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  • One bullet at a time
    French priest finds graves, unearths stories from Europe’s killing fields
  • Meet Stefan Zweig
    Jewish novelist who inspired ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ is having a comeback
  • Slaughter in Paris
    Dirty Charlie
  • When is a Jewish movie a Jewish movie?
  • Scheherazade in Cresskill
    Former Palmach, Palyam fighter talks about his adventures in Russia, Palestine, Egypt, and Brooklyn
  • Shlomo Carlebach musical has the soul to heal frayed race relations
  • Past and future in Kosovo
    In heart of Muslim province, Jewish remnant stakes its claim
  • It’s never too late
    Miriam Allenson publishes her first novel
  • Big-screen reinvention of Exodus is empty as the parted Red Sea
  • A Whole New World
    Female rabbis at forefront of pioneering prayer communities


High tech, human passion, Israeli lifesaving

Minutes matter. When it comes to saving lives, even seconds matter.

When they face a medical emergency, people call 911, and an ambulance is dispatched immediately. That system indisputably saves lives. But the EMT technicians inside those ambulances must negotiate snarled traffic, dangerous intersections, careless pedestrians, callous drivers, and other road hazards. Valuable minutes are lost.

What to do?

In Jersey City, Mayor Steven Fulop has a solution — and it comes straight from Israel.

The city is joining forces with United Hatzalah and the Jersey City Medical Center — Barnabas Health to form Community Based Emergency Care. That is a bland name for a clever new program aimed at bridging the gap between the time that an emergency is called in and when the cavalry — the EMTs and their ambulance full of equipment — can show up. It will use a combination of human passion and goodwill and technology to meet that goal.


Don’t bogart that joint — at least not on Shabbat

Fair Lawn’s Shomrei Torah’s study session looks at medical ethics, medicinal cannabis, and other issues

Just because 22 states have legalized medical marijuana, does that make it completely kosher in the eyes of Jewish law?

This timely topic will be one of the issues explored during “Torah, Text, and Tradition: An Evening of Learning and Sharing,” set to take place from 7 to 9:45 p.m. on January 31 at Fair Lawn’s Congregation Shomrei Torah, 19-10 Morlot Avenue.

Nine members of the Orthodox congregation are offering lectures grouped into three time slots. There are three choices in each slot, providing a smorgasbord of options free of charge to men, women, and teenagers from the greater community.

The idea for the evening came from Rabbi Dr. Wallace Greene, a retired Jewish educator and communal leader who joined Shomrei Torah in 1971. He will present “Medical Marijuana in Halakha,” a subject he has been writing and speaking about for the last two years as part of his greater interest in Jewish bioethics.


An American rabbi in Paris

NYU’s Rabbi Yehuda Sarna talks about France to local shuls

Two weeks ago, when four Jews were killed in a terrorist attack at a kosher supermarket in Paris, Rabbi Yehuda Sarna decided to go to Paris to visit and comfort the community

Rabbi Sarna leads the Bronfman Center for Jewish Life at New York University — the school’s equivalent of a Hillel chapter.

As a native of Montreal, he speaks French. And as a disciple and former intern of Rabbi Avi Weiss, his reaction to a crisis is: “When you feel a personal connection and likely nobody else will be there, just go.”

So two weeks ago, shortly before Shabbat, he posted plans to go to Paris on his Facebook page. Within half an hour, he had found a group of people interested in going with him.


Breaking borders

Closter teen aims to foster dialogue, create ‘safe environment’ for divergent views

Two years ago, Carter Hirschhorn of Closter, now 17, went to a program in Maine that brought him together with teens from conflicted regions around the world.

“I went to Seeds of Peace, connecting with teens from Southeast Asia and the Middle East, living for three weeks with these kids,” he said.

Engaging in team-building activities and spirited dialogues, “I learned about conflicts through the eyes of the people in them.” With exposure to a variety of different views, “I learned about conflict resolution. It was valuable to sit in a dialogue room with Palestinians, Jordanians, Egyptians, and Israelis.”

When he came home, he continued to talk to friends from the camp, with whom he discussed “great foreign policy issues.” But he realized that there was something missing.


It’s electability, stupid

Jewish Republican donors consider 2016

WASHINGTON — The key consideration for Jewish Republicans in what appears to be a burgeoning race for the party’s presidential nod is electability, top party donors said.

Although a donor’s closeness to a particular candidate or his embrace of a favored policy may have been key in the past, Jewish Republicans said, the main goals now are defeating Hillary Rodham Clinton, who is seen as the likely Democratic nominee, and reversing course on Obama’s Israel policy.

Gary Erlbaum, a real estate executive who backed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in 2012, said the growing consensus among potential donors was that sticklers for ideological correctness were not attractive.

“I don’t think that the people I know want to be Don Quixote anymore,” said Erlbaum, the president of the Philadelphia-based Greentree Properties Corp.


Peres: France doesn’t ‘need assistance’ from Israel

Tel AVIV–Former Israeli President Shimon Peres said he is confident about France’s ability to fight anti-Semitism on its own soil. Immigration to Israel, he said, should be encouraged for positive reasons, not only as a response to persecution abroad.

“We call on Jews to immigrate to Israel when there’s no crime and no other reason,” said Peres, speaking exclusively to JTA from his Peres Center for Peace office overlooking the Mediterranean.

Israeli politicians, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have called on French Jews to move to Israel following the January 9 hostage siege at a Paris kosher supermarket. The attack killed four Jewish men.

“I think Zionism is a movement of rebirth, not protest. Why should I have a negative reason? I have a positive reason,” said Peres, 91, who twice served as the nation’s prime minister.


Hezbollah, Argentine government fingered in death of AMIA prosecutor

The mysterious death of Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman seems ripped straight out of a crime thriller.

Nisman — the indefatigable prosecutor collecting evidence of culpability in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires, which killed 85 people — was found dead in his apartment just hours before he was to present evidence to Argentina’s congress that he said implicated his country’s president and foreign minister in a nefarious cover-up scheme. The charge? That the two agreed to suppress Tehran’s role in the AMIA bombing in exchange for oil shipments to energy-starved Argentina.

Nisman’s body was discovered late Sunday in his 13-floor apartment with a single gunshot wound to the head.

Officials connected to the president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, quickly said that the evidence pointed to suicide, noting that a .22-caliber pistol and a spent cartridge were found near Nisman’s body.


Noshes: celebrity names in the news


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25 February 2011
7 January 2011
20 February 2009


Temple Beth El Re-Dedication
4th Annual Kosherfest Culinary Competition 2011
Kehillah Partnership Pilot Program


Teens from Sha’ar Communities met with Jack Antonoff of the Band FUN, pictured back row, center, to talk about Jewish identity. Rabbi Adina Lewittes of Sha’ar facilitated the discussion as part of a series,  “Teens 2.0: Hitting the Refresh Button on Jewish Identity.” Courtesy Sha’ar

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