A growing awareness of disabilities

Discussions about how to include Jews with disabilities in community life often turn to the hardware of inclusion: the need for building ramps and automatic doors, retrofitting classrooms, employing American Sign Language interpreters and special-needs teachers. But there is also a software of inclusion – in the words of disability-rights advocate Shelly Cristensen, “the mind-set… Read More

Birthright welcomes the ‘veterans’

Birthright Israel was created with the idea that every Jew is entitled to a free trip to Israel. It operates on the premise that if a Jew experiences the Jewish state as a young adult, between 18 and 26, he or she will develop an attachment to the country and become a more committed Jew…. Read More

Inadvertently offensive

The Economist made some waves recently with an editorial cartoon showing the difficulty the U.S. and Iran are having coming to terms. President Hassan Rouhani is depicted reaching over a chasm to President Obama, but is being held back by a variety of hardline figures, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Mr. Obama, on the… Read More

Morocco’s Arab street maneuvers

Morocco is a stable, Western-oriented Arab monarchy, which is also known for its cooperation with Israel dating back decades. Last fall, King Muhammed VI came to Washington as part of an effort to deepen the relationship between the U.S. and Morocco. At that time, Ambassador-at-Large Serge Berdugo, president of the Jewish community of Morocco and… Read More

Ariel Sharon without apology

Ariel Sharon’s long, highly decorated and celebrated life in Israel’s military and political spheres is a rich source of material for constructing a meaningful remembrance. The complexity of his life and the different roles he played in service of the state of Israel has been on display since the general and former premier died Jan…. Read More

Harsh words and Iran sanctions

Rabbi Jack Moline, the incoming director of the National Jewish Democratic Committee, last week charged into the debate over enhanced Iran sanctions in a way that raised eyebrows and some concern. An Iran sanctions bill has won a bipartisan majority in the Senate, but not yet enough votes to overcome a promised veto from President… Read More

A Christian awakening

Israel is home to 130,000 Arab Christian citizens. A small percentage of the country’s overwhelmingly Muslim Arabic-speaking minority, these Christians have until recently been united with Muslims in identifying as Palestinians in opposition to Israel’s Jewish majority. But that may be starting to change, as some Christians have begun calling for a reconsideration of the… Read More

Requiem for a headline

If it was possible to make last week’s kidnapping and grisly murder of Menachem Stark, a New York real estate developer, landlord and Satmar Chasid, any worse, the New York Post managed to do it. On the front page of its Sunday edition, beside a large photo of Mr. Stark — which featured him with… Read More

New elections in Beit Shemesh

In a much anticipated decision issued last week, the Jerusalem District Court nullified the October re-election victory of Beit Shemesh Mayor Moshe Abutbul. To the extent that the judgment represents the repudiation of the heavy-handed and downright illegal tactics employed by those allegedly allied with the haredi-backed mayor, we applaud the decision. Now the voters… Read More

Mixed reactions to U.S. snooping

When American-born Ron Dermer was appointed as Israel’s top diplomat to the United States, it was widely seen as a move by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to place his most-trusted confidante in the capital city most capable of influencing the Jewish state’s No. 1 existential threat. Accounts at the time claimed that Dermer, who grew… Read More