News

The J List: Joy Behar And Chely Wright Do Yiddish

05/09/2010 - 20:00

It was surely one of the oddest venues for a Yiddish lesson.

On Joy Behar’s show last Wednesday night, the Italian host (she would fit Lenny Bruce’s definition of a Jew in a New York minute) was interviewing Chely Wright, the sweet country singer who shocked Nashville earlier that day by coming out as gay. Behar, expressing support and sympathy for Wright, said the singer’s decision was surely provoking some tsuris in her life.

Chely Wright

Israeli-Palestinian talks Renew, Obama Will ‘Hold Accountable’ Violators

05/09/2010 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) – The Obama administration said it would "hold accountable" Israel or the Palestinians should either side undermine trust during renewed peace negotiations.

U.S. State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said in a statement released Sunday that the first round of indirect peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians mediated by the United States had been completed.

The opening of the so-called proximity talks were "serious and wide-ranging," he said.

Obama Reportedly Picks Kagan for Supreme Court

05/09/2010 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama will reportedly nominate Elena Kagan to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Kagan, 50, currently the solicitor general and a former dean of Harvard Law School, is the president's pick, NBC News reported Sunday evening.

Kagan would bring the number of Jews and women on the court to three: Stephen Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg are Jewish, and Obama filled his first vacancy, last year, with Sonia Sotomayor.

Oren: Obama Did Not Snub Netanyahu

05/05/2010 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama never snubbed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's U.S. ambassador said.

Michael Oren ran through what he said were the distortions of a March 23 White House meeting between Netanyahu and Obama during a dinner he hosted this week for top Democrats.

According to an account of Oren's remarks prepared by the National Jewish Democratic Council, whose officers attended the dinner, Oren outlined why the Obama-Netanyahu meeting was not a snub.

Exclusive - Wiesel To Obama: Pressure On Israel Is Not The Way

In exclusive Jewish Week interview, Nobel laureate says Israel susceptible to ‘seduction.’
05/05/2010 - 20:00
Editor and Publisher

Nobel Peace laureate Elie Wiesel says that in his private lunch meeting with President Obama at the White House on Tuesday, the president “wanted me to understand” his commitment to Israel. And the Holocaust survivor and memoirist wanted to share with his host (also a Nobel Peace Prize winner) how important Israel, and particularly Jerusalem, is to the Jewish people.

Elie Wiesel leaves White House on Tuesday. Photo: Getty Images

With JCall, European Jews Get Their Own J Street Debate

05/04/2010 - 20:00
JTA

PRAGUE (JTA) -- The launch of JCall has brought the debate that American Jewry has seen over J Street to Jewish Europe: Outside of Israel, how critical in public should you be of Israeli government policies you believe are not in Israel’s best interests?

The founders of JCall, who seek to push what they see as a recalcitrant Israeli government closer to a two-state solution, say criticism of Israeli policies is constructive and necessary.

Rage At Brandeis Over Invite To Israel’s Oren

Lookstein calls protests ‘nothing less than evil.’
05/04/2010 - 20:00
Associate Editor

Israel’s Ambassador Michael Oren, though no longer in the Israel Defense Forces, might feel like he deserves combat pay for all the fury he’s generating on American campuses.

Most dramatically, 11 Muslim students were arrested in February for disrupting the ambassador’s talk at the University of California-Irvine, and now hundreds of students at  Brandeis University, many of whom are Jewish, are campaigning to have Brandeis rescind its invitation for Oren to speak at graduation ceremonies May 23.

Taking On Ahmadinejad

05/04/2010 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Political and Jewish leaders stood in the shadow of the United Nations Monday to denounce the presence of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a UN conference on the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

“Iran’s presence at this conference is a sham,” bristled Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.).

She then called for Senate hearings to investigate all companies that do business with Iran, thus helping it as it develops nuclear weapons to “enable terrorism.”

Photos by Michael Datikash

White House Charm Offensive Pays Off

After lunch with Obama, Wiesel says tension is ‘gone.’
05/04/2010 - 20:00
JTA

 Washington — When Elie Wiesel says it’s all kosher, it’s good.

For now, anyway.

President Obama capped an intensive two weeks of administration make-nice with Israeli officials and the American Jewish community by hosting Wiesel, the Nobel peace laureate and Holocaust memoirist, for lunch at the White House.

“It was a good kosher lunch,” was the first thing Wiesel pronounced, emerging from the White House to a gaggle of reporters.

And not just the food.

Elie Wiesel speaks to reporters Tuesday after White House visit. getty images

Limmud Moscow Draws Crowd

05/04/2010 - 20:00

Limmud Moscow drew more than 550 young Jews from the Russian capital and other cities earlier this month for three days of intensive Jewish learning, discussing and socializing. One conference theme was Jewish Nobel Prize winners from Russia and Israel, and among those represented were Yitzchak Rabin (by his daughter, Dalia), Shimon Peres (by his daughter, Tsvia Walden) and Menachem Begin (by Herzl Makov, director of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center). Limmud FSU was founded four years ago by Chaim Chesler of Israel, Michael Chlenov of Russia and Sandy Cahn of New York.

 

A poster for Limmud Moscow.
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