Purim


God Resumes Prophecy — Via Twitter

By Joanie Weiss

These days, it seems, nobody can afford not to Tweet — not even the Creator of the universe.Read More


Israel Reins in Firebrand Minister

By Joanie Weiss

To limit diplomatic fallout from Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s inflammatory public comments, Israeli officials have begun staging a series of fake public appearances to fool Lieberman into believing that the outside world is listening to him. These events are totally closed affairs and are stocked with a mixture of Foreign Ministry staff and homeless people, all of whom are required to sign nondisclosure waivers about Lieberman’s comments. In this photograph, Lieberman addresses those he believes to be attendees at the 2010 Herzliya Conference and lays out his strategy for machine-gunning West Bank goats suspected of terrorist activity. In fact, the event was staged at a middle school in Kenosha, Wis.Read More


Israeli Rabbinate Declares Non-Orthodox Jews ‘Kosher — and Delicious’

By Rob Kutner

In a historic ruling, the Israeli rabbinate has finally decided to recognize Reform, Reconstructionist and Conservative Jews — as the perfect entree for Shabbat dinner.Read More


What’s a Nice Gerund Like You Doing in a Place Like This?

By Phil O’Lologous

When people ask me who put the “sin in cinema,” I respond, “Kenneth Marcus of Englewood Heights, N.J.” Into their dropped jaws I explain that during the early days of American movies — when Englewood and environs were Hollywood and Broadway rolled into one — Mr. Marcus wanted to lend a sheen of sophistication to his tawdry fare.Read More


If You Agree With Me, Then You Are Right

It has recently come to my attention that you’ve got some disagreements with me about the issues. In a series of letters to the editor, you’ve suggested that my logic is flawed, that I’m ill-informed about issues, that I misrepresent facts and that my knowledge of history is thin at best. These are all fair and reasonable points, and I appreciate your bringing them to my attention.Read More


I. B. Singer’s Secret Hispanic Meydl

A newly-discovered hand-written letter written in Yiddish by Isaac Bashevis Singer to Magdalena Salazar, his Mexican maid of seven years in the Upper West Side apartment he shared with his wife Alma, offers insight into a previously unknown romantic liaison by the Nobel Prize winner. Stuck to a Zabar’s grocery list which had a late reworking of Singer’s “Gimpel the Fool” scribbled on it, the letter was found during Digitize Yiddish Week at the King’s Ransom Humanities Center in Austin, Texas. In translating it I found a handful of words undecipherable. Mrs. Salazar, who stopped working for the Singers in 1964, wasn’t mentioned in Singer’s will in 1991, the year of his death.Read More


February 26, 2009

Dear Backward, I always love to turn to your Arts & Culture pages. In a world where everything is so uncertain and life can sometimes seem so cheap, it makes me proud to be a Jew.Read More


Purim Podcast

The Backward’s Purim Spoof podcast, featuring Backward editors Anthony Weiss and Daniel Friedman in conversation with Gabrielle Birkner, looks at the Anti-Defamation League’s decision to honor Bernard Madoff, the retirement of the Elders of Zion, Adam Sandler’s meeting with Pope Benedict XVI, Jay-Z’s new Jewish dating Web site, and the existence of hot Israeli models.Read More


Elders of Zion to Retire

By Anthony Weiss

The Elders of Zion, the venerable and shadowy Jewish organization that controls the international banking industry, news media and Hollywood, has announced that it is disbanding so that members can retire to Florida and live out their golden years on the golf course.Read More


A Heartwarming Drawing

By Eli Valley

Eli Valley CartoonRead More





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  • "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:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
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