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April 6, 2018

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, APRIL 6, 2018 PAGE 15A From page 3A Democratic Party--to try to strengthen the Democratic Party's approach to Israel. But it's a real challenge. Q: What are lsrael's current challenges at 70 years? A: I think the biggest chal- lenge is Iran, both a nuclear Iran and [Iranian-supported] Hezbollah to Israel's north. Another challenge facing Is- rael-one that is really Israel's domestic problem--is how to resolve disputes between the haredi community and the modern Orthodox com- munity, and the secular com- munity. That is a very, very serious issue. And number three: how to make peace with the Palestinians, to make some kind of compromised peace with the Palestinians. Those are the issues facing Israel today. Q: As a legal expert, can you comment on the current status of the Taylor Force Act, and what impact you hope it will make regarding the United States and the Palestinians? A: The Taylor Force Act is mostly symbolic. It sends a powerful message that the United States will not toler- ate Palestinian terrorism, whether from Hamas or from the West Bank, and that the Palestinian Authority has to do a lot more to constrain it and condemn it, and not to promote it. I think a very pow- erful message needs to be sent to the Palestinians that the world and the United States will not tolerate the Palestin- ians talking out of both sides of their mouths: on the one hand, nominally condemning terrorism; and on the other hand, naming streets and parks glorifying terrorism and glorifying terrorists. So the Palestinian leadership has to make a decision about which side of the terrorism issue it's on. It can't be on both sides. Q: What is your take on Netanyahu's legal woes? A: It's very important for [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu to be able to continue with the work he's doing in terms of diplomatic successes on behalf of Israel with China, Russia, with South Africa and Africa, and I strongly oppose what I call the criminalization of political differences. If people don't like what Netanyahu is doing, then they will vote against him. But the idea of turning what he's done into crimes is very antithetical to democracy, and I'm strongly opposed [to it]. Q: What are your hopes for Israel's next seven decades? A: For Israel to get even stronger. I can imagine what the peace dividend would be if Israel were allowed to turn its swords into plowshares, its nuclear weapons into nuclear medicine. The peace dividend would be incredible. And that's why I am a strong supporter of Israel and a strong supporter of the peace process. From page 4A with North Korea, preserves, rather than dismantles, Iran's nuclear program while provid- ing Iran with the financial means to expand its regional power through its terrorist proxies. On the other hand, Bolton's actions while in office brought extraordi- nary benefit to US national security. For instance, as Bush's undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, in 2003 Bolton conceptualized and launched the Prolifera- tion Security Initiative. The purpose of the PSI was to empower nations to interdict ships suspected of carry- ing weapons of mass de- struction, delivery systems, and related materials from states and non-state actors of proliferation concern. Originally launched with 11 state members, today the PSI has 105 state members. Its members have interdicted multiple ships suspected of transferring illicit weapons systems to other states and to non-state actors. Like Trump, Bolton iS an opponent of international treaties that bind the U.S. in a manner that may be an- tithetical toits national in- terests, and prefers bilateral agreements that are tailor- made to defend America's na- tional interests. Bolton was a firm opponent of the Rome Treaty, which established the International Criminal Court. He worked avidly to vacate America's signature from the treaty. Due largely to his cogent opposition, the Bush administration de- cided not to submit the treaty to the Senate for ratification. Bolton concluded 100 bilat- eral treaties with nations committing them never to present complaints against U.S. military personnel be- fore the tribunal. Bolton's nationalist con- victions, and his refusal to join the foreign policy elite in its adoration of diplomacy over a firm, fact-based pur- suit of America's national interests lies at the heart of the foreign policy establish- ment's opposition to him. Indeed, the level of hos- tility the foreign policy establishment has directed toward Bolton over the years has been so ferocious, it is a testament to his diplomatic skills, and success, that he has managed to persevere in Washington, in and out of office for 40 years. As to the second charge by conservative critics, that Bolton is a neoconservative interventionist, the fact is that he is neither a neocon- servative nor is he a knee- jerk interventionist. Rather, Bolton supports the judi- cious use of American power in the world to advance U.S. national security and eco- nomic interests when the use of force is the best way to achieve those interests. It is true that Bolton sup- ported the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. But it is also true that he opposed the nation- building strategy that stood at the root of America's failure to achieve its aims there. It is also true that like many of the neoconserva- tives, Bolton is a firm sup- porter of Israel. However, Bolton is actually far more supportive of Israel than the neoconservatives are. As a nationalist, he supports U.S. allies because he understands that the stronger America's allies are, the better able they are to defend their interests. Since American allies--particularly Israel-- share America's interests, the more powerful they are, the more secure America's interests are, and the less the U.S. needs to assert its power abroad. Bolton urged Israel to destroy Iran's nucle- ar installations during the Obama presidency. Rather than treating Israel as what Rice referred to patroniz- ingly as America's "special friend," Bolton views Israel as America's most powerful ally in the Middle East. He op- poses Palestinian statehood and an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank. Bolton rejects the notion that American values are universally applicable, and argues that nation building and humanitarian interven- tion are both antithetical to American national security interests. Bolton's opposi- tion to nation-building and humanitarian interven- tionism was all borne out by events. As the so-called Arab Spring showed--and indeed, as Turkey's demo- cratic transformation into an Islamic theocracy also demonstrates--American values are not universal values at all. Supporting democratic processes with no concern about the values and culture those processes empower is unwise and irresponsible, and as the rise of Islamist regimes in Gaza, Egypt, Turkey, and beyond make clear, it is also antithetical to American national security interests. Bolton's healthy skep- ticism for international agreements; his support for a foreign policy that prioritizes the advance- ment of American national interests over multilateral diplomacy; and his belief that Obama's signature diplomat- ic achievement, the nuclear deal with Iran, is a disaster, all make him the senior diplomat most aligned with President Trump's America First agenda in Washington. Given the hatred Bolton inspires in the Washington swamp, it took great courage for Trump to appoint him. America and its allies will be the primary beneficiaries of this bold move. Caroline Glick is the senior Middle East Fellow at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C.; the deputy managing editor of The Jerulsaem Post; and a contributor to the Jewish World Review. From page 5A What conclusions can we draw from this survey? The most important one is that the idea that the pro -Israel consensus is fading is bunk. Israel is as popular as it has ever been in the history of American polling. While the shift of the Democratic Party to the left is troubling, the numbers also dictate that those competing for that party's presidential nomination in 2020 must realize that smart politics will compel them to stay firmly in the pro-Israel camp. There is also no evidence that Trump's willingness to move the United States closer to Israel after President Obama's eight years of seek- ing more "daylight" between the allies has discredited the pro-Israel cause. Nor is there any reason to think that Ne- tanyahu or settlements has done so, or that the youth of Americawill eventually reject Israel once their elders die. This shouldn't breedcom- placency among advocates for Israel, and it must be understood that the situa- tion elsewhere, especially in Europe, is very different. But hard as it may be for the Jewish state's critics to accept, Ameri- cans care deeply for Israel. Support for it isn't the result of a conspiracy or campaign fundraising. Americans love Israel, period. And Trump, Netanyahu, Israeli settle- ments--not even decades of Palestinian propaganda or anti-Semitism masquerading as anti-Zionism--can change that. Jonathan S. Tobin is editor in chief of JNS--the Jewish News Syndicate. Follow him on Twitter at: @jonathans tobin. From page7A It took 21 hours for 75 teens to bus in from Minne- apolis-St. Paul. They turned up outfitted in T-shirts that were colored orange for gun control and read #Dayenu, "it would have been enough" in Hebrew. At an event in a ballroom deep in the bowels of Wash- ington's Marriott Marquis hotel in the hours before the march, the NFTY lead- ership-as with the wider demonstration, the Jewish presence was largely orga- nized by teenagers--gave them permission to vent. "We march today because it's what we have to do to sleep tonight," said Zoe Terner, the social action vice president for NFTY's Southern Tropical Region. "This is how we grieve." Five of the slain at Stone- man Douglas were Jewish and the school is estimated to be 40 percent Jewish. Terner, 18, attends high school in nearby Delray Beach and has made friends from Stoneman Douglas through the movement. The night before, at a Shabbat service at Washing- ton Hebrew Congregation in the capital's Northwest quadrant, Terner pledged: "Tomorrow I will pray with my feet, and with every step, I will think of those few hours a month ago when I didn't know if my friends were alive or dead." And so they grieved by telling their stories. "I will not stand idly by the blood of my classmates," survivor Zoe Fox-Snider told the marchers gathered in the hotel ballroom Saturday morning, paraphrasing Le- viticus 19:16, "after spending two-and-a-half hours fear- ing for my life in the storage room of the media center." The evening before at Washington Hebrew, she told congregants about her thoughts in the storeroom. "I was forced to text my morn, 'I love you and ev- eryone. This is real,'" she recalled. At a media opportunity organized by NFTY, Stone- man Douglas students Talia Rumsky, 16, Charlie Good- man, 15, and Kayla Renert, 15, started an interview by talking about the Jewish values that brought them to the march. But Renert soon lapsed into remembering the day, and the others started talking over her. "We had to run past the middle school " Renert said. "We saw the SWAT team " Rumsky said. "We heard the gun- shots " Renert said. "My sister Sophie was in the middle school," Good- man said. "I had no idea what was going on." They slowed down ~nd got back to what brough: them to Washington. "Those people we ost on that day, that's whc we're here for," Rumsky sa]. "It hit home so ~ard," Renert said. "We have a lot of nrvous energy," Goodman said. "We're using this as an outlet." Rumsky later dew a placard reading "NR, stop killing my friends." Marlee Gordon, acoun- selor at Camp Colemm, the Union for Reform Jtdaism camp in Georgia atended by a number of Stmeman Douglas High studerts, re- membered when sheheard that Alyssa Alhadet was among the missinl and presumed dead. Alha&ff had been a Coleman camrer un- der another friend's charge. "He refused to believe she had died," recalled Gordon, 19, who along with two other friends at the University of Georgia kept her fellow counselor company that night. "We stayed with him all night waiting for Alyssa's name to be said on the news, so we would be there." The disciplined message, delivered to lawmakers on Friday, honed at the NFTY event on Saturday and reiter- ated again and again by the speakers at the main event on Pennsylvania Avenue, was multi-pronged. It called for a ban on the purchase and sale of assault weapons, on the sale of high-capacity maga- zines, the institution of uni- versal background checks for gun purchasers, and ending background check exemp- tions for purchases online and at gun shows. There was plenty of glitz at the march itself, including performances by Broadway stars Lin-Manuel Miranda and Ben Platt, by rapper Common and by pop stars Miley Cyrus and Ariana Grande. (The survivors on stage, who sounded so wizened, became kids again when Grande finished sing- ing "Be Alright," rushing her for selfies, which she accommodated with a grin.) There was an acutely self-aware sense of why they were able to attract that star power. "Gun violence dispropor- tionately affects people of color," said Rachel Berlowe Binder, a Duke Univer- sity student speaking at the NFTY event. "The death rate from gun violence is 10 times higher than among white children." One of the speeches that drew the loudest cheers was by Naomi Wadler, 11, from Alexandria, Virginia. "I am here today to ac- knowledge and represent the African-American girls whose stories don't make the front page of every national newspaper," said Wadler, who is African-American and Jewish. "I represent the African-American women who are victims of violence, who are simply statistics instead of vibrant, beauti- ful girls who are full of potential." There were the moments of faith. Marchers spilled out of churches along Pennsyl- vania Avenue. Edna Chavez, who lost her brother to gun violence in south Los Angeles, crossed herself as she walked on stage. Some Jewish marchers held signs emblazoned with words from Leviticus 19:16) "Do not stand idly by while your neighbor's blood is shed." (Not all the signs were so reverential. "ALTE KAHKERS STAND WITH OUR CHILDREN," read one placard, using a salty Yiddish term for the elderly.) Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld of the Orthodox Ohev Shalom Synagogue in Washington planned to walk the more than seven miles from his shul to the rally with 75 kids from around the coun- try spending Shabbat with his community. Jews and Muslims Acting Together also planned on marching, according to an organizer, Walter Ruby, carrying sings reading "Quran and Talmud say, 'If you save one life, you save the world.' Prevent Gun Violence Now!" Friday night's interfaith service at the National Cathedral began with the Washington Children's Choir singing"Al Shlosha Dvarim," a Hebrew song about the three pillars of Jewish faith. Rabbi Jonah Pesner, the director of the Reform move- ment's Religious Action Cen- ter, delivered a sermon based on Yom Kippur's A1 Cheit, a recitation of communal sins. "'Al Chet Shechatanu Lifanecha'--for being un- derstandably outraged by a mass shooting in an affluent, majority white community, and being all too silent when children of color are mur- dered every day," he said.