Daily Kickoff: Greenblatt reveals plan to unite Gaza and West Bank | Gary Vaynerchuk on upbringing in the Soviet Union | Mort Klein BDay


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FROM NAGOYA, JAPAN — Rabbi David Wolpe writes about the Japanese Man Who Saved 6,000 Jews With His Handwriting:“Even a hunter cannot kill a bird that flies to him for refuge.” This Samurai maxim inspired one gifted and courageous man to save thousands of people in defiance of his government and at the cost of his career. On Friday I came to Nagoya at the invitation of the Japanese government to speak in honor of his memory. The astonishing Chiune Sugihara raises again the questions: What shapes a moral hero? And how does someone choose to save people that others turn away?” [NYTimes]

PLAYBACK — Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO of VaynerMedia, on his upbringing during a conversation with Hollywood manager Scooter Braun: “I was traded for wheat. I was born in the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War, and nobody in my country had left that country for 40 years. You couldn’t leave. They didn’t let you leave. That’s what the Soviet Union was. And I got to leave as a three-year-old baby because 400,000 Jews got traded for wheat because Russia needed some wheat and America and Israel teamed up. To me, that is the most lucky thing.” [Video]

ULTIMATE DEAL WATCH — Trump’s envoy reveals plan to unite Gaza and West Bank — by Attila Somfalvi: “The White House’s peace plan entails intentions to unify the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Jason Greenblatt, US President Donald Trump’s special envoy to the Middle East, told Ynet on Tuesday… “Once our plan is released, all parties should read it and judge it by its merits. The PLO should be a positive force to change people’s lives for the better, and not try to sway people before they have even seen our plan,” Greenblatt went on to say.” [Ynet

Australia May Follow Trump in Moving Israel Embassy to Jerusalem — by Jason Scott: “Australia should be open-minded to this,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in Canberra on Tuesday. “We’re committed to a two-state solution but, frankly, it hasn’t been going that well.” … Morrison said he would ask his Cabinet to consider recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the embassy switch… “I’m very thankful to him for this,” Netanyahu said in a tweet after speaking with Morrison.” [BloombergTheGuardian

— “According to the Australian press, this move by Morrison is about domestic politics as much as foreign policy. He’s attempting to win Jewish votes in an upcoming election for a seat in the lower house of Parliament. The Liberal party needs to win the seat in order to maintain its majority. The candidate for the seat from Morrison’s Liberal Party is Dave Sharma — the former Australian ambassador to Israel.” [Axios

ROAD TO THE MIDTERMS — Adelsons funneled $32 million into GOP coffers in September — by Lorraine Woellert and Maggie Severns: “Conservative mega-donors Sheldon and Miriam Adelson funneled $32 million into Republican coffers in September… The Adelsons have spent at least $88 million on GOP causes so far this cycle, according to Federal Election Commission filings… They have also given smaller amounts to individual GOP candidates.”

“In September, the Adelsons also gave $2 million to ESAFund, which supports small-government candidates. Last quarter, the fund spent $1 million to oppose Democratic Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who is challenging Republican Sen. Ted Cruz in Texas.” [Politico]

HEARD LAST NIGHT — Kimberly Guilfoyle, Vice Chair of America First Action, at the Republican Jewish Coalition’s California bash in Beverly Hills: “The people in this room are making America great.” [Pic]

Texas Senate: Cruz hits O’Rourke for voting no on funds for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense – but he did, too — by Matthew Adams: “Sen. Ted Cruz asserts that Rep. Beto O’Rourke has “the most anti-Israel record of any Senate Democratic candidate.” To back up the claim, he points to one particular vote against funding for Iron Dome… The allegation may surface in Tuesday night’s debate in San Antonio, devoted in part to foreign policy. But Cruz’s allegation is oversimplified.”

“The Aug. 2014 vote was the first time O’Rourke did not support spending on Iron Dome. In May 2016, he voted against a budget bill that included Iron Dome funding… In June 2013, the House voted 315-108 for a defense spending bill that included over $235 million for Iron Dome. O’Rourke supported that bill. But when the Senate took up the measure, Cruz voted against it… In 2013, Cruz supported Sen. Rand Paul’s budget resolution, which would have slashed defense funding in 2013, including aid to Iron Dome. During the 2016 presidential campaigns, Sen. Marco Rubio attacked Cruz [for voting] against the National Defense Authorization Act three times. Each version included Iron Dome funding.” [DallasNews]

Nevada Senate: Former President Barack Obama and former Vice President Joe Biden will be in Las Vegas this month to stump for Senate candidate Jacky Rosen and down-the-ballot candidates.

New York 01: Will Too Much Love From Trump Be a Bad Thing for a Long Island Congressman? — by Lisa Foderaro: “When [Rep. Lee] Zeldin kicked off his re-election campaign in June, two former Trump White House officials — Sebastian Gorka and Sean Spicer — were there. Mr. Trump was not, but he has since endorsed Mr. Zeldin… The question, however, is whether too much love from Mr. Trump will be a bad thing for Mr. Zeldin. The campaign of [Perry] Gershon… has lately gained momentum. His third-quarter donations topped $1.5 million, one of the biggest hauls in the state.”

“Mr. Gershon said he had never considered running for office until he visited the United States Memorial Holocaust Museum in Washington… “The Holocaust Museum helped me see how some of the actions at Trump rallies were consistent with the birth of authoritarian Germany — the demeaning of the press, the denial of scientific fact and persecution of immigrants,” said Mr. Gershon, who, like Mr. Zeldin, is Jewish.” “Mr. Zeldin… criticized Mr. Gershon for drawing a parallel between Mr. Trump and Nazi Germany, saying the comparison was “unhinged and disgusting.” [NYTimes]

Perry Gershon Leverages Hamptons Star Power In Race Featuring Two Jews — by Ben Fractenberg: “Lee Zeldin gets a large chunk of his funding from Sheldon Adelson,” Gershon pointed out while touring Stony Brook University before the [Alec] Baldwin event… “I think that says a lot about Lee Zeldin’s policies and the way he looks at life. I’m not a Sheldon Adelson guy. I’m proud of that fact. I advertise it.” [Forward]

Attack Ads Against Some Democrats Try to Portray Them as Terrorists — by Jennifer Steinhauer: “In California, Representative Duncan Hunter… has used the specter of terrorism to target [Ammar] Campa-Najjar, whose paternal grandfather, Muhammad Youssef al-Najjar, was involved with the plan to murder Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympic Games in Germany… “It’s a whisper campaign,” Mr. Campa-Najjar said in an interview in a taco restaurant here. “One guy was cleared by the F.B.I. to work in the White House,” he said, referring to his time in the executive office under President Barack Obama. “The other was indicted by the F.B.I.”

In Virginia ((7th District), Abigail Spanberger is being attacked for ties to a Muslim high school where she briefly taught English as a substitute teacher… She has also been accused of being in favor of “giving $100 billion to the leading sponsor of terrorism,” a vague reference to supporting an antinuclear congressional deal with Iran.” [NYTimes]

Walter Russell Mead reviews Amy Kaplan’s book titled Our American Israel: The Story of an Entangled Alliance“Kaplan’s perspective as a scholar of American studies provides the key insight of this book: that the United States’ affinity for Israel has less to do with American Jewish activism than with deep cultural forces that have manifested themselves on both the left and the right over the years. In the 1940s and 1950s, for example, the left was the source of Israel’s most vocal U.S. support.” [ForeignAffairs]

DRIVING THE DAY — Saudis May Admit Khashoggi Was Killed in Interrogation by Mistake — by Gardiner Harris, David Kirkpatrick and Eileen Sullivan: “Saudi Arabia was preparing an alternative explanation of the fate of a dissident journalist on Monday, saying he died at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul two weeks ago in an interrogation gone wrong… President Trump echoed the possibility that Jamal Khashoggi was the victim of “rogue killers.” Mr. Trump dispatched Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Riyadh on Monday to meet with King Salman.”

“The Saudi ambassador to the United States, Prince Khalid bin Salman, left Washington last week, returned to Riyadh and will not be returning… The Saudi Embassy in Washington also canceled its National Day party, which was scheduled for Oct. 18… Advisors close to Prince Mohammed said he was shocked by the universal condemnation after Mr. Khashoggi’s disappearance.”[NYTimes]

Aaron David Miller tweets“If you believe the killing of Jamal Khashoggi was a rogue operation, I have an Israeli-Palestinian peace treaty to sell you.”

‘Pissed’ Ari Emanuel Called Jared Kushner to Vent About Saudi Khashoggi Fiasco — by Asawin Suebsaeng and Maxwell Tani: “Ari Emanuel told top clients and others close to him that he had called… Jared Kushner last week to relay his frustration with the fallout from Khashoggi’s disappearance… Emanuel also told colleagues that he was “pissed” about the consequences of Saudi Arabia’s alleged involvement in Khashoggi’s murder.” [DailyBeast] • Ari Emanuel’s Endeavor Is Said to Seek to Terminate Saudi Deal [Bloomberg]

When Business Executives Become Reluctant Statesmen — by Andrew Ross Sorkin: “How can we get out of this? That was the question repeatedly asked during a series of phone calls over the weekend by the biggest names in finance — Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase, Larry Fink of BlackRock and Stephen Schwarzman of Blackstone — about how they could extricate themselves from a conference in Saudi Arabia… Mr. Fink called Yasir Al-Rumayyan, the chief executive of the Saudi Public Investment Fund and Uber board member, and encouraged him to delay the conference… Mr. Schwarzman called Mr. Mnuchin, pressing him to cancel his trip or to work with the Saudis to postpone the conference.”

“By Sunday night, Mr. Dimon decided he could not wait for more conference-call diplomacy: He declared he was out… Mr. Fink and Mr. Schwarzman decided to give the Saudis one more chance: If the conference was not postponed by 6 a.m. Monday, they would withdraw from the event. At 6 a.m., the event was still on, and the three biggest names in finance were out.” [NYTimes]

Think tanks reconsider Saudi support amid Khashoggi controversy — by Alexander Nazaryan: “On Friday, the Brookings Institution — the center-left think tank that is perhaps the capital’s most prominent — announced that it would sever its ties with Riyadh… In its statement, Brookings said it has “no plans to accept any potential funding from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia or any of its known affiliates.” The Middle East Institute, a 72-year-old think tank in Washington, also appears to be considering a similar measure.”

“The Wilson Center, where Khashoggi has been offered and accepted a position as a fellow, said that in July, it had requested funds from the Saudi government for work on an index of female leaders… Wilson spokesman Ryan McKenna [said] that if it turns out that Khashoggi was indeed murdered by the Saudis, “we will withdraw our pending funding request.” [YahooNewsBuzzFeed]

TRANSITION — John Bolton’s chief of staff out at National Security Council — by Sarah Westwood: “Fred Fleitz, who joined the administration this summer, will soon return to the Center for Security Policy, the conservative think tank where he worked as vice president for policy prior to leaving for the NSC post… Fleitz will return as president and CEO of the Center for Security Policy starting in January 2019, according to the think tank… Its controversial founder and current leader, Frank Gaffney, will transition into the role of executive chairman after Fleitz succeeds him.” [CNN]

IRAN SANCTIONS — Trump Admin Facing Pressure to Sanction Iran’s Financial Sector — by Jenna Lifhits“Former officials and experts are urging the Trump administration to fully enforce a powerful set of sanctions against Iran’s financial institutions this November… “Failure to achieve the disconnection of such banks from the SWIFT financial messaging system would fall short of President Trump’s stated goal of imposing maximum pressure on the Islamic Republic and would make it easier for the regime to endure the re-imposition of U.S. sanctions,” write the officials and experts, who include Elliott Abrams, Michael Doran, Joe Lieberman, Mark Dubowitz, Jamie Fly… and others.” [WeeklyStandard

** Good Tuesday Morning! Enjoying the Daily Kickoff? Please share us with your friends & tell them to sign up at [JI]. Have a tip, scoop, or op-ed? We’d love to hear from you. Anything from hard news and punditry to the lighter stuff, including event coverage, job transitions, or even special birthdays, is much appreciated. Email Editor@JewishInsider.com **

BUSINESS BRIEFS: Singapore investor Temasek to acquire Israeli cybersecurity firm Sygnia [CNBC] • Continuing upheaval in CBS’s boardroom could increase the odds of a Viacom merger and determine whether former CEO Moonves gets a $120 million payout [WSJ] • Carl Icahn to Oppose Dell’s Purchase of DVMT Tracking Shares [WSJ] • Why New York Has So Many Empty Storefronts [TheAtlantic] • 23andMe CEO Anne Wojcicki and bioengineer Stephen Quake on unlocking the secrets hidden in blood and spit[Wired] • M.I.T. is setting up a new $1 billion A.I. initiative, with a $350 million gift from Blackstone’s Steve Schwarzman [FT

Facebook Deleted Thousands of Accounts Ahead of Israeli Municipal Elections — by Omer Kabir and Amarelle Wenkert: “In recent weeks, Facebook has removed thousands of fake accounts which attempted to influence Israel’s upcoming municipal elections, according to Israel National Cyber Directorate.” [Calcalist]

Marc Benioff Wants to Tax Billionaires, Including Himself — by Alex Davis: “Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff thinks philanthropy is the wrong way to attack the social problems that have accompanied the tech explosion of the past decade… “Philanthropy can only scale so far,” Benioff said on stage at the WIRED25 summit… That’s why Benioff last week pledged $2 million (half of it from Salesforce, half from himself) to support Proposition C, a San Francisco ballot initiative that would impose a new tax on companies generating more than $50 million in gross receipts in San Francisco.” [Wired]

CAMPUS BEAT — The Vanishing Ivy League Jew — by Shira Telushkin: “Declining Jewish numbers are not just about Jews, as noted, but about changes within the universities themselves. In the same years that Penn went from being 20 percent Jewish to 13 percent Jewish, the overall population of white students—a category that would include most, though certainly not all, Jews—at Penn declined from 64 percent to 44 percent. That’s pretty huge. And this reality raises new questions for Jews, who in the span of a few decades went from being castigated outsiders to part of the establishment on Ivy League campuses.” [Tablet

DESSERT — Apple fixes its new bagel emoji with cream cheese and a doughier consistency — by Nick Statt: “Apple’s most egregious crime in recent memory — a subpar bagel emoji — has been rectified… In the fourth beta release of iOS 12.1, it appears that the bagel has been replaced with a new icon that features both cream cheese and a doughier consistency more reminiscent of a fresh, hand-rolled bagel and not the frozen and machine-cut grocery store variety it was accused of emulating in its original form.” [TheVerge]

REMEMBERING — Herbert D. Kleber, Pioneer in Addiction Treatment, Dies at 84 — by Katharine Q. Seelye: “[Dr. Herbert] Kleber helped elevate the study of addiction to a discipline, and over the course of his career the field attracted increasing clinical interest and research funding… Herbert David Kleber was born on June 19, 1934, in Pittsburgh to Dorothea (Schulman) and Max Kleber, both of whom were Eastern European Jewish immigrants. His father trained as a pharmacist before going into the family luggage business, “Kleber Trunk and Bag,” which manufactured soldiers’ footlockers during World War II. His mother raised bonds for the new state of Israel.” [NYTimes]

Prominent Israeli Lawyer Who Represented Netanyahu Dies at 71 — by Ofer Aderet and Aaron Rabinowitz: “Jacob Weinroth, one of Israel’s leading lawyers, who represented Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, died of cancer on Tuesday at age 71… Born in a displaced persons’ camp in Germany in 1947 to a family from Poland, Weinroth and his family moved to Israel when he was 2 and settled in Netanya… Weinroth was a study in contrasts in other respects. Although as a lawyer he represented many of Israel’s wealthiest and most influential citizens, he said in his younger years, he was fascinated by the writings of Karl Marx.” [Haaretz]

BIRTHDAYS — Morton Klein, President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), told us that he’s celebrating his birthday today in Washington, DC by meeting with members of Congress and attending a book launch event by former White House staffer Sebastian Gorka at the Trump International Hotel… Israeli attorney, chairman of Maccabi Tel Aviv Basketball since 1969 (regular winner of the Israeli championship and six-time winner of European cup titles), he won the 2011 Israel Prize for sports, Shimon Mizrahi turns 79… Retired CFO of the airline industry’s ticket transaction settlement firm, Airlines Reporting Corporation, Chicago resident, Alfred Altschul turns 79… Film director, producer, screenwriter and creator of The Naked Gun franchise, David Zucker turns 71… Professor of economics at Smith College, he has written extensively on the business of sports, Andrew S. Zimbalist turns 71…

Director of policy and government affairs at AIPAC, Dr. Marvin C. Feuerturns 68… Member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives since 1999, David Linsky turns 61… Bestselling French novelist, one of whose books was made into Steven Spielberg’s “Just like Heaven,” Marc Levy turns 57… Actress best known for her television roles in Undressed, Santa Barbara and 8 Simple Rules, Kala Lynne Savage turns 40… Founder of The Gramlist, Brandon Jared Perlman turns 37… West Point graduate with an MBA from Touro College, he is a four-time US Army light-middleweight boxing champion who boxed with a Star of David on his trunks, Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson turns 37… Avi Fink turns 33… Senior at Tulane University, Sam Ginsberg


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