Rabbi Buchdahl: A Great Draw

I read with interest your article on why synagogues such as Temple Emanuel have lost members (“Congregational Evolution,” Feb. 20). In Temple Emanuel’s case, perhaps it’s because Rabbi Gustav Buchdahl retired. He was a great draw, his sermons were intelligent, and he was witty with great speaking ability. I never heard the present rabbi, so… Read More

The Exodus Mind Pesach

There is one line in the Haggadah that captures the entire essence of what the Seder and Pesach are all about: “B’chol dor vador chayav adam lir’ot et atzmo k’ilu hu yatzah mimitzrayim” — in every generation we are obligated to see ourselves as though we personally came out of Egypt. It’s a very powerful… Read More

Mixed Messages on Iran

In Yemen last week, Saudi Arabia launched air strikes against Houthi rebels. U.S. intelligence aided the Saudis. The Shiite Houthis are backed by Iran. In Iraq, meanwhile, the United States has joined Iran to beat back the nascent Sunni-run caliphate known as the Islamic State. And in Switzerland, international negotiations with Iran over its nuclear… Read More

A Troubling ‘Reassessment’ with Israel

President Obama addresses his differences with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a news conference at the White House on March 24.
(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Once again, American Jews are being forced to pick sides in an unnecessary fight between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Last month, it was over the breach of protocol surrounding Netanyahu’s speech to Congress and taking on a U.S. president over the Iran nuclear talks. Now, following Netanyahu’s re-election, the prime… Read More

Unlikely Holiness: Pancakes, Trash and the Priest’s Big Toe Parshat Tzav

This week’s portion continues the outline of the korbanot, the “sacrifices” begun last week in Parshat Vayikra. Its title, Tzav, is an imperative meaning “command,” and while the previous portion was addressed to the person bringing the offering, this week’s parshah is addressed to the priest assisting with the offering. The priest is God’s agent… Read More

JVP a Voice for Hate

Jewish Voice for Peace is neither Jewish, nor a voice for peace (“Jewish Voice for Peace Converges in Baltimore,” March 20). Nor is it progressive, as the article describes it. JVP is nothing more than a hateful organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel, fronted by a small number of Jews with little or no… Read More

Palestinians to Blame for Lack of Peace

Maybe Jewish Voice for Peace should change its name to Jewish Voice for Appeasement (“Jewish Voice for Peace Converges in Baltimore,” March 20). Peace will come when the Palestinians realize that endless unacceptable demands will not get them anywhere. A Palestinian state has been offered on several occasions, most recently by former Israeli Prime Minister… Read More

Wiesel Not Above Criticism

Stuart Sachs would be well advised to actually read material before attempting to criticize it (“Your Say,” March 20). As one letter noted, Wiesel does not “own” the Holocaust, so for Sachs to declare him its holy incarnation is nothing short of idolatry. And even if there was such ownership, it would bestow upon him… Read More

Judge Wiesel by His Company

Pirkei Avot counsels aseh lecha rav; we are known by the company we keep. With whom does Elie Wiesel make it a point of palling around in public (“Your Say,” March 20)? There is casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who is on record as being hostile to democracy, Shmuley Boteach, and “King Bibi” Netanyahu, best-known recently… Read More

Outreach Mission Got Buried

In the March 20 local news item “United Through Motherhood,” why was it not noted until the 10th paragraph that the Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project is an Orthodox organization, and one devoted to outreach at that? Why was this fact not highlighted upfront, at the outset? Sadly, such is the sort of deceit and misleading… Read More