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Israel needs critical friends

By Jennifer Lipman, February 8, 2014

Oh, for the conviction of those who would boycott Israel. Forget about nuance or anguished deliberation, and bring on kneejerk condemnation the minute anyone creative does anything that suggests they might, vaguely, not dislike Israel.

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Segregating men and women is not sexist? Really, rabbi?

By Lindsay Simmonds, February 1, 2014

Rabbi Daniel Levy’s anachronistic article in the JC’s Judaism page earlier this month is peppered with flawed reasoning. He suggests that “segregating men and women is not sexist”. But sexism is defined by the differentiation between sexes because of their sex alone — based on no other personal characteristic — and this is indeed the case with the mechitza.

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Jesus the Palestinian, a political messiah

By Natan Levy, February 1, 2014

After the £30,000 replica wall of Bethlehem came down in the courtyard of St James’s Church Piccadilly, just before the Quakers sent their 12th year of Ecumenical Accompaniers into Palestinian villages at a cost of over £5,000 per observer, and right around the time that the Methodist Church engaged a cadre of its leading ministers and its top staffer on poverty and justice, for months of con

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Why we should resist the pull of Jewish schools

By Karen Glaser, January 31, 2014

Results day is looming large for parents of Year Six children across the land. A month from now, they’ll know if their offspring have got through the door of their first-choice secondary school.
For many, that will be the comprehensive down the road, provided, of course, that the establishment is good, or good enough.

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Abbas needs the zero option

By Paul Charney, January 30, 2014

In this country, you often hear talk about how terrible celebrity culture is. Our aspirational role models include thuggish professional ball-kickers, scantily-clad twerking girls, and people who appear to be famous just for being famous. So it’s instructive to look at what goes on in other parts of the world.

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People with learning disabilities deserve better care

By Dianne Martin, January 24, 2014

A spate of cases involving people with learning disabilities suffering abysmal abuse have been in the headlines.

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All aboard the Sharon bus

By Christopher Walker, January 24, 2014

Before a mammoth stroke in 2006 halted Ariel Sharon’s plans to shepherd Israel into an uncertain new dawn, the clearest insight into his thinking about the future of the occupied West Bank was displayed during the bizarre day-long bus tours he hosted there for opinion-formers.

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Persecution of gays still exists

By Benjamin Cohen, January 24, 2014

If I had been alive 75 years ago and living in Berlin, not London, my outlook would not have been good and not just because I’m Jewish. Like some of those who found themselves persecuted, I also have a disability, and perhaps more pertinently, I am gay.

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Hail to American Hustle's Mel Weinberg, and all the other wild, wild Jews

By Josh Glancy, January 24, 2014

You might have seen the film American Hustle, or at least seen advertisements for it featuring a permed Bradley Cooper, a shady Christian Bale and a dappy Jennifer Lawrence. Based on Robert W Greene’s book The Sting Man: inside ABSCAM, it tells a dark but funny story of power, the mob and political corruption. At its heart, though, it is the story of Mel Weinberg.

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Reading, writhing, arguing...

By Tracy-Ann Oberman, January 23, 2014

I’m one of the guests on A Good Read this week. It’s one of BBC Radio 4’s longest-running programmes. Two guests join the presenter to discuss their favourite book. It’s a great show as the reviews are conflictingly honest and it usually ends with a bit of argy-bargy when one participant forcefully justifies their choice of book to the others.

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