An Epidemic of Hopelessness

The health news last week from the federal government was startling. Overall, mortality is up and life expectancy has fallen for the first time since 1993, particularly for Americans under age 65. It appears that the progress in longevity that we have come to expect is reversible. Some of the deaths may be linked to… Read More

Illegal West Bank Construction

In a speech last week to the Brookings Institution’s Saban Forum, Secretary of State John Kerry noted that there are “about 11,000 demolition orders for Palestinian homes through the West Bank.” These homes have been built without permits, evidence that unauthorized or illegal building by Palestinians is an ongoing problem in Area C, the 60… Read More

ADL Seizes the Center

It’s not often that a Jewish organization  revises its position on a public matter. Most groups are beholden to an ideological slice of donors and members and are frozen on a single track. Yet, the groups that take nuanced and thoughtful positions are the ones that generally win the respect of the wider community. So… Read More

House Support for Israel

It is rare to get the warring political factions in Washington to agree on anything. But last week, in a unanimous vote, the House of Representatives sent a clear message to President Barack Obama that he should oppose any U.N. Security Council resolution that seeks to impose on the parties a  solution to the Israeli-Palestinian… Read More

Wrong Address for Political Statements

In the series of demonstrations that followed the election of Donald Trump, one of the targets of Jewish protestors has been the Jewish Federations of North America. The JFNA building in Washington, for example, was a stopping point in a Nov. 14 march of IfNotNow, a group that until the election focused on opposition to… Read More

The Effect of a Thwarted Attack

How do you measure the impact of a thwarted terror attack? Last week, French authorities arrested seven men after an eight-month investigation, averting what the interior minister said may have been a “coordinated attack aimed to hit several sites simultaneously.” Just think back to the coordinated terrorist attacks around Paris in November 2015 that killed… Read More

Feeling Thankful

Photo Credit: flickr.com/photos/pulaw/6657544211

There can never be too much gratitude. And Thanksgiving is a powerful opportunity for all Americans to join with their family and close friends to share a festive meal, maybe to watch football and hopefully to count their blessings. Communities do this, as well, and the annual interfaith Thanksgiving service has long been the opportunity… Read More

Settlements Again

Donald Trump’s win in the presidential race, and the Republican majorities in the House and Senate, have signaled to some members of Israel’s government that hard times are over with regard to American disapproval of settlement building in the West Bank. In their euphoria, pro-settler party leaders have pursued two very different approaches to moving… Read More

The Need to Move Forward

Donald Trump (Photo by Gage Skidmore via Flickr, creative common license http://bit.ly/1dsePQq)

Last week’s presidential election revealed not so much a nation divided, as it did a society whose residents inhabit two very different realities — with the apparent inability of those who live in one to understand the perceptions and beliefs of those who live in the other. Which begs the question: How do we move… Read More

Stop the Madness

“The world has gone mad,” Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, former chief rabbi of the United Kingdom, told G.A. participants.

“The world has gone mad,” Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, former chief rabbi of the United Kingdom, told the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America meeting Sunday in Washington. Sacks’ message was ultimately hopeful, but the madness to which he referred certainly includes the rise in hate crimes across the country since Donald… Read More