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  • Why did Cameron Diaz have a Jewish wedding?

    Last night Cameron Diaz married Benji Madden, the guitarist for the popular punk rock band Good Charlotte, at her Beverly Hills home. In an interesting twist, the couple had a Jewish ceremony — despite the fact that neither appears to be Jewish. Diaz’s father was Cuban, and her mother has English and German ancestry. Madden, who started… More ▸

  • German neo-Nazis go hipster

    Most people don’t picture the typical neo-Nazi cooking vegan food or wearing skinny jeans. But as the neo-Nazi movement in Germany continues to decline in numbers and influence, some Germans are trying to shed their intimidating skinhead image to appeal to a younger generation. That means trading black combat boots for Converse sneakers and Tumblr… More ▸

  • Did Argentina’s president really save a Jew from becoming a werewolf?

    Last week, JTA published an unusual item about a werewolf legend that generated headlines worldwide. The item was about Yair Tawil, the first Jewish man adopted as a godson by Argentina’s president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. The adoption took place under a longstanding custom that presidents adopt the seventh son (born to a family with no daughters… More ▸

  • From the Archive: Black Hebrews, from Chicago to Dimona

    Ben Ammi Ben-Israel, the spiritual leader of the African Hebrew Israelites, a group of African-Americans who, believing they were descendants of the biblical tribe of Judah, settled in Israel in the 1960s and ’70s, died last week. He was 75. Ben-Israel’s community now numbers about 3,000, with most living in the Negev town of Dimona. While… More ▸

  • Video: Inside the IDF operation to save Hadar Goldin

    When Hadar Goldin was kidnapped in southern Gaza on Aug. 1, his IDF Givati brigade launched an all-out assault on the area. The details of the assault, known as a Hannibal Directive, were murky, and many criticized the IDF for firing indiscriminately. On Tuesday, the website Ynet leaked a set of IDF recordings in a video that offers a… More ▸

  • JTA’s top 10 stories of the year

    Re-read (or read for the first time) JTA’s top 10 most-read stories of 2014. (This list excludes breaking news briefs.) USY drops ban on interdating (Dec. 23) NYT on why it hasn’t shown photos of Hamas fighters: We don’t have any (July 31) Meet the Fokkens: Amsterdam’s septuagenarian Jewish prostitutes (Oct. 8) Is Yeshivah of Flatbush… More ▸

  • USY and the interdating ban reexamined

    Ever since publication of my Dec. 23 story on the decision by United Synagogue Youth to relax its rules barring teenage USY board members from dating non-Jews (“USY drops ban on interdating”), JTA has found itself at the center of a firestorm about coverage of the Conservative youth movement’s decision. Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, head of… More ▸

  • Israeli campaign videos: The good, the bad and the bizarre

    Israeli election season is underway, and for the hundreds of candidates vying for Knesset seats, it’s never too early to leave a unique impression on the minds of Israeli voters. Israeli election law keeps political TV spots pretty restrained — parties are only allowed to show a limited number of ads a few weeks before the… More ▸