In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 14, 2008 / 7 Adar II 5768

Middle East ‘bright side’ blinding us to costly U.S. reality

By Diana West

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | As a reasonably optimistic person, I try to look on the bright side whenever possible — unless bright-side facts are completely blotted out by bleak ones.

Example: In a recent e-mail blast, former Republican senator Rick Santorum urged readers to be heartened by Middle East developments that may have been obscured by bad news elsewhere.

There was even good news, he wrote, coming out of Iran. To wit:

"A new poll in Iran suggests that Iranians want more democracy and less theocracy, including the power to elect their Supreme Leader," Santorum wrote, referring to recent findings from the polling group Terror Free Tomorrow. "Three-quarters also wished for normal relations and trade with the U.S."

Gee, that sounds swell — so long as you don't read the rest of the poll results. These include the finding that roughly six in 10 Iranians support Iran's military and financial assistance for Hezbollah, Shiite militias in Iraq and assorted Palestinian terror groups. The good news (I guess) that Iranians want to elect their Supreme Leader directly is overridden by the bad news that they will probably elect someone who supports global jihad. This makes it tough to buy into Santorum's happy-dappy assessment.

Similarly, consider the reaction to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's recent trip to Iraq. Conservatives seem to agree — I say "seem" because few pundits have actually ventured an opinion on this momentous visit (in itself more than passing strange) — that it was a "debacle" for Iran, as the headline of Amir Taheri's New York Post piece called it.

Huh? In last week's column, I called the visit a Mesopotamian slap across the American face — a symbolic outrage, at least, to the U.S. troops who continue to be killed and maimed by Iran in Iraq.

But no. According to my fellow conservatives, the visit was a Good Thing. Far from catching Iraq two-timing with a barbaric rival of the United States, it rather demonstrated, as Taheri put it in his oft-cited column, "the limits" of Iran's influence in Iraq.

This argument rests on two main points. First, there was the absence of Iraqi crowds cheering for Ahmadinejad, and the presence of protestors in Iraqi cities — largely, but not exclusively, in Sunni enclaves, which are unsurprisingly hostile to the Iranian Shiite president. (No protest was very large — infinitesimal next to the 100,000-plus Iraqis who in 2006 demonstrated in support of Iranian proxy Hezbollah.) The other main point concerns Ahmadinejad's failure to arrange face-time with the Grand Ayatollah Al Sistani, the leading Shiite in Iraq.

The first point might be more telling if Iraq were not, as we all surely know by now, a democracy. It was Iraq's democratically elected leaders — including the Kurdish president and Shiite prime minister — who welcomed the genocidal terror master with fanfare, regardless of whether some Iraqis took to the streets (or not). For years now, these same elected leaders have been effectively intertwining Iraq's economy with Iran's to the point where Radio Free Liberty analyst Kathleen Ridolfo recently noted that "observers say Iraq is becoming economically, if not politically, subordinate to Iran." Little wonder, then, that the Iraqi government put out the red carpet for the Thug of Tehran.

This bilateral relationship — the energy accords, export market (Iraq is Iran's largest), oil trade, cooperation in education, customs, insurance, transportation, industrial projects, tourism, Iran's billion-dollar loan (interest free), and, to cap it off, the joint statement condemning Israel for taking action in Gaza to stop Hamas rockets — presents a conflict as the U.S. combats the very terrorism Iran exports. For example, last year, the U.S. Treasury blacklisted Iran's Bank Melli for its involvement in terrorism and the pursuit of nuclear weaponry. Last year, Ridolfo reported, Bank Melli opened a branch in Baghdad. (No word on whether Ahmadinejad opened an account during his visit.)

As for Point No. 2, who can claim

to know the inside skinny on the Sistani meeting? One possibility, reported by Stratfor.com, was that domestic Iranian opposition — not Sistanian opposition — might have been a factor. Perhaps more to the point is the fact that Sistani, who retains Iranian citizenship, has met with every other Iranian government officials to visit Iraq before Ahmadinejad. And that includes Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, national security official Ali Larijani and, shortly before Ahmadinejad arrived, Tehran Mayor Mohammed-Baqer Qalibaf. Sounds to me as if Iran is too close to Iraq for U.S. comfort.

I try to look on the bright side — really. Just not when the brightness is blinding.

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© 2008, Diana West