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  • NEWS ANALYSIS Showdown or compromise? Time will tell for Ne’eman effort

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 19 (JTA) — Showdown or compromise? Orthodox and non-Orthodox Jews in Israel are preparing for both as a committee working to find a solution to the conversion bill crisis closes in on its deadline. Tensions mounted as the committee, headed by Finance Minister Ya”acov Ne”eman, was expected to finish its work by Jan….

  • Reform delegation dismayed by premier’s conversion stance

    JERUSALEM, June 14 (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for patience from a visiting delegation of U.S. Reform movement leaders. But by the time his meeting with the delegation was over last Friday, the premier seemed to have succeeded only in angering the visitors. During the meeting, which focused on the government’s…

  • ISRAEL AT 50 High-tech companies drive Israel’s fast-growing economy

    TEL AVIV, April 6 (JTA) — Israeli start-up companies showed off their wares from behind sleek, futuristic booths adorned with state-of-the-art multimedia presentations. Magicians and scantily clad young women promoted the latest in high-tech products. Representatives of some of the world’s leading technology giants talked business behind closed doors — indeed, 3Com, a manufacturer of…

  • Netanyahu looks right to bolster his coalition

    JERUSALEM, April 21 (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is thinking of adding a far-right party to his governing coalition. The premier confirmed during a press briefing Tuesday that he is engaged in talks with the Moledet Party with that goal in mind. The party, which holds two Knesset seats, opposes the Oslo accords….

  • Orthodox ad campaign seeks to influence the Israeli public

    JERUSALEM, Jan. 20 (JTA) — On billboards, buses and in full-page newspaper advertisements, Israelis are being introduced to a new movement with a pro-Orthodox message on the conversion bill conflict. The campaign, which has support from some secular individuals, is an effort to get a pro-Orthodox message across to an Israeli public that has grown…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Religious pluralism battle moves to claims over wall

    JERUSALEM, June 15 (JTA) — One of the holiest sites in Judaism has moved front and center in the battle over religious pluralism in Israel. Orthodox officials boycotted a tour Monday that was aimed at finding a site for egalitarian and women’s prayer groups to worship at the Western Wall. The tour was organized by…

  • New campaign exhorts Israelis to donate funds

    JERUSALEM, March 24 (JTA) — In a television advertising campaign launched this month, Israelis are being asked for the first time to donate to a program for elderly Jews run by the Jewish Agency for Israel. The Israel campaign, hopes Avraham Burg, chairman of the Jewish Agency Executive, will eventually become the Israeli counterpart of…

  • Israel reforms economy on eve of Independence Day

    JERUSALEM, April 28 (JTA) — Israel has taken another big step toward a free-market economy. Under the sweeping reforms announced Tuesday, foreign currency restrictions on Israeli individuals and businesses would soon be scrapped. The reforms will enable Israelis to freely invest abroad in such areas as land and real estate for the first time ever….

  • Conservative Jews claim win in wake of protection at wall

    JERUSALEM, June 2 (JTA) — Conservative Jewish leaders in Israel are declaring victory after a group of 250 worshipers completed prayers on Shavuot morning at the Western Wall under police protection — despite attempts by hundreds of fervently Orthodox Jews to stop the service. Last year, non-Orthodox Jews who prayed near the Western Wall plaza…

  • BEHIND THE HEADLINES Shortage of high-tech specialists affecting Israel’s economic growth

    JERUSALEM, June 22 (JTA) — Israeli engineers and computer programmers are not worried when they see dramatic headlines warning of rising unemployment. All they have to do is turn to the help-wanted pages, which are filled with ads from companies seeking high-tech specialists. The ads demonstrate what many in the field already know: Electronics and…