Friday, July 30th 2021   |


Musician Lou Reed dies at 71

(JTA) — Musician and guitarist Lou Reed, the frontman for the band Velvet Underground as well as a solo artist, has died.

Reed, who was born to a Jewish family, died Sunday at 71. A cause of death was not made public. However, a spokesman for Reed indicated he had been in ill health since a liver transplant in May of this year following years of alcohol and drug abuse.


MTA to restore dozens of ads critical of Israel

(JTA) — The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority said it was restoring dozens of ads critical of Israel to its transit system that had been taken down following public complaints.

On Friday, the transit system said the 80 ads would be put back in the Greater Boston area and that there had been a “miscommunication” with its advertising contractor Titan, according to the Boston Globe.

The ads, which went up on...

Peres to answer questions from world Jewry at G.A. in Nov.

(JTA) — Israeli President Shimon Peres will answer questions from Jews around the world during an appearance at the General Assembly of The Jewish Federations of North America.

Peres will be interviewed on stage at the Nov. 10-12 event in Jerusalem. During the interview, which will be live-streamed online, JFNA will select a number of crowd-sourced questions submitted through an app on his Facebook page launched especially for the General...

L.A. Friends of IDF gala turns in $20 million

(JTA) — The Friends of the Israel Defense Forces Western Region brought in $20 million in contributions at its gala in Los Angeles, the organization said.

Simon Cowell, celebrity judge of the “X Factor” and formerly “American Idol,” and Grammy Award-winning musician Lionel Richie were among those on hand for Wednesday’s event. Cowell contributed $150,000, the group said in a statement.

Richie performed for a crowd that included the CEOs...

Pro-Israel group calls out Boston suburban school district

NEW YORK (JTA) — A pro-Israel group is calling on public schools in a suburban Boston district to remove “hateful education materials from their curricula.”

Americans for Peace and Tolerance in a newspaper ad campaign claims the Newton schools are using five materials that “demonize Israel and America while glorifying Islam.” They include the books “A Muslim Primer,” “The Arab World Studies Workbook” and several handouts.

JTA calls seeking comment...

Return Iraqi artifacts to Jewish community, U.S. lawmakers urge

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Some Congress members are working to ensure that Iraqi Jewish artifacts now on display in Washington are returned directly to the Iraqi Jewish community and not the government.

Reps. Steve Israel (D-NY) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) are leading the bipartisan effort to return the thousands of books, photos, texts and other materials that were found by the U.S. and coalition forces in 2003. They were brought to...

JNF completes largest campaign ever

NEW YORK (JTA) — The Jewish National Fund (JNF) completed its largest campaign ever, raising $121 million in fiscal year 2013, the organization said.

The campaign was supplemented by a $60 million gift from the estate of John Boruchin, the largest single donation in JNF’s 112-year history, the organization said Wednesday.

JNF plans to use its new funding to establish educational programs to “connect children to Zionism and make Israel...

Jewish Federations chiefs call for free Jewish preschool

NEW YORK (JTA) — The leaders of the Jewish Federations of North America are calling for free Jewish preschool for every Jewish family in America.

In an Op-Ed published Thursday on the Huffington Post and in the Forward, Jewish Federations CEO Jerry Silverman and board chairman Michael Siegal said free Jewish preschool would “dramatically widen the pipeline of families entering Jewish life through this critical early gateway.”

The idea was...

Slingshot announces annual list of 50 most innovative organizations

NEW YORK (JTA) — Eighteen organizations made their debut on the annual Slingshot Guide of the 50 most innovative Jewish groups. Among the groups is AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corps, which maintains a home for members here in New Orleans as well as in Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C.

The guide, which was launched in 2005 by a group of donors in their 20s and 30s,  evaluates North American...

Rick Perry in Israel talks of economic development

( While media reports place Texas Governor Rick Perry’s visit to Israel this week within the context of his presumed bid for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, the trip itself focused on economic development and Israel-Texas ties.

During Perry’s meetings with Israeli leaders, including Prime Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres, “never once did anyone ask him what his plans were for 2016, or did he bring it up,” said...