Russia has long been known for its musicians — and for the grueling conservatories in which those musicians are trained. The notion of learning and playing an instrument for pleasure is a foreign one, but with the support of PresenTense, the Jewish social entrepreneurship incubator, Sergey Novikov is trying to change that.
Top White House officials briefed Jewish community leaders about a Quartet statement urging Israelis and Palestinians to return to talks with no preconditions, a key Israeli demand.
"The Quartet reiterated its urgent appeal to the parties to overcome the current obstacles and resume direct bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations without delay or preconditions," said a statement released Friday evening by the grouping of the United States, Russia, the United Nations and the European Union that guides Middle East peace talks.
After weeks of ratcheting up the criticism and pressure, President Obama has finally explicitly called for Syrian dictator Bashar Assad to resign. He intensified sanctions on by freezing all assets of the regime under American jurisdiction and imposing other tough measures, but he ruled out “foreign intervention.”
(JTA) -- A Russian Jewish billionaire plans to create an international news network that will present "real information" about Israel.
Alexander Mashkevich on Wednesday announced his intention to found a Jewish Al-Jazeera during an address at the Keren Hayasod – United Israel Appeal conference in Washington D.C.
Mashkevich told The Associated Press Wednesday that he had not yet decided what the for-profit venture would be called or where it would be based, but he ruled out Kazakhstan, the country where he made his billions.
Brandeis' Rose Art Museum is not dead yet. Despite the university's much publicized--then reneged--decision to sell off much of the museum's permanent collection last year, the museum itself has been chugging along just fine. At least that's the indication from the upcoming symposium the Rose Art Museum is hosting on March 10, dedicated to the Babi Yar paintings of the stellar if little known painter Felix Lembersky.
Who's Lembersky?, and what's Babi Yar again? You're forgiven for asking.
(JTA) -- Former Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky was found guilty of embezzlement and theft.
The conviction against the former head of the Yukos oil company was handed down by a judge in Moscow in a closed court room on Monday, the New York Times reported. He faces up to 14 years in prison, with credit for time served on a previous conviction.
My story this week is about the scholars who are pushing hard against myths about the shtetl, especially the kind peddled by "Fiddler on the Roof."
As it happens, the composer of that Tony-winning classic died yesterday: Jerry Bock, at 81. Eerily, the writer of the musical's book, Joseph Stein, died ten days before. They both will be missed, deeply.
MOSCOW (JTA) -- The Russian census under way will show a Jewish decline of as much as 25 percent, a specialist on Russian Jewish demography predicts.
The estimate by Mark Kupovetsky, director of biblical and Judaic studies at the Russian State University for the Humanities, for the 2010 census is based on the stable decline of the Jewish population in Russia over the past years, as death rates rise and birthrates fall.