Middle East

Backlash To Helen Thomas Video Hits L.I. Rabbi

Rabbi David Nesenoff of Stony Brook targeted with anti-Semitic emails after veteran White House correspondent resigns under fire.

06/09/2010

No sooner was the video posted on YouTube of longtime White House correspondent Helen Thomas saying Jews should “get the hell out of Palestine” and “go home [to] Poland, Germany and America and everywhere else,” than anti-Semitic e-mails began descending on the Long Island rabbi who interviewed her.

Rabbi David Nesenoff: Shocked by outpouring of hate after he aired Helen Thomas video.

Jews, Muslims Cook Up Peace

Interfaith women’s event
an exchange of food, stories and experiences.

06/08/2010
Special To The Jewish Week

Breaking bread together, literally, helped launch conversations between some of the county’s Muslims and Jews.

In mid-April, several women from the local American Women’s Muslim Association along with several women from Westchester’s Jewish community, gathered at Hartsdale’s Chef Central to share such dishes as biryani, baba ghanoush, kasha varnishkes and noodle kugel.

Jewish and Muslim women cook together in coexistence effort at Chef Central in Hartsdale.

A Guitarist’s Jewish Sparks

For Tim Sparks, it’s a long way from Southern Baptist North Carolina to Tzadik records.

06/08/2010
Special To The Jewish Week

It is a cliché to say that music can change someone’s view of the world. But in the case of guitarist Tim Sparks, it’s true.

Sparks, who will be performing at The Stone on June 14, grew up in North Carolina where he was “exposed to a lot of heavy-duty Southern Baptist culture,” he said in a telephone interview last week from his home in Minneapolis. “I’ve spent most of my life trying to work my way out of that.”

His passport to a wider worldview was his guitar.

Tim Sparks’ journey has taken him from the blues to classical to  the music of the Jewish diaspora.

Helen Thomas, Israel and a graduation speech that won't happen

Update: JTA is reporting that Thomas has retired, effective immediately.

Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, MD, a prosperous Washington suburb, had a graduation speaker all lined up for the June 14 event. But then the proposed speaker was caught on camera saying Israels should “get the hell out of Palestine” and maybe just go back where they came from – presumably places like Germany and Poland.

That was Helen Thomas, the Hearst Newspapers columnist and a member of the White House press corps for 60 years.  Her comments produced the predictable reaction, with some Jewish groups calling for Hearst to give her the ax because of her  blatant bias against the Jewish state and some Jewish Republicans trying to lay the controversy in the lap of the Obama administration.

Journalist Thomas apologizes for anti-Israel remarks

06/06/2010

(JTA) -- Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas has issued an apology for saying that Jews should "get the hell out of Palestine."

Thomas said Jews living in Israel should "go back home to Poland, Germany, America and everywhere else," during videotaped remarks to Rabbi David Nesenoff of RabbiLive.com on the sidelines of the White House Jewish heritage event on May 27.

The videotape of Thomas's remarks had over 900,000 views as of Sunday morning.

Obama: Use Flotilla Fallout to Push Peace

06/04/2010

NEW YORK (JTA) -- President Obama reiterated his call for an investigation into the flotilla confrontation and urged parties in the Middle East to transform the situation into a chance to advance the peace process.

In an interview with Larry King on CNN Thursday, Obama called the loss of life on the boat "unnecessary" and predicted that the Israelis would agree to an "investigation of international standards" because they recognize that the current situation "can't be good for Israel's long-term security."

Washington Post: is Israel's blockade causing a Gaza humanitarian crisis?

This week's Gaza flotilla crisis has – no surprise here – renewed debate over Israel' blockade of Gaza, which, depending on which Israeli official is talking, is meant to choke off arms to Hamas, disillusion Gazans with the terror group's iron rule or win the release of Gilad Shalit, the kidnapped Israeli soldier held by Hamas.

But this is the Middle East, so getting facts through the morass of disinformation, misinformation and propaganda isn't easy.

The Gaza Flotilla Battle - On Twitter

Shaping public opinion on the Gaza blockade, 140 characters at a time.

06/02/2010
Staff Writer

 Just moments after the Israeli navy boarded the Turkish Mavi Marmara ship in the Mediterranean en route to Gaza, an explosive battle of another kind was playing out on the Facebook and Twitter fronts. 

The phrases “Gaza flotilla” and “#freedomflotilla” were among the three highest “trending topics” on Twitter on Monday morning, Eastern Standard Time. By Tuesday morning, “flotilla” still remained among the top 10. 

Israeli forces approach one of six ships bound for Gaza in the Mediterranean.

Some In The Media Had The Flotilla Figured Out

No humanitarian aid to Shalit, and no story either.

06/01/2010
Associate Editor

Even before the facts were clear about the battle between Israeli commandos and the pro-Hamas flotilla, we were told by The New York Times website, and dozens of other online media, that Israel was being “condemned.” Indeed it was.

U.S. Delegation Heading to Palestine Investment Confab

06/01/2010

(JTA) — President Obama is sending a delegation to the Palestine Investment Conference to take place Wednesday through Friday in Bethlehem.
George Mitchell, Obama’s special envoy for Middle East peace, will lead the delegation, according to the White House.

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