January 2017 -- Tevet-Shevat 5777,  Volume 23, Issue 1

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Left to right:  Wendy Lubkin, Event Co-Chair; Jason Isaacson, AJC Director of Government and International Affairs; Beverly Rosenbaum, AJC Westchester/Fairfield Regional President, Richard Lubkin, Event Co-Chair.

Isaacson Discusses Future of U.S. Foreign Policy Under Trump

By Stephen E. Lipken


Jason Isaacson, American Jewish Committee (AJC) Associate Executive Director for Policy and Managing Director of Government and International Affairs discussed the future of U.S. foreign policy under the Trump Administration at a program hosted jointly by AJC Westchester/Fairfield and Beth El Synagogue Center  in New Rochelle on Wednesday, December 7, 2016.


“I explained the November 8th outcome to 25 very serious and worried German diplomats, think tank analysts and journalists at a Transatlantic Roundtable in the AJC Berlin office on Monday, November 14,” Isaac-son began.  “I spoke about America’s uneven recovery from the Great Recession, the different Americans that have emerged, with large blocks of class and educational cohorts viewing the world in such startling different ways, as well as the paralysis of Washington, explosion of social media with fake news, America not leading the world and being feared as in the past. The looming threat of terrorism weakens confidence in our political status quo and undocumented immigrants stir up fears…


“AJC raised alarms against the alt-right with its neo-Nazi leaders and their appalling post-election meeting in Washington, calling for Donald Trump to denounce them.  We shot down the Muslim registration concept...


“With the appointment of Reince Priebus as Chief of Staff and General James Mattis as Defense Secretary, pragmatism and experience appear to win out.  In his outreach to foreign leaders,   some of the early signs have been unorthodox, including his phone calls to the President of the Philippines, Prime Minister of Pakistan and President of Taiwan…How will his contacts with Russian President Vladimir Putin affect the vulnerable Baltic States?


“Trump has expressed admiration for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and also Egyptian President Abdel Sisi who is desperate for a friend in the White House.

“We look for his outreach to bruised constituencies in the United States, with immigration deportations and Muslim bans from the campaign.


“Will he continue his outreach to the LGBTQ community, which marks a striking departure from the Republican Party?  Will he seek to weaken sanctions against Russia?  Will he pull out of Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, which AJC opposed?”

Isaacson concluded that the Two-State Solution is the only solution—“but it won’t be done anytime soon.”