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Reform Reflections

Thursday Feb 06, 2014
   American Jewish leaders agree that Jonathan Pollard should be released from jail.  What they do not agree on is why he is still there and the best way to get him out.     These differences have become public due to an editorial on January 16 in Tablet Magazine, a thoughtful, high-quality, on-line publication.      The editorial had both a strident tone and a jarring message.  I would summarize it...
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Wednesday Jan 08, 2014
  As these words are written, former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the visionary and ferocious champion of the State of Israel, fights for life in his hospital bed, and Jews everywhere pray for his return to health—even as they know that the doctors offer little or no hope of recovery.   A fearless soldier and military commander, Mr. Sharon was a hero of four of Israel’s wars. A strong and controversial leader, he fought...
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Wednesday Dec 11, 2013
    An interim deal with Iran has been signed.  The government of Israel is deeply concerned.  So too are Israel’s American Jewish supporters.  The terms of a final deal could be favorable to Israel; President Obama has made his case that this will be so.  But there is also an argument to be made that America’s resolve has been weakened, the sanctions are unravelling, and Iran is likely to emerge from...
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Saturday Nov 23, 2013
    The good news:  A multitude of proposals for religious reform have been brought to the Israeli Knesset in recent weeks and months.  At no time in recent memory have Israel’s political parties demonstrated so much interest in reforming Israel’s religious establishment and in changing the rules that govern the relationship between religion and state in Israel.     More good news:  Issues of...
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Wednesday Oct 23, 2013
    What does it mean, exactly, that the Palestinians must recognize Israel as a Jewish state? Prime Minister Netanyahu has made this demand several times recently in major speeches – at the United Nations, at Bar-Ilan University, and at the opening session of the 19th Knesset. But it is just not clear what he is talking about. This absence of clarity became a public issue when Finance Minister Yair Lapid disputed Netanyahu...
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