As Israelis, as Jews, as human beings, we must confront the daily reality that takes place throughout the occupied territories. And in doing so, we must face ourselves. By Frima (Merphie) Bubis As we began building our sukkot, the Yom Kippur reading from the Book of Jonah echoed in my head: "How can you be sleeping so soundly!" (Jonah 1:6). As though I myself heard the captain crying out, over the roar of the raging storm to the prophet fleeing his mission, as he hid away, asleep, below deck. Other moments in the story flash through my mind, as though in…Read More... | 22 Comments
In a series of posts based on field visits and meetings with migrant workers in Israel, Noa Shauer and Shiraz Grinbaum highlight the conditions, hardships and exploitation of foreign workers. In part 5, they met with agricultural workers in the northern Israeli moshavim of Sdei Trumot and Revayah, trying to re-evaluate their working conditions after a strike. Text by: Omri Paz/Kav LaOved, Photos: Shiraz Grinbaum/Activestills.org, read part 4, part 3, part 2, and part 1 In February, we paid a visit to the moshav (agricultural settlement) of Sdei Trumot in order to meet with the workers who were being maltreated by…Read More... | 2 Comments
Every year around this time – the Jewish High Holy Days – I send out a note of reflection. This year, I’ve made use of my resources and friends and put the whole thing to video! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9r_k-qfmWr4 However, if you are still inclined to read, here is the text... Hello and Shana Tova. A Happy New year to all of you. Each year, in the ten days between the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashana and the Holy Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, the Jewish people traditionally reflect on the year that has passed. For the last few years, I have…Read More... | 2 Comments
The text below is something that I share with many wonderful people in my global network of friends, colleagues and loved ones. This year, I thought it appropriate to post it to my virtual network, as well. Dear friends, And so another year has passed. And so another cycle has ended, even as a new one begins. As I did last year, and the year before, and the year before that, I would like to take this opportunity to reflect on the Jewish High Holy Days. And in doing so, I would like to share some of those thoughts with…Read More...
A few weeks ago, Rabbi David Shneyer invited me to address his congregation at a temple in Bethesda Maryland, during the Rosh Hashana service. So on Thursday morning, I drove to Maryland to speak to about 1,000 Jews about my understanding of parashat hashavua - the Torah portion read this week. The Rosh Hashana reading is about Issac and Ishmael, the ancestors of Arabs and Jews. Some analysts consider the two brothers to be the source of the Arab-Jewish conflict. However, at no point does the Torah say that they were enemies. Despite Sarah and Abraham's decision to repudiate Hagar…Read More... | 10 Comments
Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, begins this evening - as does Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim festival marking the end of Ramadan. One of the holiday traditions - besides overeating - is the sending of greeting cards. Over recent years, as social media has taken over our lives, personalized greeting cards have been replaced with less-personal emails, blog posts, or video greetings. Take, for example, President Obama's video greetings to Jewish Americans, posted on the White House website. This year, the Geneva Initiative, a Palestinian-Israeli NGO that is really more of a power peddler than a peace pursuer, once again…Read More...
The Jewish New Year begins as the cruel Middle Eastern summer draws to an end. My non-Jewish ex-wife used to say: "Your new year makes sense. Something is actually beginning. Nothing is tangibly beginning on the first of January. Of course the days are getting longer but you really wouldn't notice that until late February." To be fair, we really wouldn't know it's autumn by the weather until October. Tomorrow is new years' eve, and I'm sitting here with both fan and AC on full blast, sweating nonetheless, but there was a small breeze here and there over the last…Read More... | 1 Comment
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