Briefs

Knesset Committee To Discuss J Street

03/14/2011 - 20:00

(JTA) — The Knesset Immigration, Absorption and Public Diplomacy Committee said March 9 that a hearing on the activities of J Street, which calls itself a pro-Israel, pro-peace organization, would be held as soon as next week.

Americans for Peace Now said it was outraged by the hearing.

Israel Seizes Ship Carrying Weapons

03/14/2011 - 20:00

(JTA) — Israel’s Navy intercepted a ship bound for Egypt that the Israeli military said was smuggling weapons for use by terror organizations in the Gaza Strip.

The Liberia-flagged cargo ship Victoria was seized Tuesday in the Mediterranean Sea 200 miles west of Israel.

“The various weaponry on board the vessel was intended for the use of terror organizations operating in the Gaza Strip,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.

The crew did not appear to be aware of the weapons stash, according to reports, and did not resist.

Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters joins boycott movement

03/06/2011 - 19:00

(JTA) -- Former Pink Floyd front man Roger Waters has officially joined the the campaign of Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions against Israel, and is urging fellow artists to do the same.

In a letter posted on the website of the Alternative information Center, Waters said he would continue to wage a boycott campaign against Israel until it ends its occupation of the West Bank and dismantles the security fence, grants full equality to Arab citizens of Israel and allows all Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in Israel.

Portman, Seidler Win Oscar Gold

02/28/2011 - 19:00

Among the top winners at Sunday’s Academy Awards, Israel-born Natalie Portman, beaming and proudly pregnant, walked off with the best-actress trophy for her portrayal of a tortured ballerina in “Black Swan.”

“The King’s Speech” was named best picture, and Emile Sherman, scion of a prominent Australian Jewish family, accepted as one of the three producers.

Campaign For Quake Damaged Shul In New Zealand

02/28/2011 - 19:00

The Bnei Akiva youth organization in Christchurch, New Zealand, is conducting a fund-raising appeal on behalf of the Canterbury Hebrew Community, a synagogue damaged in the country’s recent earthquake. The synagogue, according to its web site, is “closed until further notice.”

Pete Seeger Regrets Part In Peace Rally

02/28/2011 - 19:00

 (JTA) — Folk music icon Pete Seeger says he regrets taking part in a peace rally for Israel’s Arava Institute for Environmental Studies.

Last November, the 92-year-old musician appeared on “With Earth and Each Other,” billed as on online peace rally in support of the Israeli institute, which brings together an international student body to explore solutions to cross-border ecological problems, particularly those affecting Israel and her Arab neighbors.

Hamas To Block U.N. Holocaust Lessons In Gaza

02/28/2011 - 19:00

(JTA) — Hamas said it will stop the United Nations from teaching Palestinian children in Gaza about the Holocaust as part of a human rights curriculum run by the U.N. Relief and Works Agency, The Guardian reported.

Rabbi Balkany Sentenced To Four Years

02/21/2011 - 19:00

A federal judge in Manhattan sentenced Rabbi Milton Balkany to four years in jail for trying to extort $4 million for his school, Bais Yaakov of Borough Park, from billionaire Steven Cohen's SAC Capital, using supposedly damaging information he obtained from an inmate at a federal prison where he served as a spiritual adviser.

Philanthropist Yitzchak Shavit, 67

02/21/2011 - 19:00

Yitzchak Shavit, a philanthropist who served as a leader in the Jewish Federation movement and the Jewish Agency, died Feb. 20 in his New York home. He was 67.

A Center for Resource Development named for Mr. Shavit was dedicated Sunday at the Jerusalem headquarters of the Jewish Agency.

“Yitzchak was truly unique in his warmth, his irrepressible energy and dedication to the Jewish people and the State of Israel,” Kathy Manning, chair of the Jewish Federations of North America, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

New Zealand Earthquake Destroys Chabad House

02/21/2011 - 19:00

(JTA) — An Israeli backpacker is believed to be among the 65 people killed in Tuesday's quake in New Zealand, and the destruction in Christchurch on the country's South Island included the city's Chabad House.

The Israeli, who was not immediately named by Israeli officials, was in a car with three other Israelis when a building collapsed on them during the 6.3-magnitude earthquake that ripped through the city around lunchtime, according to Rabbi Shmuel Friedman, a Chabad rabbi in Christchurch.

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