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  • Black and White

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    I met Cliff Freeman the summer I was 16; it was the end of the 1940s. He was about a year older than me and was the first black person I ever knew well. We became friends in part because it was summer, and my parents, aunts and uncles, and their friends -- the family -- had begun to...
  • The Story of the Exodus Remains Powerful

    By Aaron Leibel

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The story of the Exodus ship -- immortalized in a novel by Leon Uris and converted into a movie -- was an important marker in the struggle for the resurrection of the Jewish state. It was also a milestone in the decline of Britain as a great power, Ruth Gruber explains in her...
  • Living Waters

    By Julie G Fax

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The young woman held out her scrubbed fingernails to the attendant, ready for the final check for any specks of dirt before she descended the stairs into the warm, narrow pool of water.

    "You're shaking," said Sarah Levin, who for nearly 20 years has been a "mikvah lady," ensuring...

  • Safe Haven

    By Dahlia S

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    It is hard to say where it is more frightening to be a Jew today, in Iran or Russia. In both countries, anti-Semitic activity is escalating to chaotic levels. In Iran, 13 Jews, including several rabbis and a 16-year-old boy, sit in jail facing possible execution, falsely accused of...
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  • Lisa Kron’s 2.5 Minute Ride

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    When Lisa Kron's father, Walter, saw her acclaimed, one-woman show, "2.5 Minute Ride," his response was wry. "Nice eulogy, but I'm not dead yet," the 78-year-old Holocaust survivor quipped.

    Kron, a 38-year-old actor-monologist-comedian, admits that the piece, in part, "is a 70-minute...

  • California, Israel Sign Economic Development Pact

    By Tom Tugend

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    A pact to spur economic development throughout the Middle East has been signed by California and Israel in anticipation that Jordan, Egypt and other Arab nations will sooner or later join in the partnership.

    The memorandum establishing the California/Middle East Economic Cooperation...

  • Looking for the ‘Jew Inside,’ Young Adults Grapple with Israel

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The high winds stirring up the sands at Masada added an epic Cecil B. DeMille air to the words of Rabbi Binny Freedman.

    But 24-year-old Riva Saker of Deerfield Beach, Fla., wasn't paying attention.

    Freedman, a former Israeli tank commander, is one of many educators trying to raise...

  • Federation Dinner Honors Solicitor

    By Kerri Zerlin

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The Jewish Federation/Valley Alliance awarded Hy Freedman the 1999 Solicitor of the Year award last week in honor of his 40 years of service and dedication.

    Freedman, of the San Fernando Valley, received the award at the Federation/Valley Alliance's 1999 Campaign Volunteer Thank You...

  • A Sober Solution

    By Michael Aushenker

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Twenty-year-old "Lena" is currently leading a productive life working at a bookstore, but that wasn't always the case. Just two years ago, she was a teen in distress.

    "It wasn't until I was loaded that I actually felt that I belonged," says Lena, whose family has a history of drug...

  • Celebrating the Birthday of Family and Trees

    By Jane Ulman

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The month of January marks three important birthdays.

    On Jan. 3, my oldest son, Zack, turned 16.

    Exactly 16 years and 90 minutes after his birth, he received his driver's license. During the time I spent waiting at the Department of Motor Vehicles, only slightly shorter and less...

  • The Circuit

    By Michael Aushenker

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    If the multitude of Jewish events are any indication, the holidays hit hard this season. To paraphrase Adam Sandler's "Chanukah Song," here's a list of organizations that are Jewish, just like you and me...

    Various divisions of The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles celebrated...

  • Picture Postcards from Galilee

    By George Medovoy

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Mark Twain would get the surprise of his life if he returned to the Holy Land on the eve of the new millennium.

    He'd find a country light years away from the one he described in "Innocents Abroad," his classic account of a trip he took to Palestine and Europe in 1869.

    Twain's Holy...

  • Remembering the Lincoln Brigade

    By Tom Tugend

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The long-ago voices of Paul Robeson, Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie crackled over a loudspeaker, once more spurring on the soldiers of the International Brigades and vowing the defeat of Franco's fascists in the Spanish Civil War.

    Most of the 200 people gathered at the University of...

  • Holocaust Revisionist Says His Name is ‘Blackened’

    By Douglas Davis

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    There is scarcely a dull moment these days in London's Royal Courts of Justice, where a Holocaust revisionist is engaged in a landmark libel case against a U.S. Holocaust scholar.

    The latest twist came when David Irving announced to the court late last week, just settling in for a...

  • A Candle Still Burns

    By Mel Bloom

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Since childhood my father had always introduced me as his "Kaddish." It wasn't until my teens that I realized the implication of that honor. Upon his death 53 years ago, I went to a local synagogue morning and night for 11 months. It was a tiny shul near the intersection of La...
  • Prayer as Introspection

    By Rabbi Shawn Fields-Meyer

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    This week, in a portion filled with dramatic tales -- the escape from Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, the manna from heaven and Moses' striking of a rock for water -- we are startled by something much subtler: a brief exchange between human beings and God.

    The Israelites, after...

  • Single in Sinai

    By  Orit Arfa

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    I was having a really bad week, a likely occurrence for a recent olah. As a newly-arrived immigrant to Israel, it took me about three weeks to figure out where and how to start a bank account and get a call back from the Ministry of Interior telling me that I had to come back...
  • Is Barak Playing Syrians, Palestinians Off One Another?

    By David Landau

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak did not waste any time bemoaning Syria's decision to postpone indefinitely the next round of peace talks.

    Instead, within hours of formally acknowledging the postponement, Barak and Foreign Minister David Levy met Monday with Palestinian Authority...

  • Anti-Semitism at CSUN?

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 20, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Last week, Jacquelyn Barnette, an African-American and a Jew, received some encouraging news from Aaron Levinson, director of the Valley office of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL): The interim president of Cal State Northridge, Dr. Louanne Kennedy, had appointed an administrative...
  • Today I Am a Basket Case

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    From the introduction of Davis' book "Whose Bar/Bat Mitzvah is it Anyway?"

    "You know the joke about how the child is supposed to say 'Today I am a man'?" Sandra asks.

    "Yes." I nod tentatively.

    "Well, for me it's going to be 'Today I am a basket case!'" she says, eyes welling with...

  • Much Like a Minority

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    The Florida state legislature isn't a place you normally associate with high drama or profiles in courage. It seems to revolve largely around tax breaks for sugar growers. Most lawmakers have other jobs on the side.

    The 16 Jewish members -- 10 percent of the total, all Democrats but...

  • Misleading, Inaccurate, Distorted, and Uninformed Reporting

    By Michael Berenbaum

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Kim Murphy's article "Danger in Denying the Holocaust" could be dismissed as amateurish at best were it not the Jan. 7 Column One story of the Los Angeles Times. Because of where it appeared, some of the issues it raised must be addressed. She doesn't present the stakes in the Irving...
  • The Lucky and the Strong

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    It's easy to forget where you come from.

    Saturday evening, during a panel on journalistic ethics sponsored by Young Israel of Century City, an earnest man, referred to by the title "Doctor," suggested that the press was controlled by "liberals" and asked what did I think of that?

    "I...

  • The Life and Times of 2 Teachers

    By Beverly Gray

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Dr. George and Aviva Lebovitz didn't plan on being educators.

    When they met and married in Jerusalem, her goal was to be a mathematician and he was preparing for a career in economics. But both discovered they were gifted teachers, strongly dedicated to Jewish education. Ultimately...

  • Illusions at the L.A. Times

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Last Friday the Los Angeles Times published a Column One story on its front page with the headline: Danger in Denying Holocaust? The Times' story, written by staff writer Kim Murphy, purported to be an objective, balanced account of two equally reasoned positions. It was depicted as...
  • Fight Over Oil Continues To Burn

    By Julie G Fax

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    A battle against an oil company ignited by a handful of Jewish mothers and grandmothers has grown into community-wide demand for more accountability and honesty from both Breitburn Energy, and city and state monitoring agencies.

    Breitburn remains confounded by the demonstrations and...

  • Struggling with His Family’s Nazi Past

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    In Axel Köster's unsettling photograph, a sweet-faced child innocently smiles beside the crematoria oven at Theresienstadt. The boy, Köster's then-16-month-old son Tristan, had shouted and prattled as he climbed on the oven's pipes, delighted with the echo, oblivious to the...
  • Shared Dreams

    By Debra Nussbaum Cohen

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    To honor the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., schoolchildren all over the country are learning about his fight to win civil rights for black Americans through nonviolent protest. They are learning about the marches he led, the people he rallied and the stirring speeches he gave.

    As...

  • A Landmark Trial

    By Douglas Davis

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    A British defense attorney gave a taste of the drama to come in the libel trial brought by a Holocaust revisionist against a Holocaust scholar when, during his opening statement this week, he addressed the plaintiff.

    "To put it bluntly," Richard Rampton, who is defending Holocaust...

  • Children Count

    By Rabbi Elazar Muskin

    January 13, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Children often are pestered by well-meaning adults. I remember as a child having my cheeks pinched, or, even worse, my ear lobe pulled by some sweet elderly lady. Recounting this experience at one of my evening classes, one student seriously asked me, "Rabbi, did she pull down or...
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