Obama’s rabbinic relative shows our diversity

By David Toube, September 19, 2008

Michelle Obama's cousin is a rabbi who says biblical Jews were black. That's not much odder than many of our beliefs.

The news emerged this month that Barack Obama's wife has a rabbi in the family. Michelle Obama's cousin is Rabbi Capers Funnye.


Livni’s hairstyle is irrelevant

By Daniella Peled, September 19, 2008

The new Kadima leader's main strength is her pragmatism, not her womanhood

‘Wife, mother, secret agent" ran the breathless headline in The Times on Wednesday, anticipating Tzipi Livni's win in that day's Kadima primaries. In case anyone had failed to notice the potential sexiness of this story, the first paragraph emphasised that Livni was a "blonde former Mossad secret agent", just ahead of the de rigueur reference to Golda Meir.


A Chief Rabbi’s reality gap

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 19, 2008


Why we must urgently co-operate: Danny Rich

By Danny Rich, September 12, 2008

Delegitimising other Jews puts our future at risk


Pluralism in thought and deed has always been at the heart of Liberal Judaism, which seeks to combine the best of Jewish tradition with the gifts of modernity.

Pluralism is a means of welcoming, and living with, diversity and divergence, of pursuing one's own fragment of truth whilst acknowledging the equal validity of another's.


Why we must urgently co-operate: Jonathan Wittenberg

By Jonathan Wittenberg, September 12, 2008

We have allowed our differences to damage people. This must stop


Our statement is a call to pluralism, a plea that leaders and members of all denominations should articulate the core values of Judaism clearly and together, so that we guide the community with vision and responsibility, in a spirit of sensitivity and inclusion. It is no more than we pray for daily in the Aleinu, when we ask that God's name be made one on earth.


Why we must urgently co-operate: Stephen Moss

By Stephen Moss, September 11, 2008

Synagogue movements cannot reach everyone - unless they work together



Without our schools, we are doomed

By Lord Jonathan Sacks, September 5, 2008

Last week our Jewish day schools celebrated yet another outstanding set of results, and we should be immensely proud of them. Anyone who is anxious about the Jewish future should visit our schools. There they will see a quiet miracle: the West's oldest faith becoming young again on the faces and in the minds of our children. That is where the Jewish future is being written, and it is a strong, knowledgeable and committed future.


Why does Israel make it so hard to visit Eilat?

By Jan Shure, September 5, 2008

Israel's Red Sea resort of Eilat is not, it seems, nearly as popular with the Anglo-Jewish market as it once was. Statistics from Israel's Ministry of Tourism reveal that the number of British visitors has plummeted from a high of 45,000 in 1997 to a low of 5,000 in 2003 - recovering to just 6,000 last year.

So why are we no longer flocking to Israel's south to soak up the winter-round sunshine, luxuriate in its world-class hotels, snorkel round the coral reef, take desert tours or generally chill out - all just five hours' flying time from London?


Give our rabbis more authority

By Simon Rocker, September 4, 2008

The flip-flopping over who can eulogise at funerals is part of a power struggle within the United Synagogue.


Goldberg the gangster has breathed his last and is about to be laid to rest. The local rabbi has gone out of town, his children are estranged, so at the funeral, the sexton asks: "Since it is the custom to say a few words in memory of the deceased, would anyone like to give the eulogy?"


We don’t murder... right?

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 4, 2008

There is a distinct element of déjà vu in the complaints in a British newspaper about the way the
Israeli press has been handling the disappearance of a four-year-old girl, 13 months after Madeleine McCann went missing. But the tone of the coverage of the alleged murder of Rose Pizem - intensified over the last week by the news that Alon Yehuda and Mikhail Kruchkov, both also four, were drowned by their mothers in two separate incidents, five days apart - is very different.