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Israel’s Newfound Popularity in Syria

News-in-the-Jewish-World - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am

Since 2013, Israel has been providing humanitarian aid to Syrian civilians near its border and has brought thousands of Syrians to its hospitals for treatment. It has also provided some covert military aid to Syrian rebels, in addition to launching sporadic attacks on Syrian and Iranian positions. As a result, many Syrians have changed their attitude toward the Jewish state. Elizabeth Tsurkov writes:

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Weekly-Torah-Portion - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am

NUMBERS 4:21−7:89

Rabbi Vered L. Harris for ReformJudaism.org

Justice and Mercy Are Jewish Love

When was the last time I made a searching and fearless moral inventory of myself? Just asking the question, without even making a list or acting upon it, can cause some consternation. After all, who among us hasn’t crossed a line, fallen back, or hurt others with our choices? If I consider the ways I have sinned against others — those I love and those I don’t — how can I put myself back on track?

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Americans Are A Lonely Lot, And Young People Bear The Heaviest Burden

Young-Adults - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am

Loneliness isn't just a fleeting feeling, leaving us sad for a few hours to a few days. Research in recent years suggests that for many people, loneliness is more like a chronic ache, affecting their daily lives and sense of well-being.

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I’m A Gay Jew Of Color Who Supports Israel. The Left Hates Me

LGBTQ - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
Hen Mazzig for The Forward 

I'm a gay Mizrahi Jew who supports Israel. And the left hates me.

It’s ironic. I am the embodiment of intersectionality. I’m the son of an Iraqi mother and North African Berber-Amazigh father. I grew up in an underprivileged community, a gay boy in the closet who then became an openly gay man. I identify as Jewish but secular.

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Keeping it real with Amy Schumer

Jewish-Arts-and-Media - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
By Ben Welch for TheJC


We talk to the comedian about conquering low self esteem, early antisemitic experiences and THAT Instagram pic

Most actors when they call in sick from promotional duties are usually making an excuse for a hangover. Not Amy Schumer. The stand-up comedian, who is fast becoming one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, has just spent five days hospitalised with a “horrible kidney infection”, under the watchful eyes of the doctors, her sister Kim and chef Chris Fischer, her husband, whom she married in February.

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Kushari - a Dish from Egypt

Jewish-Food - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am

From Jimena



* 1 cup rice
* 1 cup macaroni pasta
* 1 cup brown lentils
* 2 tbsp. oil
* 1 onion, chopped finely
* 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
* 2 cups tomato sauce
* ½ -1 tsp pepper flakes
* salt and pepper, to taste
* oil for frying
* 1 onion, sliced thinly
* salt and pepper, to taste

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The 'library' that's a lifeline for families

Children-and-Familes - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
By Keren David for The JC

A free book service for children is allowing Jews in remote communities to stay connected

Sam Grainger is six and Zachary Swain is five. They live hundreds of miles apart, but they have a lot in common.

They both live in villages, with quintessentially English names - Sam comes from Bunwell in Norfolk, Zachary's home in Whimple in Devon, is the only one with a mezuzah among the thatched cottages.

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Nathan Devir on Emerging Jewish Communities

Jewish-Books - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
Interview with Adam Rovner and Nathan Devir for Jewish Book Council


Adam Rovner: Your book focuses on “emerging Jewish communities.” Can you explain what that means?

Nathan Devir: “Emerging” is an imperfect term, sometimes used alongside qualifiers such as “Judaizing” or “neo-Jewish.” These words indicate that a community is not part of a conventionally-recognized sector of klal yisrael, the worldwide Jewish people. Because Jews are such good record keepers, and because correspondence between divergent communities about matters of halacha has been part and parcel of post-exilic Jewish life, we have a pretty good idea about where Jews have settled. 

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The Mossad Ran a Fake Diving Resort for Tourists in Sudan. This Is the Incredible Story Behind It

Israeli-News - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
By Allison Kaplan Sommer for Haaretz

One of the Israeli intelligence agency’s most daring missions is being turned into a movie, ‘Red Sea Diving Resort.’ One of the operatives looks back on a breathtaking operation that saved thousands of Ethiopian Jews’ lives in the 1980s

It was one of the Mossad’s most daring, complex and longest-running operations. But only now, 37 years on, is the story of a Red Sea diving resort run by the agency getting its moment in the sun.

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Honoring Jerusalem and its Diverse People (Book)

Interfaith - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
Hadassah Magazine

My Jerusalem: The Eternal City. Edited by Ilan Greenfield. Photography by Ziv Koren (Gefen Publishing, 160 pp. $50)

This book’s display of 80 iconic images by award-winning photographer Ziv Koren dramatically honors Jerusalem and its diverse people—Jews, Muslims and Christians—whether they are serving in the army, celebrating holidays in the streets or praying in historical houses of worship (at right, schoolchildren pass the Kotel). The accompanying essays are love songs to the ancient yet modern city by politicians, philanthropists, community leaders (including Hadassah National President Ellen Hershkin) and even a New York Times journalist.

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Israeli Eurovision Win Lends Jerusalem New Cultural Capital

Celebrating-Judaism - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
Anthony Grant for Forbes

Understatement alert! Between 25-year-old Netta Barzilai’s big win for Israel at Eurovision over the weekend and the official relocation of the American Embassy to Jerusalem on Monday, this is shaping up to be a very big week for Israel. Americans tend to lag behind the rest of the world in Eurovision awareness the same way we still don’t quite “get” all the fuss about soccer, but in much of Europe and certainly in Israel it’s HUGE. 

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Tyson Foods Backs Israeli Startup to Grow Meat in the Lab

Going-Green-Jewishly - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

Tyson Foods, the largest US meat processor, has invested in an Israeli biotech company developing a way to grow affordable meat in a laboratory that takes live animals out of the equation.


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How and Why Jews Hebraized Their Family Names at the Founding of Israel

Feature-Article - Mon, 05/21/2018 - 12:00am
[email protected]

“If there is no overriding reason for the Major to retain an awkward-sounding German name that our people finds hard to pronounce, . . . he [should] change it to a Hebrew one.”

I had always thought that these Zionist leaders changed their names to Hebrew ones upon their aliyah to Palestine in the period of the Ottoman empire or the British Mandate. Now I see that this happened much later. The changing of first names, of course, goes back to the Torah and is also traditional for Jews seeking recovery from illness. But the fact that these secular Jews took Hebrew last names only at the time of the founding of Israel is an interesting one, don’t you think?

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Israel wins second-largest number of cybersecurity deals globally

Israeli-News - Tue, 05/15/2018 - 12:00am
By SHOSHANNA SOLOMON for The Times of Israel

Israeli startups BioCatch, Cylus and D-ID are among the 26 cybersecurity firms selected by CB Insights that are transforming the industry

Israel accounted for the second-largest number of cybersecurity deals globally, behind the US and ahead of the UK, a new report compiled by New York data firm CB Insights shows.

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Ex-Hasidic Woman Becomes Britain’s First Orthodox Female Rabbi

News-in-the-Jewish-World - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am
In Haaretz, from JTA

Dina Brawer, who was born in Milan to Moroccan-born parents, will take the title of 'rabba'

Dina Brawer became Britain’s first Orthodox female rabbi.

She received her semicha, or rabbinic ordination, on Monday in London from British-born Israeli academic and rabbi, Dr. Daniel Sperber, after he administered a two-hour exam.

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Weekly-Torah-Portion - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am

Numbers 1:1−4:20 


Rabbi Lisa Grushcow for ReformJudaism.org

Containing Lives in the Open Wilderness

The Book of Numbers — in Hebrew, B’midbar, “In the Wildnerness” — seems to begin with great promise. Our setting is the wilderness of Sinai. It evokes broad universalism and deep spirituality. As we read in the Midrash (B’midbar Rabbah 1:7), just like the wilderness is free to all, so too is Torah; and only those who open themselves up like a wilderness can access its wisdom.

The openness of this book of wilderness reminds me of the beautiful closing words of the novel, Leo the African:

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UT organizations alleviate the pressures of refugee camps through hygiene kits

Young-Adults - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am
BY EILISH O'SULLIVAN for the Daily Texan Online

Refugees often spend years in refugee camps, where conditions can be harsh as supplies are often scarce. Two UT student organizations are doing something to help alleviate these conditions.

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Shavuot and LGBTQ Rights

LGBTQ - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am
From Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism


Shavuot begins after sundown on May 19

At the moment where all the Israelites are gathered at the foot of Mount Sinai:    

        All the people witnessed the thunder and lightning, the blare of the horn and the mountain smoking. (Exodus 20:15)

“All the people” were there. The entire community. This is also interpreted in the Rabbinic tradition to mean that all people from generations past, present, and future were present. People of all ages and societal status. People of all genders and gender identities and sexual orientations. Therefore, all those who shared in this sacred covenant between God and the Jewish people also have a place in the Jewish community of today.       

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Want more information on Shavuot? Check out Jvillage Network's Shavuot Guide. 


Shavuot Videos

Jewish-Arts-and-Media - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am


Shavuot begins after sunset on May 19.



This week we're happy to highlight videos about Shavuot, several that you can find on Jvillage Network's Shavuot Holiday Guide.

Learn all about the holiday from BimBam.

Watch how wheat is harvested.

Is that cheese really Ben Stiller?

And learn all about the holiday in 60 seconds, no kidding!


Chag Sameach/Happy Holiday and enjoy!


Shavuot Foods from The Joy of Kosher

Jewish-Food - Mon, 05/14/2018 - 12:00am
The Joy of Kosher


Shavuot begins after sunset on May 19

Looking for the perfect meals for Shavuot? Let Jamie Geller guide you through menus from appetizers to desserts. You can find:

Jamie's Easiest Ever Shavuot Menu
Delight in Delicious Dairy Challah for Shavuot
Savory Yogurt Bowls That Satisfy
Easy Creamy Desserts
How to Host a Crepe Party
4 Israeli Cheesecake Recipes for Shavuot

And much, much more.

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And if that isn't enough, check out Jvillage Network's Shavuot Guide. 


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Upcoming Events


Shavuot Yizkor Service

Sunday, May 20, 2018, 10:30 AM


Building closed

Sunday, May 27, 2018


The school year picnic, everyone welcome!

Sunday, June 3, 2018, 10:00 AM

[email protected]  


Rabbi Isserow Retirement Celebration!

Saturday, June16, 2018, 6:30 PM 

 http://Office <[email protected]



There are activities, meetings, services and seminars at Beth El each week, ranging from service opportunities to Jewish learning and education, drawing members and guests from throughout the Washington, D.C. area.

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