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  • Arafat says one thing to U.S. Jews, another to United Nations diplomats

    NEW YORK, March 5 (JTA) — An American Jewish group told Palestinian Authority leader Yasser Arafat this week that it was counterproductive to call in third parties in the dispute over planned Israeli construction in eastern Jerusalem. Arafat, in turn, conceded that it was “preferable” to engage directly with Israel in such disputes. But a…

  • CJF leaders move on pluralism CJF leaders move on pluralism, back partnership plan with UJA

    WASHINGTON, April 15 (JTA) — Responding to what they described as “tremendous”” grass-roots pressure, federation leaders across North America have backed a plan to double campaign allocations to the Reform, Conservative and modern Orthodox movements in Israel. The move, an important gesture designed to demonstrate the Diaspora fund-raising establishment”s commitment to religious pluralism in Israel,…

  • Modified partnership plan sails through critical phase

    NEW YORK, Feb. 11 (JTA) — Leaders of the two major institutions of American Jewish philanthropy have agreed on a partnership plan to consolidate operations and raise more money. The blueprint, which stops short of earlier proposals for a formal merger, was crafted by leaders of the Council of Jewish Federations and the United Jewish…

  • FOCUS ON ISSUES Unique foundation subsidies boost attendance at day school

    SEATTLE, Jan. 27 (JTA) — Matt Peckarsky is a product of public schools and a Reform home and synagogue, yet at 14, he finds himself a freshman at the Orthodox Northwest Yeshiva High School in Seattle. The gaps in his Hebrew language background gave him a “shaky start,” says his father, David Peckarsky, but Matt…

  • FOCUS ON ISSUES Alarm sounds over conversion, but passage of measure probable

    NEW YORK, March 5 (JTA) — Israel runs a risk of dividing world Jewry if it passes legislation reinforcing exclusive Orthodox control over conversions in Israel. American Jewish leaders sounded this alarm in a flurry of meetings last week with Israeli officials in Jerusalem. Nonetheless, the Americans believe that unless something dramatic develops, the legislation…

  • And the winner is … Conference nominates new chair

    NEW YORK, March 18 (JTA) — After months of anticipation and speculation, the nomination is in for the next chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. It is Melvin Salberg, a prominent attorney and former chairman of the Anti-Defamation League. Several members of the umbrella organization expressed surprise at the news,…

  • NJCRAC delegates hear upbeat reports on U.S.-Israel relations

    WASHINGTON, Feb. 17 (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu left Washington “more hopeful than ever” about achieving peace and security in the Middle East, according to Israel’s ambassador to the United States. In talks last with President Clinton, “all subjects were raised of common interest,” including the “peace process in all its aspects,” Ambassador…

  • PROFILE Zeal of JNF’s new president inspired by Jewish awakening

    NEW YORK, March 6 (JTA) — Ronald Lauder is a man driven to reclaim his Jewish legacy. The cosmetics heir and philanthropist grew up as a self-described assimilated or “three-day-a-year” Jew. “I didn’t think twice about being Jewish,” he says during an interview in his 42nd-floor suite in the towering General Motors Building on Fifth…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES U.S. policy toward Har Homa draws mixed Jewish reaction

    NEW YORK, March 18 (JTA) — The international political uproar over Israeli construction of Jewish housing in eastern Jerusalem initially found American Jews circling the wagons. Some criticized the timing of Israel’s decision, saying that it would endanger the peace process. But most defended Israel’s sovereign right to build anywhere in the city of Jerusalem….

  • Israel to pursue extradition as Hamas issues threat to U.S.

    NEW YORK, Jan. 29 (JTA) — Israeli officials say they intend to pursue the extradition of a Hamas leader from the United States after he withdrew his appeal of the initiative. Mousa Mohammed Abu Marzook could be sent back to Israel within 60 days to stand trial, despite warnings that it would provoke Hamas violence….