He has been to Shabbat dinner, lit the menorah and he broke matzah with friends at a Passover seder. This Valentine’s Day, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa joined a club that even many Jews don’t belong to — he helped complete a new Torah scroll.
The birthstone for April is a diamond. In ancient Greek, the meaning of diamond is “unbreakable.” As the month begins, we look to the state of civil rights and intergroup relations in this city and are reminded that, while our bonds are strong, the diamond days of April hold many imperfections.
Israel's Diamond Exchange says it has expelled a longtime member for attempting to smuggle illegal Zimbabwe blood diamonds into the country.
When I turned 18 years old, my parents gave me a pair of diamond earrings. Later that same night at a comedy club, when a comedian on stage asked me what I got for my birthday, I showed him the diamonds.
"You must be Jewish, right?" he said.
I was -- still am, as a matter of fact. But I didn't know yet about Jews and diamonds. I'm not talking about the diamond industry, in which Israeli and Diaspora Jews are heavily involved, but in the purchase and wearing of diamonds.
"Blood Diamond," among other subjects, focuses on how the worldwide demand for diamonds allowed violent, inhumane rebels in the West African nation of Sierra Leone to fund their atrocities through a smuggling scheme.
If you own a diamond, you can be 80 percent sure it's been to Antwerp, Belgium, at some point in its life. Perhaps it was graded there in the heart of ancient Europe -- or ground, polished, valued, bought or sold there.
While the diamond business is historically a Jewish industry, this fact is implied, but never stated, in the film.
There once was a man who could provide only potatoes for his family's subsistence. As the monotony and the poverty wore on, he prayed, and his prayers were answered. There fell into his hands a mysterious map to a magical Island of Diamonds.