Rabbi Of The Sunni Triangle

Staff Writer
Watching last week’s Veterans Day parade on Fifth Avenue, Rabbi Irving Elson was filled with emotions. One of them was anger. “So many people didn’t give a second look,” he recalled later that day. “They didn’t even stop talking on their cell phones.” Rabbi Elson conceded that he might be oversensitive, having just returned from a second tour in Iraq.

As Iraq War Looms, Bush, Sharon Plan

Staff Writer
Even as they firmed up Israeli-American strategy in their handling of a war with Iraq, this week’s meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and President George W. Bush focused also on ways to best to defuse the Palestinian conflict. The Wednesday Oval Office meeting — the seventh since Sharon took office in March 2001 — was to ensure that both were on the same page to prevent surprises in the future, according to Gerald Steinberg, a political science professor at Bar-Ilan University.

Passover In The Trenches

Staff Writer
After an explosion at a dining hall at an American military base in Iraq killed 22 in December 2004, military dining facilities in the region imposed strict rules against anyone bringing in bags or boxes — except when Rabbi Sarah Schechter tried to enter with a bag of matzah and a box of kosher-for-Passover food. “They are very strict about this,” Rabbi Schechter said, adding that the guard who stopped her was very apologetic but insistent.

Apocalypse Now?

Associate Editor

The looming war with Iraq has long ago taken on the language of a religious crusade, in Arab capitals as well as the White House. But the Jewish messianic excitement that grew out of the first Gulf War back in 1991 is more muted now, humbled after a decade of the crash and burn of the peace process, controversy over the Lubavitch messianic aspirations, and Israelís Palestinian war that has shown little evidence of anyoneís grand plan, let alone Godís.


Staff Writer
In Baghdad, 40 people attended the first of two seders held in the heavily protected Green Zone, according to Kelly McGrew, a civilian contractor doing computer work who attended the seders.

Iraqi Jews Seeking Claims

Staff Writer
The overthrow of Saddam Hussein has touched off a scramble among Jewish groups seeking compensation for Jewish refugees from Iraq as well as other Arab countries. In many cases the groups are competing against each other. At stake potentially are billions of dollars from individual and communal claims. The push for reparations comes at a time when Palestinians are demanding the right of return to their former homes in Israel.

When Symbolism Becomes Literal

Staff Writer
As Jewish soldiers recited the Ten Plagues and spilled wine from their cups at a seder table in a tent in the Kuwaiti desert, Rabbi Joshua Narrowe observed that the spilled wine was not only "for the Egyptians who died in the Exodus, but also for the Iraqi conscripts and civilians who died" in the 26-day Iraq War.

Clinton 'Fritters Away' Opportunity for Strong Iraq Action

Jewish leaders saw the Clinton administration’s last-minute decision to call off an imminent bombing raid on Iraq as one more retreat by Washington in the face of Saddam Hussein’s skillful maneuvers.

Washington Correspondent
‘He Frittered It Away’ ‘It’s so obvious, it’s almost comical,” said Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League. “We know exactly what Saddam’s doing, but we continue to play his game.”

Battles Present, Battles To Come

Securing her spirituality
Staff Writers
Leah Dunne, a native of Patchogue, L.I., had to go to the Persian Gulf to shore up her connection with God. Dunne, 23, a six-year Air Force veteran, since December has been serving at the Al Jaber Air Base in Kuwait. Her job is to watch third country nationals, those from such countries as Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Egypt, who work at the base.
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