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  • The post-wandering Jew

    By David Suissa

    January 29, 2014 | 3:46 pm

    What does it mean to be a nomadic people? For most of our long history, Jews have been nomads. It’s only recently that we’ve started to settle down. But have we lost something in that process? Has Judaism lost some of its vitality in the absence of movement, which has defined so...

  • Letters to the Editor: Settlements, Rice, Jewlicious, Secularism

    March 28, 2013 | 8:26 am

    The Two-State Solution

    David Suissa has been writing a brilliant monologue, telling Los Angeles Jews that Israel’s settlements are legal and Israel’s enemies are so very afraid. The problem with his monologue is that it will convince no one who is not already convinced.
  • Letters to the Editor: Settlements, Response Policy, Secularism

    March 21, 2013 | 9:05 am

    Will PR Help Israel?

    David Suissa’s suggestion that Israel shift its PR efforts toward legal definitions sounds reasonable but is in reality quite futile (“Israel Needs a Lawyer,” March 15). The so-called 1967 boundaries were actually the cease-fire lines of 1949, in effect...

  • Shabbat without religion

    By David Suissa

    September 5, 2012 | 11:55 am

    How do you talk about Judaism in a way that's not too "Jewish"? How do you convey Jewish ideas to Jews who might get turned off by religious ideas? Is it possible, in other words, to talk about the Jewish religion in a nonreligious way?

    Those questions were on my mind last Friday...

  • John and Paul, still alive

    By David Suissa

    June 27, 2012 | 2:49 pm

    Last week, I started writing a column about John Sullivan, a former drug and alcohol addict who restarted his life, thanks to Beit T’Shuvah. But then I got interrupted by another great story, in a documentary called “Paul Williams: Still Alive,” directed by my friend Steve...

  • Drama queens

    By David Suissa

    June 6, 2012 | 2:39 pm

    One of the biggest and most obvious challenges in raising Jewish awareness and building Jewish connection is finding ways of getting your point across. Every week, across Los Angeles, there are hundreds of classes and sermons that aim specifically to do that: get a Jewish point...

  • Peter Beinart and David Suissa debate Zionism’s ‘Crisis’

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    May 17, 2012 | 1:15 pm

    When Peter Beinart’s new book, “The Crisis of Zionism,” was published earlier this year, it was met with a tsunami of responses — from reviews, to op-ed pieces and a fury of blogging.

    The dissemination and dissection of Beinart’s argument — that the future of Israel as...

  • Judaism in two minutes

    By David Suissa

    May 15, 2012 | 9:57 pm

    Can you “sell” Judaism in a few minutes? This question came up in a piece in The Forward by Leonard Fein, who was commenting on a recent debate in New York City between Daniel Gordis and Peter Beinart. In the debate, as Fein quotes, they were asked this question: “Both of you...

  • LIVE BROADCAST: Suissa vs. Beinart - “Is Zionism in Crisis?”

    May 11, 2012 | 1:17 pm

    Moderated by Rabbi John Rosove

    This is a recording of a live broadcast from Wed. May, 15, 2012.

  • Opinion: In defense of acquiring material things

    By Dennis Prager

    December 22, 2011 | 11:00 am

    Every year around Christmas and Chanukah time, writers, commentators, pundits and many rabbis, priests and ministers exhort Americans against spending money on things. We are too materialistic, we are told every year. Happiness, not to mention a meaningful life, depends on our having...

  • David Suissa: Fair-weather Zionists

    By David Suissa

    August 2, 2011 | 6:16 pm

    What do you do if an annoying and exasperating friend gets in trouble and really needs your help? And what do you do if that friend is also a blood relative, like Israel? I often ask myself that question about progressive, pro-Israel Jews who are furious at the direction in which...

  • Bringing Shalit home

    By David Suissa

    April 26, 2011 | 5:24 pm

    One of the most ironic obstacles to peace in the Middle East is what I call the Jewish disease of “ifonlyitis.” This is the school of thought that says “if only” Israel would do this, or “if only” Israel would do that, then we finally might resolve the conflict. I suffer...

  • Letters to the Editor: Egypt, women’s rights, Palestine

    February 16, 2011 | 12:53 pm

    Eshman’s Siren Song

    The Egyptian people clamoring for a voice in “one brief shining moment” historically and presently, by all accounts, share one thing in common — their hatred for Israel and for Jews (“Siren Song,” Feb. 11). Yet Eshman and his political mentor, Tom...

  • Bibi Should Have Gone to Washington

    By David Suissa

    May 31, 2010 | 2:34 pm

    It’s indicative of Israel’s PR acumen—or lack thereof—that when a crisis strikes, the reflex of the leadership is to head for the bunker. The Flotilla fiasco will go down as one of Israel’s biggest PR disasters. This was no Israeli commando raid in response to years of...

  • Mind-State Solution

    By David Suissa

    March 25, 2009 | 11:16 pm

    I’m not sure, but I think I have a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, or at least another way of looking at it. It hit me the other day after I broke bread at Pat’s Restaurant with some people connected to Americans for Peace Now, a leftist Jewish organization that...

  • No money, no cry

    By David Suissa

    November 26, 2008 | 7:16 pm

    I gained one of the deepest insights about money when I worked on a marketing project for a casino resort in Lake Tahoe. The client had asked our advertising agency to come up with a television campaign that would dramatize their resort and new summer program. They loved our idea...
  • Shame on Rabbis for Obama, hooray for Amy Klein, thanks for Marty Kaplan

    October 1, 2008 | 11:36 pm

    Online Dating Addict

    "True Confessions of an Online Dating Addict" -- "Cathy" it's not (Sept. 26). It's brilliant, and one of the smartest singles columns I've read. I love reading each week's adventure. Klein's journey is familiar, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks so....
  • Torah Slam: Post-denominational, multi-rabbi Bible salon draws overflow crowd [VIDEO]

    By Danielle Berrin

    September 25, 2008 | 6:35 pm

    Watch the Torah Slam in this video from our friends at the Jewish Television Network

    "Cheat on your rabbi" was the winning ad slogan that attracted an overflow crowd of 500 to what was billed as Los Angeles's first-annual cross-denominational public Torah study.

    In preparation for...

  • Awakening schmawakening, Darfur’s hope is grass-roots action

    August 21, 2008 | 12:55 am

    The Great Awakening


    Am I the only reader who finds your celebration of the Rev. Rick Warren's interviews with our presumptive presidential candidates very chilling ("The Great Awakening," Aug. 15)?

    The first nationally televised meeting of these candidates in a religious setting...

  • Dear Condoleeza Rice:

    By David Suissa

    August 14, 2008 | 12:36 am

    Last Saturday, on the Jewish Sabbath, I was attending prayer services at one of the big synagogues in Los Angeles, Beth Jacob Congregation, when something unusual happened that made me think of writing you this letter.

    After the services, a young black man named Adam Akabar got up to...

  • Zell it, Sam; Cool it, Orit; 40 million Frenchmen

    August 7, 2008 | 12:06 am

    Sell It, Sam

    Nice editorial on the demise of the L.A. Times as we have known it and loved to hate it all these years ("Sell It, Sam," Aug. 1).

    Didn't anyone realize when Sam Zell bought the Tribune Co. that real estate value was at the top of his list?

    And as to the problems of...
  • Yossi and Dror

    By David Suissa

    July 16, 2008 | 10:48 pm

    It took me a while to see the connection between Yossi Samuels and Dror Dagan. I met them a few days apart on my recent trip to Israel -- Yossi in a poor, ultra- Orthodox neighborhood of Jerusalem, Dror in a wealthy suburb of Tel Aviv.

    I met Yossi first. Immediately, he wanted to...

  • Suissa on the edge, gay marriage, ice on Mars

    July 3, 2008 | 11:31 am

    Same-Sex Marriages

    In the cover story ("Same Sex Marriage and the Fabric of Society: What Does it All Mean?" June 20), the section, "The End of Morality," is devoted to anti-gay viewpoints (including Dennis Prager, perhaps inserted as deference to some aberrant sense of balance).
  • Thriving on the edge

    By David Suissa

    June 26, 2008 | 11:32 am

    Is there any hope for peace in Israel? Are things getting better or worse? Does war and conflict dominate Israeli consciousness? After spending a week in the Holy Land with very little sleep and lots of Turkish coffee, talking to bright people from the left to the right, I can report...
  • Gay marriage, Persian tragedy,  Israel @ 60

    June 26, 2008 | 11:31 am

    Elias Eshaghian

    Your story about Elias Eshaghian's memoirs is a worthy reminder of the powerful commitment to education that Persian Jews brought with them to Los Angeles ("Memoir Recalls Educator's Hardships, Success in Iran," June 20).

    As head of a Jewish day school, where a...
  • Volume 23, Number 17

    June 15, 2008 | 8:35 pm

  • A Persian tragedy

    By David Suissa

    June 12, 2008 | 2:33 pm

    Few things in life are as tragic as the death of a child. Bianca Khalili died on Memorial Day when she fell off a balcony on the 15th floor of an apartment building in Century City. Bianca was 17 and was in her senior year at Beverly Hills High School. The tragedy occurred late at...
  • Paris with a Jewish accent

    By David Suissa

    May 29, 2008 | 2:30 pm

    I'm sitting in a Paris courtroom, and I might as well be in an art museum. There are huge windows, high ceilings, old chandeliers, and a very nervous group of people awaiting a decision.

    We're in the Cour d'appel, the French Appellate Court, on the day the court is to render its...

  • The Great Shave, the anti-Semitic professor in the U.S. Mail, Barack, Orit, Hillary and Suissa

    May 29, 2008 | 2:13 pm

    The Great Shave

    Loved your video on getting a haircut and shave on Lag b'Omer. I think it's great that you raise awareness about our customs and traditions.

    I think you made one faux pas, however. Religious Jews don't allow a razor to come in contact with their face when shaving,...
  • A birthday gift

    By David Suissa

    May 15, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Here we are, Jews in every corner of the world, awash in a frenzy of celebrations for Israel -- all because of a birthday. And not just any birthday, mind you, but one that ends in a zero.

    In a marketing-obsessed world, milestones give us an easy way to promote our brands. For...

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