Dennis Ross Moves From Jewish World Back to State Dept. to Face Iran Challenge

As the new administration’s foreign policy team takes shape, veteran peace negotiator Dennis Ross is emerging as the diplomat who will take on America’s most daunting foreign policy challenge: dealing with a perceived nuclear threat from Iran.

HOME AWAY FROM HOME: Those behind the Nofei Hashemesh housing development in Beit Shemesh are selling it to Modern Orthodox immigrants as an American-style religious community.

Building a Bit of America in Beit Shemesh

Spirituality sells. As developers feel the pinch of the global economic slowdown, building projects across Israel lie half-finished. But at the 400-unit Nofei Hashemesh development in Beit Shemesh near Jerusalem, work is steaming ahead.

ONWARD SOLDIERS: Israeli leader Ehud Olmert reads a statement at the start of a January 11 cabinet meeting. He has rejected calls, even from his own cabinet, to accept a cease-fire for the conflict in Gaza.

Olmert’s Insistence on Continuing Gaza Campaign Highlights Dangers of Hubris

Early in the third week of the Gaza war, Ehud Olmert’s old self took over. No statesman in his right mind would have said what Olmert said in public January 14 about President Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Not to mention a statesman serving as prime minister of a country supported by the United States.

The L Word: ‘Miss Yeshiva Girl’ Gets the Ax

‘The L Word” — the Showtime drama about a tight-knit group of lesbian, bisexual and transgender women living in West Hollywood, Calif. — kills off its resident Jewess in the January premiere of its sixth and final season. Jenny Schecter’s suspicious death will be the springboard for a whodunit plotline à la the famous “Who Shot J.R.?” mystery of “Dallas.”

Two-State Solution?

For the first time ever, Israel has chosen an Arab representative for one of the year’s most high-profile international gatherings: the televised music competition that launched the career of the Swedish pop group ABBA.