About 12 years ago, Joel Chasnoff had a personal crisis. Fresh out of the University of Pennsylvania, he had no idea what he wanted to do with his life. His father’s success as a doctor in Chicago made him insecure, feeling like he had too big a pair of shoes to fill. And his passions — acting, stand-up comedy — hardly promised a stable alternative. But Chasnoff did have a strong Jewish identity, the result of a day school education, and an especially romantic vision of Israelis.
On Day 10 of the Israeli mission in Haiti, Danny Biran paused during a phone conversation as a helicopter hovered above him.
“He’s looking for a place to land,” said Biran, an official of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs who has been in Haiti since 36 hours after the Jan. 12 earthquake.
In a world of rather frequent natural disasters, the earthquake in Haiti and its eerie, hellish aftermath retains the ability to shock, reminding us of the fragility of life and even civilization itself. And yet, if we will call earthquakes “acts of God,” there is some solace in seeing how so many of us have responded in a way that ironically can only be called the image of God and all that’s holy.
Few things illuminate just how useless Israel can sometimes be better than its film industry. This year, “Waltzing With Bashir” was Israel’s entry for Academy Award’s Oscar for best foreign language film.
It lost. Good.
The film focused on the killings at Sabra & Shatilla during the first Lebanon war. That’s when, in Menachem Begin’s words, “goyim kill goyim, and they come to blame the Jews.”
Thursday, November 6th, 2008
Ali Abunimah, editor of Electronic Intifada, is quite upset that Obama is pallin’ around with Rahm Israel Emanuel, the son of a so-called “terrorist” with Menachem Begin’s Irgun, back in the 1940s. Emanuel, of course, was Obama’s first appointment, as chief of staff.
From “Hussein” being the middle name we wondered about, Rahm’s middle name — Israel — now has every Haman in the Arab world wondering how the son of an Irgun guy is Obama’s new Mordechai.
For years, soft-drink magnate Coca-Cola (in its efforts to create a world of soda drinkers) has blanketed the globe with images linking its fizzy drink to fun, happiness and romantic satisfaction.
But now Coke is coming up against a tiny rival with a decidedly different marketing strategy. Instead of blitzing the public with lighthearted pictures or appeals to its flavor, newcomer Mecca Cola (launched last month) is marketing itself with images from the intifada.
untry steeped in memory, the Jewish state operates on a calendar of Jewish holidays that are implicitly or explicitly memorials, both religious and secular. But the fast pace of recent decades in Israel, one crisis or scandal or existential threat following closely on the heels of another, has left little time for communal remembrance of the latest events.
In the aftermath of last week’s deadly terror attack, all eyes focused on the fervent rescue effort in Lower Manhattan. With thousands of people buried under mountains of steel and concrete, cultural enterprise suddenly seemed frivolous and art openings, lectures, parties and awards ceremonies nationwide were canceled or postponed.