Washington

No Resolution to U.S.-Israel Tensions

03/29/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- For Benjamin Netanyahu, the formula for resolving U.S.-Israeli tensions came in the form of a flow chart.

The Israeli prime minister took the chart with him when he met with Obama administration officials and visited the White House last week, two weeks after Israel angered the U.S. administration by announcing plans for 1,600 new housing units in a Jewish neighborhood of eastern Jerusalem during a visit to Israel by Vice President Joe Biden.

For Palestinians, Judenrein Areas Is A Given

 At our seders this week we will recite at the outset, "let all who are hungry come and eat."

It's a reminder of the universal as well as particular aspect of the seder in general, and of Judaism in general, a timely reminder at a point of deep tension between Washington and Jerusalem over Israel's treatment of its Arab minority and neighbors. The Obama administration wants Israel to stop building in east Jerusalem, even though the neighborhood in question is Jewish and surrounded by the Jewish neighborhoods of French Hill and Ramot.

Our Tweeter in Washington

Much has already been made of the social media posting habits of William Daroff. Whether on Twitter or Facebook, the well-connected director of the Washington Office of The Jewish Federations of North America (and its VP for Public Policy) isn't afraid to go public with his whereabouts, upcoming speaking engagements, or even his drinking buddies.

William Daroff
PHOTO BY ADAM KREDO

Israel Gags News of Soldier-Turned-Journalist Under Arrest

03/28/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Israel has held a journalist under secret house arrest since last December based on allegations that during her military service she leaked classified documents suggesting the IDF violated laws dealing with targeted killings.

Anat Kam, 23, was arrested last December and charged under Israel's espionage and treason laws, JTA has learned.

Health Care Vote Could Mean Tough Campaign for Some Jewish Dems

03/28/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A window was shattered by a pellet gun in an apparent vandalism attack at her Tucson district office. Sarah Palin has put her on the list of Democratic lawmakers she is targeting this fall. Arizona Tea Party activists are pledging to help defeat her bid for re-election.

All this because Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) voted for health care reform.

Giffords is one of a few Jewish Democrats political observers say could have a difficult re-election campaign because of her vote for the controversial Democratic-backed health care bill.

Obama, Netanyahu Reportedly Still at Odds

No joint statement issued after White House meetings

03/25/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Though Israel's prime minister said progress was made in resolving the current diplomatic crisis with the United States during his visit, the Obama administration does not appear to be satisfied.

"We are trying to find the golden path between our will to advance the peace process along with the United States and between maintaining the standard policy of all Israeli governments," Netanyahu said before boarding a plane for his return trip to Israel early Thursday morning.

Bibi, Barack and the Big Chill

 Okay, I confess, I missed the AIPAC policy conference this week, the first I haven't attended as a reporter in 23 years. But it's okay, I had a note from my editor because I was working on the new Jewish Week Web site, which you're now reading and I hope you're liking.

But you didn't need to be on the floor of the Washington Convention Center to know there's something afoot in the U.S.-ISrael relationship that worries the leaders of mainstream pro-ISrael groups and has given new hope to groups that favor a more robust U.S. peacemaking effort in the region.

Feds Briefed On In-Flight Tefillin

03/24/2010

 Two months after a Jewish teen from White Plains was detained and briefly handcuffed after wearing his tefillin during morning prayers on a Kentucky-bound flight, the Transportation Security Administration has added information about the leather boxes and straps to briefing materials for security officials across the country.

Beyond The Rabba-Rousing

Lost in the furor over Sara Hurwitz’s title is the broader issue of women’s roles within Modern Orthodoxy.

03/24/2010
Staff Writer

 Dina Najman, rosh kehila (head of the congregation) at Kehilat Orach Eliezer on the Upper West Side, spends a majority of her day answering halachic questions, teaching classes expounding upon Jewish texts and counseling couples and individuals who are having personal difficulties. Her male rabbinic colleagues often consult with her on questions of bioethics, her area of expertise.

The bulk of the work that she does, she says, is not gender specific — and shouldn’t be viewed that way.

Rabba Sara Hurwitz: Fallout seen masking deeper concerns. jta
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