National

Fighting Fires at Home and Abroad

12/13/2010
Special to the Jewish Week

As the lights of the Chanukah candles burned, students took time from studying for finals to help deal with fires of a different sort on campus and in Israel. Anti-Semitism, anti-Israel activities, and the devastating impact of fires in Israel all intruded on pre-exam schedules.

David Meyer

Report: Palin plans Israel visit

12/11/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Sarah Palin reportedly is planning on visiting Israel in 2011.

The former Alaska governor and GOP vice presidential candidate in 2008 wants to visit Israel and Britain next year, the Daily Beast website reported Dec. 9. It would be her first visit to both countries.

Palin is widely believed to be planning a presidential run in 2012.

She wished Jews a happy Chanukah on her Facebook page on Dec. 3.

Kissinger: Gassing Soviet Jews Would Not be a U.S. Problem

12/11/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Henry Kissinger is heard saying the genocide of Soviet Jews would not be an American concern on newly released tapes chronicling President Nixon's obsession with disparaging Jews and other minorities.

Kissinger's remarks come after a meeting between the two men and Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir on March 1 1973, in which Meir pleads for U.S. pressure on the Soviet Union to release its Jews.

The men dismiss the plea after Meir leaves.

Hadassah to Pay Back $45 Million of Madoff Gains

12/09/2010
JTA

NEW YORK (JTA) -- Hadassah: The Women’s Zionist Organization of America will pay back $45 million of the money it made in the Bernard Madoff scam.

Hadassah President Nancy Falchuk in a letter Thursday told the organization’s supporters of the settlement reached by the group with the trustee of Madoff’s estate..

Supreme Court Asked to Consider Jerusalem Passport Case

12/09/2010
JTA

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Lawyers for a Jerusalem-born U.S. citizen whose family wants "Israel" listed on his passport as his birth country have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the case.

After his birth in September 2003, the family of Menachem Zivotofsky brought suit against the U.S. government under a 2002 law that allows Americans born in Jerusalem to list the city as in "Israel."

President George W. Bush had signed the law, but stated that it was "advisory" because it interfered with the president's right to conduct foreign policy.

Rabbi Sues Army Over Beard Ban

12/09/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A rabbi is suing the U.S. Army, saying it refused his services as a chaplain because he would not shave his beard.

Rabbi Menachem Stern filed suit in the U.S. District Court in Washington on Wednesday, his law firm, Lewin and Lewin, said in a news release.

Stern says the Army rejected his application to serve as a chaplain only because he would not shave his beard as a matter of conscience.

Florida Jewish School Sued Over Kohl’s Cares Contest

12/09/2010

(JTA) -- A school in Florida that nearly won Kohl's national online contest has sued two Florida Jewish Day schools that did win, saying they reneged on their promise to help.

Abi's Place in Coral Springs filed a lawsuit against Hebrew Academy Community School and Bais Chaya Inc. in Broward County, where all the schools are located, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported.

Boca Raton Under Fire for Menorah Display

12/08/2010

(JTA) -- A Catholic civil rights organization is accusing Boca Raton, Fla., of discrimination for buying and displaying menorahs in public buildings without including a nativity scene.

"The City of Boca Raton is effectively discriminating against Christians by allowing one religious symbol, namely the menorah, to be displayed in public buildings, while censoring nativity scenes," Catholic League President Bill Donahue said in a statement issued Tuesday.

House of Representatives Mourns Israel Fire Losses

12/08/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously mourned the loss of life in Israel's worst ever forest fire and pledged to support assistance.

The non-binding resolution passed Tuesday, sponsored by outgoing Rep. Ron Klein (D-Fla.), "mourns the loss of life and extends condolences to the families affected by the fire in northern Israel" and "supports the Obama Administration’s offer of, and rapid efforts to provide, United States fire fighting assistance to Israel in response to this disaster."

The Tax-Spending Squeeze

Jewish groups fear political crossfire as cuts loom.

12/07/2010
Washington Correspondent

Jewish groups are caught between a rock and a budgetary hard place as a battered Obama administration battles resurgent congressional Republicans over tax-and-spending issues that threaten to produce the sharpest cuts to health and human service programs in history.

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