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Orthodox Synagogue Votes To Shift Its Affiliation

By Steven I. Weiss

One of America’s last family-seating Orthodox-affiliated synagogues with mixed-gender seating voted this month to join the Conservative movement, leaving only one family-seating Orthodox synagogue in the entire country.Agudas Achim, a synagogue in Columbus, Ohio, voted to rescind its Orthodox affiliation at a meeting this month. The voteRead More


Conservatives Cut Social Action Officer

By Ori Nir

WASHINGTON — As the Conservative movement’s Rabbinical Assembly steps up its social action, the movement’s association of synagogues has axed its social-action officer to save money.The two unrelated developments represent a temporary shift in the gentle contest between the Conservative movement’s congregational arm and itsRead More


Western Communities Battle Isolation

By Steven I. Weiss

WOODLAND HILLS, Calif. — A conference this month aimed at reviving Jewish life among communities in the American West turned into a debate between communal and religious leaders over the character of Jewish identity.The conference, Hadesh West, was organized by United Jewish Communities’s Renaissance and Renewal Pillar and brought togetherRead More


Pols Pressure President Over Saudi WTO Entry

Senators and members of the House of Representatives are calling on the Bush administration to oppose Saudi Arabia’s admittance into the World Trade Organization unless the kingdom clearly renounces its support of the Arab boycott against Israel, aggressively cracks down on terrorist financing and improves its human rights record.In two separateRead More


Groups Cheer Senate Passage of Hate-crime Bill

Several Jewish groups last week welcomed the Senate’s approval of a bill that would broaden the federal government’s authority to prosecute criminals who commit acts of violence or intimidation against individuals because of the victim’s gender, disability or sexual orientation.The Local Law Enforcement Enhancement Act, whichRead More


Former Defense Official Offers Grim Mideast View

WASHINGTON — A former undersecretary of defense is saying that Israel is missing an opportunity to leave the territories and has tried the patience of an extremely sympathetic president.In his first interview since leaving the Bush administration, Dov Zakheim’s take on the Israeli-Palestinian dispute was grim.“It’s a huge mistake,”Read More


CAMPAIGN CONFIDENTIAL

By E.J. Kessler

Bill’s Bigs: “The American-Jewish community has been very good to me,” former President Clinton writes on Page 947 of his new memoir, “My Life.”You know it, baby.Without American Jews, Clinton couldn’t have funded his campaigns or run his administration. But what’s more, he genuinely has an affinity for Jews, as many of hisRead More


Defend the Civil Right to Freedom Of Religion for America’s Workers

By Eliot Spitzer

At first glance, Donovan Reed and Kalman Katz have very little in common. Though both are from New York State, Reed is an African-American from Mount Vernon, while Katz is an chasidic Jew from Borough Park. But both Reed and Katz are devoutly religious, and both were put in the untenable position of having to choose between keeping their faith andRead More


What Was the Real Reason for the War in Iraq?

By Gus Tyler

The report of the the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (also known as the 9-11 Commission) on why and how America was drawn into a war in Iraq compels some critical rethinking. This is no ordinary commission. When it was named, the almost universal feeling was that the commission members were people of intelligenceRead More


Israel’s Fence, New Tactics Seen Behind a Decline in Bombings

TEL AVIV — Israelis cheered silently Tuesday when the government published its latest terrorism statistics, holding their collective breath lest their streak of good luck run out. For the Israeli Defense Forces, the announcement was an occasion for a careful pat on the back, a sign of a job well done. The announcement of the tally of terroristRead More


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