(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.
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."
Jewish groups fear political crossfire as cuts loom.
James D. Besser
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.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Jewish groups praised the renewal of a law funding school meals, but expressed concern that it was financed in part by money designated for food stamps.
The approval in the U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday of the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act means the bill -- which had been subject to some last minute wrangling -- is ready for enactment by the president.
The bill extends for another ten years funding for school lunches and breakfasts for children from families that depend on the meals, estimated at 4.2 million households.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Yitzhak Perlman conducted the U.S. Navy Band at the lighting of the menorah on the National Mall.
Several thousand people packed the seats on the Ellipse in front of the White House in near-freezing temperatures Wednesday evening for the event run by American Friends of Lubavitch, a tradition of three decades.
Perlman, a pre-eminent violin virtuosi, performed two traditional Chanukah melodies with a pianist and then conducted the Navy band in "Oseh Shalom" and "God Bless America."
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A careful reading of the WikiLeaks trove of State Department cables -- which is laying bare some 250,000 secret dispatches detailing private conversations, assessments and dealmaking of U.S. diplomats -- reveals a notable if perhaps surprising pattern: how often they get things wrong.
Again and again the cables show diplomats, lawmakers and heads of state predicting outcomes that never come to pass.
Saying the fraud sentencing of kosher meat king Shalom Rubashkin was disproportionate compared with sentences meted out to others who committed more serious crimes, Rep. Yvette Clarke of Brooklyn has called on U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to intervene.