The Diary

Far from the madding cows

July 31, 2014

Members of the Board of Deputies think it ought to keep its name if it merges with the Jewish Leadership Council. But some alternatives suggested in a consultation with deputies were Jewish Parliament, Board of the Jewish Commmunity, United Voice of British Jews and National Council of UK Jewry. I would have recommended Council of Jewish Deputies - but the acronym is CJD.

More..

Rescued by Mr Hizbollah

July 31, 2014

My colleague Rosa Doherty had the unenviable task of covering the annual pro-Palestinian Al Quds rally in London last Friday. When she identified herself, a female marcher greeted her thus, "Eugh, Jew. Blood is on your hands." Feeling scared, Rosa was reassured by a friendly man waving a Hizbollah flag, who said, "Don't worry about her, she's a Christian, they're nuts."

More..

Capitally offended Rothschild

July 31, 2014

A high-powered conference on improving capitalism in London in May, which featured Prince Charles among its speakers, has led to a dispute among its organisers. Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild (the wife of Sir Evelyn de Rothschild) has issued a writ against the Henry Jackson Society, the think tank-led by Dr Alan Mendoza.

More..

Mazeltov, Luciana

July 31, 2014

Here endeth the dream of many a Jewish bachelor: rising Labour star Luciana Berger is engaged. The Shadow Minister for Public Health has previously been linked to fellow politician Chuka Ummuna but her name appears in the S&P column in this week's JC affianced to Alistair Goldsmith.

More..

MP's personal tour de France

July 24, 2014

Unlike last month, it will probably not have the crowds lining the streets.

But a worthy bike event will be beginning in Leeds today.

More..

Sound offer

July 24, 2014

You have to admire the resilience of Israelis in the face of danger. One Tel Aviv restaurant, in order to encourage people not to stay at home because of the threat of Hamas rockets, announced a 50 per cent discount to anyone who came to eat on the day of a siren warning.

More..

A cover-up in Stamford Hill

July 24, 2014

The women of Stamford Hill are generally pretty soberly dressed so I wondered what lay behind a call from the local rabbinate this week to improve the "dress code" there.

Sellers of shoes, hats and sheitels along with beauticians were "earnestly requested" in an official notice to attend a series of special meetings this week.

Perhaps the hot weather had caused one or two female folk to shed

More..

Sweet trip

July 24, 2014

Invitations went out from the Israeli Government Press Office today to journalists wanting to go to Gaza. The cost of a day trip was around £10 each way. But the name of the company operating the bus hardly chimed with the destination: Sweety Tours.

More..

Wrapping up the joy of oy

July 24, 2014

When Martin Baker of Liverpool was about to wrap a gift in this paper, his wife berated him for its "festive" flavour.

But turn the paper upside down and it is suitable for any Yiddish occasion. Though I can't tell you if the exclamation refers to the cost of the gift or anticipates the recipient's disappointment.

More..

Drinking cure for Israelis

July 17, 2014

If you want to give more than moral support to Israeli friends and relatives sheltering from Hamas rockets, then a flask of scotch might be just the thing.

Apparently, a study into the state of mind of Israelis during a previous round of hostilities with Gaza showed that those who enjoyed a drink or two were more likely to resist depression than those who were teetotal.

More..