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  • Barack Obama’s 2 farewells: Urging Americans and Israelis to defend their values

    WASHINGTON (JTA) – Barack Obama got his kishkes back. The president, whose alleged aloofness was the signature flaw cited by his rivals, his critics and at times his friends, ended his presidency with an impassioned appeal for the preservation of democracy — his lower lip trembling, a tear streaking his cheek. For sure, Obama could be…

  • DC-area rabbis urge Trump to ‘reconsider’ his campaign’s rhetoric as he starts presidency

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — Dozens of Washington-area rabbis urged President-elect Donald Trump to “reconsider” his campaign’s rhetoric and extend his agenda to all Americans. The full-page ad appearing in Tuesday’s Express, a subway giveaway newspaper published by the Washington Post, welcomes the incoming administration “to our great city.” “We expect that, first and foremost, your victory…

  • Evangelicals to push pro-Israel moves in DC as Trump presidency nears

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — Leaders of the country’s largest evangelical pro-Israel lobby are flying in to Washington, D.C., to back bills that slam the recent U.N. anti-settlements resolution and force the president to move the Israeli Embassy to Jerusalem. Some 260 members of Christians United for Israel are coming from 49 states to push the measures…

  • Reform movement expresses concerns about Jeff Sessions for attorney general

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Reform movement signaled “significant concerns” about the prospect of Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., becoming attorney general as the Senate commenced his confirmation hearings. “As the nation’s top law enforcement officer, Senator Sessions would be responsible for enforcing key civil rights laws that he has demonstrated hostility toward over more than 30…

  • Rebuke of UN shows a House divided over meaning of ‘pro-Israel’

    WASHINGTON (JTA) – Reps. Ed Royce and Eliot Engel are that Capitol Hill rarity: a Republican and a Democrat who truly have each other’s back. And nothing unites Royce, R-Calif., the chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, and Engel, D-N.Y., its top Democrat, like support for Israel. Not simply Israel –…

  • State Dept. adds 2 top Hezbollah officials to terrorist list

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — The U.S. State Department listed as designated terrorists two Hezbollah officials, including the son of a former top commander believed assassinated by Israel. A statement Monday named Ali Damush, a senior aide to the Lebanese group’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, and Mustaga Mughniyeh, the son of Imad Mughniyeh, the former chief of Hezbollah…

  • Obama: ‘No basis in fact’ to accusations US orchestrated UN anti-settlements vote

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — Accusations that the United States orchestrated last month’s U.N. Security Council anti-settlements resolution have no basis in fact, President Barack Obama said. In one of his final interviews as president, Obama spoke to Ilana Dayan, a reporter for Israel’s Channel 2, who has interviewed him in the past. The interview is to be broadcast…

  • Across the US, 16 JCCs get bomb threats in a single day

    WASHINGTON (JTA) — Bomb threats were called in to at least 16 Jewish community centers and other institutions in seven states on Monday. The calls were prerecorded in some cases and live in others, with the caller using voice disguising technology, and likely came from a single source, said Paul Goldenberg, the director of Secure…

  • John Kerry lists Iran deal, securing Israel as Obama administration foreign policy wins

    WASHINGTON (JTA) – John Kerry in his final news conference as secretary of state listed the Iran nuclear deal and securing Israel as among the Obama administration’s accomplishments. The 2015 agreement between Iran and six major powers led by the United States “is a demonstration, quite simply, of the power of diplomacy to be able…

  • House overwhelmingly approves resolution slamming UN, Obama administration

    WASHINGTON (JTA) – The U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly agreed to condemn a U.N. Security Council anti-settlements resolution and the Obama administration for allowing it through. The resolution, which passed Thursday evening  by a vote of 342-80, said the Security Council vote last month “undermined the long-standing position of the United States to oppose and…