A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:
Ukraine heats up
"Thanks to extermination and emigration, the Jews of Ukraine, who numbered about 2.7 million at the beginning of the 20th Century, are now down to perhaps 250,000 and falling. But their history is playing an oversized role in the drama of revolution unfolding in Kiev, as both sides exploit them and their memory to gain an upper hand in public opinion," reported The New York Times. "Like their compatriots, Ukraine’s Jews are waiting to see what the future holds for their country, but with the added fear that they could become targets amid the chaos," added JTA.
So what can they do? "Follow in the footsteps of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian Jews who have already come home to Israel," said a Jerusalem Post editorial. Others agreed: "Israel is but a non-stop flight from Kiev. Look for those flights to be extra crowded in the days ahead," wrote Rabbi Abraham Cooper in the Jewish Journal.
Lichtenstein wins award
Rabbi Dr. Aharon Lichtenstein will receive the Israel Prize in Jewish religious literature, it was announced this week. He was ordained at Yeshiva University, studied under his father-in-law Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik, and received a PhD from Harvard. He has co-run Yeshivat Har Etzion in Israel since the 70s. Upon hearing of the announcement, some of Lichtenstein's former students expressed their excitement. "Rav Aharon was not just a regular guy. He also was a special teacher who imbued me with indelible lessons that I have taken with me throughout my life," wrote Dr. Tzvee Zahavy on his blog.