Daily Kickoff: Iran’s stockpile grows | Jeffrey Goldberg predicts a ‘very civil, Jewish civil war’ | Spotlight: Seth Klarman | Who is Larry David?

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SPOTLIGHT: “New England’s top GOP donor isn’t a Republican (but he is Jewish)” by Annie Linskey: “I’m a complicated guy,” Klarman said to The Globe in a rare interview. “I’m fairly nuanced in my views. I’m trying to do what I think is the right thing for the country.” His registration: independent. In Washington fund-raising circles, Klarman, who is Jewish, has a reputation for seeking out candidates who support Israel. His views are moderate, supporting a separate Palestinian state and opposing building Israeli settlements.”

“One candidate who has, so far, been impervious to Klarman’s pressure is Tom Cotton, the newly minted Republican senator from Arkansas. Klarman said he gave because he respects Cotton’s intelligence and his military experience, and believes that the senator has “a serious chance of being a leader at the national level.”… “His letter to the Ayatollah turned out to be a divisive idea,” Klarman said.” [BostonGlobe] • Klarman on Iran: “I’m a fan of a good deal with Iran. I worry that we might come up with not just a mediocre deal, but maybe a bad deal that would give Iran the ability to eventually develop nuclear weapons.” [BostonGlobe]

IRAN TALKS: “Iran’s Nuclear Stockpile Grows, Complicating Negotiations” by David E. Sanger and William J. Broad: “With only one month left before a deadline to complete a nuclear deal with Iran, international inspectors have reported that Tehran’s stockpile of nuclear fuel increased about 20 percent over the last 18 months of negotiations, partially undercutting the Obama administration’s contention that the Iranian program had been “frozen” during that period.” [NYTimes] • “Israel reassures Iran, Hezbollah: Mass drill is not cover for attack” [YNet]

HEARD YESTERDAY: “Former Senators Evan Bayh (D-IN) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and former CIA Director Michael Hayden spoke about the U.S. strategy in the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program and Congress’ role to review or reject any nuclear deal with Iran.” [CSPANWashExaminer]

HAPPENING TODAY: At 10:15am, the Hudson Institute hosts a conversation with Representative Ron DeSantis (R-FL), Dr. David Cooper, Michael Eisenstadt, and Dr. Thomas Karako on the extent of Iran’s missile program and its relationship to Iran’s nuclear program. [Livestream]

Michele Flournoy and Ilan Goldenberg Op: “Obama and Netanyahu, it’s time for a shared strategy on Iran” [Haaretz]

@TzipiHotovely: “First meeting in my new position, with my friend, US Amb. Dan Shapiro.” [Twitter]

David Axelrod on Bibi-Obama: “I think Benjamin Netanyahu a great politician. He knows what he needs to do to get through the next election. But it seems to me that Israel has to think about what they need to do to get through the next generation.”… Axelrod also recalled Obama venting in a moment of contemplation, telling him ‘You know, I think I am the closest thing to a Jew that has ever sat in this office. For people to say that I am anti-Israel, or, even worse,  anti-Semitic, it hurts.’” [JP] • An interview with President Obama will be aired Tuesday evening on Channel 2. [Haaretz]

A Conversation: David Rothkopf interviews Jeffrey Goldberg on why he thinks “the most Jewish president we’ve ever had” is having such a tough time in the Middle East: “Obama’s impatience with Israel, and his dislike of Netanyahu, is rooted in the fact that he is a very specific kind of Jew – an intellectual, Upper West Side, social action-oriented, anguished-about-Israel liberal values Jew… Obama sometimes forgets that he is not, in fact, Jewish. It is remarkable, the degree to which he holds Israel to standards he doesn’t apply to other American allies. Doing this isn’t particularly fair, but it is particularly Jewish. You and I both know the argument — the Jewish people didn’t wait 2,000 years for a country so that it could be better than Syria. Obama holds Israel to high standards in part because he’s learned from [those] Jews who hold Israel to hold standards.”

Goldberg predicts a very civil, civil war between American Jewry and Israeli Jewry: “Many American Jews are probably too rosy in their understanding of the possibilities of peace and reconciliation; many Israelis, particularly those who believe that the settlement project on the West Bank is a moral success, rather than a disaster of epic proportions, don’t understand that their country is slowly growing unrecognizable to American Jews, and to would-be members of the tribe — including the one in the Oval Office — as well.” [ForeignPolicy]

“A Critique of Obama’s Understanding of Israel” — Yossi Kuperwasser to Jeffrey Goldberg: “So why does Obama pick on Netanyahu and not on Abbas? The most likely reason is directly related to a conflict in the West between two schools of thought… Optimism and realism. Obama is a remarkable proponent for the optimist approach—he fundamentally believes in human decency, and therefore in dialogue and engagement as the best way to overcome conflict… Netanyahu, on the other hand, is a realist. Due in part to Israel’s tumultuous neighborhood, he has a much more skeptical attitude of Islamists… while Obama and the optimists offer their critiques, Netanyahu and the realists will be on the ground, living with the consequences the optimists have wrought.” [TheAtlantic]

2016 WATCH: “Lindsey Graham, in announcing White House run, gets personal” by Katie Glueck: “He’s a natural, folksy campaigner and his hawkish foreign policy message plays well with a Republican base that’s grown increasingly anxious about instability in the Middle East and the rise of the Islamic State. In his address, he offered red meat to the GOP base by railing against “radical Islam,” which in his estimation, is “running wild.” [PoliticoBloomberg]

Graham on Iran: “The world is exploding in terror and violence but the biggest threat of all is the nuclear ambitions of the radical Islamists who control Iran. If the United States isn’t firm in our intention to deny them such weapons, Iran will trigger a nuclear arms race in the least stable region on earth, and make it more likely that people who aspire to genocide will have the most effective means to commit it.”

Graham on Israel: “Our close ally, Israel, is at risk as a result of Obama’s failed leadership. We share values, we share democracy, and our friendship is unbreakable. To our friends in Israel, I will never abandon you. I will always stand firm in supporting the one and only Jewish state. I too say – never again.” [CSPAN]

Joe Lieberman on Lindsey Graham: “I have a lot of respect, in addition to friendship, for him,” Lieberman said. “He has been quite outspoken on the question of these negotiations, probably as outspoken against the direction they’re taking as anybody has been.” [DailyCaller]

“Huckabee: Two-State Solution Is “Irrational, Unworkable” — Room for Palestinian State Elsewhere” by Andrew Kaczynski: The two state solution, if we mean two governments holding the same piece of real estate is irrational and unworkable,” Huckabee told Arutz Sheva TV on Sunday during an appearance at the Israel Day Concert in Central Park, New York. [BuzzFeedYouTube]

@AJCGlobal: “AJC met w/@GovernorOMalley today for a warm & productive discussion on a range of issues of shared concern.” [Twitter]

“Tough-talking Walker says force isn’t his first instinct” by Craig Gilbert: “Walker shares his hawkishness with many leading GOP hopefuls. But as a governor with no foreign policy background, he has to satisfy voters that he has a grasp of the issues and won’t be a risky bet as commander-in-chief. “People ask, ‘Are you a neocon or a hawk, what are you?’ … I’m not eager to go into open-ended engagements, but I’m not afraid to lay down the law when we have to.” [JSonline]

“Some GOP Donors Willing To Give To Many, Just Not Paul” by Julie Bykowicz: “I do not know of a single person in Mitt Romney’s donor network who will be with Rand Paul,” said Phil Rosen, a Manhattan attorney and top fundraiser for the 2012 Republican nominee. Rosen said he met with Paul and politely told him he wouldn’t be supporting him “because of his isolationist and libertarian policies.” [AP]

“Secret effort to sell Hillary Clinton to rich liberals” by Kenneth P. Vogel: “Part of the reticence stems from liberal queasiness about the expanding role of big money in politics since the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision. But there’s also some discomfort with Hillary Clinton who is seen as too hawkish on foreign policy and insufficiently progressive on key issues like fighting climate change, income inequality and the role of big money in politics. Additionally, Democratic finance operatives say, efforts to rustle up seven-figure checks are suffering from a lack of a single, unifying enemy on the right.” [Politico]

**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**

“Billionaire Leon Cooperman: Hillary Clinton ‘craps’ on hedge funds” by Heather Long: “Billionaire Leon Cooperman isn’t voting for Hillary Clinton in 2016. “I don’t need anybody crapping all over what I do for a living,” Cooperman said. He thinks Clinton is a hypocrite for painting a nasty picture of hedge fund managers and then asking them for money and trying to befriend them.” [CNN MoneyBloomberg]

“Mark Cuban’s Most Powerful Piece of Advice” by Eric Holtzclaw: “Cuban worked with a mentor early in his career that was enamored with Cuban’s enthusiasm, but felt that Cuban needed more focus, especially in meetings. He told Cuban that anytime they started a meeting, Cuban was to write the word LISTEN at the top of his notebook and reference it throughout their time together. This gentle reminder focused Cuban’s energy and he follows this advice even today. Every time he sits down for a meeting or to listen to a pitch–he writes the word LISTEN at the top of his page.” [Inc]

BUSINESS BRIEFS: “Lightstone Picks Up East End Ave. Rental Building for $32.5M” [Observer• “Teddy Sagi: Israeli billionaire bachelor who has just saved spread-betters Plus500 for £500m” [IBTimesReuters] • “Sternlicht and Gray riff on foreign investment in NYC hotels” [RealDeal]

TOP TALKER: “Supreme Court Sides With Muslim Abercrombie Jobe Applicant over Head Scarf” by Jess Bravin: “The 8-1 decision underscored employers’ obligation to accommodate, within reason, the religious practices of workers and applicants unless they impose an “undue hardship” on the business. It is the latest in a line of Supreme Court cases that have elevated religious rights over secular interests, whether exercised by powerful corporations, government agencies or prison inmates. In dissent, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that he understood the Civil Rights Act to prohibit only intentional discrimination, not neutral policies like the Abercrombie dress code that happen to interfere with some religious practices.” [WSJ]

Scalia Quote: “For example, suppose that an employer thinks (though he does not know for certain) that a job applicant may be an orthodox Jew who will observe the Sabbath, and thus be unable to work on Saturdays. If the applicant actually requires an accommodation of that religious practice, and the employer’s desire to avoid the prospective accommodation is a motivating factor in his decision, the employer violates Title VII.” [Opinion] • Flashback: “Number of Orthodox Court Clerks Jumps Thanks to Scalia” [Forward]

Happening Today: “Black and Jewish WWI Heroes Finally Getting Medal Of Honor” by Nedra Pickler: “President Barack Obama plans to posthumously bestow the nation’s highest military honor on both men for their actions in 1918 during a White House ceremony Tuesday. Sgt. William Shemin’s daughter, Elsie Shemin-Roth of suburban St. Louis, worked for years to gather documents in support of the bid for her father and plans to accept the award from Obama on his behalf. In the early 2000s, she learned of a law that reviewed cases of Jews who may have been denied medals they earned in World War II and fought for passage of a law to provide similar review for Jewish World War I veterans.” [AP]

DESSERT: Charlie Rose interviews Larry David: “For the last three months, one of the hottest tickets on Broadway has been a comedy called “Fish in the Dark,” written by and starring Larry David. He’s famous for playing a crusty curmudgeon on the television show “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” And for being the co-creator of “Seinfeld,” where a lot of the jokes came from real-life Larry David experiences. Now he’s playing another character that walks and talks like Larry David. As you’ll see, with actors and comedians, you never quite know where the act stops and the real person begins. David’s friends, for instance, say he’s a sweetheart. He says that’s just an act, the nice guy act. Who is he? That’s what we wanted to find out.” [60 Minutes] • JI Bonus: See if you can spot the ‘Mezuzahs’ in Larry’s childhood home.

**A message from Lee Wunsch, President of the Jewish Federation of Greater Houston:“The recent historic rainstorm in Houston severely affected a relatively small area of Houston in and around the Braes Bayou – neighborhoods where many Jewish families live. Several Jewish organizations were damaged by flood waters including United Orthodox Synagogue and the recently renovated JCC teen center, among others.”

“A week into the cleanup, the situation is overwhelming and frightening for those who lost cars, furniture, clothes, photographs and papers. Many now realize that they must move out of their homes in order to begin reconstruction. Recovery will take many months as people try to put their lives back in order. To help the Jewish Federation of Greater Houston provide assistance to those most vulnerable in our community, please go here: [HoustonJewish]**

That’s all folks; have a great day!

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