Skip to comments.Why The Jewish Press Is So Special
Posted on 11/30/2002 12:05:09 PM PST by alan alda
Why The Jewish Press Is So Special
The two editorials I've posted below show why The Jewish Press is the best Jewish publication going today. First, their editorial endorsing Bush in 2000 is a gem of irrefutable logic and sharp, clear writing. Second, their editorial from Dec. 2001 is an equally compelling "in your face" reminder to their fellow Jews of the heat they took for endorsing Bush the year before. These editorials are just two examples of why many Freepers -- myself included -- have been posting articles here from The Jewish Press. Every week they feature columns and articles that put forth a religiously Orthodox and politically conservative viewpoint. Their coverage of Jewish news in Israel, the U.S. and around the world is comprehensive, utilizing their own correspondents as well as such resources as the Jerusalem Post, Middle East News Line, and CNS News. The "Media Monitor" columns of the paper's senior editor, Jason Maoz, are a treasure in themselves, and if anyone wishes to sample about a year's worth of them, go to the Jewish Press website (www.jewishpress.com), scroll to the bottom of the page to "News Archive Search" and enter the name "Jason Maoz." As a politically conservative non-Jew who supports Israel, I've learned a lot from The Jewish Press, a beacon of light among all the other Jewish newspapers, which are almost without exception extremely liberal and anti-Republican.
Bush For President (Jewish Press Editorial, Nov. 3, 2000)
For The Jewish Press, determining which of the two major-party candidates we wished to see in the White House for the next four years inevitably led to a point-by-point comparison of the positions of Gov. George W. Bush and Vice President Al Gore on a series of issues of concern to the Jewish community. Certainly we are mindful of the vigorous, at times acrimonious, debate over issues of such import as the economy, Social Security, Medicare, taxes, health care, military preparedness and, of course, the overriding question of who has the greater potential for leadership in the turbulent years to come. But, frankly, most of those issues have become buried in such a morass of impenetrable rhetoric and hyperbole that while there may indeed be meaningful differences between the candidates, they are not all that easily identifiable. However, we do believe that on certain core Jewish concerns there really are discernible distinctions to be drawn. With that in mind, our choice for president this year is George W. Bush. Of course, Israel is a central concern of ours. As Americans, we are sensitive to our countrys national security interests in maintaining a stable Middle East. During the heyday of the Cold War, that region was vital to American strategic planning. Even now, years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the U.S. -- as the worlds only super power with worldwide responsibilities -- still requires constancy in that part of the world. As Jews with a special affinity to the Jewish state, we recognize that a rapprochement between Israel and its Arab neighbors is essential for Israels well-being. But this recognition is the beginning of the inquiry, not the end. The key question is not whether one favors accommodation between Arabs and Israelis, but how best to secure that accommodation. And this brings us to the posi tions of Mr. Gore and Mr. Bush. The stark reality is that the Clinton policy of unswerving support for the Oslo process despite the clear absence of reciprocity on the part of the Palestinians has brought the Middle East to the brink of war. Seven years of winking at and overlooking the failure of the Palestinian side to meet its obligations, while at the same time insisting that Israel deliver on what it promised, has led to dangerously unreasonable Palestinian expectations and the notion that at the end of the game the Palestinians will achieve their goalsthrough unilateral Israeli concessions. Not only has the above scenario allowed Arafat to avoid preparing his people for peace with Israel which was a central plank of the Oslo Accords but it also cemented in his mind, and in the minds of Palestinians generally, that there was always something more to be had beyond any Israeli offer. The Palestinian savagery visited upon Israelis , coupled with Arafats cynical celebration of the violence, serves as a graphic illustration of what should have been apparent for a very long time. The twin evils of treating Israel as something less than an ally and pressuring it to make unilateral concessions stand out as the defining mode of Oslo, and in that regard the statements of the candidates are revealing. Mr. Gore told The Jewish Press that President Clinton is the best friend Israel ever had in the White House. Questioned about whether he would continue the policy of pressuring Israel, he responded: What pressure? The president is acting only as an honest broker and in any event, consistent with the wishes of the Israeli govern ment. In truth, this response is the typical refrain of those in the Jewish community who have championed Oslo. Yet who among us can forget President Clintons savaging of Prime Minister Netanyahu when the latter insisted on reciprocity? Mr. Netanyahu was regularly disparaged in public statements from the president and Secretary of State Albright on down. And the presidents engineering of the electoral victory of Ehud Barak among other things, he shamefully dispatched his political pit bull James Carville to aid Baraks campaign hardly reflects a policy of support for the will of the people of Israel. And there is another important factor to be taken into account. In recent years, some extraordinarily wealthy members of the Jewish community, major contributors to the Democratic Party, have become part of a cadre of Jewish advisers to President Clinton. They happen to be strong supporters of Oslo, which is their right. But the problem they have created is that they have served to provide cover for the president in his reliance on Oslo to the detriment, we believe, of Israel. Yet these are the very individuals one was actually reported to have told President Clinton at a dinner that then-Prime Minister Netanyahu was not interested in peace with the Palestinians who no doubt will play the same role with a Gore Administration and continue to preclude input from other elements in the American Jewish community. So with respect to Israel, we fear that a Gore presidency would mean more of the same slavish obeisance to Oslo and more of the same cover provided by fat cat Jewish donors. This is not to suggest that Mr. Gore is anti-Israel, only that he seems ready to continue policies that have proven so disastrous. On the other hand, though we were disappointed that Gov. Bush did not make the Middle East more of an issue in the campaign, we did note that whenever he was asked about the U.S. role in the Middle East, he invariably replied that he believes in standing with an ally and in allowing the parties to resolve their differences without having solutions imposed upon them. A review of the candidates respective positions on a variety of other issues as well leads us to urge support for Gov. Bush. Soon after he was selected as Mr. Gores running mate, Senator Joseph Lieberman suddenly changed his stand on a whole host of matters -- including moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem -- doubtless to bring them into line with those of the head of the ticket. Thus he became an advocate of affirmative action, gay rights and outreach to Louis Farrakhan. He no longer opposed late-term abortions and became more tolerant of Hollywoods vulgar standards. And he became a staunch opponent of tuition vouchers. When one engages in this sort of analysis, it be comes clear that Gov. Bush is in sync with many of us in the Jewish community, and it is unfortunate that the advent of Mr. Lieberman seems to have persuaded Mr. Bush not to actively court the Jewish vote -- a decision reflected in the relatively low level of his poll support among Jews. We are aware that not everyone in the Jewish community agrees with our views, but we rather think that Governor Bush overlooked a significant source of possible support. Although it is now late, it may not be too late for him to seek more support in the American Jewish community. All things considered, the prudent choice for president this year is, in our view, Gov. George W. Bush.
Vindication (Jewish Press Editorial, Dec.19, 2001)
It is no secret that there were many people who were very unhappy when The Jewish Press endorsed George W. Bush for President. Indeed, as far as we can tell we were the only Anglo-Jewish publication to do so. We received countless letters from irate readers and organizational types who were aghast that we would fail to support Al Gore who after all chose a member of the Jewish faith and an ostensibly Orthodox one at that as his running mate. Nor could they understand how we could think of urging Jews to vote for someone they just knew was itching to continue the policies of the senior George Bush and his Secretary of State James Baker, who made no secret of his disdain for the State of Israel. It was frustrating to us that few of our critics seemed willing to credit the reasons in terms of both foreign and domestic issues we gave in our editorial endorsement which we continue to believe made out a compelling case for supporting Mr. Bush the younger. In any event, as our front-page story this week indicates, a new poll just published reports that most American Jews have come around to our way of thinking. The poll, which surveyed 400 registered Jewish voters from November 28 to 29 shows that President Bush`s approval rating at 80%, which is four times the percentage of Jewish votes he received in November 2000. The poll also discloses that in a proposed rematch with Al Gore, the President was shown to double his share of the Jewish vote to 42% compared to 39% for Mr. Gore. Key Bush administration officials also received high marks: Secretary of State Colin Powell received a 79% favorable rating; Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 76%; and Attorney General John Ashcroft, 54%. Doubtless the current poll results reflect the President`s forthright support for Israel`s right to defend itself against Arafat`s terrorists, in much the same manner as we are pursuing the war against Osama bin Laden and his cohorts. And one cannot help but compare this principled stand with the probable fence-straddling and perhaps worse, of a President Gore following in the steps of his mentor, Bill Clinton, the architect of the current predicament.