Israel sees record infections, judge rules against charedi summer camps, Brazil’s Jews adapt


Join Jewish Week editor-in-chief Andrew Silow-Carroll and Jodi Rudoren, editor-in-chief of The Forward, for an exit interview with Amb. Dani DayanIsrael’s departing Consul General in the New York area, today, July 8 @ 12 p.m. ET. The three will discuss American Jewry and its relationship with the Jewish state, and how Dayan’s experience changed his understanding of U.S. politics — and Israel’s. Register here.

The New York Jewish Week is putting our print edition on hiatus as we transition to a “digital-first model.” The last print edition of the weekly — at least for now — is scheduled for July 31. The move is in part due to the financial effects of the coronavirus crisis “and how it has hurt our bottom line and that of our advertisers,” said the announcement signed by Kai Falkenberg, board president of the Jewish Week Media Group, and Andrew Silow-Carroll, the paper’s editor in chief.

Read our  announcement about the move.

A federal judge has refused to grant a temporary order allowing Orthodox Jewish sleepaway camps in the Catskills to open in spite of a state ban on overnight children’s camps this summer because of coronavirus concerns. In a 43-page ruling, Chief Judge Glenn Suddaby of the Northern District of New York expressed sympathy for the religious beliefs of the affected families, but said he also “must acknowledge the extenuating circumstances of the COVID-19 virus and its impact throughout the world.

“Although the State of New York has made progress in limiting the transmission of the virus in recent weeks, the recent resurgence of positive COVID-19 cases in several states raises concerns and is a painful reminder that the fight is far from over,” Suddaby wrote.

He also concluded that allowing overnight camps to open would bring children from more densely populated areas and other states to rural areas with low Covid-19 levels and limited hospital beds to handle any surge in virus cases.

The lawsuit against Gov. Cuomo was brought by the Association of Jewish Camp Operators, an umbrella group formed by Agudath Israel of America. The plaintiffs argued that the decision announced on June 12 to prohibit overnight camps would block an essential part of the religious upbringing of Orthodox children and violated religious rights.

Read a response by Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel, Executive Vice President of Agudath Israel of America, here.

The number of serious coronavirus cases leaped overnight to 107 in Israel. The case load has been steadily increasing since the start of the current outbreak.

The Health Ministry also reported a new record in daily new infections, putting the number of total confirmed cases in Israel since the start of the pandemic at 32,714, the Times of Israel reports.

The ministry said 1,320 cases had been confirmed throughout Tuesday between 12 a.m. and 12 a.m. The ministry also announced one new death since Tuesday night, bringing the toll to 343, an increase of five in 24 hours.

The number of active cases, which was below 2,000 in late May, swelled to 14,104, a new high.

The current increase in weekly infections in Israel is one of the highest in the world, according to a chart published Monday afternoon by the Health Ministry.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in April rejected a plan aimed at preventing a renewed outbreak of the coronavirus, Israeli television reported Tuesday.

According to Channel 13 news, the plan was pushed by the Mossad spy agency and enjoyed the backing of much of Israel’s security establishment. The proposal was meant to create conditions in which Israelis could go about their daily routines despite the continued presence of the virus.

The prime minister instead favored a plan drawn up by his National Security Council, according to the report, but it was never implemented.

The report comes as Israel struggles to put a lid on a surge in new infections, with critics taking aim at the government for its alleged failure to develop a strategy for coping with the virus.

How is Rio’s 30,000-strong Jewish community  adapting to the pandemic? In a country with the second-highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the world behind the United States, Brazil’s Jews are responding with a now-familiar combination of remote events, cancelled synagogue services and a crisis committee established by the Jewish federation. Read the story at JTA.



The Republican Jewish Coalition will sponsor a virtual town hall on The Critical Issues Facing the Jewish Community in 2020 with Nikki Haley, former UN ambassador, and author Mark Levin, on Thursday at 7 p.m.

Young Israel of New Rochelle will sponsor an online discussion on Thursday at 7 p.m. with Arnold Roth, whose daughter Malki was the victim of a 2001 Hamas terrorist attack in Jerusalem. His topic: Bringing My Child’s Killer to Justice. Meeting ID: 819 0848 1906 Password: 240555

UJA-Federation will host A Lighthearted Lunch Hour with comedian Jessica Kirson on Wednesday at noon.

United with Israel will sponsor an interactive webinar about Jewish Zealots: Is Everything Permitted for the Sake of Heaven? on Thursday at 10 a.m.

Yeshivat Chovevei Torah will hold an online Climate Conference on July 26, 9-11:15 a.m. For information:

Friends of the Israel Defense Forces Tri-State region will hold an online conversation with Jason Greenblatt, former Chief Legal Officer for President Trump, on July 13 at 7 p.m. The conversation will focus on the topic of Middle East peace and Antisemitism as it relates to the Coronavirus. For information:, (646) 274- 9661.

Join Jewish Week cultural editor Sandee Brawarsky on Thursday, July 9 at 6 p.m. for the next event in The Jewish Week Folio series, presented with UJA-Federation of NY, featuring a virtual conversation with Sanford D. Greenberg, author of the new book “Hello Darkness, My Old Friend.”This is the remarkable story of a Columbia U. undergrad from a poor Jewish family who, after losing his eyesight to disease during his junior year, finds the power to break through the darkness and fulfill his vision for a life of great professional success and distinguished public service. The event is free but you must register.