Guess who's still coming to dinner?
Despite some controversial comments about Mussolini made last week, Italy's prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, will still be the guest of honor at a New York City dinner in two weeks sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League.
Berlusconi, a moderate right politician, triggered worldwide headlines last week when he was quoted in a regional newspaper appearing to defend Italy's World War II fascist dictator Benito Mussolini as a benign leader.
Mel Gibson's mouth has turned into a lethal weapon.
So suggests Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, following a series of published and oral comments made by the award-winning Hollywood actor and director concerning his controversial upcoming movie about the death of Jesus of Nazareth.
"Recent statements by Mel Gibson paint the portrait of an anti-Semite," Foxman told The Jewish Week Tuesday.
The first national Jewish emergency warning system will be launched within the next few weeks, enabling Jewish leaders to communicate quickly during a terrorist threat or attack, The Jewish Week has learned.
It is believed to be the first crisis alert system serving a specific community in the United States.
The project, called Secure Community Alert Network, or SCAN, includes the leading Jewish organizations in the nation, as well as hundreds of Jewish community centers, federations and educational institutions.
Mel Gibson and his Icon Productions for weeks have been requiring viewers of his controversial film "The Passion" to sign a confidentiality agreement barring them from talking about the still-unfinished product.
That hasn't stopped the select group (mostly supportive Evangelicals, conservative Catholics and media personalities) from praising the film about the suffering and death of Jesus and revealing details in newspapers and on radio, television and the Internet.
Fallout continues this week over Mel Gibson's upcoming film "The Passion," about the violent death of Jesus, following a blistering review by the Anti-Defamation League and other viewers after a screening in Houston.
New developments include:
Two thumbs down. That was the consensus of a group of horrified Jewish interfaith and community leaders after watching a rough cut of Mel Gibson's controversial "The Passion."
It was the first mainstream Jewish group to screen the Hollywood star's gory recounting of the trial and death of Jesus.
Is Mel Gibson a cynical manipulator or an insensitive true believer? Those are two theories being floated in trying to explain the increasing controversy over Gibson's upcoming film, "The Passion," his bloody retelling of the trial and crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth.
Some leading interfaith experts say the film, which the 47-year-old Gibson co-wrote and is due out in February, violates Catholic teachings and will foment anti-Semitism worldwide.
Hollywood superstar Mel Gibson's upcoming movie about the death of Jesus is anti-Semitic and could lead to increased hatred of Jews around the world, a team of prominent Catholic and Jewish scholars is warning.
In response, the Oscar-winning Gibson has threatened to sue the scholars.
Who does Israel Singer represent? That's the question several angry Jewish interfaith leaders are asking this week after Singer met privately in Rome with Pope John Paul II and raised several key issues between the Vatican and the Jewish community (apparently without the authorization of IJCIC) the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations.
A Jesuit priest working with Mel Gibson on his controversial film about the last hours of Jesus' life says Jews need not worry about being portrayed as Christ-killers.
Father William J. Fulco, a professor of ancient Mediterranean studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, says he is "intimately familiar" with the script of Gibson's upcoming, self-financed movie "The Passion" and there is "no hint" of the deicide charge that Jews were responsible for the crucifixion of Jesus.