Editorial & Opinion

Making Time For Study


From historian David McCullough: “Once upon a time in the dead of winter in the Dakota Territory, Theodore Roosevelt took off in a makeshift boat down the Little Missouri River in pursuit of a couple of thieves who had stolen his prized rowboat. After several days on the river, he caught up and got the draw on them with his trusty Winchester, at which point they surrendered. Then Roosevelt set off in a borrowed wagon to haul the thieves cross-country to justice.

Beware Of The Brotherhood


While many in the mainstream media are suggesting that the Muslim Brotherhood, which controls the majority of the new Egyptian Parliament, is being tempered toward moderation by its new responsibilities, King Abdullah of Jordan doesn’t seem to be buying it.

Bibi And The New York Times


Ari Goldman’s media column, “Bibi’s Missed Opportunity: An Op-Ed In The Times” (Dec. 30) misses the point that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, through senior adviser Ron Dermer, drew a line in the sands of history by taking the opportunity to lay out the role the Times plays in the asymmetrical war of words waged against Israel. A war in which the truth matters naught, fact checking is suspended and information that might place Palestinians in an unflattering light is not published.

On Supporting Palestinian State


 Your report claims that Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich’s description of the Palestinians as a  “made-up people ... could make him a tough sell among American Jews who overwhelmingly support a negotiated settlement” (“Gingrich Needs Boost in New York,” Dec. 16).

Inexcusable Situation


Thank you for bringing attention to the issue of the remaining Jewish aliyah (“Why The Delay In Ethiopian Jewish Aliyah?” Editorial, Dec. 30).

We are talking about 4,500 people who are living in dire conditions and have been approved for aliyah. They should have long since been in Israel.

Those of us who have been working on this frustrating problem for many years really appreciate your spreading light on this inexcusable situation that defies understanding.

Defends Chabad


Francine Klagbrun’s opinion column (“Synagogues Should Be More Welcoming,” Jan. 13), after complimenting Chabad for our genuine outreach to every Jew, regardless of financial means, offers a laundry list of old complaints

Reparative Therapy


The ongoing discussion of how to address being gay in the Orthodox community is a nuanced one, both in terms of how to preserve halacha and the associated cultural issues it raises (“Nefesh Head Backs Away From ‘Torah Declaration’ On Gays,” Jan. 6). While the signers of the “Torah Declaration” are clearly compassionate and well intentioned, I believe they are misguided.

Day School Cooperation


Our colleagues and friends at the YU Institute for University-School Partnership are to be commended for training school administrators and leadership to compare their school’s finances against Jewish day school benchmarks (“Day Schools Saving Millions In New Efficiency Effort,” Jan. 13). The open sharing of previously guarded information will help each school make wise financial decisions in pursuit of each school’s sacred mission.

Need Day School Transparency


In the article “Day Schools Save Millions in New Efficiency Effort” (Jan. 13), the author highlights how new “benchmarking” efforts have “resulted in substantial savings of tens of millions of dollars for nearly 40 Jewish day schools across the nation,” hardly an insignificant sum, even in the context of academic finances.

Reparations From Egypt


Candlelighting, Readings:
Shabbat candles: 4:49 p.m.
Torah: Exodus 10:1-13:16
Haftarah: Jeremiah 46:13-28
Havdalah: 5:51 p.m.

Our sedra features one of the most troubling episodes in all of Torah: the so-called despoiling of the Egyptians. Back in Exodus 3, the Israelites are promised that they will leave Egypt not just with their freedom but with great wealth. “You shall strip the Egyptians bare,” goes the promise, in the colloquial English of today.

Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman
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