Eric J. Greenberg

JCC Head Asked To Step Down

10/10/2003
Staff Writer
Debby Hirshman, the indefatigable force behind what could be the largest Jewish community center in America (the $85 million JCC in Manhattan) was suddenly let go as its executive director last week, according to JCC officials. "We asked for her resignation," said Peter Joseph, co-chairman of the JCC's board of directors. Joseph declined to discuss specifics whether the sudden departure was as a result of a particular incident. Joseph said Hirshman's departure was effective Sept 29.

Jesus' Death Now Debated By Jews

10/03/2003
Staff Writer
The controversy over Mel Gibson's upcoming film about the death of Jesus has spurred painful exchanges between Jews and Christians and progressive and traditional Catholics in recent days. To date, the debates have centered on the "proper" interpretation of the role of Jews in Jesus' Crucifixion, as presented in the four New Testament Gospels. But this week, Gibson's $25 million biblical epic, which the director insists is about love and forgiveness, has triggered a new squabble: among Jewish scholars.

Brighton Beach Memoirs

09/26/2003
Staff Writer
It was the early 1960s, and in the working-class Brighton Beach section of Brooklyn a group of young Jewish boys lived and breathed basketball. Every moment they could, these adolescents (many first-generation Americans and the children of Holocaust survivors) would pull on their white Converse canvas sneakers and race from their cramped apartments under the elevated subway line to their fenced concrete kingdom, the 2nd Street Park.

The Day The Music Died?

09/26/2003
Staff Writer
Twenty-nine years ago, Brooklynite Nate Sheff went on his first date with a girl named Mimi. He took her to The Bottom Line Cabaret, a hip, intimate and affordable new venue for live music on the corner of West Fourth Street, in the then-desolate West Village. Folk-rocker Eric Anderson was headlining. There was no drink minimum. A few weeks ago, Sheff took his and Mimi's elder daughter Shana and her husband to the Bottom Line for a WFUV-FM listening party. Sheff spotted Bottom Line co-owner and Brooklyn native Allan Pepper at the door.

Young Israel OKs Sale Again

09/26/2003
Staff Writer
The board of directors of the National Council of Young Israel has voted again to sell its longtime Manhattan headquarters to a condo developer for $5.4 million. The approval comes days after a state Supreme Court justice nullified a previous board vote by one of the nation's largest Orthodox membership groups for not being conducted properly. Tuesday night's vote was 18-1 with one abstention, according to NCYI attorney Ken Fisher. It took place at an hourlong closed meeting at Abigael's restaurant in Manhattan.

Berlusconi Mum On Mussolini Flap

09/26/2003
Staff Writer
A beaming Silvio Berlusconi accepted the Anti-Defamation League's Distinguished Statesman Award at a gala dinner in New York Tuesday night, a week after the Italian prime minister was skewered at home for defending the World War II reign of fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.

Standing Behind Berlusconi

09/19/2003
Staff Writer
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.

Foxman: Gibson Spewing 'Anti-Semitism'

09/19/2003
Staff Writer
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.

Rutgers Nixes Palestine Conference

09/19/2003
Staff Writer
The Palestine solidarity student conference is off. Off campus, that is. Rutgers University canceled the controversial three-day conference slated for the campus Oct. 10-12, declaring that the student backers of the event, NJ Solidarity, failed to file the necessary paperwork and make a deposit to use university facilities. NJ Solidarity quickly charged Rutgers with political repression and vowed to find a new location.

Charles Liebman, 69; Leading Political Scientist

09/12/2003
Staff Writer
Charles Liebman, winner of the 2003 Israel Prize in political science and one of the world's leading analysts of Israeli and American Jewish communities, died last week of a heart attack in Israel. He was 69. Mr. Liebman, a longtime professor at Bar-Ilan University's Department of Political Science, earned Israel's version of the Nobel Prize for his pioneering research on religion and society, and on Israel and world Jewry.
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