King

When Shabbes And Shabbesdik Collide

Does stone-throwing count as work? How about Dylan in Hebrew?

Special to the Jewish Week
04/28/2010

Shabbes! Shabbes!! Has it ever struck you as odd, those scenes in Jerusalem of fervently Orthodox Jews blocking cars and throwing stones on the holy day, to protest its desecration? To you, this may seem absurd and repellent, a blatant violation of the tranquility of Shabbat. To them, it’s a matter of life and death, not just a lifestyle choice. In short: what is or isn’t shabbesdik — in the spirit of the Sabbath, in Yiddish — is very much a subjective affair.

AMERICAN JEWISH JOINT DI STRIBUTION COMMITTEE. Shabbat held in one of the dormitories for Jewish refugees.  Shanghai, China 1940

Must Reading: Aaron David Miller on 'The False Religion of Mideast Peace'

I've always regarded Aaron David Miller as one of the smartest, most thoughtful U.S. peace processors. Since he left the State Department a few years back, he's been one of my favorite analysts for the simple reason that his take on the Middle East doesn't flow from hardened ideology but from long experience and a willingness to constantly reevaluate old assumptions.

Call most Middle East analysts about the crisis du jour, and you know in advance what they're going to say; calling Miller often produces interesting journalistic surprises.

When Can I Retire?

 

“All these married people think you’re hilarious,” my sister tells me.

It seems she keeps running into married friends who had read my columns about my search for love. Columns where I not only chronicle my exhausting and futile search for a husband in Israel, but where I lambast my married friends for making it all worse by consistently giving me bad advice.

“First of all, why do they all think you’re so funny? Don’t they realize how hostile you are towards them?” sayeth my sister.

Reasons To Root: The Mets Stood Up Against Arab Pressure

Here's one big Zionist reason to root for the New York Mets.

Last November 21, the Hebron Fund booked a reception room in the Met's stadium for a fundraising dinner. The fund supports a Jewish presence in Judaism's second holiest city, site of the Machpela (tomb of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca and Leah, and some say Adam and Eve) and King David's one-time capital. The Machpela is to Jews what the Lincoln Memorial is to Americans, except Lincoln isn't buried there but Abraham is.

King-Size Attraction

NBA’s Sabra rookie Omri Casspi, who faces the Nets next week, is big draw on and off the court. And he wears Number 18.

03/18/2010
Staff Writer

The game last month featured a pair of teams with losing records and sorry recent histories, but the seats behind one of the baskets at Madison Square Garden was crowded with scores of flag-waving, photo-snapping fans nearly two hours before tip-off between the New York Knicks and the visiting Sacramento Kings.

“I’m not a religious person. But I love to pray to God and celebrate all the holidays,” Omri Casspi says.

‘Numb Enough’ To Carry On

09/04/2004
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — The summer has been busy for Yafit Kaduri. The 18-year-old waitress at the Sbarro pizza in the central part of this city described a restaurant packed with American, French and Mexican tourists.

As she passed out advertisement leaflets on a cobblestone street just around the corner, Kaduri shrugged off fears of a repeat of the August 2001 Sbarro bombing that killed 15.

“Whoever lives here knows it could happen anywhere,” she said. “Should we stop living because of this?”

Orthodox Scandals Could Harm Power Base, Experts Warn

Rash of recent prosecutions may leave community open to political backlash.

02/25/2010
Assistant Managing Editor

In the wake of recent scandals involving local Orthodox Jews, some sociologists think there could soon be a backlash against the political power of what has long been one of the most sought-after voting blocs.

“Situations like this have a cumulative effect,” said William Helmreich, a professor of sociology at City College and director of the Center for Jewish Studies at Queens College.

Rabbi Milton Balkany: Brooklyn power broker charged with extortion in hedge fund case.

Two From The ‘60s

03/01/2002
Staff Writer

In an inspired piece of programming, two neglected comedies will be screened back-to-back this Saturday at the American Museum of the Moving Image.

Both “Bye Bye Braverman” and “The Plot Against Harry” capture an unusual slice of Jewish life in outer-borough New York in the late 1960s, yet are largely unknown, overshadowed by the comedy of Woody Allen and the urban dramas of Martin Scorcese.

Yiddish’s New Frequency

03/01/2002
Staff Writer

Only the gentlest prodding gets Dave Isay and Henry Sapoznik to sputter superlatives about “The Yiddish Radio Project,” the serendipitous act of cultural reclamation they co-produced, which airs on National Public Radio starting this Tuesday.

“It’s like opening King Tut’s tomb,” says Sapoznik. “It’s like the Rosetta Stone,” says Isay.

The King Of Comic Books

05/31/2002
Staff Writer

The superhero Spiderman has made the leap from printed page to movie screens across the country, but one giant of the comic-book industry says he is still battling for mainstream legitimacy.

Will Eisner, the creator of the 1940s comic book hero “The Spirit,” is not after box-office proceeds or merchandising spin-offs. Instead he wants recognition for comic books as a literary art form.

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