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Territorial Imperative: forward to the past

Territorial Imperative: forward to the past

In The Territorial Imperative, Robert Ardrey argues that a universal, primal instinct encompasses both the animal kingdom and humankind: the compulsion to possess and defend territory. Without territory, “territorial species” cease to exist.

Just one problem, which Ardrey, try as he might, cannot quite wedge into his category: the Jews. For nearly 1,900 years, the Jews had no territory and were subjected to terrible persecutions, yet still flourished as scholars, traders, and even builders of community. Clearly, “territorial imperative” needs to be redefined. For the Torah, territory is something less to be defended than to be sanctified, and something whose importance rises as its size shrinks.

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Conservative Lens

Why I say Merry Christmas

AS a Jew, and a religious one at that, this week, I am wishing my fellow Americans a Merry Christmas. Not “Happy Holidays.” Merry Christmas. I write, “my fellow Americans” because, as reported by the Pew Research poll released Wednesday, Dec. 18, nine in 10 Americans say they celebrate Christmas. Apparently, many Americans have forgotten that Christmas is not only a Christian holy day, but also an American national holiday. Just as we wish one another a “Happy Thanksgiving” or a ...

Last Updated ( Friday, 27 December 2013 04:32 )

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View from Central Park

As a child suffers . . .

Heartbreakingly, many of us have heard of the tragic plight of the little boy from Texas, Rephael Elisha Meir ben Devora Cohen. Aside from the fact that many of us are praying for him, a petition sent out on behalf of his family asks for 100,000 signatures so the government can make an exception and dispense non-FDA approved experimental drugs in a last ditch effort to save this precious child’s life. Conventional medical treatment has failed. At first many signed the petition, not knowing...
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View from Central Park

No nuance from American Studies Association

The American Studies Association (ASA) has officially joined the BDS movement — Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions — against Israel. ASA has heeded the Palestinian call, joining the many Europeans already boycotting Israel. For American intellectuals to stand opposed to Israel in this way is unprecedented. To fight injustice, oppression and suffering is crucial. To pick and choose who you will take a stand against based on your prejudices versus realities on the ground is a different story...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 19 December 2013 12:36 )

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View From Denver

Denverite: ‘I survived Mengele six or seven times’

Denverite: ‘I survived Mengele six or seven times’I COULDN’T believe my ears. If I read the body language correctly, my interlocutor’s level of belief wasn’t much greater. After all, it is now 68 years since the end of the Holocaust — and even longer since Cantor Zachary Kutner was in Auschwitz — but just now, something clicked. Something dawned on him. It took some 70 years for the realization, not, perhaps, of the facts themselves, but of their weight. In a mixture of anguish and wonder — sort of counting them up as he went — ...

Last Updated ( Friday, 20 December 2013 04:17 )

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Shabbat Times

JTA News

Foreign Affairs Committee’s Royce and Engel to visit Israel

Marcy Oster Reps. Ed Royce and Eliot Engel of the House Foreign Affairs Committee will visit Israel this week. ... [Link]

Turkish Jews can stay mum on Israel’s Gaza op, Turkish Jewish intellectuals say

Marcy Oster Jewish citizens of Turkey are under no obligation to comment on Israel’s operation in Gaza, a group of Jewish intellectuals in Turkey said in an open letter. ... [Link]

U.S. calls on Israel to reverse land appropriation

Marcy Oster The United States called on Israel to cancel the government appropriation of West Bank land in the Etzion bloc, while Israeli ministers praised and panned the decision. ... [Link]

Artists in Brazilian exhibition protest Israeli funding

Marcy Oster Most of the artists participating in a major Brazilian art event protested funding for the show from the Israeli government. ... [Link]

Thousands rally against escalating anti-Semitism in Britain

Marcy Oster Thousands of people gathered for a rally in central London to protest the rise in anti-Semitism in Britain. ... [Link]

New children’s books: a tale from Spain, easing a young girl’s pain

mbrodsky Jacqueline Jules was inspired to write “Never Say a Mean Word, A Tale from Medieval Spain” by a Torah commentary she read — more than a dozen years ago. ... [Link]

U.N. peacekeepers flee Syrian rebel captives

Marcy Oster Filipino troops from the U.N. peacekeeping force on the Syria-Israel border escaped from the Syrian rebels holding them captive. ... [Link]

ICC prosecutor: ‘Palestine’ can file war crimes charges against Israel

Marcy Oster “Palestine” is eligible to join the Rome Statute and file war crimes charges against Israel, the International Criminal Court prosecutor said. ... [Link]

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