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  • Swiss bank account panel under pressure to finish work

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 (JTA) – One month after Switzerland’s two largest banks agreed to pay $1.25 billion to settle Holocaust-era claims, a panel conducting a sweeping audit of Swiss banks is coming under pressure to wrap up its work. So far, auditors have discovered just over $50 million in dormant accounts belonging to Holocaust victims,…

  • Rabbis urge Senate to uphold veto of late-term abortion ban

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 (JTA) – More than 700 rabbis are urging U.S. Senators to sustain President Clinton’s veto of the so-called partial-birth abortion ban. The rabbis, representing all streams of Judaism, sent a letter last week to lawmakers expressing opposition to efforts to outlaw the late-term procedure to end pregnancy, calling it a deeply personal…

  • Hundreds rally to try to keep sputtering peace process alive

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 14 (JTA ) – Five years after the signing of the Oslo peace accords, Jewish activists gathered here this week to try to reignite the hope generated by the euphoria that surrounded the White House ceremony. More than 400 people marked the Sept. 13 anniversary at a rally on Sunday at Washington’s Adas…

  • FOCUS ON ISSUES President invokes Reform prayer in emotional confession to clergy

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 (JTA) – Facing the gravest test of his presidency and personal life, President Clinton has turned to the Yom Kippur liturgy for what he hopes will be the right words of atonement. With 106 clergy members gathered at the White House last Friday for a national prayer breakfast, Clinton opened up Gates…

  • HIGH HOLIDAY FEATURE A reporter’s notebook – A lighter look at the Jewish news

    WASHINGTON, Aug. 16 (JTA) – As the Jewish year comes to a close, here’s a look back at some of the year’s strangest episodes, dubious distinctions and superlative achievements from around the Jewish world: * Best marketing slogan: “He’Brew – the Chosen Beer.” Sales of the San Francisco microbrew took off with Shmaltz Brewing Company’s…

  • Effort to pass state RFRAs hits roadblock in California

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 9 (JTA) – The push to secure broad protections for religious practice around the country has hit a roadblock. California Gov. Pete Wilson has said he will veto a new state religious freedom measure because it extends protections to prisoners. Wilson’s threat comes on the heels of a similar move in Illinois, where…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Jewish groups shift to offense in final weeks of 105th Congress

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 1 (JTA) – Most Jewish activists on Capitol Hill have been devoting their energies to damage control since the 105th Congress opened nearly two years ago. The defeat of a constitutional amendment that would have allowed for prayer in schools and the restoration of some welfare benefits to legal immigrants stand as some…

  • Holocaust survivors want firms in Germany to pay compensation

    WASHINGTON, Sept. 1 (JTA) – German companies that helped fuel the Nazi war machine have been hit with two class-action lawsuits. Holocaust survivors filed lawsuits this week against some of Germany’s biggest and best-known companies, alleging the firms profited from Nazi-era slave labor. One lawsuit, filed in Brooklyn on Monday, names Volkswagen and 11 other…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Pro-Israel political giving bucks national support for GOP

    WASHINGTON, Nov. 25 (JTA) – Despite an overall shift in political giving toward Republicans in the 1996 election cycle, pro-Israel donors favored Democrats by a 2 to 1 margin, according to a new study. Pro-Israel political action committees and individuals contributed a total of $4.2 million to candidates for federal office in 1995-1996, according to…

  • Jewish legal experts welcome settlement of N.J. school case

    WASHINGTON, Nov. 25 (JTA) – Jewish legal activists are welcoming a New Jersey school board’s decision to settle a major affirmative action case out of court. Last week, just as the U.S. Supreme Court was preparing to hear the case, Piscataway Board of Education vs. Taxman, the school board agreed to pay $433,500 to Sharon…