Briefs

Iranian Hung For Spying For Israel

12/28/2010

(TJA) — Ali-Akbar Siadat was hanged at a prison in Tehran on Tuesday morning after being convicted of spying for Israel, according to the Iranian news agency IRNA.

Cop in Shabbat Violation Incident Transferred

12/21/2010

A street cop who ordered a Sabbath-observant jaywalker to write his name during Shabbat has been transferred from his Midwood beat, according to Councilman David Greenfield of Brooklyn.

The incident took place on Nov. 28th, when Rabbi Shalom Emer was returning from synagogue and crossed Kings Highway. The rabbi claims the cop, whose name has not been released by the NYPD, ordered him to write his name because he was not carrying identification. Facing arrest, the rabbi reluctantly complied.

Netanyahu To Make Formal Request On Pollard to Obama

12/21/2010

(JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday he would formally ask President Obama to free Jonathan Pollard, who was sentenced to life in 1987 for spying for Israel.

A number of Jewish groups routinely request Pollard's release each December, when presidents consider pardons and commutations.

Netanyahu's request could be tied to considerations of peace talks with the Palestinians, which are mired in an impasse over settlement building.

Reward Raised To $10,000 For Information On Cemetery Vandals

12/21/2010

The New York Police Department’s Hate Crimes Task Force has declared the vandalism of some 200 graves at Washington Cemetery in Brooklyn last weekend a bias crime, as local elected officials raised the reward for information to $10,000. The damage, the second such attack in two weeks, took place between Friday night and Sunday morning and included the toppling and spray-painting of headstones.

Rocket From Gaza Injures Israeli Girl

12/21/2010

(JTA)— An Israel teenager was injured when a Kassam rocket fired from the Gaza Strip exploded near a kindergarten in a western Negev kibbutz. In addition to the 14-year-old girl, who was on her way to school, an adult living on Kibbutz Zikim near Ashkelon also was hurt by shrapnel from the blast. Four others were treated for shock, according to a statement from the Israeli military. Ten children were in the kindergarten when the rocket struck about 20 feet away.

New York Pays $40,000 To Sabbath-Observant Nurse

12/21/2010

A New Jersey Orthodox woman who claimed she was denied a nursing job at a public hospital in 2007 because she couldn’t work on Shabbat won a $40,000 settlement from New York City, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.
The city denied any wrongdoing, but its Health and Hospitals Corporation said in a statement that because its facilities operate 24/7, “with nursing staff a critical component of weekend coverage it is not always possible to accommodate a request made by a nurse for religious observance leave on a weekend day.”

United Synagogue Leader Bruce Greenfield Dies At 64

12/14/2010

Bruce Greenfield, the longtime executive director of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism’s Metropolitan New York District, died Dec. 12 following a heart attack in his North Bellmore, L.I. home. He was 64.

Mr. Greenfield, who served as head of the Conservative movement’s activities in the Greater New York area, and previously as the region’s youth director, for 35 years, left USCJ two years ago as part of an investigation into possible financial improprieties at the organization.

Aaron Listhaus to Head Hebrew Charter School Incubator

12/14/2010

(JTA) — Aaron Listhaus, the chief academic officer for New York City’s Office of Charter Schools, will take over as the head of the Hebrew Charter School Center.

Listhaus, who has spent a year-and-a half helping to oversee nearly 70 authorized charter schools in New York City, will assume his new post in January.

Diaspora Rabbis Urge Israeli Colleagues To Speak Out On Rental Ruling

12/14/2010

(JTA) — Over 750 rabbis and cantors of all denominations signed a letter urging their Israeli colleagues to speak out against a ruling by 39 municipal rabbis banning renting to non-Jews.

“The recent halakhic ruling from community rabbis in Israel that forbids leasing apartments to non-Jews has caused great shock and pain in our communities,” said the letter, initiated by the New Israel Fund. “The attempt to root discriminatory policies based on religion or ethnicity in Torah is a painful distortion of our tradition.”

Hummus Hostilities Quelled

12/07/2010

Campus activity seems to have quieted this week over previously controversial hummus sales. Two weeks ago DePaul University in Chicago temporarily suspended sale of Sabra hummus on campus, after the Students for Justice in Palestine filed a complaint that Sabra's parent company, Strauss, supports the Israeli Defense Force.

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