Avi Weiss

Paris, You Aren't Alone

Rabbi Avi Weiss was at the airport in Tel Aviv when he realized he had to be with the Jewish community in Paris. He starts a whirlwind visit with the simple words: ‘Je suis juif.’

Controversial Hero: Nelson Mandela was undeniably a great man, but at times, his views made the Jewish community very uncomfortable.

Why I Had To Protest Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was a great leader, but his relationship with the Jewish community was rocky at times. Avi Weiss explains why he once protested his arrival in New York.

Revisiting a Soviet Jewry Milestone

Avi Weiss looks back at the massive Soviet Jewry rally that took place 25 years ago in Washington, an event he thinks is being remembered falsely as the defining moment of the movement.

Were We Heard? Demonstrators gathered outside the United Nations September 24 for the Stand for Freedom in Iran Rally.

Ahmadinejad Was Heard — Were We?

And then the shofar was sounded. For the first time the crowd stood still. The sound carried to the United Nations building across First Avenue. First a long blast and then the short staccato wailing sounds, reflecting the brokenness of too many in Israel and the world today, and then again the long tekiya, as if declaring against all odds we will prevail. When it was over, the crowd broke out in applause. Hearts and souls were finally touched, and the assembled were saying thank you.

I Danced at the Wedding of Sharansky’s Daughter

It was a dream come true. There beneath the chupah stood Rachel Sharansky, daughter of Natan and Avital Sharansky, with her beloved, Micha Danziger.

Mourn for Gaza, Pray for Unity

As Israel prepares to disengage from Gaza, it is not only natural but also proper that we experience a keen sense of mourning over our loss. Imagine if we were evicted from our homes, if our synagogues were dismantled, the remains of our loved ones disinterred. These feelings only become more acute when we recall that many of the residents of Gush

The Forgotten Victims of AMIA

On Sunday, tens of thousands of people gathered in front of the AMIA Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the terrorist bombing that left 85 dead and 300 injured. As each victim’s name was read out loud, the crowd respectfully, but firmly, cried, “Presente.” The dead were present — in our hearts,

A Tribute That Desecrates Rather Than Sanctifies

Creating a memorial to the 600,000 Jews murdered at the Belzec death camp in Poland is of the utmost importance. It is profoundly distressing, however, that the planned memorial will feature an enormous trench running through the entire camp. The project has already disturbed — and will continue to disturb — the ashes and bones

A Monumental Failure at Belzec

Several years ago the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum decided to build a Holocaust memorial for the 600,000 Jews murdered at Belzec.Last June, I warned on these pages that “Despite assurances by museum officials that ‘we are being careful in construction not to disturb any human remains,’ anyone familiar with the Belzec…