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Jewish Journal

Should Jews sue Jews?

by Brad A. Greenberg

February 24, 2009 | 8:33 pm

Last week I wrote an article about the Bernard Madoff investment scandal that quoted the leaders of local Jewish organizations that were invested in Madoff by the the Jewish Community Foundation regarding any actions they planned to take to recover their lost funds from the JCF.

Attorneys told me these organizations could sue, claiming breach of fiduciary responsibility, to recover from the JCF’s insurers. The question for many, though, is not whether they could, but whether they should.

“Jewish organizations suing Jewish organizations won’t end up in a net gain for the Jewish people,” said Mark Charendoff, president of Jewish Funders Network. “While everyone is looking for someone to blame, we all have to keep our eye on the ball.”

“We are living through a year which none of us have lived through before, and it may be followed up by a similar year. Our energy needs to go toward building a vibrant Jewish community and not actions that will tear that community apart,” Charendoff said. “If the Madoff scandal results in a diminished Jewish community or a ruptured fabric in the Jewish community, then that consequence will be far more severe and lasting than any financial loss.”

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Since launching the blog in 2007, I’ve referred to myself as “a God-fearing Christian with devilishly good Jewish looks.” The description, I’d say, is an accurate one,...

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