Barack Obama

New US ambassador to Israel is Obama insider

By Ellen Tumposky, March 17, 2011

The nomination of White House adviser Daniel Shapiro as US ambassador to Israel has won praise across the spectrum from US Jewish organistions which saw Shapiro as the best man for the job-and one who has the President's ear.

Mr Shapiro, 41, will replace Bush appointee James Cunningham. The nomination must be confirmed by the US Senate.


Barack Obama is not the Israel-basher now

By Robin Shepherd, February 24, 2011

There is a fascinating detail arising from the American decision to veto last week's UN Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements in east Jerusalem and the West Bank as "illegal".


Rahm Emanuel wins Chicago mayor vote

By Jennifer Lipman, February 23, 2011

The son of an Irgun member who fought during Israel’s war of independence has been elected the first Jewish mayor of Chicago.


Joe Lieberman to quit ahead of difficult senate race

By Jennifer Lipman, January 19, 2011

One of the most senior Jewish politicians in the United States, and the only Jewish vice-presidential candidate in the history of the major parties, is expected to announce his departure from the Senate today.

Senator Joe Lieberman, who was first elected to represent Connecticut for the Democratic party in 1988 but left to run as an independent in 2006, will not contest a fifth election next year.


President Obama pays tribute to Arizona victims

By Jennifer Lipman, January 13, 2011
See Video

President Barack Obama addresses the United States in the wake of the shooting spree in Arizona that left six people dead.

Referring to Gabrielle Giffords, the Jewish Congresswoman who is in intensive care following the attack, he said: "Gabby opened her eyes and I can tell you she knows we are here.

"She knows we love her and she knows we are rooting for her."


Obama's quiet war machines

By Tim Marshall, January 6, 2011

An American President authorises the bombing of a country with which it is not at war. The operation is undertaken not by the military but the CIA, and is concealed from Congress and the parliament of the country being bombed.

Pilotless drone air strikes are conducted on average once every three days, overseen from a base in California 8,000 miles from the target. Hundreds of innocent men women and children are killed in the assault.

The President is Barack Obama, the country is Pakistan, and the media scrutiny is almost invisible.


Republican Eric Cantor poised for majority leader role

By Jennifer Lipman, January 5, 2011

A Republican politician from Virginia will become the most senior Jewish politician in US history later today.

Eric Cantor will be officially sworn in as the House majority leader when the Republican Party takes control of the House of Representatives, following its success at the mid-term elections in November.

The Republicans have already vowed to challenge much of President Obama’s agenda, including a push for a repeal of his healthcare reform with a vote on January 12.


Netanyahu: I will push Obama to release Pollard

By Jennifer Lipman, December 22, 2010

Benjamin Netanyahu has announced that he will push President Barack Obama for the release of a Jewish American jailed by the US for spying in 1987.

The Israeli prime minister said in a statement that he would press for the release of Jonathan Pollard "in a formal and public manner".

However White House officials dismissed the possibility of letting the former Navy intelligence analyst out of prison early.

President Obama’s press secretary, Robert Gibbs, said: "I am not aware that that's something that the president is looking at doing.”


Peace talksgo back to the drawing board

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 16, 2010

Following its failure to secure a second settlement freeze, the Obama administration is now pushing for indirect talks over the "core" issues between Israel and the Palestinians.

The senior US negotiator George Mitchell resumed the "shuttle diplomacy" between Jerusalem and Ramallah this week, after four fruitless months spent trying to enable direct talks.

Mr Mitchell and the Prime Minister met for over three hours on Monday in a meeting that, according to Israeli sources, was mainly dedicated to "working out a new procedure for the negotiations with the Palestinians".


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.