A Funding Fight

Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson hosts the media on Feb. 23 to discuss the need for a clean, full-year Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill for fiscal year 2015. (Official DHS photo by Barry Bahler.)

As attacks on and threats levied against Jewish communities are on the rise around the world, a fight is raging in Congress over the funding of the Department of Homeland Security. Now, Jewish communal officials and security experts in the United States are beginning to worry that the possibility of a departmental shutdown would strip… Read More

BDS with a Twist California campus divestment measures target more than Israel

Demonstrators take part in a boycott, divestment and sanctions protest against Israel in Melbourne, Australia.

While two recent student resolutions initiated by boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement advocates in California ultimately had different fates, the episodes share a common twist: lumping additional nations and political entities with Israel as divestment targets. A resolution urging Stanford University to “divest from companies violating human rights in occupied Palestine” by a BDS… Read More

Hope and Appreciation Inaugural Times of Israel Gala focuses on best, brightest

1

In what was decidedly planned by organizers as a nonpolitical event, former Israeli President Shimon Peres raised eyebrows Sunday night at the inaugural Times of Israel Gala in New York City when he seemingly lambasted current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent calls for Jews under attack in Europe to settle in Israel. “Don’t come to… Read More

The Resilience of Alan Gross

Alan Gross and his wife, Judy, attend President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address on Jan. 20. (Olivier Douliery/Sipa USA/Newscom)

At The President’s State of the Union address on Jan. 20, Alan Gross raised his hand high in the air in a sign of triumph as television cameras zoomed in. At a welcome-home event at Temple Beth Ami in Rockville that same month, the man who spent five years in a Cuban prison wore a… Read More

Above the Fray Defense is one bright spot in tense Israel relationship

JONATHAN ERNST/REUTERS/Newscom

Although much attention in recent weeks has been focused on the strained political relationship between Israel and the United States, cooperation between the defense establishment of the two nations continues to be close and, if the Feb. 4 Senate Armed Services Committee hearings on President Barack Obama’s nomination of physicist Ashton Carter to replace Defense… Read More

Celebrating Israel

020915_toi

Hundreds of Israel’s biggest personalities and supporters will pack into the Waldorf Astoria in New York City this weekend to celebrate the Jewish state. The Times of Israel First Annual Gala, which will honor Israel’s prominent politicians, advocates, innovators, actors and athletes, will center on the theme “Telling Israel’s Story.” And in the midst of… Read More

A Very Real Challenge

For Orthodox Jews, President Barack Obama’s proposed tax reforms present a numbers-crunching paradox: Income he designates as well-off may mean just getting by for large families. Obama’s 2015 budget, which was introduced Monday, aims to offset economic breaks to upper-income families to help working- and middle-class Americans, a key goal of his State of the… Read More

Dermer’s Dance Eyes turn to Israeli ambassador amid firestorm over Netanyahu invite

2

A week after House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) touched off a political and diplomatic firestorm by announcing an invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to Congress, attention turned to Israel’s ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, and his role in the controversy. How serious you believe the U.S.-born Dermer’s role is in setting… Read More

Custody battle in Vienna generating international uproar

1

VIENNA — In an apartment in the Austrian capital, Beth Alexander is deleting hundreds of photos of her 5-year-old twin boys from Facebook. In one picture, Benjamin and Samuel are laughing as they hold a toy. In another they are waiting to be served lunch in their native Vienna. The ordinary snapshots are the kind… Read More

‘The Return’ takes new look at Polish Jewish revival

012315_rabbi_sm copy

LOS ANGELES — On the crumbling wall of a former Polish synagogue, adjacent to a one-time Jewish ritual bath converted into a car wash, a graffiti artist has painted “Jews, We Miss You” in Polish and German. The message, scrawled on the wall in the Polish town of Dabrowno, is an apt message in contemporary… Read More