• Are Jared and Ivanka Good for the Jews? - The New York Times

    Jewish communities stand more divided than ever on whether to embrace or denounce Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.

    By Amy Chozick and Hannah Seligson
    Nov. 17, 2018


    On election night in Beverly Hills, Jason Blum, the hot shot horror-movie producer, was accepting an award at the Israel Film Festival. The polls in a string of midterm contests were closing, and Mr. Blum, a vocal critic of President Trump, was talking about how much was at stake.

    “The past two years have been hard for all of us who cherish the freedoms we enjoy as citizens of this country,” Mr. Blum said.

    That’s when the crowd of mostly Jewish producers and power brokers started to chant, “We like Trump!” An Israeli man stepped onto the stage to try to pull Mr. Blum away from the microphone as the crowd at the Saban Theater Steve Tisch Cinema Center cheered.

    “As you can see from this auditorium, it’s the end of civil discourse,” Mr. Blum said, as security rushed the stage to help him. “Thanks to our president, anti-Semitism is on the rise.”
    In the weeks after a gunman killed 11 people at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, in one of the most horrific acts of anti-Semitism in years, debates about the president’s role in stoking extremism have roiled American Jews — and forced an uncomfortable reckoning between Mr. Trump’s rhetoric and his daughter and son-in-law’s Jewish faith.
    Rabbi Jeffrey Myers greets Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump near the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.
    Doug Mills/The New York Times


    Rabbi Jeffrey Myers greets Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump near the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.CreditDoug Mills/The New York Times
    Rabbis and Jewish leaders have raged on Twitter and in op-eds, in sermons and over shabbat dinners, over how to reconcile the paradox of Jared Kushner, the descendant of Holocaust survivors, and Ivanka Trump, who converted to Judaism to marry Mr. Kushner.

    To some Jews, the couple serves as a bulwark pushing the Trump administration toward pro-Israel policies, most notably the decision to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. To many others, they are the wolves in sheep’s clothing, allowing Mr. Trump to brush aside criticism that his words have fueled the uptick in violent attacks against Jews.

    “For Jews who are deeply opposed to Donald Trump and truly believe he is an anti-Semite, it’s deeply problematic that he’s got a Jewish son-in-law and daughter. How can that be?” said Dr. Jonathan D. Sarna, a professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis University.
    Sign up for the Of The Moment Newsletter
    Self-care and social change. Relationships and advice. Beauty and health. Fame and fortune. Stories picked for you. Get the Of the Moment newsletter.

    Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump serve as senior advisers in the White House. At a time when Judaism is under assault — the F.B.I. said this week that anti-Semitic attacks have increased in each of the last three years — they are unabashedly Orthodox, observing shabbat each week, walking to an Orthodox Chabad shul near their Kalorama home in Washington, D.C., dropping their children off at Jewish day school and hanging mezuzas on the doors of their West Wing offices.

    After the Pittsburgh attack, Mr. Kushner played a key role in Mr. Trump (eventually) decrying “the scourge of anti-Semitism.” And Mr. Kushner helped arrange the president’s visit to the Squirrel Hill synagogue, including inviting Ron Dermer, the Israeli ambassador to the United States to accompany them. There, in Pittsburgh, thousands marched to protest what one organizer described as the insult of the Mr. Trump’s visit.
    Arabella Kushner lights the menorah as her parents look on during a Hanukkah reception in the East Room of the White House in 2017.
    Olivier Douliery/Getty Images


    Arabella Kushner lights the menorah as her parents look on during a Hanukkah reception in the East Room of the White House in 2017.CreditOlivier Douliery/Getty Images
    The White House has referenced Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump’s religion to dismiss accusations that Mr. Trump’s rhetoric has emboldened anti-Semites. “The president is the grandfather of several Jewish grandchildren,” the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, told reporters.

    Using the couple in this way has unnerved many Jews who oppose the president and say Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump violated the sacred, if sometimes unspoken, communal code that mandates Jews take care of each other during times of struggle. “I’m more offended by Jared than I am by President Trump,” said Eric Reimer, a lawyer in New York who was on Mr. Kushner’s trivia team at The Frisch School, a modern Orthodox yeshiva in New Jersey that they both attended.

    “We, as Jews, are forced to grapple with the fact that Jared and his wife are Jewish, but Jared is participating in acts of Chillul Hashem,” said Mr. Reimer, using the Hebrew term for when a Jew behaves immorally while in the presence of others.
    For Mr. Reimer, who hasn’t spoken to Mr. Kushner since high school, one of those incidents was the administration’s Muslim ban, which prompted members of the Frisch community to sign an open letter to Mr. Kushner imploring him “to exercise the influence and access you have to annals of power to ensure others don’t suffer the same fate as millions of our co-religionists.”

    Leah Pisar, president of the Aladdin Project, a Paris-based group that works to counter Holocaust denial, and whose late father, Samuel Pisar, escaped Auschwitz and advised John F. Kennedy, said she found it “inconceivable that Jared could stay affiliated with the administration after Pittsburgh” and called Mr. Kushner the president’s “fig leaf.”

    Those kinds of accusations are anathema to other Jews, particularly a subset of Orthodox Jews who accused liberal Jews of politicizing the Pittsburgh attack and who say that any policies that would weaken Israel are the ultimate act of anti-Semitism.
    Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner at the opening ceremony of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem in May.
    Sebastian Scheiner/Associated Press


    Ms. Trump and Mr. Kushner at the opening ceremony of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem in May.CreditSebastian Scheiner/Associated Press
    “Jared and Ivanka are one of us as traditional Jews who care deeply about Israel,” said Ronn Torossian, a New York publicist whose children attend the Ramaz School, the same Upper East Side yeshiva where Mr. Kushner’s eldest daughter Arabella was once enrolled. “I look at them as part of our extended family.”

    Even some Jews who dislike Mr. Trump’s policies and recoil at his political style may feel a reluctance to criticize the country’s most prominent Orthodox Jewish couple, grappling with the age-old question that has haunted the Jewish psyche for generations: Yes, but is it good for the Jews?
    To that end, even as liberal New York Jews suggest the couple would be snubbed when they eventually return to the city, many in the Orthodox community would likely embrace them. “They certainly won’t be banned, but I don’t think most synagogues would give them an aliyah,” said Ethan Tucker, a rabbi and president of the Hadar yeshiva in New York, referring to the relatively limited honor of being called to make a blessing before and after the reading of the Torah. (Mr. Tucker is also the stepson of Joe Lieberman, the first Jewish candidate to run on a major party ticket in the U.S.) “I don’t think people generally honor people they feel were accomplices to politics and policies they abhor,” Mr. Tucker said.

    Haskel Lookstein, who serves as rabbi emeritus of the Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun, the modern Orthodox synagogue on the Upper East Side that Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump attended, wrote in an open letter to Mr. Trump that he was “deeply troubled” by the president saying “You also had people that were very fine people, on both sides,” in response to the white nationalist riots in Charlottesville, Va.

    When reached last week to comment about the president’s daughter and son-in-law days after the Pittsburgh attack, Mr. Lookstein said simply, “I love them and that’s one of the reasons I don’t talk about them.”

    Talk to enough Jews about Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump, and you begin to realize that the couple has become a sort of Rorschach test, with defenders and detractors seeing what they want to see as it relates to larger rifts about Jewish identity.

    “It’s not about Jared and Ivanka,” said Matthew Brooks, the executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition. “People look at them through the prism of their own worldviews.”
    Editors’ Picks

    The Adopted Black Baby, and the White One Who Replaced Her

    Stone Mountain: The Largest Confederate Monument Problem in the World

    They Survived a Massacre. Then the Lawyers Started Calling.
    From left to right on front row, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his wife Sara Netanyahu, Mr. Kushner, Ms. Trump, and the U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin at the opening ceremony of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.
    Sebastian Scheiner/Associated Press


    From left to right on front row, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his wife Sara Netanyahu, Mr. Kushner, Ms. Trump, and the U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin at the opening ceremony of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.CreditSebastian Scheiner/Associated Press
    Those worldviews are rapidly changing. One in five American Jews now describes themselves as having no religion and identifying as Jews based only on ancestry, ethnicity or culture, according to Pew. By contrast, in the 1950s, 93 percent of American Jews identified as Jews based on religion.
    As Jews retreat from membership to reform synagogues, historically made up of political liberals who were at the forefront of the fight for Civil Rights and other progressive issues, Chabad-Lubavitch, the Orthodox Hasidic group with which Mr. Kushner is affiliated, has become a rapidly-growing Jewish movement. The growth of Chabad correlates with fierce divisions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and a small but growing contingent of American Jews who prioritize Israel above any other political or social issue.

    Mr. Kushner, in particular, has become a sort of proxy for these larger schisms about faith and Israel, according to Jewish experts. “There is a great deal of anxiety around the coming of the Orthodox,” said Dr. Sarna, the Brandeis professor. “Jared in every way — his Orthodoxy, his Chabad ties, his views on Israel — symbolizes those changes.”

    Mr. Kushner is the scion of wealthy real-estate developers and his family has donated millions of dollars to the Jewish community, including through a foundation that gives to settlements in the West Bank. Mr. Kushner influenced the Trump administration’s decision to move the U.S. Embassy, to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, and to shutter a Palestine Liberation Organization office in Washington.

    “You’d be hard pressed to find a better supporter of Israel than Donald Trump and Jared plays a role in that,” said Ari Fleischer, a former White House press secretary under President George W. Bush. Mr. Kushner is currently working on a Middle East peace plan expected to be rolled out in the coming months.

    Haim Saban, an entertainment magnate and pro-Israel Democrat, is optimistic about Mr. Kushner’s efforts. He said in an interview from his hotel in Israel that although he disagrees with some of Mr. Trump’s policies, “Jared and by extension the president understand the importance of the relationship between the U.S. and Israel on multiple levels — security, intelligence, but most of all, shared values.”
    That embrace has only exacerbated tensions with secular Jews who overwhelmingly vote Democratic and oppose Mr. Trump. According to a 2018 survey by the American Jewish Committee, 41 percent of Jews said they strongly disagree with Mr. Trump’s handling of U.S.-Israeli relations and 71 percent had an overall unfavorable opinion of Mr. Trump. (In response to questions for this story, a White House press aide referred reporters to an Ami magazine poll of 263 Orthodox Jews in the tristate area published in August. Eighty-two percent said they would vote for President Trump in 2020.)

    “To wave a flag and say ‘Oh, he’s obviously pro-Jewish because he moved the embassy’ just absolutely ignores what we know to be a deeply alarming rise of anti-Semitism and all sorts of dog-whistling and enabling of the alt-right,” said Andy Bachman, a prominent progressive rabbi in New York.
    President Trump praying at the Western Wall.
    Stephen Crowley/The New York Times


    President Trump praying at the Western Wall.CreditStephen Crowley/The New York Times
    In September, Mr. Kushner and his top advisers, Jason D. Greenblatt and Avi Berkowitz, hosted a private dinner at the Pierre Hotel on the Upper East Side. Over a kosher meal, Mr. Kushner, aware of concerns within the Jewish community that Israel policy had become an overly partisan issue, fielded the advice of a range of Jewish leaders, including hedge-fund billionaire and Republican donor Paul Singer and Mr. Saban, to craft his Middle East peace plan. “He called and said ’I’ll bring 10 Republicans and you bring 10 Democrats,’” Mr. Saban said.

    The undertaking will only bring more kvetching about Mr. Kushner. Indeed, some of Mr. Trump’s most ardent Jewish supporters have already expressed their displeasure at any deal that would require Israel to give up land.

    “I’m not happy with Jared promoting a peace deal that’s sending a message that we’re ready to ignore the horrors of the Palestinian regime,” said Morton A. Klein, the president of the Zionist Organization of America and a friend of Republican megadonor Sheldon G. Adelson.

    “But …” Mr. Klein added, as if self-aware of how other Jews will view his position, “I am a fanatical, pro-Israel Zionist.”
    Amy Chozick is a New York-based writer-at-large and a frequent contributor to The New York Times Magazine, writing about the personalities and power struggles in business, politics and media.

  • CQFD — s’il en était encore besoin...

    « Next head of ‘Civil Administration’ said Palestinians are sub-human » (+972, 8 mai)

    After the Oslo Accords, the Israeli army renamed the Military Government of the West Bank the Civil Administration. MK Eli Ben-Dahan was just appointed to oversee the Administration, which oversees the theft of Palestinian land, settlement expansion and controls the movement of millions of Palestinians.


    “[Palestinians] are beasts, they are not human.” — MK Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan, Aug 1, 2013. (Hebrew)

    “A Jew always has a much higher soul than a gentile, even if he is a homosexual.” — MK Rabbi Eli Ben-Dahan, Dec 27, 2013. (Hebrew/English)

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu finalized the formation of a new government this week when he signed a coalition agreement with far-right settler party Jewish Home. As part of the agreement, Rabbi Ben-Dahan will be Israel’s next deputy defense minister, responsible for the army’s “Civil Administration.”

    The Civil Administration is responsible for all aspects the occupation that don’t involve boots-on-the-ground security operations — it administers planning, building, and infrastructure for both Jews and Palestinians in Area C of the West Bank. It also administers the Palestinian population database and is responsible for granting and revoking entry and travel permits for Palestinians, controlling every aspect of their movement.

    In other words, the man slated to take charge of an organization entrusted with supervising the theft of Palestinian land and supervising Palestinians’ lives, is a racist who said he does not see them as human, but rather as animals (nothing against animals, of course, but we can be fairly certain Ben-Dahan didn’t mean it as a compliment). That’s more or less like appointing a member of the local Klu Klux Klan chapter to investigate claims of violence and discrimination against the Baltimore Police Department — that is, if Baltimore residents were deprived of citizenship and the right to vote.

    #Palestine #Palestiniens #Cisjordanie #Israël #Eli_Ben-Dahan #sionisme #colonisation #racisme #extrême_droite #fascisme #occupation #dip

  • Change Gun Laws in Europe to Let Jews Carry Arms, Says Leading Rabbi

    In a letter sent to interior ministries around Europe and obtained by Newsweek, Rabbi Menachem Margolin, director general of the Rabbinical Centre of Europe (RCE) and the European Jewish Association (EJA) - the largest federation of Jewish organizations and communities in Europe - writes: “We hereby ask that gun licensing laws are reviewed with immediate effect to allow designated people in the Jewish communities and institutions to own weapons for the essential protection of their communities, as well as receiving the necessary training to protect their members from potential terror attacks.”

    Speaking to Newsweek, Rabbi Margolin added that he believes that “as many people within the Jewish community as possible” should carry weapons.

    On peut voir la lettre ici :

    Je ne vois pas comment ça pourrait mal tourner (je me tâte pour le hashtag imbitable #en_v'là_une_idée_qu'elle_est_bonne)

  • Leading rabbi justifies attack on Jerusalem bilingual school
    Kiryat Motzkin’s David Meir Druckman slams defense minister for considering Lehava a terrorist organization.
    By Noa Shpigel | Jan. 15, 2015 Haaretz

    Kiryat Motzkin’s Ashkenazi rabbi David Meir Druckman published an article on Chabad’s website a few days ago entitled “Bogie, I’m a proud terrorist” (referring to Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon’s nickname), in which he railed against Ya’alon for his decision to consider labeling Lehava a terrorist organization.

    The article opens with the words: “Not only is the mall crawling with Arabs luring poor daughters of Israel into their nets, not ceasing by day or night, but the entire main street of Kiryat Haim, Ya’alon’s birthplace, is full of decorated spruce trees. Cafes and restaurants, including those sanctioned by the rabbinate, are adorned with decorations marking their holiday denoting the first of January. Not one person raised a voice in protest!”

    Further into his article Druckman, using stories that are meant to be read as parables, continues to elaborate his ideas. He comments on the statements of the defense minister and President Reuven Rivlin following the torching of the bilingual school in Jerusalem by Lehava activists: “I’m not at all surprised at the ideological and moral deterioration that was expressed in Ya’alon’s poor choice of words. It is a direct result of the expression of understanding and commiseration that were uttered by ‘the honorable’ president, directed at the bilingual school, which is merely a preparatory school for assured assimilation.”

    Toward the end of his article Druckman states that “truly, if this were a proper Jewish state one would expect it to elevate and value Lehava, rewarding it and the person at its head. As in the past, if in future circumstances I would have to extricate a daughter of Israel from the risk of conversion, I would follow halakhic rulings as stated in the Shulhan Arukh (the 16th century codex of Jewish law) to the point of breaking the Sabbath laws. I wouldn’t hesitate to ask for the assistance of Lehava activists, may these righteous people be blessed with all the blessings of the Torah.”

    In response to the article, Gadi Gvaryahu, head of Tag Meir (“Spreading the Light”), a coalition of organizations combating racism in the name of Judaism, sent a letter to the prime minister, who is also the acting justice minister. “If such a senior public official allows himself to praise the torching of a school what will more lowly officials say?” wrote Gvaryahu. He added that “these public statements amount to incitement to racism and sedition, aimed at fostering hatred toward the authorities and the courts, as well as arousing conflict and hostility between different sections of Israeli society. When such words are spoken by a rabbi holding public office it is needless to point out that they are not congruent with his position, and in their publication the rabbi is abusing his position.”

    This isn’t the first time Druckman has expressed such sentiments. He was previously detained after signing a rabbis’ petition calling on employers not to employ Arabs. Over the years he has had many disputes with Kiryat Motzkin’s mayor Haim Tzuri, as well as with other city councillors. It was learned last week that Tzuri is corresponding with cabinet members, chief rabbis and the state comptroller in an attempt to remove Druckman due to his controversial conduct.

  • Chicago rabbi quits synagogue after pro-Palestine stance creates tension

    There is little doubt that Rosen’s aggressively pro-Palestine views put him on the far left edge of the spectrum of views compared to nearly every other rabbi, no matter how liberal. But saying anything regarded as remotely pro-Palestinian has become dangerous terrain for any rabbi to explore. In the wake of the Gaza war, the American Jewish community has become more bifurcated than ever: either you are unquestioningly pro-Israel or you are considered anti-Israel. Even expressing sorrow for the deaths of innocents in the Gaza operation is today considered controversial.

    Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum of Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, New York’s gay and lesbian synagogue, experienced that first-hand after she read aloud the names of Palestinian children killed during the Gaza war along with those of Israeli casualties at a recent prayer service. She was met with intense criticism although, she is quick to acknowledge, that she also received an outpouring of support from congregants. A member of the congregation’s board of directors resigned, as did two other synagogue members, she said in an interview from Israel, where she came to recharge her spiritual batteries before Rosh Hashana.

  • Israel’s War Against Gaza’s Women & Their Bodies

    Promoting the Rape of Gaza and Its Women

    On July 21, Israeli media reported that Dov Lior, Chief Rabbi of the West Bank settlement Kiryat Arba, issued a religious edict on the rules of engagement during wartime, which he sent to the country’s Defense Minister. The edict stated that according to Jewish religious law, it is permissible to bomb innocent Palestinian civilians and “to exterminate the enemy.”

    While Lior is held in high regard, he is also associated with religious Zionism’s “conservative wing.” By contrast, David Stav, Chief Rabbi of the town of Shoham is considered to be a leader of religious Zionism’s “liberal” stream. In an op-ed published the same day news of Lior’s edict broke, Stav characterized the assault on Gaza as a holy war, which is mandated by the Torah itself and must be merciless.

    While these leading religious figures called for wars of extermination, some secular Israelis suggested carrying out attacks of a more perverse nature.

    The day after Lior and Stav made headlines, news emerged that the City Council of Or Yehuda, located in Israel’s coastal region, printed out and hung a banner supporting Israeli soldiers. The display included language suggesting the rape of Palestinian women. The text of the banner read: “Israeli soldiers, the residents of Or Yehuda are with you! Pound ‘their mother and come back home safely to your mother.”

    In the image, a woman labeled “Gaza,” wears conservative Muslim dress from the waist up and nearly nothing from the waist down, while striking an alluring pose and giving the viewer a come-hither glance. The accompanying Hebrew text reads: “Bibi, finish inside this time! Signed, citizens in favor of a ground assault.” Again, a double-entendre was used to promote war while referencing rape. In Hebrew, the colloquial meaning of “finish” is to ejaculate.


  • Extremist Israeli Rabbi Dov Lior’s Controversial Calls for Destruction of Gaza

    An Israeli right-wing rabbi has legitimised the destruction of Gaza “so that the south [of Israel] should no longer suffer”.

    Dov Lior, a Zionist religious leader and chief rabbi of the West Bank’s illegal settlement of Kiryat Arba, wrote in a religious ruling that according to the Torah Jews in the time of warfare may use “deterrent measures to exterminate the enemy”.

    The attacked nation “is permitted to punish the enemy population with whatever measures it deems proper, like blocking supplies or electricity,” Lior wrote, according to Haaretz. “It may bomb the entire area based on the judgment of the war minister and not wantonly put soldiers at risk.”

    “The defence minister may even order the destruction of Gaza so that the south should no longer suffer, and to prevent harm to members of our people who have long been suffering from the enemies surrounding us,” he wrote.

    The old rabbi is not new to similar controversy. In June 2011, he was arrested by Israeli police on suspicion of inciting violence for endorsing a religious book, the King’s Torah, which justifies Jews’ killings of non-Jews including babies.

  • American Jewish leaders: Netanyahu should disown ’irresponsible" statements against two-state solution - Jewish World News - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper

    American Jewish leaders Abraham Foxman, Rabbi Rick Jacobs and David Harris condemned recent statements by senior Israeli officials about the impossibility of a two-state solution, calling them irresponsible and saying they undermine the credibility of the government.

    Earlier this week, Economy Minister Naftali Bennett told a settlers group that the idea of a Palestinian state had reached a “dead end.” His remarks came days after Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon told Israel Radio that the government will not agree to the establishment of a Palestinian state based on pre-1967 borders and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon called the Arab Peace Initiative “spin” during a speech in Washington.

    “I think these are all irresponsible statements which do not in any way reflect the commitment of the Israeli government, not to mention the long-standing position of the U.S., that the two-state solution is the only possible solution,” said Rabbi Jacobs, president of the Union for Reform Judaism.

    Jacobs, who is in Jerusalem this week to attend the President’s Conference, added: “I think President Clinton said it best last night [at the 90th birthday celebration for President Shimon Peres] when he said a two-state solution is not the fantasy; a one state solution is. This is a black and white issue and Bennett and the others are irresponsible to speak otherwise.”

    Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League, told Haaretz that the statements “undermine the seriousness of the Israeli government” and compared them to the popular children’s game “whack-a-mole,” in which the furry animals pop up and need to be hammered down time after time.

    “This can happen once in a while, but I feel it is happening way too often,” Foxman said. “Members of the coalition continue to stray from the basic tenants of the government. [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu has made it clear that, even if we don’t know the details, there are contacts going on with the view towards reaching a two-state solution.”

    Nevertheless, Foxman called on Netanyahu to repudiate the comments so as to counteract false perceptions of Israel.

    “Netanyhau has to do this every time these politicians step out of line and undermine the credibility of the government,” Foxman said. “The irony is that these kinds of statements put an added onus on Israel. For, if to go by Bennett or Dannon, it is Israel that is saying no to the two-state solution, that becomes the imagery. When in fact it is not Israel that is not serious, it is the other side.”

    (Netanyahu told Reuters this week that he is responsible for setting foreign policy and that he supports Palestinian independence. “I will seek a negotiated settlement where you’d have a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes the Jewish state,” he said.)

    David Harris, the executive director of the American Jewish Committee, called Bennett’s remarks “stunningly shortsighted” in a statement on the organization’s website.

    “Bennett contravenes the outlook of Prime Minister Netanyahu and contradicts the vision presented earlier this month to the AJC Global Forum by Minister Tzipi Livni, chief Israeli negotiator with the Palestinians,” Harris said.

    “Livni stated clearly that a negotiated two-state settlement is the only way to assure that the State of Israel will remain both Jewish and democratic. That is a view we at AJC have long supported.”

  • IDF Rabbinate shows non-Jews the door in mezuzah book ruling
    Les non juifs n’ont pas les mêmes droits que les juifs en Israël

    By Chaim Levinson


    One ruling on Jewish law in the book, “Laws of the Mezuzah,” states: “The idea that views non-Jews as having equal rights in the state goes against the opinion of the Torah, and no representative of the state is authorized to act against the will of the Torah.”

    The book deals with questions about mezuzahs, which are fixed to doorposts by Jews as a sign of faith, on army bases, and was endorsed by the IDF’s chief rabbi, Brig. Gen. Rabbi Rafi Peretz.

  • ‘South Africa can learn from you’ | The Jewish Chronicle

    There was much that South Africa could learn from its Jewish community, particularly its notion of community, said Cyril Ramaphosa, newly-elected vice president of the ANC, the country’s ruling party.
    Mr Ramaphosa was speaking at an event organised by Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein to discuss challenges facing the nation.
    Stating that a community was defined by “an essential and over-riding concern with the interest, progress and well-being of all its members”, Mr Ramaphosa said: “This I’ve found to be very prevalent in the Jewish community.”
    Addressing Mr Ramaphosa frankly on the Israel-Palestine question, Rabbi Goldstein spoke of the community’s “deep connection” to the Jewish state and the perception that the government was biased against it. “What we expect from our government is balance and a sense of proportionality.

  • Widely Cited Government Study on Iranian Spies ‘Pulled for Revisions’ - ProPublica

    Un rapport officiel américain sur le ministère iranien chargé des services de sécurité a été retiré, tellement il s’appuyait sur des données peu fiables. En fait, il s’inscrivait dans la campagne idéologique visant à préparer l’opinion à une guerre contre l’Iran

    #Iran #désinformation

    • The report’s source for the spy claim is a 2007 essay published on a now-defunct website by Rabbi Daniel Zucker, who is chair of a group called Americans for Democracy in the Middle East and has frequently written in support of the MEK.

      The Zucker piece in turn cites a 2005 post on another now-defunct pro-MEK website called iranterror.com.

  • Rabbi Dan Avital and Rebbitzin Naomi Avital of Chabad of the Australian Capital Territory – Canberra, Australia Hereby Asked to Admit or Deny Matters Relating to US Ambassador to Australia Jeffrey Bleich

    1. Admit that Rabbi Dan and Naomi Avital moved to Canberra in the beginning of 2009, and established a branch of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement in Canberra .

    2. Admit that Jeffrey Bleich is an American lawyer from California who is the United States Ambassador to Australia.

    3. Admit that Jeffrey Bleich is a Yid.

    4. Admit that around 2007-2008 Jeffrey Bleich founded and Co-Chaired “Obama for America”‘s National Finance Committee.

    Please continue @:


  • Obama campaigns with rabbi who doesn’t want “too many Arabs” in Israel | Al Akhbar English

    Obama was introduced with warm praise by Rabbi Eric Yoffie, the outgoing president of the Union for Reform Judaism, and arguably the most prominent Reform Jew in the United States. Yoffie is a major Obama campaign surrogate, whose endorsement is featured on a pro-Obama website created by the liberal Zionist Israel lobbying group, J Street.


    Earlier this year, Yoffie published the transcript of an argument he had with a right-wing friend who helped him lobby against the Palestinian Authority’s bid for statehood at the UN. He entitled the piece, “I prefer to live with Jews.”

  • Ministers and general to honor Rabbi charged with incitement

    Much has been written recently about the detainment of Dov Lior, the rabbi who endorsed the gentile-slaying manual, Torat Ha’Melekh. Lior ignored a police summons for a year, then played the victim card when he finally hauled into an interrogation room, he and his supporters conveniently forgetting that a regular citizen who would try to pull this stunt would be spend a few days in detention. Lior’s detainment brought his storied racist past and the book itself back into public consciousness. The PM and several other ministers have feebly denounced Lior’s disregard for the law and Torat Ha’Melekh, generally saying that one “ought to respect the law”, and not venturing beyond that.

    Now, we learn from NRG that tomorrow, Lior will receive an award from the Hebron Mount Local Council, crowning him as an “honoree of the settlement movement”. This in itself is not much of a surprise; the settlers always enjoyed precisely this sort of baiting the government which funds them. What is surprising is that two ministers and a general will also be present at the ceremony.

  • Rule of law bolstered following Rabbi Lior riots – JPost

    Lior, who was apprehended by the police and taken to be investigated over his alleged endorsement of a controversial book titled, Torat Hamelekh dealing with halachic permission to kill gentiles, was released after an hour and immediately joined the throngs of protesters at a demonstration at the entrance to the capital.

    The 2009 book by Yizhar Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira gives Jews permission to preemptively kill gentiles under certain conditions in wartime.

  • Il faudrait arrêter, maintenant, avec ces théories du complot...

    Rabbi : Katsav punished for backing pullout - Ynetnews

    Rabbi Elyakim Levanon, who serves as chief rabbi of the Elon Moreh settlement and the regional rabbi of Samaria, says former President Moshe Katsav’s conviction of two counts of rape is not directly related to his actions.
    According to the rabbi, Katsav is being punished for not acting against the disengagement from Gaza as president.


  • Hanukkah in March : Light a Candle for Gaza | Shalom Rav

    Last December, on the third anniversary of Israel’s Operation Cast Lead, Rabbi Alissa Wise and I submitted an article to the Washington Post in which we asked the public to mark this occasion by lighting a Hanukkah candle for Gaza. The piece was edited further and we were told that it would run in WaPo’s online “On Faith” section.

    At the eleventh hour, one day before our piece was to run, we were asked to make some more substantive edits in ways that would have significantly altered the message of the article. Unlike the earlier changes, these weren’t editorial tweaks – they were all too familiar pro-Cast Lead talking points.

    Mondoweiss raconte cet épisode glorieux du Washington Post et, surtout, publie la liste des modifications demandées.

    Un grotesque terrifiant, pour un journal dont la fiche Wikipédia rappelle :

    Recherche de la vérité, indépendance : la publication des rapports secrets du Pentagone sur la guerre du Viêt Nam ou les révélations sur le scandale du Watergate ont démontré que le Washington Post vivait selon certains principes.

  • Rabbi Aviner : Don’t read talkbacks - Ynetnews

    Shlomo Aviner, one of Religious Zionism’s leading rabbis, has stated that responses to articles on websites should not be read due to fears that doing so would lead to religious and moral transgressions.
    In a conversation with Ynet, Rabbi Aviner stressed that this isn’t a halachic decree or a comprehensive ban from a higher rabbinic authority, it is a ruling he gave to his students after receiving a question via text message which asked: “After reading a ’kosher’ article is it all right to take a look at the talkbacks?”

    The rabbi’s response: “No, due to major fears that it would lead to ’lashon hara’ (gossip, slander), humiliation and valueless time consumption”. The question and answer session was published in the Maayanei Hayeshua weekly which is given out in synagogues.

    Le Monde préfère nous informer de l’odieuse censure du Web par Hugo Chavez. Pourtant, avec les rabbins israéliens, on a largement de quoi rigoler.