How Daniel Patrick Moynihan Put Jerusalem on the American Agenda

In recognizing that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, President Trump was simply following the longstanding verdict of Congress, which has more than once called upon the executive branch to acknowledge reality. But, write the editors of the New York Sun, Congress would never have come to this conclusion without the efforts of the late Daniel P. Moynihan during his time in the U.S. Senate. They cite an incident that occurred in the early 1990s at the offices of the Forward:

[Moynihan] pulled out of his pocket a State Department telephone directory, which had Jerusalem listed as, in effect, its own country. The Democratic senator, formerly America’s envoy at the United Nations and ambassador to India, ranted at our foreign service. He was eager to move forward with some kind of legislative action.

At the same time, Moynihan quoted a warning that he attributed to Israel’s sixth prime minister, Menachem Begin. It was that the Jerusalem question can’t be solved in the United States Congress. Moynihan’s point was that only Israel itself can decide where its capital is. Of course, Israel had long since done that, and Moynihan’s view was that it was up to us to acknowledge, to recognize it. Had he lived, the Democrats might have had a leading role in winning recognition.

In the years after Moynihan, the Democratic party started to put distance between itself and Israel’s democratically elected government. This became painfully obvious in 2012, when the Jerusalem issue was temporarily stripped from the Democratic platform and the party’s pro-Israel faction was left humiliated.

Read more at New York Sun

More about: Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Democrats, Israel & Zionism, Jerusalem, U.S. Foreign policy, US-Israel relations

The IDF’s First Investigation of Its Conduct on October 7 Is Out

For several months, the Israel Defense Forces has been investigating its own actions on and preparedness for October 7, with an eye to understanding its failures. The first of what are expected to be many reports stemming from this investigation was released yesterday, and it showed a series of colossal strategic and tactical errors surrounding the battle at Kibbutz Be’eri, writes Emanuel Fabian. The probe, he reports, was led by Maj. Gen. (res.) Mickey Edelstein.

Edelstein and his team—none of whom had any involvement in the events themselves, according to the IDF—spent hundreds of hours investigating the onslaught and battle at Be’eri, reviewing every possible source of information, from residents’ WhatsApp messages to both Israeli and Hamas radio communications, as well as surveillance videos, aerial footage, interviews of survivors and those who fought, plus visits to the scene.

There will be a series of further reports issued this summer.

IDF chief Halevi in a statement issued alongside the probe said that while this was just the first investigation into the onslaught, which does not reflect the entire picture of October 7, it “clearly illustrates the magnitude of the failure and the dimensions of the disaster that befell the residents of the south who protected their families with their bodies for many hours, and the IDF was not there to protect them.” . . .

The IDF hopes to present all battle investigations by the end of August.

The IDF’s probes are strictly limited to its own conduct. For a broader look at what went wrong, Israel will have to wait for a formal state commission of inquiry to be appointed—which happens to be the subject of this month’s featured essay in Mosaic.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Gaza War 2023, IDF, Israel & Zionism, October 7