Tagged HEADLINES

Tom Friedman must apologize for slandering Israel

NEW YORK (JTA) — I don’t often read Tom Friedman in The New York Times. True, he is one of the most lucid writers in America, and his crystal-clear prose helps in understanding some of the world’s most intractable conflicts. He can also be repetitive, tiresome and a little… Read more »

Repairing a world shattered by Agent Orange

NEW YORK (JTA) — The Vietnam War looms large in America’s collective memory. Yet for most of us, that’s where the war remains: in memory. Not so for the Vietnamese. Thirty-five years after its conclusion and 15 years since our countries re-established diplomatic ties, the daily lives of many… Read more »

In Venice, a Jewish disconnect between locals and visitors

Chabad yeshiva students gather near the Chabad House on the main square of the Venice Ghetto. (Ruth Ellen Gruber)

VENICE, Italy (JTA) — It was a Friday afternoon in the heart of the historic Venice Ghetto, and I was chatting with the city’s chief rabbi, Elia Richetti, when his cellphone beeped. “It’s a text message from Gam-Gam Goodies, the Chabad-run pastry shop around the corner,” said the bespectacled… Read more »

Prosecution was overzealous in Rubashkin case

Menachem Genack. (courtesy of the Orthodox Union)

NEW YORK (JTA) — The unusually severe sentence of 27 years in prison for Sholom Rubashkin is a victory for a prosecution that from the outset pursued a win-at-all-costs strategy. But the success comes at a price, and not just to the 51-year-old man now facing a virtual life… Read more »

Stopping torture needs unswerving commitment

WASHINGTON (JTA) — A recent report by Physicians for Human Rights has found that in the period after Sept. 11, 2001, the U.S. government engaged military and civilian health professionals in “human research and experimentation on prisoners in U.S. custody.” Appalled by these findings, a number of religious leaders… Read more »

Books that made a difference – Eileen Warshaw

To submit  your “Books that made a difference” entry,  mouse over “Contact” and  select “Books that made a difference” from the drop-down menu.. Submissions will be posted online and selected entries will appear in the AJP Rosh Hashanah issue on Sept. 3. The book that changed my life: “This… Read more »

Books that made a difference – Bob Kovitz

To submit  your “Books that made a difference” entry,  mouse over “Contact” and  select “Books that made a difference” from the drop-down menu.. Submissions will be posted online and selected entries will appear in the AJP Rosh Hashanah issue on Sept. 3. In Basic Training for the U.S. Army,… Read more »

Visiting the family of the Hamas terrorist who tried to kill my wife

David E.H. Gershon

What should I buy for the children of the Hamas terrorist who tried to kill my wife? I’m sorry, some context is needed. Let me explain. In the summer of 2002 Hamas, targeting both Israelis and Americans, struck a cafeteria at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The blast, triggered by… Read more »

Gaza blockade serves Hamas, not Israel

Hadar Susskind

Watching the video of the Israeli Navy Commandos rappelling onto the Marmara was for me — as for many people — full of anxiety and sadness. Sadness that Israeli soldiers, in the same uniforms I once proudly wore, were put in such a terrible situation and subject to violent… Read more »

In defense of the blockade

Michael B. Oren

Israel’s interception of the flotilla attempting to break the Gaza blockade has been the focus of massive international attention — and condemnation. In the melee of interviews, editorials and images, the basic facts of the incident have often been obscured. Segments of the American Jewish community were rendered confused… Read more »

Small change inspires big changes

It was almost 5 o’clock when Susan realized she didn’t have the fresh basil and black olives she needed for the chicken dish she was preparing for dinner. Guests were arriving at 7 o’clock and she still needed to shower and change. Scribbling the few items down on a… Read more »

That’s what friends are for: A broad-based pro-Israel coalition is the best antidote to the Mearsheimers and Sullivans

Like the radicals aboard the Mavi Marmara, critics of the “Israel Lobby” are leading American-Jewish organizations into a trap. And unlike the Israeli commandos who boarded the ship, Jewish leaders still have a chance to change their strategy. Among those critics, Chicago’s John Mearsheimer has emerged as the Grand… Read more »

Turkey, the next Iran?

(June 6, 2010) Scanning news reports this week, I was surprised to learn that according to much of the press, Turkey had been Israel’s “staunchest ally in the Muslim world,” until this past Monday following the Gaza aid flotilla debacle. According to Associated Press, the UK’s Daily Mail and… Read more »

Question in Italy: How do we reach Orthodox Jews?

Rabbi Elia Richetti, the president of the Italian Rabbinical Assembly, mingles with tourists outside the Jewish Museum in Venice (Ruth Ellen Gruber/JTA Photo Service)

ROME (JTA) — The years-long battle that ended recently with the dismissal of the chief rabbi of Turin, Italy, highlights a 21st-century identity crisis afflicting the oldest Jewish community in the Diaspora. Rabbi Alberto Somekh, who like all recognized rabbis in Italy is Orthodox, had served as chief rabbi… Read more »

Israel facing tough choices on Gaza as criticism of blockade mounts

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Despite the international outcry following last week’s lethal confrontation between Israeli commandos and militant pro-Palestinian activists aboard a Turkish vessel carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza, Israel insists its naval blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory is justified and will continue. But even Israel’s closest allies backing the… Read more »

Grant pushes historic partnership of seminaries

NEW YORK (JTA) — Spurred by a major grant from one of the largest Jewish foundations, the rabbinical seminaries of three major synagogue movements are forging a groundbreaking partnership to train Jewish educators. The Jim Joseph Foundation announced May 24 that it was giving a combined $33 million to the… Read more »

Boycott targets stars from Elvis to Elton

WASHINGTON (Forward) — It was a feather in the cap of pro-boycott activists, but for Israelis a major setback. With battle lines drawn across concert halls and stadiums hosting rock bands, the decision by mega-star Elvis Costello to cancel his planned concerts in Israel is being viewed as a… Read more »

Germany’s Oberammergau Passion Play better, but not good

This scene in the Oberamergau Passion Play, showing Jesus' crucifixion, perpetuates the charge against the Jews of deicide, some Jewish critics say. (Passion Play/Obergammergau 2010/JTA Photo Service)

Berlin (JTA) — It’s a tradition that goes back hundreds of years in the Bavarian village of Oberammergau, nestled in the German Alps. After witnessing it in the 1930s, Hitler reportedly proclaimed, “Never has the menace of Jewry been so convincingly portrayed as in this presentation of what happened… Read more »

With flotilla deaths, Turkey may be near tipping point on Israel

Istanbul — While Turkey and Israel have seen their once-close relationship deteriorate steadily for the past few years, the Israeli commando raid of a Turkish-led flotilla heading for Gaza, in which several Turks were killed, marks a dangerous new low in the two countries’ relations. “Turkey is now involved… Read more »