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Articles written by Ben Sales

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 By Ben Sales    News    May 19, 2017 

Israel's justice minister says Trump peace plan won't go anywhere-and she's happy about it

NEW YORK (JTA)-Ten days before Donald Trump was inaugurated, Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked visited the Jewish settlement in Hebron. A community of several hundred ensconced in a city of 150,0...

 
 By Ben Sales    Features    May 19, 2017 

How the Six-Day War changed American Jews

NEW YORK (JTA)-On the morning of June 5, 1967, as Arab armies and Israel clashed following weeks of tension, Rabbi Irving "Yitz" Greenberg sat anxious amid his congregants at daily prayers-fearful...

 

Anti-Semitic incidents in U.S. surging in 2017, rose by a third in 2016

(JTA)-Anti-Semitic incidents in the United States soared 86 percent in the first three months of 2017 after rising by more than one-third in 2016, according to the Anti-Defamation League. There has...

 
 By Ben Sales    Features    May 5, 2017

Chef trying to make Ashkenazi food cool

CHICAGO (JTA)—The platter, served during Passover, contained a green, a bitter herb, an egg and matzah. But it was no seder plate. Instead, it was the appetizer served during a six-course prix fixe meal at Aviv, a pop-up, kosher-for-Passover...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 28, 2017

Four things to know about Bret Stephens, the latest Jewish New York Times columnist

NEW YORK (JTA)-At first glance, The New York Times' hiring of another white, Jewish male opinion-page columnist is anything but news. But the arrival of Bret Stephens, formerly the foreign affairs...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 21, 2017

A state legislator called J Street anti-Semitic: Right to left, Jewish groups disagree

NEW YORK (JTA)—Is J Street anti-Semitic? A South Carolina state legislator insists it is. But few, if any, Jewish leaders seem to agree. Alan Clemmons, a Republican lawmaker from Myrtle Beach, is a darling of the pro-Israel community. He led the...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 21, 2017

When politics gets in the way of Jewish giving

NEW YORK (JTA)-Lisa Greer didn't think twice when she used her cellphone to donate to IfNotNow, a Jewish organization that protests Israel's West Bank occupation. Greer and her husband, Joshua, had...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 31, 2017

Jewish bomb threat suspect undermines groups' narrative on anti-Semitism

NEW YORK (JTA)—Many Jewish groups blamed white supremacists, emboldened by Donald Trump’s campaign, for the bomb threats that have plagued Jewish institutions since the beginning of this year. It appears the groups were wrong. The news that one...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 31, 2017

Trump era prompts Jewish donors to step up giving to liberal causes

ATLANTA (JTA)—For decades, the Lippman Kanfer family has focused its philanthropy on local Jewish communities and national initiatives to teach Torah—funding causes from the Anshe Sfard Congregation in Akron, Ohio, to a Jewish day school...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 31, 2017

Six decades after synagogue bombing, Atlanta Jews feel threats again

ATLANTA (JTA)-When Janice Rothschild Blumberg first heard that a bomb threat had hit an Atlanta Jewish center, she had only one thought: "It's happening all over again." Blumberg, 93, remembers her sh...

 
 By Ben Sales    Features    March 24, 2017

At 10, egalitarian yeshiva wants to expand learning among Jews in the pews

NEW YORK (JTA)-In the upstairs sanctuary of a Manhattan synagogue, a group of rabbis is studying Jewish texts on pluralism and community. One floor below, 22 students are sitting in pairs poring over...

 
 By Ben Sales    Features    March 24, 2017

At Jewish schools hit by bomb threats, trying to teach students just enough to cope

NEW YORK (JTA)-On the morning of March 7, Rabbi Beth Naditch found out that two of her three children's schools had received bomb threats. The anonymous calls placed to the MetroWest Jewish Day...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 10, 2017

ADL: Juan Thompson's arrest alone won't stop 'unprecedented' wave of anti-Semitism

NEW YORK (JTA)-Thanking the FBI and police for the arrest of Juan Thompson, who allegedly made eight bomb threats to Jewish institutions, the Anti-Defamation League called the current wave of...

 

With full Talmud translation, online library hopes to make sages accessible

NEW YORK (JTA)-For centuries, studying a page of the Talmud has come with a bevy of barriers to entry. Written mostly in Aramaic, the Talmud in its most commonly printed form also lacks punctuation...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    February 10, 2017

JCC bomb threat probe hindered by tech disguises

NEW YORK (JTA)—A person calls a Jewish institution, makes a bomb threat and hangs up. The call lasts no more than a minute, the caller’s voice is disguised and the call is made to look as if it came from inside the building. How do you catch the...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    February 3, 2017

For Jewish groups in Women's March, many causes to fight for and a long road ahead

(JTA)-One Jewish group that joined the Women's March on Washington has seen its online donations double since the election of Donald Trump as president. Another has twice as many guests as usual atten...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    January 20, 2017

After bomb threats, FBI to coordinate with JCCs in 'new reality'

NEW YORK (JTA)—The FBI and Department of Homeland Security will be assisting local Jewish community centers in bolstering security after 16 JCCs received bomb threats on the same day. On Wednesday, officials from the FBI and Homeland Security will...

 
 By Ben Sales    Features    January 6, 2017

Married couple to face off in major Bible contest in Jerusalem

NEW YORK (JTA)-Some couples argue over movies, others disagree about how to squeeze the toothpaste. But one of the earliest debates Yaelle Frohlich and Yair Shahak had was over which biblical figure w...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    December 30, 2016

Conservative group ousts rabbi for performing intermarriages

NEW YORK (JTA)-Conservative Rabbi Seymour Rosenbloom has been expelled from the Rabbinical Assembly, the movement's rabbis' association, for performing interfaith weddings. An ordained Conservative...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    December 23, 2016

As BDS resolutions stall, pro-Palestinian students shift tactics

NEW YORK (JTA)-When Northwestern University's student Senate passed a resolution in February 2015 asking the university to divest from six corporations they said contributed to the violation...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    December 2, 2016

ADL to ZOA: diverging Jewish rhetoric under Trump

NEW YORK (JTA)—Thirty years ago, it would have been safe to say the American Jewish community agreed on the need to fight for Israel and against anti-Semitism. It may still be true that most American Jews support those causes. But now, apparently,...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    November 25, 2016

Jews and Muslims ramp up alliances in wake of Trump's election

(JTA)-For years, whenever Jews and Muslims engaged in dialogue and activism, it usually concerned one issue: the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. With Donald Trump's ascent to the presidency, that...

 

At first Jewish Comic Con, artists and geeks revel in tradition

NEW YORK (JTA)-After Brett Parker's great-grandfather fled the pogroms in Europe and came to the United States, he opened a drug store where he sold comic books. Each week he would give his grandson,...

 

Cubs fans, like the Jews, now face the challenge of success

(JTA)-For years, I've told anyone who would listen that the Cubs were the team of the Jews. I've written two blog posts about it during the past month alone. Long suffering. Faithful. Bound to...

 

Black rabbinical student leads 'Army of Moms' in fighting Chicago gun violence

CHICAGO (JTA)-The same week Tamar Manasseh's African-American son was going to become a bar mitzvah, gang violence killed two 13-year-old black boys who were also from Chicago's South Side. As she...

 

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