A typical study session for Elul, a pluralistic Israel-based beit midrash (house of study), doesn’t confine itself to a discussion of Abraham’s journey in Genesis.
Over the last month the UC Santa Barbara student government has been voting on a resolution to divest from companies doing business with Israel.
Words matter, especially when spoken by people of power. I once read a book that dissected the 271 words of President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Would that speech have become historic if, instead of phrases like “a new birth of freedom,” he had used phrases like “a reaffirmation of our values”?
This morning, as I listened to President Obama’s speech to students in Jerusalem, I was filled with frustration and mortification. I was watching the speech at the gym and read the words as they crossed the TV screen.
President Obama will be making an historic trip to Israel in which he will meet with Israeli officials, see a number of important Zionist sites, and receive the Presidential Medal of Distinction from Israeli President Shimon Peres.
Americans' sympathies lean heavily toward Israel over the Palestinians in the highest level of support seen in 22 years.
Eighty-nine members of the U.S. Congress signed a letter calling on Turkey's prime minister to retract his comments blasting Zionism.
Preparing for a US presidential visit is a huge job. Preparing for a US presidential visit the week before Passover is an almost insurmountable task.
A writer walks into a room full of rabbis. This sounds like the beginning of a joke, but it’s not. In the words of Woody Allen’s “Broadway Danny Rose,” “It’s the emes.”
Israel released a tentative itinerary for President Obama's visit to Israel and the West Bank.
He’s had to bite a few bullets to get there, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will lead Israel’s next government.
After claiming her Twitter account was hacked, an Egyptian human rights activist appeared to acknowledge at least some of the anti-Jewish tweets that led the Obama administration to delay honoring her with an award.
Ruth Calderon’s Knesset speech has created more buzz around the Jewish world than any speech like it in the history of the State of Israel. Probably because nothing remotely like it has ever happened before. The unexpected, unprecedented, yet incredibly moving sight of a non-Orthodox woman passionately teaching Gemara in the Knesset has captured the attention of Jews everywhere. Most of the reaction has been extremely enthusiastic. I think it might turn out to be one of the most pivotal moments in the last 300 years of Jewish history.
For the last couple of years - and especially the last couple of days - my Jewish friends all over the world have expressed their concern over whether anti-Semitism is on the rise in Turkey. First of all Turkey has a population over 70 million.
Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday the United States found a comment by Turkey's prime minister, likening Zionism to crimes against humanity, "objectionable", overshadowing their talks on the crisis in neighboring Syria.
Amid rampant hate speech against Jews published in newspapers in Turkey, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said at a United Nations meeting that anti-Semitism, Zionism and Islamophobia were all “crimes against humanity.”
Passers-by in the center of tourist-driven Hollywood were greeted on Jan. 27 by an uncommon scene — ralliers bearing Israeli flags and pro-Zionist signs while singing a rendition of “Am Yisrael Chai.” About 25 people attended the Sunday afternoon Rally Against Anti-Semitism staged by the Creative Zionist Coalition (CZC), a newly formed local group that aims to organize pro-Israel Jews and non-Jews via creative means, such as holding a very public rally at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue.
Remember the second U.S. presidential debate in October, when the incumbent Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney stood about six inches from each other, with one interrupting the other at every turn?
There can’t have been more than half a dozen of them. Crowded as usual near the railings of St. John’s church graveyard in the center of town, the Côr Cochion (Reds Choir) were known of old to shoppers in Cardiff, Wales’ capital city, where I still live and work.
Jewish groups looking for signals from Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi regarding his views were appalled when one finally came -- in the form of a nod and what appeared to be a muttered “amen” to an imam’s call for God to “deal harshly” with the Jews.
It’s become a standard part of John Hagee’s stump speech, the story of how the evangelical pastor and founder of the 1.2 million-member Christians United For Israel (CUFI) first got started on the path of Israel advocacy.
Israel submitted a letter to the United Nations Security Council protesting recent statements by Iranian leaders against Israel.
Many thousands of Iranians shouted "Death to America, death to Israel" during state-organized protests on Friday and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told them there was no place for the Jewish state in a future Middle East.
Mel Brooks shows no outright sense of shame or victimhood in his humorous films, but his Jewishness is there without ambivalence, according to experts.
The Avengers, Spider-Man, Superman, Batman ... and Harvey Pekar?
One of the more brazen initiatives in the Jewish world today is Peter Beinart’s call, in his book “The Crisis of Zionism,” to boycott anything produced in the Jewish settlements of Judea and Samaria (commonly known as the West Bank). In his view, the settlements must be stopped because they are encroaching on a future Palestinian state that is necessary for the survival of a Jewish and democratic Israel.
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.
On Wednesday, May 16 JewishJournal.com will live stream a debate between Peter Beinart and David Suissa, "Is Zionism in Crisis?" at Temple Israel of Hollywood.
Power corrupts. But so too does powerlessness. The narrative of powerlessness, of perpetual helpless victimhood, corrupts moral vision. In his cover story, Rabbi Wolpe does a masterful job of diffusing the political arguments of Peter Beinart’s book, The Crisis of Zionism. But he does not address the fundamental and disconcerting questions at the heart of Beinart’s concern: How has the narrative of victimhood warped contemporary Zionism and American Jewish identity? How has it distorted our collective discourse? What new narratives are made possible by sovereignty in Israel and political power in the US? And what shall we do with all our power? Like the Wicked Son of the Haggadah, Beinart is castigated, but his question goes unanswered.
After spending three days at the J Street conference in Washington, D.C., and hearing one speaker after another talk about the importance of a two-state solution, I’ve come to the conclusion that Jews are blessed with two attributes...
The first Israeli government official ever to appear before J Street received a rousing, whistling, foot-stomping reception. And that was it, as far as the welcome went.
Peter Beinart’s new book showcases its deepest flaw on the very first page, courtesy of his grandmother. From her home in South Africa, she says to her American grandson who is boasting about his country, “Don’t get too attached. The Jews are like rats. We leave the sinking ship.”
Anti-Zionists insist their views aren’t anti-Semitic. They’re often lying; but anti-Zionism continues to gain respectability, even among Jews. This is a challenge Zionists aren’t adequately addressing.
A group of students received their task during a recent workshop at New Community Jewish High School: Craft a response to college students who liken the Israeli occupation to Nazi Germany.
Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan decried what he called Jewish control of the media and accused “Zionists” of trying to push America into war with Iran.
For Rebecca Schwab, senior advisor to the Midwest board of Young Judea, the lack of Israel engagement on college campuses is one of the primary challenges facing Zionist youth movements in America.
Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said in Iran that armed resistance is the only way to fight against Israel. The "gun is our only response to the Zionist regime," Haniyeh said Monday in Tehran, according to the semi-official Iranian Fars news agency.
At the Golden Globe Awards in January, producer Howard Gordon stepped up to the stage to accept the award for Best Television Series — Drama for co-creating the breakout Showtime hit “Homeland.” In a single season, the show has become a sensation, edging the pay-cable channel closer to its rival HBO in number of subscribers and garnering profuse media attention and acclaim.
An ally of Iran's supreme leader called on Friday for Israel to be "punished" for killing a nuclear scientist and the top U.S. general urged his Israeli ally to coordinate with Washington as crisis builds in the Middle East.