👋 Good Friday morning!
For less-distracted reading over the weekend, browse this week’s edition of The Weekly Print, a curated print-friendly PDF featuring a selection of recent JI stories, including: Meet the man who wants to be Arizona’s first Jewish governor; Soho House expands to Israel; New report: Antisemitic videos spreading undetected on TikTok; A ‘military rabbi’ reflects on his service in Afghanistan; and Bernie Moreno’s sales pitch. Print the latest edition here.
Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and President Joe Biden are set to meet today at 10:25 a.m. ET in Washington, a day after the original meeting was postponed following a pair of ISIS-linked suicide bombings at the Kabul airport that killed 13 U.S. service members and scores of Afghan civilians. Bennett will now depart the U.S. after Shabbat ends.
Bennett and Biden spoke on the phone on Thursday evening, according to a statement from Bennett’s office. Bennett expressed his deepest condolences regarding the events at the Kabul airport. He added that Israel stood by the U.S. at this difficult time, just as the U.S. has stood by Israel over the years.
Biden “thanked… Bennett for his understanding regarding the change in time… and added that he is looking forward to their meeting.”
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) spoke with Bennett this week, a Hoyer spokesperson confirmed to Jewish Insider. They “discussed the importance of bipartisan support for Israel, the U.S.-Israeli relationship, and our nations’ shared values.”
Biden addressed the nation Thursday evening. He said the U.S. is developing plans to strike back at ISIS members responsible for the attack and insisted evacuation efforts will continue, but that he wants to “limit [their] duration.”
He also quoted from the Bible: “Those who have served through the ages have drawn inspiration from the Book of Isaiah. When the Lord says, ‘who shall I send, who shall go for us?’ The American military has been answering for a long time, ‘Here I am, Lord. Send me.’”
Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of the U.S. Central Command, said the U.S. is coordinating security and sharing intelligence with the Taliban as the Pentagon expects future ISIS attacks, but that the evacuations will continue.
Bernie Moreno’s sales pitch
Republican Bernie Moreno, the Cleveland car dealer and blockchain technology entrepreneur, appeared to be operating at a disadvantage when he jumped into Ohio’s crowded Senate race to replace outgoing Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) in April. The first-time candidate, 54, seemed at pains to distinguish himself from leading GOP primary contenders Josh Mandel and Jane Timken, who are well-known across the state. But Moreno took his opponents by surprise last month as his campaign reported a sizable fundraising haul of $2.25 million — more than any candidate in the race. “I’ve worked my whole life with one simple motto,” Moreno boasted in a recent interview with Jewish Insider’s Matthew Kassel. “I will always out-work, out-hustle and out-think my opponents.”
Defying the ‘narrative’: Moreno, a native of Colombia who immigrated to the United States at age 5, projected confidence that his personal story will give him an edge in the primary as well as the general election. “I’m connecting with voters, and it’s the Democrats’ worst nightmare, honestly,” he argued. “The Democrats have this narrative that says Ohio is primarily made up of a bunch of white supremacist, racist hillbillies who hate every ethnic group in the world and are afraid of them. But wouldn’t it be something when they elect a senator to represent them in D.C. who was born in Colombia.”
Trump factor: The overarching narrative, however, revolves around former President Donald Trump, who remains deeply popular in Ohio. While Moreno was once critical of the former president, he claims to have evolved and now describes Trump as “the most conservative president we’ve ever had” — typical of the praise from GOP candidates in the race. Moreno employs a number of the former president’s allies on his campaign, including his daughter Emily, who is engaged to Max Miller, the scion of a politically connected Jewish family in Shaker Heights and a former Trump aide running to unseat Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH). Emily will be converting to Judaism for the marriage, Moreno informed JI. “I’m very proud of her for doing that.”
Troubling allegations: Asked to respond to recent allegations of domestic abuse and other violent behavior from Miller, Moreno stood by his future son-in-law, who has earned an endorsement from Trump. “Those allegations are totally and completely false,” Moreno said, adding: “I’ve told Max, listen, just don’t pay attention to that stuff. I know what’s in your heart. I’ve seen you close up and personal, and I wish people will see the Max that I know. I am so happy that my daughter has met him, and they’re going to have an amazing life together. He’s going to be the father of my grandkids, and I couldn’t be happier to call him my son-in-law.”
‘Totally disqualifying’: Moreno, who expressed emphatic support for Israel, said he has worked hard to “entangle” Cleveland’s connections with the Jewish state through bilateral investment opportunities. “I’m somebody who’s traveled to Israel many times,” he said. “To me, somebody who’s a serious candidate for the United States Senate who has not visited Israel is a disqualifying factor for that person. I can’t even imagine you having the audacity to say, ‘Hey, I’m going to represent Ohio in the United States Senate, I haven’t even taken the time in my life to ever visit our most important ally in the Middle East.’ To me that’s totally disqualifying.”
Raisi taps second Buenos Aires Jewish center bombing suspect for senior administration role
Less than a month into his administration, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi is filling top government positions with hardliners, including two men wanted by Interpol for their roles in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Jewish Insider’s Gabby Deutch reports. On Wednesday, Raisi appointed former Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps leader Mohsen Rezaei to serve as his vice president for economic affairs, according to a state news agency. Rezaei ran against Raisi in the presidential election earlier this year.
Most wanted: Rezaei’s appointment comes days after Raisi named Ahmad Vahidi to be interior minister. Both men are wanted for their roles in the attack on the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association that killed 85 people and injured hundreds more. Rezaei has called the allegations a “sheer lie.”
Red notice: The attack was carried out by a Lebanese suicide bomber tied to Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed terror group, and investigators in Argentina and the United States determined that high-level Iranian government officials had planned and ordered the attack. Rezaei and Vahidi are two of six Iranians sought through Interpol “red notices” issued in 2007.
Not a surprise: “There’s tremendous evidence [against them],” said Matthew Levitt, a former FBI investigator and deputy assistant secretary for intelligence and analysis at the Treasury Department, who is now the Fromer-Wexler Fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “As for their participation in this regime, it is sickening but not surprising.”
Firsthand perspective: “We left Argentina just after the bombing, mostly because we had a feeling that there was no political will to bring those responsible to justice,” Rabbi Mario Karpuj, who moved to Chile with his wife and daughter soon after the bombing, told JI. “This is exactly the outcome of just that reality. Because we didn’t have any justice, governments feel free to just put these people there.”
Read more here.
Ten new books to read in September
As part of a new series exploring new and upcoming books, the team at Jewish Insider is previewing books we look forward to reading. These are some of the top titles coming out in September:
Moshkeleh the Thief by Sholom Aleichem (Sept. 1): This short novel by Yiddish author Sholom Aleichem first ran in a Warsaw Yiddish newspaper more than a century ago, but was lost to time and omitted from the larger collection of his works. The rediscovered Moshkeleh the Thief taps into new themes for the author: Jews in the Pale of Settlement interacting with their non-Jewish neighbors, as the eponymous Moshkeleh seeks to convince the daughter of a local tavern owner, who has fallen in love with a non-Jewish tavern patron, to return home to her family.
People Love Dead Jews by Dara Horn (Sept. 7): In this series of essays that comprises Horn’s sixth book, she pulls from both research and her own experiences — from the ubiquity of Anne Frank’s story to swastikas that appear at her children’s school — to explore the modern-day rise in antisemitism.
Wildland: The Making of America’s Furyby Evan Osnos (Sept. 14): After a decade abroad, Osnos, a staff writer for The New Yorker and a former bureau chief in Beijing for the Chicago Tribune, returns to America to get a better understanding of the ways in which the American mindset has shifted in the post-Sept. 11 era. Osnos revisits Greenwich, Conn., Chicago and Harrison County, W. Va. — three places he’s called home — to tap into the American psyche.
An Observant Wife: A Novel by Naomi Regan (Sept. 14): Regan’s sequel to her 2019 An Unorthodox Match finds protagonists Leah and Yaakov settling into married life in Boro Park. Both Yaakov and Leah struggle to adapt to their new realities: Yaakov begins a new job as an accountant in Manhattan, and Leah, who was raised in the secular world, works to gain acceptance in the religious community in which she has chosen to live, all the while parenting the widowed Yaakov’s five children from his first marriage, including the teenage Shaindele, who has secrets of her own.
✍️ Writing History: Silvia Foti, who has been vocal about her grandfather’s complicity in the mass murder of Lithuanian Jews, writes in the Wall Street Journal about the reactions to her activism. “While the Russians have been clamoring for me, Lithuanians have put me in a virtual blackout. They wish my story would go away. Lithuania’s denial of its role in the Holocaust is so strong that some friends and family have called me a traitor. Lithuanians are traumatized by the unwelcome label of perpetrators. Yet Jews are embracing me. They can’t believe a Lithuanian has admitted the truth. It is almost unheard of that a family member would admit the crimes of her grandfather.” [WSJ]
🎓 Campus Beat: The New York Times’s Emma Goldberg writes about the unanimous selection of Greg Epstein — who identifies as atheist but was raised in a Jewish household — as the new president of Harvard University’s organization of chaplains. “Maybe in a more conservative university climate there might be a question like ‘What the heck are they doing at Harvard, having a humanist be the president of the chaplains?’” said Margit Hammerstrom, the Christian Science chaplain at Harvard. “But in this environment it works. Greg is known for wanting to keep lines of communication open between different faiths.” [NYTimes]
🕊️ Museum to Nowhere: In the The Washington Post, Menachem Wecker investigates the decade-long process to fund and build a Peace Museum at a congressionally chartered site in Washington, D.C. Despite millions set aside for funding — and having survived a defunding attempt in 2011 by then-Reps. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), Chip Cravaack (R-MN) and Anthony Weiner (D-NY) — the museum remains “vacant, windowless area” of the U.S. Institute for Peace. “A decade later, the failure to establish such an exhibition space surprises and disappoints Moshe Safdie, the building’s American Canadian Israeli architect, who says he was “very involved” in donor presentations. He recalls pitches centered on substantial space being allocated to the public, with an entrance directly off the Mall. ‘That was such a big item in the board’s mind and the president’s mind,’ Safdie told me. ‘It baffles me that in 10 years, there hasn’t been the will and the funds to do it. It’s not big money. The space is there. Maybe the 10th anniversary is the occasion to bring that up and say, “Hey, let’s get that done.” [WashPost]
Around the Web
🤘He’s Out: An intern in Rep. Thomas Massie’s (R-KY) Washington office quit in protest of Massie’s now-deleted tweet comparing vaccine passports to the Holocaust.
😫 Bad Grade: A high school principal in Tennessee was reassigned by the local district after comparing vaccine records to the yellow stars Jews were forced to wear during the Holocaust.
⚖️ In the Courts: Sirhan Sirhan, who fatally shot former U.S. Attorney General and then-Sen. Robert Kennedy in 1968, will not face opposition from Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascón as he goes up for his 16th parole hearing.
🤝 Deal or No Deal: The U.S. is prepared to compromise “on difficult issues” in nuclear talks with Iran if the regime does the same, said Robert Malley, U.S. special envoy for Iran, according to a report by Bloomberg.
✋ Enough: Canadian Green Party leader Annamie Paul called out online threats made against her, advocating for more accountability by online platforms.
🍴 Good Eats: The operators of a “Mexican-inspired Jewish pop-up” explain to the Los Angeles Times how they developed their signature dish, a pastrami taco.
🏅 Winner Winner: Bari Weiss was named the recipient of the Los Angeles Press Club’s Daniel Pearl Award for Courage and Integrity in Journalism.
🔎 All a-Board: Facebook is considering forming a commission of academics to advise on election-related issues, similar to its independent Oversight Board, which can overrule the platform’s content-moderation decisions.
📈 Booming Business: Israel’s Delek Group enjoyed a net second quarter profit, in part due to natural gas sales.
📡 Under the Radar: YouTube lags behind other social media networks when it comes to removing extremist content, yet it avoids the same level of scrutiny Facebook and other media giants face, in part because the video site is difficult to study, according to an analysis by the Washington Post’s Will Oremus.
📆 Early Release: Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) is pushing for President Joe Biden to pardon Daniel Hale, who was convicted under the Espionage Act of leaking classified national security information related to the war in Afghanistan and sentenced to 45 days in prison.
💉 Shul Shots: The New York Times examines how houses of worship are cautiously weighing vaccine mandates amid a spike in COVID-19 cases.
🗞️ The Forever Beat: In a Washington Post profile,New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman discusses her ongoing coverage of former President Donald Trump and its impact on her life, as well as the online vitriol she faces for continuing to cover the former president.
🕯️ Remembering: Inge Ginsberg, a Holocaust survivor who became a heavy-metal singer in her later years, died at 99.
Wine of the Week
JI’s wine columnist Yitz Applbaum reviews the 100 Tropez Reserve Rose:
“Last week, I had the great fortune to spend some time on a magnificent Greek isle called Paros. I was at a dinner where all the wine gifts brought were rosés from Provence. After everyone had a chance to taste all the wines, my kosher rosé became the most sought-after bottle. Overlooking the Aegean Sea, dressed up in fancy summer attire, I was so proud that the kosher wine was more than able to hold its own in the increasingly important rosé world.
“The 100 Tropez Reserve Rosé is an epic bottle. The front of your tongue is greeted with a burst of summer sunshine, then the pink liquid settles on your mid-palate, where it lingers like apricot jam on a spoon. Finally the crisp and fruity grapefruit peel finish attaches itself to the back of your throat and refuses to leave. An overall special experience. This wine should be paired with Greek olives, hummus and toasted pita.”
Pic of the Day
Members of New York’s Orthodox Jewish and Haitian communities came together on Thursday to collect supplies to send to Haiti in the aftermath of the earthquake two weeks ago that killed more than 2,000 people.
Interior designer and fashion icon, Iris Apfel turns 100 on Sunday…
Chatsworth, Calif., resident, Ruth Ann Kerker Hapner turns 74… Interim president and CEO at the Jewish Federation of Broward County, Mark S. Freedman turns 70… Author and journalist, Michael Wolff turns 68… President of Cornell University, Martha Elizabeth Pollack turns 63… Starting three days ago, the first female governor of New York State, Kathy Hochul turns 63… Israel’s ambassador to Poland, Anna Azari turns 62… Former director of the White House National Economic Council in the Trump administration, previously the president and COO of Goldman Sachs, Gary Cohn turns 61… Executive director of J Street Israel, Nadav Tamir turns 60… Editor-at-large of The Hill, Steve Clemons turns 59… Israeli-born professor at Stanford University focused on artificial intelligence, a 2004 winner of a MacArthur genius fellowship, Daphne Koller turns 53… Co-founder of the 2017 Women’s March which she eventually left citing concerns over antisemitism, Vanessa Wruble turns 47… Portfolio manager and founder of NYC-based G2 Investment Partners, Joshua Goldberg turns 46… Former director general of the Israeli Ministry of Finance, Shai Babad turns 45… Mayor of Evanston, Illinois, Daniel Kalman Biss turns 44… Co-host of Jewish Insider‘s “Limited Liability Podcast” and senior advisor at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, also a longtime GOP policy advisor and campaign strategist, Richard Goldberg turns 38… Co-founder of theSkimm, Danielle Merriah Weisberg turns 35… Director of national initiatives at the Jewish National Fund, Nelson France turns 35… Member of AJR, an indie pop multi-instrumentalist trio, together with his two brothers, Adam Metzger turns 31… Michael Weiss turns 27… Lecturer and Director of the Botanical Garden at Tel Aviv University, Yuval Sapir… Talia Rubin…
SATURDAY: Artist and chemist, he survived the Holocaust by living in a hole in the ground for seven months, Tibor Spitz turns 92… Independent international trade and development professional, Bernard Kupferschmid turns 90… Professor emeritus of quantum physics at Tel Aviv University, Yakir Aharonov turns 89… Retired general counsel of Queens College of the City University of New York, Jane Denkensohn turns 73… Founder and CEO of retail chain Indigo Books & Music and co-founder and past chair of Kobo, Heather Reisman turns 73… Psychoanalyst and author of a 2019 memoir about her father Norman Mailer, Susan Mailer turns 72… Former Texas State Representative, Paul Colbert turns 72… Former Chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents, Merryl H. Tisch turns 66… CEO of the Consumer Technology Association and author of the New York Times best-seller “Ninja Innovation,” Gary J. Shapiro turns 65… Senior rabbi of B’nai Jeshurun on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Jose Rolando Matalon turns 65… British actress best known for her soap opera roles and known professionally as Emma Samms, Emma Elizabeth Wylie Samuelson turns 61… Deputy counsel to the POTUS and National Security Council legal advisor, Jonathan G. Cedarbaum turns 60… Television writer and producer, he is best known as the original showrunner and executive producer of Family Guy, David J. Zuckerman turns 59… CEO and founder of PharmStars and managing partner and co-founder of Ambit Health Ventures, Naomi Fried, Ph.D. turns 55… COO of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg turns 52… General counsel of G/O Media, Kai Falkenberg turns 48… Israeli soldier held captive for over 5 years by Hamas, Gilad Shalit turns 35… Ari Willner…
SUNDAY: Lakewood, California resident, Joe Lissak turns 87… Long time movie and television actor, Elliott Gould turns 83… Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury during the Clinton administration, Robert Rubin turns 83… Head of Yeshiva Ahavat Shalom in Jerusalem, Rabbi Yaakov Moshe Hillel turns 76… Hotel and real estate mogul and co-founder of Dog Tag Bakery, Connie Milstein turns 75… Former Dean of Duke Law School following 17 years as a U.S. District Court judge, David F. Levi turns 70… Founder of Yad Sarah and former mayor of Jerusalem, Uri Lupolianski turns 70… Los Angeles resident, Warren B. Stern turns 69… Former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury during the Obama administration, Jacob Joseph ‘Jack’ Lew turns 66… Senior counsel at the Federal Communications Commission, Amy L. Nathan turns 66… Director of operations at Kesher Israel: The Georgetown Synagogue, Laura Kamer-Israel turns 61… CEO of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, Ariel Zwang turns 58… Journalist and author, Lisa Frydman Barr turns 57… Partner at DC-based HLP&R Advocacy, Jerr Rosenbaum turns 49… Election law guru at Dickinson Wright PLLC, Charles R. Spies turns 49… Hip-hop fashion designer, entrepreneur and artist, Marc Ecko turns 49… Rosh Yeshiva and Head of School at Bnei Akiva Schools in Toronto, Rabbi Seth Grauer turns 43… Rabbi of Congregation Sons of Israel in Cherry Hill, NJ, Michael Z. Davies turns 39… Winner of the Tiberias Marathon and the Jerusalem Marathon, Bracha “Beatie” Deutsch turns 32… Robin Rubin… Adam Shapiro…