Mel Berger is usually found safely behind his desk in Midtown making book deals for the likes of Ray Romano, Erin Brokovich, and former New York Yankee star Paul O'Neill.
So it was out of character when the 53-year-old William Morris literary agent recently found himself on his hands and knees in a little-known forest on the French-German border, sifting dirt looking for buried World War II treasures.
Israeli academic Miriam Shlesinger received a devastating e-mail last May from her old British friend and editor Mona Baker.
Shlesinger, an interpreter at Bar Ilan University, was checking to see whether she should finish a writing assignment for Baker, editorial director of St. Jerome Publishing in England. St. Jerome publishes the prestigious journal The Translator, where Shlesinger sat on the editorial board.
In response, Baker told the Israeli to get lost.
With a provocative title like "If this is World War III, how do we win?" one might have thought a forum on terrorism would have presented a unified vision of what's in store for the world in the face of rising militant Islam and an imminent regime change in Iraq.
But there were glaring differences among such ex-heads of state as Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, Prime Minister Ehud Barak, Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt and Jordan's Crown Prince Hassan about how to view the world terror threat and, indeed, what is responsible for the current situation.
A Jesuit priest working with Mel Gibson on his controversial film about the last hours of Jesus' life says Jews need not worry about being portrayed as Christ-killers.
Father William J. Fulco, a professor of ancient Mediterranean studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, says he is "intimately familiar" with the script of Gibson's upcoming, self-financed movie "The Passion" and there is "no hint" of the deicide charge that Jews were responsible for the crucifixion of Jesus.
Mark Asher Evnin wanted to improve himself, and the world, too. At 18, after graduating from Vermont's South Burlington High School in 32 years, the well-liked student athlete and only child of Mindy Evnin joined the Marines.
So while his friends were taking freshman college courses, Mark was in basic training: much to his mother's chagrin.
"My son, a Jewish Marine, how bizarre," Evnin told The Jewish Week Tuesday. "We come from a professional Jewish family, rabbis, cantors and biochemists."
The running battle between militant Islam critic Daniel Pipes and a prominent national Islam advocacy group heated up again this week when the Council on American Islamic Relations launched a campaign to stop Pipes' nomination to the United States Institute of Peace.
Israel's Interior Ministry is revamping its procedures for allowing Christian clerics, religious students and volunteers to enter the country in response to growing complaints by Christian groups, The Jewish Week has learned.
The groups said they have had serious trouble in recent months obtaining entry visas and renewals for their flock.
Inside the third-floor conference hall, Cardozo Law School officials beamed with pride as Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu accepted a peace award sponsored by the school, an affiliate of Yeshiva University.
But outside the hall, a group of students protested the selection by fellow students of Archbishop Tutu as the fourth recipient of the International Advocate for Peace Award, labeling him an anti-Semite and opponent of Israel.
"Anti-Semite on campus," called out Cardozo student Yishai Fleisher, a bearded man sporting a yarmulke and tzitizit.
Chanukah 5769 is one for the books — the Guinness Book of World Records.
Around the world this week, several Jewish communities vied to establish various records – largest menorah, largest crowd, largest number of menorahs concurrently lit – at their public celebrations of the Holiday of Lights.