Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Articles from the February 12, 2021 edition


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  • Landslide victory: Senate votes 97-3 to make US Embassy move permanent

    World Israel News|Feb 12, 2021

    In a landslide vote Thursday the Senate approved a budget resolution amendment making the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem permanent, so that it could not be moved out of Israel's capital in the future. "Pleased the Senate overwhelmingly passed the amendment Senator Hagerty and I introduced to make sure the U.S. Embassy to Israel remains located in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel," tweeted the bill's co-sponsor, Republican Senator Jim Infofe of Oklahoma. "I am proud to introduce legislation to...

  • Israel headed toward 1 million residents living in the West Bank

    Josh Hasten|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) - The latest edition of the "West Bank Jewish Population Stats Report," commissioned annually by former Member of Knesset and National Union Party head Yaakov "Ketzaleh" Katz, shows a 2.62 percent growth in 2020, and a 17 percent in growth in the past five years, in the number of Jews who live in Judea and Samaria, more commonly known as the West Bank. According to the report, some 475,481 Jews currently call these regions home. The statistics do not take into account the more than 325,000...

  • Trump tapped for Nobel Peace Prize

    Jack Phillips|Feb 12, 2021

    Former President Donald Trump was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize on Feb. 1 by an Estonian member of the European Parliament, Jaak Madison. In a post on social media, Madison said: “In the last 30 years, Donald Trump is the first president of the United States, who during his tenure, has not started a war. Additionally, he signed several peace agreements in the Middle East which have helped provide stability in the region and peace.” Madison was referring to the Abraham Accords, a joint statement between Israel, the United Arab Emi...

  • Israeli drug cured COVID cases in days

    Paul Shindman, World Israel News|Feb 12, 2021

    Researchers at Tel Aviv’s Ichilov Hospital have discovered that a new cancer drug has been successfully used to treat patients seriously ill with the coronavirus, Kan News reported Friday. The drug EXO-CD24 is based on a biological protein normally associated with cancer research that is known to calm the body’s immune system, which in the second stage of coronavirus attacks itself and causes severe breathing problems. The treatment developed by Professor Nadir Arber of the Integrated Cancer Prevention Center at the hospital was tested on 30...

  • Why American Jews love Stella D'Oro cookies

    Joanna OLeary|Feb 12, 2021

    As a child, visits to my maternal grandfather and grandmother (of Italian and Polish heritage, respectively) involved eating a lot pasta and pierogi. Dessert, in turn, was sometimes cannoli and poppyseed roll, but often a platter of Stella D'Oro cookies - assorted dainty corrugated rings and logs of buttery dough with almond undertones. My grandfather had developed a taste for them early in his youth as an immigrant from Genoa, and my grandparents' pantry was never without at least one package....

  • Zoom Havdalah at Temple Israel

    Feb 12, 2021

    Temple Israel Sisterhood is hosting a special Zoom Havdalah on Saturday, Feb. 20 at 7:15 p.m. and invites the community at large. This service is a symbolic way to say goodbye to Shabbat and usher in a new week. Please RSVP at https://tisisterhoodorlando.org/sisterhood-havdalah or email TISisterhoodOrlando@gmail.com to receive your Havdalah kit as well as the Zoom link for this warm and welcoming event. Kits are free for Temple Israel members and $5 for nonmembers. The Havdalah kits include a braided candle, spice box, and printed prayers....

  • Jewish Pavilion volunteers have long lasting friendships

    Feb 12, 2021

    "Make new friends and keep the old. One is silver and the other gold." Not only is that a quote very similar to us but can be very relatable as well. The Jewish Pavilion has solidified so many silver- and gold-type relationships. Volunteers spend many hours with seniors, many who are considered true friends. Whether it be at a Shabbat, a holiday, a one-on-one room visit, or even playing a few games of mahjong, the time spent is invaluable to all. Spending time at the communities also forges frie...

  • Blinken says Iran's breakout time 'matter of weeks,' Israel's energy minister disagrees

    Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — Contrary to U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken’s assessment that Iran could produce enough fissile material for a nuclear weapon in “a matter of weeks,” Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said on Tuesday that it would take closer to six months. Speaking to NBC News on Sunday, Blinken said the time frame would apply if Iran continued its current violations of the nuclear deal the regime made with the world powers in 2015. Steinitz, in a radio interview with KAN news, as reported by Reuters, disagreed, saying that the steps were tak...

  • US official, Palestinians speak in first government contact in years

    Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — Officials in the Biden administration and the Palestinian Authority held a discussion on Monday in what appears to be the first formal contact between the United States and Palestinians in several years. U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Israeli and Palestinian Affairs Hady Amr spoke with Palestinian Authority Civil Affairs Commission chairman Hussein al-Sheikh on Monday with the two men agreeing to future dialogue. “Bilateral relations were discussed, and the political situation and the latest current developments. It was...

  • Israel transfers thousands of vaccines to Palestinians

    Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — Israel on Monday transferred 2,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to the Palestinian Authority, according to Israel’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories. The Moderna vaccines are to be used by medical personnel caring for coronavirus patients, said the P.A. Ministry of Health, wrote Reuters. Any surplus will be administered to those over the age of 60 or who have chronic diseases, said the ministry. Another 3,000 doses have also been earmarked for the Palestinians, said a COGAT official, according to Reuters. The...

  • It's not enough to just remember the Holocaust

    Clifford D. May|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — International Holocaust Remembrance Day is meant to serve two purposes: to memorialize the victims of the Nazi genocide and help prevent future genocides. Last week, on Jan. 27, the day designated by the U.N. General Assembly for this annual commemoration, both purposes were insufficiently served. I’ll give credit where it’s due. U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres made an appropriate statement: “Today, we honor the memory of the 6 million Jews and millions of others who were systematically murdered in the Holocaust by the Nazis and...

  • U.S. re-engagement with the Palestinians

    Mel Pearlman, Everywhere|Feb 12, 2021

    As the Biden administration takes shape it is becoming increasing clear, through the president’s appointments to the State Department, White House staff and other federal bodies dealing with Middle East policy formulation, that he sees U.S. re-engagement with the Palestinians as a high priority. The terms of that re-engagement could be beneficial in advancing the peace process by fostering a resumption of bilateral negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority on the basis of the new realty in the Arab/Israeli relationship. H...

  • California's ethnic-studies curriculum

    Roz Rothstein|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — For more than a-year-and-a-half, StandWithUs has worked tirelessly together with concerned citizens and partners to remove anti-Semitism, anti-Israel bias and other destructive ideas from California’s draft Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum. At the same time, we have pushed for the inclusion of positive education about anti-Semitism and the Jewish people. The stakes are extremely high because California public schools serve 6 million students, and the ESMC is likely to be used as a model in many other states as well. As the ESMC rec...

  • Biden returns to immoral equivalency

    Stephen M. Flatow|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — It took less than a week for the Biden administration to return to the Obama-Biden policy of moral equivalency, or what I prefer to call immoral equivalency — the policy of viewing Israel and the Palestinian Authority, and their respective actions, as being on the same moral plane. On Jan. 26, just six days after the inauguration, President Joe Biden’s acting representative at the United Nations, Deputy Ambassador Richard Mills, announced that the administration supports creating a Palestinian state. In practical terms, that means...

  • Put Iran out of the nuclear-weapons business for good

    Daniel Mariaschin|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — The question now is not if the United States will return to negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program, but when. Notwithstanding reports that the Biden administration has too much on its plate right now to move up talks with Tehran as a priority, it certainly seems like that process is underway. That would send Washington back to the table for the first time since an agreement was concluded in 2015. The Trump administration withdrew from the pact in May 2018, citing inherent weaknesses and loopholes on such issues as Iran’s ballistic-mis...

  • Combating anti-Semitism: We need swivel-headed Jews

    David Harris|Feb 12, 2021

    For the last two decades, American Jewish Committee has been blowing the whistle on the rising tide of anti-Semitism worldwide. When asked the source, our answer has always been the same, depending on the specific circumstances: Look in one of three basic directions far left, far right, and jihadists. Too many in our hyper-partisan world, however, would prefer to shy away from this trifocal analysis. For them, it doesn’t necessarily sit well politically, the facts be damned. But, true to AJC’s mission, we don’t have a particular ax to grind...

  • Do not forget those exterminated in Croatia

    Feb 12, 2021

    Dear editor: In response to the article “New attacks on Israel and Zionism may fuel campus anti-Semitism,” (by Sean Savage, JNS, in the Jan. 29, 2021 issue), it is important that Tammi Benjamin [co-founder and director of the California-based Amcha Initiative] teaches the way she does. She should also educate herself about the “Logor Jasenovac,” which occurred during the World War II occupation by the Ustase regime in today’s Croatia. There were about *700,000 to 750,000 Serbs, Jews and Gypsies exterminated in this camp during this heinous crim...

  • What's Happening

    Feb 12, 2021

    MORNING MINYANS (Please note, because of the coronavirus, some minyans have been canceled or held virtually.) Chabad of North Orlando is holding in-person minyans. Chabad of South Orlando — Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. and 10 minutes before sunset; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.; Sunday, 8:15 a.m., 407-354-3660. Congregation Ahavas Yisrael — Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.; Sunday, 9 a.m., 407-644-2500. Congregation Chabad Lubavitch of Greater Daytona — Monday, 8 a.m.; Thursday, 8 a.m., 904-672-9300. Congregation Ohev Shalom — Sunday, 9 a.m.,...

  • Biden 'embraces' international definition of anti-Semitism

    Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) — The Biden administration has said it will adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance working definition of anti-Semitism, a key tool in fighting anti-Semitism at home and abroad. While addressing the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kara McDonald stated: “We must educate ourselves and our communities to recognize anti-Semitism in its many forms, so that we can call hate by its proper name and take effective action. That is why the International Holocaust Rem...

  • IDF's Kochavi positions Israel atop regional anti-Iran bloc

    Yaakov Lappin|Feb 12, 2021

    (JNS) - When assessing the comments made earlier this week by Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi, who warned against the return to the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, it is useful to envisage two red countdown clocks. The first is counting down the time left until Iran is able to break through to nuclear-weapons production capability. Iran does not have to build an atomic bomb to reach the status of a breakout state. It merely needs to come within "striking distance" -...

  • 2021 NAACP Image Awards: The Jewish nominees, from Daveed Diggs to Doja Cat

    Emily Burack|Feb 12, 2021

    (JTA) — Several Jewish stars are among the nominees for the 2021 NAACP Image Awards, which celebrate Black achievement in movies, television, music and literature. The list announced Tuesday features a mix of familiar Jewish names, such as the often-awarded rapper Drake and TV star Tracee Ellis Ross, along with rising artists like actress Jurnee Smollett and rapper Doja Cat. The ceremony will air virtually on March 27. Here are the Jews to know. The stars Jurnee Smollett received a nomination for her breakout role as Leti in “Lovecraft Cou...

  • 2021 Golden Globes: All the Jewish nominees, from 'Mank' to 'Borat' to 'Unorthodox'

    Emily Burack|Feb 12, 2021

    (JTA) - "Schitt's Creek" is trying to pick up in the Golden Globes where it left off in the fall with its historic Emmys sweep. The show about a wealthy interfaith Jewish family was nominated Wednesday for five awards, including four for the main actors and one for best series. There are plenty of other Jewish nominations, too, notably "Mank," the acclaimed film on the story of Jewish screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz, with six. The Golden Globes, taking place virtually in the new pandemic normal,...

  • 170 celebs, execs to launch new 'Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance'

    Erin Ben-Moche|Feb 12, 2021

    (Jewish Journal via JNS) - More than 170 entertainment industry leaders released a unity statement on Feb. 1 after launching the Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance (BJEA), a joint initiative by black and Jewish entertainment industry professionals devoted to countering racism and anti-Semitism. In the face of institutional racism and rising anti-Semitism, members of the alliance feel it is critical to stand together and support one another. Signatories of the statement include Billy Porter,...

  • Scene Around

    Gloria Yousha|Feb 12, 2021

    First, a somber memory ... Jan. 27 was "Holocaust Remembrance Day." That brings to mind the late former Congressman from California, Tom Lantos, who passed some years ago from cancer. For those of you who aren't familiar with him, I will try to fill you in: Tamas (Thomas) Peter Lantos was born in Bupapest, Hungary, to a Jewish family that was very educated with teachers, professors, etc. Of course, during World War II, they were sent to concentration camps. When Tom was 16 years old he was...

  • This NYC ice cream parlor is famous for wild flavors - it's surviving the pandemic by catering to Jewish customers

    Shira Feder|Feb 12, 2021

    NEW YORK (JTA) - On a frosty Tuesday in January, Mark Becker strode into Max and Mina's ice cream shop holding a netted green bag filled with fresh oranges. "Maybe he's making orange ice cream," his brother Bruce said from behind the counter. Max and Mina's flavors tend to change with the seasons, the Jewish holidays and the Becker brothers' moods. Winter doesn't stop the experimentation. "I'm using all of it, even the peel," Mark Becker said firmly, swinging the bag over his shoulder and...

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