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North America

  • Jews Face Tough Choice As Canadian Elections Near

    Canada’s federal election campaign has a distinctly Jewish irony this time around: The country’s solidly pro-Israel prime minister reached out to Jewish voters with Rosh Hashanah cards just weeks before an election that falls on a Jewish holiday. For the second consecutive year, the holiday cards sent by Prime Minister Stephen Harper triggered questions about… More ▸

  • Canada’s Prime Minister Seen As Key to Growing Support for Israel

    For many Canadian Jews, the country’s prime minister has been more than just a breath of fresh air when it comes to support for Israel. They wonder whether Stephen Harper may be too good to be true. Elected with a minority Conservative government in January 2006, Harper has left an unmistakable record of solidly and… More ▸

  • Experts Debate the Accuracy of Jewish Numbers in Canadian Census

    A new Canadian census that appears to show a significant decline in the number of Jews in Canada has experts divided over the significance of the figures. Statistics culled from Canada’s 2006 “mini-census” released last week show that 315,000 Canadians identified themselves as Jewish by ethnic origin. This constitutes a 9 percent drop from 2001,… More ▸

  • Women Refused Get by Husband Wins Ruling in Canada’s High Court

    In a landmark decision that could provide relief to agunot, Jewish women whose husbands deny them a Jewish divorce, Canada’s highest court sided with a woman whose husband had refused for 15 years to grant her a get, a religious writ of divorce. Making a rare foray into religious matters, the Supreme Court of Canada… More ▸

  • Toronto Day Schools Get a Much-needed Boost

    Cash-strapped elementary Jewish day schools in Toronto will get an annual infusion of $2 million for at least four years. Longtime Canadian philanthropists Henry and Julia Koschitzky are giving the 11 schools half the amount; the remainder will be matched by the United Jewish Appeal-Federation of Greater Toronto. The new funds will assist schools providing… More ▸

  • In a Corner of the Caribbean, Trinidad’s Jews Keep the Faith

    Hindu temples, Muslim mosques and Catholic churches can be found all over this oil-exporting island famous for Carnival, callaloo soup and calypso. But don’t look for synagogues in Trinidad — there aren’t any. No more than 55 Jews live here, despite the fact that Trinidad & Tobago’s 1.3 million inhabitants make it the second-largest English-speaking… More ▸

  • Hurricane Dean Turns Reunion in Jamaica into Family Nightmare

    A Jewish family’s annual reunion on the white sand beaches of Jamaica turned into a nightmare when a deadly hurricane ripped across the Caribbean, killing at least 28 people and leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. The Alberga family had converged last week on the idyllic island from Britain, Canada and Cameroon on… More ▸

  • Jews and Muslims Near Caribbean Go About Their Business Peacefully

    While conflicts in the Middle East make the prospect of peaceful coexistence between Jews and Arabs seem distant, a walk along the crowded streets of this trading zone shows Jews and Arabs can get along. Inside the stores here — wholesale distribution centers for Asian goods seeking Latin American importers — businesses run by Orthodox… More ▸

  • Anti-semitism in Canada at Highest Level in 25 Years

    Anti-Semitic activities in Canada have risen to their highest level in 25 years, according to a new report. B nai Brith Canada s 2006 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents indicates that 935 incidents were reported to the organization s League of Human Rights last year. Almost two-thirds were categorized as harassment, one-third as vandalism, and about… More ▸

  • Around the Jewish World in Caribbean, Conversion Offers

    Conversion is offering a way to keep Jewish life alive in the tiny Jewish communities of the Caribbean and Central America, though not without potential hazards. As more of these communities — some numbering as few as 20 members and located in isolated Jewish outposts such as El Salvador and Bahamas — are able to… More ▸