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July 25, 2016 / 19 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Manhattan’

US, Israel Group to Launch Jerusalem, Manhattan ‘Techotels’

Monday, July 11th, 2016

Reuven Kahane and a group of investors from Silicon Alley and its Israeli counterpart Silicon Wadi are negotiating the purchase of a Jerusalem and a Manhattan Hotel to be transformed and merged into “Techotels,” to brand and serve as an innovation lab for the latest gadgets and innovations geared to the hotel and entertainment industries.

Eli Pollack of Pollack Real Estate Consultants of Jerusalem, Bunim Klein & Sruli Schechter of NYB equities & Ryan Magner are advising on the estimated $325 million transactions.

In addition to the latest technologies and tech-sponsored conferences, the Techotels will seek to become the central hub for hi-tech entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and executives in NY, Israel and the Bay Area, where they expect to purchase a third hotel within the year.

The four-year-old Jerusalem hotel, located minutes from the Old City, will keep its world-famous brand, while the Park Avenue South hotel in the heart of Silicon Alley will be renamed. The hotels will include guest friendly apps, smart keys, Robotic concierge, sensor screen check in Tesla car services, full service video conference rooms and always free, super fast Wi-Fi.

David Israel

3 Arrested at Holland Tunnel With Combat Gear, Weapons Cache, Driving to NYC

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

Three people were arrested Tuesday morning with a large weapons cache, just before entering the Holland Tunnel on their way to New York City.

Two men in their fifties and a woman in her thirties were stopped by police on the New Jersey side of the tunnel when they were spotted in a car with a cracked windshield.

Port Authority Police initially stopped the trio at a toll plaza at around 7:40 am Eastern Time, police said. They were soon joined by agents from the Joint Terrorism Task Force, a source said, when a search of the vehicle turned up the cache of combat gear.

The collection of combat gear included body armor (several ballistic vests), a camouflage helmet with night vision goggles, multiple rifles and handguns (some loaded), a number of knives, and several magazines filled with ammunition.

Two senior law enforcement officials told NBC 4 News the suspects were “gun enthusiasts” and had “no nexus to terror.”

The trio reportedly may be from Pennsylvania, where a police source said “gun laws are more relaxed.”

Hana Levi Julian

Las Vegas Billionaire Sheldon Adelson Pledges $100M for Trump Presidential Campaign

Sunday, May 15th, 2016

Las Vegas casino magnate Sheldon G. Adelson has reportedly pledged $100 million, and possibly more, to help finance GOP candidate Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

The news was reported in the Friday’s edition (May 13) of the New York Times.

The two men met last week to discuss the issue, according to two nameless Republican sources quoted by NYT who said they were not authorized to speak about the matter publicly.

Adelson, 82, and his wife Miriam met with Trump and his campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski at the St. Regis Hotel in midtown Manhattan, while the couple were in town for a gala dinner to benefit a Jewish organization.

During their chat, Trump reportedly told the Adelsons he is dedicated to protecting Israel’s security.

The billionaire has financed Republican causes over the years to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars – but this year he plans to scale back contributions to Congressional campaigns to focus on helping Trump, according to the report.

There is, however, the thorny problem of logistics: there is a limit on how much money a single individual can give to political campaigns in the United States. In order to give really “big” money, one requires a “super PAC” — super political action committee.

On Thursday, one such group announced it would aim to raise $20 million for Trump. The Committee for American Sovereignty was formed by Doug Watts, a former aide to Ben Carson’s campaign. Watts now serves as the executive director of the group, which he said “will not accept special interest PAC contributions.”

However, up to this week Trump had not yet decided whether he will allow PACs to help finance his campaign. Last October he disavowed nine unauthorized groups and demanded they return all funds they had raised to support his campaign. It seems that now, however, he has come to the realization that for a general campaign there is no way he can gather the needed $1.5 billion through individual contributions alone. Several of the bigger powerhouse Republican superPACs are quietly gearing up to begin the job of rounding up their major givers — something that Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton  had already gotten busy with months ago — and have hired top-flight fundraisers and campaign managers to crank up the party machine.

Meanwhile, Adelson explained his reasons for throwing his support behind his fellow business mogul in an op-ed he wrote that was published in Friday’s Washington Post: “He is a candidate with actual CEO experience, shaped and molded by the commitment and risk of his own money rather than the public’s.

“I am endorsing Trump’s bid for president and strongly encourage my fellow Republicans – especially our Republican elected officials, party loyalists and operatives, and those who provide important financial backing – to do the same,” Adelson wrote.

Hana Levi Julian

Marchers Danced Through Rain at 2015 NY Israel Day Parade

Sunday, May 31st, 2015

Parents carried little ones on their shoulders, and held five-year-old children by the hand. Older children gripped their blue-and-white flags tightly and waved them in the breeze as the marching bands played music to dance by — some of them not understand the tears in their grandparents’ eyes.

Tens of thousands of Jews turned out Sunday (May 31) to show their pride in being Jewish, in their visceral connection to the Jewish State, the reborn State of Israel. Politics aside, military threat aside, Israel’s desire for peace was in citywide evidence in the very theme for the event: “Israel Imagines Peace.”

Sponsored by some 35 organizations that included the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, the government of the State of Israel and the UJA Federation, this year’s lineup featured some 40,000 marchers, according to UJA Federation CEO Eric Goldstein.

This year’s Grand Marshals were two representatives for the Russian-speaking Jewish community, Alan Meskin and Angela Reyzelman. “Jews originating from the Soviet Union were instrumental builders and warriors of the State of Israel and also directly benefited from the creation of the state in 1948, as for many, Israel became a safe haven, a land of opportunity and a new home,” explained organizers on the Celebrate Israel New York (CelebrateIsraelNY) website.

Representing the State of Israel were Ambassador Ido Aharoni, Consul General of Israel in New York; Science, Technology & Space Minister Danny Danon; and Minister Without Portfolio Ofir Akunis. Also marching were Knesset Members Yoav Ben-Tzur, Avraham Nagosa, Ksenia Svetlov and Revital Sweid.

Numerous prominent Jewish personalities participated in the parade; Dr. Ruth Westheimer made a surprise appearance as well, telling FOX television co-anchor Becky Griffin: “It is very important to support this parade, especially today… Imagine living with a Palestinian neighbor, and everyone living in peace – that’s the most important thing for you and me.”

At least 100,000 people lined both sides of Fifth Avenue to watch the marchers make their way up the famous avenue from 57th Street to 74th Street.

Marching up Fifth Avenue. The parade seemed endless.

Marching up Fifth Avenue. The parade seemed endless.

The New York Police Department’s Shomrim Society — the organization of Jewish police officers — was one of the first groups to lead off the parade, as always. The city’s Fire Department also marched, as it does to honor every ethnicity in New York, most of whom are also represented on the force as well.

The parade stepped off at 11 am and continued through until 3pm; at about 2 pm, a light rain began to fall on marchers and spectators – but no one paid any attention to the droplets.

Jerusalem's Shaare Zedek Medical Center was also represented at the parade.

Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center was also represented at the parade.

“This year’s parade is the largest in the history of the event,” JCRC executive vice president and CEO Michael Miller smiled. “Next year it will be just as big – if not bigger!,” he added.

Perhaps the group that summed up the experience best was RAJE, the Russian American Jewish Experience, which ran the banner, “Let My People Know!”

Hana Levi Julian

World Trade Center, 9/11: Is Ground Zero A Sacred Site?

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

It’s been 13 years since I slammed my transmission into overdrive, popped the flashing red light onto the roof of my car and went barreling down half-empty streets in Brooklyn towards Manhattan.

Beside me were a sheaf of papers bearing photos of a girl I didn’t know, who was working in an office on the 105th floor of the World Trade Center. “Maybe someone has seen her,” her terrified parents said. A colleague handed half of the stack to me before getting into his own car to head down the same road.

We both knew it was a long shot but neither of us realized just how long a shot it was. In fact, it was no shot at all. No one ever came out of that pile of busted concrete and twisted metal alive. I know, because I was there.

Too old already to be a firefighter (which I was in younger days), back then I was a volunteer fire chaplain. But I was on my way to work at a local mental health clinic that morning, since I am also a trauma therapist and ADHD specialist in my “other life.” I was listening to the radio in my car when the DJ interrupted the music to make “a special announcement.” Annoying, I thought idly.

A plane had slammed into the World Trade Center, he said. Details to follow. Weird, I thought. “Radar screwed up? Pilot lost control of the plane?” I started to run through the list in my mind. Meanwhile the DJ was doing the same thing on the air with a second person who had joined him on commentary.

That’s ominous, I reflected. Having lived five years in Israel in my younger years, all my red flags went up the more I thought about it.

And then a plane hit the second tower. That’s when I knew this was no accident.

By the time I reached the clinic, patients were calling in to cancel and the secretary had a small television on, with live coverage showing what had happened. “That’s a terror attack,” I muttered, and disappeared into my office. The next call was to the volunteer fire and rescue team coordinator. I saw two patients and the clinic closed early. A sigh of relief and I raced to pick up the flyers: “Have you seen this girl?”

I flashed an ID in order to get into the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel, which was blocked off to everyone. Cops were everywhere. “A bit late, no?” I grumbled, whizzing into the tunnel. It opened up into a smoke-filled nightmare.

I couldn’t park anywhere near the site. In fact, I couldn’t FIND the site. The World Trade Center had disappeared. The entire area was wrapped in a thick grey haze for dozens of blocks in each direction. It was impossible to see beyond a foot or two. The Liberty One building was not stable — it was swaying in the breeze.

I finally found a spot about half a mile away. It was still smoky in that area, but at least I could see the address, which I’ve since blocked from my mind. There’s a lot I’ve blocked, in fact, but what I have never been able to block out is the stink that hit as soon as I got closer to Ground Zero.

There is no mistaking that smell.

When I was a child, my Sunday School held a special assembly to educate the students in Grades 4 and up about the Holocaust. On that day we were shown the film, “Let My People Go,” a documentary of the atrocities committed by the Nazis against the Jews. It included a full description by concentration camp survivors of the crematoria and accompanying photos.

Hana Levi Julian

Second Orthodox NY High School Allowing Girls to Don Tefillin

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

A second Modern Orthodox high school in New York has announced it will permit girls to wear tefillin during prayer.

The Ramaz School in Manhattan said it will allow girls to wear tefillin during coed worship, going one step further than SAR High School, which drew a flurry of media coverage earlier this week for allowing girls to use the phylacteries during women’s prayer services.

Ramaz, one of the oldest and most prestigious Modern Orthodox day schools in the United States, sent its parents, students and board members an email Tuesday afternoon announcing that it “would be happy to allow any female student who wants to observe the mitzvah of tefillin to do so.”

The email, from head of school Paul Shaviv, noted, “Women should be taught that they do not need to wear tefillin in order to lead Jewishly-religiously meaningful lives, at least equal to men. But they have the right to make their own decisions.”

In an interview with JTA, Shaviv said “a small number of girls” have donned tefillin at the school’s prayer services in past years “without anyone making a fuss,” although none have asked to do so in the past three years.

Shaviv said the school decided for the first time on Tuesday to “formalize” its policy and “clarify our position” because journalists were calling to inquire about it.

“The parental response has been completely positive,” he said.

Rabbi Haskel Lookstein, longtime principal of the Upper East Side school and spiritual leader of Kehilath Jeshurun, told JTA that no female student has requested to wear tefillin recently, but that if one did “we would honor that request.”

“We’re not encouraging this; we’re accommodating this,” he added.

JTA

New Jersey Man Claims He Lost Job for not Firing Jewish Employee

Monday, December 30th, 2013

A New Jersey man said he was fired after refusing to fire a man his boss called a “no-good New York city Jew.”

Thomas Greco, a Middleton, New Jersey father of five, said after he was hired in May 2011 as a superintendent at the U.S. Custom House in Lower Manhattan, his boss, Howard Anastasi, ordered him to fire the Jewish worker, The New York Post reported.

“He says, ‘You got a guy working for you — Chuck Brenner — he’s a no-good New York City Jew,’ ” Greco told the Post. “ ‘You know what that means: He’s no good. You gotta get rid of him.’ ”

Greco did not fire Brenner.

A year later, while Greco was on a leave of absence following an injury, Anastasi fired him and said, according to Greco, “I told you to take care of something, and you didn’t.”

Greco, 51, has filed a complaint with New York City’s Human Rights Commission and with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, according to the newspaper.

JTA

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/new-jersey-man-claims-he-lost-job-for-not-firing-jewish-employee/2013/12/30/

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