Editorial & Opinion

Mission Impossible?

Teen travel to Israel is languishing. Funders and activists want to double the numbers.
08/05/2013 - 20:00
Editor And Publisher

Common sense suggests that one of the most effective ways of heightening Jewish identity and Israel engagement among young people is through summer teen trips to the Jewish state. The younger our kids are exposed to the miracles and challenges of Israel today, the better, and longer, their connection. And the more involved they and their families will be. 

Gary Rosenblatt

Willful Dissonance

08/05/2013 - 20:00

Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, is being described as a moderate in the American press. Compared to his predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, maybe he is. After all, while Ahmadinejad denied the Holocaust and openly and repeatedly called for doing away with Israel, so far Rouhani, appearing at an Al Quds Day event in Iran on Friday where marchers shout “Death to Israel,” “only” referred to the Jewish state as “a sore that has been sitting on the body of the Islamic world for many years.”

‘You Better Start Swimmin’ Or You’ll Sink Like A Stone’

08/05/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

The times they are a-changin’. A few weeks ago I attended a wedding in Central Park. It was a gorgeous Wednesday morning, the nearby lake looked stately, and the green foliage on the trees seemed to hold itself motionless so as not to distract from the drama taking place.

Francine Klagsbrun

For The Israeli-Palestinian Talks To Be Successful…

08/05/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Shortly before Secretary of State John Kerry announced resumption of peace negotiations, leaders of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and the American Task Force for Palestine met jointly in Washington, D.C., with administration and congressional officials to express support for a two-state resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and active U.S. involvement in bringing it about. We did this because our two organizations reject zero-sum politics in regard to the Israeli-Palestinian issue and believe successful negotiations must be rooted both in compromise and a win-win approach. This is the only realistic way forward, whether within the next nine months or the next nine years.

Martin Raffel

A Torah Fit For A King

08/05/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Candlelighting, Readings:
Shabbat candles: 7:45 p.m.
Torah: Deut. 16:18-21:9
Haftarah: Isaiah 51:12-52:12
Havdalah: 8:46 p.m.

“You shall surely appoint over yourselves a king whom the Lord your God will choose” [Deuteronomy 17:15].

Sorry, future King George Alexander Louis: Jewish kings are leaders beyond the accident of birth.

Beth Kissileff

To Bet Or Not To Bet: Jewish Concerns with Gambling And The Lottery

08/05/2013 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Judaism is mostly a rationalist tradition that embraces free will, critical thinking, and the importance of the intellect. Most endeavors that mandate irrational and overly chancy behavior are forbidden by the Jewish tradition. Gambling is one of the prevalent modern activities that may make for fun sport in moderation, but when treated as a primary source of income it borders on the irrational.

75 percent of gamblers have committed embezzlement or other fraud to finance their habit, experts say. Photo via Google

European Anti-Semitism: The Unpleasant Truth

Author suggests ‘humanitarian racism’ behind demonization of Israel.
07/29/2013 - 20:00
Editor and Publisher

Anti-Semitism in Europe, often in the guise now of anti-Israel rhetoric and actions, has become too big a problem to ignore or rationalize away. And it is taking place on two levels: as official policy, and within societies where, according to recent polls, Israel is considered the most dangerous nation in the world, more of a threat to world peace even than Iran or North Korea.

Gary Rosenblatt

Grieving Lessons

07/29/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

That old adage is true: There’s nothing worse than losing a child. I discovered this a year ago when we laid our beautiful daughter Rachel to rest after a long illness. She was 28. Having lost parents and in-laws, I thought I understood everything about grief. I was wrong.

How We Treat One Another

07/29/2013 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

My teacher Simon Greenberg once explained the great innovation of the Ten Commandments. He explained that the first four are the justification for the last six. In other words, he told us, the Ten Commandments introduced the world to the idea that God cares most how we treat one another.

Rabbi David Wolpe

Upset With Claims Conference

07/29/2013 - 20:00

I am writing on behalf of my mother, a 91-year-old survivor of Auschwitz who became a widow in 1962, when my father died (“Under Pressure, Claims Conference Officials Alter Meeting Agenda,” July 5).

My mother has had numerous unpleasant conversations with the staff of the Claims Conference, which instead of helping survivors has “lost” $57.3 million in fraudulent claims. My mother was denied any reparations after my father’s untimely death. My mother appealed the decision and also applied for an increase for herself and was turned down.

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