American Jewry and the Oslo Years by N. Rubin

By N. Rubin

The Oslo means of September 1993 to January 2001 finally caused an enduring holiday in American Judaism's conventional wall-to-wall help for any Israeli executive. Drawing on huge new assets, Rubin analyzes what this intended for the yank and Israeli Jewish communities―critical constituencies in previous and destiny negotiations.

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They [the Jews] didn’t vote for us anyway [in the 1988 elections],” Baker said, according to former New York City mayor and now New York Post columnist Ed Koch while citing anonymous sources. ” Further, he wrote, “Jews and supporters of Israel [Koch was both] should not hesitate during the current political debate and election to let the candidates know that the security of Israel is a top priority for them. Other groups advance their priorities without fear of intimidation. ”57 The column, coming from an influential New York political leader with high standing both nationally and in the Jewish community, not to mention 34 ● American Jewry and the Oslo Years one with a good personal relationship with Bush, caught the President’s attention.

Civic organizations and local governments often held ceremonies featuring talks by Holocaust survivors and their GI liberators. Enhancing this trend was that Hollywood, America’s great purveyor of popular culture, caught on as well. In 1993, the acclaimed director Steven Spielberg made the film Schindler’s List, an emotionally grueling three-and-a-quarterhour portrayal of Nazi occupation and enslavement of Jews. It was hailed as one of the more important films ever made, and duly was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, walking away with 7 of them.

Meanwhile, the United States increasingly became seen as the only country able to both bring Israel into a peace process as well as protect the Jewish state’s interests. In fact, between 1967 and 1993, almost every major effort at IsraeliArab peace making was initiated by high-level US involvement. The Oslo Accords would be—at least in their formation—a notable break in this pattern. Following the Six-Day War, Washington took the lead by protecting Israel at international forums, particularly at the United Nations.

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