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November 29, 2013

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, NOVEMBER 29, 2013 PAGE 5.A HERITAGE encourages readers to send in their opin- ions for the Viewpoint column. They must be signed; however, names will be withheld upon request. Due to space limitations, we reserve the right to edit, if neces- sary. Opinions printed in Viewpoint do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the paper. Should Congress enact further sanctions on Iran? By Howard Lefkowitz opportunity to reverse their directions. The fact that the Providingaproperresponse U.S. proved to be a tooth- is like being caught in the less tiger in the handling of horns of a dilemma. The real North Korea didn't help the issue is a combination of first, situation, either. U.S. foreign howtoavoidwar;second, how policy with respect to the toinhibit Iran fromnucleariz- "Arab Spring"; the bailout of ingweaponry; and, third, how Afghanistan (whichwe should to impact Iran to become less never have been this deeply of a terrorist outreach state, embedded anyway); the U.S. Iassessthepragmaticgoals insistence in re-awakening in the following order: an Israeli-Palestinian peace First priority is to keep program; the U.S. naivety in Iran from a nuclear weapon, dealing with Russia's Putin; Unfortunately, there's no and any variety of other practical way, short of all-out foreign policy missteps, have war, to keep Iron from having all led to Iranian confidence nuclear capabilities. Had the that they could proceed with U.S. taken them on seriously nuclear development with five or eight years ago, when impunity. That calculation they were substantially not has proven to be correct. as far along the nuclear de- Further, the calculation veiopment process, had less that continued effort to fortified facilities, had less develop nuclear weaponry investment, andstillhada fear would remain unchallenged, of the U.S.'s incursions into even in the wake of the most the Middle East to effectuate successful sanctions regime serious changes, thenperhaps in world h!story, has proven there would have been an to be correct. Iran must have assumed that once sanctions stopped the development of or South America). Alas, that So, where are we now? Ne- were proving cohesive within missile delivery development appearstobeoutsidethescope tanyahu has played a brilliant the international community, and refinement, which is of the "nuclear negotiations," game of undermining the it was only a matter of time already substantially down regardless of the successful credibility of the U.S.position until they would be forced the road, and about which sanctions, by directly enlisting help from to capitulate something, you hear absolutely nothing Should the U.S. Congress other U.S. allies in toughen- Therefore, the further down discussed in reporting on the hold off from approval of ing up the P5+1 negotiating the road they could move, the negotiations. Iran has always implementation of more position. Even the Saudi's and better their positionwouldbe demonstrated "patience''.in sanctions? Absolutely not. the Emirates are on Israel's for giving up something, but the attainment of their ulti- Notwithstanding Kerry'sside. France is happy to be not everything. Again, that mate goals, andwill continue comment about not thinking there after Obama embar- assumption will prove to be tofollowthatmostsuccessful of himself as "stupid," the rassed them so badly on his correct, particularly when path in the attainment of best position for hardcore back down regarding Syria. viewed in two lights: one, the nuclear weaponry, negotiation is the black hat/ No doubt Netanyahu and his original goalwas to keep Iran So, thatbegsanotherques- white program. Let Irancabinet weighed deeply the frombeingnuclearanything; tion: Doyou use the current think that Congress canimpacthisactionswouldhave and secondly, the Obama negotiations to dissuade Iran further impact the removal on the relationship with the administration had tacitly, from acting as the terrorist- of sanctions, particularly as U.S. However, youcanbetthat now explicitly acknowledged sponsored state that it is Iran sees how fractured and thefeelingwasthatU.S.public Iran's right to have"peaceful" known to be? I've yet to hear, weak the administration and support, together with U.S. nuclear capability, read, orassumeanythingthat legislative branchesappear to congressional support would Short of a war (which I would convince me that the therestoftheworld. Theaddi- outlive the Obama adminis- don'tthinkwillhappenwithin questionofliftingsanctionsis tionalpressureIranmaythink tration embarrassment and my lifetime) Iran will end up tied in any way to a modifica- they're going to be subjected anger. Plus, Netanyahu has wi~h nuclear capabilities; tionofIran'scurrentactivities to can only work in the P5+1 convinced the world that he will openly agree to limit any within the world. Why the favor. Also, there's no reason isn't kidding about attacking developmentofnuclearweap- Obamaadministrationfailsto the P5+lshouldn't thinkthat Iran and that only the U.S. so ons; and will do exactly what broadenthesanctionsdiscus- the U.S. can act as "rogue," farhasheldhimback...trueor Germany did after WWI: lay sions to trade off"other con- too. The secret may be in the not. The other thing worth low on any weapons develop- cessions," is beyond my corn- "timing"ofthe newsanctions thinking about is the Israeli ment until such time as the prehension. Again, short ofa implementation, and using philosophy to negotiation world has other things with direct threatofwar, whichthe that as awedge for obtaining with the Arabs: Always ask which to be concerned, and Iranians know the U.S. won't timely concessions. Willthat for way more than you think then commence to covertly wage, andwhichthey assume possibly push Iran over the you're going to give; always start the higher level enrich- Israel won't undertake with- cliff toward war? I highly carryabigstick;andwhenyou ment process, which will ul- out U.S. support, there is no doubt it. With sanctions in back down, you're still ahead timatelybewitnessedovertly, overt threat to force them to place and effective, they're of what your true goals origi- Theyarewiseenoughtoknow changetheirbehavior, beyond probably too weak to sustain nallywere. Ihighlydoubtthat that once the sanctions are sanctions. Is it inconceivable asubstantial, long-termbattle the U.S. Department of State, softened or lifted altogether, that Iran couldn't be cajoled position. Further, they know and certainly not the EU's the sanctions are highly into changing some political that war will destroy the vast Catherine Ashton, entered unlikely to be reinstated on activity within Syria, Iraq, or majority of nuclear facilities these negotiations under the such a broad international Lebanon? (Forget the terror- they already invested in. same tactical philosophy. coalition basis. During that ist positions being fomented "War" is a red-herring argu- period, Iran will never have within sub-Saharan Africa, ment. Viewpoint on page 14A A monthly update from Olga Yorish Celebrating the Festival of Lights Thisyear, thestarsaligned! stemming from the differ- The first day of Chanukah encesbetweentheJewishand and Thanksgiving fall on the the Gregorian calendars, but same day! Accordingto'many let's rather think about the calculations, it is the rarest of meaning and the message occasions that will not be re- behind this coincidence. peated for many, manyyears. Just like everything in It is fascinating to delve into Jewishlife, the unique conver- calculations and assumptions gence makes sense and comes at avery important time when many of us, spurred by recent demographic revelations, worry about the survival and the future of the Jewish people in America. When Chanukah falls on or near Christmas, it confuses non-Jews as well as many Jews HERITAGE welcomes and encourages let- ters to the editor, but they must be typed or printed and include name and phone number. We will withhold your name if you so request. Please limit letters to 250 words. Due to space limitations, we reserve the right to edit letters. Send letters to P.O. Box 300742, Fern Park, FL 32730. Or e-mail to A 'thank you' to all who contributed to the JCC project Dear Editor: the JCC, Federation and our Now that the Roth Renova- synagogue. Having the JCC tion Project nears completion allowed Us to see our children withafabulousnewcourtyard have fun while learning to be playground, I would like to Jews and part of the Jewish thank all community mem- community.Aperfectexample bers who generously donated was this last Saturday evening to the project. Along with the when we dropped our son at playground, the revitalized the J for basketball and our campus features a renovated daughter for a movie, and pool area, a resurfaced and we attended the Jewish Film relit outdoor basketballcourt, Festival sponsored by the JCC resurfaced tennis courts and and Federation with friends auditorium improvements, we met through the J. All of these components make I am confidentthatwe share the whole campus greater the universal desire of project than the sum of its parts and donors to facilitate present promote sustainability as a and future generations being vibrant and vital community partofastrong, vibrantJewish hub. community. When my wife, Caryn, I wish to thank my RRP and I moved to Orlando in Committee co-chairman 1999, we were grateful to AndyKleimanandcommittee meet many friends through members Jodi Krinker and Mark Chaet for being great to work with. This project was birthed at the JCC board that carefully and passionately reviewedoptions forvitalizing the campus. The committee members met their respon- sibility in getting the project accomplished. Special thanks goes to Tomer Taggert and Matt Klein who assisted in.negotiating the financing with the Jew- ish Capital Alliance (JCA), and for making sure that the J was properly budgeted. I can report that the budget attached to the loan called for $360,000 in pledges and we received $360,000 in written pledges. Scott Richman, who succeeded Tomer as President when Tomer's family made Aliyah to Israel, has my thanks for supporting this Project while also working to achieve remarkable growth at the Rosen Campus. This was the JCA's first project and its professional- ism and support were vital. Howard Lefkowitz and Ed Kleiman made invaluable sug- gestions, and Dan Williams re- ailyworked cooperativelywith the JCC's Executive Director David Wayne. It should also be mentioned that the Federation board responded positively to our into thinking that these two plightofthePilgrimswhofled odds, about the victory of holidays are-related, that they their country ofbirthseeking the few over the many, the are just two "winter holidays" anewfuturewithoutreligious weak over the mighty, the withrequiredgiftsandparties, oppression. And that is also spiritual over the material. And so over the years Chanu- the story of Chanukah--the Let's understandand focus on kahhasbecomeallaboutshop- story of how we fought back what we are celebrating: the ping, wrapping, and eating, against religious oppression triumphofJewishvalues over This year's Thanksgivukkah in our own land, earned our an attempt to outlaw Jewish puts a stop to the dangerous freedom and thanked G-d for practice, and the miracle of a blurring of two distinct reli- the miracles, little bit of oil--just enough gious traditions. And so it is, both Chanukah to last a day--that burned for Unlike most American and Thanksgiving are about eight days and nights. holidays, Thanksgiving has gratitude for what we've Each year, Chanukah retained its original signifi- recei.ved...and showing our brings light into our lives. cance for most people. Many gratitude by giving to others At the Jewish Federation Americans (including meand food, gifts and sustenance of Greater Orlando, we are my family) identify with the from our heart, proud of everything we do, Why do we still light Cha- with the help of our generous nukah candles and teach our community, to bringwarmth children about the struggle andlighttotheJewishpeople. of a Jewish community that Becauseofyourgenerositywe lived thousands of years ago? are able to help people here in It is to teach them about our Central Florida, in Israel and religious survival against all around the world. project mission, and that chairmen Michael Soll and Ryan Lefkowitz donated gen- erously to the project. This community is some- times distracted by one issue or another, that we seem surprised that every outside visitor to the campus remarks with astonishment on our busy and full campus. The vision here is to have JCC's creative and dedicated staff work with our members, the Federation, JAO, HMREC and the synagogues to use the campus even more. We already have very successful Summer Swim Parties that enable young families to form bonds while the kids have fun in a shaded kiddie pool and resurfaced main pool. Going forward, Federa- tion can expand the "Shalom Orlando" concept by holding a pool and basketball barbe- cue. Synagogues can have a pool and sports parties for its members. The JAO can field a swim team. There can be basketball parties after the synagogues have Sunday school or hold services. Many possibilities, and I personally look forward to seeing com- munity members work toward their realization. Daniel H. Coultoff Lake Mary YOU CAN'T BLAME AM ICA'S DECLINE ON THE INEPTITUDE OF ONE MAN 0 0 Z 0 m Q TO BE LABEL A RACIST AND L LAMOPHOBIC