After an accountant in his mid-50s from Merrick, L.I., was laid off this summer amid the burgeoning economic crisis, he went to meet with his rabbi.
“He felt betrayed by his company,” said Rabbi Charles Klein, spiritual leader of the Merrick Jewish Center. “He also wanted someone to talk to because he didn’t want to show his wife how frightened and hurt he was.”
As a student rabbi, Alysa Stanton — who next month becomes the first ever African-American woman rabbi — was assigned to intern in a congregation in Dothan, Ala.
But no sooner did she arrive than the president of the congregation called the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati to complain.
“He said, ‘Are you kidding,?’” recalled Rabbi Ken Kanter, director of HUC’s rabbinical program.
Julian Sandler, board chairman of Hillel: Foundation for Jewish Campus Life who died March 20 after a brief illness, was remembered this week for his keen analytical mind, his warmth, ever present smile and “sweet South African accent.” He was 64.
“He made each of his friends feel special,” said Stephen Steinig, a friend who spoke at Mr. Sandler’s funeral Sunday at the Dix Hills Jewish Center where Mr. Sandler was a former president. “Julian was a leader among leaders.”
Okay, I’d resolved not to blog about J Street for a while, since every time I do it takes days to sort through the angry email, but I just have to ask again: what is it about this group that drives people so batty?
Read through J Street’s press statements, Web site and op-eds, and it’s obviously a strongly pro-Israel group, even if its views of what constitutes the best policy to secure Israel’s future aren’t the same as the Israeli government’s or AIPAC’s and even though it is clearly not a big fan of the current government.
As new chair of the Jewish Agency, can the former dissident overcome Zionism’s political infighting?
Editor and Publisher
Natan Sharansky, an authentic modern-day Jewish hero, has been in his post as chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel less than two weeks, and already his fortitude for coping with the bureaucracy and politics that goes with the job is being questioned.
A while back I wrote a story suggesting the Obama administration is highly confident it can push Israel on the issue of Jewish settlements without risking a big political backlash from Jewish voters.
That story ignited a flurry of calls and emails from readers disagreeing with me, many from Jewish leadership types, and I had to concede they were right, up to a point: there is a spreading feeling of anxiety about Obama policies in the circles in which these responders move.