Obama: Resistance to policy inspires holiday today

WASHINGTON (JTA) — President Obama in a statement marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day said the spirit of Holocaust resistance must inspire policy today. “While this is a time for mourning and reflection, it is also the time for action,” Obama said in the statement released Sunday.

“On this day, we recall...
Continue Reading ⇒

Why America has no chief rabbi


(Jewish Ideas Daily) — The public face of world Jewry will change this summer.  Come September, both England and Israel will install new chief rabbis.  Jonathan Sacks, the brilliant and widely published chief rabbi of the United Kingdom, is retiring to be succeeded by the affable...
Continue Reading ⇒

U.S. officials praise Israel democracy

( – Reacting to news of Israel’s election results, American officials praised Israeli democracy and promised to work with the new government, the Jerusalem Post reported.  In a tweet, U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro congratulated Israelis on a successful election day.  “Mazal tov to the Israeli people on their just completed elections! Always...
Continue Reading ⇒

Chasidic counselor Nechemya Weberman sentenced to 103 years

NEW YORK (JTA) — Chasidic counselor Nechemya Weberman was sentenced to 103 years in prison for sexual abuse of a teenage female patient over several years. Weberman, 54, a member of the Satmar Chasidic community in Brooklyn, did not speak during the Jan. 22 sentencing in New York State Supreme...
Continue Reading ⇒

OU sets date for contested presidential election

NEW YORK (JTA) — The Orthodox Union has set a March date to pick its next president in a highly unusual contested vote. The umbrella group of Modern Orthodox synagogues and organizations, perhaps best known as the world’s largest kosher certifier, said on Jan. 17 that its board will convene...
Continue Reading ⇒

At inauguration Obama speaks of a united America, involvement abroad

(JTA) — President Obama in his second inaugural address spoke of U.S. involvement throughout the world and Americans working together at home. Obama was sworn in publicly for his second term on Jan. 21 by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. Some 800,000 people reportedly thronged the area to witness...
Continue Reading ⇒

‘Dear Abby’ columnist Pauline Phillips dies

NEW YORK (JTA) — Pauline Phillips, the woman known to the world as the advice columnist behind “Dear Abby,” has died. Phillips, the daughter of Russian Jewish immigrants, died Wednesday at 94 after years of battling Alzheimer’s disease, according to news reports.

Writing under the pseudonym Abigail van Buren, Phillips’...
Continue Reading ⇒

Netanyahu answers Obama’s criticism

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, responding to comments attributed to President Obama, said that Israelis would determine the country’s best interests. “Only the Israeli people will determine who best represents the State of Israel’s vital interests,” Netanyahu reportedly said Jan. 17 during a visit to the Gaza Division...
Continue Reading ⇒

Orthodox woman to head ‘transdenominational’ rabbinical school

NEW YORK (JTA) — An Orthodox woman was named the president of a “transdenominational” rabbinical school in Southern California. Tamar Frankiel, who holds a doctorate in the history of religions, will helm the Academy for Jewish Religion at Claremont Lincoln University, it was announced this week.

In a statement, the...
Continue Reading ⇒

Key Jewish leaders back Hagel, clearing path for Defense post

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Chuck Hagel added three major Jewish Democrats to his list of endorsers, clearing his way to likely confirmation as secretary of defense. U.S. Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Charles Schumer (D-NY) each said they were satisfied that Hagel, a former Republican senator from Nebraska, would advance the...
Continue Reading ⇒