Nowhere has the truism that politics makes strange bedfellows seemed truer than in New York’s 39th City Council district.
The battered image of Hadassah, the American women’s Zionist organization, may be harmed further by the disclosure earlier this month that its former chief financial officer was a mistress to Bernard Madoff — even as she sat on the committee that invested the charity’s funds with Madoff’s $50 billion Ponzi scheme.
I’m in the dressing room at Emporio, an Italian clothing boutique, in a city whose most famous landmark is Auschwitz. And I’m having a debate with myself. In question are two brightly designed shirts that together cost 25 American dollars: a downright steal. But I’m kept in the room by superstition: Does the historical trauma so apparent in Oswiecim get woven into the fabric of the shirts? And do I really want souvenirs from this town? In the end, my bargain-hunting impulse wins. But the shirts, purchased in July, remain in the closet, unworn.
Taglit-Birthright Israel, one of the most widely praised Jewish communal programs, is facing a rare dose of criticism from within the Jewish world after deciding to hire a public relations company with big national clients — and a history of controversy.
In response to the July corruption arrests that swept up a number of rabbis on money-laundering charges, the Sephardic Community Federation is launching a program aimed at making religious charities more accountable and transparent.