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Joint Action Committee for Political Affairs

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JACPAC's News & Opinion Digest

February 3, 2012  

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 We've been keeping a close eye on the assault on women's health. Eye
We don't like what we see. 

The time is NOW to support JAC & pro-choice candidates. 
Click here to see the fact sheet and to support JAC.
 Your Calls Worked!
The outcry of support for Planned Parenthood and criticism for the decision by Susan G. Komen for the Cure to sever ties with the organization was more than a mere exercise in free expression.  The spontaneous protest of JAC members together with other women's health proponents, along with a group of our friends in the House and Senate, proved to be more than Komen could ignore.   

We hope that this will be a precedent-setting move that will demonstrate to other organizations and elected officials that catering to the religious right has negative consequences. 

Thank you again for your response.  It made a difference.  

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 issues and opinion and to sort fact from fiction on the Internet.  Be sure to read Presidential Ponderings, thoughts and observations from JACPAC President Gail Yamner. 

panetta'Panetta believes Israel will strike Iran soon'
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta believes that Israel is likely to strike Iran in the coming months, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius said Thursday.

The Palestinians are doing their best to derail peace talks with Israel
While the world's attention is fixed on the deepening drama of Iran's nuclear programme and the continuing fall-out from the wave of anti-government protests in the Arab world (I still refuse to countenance the concept  of an Arab Spring), it is hardly surprising that attempts to revive the Palestinian-Israeli peace dialogue are not generating many headlines.
Quartet to PA: Resume talks, develop gas reserves
Wassel Abu-Youssef, a member of the PLO's executive committee and the Palestinian representative to the exploratory talks with Israel in Jordan said Thursday that the Quartet has put together an incentives package that would build trust between the sides and jump-start the stalled peace process.

IDF chief: Iran's nuclear program must continue to be disrupted

Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz said on Wednesday that the threats facing Israel have increased and intensified in recent years due to regional instability. He also said that Iran's attempts to acquire nuclear weapons must continue to be disrupted.

Iran Supreme Leader: U.S., Israel will suffer for threats on nuclear program
In televised address, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says has no fear of saying that Iran would support any 'nation or group that wants to confront and fight against the Zionist regime.'

Israel scores rare victory at UN
Israel is used to being on the defensive at the United Nations where it is often outnumbered by its foes, but on Thursday its delegation at UN headquarters in New York scored a rare diplomatic victory.    


Reproductive Rights
 abortionAbortion Debate Likely To Heat Up In 2012

Last year was a pivotal one for abortion laws. Dozens of restrictions were passed in the states - nearly a record since the Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which legalized abortion.  This year, anti-abortion groups say they'll focus on passing more restrictions, and on a state-by-state campaign to grant constitutional rights to embryos.


Catholic Church's opposition to contraception turns health care law into religious freedom issue: A Closer Look
The Affordable Care Act signed into law in March 2010 certainly has its share of critics, especially amongst conservatives. Every GOP candidate for president, including those no longer in the race, has said he or she would repeal the law if elected.  It's a hot-button issue ... so why not stoke the fire with a religious argument as well?

Why President Obama Is Right to Ensure Access to Contraception for America's Families, by Senator Barbara Boxer
When President Obama announced that because of health care reform, birth control would soon be available for free in new insurance plans, you would have expected universal approval.

Sen. Rubio pushes for faith exemption from birth-control mandate
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Monday introduced legislation to overturn Obama administration regulations that would require most health plans to pay for birth control, including those provided by religiously affiliated hospitals and universities.

Rhode Island City Enraged Over School Prayer Suit 

She's 16, a self-proclaimed nerd who loves Harry Potter and Facebook. But Jessica Ahlquist is also an atheist who has incensed this heavily Roman Catholic city with a successful lawsuit to get a prayer removed from her high school auditorium's wall, where it has hung for 49 years.

Indiana Senate backs teaching creationism proposal
Indiana's public schools would be allowed to teach creationism in science classes as long as they include origin of life theories from multiple religions under a proposal approved Tuesday by the state Senate.


kindergartenGet the Church Out of America's Kindergartens
A radical religious ideology is rapidly gaining momentum in America's public elementary schools. Largely unbeknownst to parents, and poorly understood by school administrators, conservative groups within the evangelical Christian movement are carrying out an organized campaign to capture the hearts and minds of children and subvert the separation of church and state.
Political Bytes

'Tea Party 10' Targeted In Multimillion Dollar Campaign By Liberal Super PAC       

A liberal super PAC is set Monday to launch what it is billing as a multimillion dollar campaign to "Take Down the Tea Party Ten."

feministWhat's a Republican Feminist To Do?
In the winter line-up of Republican presidential candidates, a moderate pro-choice Republican woman has no choice. She might feel as if she were so, well, last century.

 movieFilm shows Palestinians, Jews saving lives   

No one believed it could happen, but it has: An Israeli living in England has made a politics-free film about cooperation between Jewish and Palestinian volunteer paramedics for the Orthodox Jerusalem organization United Hatzalah, who save lives together in the capital's western and eastern neighborhoods.  


Israel's 'Footnote,' Allen and Spielberg get Oscar nods 

The Israeli film "Footnote" and veteran Jewish filmmakers Woody Allen and Steven Spielberg are up for Academy Awards.

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.