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 5, 2014 / 3 Adar II, 5774

It's 3 a.m., and Obama's phone is ringing

By John Kass

John Kass

JewishWorldReview.com | As he seeks to rebuild the Russian empire, strongman Vladimir Putin has developed a terribly obnoxious habit.

He keeps dragging the Obama White House back to a difficult place.

It's called "reality."

Putin's military capture of Crimea, a region of Ukraine, is just the latest example. His could be an act of willfulness, or a desperate attempt to stave off Russian decline. But in any case, no sane American would argue for a shooting war over Ukraine. The point is to avoid miscalculations that could lead to one.

It's like that phone call at 3 a.m. to a White House run by an inexperienced leader, that call Hillary Clinton warned America about years ago.

Her devastating 2008 campaign spot of that ringing phone, arguing that Barack Obama was not ready for the call, was profound. And it was profoundly forgotten.

It faded away as America was captured instead by his soaring rhetoric and the messianic politics orchestrated by Obama's mythmakers.

Clinton's campaign was gutted by Obama's expert and cynical use of the race card. The Democratic Party arithmetic made it impossible to win without African-American voters. And she lost them when he said hello.

As Clinton receded, wounded, humiliated by the devastating label of racial insensitivity, the American media grew bored with her. But journalists found a new hobby: placing laurel wreaths upon the head of Mr. Obama.

Vesting a nation's leader with unearned virtues isn't particularly American. The same goes on in the Russian media.

Putin is portrayed at home as man of action, the strongman of Russia who tames bears and conquers other wild beasts, sometimes with his will alone, and sometimes with his shirt on.

But good intelligence services are not run by sentimentalists. These are people of cold mind.

And somewhere in the Kremlin, there must be a dossier on Obama, something a bit more comprehensive than media gushing about his use of symbolism.

What would such a Russian dossier tell Putin about the nature of the man?

It would tell Putin that Obama rose on the wings of an America tired of war.

And that Obama flew skyward, preaching about ethics, and promising hope and change we could believe in, all of it orchestrated brilliantly by David Axelrod, who doubled as the mouthpiece of Chicago's supremely cynical political boss, then-Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Putin already knew that Obama had absolutely no executive experience before taking the most important executive job in the world. And that he charmed his way into the job. America, tired of war and fearful of a collapsing economy, reached for the president from Chicago in the way a drowning man reaches for a chunk of floating wood.

But the Obama dossier would mention what many here have ignored about the president's formative years: Obama challenged power only once.

And when he did so, U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush branded him as not black enough for the South Side. It was a lesson Obama never forgot.

From then on, Obama didn't challenge power. He accommodated it.

He got down on his knees before it, asking Illinois Senate President Emil Jones to make him a United States senator.

And so Obama climbed out of Chicago.

Young, risk-averse people who teach themselves never to challenge power can and do succeed. They can prosper in an America that has reshaped itself as a kind of modern Byzantium.

They do well in corporate and political life. They punch their tickets. They make their connections. They gather support among like-minded bureaucrats and clerks, as the Byzantines once did.

They rise. They prosper.

But they don't grow up to be William Wallace.

Instead, they become older men who can always find practical reasons for acquiescing.

That kind of man can turn his back on Poland, after that nation agreed to a U.S.-backed missile defense shield, and feign shock that Russia would see an opening.

Though Obama was a gentle stalk of asparagus when it came to Chicago's City Hall, he has shown flashes of backbone as president.

For example, during a tough re-election campaign, he fended off calls by Israel to support a military strike against a nuclear Iran that had threatened to obliterate Israel. His resolve was vastly underrated.

He's withdrawn our troops from Iraq. He's getting us out of Afghanistan, too. And he gave that order to take out Osama bin Laden.

But it's his desire to avoid confrontation that must whet Putin's appetite.

Like at the famous 2012 photo-op in Seoul with Putin's acolyte, Dmitry Medvedev. On a hot microphone, Obama asked Medvedev for time on missile defense issues until he put his own politics in order.

"This is my last election ...," Obama was overheard to say. "After my election I have more flexibility."

"I will transmit this information to Vladimir," said Medvedev.

Imagine Putin smirking at Obama being so eager to make friends.

Later, in a debate with Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, Obama attacked Romney for daring to call Russia our leading geopolitical foe.

"Gov. Romney ... the 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back," Obama said. "Because the Cold War has been over for 20 years."

It was a snarky bite, like a Twitterverse rendition of complicated and dangerous history.

President Obama, the '80s aren't alone in calling for their foreign policy back.

The '60s and '70s are calling now, too.

And your White House phone is ringing.

Is it really 3 a.m.?


Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Comments by clicking here.

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