Showing posts from December, 2011

My take on Ron Paul and Israel in Haaretz Home Jewish World News Published 04:33 29.12.11 Latest update 04:33 29.12.11 The truth about Ron Paul There is no anti-Israel aspect to the Republican presidential candidate's opposition to giving Israel aid, he is opposed in principle to foreign aid, which he sees as a waste of money. By Leon Hadar Tags: Israel US Get Haaretz on iPhone Get Haaretz on Android WASHINGTON - He probably won't be the Republican candidate for president in 2012, but Congressman Ron Paul of Texas has a good chance to win the Republican primaries in Iowa and New Hampshire in January, become a driving force in next year's campaign and continue to influence his party's agenda. This isn't good news for Jewish Republican activists and neoconservative intellectuals who backed the Iraq War; they accuse the most influential libertarian legislator on Capitol Hill of being anti-Israel. The Republican Jewish coalition d

2012 the year of Counter-Revolution?

Business Times - 30 Dec 2011 2012 the year of Counter-Revolution? Members of the old order may fight back to protect the status quo just like Europe's counter-revolutionaries did in 1849 By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT THE outgoing 2011 is the Year of the Protester, according to Time magazine. The insurgency targeting the ruling political elites, first in Tunisia, and then in Egypt, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Bahrain, has not been confined to the Middle East. Protests have taken place in Spain, Greece, Italy, France, Britain and Israel. And in the United States, the Occupy Wall Street protesters began demonstrating first in New York, and then in Washington, Chicago, and in other cities across the country. The 2011 global uprisings against the status quo have been compared to the revolutions that swept through Europe in 1848, when working-class socialists and middle-class liberals in Paris, Milan, Vienna, Prague, Budapest and Berlin tried to bring down the old regimes. And indee

On the recent mess in Washington

Business Times - 27 Dec 2011 Tax cut battle in House exposes divisions within Republican Party The spectre of the party being taken over by radicals is bound to alienate moderates and help Obama win election By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT REPUBLICANS were licking their self-inflicted political wounds after what would probably be recalled as the Great Christmas-Eve Tax Cuts Battle (GCETCB) concluded with a legislative ceasefire but with clear political victory for President Barack Obama and the Democrats. Indeed, after a week of unyielding opposition by Republicans in the US House of Representatives to a modest temporary or 'stopgap' legislative measure that enjoyed wide bipartisan support, both the House and Senate finally approved - just two days before Christmas - a short-term extension of the payroll tax cut and federal unemployment benefits. It was a nice holiday present for President Obama who signed the legislation before leaving to join his family on vacation in

The German Spring in TNI

Published on The National Interest ( Source URL (retrieved on Dec 19, 2011): Springtime for Merkel and Germany | More [1] | December 19, 2011 Leon Hadar [2] For the first time since its founding in 1871, Germany seems to be in a position to achieve its long-standing objective of bringing much of Europe under its control, through peaceful means this time around. True, some people—for example, Greeks and the Italians—are resisting the new form of German geoeconomic hegemony in Europe, achieved through a new form of French collaboration. But the pundits are disparaging these Mediterranean people as a lazy bunch of beach dwellers and party goers on the periphery of Europe who have yet to acquaint themselves with the basics of twenty-first-century financial literacy. Indeed, much of the prevailing media discourse views the euro-zone debate as being over economic policies—or, as New York Times c

Will Gingrich be the Obama of 2012?

Business Times - 16 Dec 2011 Will Gingrich be the Obama of 2012? By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT FOUR years ago, after a large number of candidates had entered the Democratic Party's presidential primaries, the conventional wisdom among the political professionals was that New York Senator and former first lady Hillary Clinton would win the race. She had the political experience and skills, the name recognition and well-organised election campaign and fund-raising operations. Members of the party's establishment as well as many activists loved her. She was ready for Prime Time. She was unbeatable. The nomination was hers to lose; which she did. After the field of Democratic presidential candidates narrowed to a duel between Senator Clinton and a young and relatively unknown Senator from Illinois, most political experts continued to underestimate the African-American with the exotic name of Barack Obama. They insisted that he didn't have the experience or the skills t

my new piece in Haaretz לכודים במזרח התיכון לי-און הדר 13.12.2011 12:00 וושינגטון בתחילת נובמבר, כאשר הנשיא ברק אובמה אירח פסגה של מנהיגי מדינות מזרח אסיה ואזור האוקיינוס השקט בהוואי, יצא לאקרנים בארצות הברית סרט חדש, "היורשים" שמו. ג'ורג' קלוני הוא מאט קינג, עורך דין המתגורר בהונולולו, נצר לנסיכה הוואית שנישאה במאה ה-19 לבנקאי אנגלו-אמריקאי, שמתלבט האם למכור לחברה משיקגו שטח אדמה בהוואי שהיה בבעלות משפחתו במשך כמה דורות, או לשמר אותו כאתר מורשת משפחתית. כמו מאט בסרט, גם אובמה נולד וגדל בהוואי והוא תוצר של נישואים מעורבים ושל קשרים היסטוריים ותרבותיים בין אזור האוקיינוס השקט (אסיה) והאוקיינוס האטלנטי (ארה"ב). אובמה, שכינה את עצמו "הנשיא הפסיפי הראשון של ארה"ב", עומד בפני דילמה דומה, אך מסובכת מזו של מאט. וושינגטון רוצה להסיט את תשומת הלב המדינית והכלכלית שלה מאזור האוקיינוס האטלנטי והמזרח התיכון לאזור האוקיינוס השקט ומזרח אסיה, אך היא חייבת לאזן את האוריינטצייה הפסיפית הזאת עם ההתחייבויות הדיפלומטיות והצבאיות שלה במערב אסיה. &

Will Obama's populist message win him votes next year?

Business Times - 13 Dec 2011 Will Obama's populist message win him votes next year? The US president seems to be picking up the political mantle of the legendary Theodore Roosevelt in recent days By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT PRESIDENT Theodore Roosevelt is one of the three most revered Republican presidents in US history (the other two being Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan) which raises an interesting question: why is Democratic President Barack Obama trying to sound like that Republican president as he prepares to confront his Republican challenger next year? But then it is doubtful that TR would be celebrated by present-day conservative Republicans. He was, in fact, a self-proclaimed 'progressive' who had rallied against the big corporations and financial institutions of his day and admonished Americans to promote more social and economic equality. The populist message advanced by 'Teddy' would be decried today by the likes of Glenn Beck and Sarah Pali

The American Conservative

The American Conservative

US unfazed by Chavez's latest act of bravado

Business Times - 08 Dec 2011 US unfazed by Chavez's latest act of bravado By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT NOW that Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi cannot play any more the roles as Washington's favourite bogeymen, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez has been trying to fill the void. The recent formation of a new regional bloc, called the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac) - that includes 33 member states but excludes the United States and Canada - seems a strategy on the part of Mr Chavez to demonstrate that Latin American nations are gradually detaching themselves from Washington's influence. The Venezuelan leader, taking up the mantle of the South American liberator Simon Bolivar, hosted leaders from all across Latin America and the Caribbean in Caracas last Friday to inaugurate the new continental group which he described as the 'the most important political event in our

Marathon man up against the short-distance runner

Business Times - 07 Dec 2011 Marathon man up against the short-distance runner The US Republican contest for presidential nominee seems to be boiling down to a race between Romney and Gingrich By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT IT does seem that we may be arriving at the end of the Amateur Hour(s) of the Republican Party's presidential primaries. At some point in the coming weeks, the grown-ups will be taking charge of the process that will culminate in the selection of the Republican presidential candidate. According to many political pundits, the party's presidential nominee would have a better than an even chance to beat President Barack Obama in next year's race for the White House. It is not surprising that many veteran Republican political hands have been feeling a certain sense of nostalgia for the good old days before the age of the open and democratic presidential primaries in the 1960s, for a time when the 'bosses in the smoke-filled rooms' - the party

Romney and China

Business Times - 03 Dec 2011 Romney's dangerous anti-China rhetoric Accusing Beijing of manipulating its currency and stealing US jobs is not based on any sound economic policy and everything to do with electoral politics By LEON HADAR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT AS the US presidential and congressional election campaigns are getting started, no one should be surprised that both Democrats and Republicans have been doing a lot of China-bashing. After all, the economically distressed American voter is in a very angry mood, blaming the Wall Street elites and the Washington bureaucrats for the nation's economic mess, and ready to listen to a populist message that fuses nationalism, xenophobia and protectionism. And according to recent opinion polls, a majority of Americans believe that China is intent on - and will succeed in - supplanting the US as the world's leading economic and geopolitical power. In this political environment, scapegoating China for destroying US manufacturin