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Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs

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JACPAC's News & Opinion Digest

November 17, 2011 

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This week's issue highlights the following significant developments here and in the Middle East:



Remember to check out our blog to keep up with current events, op-eds, reproductive rights information, sort fact from fiction in your inbox about Israel, and Presidential Ponderings - Gail's thoughts and observations.


abbasAbbas to call for formation of unity gov't
Fayyad's willingness to step down seen as crucial to overcoming disagreements between Fatah and Hamas.



Palestinians must come to the table
The situation in our part of the Middle East doesn't appear to make much sense at first glance. Israel has declared that it supports the establishment of two states for two peoples - which includes a Palestinian state. The Palestinians say they want a state. So why do two seemingly identical positions not lead to the expected outcome?   



Quartet talks unlikely to jump-start negotiations
Quartet members arrive in Israel Monday with little hope of bridging the gulf that divides the Israeli and the Palestinian leadership and has prevented the resumption of negotiations.   



The growing threat of Iran's nuclear program
When the computers that control Iran's centrifuges were attacked by the Stuxnet worm beginning in 2009, the assault was widely ascribed to intelligence services intent on setting back Iran's nuclear program. More significant than the damage to Iran, however, has been the damage to Western resolve, as the United States and other countries have become more complacent about the Iranian threat.



The Significance of the November 2011 IAEA Report on Iran by Dore Gold 

Many analysts asked why Iran, which had huge oil and gas reserves, needs to invest in a program to produce electricity from nuclear reactors?



'Starting from zero' aid plan alarms pro-Israel activists
Many analysts asked why Iran, which had huge oil and gas reserves, needs to invest in a program to produce electricity from nuclear reactors?
Reproductive Rights

Ohio repeals law restricting unions; Miss. blocks 'personhood' amendment

Ohioans voted Tuesday to repeal a Republican-backed law that restricted collective bargaining for public workers, while Mississippi voters blocked an amendment that would have defined a fertilized egg as a person.


Bishops Open 'Religious Liberty' Drive

The nation's Roman Catholic bishops opened a new front in their fight against abortion and same-sex marriage on Monday, recasting their opposition as a struggle for "religious liberty" against a government and a culture that are infringing on the church's rights.


abortionDistrict leaders reject Issa's budget autonomy bill over abortion ban 

District leaders have decided to reject a legislative deal that would have granted the city more budget autonomy in exchange for acceding to a ban on publicly funded abortions, likely dooming the proposal.

Recent ruling regarding crosses upholds separation of church, state

Utahns, and those interested in church-state separation around the U.S., have been up in arms about the recent controversy surrounding the ruling of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on crosses posted along Utah highways.

separationSeparation of Church and State News Round-Up 
Leaders of a Tennessee county have agreed to show a local man's display promoting church-state separation in the courthouse's "public forum" area.

Political Bytes

postionsFrom abortion to war, a look at the positions of the Republican presidential candidates    

Here's where the 2012 Republican presidential candidates stand on a selection of issues.

Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown: "Last Night Ohio Made History"
"I don't remember in my lifetime seeing anything quite like" last night's vote in Ohio against SB5, the anti-union bill that would have banned collective bargaining in the state, said Senator Sherrod Brown in a conference call Wednesday morning.

In Tuesday's Election Results, Democrats See Hope for 2011
Just hours after polls closed Tuesday night, Democrats seized on scattered results across the country as evidence that voters are rejecting Republican policies and will return President Obama to the Oval Office in 2012.


When a clown is better than aspirin 

Israel leads the way in professionalizing the field of medical clowning and providing scientific evidence for its effectiveness.

cancerNew Cancer Vaccine in Phase III Clinical Trials in Jerusalem
A new cancer vaccine created by Israeli scientists has begun Phase III clinical trials at a Jerusalem hospital. So far, doctors are hopeful.

Our members count on JACPAC to provide information on current events, candidates, and elections.  JACPAC depends on membership support to make this possible.


If you have not renewed your membership, please consider doing so today, to help us pursue a strong US-Israel relationship, reproductive rights, and separation of religion and state.  Together we can make this a better world!



Gail Yamner, President
Marcia Balonick, Executive Director
Joy Malkus, Research Director 

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Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs (JACPAC) is a national network committed to the special relationship between the US and Israel and a social agenda that includes reproductive rights and separation of religion and state.  JACPAC supported US Senate and House candidates who uphold this agenda and maintains ongoing dialogue with those it helps elect.  In addition, JACPAC serves as a political resource for the Jewish community, furnishing information about candidates, elections and issues.