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Time To Start Worrying About Obama’s Mideast Vision

18 Sivan 5769 – June 10, 2009
President Obama's long-awaited speech in Cairo on U.S.-Muslim relations met expectations. It was passionately read and delivered (except for one stumble: calling a "hijab" a "hajib," an understandable error), touched all the rhetorical bases and - typical Obama - actually said much less than it read.

Identity Crisis

12 Sivan 5769 – June 3, 2009
I’ve long maintained that the large number of people having a difficult time getting and staying happily married is only a symptom of deeper problems in the community. Consequently, efforts to get more singles to go out on more dates will be largely unsuccessful unless the deeper problems are addressed. This thesis has been validated in recent years, as more attention to the “crisis” and various schemes to create shidduchim have yet to result in meaningful change or much cause for optimism.

Will U.S. Jews Stand With Israel – Or Obama?

American Jews overwhelmingly voted for Barack Obama, the Candidate of Change, despite credible warnings and ample evidence that he would obsessively seek to create a Palestinian state at Israel's expense and "engage" nuclear-arming, Islamist Iran.

Markey 2.0: Improving Legislation to Provide More Gain and Cause Less Pain

The debate over the Markey Bill has been framed in the starkest terms on the Internet and in the street: If you are for the bill, you are for children; if you are opposed to it, you are a horrible person who is protecting child molesters.

The Interview Netanyahu Didn’t Give

While in the U.S. last month, Prime Minister Netanyahu gave a number of interviews. The following is one he did not give, though I wish he would have.

Shield Of Avraham

5 Sivan 5769 – May 27, 2009
Why is an egg an integral part of the Pesach Seder? I heard a beautiful answer from the beloved rosh yeshiva of Sh’or Yoshuv, Rabbi Naftali Jaeger, shlita.

White House Meeting Changed Nothing – For Now

It happened because it had to happen, because history dictated that it happen. Barack Obama, the newly elected president of the United States and Benjamin Netanyahu, the newly resurrected prime minister of Israel, were fated to meet.

Three Approaches To Remembering: A Meditation

“Why is it,” Reb Levi Yitzchok of Berditchev was asked, “that Shavuot is also referred to as Atzeret? After all, the Torah uses the term atzeret only in association with the festival of Shemini Atzeret, not Shavuot.”

Pope Embodies Historic Shift In Jewish-Catholic Relations

On May 12 I was privileged to be a witness to history when Pope Benedict XVI visited the Kotel. Earlier, while standing on Mount Nebo, Jordan, the spot from which Moses viewed the Holy Land, Benedict spoke of the “inseparable bond” between Catholics and Jews.

Eyeless In Antwerp

27 Iyyar 5769 – May 20, 2009
The impact of opera on contemporary politics is fairly limited these days. Unlike the 19th century when new operas by composers like Giuseppe Verdi would often be seen as important political statements, the contemporary lyric theater is usually the preserve of an elite that most people don’t care about. But every once in a while something can happen at an opera house that makes its way onto the news pages.

Accountability Of Leadership

During the seven weeks between Pesach and Shavuot we are commanded to count every day and make a daily blessing. This mitzvah of counting the Omer illustrates the process of advancing up the ladder of freedom which began by God redeeming us from Egypt and came to its culmination at Mount Sinai where the Torah was given.

Palestine 2.0: A Gun Aimed At Every Jew

The first Palestinian state, commonly called Jordan, was carved out of the Palestine Mandate and equipped with a refugee Saudi royal family. Today Jordan exists mainly under the protection of the U.S. and Israel, and the majority of its population of Palestinian Arabs supports Osama bin Laden at a higher percentage than do the citizens of Pakistan.

Nachmanides And The Rebuilding Of Jerusalem

Seven hundred years before Israeli paratroopers restored the Old City of Jerusalem to Jewish hands, a great sage was rejuvenating Jewish life in the holy city, building the cornerstone for many generations to follow.

Anti-Semitism With A Human Face

There is no question in my mind that so-called anti-Zionism serves as a fig leaf for Jew-hatred. There is no other explanation. I know of no other country whose legitimacy is as relentlessly questioned and undermined as is Israel’s. You would think that those who espouse the love of human rights and rejection of violence and government oppression would attack, with proper fury, countries like Congo, Sudan, Jordan, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Cuba, Libya, Dubai, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Venezuela, and of course the most repressive country on the planet, North Korea.

Playing With Fire

20 Iyyar 5769 – May 13, 2009
With renewed urgency, the Obama administration seeks to resolve the states of conflict between Israel and the Palestinians and neighboring Muslim states on one hand, and America and the Islamic Republic of Iran on the other.

An Illusion Built On Sand

Today, under the Obama administration – as yesterday under the Bush administration – U.S. policy toward the Arab war on Israel is largely based on the notion that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his Fatah faction are genuine moderates who reject terrorism and accept Israel’s right to exist, and are therefore committed to building a Palestinian state living in peace alongside Israel.

Opposing The Redefinition Of Marriage

The Orthodox community should voice its strong opposition to the new proposals by the mayor of York City and the governor of New York State to legally redefine marriage.

Spain To Israel: Do As We Say, Not As We Do

The anti-terror campaign made a mockery out of any concern for human rights. Collateral damage and injury to innocent bystanders were regular and common features of the campaign. Anti-terror paramilitary fighters and forces routinely engaged in torture of captured terrorists.

Boxing’s Invisible Jew

13 Iyyar 5769 – May 6, 2009
He did a photo-op with former president Bush – twice. He made the cover of New York magazine. He was the subject of the well-received documentary “Orthodox Stance.” He boasts an unblemished record of 29-0 and is currently the number-one ranked World Boxing Association contender for the junior welterweight championship of the world.

Joan Clark: A 20th Century Life

Every American, obviously, has heard of Ronald Reagan, and Reagan historians have heard of Bill Clark. Clark was Reagan’s close aide, who, more than any other, laid the foundation for Cold War victory.

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