Although food prices have remained relatively steady in recent years, kosher food prices have soared — 6 percent in the last year alone, according to surveys conducted by the city Department of Consumer Affairs.
Estelle Sapir of Queens, whose 52-year fight to gain access to her father’s Credit Suisse bank account epitomized the plight of Jews denied access to the Swiss accounts of Holocaust victims, is on the verge of reaching a six-figure settlement with the bank, The Jewish Week has learned.
The settlement would be the first approved by the court involving a plaintiff in the class-action lawsuits filed by Holocaust survivors and their heirs against Swiss banks for allegedly hoarding money deposited by Jews who were later murdered in the Holocaust.
He was to be, in his words, the “heir to the throne” as spiritual leader of the Park East Synagogue after his father’s retirement. But when forced by the congregation’s board in the spring of 1993 to choose between tony Park East and his quixotic notion of starting a congregation where none had existed before — Westhampton Beach, L.I. — Rabbi Marc Schneier chose the challenge of the unknown.
Ina (Catharina) Polak did not know until 20 years ago that an honorary El Salvadoran diplomat, George Mandel Montello, had saved her family from almost certain death at the hands of the Nazis by issuing them Salvadoran visas.
Until last week, one of Montello’s son, Enrico, had never met any of the thousands of Jews his father saved.
When the two met at a UN reception honoring righteous diplomats, Montello was nearly moved to tears as he heard Polak’s story and saw the actual visa his father had signed for her, her sister and their parents.
When Muriel Horowitz transferred the deed of her million-dollar Great Neck home to UJA-Federation in 1992, it allowed her to live there for the rest of her life and for her son, Sandy, to be given a reasonable amount of time to remove her belongings after her death.
She died last March 3 and on Monday, a judge in Mineola, L.I., will be asked to define what constitutes a reasonable amount of time.
Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, recently traveled to Turkey for meetings with government leaders there. Last week, a new, more moderate military chief of staff took over in Turkey, and all eyes will be focused on Gen. Huseyin Kivrikoglu to see if he will continue to control the influence of Islamic fundamentalism there. On Monday, Turkey’s prime minister, Mesut Yilmaz, will be making his first state visit to Israel.
James Tisch, the new president of UJA-Federation of New York, hopes to increase fund-raising to the community’s premier charity by simplifying its goals and message.
“We are a philanthropy designed to help Jews in need — in New York, Israel and around the world,” said Tisch during an interview last week in his office at the Loews Corp., where he is president and chief operating officer.
What is the conventional wisdom today among some of the leading Islamic thinkers and opinion leaders about Israel and the Jews?
At a groundbreaking meeting here between seven of these figures and leaders of the American Jewish Committee, the unquestioned truths came tumbling out:
“Jews, in the eyes of the Torah, are the master. And non-Jews, regardless of nationality, are their servants,” complained Ahmed Abu Halabia, dean of the faculty of religion at the Islamic University of Gaza. He cited the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” as evidence.
The struggle for Reform and Conservative legitimacy in Israel remained clouded this week as the chief rabbinate studied the recommendation of a government committee to effectively recognize them yet preserve Orthodox hegemony over conversions in Israel.
Chief Rabbis Yisrael Lau and Eliahu Bakshi-Doron were to meet this week with members of the Knesset Absorption Committee, who favor the Neeman Committee’s proposals, and with the chairman of the government committee, Finance Minister Yaakov Neeman.
For the sake of religious freedom, Jews in Israel should be allowed to select the rabbi of their choice for marriages, conversions and burial, argued Manhattan businessman David Arnow.
For the sake of Jewish unity, there must continue to be only one recognized form of Judaism in Israel — Orthodoxy — countered Jerusalem writer Jonathan Rosenblum.