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Netanyahu’s unexpected confrontation with US Jews

It is unclear why Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided now of all times to confront US Jews.
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu touches the stones of the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City March 18, 2015. Netanyahu won a come-from-behind victory in Israel's election after tacking hard to the right in the final days of campaigning, including abandoning a commitment to negotiate a Palestinian state. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun (JERUSALEM - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS RELIGION) - RTR4TV5K
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The meeting that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had with Jerry Silverman, the CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America, on June 27 failed to allay the tempest that the prime minister had just stirred up over Israel's relationship with American Jews.

A deep rift has been emerging in that relationship since June 25. In fact, that rift is so deep that there has never been anything like it in the relationship between the Jews of the United States and the Israeli government. The unrest was instigated by two volatile moves supported by Netanyahu. The first was a surprising decision that the prime minister brought before his Cabinet, suspending the Western Wall compromise, approved by the government in January 2016. This compromise involved the creation of a mixed-gender prayer space at the Western Wall, which would allow all denominations of Judaism to pray there.

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