Forward Forum


To Starve Or Feed the Beast

By Leonard Fein

Surely Nashat Aqtash has one of the more improbable jobs in the world: He is public relations adviser to Hamas; his job is to portray the new majority party of the Palestinians as kinder and gentler than its charter and its history have convinced most of the world it is.Before last week’s elections, Aqtash was reportedly paid $40,000 for hisRead More


Movement Cannot Feed Society on Resistance Alone

By Eran Lerman

Painful ironies mark the new political landscape of the Middle East, following the shattering defeat of the Fatah movement in last week’s Palestinian Legislative Council elections. One symbolic moment tells the story.As many of their countrymen watched in shock — one Palestinian scholar, who met a group of visiting French Parliamentarians onRead More


Is Olmert a Man Of Action?

By Leonard Fein

George Orwell taught us that the words used by political leaders may not mean what the same words mean in conventional discourse, what they mean according to our dictionaries. (So did Lewis Carroll.) Accordingly, it is worth noting a potential transformation in Israel — where three phrases, it seems, have begun overnight to mean just what theyRead More


In Praise of ‘Civilian’ Leadership

By Uri Dromi

Can Ehud Olmert fill the vacuum left by the mighty Ariel Sharon? This is the question that Israelis, and indeed, people all around the world, are currently asking. After all, Acting Prime Minister Olmert, likely winner of the upcoming March 28 elections, has no serious military background. And in a country besieged by terrorist, guerrilla,Read More


The Skewering Of Jack Abramoff

By David Klinghoffer

From George Clooney to Orthodox rabbis, the list of those who have scathingly denounced Jack Abramoff seems endless. Given the admission of guilt by this Orthodox Jew and former super-lobbyist for Indian gambling tribes, is it possible to discover any grounds for sympathy with him?Actually, yes.But first a disclaimer. As I wrote in the ForwardRead More


The Purse and the Sword

By John Yoo

Iraq is beginning to sound like a rerun of the Vietnam War, and not just because presidential critics again are crying out that the United States has fallen into a quagmire. Opponents of the American presence in Iraq are arguing that a wartime president has overstepped the Constitution and that, if Congress’s constitutional role in deciding onRead More


Out of Many, Less Than One

By Leonard Fein

The polite way to put it is that we are a “voluntary community,” and that is surely the truth. But it is quite far from the whole truth, which is that we are an anarchic community. For better and now and then for worse, we have neither pope nor president, no hierarchical structure that speaks to — and for — us allRead More


Go to Gush Etzion

By Leonard Fein

Facts and figments. As ever, Jerusalem is a riot of figments. Camp David, Taba, Geneva, back to Clinton, the road map, on and on, and trying to grab hold as each buzzes past is like trying to catch a mosquito: You’re sure you have it but when you open your hand there’s nothing there, so you try again and this time you’re really sure but noRead More


Patriots and Intruders

By Gus Tyler

In the furious debate over the USA Patriot Act, frequent reference is made to the First Amendment of the Constitution. The president’s critics maintain that the Patriot Act’s intrusive practices, including wiretapping, monitoring library use and more, amount to limitations on our freedom of speech. Armed with these new tools, Uncle Sam becomesRead More


The Year Of the Camel

By Leonard Fein

As this year runs quite unlamentably out, it is well to fill in some of its blanks — bits and pieces you may have missed.Once every 10 years or so, there takes place something called a White House Conference on Aging. The fifth such was from December 11 to December 14 of this year. It is, however, somewhat difficult to understand just why thisRead More





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  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
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