Huddled in the cold rain at the women’s section of the Western Wall Plaza, Anat Hoffman, veteran leader of Women of the Wall, removed her jacket, rolled up her long sleeves, and put on tefillin (phylacteries) for the first time in her life.
An Israeli fashion store’s decision to fire Israeli actress Ayelet Zurer, 46, as its house model and replace her with a 25-year-old sparked a national debate on women’s rights in that industry.
Robyn Gedrich, front, was booted from Tinder for campaigning on the site for Bernie Sanders, which the dating site says is a violation of its rules.
The historic Kotel Agreement represents laudable progress in Israel’s stormy sea of religion, state and politics. Credit is due to the many partners who labored hard for three years to bring this about. The details have been widely covered, but it remains to be seen whether it will be fully implemented. Considering Israel’s murky political landscape, it may turn out that it was easier to sign this important document than to implement it. Already we read that Shas’s Minister of Religious Services, David Azoulay is refusing to cover the agreement’s costs. In addition, three other relevant Israeli cabinet ministers have also refused to provide funding from their budgets.
I am one of the Original Women of the Wall; you have been hearing about us for over two decades now. We are the ones who have not veered away from our single goal, fulfilling a pristine and realizable vision of the late Rivka Haut: to pray together according to our customs as Jewish women of many denominations at the Kotel in the women’s section. We are neither a splinter group nor a breakaway. We continue to do what we have done all along. We will pray with tallit and tefillin. Even if we risk being arrested in the near future. And that does seem likely, given that the administrator of the Western Wall foundation proclaimed that once an egalitarian prayer-space is set up, he will forbid the women’s prayer practices that he despises. If we have to go back to the drawing board, back to the Supreme Court to regain our hard-won rights if they are taken from us, we will do so. And then our daughters will. And our granddaughters.