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  • Behind the Headlines As Bush Gets Tougher on Cuba, Groups Worry About Impact on Jews by Larry Luxner

    Jewish humanitarian groups are debating how tough new U.S. regulations aimed at depriving the Castro regime of dollars will affect Cuba’s estimated 1,500 Jews. “This strategy encourages the spending of money to help organizations to protect dissidents and to promote human rights,” President Bush said as the State Department made public a 423-page report prepared… More ▸

  • Around the Jewish World As Haiti Burns, Its Few Jews Choose Business over Politics

    At the once-elegant El Rancho Hotel in the hills above Port-au-Prince, aggressive young men peddle exotic African sculptures next to the taxi stand, and colorful Haitian paintings decorate the reception area. Yet it’s hard not to notice the black, wrought-iron menorah smack in the middle of the lobby. “My father was Jewish,” explains manager Elizabeth… More ▸

  • Despite Lack of Diplomatic Ties, Israeli Tourists Flocking to Cuba

    Israel and Cuba haven’t had diplomatic relations since 1973, but that hasn’t stopped thousands of Israelis from touring the Caribbean island anyway. “We assume that at least 10,000 Israelis have already visited Cuba,” said Daniel Faians, president and CEO of Polaris Group, a large travel wholesaler and airline agent based in Tel Aviv. Overall traffic… More ▸

  • Jewish Travel Where to Head in the Caribbean? Kashrut Lovers Choose Destinations

    Some Caribbean islands inspire awe at the wonder of God’s varied beauty. Even a peaceful Shabbat assumes new meaning when the day is spent at sea praying, reading or learning — or simply contemplating the ocean and sky. And Caribbean-bound tourists who adhere to high standards of kashrut now have expanded options. Among them is… More ▸

  • Castro Attends Chanukah Fete in Historic Havana Synagogue Visit

    Cuban President Fidel Castro was an honored guest at a Havana synagogue recently, where he mingled with 200 congregants during Chanukah celebrations last month. The visit was Castro’s first to a synagogue, according to the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, whose local official in Havana led the Chanukah program. Castro spent about two hours in… More ▸

  • Jewish Organization Considers Call for End to Embargo of Cuba

    Cuba has become one of the most popular destinations for American Jewish delegations. Now one national Jewish organization wants to do more than bring humanitarian and religious supplies to the island nation’s tiny Jewish community. The American Jewish Congress is moving toward calling on the United States government to end its decades-old economic sanctions against… More ▸

  • First Synagogue on Martinique Opens

    The 500-strong Jewish community on the Caribbean island of Martinique has obtained a synagogue, the first Jewish temple on the French island in 350 years. The chief rabbi of France, Joseph Sitruk, and Jean Kahn, the secular leader of France’s Jewish community, inaugurated Kenaf Aretz Synagogue last week in Fort- de-France, Martinique’s capital. Nearly all… More ▸

  • Israeli Volunteer Contingent Returns from Service in Haiti

    The Israeli police contingent that was dispatched to Haiti last October as part of an international peacekeeping force returned to Israel this week. During their three months of service in the tiny Caribbean island nation, the 28 Israeli volunteers worked to help create better relations between the community and local police. The Israeli detachment was… More ▸

  • Israeli Police Joining Haiti Force; Training in Puerto Rico for the Mission

    A 30-member Israeli police contingent left here last week to join an international peacekeeping force whose goal is to restore law and order in Haiti. The 28 men and two women who volunteered to assist in the restoration of stability in the Caribbean island nation left Israel on Oct. 6. The group left two days… More ▸