In happier times, singers Achinoam Nini and Mira Awad would have been an easy sell: a pair of Israelis, one Jewish and one Arab, singing a heartfelt peace anthem called “There Must Be Another Way.” When the duo performed the song at the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest — the annual pop competition voted on by TV viewers across Europe — Awad became the first Arab to represent Israel, joining Nini on lyrics in English, Arabic and Hebrew.
The mind of Israeli writer and filmmaker Etgar Keret doesn’t rest easy, and the same could be said of Keret’s feet. He landed in New York recently, and decided that the best way to traverse Manhattan to record a podcast at the Forward studios was to walk. He was in the states, in part, for a retrospective of his films at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
In a tug-of-war over the question of how the Obama administration’s approach toward Israel is affecting the views of American Jews, Jewish Democrats and Republicans are each touting data seeming to point in opposite directions.
When President Obama dropped in on a meeting of his national security adviser in March, he found him deep in discussion with a number of advisers from past administrations on one of the most sensitive of topics on the ever-sensitive Middle East: whether the United States should at some point lay out its own plan for settling the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
The informal boycott imposed by Israel’s ambassador to Washington on the dovish lobby J Street ended Thursday with a meeting between Ambassador Michael Oren and Jeremy Ben-Ami, J Street’s founder and president.
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