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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 August 22, 2005 / 17 Av, 5765

In this drama of democracy, hangers-on compound mom's tragedy

By Jonathan Gurwitz


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A mother — an ordinary citizen — is camped out to protest against the war in Iraq, demanding an audience with the highest elected leader in the land.

Hundreds join her and face counterprotesters who support the president and his policies that led the nation into war.

Congress has adjourned for vacation. The summer doldrums have set in. The great issue before the republic is: Should he meet with her, again, or shouldn't he? The nation is watching. The world is watching.

What's taking place beyond the gates of President Bush's Crawford ranch is a quintessentially American drama. It is a display of what Joseph Nye, dean of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, calls soft power.

In a book by the same title last year, Nye recognized the necessity for the United States to employ military and economic forces — hard power — in its foreign policy. Yet the exercise of hard power carries with it negative consequences: increased perceptions of U.S. arrogance, more dislike of the amorphous global concept that is America.


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The necessary complement to hard power, Nye argued, is soft power: the social, cultural and humanitarian displays that cultivate allies and generate greater approval of "America." Rhetoric about the power of freedom, the blessings of democracy and the protection of human rights can only accomplish so much. The United States must also demonstrate those principles itself.

As television cameras from around the globe pan across the Texas landscape and capture the drama in Crawford, they are transmitting a powerful demonstration of soft power. Millions who live in oppressed societies, millions more who have been force-fed a daily diet of news and commentary about the unrestrained, brutal power of this president must wonder in amazement: Why can't he make that woman disappear? At the very least, why can't he silence her?

Welcome to America.

Were this drama the only performance in Crawford, it would be all for the good. Good for a society that is so easily diverted by trivial matters. Good for our democracy. Good for American soft power and, therefore, good for its hard power.

But there is another performance taking place in Crawford, one that is an ancient and grand tragedy. It is a tragedy, first and foremost, about a mother who has lost her son.

There is no greater sign of disorder in the cosmos than the death of a child. If a child can precede his parent in death, then day does not necessarily follow night and a rainbow will not always follow the storm.

For her personal agony, Cindy Sheehan's intemperate comments about this country and its leaders and her disturbing devotion to repugnant conspiracy theories can be understood and forgiven. What cannot be forgiven is the double tragedy of interest groups and political operatives greasing Sheehan's slide into ideological hysteria and using her grief to promote their own partisan agendas.

If only they had had a Cindy Sheehan a year ago, they are certainly lamenting, George W. Bush wouldn't have won the election in November. Summer in Crawford would today be stretching out in unobserved silence.

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If only they could have a hundred Cindy Sheehans a year from now, they are surely hoping, they could direct a political production that will have profound consequences in November 2006 and beyond.

In domestic politics as in foreign policy, there is hard power and there is soft power. The hard power that would capitalize on a mother's grief and disordered world may achieve a certain result, but it also has its negative consequences. The soft power that shows compassion and restraint cultivates allies.

The drama of democracy should be clearly visible for all to see. The tragedy of a grieving mother is something that should be quietly comforted. Everyone should celebrate the first. No one should exploit the latter.

Rather than made-for-television theatrics to advance a political cause, those who claim to support Sheehan would do far better to offer consoling words and grant her and her family respite.

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

JWR contributor Jonathan Gurwitz, a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News, is a co-founder and twice served as Director General of the Future Leaders of the Alliance program at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. In 1986 he was placed on the Foreign Service Register of the U.S. State Department.Comment by clicking here.

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© 2005, Jonathan Gurwitz

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