Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Article from Matthew RJ Brodsky

How Russia Benefited From Israel's Airstrikes in Syria

May 20, 2018  •  The National Interest

Russian president Vladimir Putin further cemented his position atop the Syrian power pyramid as a result of Israel's massive air campaign that targeted Iran's positions and Assad's air defenses. Dubbed by Israeli military planners as "Operation House of Cards," it was the most extensive aerial assault by the Israeli Air Force (IAF) in Syria since October 1973. Whether Jerusalem's impressive military success translates into a political triumph will be determined by how Tehran responds going forward, but there is little doubt Iran suffered a major setback in a week already full of monumental disappointments. In the meantime, Putin's strategic position in the Middle East has been enhanced and all he had to do was say, "Yes," to Israeli prime minister Bibi Netanyahu.

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Latest Article from Jonathan Schanzer

For Gaza's suffering, blame Hamas

May 17, 2018  •  New York Post

Predictably, the recent unrest on the border separating Israel and the Gaza Strip has given way to a banal debate over the "desperation" of the people of Gaza.

There can be no doubt that the people of Gaza are miserable. They have been living under Hamas rule since 2007. Israel has no choice but to treat the territory as hostile, given that Hamas has stated repeatedly and unequivocally that it seeks nothing less than the destruction of the state of Israel.

And it has backed up its words with deeds, launching multiple rocket wars against the Jewish state, accentuated by attempted commando raids by sea or by tunnel.

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Latest Article from Ilan Berman

Scrapping Iran Deal Provides A Trump Card With North Korea

May 16, 2018  •  The Hill

Obama White House, Trump's pullout was condemned as ill-advised for a host of reasons, not least because it complicates America's planned negotiations with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. After all, these critics argue, why would Pyongyang trust a Washington that doesn't honor its international obligations? That argument, however, is flat wrong. In fact, President Trump's decision to scrap the Iran nuclear deal actually strengthens his bargaining position vis-à-vis Pyongyang, and it increases the pressure on the North Korean regime to make meaningful concessions regarding its strategic arsenal if the two leaders meet next month in Singapore as planned.

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Latest Article from Clifford May

Trump's art of the nuclear deals

May 16, 2018  •  The Washington Times

Donald Trump inherited two deadly serious national security crises, one in the Middle East, one in the Far East. Look closely and you'll see that these crises are inseverable.

The dynastic, neo-Stalinist who rules North Korea and the jihadist, imperialist theocrats who rule Iran have always harbored hostile intentions toward America and America's allies. Both have been illicitly developing nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them to targets in America or anywhere on Earth.

One American president after another has attempted to mitigate their intentions and/or curb their capabilities. One American president after another has failed.

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Latest Article from Asaf Romirowsky

review of Thou Shalt Innovate

May 13, 2018  •  JNS

As Israel celebrates its 70th birthday, the global Boycott, Sanctions and Divestment movement has been propagating the idea of "anti-normalization," advocating for complete and total isolation of Israel, rejecting any interaction between Arabs and Jews, and underscoring that Jews cannot be or have a nation-state.

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Latest Article from Soeren Kern

A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: April 2018

May 11, 2018  •  Gatestone Institute

April 1. Senior German officials, including Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, always quick to outdo each other with good wishes for Islamic festivals, failed to greet Germans for Easter, the most important Christian festival. By contrast, Aiman ​​Mazyek, the head of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, did offer Easter greetings: "I wish you all peaceful and relaxing holidays. Happy Easter to the Christians, a happy 'Passover' to the Jews and a few contemplative days to the non-believers. #Variety makes you strong."

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Latest Article from Judith Miller

Comey & Plame, spinning away on Scooter Libby

May 10, 2018  •  New York Daily News

There are many ways to lie. The simplest is to assert something that is patently false. But a more insidious, effective way is to ignore facts that contradict one's narrative.

Consider the reaction of former FBI Director James Comey and former CIA employee Valerie Plame to President Trump's recent pardon of I. Lewis (aka Scooter) Libby. In 2007, Libby, who had been Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, was convicted of perjury and obstructing justice during the investigation of how Plame's identity had been leaked to the press four years earlier. In pardoning Libby, Trump declared he had been unjustly prosecuted.

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Latest Article from Tevi Troy

Learning to Like Ike
The strategic savvy of an underestimated leader

May 4, 2018  •  The Weekly Standard

Dwight Eisenhower appears to be having a moment. A popular president who was nevertheless looked down on by the media and the smart set in his time, Ike has grown in historical reputation and is now seen as one of our greatest presidents. Similarly, the 1950s have come down in popular perception as a dull time, but they were a time of peace, prosperity, and American success—and a period in which America made significant social progress.

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Latest Article from Michael Freund

Demography and Jewish destiny

April 4, 2018  •  Jerusalem Post

The otherwise arcane subject of demography made quite a splash in recent days, thanks in no small measure to a courageous report prepared by a committee established by the Diaspora Affairs Ministry.

Tasked with exploring how the government should relate to millions of people around the world with Jewish ancestry, the committee did not shy away from tackling the crucial subject head on, offering a variety of practical recommendations to strengthen the connection between Israel and "lost Jews." These included ideas ranging from encouraging more academic research on the subject to facilitating visits to the Jewish state by those with a historical connection with the people of Israel.

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Latest Article from Jeff Jacoby

The death penalty, humane and painless

March 21, 2018  •  The Boston Globe

OKLAHOMA PLAYED a key role in the effort to make capital punishment more humane.

It was Oklahoma's state medical examiner who in 1977 proposed lethal injections as a less painful, less violent method of executing murderers than hanging or the electric chair. A few years later, lethal injection was used for the first time to put a condemned killer to death. Soon Oklahoma's innovation was the primary method of execution in nearly every state with the death penalty on its books.

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Latest Article from Jeff Stier

It's High Time To Cut U.S. Funding For This Troubled International Cancer Agency
The United States has failed to hold the World Health Organization accountable for the nearly $2 billion in U.S. funding WHO receives each year.

December 19, 2017  •  The Federalist

Since Donald Trump's election, international bureaucracies that receive U.S. tax dollars have been on notice that our unchecked government largess to them is about to end. The World Health Organization is one example of a bloated, inefficient agency that is ripe for reform.

As Jeff wrote in June, "WHO is plagued by persistent wasteful spending, utter disregard for transparency, pervasive incompetence, and failure to adhere to even basic democratic standards." The United States has failed to hold the WHO accountable for the nearly $2 billion in U.S. funding WHO receives each year.

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