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This week's editorial

Haredi Israel in 2059

Israel’s fast-growing haredi Orthodox population is, in many ways, distinct from mainstream Jewish Israelis, whether secular, traditional or modern Orthodox. Like many Israeli Arabs, large segments of the haredi community have an ambivalent relationship with the state. The haredi community, like its Arab counterpart, is also marked by high levels of poverty.
Wednesday 05/24/2017
Trump crisis shouldn’t mask new opportunities for Mideast peace
Posted: May 24, 2017

By any standards, last week was an extraordinary one for U.S.-Israel relations – and that was before President Donald Trump even arrived in Israel for his official visit.

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Wednesday 05/17/2017
Yes, Virginia, there are Jews there
Posted: May 17, 2017

First, the bad news. Shockingly, we have all been hearing and reading about vicious anti-Semitic attacks in Europe: shootings, stabbings, political leaders rabble-rousing crowds to rise up against Jewish communities and to blame them for society’s ills. This has led to a large uptick in the decision by many European Jews to make aliyah and relocate to Israel. Here at home, we’re hearing more about anti-Semitism on college campuses – anti-Jewish rhetoric that is cloaked in the venomous language of “anti-Zionism,” a convenient way for Students for Justice in Palestine and similar social justice warriors to smear the Jewish people and the Jewish homeland.

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Recipes for disunity
Posted: May 17, 2017

For decades, haredi-Orthodox authorities have sought to tighten their control over Israel’s already strict interpretation of personal status questions, such as who may marry and whose conversions are kosher in the eyes of the state. The latest attempt comes from the Sephardic haredi party Shas, which last week submitted a bill to the Knesset that would invalidate all conversions to Judaism performed in Israel except for those performed under the auspices of the haredi-dominated Chief Rabbinate.

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Wednesday 05/10/2017
Independence Day: free at last?
Posted: May 10, 2017

Israel’s 69th year of independence as a modern state by Jews and for Jews causes us to reflect on the words from “Hatikvah”: “LeHiyot Am Chofshi b’Artzeinu,” “to be a free people in our land.” Though penned in 1878 by Naftali Herz Imber, these words ring truer today than ever. With blood and bravery, Israel became physically independent again as a sovereign nation in 1948, but the question is, are we Jews free in our homeland Israel today in 2017?

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Facing the toxic brew of politics and religion
Posted: May 10, 2017

Here’s a thought experiment: Imagine your rabbi dedicating his Yom Kippur sermon to why he will be voting for Candidate X come Election Day, and why you should, as well.

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Wednesday 05/03/2017
Don’t cheat this time, Marwan Barghouti
Posted: May 03, 2017

According to the latest pictures I’ve seen of Marwan Barghouti, he can use a little dieting. He’s grown a bit heavier, with his sedentary lifestyle of late. Not like the early 2000s, when he was active and busy planning the murders of hundreds of Jews.

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Is this really happening in NYC?
Posted: May 03, 2017

Gentrification is a serious issue in many large cities. Rising real estate values, which are generally a sign of economic health, can bring with them upper-income residents who displace lower-income tenants from developing neighborhoods. There is nothing new about this problem. But are Jews to blame for it? One Democratic candidate for the New York City Council is arguing that they are.

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Wednesday 04/26/2017
The Holocaust tested man’s true nature
Posted: April 26, 2017

A few days ago, the Jewish world observed Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day. This marks the greatest calamity in Jewish history, the cold-blooded, methodical destruction of six million innocent Jewish souls – men, women and children.

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A new dawn at the UN?
Posted: April 26, 2017

On Sunday, U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres made a series of statements that were unusual for the world body and its chief executive. He vowed to take action to end anti-Semitism and called denial of Israel’s right to exist a modern form of anti-Jewish hatred.

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Wednesday 04/19/2017
Spicer’s Yom Hashoah lesson
Posted: April 19, 2017

It would be simple to play the moral outrage card on White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s confused comparison of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons and Adolf Hitler’s refraining from gassing enemy troops on the battlefield (but killing millions of Jews with that method to effect his Final Solution). But we detect no anti-Semitism in Spicer’s April 11 statement, for which he apologized twice. Anyone who does has either too much time on their hands, or a different agenda.

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Time to start listening to immigrant leaders
Posted: April 19, 2017

Jews everywhere, myself included, have been horrified to see the beginnings of a crackdown on undocumented immigrants, which threatens to shatter families and communities and send people back to dangerous circumstances they fled.

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