Wealth Versus Democracy

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In the world of politics and diplomacy, we are accustomed to understatement and a fair degree of obfuscation in much of the public discourse that unfolds around us. So when someone says what’s really on their mind, and does so in a direct and unvarnished fashion, it gets our attention. That is so particularly when… Read More

Let School System Do Its Homework

Montgomery County’s Board of Education was not being a Grinch when it removed the names of religious holidays from the school calendar and replaced them with secular names such as “winter break.” The board vote drew national attention and became an instant cause for extremists, hatemongers and conspiracy theorists. But with its vote, the board… Read More

Working with Governor-Elect Hogan

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Maryland’s Republican governor-elect, Larry Hogan, sailed to his historic victory Nov. 4 on the tide of a poorly run campaign by his Democratic challenger, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown, and fatigue after eight years of Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley. Yet, little is known about Hogan, other than that he is pro-business, that he wants to cut… Read More

The Mighty Dollar at Brookings

Martin Indyk.
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

In September, news that Martin Indyk, a director of the prestigious Brookings Institution, former U.S. ambassador to Israel and U.S. Mideast peace negotiator, had accepted a $14.8 million gift from Qatar on behalf of Brookings raised the question of foreign-influence peddling in Washington. At the time, critics of the gift pointed out that Qatar funds… Read More

Jewish Community Recharger

On Sunday, close to 3,000 Jewish professionals and lay leaders will gather at the National Harbor on the Potomac River to discuss Jewish issues, to network with other active Jews and to learn how to be more effective community leaders. The three-day General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America, billed as a retreat… Read More

Conversions and Politics

Immediately after Rabbi Barry Freundel of Kesher Israel Congregation was arrested and charged with placing hidden cameras in the changing room of the ritual bath adjacent to his synagogue, the question arose whether the conversions he oversaw over many years were still valid. The response from the Rabbinical Council of America, on which Freundel served,… Read More

For Maryland, Brown and Frosh

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In the races for the top two state positions on Tuesday, Brian Frosh for attorney general and Anthony Brown for governor, both Democrats, are more experienced and more in tune with mainstream Maryland voters than their opponents. Frosh, a proud member of the Jewish community, has been a state senator representing District 16 since 1994…. Read More

Three for Congress

In the Nov. 4 elections, Baltimore has three outstanding members of Congress who deserve re-election. Democrats Dutch Ruppersberger in District 2, John Sarbanes in District 3 and Elijah Cummings in District 7 serve their districts well, and we endorse them. Ruppersberger is the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, where he has been outspoken… Read More

A Matter of Trust, Sanctity

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The arrest last week of Rabbi Barry Freundel on six charges of voyeurism has shaken his congregation, Kesher Israel in Georgetown, as well the Jewish community of greater Washington and the Orthodox world at large. Freundel had influence far beyond his synagogue and the mikvah, or ritual bath, next door, from where he allegedly videotaped… Read More

Searching for Opportunities Among Contradictions

In the Middle East today, the enemy of my enemy is also my enemy, and every action — including doing nothing — produces a negative reaction. For example, American disengagement in Iraq and refusal to intervene in the Syrian civil war have been identified as the root causes of the rise of the so-called Islamic… Read More