Tagged Israel

Saying goodbye to Shimon Peres, world leaders talk peace and love

President Barack Obama viewing the coffin of Shimon Peres after speaking during his funeral at Jerusalem's Mount Herzl national cemetery, Sept. 30, 2016. (Abir Sultan/AFP/Getty Images)

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israeli and world leaders gathered atop Mount Herzl on Friday to say goodbye to Shimon Peres, Israel’s last founding father. In addition to fond personal recollections, many of those who took the stage alongside Peres’ Israeli-flag-draped coffin offered their visions of the peace that eluded the… Read more »

OP-ED We need dialogue, not demagoguery, when it comes to Israel

A protester against Israel's military operations in the Gaza Strip speaking into a megaphone as pro-Israel counterprotesters wave Israeli flags in Los Angeles, Aug. 2, 2014. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

(JTA) — A Jewish educator who works on behalf of the Jewish people every single day recently received a letter that began with harsh words about her support for the anti-occupation group Breaking the Silence. Before long it took a startling turn. “I regretfully must express my utmost hope,” the author wrote,… Read more »

After bombings, New Yorkers cop an Israeli attitude: ‘Stuff’ happens

A New York City police officer standing guard outside Grand Central Station in New York City, Sept. 20, 2016. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — “I heard the explosion, then I went to the deli.” In the hours after the bombings Saturday in New York and on the Jersey Shore, the phrase became an instant slogan for New Yorkers’ purported coolness under fire. Attributed to a witness of the bombing that… Read more »

OP-ED As an African Israeli, I find claims of state racism against Falash Mura outrageous

New Jewish immigrant children at Israel's Ben Gurion Airport after arriving on a flight from Ethiopia, Oct. 29, 2012. (Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — “We are committed to helping ensure that the State of Israel welcomes Jews of all colors.” “We say, we have black lives that matter in Africa.” “In America, race has been a central area of Jewish concern historically.” These are all statements that have been… Read more »

Hamas, natural gas and other good reasons Israel and Turkey should stick together

The Turkish government ship Lady Leyla in Mersin before being sent to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza following the completion of the reconciliation deal between Turkey and Israel, July 1, 2016. (Sezgin Pancar/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel and Turkey ought to be friends, geopolitically speaking. As Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan put it in January: “Israel needs a country like Turkey in this region. We, too, should admit that we need a country like Israel.” But the regional powers often can’t seem to make… Read more »

Fearful for economic future, Israelis want Scandinavian-style government, survey shows

Young Israelis living on Rothschild Boulevard in Tel Aviv in protest of high housing prices, Aug. 10, 2011. (Liron Almog/Flash90)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — On one hand, most Israelis say their financial situation is good and getting better. On the other hand, they’re worried they won’t be able to provide for their children. On one hand, they want significantly more government spending in a wide range of public services.… Read more »

New stage for Temple Mount activist Yehuda Glick: The Knesset

On a tour of the Temple Mount, Yehuda Glick shows religious Jews a diagram of the Jewish temple that once stood where the golden Dome of the Rock stands today in Jerusalem, Sept. 17, 2013. (Christa Case Bryant/The Christian Science Monitor/Getty Images)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — A year and a half ago he was a fringe Temple Mount activist expected to die, the victim of a point-blank assassination attempt. This week he will enter the Knesset, the ruling Likud party’s replacement legislator for outgoing Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon. Yehuda Glick’s journey —… Read more »

New hard-line defense minister said to join Israeli government in surprise turn to right

Avigdor Liberman speaking at a news conference in the Israeli parliament, May 18, 2016. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — The unity government was about to form: Likud and Labor, right and left, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and opposition leader Isaac Herzog. Then, according to media reports, Netanyahu swung to the right and instead embraced an old partner: Avigdor Liberman, head of the hard-line… Read more »

Kids’ soccer leagues aim to bridge Israel’s religious divide

Members of the Tzav Pius 13-year-olds' team in the Israeli city of Pardes Hanna participating before practice in an educational exercise meant to teach teamwork.

PARDES HANNA, Israel (JTA) — When Yoel decided, at age 8, to begin observing Shabbat, there was one problem: It meant he couldn’t join most of Israel’s youth soccer teams, which played games on Saturday. Yoel, now 12, has always lived in the increasingly large gray area between Israel’s… Read more »

OP-ED ‘I’m for Israel. Period.’ That’s the John Kasich I know.

John Kasich at a campaign rally at the Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus, Ohio, March 6, 2016. (Ty Wright/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (JTA) — There are many opinions as to what criteria should be used in deciding who gets my fellow Republicans’ vote as their nominee for president of the United States. But I think the only valid question should be this one: Which candidate can actually beat Hillary… Read more »

OP-ED Not a day goes by that Ted Cruz doesn’t think about the Jews and Israel

Ted Cruz speaking to workers at a manufacturing plant in Dane, Wis.,March 24, 2016. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

SILVER SPRING, Md. (JTA) —  King Solomon tells us in Proverbs: “The heavens are for the heights, and the earth is for the depths, and the hearts of kings no one can ponder.” It is impossible to know what kings and leaders of nations have in their hearts. With… Read more »

Op-Ed: Can a united community still work miracles? Ask the Yemenite Jews.

A Jewish family from Yemen arriving in Israel at Ben Gurion International Airport, Aug. 14, 2013. (Moshik Brin/The Jewish Agency/Flash90)

(JTA) — Passover is a time for family, for tradition, and for festive celebration. It’s also a time to fix a paradox. As we read the Haggadah, we reflect on our past travails and miraculous redemption as a Jewish people. But if we look only at the past we… Read more »

Israel touts gay-friendly climate, but rights fight faces religious firewall

Israelis participating in the annual gay pride parade in Jerusalem, Sept. 18, 2014. (Hadas Parush/Flash 90)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — As last Tuesday ended, it felt like Israel’s gay community had taken a major step forward. On Feb. 23, eight separate Israeli parliamentary committees convened to discuss a broad set of issues facing the country’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Lawmakers from a range of parties… Read more »

How Syria and natural gas are pushing Israel and Turkey back together

An oil rig in the Tamar natural gas field off the Israeli coast, June 23, 2014. (Moshe Shai/Flash 90)

TEL AVIV (JTA) – After years of false starts, Israeli negotiators went to Geneva last week for talks aimed at ending a long-running conflict with a regional adversary. It’s not the Palestinians. It’s Turkey. Once a key partner of Israel, Turkey in recent years has been a thorn in… Read more »

50 years on, Bernie Sanders still champions values of his Israeli kibbutz

A photo of Kibbutz Shaar Haamakim as it was in 1963, when Bernie Sanders volunteered there for several months. (Ben Sales)

SHAAR HAAMAKIM, Israel (JTA) — Every morning, Bernie Sanders would wake up at 4:10 a.m. to pick apples and pears. Leaving the cabin he shared with a few other American college student volunteers, Sanders would have a quick bite of bread before heading out to the orchard. After 2… Read more »

In Focus 1.8.16

Temple Emanu-El’s Greatest Hanukkah on Earth! XVII Some 450 people attended Temple Emanu-El’s “Greatest Hanukkah on Earth!XVII — Making Miracles” celebration on Sunday, Dec. 13. The event included songs, stories, parodies, drama, dance and a menorah lighting.           LEGO Chanukah at Chabad Mikaela Perry, Jonathan… Read more »

Why you won’t find Starbucks in Israel

The Cofix cafe chain in Israel is offering an across-the-board price of 5 shekels (about $1.30) in a bid to shake up the country's coffee scene. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

(JTA) — In Israel, American stores dot shopping malls and McDonald’s branches proliferate. But one chain you won’t see is Starbucks. Starbucks has franchises around the world, but its brief experiment with Israeli stores lasted just two years, from 2001 to 2003. Maybe, as some have suggested, Starbucks pulled… Read more »