Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Articles from the August 21, 2020 edition


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  • Israel and UAE reach US-brokered deal to normalize relations

    Josefin Dolsten|Aug 21, 2020

    (JTA) — In a diplomatic breakthrough, Israel and the United Arab Emirates are normalizing ties. The deal was finalized in a phone call on Thursday, Aug. 13, between President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi. In a joint statement by the United States, Israel and UAE posted by Trump on Twitter, it said that this was a “historic diplomatic breakthrough” and will “advance peace in the Middle East.” As part of a peace deal, Israel will pause its plans to...

  • Israel's historic deal with the UAE could be just the beginning

    Israel Kasnett|Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) - A joint statement by U.S. President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, announcing the "Abraham Accord," a peace deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, is the first since Jordan signed such an agreement in 1994. What does this deal include, and what does it portend for the future? Richard Goldberg, a senior adviser at Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told JNS that "the peace agree...

  • Kamala Harris is Biden's VP pick

    Gabe Friedman|Aug 21, 2020

    (JTA) - It's official: Kamala Harris is Joe Biden's choice for vice president. The California senator, who made history Tuesday as the first Black woman to join a major party presidential ticket, is still in her first term. But during several years in public office, the 55-year-old lawmaker's outspoken opinions on a range of issues and her presidential run have given Jewish voters plenty to scrutinize. She is also married to Jewish lawyer Douglas Emhoff, who would become the country's first...

  • Hillel confronts Jew-hatred

    Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) — Amid the rise in anti-Semitism on college campuses, Hillel International announced on Monday that it is launching a new initiative to ensure that university administrators and staff are trained to recognize and confront Jew-hatred. The Campus Climate Initiative will work with administrators to provide measurement tools, best practices, education and training designed to empower university leadership to understand the threats of anti-Semitism, take proactive steps to minimize them and directly address them when they occur. The new i...

  • Congregation Ohev Shalom welcomes new youth director, Jayme Epstein

    Aug 21, 2020

    The leadership of Congregation Ohev Shalom is pleased to announce the hiring of Jayme Epstein as youth director. Epstein grew up between Westchester, New York, and Dallas, Texas, and has been in Orlando for eight years. She graduated from Texas Tech University with Bachelors of Business Administration in Marketing and Accounting. A little over three years ago, Epstein made the switch from Marketing to Jewish youth work. She spent the last three years working as the regional director for BBYO...

  • Jewish Pavilion seniors never forgotten, even during this time

    Aug 21, 2020

    The Jewish Pavilion would like to welcome Watercrest Senior Living Group in Winter Park as one of its newest sponsors. The Jewish Pavilion volunteers look forward to celebrating Shabbats, holidays and many other events with the residents once again when all can safely visit. Until then, Jewish Pavilion's senior residents, such as Bernice "Bunny," are enjoying the Shabbat bags that were delivered to them. - Julie Levitt, program director...

  • Zoom into the Museum of Happiness - Virtual Edition

    Aug 21, 2020

    Join Congregation Ohev Shalom Sisterhood as COS member Rachel Scheinberg, president of Matooki - Making Tomorrow Kinder, leads The Museum of Happiness - Virtual Edition at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020. Our current world is witnessing increased levels of depression, anxiety, and preventable disease. Despite the many ways of increased connectedness, we're also witnessing unprecedented levels of loneliness. The Museum of Happiness experience offers a fun hour to explore ways we can access...

  • Jewish Academy steps ups safety to welcome back students

    Aug 21, 2020

    Jewish Academy of Orlando began the 2020-2021 school year on Monday, Aug. 17, after adding additional precautions to ensure a safe start. Some students began attending in-person with precautions in place while others participated in remote learning. The school will provide a blended learning model, utilizing both synchronous instruction (lessons that will be delivered simultaneously in the classroom and available for remote learning) and asynchronous instruction (recorded lessons that can viewed at a time of your choosing). “We are thrilled t...

  • StandWithUs launches Rabbis United

    Aug 21, 2020

    (LOS ANGELES) - StandWithUs announces the launch of its new division, Rabbis United. Rabbis United will enable StandWithUs to connect more closely with rabbis and other Jewish community leaders and their congregations from a variety of denominations and backgrounds in cities around the world. The newest division of StandWithUs will ensure that rabbis and Jewish community leaders have access to community-building tools, including: • A multimedia library of educational materials, programs, s...

  • Israeli corona discovery: Tuberculosis shots could help

    United with Israel|Aug 21, 2020

    Vaccinations against Tuberculosis administered in the last 15 years may provide additional protection against COVID-19 to people under 24 years of age, according to a new study published recently in the medical journal Vaccines. Dr. Nadav Rappoport of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev collaborated with colleagues from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem to analyze the correlation between different countries’ policies for the Bacille Calmette-Guérin vaccine for tuberculosis and countries’ COVID-19 outcomes. As explained in a BGU press rele...

  • Reform movement gets $600,000 grant

    Josefin Dolsten|Aug 21, 2020

    By(JTA) — The Reform movement has received a $600,000 multi-year grant to support racial equity, inclusion and diversity work. The Union for Reform Judaism said Wednesday that it had received funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to fight racism and back inclusion across its institutions. Reform is the largest Jewish denomination in the United States. The movement will work to recruit a more diverse staff and board with a focus on racial justice, a statement said, while also addressing discrimination against LGBTQ, disabled and l...

  • Trump vows new Iran deal 'within four weeks' if re-elected

    Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) — U.S. President Donald Trump vowed that if re-elected in November, there would be a new deal with Iran “within four weeks.” “When we win, we will have a deal within four weeks,” he said in leaked footage from a fundraiser on Sunday at the New Jersey home of Syrian-Jewish leader Stanley Chera, a real estate developer and friend of the president who died in April at the age of 77 due to complications from coronavirus. The crowd reacted positively, an attendee told JNS on Monday. Trump withdrew the United States in May 2018 from the 2015...

  • America's failed Jewish leadership must resign

    Charles Jacobs and Avi Goldwasser|Aug 21, 2020

    On Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019, in a premeditated attack, two shooters opened fire inside a kosher deli in Jersey City, New Jersey, and murdered four people. The killers included a former member of a notoriously anti-Semitic group and, reportedly, a follower of Louis Farrakhan. It’s becoming obvious to most Jews that we are living in a state of siege. Practically every Jewish institution in America now needs significant security. College campuses have become hostile territory for Jewish students. Jews are murdered in Pittsburgh, San Diego, and Jerse...

  • UAE and Israel: A match made in heaven

    Martin Oliner|Aug 21, 2020

    Earlier this month, the Jewish people celebrated the joyous holiday of Tu B’Av, the date on the Jewish calendar that focuses on love and commitment. Little did we know, but at the time, U.S. President Donald Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and United Arab Emirates Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan were putting the finishing touches on an agreement formalizing the bond between Israel and the UAE. This agreement is a match made in heaven, wedding the technology of Israel with the economic powerhouse of the UAE. Only t...

  • What will normalization with the Arab world mean for Israel?

    Alex Traiman|Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) — Israel is set to sign a historic agreement with the United Arab Emirates that would see the two Middle Eastern nations officially strike diplomatic relations and exchange embassies. The move represents a major validation of the Netanyahu inside-out regional peace doctrine. For years, Israel’s senior statesman has argued that it would not be a peace agreement between Israelis and Palestinians that would be the key to peace in the greater region, but rather that peace with the greater Arab world will increase the chances of an agr...

  • Centrist Democrats and their leftist aides

    Jonathan S. Tobin|Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) — Heading into the 2020 presidential campaign, centrist Democrats as well as those who are supporters of Israel had good reason to be worried about the future of their party. After Hillary Clinton’s defeat in 2016, Bernie Sanders’s wing of the party was still nursing a grudge about being supposedly robbed of the presidential nomination by the establishment. They were confident that the rise of a new generation of radical politicians marked a changing of the guard, and that they were poised to take over. That seemed likely earlier this...

  • The Israel and UAE peace deal: The honey and the thorn

    Kenneth Hanson|Aug 21, 2020

    Israel’s celebrated songstress and unofficial poet laureate, who authored the classic melody “Jerusalem of Gold,” the late Naomi Shemer, subsequently wrote a far more melancholy tune called “The Honey and the Thorn.” It describes the heartbreak of the Jewish settlers in the Israeli town of Yamit, on the Egyptian border, who (in 1982) were forcibly dragged from their homes by the Israel Defense Force, as part of the “land for peace” deal that brought about the formal recognition of the Jewish state by Anwar Sadat’s Egypt back in 1979. The homes...

  • What do 'unmarried female rabbis' have to do with solving world problems?

    Aug 21, 2020

    Dear Editor: In the July 31, 2020, edition of the Heritage Florida Jewish News, there was a letter to the editor by David G. Danziger titled “Using common sense to solve world problems.” There are many aspects of this letter that I strongly disagree with, however in this short communication I would like to address just one. Could Mr. Danziger please explain what “thousands of unmarried female rabbis” have to do with this issue? First of all there are not thousands of female rabbis, let alone thousands of unmarried female rabbis. Does this imply...

  • My two cents on the Federation leaders' statement about George Floyd

    Aug 21, 2020

    Dear Editor: My name is William J. Levy and I live in Ormond Beach and read your newspaper every week. Sadly there is only one group of people in America who think of themselves as guests: not the Irish, not the Blacks, not the Lithuanians, no one but the Jews. Jews are the most hated group in America. Blacks attack them and kill them in the streets of Brooklyn or in their homes in Moncey, N.Y., or in their supermarkets in Union City, N.J., and whites kill them in their synagogues in Pittsburgh, Pa., or Poway, Ca. Jewish children broke breakfas...

  • What's Happening

    Aug 21, 2020

    MORNING MINYANS (Please note, because of the coronavirus, all minyans have been canceled or held virtually.) 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., 407-298-4650. GOBOR Community Minyan at Jewish Academy...

  • Harris' nickname shows how close she is with her Jewish family

    Gabe Friedman|Aug 21, 2020

    (JTA) — In the middle of her first speech as Joe Biden’s running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris disclosed her favorite nickname. “My family means everything to me. And I’ve had a lot of titles over my career, and certainly, vice president will be great, but ‘momala’ will always be the one that means the most,” she said Thursday in Wilmington, Delaware. Harris’ two step-children deserve the credit for that mashup of “mom” and “Kamala,” CNN reported last year. Despite the fact that their father — Harris’ husband, Douglas Emhoff — is Jewish, it’s un...

  • Harris as Biden's VP pick prompts immediate replies from Jewish, Israel-related groups

    Jackson Richman|Aug 21, 2020

    (JNS) - Jewish and Israel-related groups expressed mixed reactions to the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, picking Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) as his running mate. Organizations from the Democratic Majority for Israel to J Street praised the selection of Harris, who would be the first African-American and South Asian to be picked as a running mate for a major-party candidate. She would also be the third woman tapped for the vice-presidenti...

  • Jews in the Land of Disney: With family and friends, Debbie Meitin has lived a wonderful life

    Ed Borowsky|Aug 21, 2020

    "I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, the only child of Rosalind and Irving Dorsky. My grandparents came from Belarus and Ukraine to the United States at the turn of the 20th century. My paternal grandfather was a tailor and my maternal grandfather had a pet store and was a part-time cantor. I have warm memories of my grandfather teaching me how to sew," Debbie Meitin said. Meitin's parents met at a dance held by a Jewish organization. "My father was an attorney, but he worked with his brother in a...

  • Scene Around

    Gloria Yousha|Aug 21, 2020

    A proud Navy mom ... While watching television the other night (what else is there to do during the "pandemic"?), I watched one Navy musical movie after another. The first one was titled "Hit The Deck," starring Alvin Morris, a nice Jewish boy! You probably knew him as Tony Martin. The second movie musical about the Navy is titled "On The Town." The talents behind it were Basia Cohen (Betty Comden), Adolph Green and Leonard Bernstein, among others. They, of course, were all Russian Jews. Who...

  • Algorithms promote Holocaust denial

    Marcy Oster|Aug 21, 2020

    (JTA) — Holocaust denial content is “readily accessible” on social media and Facebook algorithms “actively” promote it, according to a report published Monday. The London-based Institute for Strategic Dialogue found that typing “holocaust” in the Facebook search function brought up suggestions for denial pages, which point users to publishers that sell revisionist and denial literature. “Using a ‘snowball’ discovery method, we found that when a user follows public pages containing Holocaust denial content, Facebook actively promotes further Hol...

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