Commentary Magazine


Topic: Neal Kozodoy

Welcome to Mosaic

Today we’re happy to welcome a new Web magazine to the spectrum of Jewish opinion and letters: Mosaic. Readers of Mosaicmagazine.com, which marks its debut today, will be able to enjoy the daily “Editor’s Picks” of the best writing on Jewish subjects that was part of its predecessor publication Jewish Ideas Daily. But in addition to that, it will provide a monthly feature on an issue of pressing significance for Jews, Judaism, or the Jewish state. Throughout the month, the discussion about that article will continue with interviews with the author, debate about the essay’s arguments and other comments. The premiere essay by Leon Kass on the Ten Commandments gives the magazine an auspicious start.

Readers of COMMENTARY will need no stronger incentive to become regular visitors to Mosaic than the news that its editor is Neal Kozodoy. Neal’s legacy of excellence during his long tenure as editor at COMMENTARY helped establish it as the leading voice of conservative and Jewish ideas. Under his guidance, Mosaic will make an important contribution to the Jewish public square as well as giving us something important to read and think about on a regular basis. 

Today we’re happy to welcome a new Web magazine to the spectrum of Jewish opinion and letters: Mosaic. Readers of Mosaicmagazine.com, which marks its debut today, will be able to enjoy the daily “Editor’s Picks” of the best writing on Jewish subjects that was part of its predecessor publication Jewish Ideas Daily. But in addition to that, it will provide a monthly feature on an issue of pressing significance for Jews, Judaism, or the Jewish state. Throughout the month, the discussion about that article will continue with interviews with the author, debate about the essay’s arguments and other comments. The premiere essay by Leon Kass on the Ten Commandments gives the magazine an auspicious start.

Readers of COMMENTARY will need no stronger incentive to become regular visitors to Mosaic than the news that its editor is Neal Kozodoy. Neal’s legacy of excellence during his long tenure as editor at COMMENTARY helped establish it as the leading voice of conservative and Jewish ideas. Under his guidance, Mosaic will make an important contribution to the Jewish public square as well as giving us something important to read and think about on a regular basis. 

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RE: Rabbis Spun by Rahm Emanuel

COMMENTARY contributor Abby Wisse Schachter points out that it may be the rabbis — or one, at least — who were doing the spinning. Citing a JTA article, she writes:

“Moline, a Conservative rabbi at Congregation Agudas Achim in Alexandria, Va., initiated the meetings after a talk he had with his friend Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, about the Obama administration’s perceived lack of friendliness toward Israel.” So it wasn’t Obama, or Jewy-Jew Emanuel who were worried about Jewish support eroding. It was Moline who was already a self-declared Obama booster who decided it was time to have the White House help a bunch of pulpit rabbis to write their Shabbat sermons. And it seems to have worked. “The rabbis in attendance … took the message home. ‘Our president is every bit as committed to Israel’s safety and security as any previous administration,’ Rabbi Aaron Rubinger said in a May 8 Shabbat morning sermon at Congregation Ohev Shalom, a Conservative synagogue in Orlando, Fla. ‘I do not believe the president is abandoning Israel or has any intention of abandoning Israel.'”

This is the state of at least a significant segment of American Jewry — desperate to shill for Obama, blind to the peril that Israel faces, and oblivious to the historical legacy that awaits them, as well as their precious president, if Iran goes nuclear — or if Israel is forced to do what the U.S. should, namely, use military force to defuse an existential threat to the Jewish state. Again we must ask:

What is it about liberals and the longing for what Neal Kozodoy once so brilliantly called “the ratifying kick in the teeth”? Why do they despise their familiars and love The Stranger who hates them—and hates them all the more for their craven pursuit of him?

And the mainstream Jewish organizations are no better, failing to sound the alarm and incapable of taking on a president whose name remains affixed to the bumpers of so many of their members’ cars. For those who portray themselves as leaders of the Jewish community and friends of Israel but who, as one Israel hand e-mails, “cling to liberalism, secularism and pacifism,” there is now the stark reality that they do so at the expense of the Jewish state.

COMMENTARY contributor Abby Wisse Schachter points out that it may be the rabbis — or one, at least — who were doing the spinning. Citing a JTA article, she writes:

“Moline, a Conservative rabbi at Congregation Agudas Achim in Alexandria, Va., initiated the meetings after a talk he had with his friend Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, about the Obama administration’s perceived lack of friendliness toward Israel.” So it wasn’t Obama, or Jewy-Jew Emanuel who were worried about Jewish support eroding. It was Moline who was already a self-declared Obama booster who decided it was time to have the White House help a bunch of pulpit rabbis to write their Shabbat sermons. And it seems to have worked. “The rabbis in attendance … took the message home. ‘Our president is every bit as committed to Israel’s safety and security as any previous administration,’ Rabbi Aaron Rubinger said in a May 8 Shabbat morning sermon at Congregation Ohev Shalom, a Conservative synagogue in Orlando, Fla. ‘I do not believe the president is abandoning Israel or has any intention of abandoning Israel.'”

This is the state of at least a significant segment of American Jewry — desperate to shill for Obama, blind to the peril that Israel faces, and oblivious to the historical legacy that awaits them, as well as their precious president, if Iran goes nuclear — or if Israel is forced to do what the U.S. should, namely, use military force to defuse an existential threat to the Jewish state. Again we must ask:

What is it about liberals and the longing for what Neal Kozodoy once so brilliantly called “the ratifying kick in the teeth”? Why do they despise their familiars and love The Stranger who hates them—and hates them all the more for their craven pursuit of him?

And the mainstream Jewish organizations are no better, failing to sound the alarm and incapable of taking on a president whose name remains affixed to the bumpers of so many of their members’ cars. For those who portray themselves as leaders of the Jewish community and friends of Israel but who, as one Israel hand e-mails, “cling to liberalism, secularism and pacifism,” there is now the stark reality that they do so at the expense of the Jewish state.

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