Opinion

REPORTER’S NOTEBOOK: How an encounter between Jews and Palestinians underlines the promise and failures of Oslo

The Palestinian side of the separation wall in Bethlehem has graffiti in Arabic and English, but not Hebrew, June 25, 2018. (Ron Kampeas)

(JTA) — The wall separating Bethlehem from Israel-controlled territory is silent and noisy at once, like the breakdown in conversation between Israelis and Palestinians that helped kill the Oslo peace accords. It was only this year — in June, almost 25 years since the launch of the accords that… Read more »

OP-ED Young activists learned the wrong lessons from the Oslo Accords

Members of the Peace Now movement demonstrate outside the residence of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak in Jerusalem, July11, 2000. (Brian Hendler/Newsmakers/Getty Images)

LAS VEGAS (JTA) — This summer, America’s Jewish youth rebelled. Or at least a very small minority of them did. But through orchestrated stunts and aggressive marketing, they garnered the headlines they sought. These youth are demanding that Israel end its “occupation,” presumably of the West Bank. They are… Read more »

Oslo failed. Long live Oslo.

From left to right: Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin in 1994 after winning the Nobel Peace Prize for their roles in the Oslo Accords. (Wikimedia Commons)

NEW YORK (JTA) — It has become conventional wisdom in certain circles that the Oslo agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, which was signed 25 years ago Sept. 13 on the White House lawn, was simply a failure. There is no doubt that the great hopes of Israeli-Palestinian peace and… Read more »

With time running out, more of us must engage with Holocaust survivors

Raisa Moroz, Holocaust survivors program manager at Jewish Family & Children's Services of Southern Arizona (left), talks with Yulia Genina, a survivor from Ukraine, in 2014. (Nancy Ben-Asher, AJP)

There are over 400,000 Jewish Holocaust survivors worldwide, but the survivor population is rapidly diminishing. As we celebrate the High Holidays and mark the beginning of another year, each of us needs to reflect on what we have done in the past year to support this shrinking community and… Read more »

‘Never again’ belongs to the Holocaust, not the gun control movement

I am a Holocaust concentration camp survivor. I am one of a rapidly dwindling number of eyewitnesses to the Nazi Holocaust, the most systematic genocide of all time. I regularly speak at high schools, universities and community events, sharing my eyewitness account with newer generations of Americans who have no… Read more »

First I sat shiva for my mom. Then I ran a marathon.

(Kveller via JTA) – When a Jewish person dies, the traditional way to grieve includes sitting shiva, a seven-day mourning period when visitors arrive to comfort and care for the bereaved. At the end of the week, the mourners “get up” and resume more of their normal activities. Some people… Read more »

OP-ED Eastern Europe is changing. How we deliver care to Jewish elderly has to change with it.

A man in Kishinev, Moldova, receives honey from the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. (Courtesy of the JDC)

    NEW YORK (JTA) — In business, an effective planning process is essential for success. During the High Holidays, Jews are urged to engage in this sort of process for our own lives. We reflect on the past year, seeking lessons to help us in the coming year.… Read more »

I don’t believe in God — but this is why I’m having an Orthodox wedding

Cnaan Liphshiz and wife Iris celebrate their wedding in the Netherlands, July 2, 2013. (Courtesy of Liphshiz)

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — My wife and I were married roughly 5,000 diapers ago, and she’s still waiting for me to propose. I know this because she reminds me every anniversary. To be clear, ours was no shotgun wedding. Iris and I were hitched in a civil marriage in Holland… Read more »

OP-ED: One year after Charlottesville, white supremacists have not faded away

Carlos Galindo-Elvira

On Aug. 12, 2017, the nation was gripped by the shocking scene of hundreds of white supremacists taking to the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia, bellowing racist and anti-Semitic chants. While some wore polo shirts and others waved Nazi flags, their message was clear: non-whites and minorities have no place… Read more »

You need to know about this trailblazing Jewish mom

(Kveller via JTA) – On Nov. 22, 1909, at a massive workers meeting held at Cooper Union, Clara Lemlich Shavelson made herself known. In Yiddish, she declared, “I am tired of listening to speakers who talk in general terms. …  I move that we go on a general strike!”… Read more »

OP-ED Why a former Israeli military intelligence chief stands with the Druze

Amos Yadlin (Courtesy of Tel Aviv University’s Institute for National Security Studies)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Israel’s new “nation-state” law, which is widely viewed here as clumsy, unnecessary and unwise, must be amended. That’s why I was proud to join tens of thousands of Israelis on Saturday night in a peaceful, unifying protest led by the Druze community. I came to… Read more »

The Neurotic Jewish Mom’s Guide to Summer

(Kveller via JTA) — Summer is known for being a lazy, carefree time — but for anxious moms like me, summer can be seriously scary. There’s a host of hidden dangers to worry about, from sunburn to tick bites to water accidents. During the school year, I’m a pretty… Read more »

Letter to Editor: Thankful JFSA hosted ‘The Connection’

Regarding the letter in the June 29 edition, “Connection doesn’t give women equal access,” I hope the Jewish Federation continues to host events like ‘The Connection.’ As a transgender Jewish woman, I am not always allowed to attend women’s events in the Orthodox world. When such events are held… Read more »

OP-ED Conservative movement is closing its gender gap, but there is still work to be done

Amy Eilberg, the first woman ordained by the Conservative movement's Jewish Theological Seminary in 1987, speaks at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, December 2016. (Screenshot from Youtube)

(JTA) — As the Jewish world this year marks Israel’s 70th anniversary, we recall that two years before Israel’s independence, a momentous change came in the Conservative movement: Its then new prayer book, known as the Silverman siddur, no longer contained the traditional words “Shelo Asani Eisha” — thank you… Read more »

Relating Tisha b’Av to today’s environmental crises

Tisha b’Av (the 9th day of the month of Av) which we commemorate this year on July 21-22, reminds us that over 2,000 years ago Jews failed to heed the warnings of the prophet Jeremiah, with the result that the first Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed, the first of… Read more »