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A Different Sukkot Message

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As we prepare for Sukkot, we understand that part of the symbolism of our sukkahs is the fragility of life, and knowing that, we can look upward and see the night stars while we enjoy a holiday meal with friends and family.

Underneath those same stars we are witnessing what cannot be considered anything less than a...

Why Can’t We Argue Civilly?

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Orthodox Judaism emphasizes Talmud study. Some people love the analysis-and-debate format of the Talmud but other people prefer studying the final decisions of the Talmud. They don’t enjoy the argument and discussion in the Talmud, and they most certainly do not love the layer upon layer of subsequent debate about the arguments in the Talmud. They simply want the sausage without seeing how it is made.

I happen to enjoy the Talmud’s version of the Socratic method. I especially love the intensity of later commentaries arguing vociferously over small details with broad ramifications.

From a historical perspective, Talmudic argument until the modern era was very different from modern...

Does the Pending Deal with Iran Prevent Another 9/11 or Enable It?

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It was not so long ago that Federal District Court Judge Daniels ruled Iran, including the Ayatollah Khomeini, was responsible for the 9/11 attacks on the U.S.

The historic ruling was entered, on December 22, 2011, in the Havlish case, brought by family members and legal representatives of victims of 9/11. The judge also issued 53 pages of detailed Findings of Facts and Conclusions of Law that describe the role Iran and its various governmental organs played in this horrible attack on the homeland.

Among other things, the court found:

Iran has been waging war against the United States and Israel for over 30 years.

The Ayatollah Khomeini holds the power to dismiss the president...

We Must Fight BDS in the Name of Human Rights

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Note: Following Rabbi Sacks’s contributions at last week’s Herzliya Conference, The Jerusalem Post published an article on Friday in which he outlined his perspectives on the growing threats posed by the BDS movement.

 

There is a growing and widespread concern among Jews in Israel and outside, and among friends of Israel everywhere, of the increasing threat posed by the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement. At three conferences in the past few days—in Las Vegas convened by Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban, in New York by The Jerusalem Post and at The Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya at which I spoke—discussion about the BDS movement and how to tackle it have...

Obama Preaches to the Choir

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President Barack Obama addressed a Jewish group last Friday as part of Jewish American Heritage Month. Adas Israel, a Conservative congregation located in Northwest Washington, D.C. became the sanctuary for only the fourth presidential address in a synagogue in American history.

The President told the packed sanctuary “it is precisely because I care so deeply about the State of Israel – precisely, yes, I have high expectations for Israel the same way I have expectations for the United States of America – that I feel a responsibility to speak out honestly about what I think will lead to long-term security and to the preservation of a true democracy in the Jewish homeland.”

It...

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