National

Jews Turn Against Torture

02/27/2008

Editor At Large
As Attorney General Michael Mukasey’s stand on government torture meets widespread criticism — including, increasingly, from the organized Jewish community — a former Israeli military attorney who oversaw terrorist cases is pushing for the United States to borrow, selectively, from Israel’s approach to the issue. Since a 1999 High Court ruling mandated it, says Amos Guiora, Israel has established a “no-torture-based paradigm” that contain key elements the U.S. should adopt; but also some elements it should avoid.

Liberal ’Hood Torn

02/06/2008

Editor At Large
For the storied liberals of Manhattan’s Upper West Side, the race between Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination posed a tough choice. Few denied feeling torn. But based on random interviews with roughly evenly divided Jewish voters as they emerged from several polling sites, it seemed that many who chose Obama hungered for the excitement of a candidate they believed could inspire broad transformative change for the country.

ADL Chief To Obama: ‘Confront Your Pastor’ On Minister Farrakhan

01/16/2008

Editor At Large
The leader of the Anti-Defamation League called presidential candidate Barack Obama’s spiritual mentor and pastor a "black racist" Tuesday and called upon the Illinois Democrat to "confront his minister" on his embrace of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

Tentative Date For Israel Critic At Brandeis

03/08/2007
Editor At Large
Brandeis University students seeking to bring a controversial critic of Israel to campus were finally granted a date and place Monday; then told an hour later the venue was not available, after all; then offered an alternative venue the next day. The latest twists in their lengthy effort to bring DePaul University Professor Norman Finkelstein to campus have left the Radical Student Alliance and Arab Culture Club crossing their fingers that he will appear on March 6 at the university, founded as a Jewish-sponsored, non-sectarian school.

Brandeis Donors Exact Revenge For Carter Visit

02/19/2007

Editor At Large
Major donors to Brandeis University have informed the school they will no longer give it money in retaliation for its decision last month to host former President Jimmy Carter, a strong critic of Israel. The donors have notified the school in writing of their decisions — and specified Carter as the reason, said Stuart Eizenstat, a former aide to Carter during his presidency and a current trustee of Brandeis, one of the nation’s premier Jewish institutions of higher learning.

No Sex Charge For Kolko; Boys’ Parents Foiled By DA

04/16/2008
Special Report/Editor at Large
In a surprise move, Rabbi Yehuda Kolko, the Brooklyn yeshiva teacher charged with having sexually molested his students, pleaded guilty Monday to two lesser counts of child endangerment and was sentenced to three years’ probation. Under the plea agreement, Rabbi Kolko, 62, made no admission of sexual wrongdoing. He will not have to register as a sex offender, and pleaded guilty only to a misdemeanor — not a felony.

For Kosher Meat Giant, A ‘Dreyfus’ Trial

07/30/2008
Staff Writer
If answers aren’t exactly forthcoming from Postville, well then, people are going to Postville to try and seek them out. A veritable parade of Jews — busloads from the Midwest last Sunday for a rally on behalf of immigrant rights, and this week a group of Orthodox rabbis traveling at Agriprocessors’s expense on what is being called “a fact-finding mission” — went looking for answers about the conditions in which their kosher meat is produced.

Keeping Her Eyes On Elderly

07/23/2008
Staff Writer
When Vivian Fenster Ehrlich left a career in publishing to become executive director of the nonprofit Dorot, 21 years ago, it had a budget of $700,000 and a staff of 24 crammed into two floors of a decrepit brownstone on West 91st Street. Now, as she prepares to become director emerita and start a venture she isn’t ready to publicly discuss, Ehrlich is running an organization with 10 times the budget and nearly three times as many staff, working out of its own 10,000-square-foot townhouse a few blocks south.

Harnessing The Growing Wealth Of Women

06/11/2008
Staff Writer
Alisa Levin was busy — as an attorney, as a mother and as a volunteer. In addition to facilitating multimillion-dollar “workout” and bankruptcy deals, she chaired the board of the private school her two children attended in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Though disinterested in mainstream Jewish philanthropy, several years ago she was asked to give a talk to the Women’s Executive Circle, a group within UJA-Federation of New York for female chief execs and managing directors, who give annual gifts of at least $6,000 in their own names.

Pressure Seen Mounting Against Kosher Meat Giant

05/28/2008
Staff Writer
Jason Herman, a Manhattan Orthodox rabbi and kosher meat consumer, has stopped buying the beef and poultry sold by AgriProcessors. Now, when he shops at the Upper West Side’s Kosher Marketplace, he takes care to choose only products from its competitors.
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