Good Friday morning.
In today’s Daily Kickoff, we talk to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand about the chances for a broader normalization deal between Israel and the Arab world, and report on American University’s efforts to address antisemitism on campus. Also in today’s Daily Kickoff: Clarissa Ward, Steven Spielberg and Evan Gershkovich.
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 Jewish Insider, eJewishPhilanthropy and The Circuit stories, including: Aiming to succeed Elissa Slotkin, Curtis Hertel mirrors her pragmatic sensibilities; Inside the army unit that handles the humanitarian needs of Gaza civilians; Jewish Washingtonians gather at Qatari Embassy to push for hostage release. Print the latest edition here.
The International Court of Justice is set this afternoon to offer a preliminary ruling on Israel’s military operation in Gaza. A fuller ruling, on South Africa’s claim that Israel is committing genocide, could take years.
Earlier today, El Al announced the suspension of its twice-weekly flights to South Africa, beginning in March.
Georgia lawmakers on Thursday adopted legislation that will define antisemitism in state law in order to help public officials identify hate crimes and discrimination against Jews. Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican, said he plans to sign the bill into law, Jewish Insider’s senior national correspondent Gabby Deutch reports.
The bill requires state agencies to consider the working definition of antisemitism written by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), which has been embraced by dozens of foreign governments, other states and the Biden administration.
The bill’s passage marks a 180-degree change from last year’s legislative session, when it was tabled over some legislators’ concerns that the IHRA definition hampered the freedom of expression of people critical of Israel. The IHRA definition counts some critiques of Israel as antisemitic.
That the legislation now enjoys widespread support among both Democrats and Republicans demonstrates how much the atmosphere has shifted, in light of the Oct. 7 terror attacks in Israel and the resulting rise in antisemitism in the United States. Kemp said the bill “builds on our commitment to protect Georgians from criminal acts, including those based on hate.”
Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day tomorrow, President Joe Biden said in a statement that “the charge to remember the Holocaust, the evil of the Nazis and the scourge of antisemitism is more pressing than ever” following the Oct. 7 attacks.
“In the aftermath of Hamas’s vicious massacre, we have witnessed an alarming rise of despicable antisemitism at home and abroad that has surfaced painful scars from millennia of hate and genocide of Jewish people. It is unacceptable,” the president continued. “We cannot remember all that Jewish survivors of the Holocaust experienced and then stand silently by when Jews are attacked and targeted again today,” said Biden, noting that Holocaust survivors were among those taken hostage by Hamas. He drew a parallel between Holocaust deniers and those who deny or minimize the atrocities of Oct. 7.
“Without equivocation or exception, we must also forcefully push back against attempts to ignore, deny, distort and revise history,” Biden said. This includes Holocaust denialism and efforts to minimize the horrors that Hamas perpetrated on October 7, especially its appalling and unforgiveable use of rape and sexual violence to terrorize victims.”
Biden pledged to “recommit to carrying forward the lessons of the Shoah, to fighting antisemitism and all forms of hate-fueled violence, and to bringing the hostages home.”
on the table
Gillibrand: Israeli-Arab mega-deal is on the table, if Israel is open to two states
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), who recently returned from a trip to Israel, Saudi Arabia and Jordan, told Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod on Thursday that Arab states stand ready to seal a regional peace deal with Israel in the near future — if Israel commits to a two-state solution.
The deal: “They’re available to do this long-term peace agreement. They are willing to play a role in rebuilding a Palestinian state, providing security and creating an international regional alliance to fight against Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran and all its proxies,” Gillibrand said. “I know and I hope that can happen in the months to come — not years — months to come.” She continued, “What Israel has to give, in this scenario, is the willingness to have a second state.”
The obstacle: Based on her recent visit to Israel, Gillibrand described this as a major sticking point that has developed since Oct. 7. She said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in meetings a year ago, was not opposed to a two-state solution as he laid out an ambitious plan for normalization with Saudi Arabia and broader regional peace. “My hope is that the Israeli people, and the Israeli government, and Prime Minister Netanyahu can collectively decide, ‘We will not be manipulated [by Hamas] into giving up our own vision for peace,’” she said.
Path forward: Gillibrand said that the Saudi government is willing to conduct anti-terrorism and security operations with its own military personnel inside Gaza as part of an international force, with guidance from Israel. And she said the Jordanian government is “positioned” to help bring in a new Palestinian government — ”they have proposals, they have a plan.” She argued that such an arrangement can and should come before Hamas is fully rooted out from Gaza. She explained that a regional multinational security force including Arab allies and the Palestinian population would be more effective in eliminating Hamas than Israel acting alone.
pressure on qatar
‘Our patience has run out. Time is up,’ Sen. Ted Budd tells Qatar
Sen. Ted Budd (R-NC), who has emerged as one of Qatar’s most vocal critics in the Senate since Oct. 7, questioned the Qatari government’s ability to influence Hamas and secure the release of additional hostages, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports.
Quotable: “Our patience has run out. Time is up. Either pressure Hamas leaders to release the hostages now, or expel them from your land,” Budd said in a Senate floor speech on Thursday. “It’s that simple. The United States of America will be watching.”
Raising doubts: “One has to consider the potential reality that Qatar might not have the leverage they are so quick to boast about,” Budd added. “And if Qatar is not able to effectuate the release of hostages, then there is no further reason for these terrorists to remain in their country.”
Facing federal civil rights complaint, American U. announces actions to fight antisemitism
A week after a group of Jewish students submitted a complaint with a federal civil rights office alleging widespread antisemitism at American University, the school on Thursday unveiled a new set of policies meant to counter antisemitism and promote civil discourse on the Washington, D.C., campus, Jewish Insider’s Gabby Deutch reports.
Content-neutral grounds: The three new policies are content-neutral: Rather than specifically referring to antisemitism, they are meant to “support the sense of belonging on campus, promote safety, address the immediate challenges at hand and help build broader community for all,” said the email, authored by the school’s president, Sylvia Burwell, and several other administrators. But an email sent to the university community made clear that the policies were created in response to recent events that “have made Jewish students feel unsafe and unwelcome.”
New rules: The actions, which went into effect immediately, forbid protests inside university buildings, require student clubs and organizations to be “welcoming to all students” and require posters and university-sponsored events to “promote inclusivity.”
Enforcement watch: The test for American will be how the university enforces the new policies, particularly when administrators will have to weigh in on thornier questions like whether chants to free Palestine “from the river to the sea” are considered antisemitic or legitimate political speech. “We have not issued a statement on that specifically, but what I can tell you is if your behavior in a protest disrupts safety, disrupts sense of belonging, we take action,” Matthew Bennett, American University’s vice president and chief communications officer, told JI.
Arab civil society leaders promote Holocaust education at memorial event
Arab civil society leaders who gathered on Thursday for a Holocaust memorial event emphasized the importance of remembering the Holocaust and its lessons at a time of rising global hate, Jewish Insider’s Gabby Deutch reports.
Annual tradition: Thursday’s virtual event, organized by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Saturday, is the museum’s third consecutive yearly event focused on Holocaust education, following gatherings in Cairo and Abu Dhabi. A similar in-person event could not be organized in the Middle East this year amid the war in Gaza.
Future-facing: “Expressing empathy and respect for the Holocaust victims is not only a tribute to the past, but also a way of diminishing racism, bigotry, prejudice and intolerance in the present and future,” said Mohammed Dajani, a Palestinian professor who gained international attention — and faced strong Palestinian criticism — when he took a group of Palestinian students to visit Auschwitz in 2014 with Jewish Holocaust survivors.
Not politicized: “As such,” Dajani continued, “the Holocaust should not be politicized, linked to or compared with other genocides, nor should its commemoration be avoided due to violent political events or current wars.”
Supplemental border talks remain on track, Senate Republicans insist, despite leaked McConnell comments
Senate Republicans insisted on Thursday that talks on border policy — which have become the key to unlocking the aid package for Israel and other U.S. allies — remain on track, despite leaked comments by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) from a GOP conference meeting on Wednesday that had appeared to throw cold water on such a deal, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports. If those talks do ultimately fall apart amid growing opposition from former President Donald Trump and skepticism from House Republicans, it’s not clear that there’s a concrete backup plan to advance Israel aid and other portions of the bill.
Correcting the record: “I was in that meeting, and I didn’t take it that way at all,” Sen. James Lankford (R-OK), told reporters, addressing the reports that McConnell had effectively disavowed the plan of linking border policy to the supplemental. “He was laying out the political realities of where things are, and it was kind of the elephant in the room conversation,” regarding Trump’s opposition to a deal, Lankford continued. “At the end of it he was very clear, ‘I’m not making any recommendation.’ … This wasn’t a matter of ‘We should do [it]’ or ‘We shouldn’t.’”
Lingering questions: Even if it’s still on track, it’s not certain that the border deal will be enough to bring the supplemental to passage. Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) said he’s “skeptical” that the deal will be sufficient. Vance added that he doesn’t think the current deal can pass the House, and that if that’s the case, it “doesn’t make a ton of sense” for Republicans to support a vote on the package.
Plan B: If the border deal collapses, it’s not clear how the Senate will move Israel aid forward, although supporters insist that it will move forward in some capacity. “We’re going to continue to fight, because that’s something important too,” Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) told JI. “I do not want to be a part of history that fails democracy, and that’s a failure if we don’t find a way to fund Ukraine and Israel.” Tillis also said that “we may have to” ultimately split up the supplemental bill, while insisting “that was not what Mitch McConnell said yesterday.”
Jewish-owned businesses in Bowman’s district vandalized with anti-Israel graffiti
A pair of Jewish-owned businesses in Scarsdale, N.Y., near a Jewish community center were vandalized overnight on Wednesday by an unknown perpetrator who spray painted “genocide supporter” on their front windows. The incident took place inside the congressional district represented by Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), a critic of Israel who has himself accused Israel of genocide. The district is the site of an increasingly heated primary battle between Bowman and Westchester County Executive George Latimer, who has the backing of the pro-Israel community, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports. Hundreds of community members turned out on Thursday to show their support for the two businesses — including Latimer himself. The district has a sizable Jewish population.
Bowman’s statement: Bowman issued a statement on the situation, in which he said, “I strongly condemn antisemitic actions that target Jewish Americans because of their religion or conflate the actions of the Israeli government with our Jewish neighbors.” He said he’d sent a staffer to the scene to look at the area. “Throughout history, vandalism has been used to target and harass Jewish communities, and the use of vandalism today against Jewish-owned shops here in our district is unacceptable,” Bowman continued. “There is no place for vandalism or violence anywhere in our communities.”
Latimer’s statement: Latimer, who delivered remarks at the rally in support of the two businesses, posted on X, “Tonight the community came together to stand against antisemitism after two Jewish-owned businesses were targeted and vandalized. We must stand with Scoop Shop and Cheryl’s Closet, the Jewish community, and others who experience hatred in any form. This hatred has no home in Westchester or anywhere.”
Bonus: Residents of Bowman’s district are mobilizing to register Jewish voters as Democrats if they are not already enrolled in the party, in an effort to boost Latimer’s bid.
Speaking Up: In Newsweek, Muslim women’s rights activists Farhana Khorshed, Soraya Deen, Raheel Raza and Zainab Khan call on Muslim women to speak out against the sexual violence committed by Hamas on Oct. 7. “Islam, the proclaimed religion of Hamas, does indeed prohibit such behavior. But Hamas clearly ignored this and embraced violence against women, children, and civilians in general. Now, they continue to lie about it. If we, as Muslim women, do not raise our voices against this, we are giving a green light to other extremist groups such as Boko Haram, ISIS, and Hezbollah, who are already emboldened in their acts of terrorism and violence, to act like Hamas. We must not rest our voices until the world holds Hamas and other similar violent and oppressive groups accountable. As we write this, five decades of progress on women’s rights is at risk of simply fading away. We cannot fall into old patterns we have spent years working to erase — patterns like not believing women, blaming the victim in order to justify rape, or remaining silent because the topic is uncomfortable.” [Newsweek]
Saudi Strategy: In The Atlantic, Hussein Ibish looks at the Saudi approach to the Houthis, noting that Riyadh’s hard-line position against the Iran-back militia preceded that of much of the rest of the world. “Riyadh grasped the genuine fanaticism and growing power of the Houthis in a way that many in Washington did not. The threat the Saudis perceived applied as much to U.S. interests as to Saudi ones — especially if U.S. interests in the Middle East are understood to no longer be limited to oil, Israel, and counterterrorism. Three of the world’s great maritime choke points surround the Arabian Peninsula: the Strait of Hormuz, which controls ingress and egress from the Gulf; the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, at one end of the Red Sea; and the Suez Canal, at the other, leading to the Mediterranean. At least 12 percent of global commerce passes through the Suez Canal. The Houthis have been wreaking havoc in and around the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, disrupting global supply chains and sending even the price of flavored coffee beans soaring this January.” [TheAtlantic]
Reporters’ Access: In the Washington Post, CNN’s Clarissa Ward calls on Israel to allow foreign press into Gaza to cover the Israel-Hamas war. “Last month, we became the only Western journalists to gain access to Gaza without the IDF, during a one-off trip facilitated by the United Arab Emirates. We had only two hours on the ground. Two hours to cover more than two months of relentless bombing. During this brief time, we met children who had been maimed and orphaned being treated at a UAE-run field hospital. After an Israeli strike hit nearby, we were in the operating room as the casualties arrived. We drove past the rubble from recent bombing and watched people lining up at a bakery for food. Our trip provided a window into the war zone, but only a small one. … But Gaza’s journalists should not be left to cover this war alone. In a conflict where information has been weaponized, where every claim is met with a dizzying counter claim and misinformation is thriving, international journalists can add an invaluable perspective.” [WashPost]
Proxy Perspective: In The Free Press, Eli Lake spotlights the string of attacks on American allies by Iranian proxies since Oct. 7, as well as the Biden administration’s response. “It’s almost like there are two policies for the Biden administration. In Washington, the State Department and Treasury Department are still pursuing a nuclear deal with Iran. In Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, the U.S. military is at war. This approach to Iran’s proxies is most striking in the U.S. response to the Houthi militias in Yemen. American and British war ships in the Red Sea have been barraging Houthi positions in Yemen this month. And yet, in Washington, the Biden administration has been cautious about applying economic pressure. … Joel Rayburn, a former special envoy for Syria, told me he suspects Biden’s reluctance to enforce sanctions against Iran and its proxies is because ‘senior levels of the administration are staffed by Iran negotiators from 2015, [and] they still prioritize keeping the door open for another JCPOA [Iran nuclear deal] once the high-intensity phase in the war in Gaza has passed.’” [FreePress]
The State of Harvard: The Wall Street Journal’s Dominic Green reflects on the situation at Harvard following the creation of a new task force on antisemitism co-chaired by a professor with a history of inflammatory comments about Israel. “I’m an inmate of the open-air asylum that is Cambridge, Mass., and some of my best friends are professors. All of them are from the shrinking minority of classical liberals and liberal conservatives. We meet in private, lest their colleagues spot them. They know the battle of ideas is lost. The ship of fools was hijacked decades ago by the radical left. It floats down the River Charles on a tide of donor cash, dissenters thrown overboard. Like the real America, Harvard is federal by design but paralyzed by the administrative state. Each of its undergraduate colleges and professional schools has its own fundraising machinery and endowment. Each has its boutique DEI commissariat that corrupts the academic hiring process and pollutes the intellectual atmosphere with what Rabbi [David] Wolpe calls the ‘toxicity of intellectual slovenliness.’ The president and the Harvard Corp. resemble the U.S. government before the creation of the Federal Reserve and the New Deal: strong enough to speak on everyone’s behalf but struggling to impose their orders.” [WSJ]
Around the Web
Biden + Bibi: President Joe Biden pushed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to begin to scale down the Israel-Hamas war, saying that the White House could not support a yearlong war.
Houthi Heat: The U.S. and U.K. imposed new sanctions on four top Houthi officials, citing continued disruptions to shipping routes in the Red Sea as the Iran-backed militants launch attacks on vessels transiting through the region.
Prior Warning: The U.S. secretly alerted Tehran to an impending ISIS attack that killed more than 80 people in two suicide bombings earlier this month.
Troop Talk: Politicoshot down rumors of mass U.S. troop withdrawals from Iraq and Syria, amid conversations about the future of American positions in the region.
Strategy Suggestion: In a Newsweek op-ed, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) and Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ) lay out how Congress can play a role in securing the release of the remaining 136 hostages in Gaza.
Securing Their Rights: Sens. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and J.D. Vance (R-OH) introduced legislation to ensure that the U.S. Embassy employees taken hostage during the Iran Hostage Crisis receive the full compensation to which they are entitled under U.S. law.
Lee’s Haul: Rep. Summer Lee (D-PA) announced a fundraising haul of $1 million in the final quarter of 2023; challenger Bhavini Patel pulled in $310,000 last quarter.
Probe Dropped: The House Ethics Committee dropped its inquiry into an October incident in which Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) pulled a House fire alarm, but called the legislator’s explanation for his actions “less than credible and otherwise misleading.”
DSA Fines: A special campaign committee tied to the Democratic Socialists of America’s New York chapter is facing more than $300,000 in fines after the state elections watchdog found that the group lacked the proper authorizations to raise and spend money in elections.
TED Tiff: Five TED senior fellows resigned in protest of the organization’s naming of Bill Ackman and Bari Weiss as main stage speakers at the group’s annual convening this spring.
Cease-fire Call: The Minneapolis City Council passed a veto-proof resolution calling for a cease-fire.
Court Case: A Michigan man was convicted by a federal jury of defacing a synagogue with antisemitic graffiti.
Museum Move: A Detroit-area Holocaust museum is making changes to its displays to discourage museum-goers from glorifying Nazi atrocities.
Campus Beat: The Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights opened an investigation into The Ohio State University, following a complaint over the school’s handling of antisemitism on campus.
Miseducation: An adjunct professor at NYU was filmed denying the extent of the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attack and telling students at a campus teach-in that they lived in “a Zionist city.”
Speech Bubble: In The New York Times, Yale’s Stephen Carter considers the limits of free speech on campus.
Graduate Gift: A new $10 million launch gift from Craig Newmark Philanthropies to the Craigslist founder’s namesake graduate journalism program at the City University of New York will set the school down a path for future students to receive free tuition.
Abu Dhabi Meeting: Apollo Global Management’s Marc Rowan met in the UAE with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who also chairs the Abu Dhabi Executive Council.
Airing on Apple: A new Apple+ series from Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg spotlights the Air Force group known as the “Bloody Hundredth,” which flew daring daytime missions over Nazi Germany.
Bad for Business:Business Insideris cutting 8% of its staff, following similar staff reductions at the Los Angeles Times and Time magazine.
Detention Extended: The pre-trial detention of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who has been held in Russia since last spring, was extended until the end of March.
Death Toll Details: A new report from The Washington Institute for Near East Policy looks at how fatality counts in Gaza are collected and reported.
No-Man’s Land: The Wall Street Journallooks at Israeli efforts to create a buffer zone on the Gazan side of the Israel-Gaza border.
The Day After: In The Wall Street Journal, Steven Cook explores the U.S.’ prospects for partnership in rebuilding Gaza after the war.
Sweden Sign-off: Turkey gave its sign-off on Sweden’s entry into NATO, leaving Hungary as the final country needed for ratification.
Transition: Mark Treyger was named the new CEO of the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York.
Remembering: Legal scholar Charles Fried, who served as solicitor general during the Reagan administration, died at 88.
Pic of the Day
Israeli Minister of Diaspora Affairs and Combating Antisemitism Amichai Chikli (left), Israeli Ambassador to Poland Yacov Livne and Polish Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Andrzej Szejna light memorial candles and recite the Jewish mourners’ prayer at Auschwitz-Birkenau earlier this week ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which falls on Saturday.
Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist, Jules Feiffer turns 95…
FRIDAY: Actor, film director and playwright, Henry David Jaglom turns 86… Pioneering computer scientist, Barbara Bluestein Simons, Ph.D. turns 83… Singer-songwriter, socialite and political fundraiser, Denise Eisenberg Rich turns 80… Economic and social theorist, author of 23 books, Jeremy Rifkin turns 79… New Haven, Conn.-based personal injury attorney, Herbert Ira Mendelsohn… Publishing professional, Agnes F. Holland… Professor emeritus of modern Judaic studies at the University of Virginia, Peter W. Ochs turns 74… Two-time Emmy Award-winning film and television director, Mimi Leder turns 72… President of The Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, Rabbi Marc Schneier… Argentina’s largest real-estate developer, president of Chabad Argentina, president of Hillel Argentina and president of Taglit Birthright Argentina, Eduardo Elsztain turns 64… Co-founder of the Laura and Gary Lauder Family Venture Philanthropy Fund, Laura Heller Lauder… President of HSK Consulting focused on strategic planning and fundraising services, Hilary Smith Kapner… Former CNN anchor and correspondent for 12 years, author of two books, Daryn Kagan turns 61… Co-founder of Boardroom One, Brent Cohen… Actress, comedian and television screenwriter, Claudia Lonow turns 61… Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives until about four months ago, Kevin McCarthy turns 59… Major general (res.) in the IDF, now serving as director general of the Ministry of Defense, Eyal Zamir turns 58… Senior strategist and consultant at Hillel of Broward and Palm Beach, Jill Weinstock Deutch… Oakland County (Mich.) Clerk and Register of Deeds, Lisa Brown turns 57… Community scholar at The Jewish Center in Manhattan, Raizi Gruenebaum Chechik… Former middleweight boxing champion, now a credit union loan officer, Dana Rosenblatt turns 52… Retired professional tennis player, Justin Gimelstob turns 47… Actress, she hosted The CW reality series “Shedding for the Wedding,” Sara Rue turns 45… Of counsel at Morrison Cohen LLP, he was previously an Obama White House Jewish liaison, Jarrod Neal Bernstein turns 44… Senior advisor at the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and president of the Palm Collective, Tamar Remz… Former Olympic figure skater, now a business lead at Grandstand, Emily Hughes turns 35… Blues and jazz musician, Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton turns 35… Co-founder and CEO of Stealth, Fay Goldstein…
SATURDAY: Auschwitz survivor, retired professor of child psychiatry at Harvard and the University of Cincinnati, Anna Ornstein turns 97… Senior counsel focused on mergers and acquisitions in the NYC office of Fried, Frank, Arthur Fleischer turns 91… Businessman and real estate investor, Paul Sislin turns 89… Winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics, he is a professor emeritus at California Institute of Technology, Barry Clark Barish turns 88… Builder and operator of luxury casinos and hotels, Steve Wynn (born Stephen Alan Weinberg) turns 82… Corporate venture capitalist and scientist, Avram Miller turns 79… Topanga, Calif., resident, Joseph Helfer… Columbia, S.C., resident, Charles Geffen… VP at Elnat Equity Liquidity Providers, Eliezer Edelman… Professor of Medieval Judaism and Islam at the Los Angeles campus of HUC-JIR, Reuven Firestone turns 72… Cookbook author and attorney, she is a co-founder of Foundation for Jewish Camp, Elisa Spungen Bildner… Chief justice of the United States, John Roberts turns 69… Former member of the Missouri State Senate, Jill Schupp turns 69… Television writer and producer best known as the creator of “Everybody Loves Raymond,” more recently he stars in the Netflix series “Somebody Feed Phil,” Philip Rosenthal turns 64… Founder and chairman of Willoughby Capital, Daniel Och turns 63… Communications director at C-SPAN and author in 2020 of When Rabbis Bless Congress, Howard Mortman… Founder and managing member of Liberty Peak Capital and co-founder and lead investor of Multiplier Capital, Ezra M. Friedberg… CEO of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Rochester, Josh Weinstein… Editor-in-chief of The Foreign Desk, Lisa Daftari… Jerusalem-born rapper and YouTuber with 388 million views, Rucka Rucka Ali turns 37… English fashion model, Daisy Rebecca Lowe turns 35… Former college and professional basketball point guard including playing on the Israeli women’s national basketball team, she is now a coordinator at Herzl Camp in Wisconsin, Jacqui Kalin turns 35… Community engagement coordinator at the Raleigh-Cary (N.C.) JCC, Grace Kaplan… Co-founder and advisor of Quai[dot]MD, Lia Michal Weiner Tsur… Manager at Deloitte, Joshua Henderson…
SUNDAY: Long-time Baltimore area dentist now living in Jupiter, Fla., Joel I. Goldberg, DDS… Former chair of the political science department of the Hebrew University, Avraham Diskin turns 77… 26th national president of Hadassah, now chair of Hadassah’s magazine, Ellen Hershkin… U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) turns 77… Attorney and lobbyist, Kenneth Levine… Rabbi emeritus of Kehillat Israel Reconstructionist Congregation in Pacific Palisades, Steven Carr Reuben… Chairman and founder of London-based ICM Stellar Sports, Jonathan Ian Barnett turns 74… Model, actress and singer, Barbi Benton turns 74… Elayne Z. Wolf… Senior U.S. district judge for the Central District of California, he was appointed by President Clinton in 1996, Judge Dean Douglas Pregerson turns 73… Freelance writer, Rabbi Reba Carmel… NYC-based advisor and investor focusing on fintech, blockchain and emerging technologies, Donna Redel turns 71… Assistant dean and executive director at the UCLA Center for Community Engagement, Shalom David Staub… Angel investor and mentor, Mark N. Schwartz… Retired member of the New Jersey General Assembly, Amy H. Handlin turns 68… Executive director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Robert Satloff turns 62… Chairman of Genesis Philanthropy Group, Gennady Gazin turns 59… Founder and CEO of Boca Raton-based Lyons Capital LLC, Jason Lyons… Associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Amy Coney Barrett turns 52… SVP at Weber Shandwick, Ariel Bashi… Israeli theatre and movie actress, Adi Bielski turns 42… Principal at PJT Partners, Max Heller… Associate at Goldman Sachs, Perry Bloch… Actress and singer, Julia Lester turns 24…