Zionism

Reviving Liberal Zionism

03/21/2011 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of essays on Zionist thinkers and doers, in Israel and outside, who are pioneering new understandings of what Jewish nationalism can mean in the 21st century.

How fitting that Ruth Gavison, a legal expert in the areas of human and civil rights and constitutional law, was awarded the Israel Prize this week, cited for grappling “exhaustively and courageously with forming Israel’s identity as a Jewish and democratic state.”

Tony Judt, Joshua Foer, and a Jewish Memory Palaces

My colleague Sandee Brawarsky spoke with Joshua Foer this week, and did an excellent job reminding readers of memory's central place in Judaism.  Foer's in the news for his new book, "Moonwalking with Einstein," which details how he won the American memory championship. 

Needed: A New Jewish Civics Course

01/10/2011 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

If 2000-2010 was the decade of delegitimization, when Palestinian attacks on Israel’s existence gained renewed traction, 2010 was the year of delegitimization-lite.

More and more Jews responded to the relentless criticism of Israel by internalizing it.

True, most rejected the radical caricature of Israel as a racist or apartheid state deserving destruction. But absorbing the anti-Israel poison in the atmosphere, increasing numbers, especially among liberal Jewish elites, attacked Israel as fundamentally broken, caricaturing Zionism as a right-wing enterprise.

Journalists’ Group Considers Dropping Helen Thomas Award

01/03/2011 - 19:00
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Helen Thomas’ decision to take her disparagement of Zionists from off the cuff (last May) to on the record (last month) has led a journalists' group to consider dropping her name from a lifetime achievement award.

The Society of Professional Journalists is revisiting its decision last summer not to change the name of its Helen Thomas Lifetime Achievement Award after Thomas, 90, told an Arab-American group in Dearborn, Mich., last month that Congress, the White House, Hollywood and Wall Street “are owned by the Zionists.”

Rabbi Tells Students Not to Comment on Blogs or Website Articles

The more I blog, the thicker my skin gets. Overtime, I've learned to prepare myself before reading the comment section at the bottom of my posts. With great inventions, we have to take the bad with the good. It's been wonderful that newspapers and magazines make their articles available to us on the Web, but it also means that individuals can post outrageous, defaming, and insulting comments underneath each article -- opinions that would never be published in a print edition.

Rabbi Shlomo Aviner says stay away from talkbacks and blog commenting

Why I Don’t Share Beinart’s Pessimism

How Zionist education, Birthright can strengthen Israel support.
12/06/2010 - 19:00
Editor And Publisher

Is it true, as Peter Beinart suggested in his widely read New York Review of Books essay in June, that young American Jews are increasingly alienated from Israel because of its allegedly declining commitment to democratic ideals?

Agree with him or not, the former New Republic editor hit a raw nerve among many Jews when he wrote “The Failure of the American Jewish Establishment,” setting off a discussion that continues to stir debate six months later.

Gary Rosenblatt

How The Zionist Revolution Changed Chanukah

12/06/2010 - 19:00
Special To The Jewish Week

‘A miracle did not happen for us. We did not find a cruse of oil.”

These are the words sung publicly in Israel for many years on the eve of Independence Day, and privately by some on Chanukah. But what do they mean? No miracle? No oil? Isn’t the entire Chanukah saga based on those two factors? Haven’t we stuffed ourselves with latkes for a week because of the little cruse of oil that miraculously lasted for eight days?

Israel Dermatitis: The Other 92nd Street Y Debate

Well, the 92nd Street Y debate I went to on Tuesday was not quite as contentious as the flubbed Steve Martin one happening in the night before, but it still got pretty heated. A sold-out audience came to see Peter Beinart and New York Times columnist Roger Cohen debate former AIPACer Steven J. Rosen and Wall Street Journal editoral page editor and former Jerusalem Post editor Bret Stephens.

The Great Debate: Beinart v. The American Jewish Establishment, A Preview

In preview of tomorrow night's debate at the 92nd Street Y featuring Peter Beinart, I'll engage in a small bit of self-promotion.  My story in last week's paper profiled Beinart, whose essay attacking American Jewish leadership for failing to attract young American Jews to support Israel created a firestorm this spring.  If you cannot make the debate (at 8:15 pm Tuesday night) I hope my story catches you up on the discussion's general parameters.

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