Some Concrete Proposals for Protecting U.S. Jewry

What is to be done about the anti-Semitism that seems to be bursting forth everywhere? Discussions often run aground on the problems of protecting freedom of speech and making fine distinctions between anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel. But Yuval Levin explains that these aren’t, in fact, particularly intricate problems and, moreover, that there are clearcut policy solutions:

The students left to cower in their dorms at Cornell or the New Jersey residents vaguely warned by federal officials to “take all security precautions to protect your community” . . . could tell you that the problem is not speech but hateful intimidation. The boundaries between the two are not unexplored in our laws. They can sometimes be vague, and in those instances, some balance must be sought between rights of expression and the imperative of physical security. But they are often not vague at all. The states and the federal government have statutes in place to protect Americans subjected to terror tactics and hate crimes. Yet anti-Semitism can sometimes fall between the cracks of such laws, and of their enforcement.

This is in part because . . . contemporary left-wing anti-Semitism so often treats Israel as its subject but American Jews as its object. Concerns about it are frequently dismissed because its practitioners insist they are criticizing a foreign government, not fellow Americans. Yet their criticism is not a policy argument but a denial of Israel’s right to exist on the basis of its Jewish character, and they themselves plainly behave as though that message should have implications for Jews in America.

In this respect, anti-Zionism is not about geopolitics; it is about Jews. It is generally easy to distinguish from criticism of the particular actions of any Israeli government, and all the more so when it is attached to the intimidation of particular Americans on the basis of their Jewish identity.

Read more at National Review

More about: American Jewry, Anti-Semitism

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