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Feb 08th

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Getting the lay-up of it

Getting the lay-up of it

Former Maccabi Tel Aviv coach leapfrogs (like LeBron) to Cavaliers

WASHINGTON — With the clock winding down on a recent game here, Cleveland Cavaliers coach David Blatt was still barking out instructions to his players despite enjoying a late 40-point lead over the Washington Wizards.

Things didn’t come quite as easy early this season for the rookie NBA coach and his team, which had great expectations with the return of four-time MVP LeBron James via free agency from the Miami Heat.

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Leonard Nimoy: Mr. Spock, and more

Leonard Nimoy: Mr. Spock, and moreThis article was originally published in 1991. In the wake of Leonard Nimoy’s Feb. 27 death, the piece is republished with the permission of the author. LOS ANGELES — As a struggling young actor in the early 1950s, Leonard Nimoy, inspired by the rebirth of the Jewish state and childhood memories of Zionist rallies in Boston Garden, considered making aliyah to join Habimah, Israel’s national theater. Upon cooler reflection on the huge language barrier he would face, Nimoy dropped the idea...
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Will 'Ida' take home best foreign film?

Will 'Ida' take home best foreign film?LOS ANGELES — For the past few decades, Holocaust films have been common — and often victorious — fare at the Academy Awards. But this year, the Polish nominee in the Foreign Language Film category ventures into the less frequently explored territory of the Holocaust’s aftermath. “Ida,” writer-director Pawel Pawlikowki’s stark black-and-white film, is an unsparing look at the discomfiting void left behind after the obliteration of Poland’s Jews. Set in 1962 Poland, the film te...

Last Updated ( Friday, 20 February 2015 09:26 )

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Up, up and away: How American vets created Israel's air force

Up, up and away: How American vets created Israel's air forceWHY DID a bunch of Jewish American GIs — several of whom did not, by their own admission, have a strong Jewish identity — risk their American citizenship, jail time and, not least, life itself, for what could only be described as the ultimate daredevil mission? Was it just for the thrill of risk taking for which pilots, particularly in aviation’s early days, were known? This is the core question that spurs “Above & Beyond,” the recently released documentary about the unlikely sto...

Last Updated ( Friday, 13 February 2015 08:50 )

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From Rangers fan to NHL top boss

From Rangers fan to NHL top bossNEW YORK — In the late 1960s, Gary Bettman would finish classes at his Queens high school, take the subway to Madison Square Garden and whip out his student ID card to land a ticket for 50 cents to a New York Rangers game. He’d sit in the arena doing his homework until the game began and he would cheer on favorite players like Rod Gilbert and Eddie Giacomin. Though the Rangers were a storied hockey club, Bettman was drawn to the newer franchises. Growing up in a single-parent home, “I di...
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State Dept. forcefully denies Kerry plans to restart talks

Ron Kampeas There are anxieties in Israel that President Barack Obama plans to use his lame duck year to impose a peace deal on the sides; Obama administration officials say there is no basis for such fears. ... [Link]

Thriving indie Jewish communities join forces to create rabbinic fellowship

Ben Harris The communities of the Jewish Emergent Network have been widely hailed for their innovative spirit and proven success in attracting the young and unaffiliated. ... [Link]

Twitter: 125,000 accounts suspended for terror threats, most ISIS-related

Marcy Oster The online social networking service said it has increased the size of the team that reviews reports of abuse. ... [Link]

Muslim Waqf opposes expanded egalitarian prayer area at Western Wall

Marcy Oster Meanwhile, a plan announced by the United States to install surveillance cameras on the Temple Mount to deter violence has been delayed due to disagreement between Israel and Jordan. ... [Link]

When Ted Cruz slams Trump for ‘chutzpah,’ should Jews be offended or honored?

Ron Kampeas Cruz’s critics say Cruz’s use of the Yiddish term was yet another anti-Semitic dog whistle, but JTA’s Ron Kampeas isn’t so sure. ... [Link]

Orthodox Jewish teen comes up short in Olympics ping-pong bid, sits out on Shabbat

Marcy Oster Estee Ackerman, 14, of New York, lost in her first two days at the trials and eschewed the Saturday competition. ... [Link]

Valentine’s Day: An ideal date for Jewish weddings?

Lisa Keys Maybe it’s romantic; perhaps it’s convenient. A writer explores why some Jewish couples get married on this traditionally Christian day of love. ... [Link]

Netanyahu eyeing measures to punish lawmakers for inappropriate behavior

Marcy Oster The remarks come days after three Arab-Israeli lawmakers met with the families of Palestinians who killed or attempted to kill Israelis. ... [Link]

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