US: “The Earth’s Last Best Hope”
Lincoln believed that the United States is “the earth’s last best hope.”
We Americans are living proof of the truth our great President’s words. We are the elements of every particle of the rainbow. We are from every country, we are of every religion, every culture and we all watch out for each other. In our American family, we are Jews, Sikhs, Buddhists, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Hindus and all people of good faith who are and who are not affiliated with any particular religion.
Vandalism of Jewish cemeteries is a crime against our American family. A threat made to Jewish Community Centers is a crime against our American family. An attack against any faith is an attack against our American family. While the last months have seen a dangerous increase in the number of hate crimes in our nation, we Americans have learned the lessons of the prejudice that consumed Europe in the years that preceded the Second World War.
These attacks have this in common: They are the product of a volatile and dangerous combination of cowardice and hate.
As members of the New York Chapter of the National Association of Jewish Legislators, we condemn these vile acts and pledge to stand together as part of our American Family to battle against hatred and cowardice.
The death and near eradication of the European branch of our family is not lost on us. Nor have we forgotten that European governments failed to stand together in the face of the emergent hatred that was enabled to fester and result in the ritualized slaughter of 6 million defenseless Jewish civilians.
Let us all unite to protect the “earth’s last best hope.”
National Association of Jewish Legislators - NY Chapter
Age of Consent at Marriage Under Siege
Our government is looking to further involve themselves in our children’s marriages! A law voted by the NJ assembly and awaiting a Senate vote would prohibit marriage before the age of 18. Many women in the Syrian Jewish community marry young. The proposed bill http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2016/Bills/A3500/3091_R1.PDF will make such marriages illegal.
We have many happily married couples in our community that attest that this bill will only hurt us. Couples that marry before the age of 18 may be prosecuted by law.
Please contact Senator Jenn Beck and ask her not to support this bill. You can reach the senator at the following e-mail address and/or phone number.
Wants US to Recognize Golan as Part of Israel
As we’ve noted over the last few months, Donald Trump’s ascent to the Presidency portends well for Israel and us Israel advocates. On the other hand, while Mr. Trump has been quick to act on other campaign pledges, his steps to restore—and improve—the U.S. relationship with Israel have until now been optical, not substantive.
While the President’s attitude toward Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have certainly been friendly, his commitments to Israel have yet to result in concrete changes.
While it’s too early in the Trump administration to begin hard pressure, Mr. Netanyahu used his recent visit—and substantial political capital with the President—to push not for relocating the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, but for U.S. recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights. While both changes in U.S. policy would clearly benefit Israel, for many reasons, recognition of the Golan as Israeli territory would bring more benefits, both to Israel and the U.S.
Quick background: Following the Arabs’ attack on Israel in 1967, and their ignominious defeat in just six days, Israel, for security reasons, took control of the Sinai Peninsula and Gaza from Egypt, Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) from Jordan, and the Golan Heights from Syria. Since that time, Israel has made peace with Jordan and Egypt, relinquishing rights to water and lands, most notably the Sinai, which was returned to Egypt.
Syria has steadfastly resisted a reasonable deal for peace, in fact insisting on a full return of the lost Golan lands, which would lead to a security disaster for Israel. From a military standpoint, the Golan Heights provide the perfect view and attack platform over Israel’s vulnerable central Galilee plain.
Certainly the unfolding of Syria’s sorry history over the last six years has supported Israel’s refusal to relinquish this precious strategic territory. The notion of Iran’s Hizbollah terror surrogates or ISIS seizing the Golan from Syria—either of which would have been likely—represents an unthinkable existential nightmare for the Jewish state.
This week’s FLAME Hotline featured article, by Matthew Brodsky, lays out a compelling justification for the Trump administration to show leadership on the Golan question—and in the process do the United States a great favor on the Middle East chessboard.
Brodsky, senior Middle East analyst at Wikistrat and former director of policy at the Jewish Policy Center in Washington, D.C., argues that this is an opportunity for the U.S. not only to do Israel a valuable favor, but also to leverage influence against Russia and Iran.
Once you’ve reviewed this piece, we recommend you contact your Senators and Representative, recommending that they support such an action.
Finally, I hope you’ll also quickly review FLAME’s current hasbarah campaign to expose five despicable media myths about Israel’s settlements in Judea and Samaria.
President, Facts and Logic About the Middle East (FLAME)