Silicon Wadi: Israeli high-tech explored at California conference

SAN FRANCISCO (j weekly) — Ronni Zehavi got quite a Chanukah present in December. On Dec. 11, he sold Contendo, a Web services company he co-founded in Israel four years ago, to Akamai, a major global high-tech player. Sale price: $268 million. Score one for the startup nation. Contendo… Read more »

New technology points to missing Holocaust-era mass graves at Treblinka

Each stone at the Treblinka memorial represents a Jewish town or city that had its people exterminated at the camp. (Little Savage via CC)

(JTA) — Scientists using ground-probing electronics may have discovered the missing mass graves at the site of Treblinka, one of the Nazis’ most notorious death camps. No actual bodies were found and the graves were not excavated, in keeping with Jewish law, but bones and bone fragments were discovered… Read more »

After string of foiled plots, concerns mount over Iranian-backed terror

WASHINGTON (JTA) — When America’s top intelligence official said that Iran’s regime is considering attacks on U.S. soil, he cited a single incident and qualified the assessment with a “probably.” But intelligence and law enforcement experts say the Jan. 31 warning by the director of national intelligence, James Clapper,… Read more »

Komen reverses course on Planned Parenthood, but supporters still upset

Sen. Joseph Lieberman participates in the Race for the Cure event in Jerusalem with his wife, Hadassah, left, and Komen founder Nancy brinker. (Photo U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv)

NEW YORK (JTA) — It took just hours for the protests against Susan G. Komen for the Cure to begin, and they quickly took on the fury and form of a full-blown movement. Online petitions were started. Calls poured forth to withhold donations from Komen for its de-funding of… Read more »

NCJW applauds Komen Foundation for reversing decision on Planned Parenthood funding

Sen. Joseph Lieberman participates in the Race for the Cure event in Jerusalem in 2010 with his wife. Hadassah, left, and Komen founder Nancy Brinker. (Photo U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv)

February 3, 2012, Washington, DC — The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) today commended the Susan G. Komen for the Cure® foundation for reversing its decision to defund cancer screenings performed by Planned Parenthood. NCJW CEO Nancy K. Kaufman released the following statement: “NCJW was deeply disappointed when… Read more »

For some schoolkids in southern Italy, meeting their first Jew on Holocaust Day

Amendolara Mayor Salvatore Antonio Ciminelli, left, standing next to JTA's Ruth Ellen Gruber, after presenting award certificates to some of the 100 schoolchildren who attended a Holocaust Memorial Day ceremony in the town hall, Jan. 27, 2012. The children received awards for art or writing projects about the Shoah. (Photo courtesy Amendolara Town Hall)

AMENDOLARA, Italy (JTA) — It was International Holocaust Memorial Day, and when I told my audience that I was a Jew, they burst into applause. I was speaking at the City Hall in this ancient seacoast town in Calabria, deep in southern Italy on the instep of the Italian… Read more »

On Iranian nuclear issue, mixed signals proliferate

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, seen here addressing a regional economic summit in Tehran in May 2011, says he is "optimistic" that nuclear inspectors will not find anything amiss this week during their visit to the country. (Parmida Rahimi via Creative Commons)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Israel, the United States and Iran have all gone deep into mixed-signals territory. Conversations with Israeli officials, including Defense Minister Ehud Barak, left one prominent journalist convinced that Israel will strike Iran by year’s end. Yet two weeks ago, Barak had said that any possible Israeli… Read more »

Controversy grows in Israel over extension of Tal Law granting haredim army exemptions

Soldiers from the Israeli army's haredi Orthodox unit called the Netzah Yehuda Battalion praying. (Abir Sultan/Flash90/JTA)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — When Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, granted a few hundred haredi Orthodox Jews an exemption from army service, it’s likely he never dreamed that 63 years later, tens of thousands of haredi Israelis would claim the exemption — or that the issue would be among… Read more »

In Jewish fracking debate, it’s the environment vs. energy independence — and energy’s winning

Activists connected to Jews Against Hydrofracking demonstrating in New Jersey on Nov. 21. (Jews Against Hydrofracking)

NEW YORK (JTA) – To frack or not to frack? As concerns mount over the environmental and public health consequences of hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, Jewish groups are coalescing around a strategy that supports efforts to extract natural gas from shale rock while seeking to mitigate its worst… Read more »

Seeking Kin: Tracing a group of refugees, from Europe to Cyprus to Palestine to East Africa

Peter Keeda, an Australian retiree, stumbled upon the story of a group of Jewish refugees from Nazi Europe who were sent by the British from Cyprus to Palestine and later to East Africa. (Courtesy Peter Keeda)

The “Seeking Kin” column aims to help reunite long-lost friends and relatives. BALTIMORE (JTA) — A virtually unknown episode in prestate Israel grabbed Peter Keeda last year and won’t let go: the British government’s June 1941 shipment of 384 European Jews from Cyprus to Palestine. They and 39 others… Read more »

Tucsonans fare well at Pan American Maccabi Games in Brazil

Tucsonan Josh Landau, left in second row, with teammates at the opening ceremony of the Pan American Maccabi Games in Brazil.

Sao Paolo, Brazil, is “a weird place,” with the most skyscrapers in the world but also teeming slums, says Tucsonan Josh Landau, who was there for the 12th annual Pan American Maccabi Games, held Dec. 26-Jan. 2. “We were staying in a really nice four-star hotel and you look… Read more »

Arizona Centennial: Cemeteries reveal history of years gone by

It’s not morbid, it’s history. For a state that’s nearly 100 years old, Arizona has no shortage of fascinating stories, many of which can be found in our historic Jewish cemeteries. Evergreen Cemetery in Tucson contains the grave sites of the men and women that figure prominently in the… Read more »

Arizona Centennial: Women vital to arts, education, religious life

Tucson trailblazer Clara Ferrin, the daughter of German immigrants Joseph and Therese Ferrin, was born in Tucson on July 26, 1881, at her parents’ home. She, along with her sister and brother, attended the Congress Street School, which later became the location of the David Bloom & Sons Clothing… Read more »

Producer to attend NW screening on Jews of India

A free screening of the documentary “This Song Is Old,” about the B’nei Menashe Jews of India, will take place Thursday, Feb. 2, at 7 p.m. at the Sun City Social Hall, 1495 E. Rancho Vistoso Blvd. in Oro Valley. The B’nei Menashe, who live in the northeastern Indian… Read more »

Tucson to debut ‘Look Ma, We’re Dancing’

Susan Kovitz (left) and Susan Claassen rehearse ‘Look Ma, We’re Dancing,’ premiering at The Invisible Theatre. (Tim Fuller)

The Invisible Theatre will stage the world premiere of Janet Neipris’ “Look Ma, We’re Dancing,” a lighthearted comedy about two grown sisters who are still competing for the approval and attention of their long dead mother. The show will run Feb. 8-26, with a preview performance Feb. 7. “Janet… Read more »

Jewish Tucsonans will exclaim ‘Shalom Pardner’ for AZ Centennial

Charles Moses Strauss, the first Jewish mayor of Tucson, Arizona Territory (elected 1883), with his son, Charles junior. Eileen Warshaw, executive director of the Jewish History Museum, explains that Strauss was actually a very dapper gentleman. The Western “duds” he and his son are wearing in this photo were photographer’s props. (Courtesy Jewish History Museum)

Tucson has a rich Jewish history, which the Jewish community will celebrate during the city’s Arizona Centennial Weekend from Feb. 10 to 12. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime event,” says Eileen Warshaw, executive director of the Jewish History Museum and one of the co-chairs of the Downtown Centennial Celebration Committee.… Read more »

TIPS partnership to bring Israeli artists to Tucson

Vered Otmy

Four Israeli artists will spend almost two weeks in Tucson this month, giving workshops and talking about their experiences as artists living in Israel. “This amazing ‘partnership 2gether’ project, sponsored by the Jewish Agency for Israel, Jewish Federations of North America and our local TIPS (Tucson, Israel, Phoenix, Seattle)… Read more »