Good to talk? Useful, anyway

By Jonathan Freedland, January 19, 2012

First, I should declare an interest. I am a friend and admirer of Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg, leader of Britain's Masorti movement. But I also like and admire the JC's political editor, Martin Bright.


'Zionist' has become a dirty word

By David Aaronovitch, January 12, 2012

The other day, on other pages, I took a blast at the more unlikely supporters of Republican presidential candidate, Ron Paul. I wrote what was true, that Paul was part of an extreme isolationist and anti-government tendency on the US right, and one that had flirted extensively with folk possessing dodgy views on questions such as race.

Among the more hostile responses was a common theme.


Unbalanced forms of balance

By Geoffrey Alderman, January 12, 2012

I have some sympathy with Rabbi Danny Rich, chief executive of Liberal Judaism, who has found himself at the receiving end of communal opprobrium following his decision to participate in a sixth-form study day at the Gryphon Church of England school, chaired by the Bishop of Sherborne, Graham Kings.

The event was focused on Israel and Palestine.


How not to choose our leaders

By Geoffrey Alderman, January 5, 2012

I've said it before. I'll say it again. The Jewish communities of the UK are run by some of the best brains in the land: captains of industry; giants of commerce; leading lights of the learned professions; men and women who are at the tops of their respective trees.


Riots reveal cracks in society

By Melanie Phillips, January 5, 2012

When it comes to shooting itself in the foot and other essential bits, Israel undoubtedly takes the all-time prize.

For the past few weeks, Israel has been convulsed by how women are treated by fanatics in the strictly Orthodox community. Women are being segregated on buses serving Charedi neighbourhoods.


Hitchens got it wrong on Israel

By Daniel Finkelstein, December 29, 2011

It doesn't seem all that long ago that, at a Jewish Book Week event, I met Christopher Hitchens. We parted with him saying that we should get to know each other better. But we never did. He went home to the United States and before we could meet up, he fell ill. I will always regret it. Friends of mine, who knew him well, attest that he was great company.


When background is a barrier

By Geoffrey Alderman, December 29, 2011

I have just finished updating my history of Hackney Downs school, first published 40 years ago. Founded by the Grocers' Company in 1876 it was, in its heyday, one of the finest boys' secondary schools in the land. In 1995, dubbed by the tabloids as the "worst" school in England, it was shut down.


Europe's Jews need this union

By Jonathan Freedland, December 15, 2011

There's one number you won't find in the torrent of opinion polls unleashed by David Cameron's European summit veto.


Are US's leaders fit for offce?

By Geoffrey Alderman, December 15, 2011

Last week the United Synagogue made a particularly nasty attack on this newspaper. I have read more or less every edition of every Anglo-Jewish broadsheet since the beginning of time. But I have never before read an attack of such viciousness on any such newspaper, and I would never have expected such a mindset to be projected from within the portals of the US.


Tis not our season to be jolly

By Geoffrey Alderman, December 8, 2011

An Open Letter to Lord Sacks of Aldgate
Dear Jonathan

I feel compelled to write to you, both as a Jew and as a Jewish husband and father, to express to you the deep unease that I felt on reading press reports of your homily delivered at the Scottish Parliament at the end of last month.

I refer in particular to certain declarations that you reportedly made during the course of your re