Jewish Journal

This week in power: Suspect arrested and evolution lessons

by Danny Groner

June 4, 2014 | 8:53 pm

A roundup of the most talked about political and global stories in the Jewish world this week:

Arrest in Brussels attack
"A 29-year-old Frenchman believed to have returned recently from fighting with Islamist militant rebels in Syria has been arrested for the killing of three people at Brussels’ Jewish Museum last month," reported Reuters. Mehdi Nemmouche was detained in Marseille, France, with weapons in his posession. He reportedly had a recording on him as well in which he confessed to the shootings. "French prosecutors say Mehdi Nemmouche had returned from Syria, his destination after being radicalised in prison," according to BBC News.

Some are growing worried about similar attacks in the future. "While some recent surveys indicate that there is an undercurrent of anti-Semitism in America, it is far less substantial than in almost every European country, with adults who cling to anti-Semitic stereotypes being three times as numerous in Europe on a percentage basis than in the United States," wrote Richard Baehr at Israel Hayom.

Israeli schools' science debate
Israeli middle schools are adding evolution to part of the core curriculum, according to JTA. It'll include lessons about natural selection "but will not include human evolution from primates." Some contemporary rabbis, The Jewish Press pointed out, argue that "the story of Creation is not literal, but rather a hint, a secret. And Rav Kook did not see a contradiction between evolution and the Torah." The decision has been met by mostly praise: "Though there are people in Israel who continue to see the religious communities as primitive and superstitious for holding to the biblical narrative, in this case at least the Ministry of Education has shown a way that does not lead to extremism, division and strife," wrote Tsvi Sadan at Israel Today.

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Danny Groner is a contributing writer to the Jewish Journal. He has worked in journalism since he was a teenager, starting off as an intern for a local publication. During his...

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