👋 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: Ehud Bleiberg on the true story behind Netflix’s ‘Image of Victory’; ‘People love Joe Biden here,’ Nides says of the president’s reception in Israel; Learn from Israel’s example, Aspen Security Forum speakers encourage; Burns: U.S. will ‘do everything we can’ to encourage increased Israeli normalization in region; Space Force provides a deterrent for traditional ground conflict, chief of space operations says; Israel’s SolarEdge Emerges With Saudi Deal After Biden Trip; AnD Ventures grooms start-ups as cash gets tougher to find; ‘Someone has to pay for it’: Aid workers and organizers on the burdens and benefits of American Jewish missions to the Ukrainian border; and Miriam Anzovin, TikTok Daf Yomi star, to join Moishe House. Print the latest edition here.
At the last in-person Aspen Security Forum, the idea of Bahraini and Israeli officials publicly embracing each other and making jokes was an unthinkable sight. The year was 2019, and the Abraham Accords, which normalized relations between the two countries, was more than a year away.
But yesterday afternoon, that was exactly what happened. In between their back-to-back sessions with The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, Israeli Defense Secretary Benny Gantz — surrounded by perhaps the largest security delegation of any speaker in Aspen this week — and Bahraini Undersecretary for Political Affairs Abdulla Al Khalifa posed for photos and exchanged laughs.
Goldberg peppered each conversation with similar questions, ranging from the viability of a two-state solution to the Iranian nuclear program.
Al Khalifa: “October 9, 2006. The world woke up to the news that North Korea tested its first nuclear weapon. That was the reality that the world still is facing its consequences. What if one day, all of us wake up to the news that Iran has tested its first nuclear weapon and face it as a reality? So I believe addressing the issue now, when there is an opportunity, is much better than addressing it later, when it’s too late.”
Gantz: “I would say we all see Iran’s malign activities in the region and elsewhere. Now, they’re doing all that without having the nuclear canopy deterrence to support. Now just try to figure out the reality, how would they act without using nuclear but just using the nuclear canopy in all those activities that we are seeing around in the region.”
On the Palestinians:
Gantz: “I would like to tell you that from a Zionistic perspective, from a Jewish, democratic and Zionistic perspective, I would like to see a better future between us and the Palestinians… I think that the more we invest in strategic planning, the more we invest in infrastructure, the more we make sure that there is a security, then there is stability, and then there is economy, prosperity, I would say, then, hopefully we can, down the road, be able to create what I call [a] bridging situation. My own phrase for it is two-entity situation — to create a better, positive situation on the ground that will enable us in the future to come to a permanent arrangement between the Palestinians and us.”
Al Khalifa: “There’s a limitation to what Bahrain can do or to what anyone can do to support the Palestinians if they do not support themselves. We would have to see a united Palestinian national front, for them to know what exactly they want, instead of us looking into rather than a two-state solution, it looks more like a three-state solution nowadays. So there’s a limitation to what could be done from our end in Bahrain. But at the end of the day, whatever the Palestinians agree, unanimously, to achieve, we are more than [likely] to support that.”
On Israel’s increased integration into the region following the Abraham Accords:
Al Khalifa: “We have interestingly signed a joint, warm-peace strategy, a 10-year strategy [that]… has specifically identified areas of interest to develop and deliver tangible results, namely in innovation and technology, through investment for the security, healthcare, education, tourism and a couple of others. This was signed on the sidelines of the historic Negev Summit, last March, which was an event hosted by Israel and attended by foreign ministers from Bahrain, the U.S., the UAE, Morocco and Egypt. It was the gathering of like-minded countries in the region interested in developing stability and prosperity in the region, and to upscale the level of cooperative coordination in the various fields… And I think it was a step to conceptualize a new regional network.”
Gantz: “I think that those countries have realized that Israel is there to stay. I think those countries have realized that Israel is not a burden, it’s an asset. I think they realize the good relations that Israel has with the United States. It’s a good bridge to be used. And altogether, we never threaten them, while the Iranians do so. So I think they took the right decisions from their own perspective.”
Watch the full conversation here.Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told Jewish Insider yesterday that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s meeting earlier this week with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei highlights that the three have become “an axis — a trio of evil, as far as I’m concerned.”
“This is another example of how Erdogan alternately sides with the most despotic and oppressive leaders in the world,” Menendez continued. “And another manifestation of why helping him with the F-16s is not in the national interests of the United States.”
State Department spokesperson Ned Price told reporters that any new Turkish offensive in Syria “would have the potential to set back some of the tremendous progress that the coalition has made,” but said, “We strongly value our partnership with Turkey.” Price said that the administration is working with Congress on Turkey’s request to purchase 40 F-16 fighter jets.
by the numbers
New MI-11 poll shows Stevens leading Levin by 27 points
New polling released Thursday in Michigan’s 11th Congressional District shows Rep. Haley Stevens (D-MI) with a 27-point lead over Rep. Andy Levin (D-MI) two weeks before the Aug. 2 Democratic primary, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports.
By the numbers: Fifty-eight percent of those surveyed said they plan to vote for Stevens, while 31% said they’ll cast their ballot for Levin. Eleven percent of voters remain undecided. The poll of 500 likely voters was conducted by landline and cell phone from July 18-20, and has a margin of error of 4.5%. The poll was conducted by Target Insyght, a Michigan-based firm, and was not commissioned by a campaign or outside group.
Response from the field: A source inside the Stevens campaign told Jewish Insider the data was consistent with its internal polling. Levin’s campaign spokesperson, Jenny Byer, called into question the reliability of Target Insyght and the poll, saying that their internal polling, which she declined to share, showed “a very tight race.”
Final verdict: “Polls like this at this time in the campaign usually exaggerate the winner if they have a big lead,” Target Insyght’s executive director, Ed Sarpolus, told JI. “So it’s probably going to be a lot closer, but it still shows the trend… Unless something happens, Haley is going to win.”
Inside Glenn Ivey’s victory over Donna Edwards
All politics is local, former House Speaker Tip O’Neill was fond of saying. In the Democratic primary in Maryland’s 4th Congressional District, a race that garnered national attention, attracted millions in spending by outside pro-Israel groups and came with a “battle for the soul of the Democratic Party” narrative, that old political saw just may be the best explanation for former state’s attorney Glenn Ivey’s victory over former Rep. Donna Edwards, writes Jewish Insider’s Gabby Deutch.
Vote local: “Ivey was a well-known and well-liked candidate with an established political network and a lifetime of contacts in the district, so that was a big factor,” said Josh Kurtz, founding editor of the nonprofit news site Maryland Matters. “Every time [Edwards] came out with an endorsement from a former congressional colleague, he countered with an endorsement from a local mayor or other officeholder. Those are more important.”
Factors at play: For the race’s many outside observers, Ivey’s victory was a political Rohrshach test. But for voters in the 4th District, which includes most of Prince George’s County, Edwards has a decade and a half of political baggage, and Ivey, the former county prosecutor, is a recognizable member of a local political dynasty. Voters considered all of that, as well as the influence of outside political groups, as they made their decisions. And the decision of one candidate — Jazz Lewis — to drop out of the race to help shore up support for Ivey might have sealed Edwards’ fate.
Fetterman meets with Jewish voters in person on first day back on the campaign trail
Democratic Jewish Outreach Pennsylvania hosted a fundraiser last night for Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, one of the first in-person events the Pennsylvania Senate candidate has held since having a stroke two months ago. Attendees said the candidate appeared healthy and in good spirits, while acknowledging that he has not yet fully recovered, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports.
Back in the field: Steve Irwin, a Pittsburgh attorney and former House candidate who has known Fetterman for several years, said the event — which took place on Fetterman’s first day back on the campaign trail — was the first time he has seen the candidate since his stroke. “He looked good. He looked physically healthy. His color was good, he wasn’t too thin. He displayed a wide range of emotions. He made people laugh. He was very warm,” Irwin said. “He really came across not that different from the John that we knew beforehand. But clearly he had a stroke and it was a long day for him.”
On the agenda: Fetterman attended three fundraisers on Thursday, according to Politico. DJOP leaders said he spoke at their event for nearly half an hour about both policy and campaign strategy, including the recent House vote to protect contraception and the Supreme Court’s ruling last month overturning abortion rights. They said that Fetterman — still wearing his signature hoodie and gym shorts — also joked with the crowd of around 150 and stuck around to shake hands and take pictures.
Ground game: “He was very transparent about the fact that he had a stroke two months ago… so kind of bear with him a bit because he’s not 100% and he’s on his way back,” DJOP founder Brett Goldman said. “But he’s super excited to get back out there, and you can see that just in the way that he was interacting with the crowd.” Irwin noted that neither Fetterman’s wife, Giselle, nor his staffers were “trying to control him.”
Outreach: During the primary cycle, Goldman told JI that he had found Fetterman somewhat inaccessible to the Jewish community in his official capacity, recounting that past attempts to engage Fetterman had “either been put off for some reason or really surface-level.” DJOP leaders emphasized that they felt the situation had now changed. “I think he’s been very open to speaking to the Jewish community. He was very happy to receive our endorsement,” DJOP’s chair, Jill Zipin, said. Goldman said, “He’s definitely built a stronger relationship with the Jewish community than I think existed a couple of years ago.”
No show: Attendees said that the subject of Israel did not not come up during the event. Last week, Fetterman touted the endorsement of Peace Action, a group that aligns with organizations that support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel.
Bonus: Irwin recounted that Fetterman had helped host his daughter’s bat mitzvah in his home. The former House candidate explained that Fetterman lives on the second floor of a former car dealership, which now has a restaurant on the ground floor. The restaurant, according to Irwin, was not big enough for the entire party, and Fetterman opened his home — “a big, gigantic room,” in Irwin’s words — to the group.
Gates: Israel and Gulf states don’t believe U.S. would use military action to prevent a nuclear Iran
Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates said at the Aspen Security Forum that despite the Biden administration’s stated commitment to keep Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, neither Gulf Arab nations nor Israel believe that Washington would act militarily to stop Tehran in its nuclear ambitions, Jewish Insider’s Melissa Weiss reports from Aspen.
Red lines: “When President Biden says Iran will not be allowed to have a nuclear weapon, does that mean President Biden is willing to go to war with Iran?” the former defense secretary, who served in the role from 2006-2011 under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, said. “Israel will not permit Iran to have a nuclear weapon, and they will take care of them militarily, if there is no other alternative. I don’t think either the Israelis or the Gulf Arabs, at this point, believe that President Biden is prepared to go to war to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons.”
Mideast strategy: But while Biden’s meetings with Saudi and Israeli officials in the region earlier this month addressed concerns over Iran’s nuclear program and the stalled negotiations in Vienna, a main goal of the trip, Gates said, was “to lay down a marker” amid increasing concerns that China and Russia are seeking to gain a foothold in the Middle East. He added that Israel and Arab countries were welcoming the change, which Gates attributed to successive Democratic and Republican administrations vocalizing their intent to scale back in the region. “The strategic driver [of the trip] was the realization,” he explained, “that for a variety of reasons, key players in the Middle East who have in the past been some of our closest friends, were increasingly open to expanding their relationship with both China and Russia.”
Also heard in Aspen: Richard Moore, the head of the U.K.’s MI6 intelligence service, said that he does not believe that Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei wants to reach a new nuclear agreement.
🚀 Rise of Omar: Tablet magazine’s Armin Rosen looks at the political rise of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and how the legislator has used her history to define her narrative. “Omar has now been in Congress for over three and a half years. American politics has lost much of its local and even regional character, thanks in part to figures like her. The country’s political life is now almost entirely national-scale and personality-driven, a clash between controversy-seekers who are essentially celebrities, and who are constantly vying for attention and adoration before a third of a billion citizens. Omar recognized this shift to a world of Ocasio-Cortezes and Marjorie Taylor Greenes earlier than nearly anyone. She understood that she was playing on a field larger than a single state assembly or congressional district, or even any single country. She realized that politics was becoming an arena defined less by policy and action than by narrative and personal emotional investment. Proceeding from this insight, she became a lone voice willing to stake out provocative or maximalist positions that some growing portion of the country wanted to hear: on Israel, on race relations, on student loan forgiveness, on the integrity and inner motives of her own Democratic Party colleagues.” [Tablet]
🇨🇳 Beijing’s Bluff: In Foreign Policy, the American Enterprise Institute’s Danielle Pletka suggests that China is unlikely to become a major power broker in the Middle East. “Taken together, all the various pieces of China’s engagement in the greater Middle East appear to add up to a significant effort to usurp the United States’ role in the region. Indeed, analysts could be forgiven for thinking there is a major play afoot. But there is not, and the reason is quite simple. Arab and Israeli concerns boil down to one overarching priority: containing Iran. And though the Obama and Biden administrations have been eager to propitiate Tehran — sending pallets of cash to Tehran at the outset of the Iran nuclear deal (Obama), buying enriched nuclear material produced in violation of Tehran’s commitments (Obama), and declining to impose sanctions for illegal oil sales (Biden) — the United States nevertheless remains the only global power willing and able to actually punish the Iranian regime for its malign regional behavior.” [ForeignPolicy]
🔫 Toughening Turkey: In the Wall Street Journal, Jared Malsin and Elvan Kivilcim look at Turkey’s two-decade-long effort to become a weapons powerhouse. “Turkey’s low-cost drones helped alter the balance of power in Ukraine’s battle against the Russian invasion and are transforming conflicts around the world. A new crop of Turkish companies is exporting helicopters to the Philippines, a naval corvette to Pakistan, and armored vehicles to Kenya. Turkey has built up its navy to compete with its rival Greece, and is selling patrol boats to 10 different countries. Mr. Erdogan’s government is pouring $60 billion a year—up from $5 billion in 2002—into an effort to reduce dependence on U.S. and other foreign military suppliers. The private defense industry grew to $11 billion in 2020 from $1 billion in 2002. Arms deals are now one of Mr. Erdogan’s foreign-policy tools of choice, as he uses sales of drones and other weapons to build relationships and further his aspirations of global Turkish influence.” [WSJ]
Around the Web
🗳️ Capitol Spotlight: Rep. Kathy Manning (D-NC), the former Jewish Federations of North America chair, was the lead sponsor of the House bill passed yesterday to codify contraception rights in response to the Supreme Court ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade.
🤝🏽 D.C. Meet-up: Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) met with Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Herzog in Washington yesterday.
📱 Gab Gripe: The Republican Jewish Coalition called on Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano to “end his association” with the extremist platform Gab, where his account has 38,000 followers.
🎓 Donor Advice: Former Treasury Secretary and Harvard President Larry Summers advocated for wealthy donors to become more involved in community colleges in order to grow the U.S. workforce.
🌳 Tree Trouble: The Buchenwald concentration camp memorial said that seven trees paying tribute to Holocaust victims who died at the Nazi concentration camp were chopped down.
🏺 Back Home: Dozens of looted antiquities worth a collective $14 million were returned to their countries of origin after being forfeited by collector Michael Steinhardt.
💉 Polio Problem: Health officials in New York confirmed the first case of polio in a decade, which local officials said was found in an Orthodox man from Rockland County.
🏀 Leap of Faith: A new law in Maryland requires athletic institutions in the state to allow modifications to sports uniforms for athletes whose religion requires specific dress.
🛫 Big Sale: Israel Aerospace Industries said it signed a contract for more than $200 million with an unnamed European NATO member.
🇮🇱🇷🇺 Rapid Response: Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid is sending a delegation to Russia to address a recent decision by Moscow to halt the operations of The Jewish Agency for Israel.
🗣️ Stampede Probe: Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told an independent commission investigating last year’s Lag B’Omer stampede that he bears no responsibility for the incident, which killed 45 people.
🇸🇪🇮🇷 Envoy Recall: Iran recalled its ambassador to Sweden after a Swedish court sentenced an Iranian national to life in prison for war crimes committed in Iran and Iraq in the 1980s.
Wine of the Week
JI wine columnist Yitz Applbaum reviews the Chateau Trianon Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2018:
“The Chateau Trianon wine we enjoyed last Friday night is steeped in a remarkable history. The chateau where the wine is produced is a 17th-century palace that was built in honor of the Royal Court and was frequented by the then-king of France. Fast-forward almost 400 years, and some of the finest French wines are being produced in this historic edifice using some of the most advanced viticulture technologies. Even with the modernization of the winery, you can feel and taste the regalness of this remarkable place in every sip of the wine.
“The Chateau Trianon Saint-Emilion Grand Cru 2018 is 90 percent merlot and 10% cabernet franc. The front of the palate is overwhelmed with the tartness of freshly crushed grapes. As the liquid slides into the mid-palate, it’s almost as if one goes through the fermentation process on their tongue, and then the finish is long, fruity, complex and satisfying. This wine will be good for at least 10 years and goes well with foie gras and an extra dose of thoughtfulness.”
Pic of the Day
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez (second from right) and Hollywood Mayor Josh Levy (center) during a visit to the Western Wall in Jerusalem this week.
Former U.S. ambassador to Romania and senior counsel at Covington and Burling, Alfred H. Moses turns 93 on Sunday…
FRIDAY: Israeli actress Gila Almagor turns 83… Former British Conservative Party member of Parliament, Anthony Steen CBE turns 83… Historian, author and professor (now emerita) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Judith Walzer Leavitt turns 82… British biochemist and professor at the University of Dundee in Scotland, Sir Philip Cohen turns 77… Actor, director and comedian, Albert Brooks (born Albert Lawrence Einstein) turns 75… Owner of Nodel Parks, Richard Martin Nodel… Pianist and composer of many Disney movie musical scores, Alan Menken turns 73… Owner of Baltimore’s Seven Mile Market, Hershel Boehm… Born in Norwalk, Conn., and now based in Munich, Germany, where he is the managing director of a public affairs firm and works to ensure that the Holocaust and its many victims are not forgotten, Terry Swartzberg turns 69… Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia since 2011, Judge Amy Berman Jackson turns 68… Member of AJC’s Jewish Religious Equality Coalition, Cindy Masters… Former secretary of veterans affairs, David Jonathon Shulkin turns 63… Founding partner of the DC-based intellectual property law firm, Greenberg & Lieberman, Stevan Lieberman turns 57… Television journalist and news anchor, David Shuster turns 55… Pentagon speechwriter, Warren Bass… Owner of West Bloomfield-based Saltsman Industries, Daniel A. Saltsman… Former Pentagon official, now a consultant on operations and political intelligence, Jonathan Freeman… Contemporary artist living in Brooklyn, Dustin Yellin turns 47… Director of the field operations team at the Pew Charitable Trust, Elise Rachel Shutzer… Nominee as an associate justice on the New Jersey Supreme Court, her confirmation is still pending, Rachel Wainer Apter turns 42… Former White House assistant press secretary, now the managing editor of podcasts at NBC News, Reid Cherlin… White House correspondent, Andrew Grant Feinberg turns 40… General treasurer of the State of Rhode Island, he is one of six candidates running in the upcoming Democratic primary for Congress (RI-2), Seth Magaziner turns 39… Executive director of the American Sephardi Federation, Jason Guberman-Pfeffer… Actor best known for his role in the Freeform series “Pretty Little Liars,” Keegan Phillip Allen turns 33… Director of business operations at CertifyOS, Maor Cohen… Talia Thurm Abramson… Serial entrepreneur and product strategist in Silicon Valley, Yoela Palkin… Actor and voice actor, he starred as Eric in Netflix’s “Santa Clarita Diet,” Skyler Gisondo turns 26… Past board chair of Fuente Latina and CEO of Siegman Consulting Services, Fred Siegman… Michael Suissa…
SATURDAY: Banker who distributed $60 million to his 400 employees when he sold City National Bank of Florida in 2008, Leonard L. Abess turns 74… Former U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands, now chair of the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, Fay Hartog-Levin turns 74… Retired judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Judge Alex Kozinski turns 72… Businessman and real estate investor, Alexander Rovt turns 70… Academy Award-winning film producer, Jon Landau turns 62… Proprietor of Oy Vey Jewish Bakery and Delicatessen in Terre Haute, Indiana, Chavah Stair… Freelance journalist, she is the widow of Daniel Pearl and wrote a book about his kidnapping and murder in Pakistan in 2002, Mariane Pearl turns 55… Director of the Smithsonian’s Arts and Industries Museum, Rachel Eva Goslins turns 53… U.S. senator (D-GA), Raphael Warnock turns 53… Dov M. Katz… Freelance television writer and author of two books, Joel Stein… Psychologist in private practice in both Manhattan and Great Neck, Long Island, Lynn Glasman, Ph.D…. Activist Monica Lewinsky turns 49… Music producer and songwriter, Jonathan Reuven “J.R.” Rotem turns 47… Professor at Georgetown University Law Center, Itai Grinberg… Mayor of Minneapolis, Minn., Jacob Lawrence Frey turns 41… Sports studio host and play-by-play announcer for Westwood One, Sirius XM and ESPN, Jason M. Horowitz… Reporter for The Washington Post covering education issues in the District of Columbia, Perry Stein… Starting right fielder for Team Israel at the 2017 World Baseball Classic, Zach Borenstein turns 32… Joseph Stern…
SUNDAY: Founder and chairman at Chicago-based housing developer The Habitat Company, Daniel Levin… Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter who worked for ABC News and CBS’s “60 Minutes,” Lowell Bergman turns 77… Israeli physician, author and playwright, he is the younger brother of former PM Benjamin Netanyahu, Iddo Netanyahu turns 70… Political consultant known for his role in both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns, Joel Benenson turns 70… Los Angeles-based business and real estate attorney, Michael Jeffrey Bordy… Radio anchor and reporter on both CBS nationally and NYC’s WCBS, Michael Sugerman… Member of Congress (D-FL) and former governor of Florida, Charlie Crist turns 66… Russian businessman and chairman of the Board of Patrons of The Conference of European Rabbis, Boris Mints turns 64… Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, Judge Patty Shwartz turns 61… Director of the AIPAC Senior Fellows program for the Florida regional office, he is a retired NFL player who played for the Packers (1986-1990) and the Cowboys (1991-1992) where he won in Super Bowl XXVII, Alan “Shlomo” Veingrad turns 59… Partner in the Kentucky-based law firm of Frost Brown Todd and author of The Liberal Case for Israel, he was the first-ever Jewish statewide elected official in Kentucky, Jonathan Miller turns 55… President of Access Computer Technology in West Bloomfield, Mich., he is a rabbi, entrepreneur and social media expert, Jason Miller… President and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, Noah Zvi Farkas… EVP and CFO of Morgan Stanley, Sharon Yeshaya… Actress, screenwriter and director, Lauren Miller Rogen turns 40… Board member of Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester, Aviva Futerman-Schochat turns 38… Co-founder and partner at Orfin Ventures, Adam Finkel… Account supervisor at Havas Formula, Sarah Citrenbaum… Associate at Quinn Emanuel, Shlomo Klapper…