I was riveted by the recent story of an Orthodox Israeli young woman, Ophir Ben-Shetreet, who sang beautifully on the Israeli talent-search program, “The Voice,” and as a result was suspended from her Orthodox school for two weeks because of the prohibition against women singing in public if men are present. Ophir’s performance and evident charm inspired people around the country. The judges praised her as “modest” and “pure,” and she could serve as a role model for young Orthodox women who feel the desire to express themselves and develop their talents. Instead, she was condemned.
Founder of Tel Aviv's secular yeshiva, also a Knesset member, leads Israel's parliament in study and prayer.
Editor’s Note: Ruth Calderon, founder of a secular yeshiva in Tel Aviv, spent several years living in New York recently, teaching at the JCC in Manhattan and other venues. This was her inaugural speech in the Knesset this week as a member of Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party.
Two months of bloody war have ended in a fragile remission, and it is hard to say what it was all for. It took 50 days of fighting that killed 73 Israelis and over 2,000 Palestinians --including hundreds of children -- just to go back to the starting point with no real change in Gaza. And so, even as life begins to return to normal, we have no illusions that this quiet will hold for long. The next war is just a question of (short) time.
“Israel today,” Jeremy Ben-Ami tells us in “Liberal Zionism and Its Discontents” (Opinion, Sept. 12), “falls far short of fulfilling the dreams of its founders in all respects.” In a one-sentence tour de force Mr. Ben-Ami thus writes off Israel’s 66 years of astonishing accomplishment.
Your Editorial, “A Palestinian State in Israel” (Sept. 12), both shocks and offends me. In truth, Arafat was a murderer whose hand had indeed pulled many “triggers.” Also true is that the Arabs never have, and never will accept any Israel. This absurd proposal should never be welcomed, as you suggested. I thought that I was reading The Jewish Week, not The New York Times.
One lesson stands out after reading “Chasing the Diplomatic Horizon” by Joshua Mitnick (Sept 5). The situation is not hopeful but there is still a possibility to revive the peace process and come to a permanent, stable resolution between Israel and Palestine.
Regarding Gary Rosenblatt’s column, “Israel West Bank Grab, More Than Bad Timing” (Sept. 12):
No one suggests Israel give up the West Bank or portions thereof in an agreeable swap of land unless Israel’s right to exist is accepted by all the Arab countries and there is a commitment to get rid of Hamas and other terrorist organizations. Until that occurs, however, it is counterproductive and it makes no sense for Israel to pursue a provocative policy of enlarging settlements in the area. Gary Rosenblatt is correct to state the recent claim to about 1,000 acres in the West Bank is bad timing and raises questions about the Netanyahu government’s commitment to a two-state solution.
Regarding “Israel’s Land Grab, More Than Bad Timing” (Sept. 12): Is Gary Rosenblatt kidding? Is he still living in the fantasyland of a two-state solution? It is incredulous that after three Israeli boys were kidnapped and murdered by West Bank Palestinians, which then turned into the war, that there are actually people who still think some sort of compromise can be worked out with people who want all Jews dead.
Regarding Gary Rosenblatt’s Sept. 12 column, “Israel Land Grab, More Than Bad Timing,” I am not one those supporters who cringed upon hearing [of Israel’s claim on nearly 1,000 acres of land in the West Bank], I was delirious with joy.