Senator Schumer Breaks with Administration; Announces Opposition to Nuclear Pact with Iran Sen. Charles E. Schumer announced his opposition to President Obama’s nuclear pact with Iran, becoming the most senior Democrat to break ranks with the administration. The likely next leader of Senate Democrats, Schumer (N.Y.) said his three-week reading of the proposal left him unconvinced. “There is a strong case that we are better off without an agreement than with one,” he said, referring to the nuclear pact. Schumer is in line to succeed Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.), who is retiring at the end of 2016. He is also the most senior Jewish member of Congress. click Israel Matters! 94 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Israelis and Saudis Reveal Secret Iran Talks Since the beginning of 2014, representatives from Israel and Saudi Arabia have had five secret meetings to discuss a common foe, Iran. In June, the two countries revealed this covert diplomacy at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington. click Israel Matters! 93a to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Netanyahu Forms Fourth Term Government Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cemented a conservative and religious coalition that will let him re-main Israel’s leader for a fourth term, but afford little room to safeguard his government’s survival. In an unexpected epilogue to his Likud Party’s election landslide in March, the Israeli leader became embroiled in prolonged negotia-tions with coalition partners that were further complicated by a former ally’s desertion. click Israel Matters! 92 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Israel, U.S. Lawmakers Press Case Against Iran Nuclear Deal Israeli officials and congressional Republicans set high bars with exacting conditions for a nuclear accord with Iran, signaling fresh domestic and international pressure on negotiations leading up to a summer deadline. Leading Arab governments, including Saudi Arabia, cautiously accepted the landmark diplomacy with Iran. But Saudi officials said they needed more assurances that Iran’s pathway to a nuclear weapons program has been blocked. click Israel Matters! 91 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Obama Attacks Netanyahu’s Credibility Following Speech to Congress Responding to Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech, President Obama told Reuters that a deal with Iran to freeze its nuclear activity for at least 10 years, with verification measures, would be “far more effective in controlling their nuclear program than any military action we could take, any military action Israel could take and far more effective than sanctions will be.” He also said Netanyahu has been wrong before — pointing to the 2013 interim deal with Iran. click Israel Matters! 90 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Netanyahu Denounces War Crime Probe of Israel Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has again denounced the move by the International Criminal Court to launch an inquiry into possible war crimes committed against the Palestinians. In a recent televised speech, he called the move “absurd.”Netanyahu said the “ultimate folly” of the decision was that the democracy of Israel, a world leader in fighting terrorism, was being investigated by the ICC. At the same time, he said, “the terrorist criminals of Hamas” will be pressing the charges.He said he would not be surprised if the Islamic State, al-Qaida and Hezbollah followed suit. click Israel Matters! 89 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Thousands Gather in Israel for Funeral of Four Jewish Men Killed in Paris Israelis and their leaders mourned alongside the grieving families of four Jewish men killed by a gunman at a kosher supermarket in Paris in early January as they were buried at an emotional funeral in Jerusalem. Relatives of the victims spoke briefly at the service, in a mixture of French, English, and Hebrew, and lit candles in memory of their loved ones. An uncle called his nephew an angel; a wife said her husband was perfect; a son remembered that his father always wanted to live in Israel. “He’s here now,” the son said. click Israel Matters! 88 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Poll: Number of Israelis Viewing Obama as ‘Positive’ or ‘Neutral’ Drops Sharply The percentage of Israelis who believe President Barack Obama has either a “positive” or a “neutral” view of Israel has fallen steeply in the two years since his visit to Israel in the spring of 2012, according to a Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA) survey released during December. Of the respondents, 37 % said Obama has a “positive” position toward Israel, and an equal number said he had a “negative” attitude toward the country. Another 24% said he was “neutral.” click Israel Matters! 87 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Jerusalem or Israel? Supreme Court Appears Split on Passport Case A splintered US Supreme Court grappled recently with the thorny question of whether Congress exceeded its authority when it passed a law permitting the passport of an American citizen born in Jerusalem to reflect that the child had been born in Israel. Long-standing US foreign policy has been to maintain strict neutrality over the disputed status of Jerusalem. Under this policy, the passport of a citizen born in the city shows the place of birth simply as “Jerusalem,” with no mention of Israel or Palestine.click Israel Matters! 86 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.
Netanyahu: Hamas and Islamic State are "Branches of Same Poisonous Tree" In a blistering speech to the United Nations, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that Hamas and the Islamic State group are “branches of the same poisonous tree,” both bent on world domination through terror, just as the Nazis were. Netanyahu also lashed back at Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who had accused Israel of carrying out war crimes and waging a “war of genocide” during the fighting in Gaza. Netanyahu said Hamas committed “the real war crimes” in Gaza by using Palestinian civilians as human shields.click Israel Matters! 85 to read the complete issue. Will open with the free Adobe Reader or equal.