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New Israel Fund Grants Spark Human Rights Brouhaha

Right-wing Im Tirtzu accuses New Israel Fund —and its president — of bearing responsibility for Goldstone; NIF decries campaign to repress ‘dissent and honesty.’

02/03/2010
Staff Writer

Charges that the New Israel Fund supports Israeli civil rights groups that played a key role in providing information highly critical of Israel’s role in the Gaza war last year have sparked a spirited, and nasty, debate over the proper role for civil and human rights groups in a democratic state.

Locking horns over Goldstone: ad sponsored by Im Tirzu depicted Naomi Chazen, NIF president, with a horn on her head

Lanner Off Sex Offender Registries?

10/16/2009
Special to The Jewish Week

Baruch Lanner, a former yeshiva high school principal and religious youth group counselor who was convicted in 2002 in New Jersey of sexually abusing two teenage girls, appears no longer to be on the New Jersey, Florida or national sex offender registries.

Lanner, 59, an ordained Orthodox rabbi, was sentenced to seven years in prison, but did not begin serving his sentence until 2005, after his conviction was upheld on appeal. He was released on parole in January of 2008. According to the New Jersey Department of Corrections, Lanner’s parole ends next month. 

Protest At Agudah

05/22/2009
Special to The Jewish Week

The battle over legislation that would remove the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse for one year took to the streets Sunday night, complete with a dose of sophisticated street theater.

The Shoah Torah Scam?

Washington Post article questions the legitimacy
of a prominent rabbi who claims he’s rescued
Holocaust-affected scrolls.

01/28/2010
Staff Writer

Two years ago, philanthropist David Rubenstein offered to buy a Torah scroll for Manhattan’s Central Synagogue. The story of the scroll was as impressive as the object itself: Rabbi Menachem Youlus, a Maryland Torah scribe and Jewish bookstore owner, said he had discovered the sefer Torah in a cemetery in Oswiecim, the Polish town the occupying Germans called Auschwitz.

The scroll was dedicated in a gala ceremony at Central Synagogue on Yom HaShoah 2008. On Rosh HaShanah that year, Rabbi Peter Rubinstein repeated the Torah’s story of survival.

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Reclaiming The Keffiyah?

01/28/2010

Miffed that the keffiyah, the draped checkered headscarf worn by Yasir Arafat and often identified with the Palestinian cause, has become a “must-have” for many fashionistas?

Concerned that even the most humungous Jewish star around one’s neck can’t compete in the ethnic pride department?
If so, check out the “Israeli Keffiyeh,” the brainchild of New Yorker Bernard Chertok. Chertok’s company, Dveykus, manufactures “JewCentric” T-shirts aimed at promoting Jewish pride.

The Israeli Keffiyeh: Scarf with “star” power.

Gay YU Panel Broadens Discussion, Debate

Personal experiences draw big crowd to school’s campus, even as rabbis reaffirm ‘abomination’ of homosexual acts.

12/30/2009
Staff Writer

A standing-room-only public forum last week at Yeshiva University could take the discussion about gay Jews in the Orthodox community from a single meeting hall to the entire movement, focusing on the balance between empathy for individuals and the halachic ban on homosexual activity.

An estimated 600 to 800 people last week attended “Being Gay in the Modern Orthodox World,” a panel discussion on the university’s Washington Heights campus sponsored by YU’s year-old Tolerance Club and its Wurzweiler School of Social Work.

Openly gay Rabbi Steve Greenberg likened the forum to the groundbreaking film “Trembling Before G-d.”

String Theory: Purim gets the puppet treatment

02/13/2009
Special To The Jewish Week
Of all the holidays in the Jewish calendar, Purim is the most theatrical. Throughout the ages, Jewish communities worldwide have naturally performed the story in different ways, in accordance with their own native theatrical traditions. In 18th-century Prague, since itinerant puppeteers provided much of the entertainment seen by the common people, a marionette version of “Queen Esther” was one of the hits of the day.

For The Love Of Israeli Wines

Special To The Jewish Week
11/17/2009
One red wine was  compared to a really great passionate kiss. Another was praised as earthy, like wet leaves, like the earth itself. Participants in the Israeli Wine Lovers Club are encouraged to share their reactions to the wines they taste, to speak about aromas, flavors, oakiness, acidity, balance and, mostly, how all of the above strikes their palettes.

Investing In A 529 Plan: Still A Smart Move?

Experts weigh in on how to save for college in these tough times.

01/16/2009
Staff Writer
The cost of a four-year private college education has passed the $150,000 mark — which is “enough to cause even the most affluent parent to want to sit down and cry,” according to Kalman Chany, author of the 2009 edition of the Princeton Review’s “Paying For College Without Going Broke.” And in 2009, the average one year tuition cost (including room and board, books, and other fees) will be $35,958 — up 5.5 percent from the previous year.

Gay YU Panel Broadens Discussion, Debate

Personal experiences draw big crowd to school’s campus, even as rabbis reaffirm ‘abomination’ of homosexual acts.

12/30/2009
Staff Writer

A standing-room-only public forum last week at Yeshiva University could take the discussion about gay Jews in the Orthodox community from a single meeting hall to the entire movement, focusing on the balance between empathy for individuals and the halachic ban on homosexual activity.

An estimated 600 to 800 people last week attended “Being Gay in the Modern Orthodox World,” a panel discussion on the university’s Washington Heights campus sponsored by YU’s year-old Tolerance Club and its Wurzweiler School of Social Work.

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