Archive for May, 2010

IDF vs. "Humanitarian" flotilla: who's the bigger fool?

May 31, 2010

In case you have not been reading the news lately, earlier today a flotilla of six ships sailed from Cyprus, bearing humanitarian aid for Gaza.  According to Haaretz, at least nine of the activists on the ships were killed by the IDF. It appears that five of the ships were carrying peaceful people bearing...
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Torah from my daughters

May 29, 2010

Once a week, as the Sabbath is nearing its close – at the time for “seudah shlishit,” the third Sabbath meal – I hold the “Leff Family Beit Midrash” with my three youngest daughters (my two oldest live in the US).  We’ve started studying Pirkei Avot (Teachings of the Fathers), a collection of Jewish...
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Questions for Shavuot (Feast of Weeks)

May 17, 2010

I usually write with answers; today I'm writing with a LONG list of questions appropriate to the holiday.  On Shavuot, we read the story of Ruth, considered the archetype for the Jewish convert: she joins the Jewish people with a beautiful statement to her mother in law:   And Ruth said, Do not entreat...
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No news is good news

May 14, 2010
No news is good news

Jerusalem, Rosh Chodesh Sivan 5770 (May 14, 2010): This morning a group of women prayed together at Judaism's holiest site, the Kotel (Western Wall). Other than one guy who yelled for a while about how terrible it was that women were doing this at a holy place, and I understand from the women's side,...
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Yom Yerushalayim

May 11, 2010
Yom Yerushalayim

Today is "Yom Yerushalayim," Jerusalem Day. The day when we celebrate the reunification of Jerusalem (according to the Hebrew calendar) in 1967. I have to admit, I feel deeply ambivalent about this day.  On the one hand, 'when I watch the news clips from that June day in 1967 — which you can see...
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Arson in the name of God

May 7, 2010
Arson in the name of God

Earlier this week there was a fire at a mosque in the West Bank town of Luban al Sharqiya, not far from Nablus. Earlier today I took a tour of the mosque and participated in a meeting with residents of the town and Israelis and Palestinians associated with Combatants for Peace. Right after the...
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