Sobering Thoughts about BDS

In its annual survey of the Jewish world, the Israel-based think tank Jewish People Policy Institute (JPPI) considered the de-legitimization threat posed against Israel by the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement. The think tank, which is chaired by longtime U.S. diplomats Stuart Eizenstat and Dennis Ross, submitted its assessment last month to the Israeli… Read More

Applauding the Panthers

Editorial Director

What exactly is hand and foot canasta and what does it have to do with Judaism? To an untrained audience, the exact same question could be asked of mah jongg, but I digress. In the context of this week’s JT, the card game, of which apparently there are many variants, provides fodder for an ongoing… Read More

An Untimely Objection

State Department  spokesman John Kirby (DoD Photo by Glenn Fawcett/Public Domain)

Why did the State Department move from celebrating President Barack Obama’s legislative victory a day after the passage of the Trade Promotion Authority bill to “clarifying” a provision in the legislation that treats Israel and “Israeli-controlled territories” as a single economic entity? The provision in question, spearheaded by Sens. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Rob Portman… Read More

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Curse the Children of Israel

The use of comedy in Jewish storytelling is a very powerful tool for conveying the serious wisdom of our tradition. Often, the Torah introduces us to a wide range of colorful characters — intriguing men, women, and creatures — in order to infuse the stories of the Torah with wit and humor. These personalities have… Read More

Shame on J Street

The representative of J Street had the gall to demand that Hillel not only give it a venue for its anti-Israel agenda, but also, by extension, funds that have been donated to Hillel (“No More Talking,”  June 19). For a blatantly anti-Israel, pro-Arab organization to make such a demand required real chutzpah and a falsification… Read More

Well-Earned Salute for Col. Burtnick

I enjoyed your article on the post-humous award of the Medal of Honor to Sgt. William Shemin (“ Medal of Honor,”  June 5); however, one major element was left out. Col. Erwin Burtnick, commander of the Department of Maryland and chairman of the national Awards for Valor Committee of the Jewish War Veterans of the… Read More

Our Jewish Identity

Editorial Director

In the barrage of Facebook messages, tweets and dueling op-eds leading up to, distilling and reacting to the historic June 26 Supreme Court decision recognizing a right enshrined in the Constitution for people of the same sex to marry, few have used the opportunity to reveal certain inherent truths. Yes, those celebrating the landmark 5-4… Read More

Fitness and Family

We all know the health benefits of being active, but life is hectic with work, child care/family responsibilities and a bunch of other demands on our time. Rather than looking at family obligations as an obstacle to exercise, I view it as an opportunity. By exercising with their children, parents not only teach them how… Read More

We Must Do Better

In the aftermath of the Freddie Gray riots, some have chided black Baltimoreans for participating, for supposedly labelling themselves as victims and for justifying the economic malaise that affect their people. I take issue with that characterization. Since 2012, I have participated in dialogue between African-American and Jewish members of Northwest Neighbors Connecting, sponsored by… Read More

Order in the Court

It is one of Israel’s paradoxes that, while the country accepts any conversion made abroad for purposes of aliyah, not even many Orthodox conversions made abroad are sufficient to render a future Israeli Jewish for personal status purposes. That’s because only Orthodox conversions made in the country under the auspices of Israel’s Chief Rabbinate —… Read More