Melissa Weininger: Why President Obama Should Not Visit the Western WallRoundup: Historians' Take
tags: Israel, Melissa Weininger, Western Wall, Wailing Wall, Jewish studies
Melissa Weininger is a scholar of modern Jewish Studies. She received her Ph.D. in 2010, and has taught at The University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, and Rice University.
Last week the New York Times and the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz reported that President Obama will not go to the Western Wall when he visits Israel next week.
An official who spoke to the Times framed this lacuna in the president’s itinerary as a security issue, explaining that the difficulty of protecting the president near the site was too great. And other presidents, including Bill Clinton in 1996, have not visited the Wall either. In general there has been little response, positive or negative, to the news that the president would not go to the Wall. But Americans and Israelis concerned with civil rights in Israel should be applauding the news, because there are many good reasons why President Obama should not visit the Western Wall.
The New York Times quoted Israeli ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren as saying, “Everything on the Seder table—from the lamb shank to the parsley to the egg—is rife with symbolism. So, too, with every item on the president’s itinerary.”...
comments powered by Disqus
- Snopes debunks slavery Internet meme
- Revamped Chinese History Journal Welcomes Hard-Line Writers
- Poll: 3 Out of 5 Texan Trump Supporters Want Secession if Hillary Clinton Is Elected
- The Psychiatric Question: Is It Fair to Analyze Donald Trump From Afar?
- Minorities still feel Eugene, Oregon’s historical link to the Ku Klux Klan
- Ernst Nolte, Historian Whose Views on Hitler Caused an Uproar, Dies at 93
- Japan should give formal apology for wartime aggression, says historian
- Historian Benjamin Madley says what whites did to Indians in the 19th century in California was genocide.
- Kevin Baker says America needs to bring back political machines
- Covell Meyskens uses his blog to show what life was like under Mao. (Interview)