Not a single candy wrapper, cough nor cell phone interrupted the New Yiddish Repertory’s January 13 reading of “Shaylok, oder der Koyfman Fun Venedig,” a Yiddish adaptation of William Shakespeare’s “The Merchant of Venice,” at the Center for Jewish History. The evening was, in Broadway speak — a smash hit.
A New York suburb is divided over plans to absorb a private special education program for Yiddish and Hebrew speakers into the public school district — a plan that opponents say could be racially discriminatory. The proposal for the East Ramapo Central School District in Rockland County, N.Y., to take over the financially troubled Rockland Institute for Special Education (RISE) is drawing complaints from local activists and minority communities in the ethnically diverse district, which is home to a large Orthodox Jewish community.14
In Germany today, Muslims are often cited as a driving force behind contemporary German anti-Semitism — and are increasingly a target of ethnic-based prejudice and bigotry. Yet leaders of Germany’s Jewish community have joined others in combating what many view as a tidal wave of German Islamophobia.70
The Israeli-Palestinian peace process may be near collapse, but the Washington turf wars surrounding it are still going strong, according to sources involved in the negotiations. The administration’s top Middle East hands — special envoy George Mitchell and White House adviser Dennis Ross — are increasingly at loggerheads, these sources say.40
Rep. Gabrielle Giffords invited her rabbi, Stephanie Aaron, to accompany her to this year’s National Prayer Breakfast, on February 3. Aaron plans to be in Washington for the gathering, but acknowledges she won’t likely be sitting alongside Giffords, her friend, congregant and student.78
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