Christians United for…Settlements?

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009 I confess: because of other assignments, I didn’t get down to the Christians United for Israel Washington summit this week, the first one I’ve missed. But based on past years events and interviews with several folks who attended this week’s, I’ve reached one new conclusion about the group. From the beginning, CUFI has embraced the Israeli settlers movement in a way no major Jewish group has.

Senate passes hate crimes bill - but jet controversy could kill it

Friday, July 17th, 2009 Here’s the good news for the ADL and other Jewish groups that have fought for it for than a decade: the Senate today passed a new hate crimes bill expanding coverage of existing statutes to include, among others, gays and lesbians. The House already passed the measure.

White House Jewish outreach on steroids

Friday, July 17th, 2009 Pretty much every Jewish reporter was focused this week on President Barack Obama’s meeting with 16 Jewish leaders at the White House – a presidential performance described as masterful even by some participants uneasy about his evolving Middle East policies and his determination to speak bluntly to Israel about issues such as settlements (read the Jewish Week story on the meeting here).

CUFI, Hagee coming to Washington, but where’s the buzz?

Thursday, July 16th, 2009 Christians United For Israel (CUFI) will be in town next week for its annual Washington Summit, and one thing I’ve noticed: the media hoopla that surrounded the group’s first few big Washington gatherings seems to have died down.

Are Lay Leaders Fiddling While Yeshivas Burn?

Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

The lack of sustainability of what is now a $2 billion educational system that caters primarily to middle-class and lower-class students should have been anticipated long ago, when the number of kids in private Jewish schools began to skyrocket, as far back as the 1950s.


Minnesota Supreme Court rules, Coleman’s toast, Franken to be seated

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009 Eight months after Minnesota voters went to the polls, the state is about to get a new senator. And it’s not the old one – Norm Coleman, the Republican whose last appeal of the razor-thin election was rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court on Tuesday in a unanimous decision. A lower court ruled that Democrat Al Franken, the former Saturday Night Live comic, won the election by 312 votes, but Coleman continued to argue that an additional 4000 absentee ballots should be counted.

Jewish groups play different roles in climate change bill

Sunday, June 28th, 2009 A couple of Jewish groups played a role in Friday’s passage of a landmark climate change bill by the House – the first major piece of legislation to address the issue of carbon emissions and global warming. Another played a role in one aspect of the legislation.

Ross to White House: it’s official

Thursday, June 25th, 2009 As this blog reported last week, longtime U.S. Middle East peace negotiator and pro-Israel think tanker Dennis Ross is going over to the White House; as numerous blogs have reported, it’s something of a promotion for Ross, who had a nebulous role at the State Department as a special envoy to something or other. Here’s what the NSC spokesman had to say:

A Loss And A Gain For Tribeca Jews

Staff Writer

In yet another sign of the toll the economic downturn has exacted on the Jewish community, the trendy Tribeca Hebrew school — which helped re-energize Jewish life downtown after Sept. 11 — has closed its doors and merged with its neighbor, the Jewish Community Project.

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