- Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahar tells Bloomberg he "isn’t expecting U.S. policy to change under President-elect Barack Obama":
“He is 100 percent pro-Israeli and his positions are unacceptable,” Zahar said.
- Ori Nir of Americans for Peace Now, writing in the Washington Times, says "the current comeback of the Arab League’s peace initiative is a big deal":
If the Obama administration is looking for a good place from which to launch its Mideast peace efforts, this is it: Push Israel to impose a real, full settlement freeze while working with the Arab world to animate the Arab peace initiative.
- Current White House chief of staff John Bolten brought 11 former White House chiefs of staffs together to meet with incoming Obama COS Rahm Emanuel. Politico notes the site of the meeting:
Bolten, who is Jewish and a motorcycle aficionado, set the tone by hosting the get-together in an office that is currently dominated by a Christmas tree bedecked with Harley-Davidson ornaments and pipes instead of a star on top.
- CNN reports liberal and gay rights groups are not happy over the selection of Pastor Rick Warren to give the invocation at Barack Obama’s inauguration. And abortion rights advocates are upset over a recent interview Warren gave to Beliefnet:
"Don’t tell me it should be rare," he said in the interview. "That’s like saying on the Holocaust, ‘Well, maybe we could save 20 percent of the Jewish people in Poland and Germany and get them out and we should be satisfied with that — I’m not satisfied with that. I want the Holocaust ended."
- Jewish activist Menachem Rosensaft, in the Huffington Post, defends Caroline Kennedy:
We have yet to hear a single substantive criticism of her ability, her intellect, or her political views. As Senator, she would most probably make education her signature issue. She would also continue Senator Clinton’s commitment to women’s and children’s health issues. This is not only commendable, but would be of enormous value to New Yorkers and Americans alike.