National News


New ‘Pay Czar’ Walks Familiar Path

By J.J. Goldberg

The age-old Jewish antipathy toward the murderous, antisemitic monarchs of pre-communist Russia was never captured better than in the old joke, retold in “Fiddler on the Roof,” in which a rabbi asks if there is a special prayer for the czar. Yes, the rabbi replies: “May the Lord bless and keep the czar — far away from us.”Read More


After Bibi’s Speech: A Shift To Quiet Talks

By Nathan Guttman

The Obama administration now seems poised to ease its public pressure on Israel following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s acceptance of a two-state solution to his country’s conflict with the Palestinians.Read More


Sammy Davis Jr.’s Menorah Fails To Sell

By Rebecca Dube

Celebrity sparkle wasn’t enough to sell Sammy Davis Jr.’s menorah at auction. The silver menorah that belonged to one of Judaism’s most famous converts went on the auction block June 8, but failed to garner the $10,000 minimum bid sought by the owner, a Judaica collector.Read More


Waiting Game: What Did Abbas Mean?

By Nathan Guttman

While Mahmoud Abbas’s meeting with President Obama was widely described as uneventful, comments the Palestinian leader made in a Washington Post interview before entering the White House have led to a feisty debate within the Jewish community.Read More


In New Book, Ross, Top Envoy To Iran, Is Skeptical of Diplomatic Engagement

By Nathan Guttman

Since assuming his post as special adviser to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Iran matters, Ambassador Dennis Ross has stepped back and refrained from discussing in public his suggestions for dealing with Tehran.Read More


Long Strike at Chicago Hotel Pits Jew Against Jew

By Nathaniel Popper

Nearly six years after the housekeepers and dishwashers at the Congress Plaza Hotel first went on strike, the enormous hotel here on Chicago’s lakefront shows the marks of being a battle zone in America’s labor wars.Read More


Orthodox, and Sticking With the Union

By Nathaniel Popper

Recent controversies about labor issues in the Jewish community have often become battles between non-Orthodox and Orthodox Jews. At the Congress Plaza Hotel in Chicago, this paradigm seems to hold, with rabbis from more liberal denominations protesting the Orthodox Jewish owners of the hotel.Read More


Key Lawmakers Are Opposing Israeli Policy On Settlements

By Nathan Guttman

For the first time in America’s decades of jousting with Israel over West Bank settlements, an American president seems to have succeeded in isolating the settlements issue and disconnecting it from other elements of support for Israel.Read More


Menorah Illuminates Davis Jr.’s Judaism

By Rebecca Dube

If you want to buy Sammy Davis Jr.’s menorah when goes up for auction next month, it will cost you a bit more than a song.Read More


New York’s First Flu Victim Was a ‘Wonderful Role Model’

By Lana Gersten

Mitchell Wiener, a Queens public school administrator and beloved member of that New York borough’s Jewish community, died May 17 of complications from swine flu — the first person in New York State and sixth in the United States to die from the flu strain now spreading around the world.Read More





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  • 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
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
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