After failing to elect a Russian-speaking candidate to the City Council last year, activists in the city's best-known immigrant neighborhood are now backing a non-emigre in a heated Assembly contest.
Susan Lasher, whose husband, Howard, represented Brighton Beach, Manhattan Beach and Coney Island in both the City Council and state Assembly, is taking on incumbent Adele Cohen in the Democratic primary Sept. 10.
The trouble began when they spotted a rodent in the hallway, claim Rafael and Devorah Streicher, but after being escorted by police from the Days Inn in Catskill, N.Y., the Brooklyn couple began to smell a rat.
The Streichers and three of their five children checked into the motel, about two hours from New York City, on a Friday last month en route to visit their son at a nearby summer camp. The following afternoon, the Orthodox family watched as housekeepers packed up their cholent pot and other belongings and sent them to another hotel.
Lenora Fulani isn't running for anything this year, but the Marxist activist and frequent candidate (who has made controversial statements about Jews, Israel and the Sept. 11 attacks) is fast becoming one of the most talked-about personalities on the political scene.
That's got Jewish leaders worried about elected officials turning a blind eye for quick political gain.
Now that city teachers have won a hefty, 16 percent pay raise, Jewish education experts are worried about an exodus from day schools to public schools.
According to a survey by the Board of Jewish Education of Greater New York last year, the average maximum salary for head teachers at yeshivas and day schools is about $35,000.
In a historic partnership, dozens of local paramedics and technicians from the Hatzalah Volunteer Ambulance Service are being trained by Magen David Adom to field emergency calls in Israel in the event of a major war.
"We have told Magen David that we are ready to go when you need us the most," said Chevra Hatzalah president Heshy Jacob, who hopes to have 60 volunteers trained and ready before the High Holy Days.
Leaders of the American Jewish Congress have a message for critics of the group's stance on French anti-Semitism: Let them eat cake.
A delegation of AJCongress leaders who visited France earlier this month said the country's Jews heavily support the group's tactics, which include an ad campaign criticizing the French for inaction on the eve of the Cannes film festival, and directing newspaper readers to a Web site, BoycottFrance.com.
Despite a session of raucous testimony on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on July 9, members of the City Council remain "unequivocally pro-Israel," Speaker Gifford Miller told The Jewish Week.
In his first comments on the hearing that lasted more than three hours, and included a call for an "evenhanded" resolution condemning violence on both sides, Miller said there was no place for what he called a "morally relative" approach when dealing with terrorism.
When he’s doing stand-up comedy, puppet shows, juggling or voicing characters on “Dora the Explorer,” Marc Weiner’s only goal is to entertain. If he had to ask people to ponder their emotional state while he’s performing, that would mean he’s not doing his job well.
But lately Weiner is engaging audiences in a different way, at schools, synagogues and other settings: asking them to reach into the depths of their hearts and souls to discover what they’re feeling and how it influences their actions.
In its first survey of European attitudes about Jews, the Anti-Defamation League has found that 30 percent of respondents harbor "traditional anti-Semitic stereotypes," while nearly half believe Jews are more loyal to Israel than to their native lands.
But more disturbing than the statistics is evidence that officials in major European countries are doing next to nothing to stop the synagogue desecrations, assaults and other expressions of hate that have swept across the continent in the past two years, says ADL national director Abraham Foxman.