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The Greatest Gift I Ever Gave

9 Shevat 5772 – February 1, 2012
Ordinarily, Chanukah is a time to hug and kiss the kids as we sing in front of the menorah. This past Chanukah was an exception. Instead of putting my arms around my children, I watched them light the menorah on a streaming video from my iPad while I rested comfortably in my hospital bed.

UN Security Council Convenes on Syria

7 Shevat 5772 – January 31, 2012
Russia resisting resolution that would condemn Bashar al-Assad and demand his resignation.

Azerbaijani Assassination Plot Foiled

2 Shevat 5772 – January 25, 2012
Suspects allegedly intended to murder the Israeli ambassador to Azerbaijan and two employees at the Chabad school in Baku.

Build A Bear

1 Shevat 5772 – January 24, 2012
My son can never get enough of his cozy teddy bears. So, for his birthday party last year we created an "in house" build-a-bear factory.

Hamas Faces Political Upheaval

22 Tevet 5772 – January 17, 2012
Longtime Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, who has ruled the terrorist group’s political structure from Damascus since 1996, has told Palestinian media he would soon step down.

Hamas PM Insists that the Armed Struggle Against Israel Will Continue

14 Tevet 5772 – January 9, 2012
Ismail Haniyeh receives a warm welcome in Tunis.

Anguish That Does Not Go Away: The Singles Problem (Part Three)

4 Tevet 5772 – December 29, 2011
The woman in her mid-thirties who initiated this discussion a few weeks ago bemoaned what she considers the indifference and the insensitivity of most people to the plight of singles.

The Miracle Of Emunah

7 Tishri 5771 – September 15, 2010
During the 1920s, a polio epidemic swept across the United Sates. My uncle, then a baby, was one of its victims. As a child, I heard the story of his recovery many times from my mother, his sister. At the time she was about 10 years old, and witnessed the miracle firsthand.

Waiting For The Nixonphobes

24 Av 5770 – August 4, 2010
Five years ago this week, the Monitor learned firsthand just how the mere mention of Richard Nixon is enough to turn even the most mild-mannered of liberals into screaming viragos. In that particular case, the words about Nixon that so provoked them - their tortured heads no doubt filled with the sounds of werewolves howling and fingernails scratching blackboards - appeared not in this column but in a front-page essay for this paper penned by your humble scribbler.

‘Oh Baby’

14 Iyyar 5770 – April 28, 2010
I was eating in a restaurant recently, enjoying both the food (post-Pesach) and the company, when a few minutes into the meal the sound of a baby shrieking shattered the subdued ambiance. I looked around and saw a young mother and father sitting at a table, a baby carriage nearby. To my annoyance, they continued just sitting there, despite the fact that their child's cries had become more strident and ear shattering. They seemed oblivious to the noise, and were not in any hurry to do something about it. It was only after they noticed that people at other tables were eyeing them with mild (to extreme) disgust that the mother stirred herself to get up, pick up the infant - who looked to be about one month old - and try to calm him down.

Siona Benjamin’s Blue Angels

6 Tevet 5770 – December 23, 2009
A blue-skinned woman with at least one wing carries a caged dove in her right hand and has just released a golden bird from her other hand. Her hair is covered by a shawl that rests over a curved dagger (like the Yemenite jambiya) with a sheath decorated with the stars and stripes of the American flag. A corner of the shawl becomes a pair of tzitzit whose strings are wrapped around a lion's arms and midsection, perhaps restraining it. The woman, who represents a self-portrait of the artist Siona Benjamin, stands on a white ball, which unravels to reveal not string but floral patterns that border the painting. Beneath her yellow skirt, the woman wears striped pants that evoke either the uniform of a prisoner or a concentration camp inmate.

‘Playing’ It Safe For Your Children

26 Tishri 5770 – October 14, 2009
A few years ago I wrote in this column that at the bris of my oldest son - held in a shul whose members were for the most part elderly - a wizened old man approached me, peered into my face and muttered in a raspy voice with a Yiddish accent, "May your children sit shiva for you." I was too stunned to say anything to him and just shook my head as he walked away. I thought, "nebach, he must be demented."

Israelis Ask: Did We Win War Against Hamas?

25 Tevet 5769 – January 21, 2009
JERUSALEM - With a cease-fire in place, Israelis are asking whether the 22-day war against Hamas in Gaza achieved its aims.

Remembering The Real King Hussein

13 Shevat 5767 – January 31, 2007
There was just something so false in the universal acclaim for King Hussein on the occasion of his death eight years ago this week – false because most media accounts failed to offer a full reckoning of the Jordanian monarch’s life, with journalists whitewashing or ignoring its many inconvenient chapters and plentiful examples of ugly rhetoric.

Parshat Vayera

17 Heshvan 5767 – November 8, 2006
"A few months ago I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages.

Parshat Vayera

"A few months ago I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages.

Jazzy Jewish Jamming John Zorn At The Bridge Shul

5 Heshvan 5765 – October 20, 2004
I recognized him as the Fiddler immediately. Sure, he sat cross-legged on the floor (not the roof) with his back to the audience.

Title: Let Me Go

10 Adar 5764 – March 3, 2004
Imagine what it would feel like to discover, as an adult, that your own mother was a cold-blooded concentration-camp guard who participated even in the killing of babies in their mothers' arms?

Yanks Just Better Than Brits

1 Adar 5762 – February 13, 2002
America's pundits and editorialists have for the most part been supportive of Israel's side of the story in the capture of the weapons-laden Katrine-A. Several examples of that support are offered below (the Monitor thanks Zionist Organization of America National President Morton Klein for the compilation), but first, a splash of frigid water from Reuters correspondent Jon Immanuel.

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