Can we practise what we protest?

By Rosalind Preston, June 17, 2010

In 2009, the report, Connection, Continuity and Community (widely referred to as Women in the Community) was published. This represented the authentic voice of female Jewry in contemporary Britain. It spoke of a desire for a cohesive, dynamic and inclusive community. It called for an exploration of Jewish education, family, community life, and spiritual growth.


What the real situation is like in Gaza

By Moeen Elhelou, June 10, 2010

What is the real situation in Gaza? I will try to give you a taste of what it is like to live as a journalist here.

Every morning when I wake up I hope that there will be electricity. If there is none, I cannot surf the internet or watch TV - and just as bad, I cannot iron clean clothes. This morning, for example, there was none. My wife told me: "There is no choice, just wear what you wore yesterday".


Analysis: Europeans don't 'get' war

By Douglas Murray, June 10, 2010

My primary realisation of this week has been how many naval-boarding experts you can meet on any given day. My second is how many Europeans don't understand this matter at all.

The American strategist Robert Kagan famously described Americans as being from Mars and Europeans from Venus. Coverage of Israel's naval actions in the British/European press reminded me of this. Defending yourself seems simply "so 20th century".


Jewish mothers: let's lead the way

By Tracy-Ann Oberman, June 10, 2010

I hate Jewish Mother jokes. I can't abide them. They are sexist and racist. Jokes like, "What's the difference between a Jewish mother and a rottweiler? The rottweiler lets go eventually." Oh yes, ha ha ,very ribald, very Bernard Manning. And besides being an overprotective, loving mother is what? Really BAD?


Thomas's bigotry runs deep

By Winston Pickett, June 10, 2010

The saga of Helen Thomas has served up a pungent lesson on how anti-Semitic ideas can pollute and ultimately force a 58-year career to crash, burn and splutter to an inglorious conclusion.

Thomas, the 89-year-old White House columnist for Hearst newspapers, was caught last week on a homemade video declaring that Jews should "get the hell out of Palestine" and "go back home to live in Germany and Poland".

On Monday, she announced her retirement following a barrage of criticism - including that of President Obama, who called her remarks "offensive" and "out of line."


How political artists do away with nations

By Benjamin Weinthal, June 10, 2010

There is nothing more dreary than contemporary art that sets out merely to be provocative when it is in fact conventional and reactionary. A case in point is the Danish artistic group Surrend's anti-Israel poster showing maps of the Middle East in which the state of Israel does not exist, with the term "Final Solution" at the top. Not only does this mirror the jingoistic foreign policy of the Holocaust-denying regime in Iran, but it also resonates with many Germans.


How historians remove stains

By Michael Pinto-Duschinsky, June 10, 2010

Holocaust history remains a vicious political battlefield. Memory and truth are under assault not only by the blunt frontal attacks of those who deny the gas chambers; there is a second form of Holocaust writing even more pernicious because its distortions and interpretations are more subtle.


When it's OK to hate Germany

By Simon Round, June 3, 2010

'So, did you have a nice day at school, Lucy?" I asked my seven-year-old daughter. I was expecting one of the normal replies - either "Be quiet, I'm watching Spongebob" or "I can't remember."

But today was different. "Yes, it was great," she said.

What, I inquired, was so wonderful about today. "It was Germany day," Lucy told me. "We had German chocolate and German pretzelly things and they gave us badges with a map of Germany and this pencil which actually has the German flag on it. It looks like a really nice country - maybe we can go there on holiday."


Do mention the war (if you're German, that is)

By Monica Porter, June 3, 2010

Who can forget the hilarious Fawlty Towers episode from 1975, in which Basil goads his German hotel guests about the war with his mocking jokes and goose-stepping, until they are reduced to despair? Basil's line, "don't mention the war", has become a sardonic catchphrase in our language, precisely because we do mention the war rather a lot, to the dismay of the Germans.


Correcting my vision in Palestine

By Adam Foulds, June 3, 2010

A few weeks ago, I stood by Abraham's tomb in Hebron during the recitation of the Amidah.

It was an awesome moment, to be at the resting place of the first Jew on earth while hearing the liturgy, and it came at the end of an extraordinary journey, one that had challenged the assumptions I had set out with. My journey was through Palestine. I was travelling with a literary festival.