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THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010 11 ADAR, 5770 SHABBAT: FRI 6:09 – SAT 7:09 CINCINNATI, OHIO VOL. 156 • NO. 31 SINGLE ISSUE PRICE $2.00

Four local comedians at Temple Sholom Four local comedians will perform at Temple Sholom on Sunday, March 7: Alex Stone, Mike Cody, John Bunyan and Keith Sanders. Alex Stone has entertained audiences at colleges and clubs across the country. Alex’s Mom and a big fan, Sharon Stone, offers some insight into the her son’s emergence into

comedy. Said Stone, “When you are the mother of a shy boy, you wonder what his profession might be as an adult. You try to picture him as a writer, a radiologist, a trash collector, anything that doesn’t involve much interaction with the public. The one thing you don’t envision is a stand-up comedian.

“As Alex was growing up, I knew he had a great sense of humor and he loved to draw, so I thought he might become an editorial cartoonist. “Imagine my surprise when he told us that he was in a stand-up comedy contest. The principal at his high school was even more astonished when I told him that

Alex had won ‘The Funniest Person in Cincinnati’ Contest at Go Bananas Comedy Club. His response was ‘But he doesn’t talk.”’ Dinner is included in the evening. The public is welcome. There is a charge. For information and reservations, call Temple Sholom.

Wise Temple convenes panel on prisons

NATIONAL Free speech at issue in campus Israel wars Page 7

INTERNATIONAL Shooting a German-Israeli relationship Page 9

Wise Temple’s Critical Topics Committee will present a panel to discuss the impact of prisons and prisoners on Cincinnati and communities nationwide for the evening of March 25 at the temple. After opening remarks by Rabbi Ilana Baden of Wise, Professor Marianna Brown Bettman, Professor of Clinical Law at the University of Cincinnati College of Law, and a regular columnist for The American Israelite newspaper, will serve as moderator of a distinguished panel whose combined expertise comprises such areas as day-to-day operation of prisons, the criminal justice system, prison

reform, and attorney education. The panelists are as follows: Terry Collins — immediate past director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections — began his career in the department as a social worker, then became a warden, deputy director, and assistant director before being appointed director in 2006 by then Governor Robert Taft. Governor Ted Strickland renewed his appointment in 2007. Collins oversaw 13,000 employees and an inmate population of over 51,000. Mr. Collins retired on Jan. 31, 2010. David Yost — now in his third term as Delaware County prosecut-

ing attorney, Yost won the first-ever capital sentence in that county in 2003. A defender of Megan’s Law unconstitutionality claims, Yost filed the first eviction action against a convicted sex offender living within 1,000 feet of a school. Previously, Yost practiced law, served in senior posts in the administrations of Columbus Mayor Dana G. “Buck” Rinehart and Governor George V. Voinovich, reported for the Columbus CitizenJournal, and taught at Columbus State College. David Singleton — after law school, Singleton won the Skadden Fellowship to practice at the Legal

Action Center for the Homeless in New York, worked as a Public Defender for the District of Columbia, and practiced law at Thompson Hine and Flory in Cincinnati before assuming his current position in 2002. Singleton is an attorney and executive director of the Ohio Justice and Policy Center (OJPC), a nonpartisan, nonprofit, public interest law office based in Cincinnati whose purpose is the reform of Ohio’s justice system. The presentation by the panel will be followed by a question and answer period. The program is free and open to the public.

Rabbi Yechezkel Besser, who guided Lauder on revitalizing Jewish life in Poland, dies by Jacob Berkman Jewish Telegraphic Agency

ISRAEL Israel debates giving expats the vote overseas Page 10

DINING OUT Trio cackling over Best Chicken Soup award Page 14

NEW YORK (JTA) — Rabbi Yechezkel Besser, the “spiritual father” of the Polish Jewish revival, has died. Besser, who died Feb. 9, is widely credited with focusing Jewish attention and resources on the remnant of Polish Jewry to have survived the Holocaust. In particular he worked with philanthropist and cosmetics magnate Ronald Lauder to build more than 20 Jewish schools in Poland and Eastern Europe. Besser, a Chasidic rabbi who made his money in real estate and had a shtiebel on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, met Lauder in 1987 when Lauder was serving as the U.S. ambassador to Austria. The rabbi, who had narrowly escaped his native Poland in the days following Kristallnacht, already had

Chabad.org

The Lubavitcher rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, left, pours wine for a blessing in the cup of Ronald Lauder as Rabbi Yechezkel Besser, second from left, and Estee Lauder look on.

started returning to his native land to try to rekindle the Jewish world he saw destroyed by the Nazis. “In some ways it was a perfect partnership,” said Warren Kozak, the author of a book on Besser titled “The Rabbi on 84th Street.” “He could not have helped rebuild Judaism in Eastern Europe without Ronald, and Ronald could not have done it without Rabbi Besser. He gave Ronald the knowledge and background necessary in terms of East Europe, Talmud and Judaism. Ron had the resources the rabbi needed.” Besser, who was born in Katowice, Poland, in 1923 and immigrated to the United States after World War II, helped guide the billionaire cosmetics magnate as he launched the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation in 1988 to start building schools.

BESSER on page 19


DEADLINE IS TOMORROW • FRIDAY, FEB. 26

WONDERFUL WEDDINGS 2010 S PECIAL S ECTION

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THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

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Weekend youth programs at the J This March, the JCC will offer two weekend youth programs— one for grades K – 5 and another for grades 6 – 8: “Hang at the J” for the younger kids; “Tween Scene” for the older ones. The “Hang at the J” program for kids in grades K – 5 offers activities in the J’s heated indoor water park and the two-court gymnasium, as well as kid-friendly snacks, dinner and a movie, too. In March the program is slated for

Saturday night, March 13. For the older kids, “Tween Scene” activities result from cooperative planning between the kids and the J’s Danny Meisterman, JCC Youth and Teen coordinator. The planned theme for the March 20 “Tween Scene” is “color wars.” The kids will break into teams to compete against each other in swimming, sports, arts and crafts, video games and more traditional games

like air hockey and foosball. “Social youth programs like Hang at the J and Tween Scene are a perfect way for kids across the community to come together,” said Ilene Ross. “My son loves meeting new friends at JCC programs like these. It’s exactly why we joined the J!” Both programs are open to the public To register and for information, call the J.

NHS Sisterhood conducts Shabbat service Shabbat Shirah, the Shabbat of Songs, was the occasion as Northern Hills Synagogue Congregation B’nai Avraham celebrated the contribution of its sisterhood at a Sisterhood Shabbat service held on Saturday morning, Jan. 30. Sisterhood members conducted the service. Sandy Spitz, co-president of the sisterhood, delivered the d’var

Torah, discussing the weekly Torah portion of B’Shallah, where the Israelites cross the Sea of Reeds en route to the Sinai Desert. Spitz focused on the role of Miriam as an inspiration to other women. She noted that Miriam led the women in celebration after their miraculous crossing, and according to some interpretations, provided a well to satisfy the

needs of the people for water during their wandering in the desert. “Miriam, the prophetess, represents the strengths and dignity exhibited by the women of our Sisterhood,” Spitz observed, This year the sisterhood offered programs on sexuality, self-protection and physical wellbeing. Upcoming programs will be on craft design and stress management.

Efforts to make our Jewish organizations more efficient brings Cincinnati into spotlight In 2009, the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati formed the Community Efficiencies Group (CEG) in response to the economic downturn. The objective was to save community dollars by working with representatives from agencies and synagogues in a collaborative effort. CEG’s effort was based on interviews of individuals in other communities who had recently implemented new efficiency programs of their own. “Our CEG’s focus has always been to emerge as a more efficient and effective community as a result of this process — while continuing to provide critical lifeline services to those with the greatest needs. Because no idea was ever off the table, we considered every possible option to get to our goal...,” said Shep Englander, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati. Some outcomes to date of the work of the Community Efficiencies Group include: The Center for Holocaust and Humanity Education (CHHE) and its exhibits have moved into the Rockwern Academy building. The Nielsen Company, the

global market research leader, is providing pro-bono consulting to the JFS, JCC and Federation in the integration of their Finance, IT and HR Departments. Thirteen agencies and congregations have signed up for electric contracts with a potential community-wide savings of over $200,000; and/or gas contracts for a guaranteed savings of 14.5 percent. Jewish community preschools will enter into collaborations for joint teacher training, shared sports leagues and joint advertising. The group’s efforts have captured the interest of other American Jewish communities. Bob Brant, co-chair of the CEG with Harry Davidow, and Sharon Stern, the Federation’s Chief Operating Officer, will travel to St. Louis on Thursday, March 4 to meet with community leaders there and share the innovations and tactics the Cincinnati group adopted and implemented to achieve their goals. The meeting in St. Louis will include more than 100 participants from the local St. Louis community representing a wide range of Federation agency, congregation and independent Jewish

organizations. The St. Louis Jewish community is just beginning their costsaving effort. Their initial focus is the review of possible synagogue mergers, possible religious school mergers and a major effort to restructure their day school network. Also, they have begun discussions and efforts around joint administrative and purchasing solutions, including casualty insurance, investment and health insurance. Brant believes that America’s Jewish communities must undertake this all-encompassing task with a well-defined strategic approach in order to find new ways to provide help and support in challenging times. “Our task was to develop a functional framework through which we could respond to our community’s needs —despite the difficult economic environment,” explained Brant. “The breadth and spirit of community cooperation we experienced throughout our process here in Cincinnati certainly has been without precedent. Everyone came into this for the good of all—just as the St. Louis Jewish community is doing at this time.”


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Wild West Purim celebration, Feb. 28 The Chabad Jewish Center will host its 14th Annual “Purim Around the World” at Rockwern Academy on Feb. 28. The theme is the Wild West with bbq chicken, hot dogs, chili and corn on the cob. For entertain-

ment “America’s Favorite Magician” and ventriloquest, Mark Comley, will perform. “Purim is the Jewish festival that commemorates the salvation of the Jews from imminent annihilation (G-d forbid) at the hands of

the evil Haman, the Prime Minister of the Persian Emperor Achashverosh, in the year 356 BCE,” said Rabbi Berel Cohen, Youth and Family Program Director at Chabad Jewish Center. The celebration includes an

interactive Megillah reading. Guests should come dressed in western gear (or any other costume) to win a prize. There is a charge. For more information, contact Chabad Jewish Center in Blue Ash.

Auction Gala to support local families The Jewish Discovery Center will hold an Auction Gala at Marriott Northeast in Mason on March 7 to raise money for local needy families. The event will offer a wide variety of international foods, a cash bar, comedy entertainment and a DJ. Deb Silverman of WCPO will emcee the event. “This is not only an opportunity to socialize, be entertained and find some great deals, but also help

those families who are the hardest struck by the economic downturn,” Rabbi Kalmanson said. “So many local families have lost their source of income. We want to partner with those more fortunate and assist those in need.” A wide variety of items will be available for silent auction bidding and for Chinese auction, including jewelry such as an Aaron Basha diamond baby shoe, a diamond ring, and pearl sets, a 50-inch plas-

ma TV, fur coat, spa packages, Dead Sea cosmetics, food packages, books, electronics, original art, dance lessons, amusement park passes, legal services, personal life coaching services, personal fitness trainer services, month at preschool, year of Hebrew School, program pass at the Jewish Discovery Center, food packages, parents night out (babysitter included), catered elegant Shabbat dinner for 18, neighborhood gift certifi-

cates, teeth whitening package, birthday package, sports memorabilia and a bridal package. The center is still accepting donations and sponsorships, especially gifts that may be offered for auction. There is a charge for the event that includes a raffle entry for a door prize and one entry for a chance to win $15,000 in cash. Call the Jewish Discovery Center for information.

Hadassah’s youth aliyah/children at risk tea, March 4 Cincinnati Chapter of Hadassah is holding a Youth Aliyah/Children at Risk Tea on Thursday, March 4, 2010. Guest speakers will be Chen Ezer and Tomer Peretz, two Israeli young adults from our sister city, Netanya. Suzanne Schweiger, the event chair, will talk about Hadassah Neurim, one of three Youth Aliyah villages in Israel. Ezer and Peretz have been

Last year the program connected with over 3,400 children and adults, who were offered a basis for better understanding Israel and life there.

The American Israelite is now hiring a

SALES REPRESENATIVE • HIGH COMMISION • PART TIME OR FLEX TIME • NO EXPERIENCE REQUIRED To apply, call Ted Deutsch at (513) 621-3145 You can also send your resume to publisher@americanisraelite.com or send to The American Israelite 18 West Ninth Street, Suite 2 Cincinnati, OH 45202

brought to Cincinnati by the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati through Partnership 2000 for the program Chaverim M’Israel. They are in our community for a year teaching about Israel and bringing the culture of Israel to our secular and non-secular schools and organizations, They seek to interact with every affiliated Jewish child in our community on a semi-weekly basis through learning activities. Also, this program goes into public and secular schools to teach about Israel. Last year the program connected with over 3,400 children and adults, who were offered a basis for better understanding Israel and life there. Their mission is to create a person-to-person bond between Israel and Cincinnati. Hadassah Youth Aliyah/ Children at Risk is one of many educational programs sponsored by Hadassah in Israel. The program was created in 1934 when Henrietta Szold assisted Recha Freier in rescuing tens of thousand of children from war torn Eastern Europe. Today Youth Aliyah services disadvantaged native-born Israeli children, abused and neglected children, children with learning problems, and recent immigrants from countries like the former Soviet Union, Ethiopia and Argentina. Hadassah has responsibility for three Youth Aliyah villages: Hadassah Neurim, Meir Shreyah and Ramat Hadassah Szold. There is a charge to attend. For information, contact the Hadassah office.

LET THERE BE LIGHT

The oldest English-Jewish weekly in America Founded July 15, 1854 by Isaac M.Wise VOL. 156 • NO. 31 Thursday, February 25, 2009 11 Adar, 5770 Shabbat begins Fri, 6:09 p.m. Shabbat ends Sat, 7:09 p.m. THE AMERICAN ISRAELITE CO., PUBLISHERS 18 WEST NINTH STREET, SUITE 2 CINCINNATI, OHIO 45202-2037 PHONE: (513) 621-3145 FAX: (513) 621-3744 publisher@americanisraelite.com editor@americanisraelite.com articles@americanisraelite.com production@americanisraelite.com HENRY C. SEGAL Editor & Publisher 1930-1985 MILLARD H. MACK Publisher Emeritus NETANEL (TED) DEUTSCH Editor & Publisher AVI MILGROM MICHAEL McCRACKEN Assistant Editors ALEXIA KADISH Copy Editor JOSEPH D. STANGE Production Manager LEV LOKSHIN JANE KARLSBERG Staff Photographers JANET STEINBERG Travel Editor ROBERT WILHELMY Restaurant Reporter MARIANNA BETTMAN NATE BLOOM RABBI A. JAMES RUDIN RABBI AVI SHAFRAN Contributing Writers CHRISTIE HALKO Office Manager

THE AMERICAN ISRAELITE (USPS 019-320) is published weekly for $40 per year and $2.00 per single copy in Cincinnati and $45 per year and $3.00 per single copy elsewhere in U.S. by The American Israelite Co. 18 West Ninth Street, Suite 2, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202-2037. Periodicals postage paid at Cincinnati, OH. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to THE AMERICAN ISRAELITE, 18 West Ninth Street, Suite 2, Cincinnati, Ohio 45202-2037.

The views and opinions expressed by American Israelite columnists do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the newspaper.


THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

National Briefs Brooklyn rabbi accused of extortion, blackmail NEW YORK (JTA) — A prominent Brooklyn rabbi has been accused again of financial wrongdoing. Milton Balkany, the head of the Bais Yaakov school in Borough Park, was charged Feb. 18 with trying to extort $4 million from a Connecticut hedge fund. Balkany was charged with a range of infractions stemming from his alleged scheme to get the fund to transfer money to Bais Yaakov and another Brooklyn yeshiva. Balkany allegedly claimed that a federal prison inmate he was counseling had information that the fund had made insider trades. If the fund didn’t pay up, Balkany would have the prisoner talk to federal authorities. Prosecutors claim Balkany made up the story about the trades. If convicted, Balkany could face more than 20 years in prison. He was released on bail on Feb. 18. Balkany told several news outlets that as with the earlier charges against him, he ultimately would be exonerated. Balkany also was involved in efforts to head off a boycott of the disgraced kosher meat producer Agriprocessors, which was owned by his father-in-law, Aaron Rubashkin.

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In meeting with Fayyad, U.S. Jewish leader raises incitement issue by Ben Harris Jewish Telegraphic Agency NEW YORK (JTA) — U.S. Jewish leaders pressed Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad on incitement and the need to keep Israel a Jewish state. At a meeting Thursday in Jenin between Fayyad and a visiting delegation from the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Alan Solow, the chairman of the Jewish umbrella group, said the actions of the Palestinian leadership set back the cause of peace. “When the Palestinian leadership visits and honors families of those who have murdered innocent Israeli civilians, or when produce is destroyed rather than used only because it originates from the West Bank, that sets back our confidence of peace,” Solow said, according to a news release from the Conference of Presidents. “The Israeli prime minister is clear about Israel’s needs to be recognized as a Jewish state. Yet, not only do the Palestinians refuse to acknowledge Israel’s Jewish nature, but clearly state, in Article 19 of the Fatah constitution, that

there must be an armed struggle with the Zionist entity.” Fayyad criticized Israeli military incursions into Palestinian areas, saying they undermined the Palestinian leadership. He pledged that the Palestinian Authority is committed to nonviolence and coexistence. The PA wants “a progressive state, democratic, which doesn’t tolerate discrimination, which is open, culturally sensitive — including to our Israeli neighbors,” Fayyad said, according to The Jerusalem Post. A former World Bank official with a Ph.D. in economics, Fayyad is generally regarded as a moderate, though he has come under fire, including from the Zionist Organization of America, for meeting on Wednesday with the family of a Palestinian killed as he allegedly attempted to stab an Israeli soldier in Hebron Feb. 12. The ZOA called Fayyad and the Palestinian Authority “unreconstructed supporters of terrorism and not genuine moderates and peace makers.” ZOA president, Morton Klein, who was present for Thursday’s meeting, could not be reached for comment.

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J Street, Oren mending fences — but wariness lingers by Ron Kampeas Jewish Telegraphic Agency WASHINGTON (JTA) After months of high-profile feuding, the breakout dovish lobbying group J Street and Israel’s ambassador to Washington appear to be reconciling. The two sides have been talking — through the media and directly in private — with the goal of ending the hot-cold feud that dominated much professional Jewish chatter in the latter part of last year. Both sides say that while there have been strides in the rapprochement, much needs to be bridged — underscored by a persistent Israeli government wariness of the group. Michael Oren, the Israeli

ambassador, dropped J Street a bouquet in a Feb. 10 interview with the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles in which he said that the organization had moved “much more into the mainstream.” It marked a sharp turn from his characterization of the group late last year as having positions dangerous to Israeli interests. “The J Street controversy has come a long way toward resolving,” Oren said in the interview. “The major concern with J Street was their position on security issues, not the peace process. J Street has now come and supported Congressman [Howard] Berman’s Iran sanction bill; it has condemned the Goldstone report; it has denounced the British court’s decision to try Tzipi Livni for war crimes, which puts J Street

JTA Photo

Israeli U.S. Ambassador Michael Oren, left, and J Street director Jeremy Ben-Ami are reconciling after having heated exchanges in 2009 on some of the dovish pro-Israel lobby’s positions.

much more into the mainstream.” Oren’s comments come as some pro-Israel activists continue their efforts to marginalize Jewish groups on the left, including J Street, that they see as being hostile to Israel. The comments were no slip of the lip, said sources close to the ambassador. They were a quid pro quo arising out of recent statements J Street has released, including an admonishment to the United Nations to treat Israel fairly and an endorsement of immediate passage of new U.S. sanctions against Iran. For its part J Street, which backs U.S. pressure on Israel and the Palestinians in pursuit of a two-state deal, has endeavored to OREN on page 21

Christian student group case poses dilemmas for Jewish groups by Ron Kampeas Jewish Telegraphic Agency WASHINGTON (JTA) — Is it discriminatory for government to fund some forms of discrimination and not others? And what does “funding” mean? These questions are at the center of a case concerning the right of a Christian student group to recognition on its campus. The Christian Legal Society’s quest for official status at the University of California’s Hastings College of Law has wound its way through the courts and now is under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court. The court took up the case in December; it has yet to set a date for hearings. On the Orthodox side, Agudath Israel of America and the Orthodox Union have filed separate briefs friendly to the Christian Legal Society. So has the National Council of Young Israel, joining a brief that includes Muslim, Christian and Sikh groups. The Anti-Defamation League and the American Jewish Committee are planning to file separate briefs friendly to the university. The American Jewish Congress chose not to file a brief. The Orthodox vs. secular alignment is not unusual in such church-state cases. However, subtle differences over the case’s ramifications and over strategy have emerged between groups on the same side. The crux of the dilemma for Jewish groups is whether the greater threat to Jews is posed by groups that exclude — or margin-

alizing groups that exclude. The Christian Legal Society requires a signed commitment to what it defines as Christian principles, including proscribing premarital sex and defining marriage as being exclusively between a man and a woman. The society wants Hastings, which receives state and federal funds, to allocate it the same funding due other on-campus groups and it wants equal access to campus facilities. The Orthodox Union’s brief emphasizes the threat that the law school’s lower court victories pose to the ability of student affiliates, the National Conference of Synagogue Youth and the Jewish Student Union, as well as other Jewish student associations, to control membership and leadership. “A Jewish campus organization such as Hillel would be compelled to admit adherents of Jews for Jesus into its membership,” the OU brief says. “Not only would such requirements redefine the group, they would likely drive away members who wish to congregate with co-religionists, free from proselytizing.” Nathan Diament, the OU’s Washington director and its counsel in this case, said the school’s refusal to recognize the Christian society violated the group’s constitutional rights. “They are excluding this group because of a viewpoint,” he said. “This is a state university, and the state is not entitled under the First Amendment, under the free exercise of religion or freedom of association to say these are the condi-

tions under which to exercise your rights.” For the ADL, the danger lies in the prospect of federal funding for a group that not only requires Christian commitment but the exclusion of gays. “We really see this is as a discrimination case,” said Deborah Lauter, ADL’s civil rights director. “What if a club formed that said no Jews? Any organization that says they’re opposed to Jews, women, blacks, gays — if CLS succeeds, public-funded universities will have to fund it.” The ADL and Agudah, from opposing sides, see far-reaching consequences for funding for faith groups in general. The Orthodox Union and the American Jewish Committee see the case more narrowly affecting student activities. Lauter says the case has ramifications for the efforts by Jewish civil rights groups to get the Obama administration to make good on promises to restrict faithbased funding for social activism to groups that do not proselytize or discriminate in their hiring. “This would open the door up for federal funds to be used to discriminate in the hiring and firing of people,” Lauter said. “It’s antithetical to democracy.” The AJC joined the ADL in its letter this month to the White House regarding faith-based funding, but Richard Foltin, the AJC’s legislative director, said the Hastings case was unrelated. “I wouldn’t say one motivates the other,” he said. CHRISTIANS on page 20


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Federal authorities Free speech at issue in campus move to deport illegal Israel wars Israeli immigrants by Ben Harris Jewish Telegraphic Agency

by Joel Magalnick Guest Author SEATTLE (JTNews) — Those attractive Israelis you may see at the mall hawking colorful beauty and hair products from the Dead Sea may not be as innocuous as they seem. Many are in the U.S. illegally, working in violation of their tourist visas, and the U.S Department of Homeland Security has taken notice. In early December, 12 Israelis were rounded up in Kennewick, in eastern Washington. One, Yuval Oran, remains in detention and has been charged with harboring illegal aliens. The other 11, including Oran’s sister, have posted bond and are expected to testify against him. A few, citing financial hardship, will be able to return home once they provide video depositions, according to court documents obtained by JTNews. “They’ve turned the workers into witnesses,” said Chaplain Gary Friedman, executive director of Seattle-based Jewish Prisoner Services International, which has been providing services to the Israelis while in custody. At approximately the same time, a smaller number of Israelis in the Seattle-Tacoma area also were arrested by federal agents. A recent article in the Israeli paper Yediot Achronot reported that similar arrests also have been made in Texas. The Israelis who manage these mall kiosks — most are here legally as dual citizens or resident aliens — say they are running franchise businesses. Friedman believes, however, that they are a network of con men who entice young Israelis fresh out of the army or school with the promise of making a lot of money in a short amount of time. “There might be a handful of them who are decent people,” Friedman said, “but by and large they’re con men.” The consequences, as the arrested Israelis are finding out, are not so minimal. Deportees are banned from re-entering the United States for 10 years, and there are very few exceptions. The Israelis working at the kiosks know what they’re getting themselves into, and the situation is far from anything resembling human trafficking, Friedman said. The ringleaders who bring them in

rent comfortable apartments and supply computers and cars, and the workers can leave whenever they wish. The problem, Friedman said, is they don’t want to leave. “They can make in three months here what they can make in three years in Israel,” Friedman said the organizer of one such group told him. Friedman spoke to one of the kiosk managers earlier this month as he cleared out an apartment that had been vacated by about 15 Israelis. The fact that so many of the Israelis left so quickly means the attention from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is having an effect. Gideon Lustig, Israel’s deputy consul general to the Pacific Northwest, said he wouldn’t classify the arrests as a problem, but admitted that “we are concerned about the growing number of Israelis working illegally in Washington State.” Once the Israelis are arrested, they are held and released on bond, and then generally ordered deported. Lustig said the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been working with authorities in the state, but has refrained from attempts to impose any influence on behalf of the detainees. “These people are responsible for their actions, and we have been working closely with the Washington authorities, who are very cooperative and communicative with us,” Lustig said. “We are trying to communicate these issues back to people in Israel so they would know what might be the consequences of their doing this, but we are not getting legally involved, as this is the law of the state.” The Foreign Ministry has, mainly through Jewish Prisoner Services, been working to provide kosher food and shelter to the released detainees. Families in Israel have pleaded with Friedman to post bond, pay attorneys’ fees or purchase airline tickets. But worse than the financial toll, Friedman said, he worries about the way their actions reflect on the Jewish community. “Obviously the immigration authorities are not thinking very highly of Israelis these days, and I hate to see that because it reflects on Jews and Israel,” Friedman said. “Not just Israelis but Jews in general.”

NEW YORK (JTA) — In the wake of the arrests of 11 University of California, Irvine students for disrupting a speech by the Israeli ambassador to the United States, Shalom Elcott, the president and chief executive of the Jewish Federation of Orange County, Calif., threw down the gauntlet. UC-Irvine has long been caught in the thicket of the Israel wars, its campus notorious in the pro-Israel community for the intensity and often confrontational quality of discourse on the Middle East. But while some Jewish groups have pushed the administration to condemn inflammatory speakers sponsored by Muslim students, the university previously had been willing only to issue generic condemnations of hate speech on campus. This time, the Jewish community will “intensely monitor” the response of the university, Elcott told JTA. “While it’s nice to condemn hate speech in general, we expect a very specific response from the University of California leadership based on what transpired in that

JTA

A protester is removed by campus police after disrupting a speech by Israel’s ambassador to the United States at the University of California, Irvine, Feb. 8, 2010.

room,” he said. In addition to prosecuting the students “to the fullest extent of the law,” Elcott told JTA he expects future activities of the Muslim Students Union to be closely scrutinized and would like to see their programming stripped of public funding. Civil discourse on college campuses, or the lack thereof, has been a source of concern for some time.

But two distinct strategies are now taking shape, seemingly informed by the recourse available to both sides. Jewish groups increasingly are pressing their case directly with universities and relevant government agencies, serving notice to university leaders and major donors that they expect strict enforcement CAMPUS on page 22

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It’s Purim, let the revelry commence by Linda Morel Jewish Telegraphic Agency NEW YORK (JTA) — Purim is a busy holiday. It starts with an evening reading of the Megillah of Esther, followed the next morning by the second reading of a story that rivals the pace of a best-selling novel. The plot features a brave and beautiful heroine, a despotic king, a clever uncle and a villain who is destroyed by his own evil plans. After the morning reading, many people visit family and friends to distribute “mishloach manot,” packages filled with two baked goods and a drink. They also give “matanot l’evyonim,” donations to the needy. Finally comes the highlight of any Jewish holiday — a delicious meal. But unlike most Jewish celebrations, where dining occurs at night, the Seudat Purim is a feast served midday, often lingering until evening. The idea of consuming a meal during daylight hours was decided in the fourth century by the scholar Rava, who thought the timing would prevent Purim from becoming a regular workday. Bearing out Rava’s worst fears, the lavish luncheon now passes under the radar screen of many, and it is mostly observant Jews who throw Seudat Purims. However, because Purim falls on a Sunday this year, Feb. 28, it’s an opportuni-

Linda More

Almond triangles, like the Purim favorite hamantaschen, are mindful of Haman’s three-cornered hat.

ty for the celebration to reach a larger audience. But how do you get started? “There’s no such thing as a traditional Seudat Purim,” says Janet Andron Hoffman, a social worker from Teaneck, N.J. Hoffman finds that most families develop their own style of hosting the celebratory lunch. However, the meal begins like other Jewish holidays — by breaking bread and reciting blessings. If you’re thinking of guidelines, the Seudat Purim must start midday and end at sundown. Most important, the luncheon should be joyous

because it commemorates the Jews of ancient Persia defeating their enemies. Drinking plays heavily in the Purim story, which opens when King Ahasuerus of Persia gets drunk at a party and asks his first wife to show off her good looks. She refuses, so the king banishes her. Ahasuerus then holds a contest to select a new wife. From hundreds of applicants he chooses a nice Jewish girl named Esther. She’s the niece of Mordechai, a prominent Jew who suggested that Esther enter the contest. He warns her not to reveal her religion at court.

In the next scene, Mordechai overhears that the King’s vizier, Haman, is plotting to annihilate the Jews. Mordechai implores Esther to save the Jewish people by intervening with her husband. She organizes a three-day event at which everyone gets drunk. Ahasuerus becomes enraged when people he has not summoned request an audience, so Esther gathers her courage and approaches him. Risking her life, she drops two bombshells: She reveals her religion and exposes Haman’s evil plot. Upon hearing the news, the king becomes so outraged, he hangs Haman on the gallows that the vizier had prepared to murder the Jews. An ecstatic Mordechai and Esther host a huge celebration. From then on, they want Jews to observe Purim by exchanging packages of food and drink, and by making charitable donations. “This is what I love about my religion,” Hoffman says. “Even in the act of rejoicing, we’re still thinking about people in need. It’s built into the holiday.” The foods eaten at Seudat Purim luncheons are rife with symbolism. Seeds and nuts are customarily cooked into holiday foods. The Talmud relates that Esther as queen ate only seeds and nuts in the palace of King Ahasuerus because she had no access to kosher food. Some experts believe she subsisted on chickpeas, too. Many families buy an especially long, braided challah, commemorating the rope used to hang Haman. As turkey is generally known as a stupid animal and Ahaseurus was a foolish king, turkey often is the entree of choice on Seudat Purim menus. Hamantaschen is the most wellknown Purim food because its shape is reminiscent of Haman’s triangular hat. While hamantaschen is often filled with preserves and chocolate, poppy seeds were the traditional filling. The drinking of alcoholic beverages is not only suggested but encouraged. In the Talmud, Rava said at Purim that people should drink to the point of not remembering whether it is Mordechai or Haman they are praising or cursing. If that degree of drunkenness is not appealing, a Seudat Purim is an occasion to serve your best wines. Among all Jewish celebrations, this special meal is a time to express joyous revelry and release. The bottom line is, a Seudat Purim is great fun. Hoffman has a large house and more than 20 in her extended family, so she has hosted the festive lunch many times. With her three children now in their 20s, her Purim celebrations have evolved as her children have grown.

“The Seudat Purim is an opportunity to be with my family,” Hoffman says. “We love each other and have fun together; we’re lucky in that way. “We celebrate with food, wine and merrymaking. We’re all together. What could be better than that?” Below are some recipes for a Seudat Purim menu. DRUNKEN TURKEY (Meat) Because the liqueur in this recipe is cooked through, the alcohol has lost its potency and thus is safe for children to eat. Turkey Ingredients: No-stick vegetable spray 3-31⁄2 pound turkey breast 1⁄4 cup orange liqueur Kosher salt to taste Freshly ground pepper to taste 1⁄4 teaspoon garlic powder Orange Sauce Ingredients: 1⁄4 cup orange liqueur 11⁄2 cups orange juice 3⁄4 cup orange marmalade 1 teaspoon lemon juice 6 tablespoons honey 2 teaspoons Balsamic vinegar Turkey Preparation: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a roasting pan and rack with no-stick spray. Place rack inside of roasting pan. Rinse turkey breast under cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place breast skin side down on a plate. Douse with 1/8 cup orange liqueur. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder. Place breast skin side up on rack and repeat, seasoning with remaining orange liqueur, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the breast, avoiding any bones. Slide roasting pan inside the oven. Meanwhile, place Orange Sauce ingredients into a medium-sized pot. Stir well to blend. Bring to a boil on a medium flame. Reduce flame and simmer sauce for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. If sauce returns to a boil, reduce heat again. Cool to warm and reserve. After breast has roasted for 11⁄2 hours, remove it from oven. With a ladle, drizzle Orange Sauce on breast, reserving the remainder. Then return turkey to the oven. Breast is ready when temperature on the thermometer reaches 170, which takes about 2 to 21⁄2 hours. Remove from oven and wait 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with Orange Sauce. Yield: 6 servings RECIPES on page 22


INTERNATIONAL

9

Toby Axelrod

Israeli filmmaker Tomer Heymann, left, with his mother, Noa, and his German boyfriend Andreas Merk at the Berlin International Film Festival.

Shooting a GermanIsraeli relationship by Toby Axelrod Jewish Telegraphic Agency BERLIN (JTA) — Israeli filmmaker Tomer Heymann almost never stops shooting. He shoots his mother. He shoots his relatives. And, most of all, he shoots his German boyfriend. Heymann’s latest documentary, “I Shot My Love,” tells the sometimes painful story about how his love affair with his German boyfriend, Andreas Merk, is complicated by the tortured GermanJewish past. The film, which debuted last Saturday, is one of several Israeli offerings at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival, which runs through Feb. 21. “What does it mean that more than 60 years after the Shoah, we are in love?” Heymann said in an interview, describing his film. “And what do we solve by being together?” The two men met in 2006 following the screening of Heymann’s film “Paper Dolls” at the 2006 Berlin film fest, where the movie won several awards. Heymann, whose grandparents fled from Berlin to Palestine in the 1930s, started filming his new boyfriend almost immediately, providing the footage for this unusual documentary. The film follows Merk after his first date with Heymann, who can be heard from behind the camera and throughout their relationship as it evolves and the couple moves to Tel Aviv. German-Israeli love affairs are not uncommon. Many Germans of the first postwar generation visited Israel, fell in love and settled down with Israelis. Heymann, 39, and Merk, 31, are different because they are of the second generation, and they are gay. When Merk says on camera that he never asked his grandparents about their past during the Nazi era, Heymann wants to know why. “I was afraid,” Merk answers. “Maybe that’s why I didn’t ask.”

Merk ultimately finds a surprising connection with Heymann’s family, whose German roots are very apparent. Merk talks with Heymann’s older relatives in German, and on Passover he reads aloud from a prewar German Haggadah that had been stowed away for decades. “Through my relationship with Andreas, the German side that was sleeping so long in my family came out,” Heymann told JTA. The film juxtaposes Heymann’s open, emotional Israeli family with Merk’s reserved yet equally emotional German Catholic family. It also explores the theme of victimhood, and not just on Heymann’s side. Merk talks about the sexual abuse he suffered as a child at the hands of a Catholic priest. Victimhood “is a state of mind,” he tells Heymann. “For me, giving myself to you, it’s like a big thing because I give it out of freedom and out of choice.” Merk doesn’t always have an easy time of it. Two years into the relationship, he stares down the camera and says, “It’s like, hello? I am not just a story. I’m your partner and this story is alive. In me.” Today the couple lives in Israel. Merk said he mostly feels welcome, though he occasionally finds himself the subject of off-color remarks about the Holocaust. When they are in Germany, the two do not visit Holocaust memorials. “I don’t like these rituals; they seem fake,” Heymann said. But when Merk recently showed him a “stumbling block” memorial — a small brass plaque embedded in the pavement in front of a building noting the name of a former Jewish tenant who was deported — Heymann was moved. “This touched me, and created something very close between me and Andreas,” Heymann said. “Hey, something happened between our nations, but today, most Israelis open themselves to create something new.”


10

INTERNATIONAL/ISRAEL

iMussolini app flap restirs debate on Il Duce’s legacy by Ruth Ellen Gruber Jewish Telegraphic Agency ROME (JTA) — Over the past few days I’ve been watching online videos of “Il Duce,” Italy’s World War II fascist dictator Benito Mussolini. There are hundreds on YouTube, and some of the clips have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times. Most are taken from the fascistera newsreels that were part of Mussolini’s powerful propaganda machine. They show military parades and motorcades, or Il Duce, with his jackboots and jutting chin, orating before enormous adoring crowds. Quite a few are pro-fascist tributes posted by admirers who even today regard Mussolini as their ideological guide. What prompted my interest was the recent flap over iMussolini, an iPhone application that collated the texts of more than 120 of Mussolini’s speeches, plus audio and video clips of the dictator in action. iMussolini went up on the Italian iTunes store on Jan. 21, and with more than 1,000 downloads a day was the site’s best-selling app until it was yanked two weeks later because of possible copyright violation of material in the state archives. A revised version, which added text but deleted audio, went back on sale Feb. 9. iMussolini has caused a stir in a country where Il Duce and his legacy remain a divisive issue. Comments left on the YouTube clips run the gamut from passionate affirmations of “Viva il Duce!” to utter condemnation. “It’s disgusting,” reads one of the more than 6,000 responses to a clip of Mussolini’s speech declaring war in 1940. “Our fathers and grandfathers were completely crazy, robbed of their brains, reduced to being shameful assassins.” Mussolini came to power in Italy in 1922, when he and his fascist forces marched on Rome. Under his iron-fisted regime, Italy took many steps toward modernization. But he led the country into ruin with his disastrous alliance with Nazi Germany and instituted harsh antiSemitic laws in 1938. Partisans executed Mussolini and his mistress in 1945, and their bodies were strung up by their heels in a Milan piazza. Fascism is outlawed in Italy today, but some Italians now equate both fascists and partisans as patriots, and a visible segment of the political far-right regards Mussolini as a hero.

His tomb in the northeast town of Predappio is a place of pilgrimage, where souvenir shops sell all sorts of fascist memorabilia. Skinheads give the fascist salute in his honor, and there are flourishing Mussolini groups on Facebook — one boasts more than 6,000 fans. The iMussolini app’s developer, 25-year-old Luigi Marino, denies wanting to cash in on fascist nostalgia. He said he created his app simply by collating historical material that is freely available in bookstores, in libraries and online. Presenting it without comment, he says on the iTunes site, enables an “unconditioned analysis of what took place in those years.” Others see it quite differently. One leftist group called iMussolini a “hymn to fascism.” And a Holocaust survivor association branded it “an insult to the memory of all victims of Nazism and fascism” and an “offense to decency and conscience.” In fact, there is a complex dilemma involved. Mussolini’s rule — and the power he exercised over his countrymen — formed an epoch of Italian history whose impact is still being felt today. Postwar Italian democracy was built on a foundation of anti-fascism that exalted the wartime anti-fascist resistance while it minimized the extent to which many Italians had supported Mussolini’s regime — indeed, before 1938, Fascist Party ranks had included thousands of Jews. In recent years, new debates over the “true” nature of Italian fascism and its legacy have arisen, along with a less ideological examination of history that seeks to separate myth from fact. The speeches on the iMussolini app, “like them or not, form part of history,” said Il Duce’s granddaughter, Alessandra Mussolini, a longtime right-wing member of the Italian parliament. “But if you want to wipe out history with censorship, help yourself.” With the iMussolini app, however, the issue is not censorship. It is, instead, where the line gets drawn between history and opinion, facts and propaganda. “This is an ugly side of Italian history and is not something to be sold on iTunes, out of context, like a video game or song,” said Angelo Pontecorboli, a Florence-based artist and publisher. “For thousands of Italian Jews like me,” he added, “it was part of our suffering.” APP on page 19

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

Conservative synagogue in Arad damaged by arson by Michael K. McCracken Assistant Editor Shira Hadasha synagogue in Arad, Israel is the only nonOrthodox synagogue in that community. Over the years, several acts of vandalism have been committed against the Conservative shul. One year ago arsonists tried, but failed, to burn it down. On Monday, February 8 someone tried again. The building suffered damage to the exterior, but no one was hurt in the blaze. In the previous week, a person or persons unknown tried to break

into the synagogue. Unable to complete the break-in, they were successful in drilling a hole in the wall. On February 8, someone came back to the building and poured flammable liquids into that hole and started the fire. According to Yitzhar Hess, general manager of the Conservative Movement in Israel, such acts of vandalism — with the exception of the failed arson attempt a year ago — had died down over the past few years. Hess went on to describe the conservative community and its role in Arad. He said that there are dozens of conservative families in

the community and that this synagogue has been in the city for more than 20 years, with its members taking an active role in local, municipal functions. According to Mr. Hess, it’s “a miracle” that the damage was minor and that no one was hurt. He went on to say that “the Conservative Movement won’t give in to violence.” According to the Negev Police department, they have made no arrests and have no specific suspects. However, according to a spokesman, “A synagogue was burned, and police are taking the incident very seriously.”

Israel debates giving expats the vote overseas

Olivier Fitoussi / Flash90 / JTA

Israeli election workers at the Knesset count absentee ballots from soldiers and others during Israel’s last election, Feb. 12, 2009.

by Marcy Oster Jewish Telegraphic Agency JERUSALEM (JTA) — Hilary Levenson holds three passports: from her native Britain; Israel, to where she immigrated in 1974; and the United States, where she has lived since 1990. But she exercises her right to vote only in the country in which she lives — at a polling station near her home in Norman, Okla. If Israel’s Yisrael Beiteinu party has its way, however, Levenson soon could be eligible to vote from the United States in Israeli elections. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fulfilled a coalition pledge to Yisrael Beiteinu in proposing a bill last week to grant Israelis overseas the right to vote. Current law requires Israelis to be in country to vote, diplomatic staff excepted. Even if the bill passes,

Levenson says she wouldn’t vote in Israeli elections. “I would not vote from outside of Israel,” Levenson said this week in Israel during a family visit. “Each vote affects everybody here. I’m not living here anymore or bringing up kids here anymore.” The exact contours of the bill are still under debate, and the chances of its passage are slim. One version would limit voting rights to those who hold Israeli passports and have been abroad for less than 10 years. Netanyahu is said to favor a time limit of four to six years — about the length of time it takes to achieve one or two academic degrees. To a large extent, the debate over the bill is about the legitimacy of Israelis spending time overseas. In a country this small, going abroad is not just a rite of passage but, in many professions, a virtual requirement. Academics are encouraged to do post-doctoral

studies overseas, and doctors are urged to take fellowships and train outside the country. The question for Zionists is how much time abroad is too much. Giving Israelis who live overseas the right to vote from abroad “legitimizes leaving the country,” said Shlomo Avineri, a professor of political science at Hebrew University who served as director general of Israel’s Foreign Ministry under Yitzhak Rabin. “It’s a very bad idea,” he said. “It’s a matter of principle. If you don’t live here, you don’t vote. Participation in the political process while you are not going to have to live with the consequences is immoral and undemocratic.” A Yisrael Beiteinu spokesman, Danny Hershtal, noted that the current law allows even Israelis who haven’t lived in Israel for decades to vote — they just have to come to Israel to cast their ballot. “Every Israeli has a right to vote. What prevents most Israeli citizens from voting is that they do not have enough money to fly to Israel on Election Day,” Hershtal said of Israelis overseas. “A person who cares about Israel has a basic right as a citizen to vote. We simply want to equalize it and make it more convenient.” In theory, because of the unique nature of Israeli immigration laws that grant any Jew the right to immigrate, the prospect of such a bill raises the possibility that Diaspora Jews could obtain Israeli citizenship simply to get a say in Israeli elections without going through the trouble of actually living in Israel, even on Election Day. Several versions of the bill under consideration aim to eliminate that possibility.


SOCIAL LIFE

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

11

2010 PASSOVER COVER

COLORING

CONTEST

ANNOUNCEMENTS BIRTH lka Tovah and Solomon Davidoff, of Malden, Mass., announce the birth of a son, Harry Isaac (Tzvi

E

Shamai), on January 17, 2010. The maternal grandparents are Judy Menkes and Barry Menkes, of Massachusetts. Paternal grandparents are Kathy and Allen Davidoff.

SIZE:

Art must be no larger than 8.5" Wide x 11" High. MATERIALS:

Anything that shows up bold and bright, such as markers, crayons, paint or cut paper. AGE CATEGORIES:

Open to children of all ages. All entries must be received by FRIDAY, MARCH 19

TH

THE AMERICAN ISRAELITE 18 WEST NINTH, SUITE 2 CINCINNATI, OH 45202 Entries must have a completed entry form attached to the back. Please print clearly.

2010 PASSOVER COVER COLORING CONTEST ENTRY FORM

R E F UA H S H L E M A H Frieda Berger Fraida bat Raizel

Murray Kirschner Chaim Meir ben Basha

Rozlyn Bleznick

Andrea Lavine Chana Sara bat Esther Enya

Rachel Boymel Rochel bat Pesia Fruma Daniel Eliyahu Daniel ben Tikvah Mel Fisher Moshe ben Hinda Edith Kaffeman Yehudit bat B’racha Roma Kaltman Ruchama bat Perl

Al Markovitz Avraham ben Charna Ravid Sulam Ravid Chaya bat Ayelet Bill Ziv Zev Shmuel ben Malkah Rachel Edward Ziv Raphael Eliezer Aharon ben Esther Enya

Announcements are 100% FREE Place any of these announcements in The American Israelite: BIRTHS BIRTHDAYS BAR/BAT MITZVAHS ENGAGEMENTS WEDDINGS ANNIVERSARIES Send an e-mail including announcement copy and photo (optional) to:

articles@americanisraelite.com with “Announcement” in the Subject Line


SUNDAY, 28 FEBRUARY 2010 / 14 ADAR 5770

VOL. 552 • NO. 25

SINGLE ISSUE RECALL

Netanel (Ted) Deutsch to wed this spring by A. Muschnik Assistant to the Assistant Schlepper On April 31, the publisher of The American Israelite, and one of Cincinnati’s most eligible bachelors, will wed his beloved at the main house of French Park, on Section Road in Amberley Village, at 6 p.m. The setting for the betrothal will be the bucolic park’s 275 acres of woods, grass and fields that recall a more genteel time of board games and tea parties, a time when money was not a concern — but life spent well was. Amid the bountiful smells and sounds of nature recreating itself, Netanel and his fiancée will take their vows in an Orthodox ceremony led by Rabbi Yeshua Ben

Joseph. Sheva Brachot will begin on May 1. As the newly formed, and so blessed couple, begin their life together—to face the many storms ahead from the serene bubble of marital bliss—guests will celebrate with music by “Moe and Sye – The Gangsta Twins” and fress from tables laden with delightful traditional foods and pastries— including whitefish from the bottommost depths of post-industrial Lake Erie—caught and smoked by Netanel himself. Dietary laws will be followed. Dress is semi-formal. Everyone in the community is invited. So who is the bride? At this writing, the bride’s identity is known only to Netanel

and no one else — not even his beautiful daughter, Rachel. Her identity will be announced in the traditional Bedeken ceremony, one hour before the wedding. All of this will be captured on film for a special episode of Jewish Broadcasting Company’s (JBC) “Hot Date Show.” During this exclusive JBC broadcast, Netanel will select from four nice Jewish women he has been dating. First there will be footage of his various dates, including the now famous scene of Netanel tearing off his clothes, while sailing on the Ohio River, to save a neighborhood dog from drowning — such a fetching scene with his beautiful date cheering him on. Then each woman will reveal

her true feelings about Netanel. Wait until you hear what these women say. For some—such a mensch and so much fun! For others — they’ve had better. Finally, in what will be a stunning, if not historic, television event, Netanel will reveal which woman he will bring to the alter for a long and enchanting life together. The women will be lined up, dressed in formal attire and undoubtedly a gorgeous sight for all to enjoy. Then Dr. Ruth, in a special appearance, will come onstage dressed from head to foot in a faux feline fur, complete with mittens and a furry hat. In her right hand will be a plate made of gold — solid gold—with one moist, cherry hamentaschen and one ripe,

juicy pomegranate—all surrounded by an array of large, wholesome walnuts. Netanel and his chosen will then walk to center stage, where he will propose and present what is sure to be a magnificent ring. After Dr. Ruth congratulates the couple and wishes them a long and fertile union, the show will close with comments from the women not chosen —all of whom will receive generous gifts, including a copy of Ted’s new book, “Transforming the World, Transforming my Life”—an autobiographical vision of a Jewish life well-lived. Congratulatory wishes and bridal gifts should be mailed to the offices of The American Israelite, 18 West 9th Street, Cincinnati, Ohio, 45202.

The wedding from a female perspective by A. Shayna Punim Special correspondent The dates have been had, the kibitzing has occurred and the Jewish community of Cincinnati has voiced their opinions. With bated breath we await the news on who has captured the heart, and marriage proposal, of Netanel (Ted) Deutsch. For the final four women who remain in the running, the question

that is on everyone’s tongue is this: Who will receive the last hamentaschen from Netanel on April 31 under the chuppah? First there is Balabus Yente, the “cougar,” who had originally shared her age to be 10 years younger than in actuality. Upon realizing this stretch of the truth, expert opinions agree that she will not be in the number one position. Next is Chaya Kibitzer, and while her age is not the issue here,

this columnist finds she is too immature to enter into matrimony. Of course we cannot leave out Harriet Fresser, kindly referred to as “Bubbe.” While her age may be a slight deterrent to Netanel, it’s more that she is not as health conscious as he is and may not be able to keep up on the golf course. The final contestant remaining in the top four is Naches Bashert. In the spirit of the childhood fairy tale “Goldilocks and the Three

Bears,” this contestant seems to be “just right!” She’s a wonderful cook, likes to play golf, likes to drink single-malt scotch, and she even smokes cigars – although never in the house. The final details of the wedding have recently been shared and I can tell you that photography has been donated by “Photos R’ Us” and the catering will be provided by “Blintzes” (find them at www.cholentforschnorrers.com).

In anticipation of being chosen to receive the final hamentaschen from Netanel, each of the women has pre-selected an engagement ring, courtesy of “Shnitzy,” the top diamond dealer in town, and a wedding dress from the “Glitzy Shtetl.” Of course, only one woman will walk away with the bakery treat and the man. Come to the wedding under the chuppah and stay tuned to find out which one it will be!

TOP TEN PROPOSED

VOWS FROM THE PRODUCERS OF

1. Behold you are consecrated to me with this ring according to the laws of Moses and Israel, and of course let’s not forget the seven blessings. 2. I am my Beloved’s and my Beloved is mine—oy vey la dodee. 3. I promise to love you as much as I love the Cincinnati Reds and not to hold your Dodger blue dress against you. From this day forward, I will listen to all of your com-

plaints about the mall, if you say them during the off season, and I promise to retire my baseball cap and face paint for public outings. I will love you in sickness and in health, from this day forward, until death parts us, or you become a Cardinals fan. 4. I promise to love you as much as you love your credit card and not hold your poor fashion sense against you. I promise to just sit and listen— even after my lip becomes bloody.

THE JEWISH CINCINNATI BACHELOR

5. I will love you for richer or poorer, as long as our credit limit stays high. 6. I pledge to be faithful, even when we are both old and dull. 7. I pledge to stop taking calls from Tiger Woods and to stop partying with him after each tournament—Hey sometimes the material just writes itself! 8. I promise to throw out that book David Letterman gave me on how to take care of employees and those working

under you. Let’s also not forget Elliot Spitzer client # 9, and the other well-known philanderers. Why, there are also a few local ones we know about who can be named for a small fee. Hey, just because the shtick writes itself doesn’t mean it has to be any good. 9. I promise to always let you wear my extra pair of long johns, even those colorful silk ones you like, and my flannel shirts in the wintertime. 10. I promise to do something

about being a schnorrer—I mean, who can keep up this shtick of schnorring forever? I will resign my position as Mayor of Schnorrville as soon as I get my own radio show— hopefully on 1160 AM—I had to work at it, but I told you I would get that one in, and yes, it is Purim and this is our lame attempt at humor. And if you think you have any better vows to replace these, please let us know as soon as possible. Heck, the wedding is coming up in a few weeks.


MEET THE FINALISTS OF THE CINCINNATI JEWISH BACHELOR

The honour of your presence is requested at the marriage of

THE WINNER TO BE REVEALED UNDER THE CHUPPAH...

Netanel (Ted) Deutsch and

The Winner of the Cincinnati Jewish Bachelor on Saturday, the thirty first of April Two thousand and ten at Six o’clock in the evening Under the chuppah French Park, French House Ridge and Section Roads Reception to follow, black tie optional

THE

COUGAR

THE

YOUNGIN

Just one of the many letters we get...

Here’s just one of the many letters sent in by our loyal and satisfied subscribers

THE

BUBBE

THE

GOLDILOCKS


14

DINING OUT

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

Trio cackling over Best Chicken Soup award by Bob Wilhelmy Restaurant Reporter The Wise Temple Brotherhood’s 6th Annual Chicken Soup Cookoff, held Jan.31, was a sight to see, and we’ll get to that. The big news from the Dining Out column’s perspective is that again this year, one of our own is privileged to cluck loudest over the results. Trio Bistro won the Best Chicken Noodle Soup trophy in the Pro Division of the competition. And to do this, the restaurant changed not one, single, solitary thing in its recipe that is available every day on its menu. We talked to Trio’s Mark Boor, executive chef, and he said: “It’s the same soup we make every week. In fact, all we did was make a larger batch than normal, and sent the extra to the cookoff.” Asked if the current recipe was a result of tweaking over the years, Boor said he did not know. “The recipe has been here, and as far as I know, it has been the one we’ve used for a long time.” The only switch is that several years back, Trio changed from using a foodservice paste for the base of the soup. Trio started making the broth, or stock, from chicken bones and a mirepoix (a mix of diced carrots, onions, celery and herbs). That’s a healthier way to make stock, because it has none of the preservatives and MSG that the foodservice variety has in it. Boor shared a quick primer on the making of a good chicken noodle soup stock from scratch. First, take the bones of a chicken, along with the wings and other parts you may not eat, and put them in a stock pot. Cover with cold water and bring to a rapid boil. As you do this, a foam or scum will rise to the top, and this must be skimmed off and discarded. Once the skimming is complete, then reduce the heat to a simmer level, and add the mirepoix, along with bay leaves, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper, and cook for perhaps two to three hours. Once the stock is thoroughly cooked and ready, then the Trio folks double strain it. This is done with a course strainer to get the big stuff out, then with cheesecloth to remove small bits. A clear broth should result. That’s as far as Trio’s Boor was willing to go on his lesson. Boor said “secret” ingredients are added to gain the rich flavor of the soup. As to the Brotherhood’s competition, a new record of 845 paid attendees was established. They sampled soups from 30 pro and amateur entrants. Some 39 gallons of soup were consumed, along with 1,500 bagels and 500 sandwiches. Not to mention a spread of raw veggies and dips that was several table-lengths long.

Executive Chef Mark Boor is seated near a bowl of his award-winning chicken noodle soup, and the trophy that was presented at the Wise Temple Brotherhood Annual Chicken Soup Cookoff on January 31.

Trio is a repeat winner, having won a couple of years ago as well. The restaurant takes great pride in its soups, according to Brett Walls, the GM. “We take real care with everything we bring to the table here, and that is one important reason that people dine with us on a regular basis,” he said. “And our soup is no different. It’s really good!” He cited other varieties, such as the vegetarian vegetable and the tomato tarragon as other soups that gain rave reviews from customers. Walls wanted diners to know that during March (22-28), many

of Cincinnati’s independent restaurants will be participating in a $26.10 meal deal in honor of Restaurant Week. Trio will feature a 3-course meal for that week, with a number of choices within the 3-course structure. Diners will be able to select from three appetizers, choose a soup or salad, and then select from three entrees. The entrées include prime filet of beef, grouper Hemingway and a pasta dish. “It’s really a good deal, and we expect the special offering to generate a lot of interest among our diners,” Walls said.

Greg Pancero, owner of Trio, wanted to make sure Jewish patrons know of the private party facilities at his restaurant. “We are doing more and more bridal showers, rehearsal dinners, bar and bat mitzvahs, significant birthday and anniversary celebrations, business parties, and other gatherings where our customers need a space to themselves,” said Pancero. Julie McCracken, events manager, gave some insight regarding the approach taken at Trio: “We work with the planner of the party to put a menu together of three or four entrée choices,” she said.

“We have a menu at the tables so the guests to the party can pick from the list. That way, everybody gets a choice, which is unusual at group events.” Trio handles the party’s meals differently in the kitchen. “When you come here for a party, the food we prepare is off-line in the kitchen. That means the food for the party is not competing with the food being prepared for the general dining room. We have a dedicated staff and dedicated kitchen space for the party.” Why is the dedicated staff and kitchen space important? The reason is that the food will be better, come to the table in a timely fashion, and will be at peak quality. The normal way many restaurants do parties is to prepare the entrée items ahead, place them in “Queen Marys” (large warming units), and keep them on hold until serving time arrives. Try Trio Bistro for parties, and for great chicken noodle soup, too! Trio Bistro 7565 Kenwood Road Cincinnati, OH 45236 513-984-1905


THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

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OPINION

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

Point of View

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

by Rabbi James A. Rudin

(RNS) — The biblical book of Esther is the source of the Purim holiday, which starts this year at sunset on Feb. 27 with synagogue readings, and continues the next day with carnivals, costume parties and holiday foods. It’s not exactly the Jewish version of Mardi Gras, or even Halloween, but close. Purim commemorates the deliverance of the Jews from extermination in ancient Persia (modern-day Iran). Their annihilation was devised by Haman, the evil prime minister who served under the weak King Ahasuerus. Purim is the Hebrew term for the “dice” or “lots” that were cast to determine the date of the slaughter. But Ahasuerus’ Jewish queen, Esther, successfully used her royal position to rescue herself and her people. The book bearing her name concludes with Haman put to death on the very gallows he had erected for the Jews. Haman, one of the first leaders in history to plan the slaughter of an entire people, may have failed in his obscene plot, but there have been many others throughout history who succeeded at genocide. Here’s a list of quotable quotes from seven latter-day “Hamans.” Guess who said them (here’s a hint: one is from Haman himself). Answers follow at the end. 1. “Since he is of no use anymore, there is no gain if he lives and no loss if he dies.” 2. “They have neither the intelligence, the industry, the moral habits, nor the desire of improvement which are essential to any favorable change in their condition. Established in the midst of another and a superior race, and without appreciating the causes of their inferiority or seeking to control them, they must necessarily yield to the force of circumstances and ere long disappear.” 3. “I go on this journey only after avenging the blood of the crucified one by shedding Jewish blood and completely eradicating any trace of those bearing the name

(Rabbi Rudin is the American Jewish Committee’s senior interreligious adviser.)

Do you have something to say? E-mail your letter to editor@americanisraelite.com

Dear Editor, Thank you very much for the front page coverage of our January 24, 2010 Education Day event, co-sponsored by Hadassah and Jewish Family Service. Tobe Snow, President Cincinnati Chapter of Hadassah The Chapter that Rocks!

Dear Editor, This is to advise your readers that we have not approved of the 2010 production of Oberammergau Passion Play. Contrary to misleading assertions that appear on the official Web site of the 2010 Oberammergau Passion Play and in subsequent erroneous media reports, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the American Jewish Committee (AJC) categorically state that they have not endorsed or approved the 2010 German production. ADL and AJC are asking play officials to remove the

names of their respective organizations and the names of their organizations’ representatives from the official Oberammergau Web site and all Oberammergau press releases. In a joint statement, Rabbi Eric Greenberg, ADL Director of the Department of Interfaith Affairs; Rabbi Noam Marans, AJC’s Associate Director of Interreligious and Intergroup Relations; and Rabbi James Rudin, AJC’s Senior Interreligious Adviser, said: “American Jewish Committee and the AntiDefamation League have not approved the 2010 Oberammergau Passion Play. After our rabbinic team met in Oberammergau with the directors and church (Catholic and Lutheran) theological advisor in October 2009, we made clear a number of issues of great concern regarding the play’s text, visual images and significant plot changes that we believe can transmit toxic anti-Jewish images and perceptions. We notified them about our concerns in a Nov. 4, 2009 letter, and have never received a response.”

“Although we engaged in significant discussions regarding a host of issues, it would not be possible to render our final evaluation regarding the 2010 Passion Play until a team of Christian and Jewish scholars can study a completed text and translation and receive a clearer picture of the set designs, costuming and plot changes. Until then we cannot offer a final evaluation of the 2010 Passion Play.” Historically, Passion plays have perpetuated anti-Jewish sentiment through caricatures and stereotypes of Jews and selective texts. In the spirit of Christian-Jewish dialogue AJC and ADL have spearheaded the decades-long process of removing anti-Jewish elements from the Oberammergau Passion Play. The Oberammergau Passion Play is performed every 10 years in a village near Munich and is viewed by hundreds of thousands of people. The play’s influence is reflected throughout the world in Passion plays large and small. The 2010 performances will begin in May. Barbara Glueck Director, AJC Cincinnati

TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE of this week’s Torah portion This Week’s Portion: Purim Book of Esther 1. Was King Achashvarosh involved in Haman's plot? a.) Yes b.) No 2. What month of the year did Haman plot? a.) First b.) Seventh c.) Twelfth 3. Did Esther bring up the issue of Haman immediately with the King?

a.) Yes b.) No 4. How was Haman killed? a.) In battle against the Jews b.) By Hanging c.) By Sword 5. Does the battle against the Jews end with Haman's death? a.) Yes b.) No

Written by Rabbi Dov Aaron Wise

1. A 3:9-11 However, the Malbim says that Achasvarosh was led into the plot. Haman never openly mentioned the Jews, but a nation that was different. Also, Haman never said to destroy them, but that they should be “lost”, which could mean their losing their singular identity. 2. A 3:12 It was the 13th day of Nissan. Therefore, the Jews fasted three days, including the 15th of Nissan which is Passover 3. B 5:1 Esther approached the King on the third day of her fast. She did not mention Haman until the second feast. The Midrash says this wait caused the King to have a sleepless night. Chapter 6 4. C 7:10 He was hung on the tree he prepared for Mordecai 5. B Chapter 9 details the battle which happened during the 12th month

Haman may have been the first, but wasn’t the last

‘Jew,’ thus assuaging his (Jesus’) own burning wrath.” 4. “There is a certain people, scattered and dispersed among the other peoples ... whose laws are different from those of any other people. ... Let an edict be drawn for their destruction ... to destroy, massacre, and exterminate (them) ...” 5. “The death of one man is a tragedy; the death of millions is a statistic.” 6. “Treatment of (the hated group) ... is part of the ... task of national regeneration. A solution can only be achieved if the philosophical perspectives are observed. ... The aim of measures taken by the State to defend the homogeneity of the ... nation must be their physical separation from the nation, the prevention of miscegenation, and finally, the regulation of their way of life. ... The necessary legal foundation can only be created through a ... law which prevents further intermingling of blood, and which regulates all the most pressing questions which go together with their existence ... in the living space of the ... nation.” 7. “(I am) determined to clear up the Jews in Europe without compunction. ... We must accelerate this process with cold ruthlessness, and in so doing we are rendering an incalculable service to a human race that has been tormented by Jewry for millennia.” The answers: No. 1 was Pol Pot, the Khmer Rouge leader in the 1970s. It is estimated he ordered the murders of nearly 2 million Cambodians. No. 2 was President Andrew Jackson, in 1833, when he ordered the mass expulsion of American Indians from their homelands, many of whom died on the “Trail of Tears.” No. 3 was the Christian knight Godfrey of Bouillon, setting out on the first Crusade in 1096. No. 4 are Haman’s own words from Chapter 3 of Esther. No. 5 is attributed to Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. While there is no definitive source for the quotation, scholars estimate he is responsible for at least 20 million deaths. No. 6: I omitted the names of the “nation” and its intended victims. The words, written in 1938 by Nazi SS Chief Heinrich Himmler, refer to Germany and European Gypsies. No. 7 is no surprise: Adolf Hitler in 1942, the person responsible for the Holocaust. Haman may have been one of the first genocidal maniacs, but sadly, he wasn’t the last.

Answers

16


JEWISH LIFE

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

17

Sedra of the Week by Rabbi Shlomo Riskin

Shabbat Shalom: Parshat Tetzaveh-Purim Exodus 27:20-30:10

Efrat, Israel: — The harsh winds of anti-Semitism are once again threatening our people with an increasing number of attacks on Jews around the world. But is it possible that even anti-Semitism has a redeeming quality? Let us look to the Purim story for the answer. Purim is a most joyous, but rather anomalous festival. It captures the universal theme of good triumphing over evil, but for this one day a year, our relatively strict Jewish way of life is replaced with a carnival-like atmosphere of parades, drinking and masks. The Talmud even commands us “to get so drunk that we cannot tell the difference between cursing Haman and blessing Mordechai.” (B.T. Megilla 7B). In order to understand the meaning of this strange directive, as well as to answer our opening question, it is necessary to explore the identity of Purim’s real hero. Is it the great Jewish beauty who wins the King’s heart, and becomes the voice of the Jews as she pleads before the one man who has the power to save or destroy her people? Or is the hero the king himself who, despite being surrounded by evil men – most notably Haman – is able to rise above the prejudices toward Jews, who are scattered and dispersed across the land, keeping their own laws? When Ahashverosh permits the Jews to defend themselves against their attackers, he demonstrates the kind of wise sovereignty select monarchs have had toward their Jewish subjects throughout the ages. Or is Mordechai the hero? This humble, saintly, self-effacing man whom Divine Providence put in the right place at the right time, allowing him to overhear the mutinous plot of two of Ahashverosh’s ministers, thereby saving the king’s life? Or perhaps he’s the hero because he never forgets he is a Jew, refusing to bow down to Haman no matter what the consequences are. To better understand who the real hero might be, we should pay close attention to the Talmudic dictum that on Purim, we must drink until we cannot tell the difference between cursing Haman and blessing Mordechai. Shushan, the capital of Ahashverosh’s kingdom may very well have been like New York City or any other great melting pot. The historical period of the Book of Esther is dated between 536 and 516 BCE, the period after Cyrus permitted the Judeans to return to

Israel, but before the Second Temple was built. Most of the Jews chose to remain in Persia, where they would not have to face the financial and military insecurity which awaited those who headed for Judea. Indeed, the Scroll of Esther may very well be the first work to describe what happens to a Jewish community which chooses to remain in the Diaspora; a situation which parallels our own Diaspora communities today, when Jews have the possibility of returning to Israel but most do not take advantage of the opportunity. The Jews were the cream of Shushan society with PJY’s (Persian Jewish Yuppies) showing up everywhere. Indeed, the Scroll of Esther opens with the king’s invitation to attend the great feast in his palace – with no mention of kosher caterers. Even intermarriage seems so deeply entrenched that when the niece of the leading religious Jew of the city marries the king, the text only says: “… she was taken” (Esther 2:8). There is no indication she put up a fight or at least shaved her head in an attempt to make herself ugly during the year of primping in the king’s harem. She does not reveal her Jewish lineage and the Ibn Ezra mentions a commentary (which he rejects) indicating that she hides her identity in order to enhance her chances to be chosen queen. Perhaps G-d’s name does not appear because in Shushan these Jews had fallen prey to assimilation and had made no room for Him in their lives. Be that as it may, this story teaches us that the Ruler of the Universe had other plans for His people. In effect, G-d was saying: “Either you will remember that you’re Jews on your own, or I’ll have to remind you.” And so Haman arises to persecute the Jews. The paradigm for this historical rule of Divine Providence is to be found in the beginning of the Book of Exodus, when the Bible describes the initially prospering descendants of Jacob’s family in Egypt: “… And the children of Israel were fruitful and swarmed (va’yishratzu), multiplied and waxed exceedingly mighty and the land was filled with them” (Exodus 1:7). The Midrash picks up on the verb “to swarm” which includes the root noun sheretz, an impure reptile and the fact that the Jewish people filled the land. The Bible is apparently suggesting that the Hebrews were saturating the cultural landscape of Egypt, swarming over their places of entertainment in order to indulge in every forbidden practice (Midrash Tanchuma Yashan Shemot 6). And then what happens? “There

arose a new king over Egypt” (Exodus 1:8). The party is over. Edicts begin, Jews are forbidden to socialize with Egyptians, death is in the air and pogroms occur. Male children are cast into the Nile to drown, or conscripted into the army at the age of eight. In whatever the fashion, when Jews in the Diaspora forget that they are Jews, a Gentile will remind them. His name may be Pharaoh, or Haman, or Stalin, or Hitler. And the Talmud notes that sometimes these evil antisemites are more effective than all the prophets that God sends to remind us of our Jewish identity. Let us now return to the Esther Scroll. Ahashverosh has arbitrarily placed total power in the hands of a new Grand Vizier – Haman who loses no time in choosing a day when the Jews of Persia may be murdered and their homes looted. Mordechai appears before the palace gates dressed in sackcloth and ashes in a high-profile demonstration on behalf of his people. He can no longer remain silent – and bids Esther (whose Persian name which comes from the goddess Astarte, can also mean “hidden”) to come “out of the closet” to plead for her people before the King. At that moment, placing her life on the line for her nation, Esther very possibly becomes the first ba’alat teshuva. She succeeds in her mission, the Jews in Persia are granted the right to defend themselves, and Haman is hanged. The son she bears with Ahashverosh, Darius, is the king who allows the Jews in Judea to complete their Second Temple. On Purim, we are commanded to drink. The reason is beginning to come clear. Without Haman, the tide of assimilation would have led to Jewish oblivion. Thus, in a rather convoluted and twisted way, we owe our continued existence to this classic anti-Semite. Yes, it is natural to praise Mordechai, but had it not been for Haman, neither he nor Esther would have stepped to the plate and emerged as Jewish leaders. And we need to drink in order to blot out the difference between Jewish patriot and Gentile antiSemite who activated the Jewish patriot. We need the external stimulus of wine in order to celebrate a Jewish victory which owes its genesis to anti-Semitism! And if Jews ever think that the Diaspora is more secure than our homeland Israel, let the Scroll of Esther remind them that Diaspora assimilation and antiSemitism are the greatest dangers of all. Shabbat Shalom Shlomo Riskin Chancellor Ohr Torah Stone Chief Rabbi — Efrat Israel

3100 LONGMEADOW LANE • CINCINNATI, OH 45236 791-1330 • www.templesholom.net Richard Shapiro, Interim Rabbi Marcy Ziek, President Gerry H. Walter, Rabbi Emeritus February 26 6:00 pm Shabbat Nosh 6:30 pm Shabbat Evening Service

March 5 6:30 pm Sholom Unplugged A Light Dinner will Follow Services

February 27 10:30 am Shabbat Morning Service 6:30 pm Purim Megillah Reading

March 6 10:30 am Shabbat Morning Service


18

JEWZ IN THE NEWZ

Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom Contributing Columnist BUDDY FLICK “Cop Out” stars Tracy Morgan (“30 Rock”) and Bruce Willis as NYPD detectives who’ve been partners for a long time. The advance publicity didn’t spell out the roles of the supporting actors — but I know this much — Willis is trying to get back a valuable baseball card stolen from him by a memorabilia-obsessed gangster. Willis wants to sell the card to pay for his daughter’s wedding. Meanwhile, the duo are accidentally drawn into a Mexican drug cartel’s mishigosh and rescue a damsel in distress. There are supposed to be many funny moments amidst the usual cop-buddy movie violence and mayhem — including a comic subplot about Morgan being obsessed with whether his wife is faithful. Jewish actors in supporting roles include ADAM BRODY, 30, (“The O.C.”), KEVIN POLLAK, 52, MICHELLE TRACTENBERG, 24, ( TV’s “Mercy”), RASHIDA JONES, 33, (“Parks and Recreation”), and SUSIE ESSMAN, 54, (“Curb Your Enthusiasm”). (Opens Friday, Feb. 26.) MUSICAL NOTES Singer JOHN MAYER, 32, has repeatedly apologized for making what many took as a racist comment in a very candid recent “Playboy” interview (posted, in full, on Playboy’s Web site). Much less noticed was the fact that Mayer, for the first time, spoke to a reporter about his Jewish background. He said: “I’m half Jewish. People say, ‘Well, which side of your family is Jewish?’ I say, ‘My dad’s.’ And they always say it doesn’t count. But I will say I keep my pool at 92 degrees, so you do the math. I find myself relating to Judaism. One of my best friends is Jewish beyond all Jews — I went to my first Passover seder at his house — and I train in Krav Maga with a lot of Israelis.” If you watched the Olympics’ opening ceremony, you might have been struck by the somewhat rocking version of the Canadian national anthem, “O Canada,” by jazz/pop singer NIKKI YANOFKSY, 16. The Montreal native is a genuine “phenom” who has been wowing audiences since she was 12. She has headlined the Montreal Jazz Festival every year since 2006 and she’s worked with a “who’s who” of top musical performers and producers. Her first studio album comes out this spring

and she will tour internationally after its release. Yanofsky has done benefit performances for ORT and for a charity assisting disabled Israeli soldiers. DAZZLING DANIELA Last September saw the premiere of “NCIS: Los Angeles,” a spin-off of “NCIS,” the hit CBS crime investigation series. DANIELA RUAH, 26, co-stars as Kensi Blye, a beautiful NCIS Special Agent who is a member of a team of highly trained agents who specialize in undercover work. (Airs Tuesdays at 9PM, CBS.) Ruah has a quite unusual biography. She was born in Boston, the only child of DR. MOISES CARLOS BENTES RUAH and his wife, CATARINA LIA AZANCOT KORN. Her father was the head of the ear, nose and throat department of Boston University Hospital. Both her parents were born in Portugal. They left Boston and returned to Portugal, with Daniela, when she was 5. The entire Portuguese Jewish community was expelled from Portugal in 1498. Daniela’s father’s family, the Ruahs, were among the first Jews of historic Portuguese origin who returned to Portugal in the 19th century when Jews were permitted to settle in Portugal again (most of the extended Ruah family settled in Morocco after the expulsion). Daniela’s mother is the daughter of a Portugal-born Sephardi mother and an Ashkenazi Jewish father who was born (1922) in Breslau, then a city in eastern Germany. I suspect he fled to Portugal with the Nazi take-over. Daniela started acting in Portuguese soap operas when she was a teen. She was the winner of the Portuguese version of “Dancing with the Stars” before she moved to the States in 2007. She has a B.A. from an English university and she was an active member of the Portuguese Jewish community (her father’s second cousin, also a doctor, is the official head of the community). In 2003, the Jewish Telegraph Agency ran a piece about an annual gathering of Jewish young people from 32 countries sponsored by the European Union of Jewish Students. Daniela, then 19 and still living in Lisbon, was one of the many happy students the JTA interviewed. She said, “I’ve never been around as many Jews in my entire life. Here, you don’t feel the need to explain to people who you are. I am meeting people who eat kosher for the first time ever.”

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

FROM THE PAGES 100 Years Ago A very pleasant surprise party was tendered to Mr. Max Michelson last Saturday evening by a number of his friends on the occasion of his 21st birthday. Alvin H. Lauer, his wife and two children and two servants at the Lauer home, Hale Avenue, Avondale, early Sunday morning, had narrow escapes from death and suffocation. The flue from their gas furnace became clogged with the heavy snow

and the natural gas fumes escaped into the rooms. Prompt attention of physicians saved their lives. Complaint has been made to Mayor Schwab that crowds of boys annoy the aged Jews who each evening go to one of the synagogues at either Ninth and Linn streets, Eighth and Mound streets or Kenyon avenue, near Linn street, for worship. The young loafers, it is alleged, pull the men’s beards, spit on them

and in other ways annoy and abuse them. The Mayor has called Chief Millikin’s attention to the matter, and it is to be hoped that he will take the necessary steps to suppress, with a strong hand, this ruffianism, which is nothing less than a display, in its incipience, of that riotous mob spirit whose prevalence in the United States is one of the foulest blots upon the good name of our country. — February 24, 1910

75 Years Ago Mrs. Philip Goldsmith and her little daughter, Minette, are enjoying the remainder of the winter in Los Angeles, established with Mrs. Goldsmith’s mother at the Langham Hotel. Miss Henriette Hahn will play the comedy lead in the production of the University of Cincinnati “Fresh Painters” in April. Mr. Sigmund Muehlfelder also has an important part in the presentation, which is under the direction of Mr. John Froome, with Mme. Federova supervising the dancing.

Some 800 men and women enjoyed the Civic Club’s sixth annual gridiron dinner at the Masonic Temple, Tuesday, Feb. 26. Among those participating were: Messrs. Robert E. Segal, Civic Club president; Ernest M. Ach, past president; Henry B. Flarsheim, Julius W. Freiberg, Dr. Henry B. Freiberg, Grauman Marks, P. Elias Phillips, Dr. Joseph D. Heiman, Edgar M. Powers and Henry C. Segal. Abraham S. Workum, member of a family prominently known as

diamond cutters in Europe for 300 years, died Thursday night Feb. 21, at Jewish Hospital. He lived at 3975 Warwick Avenue, Avondale. Mr. Workum, 58, was born in Amsterdam, Holland, where the family business is conducted. Precious stones for crowns of European rulers were among jewels prepared by the family. He leaves his widow, Mrs. Jeanette Workum, and a son, Bertram Workum, associated in the father’s business. — February, 28, 1935

50 Years Ago Jewish Hospital births include: Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Kanter (Nancy Reed), 1651 Waycross Road, a daughter, Saturday, Feb. 20. Dr. and Mrs. Robert S Mendelsohn (Ruth Lorber), 7438 Buckingham, St. Louis, are the parents of a daughter, born Wednesday, Feb. 17, in St. Louis. The infant has two brothers, Mike and Jimmy. Mr. and Mrs. M.J. Lorber of Miami Beach and Mr. and Mrs. Simon Mendelsohn of Burton Woods Lane are the grandparents.

Mrs. Michael Rolfe of Miami Beach is the infant’s maternal greatgrandmother. Hyman Sirkin, 6125 Joyce Lane, passed away Saturday, Feb. 20. He is survived by a daughter, Mrs. Max Wolfson; four sons, Albert, Ben, Max and William, all of Cincinnati; two brothers, Sam of Toronto and Eli of Rochester; 10 grandchildren and two greatgrandchildren. Hyman Loshin, 2447

Losantiville Road, passed away Friday, Feb. 19. He is survived by his wife, Mrs. Rubye Loshin; two sons, Jerome Loshin of White Plains, N.Y., and Philip Loshin of Cincinnati; two sisters, Mrs. Abe Popiel of New York and Mrs. David Convisor of Miami; four brothers, Morris Loshinksy of Cincinnati, Manuel Loshinsky of Havana, Samuel Lansing of San Francisco and Mitchel Lansing of Los Angeles; and four grandchildren. — February 25, 1960

25 Years Ago Stanley M. Chesley, well-known Cincinnati attorney and leader in the Jewish community, was appointed to the UC Board of Trustees, it was announced Feb. 14. Mr. Chesley was picked by Gov. Richard Celeste for the nine-year term. Lynne Meyers Gordon and Jerome A. Gordon, Sr. announce the engagement of their son, Jerome A., Jr., to Miriam Kniess, daugher of Renee and Ronald Kniess of Indianapolis.

Jerome Jr. is the gandson of Philip M. Meyers, Sr. and the late Lucille G. Meyers and Vers S. Gordon and the late Samuel H. Gordon. Aspring wedding in Indianapolis is planned. Mr. and Mrs. John Fox (Lisa West) announce the birth of a son, Richard West, Feb. 11. Rick has a sister, Jori. Maternal grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. William L. West of Elkins Park, Pa. Paternal grandparents are

Mr. and Mrs. Frank M. Fox and the late Marjorie Kiefer Fox, all of Cincinnati. Paternal great-grandmother is Mrs. Carl J. Kiefer of Cincinnati. John G. Saas of 1596 Teakwood Avenue passed awy Feb. 12. He is survived by his wife, Regina; four children, Paul of New Orleans, Helen of Cincinnati, Henry of Mesa, Ariz., and Fred of Chicago; and five grandchildren. — February 21, 1985

10 Years Ago The Sycamore Board of Education overwhelmingly approved next year’s school calendar that does not include days off for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Sycamore schools have been closed for the Jewish High Holy Days for the past two years as part of a pilot program to reduce days of high student absenteeism. The board, passing the measure by a vote of 4-1, took public comment during its

Thursday meeting but voted on the matter without any board discussion. Action by the Sycamore board was in response to a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio Foundation, Inc., in US District Court. The suit challenged the school closing as a violation of First Amendment constitutional protection of the separation of church and state. The ACLU suit claimed Sycamore’s policy favored Judaism

over other religious faiths. Robert N. Rosenthal, 88, passed away in Oakland, Calif. on Feb. 11, 2000. Mr. Rosenthal’s first spouse, Betsy Rosenthal, predeceased him. He is survived by his current spouse, Doris Rosenthal of Lanton, Mich. Among the other survivors are: a son and his wife, Dr. William Rosenthal and Carol Murphy of Oakland, Calif. — February 24, 2000


CLASSIFIEDS

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

COMMUNITY DIRECTORY COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS Big Brothers/Big Sisters Assoc. (513) 761-3200 • bigbrobigsis.org Beth Tevilah Mikveh Society (513) 821-6679 Camp Ashreinu (513) 702-1513 Camp at the J (513) 722-7226 • mayersonjcc.org Camp Livingston (513) 793-5554 • camplivingston.com Cedar Village (513) 336-3183 • cedar-village.org Chevra Kadisha (513) 396-6426 Halom House (513) 791-2912 • halomhouse.com Hillel Jewish Student Center (513) 221-6728 • hillelcincinnati.org Jewish Community Center (513) 761-7500 • mayersonjcc.org Jewish Community Relations Council (513) 985-1501 Jewish Family Service (513) 469-1188 • jfscinti.org Jewish Federation of Cincinnati (513) 985-1500 • shalomcincy.org Jewish Foundation (513) 792-2715 Jewish Information Network (513) 985-1514 Jewish Vocational Service (513) 985-0515 • jvscinti.org Kesher (513) 766-3348 Plum Street Temple Historic Preservation Fund (513) 793-2556 The Center for Holocaust & Humanity Education (513) 487-3055 • holocaustandhumanity.org Vaad Hoier (513) 731-4671 Workum Summer Intern Program (513) 683-6670 • workum.org CONGREGATIONS Adath Israel Congregation (513) 793-1800 • adath-israel.org Beit Chaverim (513) 335-5812 Beth Israel Congregation (513) 868-2049 • bethisraelcongregation.net Congregation Beth Adam (513) 985-0400 • bethadam.org Congregation B’nai Tikvah (513) 759-5356 • bnai-tikvah.org Congregation B’nai Tzedek (513) 984-3393 • bnaitzedek.us Congregation Ohav Shalom

(513) 489-3399 • ohavshalom.org Golf Manor Synagogue (513) 531-6654 • golfmanorsynagogue.org Isaac M. Wise Temple (513) 793-2556 • wisetemple.org Isaac Nathan Congregation (513) 841-9005 Kehilas B’nai Israel (513) 761-0769 Northern Hills Synagogue (513) 931-6038 • nhs-cba.org Rockdale Temple (513) 891-9900 • rockdaletemple.org Temple Beth Shalom (513) 422-8313 • tbsohio.org Temple Sholom (513) 791-1330 • templesholom.net The Valley Temple (513) 761-3555 • valleytemple.com EDUCATION Chabad Blue Ash (513) 793-5200 • chabadba.com Cincinnati Community Kollel (513) 631-1118 • kollel.shul.net Cincinnati Hebrew Day School (513) 351-7777 • chds.shul.net HUC-JIR (513) 221-1875 • huc.edu JCC Early Childhood School (513) 793-2122 • mayersonjcc.org Mercaz High School (513) 792-5082 x104 • mercazhs.org Reform Jewish High School (513) 469-6406 • crjhs.org Regional Institute Torah & Secular Studies (513) 631-0083 Rockwern Academy (513) 984-3770 • rockwernacademy.org ORGANIZATIONS American Jewish Committee (513) 621-4020 • ajc.org American Friends of Magen David Adom (513) 521-1197 • afmda.org B’nai B’rith (513) 984-1999 Hadassah (513) 821-6157 • cincinnati-hadassah.org Jewish National Fund (513) 794-1300 • jnf.org NA’AMAT (513) 984-3805 • naamat.org National Council of Jewish Women (513) 891-9583 • ncjw.org State of Israel Bonds (513) 793-4440 • israelbonds.com Women’s American ORT (513) 985-1512 • ortamerica.org.org

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production@ americanisraelite.com BESSER from page 1 “Everyone said to Ron, ‘Are you crazy building Jewish schools in Eastern Europe?’” recalled Kozak, who spent several years with the rabbi as he researched the book. “This was 1988. A year later, the Berlin Wall falls and Jews came out of woodwork. “There are now over 100,000 kids who learned what it is to be Jewish, and all because of Ron Lauder and Rabbi Besser.” Lauder, who delivered a eulogy at Besser’s funeral in Brooklyn, could not be reached for comment. The rabbi was buried in Israel. A memorial service was slated to be held in his memory at the Nozyk Synagogue in Warsaw. Besser, who also revitalized the Daf Yomi project in the United States, in which Jews learn the entire Talmud by studying one page a day over the course of seven years, never took a salary APP from page 10 I didn’t buy iMussolini when the app first came out. But when the revised version went on line, I decided to invest $2 and take a look. It’s a little creepy. For one thing, most of the user comments on the iTunes site come from nostalgic pro-fascists who, as one put it, found it “great to have il

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513-531-9600 from Lauder, according to Kozak — nor did he take a salary from Congregation Bnei Yisroel Chaim, the synagogue he ran. Until his health started fading a couple of years ago, the rabbi did have an office right next to Lauder’s in the Estee Lauder Building in Midtown Manhattan. “It was very odd. Right in the heart of corporate America, you’re in this very fancy office and all of a sudden there was this Chasidic rabbi there,” Kozak said. “But whenever someone came in to the offices and it had to do with Eastern Europe, they would always meet with Rabbi Besser.” Michael Schudrich, the U.S.born chief rabbi of Poland who was hired by Besser, credited him as “the guy that started the Jewish revival in Poland. “He was considered to be the spiritual father of everything that was rekindled and re-emerged here in Poland,” Schudrich said. Duce always with me.” Then on the app itself, a disclaimer that it “does not intend to celebrate Fascism but exclusively contains historical documents” is misleading. The app’s biography of Mussolini clearly was written from the standpoint of an admirer. And the “historical documents” it contains provide a sanitized picture of his regime that is far from complete.


20

BUSINESS

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

Consumer News by Darryl Dick Guest Columnist Lowest price medicare supplements, low interest rate credit cards and more… Millions of seniors are paying more than they have to for their medicare supplement plan. Medicare supplement plans are a commodity. What does that mean? Simply put, “Plan C or Plan F” with one company is the same as “Plan C or Plan F” with another company. The only difference is how much you choose to pay. Often, seniors gravitate to medicare supplement plans from the “big name” insurance companies. That could be a costly mistake. Depending on the insurance company you choose, the price of your medicare supplement could vary by $600 a year or more for the exact same plan! The good news is that you can apply to another medicare supplement company anytime you wish. Worst case scenario? The new company doesn’t accept you and you stay put with your current company. Look at it this way. If you were interested in purchasing a new high definition TV and “Store A” sold the model you wanted for $1,000, but “Store B” sold the exact same model for $500, where would you purchase the TV? Store B… of course! It’s the same thing with medicare supplements. Remember, “Plan C or Plan F” with one company is the same as “Plan C or Plan F” with another company. People on a fixed income need to save all the money they can. Shop around and you’ll be happily surprised by how much money you can save. By the way, basic Medicare Part B premiums have risen 15 percent for 12 million newly eligible people. The increase to $110.50 per month marks the first time that premiums will be north of $100. However, existing Medicare recipients will not face higher rates because under federal law, their premiums cannot go up more than their increase in social security benefits and those benefits do not go up in 2010. Medicare is a great deal for seniors, but what about people under the age of 65? The price of individual and family health insurance has skyrocketed over the past five years. Premiums are going up and benefits are going down. With one exception. Health savings account plans. HSA plans have gotten much better over the past few years. In a nutshell, HSA plans are high deductible plans. For individuals, the deductibles are often $1,500,

$3,000, or $5,000. Family deductibles are typically $3,000, $6,000, or $10,000. But it’s better than it sounds. Regardless of the deductible you choose, adult and child preventive care services are usually covered 100 percent! Preventive annual physical? Covered 100 percent. Preventive pap and mammography exam? Covered 100 percent. Preventive immunizations, prostate exams and even preventive colonoscopy procedures are often covered 100 percent. The downside of HSAs? Other than preventive services, you’ll pay for all non-preventive services and prescriptions out-ofpocket. What’s a non-preventive service? Your son has strep throat. This is a non-preventive situation because he already has something. So you pay for this and the prescribed medication out-of-pocket. Let’s say your annual family deductible is $3,000. Once you’ve paid $3,000 out-of-pocket for the calendar year, everything from that point on, including prescriptions, is covered for the rest of the year. Hopefully, you never spend $3,000 out-of-pocket. But if you do, with many HSA plans, everything from that point on is covered. Here’s valuable information about one of the lowest interest rate credit cards in the country. You never want to carry a balance on your credit card if humanly possible. But many times, good people find themselves buried in credit card debt. And with skyhigh interest rates, it can take years to pay it off. If you have credit card debt, make sure to use a credit card with a low interest rate. Simmons First Visa currently charges an interest rate of 7.25% with no annual fee. Many people carry balances with an interest rate of 19% or more! If you or someone you know is trapped in credit card debt, you may want to direct them to the offering from Simmons so that they, at a minimum, can transfer their balance to the lower rate card. And for those of you looking for the best “rewards” credit card, look no further than the Invest First Visa Signature Card from Charles Schwab. This card gives you a flat 2% back on all purchases. No limits on the amount of cash back you can earn. And since it’s a Visa Signature card, it’s accepted everywhere and you’ll pay zero foreign exchange fees when you use the card out of the country. As far as “rewards” cards go, you’ll be hard pressed to find a better deal. Speaking of credit, I’m sure you’ve seen the TV ads for the Web based Free Credit Report. Don’t be fooled! Their ads and Web site emphasize that your cred-

it report is free, but the small print says that once you order your “free” report, you will automatically be enrolled in credit monitoring for $14.95 a month unless you cancel the subscription within seven days. The Better Business Bureau has received over 10,000 complaints about this company. Do you pride yourself on being a good stock picker? Do you think you have what it takes to run a successful mutual fund? Here’s your chance to find out. An online company called Marketocracy gives you the opportunity to run your own mutual fund. Instead of playing “fantasy football”, think of this as a fantasy mutual fund league. Marketocracy gives you 1 million “virtual” dollars to play with. You name your fund, create a ticker symbol, choose your stocks, and Marketocracy tabulates the daily results. There’s no charge for running your virtual fund. And your results will be measured against the 65,000 other people who are running their fantasy funds. Put your stock picking skills to the test and see if you could be the next Bernie… er… Warren Buffett! Here’s a way to cash in on all the junk, I mean, all the used electronics laying around your house that you no longer use. Believe it or not, Costco, Sears and Wal-Mart are offering gift cards for used cameras, cell phones, laptops, and more. Why would they do this? The three retailers are participating in a program with a company called Gazelle. Gazelle is the nation’s largest re-commerce company, providing a practical, responsible, rewarding way for consumers to get value for used electronics. The company hopes to change the way people think about the products they buy. Their vision is that every consumer electronic is considered for re-commerce and that none ends up in a landfill. So here’s your chance to “go green” and add some green to your wallet. Go online and check out Sears Gazelle, Walmart Gazelle, or Costco Gazelle and you’ll fill out a form describing what you have to trade-in. Soon, you’ll receive an online quote. If you accept, you’ll be mailed a shipping box with prepaid postage to mail your device. Here’s a great way to get coupon codes and discounts for 50,000 online stores! Visit “retailmenot” online. Once you’re there you’ll find significant savings from online vendors such as JC Penney, Victoria’s Secret, Borders, PacSun, Forever 21, and others. Often, you’ll find 15 or 20% off your entire purchase and free shipping. If you’re a shop-a-holic, this is definitely a site worth checking out!

New Passover products from Manischewitz SECAUCUS, NJ In January of this year, the Manischewitz Company introduced several new products for the holiday season. Manischewitz Decadent Dark Chocolate Almond Bark: This new Chocolate Bark is Pareve. Size-5 oz. Manischewitz Kosher Salt: Manischewitz new Kosher salt delivers consistent flavor and, with its coarse texture, it readily adheres to food for encrusting, brining or using as a rub on brisket, chicken and steak. Size-16 oz. Manischewitz Clover Honey Squeeze Bear: The new Clover Honey Squeeze bear is all-natural. Size-12 oz. Magic Max Cotton Candy: Especially for the kids. Size-1 oz. Season Canned Tuna: Premium Quality Solid White Albacore Tuna is available in both water and olive oil. Size-5 oz. New Mishpacha Products for the Holiday: Mishpacha is introducing a new line of macaroons, available in three flavors: Coconut, Chocolate and Chocolate Chip. Also, for the hol-

iday the brand is introducing Grab n’ go all-natural apple sauces, lemon juice and pineapple products. Macaroons: Size-10 oz.; Apple Sauce: Size-6 pack-4 oz cups; Lemon Juice: Size-32 oz; Pineapple Juice: Size- 20 oz. The Manischewitz Company is a specialty food company that includes the Manischewitz brand®, Season®, Guiltless Gourmet®, Asian Harvest®, Rokeach®, Mishpacha®, Horowitz Margareten® , Jason®, Mother’s®, Carmel®, Croyden House®, Mrs. Adler’s® and Goodman’s® brands. The Manischewitz brand was founded in a small bakery built to make Passover matzo in 1888 by Rabbi Dov Behr Manischewitz in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1932, Rabbi Manischewitz opened a plant in Jersey City, N.J., replacing the operation in Cincinnati. This move paved the way for the introduction of new products like Tam Tam® Crackers, Chicken Soup, Noodles and Gefilte Fish. Today, all plant operations take place in Newark, N.J.

CHRISTIANS from page 6

the programs that could be adversely affected, including state and federal assistance for disabled students, remedial teaching, disaster relief and homeland security assistance for securing Jewish institutions. “So much of our religious life involves separation between the genders and services and activities that are exclusive to the Jewish faith,” he said. “This really hits at the hearts of our religious practice.” Hastings’ inclination to protect gays from discrimination — a key factor cited repeatedly in the university’s brief — is a matter of “contemporary mores” and not law, Cohen argues. “One would need a much, much higher level of state interest to infringe upon” the rights of religious groups, he said. “You’re dealing with association rights, free speech rights, you’re dealing with the very things which make religion what it is.” The AJCongress’ board debated whether to file a brief, but found itself torn between the dangers each side sees and decided against, said Marc Stern, the group’s legal counsel and acting executive director. Stern says the dilemma reflects broader Jewish community tensions. “Does Jewish security lie in eliminating any vestige of discrimination in a public space?” he asked, “or does it lie in people drawing lines for ideological reasons to meet privately?”

In fact, Foltin said, AJC was driven to file an amicus brief because the Christian society insists on receiving the same direct funding from the university that other groups receive. Had the society simply asked for the same oncampus status of other groups — access to space and facilities, Foltin said — AJC might not have joined the case. Lauter says ADL sees any university sanction of the group as crossing a line. “There’s no distinction — once you open the door up, it’s open,” she said, adding that the Christian society was free to meet off-campus. Similarly, whereas the Orthodox Union’s brief focuses principally on the ramifications for student groups, Agudah tells the Supreme Court in its brief that upholding lower courts’ decisions favoring Hastings would have dire consequences for expression of faith generally. “Applying these laws to Orthodox Jewish schools and synagogues, federal, state or local governments could relegate Orthodox Jews and our institutions to second-class status, ineligible to participate equally in society,” the Agudah brief says. “Such a result cannot be reconciled with our nation’s foundational concept of religious freedom.” Abba Cohen, Agudah’s Washington director, counted off


NEWS

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

OREN from page 6 cast the embassy and the Israeli establishment as a friend and an intimate in some recent statements. At a time when some voices on the left were criticizing Israel’s rescue mission in Haiti as a cynical ploy to distract attention from continued opprobrium arising from last year’s Gaza war, J Street was effusive in its praise. “Israel’s swift response to another nation’s needs speaks to the very best of the values underpinning the Jewish tradition and the best of what that country represents as the national home of the Jewish people,” J Street said. “It did, in this instance, serve as a real model for the international community. We urge those who might otherwise disagree with Israeli policy and action to commend Israel for reacting so swiftly and making a positive contribution at this time of urgent international need.” And this month, when Oren came under verbal assault when he delivered a speech at University of California, Irvine — a hotbed of anti-Israel activism — J Street was calling for civility. “We believe that universities should be a place for an honest discussion about tough issues,” the group said. “While appropriate and respectful protests are a legitimate and important part of the conversation on campus, antiSemitic, racist, disruptive and

CHANGE

inflammatory actions and language are simply unacceptable.” Hadar Susskind, the J Street policy director, said such statements arose out of recent efforts to reconcile after a tense 2009. “We’ve been having ongoing discussions with the embassy making clear our different positions,” Susskind said. “We’ve said all along we would welcome a good productive relationship with them.” Officials close to the Israeli Embassy confirmed the conversations. J Street was established in early 2008. What little relationship it had developed with the embassy was shattered in early 2009 when the organization issued a statement that seemed to blame Israel and Hamas equally for the Gaza war. Worsening the situation was J Street’s position until December that the time was not right yet for sanctions targeting Iran’s energy sector, even as many Jewish groups were pushing for such measures. Israel considers containing Iran’s nuclear ambitions its signature issue, beyond how it deals with the Palestinians. Oren, who assumed his post last summer, launched his tenure with a stated policy of reaching out to Jewish groups across the spectrum — and then he pointedly avoided J Street. He declined to attend the group’s inaugural conference in October, and in December told a group of Conservative rabbis that J Street’s

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views are dangerous for Israel. Neither side needed the tension. Oren’s description of the group as “dangerous” earned a rebuke from Hannah Rosenthal, the State Department’s anti-Semitism envoy — an official with whom he would in theory work closely. Centrist and right-wing Jewish groups closed ranks behind Oren, but the Obama administration made it clear it was not unhappy with Rosenthal’s remarks. J Street has a dependable cadre of 40-50 members of the U.S. House of Representatives ready to heed its voting recommendations. Congressional insiders say J Street’s green light in December for Iran sanctions nudged the bill from the super majority that traditional lobbying by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee usually turns out to officially “overwhelming”: 412-12. That sent the Obama administration a clear message to hurry it on up, the insiders say. And J Street, however much its reputation is made on a willingness to take Israel to task, also needs to work with the leadership in Israel in order to maintain any credible claim that its critiques will have an impact. Its first congressional delegation visiting the region this week met with top Palestinian and Jordanian leaders — but in Israel, its top interlocutor was Dan Meridor, one of five deputy prime ministers. There’s a way to go, both sides acknowledge: J Street is not yet on

the “must call” list for the embassy when the ambassador calls a meeting of the Jewish leadership. Centrist and right-wing proIsrael groups also are watching the developments. J Street earned much pro-Israel resentment at its outset by “punching up” — issuing blistering attacks on groups that were larger and better known such as AIPAC, Christians United for Israel and The Israel Project. CUFI spokesmen said they welcomed J Street’s recent efforts to pull back from such attacks, but noted that as recently as last week, J Street Executive Director Jeremy Ben-Ami maintained that the Christian group hoped to “precipitate” an Armageddon through support for right-wing Israeli policies. CUFI says its pro-Israel work is informed by political, not theological, sympathies for Israel — and in any case, says its theology has no place for sparking the end of the world. “J Street seems to employ a strategy of publicity through controversy without considering the harm that policy does to the proIsrael community,” CUFI spokesman Ari Morgenstern said. Gary Erlbaum, a Philadelphiaarea property developer who has been a major giver to an array of centrist and right-wing pro-Israel groups, said Oren was being politic where it was unwarranted. “He’s trying to not pick any additional fights, there are enough fights,” said Erlbaum, who was

21

among the most vocal critics of the decision by the Hillel at the University of Pennsylvania to rent space to J Street for a recent event. “I don’t think J Street has changed its spots. You would think that Israel would be quite defensive about any group that believes that the American government should force Israel to do things that are against its interests.” Top Israeli officials remain wary, as the snub of the congressional delegation shows. Meeting Tuesday with the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon was less than encouraging when asked about J Street. “The thing that troubles me is that they don’t present themselves as to what they really are,” Ayalon said in remarks reprinted on the Foreign Ministry Web site. “They should not call themselves proIsraeli.” That echoed a dismissal dished out earlier this month by Yuli Edelstein, the Diaspora affairs minister, who would not meet with J Street representatives. “There’s a very simple rule, and I leave it with a question mark: If J Street says it is able to represent every government in Israel, maybe they can be a lobby,” he said. “If they can’t be a lobby, call themselves Young Liberal Jews for whatever, for Better Jewish Communal Life in the United States, and then we’ll speak with them.”

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OBITUARIES

DEATH NOTICES HEILBRUN, Leonard W., age 88, died on February 12, 2010; 28 shevat, 5770. BOCHNER, Ruth vanGelder, age 91, died on February 13, 2010; 29 Shevat, 5770. RISHTY, Eli, age 85, died on February 13, 2010; 29 Shevat, 5770. HONIG, Rhea, age 88, died on February 13, 2010; 29 Shevat, 5770. WEINBERG, Irwin C., age 90, died on February 21, 2010; 7 Adar, 5770.

OBITUARIES

Brooklyn, N.Y., he was a son of the late Rachel and Joseph Rishty. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Arvilla. Surviving family members include his wife, Wilma Rishty; his daughters, Paula (Steve) Ott and Diane (Richard) Katz; his grandchildren, Stephanie (Matt) Byer Fries, Jonathan (Kate) Ott and Scott (Carrie) Katz; his greatgrandchildren, Shayne Elizabeth Fries and Benjamin and Carson Katz and his siblings, Raymond Rishty and Patti Krady. Funeral services were held for Mr. Rishty on Tuesday, February 16 at Weil Funeral Home, with Rabbi Ilana Baden from Wise Temple officiating. Memorial contributions can be made to the JCC Senior Adult Program, 8485 Ridge Road, Cincinnati, Ohio 45236.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2010

was the beloved wife of the late Arthur vanGelder and Harvey Bochner, devoted mother of Jim (Fran) vanGelder of Hollywood, Fla. and Maureen “Reenie” (Steve) Mason; loving grandmother of Ilene Wolchok, Jeffrey (Melissa) vanGelder, Arianne vanGelder, Adam vanGelder, Brad(Mary) Mason and Julie(Daniel)Pfeiffer; beloved great-grandmother of Cassi, Alison and Matthew Pfeiffer, Cydny and Rachel Wolchok, Jared, Gregory and Steven vanGelder; loving aunt of Michael Leroy and Murray Tauber and great-aunt of Jess, Matt and Sophie Leroy. Services were held at Weil Funeral Home on Sunday, February 21. Memorial contributions would be appreciated to the National Association for Down Syndrome, P.O. Box 206, Wilmette, Ill. 60091.

Ruth vanGelder-Bochner, age 91, passed away on February 13, 2010—the 29th day of Shevat, 5770—in Hollywood, Fla. She

WEINBERG, Irwin C. Irwin C. Weinberg, 90, passed away on February 21,

2010—the 7th day of Adar, 5770—at Mayview Convalescent Center. He was born on February 12, 1920, in Cleveland, Ohio to the late Charles and Mollie Weinberg. During WWII, Mr. Weinberg was a chemist with the Search Light Mirror Plant of the U.S. War Department. A graduate of Western Reserve University, he moved to Cincinnati and became the director of purchasing, as well as being a pharmacist by trade, at the University of Cincinnati

sure on an institutional level, seeking governmental investigations and leveraging relationships with university officials and their deep-pocketed supporters. Pro-Palestinian groups, generally outmatched at that game, have employed methods more reminiscent of guerrilla politics — disrupting speeches, creating political theater on campuses and being arrested. On Tuesday, the Zionist Organization of America called for donors to stop supporting UCIrvine and for Jewish students not to apply there. Such tactics have surfaced at

other campuses as well. The Simon Wiesenthal Center issued a statement protesting an appearance scheduled for Tuesday night at New York University by Richard Goldstone, the South African Jewish jurist whose report on Israel’s conduct of the 2008 Gaza war sparked vitriolic condemnations. In Philadelphia, several proIsrael activists protested the decision by the Hillel chapter at the University of Pennsylvania to host an event organized by the group J Street, which backs U.S. pressure on Israel and the Palestinians. And across the state, in Pittsburgh, the

roles were reversed: Local J Street supporters initiated a campaign to stop the Hillel chapter from hosting a speech by Israeli hard-liner Effi Eitam. “There was a tremendous amount of pressure put on this organization, on a variety of levels, in an attempt to force us to cancel the event,” said Aaron Weil, the local Hillel director in Pittsburgh. For their part, pro-Palestinian students have repeatedly disrupted speeches by Israeli speakers, including one last week by Israel’s deputy foreign minister, Danny Ayalon, at Oxford University. At UCLA, a

coalition of pro-Palestinian student groups affixed duct tape to their mouths and disrupted a lecture by another Israeli official on the same night as Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren was nearly shouted down at Irvine. And at the University of Chicago, hecklers made it exceedingly difficult for former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to speak in October, interrupting his talk repeatedly with cries of “war criminal.” Even as they seek to disrupt Israeli speakers, the pro-Palestinian students are being cast, by themselves and by some supporters, as representing the cause of free speech.

White pepper to taste 1 tablespoon poppy seeds 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, garnish

mixing bowl. Pour shallot butter (or margarine) over them. Add salt, pepper and poppy seeds; stir until blended. Move noodles to an attractive serving bowl and sprinkle parsley over the top. Serve immediately. Yield: 6 servings (as a side dish)

Preparation: Drain chick peas in a colander. Place chick peas and remaining ingredients in a large bowl and toss until well combined. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Toss again before serving, adding more olive oil and vinegar, if necessary. Yield: 6-8 servings

coarsely chopped

BOCHNER, Ruth vanGelder RISHTY, Eli Eli Rishty, age 85, passed away on February 13, 2010 – the 29th day of Shevat, 5770. Born in CAMPUS from page 7 of campus codes of conduct. Some even have sought to have speakers disinvited whose views are deemed beyond the pale. Meanwhile, Israel’s critics have stepped up efforts to actively disrupt speakers defending the Jewish state. The differing tactics in many ways reflect the methods that Israelis and Palestinians, by virtue of their power differential, have been led to adopt in their own confrontations. Jewish groups, possessed of greater political and financial strength, have sought to exert presRECIPES from page 8 POPPY SEED NOODLES (Dairy or Pareve) This recipe from Hungary reminds us of Queen Esther’s plight in King Ahaseurus’ court. Ingredients: 1 (16-ounce) package of extra wide egg noodles A few drops of cooking oil 2 shallots 6 tablespoons butter or margarine Kosher salt to taste

Irwin C. Weinberg

Medical Center. After Mr. Weinberg retired, he and his wife, Doris, moved to Coconut Creek, Fla. Upon moving to Raleigh, N.C., they became members of Temple Beth Meyer. Above all he was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. He is lovingly remembered by his wife Doris, sons Dr. Stephen (Linda) Weinberg, Dr. Gary Weinberg, and Richard Weinberg; grandchildren Justin and his wife Lori, Jessica Malia, Sarah and her husband Wade, and Samuel; great-grandchildren Jacob, Eli, and Katelyn. He will also be missed by his brothers Herman and Aaron Weinberg. He was predeceased by his sisters Esther, Miriam and Ruth, and his brother Julius. A graveside service was held on Tuesday, February 23, 2010, at the Raleigh Hebrew Cemetery. Memorial contributions can be made to the Hospice of Wake County, in memory of Irwin Weinberg, Condolences can be sent to the family at www.brownwynneeastmillbrook.com.

Preparation: Prepare noodles according to package directions, adding cooking oil to the boiling water. While noodles boil, chop shallots fine and saute in butter or margarine until translucent, about 2 minutes. Reserve. When noodles reach the desired tenderness, drain them well in a colander. Place noodles in a large

The unveiling of the monument for

Lola Reinhart will be held Sunday, March 7, 2010 at 12:30 p.m. Rabbi Wise will be officiating. It will be held at the United Jewish Cemetery, Montgomery, OH. Family and friends are welcome.

CHICK PEA SALAD (Pareve) This recipe tastes best when made 24 hours in advance. Ingredients: 2 (19 ounce) cans chick peas 15 cherry tomatoes, cut in half 1⁄2 cup pitted kalamata olives, cut in half 1⁄2 teaspoon dried basil 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped 1⁄2 medium-sized red onion, chopped 1⁄4 teaspoon garlic powder Kosher salt to taste 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar 11⁄2 tablespoons olive oil

ALMOND TRIANGLES (Pareve) Like hamantaschen, this pastry reminds us of Haman’s three-cornered hat. Ingredients: No-stick vegetable spray 1 egg 1 cup dark brown sugar (hard lumps removed) 1 teaspoon almond extract 1⁄2 cup flour 1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda 1⁄4 teaspoon salt 1⁄4 teaspoon cardamom 1 cup blanched, slivered almonds,

Preparation: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat an 8-inch square baking pan with no-stick spray. In a large mixing bowl, with a wooden spoon hand mix the egg, brown sugar and almond extract. (Don’t use an electric mixer in any step of this recipe.) Fold in flour, baking soda, salt and cardamom, mixing well. Add almonds and stir until well blended. Place batter in prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until edges brown and top surface is slightly firm to the touch but soft and spongy underneath. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature on a wire rack. With a knife, cut across the pan, making 3 horizontal but equal strips. Then cut down the length of the pan, making 3 equal vertical strips. You’ll have 9 squares. Remove these squares from the pan and cut them in half diagonally, creating triangles. Recipe freezes well. Yield: 18 triangles.


PARTY PLANNING

SHOW CASE 10 SUNDAY, MARCH 7 11-4 @ THE NEW JCC 8485 RIDGE ROAD, CINCINNATI, OHIO 45236

From Caterers to DJs, the Party Planning Showcase has everything you need to make your event something to celebrate! Come join us for this FREE extravaganza and learn what’s new and what’s hot. Don’t miss out on the Booths, Raffle Prizes and FREE Food plus everything you’ll need to throw the best party ever, no matter the occasion.

Showcasing only the best Balloons, Cakes, Caterers, DJs, Flowers, Photographers & More! Whether you are planning a Bar/Bat Mitzvah, Wedding, Sweet 16, Prom or Graduation Party, the Party Planning Showcase will be the only place to be. FREE ADMISSION. Sponsored by The American Israelite & Artrageous Desserts

To reserve booth space or for more information, contact Teri Scheff at 793-6627 / dezert@aol.com or Ted Deutsch at 621-3145 / publisher@americanisraelite.com


AI2010_02_25  

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