Is Israel shutting the door on skeptics?

We support efforts to combat the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement that seeks to undermine Israel’s legitimacy. But the anti-BDS bill that Israel’s Knesset adopted on March 6 will neither halt nor diminish BDS activities, and will not make Israel more secure. All it will really accomplish is to make Israel a less welcoming… Read More

Not the suspect we expected

For all we know, the person who committed the lion’s share of the bomb threats against Jewish institutions really is a right-wing anti-Semitic nut, with David Duke on his speed dial. But that isn’t the description of Juan Thompson, who was arrested by the FBI on March 3 on suspicion of phoning in eight bomb… Read More

Do as we say, not as we did

Last week, at its annual conference, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs did something commendable in our highly charged political environment. The group, whose member agencies advocate primarily from the left of the political center, welcomed and listened politely to a presentation from a pair of more conservative pundits: Noah Silverman, congressional affairs director for… Read More

Pence to the rescue

The number of reported anti-Semitic incidents in North American cities keeps rising. At last count, among other things, there were more than 60 bomb threats called in to JCCs in the United States and Canada, a bomb threat called in to the ADL office in New York and several Jewish schools and the toppling of… Read More

Sour on Sarsour

What’s Linda Sarsour’s angle? The American activist, who was a surrogate for Sen. Bernie Sanders during his presidential campaign and an organizer of the Women’s March that brought half a million people to Washington in January to protest Donald Trump, last week helped start a crowdfunding campaign to repair more than 100 gravestones that vandals… Read More

The Mideast can’t live ‘with either one’

In his month in office, President Donald Trump has challenged several longstanding American policies, only to back off later. The result has been to leave unclear exactly what American policy is toward China, Russia or NATO, among other things. Last week, at his news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the president seemed to… Read More

A school protects its children

The first impulse of most institutions when confronted by an accusation of child abuse by one of its staff is to squelch it. High-profile examples include the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State, the widespread abuse scandal in the Catholic Church and the accusation that administrators of Yeshiva University High School in New York City… Read More

Cracks in the wall

Will we or won’t we get a wall? As a candidate, President Donald Trump repeatedly promised to build a “big, beautiful wall” on the border with Mexico and pledged that it would be paid for by Mexico. As the commander-in-chief, he has repeated that promise — even if he has waffled a bit on exactly… Read More

Everyone’s Talmud

Until modern times, the Talmud was a major Jewish preoccupation. This sprawling compendium of the law, lore and commentary of successive generations of early rabbinic scholars provided Jews with a human map for following the law of the Hebrew Bible and the six books of the Mishnah. The fact is that not many Jews —… Read More