The Shalem Center has a new baby.
Its "Institute of Strategic Studies".
The 'Scholars' in the Institute include: Natan Sharansky, Institute Chairman and Distinguished Fellow; Moshe "Bogie" Yaalon, Distinguished Fellow; Michael B. Oren, Senior Fellow; Martin Kramer, Senior Fellow; Yossi Klein Halevi, Senior Fellow. (*)
To get it off the ground, the Center graciously accepted a $4.5 million gift from the Adelson Family Foundation.
The Institute is intended to advance ideas such as the: Spreading of human rights and democracy; Opposition to totalitarian regimes; and Defense of national sovereignty and a Jewish state.
Its first effort is a briefing this week, one session of which is entitled "One People, Two Countries?" with Ehud Yaari and Bassem Eid. Bassem is the founder and director of the Palestinian Rights Monotoring Group (actually, that should be the Palestinain Human Rights Monoitring Group. They got it wrong).
I have quoted from the PHRMG reports and have no problem with his attendance.
What I do find a bit odd is:
a) why not a title like "Three [or Four] Countries for Two Peoples?"
b) why not a human rights activist from the Jewish camp?
I think Shalem is starting off on the wrong foot.
P.S. By the way, I liked how they simply rearranged themselves. Four of the five fellows of the Institute have been working for Shalem for years. Yossi Klein Halevi is a senior fellow in the Shalem Center's Institute for Zionist History and Thought.
Michael B. Oren is a Senior Fellow at the Shalem Center. Sharansky came to Shalem in May 2005 as a distinguised fellow. Yaalon was at Shalem for almost a year before moving on to Beit Moreshet. As for Kramer, I think he's the only real "new guy on the block".