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Shavuot’s Gift: What to do After ‘Lost’

05/15/2010 - 20:00
JTA

 NEW YORK (JTA) -- Early on in the Talmudic tractate of Taanit, Rabbi Yitzchak causes a bit of stir when, in the name of Rabbi Yochanan, he declares: "Jacob our father did not die."

Rav Nachman rejects the idea with a sharp retort, asking: "Was it then for nothing that they mourned Jacob and the embalmers embalmed him and the grave-diggers buried him?"

Major Donor Saban Unhappy With Obama

05/15/2010 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A major pro-Israel Democratic Party campaign donor says the Obama administration's Middle East policy unsettles him.

"The situation is catastrophic, if you want me to put it simply," Haim Saban, an entertainment magnate, told Israel's Channel 10 news on May 13. "Look, I don’t think Obama is anti-Israel, like people think he is. His goal is to achieve peace, just like our goal is to achieve peace. The way he intends to do it may not be the way some people in Israel would like it, and especially on the right."

Obama Authorizes $205 Million for Iron Dome

05/13/2010 - 20:00
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The Obama administration authorized $205 million to allow Israel to complete its Iron Dome short-range missile defense system.

White House Meets With Rabbis to Assuage Concerns on Israel

05/13/2010 - 20:00
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- If you tell the rabbis, they will spread the word.

That was the thinking behind two intimate White House meetings -- the second of which took place on Thursday -- with a carefully selected slate of 15 rabbis from across the country and representing the Orthodox, Reform and Conservative streams.

Netanyahu: ‘We will continue to build’ in Jerusalem

05/11/2010 - 20:00

JERUSALEM (JTA) – Israel will continue to build in Jerusalem, Benjamin Netanyahu said during the state ceremony marking Jerusalem Day.

"We will continue to build and be built in Jerusalem," the prime minister said Wednesday during the ceremony on Ammunition Hill. "We will continue to develop, plan and create in Jerusalem. We cannot develop in a divided city."

Jerusalem Day marks the date on the Hebrew calendar that Israeli forces captured eastern Jerusalem during the 1967 Six-Day War, thus reuniting the city.

Unusual Coalition Gov’t Leaves British Jews Uncertain on Policy

05/11/2010 - 20:00
JTA

LONDON (JTA) – With Britons uncertain of how the country’s first coalition government since World War II will go about governing, the country’s Jewish community appears to be taking a wait-and-see approach to the new Conservative-Liberal Democrat government.

During the campaign, many Jews expressed alarm at Liberal Democratic positions on Israel.

Obama Calls Abbas As Israeli-Palestinian Proximity Talks Begin

05/10/2010 - 20:00

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- President Obama called  Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at the outset of renewed Israeli-Palestinian talks.

"The President congratulated President Abbas on the start of Israeli-Palestinian proximity talks," a White House statement said Tuesday. "He reiterated his strong support for the establishment of an independent, viable Palestinian state living in peace and security with Israel."

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.

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