Columnists

Now read Gordon’s note to God

By Miriam Shaviv, August 1, 2008

There was uproar when Obama's prayer was lifted from the Kotel. But what if we could read all politicians' letters to the Almighty?

 

If anyone still doubted that Barack Obama was the Messiah, he has now delivered written proof.

"Lord," he wrote in a note he deposited between the Kotel's stones last week, "Protect my family and me. Forgive me my sins, and help me guard against pride and despair. Give me the wisdom to do what is right and just. And make me an instrument of your will."

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Our 150 years of wasted power

By Geoffrey Alderman, July 25, 2008

What have Jewish Parliamentarians ever done for the community?


This past week and next mark two important 150th anniversaries. It was on July 23 1858 that Parliament enacted legislation enabling professing Jews to sit in the House of Commons. Five days later, Lionel de Rothschild, at the climax of an 11-year campaign, was finally able to take his seat in that chamber as Liberal MP for the City of London.

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I'm sorry that I got my way

By Jonathan Freedland, July 25, 2008

Let's hope the JCC does not lose momentum now its building plans have been shelved


One of the oddities of my line of work is the frequent desire to be proved wrong. Often we commentators make dire predictions about the state of the world, issuing gloomy warnings about the consequences of this or that decision, consequences which - as citizens, rather than journalists - we obviously hope will never materialise. In this game, vindication is rarely sweet and often bitter.

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Why this forced get is a scandal

By Miriam Shaviv, July 25, 2008

So the Sephardi Bet Din has issued a religious divorce to a woman who never appeared in its court. Justifying his decision, Dayan Amor wrote, according to the JC's translation, that she "dressed provocatively in public, worse than a common harlot" and "danced in nightclubs late into the night".

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The POW swap was a bad deal

By Geoffrey Alderman, July 18, 2008

Freeing the murderer Samir Kuntar has shown Hizbollah that kidnaps pay


In a deal brokered by Germany, the government of Ehud Olmert has turned over to the terrorist organisation Hizbollah the bodies of around 200 Lebanese killed during the 2006 war, plus four still living Hizbollah terrorists currently held in Israel, and the convicted murderer Samir Kuntar.

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Our media strategy is wrong

By Daniel Finkelstein, July 18, 2008

You can’t batter anti-Israel bias out of journalists. But psychology offers a neater solution


In August 1961, on the A6 in the woods near Mauden in Bedfordshire, a terrible crime was committed. A man was shot and killed in his car and his girlfriend, having been raped, was also shot. She spent the rest of her life in a wheelchair.

I need to tell you all about it in order to help you the next time you complain to the media about bias against Israel.

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It all looks different from Israel

By Geoffrey Alderman, July 11, 2008

Our columnist pays his first visit to the Holy Land in 10 years, and is impressed


‘So, what do you make of all this political corruption? Why do politicians behave this way? They’re all in it for themselves — for what they can get out of the system, eh?”

These were the opening remarks of a fascinating conversation I had just a few days ago with an informed and talkative taxi-driver. But the journey I had booked was not in the UK. It was in Israel.

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Was it really terrorism last week?

By David Aaronovitch, July 11, 2008

There is no proof that the bulldozer killer was motivated by politics

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No, Muslims are not ‘new Jews’

By Miriam Shaviv, July 11, 2008

Britain’s first Muslim government minister, Shahid Malik, thinks that many British Muslims feel like “the Jews of Europe”.“I don’t mean to equate that with the Holocaust,” the Dewsbury MP said last week on Channel 4, “but in the way that it was legitimate almost — and still is in some parts — to target Jews, many Muslims would say that we feel the exact same way.”

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I too have a problem with The Jews

By Geoffrey Alderman, July 4, 2008

A documentary about Stamford Hill Chasidim took too many answers at face value

I was fascinated to learn of Chanoch Kesselman’s complaint to the BBC about the recently-screened documentary focusing on the life and ethos of the sectarian-Orthodox Jewish community of Stamford Hill.  Or rather, I was surprised to learn that his complaints addressed not so much the detailed content of the programme, as the fact that the documentary had been made without prior consultation with “community representatives”.

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