Giving ‘Seinfeld’ Fans a Taste of Reality, Kramer-style

By Max Gross

Kenny Kramer wasn’t allowed to be himself.In the late 1980s, the stand-up comedian was living next door to Larry David, co-creator of television’s “Seinfeld,” which was then in the development stage. David saw infinite comic possibilities in his neighbor, who spent his time golfing, scheming, chomping cigars, falling head-firstRead More

Empire State’s Kosher Law Advances, But Draws Tepid Support

By Steven I. Weiss

The New York State Legislature has passed legislation to protect kosher consumers from food products falsely advertised as kosher. The new law is intended to replace New York’s previous kosher law, which was struck down in the courts last year after being declared unconstitutional.New York is home to the country’s largest Jewish population, asRead More

Polluting Piety With Politics

By Gus Tyler

An article on the front-page of the June 3 New York Times was scary. It notes that the Bush campaign is reaching out to thousands of churches around the country to involve them in distributing campaign fliers and registering voters on behalf of the president’s November run. The move makes history. It seems that at no time in the nation’sRead More

Chirac, Bush Spar Over Turkey’s Admission to the E.U.

By Marc Perelman

PARIS — President Bush’s latest tour of Europe, aimed at fence mending, instead has touched off another round of Franco-American feuding, with Bush and French President Jacques Chirac trading barbs over everything from NATO’s role in Iraq to Yasser Arafat’s role in Ramallah.For many observers here, however, the most tellingRead More

American Orthodox Leaders Try To Stay Above Fray

By Steven I. Weiss

American Orthodox leaders say they are struggling to stay out of the debates tearing at Israel’s religious community over Prime Minister Sharon’s Gaza disengagement plan.Modern Orthodox groups in America traditionally look to Israel’s so-called national religious camp, embodied in the National Religious Party and the chief rabbinate,Read More

Right-wing Rabbis Call on Soldiers, Settlers To Defy Evacuation

JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Sharon faces a new and growing threat to his plan for evacuating settlements in Gaza and the West Bank: Right-wing rabbis who have ruled that dismantling settlements violates Jewish religious law. Some rabbis are calling on soldiers to disobey orders and on settlers to resist evacuation forcibly.With major rabbinicRead More

Terrorists’ Rocket Changes Strategy Of Israeli Pullout

By Ofer Shelah

TEL AVIV — Prime Minister Sharon was clear and adamant. “We will make sure,” he told his audience, “that this will not happen again — not before the withdrawal from Gaza and not after.”“This” was a Qassam rocket attack Monday on the Negev town of Sderot, two miles from the Gaza border. A day earlier, a barrage of the homemadeRead More

White House Cool to Palestinian Proposal To Hold General Elections

By Ori Nir

WASHINGTON — In another diplomatic victory for Israel’s government, the Bush administration is turning a cold shoulder to a Palestinian initiative that would schedule general elections in the West Bank and Gaza as soon as January 2005.The Palestinians are touting the idea as a tool to produce a new, reformed leadership, but theRead More

A Nation Mourns Naomi Shemer, Iconic Songstress

By Miriam Colton

On June 26, the woman known affectionately as the First Lady of Israeli Song died at the age of 74.It was indicative of songwriter Naomi Shemer’s place in the Israeli imagination that her death and the national grieving it engendered took over the front pages of Israel’s newspapers for two days running, forcing the intifada and theRead More

International Law Itself on Trial In Milosevic’s War Crimes Case

By Muhamed Sacirbey

Slobodan Milosevic had a pleasant demeanor when we sat down in Dayton, Ohio, nine years ago to negotiate peace in Bosnia. He was engaging, accessible and charismatic, and even when an impish smile would cloud over his face, the result was less a storm than a soggy downpour.Toward worthy adversaries and mediators, Milosevic employed a seductionRead More

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