Blame It On Rio

Not even a beautiful Mossad agent can save the Bondian romp, ‘Lost in Rio.’
05/03/2010 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Life was so much simpler in 1967. For a brief moment, everyone loved Israel, the plucky little country that fended off attacks from all its much larger, more powerful neighbors. With the U.S. involved in an unpopular war in Vietnam, it was comfortable for progressives to view the Israelis as a model for the Third World, a nation too tough to take crap from the big boys.

No 007: Jean Dujardin and Louise Monot in scene from “OSS 117 — Lost in Rio.”

So Long, Greenberg

05/03/2010 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

The thing about “Greenberg,” the latest movie by my most favorite filmmaker, Noah Baumbach, is that I’ve dated that guy. Not Baumbach, unfortunately. I should be so lucky. But the character, Greenberg, played by the king of on-screen neuroses, Ben Stiller.

Seeing Beyond the Immediate in the Synagogue

04/29/2010 - 20:00
Special to the Jewish Week

Of the many things that I admire my wife for, one (surely not the most significant) is her ability to walk into an empty room in a house and imagine how it might or ought to look with furniture and everything else that makes up a room. The couch can go there, the rocker there, that painting over there… it’s this remarkable ability to see beyond what presents right now and have an image of what it might be.

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik

Selection of Israeli Envoy Sparks Debate at Brandeis

04/26/2010 - 20:00

NEW YORK (JTA) -- Brandeis has sparked a controversy in the university community with its selection of Israel’s ambassador to Washington as its commencement speaker.

Last week's announcement of Michael Oren as this year's keynoter has evoked a spectrum of responses in campus publications and online forums ranging from enthusiastic support to wary apprehension to outrage.

Neither Oren nor the suburban Boston university are strangers to such controversies.

Can Palin Win Over Jews?

Could Obama’s growing problems with the community translate into popularity for our least-favorite Sarah? Despite a new website, most experts say no.
04/26/2010 - 20:00
Staff Writer

If you believe the conventional wisdom about the 2008 presidential election, Democratic candidate Sen. Barack Obama was having a very tough time garnering Jewish support before Sen. John McCain picked a running mate. Polls in the Jewish community had Obama getting about 55 percent of the Jewish vote, as much as 20 percentage points lower than John Kerry or Al Gore, the two previous Democratic presidential candidates.

Sarah Palin.

Broadcasts From The Edge

Israel loved on talk radio, WABC buffs up ratings and Zionist lineup
04/26/2010 - 20:00
Associate Editor

If Israel is getting roughed up lately, that’s never the case at WABC-Radio (770 AM). Its conservative hosts — Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin, among others — can sound as if they’re broadcasting from Israel. Aaron Klein, their newest on-air host, actually is broadcasting from microphones in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. What was once “W-A-Beatles-C” might as well be “W-A-Bibi-C.”

WABC host Aaron Klein passionately supports the Israeli right, but Islamic Jihad and Hamas call in, too. “It’s important,” says

Understanding Obama As Our First PC President

04/26/2010 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Three mysteries underlie the current crisis between America and Israel. The first one is biographical: How can President Barack Obama call himself Israel’s friend, yet display such animus toward the Jewish state, exemplified most recently by refusing even to be photographed with Israel’s Prime Minister when hosting Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House?

Striking Out In Israel

04/26/2010 - 20:00

The history of Israel is rich with entrepreneurial spirit and outside-the-box innovation that helped transform the tiny desert country.

And then there was the 2007 effort to transplant baseball to the Jewish state.

Israel Baseball League, the film: Scene from “Holy Land Hardball.”

Anna Halprin’s Dance Therapy

New documentary traces the varied steps of the pioneering modern dance choreographer.
04/26/2010 - 20:00
Staff Writer

When Anna Halprin was growing up in the 1920s, she liked to watch her grandfather pray. He would rock back and forth, his long white beard swaying, while a string of unintelligible words rushed from his mouth. As his words became louder, faster, his body followed suit, moving in what seemed like some mystical dance. God must have looked something like that, Halprin remembers thinking. And so, she reasoned, “I thought God was a dancer.”

For Halprin, dance has tangible health benefits.

Did The Hebrew Bible Give Birth To Democracy?

Scholars beginning to challenge view that the rise of democratic values belongs solely to Western secular thought.
04/26/2010 - 20:00
Staff Writer

When the Texas Board of Education voted last month in favor of a proposal that would emphasize the religious origins of democracy in high school curricula, many liberals were outraged. It seemed to fly in the face of the long-held assumption that Western political ideas — toleration, the separation of church and state, indeed the genius of democratic rule itself — was born from the steady secularization of the West. It was the age of the Enlightenment, after all, that produced America’s great experiment in democracy.

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