Gary Rosenblatt

Waiting For The Power To Come Back

08/30/2011
Editor And Publisher

When the power went out in our house Sunday afternoon, I was able to e-mail a friend and neighbor (thanks to my trusty BlackBerry) to ask if he’d lost power, too. He wrote back to say yes, adding: “But Jews were powerless for 2,000 years, and we’re still here.”

Gary Rosenblatt

The Weekly Column, Shooting For 1,000

08/16/2011
Editor And Publisher

A few summers back, while talking to my Mom on a Saturday night, I mentioned that my wife and I were packing for our vacation the next day but that I still hadn’t written my Jewish Week column for the upcoming issue and was feeling the pressure.

“Why don’t you skip a week,” said my Mom, who has since passed away. “Make ‘em miss you.”

After some initial resistance, I took her suggestion.

Gary Rosenblatt

Looking Back, From Addis Ababa To Crown Heights

08/09/2011
Editor And Publisher

Two very different landmark events in black-Jewish relations took place in 1991, one tragic and one thrilling. Twenty years later, the repercussions are still being felt.

On Aug. 19, 1991, a car accident in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn launched a perfect storm of violence, transforming a longstanding resentment among some blacks of Jews in general and neighborhood chasidim in particular into three days of rage and riots that some historians have called the worst case of anti-Semitism in American history.

Gary Rosenblatt

Is It ‘Anti-Orthodox’ To Seek A Safer Community?

08/02/2011
Editor And Publisher

It is sad, if not maddening, when this newspaper is labeled “anti-Orthodox” for its reporting on scandals and other disturbing incidents in a segment of the community whose culture places a high value on policing itself.

Gary Rosenblatt

When Promises Were Sacred, Not Empty

07/26/2011
Editor And Publisher

Reading news reports this summer about the breakdown of talks, and trust, between our nation’s leaders over the debt ceiling has been deeply depressing but not surprising.

It’s just one example, however dramatic, of the chasm between public pledges made and kept.

We have become so used to government officials in Jerusalem as well as Washington making empty promises that we no longer register shock or disappointment when their actions contradict their previous assurances, where “word of honor” has no meaning.

Gary Rosenblatt

We’ve Got It Backward: Israel Education Should Come First, Then Advocacy

The evidence is growing that we may be fighting the wrong battle in the struggle to support Israel these days.

07/19/2011
Editor And Publisher

The situation is grim, if not alarming: Jerusalem is increasingly on the defensive diplomatically, faced with a United Nations vote for a Palestinian state in September, and a range of outside efforts aimed at undermining the legitimacy of the Jewish State, from boycotts to flotillas. What’s more, there is concern that the circle-the-wagon response in Jerusalem to these threats can lead to more problems; witness the recent passage of anti-boycott resolution in the Knesset that has been widely criticized as undemocratic, even among mainstream Jewish organizations.

Gary Rosenblatt

Of Balaam And Birthright: When A Curse Is A Blessing

07/12/2011
Editor And Publisher

Officials of Birthright Israel are said to be worried about the impact of an in-depth, highly critical piece, written by a recent participant and published in the July 4-11 issue of The Nation.

They needn’t be.

Gary Rosenblatt

Baby Steps Toward Arab-Jewish Cooperation

Two mayors in the north, looking for a grass-roots connection.

07/05/2011
Editor And Publisher

‘Even if there is peace between Israel and the Arabs, it will not solve our problems,” Nazia Masrawa, the mayor of an Arab Israeli town in the north called Kfar Qara (population 17,000), told me in a soft, matter-of-fact voice during a recent interview here.

He cited the lack of interaction between Arabs and Jews living in close proximity, based on fear and distrust, and the economic gap between the societies that has widened since the first intifada almost 24 years ago.

Gary Rosenblatt

Building A 21st-Century Palestinian City

06/28/2011
Editor and Publisher

‘Facts on the ground.”

It’s a phrase we’ve come to associate over the years with Israel’s West Bank settlements, seen by supporters as a tangible Jewish presence to serve as a bulwark against Arab incursions, a vanguard to protect larger Jewish population centers.

Gary Rosenblatt

Amidst The Discussion And Debate, A Spark Of Hope

06/21/2011
Editor And Publisher

What keeps thoughtful Jews up at night worrying?

That wasn’t the title of a conference I participated in last week, but it could have been.

Many in the mix of 45 New Yorkers — Jewishly active in one way or another — who engaged in 48 hours of almost nonstop conversation challenged the very pillars of Jewish communal life and how we think about them. Whether that’s a good or bad sign depends on your own point of view and vision for the future.

Gary Rosenblatt
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