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  • Jewish groups hail verdict in Crown Heights civil trial

    NEW YORK, Feb. 10 (JTA) — Jewish groups are hailing the federal jury conviction of Lemrick Nelson Jr. in the killing of a Chasidic scholar during the Crown Heights riots in 1991. They also called for greater racial tolerance. Nelson, 21, had earlier been acquitted in state court of killing Yankel Rosenbaum, prompting demands for…

  • Regional leaders of JNF endorse Lauder for president

    NEW YORK, Jan. 22 (JTA) — Leaders of the Jewish National Fund of America from across the country have endorsed Ronald Lauder, cosmetics heir, philanthropist and former U.S. ambassador to Austria, as the next president of the organization. If the board approves, he could be installed as early as next month, replacing Milton Shapiro who…

  • 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…