel's leaders must accept some blame for fire

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 9, 2010

Binyamin Netanyahu can arguably be said to have come out well from the first national emergency of his second premiership.

Indeed, his decision to call it
a "national emergency" - at one stage he even used the word "international" - contributed to the marshalling of resources necessary to put the fire out, four days and 42 deaths after it was ignited.

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Plan fraught with danger

By Robin Shepherd, December 2, 2010

The notion that London has become a "hub of hubs" in a global campaign of delegitimisation against Israel will not come as a surprise to astute observers of the movement to undermine and destroy the Jewish state.

Nor will it be seen as a shocking revelation that it is being driven from below by an "unholy alliance" between the far Left and radical Islamism and then spread through mainstream society by a liberal-left establishment exercising near hegemonic control over NGOs, establishment think tanks, leading newspapers and, of course, the BBC.

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Reut in vanguard of policy planning

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 2, 2010

A lack of long-range comprehensive strategic planning is evident in much of the Israeli government's actions and was one of the main criticisms of the Winograd Commission Report on the second Lebanon war. The National Security Council, which was founded in 1999, was supposed to act as a national planning forum, but political and personal calculations have limited its influence.

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Israel has a strong message but it will still be a hard sell

By Martin Bright, December 2, 2010

The Reut Institute report on London's role as the "hub of hubs" of the delegitimisation campaign is a profoundly important intervention in the debate. Its analysis of the existential attack on Israel, by an alliance of Islamists and the hard left, acts as a sobering warning to those who felt that the Jewish people's right to statehood had been established decades ago.

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Expensive fight for just 2,000 chickens

By Dan Goldberg, December 2, 2010

Chicken soup – the sine qua non for Jews worldwide – is still on the menu for New Zealand's small Jewish community after Agriculture Minister David Carter backed down from his controversial ban on shechitah last Friday.

At face value, it's a victory for all diaspora Jewish communities against those who are trying to ban shechitah on the grounds of animal rights. But because the court case never happened, the case for kosher slaughter is no more robust – and no more humane, for that matter – this week than it was last week.

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And now, the truth of what the Arab world really thinks

By Tim Marshall, December 2, 2010

It can be very embarrassing when you are caught telling the truth.

For the Arab states, this was an uncomfortable week. Not only did the truth contradict their previous public views, but it supported the story Israel has been telling for years.

Thanks to Wikileaks we now know that the Arab leaders see Israel, not as their greatest enemy, but as one of only two countries which could help save them from the Persians and their soon to come hordes of nuclear missiles.

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We've said this all along

By Uri Dromi, December 2, 2010

This week's WikiLeaks scandal brought back memories from 1993, when Chris Walker, then the Israel correspondent of The Times, came to see me at the Government Press Office. He was interested in my opinion on the big manoeuvre which the Israeli Air Force (IAF) was carrying out in the Negev.

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