Tourism to Israel Is Down, but Optimism Abounds Despite decline in visitors, experts remain positive about country’s tourist offerings

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Senior reporter Marc Shapiro recently traveled to Israel as part of a Jewish press trip that was sponsored by Israel’s Ministry of Tourism. The weeklong trip, from July 22 to 28, allowed Shapiro and seven other journalists to travel throughout the country to Jerusalem, the Negev Desert, Tel Aviv, Jaffa and more. The following articles… Read More

Museum on the Seam: Not Your Average Art Venue Jerusalem sociopolitical art museum in danger of shutting down

A banner declaring “The Revolution Is Not Over” greets museum visitors. (Photo by Marc Shapiro)

When people think of Jerusalem, biblical history comes to mind: the Western Wall, the Old City and other sacred relics of the past. But situated in a modest building on the borders of Mea Shearim, Musara and East Jerusalem is what one might call an anomaly for Jerusalem, a contemporary art museum with alluring and… Read More

Israel’s Biblical Chef Moshe Basson’s culinary creations draw from the Torah and his multiethnic upbringing

Above: Chef Moshe Basson, known as Israel’s Biblical Chef, speaks with a group of journalists at his restaurant, The Eucalyptus. (Photo by Marc Shapiro)

Many people connect to the earth by going on hikes, connect to the Bible by going to synagogue or church and connect with food by eating and cooking it. For Chef Moshe Basson of The Eucalyptus in Jerusalem, all of those pieces come together in his work. From picking his own herbs and vegetables to… Read More

A Matter of Conversion Targeting modern Orthodox rabbi, Israeli rabbinate draws battle line

Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, rabbi of the Jewish settlement of Efrat conducts the Pidyon HaBen ceremony for a 
30-day-old first-born son in Efrat, West Bank last month.
(Gershon Elinson/Flash90)

TEL AVIV — There’s no shortage of Israelis who want to reform the office of the Chief Rabbinate. Ranging from advocates of religion-state separation to leaders of Israel’s non-Orthodox movements to newspaper columnists, some want to end the Rabbinate’s monopoly over the country’s religious services; others want to dissolve it entirely. But this week, the… Read More

Obama Gets Candid on Middle East President speaks about Israeli policy, Iran deal at Adas Israel

President Barack Obama shakes hands with Adas Israel Congregation Senior Rabbi Gil Steinlauf.

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama went on the charm offensive last week, declaring publically what his most ardent Jewish Democratic supporters have said he’s expressed privately: a love of the Jewish people and Israel. Speaking before an audience of 1,000 at Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, D.C., Obama joked about his status as the “first… Read More

At Home in the Lab

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BEERSHEVA, Israel — In sync with a worldwide momentum to attract more women to STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and math — for their study and career choices, Israel’s Council for Higher Education (CHE) is spearheading a concerted nationwide effort to attract and retain more women into academia in those fields. The results from… Read More

AIPAC Doubles Down Focus on Iran

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke to a crowd of over 2,000 people at this year's JFNA GA. The keyword: security.

Organizers for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee told attendees of its Policy Conference 2015 that unlike previous years –where a number of issues and pieces of legislation made up the slate of lobbying initiatives – this Tuesday delegates should focus solely on “stopping Iran.” “When we go to the Hill on Tuesday, we will… Read More

Jewish Groups Slam Boteach Ad on Susan Rice

WASHINGTON — An array of Jewish groups condemned an ad by a foundation associated with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach accusing National Security Adviser Susan Rice of turning a blind eye to genocide. “Susan Rice has a blind spot: Genocide,” said the advertisement appearing in Saturday’s New York Times, touting a talk on Iran this week in… Read More

The Other Pro-Israel Lobby

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“Usually after the first event, it’s like a firestorm,” said Pastor Scott Thomas, the Florida state director for Christians United for Israel (CUFI). “The excitement hits, the understanding settles in.” That, in short, illustrates the process through which CUFI has become America’s largest pro-Israel organization in less than a decade of existence. In January, CUFI… Read More