The Iran Deal Ruined Rosh Hashanah, Senate Republicans Argue

Evidently, the Jewish new year has been filled with distress thanks to the nuclear accord.
Caren Firouz / Reuters

WASHINGTON ― There are countless reasons that Republicans oppose the nuclear deal negotiated between world powers and Iran. The inspections aren’t strict enough; the sanctions relief is too generous; the deal phases out too quickly; it doesn’t address regional terrorism; and so on.

To this list, the National Republican Senatorial Committee is adding one more. The deal has spoiled Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year. From the committee’s Monday release:

Last night marked the start of Rosh Hashanah ― a holiday during which the Jewish people gather across the country and around the world to celebrate the new year.

Unfortunately, what should be a time for tremendous joy has become a time for tremendous concern. Just last week, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei expressed his hope that Israel will not exist in 25 years[...]

It’s true (OK, this is anecdotal) that the Iran deal introduced a new tension to the traditional pre-Rosh Hashanah meal. The uncle who opposes it stewed in the corner, stuffing apples and honey in his face, before going off on the rest of the family about their incredible naiveté and unbending Obama worship. And yes, the next day, the rabbi vaguely addressed the topic in his sermon, referencing the dangerous habit of Diaspora Jews to trust the motives of others. The couple next to you, sitting quietly with their song sheet in hand, whispered to each other, “When can we leave and not feel guilty?” And, fine, as you walked over to the Tashlikh ceremony, maybe a debate erupted about the state of U.S.-Israel relations, and maybe you ended up agreeing to send your firstborn child on a Birthright trip to affirm your Zionist cred.

And then as you settled down to eat following the long day, you probably did worry about what $100 billion in Iran sanctions relief would mean if filtered down to Hamas or Hezbollah. These aren’t small stakes. But it was more likely than not that you then went to bed and slept semi-decently, because, by a slim margin, more American Jews support the Iran deal than oppose it.

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