politician

Memo To Israel’s Leaders: Reinvent The Jewish Agency

02/02/2010
Special To The Jewish Week

To: Prime Minister Netanyahu, Chairman Sharansky

From: Prof. Yoav Shoham, Stanford University

1. Background:

a. Re-conceptualizing and re-establishing the connection between Israel and Jewish communities worldwide is a matter of national security for Israel no less important than Iran;

b. Reforming the Jewish Agency For Israel (JAFI) is a key component of such a move.

2. JAFI today:

But Seriously… Barack Obama’s Nobel Prize

10/16/2009
Special to the Jewish Week

Just a few weeks ago, I wrote a blog entry that cited my second day Rosh Hashanah sermon.  It defended President Obama from what I consider ill-advised attacks against him, caustic and often personal attacks not grounded in any reality.  As I see it, he’s a relatively untested politician in a terribly difficult job in a ridiculously difficult time, doing the best he can.  The jury is out on him, and time alone will tell.  (Yes, Mr. Safire a”h, too many clichés, but they are all perfectly appropriate!).

Noah and the 21st Century

10/23/2009
Special to the Jewish Week

This coming Shabbat, in synagogues around the world, the story of Noah will be read and discussed, as it has been for thousands of years.

The great medieval exegete Rashi famously cited a timeless discussion in the Talmud about just how virtuous Noah really was.  One sage said that it mattered not a whit what generation Noah was born in- he would have stood out as a great man regardless of time and place.  Another differed, and said that had Noah been born, say, in the generation of Abraham, he would not have been seen as exceptional.

So Long, Studs

Monday, November 10th, 2008 Born in the Bronx to Russian Jewish immigrants, Studs Terkel (who was to become “the walking anthology of all things Chicago) didn’t particularly see himself as Jewish, except as an agnostic’s ethnic curiosity. But his recent death underlined, for me, at least, the serious difference between Stud’s leftist politics and that of Bill Ayers.   The left of Ayers, and his Weather Underground, was nihilist, born of rage, leading to bombings and death, to a culture of loathing for anyone who disagreed.

Hair, Harry And Hindus

Sunday, September 28th, 2008   In the end, of course, “Hair” is a Broadway musical, a superficial story with superb songs that just happen to be about drugs, dropouts and draft dodging. Some teenagers, from a yeshiva, told an old man (me) that seeing  “Hair” made them wish that they were “activists,” too, like the kids in “Hair,” which is as connected to real life as wanting to be a nanny after seeing “Mary Poppins,” or a horse after “Equus.”  

A Brief History of God’s Mailbox

Thursday, July 31st, 2008 An interesting footnote to Obama’s letter in the Kotel is not only how relatively new the custom is, beginning in the 1700s, but how dramatically the concept of the Kotel has changed in that time period.

Mixed Bag On European Bias

05/16/2008
Staff Writer
In England, a prominent politician with a reputation as an anti-Semite is defeated in a re-election bid. In France, three policemen shout anti-Semitic slogans and make the Nazi salute in a bar. In the United States, a leading spokesman for European Jewry brings a cautionary message about the “current state of anti-Semitism” on the European continent.

Pluralism? Fuhgedaboudit!

10/01/1999
Staff Writer
An initiative by Israel’s ruling One Israel party to rally American Jewish supporters of its peace policies blew up in acrimony last week over the issue of religious pluralism in the Jewish state. Haim Ramon, a senior cabinet minister and key adviser to Prime Minister Ehud Barak, bluntly rejected concerns about religious and civil rights for non-Orthodox Jews raised at what was to be a private briefing on the peace process for centrist and dovish Jewish groups.

Likud’s Tangled Charity Web

02/19/1999
Staff Writer
Nearly a half-million dollars raised in America for Israeli children by Likud fund-raisers cannot be properly accounted for, a joint investigation by The Jewish Week and the Israeli daily paper Haaretz has found. The joint probe, which included scrutiny of Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu’s campaign financing, has found that some of the money in question — about $47,000 — was instead channeled directly to the Likud Party and other Israeli political causes.
Syndicate content