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Jewish Journal

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  • U.S. Jews vs. U.S. Christianity

    By Dennis Prager

    May 14, 2014 | 9:25 am

    It’s not something that Americans mention in public. And it may not even be something many note in private. But a Jew writing in a Jewish journal ought to point out a fact that, no matter how much ignored, is significant.

    On May 5, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in “Town of...

  • Paralyzing narratives: Why peace keeps failing

    By David Suissa

    May 7, 2014 | 11:44 am

    We're so used to seeing the Israeli-Palestinian peace process fail that we often overlook this simple question: How is it possible that so many can try so hard for so long and still fail to make any progress? How can it be that the United States, the most powerful country on Earth,...

  • Living in the shadows – the story of the Holocaust’s “Hidden Children”

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    April 25, 2014 | 8:23 am

    When remembering the horrors of the Holocaust, one can’t avoid thinking about the kids. Jewish children who lived in Europe during the Third Reich were forced into a grown-up perspective on life and skipped the innocence of the childhood. They did not laugh, they did not play, they...

  • Sinai Temple’s Atid Launches Video Campaign to Attract Young Crowd

    By Nicole Behnam

    April 14, 2014 | 1:05 pm

    In a world that depends on flyers, brochures, and similar promotional devices to garner attention for events, Sinai Temple’s Atid decided to step up their approach. Based on the popularity in recent years of Jewish-themed parody songs, Atid has launched a video marketing campaign...

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  • Our freedom from ourselves

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    April 9, 2014 | 12:58 pm

    Passover is a time of tacky text messages and Facebook statuses. Just like every other holiday, I find myself being carried away through a swirl of wishes and witty sentences which combine holiday songs' lyrics. This year, though, a status written by a good friend of mine caught my...

  • The Seder’s Innermost Secret—Charoset:  Earth & Eros in the Passover Celebration

    By Rabbi Arthur Waskow

    April 8, 2014 | 9:52 am

    There it sits on the Seder plate: charoset, a delicious paste of chopped nuts, chopped fruits, spices, and wine.

    So the question would seem obvious "Why is there charoset on the Seder plate?"

    That's the most secret Question at the Seder – so secret nobody even asks it. And it’s...

  • Many doubt report on Iranian-Jewish captives

    By Karmel Melamed

    April 2, 2014 | 1:43 pm

    Los Angeles-area Iranian-Jewish activists are expressing doubt about a recent report from the Israeli intelligence agency that a group of Jews fleeing Iran during the 1990s were, in fact, kidnapped and then murdered.

    On March 20, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office...

  • One Israeli creation for the weekend

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    March 28, 2014 | 12:08 pm

    You probably don’t need an introduction to Hora - the traditional Israeli dance, but you probably didn’t know that it is not originating in Israel at all. This fun circle dance is originating in the Balkans, and its name (spelled differently in different countries) is cognate to...

  • SEC charges L.A. Jewish leaders in alleged variable annuities scheme

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    March 18, 2014 | 3:39 am

    Since the 1990s, Rabbi Harold Ten has been helping gravely ill Jews and their families navigate the health care system. Ten is the president of Bikur Cholim, a nonprofit that can get patients kosher meals in their hospital rooms or provide them with free loans of medical equipment....

  • An open letter to President Obama

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    March 12, 2014 | 10:14 am

    President Obama,

    My name is Noga, and I am a young Israeli student. I am now in my senior year of my B. A studies in Political Science and Communications, and this is about the time in my life where I start thinking about the future. I have big dreams of being a Diplomat,...

  • Jewish Federations establishes fund for Ukrainian Jews

    March 6, 2014 | 4:07 pm

    The Jewish Federations of North America has launched a Ukraine Assistance Fund.

    The money raised by the umbrella group will be used to provide security for Jewish institutions and offer assistance to individuals as the country faces turmoil sparked by its recent revolution and...

  • With great power comes great lack of responsibility

    March 6, 2014 | 9:23 am

    Today in handsome Jews acting badly, actor Andrew Garfield has reportedly let down a 5-year-old cancer survivor.

    The “Spider-Man” star was supposed to take the stage at the Academy Awards on Sunday and introduce Miles “Batkid” Scott as “the world’s next superhero,” according...

  • AIPAC vs. Oscars

    February 28, 2014 | 9:57 am

    Anti-Semites say that Jews control Hollywood. And they say that Jews control Washington. But can we control both at once?

    The biggest event in pro-Israel Israel advocacy — the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference — kicks off this Sunday, the same...

  • Ukraine’s Jews again caught between a rock and a hard place

    February 24, 2014 | 1:53 pm

    Shortly after the demise of the Soviet Union, I received an invitation to participate in a conference in the newly independent Ukraine. The organizers asked me to appear on the country’s version of “Good Morning America,” watched by millions of citizens. The anchorwoman interviewed...

  • Iran’s Zarif: Holocaust ‘should not happen again’

    February 4, 2014 | 9:10 am

    Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said the Holocaust was “tragically cruel and should not happen again.”

    Zarif, addressing the Munich Security Conference, again distanced his government led by President Hassan Rouhani, who was elected last summer, from its predecessor led by...

  • PUNK JEWS: Los Angeles Premiere 2/8

    By Tera Greene

    January 30, 2014 | 10:57 pm

    GET EXCITED!

    PUNK JEWS is finally premiering in Los Angeles!!!

    Let me just say that I am SO happy to be back in LA right now. The energy of Los Angeles is vibrant with Arts, Music, Film and media that is worth engaging with.  PUNK JEWS (Dir. Jesse Zook Mann) is a film that...

  • Soul Cycle

    By Rabbi Lori Shapiro

    January 29, 2014 | 11:45 am

    White on White, the Soul Cycle storefront is the Apple Store of Fitness. It glows from within like the “Athletes” emerging from their classes. I call them “Athletes”, although I could have as easily called them “Rock Stars” or “Warriors” or “Leaders” because the walls as I enter...

  • It is essential for Muslims to remember the Nazi’s atrocities and to commemorate their victims

    January 27, 2014 | 9:36 am

    It is now a universally acknowledged fact that the Twentieth Century represents one of the darkest and bloodiest centuries in the history of humanity. The idea of Social Darwinism, the basics of which were put forth in the 19th Century, was the main reason that dragged the 20th...

  • The origins and meaning of Ashkenazic last names

    January 14, 2014 | 2:44 pm

    This piece originally ran on jewishcurrents.org.

    Ashkenazic Jews were among the last Europeans to take family names.  Some German speaking Jews took last names as early as the 17th century, but the overwhelming majority of Jews lived in Eastern Europe and did not take last...

  • USC’s Jews, Muslims unite in quest for meat

    By Jared Sichel

    January 10, 2014 | 1:27 pm

    A common quest to answer the question “Where’s the beef?” has brought together Jews and Muslims at the University of Southern California (USC).

    Until recently, junior Mushfiqur Chowdhury was forced to rely on Muslim Student Union (MSU) events or rides from friends to off-campus...

  • Asylum seekers’ “undecided” status – will our govt finally reach a solution?

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    January 8, 2014 | 9:30 am

    In the past four days, thousands of African migrants are striking and protesting in the streets of Tel-Aviv. Many of them work illegally as dishwashers or janitors, and them striking directly affects many businesses and thus – draw a lot of attention. So far, protests involving...

  • U.S. falters on Auschwitz funds

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    January 3, 2014 | 3:23 pm

    Auschwitz-Birkenau, the Nazi death camp where 1.1 million Jews and other victims were murdered, was not built to last forever. But that’s exactly what the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation is charged with making happen, and the foundation is hoping to collect some $160 million from a...

  • The anti- Semite Quenelle salute is sweeping Europe, and the world stands still

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    December 30, 2013 | 11:53 am

    A new "Nazi salute" is sweeping Europe, and the world stands still. The neo-Nazi gesture is spreading rapidly among anti-Semites in Europe. In the past few couple of months, it gained popularity when hundreds of Europeans posted online pictures of themselves performing the new...

  • Valuing the Reform perspective in the Pew report

    By Rabbi Dan Moskovitz

    December 4, 2013 | 4:59 pm

    The historian Simon Rawidowicz wrote a famous essay in which he described Jews, with our constant fear of extinction, as the “ever-dying” people. He wrote the essay approximately 60 years ago. Does that make him wrong or prophetic?

    It seems that every few years, a major Jewish...

  • Why does Judaism care about gratitude?

    By Jared Sichel

    December 3, 2013 | 2:48 pm

    While Jews were able to enjoy the rare, simultaneous celebration of Thanksgiving and Chanukah this year, Judaism has long been had something in common with the American holiday.

    It’s a theme that runs from Torah to Talmud, from Psalms to the siddur (prayer book) and into aspects...

  • ADL raps rapper Kanye West for ‘classic anti-Semitism’ [VIDEO]

    December 2, 2013 | 5:00 pm

    The Anti-Defamation League rapped rapper Kanye West over his off-the-cuff remarks in a radio interview that Jews and “oil people” are more well-connected than black people in general and President Obama in particular.

    “If the comments are true as reported, this is classic...

  • International success, music, extreme sport, a fallen star and more…This week from Israel!

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    December 2, 2013 | 12:33 pm

    Music icon Arik Einstein dies at 74

    Fallen star. Arik Einstein, one of the greatest musicians of Israel’s history, died Tuesday night at the age of 74 at Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv, hours after he suffered a fatal hemorrhage.
    Einstein, who was often referred to as “the...

  • Sucker punch: Brooklyn Jews targeted in ‘knockout’ attacks

    November 26, 2013 | 1:13 pm

    Chava, a student at a Chabad seminary, has lived in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn for six years, but it’s only in the past few days that she started carrying pepper spray in her handbag.

    Her younger brother gave her the deterrent after news hit of a string of recent...

  • ‘Thanksgivukkah’? Not quite

    By David Suissa

    November 25, 2013 | 6:22 pm

    It’s taken American Jews a good century to fully absorb the miraculous idea that this country is unlike any other that Jews have experienced. After 2,000 years of feeling insecure no matter where we pitched our tents, the people of Moses finally found safe harbor in the land of...

  • Barack or Bibi? Trust, loyalty and Iran

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    November 20, 2013 | 1:56 pm

    On Rosh Hashanah 2012, just a few weeks before the presidential election, Sinai Temple’s Rabbi David Wolpe offered his congregants a sermon titled “The Most Important Question in the World Today.” In it, he told his congregation he was, at that moment, a single-issue voter: “I will...

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