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View from Central Park

Name calling

EVEN if the Prime Minister of Israel were the biggest incompetent loser around, it would still be inappropriate for a senior US government official to publically engage in name calling against him. After all, Benjamin Netanyahu is not a private citizen. He is the prime minister of the State of Israel, a leader of the Jewish people. Basic respect should be a given.

But Tuesday, in The Atlantic, an unnamed senior source in the Obama administration sank to low, obscene name calling. The subject was Netanyahu. Aside from the sting of it, it was wholly inappropriate, to say the least.

Imagine if an anonymous senior official in Israel’s cabinet would call President Obama by an obscene name, and intentionally leak it to a journalist. It wouldn’t fly. An apology would immediately be verbalized, distancing Israel from such uncouth, unprofessional behavior (not to mention the stupidity on the diplomatic plane).

Last Updated ( Thursday, 30 October 2014 11:30 )

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Tipping point

UNFORTUNATELY this past week’s mikveh scandal involving the accused Rabbi Barry Freundel is another in a chain of scandals that has been creeping upon the Orthodox Jewish community, painfully with all too much frequency. Sadly, I know that other denominations in Judaism are riddled with their own share of scandals. Being Orthodox, though, I am more familiar with and — for better or for worse — feel more affected when the scandals are from within the Orthodox community. The Freundel scanda...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 23 October 2014 12:31 )

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Zuckerbergs...role models

What a refreshing change. Usually when I am checking email at my Yahoo address (I know, I’m old school), there are news stories highlighted, one more ridiculous than the next. Oftentimes they’re about celebrities’ ostentatious displays of wealth and excess, political pushing, or just random irrelevant information. This time the title of an article finally made me succumb to clicking on a Yahoo story. Mark Zuckerberg and his wife have donated $25 million to the Centers for Disease Control...
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Four Species, two complaints

With Sukkot upon us it’s time for the Four Species. In Jewish communities around the world, especially in Israel, and specifically in Jerusalem, there are hundreds of booths selling the Four Species. There is a fragrance in the air: fresh cut wood and the citrusy etrog. Heaven! In search of the perfect etrog, people are scrutinizing etrogim with eagle eyes. Like a baby swaddled and cradled, the etrog is wrapped in silky and golden gossamer flaxen threads. Along with the building of the sukka...

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 08 October 2014 16:09 )

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An ironic thank you

It seems like the SodaStream controversy has barely died down when Israel faces another culinary BDS threat. Only this time the source is from the inside. So far. Shamir Salads — you’ve probably passed the brand in the refrigerator section of a market here or there, identified by its signature green leaf-red tomato graphic icon — is being tossed about now as the evil factory in question. All those divine salads of the Middle East, such as hummus, baba-genouj and Matboucha (a Turkish pepp...
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Shabbat Times

JTA News

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Ron Kampeas The United States and Israel will maintain “unprecedented coordination” as nuclear talks go forward with Iran, the White House said after a summit of the two nation’s security advisers. ... [Link]

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Julie Wiener Haaretz, often described as Israel’s New York Times, didn’t do itself any favors Thursday when it published a cartoon featuring Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flying a plane into the World Trad... [Link]

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Ron Kampeas Israeli media reported that he allegedly was planning an attack on Jewish targets in Peru. ... [Link]

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Ron Kampeas His remarks could signal a readiness by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to champion a Palestinian bid for statehood in the wake of collapsed peace talks. ... [Link]

Kerry: Netanyahu slur is ‘disgraceful’

Ron Kampeas The secretary of state said the derogatory reference by an anonymous White House staffer is damaging and does not reflect the president or himself. ... [Link]

Temple Mount to reopen, but with restrictions

Ron Kampeas The Obama administration called on Israel to reopen the area to Muslim worshippers after it was closed in the wake of an assassination attempt on a Jewish activist. ... [Link]

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Raffi Wineburg The Florida teenager not only helped set up a clinic for poor people in Guatemala, he even gave eye exams and ran some tests like an EKG. ... [Link]

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