News

In Manchester, Jews have been preparing for an attack for years

Emergency responders arrive at the Manchester Arena following a bomb attack at an Ariana Grande concert, May 22, 2017. (Dave Thompson/Getty Images)

  (JTA) — Britain’s bloodiest terrorist attack in over a decade occurred Monday just two miles from Rabbi Yisroel Cohen’s synagogue. Yet one day after the deadly bombing in Manchester, Cohen told JTA he has no intention of changing security arrangements at his congregation. In fact Cohen, a Chabad… Read more »

Israel gave Trump the royal treatment he longs for back home

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin guides President Donald Trump at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, May 22, 2017. (Avi Ohayon/GPO/Flash90)

JERUSALEM (JTA) – President Donald Trump must have felt like he was back behind his desk at Trump Tower. During his whirlwind visit to Israel and the West Bank on Monday and Tuesday, the U.S. leader was treated with the deference befitting a CEO. His words were greeted with rapturous applause and… Read more »

A Jewish hipster haven in the heart of Chabad’s Brooklyn territory

Nechama Levy, who participates in a few Crown Heights independent prayer groups, is involved in another Brooklyn trend: Her bike shop, Bicycle Roots, is also in the neighborhood. (Courtesy of Levy)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Soon after Nechama Levy moved to Brooklyn five years ago, she opened a bicycle repair shop. The spacious, high-ceilinged store was just down the street from a new pub with exposed brick walls. Like many who have moved recently to the rapidly gentrifying borough, Levy, 33,… Read more »

Short on time, Yad Vashem packing emotion into Trump visit with story of one young victim

Ester Goldstein, left and sister Margot lived in Berlin before they were separated in 1939. (Courtesy of Yad Vashem)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — President Donald Trump will spend just 30 minutes at Yad Vashem on the second and last day of his visit to Israel, but the leadership of the Holocaust memorial center in Jerusalem plans to use the brief time to deliver a powerful message. Rather than bombarding Trump with facts… Read more »

Rebel Israeli lawmaker snags selfie with Donald Trump

Oren Hazan in front of the Israeli parliament building, Oct. 31, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

  TEL AVIV (JTA) — Oren Hazan finally met his hero, and he wasn’t going to let the moment go undocumented. The notoriously misbehaved Israeli lawmaker snapped a selfie with President Donald Trump during the official welcome ceremony Monday at Ben Gurion Airport. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu belatedly attempted to stop… Read more »

Netanyahu, a man in the middle, scrambles to give Trump a warm welcome

Air Force One arrives at Ben Gurion Airport near Tel Aviv, May 22, 2017. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

  TEL AVIV (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did his best to give Donald Trump a warm welcome when he landed Monday at Ben Gurion Airport on his first trip abroad as U.S. president. Netanyahu offered support for Trump’s stated aspiration to broker the “ultimate deal” between Israel and… Read more »

This Israeli film about Orthodox Jews is a surprise hit overseas

From left to right: Orna Banai, Yafit Asulin, Evelin Hagoel, Sharona Elimelech and Einat Sarouf in "The Women's Balcony." (Courtesy of Menemsha Films)

(JTA) — It’s safe to call the Israeli film “The Women’s Balcony” the opposite of a Hollywood blockbuster. The movie, directed by Emil Ben-Shimon, is a sensitive, slice-of-life story that focuses on the rift caused in a modern Orthodox community in Jerusalem when a Hasidic rabbi offers to fill… Read more »

The pro-Israel right is starting to feel unease with Trump

President Donald Trump at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy graduation ceremony in New London, Conn., May 17, 2017. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

  WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Zionist Organization of America launched two broadsides against a Trump administration it has ardently defended, signaling a growing unease on the pro-Israel right with the president’s Israel policies. The ZOA, the flagship for the conservative pro-Israel community, slammed President Donald Trump for retreating from… Read more »

Israel’s demographic future: Crowded and very religious

Hasidic Jews from the Strikov dynasty celebrate the writing of a new Torah scroll in Bnei Brak, Israel, March 26, 2017. (Yaakov Naumi/Flash90)

  TEL AVIV (JTA) – Israel’s projected future looks a lot like a visit to the Jerusalem central bus station: crowded and very religious. According to a government report to be released in full next week, the Jewish state’s population will double in about 40 years. Some 29 percent —… Read more »

David Friedman, new US envoy to Israel, presents credentials in Jerusalem

David Friedman, right, with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin at a ceremony for new ambassadors at the president's residence in Jerusalem, May 16, 2017. (Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The new U.S. ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, presented his credentials to President Reuven Rivlin in Jerusalem. During the ceremony Tuesday morning, Rivlin identified himself as a seventh-generation Jerusalemite and noted.”Next week, we will celebrate 50 years since Jerusalem was united, and the Jewish people were… Read more »

A government campaign against George Soros splits Hungarian Jews

George Soros at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Sept. 20, 2016. (Peter Foley/Pool/Getty Images)

(JTA) — On a recent Sunday, eight far-right activists filmed themselves on what they called a “raid” on the Aurora Jewish community center in Budapest. Sporting crewcuts and black clothes, the men affixed posters with a crossed-out picture of the Hungary-born Jewish American billionaire George Soros to the entrance of… Read more »

Israeli startups are driving the car technology revolution. Here’s how.

A simulation of cars using Autotalks' vehicle-to-vehicle communication system. (Screenshot from YouTube)

TEL AVIV (JTA) – Israeli startups are revving their engines ahead of the country’s largest-ever “smart transportation” event. Over 200 local companies working in transportation technology will be at the EcoMotion Conference on Thursday at the Peres Center for Peace in Jaffa. The plan is to give auto industry… Read more »

These 7 smartphone apps make life easier for religious Jews

Smartphone apps can help with everything from putting on tefillin correctly to finding a minyan to locating a kosher restaurant. (Lior Zaltzman)

(JTA) — These days there are smartphone applications for pretty much anything, from ordering food to finding a date to reporting anti-Semitic incidents. But what about tools for living a religious Jewish life? Well, there are apps for that, too. Whereas in the time before smartphones, observant Jews may have… Read more »

Progressive Jewish Latina embraces community with gusto

Alma Hernandez at her bat mitzvah party in the Holocaust History Center garden, April 8 (Courtesy Hernandez)

Alma Hernandez is passionate and strives every day to make a difference. People say her values and actions represent the core of Judaism, which is noteworthy because Hernandez didn’t grow up Jewish. At age 24, she has been active in the Jewish community for several years, even before she… Read more »

JCRC immigration forum highlights city’s citizenship campaign

Immigration lawyer Alan Bennett speaks at the Tucson Jewish Community Center April 28. (Simon Rosenblatt)

The immigration crisis in Southern Arizona was the topic of a breakfast forum organized by the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona on Friday, April 28. Opening the meeting, which was held at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, JCRC Chair Richard White explained that… Read more »

‘Recovered atheist’ and future rabbi speaks from heart on Jewish identity, healthy homes

(L-R): Linda Behr, Congregation Bet Shalom Cantor Avraham Alpert, Eileen Weizenbaum and Andrea Siemens, LMSW, at the Tucson Jewish Community Center April 23. Behr and Weizenbaum are Jewish Family & Children's Services Shalom in Every Home Healthy Family program board members. (Korene Charnofsky Cohen)

Avraham “Avi” Alpert’s spiritual journey has led him from Judaism to atheism to being an observant Jew. Now he wants to help other Jews find their own path to Jewish traditions, values and celebrations that bring families closer together. His April 23 talk at the Tucson Jewish Community Center,… Read more »

Three Tucsonans to compete on Team USA at Maccabiah Games in Israel

Sam Beskind of Catalina Foothills High School drives to the basket against Walden Grove High School, Jan. 12, 2017. [Courtesy Beskind)

Three young Jewish athletes from Tucson will compete in the elite Maccabiah Games in Israel. Held every four years, the games are the world’s third-largest international sporting event, with more than 9,000 athletes from over 80 countries. Sam Beskind, Tamara Statman and Brett Miller will be part of Team… Read more »

From Navajo reservation to exotic cruises, medical career is window to world

Dr. Seneca Erman and Cantor Janece Cohen at Congregation Or Chadash in 2016 (Elliot Framan)

The Navajo cradleboard at Tucson’s Jewish History Museum held Cantor Janece Cohen when she was a baby. It continues to hold many stories for her and her father, Dr. Seneca Erman, 88, who gave a gallery chat at the museum on Feb. 3. Erman had done a two-month internship… Read more »