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Tags: Israel | Policy | Faulty | Strategy | NRCC Scolds PACs | Al Gore | Hillary Clinton

ADL: Obama's Israel Policy a 'Faulty Strategy'

By    |   Monday, 26 April 2010 12:11 PM

Insider Report

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. ADL: Obama’s Israel Policy a ‘Faulty Strategy’
2. Al Gore Targeting Youth
3. NRCC Scolds PACs Over Donations to Democrats
4. Texas Town Quiet in Post-Bush Years
5. Hillary Says Her Job ‘Wears You Out’
6. Murdoch Launching War Against NY Times
7. We Heard: FreedomWorks, Sarah Palin

1. ADL: Obama’s Israel Policy a ‘Faulty Strategy’

The Anti-Defamation League has taken issue with comments from President Barack Obama that the ADL says reflect a “significant shift” in U.S. policy toward Israel and the peace process.

During his closing remarks and press conference following the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington on April 13, Obama said about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: “Not only is it in the interests of each party to resolve these conflicts, but it’s also in the interest of the United States. It is a vital national security interest of the United States to reduce these conflicts.”

ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman issued this statement in response: “The significant shift in U.S. policy toward Israel and the peace process, which has been evident in comments from various members of the Obama Administration and has now been confirmed by the president himself in his press conference at the Nuclear Security Summit, is deeply distressing.

“Saying that the absence of a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict undermines U.S. interests in the broader Middle East and the larger issue of resolving other conflicts is a faulty strategy. It is an incorrect approach on which to base America's foreign policy in the Middle East and its relationship with its longtime friend and ally, Israel.

“The net effect of this dangerous thinking is to shift responsibility for success of American foreign policy away from Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt and directly onto Israel.

“It is particularly disturbing in light of the blatantly disproportionate number and the nature of statements issued by this administration criticizing Israel as compared to what has been said about the Palestinians.

“The best way to move the peace process between the Israelis and Palestinians forward is for all parties to demand that the Palestinians abandon their tactic of ‘just saying no’ and insist that the rest of the Arab world move toward normalization of relations with Israel.”

Editor's Note:

2. Al Gore Targeting Youth

An environmental group founded by former Vice President Al Gore has launched an effort to enlist young people in his crusade to deal with the “climate crisis.”

The effort, called Inconvenient Youth, was initiated on Thursday, Earth Day, by The Climate Project, Gore’s Nashville, Tenn.-based group.

“Inconvenient Youth is built on the belief that teens can help lead efforts to solve the climate crisis,” Gore said in a statement.

“It will give this generation — which has a unique stake in this issue — a chance to organize and exchange ideas with other young people who want to do their part to address the climate crisis.

“Perhaps most importantly, this initiative was inspired by youth and shaped by youth with their unique viewpoint guiding it forward.”

The name “Inconvenient Youth” plays off the title of Gore’s book and documentary film “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Teens who want to get involved can go to Inconvenient Youth’s website before May 15 and apply to be taught by Gore at The Climate Project’s next training session in June, The Tennessean reports.

Teens who are selected will present a slide show to their communities based on Gore’s latest book, “Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis.”

The Climate Project, begun in 2006, claims to have more than 3,000 presenters worldwide.

Editor's Note:

3. NRCC Scolds PACs Over Donations to Democrats

A top official with the National Republican Congressional Committee chided a gathering of political action committee representatives for giving too much money to Democrats during this election cycle.

NRCC Deputy Chairman Greg Walden “asked people to be very strategic and practical, to take a look at their giving patterns and just don’t mindlessly give,” said a source who attended the gathering at the Capitol Hill Club, a Republican social club, in mid-April.

Roll Call reported, “While Walden stopped short of threatening the PAC executives with political retribution, a source in attendance observed that his point was clear: ‘Republican leadership is watching.’”

Walden reportedly sought to convince the PAC representatives that a Republican majority in Congress is better for the business community than a Democratic majority.

One organization cited by Roll Call, the American Health Care Association PAC, had through Feb. 1 given only 27 percent of its $582,000 in donations to Republican candidates and committees.

The National Community Pharmacists Association through Feb. 1 had given just 35 percent of its political donations to Republican political committees.

“Over the past few election cycles, Democrats have been on the receiving end of the overwhelming majority of PAC contributions,” NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain said in a statement.

The source told Roll Call: “There was an initial leap last year with all of these PAC budgets to get left real quick, and a lot of them did. You’re starting to see a shift.

“It’s a combination of the environment changing and a dissatisfaction with the government.”

Editor's Note:

4. Texas Town Quiet in Post-Bush Years

The small town of Crawford, Texas, took a place on the world stage after George W. Bush bought a ranch nearby shortly before winning the presidency in 2000.

The town of 750 people played host to foreign heads of state and was thronged with journalists, protesters, and White House officials whenever President Bush was at his 1,400-acre ranch.

But now that Bush has bought a $3 million house in Dallas and spends most of his time there, the glory days of Crawford are long gone.

The town once boasted five souvenir shops. Now all but one are closed, The New York Times reports.

Popular items at The Red Bull, the one remaining shop, are coasters emblazoned with “The Western White House” and bumper stickers with Bush’s likeness that read “Do You Miss Me Yet?”

The former president spends much of his time these days planning his presidential library at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. But he does visit his ranch on occasion to ride his mountain bike or fish for bass, according to the Times.

Carter Blenden, a waiter at a local restaurant, said, “Ever since he got that new place in Dallas, he hasn’t been around much.”

Gone too is anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who launched an extended protest against the Iraq war from a makeshift camp near the Bush ranch.

Editor's Note:

5. Hillary Says Her Job ‘Wears You Out’

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton admits that the constant travel demanded by her job has begun to take a toll.

“It wears you out,” Clinton told Esquire magazine.

“The jet lag, the dry air on planes, the whole ‘If it’s Tuesday, I must be in . . .’ kind of thing.”

But Hillary said she has the stamina it takes to keep up with the demands.

“I do have good stamina and resilience. But you would think, in the world in which we live today, that with instantaneous communications, that you wouldn’t need to travel as much.

“But in fact, you almost have to travel more, both because everybody knows you can get on an airplane and get to where they’re expecting you, but also because it’s almost as if the virtual reality cries out for the real relationships to be affirmed.”

Clinton traveled a quarter of a million miles during her first year in office, according to Esquire. This past week she attended a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Estonia.

Editor's Note:

6. Murdoch Launching War Against NY Times

Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal is launching a New York section on Apr. 26 in an effort to snatch some of the ailing Times’ local ad revenue.

The move comes as the Times struggles to dig out from under crushing debt. The New York Times Co. last year had to pay Mexican industrialist Carlos Slim 14 percent for a $250 million loan, and servicing the loan costs the Times $35 million a year even though the paper’s balance sheet shows just $36.5 million in cash, Bloomberg Businessweek reports.

The Times derives 44 percent of its weekday circulation from the New York City area, compared to the Journal’s 15 percent, and the Journal aims to attract the department store and luxury ads that are the mainstay of the Times.

Murdoch’s venture “is aimed at kicking the Times when it’s down,” said media analyst Alan D. Mutter.

“The Times will try to compete with as much resource as it can muster. But you have to pay Carlos first.”

Murdoch’s not one to shy away from battle. He said at the National Press Club: “We’ve been involved in all type of media wars, yes, and I’ve enjoyed them.”

Editor's Note:

7. We Heard . . .

THAT Lance Baxter, whose voice has been heard in GEICO television commercials, has been fired by the insurance company after he left a voice mail insulting the tea party organization FreedomWorks.

Baxter asked in his voice mail what are “the percentage of people that are mentally retarded who are working for FreedomWorks and who are following it?”

He also asked how FreedomWorks will “spin it when one of your members does actually kill somebody,” according to NPR.com.

After he was axed by GEICO, Baxter — who has an acting career under the name D.C. Douglas — wrote in a blog that sending the voice mail was “stupid,” but he maintained that the tea party movement has been guilty of encouraging hate speech.

THAT Vice President Joe Biden had some surprising comments about his 2008 Republican rival Sarah Palin during an appearance on “The View” Thursday morning.

“If you meet her, she is a charming person,” he said. “I say this and people look at me like I’m kidding. I like her.”

Asked if he thought the former Alaska governor posed a threat to Democrats in 2012, Biden said: “The governor says she’s not running. I don’t know what she’s going to do. I’m sure whoever the Republican nominee is, it will be a very contested race.”

Editor's Note:

Editor's Notes:

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Insider Report Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. ADL: Obama s Israel Policy a Faulty Strategy 2. Al Gore Targeting Youth3. NRCC Scolds PACs Over Donations to Democrats4. Texas Town Quiet in Post-Bush Years5. Hillary Says Her Job Wears You Out 6. Murdoch...
Israel,Policy,Faulty,Strategy,NRCC Scolds PACs,Al Gore,Hillary Clinton,Murdoch,FreedomWorks,Sarah Palin
Monday, 26 April 2010 12:11 PM
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