In March of 1994, barely three months into Rudolph Giuliani’s term as New York’s 107th mayor, a gunman opened fire on a van full of chasidic students crossing the Brooklyn Bridge. Four yeshiva boys who had been visiting the Lubavitcher rebbe were wounded, one fatally.
Within hours the mayor was live on television, offering a reward and promising to use every available law enforcement resource to capture the terrorist. He held two more news conferences in the ensuing 24 hours, the latter to announce the arrest of gunman Rashid Baz.
It’s not every day that City Council members win a victory against Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. So Ronnie Eldridge can be forgiven for gloating a bit last week when the mayor reversed his policy of banning press conferences by Council members on the steps of City Hall.
“It was impossible for him not to let us do it,” said the Upper West Side Democrat, who led a group of Council members in a defiant City Hall photo op two weeks ago, declaring that the mayor has overreacted to the threat against City Hall following recent U.S. action against terrorism.
Over the past 14 years, I’ve never had the opportunity to interview a major political figure as often as I have Eliot Spitzer during his three runs for attorney general, his two terms in that office and his slam-dunk campaign for governor.
And yet I never felt like I knew much about him at all.
When Yeshivah of Flatbush High School students take the stage on Dec. 28 to perform “Noah! Ride The Wave,” they will be embracing the concept of giving chizuk, or strength, on two levels.
The musical was produced by women in West Bank settlements as an emotional outlet following years of terror attacks that began in 2000 following the collapse of negotiations with the Palestinians.
New York continues to be the anti-Semitism capital of the United States, with a 23 percent jump in incidents of harassment and vandalism in 2007, even as the national total dropped 13 percent, the Anti-Defamation League reported in its annual audit this week.
Jewish voters in New York overwhelmingly backed Sen. Hillary Clinton in her historic presidential bid. But it remains to be seen if she would retain that support should she become the Democratic nominee, since many voters gave her mixed reviews even as they pulled the lever for her.
With New York emerging as a key battleground in next week’s Super Tuesday presidential primaries, supporters of the top two Democratic contenders are stepping up Jewish outreach efforts here.
Jewish advisers to John Kerry of Massachusetts, a 19-year veteran in the Senate, kicked off a focus group on Tuesday to work on polishing his image.
At the same time, supporters of North Carolina Sen. John Edwards, who has been on the national political scene for five years and represents a state with a minuscule Jewish population, are working on raising his profile.
More than three months after an appeals court overturned guilty verdicts in the federal Crown Heights trial, prosecutors have reached a plea deal with one defendant and are reportedly discussing an agreement with murder suspect Lemrick Nelson, Jr.
Charles Price, 49, saw his original sentence cut in half Friday, from 22 years to 11 years, eight months after admitting that he incited black rioters to kill Yankel Rosenbaum on Aug. 19, 1991.
The winds of change were in the air at the annual Gathering of Remembrance marking Yom HaShoah Sunday.
The ceremony, at Temple Emanu-El on Manhattan’s East Side, marked the first year that the Museum of Jewish Heritage-Living Memorial to the Holocaust organized the event, sponsored for over 40 years by the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors.
“The time has come for a younger generation to carry on the tradition,” said Benjamin Meed, chairman of the Warsaw Ghetto Resistance Organization, who has presided over the event since its inception.
Seeking broad support for his initiative to fight slavery in Sudan, the Rev. Al Sharpton is turning to Jewish philanthropists for help and challenging communal leaders to end their ban on meeting with him, asserting that Jews and blacks should work together for this cause.
“I will meet with them any time, anywhere, and whatever things I have said or done that are injurious or wrong, I will deal with because that’s real leadership,” said Rev. Sharpton in an interview last week. “Give me the bill of particulars.”