Iran War Watch: Netanyahu Gives Obama a Badass Biblical Scroll

Spoiler Alert: The Jews win.<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Megillat_Esther_%281%29.jpg">Chefallen</a>/Wikimedia Commons

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Are the United States and Iran on a collision course over the Middle Eastern country’s controversial nuclear program? We’ll be posting the latest news on Iran-war fever—the intel, the media frenzy, the rhetoric.

The following will sound a lot like a scene from Kung Fu Panda. It happened during the high-profile meeting between President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House on Monday.

Bloomberg’s Jonathan Ferziger has the story:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave President Barack Obama a Purim Megillah scroll, which tells the story of how Jews prevailed over a plot to kill them in ancient Persia, which is present-day Iran.

Netanyahu gave Obama the gift…during a White House meeting, two days before the Jewish holiday of Purim begins.

In case you’re not familiar with the details of said Hebrew scroll: The Megillah, commonly known as the Book of Esther, is the part of the Hebrew Bible that tells the story of how a hard-partying Persian king was convinced by an evil adviser that it’d be fun to decimate the Jewish minority population in his dominion. He declares a government holiday in the month of Adar during which his subjects are given carte blanche to murder Jews and steal their property. Long-story-short, the Jews do a fantastic job of defending themselves against the state-sponsored onslaught, and then proceed to commit a hugely successful counter-slaughter of the Persians. (This bit of Biblical spin has long since found a home in the annals of fascist and far-right propaganda.)

Flash forward a couple dozen centuries, and the Jews now have something of a home-plate advantage over Persian foes: They are the regional superpower. They have backing of the only global superpower. The track record of the Israeli military—and special ops forces—has achieved a Hollywoodlevel of renown. Oh, and one other thing: They have nuclear bombs.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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