Jewish Journal

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  • Invasion of the Creature Feature

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    In 1956's "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," a mannequin-like figure mysteriously appears on a billiards table, a half-formed thing without hair, face or fingerprints. Meanwhile, a woman insists that her uncle isn't her uncle, but an imposter who looks just like him; husbands say the...

  • The Yiddish Guide to Retirement Planning

    By Les Abromovitz

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    When I help my mom with her banking, she'll invariably talk to me in Yiddish to avoid anyone overhearing the details of her financial situation. Unfortunately, I'm in the dark as well, just as I was growing up when she and my Dad spoke Yiddish at the dinner table to avoid disclosure...

  • Door to Holiness

    By Rabbi Moshe D. Bryski

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    So what's with the blood on the doors?

    In this week's Torah portion of Bo, we learn of the final steps leading up to the liberation of Israel from slavery in ancient Egypt. On that fateful night, God dealt the final blow to the Egyptians by smiting the firstborn of each of their...

  • The Circuit

    By Gaby Wenig

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Hadassah's Heroes

    The Persian community's first major fundraiser for Israel this year took place at the home of Dr. Ata and Sima Kashani in Encino on Jan. 14. The Persian Group Council of Hadassah Southern California organized the event, which raised $50,000 to go toward...

  • Life After New Hampshire

    By Matthew E. Berger

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Now that the race for the Democratic nomination for president is moving south and west, Jewish scrutiny of the candidates is likely to intensify.

    Sen. John Kerry (D.-Mass.), who won New Hampshire with a healthy margin, was propelled forward with his second win in two weeks. He has...

  • Community Briefs

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Workers Owe Win to Bet Tzedek

    Bet Tzedek has won a significant victory for low-paid Latino and Asian garment workers, successors to the Jewish immigrants who labored in sweatshops a century ago. The settlement, reached by the free legal counseling service, is somewhat technical,...

  • Suicide bomb in Jerusalem kills 10

    By Dina Kraft

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 29 (JTA) -- "How will I find anyone alive?" the 21-year-old security guard asked as he broke down the door and climbed onto the charred ruins of bus no. 19,...

  • Vista Del Mar’s Grand Dame

    By Michael Aushenker

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Ruth Shuken's backyard is a floral wonderland. Shuken, who turns 94 on July 4, strolls through aisles of roses, lilacs and azaleas. Her green thumb has also served her well in cultivating a garden of mitzvahs.

    Shuken's Beverlywood manor, which she has called home for 55 years, is a...

  • Q & A With Benny Morris

    By Ari Shavit

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Benny Morris says he was always a Zionist. People were mistaken when they labeled him a post-Zionist, when they thought that his historical study on the birth of the Palestinian refugee problem was intended to undercut the Zionist enterprise. Nonsense, Morris says, that's completely...

  • Israel Swaps With Hezbollah

    By Dan Baron

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Free at last, but at what price? That was the question on some Israelis' minds over the weekend after a German mediator helped seal the deal on a long-awaited prisoner swap between Israel and Hezbollah, the Lebanese militia group.

    Barring last-minute delays, an Israeli businessman...

  • No Local Plans to Quench ‘Passion’

    By David Finnigan

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Jewish leaders are talking -- but also wary of talking too much -- about filmmaker Mel Gibson's controversial religious film, "The Passion of the Christ," opening Feb. 25.

    "My fear would be an overreaction on the part of the Jewish community. It raises, to high prominence, Gibson and...

  • Menopause Goes Mainstream

    By Nancy Sokoler Steiner

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    After years of being talked about in hushed tones as "the change of life" -- or not being talked about at all -- menopause is now in the spotlight. Two recent plays, "Is it Hot in Here ... Or Is it Me?" and "Menopause the Musical" literally put menopause center stage. A support group...

  • ‘House’ of Oscar Fever

    By Tom Tugend

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Jewish talent and themes scored only modestly in the Oscar nominations announced Tuesday.

    However, there was recognition for the critically acclaimed "House of Sand and Fog" by Vadim Perelman, a 39-year old native of Kiev, in his first feature film.

    Although Perelman did not make the...

  • A Righteous History

    By Stephen Breuer

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    More than 20 years ago, as I looked over family papers with my late father, I came across a letter referring to my "conversion." Curious, I asked what that meant. With some self-consciousness, my father first shared with me the fact that I had a Catholic baptism as a 2-year-old child...

  • Zohar for the Rest of Us

    By David Klinghoffer

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    After you've spent a couple hours puzzling over Daniel Matt's Zohar or trying to sort truth from hype in the teachings of the Kabbalah Centre, it's a welcome relief to turn to a lucid academic rendering of kabbalah. Arthur Green, a professor of Jewish thought at Brandeis University,...

  • World Briefs

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Was an Offer Made?

    Ariel Sharon denied that his office sought Israeli settlers' agreement to dismantle some illegal West Bank outposts. The denial by Israel's prime minister came after a spokesman for a settlers' group said the group had rejected the offer. Sharon is planning to...

  • Mad for Kosher Beef

    By Julie G Fax

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    "Don't Get 'Mad,' Get Kosher. Kosher Meat Is Safe," reads an enormous red-and-yellow banner hanging in front of Santa Monica Glatt Market on Santa Monica Boulevard near Sawtelle Boulevard.

    Well, maybe not completely safe, but certainly safer from mad cow disease.

    "It's not foolproof...

  • Will Sharon Weather Israel ‘Watergate’?

    By Leslie Susser

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    As with President Richard Nixon in the Watergate affair, tapes and an attempted cover-up could be the undoing of Israel's scandal-haunted leader.

    After audiotapes and videotapes that aired on prime-time television last week suggested that Ariel Sharon knew more than he has admitted...

  • Total Recall

    By Nancy Sokoler Steiner

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Twice in the past couple of days, I've been in conversation and found myself grasping for a word. On both occasions, my 4-year-old supplied the word before I could come up with it. And, of course, there are the times that I walk into a room only to realize that I have no idea what I...

  • State of the Union Aftermath

    By James Besser

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    President Bush signaled the start of a new battle over faith-based health and social service programs in a State of the Union address that included a firm defense of his war in Iraq, a call to make his controversial tax cuts permanent and not a single mention of the Arab-Israeli...

  • Jews’ Support Spans Political Spectrum

    By James Besser

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Will Jewish Democrats line up behind Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), now that the veteran lawmaker's campaign for the 2004 Democratic presidential nomination has been resurrected by Monday's blowout victory in the Iowa caucuses?

    Perhaps, but Kerry would be wise not to start sending out...

  • Stuart D. Buchalter

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Stuart D. Buchalter, a prominent Los Angeles corporate and securities attorney and philanthropist, died Jan. 7 at the age of 66.

    Buchalter, of Buchalter, Nemer, Fields & Younger, mentored numerous attorneys and was a dedicated teacher of the law to all around him.

    A Los Angeles...

  • Home Repair

    By Rob Eshman

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    In a narrow Jerusalem alley a few blocks away from the souvenir shops of Ben Yehuda Street, a former drug addict who wants to be called Shimon is telling me the story of his horrific childhood.

    Born into a large Chasidic family in Eilat, Shimon and his 11 siblings were repeatedly...

  • Mix it Once, Mix it Twice

    By Shoshana Lewin-Fischer

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Ask anyone who cooks chicken soup what makes it taste so delicious, and the answer will likely be: "A pinch of this, a dash of that." But no more. Now, amateur cooks 18 and older from around the country will have to spell out their exact ingredients if they hope to have their...

  • Starry, Starry Political Night

    By Tom Tugend

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    The ripple effects of Mideast politics are spreading as far as Hollywood's glamour-studded Oscar awards.

    On Jan. 27 at 5:30 a.m., when the nominations for the Academy Awards are announced, moviemakers from 55 countries will listen most intently for the names of the five finalists in...

  • Tracks of the Missing Ten

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    On a rocky hillside in Mardan, Pakistan, in the 1990s, filmmaker Simcha Jacobovici stared in awe at a hulking pillar covered with faded script. The stone was an ancient propaganda sign, one of many that had been placed throughout a Buddhist empire 2,300 years ago. But while the other...

  • Kosher Consumers for a New Age

    By Gaby Wenig

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Meet the new kosher consumer: No, it is not a rabbi with a beard down to his navel and payot that graze his shoulders, but practicing Seventh-day Adventist Kay Meager, a mother of three and a first-grade teacher at Conejo Adventist Elementary School. Meager's husband, Larry, is...

  • Immigration Plan Poses Challenges

    By Ira Mehlman

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    President Bush's Jan. 7 proposal to dramatically expand immigration to the United States ignited a national debate about this highly emotional issue. While this is a critical policy that will profoundly affect all Americans, it is a policy that must be of particular concern to...

  • Jacko’s Jewish Kids Going Muslim?

    By Adam Wills

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    New allegations are being thrown Michael Jackson's way, but this time they're not child molestation charges. The reclusive Debbie Rowe, Jackson's Jewish ex-wife and the mother who surrendered custody of their two children, is worried that the singer is allowing Prince Michael I and...

  • The First Step

    By Adam Gilad

    January 22, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    First let's do the numbers: It's been about four days that I've been single. I was married at 23 and stayed that way for 17 years. I've just met a charming and articulate woman at a party and stumbled through an uncharming and inarticulate request for her phone number.

    And wonder of...

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