Looking for a Quickie Jewish Wedding? Call Rabbi Mel

Rabbi Mel Hecht marries Craig Silver and Karen Butt of Connecticut at Red Rock Canyon near Las Vegas. (Ron Kampeas)

LAS VEGAS — Rabbi Mel Hecht clutches his black coffee and paces in front of the Dunkin’ Donuts just down the road from the Red Rock Casino. It’s 2:27 p.m., and the couple said they’d be there by 2:20. The photographer has an appointment at Bellagio at 5 p.m., and he wanted to get started… Read More

One Month after Iran Deal Implementation, U.S. Lawmakers Air Concerns

The House Foreign Affairs Committee meets on Feb. 11 to evaluate the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal. Some Jewish lawmakers want sanctions. (Daniel Schere)

Less than a month after Iran was judged to have curbed its nuclear program to the extent that international sanctions could begin to be lifted, U.S. lawmakers assessed the success of the agreement reached between Iran and six world powers, including the United States. At a Feb. 11 House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing, members also… Read More

Loud and Clear! BBYO’s Baltimore message of social justice resonates with Jewish teens

coverRotator

More than 2,400 teenage Jews from around the globe came to Baltimore last week and were spurred to action by the words of NAACP president and CEO Cornell Brooks, who told them the future was in their hands. “We have a generation that is not prematurely pessimistic, not prematurely cynical about what they can do,… Read More

Duty Calls Responsibility drives unimpressed New Hampshire Jewish voters

politics

Less than thrilled is how some New Hampshire Jewish voters describe their feelings toward the presidential candidates vying for votes in the Granite State. Despite the lackluster enthusiasm for this year’s candidates, the Jews of New Hampshire will do their duty and head to the polls on Feb. 9. “I’ve been a lifelong Democrat,” said… Read More

From Crofton to Clinton Joel Wanger cites his Jewish faith as a factor in becoming politically active

Joel Wanger (right) says working for progressive candidates such as Hillary Clinton is an important way to “live” his Judaism. (Provided)

It was the deep-seated Jewish values of social justice that spurred Crofton, Md., native Joel Wanger to become involved in politics. Wanger “fell in love” with the campaign lifestyle while in college at Northeastern University in Boston, he said, prompting him to apply for the Israel Government Fellows program that is run by Masa Israel…. Read More

Jewish Nonprofit Testifies on Food Insecurity among Military, Veteran Families

A Jewish nonprofit dedicated to ending hunger in the United States and Israel provided testimony on Capitol Hill on Jan. 12. On behalf of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, Abby J. Leibman, president and CEO of the nonprofit, testified before the House Committee on Agriculture’s Subcommittee on Nutrition. The Jewish nonprofit is leading nationwide… Read More

Day School Groups Plan Merger New national organization to speak for 375 day schools

The Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School. (Henry H. Lewis Contractors, LLC via Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School)

Regional day school heads are expressing support for a merger announced last week of five North American Jewish day school organizations. Those groups represent more than 375 schools from across the denominational spectrum. “It’s very exciting news for the  entire day school field,” said Rabbi Mitchel Malkus, head of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School,… Read More

Eliminated! OU Advocacy closes its Maryland office

Attendees of last summer’s OU Advocacy’s legislative breakfast chat with Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford. (Anthony Marill Photography)

There is no one staffing the Orthodox Union’s Maryland Advocacy office now that the new legislative session in Annapolis is underway. The position of regional director, the organization’s only full-time staff position dedicated to Maryland issues, was eliminated Dec. 31. Maury Litwack, director of state political affairs for OU Advocacy Center, confirmed no one has… Read More

One-Upmanship Candidates seek more than votes with pro-Israel pandering

Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz has made little secret of his effort to score pro-Israel political points. (EPA/CJ GUNTHER/Newscom )

Sens. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) put forward legislation last week to force the current administration to move the United States embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The bill has little chance of getting through Congress, but it’s yet another example of a presidential candidate, in this case Cruz, loudly proclaiming… Read More