Political Tidbits: Obama to tap Mitchell, Peres not worried


The Washington Post reports that Barack Obama plans to tap former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell to serve as a Middle East envoy. Ed Lasky rounds up some reaction and weighs in himself.

Shimon Peres says he isn’t worried about Barack Obama meeting with Iran.

Time magazine points out the all-Protestant lineup for today’s inaugural (of course the publication should look in the mirror about its headline): "That’s because for the sixth straight presidential Inauguration, rabbis won’t have a place on the dais. And the Jewish faith isn’t the only religious tradition that continues to be snubbed. Since 1985, only Evangelical Protestants have played a part in the swearing-in ceremony. That will continue again this year when megachurch pastor Warren delivers the invocation and the Rev. Joseph Lowery, an African-American Evangelical, offers the benediction. At a time when the United States is more religiously diverse than at any other point in its history, and Obama’s entire campaign was built on the notion of a newfound inclusiveness and multiculturalism, it seems a glaring omission."

Jewess isn’t all that upset about the all-male rabbinic trio due to speak at Wednesday’s prayer service (though she overstates the case about this journalist’s feelings on the matter): "I see it merely as a telling indication of the state of Jewish rabbinical leadership."

Ha’aretz columnist Akiva Eldar says he isn’t excited: "Unfortunately, Israelis and Palestinians will watch the swearing-in ceremony of Obama with a growing sense of, "No we can’t" and "Change: We don’t believe in it."

Ynet columnist Levi Brackman tells Barack Obama to give up on a two-state solution: "The road to peace in the Middle East does not go through Gaza City or Ramallah. It goes through Amman and Cairo. As Barack Obama takes over as president of the United States he needs to break from Bush’s failed concept of a two state solution and begin knocking on doors in Cairo and Amman instead."

USA Today reports that Muslims aren’t so excited about Obama anymore.

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