The Shmooze


A Small World Weds Saris and Yarmulkes At New Delhi’s Sole Synagogue

By Alex Halperin

As soon as David Danieli, Israel’s new ambassador to India, arrived behind schedule at Judah Hyam Hall synagogue in New Delhi one recent Friday night, the congregants raised their arms toward the ark to welcome the Sabbath.“It’s good of him to come,” one woman said in a scratchy voice that would later dominate the…Read More


Frum Fiction: Observant Gumshoes Master ABCs of Murder

By Zackary Sholem Berger

What makes a good mystery? Sex and death — but shul attendance and Sabbath observance don’t hurt either. That’s right: Orthodox Judaism has entered the world of detective fiction.There have been Jewish mysteries before, of course. Take Harry Kemelman’s haymish, if low-intensity, series of mystery novels featuring the Conservative RabbiRead More


Muckraking Crusader Creeps Onto the Bestseller List

By Max Gross

When investigative journalist Greg Palast published his account of voting irregularities that occurred in Florida during the 2000 presidential election, the state’s secretary of state, Katherine Harris, denounced his findings as “twisted.”Palast put that quote on his book jacket.“The Best Democracy Money CanRead More


Music Gets Boost on Israeli TV

This revolution will be televised.Earlier this month, Music 24 became Israel’s first all-music television station, unleashing what CEO Guy Behar and Amir Golan, the station’s marketing director, called “a quiet revolution.”Airing 24 hours a day, with an archive of 1,500 video clips ranging from Middle Eastern music toRead More


Day Schools Learn New Math During Economic Downturn (Correction)

An article in the August 8 issue, “Day Schools Learn New Math During Economic Downturn,” misstated the number of students enrolled at the Agnon School in Beachwood, Ohio. There were 330 students at the conclusion of the past school year.Read More


IN OTHER WORDS...

By Oren Rawls

Arnie the Styrian Oak: “Now he’s finally done it,” Christoph Winder writes in the August 8 issue of the liberal Austrian daily Der Standard. “Arnie, the honorable oak of Styria, Terminator and Austria’s undisputed symbol of expatriate success, overcame his scruples and on October 7 will be running for governor of California.”FromRead More


How Terry Sue Became Tovah

By Masha Leon

Trim and elegant in an ecru suit, Tovah Feldshuh mounted the Center for Jewish History’s auditorium stage for the July 14 American Jewish Historical Society-sponsored “dialogue” with Rabbi William Berkowitz. A veteran of more than 500 celebrity interviews over the past 51 years, the rabbi managed a few commentaries during “intermissions”…Read More


We Should All Be Proud

By Wendy Belzberg

Yes, I am a Jew, but why am I not called a Hebrew? In Israel, they speak, write and read Hebrew. In the Bible, our forefathers were Hebrews. Why aren’t we called Hebrew-Americans?

— A Hebrew at heart According to Rabbi Harlan Wechsler of Manhattan’s Congregation Or Zarua, though the Bible on occasion refers to the Jews as Hebrews,Read More


Traipsing Down the Red-Carpet Runway at ‘The Holy Land’ Gala

By Masha Leon

At the July 8 gala opening of “The Holy Land” at the Leonard Nimoy Theater at Symphony Space, the crush of photographers went flash ballistic as Danny Aiello emerged from his Jaguar and the film’s stars — Oren Rehany and Tchelet Semel — trod the red carpet.Subtitled “A Yeshiva Student, a Russian Prostitute, a Love Story,” this is…Read More


You Are Entitled to Exactly What You Want

By Wendy Belzberg

I am expecting my first child, and for medical reasons my doctor has already scheduled my delivery date. With no mystery about when the baby is coming, both sides of our family have already booked their plane tickets and are planning to show up en masse. I want to have some time alone with my baby and my husband beforehand. This may soundRead More





Find us on Facebook!
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • 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
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.