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Newsdesk April 25, 2003

JCC CFO Pleads Guilty

A Florida woman pleaded guilty to stealing more than $20,000 from a Jewish community center where she was chief financial officer. Wendi Korb, 37, was placed on probation and must pay $25,000 to the Jewish Community Center of the Greater Palm Beaches immediately, and $45,000 more during the next 10 years. Korb, 37, took the money by transferring credit from the JCC to personal credit card accounts. Korb worked for the JCC from August 1998 until November 2001. The previous CFO of the JCC pleaded guilty to stealing almost $65,000 from the institution.

Israel Mulls SARS Bars

Israeli health officials are considering barring entry to foreign workers from countries with many cases of the SARS virus. Health Minister Dan Naveh met with health officials Monday to hear reports on the latest cases of Israelis returning from Asia with suspicious symptoms. So far, there has not been any confirmed case of SARS in Israel.

Fight Over Nabbed Terrorist

The capture of Mohammed “Abu” Abbas may advance the American war against terrorism, but it also could set off a political time bomb. Less than a day after U.S. Special Operations Forces in Baghdad nabbed the mastermind of the infamous 1985 Achille Lauro cruise ship hijacking, parties ranging from the Anti-Defamation League to Italian authorities to PLO officials fought to influence his fate. On Wednesday, the ADL called on Attorney General John Ashcroft to bring Abbas to the United States to stand trial for the murder of Leon Klinghoffer, a disabled American Jewish passenger who was shot after the ship was hijacked. Klinghoffer was then dumped in his wheelchair into the Mediterranean.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority demanded that Abbas be freed, saying his arrest violated the Oslo peace accords and subsequent interim deals. With apparent American and Israeli approval, Abbas was allowed to return to Palestinian areas several times starting in 1996, and even lived openly in Gaza for a time.

Departure Order Lifted

Non-emergency American government employees may return to Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. The State Department had ordered all such employees and their families to leave American facilities in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem when military action against Iraq commenced, fearing Iraqi attacks against Israel. A warning to Americans to avoid travel to Israel, West Bank and Gaza remains in effect.

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