This is the fourth and final installment in a series of in-depth articles examining key aspects of ultra-Orthodox society and its role in and influence on the country today.
It was one of the most progressive experiments in the history of Jewish secondary education in Eastern Europe. The Munkacs Hebrew Gymnasium, in a major Jewish community in the Carpathian Mountains, was established in 1925 as a school where every subject in a modern high school curriculum was taught in Hebrew. Young Jewish men and women studied alongside one another as equals. Historians have described it as the most prestigious Jewish high school east of Warsaw. (more…)
Why the haredi status quo cannot be sustained
This is the second in an in-depth series of articles examining key aspects of haredi society and its role in and influence on the country today.
BY VIVIAN BERCOVICI – MARCH 4, 2021
The burning bus. Torched and aflame on a main street in Bnei Brak a haredi enclave abutting Tel Aviv, the bus was seen around the world in late January. It has become an iconic image, seen by some to reflect the lawlessness and autonomy among haredim in Israel that has become somewhat regular in the COVID era. Not even the firefighters would rush to douse the blaze without a police escort. (more…)
This is the first of an in-depth series of articles in the run-up to the March 23 election looking at key aspects of haredi society and its role in and influence on the country today.
“If we face the choice of transgressing the laws of Moses or the laws of the state, we will violate the laws of the state, not those of Moses.”
– Yitzhak Meir-Levin, haredi welfare minister, addressing his cabinet colleagues at a meeting, July 12, 1950 (more…)
Harvard’s top astronomer to ‘Post’: Alien life could exist. Lightsail technology could allow humanity to achieve interstellar travel. * Modern “Noah’s Ark” could help save, reconstruct life on Earth.
By AARON REICH – JANUARY 11, 2021
If humanity is truly not alone in the universe, how would we go about finding extraterrestrial life, and would they be as advanced or perhaps even more so than we are?
These are the questions that Prof. Avi Loeb seeks to answer, and according to his newest book, Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth, which is set to come out January 26, the clues might already be there.
Loeb, an Israeli-born scientist who has been the longest ever serving chair of Harvard University’s Astronomy department, has long been one of the most vocal advocates for the possible existence of alien life. (more…)
Most Jews know only the legend about the miracle of the cruse of oil and very little about the actual military victories of the Maccabees.
The festival of Hanukkah has many beautiful customs such as the dreidel, latkes and sufganiyot, but there is one custom we would expect to find on Hanukkah that seems to be missing – the reading of a scroll in public. After all, on Purim we read the Scroll of Esther every year in order to publicize the miracle. Why don’t we read a scroll on Hanukkah in order to publicize the miracles that God wrought for our ancestors in the days of Mattathias and his sons? The result is that most Jews know only the legend about the miracle of the cruse of oil (Shabbat 21b) and very little about the actual military victories of the Maccabees. (more…)
A different kind of redemption from Greek tyranny
Antiochus and his elephants left Gaza in defeat.
One of the largest battles of the ancient world was over – apparently the first time Asian and African elephants had faced off against one another – though the victor’s herd had been of little help, famously fleeing the war zone in a crazed frenzy. (more…)
‘Promised Land’ or revisionist history? A former Knesset member weighs in on Barack Obama’s telling of Israel’s story
By Dov Lipman – CT Jewish Ledger – December 11, 2020
(JNS) I have never criticized former U.S. President Barack Obama publicly – neither during my time in the Knesset nor anywhere else – despite my having disagreed with many of his policies. I am of the strong opinion that Israelis should not engage in or interfere with American politics, and I regularly offer a blanket thank you to all American presidents, including Obama, for their economic and military support for Israel.< (more…)