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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 Sept. 26, 2013/ 22 Tishrei, 5774

Charges of isolationism are just name-calling

By Jack Kelly




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | An old canard has been revived to smear Americans who oppose U.S. military intervention in the civil war in Syria.

"This is not the time for armchair isolationism," Secretary of State John Kerry said of lawmakers who opposed President Barack Obama's belated request for congressional authorization for a military strike on the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar Assad.

The president initially planned to strike without approval from Congress because he feared "isolationists" in both parties would block a resolution authorizing the use of force, said NBC's Chuck Todd.

"Isolationism is not just an aversion to war," said former New York Times editor Bill Keller. "It is a broader reluctance to engage, to assert responsibility, to commit."

The debate over intervention in Syria is "exposing the isolationist worm eating its way through the GOP apple," said Wall Street Journal columnist Bret Stephens.

Failing to attack Syria would be a victory for "the rising isolationists of the right," said Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson, who'd been a speechwriter for President George W. Bush.

"For isolationists, there is no amount of dead Syrians, refugees and WMD deaths that would justify us doing anything effective," said his Post colleague, conservative blogger Jennifer Rubin.

Liberals have long confused invective with argument. It's distressing so many conservatives do too.

An isolationist believes the United States should not be involved in the affairs of other nations, period. The term was popularized by Capt. Alfred Thayer Mahan, America's first grand strategist, in an article in the Atlantic magazine in 1890.

"I'm an imperialist," Capt. Mahan said, "simply because I am not an isolationist."

The "isolationist" tag was affixed with reasonable accuracy to those who before Pearl Harbor opposed military aid to Britain.

But there is simply no comparison between the war in Europe in 1940 and the Syrian civil war in 2013. To imply there is is shameful.

-- In 1940, it was clear who were the good guys, and who were the bad guys. In Syria, a choice between Iran's puppet and a rebel coalition dominated by al-Qaida is a choice between bad and worse --- and it isn't clear which is "bad," and which is "worse."

-- In 1940, the grim consequences for the United States of Nazi domination of Europe were clear. America had no important interest at risk in Syria until President Barack Obama created one with loose talk about "red lines."



The chief reason those conservatives who supported it gave for authorizing a military strike was that if we failed to follow through on the president's threat, America's "credibility" would suffer.

-- Barack Obama is no FDR. The military strike he was planning would be "a shot across the bow," the president said. An "unbelievably small, limited kind of effort," said his secretary of state.

Isolationism as a political force died on Dec. 7, 1941. In a world in which an ICBM with a nuclear warhead can travel from Russia to the U.S. in half an hour, true isolationists are restricted to a handful on the lunatic fringes.

It is not "isolationist" to think the United States should go to war only when an interest more substantive than a president's prestige is at risk; when a clear-cut benefit can be achieved by military action, and when the president is willing to do what it takes to win.

Nor is it "isolationist" to lack confidence in an indecisive, inexperienced commander in chief, or to fear the consequences of a botched military action are likely to be worse than the consequences of inaction.

It isn't "isolationist" to believe a president ought not to be permitted to launch an attack on a country that hasn't attacked us (or isn't about to) without the consent of Congress.

And it isn't "isolationist" to note the strain the U.S. military has been under after 12 years of war; to fret about the consequences of defense budget cuts, or to ask from whence will come the money to pay for yet another war.

The purpose of name-calling is to intimidate, not to persuade.

The name-callers who call those who've raised these concerns about intervention in Syria "isolationists" do so because they cannot respond to their concerns with facts or logic. But name-calling diminishes the name-callers more than it does those they are trying to shut up.

Jack Kelly writes for The Pittsburgh Press and The Blade of Toledo, Ohio,

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JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan administration.

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