👋 Good Friday morning!
On Capitol Hill, the House is set to vote on a resolution reaffirming U.S. support for the two-state solution. More below.
In South Florida, President Donald Trump will speak Saturday night at the annual Israeli-American Council national summit, taking place this weekend at the Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood.
In Israel, three Netanyahu associates — including his cousin — were indicted yesterday on charges of corruption linked to Case 3000, which related to the 2016 purchase of submarines from Germany. Netanyahu himself was not charged in the case.
In Poland, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is slated to make her first visit since assuming office to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial today, and announce a donation of €60 million to conservation efforts.
In London, the Campaign Against Antisemitism is hosting the “Together Against Antisemitism” national solidarity march on Sunday in Parliament Square.
Over at Fox News: A few days after The Washington Post’s media critic Erik Wemple wrote ‘Fox can’t shake anti-Semitism,’ Tablet’s Yair Rosenberg observes the dog-whistles deployed by Tucker Carlson in a segment earlier this week.
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ON THE HILL — House to take a stance on annexation and continued aid to Israel
The House of Representatives will vote today on a resolution (H.R. 326), introduced by Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), reaffirming U.S. support for the two-state solution.
Why now: Lowenthal said the recent reversal on settlements by the Trump administration — and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s vow earlier this year to annex part of the West Bank — makes this declaration critical. “We cannot let partisan political concerns — either at home or abroad — distract us from keeping the dream of a just peace alive,” he said. “Congress must speak out to make clear to the world that the United States stands behind its longstanding foreign policy principles.”
Along partisan lines: Nearly 200 Democrats have cosponsored the resolution, which also expresses opposition to the “unilateral annexation of territory or efforts to achieve Palestinian statehood status outside the framework of negotiations.” Despite the removal of language referencing the “occupation” and “opposing settlement activity” from the final draft, most Republicans are expected to oppose the resolution.
The last minute inclusion of two amendments — introduced by Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Tom Reed (R-NY) — reaffirming the “ironclad” U.S. commitment to the MOU and to annual military assistance without new conditions — will make the passage of the resolution bipartisan. At least 10 Republicans signed on in support of the amendments, and several are likely to vote in favor of the measure.
Timing: Gottheimer told JI’s Jacob Kornbluh that the passage of the resolution “sends a very clear message that puts to rest the splinter view of adding new conditions on aid to Israel.” According to the New Jersey Democrat, while “the underlying resolution isn’t perfect,” the fact that the amendments added were backed by a handful of Republicans makes it a bipartisan declaration about continued aid to Israel.
No comment: An AIPAC spokesperson tells JI, “We have no position on this resolution.” A similar measure condemning the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and endorsing the two-state solution (H.R. 246), which passed overwhelmingly 398-17 in July, was supported by AIPAC. The current resolution has the support of J Street and the Jewish Democratic Council of America.
Why it matters: If passed, the resolution will mark the first time the House has voted to oppose unilateral Israeli annexation of the West Bank. “Coming at the end of a week in which President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu reportedly discussed potential Israeli annexation of the Jordan Valley, it will send a clear message that Congress strongly opposes such efforts to undermine the prospects for a two-state solution,” Logan Bayroff, J Street’s director of communications, told JI.
Rep. David Price (D-NC) tells JI’s Ben Jacobs that he’s “pleased to put the House on the record” in opposition to West Bank annexation and the withholding of U.S. funds to the Palestinian Authority.
Republican opposition: In a letter sent earlier this week to Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the Republican Jewish Coalition pointed to the passing of H.R. 246 as a reason to oppose the current Democratic-sponsored resolution. “It appears that their purpose is to undercut the Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan ahead of its unveiling,” the RJC wrote in the letter, which was obtained by Jewish Insider, calling the vote a “redundant exercise.”
Opposing from the left: Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Justin Amash (I-MI) sided with the Republicans in voting “no” on the amendments and the ruling. Tlaib toldThe Hill that she opposed the amendments because she supports a one-state solution and will vote against the resolution because the “word ‘occupation’ was taken out.”
U.S.-Israel defense pact: In a briefing with Israeli reporters in Lisbon, Portugal, Netanyahu said that Pompeo agreed to promote a mutual defense pact between the U.S. and Israel, but cautioned that it might not be possible for the U.S. to sign such an agreement with only an interim Israeli government in place.
Bonus:Al-Arabiya reports that Palestinian officials are concerned over a recent report by the International Criminal Court’s head prosecutor that addresses Palestinian Authority payments to individuals who’ve conducted terror attacks against Israelis. The report warned that the payments could constitute a war crime.
HEARD LAST NIGHT — Jeffrey Goldberg, Bari Weiss discuss antisemitism in America
At the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan on Thursday night, Atlantic editor Jeffrey Goldberg and New York Times opinion editor Bari Weiss spoke with Council for Young Jewish Presidents executive director Zach Schaffer about assimilation, the relationship between Israel and the American Jewish community and the politicization of antisemitism.
Goldberg told the audience: “The interesting thing about the antisemitism on the far left is that it plays an unusually sophisticated role in corroding Jewish unity, Jewish sense of self, Jewish purpose in a way that Nazism [and] Islamism… don’t — they actually bring the Jewish people together. The extreme leftism is interesting because it’s far more clever than idiot Nazis running around in Charlottesville.”
Speaking to JI Thursday night, Weiss expressed frustration with Sanders’s silence over comments made by campaign surrogate Linda Sarsour — at a conference hosted by American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) — that Israel was “built on the idea that Jews are supreme to everybody else.” Weiss told JI that entrenched antisemitism within a political party can originate at Sarsour’s level: “This is sort of how it begins, where it’s like, ‘What is the line?’”
Weiss told JI: “It’s not just what [Sarsour] said — it’s the content of the entire conference,” noting that the controversial statements and sessions did not garner significant attention beyond the Jewish community. Weiss pointed out that the conference included a session with the description, “Zionism has come in like a disease to destroy the purity of Al Quds [Jerusalem].”
Piling on: In a press release distributed Thursday, Democratic Majority for Israel said, “We are deeply saddened and completely appalled to see Senator Sanders standing with antisemitism by remaining silent and retaining Linda Sarsour as an ‘official surrogate’ of his campaign after she made yet another antisemitic statement.”
PODCAST PLAYBACK — Indyk discusses new book on Kissinger and the Middle East
Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk discussed his forthcoming book Henry Kissinger and the Art of the Middle East Deal, on the “Decision Points” podcast with The Washington Institute’s David Makovsky.
On the 1973 Yom Kippur War: Indyk characterizes the U.S. airlift in support of Israeli troops as a vital moment in the war and broader U.S.-American relationship. After, “what the airlift did was give the Israelis a shot in the arm and a critical sense that the United States was behind them full-square.”
Ultimate Deal: Kissinger approached Middle East peace as a means to expelling Soviet presence in the region. According to Indyk, this came much to the chagrin of then-Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir. In one incident, Indyk explains, Kissinger “had to convince the Israelis to give up territory, not for peace, but for the order he wished to create.”
Listen to the full podcast here.
📰 True or False:Tablet’s Armin Rosen takes to task “the new journalism” in an article exploring how media outlets have chased stories of foreign actors operating in the U.S., often without understanding the truth or the consequences of such reporting. “Can any suggestion of any crime, no matter how hideous or consequential, be made against any individual, so long as the phrasing is conditional enough to be libel-proof?” [Tablet]
📺 So-so Show: David Frum writes in The Atlantic that the impeachment hearings in the House Judiciary Committee this week were unplanned, unfocused and pointless. Frum argues that if Rep. Jerry Nadler and the Democrats don’t become more effective, “they will lose, and the country with them.” [TheAtlantic]
🗣️ On Repeat: Josh Lederman writes for NBC News about how a conspiracy theory involving George Soros is being heavily trafficked by Trump allies pushing back against the impeachment hearings. [NBC News]
🥡 Profile: Business Insiderspoke to OpenTable CTO Joseph Essas, who said that his kosher diet means he can only eat at 30 of the 55,000 restaurants available on the app. With restaurants across the world, Essas travels frequently, but always returns home for Shabbat. His work in the fine-dining industry has led to some amusing encounters with supposedly “kosher” food. [BusinessInsider]
AROUND THE WEB
🕎 Royal Holiday: Prince Charles hosted a pre-Hanukkah reception at Buckingham Palace last night, praising the Jewish community’s contributions to Britain and lamenting how their history has “often been shadowed by persecution.”
👫 Early Fall: Mark Wiseman, who was seen as a potential heir to BlackRock’s chief executive Laurence Fink, was ousted from the company for failing to disclose a relationship with a colleague.
📡 Shifting Roles: David Cohen, senior executive vice president of Comcast, is expected to step down from his operational responsibilities at the company in January.
🏡 Dealmaking: Lev Parnas has asked a judge to release him from house arrest to spend time with his family — promising he’ll stay away from airports, boat docks and train stations.
🚶♂️ U.K. Election Watch: A Jewish member of the European Parliament (MEP), has quit Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party in order to endorse Boris Johnson’s Conservative party.
📝 Taking Notes: Seventy members of the Jewish Labour Movement have submitted detailed accusations of antisemitism within the party to an external inquiry run by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.
🙏 View from Jerusalem: Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz said in a radio interview that he hopes Labour loses the Dec. 12 election, citing Jeremy Corbyn’s handling of antisemitism.
🖥️ Deep Dive: A mysterious Israel-based group has been using 21 Facebook pages with coordinated fake news posts to target Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN), The Guardian reports.
⚖️ Taking Action: New York Attorney General Letitia James filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit against the Town of Chester and Orange County for discrimination and antisemitic housing practices targeting the local Hasidic Jewish community.
📸 Photo Bomb: Several dozen corrections officers in West Virginia have been suspended after the discovery of a recent photo of the group performing a Nazi salute. Gov. Jim Justice said anyone involved should be fired.
👮 Hate Crime: Police are investigating after swastika graffiti was found at the Holocaust Memorial & Tolerance Center of Nassau County on Long Island.
🎓 Campus Beat: After a violent protest outside an Israel event last month, York University has both suspended Students Against Israeli Apartheid from operating and banned Herut Canada from hosting events on campus.
📖 Joint Degree: Columbia University announced yesterday a new dual-degree program with Tel Aviv University.
🕯️Remembering: Jay Kriegel, chief of staff to former New York City Mayor John Lindsay and later a senior vice president at CBS, has died at age 79. Bloomberg Beta’s Roy Bahat pays tribute to Kriegel in a Medium post this morning, noting, “A thank you could never say enough, to a man who gave, and gave… ז״ל”’
PIC OF THE DAY
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley reflected on her two-year tenure at the international body in remarks at the inaugural U.N. Watch gala held at The Plaza in New York City.
Haley was introduced by Israel’s Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon. “We miss you at the U.N., Nikki,” Danon said.
On Saturday, Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Bonnie Glick…
FRIDAY: Judy Clark turns 85… Moshe Hochenberg turns 82… Member of the National Assembly of Quebec for 20 years (1994-2014), Lawrence Bergman turns 79… Renowned artist Bruce Nauman turns 78… Israeli-born Hollywood producer and a central figure in “Case 1000,” Arnon Milchan turns 75… Founder of Susan G. Komen (named after her late sister), she also served as U.S. Ambassador to Hungary (2001-2003) and Chief of Protocol of the U.S. (2007-2009), Nancy Goodman Brinker turns 73… Cell and molecular biologist who is the director of research and professor at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, David L. Spector turns 67… Founder of Craigslist, Craig Newmark turns 67… Faculty member at Harvard Law School since 1981, professor since 1986, she served as dean of Harvard Law School (2009-2017), Martha Minow turns 65…
SVP and general counsel at United Airlines, Robert S. Rivkin turns 59… EVP and chief operating officer of the Inter-American Development Bank, Julie Katzman turns 58… Emmy Award-winning producer, actor, and comedian, Judd Apatow turns 52… Member of Knesset for the Likud party since 2015, he was previously a fighter pilot for the IDF and a civilian pilot for El Al, Yoav Kish turns 51… Professor of economics at the University of Chicago, Michael Greenstone turns 51… Professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University, Julian E. Zelizer turns 50… Director of communications at Tel Aviv’s Start-Up Nation Central, Amir Mizroch turns 44… EVP in the NYC office of PR firm BerlinRosen, Dan Levitan turns 37… Boston native, now Seattle-based, he is an aviation expert and the editor-in-chief of The Air Current, Jon Ostrower turns 36… Atlanta native, he is the managing director of Siftech in Jerusalem, Ilan Regenbaum turns 29… Researcher at Rome’s Istituto Affari Internazionali, Andrea Dessì… Joe Blumenthal…
SATURDAY: Linguist, philosopher, social critic, political activist and professor emeritus at MIT, Noam Chomsky turns 91… Rabbi emeritus of The Jewish Center of Princeton, NJ and author of TheNew York Times best-selling Chicken Soup for the Jewish Soul, Rabbi Dov Peretz Elkins turns 82… Professor of mathematics at Princeton University, Nicholas Michael Katz turns 76… Novelist, essayist and screenwriter, Susan Isaacs turns 76… Former Israeli ambassador to Canada, now at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, Ambassador Alan Baker turns 72… Retired chair of the Longmeadow, Massachusetts Democratic Town Committee, Candy Glazer turns 72… Woodland Hills, California resident, Elaine Kretchman turns 72…
Director, president and COO of Simon Property Group, Richard S. Sokolov turns 70… Board chair of AIPAC, Lillian Pinkus turns 68… Co-chairman of Loews Hotels and co-owner of the NFL’s New York Giants, Jonathan M. Tisch turns 66… Pamela Decker turns 65… Teacher in the Elko County School District in the northeast portion of Nevada, Shawn Welton-Lowe turns 56… Co-founder of Laurel Strategies, Dafna Tapiero turns 50… Director, producer, writer, actor and comedian, Jason Winer turns 47… Actress Shiri Appleby turns 41… President of NYC-based Capitol Consulting, Jeffrey Leb turns 41… VP and executive recruiter at NYC’s Mission Staffing, Jaime Leiman turns 29… Founder of Go Dash Dot, an activewear accessories brand, Hannah Fastov turns 29… Shopper at TheaterWorksUSA, Hannah Vilinsky turns 28… Partner in Cornerstone Venture Partners and founder of “Made in Jerusalem,” Hanan Brand… Jeff Blum… Toby Lerner…
SUNDAY: Founder and CEO of Top Rank, a boxing promotion company based in Las Vegas, Bob Arum turns 88… Film, stage and television actor, John Rubinstein turns 73… Israeli folk singer, she has released more than 60 albums sold world-wide, Chava Alberstein turns 72… Astrophysicist and senior scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Margaret Geller turns 72… Film director Nancy Meyers turns 70… Professor of human development at Cornell University, Robert Sternberg turns 70… Doug Bohannon turns 68… Senior executive producer of special events at ABC News, Marc Burstein turns 66… Chairman of a nationwide insurance brokerage, Bruce P. Gendelman turns 65…
Author of Toward a Meaningful Life and publisher of The Algemeiner Journal, Rabbi Simon Jacobson turns 63… Rabbi, speaker and musician known as Rav Shmuel, Shmuel Skaist turns 55… Co-founder and CEO of Xometry in 2013, he ran for Congress in NY-1 in 2010 and 2012, Randy Altschuler turns 49… Social media blogger and author, Rachel Sklar turns 47… Founder of the newsletter “Popular Information,” Judd Legum turns 41… Venture capitalist in Israel, Alex Oppenheimer turns 31… Associate attorney at Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, Ali Krimmer turns 28… Writer, photographer and designer, founder of the Honey Sharp Gallery and Ganesh Café in the Berkshires, mother of Politico‘s Daniel Lippman, Honey Sharp…