Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

11/23/2010 | | Special to the Jewish Week | Opinion

If there is to remain any meaning to the terms Chief Rabbinate and Religious Zionism, then the recent decision casting aspersions on conversions by the Israel Defense Forces, should be “last straw” in our relationship with the rabbinate.

As a religious Zionist who believes that Israel is the beginning of our redemption, it is not easy for me to come to terms with this realization, but it seems to me that that the time has come to say honestly, and painfully, that the Chief Rabbinate as it stands today has run its course.

11/23/2010 | | Opinion

Special To The Jewish Week

1. The real weapon is not ammunition but ideas. Ideas win wars.

11/19/2010 | | Special to the Jewish Week | Opinion

The great American bar/bat mitzvah has become a source of parody in Jewish life. The 13-year olds are at the most awkward stage of their lives with hormones raging. Anywhere from 10 to 50 friends might be invited who then sit in the sanctuary with no interest in the service and little clue as what is transpiring. The relatives and friends of the parents are polite but often sit stoically, unnerved by the unfamiliarity of the surroundings.

11/16/2010 | | Special to the Jewish Week | Opinion

Editor’s Note: An edited version of these remarks were delivered at the dedication of the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia on Nov. 14.

11/16/2010 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The recent revelation that U.S. government officials gave aid and comfort to some Nazi war criminals and collaborators for several decades is as shocking as Claude Rains' discovery in Casablanca that gambling was going on in Rick’s Café. It has long been known, for example, that SS-Hauptsturmführer (Captain) Klaus Barbie, who headed the Gestapo in Lyon, France, from 1942 until 1944 and who ordered the deportation of Jewish orphans to Auschwitz, subsequently became an agent of the U.S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps.

11/16/2010 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Israeli Knesset member David Rotem, author of a controversial bill that would grant the Chief Rabbinate sole authority over conversions, defended his position recently. In response to complaints from leaders of non-Orthodox movements that the bill discriminates against them, he said, “In my opinion, there’s only one Judaism. There are no three Judaisms.” What he meant was that Orthodoxy is the only legitimate form of Judaism. The other streams don’t count.