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  • News Brief

    Growing religious freedom makes Russia a better place to be Jewish than Israel, a Russian chief rabbi said. The head Chabad rabbi in Russia, Berel Lazar, says he advises Jews to stay in Russia and not to immigrate to Israel. In an interview with the European publication Naaseh V’Nishma, he cited growing religious freedom under… More ▸

  • Russian Immigrants Explore Their Jewishness at Limmud Event in Israel

    In the 1840s, Shmeylin Valentin’s great-great-great-grandfather was a student of the Vilna Gaon. But Valentin, the son of a staunch communist, says he grew up in Lithuania with “no Yiddish and no religion” at home, even though his grandfather had been a rabbi. Now living in Israel, Valentin is curious to know more. Last week… More ▸

  • In 5768, Establishment Groups Faced Challenges by Upstarts

    In the weeks leading up to last Rosh Hashana, the Anti-Defamation League, bowing to mounting pressure and a mini-revolt by its New England board, reversed its longstanding refusal to recognize the Armenian genocide. Wary of offending Turkey — a close ally of both Israel and the United States — the ADL had refused to say… More ▸

  • News Brief

    Israel will allow additional Ethiopians to petition for aliyah under the special circumstances afforded the Falash Mura. Without specifying a number, Israel’s Cabinet decided Sunday that the petitioners must meet three key criteria: They must be listed on a 1999 census of the Falash Mura in Ethiopia; have been living for at least a year… More ▸

  • Eckstein Denies Report That Group Gave Money to Missionize Jews

    Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, who has raised tens of millions of dollars for Israel from American evangelicals, is denying a report suggesting that some of the money was used by Christians to missionize Jews. The Israeli daily Ma’ariv reported Monday that Eckstein’s organization, the Chicago-based International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, gave $10,000 in 2007 to… More ▸

  • Outgoing Ujc Head Faces Tough Task with Overseas Partners

    Don’t expect Howard Rieger to spend his last year on the job quacking. Rieger, the president and CEO of the United Jewish Communities, told JTA this summer that he plans to play the heavy during the next dozen months as he works hard to make sure that the relationship between the UJC and the network… More ▸

  • Mccain in Closing Gop Parley Defends and Raps His Party

    John McCain used his closing speech at the Republican National Convention to unveil his game plan for claiming the mantle of real change: Shore up support among conservatives by touting traditional GOP positions while appealing to undecided voters by criticizing his party’s actual performance and promising to work across party lines. In the process, McCain… More ▸

  • U.S. Sailors Who Brought Survivors to Prestate Palestine Share Stories

    One by one, until they numbered more than a thousand, they clambered up the bobbing rope and twine that God-fearing sailors centuries ago dubbed Jacob’s Ladder. It was Italy, May 1947. A bottomless sea lay below, a dark night sky above. The Jewish refugees finally were leaving Europe and the ashes of the Holocaust. They… More ▸

  • Feuding Aliyah Groups Agree to Work Together

    A fierce feud over immigration to Israel appears to be ending, as two organizations involved in promoting aliyah have agreed to work together. The deal involves the Jewish Agency for Israel, the quasi-governmental organization that traditionally has overseen aliyah, and Nefesh B’Nefesh, a nonprofit group that has used cash incentives to help encourage 16,000 people… More ▸

  • News Brief

    The Reform movement’s rabbinical group endorsed the Conservative movement’s ethical kosher initiative. The Board of Trustees of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Reform movement’s rabbinical association, resolved last month to explore ways to cooperate with the initiative, known as Hekhsher Tzedek. The conference urged producers of kosher meat to adhere to the highest… More ▸