Forward Forum


Anti-sex Campaign Abstains Only From Scientific Truths

By Kathleen Peratis

To you and me, an ATM is a cash machine. To America’s religious conservatives, ATM stands for the “Abstinence ‘Til Marriage” pledge — and it, too, is a cash machine.The federal government funds abstinence-only programs in public schools to the tune of $165 million annually. If the Bush administration has its way on a pending budgetRead More


Dear Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Mr. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

President of the Islamic Republic of Iran

May 26, 2006 Your Excellency,

Our sincere apologies for the delayed response to your letter from earlier this month.We appreciate your effort at self-clarification and assume that it expresses a genuine desire to engage in dialogue. We write to you as fellow teachers whoRead More


A Not Quite Golden Jerusalem Still Shines

By Emily Hauser

An American friend of mine once asked me to list my favorite places in Jerusalem, not long after another American friend expressed his jealousy that I was in Jerusalem for Passover and he was not.In honor of Jerusalem Day this Friday, then, I want to clarify something for all prospective questioners: I, a kosher-keeping, davening IsraeliRead More


Of Moabites and Mexicans

By David Klinghoffer

With a touch of divine providence, the debate about illegal immigration is heating up just as Jews prepare for Shavuot. The two-day festival starting the evening of June 1, called Pentecost in English, marks the anniversary of the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai. The holiday’s most sweetly recalled feature, though, is the reading of theRead More


On Our Very Own Streets

By Leonard Fein

Yes, there’s Iraq and Iran and Hamas and Fatah. There’s gas prices and NSA and CIA and the stock market. There are typhoons and volcanic eruptions and soon, again, hurricanes. There’s Darfur and taxes, the morning-after pill and the essay by Mearsheimer and Walt, and that’s quite enough for the moment, thank you very much.But there’sRead More


Next Time Invite American Olim Instead of A.B. Yehoshua

By David Chinitz

Earlier this month Israeli author A.B. Yehoshua created a tempest in a teapot by stating that one cannot live a fully Jewish life outside of Israel. As an American immigrant to Israel, I read with amusement and frustration about Yehoshua’s blast at the American Jewish Committee’s 100th anniversary conference and about the predictableRead More


British Academic Boycott Is Just Blinkered Bigotry

By Peter Kearney

Later this month Britain’s largest university and college lecturers union will vote on a motion recommending its 67,000 members boycott their Israeli counterparts and Israeli academic institutions. The move by the National Association of Teachers in Further and Higher Education is only the latest in a series of high-profile anti-IsraelRead More


Conversion Is Not An Outreach Strategy

By David Ellenson and Kerry Olitzky

For more than a decade, a group of Jewish communal leaders has been arguing that the challenge of intermarriage can only be met by a policy of converting non-Jewish partners. They cite statistics indicating that among children raised in interfaith families in which the non-Jewish partner has not converted, only a small minority identify asRead More


Can Peretz Conquer General Skepticism?

By Yossi Alpher

How symbolic that Amir Peretz’s first act as Israeli defense minister was to approve an air strike that killed five Palestinian terrorists in Gaza. The dovish former labor union leader, turned instant hawk.His second act, though, was to begin lifting the most recent closure strangling the West Bank. More than any other job in Israel, the defenseRead More


Exploring the New Jewish Spiritualities

By Jay Michaelson

What is spirituality? For some, the word connotes the fantasies of the New Age, from harmless notions like astrology to dangerous ones like apocalyptic messianism. For others, the word means precisely the opposite: not seeing the imaginary, but seeing the real more clearly, from the stirrings of the heart to theRead More





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