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Atheist Chic

I suppose I should begin by explaining why I bothered to read the book The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins (Bantam, 2006).

Into The Bunker With Olmert

One year after the second Lebanon War, Israel’s north is back in business. Where 12 months ago the region was shaken to its core by the impact of hundreds of missile hits from Hizbullah, traces of the damage are now hard to find.

Reflections On The Feldman Affair

The Feldman Affair, by which I mean both the New York Times Magazine article and its aftermath, is a significant event in the development of American Orthodoxy, encompassing important issues about Modern Orthodoxy that have not been sufficiently explored, intra-Orthodox divisions, and our approach to intermarriage.

Rotten Times

Once upon a time, I only read and wrote for the most radical, Left, and feminist media on the face of the earth. Reluctantly, suspiciously, I read just one establishment, “grown up” paper: The New York Times. After all, it was my hometown paper – and being as provincial as most Manhattanites, I somehow still believed (you imbibe this in the drinking water) that the Times covered issues in an objective, sophisticated, and leading-edge manner.

Scaring Ourselves To Death?

The lengthy cover story in a weekly news magazine deftly sums up the profound unease afflicting U.S. Jewry. Titled “American Jews and Israel,” the piece paints a picture of a community enjoying unprecedented affluence and influence and at the same time worrying about the future of U.S.-Israel relations and the possible emergence of widespread anti-Semitism in America.

The United States And Saudi Arabia: A Foolish Alliance

In view of major current developments concerning Saudi Arabia, Israel and the United States (especially the recently-announced sale of billions of dollars of new advanced weapon systems to Saudi Arabia), this very early article by Professor Beres warrants another close look. One must wonder, as all of Professor Beres' prior warnings on Saudi Arabia have now proved correct, why President Bush insists upon further arms for Riyadh. At a minimum, the president should be concerned that the monarchy could soon be overthrown by al-Qaeda and kindred Jihadist elements, a transfer of power that would give Islamist insurgents control over all of the latest advanced American weapons.

Special Events In Poland

This year's International Summer Yiddish Language And Culture Seminar will take place August 13 - September 2.

Israel’s Music Man

The Israeli Labor Party recently selected Ehud Barak, who had been prime minister from 1999 to 2001, to serve as its party chief and contender for prime minister in the next election, probably in 2008.

American Victims of the 1929 Hebron Massacre

On August 27, 1929, The New York Times ran the following front-page banner:8 AMERICANS LISTED IN 70 HEBRON DEADAttack on Rabbinical College was Savage...

Which U.S. Political Party Is Better For Israel?

For the past several years, whenever anyone asked me which American political party was best for Israel, my answer was: both. Even AIPAC, in the weeks before the 2006 Congressional election, stated that both parties are equally good for Israel. This of course has been and will continue to be ignored by the Republican Party, which attempts to use Israel as a wedge issue in the Jewish community.

Three Weeks In A Land Of Paradox

Having recently returned from a three week trip to Israel, I’m sorting out the information and impressions gathered from traveling throughout the country and meeting with many good friends, all dedicated to preserving Am Yisrael in Eretz Yisrael.

What Would Reagan Say About The Saudis Today?

If President Reagan were to give a speech today, what might he say? Perhaps something like the following. Let’s hear one more from the Gipper:

Coming Of Age In Hebron

The road to Hebron was nearly deserted as I drove to the town Monday night, August 6. The Avraham Avinu neighborhood, however, one of the Jewish enclaves inside the PA-controlled city, was alive with hundreds of young people when I arrived. They had come to protest the destruction of several Jewish homes by the Israeli government, slated for early the next morning. Several thousand police and anti-riot troops had been deployed in nearby army camps to carry out the action.

Points To Ponder

• Michael Beschloss, the historian whose new book, Presidential Courage, played such a prominent role in the Monitor’s last offering, apparently has become a victim of Bush Derangement Syndrome, so named by columnist Charles Krauthammer in 2003 as he sought to give a name to “the acute onset of paranoia in otherwise normal people in reaction to the policies, the presidency – nay, the very existence – of George W. Bush.”

Israel’s Security After The Oslo Agreement (Second of Two Parts)

The following is the original text of an important lecture delivered by Professor Louis Rene Beres to the Dayan Forum, Israel, on March 11, 1994 (Ambassador Zalman Shoval, presiding). It remains entirely relevant today, especially with Israeli Prime Minister Olmert's: (1) recent release of Palestinian terrorists as a "goodwill gesture;" (2) the Prime Minister's equally incomprehensible support of one murderous terrorist faction (Fatah) against another (Hamas); and his corollary commitment to the altogether twisted cartography of a markedly one-sided "Road Map."

Six Thousand Miles (Part III)

Our fourth Shabbat was observed in Toronto. My former Chabad chavrusah, Yosef Baruch Spielman, had arranged Shabbat hospitality for us at the home of his niece and nephew, Elisheva and Rabbi Chaim Weinman.

Vandals Desecrate Cemetery

Last week, Mr. Sigmund Rolat visited his birthplace in Poland, the city of Czestochowa. As he does on every trip, he took time out to pay his respects to the local Jewish cemetery.

Stalks To Golden Grains… And Back Again

I stood outside the Nitzan Caravilla site on a warm summer afternoon and watched the golden hay being baled. The heavy machinery grinded loudly and spat out large, square sweet-smelling bales.

Rabbits And Groundhogs And Kittens, Oh My! Summer Musings From My Back Porch

The wide open spaces, the winding country roads and breathtaking sunsets, the deer that live in harmony with the rabbits and the lone stray cat that gets along with the groundhog – these are but a few of my favorite things that make the daily commute from Manhattan (where I am employed) worthwhile.

The Hidden Basis For Hostility To Israel And America

Recently in Jerusalem, I participated in a moving religious service to honor one of Israel’s most celebrated heroes from last summer’s war against the Hizbullah terrorists.

One A.M. – One Week Later

In last week’s Jewish Press, an op-ed column of mine – “It’s One A.M. Do You Know Where Your Children Are? – described the “scene” in and around the pool hall in Monticello, New York, where hundreds of unsupervised teenage boys and girls were hanging out, drinking, and using drugs. I noted that some of the kids in the pool hall said they and their friends rent bungalows in non-Jewish colonies or motel rooms throughout the Catskills where they regularly party from Thursday night until Monday morning – including Shabbos.

Israel’s Security After The Oslo Agreement (First of Two Parts)

The following is the original text of an important lecture delivered by Professor Louis Rene Beres to the Dayan Forum, Israel, on March 11, 1994 (Ambassador Zalman Shoval, presiding). It remains entirely relevant today, especially with Israeli Prime Minister Olmert's: (1) recent release of Palestinian terrorists as a "goodwill gesture;" (2) the Prime Minister's equally incomprehensible support of one murderous terrorist faction (Fatah) against another (Hamas); and his corollary commitment to the altogether twisted cartography of a markedly one-sided "Road Map."

Harry Potter’s Fabulous Jewish Monsters

While the book was of great interest to those struggling with conflicts between Torah and science, and aroused considerable controversy in some quarters, it turned out that those most passionate about the book were of a different group: Harry Potter readers.

Kaddish For Mr. Mlodnicki

We just observed Tisha B’Av, the day we mourn the destruction of our Holy Temple. With the Holocaust being so recent and such an enormity, I could not help but turn my attention to it as I contemplated the destruction that has befallen the Jewish people over the millennia. In particular, I thought about what happened to my father-in-law on that day many years ago, as well as the events leading up to it. Its message is timeless.

Feldman Article Raises Questions Of Journalistic Standards

Initially, Professor Noah Feldman’s “Orthodox Paradox,” an article appearing in the July 22 issue of The New York Times Magazine, may seem entertaining. But on further reading, a very disturbing message emerges – a message that calls into serious question the intent of the author and the judgment of The New York Times in publishing the piece.

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