Arlene sacked? Time to step up Ruby, Zoe and Vanessa

By Keren David, July 16, 2009

To the picket lines, Maureen Lipman! Placard at the ready Esther Rantzen! Zoe Wanamaker, Ruby Wax, pick up your megaphones! You are who we need at this time of crisis. I’m proposing a new union, Older Jewish Entertaining Women (O JEW) to take on the bumbling bosses of the BBC.
We muttered about Wossy and Sachsgate. We grumbled over the Blue Peter cat row. We rolled our eyes at executives’ vast expenses claims.
But this is a step too far. Arlene Phillips has been booted off the Strictly Come Dancing judging panel.


A brief belay while I hit a peak of fitness

By Peter Rosengard, July 16, 2009

Last Friday, my friend Arnold asked me what I was doing for the weekend.
“I’m going climbing,” I said.
“Climbing. The only climbing you’ve ever done is of the social variety!”
“I happen to come from a long line of Jewish mountaineers; my uncle, Sherpa Rosengard was obscured on Everest by Tenzing.”
“Sure,” Arnold said. “What kind of climbing?”
“I’m becoming a belayer.”
“Is that like being an Amish?”


Let’s use the law to halt these Nazi slurs

By Winston Pickett, July 16, 2009

In assessing the consequences of antisemitic discourse, are some characterisations worse than others? Are some epithets more offensive due to the depth of the insult, the affront to memory or the power to malign the Jewish collective? If so, how should they be treated?


Who is a – musical – Jew?

By Norman Lebrecht, July 16, 2009

Do we really need to know if a public figure is Jewish? Perhaps, in the case of a politician who can affect the state of nations, or a billionaire who can be tapped by communal charities. In other cases, the interest is either prurient or possessive, a kvell of collective pride signifying nothing.


Crumbs! I was banned from the bakery

By NWJew, July 16, 2009

I was once banned from the bread shop. It was a few years ago so my conviction is now spent and I can talk about it without risking my reputation as an upstanding member of the Jewish community.

When I was a teenager I would go to pubs with friends, some of whom may not have been Jewish. One was banned from the local where we liked to play pool. He had drunk a fair bit more than he needed and started a fight with someone about something insignificant.


How to make marriage - and divorce - work

By Deborah Levy, July 9, 2009

Last week, Katrin Radmacher won a landmark Court of Appeal case to enforce a pre-nuptial agreement to protect her wealth from claims by her former husband, Nicholas Granatino. Last July, the High Court ordered Ms Radmacher to pay her husband a lump sum in excess of £5.5 million. The Court of Appeal’s decision meant that Mr Granatino’s award was reduced in the light of a pre-nuptial agreement the parties had signed. This groundbreaking decision is a further step towards couples being able to regulate their own financial affairs.


If you are a Jew, you are a feminist

By Ellie Levenson, July 9, 2009

For all the talk of Judaism being a patriarchal religion, there is a case to be made for feminism — though I suspect many of us would not use the word — as an essential aspect of being Jewish. On the other hand, it can be all too easy to pay lip service to the idea of being a feminist without thinking it through.


Missiles will be key factor in Moscow moves on Iran

By Tim Marshall, July 9, 2009

A host of interested parties examined every word spoken at this week’s Russia-USA summit, but few as closely as Iran and Israel.

Both countries looked for signs that Moscow might cut Tehran loose and move closer to the Americans on the Iran question. Neither saw much to support that, but they will have noted the clear American attempt to bring Russia on-side in a process that will be continued throughout the year.


Sky’s monopoly is just not cricket

By Simon Round, July 9, 2009

I have always thought of cricket as a very Jewish game. The Wisden Almanac is almost the equivalent of the Talmud, and going to watch cricket is very much like going to a synagogue service — most people are more interested in chatting to each other or snoozing than paying attention to what is going on out there on the pitch.


Bibi is proving his worth this time

By David Hazony, July 9, 2009

During Israel’s intense 2009 election, Binyamin Netanyahu embarked on a campaign to fix his reputation of being fickle and slippery.

His first term as PM had ended in failure, with his party routed in 1999, and Mr Netanyahu himself hurled into the political wilderness. This time he was promising Israelis that he had changed.

“Strong on security, strong on the economy” was his blunt slogan.
This was, we were told, a new Bibi.

One hundred days into his second stint as premier, how is he doing?