Why Jews Should Stand with the West and against Vladimir Putin

Dictators, notes Ben Cohen, have a habit of embracing anti-Semitism—whether they are fascist, Communist, or Islamist; whether they rule in pre-World War II Eastern Europe or the post-World War II Middle East. Vladimir Putin appears to be an exception to this pattern, but there are reasons for Jewish worry:

Following the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, Jews finally enjoyed an unprecedented flowering, cemented by the establishment of a Jewish democratic state and the confident participation of Diaspora Jewish communities in the political, cultural, and commercial lives of their countries. Such a flowering was—and remains—possible only within the framework of liberal democracies like the U.S. and Western Europe for one very good reason: liberal democracy enables Jews to organize as a community, and to speak out without fear, without needing an authoritarian protector to lord it over them.

However, a protector is exactly what the 200,000-odd Jews who live in Russia have in Putin. Due to that, their position is far more precarious than ours in America; . . . while anti-Semitism in Russia has taken a back seat under Putin, it is still present—and can be invoked should conditions suit. Moreover, Putin already has a nasty habit of citing Nazism and the Holocaust to justify his aggression against Ukraine, and he has cynically highlighted historic anti-Semitism in Ukraine to bolster his delegitimization campaign against his neighbor. That rhetoric is sure to intensify, and any Jewish discomfort with Putin’s appropriation of the Holocaust for his war strategy will not be regarded sympathetically in the Kremlin.

Read more at Algemeiner

More about: Anti-Semitism, Jewish politics, Vladimir Putin, War in Ukraine


To Save Gaza, the U.S. Needs a Strategy to Restrain Iran

Since the outbreak of war on October 7, America has given Israel much support, and also much advice. Seth Cropsey argues that some of that advice hasn’t been especially good:

American demands for “restraint” and a “lighter footprint” provide significant elements of Hamas’s command structure, including Yahya Sinwar, the architect of 10/7, a far greater chance of surviving and preserving the organization’s capabilities. Its threat will persist to some extent in any case, since it has significant assets in Lebanon and is poised to enter into a full-fledged partnership with Hizballah that would give it access to Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps for recruitment and to Iranian-supported ratlines into Jordan and Syria.

Turning to the aftermath of the war, Cropsey observes that it will take a different kind of involvement for the U.S. to get the outcomes it desires, namely an alternative to Israeli and to Hamas rule in Gaza that comes with buy-in from its Arab allies:

The only way that Gaza can be governed in a sustainable and stable manner is through the participation of Arab states, and in particular the Gulf Arabs, and the only power that can deliver their participation is the United States. A grand bargain is impossible unless the U.S. exerts enough leverage to induce one.

Militarily speaking, the U.S. has shown no desire seriously to curb Iranian power. It has persistently signaled a desire to avoid escalation. . . . The Gulf Arabs understand this. They have no desire to engage in serious strategic dialogue with Washington and Jerusalem over Iran strategy, since Washington does not have an Iran strategy.

Gaza’s fate is a small part of a much broader strategic struggle. Unless this is recognized, any diplomatic master plan will degenerate into a diplomatic parlor game.

Read more at National Review

More about: Gaza War 2023, Iran, U.S. Foreign policy