The Yad

On Point With Today's News

Holy Toledo

Elie Wiesel frequently states that “The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference.”
By that measure, William Toledo is a lover of humanity.

The State of The Jewish State: A Mixed Report


Is Israel a “light unto the nations” (Isaiah 42:6) or a “state just like any other” (David Ben-Gurion)?

According to the current issue of The Jerusalem Report, the biweekly newsmagazine published by the Jerusalem Post, it’s both of the above.

Cases Of Mistaken Religious Identity


Wade Page, the White supremacist who stands accused of killing six people in a shooting rampage two weeks ago at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound and apparently did his murderous deeds at a Sikh religious institution because of a common error.

He thought the Sikhs were Muslims.

Sikh men and many devout Muslim men sport beards and head coverings – turbans in the case of Sikhs; various items, including knitted white skullcaps, in the case of Muslims.

Eruv Battle In The Hamptons: No Strings Attached

The legal fight in the Hamptons ­ -- largely among Jews -- ­ over the erection of an eruv continues for the fourth straight year with the filing July 30 of another suit.

This one seeks to prevent the Long Island Power Authority from permitting use of its utility poles for the demarcation of the eruv, a ritual boundary within which observant Jews may carry items from a private to a public area on the Sabbath.

Poles Apart: Opponents square off over use of LIPA equipment.

Are We All Jonah Lehrer?

Until two weeks ago, when he was revealed to have made up quotes and attributed them to Bob Dylan, Jonah Lehrer was one of the most successful journalists of his generation, and an It Boy, and a good boy, to boot.

At 31, he’s the author of three books that nimbly dance a line between the sciences and the humanities altogether invisible to most mere mortals: Imagine (containing the falsified quotes), How We Decide and Proust was a Neuroscientist.

Jonah Lehrer falls from grace.

Fantasyland: What If It Really Were Cheap To Go To Israel?

Those lucky few who scored dirt-cheap flights on El Al as a result of HaSnafu Hagadol on Monday must have been pinching themselves. As quite a few people told The Jewish Week and JTA, they viewed a visit to the Holy Land on a par with a new Lexus or a backyard pool up until the fateful alert from Dan’s Deals sent them scrambling to Orbitz or Expedia.

The Best-Dressed List Burns My Britches

This year, I noticed H.H. Shekha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar among the usual collection of European royals and movie stars that constitute Vanity Fair's annual celebration of wealthy people wearing clothes. (They're just like us. But they have more money. Ergo, tailors.)

The lady's got style. Nothing else matters.

The Olympics' Moving Performances

Gabby Douglas probably never studied page 16, side b, of the Babylonian Talmud’s tractate Rosh Hashanah.

But she embodies one of its precepts.

Douglas, of course, is the star of the “Fab Five” U.S. women’s gymnastics team that won a gold medal last week at the Summer Olympics in London; she also captured the individual all-around title.

The Power of Jonas Salk And William Shatner: A Pakistani View Of Jews

An opinion piece in the Malaysia Chronicle by Dr. Farrukh Saleem, a freelance journalist from Islamabad, Pakistan, caught our eye because of its ominous headline: “Why are Jews So Powerful?”

But far from being another anti-Semitic diatribe, Saleem tries to stick to these facts: there are 14 million Jews in the world -- one  Jew for every 100 Muslims – “yet Jews are more than a hundred times more powerful than all the Muslims put together.”

Education made Jewish celebrities successful, wrote Dr. Farrukh Saleeem.

Tu B'What?

“It’s Tu B’Av tonight,” I say casually to my friends, waiting for them to bite.

“It’s what?”

“Oh, Tu B’Av,” I say, my inner hipster breaking free. “It’s a pretty obscure Jewish holiday. You’ve probably never heard of it.”

“What is it?”

“Well, it’s like Valentine’s Day, only better.”

“What do you do?”


Oh, wait, was that today?
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