Articles written by Ben Sales

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 By Ben Sales    News    July 12, 2019 

Shooter drills during services

(JTA)-When the ushers locked the door to the sanctuary, and the congregants prepared to flee the synagogue in preparation for a mass shooting, Rabbi Neil Cooper made sure it all happened before they...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 21, 2019

NYC closes tenth Jewish school

NEW YORK (JTA)—New York City is shuttering an Orthodox school in Brooklyn because it has continued to admit unvaccinated students in violation of a city order. The Central UTA Satmar School for Boys, a hasidic school in the Williamsburg...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 21, 2019

An Orthodox rally in Brooklyn sees vaccines as a conspiracy

NEW YORK (JTA)—The weirdest part of an Orthodox anti-vaccine conference here was probably when the emcee, a rabbi wearing a black hat and white beard, quoted the Gospel of Luke. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!” he cried,...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 21, 2019

Orthodox synagogue in Atlanta breaks from national Young Israel movement after political spat

(JTA) — A large Orthodox synagogue in Atlanta is breaking away from the Young Israel synagogue movement. The exit comes months after its rabbi protested the movement’s right-wing political positions. In a statement provided Wednesday afternoon to...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 21, 2019

This Chicago synagogue is a home for non-Zionist Jews

CHICAGO (JTA)-If a pro-Israel activist were to conjure an image of an anti-Zionist synagogue, they'd probably come up with something like Tzedek Chicago. A congregation of 180 people that meets in a...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 14, 2019

Chicago-area high school pulls support for teacher

CHICAGO (JTA)—A high school district with a large Jewish population has withdrawn its recommendation of an optional training opportunity for teachers called “Teaching Palestine” after local teachers, synagogues and national organizations...

 
 By Ben Sales    Opinions    June 7, 2019

Why Israel will hold a second national election in 2019

(JTA)—Israel held a national election seven weeks ago. It will hold another one in September. If that sounds weird to you, you’re right: Israel has a famously raucous political system, but it’s never held national elections twice in one year....

 
 By Ben Sales    News    June 7, 2019

Jewish lawyer representing clients at immigration court

(JTA)-Most of the year, Marty Rosenbluth lives alone in a small house in Lumpkin, a Georgia town with 2,000 residents and one restaurant. It's 500 miles away from his wife and community in North...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    May 31, 2019

Palestinian activists don't understand why they can't enter the US

(JTA)-In December 1992, about nine months before the first Palestinian-Israeli peace accords were signed on the White House lawn, Hanan Ashrawi met with President George H.W. Bush in the Oval Office....

 
 By Ben Sales    News    May 31, 2019

Who are the Sacklers, the family at the center of the opioid crisis?

NEW YORK (JTA)-In the 1930s, Mortimer and Raymond Sackler both traveled to Scotland for medical school because, they said, American universities wouldn't admit them as Jews. Eighty years later,...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    May 10, 2019

After Poway, ADL director calls for government to take action

(JTA)—The head of the Anti-Defamation League said Saturday’s synagogue shooting should serve as a “wake-up call” for politicians and business executives to more seriously address anti-Semitism. Jonathan Greenblatt, the CEO and national...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    May 10, 2019

How Venezuela's remaining Jews are hanging on amid the crisis

(JTA)—One night years ago, when a Jewish man was driving to his parents’ house in Caracas, Venezuela, two cars blocked off the street he was on and held him up at gunpoint. He got into their car and began answering questions: who he was, where...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 26, 2019

Pete Buttigieg keeps calling Mike Pence a 'Pharisee' and it angers Jews

(JTA)-Pete Buttigieg has a word he likes to use to describe Vice President Mike Pence: "Pharisee." Jewish scholars would like him to stop doing that. Buttigieg, the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend,...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 26, 2019

Netanyahu's promise to annex West Bank settlements, explained

(JTA)—Just days before Israel was to hold national elections, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised to annex parts of the West Bank as Israeli territory. “I’m going to extend sovereignty,” he said in an interview with Israeli Channel...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 26, 2019

Orthodox communities at the center of a measles outbreak

(JTA)—Rabbi Mordechai Shain isn’t sure about vaccines. Nearly all of the 400 kids in the school he runs, from 3 months old to eighth-grade teens, are vaccinated. About eight or 10 are not. But he’s skeptical that immunization works at all. “M...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 26, 2019

Was a UNC-Duke conference on Gaza anti-Semitic?

(JTA)-"This is my anti-Semitic song," Tamer Nafar, a Palestinian-Israeli rapper, said at the opening of a conference on Gaza last month at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. "I know it...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 19, 2019

Netanyahu wins narrow victory

(JTA)-Benjamin Netanyahu appears likely to win a fifth term as Israel's prime minister as right-wing parties apparently have maintained their majority in the nationwide elections held Tuesday. With mo...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 19, 2019

Airbnb will cancel ban on West Bank

(JTA)—In a reversal of a 2018 policy announcement, Airbnb will not remove West Bank settlement listings from its website. The policy change came after two federal court settlements Monday between the vacation rental company and two groups of...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 12, 2019

Netanyahu wins narrow victory in Israel's election

(JTA) - Benjamin Netanyahu appears likely to win a fifth term as Israel's prime minister as right-wing parties apparently have maintained their majority in the nationwide elections held Tuesday. With...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    April 5, 2019

The Golan Heights, explained

(JTA)-President Donald Trump recently signed a proclamation recognizing Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights. Here's what you need to know about the Golan Heights, the 52-year argument over...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 29, 2019

Benjamin Netanyahu's views on a Palestinian state, explained

(JTA)-It wasn't so long ago that most major Israeli politicians supported establishing a Palestinian state. Now it's not clear that any of them do, including the current prime minister, Benjamin...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 15, 2019

How partisan politics are dividing an Orthodox synagogue movement

NEW YORK (JTA)-At the end of March, the National Council of Young Israel, an Orthodox synagogue association, will hold a gala dinner hosted by Pete Hegseth, the co-host of "Fox & Friends." The...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 8, 2019

Bibi's scandals explained

(JTA)-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is going to court on corruption charges-he says he's innocent. Netanyahu was indicted in three cases Thursday pending a court hearing. It's the first ti...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 8, 2019

Deborah Lipstadt quits synagogue after its national affiliate backs Netanyahu's overture to far-right party

(JTA)—Deborah Lipstadt, the prominent Holocaust historian, is resigning her membership in her local synagogue because it belongs to a movement that defended an Israeli political deal with the extremist right wing. Lipstadt belonged to Young Israel...

 
 By Ben Sales    News    March 8, 2019

US Orthodox group defends Netanyahu's deal with far-right

NEW YORK (JTA)—An American Orthodox Jewish group is defending Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to work with a far-right political party. It is the first statement by a major American Jewish organization defending...

 

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