World
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Much of Tacloban on Leyte Island in the Philippines was destroyed when it was hit by Typhoon Haiyan in early November. The death toll will probably never be exactly known but it is now more than 6,000 with another 23,000 people injured. The … more
In 2010, Cornelius Gurlitt, the son of Hildebrand Gurlitt, part-Jewish museum director, art critic and dealer for the Nazis, who died in a car crash in 1956, attracted the attention of customs agents when he boarded a train from Munich to … more
Quite independently, in early October, Bernice and Dick Kumins and Mel and I made arrangements to travel to the Ukraine for a Viking River Cruise titled, “Footsteps of the Cossacks” a cruise from Odessa  to Kiev on the Dnieper River. more
During the 1980s, the Jews of Ethiopia began leaving Africa for Israel in the thousands, and at present very few remain in Ethiopia. Their emigration to Israel has involved many challenges, including having to transition from village life to life in … more
MAFRAQ, Jordan (JTA) – The purple plastic sacks fill two rooms in the otherwise sparsely furnished headquarters of a Jordanian NGO (non-governmental organization), awaiting distribution to Syrian refugees already lined up on the sidewalk. more
New York (JTA) –Yad Vashem posthumously recognized the Italian cycling champion Gino Bartali as Righteous Among the Nations. The Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem released a statement saying that during the German occupation of Italy beginning … more
Religious Zionism and the kibbutz movement, Israeli author and think-tanker Yossi Klein Halevi recently told me, are “the two messianic streams within Zionism that wanted more than just a safe refuge for the Jewish people.” In his estimation, … more
  TEL AVIV (JTA) – Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the Israeli sage who founded the Sephardic Orthodox Shas political party and exercised major influence on Jewish law, died Oct. 7. Ovadia Yosef was born Abdullah Yosef in Baghdad, Iraq, on Sept. 23, … more
NEW YORK (JTA) – There was a good deal that was wrong and fantastical in President Barack Obama’s address to the United Nations last week – such as the idea that al-Qaeda is “splintering” (actually, it is proliferating) or that Russia … more
From the brink of war, the Middle East has moved at dizzying speed to the cusp of peace. Or so we have been led to believe. The issues at hand are Iran and Syria – and incidentally, there is good reason to feel some relief from that fact, … more
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