Analysis

Mazaltov. But now time for Project Ed

By Martin Bright, November 11, 2010

Congratulations are due to Ed Miliband and his partner Justine Thornton on the birth of their second son. But as the Labour leader prepares for two weeks of paternity leave, Project Ed has begun in earnest.

Since he expressed his opposition to Israel's blockade of Gaza and the boarding of the Turkish flotilla during his leadership acceptance speech, Labour Friends of Israel have been working hard to mend fences.

In his interview with the JC last week, Mr Miliband made it clear that he condemns Hamas rocket attacks on civilian targets. This is a start.

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Netanyahu is just playing hardball

By Anshel Pfeffer, November 11, 2010

This week's quarrel between the Israeli and US governments is almost an exact replay of previous disputes between Benjamin Netanyahu and Barack Obama's administration, signalling a return to the rocky relationship of last year. But it could also be an artificial spat to be followed shortly by agreement and progress.

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US has run out of ideas for peace

By Robin Shepherd, November 11, 2010

However many times Barack Obama repeats mantras of the type "two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security", the conclusion that the United States has no further clue on how to forge alasting Middle East peace is increasingly inescapable.

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Obama, you're losing the Jews too

By Gil Troy, November 4, 2010

As Americans tallied their red, white and blue electoral scores from the 2010 midterm elections, many American Jews completed a parallel blue and white score too.

In charting their wins and losses, sifting through what definitely happened and what might have happened, US Jews will see yet more evidence of their march toward Americanisation. What may also strike them is their increasingly paradoxical position regarding liberalism, the Democratic Party, Barack Obama and Israel.

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European Jewry vibrant and growing, says report

By Simon Rocker, November 4, 2010

When I searched "European Jewry" recently in our electronic archive, the results came accompanied with words like "Holocaust" or "annihilation". It is as if the Jewish communities of the continent could only be defined in reference to the catastrophic past.

So it is refreshing to see a report which is unashamedly upbeat: European Jewry is "confident, vibrant and growing", according to the The 2010 Survey of New Jewish Initiatives.

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It's a mad, bad world. And that's just the UN

By Robin Shepherd, October 28, 2010

Put formulations such as "United Nations", "Human Rights" and "Palestinian territories" into the same sentence and, chances are, you're in for a peculiar experience. Add to that sentence the name "Richard Falk" - UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories - and you've entered the theatre of the absurd.

Mr Falk, who doubts official accounts of 9/11, was on fine form last week in delivering a report to the UN General Assembly.

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How political Islam got the public vote

By Martin Bright, October 28, 2010

Political Islam or Islamism, as it is sometimes known, has finally entered the mainstream of British politics. The election of Lutfur Rahman as Mayor of Tower Hamlets, the new government's decision to send a minister to attend Islam Channel's Global Peace and Unity conference, and the news that Tony Blair's sister-in-law has converted to Islam, demonstrate that a radical strain of totalitarian Islam has become acceptable to a significant proportion of the political classes.

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Mosque attack part of tit-for-tat policy

By Nathan Jeffay, October 14, 2010

Who were the arsonists at Beit Fajar, and why would anybody want to torch a Palestinian mosque?

The obvious answer is that it was an act of hatred, akin to when antisemites desecrate Jewish cemeteries in Europe: it is simply a bubbling over of the contempt that some settlers have for Palestinians.

In all probability, however, the attack was not an expression of anti-Arab anger but rather a show staged by extremist settlers to communicate a specific message to the Israeli authorities. The Beit Fajar mosque was essentially caught in the crossfire.

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Too late for dialogue with Palestinians

By Emanuele Ottolenghi, October 14, 2010

For nine months out of the ten-month settlement freeze, Palestinian leaders refused to directly engage their Israeli counterparts, because it did not include Jerusalem. Having belatedly joined the talks, they quickly abandoned them lest the freeze they previously considered insufficient be reinstated.

Suppose that, at Washington's behest, Israel extends the freeze for two more months. Given the track record, there is little chance anything will be achieved - except, maybe, stemming the tidal wave about to drown US President Barack Obama's Democrats in the mid-term elections.

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What this means for the law...

By Jonathan Goldberg, October 14, 2010

Although I was one of the complainants against this judge, I take no pleasure whatever in the moral victory of the formal reprimand.

It must be understood that you cannot criticise any judge for summing up the evidence actually called in the trial, however flawed or prejudiced that evidence seems.

At the Hove trial, the defence called every type of pro-Palestinian propagandist in the guise of "expert", whereas the prosecution countered with no evidence whatever for the Israeli side.

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