Daily Kickoff: GOP to make Harry Reid’s life miserable over Iran; Jewish bitcoin evangelist; Q&A with Yaakov Amidror; Kerry defends himself

Josh Rogin Scoops: GOP Will Force Reid to Save Obama’s Iran Policy—Over and Over Again: “Dozens of Republican senators joined Wednesday to demand that Harry Reid allow a floor vote on a new Iran sanctions bill. If he doesn’t, they are planning to make his life miserable. Republicans plan to respond today by using an array of floor tactics—including bringing up the bill and forcing Reid to publicly oppose it—as a means of putting public pressure on Reid and Democrats who may be on the fence.” [DailyBeast] — See the letter sent to Harry Reid [Scribd] (more…)

Jewish Insider Daily Kickoff – Nov 26

Rundown – AIPAC breaks silence on Iran deal; White House reaches out to Jewish leaders; Haim Saban hosted President Obama at his house last night; Harry Reid stuck between Dem caucus and White House… 

AP – A battered Israel resumes campaign against Iran: “Having lost its battle to stop the international deal reached this week on Iran’s nuclear program, Israeli officials are already picking up the pieces and planning a fight to shape a final agreement that negotiators hope to reach in six months.” [AssociatedPress]

AIPAC – U.S. Must Prevent a Nuclear-Capable Iran: “Now that the P5+1 has inked an initial agreement with Iran, America must not only ensure full Iranian compliance but also insist that any final deal deny Tehran a nuclear weapons capability. Tough sanctions legislation passed by Congress and vigorous diplomacy pursued by the administration have brought Iran to negotiations. However, the initial agreement raises many concerns—including implicit acceptance of Iranian enrichment. Congress has provided the leverage to spur Iran to seek talks; now it must press the administration to negotiate a verifiable agreement that will prevent Iran from ever building nuclear weapons. Congress must also legislate additional sanctions, so that Iran will face immediate consequences should it renege on its commitments or refuse to negotiate an acceptable final agreement.” [AIPAC] Analysis from @Yair_Rosenberg – AIPAC is not bucking the Obama administration by pushing sanctions IF Iran violates deal. That’s the admin’s stance!  (more…)

Jewish Insider Daily Kickoff – Nov. 8

West and Iran May Be Near Nuclear Deal: “After years of fruitless negotiations, Western and Iranian diplomats are on the verge of an agreement that would freeze Tehran’s nuclear program in exchange for an easing of some economic sanctions.” [Bloomberg]

Netanyahu: Geneva offer to Iran is a ‘historic mistake’: Addressing Israeli and Diaspora leaders in Jerusalem as a new round of talks on Iran’s rogue nuclear program got under way in Geneva, Netanyahu said, the proposals “on the table in Geneva” would “ease the pressure on Iran in return for ‘concessions’ that aren’t concessions at all.” He said Israel completely oppose these proposals, which would leave Iran with a capacity to build nuclear weapons. “I believe that adopting [these proposals] would be a mistake of historic proportions. They must be rejected outright,” he added.” [TOI] (more…)

Simon Wiesenthal Center Raises Record $2.2M at Annual Dinner

The Simon Wiesenthal Center raised a record $2.2 million at its annual National Tribute Dinner held at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel Tuesday night according to The Hollywood Reporter

Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO of DreamWorks, presented Jim Gianopulos, CEO of Fox Films, with the Center’s Humanitarian Award. The list of the evening’s co-chairs included Gianopulos’ boss, Rupert Murdoch, Chase Carey, Eddy Cue, Bob Iger and Ron Meyer.

Rabbi Marvin Hier, who founded the center that furthers the work of the renowned Austrian Holocaust survivor and hunter of Nazi war criminals, said “The Center is thrilled to honor Jim Gianopulos, one of the giants of the entertainment world, for his leadership and generous support of our institution and many other worthwhile humanitarian causes.”


For his part, the 20th Century Fox Film CEO spoke of his most recent visit to the center’s Museum of tolerance on Pico Blvd. in West Los Angeles and recalled the a story involving Simon Wiesenthal himself. “When Wiesenthal was asked why he did not return (after the war) to being the architect he had worked so hard to become before the horrors of the Holocaust denied him the opportunity, he answered simply: ‘When we come to the other world and meet the millions of Jews who died in the camps and they ask us, ‘What have you done?’ There will be many answers. You will say, ‘I became a jeweler.’ Another will say, ‘I have smuggled coffee and American cigarettes.’ Another will say, ‘I built houses.’ But I will say, ‘I did not forget you’…”


“His message must be a call to action for all of us,” Gianapulos concluded, “especially for those of us who live lives so often insulated from the suffering of others, when it is easy to turn away and immerse ourselves in our work and our families and pretend it’s not our problem.”


The Wiesenthal Center’s operations include the Museum of Tolerance, classes on the Holocaust for school children across Southern California, a facility and soon-to-be-opened museum in Jerusalem, and a film division whose documentaries have won two Academy Awards. The Center has long been a favorite cause of A-list Hollywood stars and executives.


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