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is the managing editor of MyJewishLearning. Follow her on Twitter @Julie_Wiener

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  • Israeli ministry collecting info on, and threatening to slash funding of, artists who shun settlements

    (JTA) — Israel’s culture minister is collecting information about which theaters, orchestras and dance troupes perform in Jewish settlements in the West Bank, with an eye toward reducing the funding of those who don’t. Miri Regev of the Likud party said Wednesday that she circulated a questionnaire on the topic because she is proud to lead a…

  • Construction of Jewish apartments in predominantly Arab Jerusalem neighborhood approved

    (JTA) — The Jerusalem municipality has approved an NGO’s plans to build a Jewish apartment building in a predominantly Arab neighborhood of the city. The Planning and Building Committee on Wednesday approved Ateret Cohanim’s construction plans in the Silwan section of eastern Jerusalem, The Jerusalem Post reported. The site, near another Jewish apartment building purchased…

  • Chabad rabbi competes on Food Network’s ‘Chopped’

    NEW YORK (JTA) — A Chabad rabbi is one of four clergy members competing in an upcoming episode of the Food Network’s “Chopped.” In an already taped episode that airs June 21, Rabbi Hanon Hecht, a Chabad emissary in upstate Rhinebeck, New York, appears with a monk, nun and priest, according to Lubavitch.com, the website of the…

  • Wide-ranging terror law passes Knesset in aftermath of Tel Aviv attack

    (JTA) — A week after Palestinian terrorists killed four Israelis in an upscale Tel Aviv food court, the Knesset on Wednesday passed wide-ranging new anti-terrorism legislation to replace all previous anti-terror laws and regulations. The bill, which Haaretz said was supported by all the major parties in the Knesset except Meretz and the Joint Arab…

  • 65 Israeli lawmakers sign letter requesting pardon of Ethiopian who killed his alleged abuser

    (JTA) — More than half the members of the Knesset want Israeli President Reuven Rivlin to pardon an Ethiopian man who murdered his alleged rapist and abuser. In 2010 Yonatan Heilo, now 29, killed Yaron Eilin, a powerful member of the Ethiopian community in Netanya who allegedly had abused him emotionally, physically and sexually for years….

  • Senior Hamas official reportedly defects to Israel

    (JTA) — A senior Hamas officer from Gaza reportedly has defected to Israel. Bassam Mahmoud Baraka, who is believed to have extensive knowledge of Hamas’ underground tunnel networks, has been missing for several days and may have fled to Israel, Haaretz reported Tuesday, citing several Palestinian media outlets. Baraka, the son of a Muslim religious…

  • NY congregation to appeal ruling on historic Touro Synagogue

    (JTA) — Congregation Shearith Israel in New York will appeal a federal court ruling last month stripping its control of the historic Touro Synagogue in Rhode Island. The Manhattan congregation filed a notice Tuesday saying it will appeal to the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in an effort to reverse last month’s  decision concerning…

  • Chief rabbi holds Orthodox service at egalitarian section of Western Wall

    (JTA) — In what is believed to be a first, Orthodox Jews temporarily took over the space at the Western Wall that has been designated for non-Orthodox prayer services. A mechitzah — a physical divider separating men and women — was set up at the southern section of the Western Wall on Tuesday for a service led…

  • Palestinians accused in Tel Aviv terror attack entered Israel through hole in security fence

    (JTA) — The two alleged gunmen in Wednesday’s deadly terror attack in Tel Aviv entered Israel through a hole in the security fence, police said. The two alleged terrorists, Palestinian cousins from a West Bank town near Hebron who had not been authorized to enter Israel, snuck in near Beersheba and then took a taxi from…

  • Fox Sports reporter fired after slurring Jews, Mexicans

    (JTA) — A Fox Sports sideline reporter has been fired for making racist and anti-Semitic comments on a live Facebook broadcast. In the broadcast Thursday on Barstool Sports’ Facebook Live, Emily Austen, 27, said Jewish people are stingy and expressed surprise that a Mexican immigrant was a high school valedictorian because, “I didn’t even know Mexicans…