Arts & Culture


At Christian Rally for Israel, Robertson Pitches ‘Messiah’

By Judy Lash Balint

JERUSALEM — With 4,000 Christian guests from 70 countries set to participate, the city’s annual Sukkot march was billed as the centerpiece of a weeklong show of evangelical support for Israel. But then televangelist and former GOP presidential candidate Pat Robertson opened his mouth and uncorked a can of theological worms guaranteed to makeRead More


CAMPAIGN CONFIDENTIAL

By E.J. Kessler

CLEVELAND — Ohio is often described as an electoral battleground where domestic policies are key. Quite suddenly, though, Israel and the Middle East have become hot topics here in the Buckeye State.Senator John Edwards and Vice President Richard Cheney took time during their debate here Tuesday to spar over Iraq and to cast theirRead More


Roman Holiday

By Nathaniel Popper

Close to 1 million people in American Jewish families live in low-income households, according to a new study that appears to be the most extensive national communal study ever done about economic vulnerability among American Jews.The study released last month, which used data gathered during the 2001 National Jewish Population Study, lookedRead More


Thank You, Shawn Green

By Peter Dreier

My 7-year old daughter Sarah’s soccer team, which I co-coach, plays every Saturday during the fall. At the team’s Tuesday night practice two weeks ago, I told the players that Sarah — who is the only Jew on her team — and I wouldn’t be at the game the following Saturday because we’d be going to synagogue for Yom Kippur servicesRead More


Kafka on the Dance Floor

By Joseph Carman

Paul Lazar and his wife, Annie-B Parson, never questioned whether the spoken text of live theater and the pure kinetics of dance could create a perfect marriage. Lazar, the actor, and Parson, the dancer and choreographer, formed Big Dance Theater in 1991 to mine and to combine the elements of both art forms into a unique formula. TheRead More


Roth’s Fanfare for the Common Man

By Mark Shechner

The Plot Against America By Philip Roth Houghton Mifflin Company, 400 pages, $26. ——Knitting domains together — domestic and global, story and back-story — always has been iffy for Philip Roth. He understands life best in the lower case — inside the family, the marriage, the disheveled heart, the desperate moment. HisRead More


Life in the Unholy Holy Land

By Leslie Camhi

My partner, who went to school in Israel during the 1950s, is fond of recalling the fact that some 28 different languages were spoken by the 42 children in his third grade class. Even today, holding up a mirror to Israeli society produces a fragmented image of rare complexity, showing a culture multiply divided between ethnicities and languages;Read More


An Indie Label Strikes Gold

By Dimitri Ehrlich

Two years ago, Michael Caplan couldn’t wait to be fired. He was working as an executive vice president at Sony Music, where he discovered acts like Living Colour, G. Love and Ginuwine. But he had long been dismayed by the lack of love for actual music in the record business, a problem he watched grow worse as major labelsRead More


In the Circular Ruins of the Aleph

By Jeffrey Fiskin

A white room in a white world. The sort of place that set designers use to suggest heaven. Why such a sterile vision is supposed to imply eternal bliss, one may only guess.

Two men wander the cloudy floor in casual conversation. One, Moses, is an imposing figure in flowing robes with the wild hair of a prophet or a rock star. TheRead More


Activist Recalls Vietnam, Communal Battles

By Ami Eden

A quick surf on Amazon or a stroll through the local bookstore suggests that we are living in the era of the political memoir. Anyone with enough time to wade through at least a sampling of the abundant “I was there” autobiographies from Beltway vets will end up not only with a better understanding of how the American policy sausage is made,Read More





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  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
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