Israel

Turning Pain Into Joy On My Daughter's 4th Birthday, Part 1

Editor's Note: Today we are sharing part one of a mother's beautiful blog. Look for Part 2 tomorrow.

As far back as I can remember, I have always loved and awaited my birthday. When August arrives, I am already full of expectation, even though I was born at the end of the month. So much so that when my siblings want to tease me, they say to me: "If August would only come already …" My birthday is my day: I spoil myself on that day and do things that I love. I enjoy the attention from those around me and feel very special.

Since my Neta was born, her birthday is a complex and tumultuous day for me. I want to celebrate and be happy in the way that I know birthdays to be, but I cannot help hurting. On this day, the chronological age that we "celebrate" and according to which we place candles on the cake confronts the developmental age that she has reached.

Snubs

Jimmy Carter was in Israel last week.  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu let it be known he wasn't interested in seeing the former president, 90, who he considers hostile to the Jewish state.

Carter responded by saying meeting with Bibi would be "a waste of time" because the Israeli leader "does not now and has never sincerely believed in a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine." Rubbing it in, Carter said Hamas political chief Khaled Mashaal is not a terrorist and is "strongly in favor of the peace process."

Why Doesn't Natalie Portman Display Her Oscar?

In a recent interview, the Israeli-born actress sounds off on filming in Israel, Bibi, anti-semitism and Alan Dershowitz.

05/06/2015 - 20:00
Web Editor

If the Harvard degree on her wall, brilliant kop and incredible acting abilities wasn’t enough, Natalie Portman just gave bubbes everywhere another 100 reasons to love her. In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter she opened up about her deep connection to Israel, her debut film, and why she doesn’t put her Oscar on display.

Natalie Portman on the set of her new film, 'A Tale Of Love And Darkness', in Jerusalem last year. Getty Images

Ultra-Orthodox Mayor Cancels Bar/Bat Mitzvah For Disabled Children

Editor's Note: We were shocked and saddened to read this news story from Israel and wanted to share it with "New Normal" readers.

The ultra-Orthodox mayor of Rehovot has cancelled a special bar- and bat-mitzvah ceremony for children with disabilities that was scheduled to take place on Thursday at the Israeli city's Conservative synagogue.

Baltimore Mom's Lesson For The Middle East

It struck me while watching that heroic mother in Baltimore emphatically educating her son (see it here) about the perils of rioting and throwing rocks at police that she should be a role model for Israeli and Palestinian mothers.

Toya Graham saw her son Michael, 16, on TV and immediately went out on the streets looking to literally knock some sense into his head.

This Is The Only State Of Israel That We Have

04/22/2015 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

As we celebrate this Yom Ha’atzma’ut, the sixty-seventh birthday of the State of Israel, I share a treasured Israel memory.

Rabbi Gerald C. Skolnik

Israel, U.S. Send Delegations To Armenia Amid Debate On Calling Events ‘Genocide’

Ceremonies are being held in Armenia and abroad this week for the centennial anniversary of the mass killings.

04/22/2015 - 20:00

Friday marks the centennial of the start of the systematic extermination of 1.5 million members of Turkey’s Armenian community at the hands of Turkey’s ultra-nationalist government during World War I.

Remembering Israel’s Fallen Throughout The Years

These photos offer a glimpse into Remembrance Day in Israel since the 1950s.

04/21/2015 - 20:00
Contributing Editor

Yom Hazikaron, or Israel's Remembrance Day, collectively commemorates all the men and women who lost their lives defending Israel.

Women soldiers marching in a Yom HaZikaron parade in 1968. JTA

Bibi To Put Fox In Charge Of Chicken Coop

That could be the headline when Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to announce he is appointing convicted felon Aryeh Deri to be his Minister of the Interior. 

In 1999, Deri, the leader of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, was convicted of bribery, fraud and breach of trust while he was Minister of the Interior between 1988 and 1993.  He served two years of a three-year sentence.

Hillary ‘Between A Rock And A Hard Place’

Clinton weighs loyalty to Obama with distinctions on Israel issues.

04/14/2015 - 20:00

Washington, D.C. — Hillary Clinton does not appear until 90 seconds into the two-minute video rolling out her campaign. No one among the bright and diverse array of everyday Americans in that video mentions foreign policy. Or Barack Obama.

Hillary Clinton in the video this week that launched her presidential bid. Getty Images
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