Joel B. Pollak

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large and in-house counsel at Breitbart News. A graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, he also has a degree in Jewish Studies from the University of Cape Town. He ran for Congress in 2010 in his hometown of Skokie, IL and worked as a Research Fellow at the Hudson Institute, as well as speechwriter to the Leader of the Opposition in the South African Parliament. He enjoys improv comedy, rock 'n' roll, and the literature of liberal apostates and iconoclasts. His wife Julia is a Ph.D. Fellow at the Pardee Rand Graduate School and his daughter Maya is unbelievably cute.

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5 Thoughts on Iran's Simulated Attack on Israel, U.S.

Iranian state television aired a simulated airstrike on Israel and on American targets on Friday, as a warning of the kind of response that could be expected if either country attacked Iran's nuclear program. The broadcast needs to be taken seriously: what an enemy is willing to imagine, it is willing to execute. And it is also worth noting that while the Obama administration is keen to look accommodating, Iran is stepping up its threats. Yet there are a few other things worth noting about the video, beyond the basic fact that it was aired at all. Feb 8, 2014 11:29 PM PT

Iran: The Real 'Linkage'

Many of those so-called "realists" who inspired Barack Obama's opposition to the Iraq War and accompanied him into the administration believed in the theory of "linkage"--that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was closely linked to threats against the U.S., and was in fact the primary reason that the U.S. was targeted by terrorists and disliked by other regional powers, including Iran. Reality, in fact, has proved otherwise in the past few years. Feb 8, 2014 10:24 PM PT

Politico's Heroic Profile of Jerry Brown's High-Speed Rail Dream

The latest edition of Politico Magazine features a profile of California Gov. Jerry Brown and his ambition--now more than three decades old--to bring high-speed rail to the state. The happy coincidence of Barack Obama's enormously wasteful and ineffective stimulus allowed Brown's dream, inspired by a trip to Japan, to take root. David Dayen's article casts Brown's mission in almost heroic style, a brave battle waged against great odds. Feb 8, 2014 8:38 PM PT

Obama's Appeasement Invites Iran's Mission Creep

When Breitbart News first noted on Jan. 21 that Iran was sending its first warships to the Atlantic, the mission was presumed to be a mere tour of the open seas. On Feb. 8, however, Iran's Northern Naval Fleet Commander Admiral Afshin Rezayee Haddad announced that the destination of the small convoy--a helicopter carrier and destroyer--would be the U.S. maritime borders, a deliberately provocative gesture aimed at challenging the U.S. Feb 8, 2014 8:01 PM PT

California Drought: Cold Weather Brings Power Shortage

Though it is fashionable among Democrats to blame the ongoing California drought--one of the worst ever seen--on global warming, the state now faces a new problem: namely, cold winter temperatures. The cold snap has led to increased use of heating by residents and businesses, and a shortage of natural gas in Southern California. State officials are now calling on California residents to conserve electricity as well as water. Feb 7, 2014 10:52 AM PT

Reminder: Liberal Jews Not Immune from Anti-Israel Hate

Left-wing Jews may hope that their increased willingness to criticize Israel might spare them some of the worst of anti-Israel hatred from Palestinian advocates and antisemites. Not so, sadly. The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles reports that a beautiful mural along the outer wall of the Arbeter Ring/Workmen’s Circle Southern California facility in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood was defaced with "Free Palestine!!!!" graffiti Thursday. Feb 7, 2014 10:44 AM PT

Fluke Hopes to Boost Women, Says Limbaugh's 'Slut' Insult Helped

Sandra Fluke, who is now running for state Senate in California's 26th district rather than for the congressional seat being vacated by Democrat Henry Waxman after forty years, says that while people should not vote for her because she's a woman, increasing the number of women in the state legislature is something she hopes to do. Feb 7, 2014 10:37 AM PT

Ezra Klein: 'There Still Might Be' a JournoList

Tom Bevan and Carl Cannon take Ezra Klein for a spin in the latest edition of RealClearPolitics' "Morning Commute." The duo has posted several clips of their interview with Klein, but one this morning is particularly strange. They ask Klein about JournoList, the email group Klein ran several years ago that often served to coordinate coverage among left-leaning members of the media. Does such a group still exists, Cannon wonders? Feb 7, 2014 5:35 AM PT

Blue State Blues: Job-locked Workers of the World, Unite!

When the Congressional Budget Office announced on Tuesday that Obamacare would now prompt 2.5 million workers to leave the labor force in the next ten years, the left howled in unison. Shaking their fists at the media, they insisted they were the victims of a right-wing propaganda campaign. It wasn't 2.5 million jobs being lost! Sure enough, the media began dialing back their headlines. It looked like the left had won yet another round. Feb 7, 2014 2:01 AM PT

Poll: 70% of Israeli Jews Don't Trust U.S. Security Guarantees

A new poll by Israel's Geocartography Institute found that 70% of Israeli Jews do not trust the U.S. to protect Israeli security interests in negotiations with the Palestinian Authority, according to the Jerusalem Post. The poll, which was conducted among 500 adults with a 4.2% margin of error, also revealed that 75% of Jewish Israelis do not trust President Barack Obama, with degrees ranging from "definitely no" to "not completely." Feb 7, 2014 12:29 AM PT

Pro-Life Students Take the High Road at USC

When Lisa Ebiner Gavit, president of Students for Life at the University of Southern California, arrived at the famous Tommy Trojan statue last month to take down her organization's display commemorating the 41st anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, she came across an unexpected scene. "We saw two girls bending down over the display," she recalls. "From a distance we couldn't tell what was going on, but as I got closer I saw that all the posters were gone." They had been ripped off the statue and "crumpled up into a ball." Feb 6, 2014 11:03 PM PT

Colbert Mocks Breitbart's Leahy over Coca-Cola Super Bowl Ad

Comedian Stephen Colbert took a swing at Breitbart's own Michael Patrick Leahy on Monday evening, setting him up as the target in a liberal pushback against conservatives who criticized Coca-Cola's commercial during the Super Bowl. The 60-second spot features children singing "America the Beautiful" in several different languages, set against various scenes of Americana--including, as Leahy pointed out, a pair of gay parents. Feb 6, 2014 2:41 PM PT

Israel Unveils New Drone--on the Water

Meet the next wave of drone technology: unmanned surface vessels (USV), otherwise known as marine drones. Israel Aerospace Industries unveiled the Katana on Tuesday, and the "unsinkable" boat can function either as a drone or as a manned combat vessel. It has two engines and some incredible gadgets. Feb 6, 2014 5:49 AM PT

New York Times Profit Falls 12%; Print, Digital Revenues Still Falling

The New York Times announced Thursday that operating profits had fallen 12% in the fourth quarter of 2013 compared to the same period a year before. Earnings per share dropped by roughly two-thirds, from $0.76 to $0.24. Total revenues were down 5.2% and advertising revenues were down 6.3%, with print advertising revenues falling by 7.0% and digital by 4.3% over 2013. The company added digital subscribers, up 19% in the fourth quarter of 2013 compared to same period in 2012, but its circulation revenues were down, too. Feb 6, 2014 5:13 AM PT


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