Zio-Watch News Round-up

Dr. Patrick Slattery’s News Roundup, January 2, 2015



From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

U.S. diplomats attacked by stone-throwing Israeli settlers

(JTA) — Jewish settlers stoned the cars of U.S. diplomats investigating vandalism to Palestinian-owned olive groves in the West Bank.

The convoy of U.S. consular officials was attacked Friday as it approached Adi Ad, an Israeli settlement. U.S. security guards exited the cars after the rocks were thrown and pointed their guns at the Israeli settlers, according to The Times of Israel. But an Israeli police spokeswoman told Reuters that the U.S. delegation did not draw their weapons, though they also did not coordinate their investigation with local Israeli officials. The U.S. Embassy declined to comment.

No one was injured in the incident.

U.S. officials reportedly were looking for examples of vandalism after residents of the Palestinian village of Turmus Ayya claimed Israeli settlers had destroyed thousands of olive tree saplings in recent weeks.
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From the Jewish Daily Forward

How Mario Cuomo Connected With Both Orthodox and Secular Jews

Teenage ‘Shabbos Goy’ Learned Vulnerability of the Faithful

By Ron Kampeas

Published January 02, 2015.
(JTA) — Mario Cuomo, the three-term New York governor who died Thursday, was the rare politician who appealed to the Jewish tent’s opposite poles.

A strident liberal with a nuanced understanding of the sense of vulnerability among the deeply religious in a secular society, Cuomo died of heart failure just hours after his son Andrew was sworn in for his second term as governor. He was 82.

Lopsided Jewish support helped propel Cuomo into the governor’s office three times, in 1982, 1986 and 1990. The state’s large Jewish community joined other liberal constituencies in celebrating the man who emerged in the 1980s as the most prominent vanguard against President Ronald Reagan.
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From the Jewish Daily Forward

When Mario Cuomo Did Grossinger’s — With Ed Koch

By Masha Leon

Mario Cuomo as he appeared in Karen Leon’s 1987 cartoon

I first met Mario Cuomo, the former New York State governor who died at 82 on Thursday, at Grossinger’s in the Catskills in 1982. He and Ed Koch were debaters before the New York State Broadcasters Association Annual Conference. Hearing of my Forward connection, Koch told me outright “tell your readers to rush to the polls and vote.”
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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Dershowitz denies sex charges

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Alan Dershowitz firmly denied allegations that he engaged in sexual activity with a minor employed by a client.

Dershowitz declared “totally, unequivocally and completely false” allegations that he had sex with the former staffer for investor Jeffrey Epstein.

Dershowitz was named in a lawsuit charging that federal prosecutors in Florida broke the law by granting Epstein a plea deal to avoid a federal prosecution, Politico reported on Dec. 31.

According to a court filing quoted by Politico, Epstein forced the woman, referred to as Jane Doe #3, to have sex with Dershowitz, among other men.
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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Members of Congress warn of repercussions for Palestinian ICC move

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Republican and Democratic lawmakers said there would be repercussions for the Palestinian Authority in the wake of its joining the International Criminal Court.

“Congress must do everything in its power to block funds to the P.A. and to any U.N. entity that recognizes a non-existent State of Palestine to make it clear to Abu Mazen that there will be consequences to his schemes at the United Nations and other international organizations like the International Criminal Court,” Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), the chairwoman of the U.S. House of Representatives Middle East subcommittee, said in a Dec. 31 statement.

Abu Mazen is the nickname of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who signed the treaty on Dec. 31.
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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Zeldin: Scalise speech to supremacist group won’t harm GOP among Jews

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The sole Jewish Republican in the incoming Congress said a speech by a party leader to a white supremacist group would not harm the party.

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) responded on Dec. 30 to revelations that Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.), the majority whip in the incoming U.S. House of Representatives, spoke in 2002 to a group with ties to white supremacist David Duke.

“This doesn’t undercut Republican progress towards reaching minorities and the Jewish community,” Zeldin said in a statement to The Hill, a daily covering Congress.

Scalise’s comments are clouding the Republican triumph in November elections, when the party gained seats in the House and seized control of the Senate from Democrats.
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From the Jewish Daily Forward

Is Ted Cruz a Big Draw in Kosher Vacationland?

By Anthony Weiss

(JTA) — Imagine your ideal Passover getaway. What would it include? Sandy beaches? Emerald green fairways? Kosher haute cuisine? Sen. Ted Cruz?

If the Prime Hospitality Group is any judge, you’ll want all of those things. Especially the last one.

Politico is reporting that the Prime Group, which specializes in offering lavish getaways for religiously observant Jews, is billing the firebrand Texas senator as a prime attraction for its 2015 Passover packages. Prime lists Cruz as a featured speaker for vacationers at high-end destinations including Aspen, Colo.; Westlake Village and Monach Beach, Calif.; and Vieques Island, Puerto Rico, alongside prominent rabbis such as Jonathan Sacks and Marvin Hier, and top communal officials like Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations Executive Vice Chairman Malcolm Hoenlein.

A Cruz adviser told Politico that the senator would only be speaking once, at Monarch Beach, suggesting that “well-meaning program organizers overstated his participation.” But the fact that Prime Group is eager, or even over-eager, to tout Cruz to its well-heeled, kosher-observant clientele suggests that Cruz is successfully carving out a niche for himself in the Jewish world, and that, in turn could have major repercussions for the 2016 presidential race.

The National Review has reported that Cruz’s strategy for 2016 is to focus his efforts to win over the conservative base, millennials, Hispanics and Jews. To the latter end, Cruz has worked assiduously to court Jewish power brokers. In a recent trip to New York, Cruz met with heavy hitters that included casino magnate and major GOP funder Sheldon Adelson, former Presidents Conference Chair Mort Zuckerman, and philanthropist Michael Steinhardt, and spoke at an awards dinner for the Zionist Organization of America. He has also brought his staunch pro-Israel rhetoric to less friendly venues, as when he was booed off the stage at a September gala to support Mideast Christians. (A number of conservative commentators suggested that Cruz may have cynically picked the fight to draw attention.)

Read more: http://blogs.forward.com/forward-thinking/211883/is-ted-cruz-a-big-draw-in-kosher-vacationland/?#ixzz3NjGxvA3F
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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Israel: ‘Deep disappointment’ in France’s U.N. vote on Palestine

(JTA) — Israel said it was “deeply disappointed” with France’s U.N. Security Council vote for Palestinian statehood.

Aviv Shir-On, the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s deputy director for Europe, communicated Israel’s disappointment on Friday in a meeting with Patrick Maisonnave, France’s ambassador to Israel, according to news reports.

A Jordanian bid to pass a resolution on Palestinian statehood failed this week to garner the necessary nine out of 15 votes necessary for adoption. The United States promised it would veto the resolution if it crossed that threshold.

France was among the eight nations voting in favor of the resolution. In the past, European nations abstained from voting for Palestinian statehood.
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From the Jewish Telegrapic Agency

Islamic leader to visit Temple Mount mosques

(JTA) — The secretary general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation plans to visit the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

Iyad bin Amin Madani will be in Jerusalem on Monday, according to the OnIslam news site.

Clashes over Muslim and Jewish access to the Temple Mount have erupted in recent months.

Madani has urged Muslims to visit Al Aqsa mosque to “confirm that this mosque is a part of their faith.”
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