Challenges facing Israel focus of an upcoming JCRC event

Dr. Eric Mandel, founder and director of MEPIN (the Middle East Political Information Network, a private Middle East research and analysis organization), will lead a discussion on “Israel’s Challenges for 2022: A Pivotal Year for Decisions.” The talk will be held on Thursday, Mar. 31 at 7:30 p.m. via zoom. The event is being hosted by the Jewish Community Relations Council of Southern New Jersey. The conversation will include current topics, including the Iran negotiations, the War in the North (the new Iranian border), and how Ukraine plays into the Middle East.

Mandel regularly briefs members of Congress about the ever-changing geopolitical situation in the Middle East. He also is the senior security editor of the Jerusalem Report news magazine and regularly writes op-eds for the Jerusalem Post. He also writes for many other publications, including a recent article in the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle in which he discussed how anti-Zionism equates to anti-Semitism and why this is an important dialogue in our undergraduate schools, colleges and universities, here and abroad.

The evening with Mandel culminates a year-long project from the Board of Directors of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Southern New Jersey (JCRC). In January 2021, the board created an ad hoc committee to address the possibility of a return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran. With the transition to a new president in the United States and the fourth election in Israel, concerns about Iran were amplified, and the board recognized that any potential deal with Iran would be of paramount importance to the community. The committee created a briefing document that can serve as an educational resource for the broader South Jersey audience. The process is not meant to make a statement, judgment, or recommendation regarding any decision to reenter the JCPOA or any future deal with Iran, nor is it meant to offer prospective commentary from the JCRC of Southern NJ on any related policies that might emerge in the future.

The paper found on the JCRC website at, presents an abbreviated timeline of events that led up to and followed the adoption of the JCPOA, describes the evolution of JCRC’s position statement about the deal, and provides summaries of the arguments for and against (returning to) the deal. It also curates a set of credible articles that reflect the range of expert assessments of the history and the current status.

Registration for the free Zoom program is at

For more information, contact Sabrina Spector, JCRC of Southern NJ associate director, at or call (856) 673-2511.

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