In Israel, Passover is not a last-minute affair. The planning starts before Purim.
In the weeks and months before the first night of Pesach, tons of shmura matzah are baked, yom tov food orders are placed, seder invitations are made and accepted, and hotel reservations are confirmed.
The work isn’t reserved for families, merchants and rabbis.
Cities make plans too.
The Israeli organization that represents the nearly 9,000 people evacuated from Gaza in 2005 has started a $40 million fundraising effort in the United States for the evacuees’ financial, educational and psychological needs.
The $40 million, to be raised over three years, will fill “the gap” between basic needs and the money that the government has pledged to provide, said Dror Vanunu, international coordinator or the Gush Katif Residents Committee (www.katifund.org; Friends of Gush Katif, P.O.B. 1184, Teaneck, NJ 07666).
The 53 pieces of art that went on exhibit at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem last week, worth millions of dollars, are on loan from several French museums.
If the exhibit is a success, some of the paintings won’t return to France — they’ll go back to their rightful owners or the owners’ heirs.
Another day, another dollar.
This week it was another Super Sunday, another million dollars.
UJA-Federation held its annual Super Sunday phone-a-thon on Sunday, more than 1,000 volunteers making calls from the philanthropy’s headquarters in Manhattan, Long Island and Westchester. Together, they raised more than $1 million.
This year’s theme was Israel’s 60th anniversary.
The law professor last month awarded $3.1 million for his work on the Swiss Bank Holocaust settlement now wants $300,000 more.
The professor, Burt Neuborne, said in court papers that he is owed interest for the two years he waited while the court weighed survivors’ objections to his fee request.
“Shock is the only way to describe this obscene effort at enrichment at a time when Holocaust survivors are dying in poverty,” said Elan Steinberg, vice president of the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Descendants.
They come from South America, they live in Israel and they made history in Australia.
Andy Ram and Jonathan Erlich, Israel’s top men’s doubles team since they met at the Wingate Institute in the 1990s and competed at the highest levels of international tennis, won the doubles title at the Australian Open last week.
Their victory marked the first Israeli championship in a Grand Slam tournament — Ram had twice shared a Grand Slam mixed doubles title with a woman from another country.