Forward Forum


Rescue and Resistance

By Jeremy Ben-Ami

Sixty-eight years ago this week, Adolf Hitler unleashed the infamous Kristallnacht pogrom. Savage mobs beat and murdered Jews, smashed their stores and burned down synagogues throughout Germany and Austria. My father, then 25, barely eluded this hurricane of destruction: He was on a boat just down river from Vienna, leading 550 Jewish refugees to safety.Read More


Ehud Olmert’s Amateur Defense

By Yossi Alpher

One can’t entirely blame Ehud Olmert for feeling smug these days. He expanded his governing coalition, guaranteed that the 2007 budget will pass in the Knesset and stabilized his government after the tribulations of this summer’s war in Lebanon and in anticipation of the findings of the Winograd Commission investigating that war. And he did all this at a ridiculously low political price. A grandiose but empty ministerial title for Avigdor Lieberman (“minister for strategic threats,” which sounds like something out of Monty Python) brought Yisrael Beiteinu’s 11 Knesset members into the coalition. And a deputy ministry and chairmanships of a couple of committees on Arab affairs kept Amir Peretz’s Labor Party from leaving in protest.Read More


Piling Debt on Debt

By Gus Tyler

Once upon a time, the Republican Party prided itself on its businesslike way of running government — namely, pinching each penny and borrowing as little as possible. For years, the GOP regularly attacked the Democrats as the party of “tax and spend.” The Democrats were spendthrifts, while the GOP was thrifty. Now, as the Bush administration winds up its sixth year in office, it appears set to establish an all-time record for unbalanced budgets and mounting debt.Read More


The Road to Justice in Argentina Leads to Iran

By David A. Harris

On July 18, 1994, the deadliest postwar terrorist attack against a Jewish target took place in Buenos Aires. The seven-story headquarters of the AMIA, the Argentine Jewish community’s central welfare body, was destroyed. Eighty-five people, Jews and non-Jews alike, were killed; hundreds were wounded. It followed in the wake of another deadly terrorist assault in Buenos Aires two years earlier, against the Israeli Embassy.Read More


The Passing of Two Titans

By Miles Lerman and Michael Berenbaum

Just hours after Sigmund Strochlitz’s family rose from shiva to reenter the world of the living, Ben Meed died and trauma again reverberated through the survivor community. Two giants had fallen; their contributions were singular and monumental. Together they had done so much to advance the cause of remembrance. Their backgrounds and their experiences were different; their commitment to remembrance wholehearted and passionate.Read More


How To Put U.N. Rights Council Back on Track

By Peggy Hicks

Seven months after the United Nations General Assembly created a Human Rights Council to replace the much-maligned Commission on Human Rights, the new council already has garnered a level of condemnation that its predecessor took decades to achieve. Much of this criticism is justified. The council has failed to take concrete action or even to condemn serious human rights abuses in places like Darfur, Burma, Uzbekistan or Colombia. Yet it has adopted three one-sided resolutions condemning Israeli human rights violations, none of which even mentions abuses by armed Palestinian groups or Hezbollah.Read More


Lives Lost Amid the Slogans of a Time Long Ago

By Kathleen Peratis

Judy Clark is a 57-year-old Jewish woman who has a sweet face, wears a chai and laughs a lot. She is often (I am told) accompanied by a dog — a dog she is training to be a seeing-eye dog, part of the program “Puppies Behind Bars.”Read More


Turkey’s Choice: Europe or Amnesia

By Eric Frey

On October 12 Europe sent two powerful messages to Turkey about the way it should deal with the crimes of the past and the civil liberties of the present: The Swedish Academy awarded the Nobel Prize for literature to dissident Turkish writer Orhan Pamuk, and the French National Assembly passed a bill making denial of the Armenian genocide during the First World War a crime punishable by several years in prison.Read More


The Unmet Threat Of a Nuclear Iran

By Brad Sherman

A nuclear-armed Iran would be a catastrophe for the United States and the larger international community. It is a catastrophe that we could be doing more to prevent.Read More


Passing the Buck on Israel’s Periphery

By Larry Garber

In a most dramatic fashion, the American Jewish community rallied to Israel this past summer during the war with Hezbollah. Emergency appeals raised millions of dollars, and individuals and organizations mobilized to demonstrate their political support for Israel. Philanthropists from around the world stepped in to do what Israel’s government apparently could not: alleviate the dire situation of the many Israelis trapped in the North or in temporary refugee situations.Read More


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