Forward Forum


Reformists, Conservatives and Other Iranians

By Zvi Bar’el

A sense of dread befell the world last Friday: New Iranian president Mahmood Ahmadinejad is an extremist, a lover of nukes, a Beckham-hater, a believer in the separation of the sexes. To cut a long story short: Prepare for war. One could sense the disappointment that crossed the ocean with the news that former president Hashemi Rafsanjani, theRead More


Unfinished Business at the Jewish Agency

By Jerome Epstein

Sallai Meridor’s surprise announcement on May 10 that he would relinquish his chairmanship of the Jewish Agency for Israel and of the World Zionist Organization caught many, including me, off guard. I can only hope that whoever is chosen to replace him later this month is committed to seeing through to completion the important workRead More


Build an Open Tent Instead of Guarding The Communal Gates

By Tobin Belzer, Amichai Lau-Lavie and Ronit Avni

A few months ago, Joshua Venture quietly closed down. We are proud that during its four-plus years of existence, our fellowship of Jewish social entrepreneurs piqued the interest of hundreds of unaffiliated young adults who had felt alienated by increasingly conservative and creatively stagnant Jewish institutions.We are proud, but we are alsoRead More


‘Green’ Nuclear Energy, in Black and White

By Lawrence Bush

As the Senate debates its bipartisan energy bill, it is obvious that nuclear power is slated to make a comeback in America. The bill includes an extension to 2025 of the Price Anderson liability protection law, which caps the damages for which the nuclear industry can be held liable in the event of a catastrophe such as a core meltdown.This is theRead More


The Nature of Being Ashkenazic

By Robert Pollack

We Jews call ourselves a family, and in many ways — for better and for worse — we act as if we were. We continue to preserve common laws, habits, language, texts and historical memories, as well as the belief that all of these are the gifts of an unknowable Deity who began our place in history by exchanging covenantal promises with ourRead More


Are We Being Fair to Messianic Jews?

By David Klinghoffer

When you write a book called “Why the Jews Rejected Jesus” and make your e-mail address available on a Web site bearing your name, as I’ve done, you are going to get a lot of e-mail from strangers. Some of it will be friendly, some hostile and some just heartbreaking. In the last category, I place the many communications I’ve received fromRead More


Territorial Indigestion

By Leonard Fein

A reader writes, asking how it is that I have not written about Israel in many weeks. Reasonable question. It’s not because there’s been so much else going on here at home, although there has been; I am quite used to dividing my time and my attention. Nor is it that there’s been no news out of Israel these last weeks;Read More


Matters of Distinction

By Leonard Fein

One of the signal contributions of the American Jewish Committee, over many years now, has been its stream of publications reporting on and analyzing our community. Its annual “American Jewish Yearbook” has long been a staple in Jewish libraries; as David Harris wrote in his foreword to Volume 100, which appeared in theRead More


The Price of Multi-payer Health Care

By Kathleen Peratis

A memorable moment in the 1997 movie “As Good As It Gets” comes when the protagonist played by Helen Hunt, a hard-working waitress and mother of an asthmatic little boy, loses it when she learns that her health insurer will not pay for a doctor-advised diagnostic test. She explodes: “Those f—king HMO bastard pieces of s—t.” TheRead More


Work To Create Communal Careers

By Shaul Kelner and Leonard Saxe

Across America, graduates are once again marching across university lawns and out into the work world. As the class of 2005 enters the labor market, Jewish organizations are hoping that more than a few will choose to work for them.From local synagogues to national agencies, Jewish communal work is a multi-billion dollar sector of theRead More





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