UNDERGROUND COMMERCE: A Palestinian in Gaza pulls up smuggled goods from Egypt, transported via a tunnel into Rafah refugee camp on the border. Other tunnels, dug by Hamas and targeted by Israel, are used to transport arms.

Gaza Campaign Shifts Focus to Hamas Arms Smuggling, Puts Egypt on the Spot

As Israel’s military campaign in Gaza entered its third week, Israel’s leaders were shifting the stated aim of their offensive to preventing Hamas from rearming by smuggling weapons through a series of tunnels between Gaza and Egypt. However indirectly, this meant Egypt, too, had become a focus of the ongoing offensive.

Judge’s Ruling Seen as Imperiling Rabbinical Courts’ Role

A New York State court decision has called into question the arbitration powers of rabbinical courts, long used by observant Jews to settle civil disputes.

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.