U.S. Army

‘As Jewish As You Get’

A rookie reporter recalls a 1980 encounter with ‘Yidl Izhik,’ a very good politician.

02/05/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

When I interviewed Ed Koch in 1980, his father had just visited him at Gracie Mansion. When the elder Koch heard his son criticized, he asked, in characteristic family style, “What do you need this for?”

One icon, and another: Koch and Pope John Paul II. Getty Images

Army Does An ‘About Face’ On Chaplain’s Beard

Brooklyn rabbi wins right to serve without shaving.

12/06/2011
Staff Writer

One year after filing suit against the U.S. Army for refusing to allow him to enlist as a military chaplain unless he shaved his beard, Rabbi Menachem Stern is to be sworn-in this week — beard and all.

Rabbi Stern, 29, of Crown Heights, Brooklyn, is to take the oath Friday in a ceremony in the Surfside, Fla., office of the Aleph Institute, an agency authorized by the Department of Defense to recruit, vet and endorse rabbis for the military chaplaincy.

Rabbi Menachem Stern.

Rabbi Sues Army Over Beard Ban

12/09/2010

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A rabbi is suing the U.S. Army, saying it refused his services as a chaplain because he would not shave his beard.

Rabbi Menachem Stern filed suit in the U.S. District Court in Washington on Wednesday, his law firm, Lewin and Lewin, said in a news release.

Stern says the Army rejected his application to serve as a chaplain only because he would not shave his beard as a matter of conscience.

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