“For all the tightrope walking, the carefully formulated nuanced comments, and the impossible straddling between wishing to allow Israel to make its own decisions while providing cautionary input from abroad, American Jews and their views don’t really move the needle in Netanyahu and Gantz’s decision-making process.”
History was made Sunday in an over-crowded, bare-walled room in Jerusalem’s district court building. A defendant, facing charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust, took his seat and acknowledged, in front of the three-judge panel and the entire State of Israel, that he had read the charges and fully understood them.
What are the chances of this dramatic step actually taking place? Is this an inevitable result of the new government formed or yet another election-promise bound to be discarded as campaign rhetoric makes way to reality?
It all depends on four key players, their motivation, and their ability to influence the course of events.
On Tuesday, members of the Conference of Presidents will vote on the approval of Dianne Lob as the next chairwoman of the organization, a two-year position that would make her the group’s top lay leader. Initially, she was supposed to take office immediately upon approval, but a last-minute change will make Lob chair-elect for the next year, after which she will assume the chairmanship—more on that later.
Last Wednesday, as Jewish Americans were busy wrapping up their Passover shopping (well distanced outside the supermarkets, or begging for an online delivery slot) and struggling to set up a Zoom call with their socially-distanced families, Bernie Sanders bowed out.
“Just as Trump was there for Netanyahu when he needed a nice diplomatic gesture on the eve of Israeli elections (and then on the eve of the next one, and the next one) and just as he was willing to go further than any other American president in fulfilling the wishes of an Israeli center-right government, now Trump needs Netanyahu to do him a solid.”—Nathan Guttman
Bernie Sanders announced Sunday that he will not attend AIPAC’s annual policy conference next week. “The Israeli people have the right to live in peace and security. So do the Palestinian people. I remain concerned about the platform AIPAC provides for leaders who express bigotry and oppose basic Palestinian rights. For that reason I will not attend their conference,” Sanders wrote, promising that as president, he will “support the rights of both Israelis and Palestinians and do everything possible to bring peace and security to the region.”