Leader

Steven Lewis's vital debate

June 6, 2014

The direct language used by Steven Lewis might not be to everyone’s taste. But, in describing the community as more “materialistic and selfish” than ever before, he certainly guarantees a much-needed debate. And it is important — vital, even — that his main point is not lost in the controversy that will inevitably follow his broadside against his fellow Jews.

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Payment for results

May 23, 2014

All the information in our survey of Jewish communal executives’ pay is publicly available. But it would be hard to overstate the hostility and nervousness from some of those concerned when we started contacting them for confirmation of the figures in their accounts. There were conference calls between organisations to discuss how best to respond. There were attempts to silence the JC.

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Unfit to govern

May 16, 2014

Hindsight is an overused tool. But it does not require any benefit of hindsight to realise that the governors of King Solomon High School made a monumental and easily avoidable error in appointing Jo Shuter as head.

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Chief Rabbi's successful Israel tour

May 16, 2014

In the weeks before the Chief Rabbi’s mission to Israel, there was an undercurrent of carping about the cost and the purpose of taking 49 rabbbis to the Jewish state. Now that it has happened, it should be hailed as a great success that was clearly worth the special fundraising and energy it needed.

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Alone and depressing

May 9, 2014

As survivor Jacob Geller put it this week, being the only Jew at an event marking a Holocaust massacre of 9,000 Jews is nothing other than depressing. Konskie, a small town in central Poland — it could have been many others — went from being a hub of Jewish life with kosher shops, schools and shuls to a place where there were not even Jewish memories: there are no Jews to remember anything.

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Gillian Merron - a good appointment

May 9, 2014

Gillian Merron’s gender ought to be entirely irrelevant. She has been appointed to her new position as CEO of the Board of Deputies on merit and through open competition. Instead of commenting on her gender, reaction to her appointment should be focused on her wide experience of government and politics.

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Hooray for Hull

May 1, 2014

A Jew, a Hindu and a Muslim walk into a room. No, it’s not the start of a joke. It’s what happens every week at Hull JSoc, where non-Jews outnumber Jews. Good on them and the other JSocs where small Jewish student populations necessitate creative solutions. Not that they are alone in opening up to non-Jews. Spurs have been known to have the odd gentile supporter.

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Israelis - most liberal

May 1, 2014

Who would have thought it? A survey by the globally respected Pew Research Centre has shown that Israelis — a people surrounded on virtually all sides by dictators, theocrats and militant Islamists — are significantly more relaxed than the rest of the world on touchstone liberal issues such as homosexuality, premarital sex and abortion.

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Tony Blair, back for a day

April 24, 2014

Much has changed since Tony Blair left office in 2007. But one thing remains the same — the clear thinking and vital analysis he offers of the biggest threat facing the West. It is a fantasy to imagine that extremist Islam is no longer the force it once was. As the former Prime Minister says, we need to remember who and what we are up against — and stick to that fight.

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Warped boycott crowd

April 24, 2014

Nothing better illustrates the warped mindset of the Jew-haters who push for a boycott of Israel than the experience of the Stills gallery in Edinburgh. Earlier this year, the Israeli embassy handed over a small sum to the gallery to support an exhibition by video artist Yael Bartana. Ms Bartana is a vocal critic of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.

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