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Mitzvah Palooza 4 at Rockdale Temple The congregation of Rockdale Temple invites the community to join in the temple’s fourth annual Mitzvah Palooza on Sunday Nov. 13. Mitzvah Palooza is a day-long event featuring opportunities to learn about social action programs and participate in a variety of service projects at the temple or in the community. Lori Reidel, co-chair with Ed Marks, explained this year’s theme is The Four R’s of Social Connection: React, Renew, Repair, Re-Use. “This is a chance to really make a difference—to be part of Tikkun Olam,” she said. “On Rosh Hashana, Rockdale’s President, Mark Schaengold, said that offering one’s time, energy and effort is more precious than a monetary donation. That’s especially important in a time where putting a check in the mail isn’t as easy as it once was.” The day will begin at 9 a.m. with a Hoxworth Blood Center Mobile Unit blood drive. Appointments are available until 3 p.m. and can be scheduled at the temple’s website or by calling the temple office. The entire donation process takes about 30 minutes. At 9:30 a.m., the temple’s Environmental Committee will begin accepting items for its “REUSE-IT! Exchange.” Joanne Gerson, Environmental Committee chair, described the exchange as a recycling opportunity in which people can get rid of things they don’t want and take home items they can use. Everyone who brings gentlyused toys, games, books, puzzles, CDs, baby items, kitchenware, decorative pieces, artwork, hobby supplies, tabletop appliances, lamps and
Community members enjoy participating in a service project.
small furniture pieces will be given one ticket for each item brought. Each ticket can be used to claim one “new” item from the exchange. “We’re not accepting clothing or food,” Gerson said, “but just about anything else in good condition that’s easily lifted and moved can be included.” Gerson noted that the committee has the right to refuse any item and
can make no guarantee of the soundness or safety of any item. She said the committee would appreciate donations of shopping bags and encouraged participants to bring reusable bags for taking items home. Exchange items will be accepted until noon. Participants may claim new items from 1 to 4 p.m. No items will be sold for money. At 10:30 a.m., participants may
choose between presentations by Peter Bloch, president and CEO of Jewish Vocational Service and Dolores Goldfinger, a globe-trotting social advocacy volunteer. Bloch’s talk is entitled “What’s so Jewish About Jewish Vocational Service?” Goldfinger’s is “From Cincinnati to Uganda: A Trip of a Lifetime,” which describes her life-changing encounter with Jews of that country. After a no-cost lunch from noon1 p.m., participants can choose from among eight mitzvah projects. Those at the temple include making greeting cards for Jewish soldiers serving overseas, addressing envelopes for the Crisis Card Project, knitting caps for newborns and lap blankets, and preparing temple garden areas for spring (volunteers for the last project should bring gloves, boots, rakes, and shovels if possible). Community-based projects include visiting residents of Cedar Village, sorting school supplies at Crayons to Computers and cleaning/re-stocking the Jewish Family Service Pantry. Children are welcome to participate in Mitzvah Palooza but there are age restrictions on some projects. “We hope this day will encourage everyone to become involved in Tikkun Olam and continue all year round, as an expression of what it means to be Jewish,” said Rockdale’s Senior Rabbi, Sissy Coran. “This is the mission we’ve learned from the prophets. It’s the essence of Micah’s teaching of what God requires—to do justly, love mercifully, and walk humbly with our God. On Mitzvah Palooza day, we can do all of that and help others too. What could be better?”
LOCAL • 3
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
Jewish Federation approves allocations for fiscal year 2012 Thanks to donors like you, the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati funds and supports a communitywide network of organizations that does two things: 1. Care for people in need here at home, in Israel, and around the world. 2. Nurture and sustain the Jewish community today and for future generations. Each year, the Planning and Allocations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati makes a recommendation to the Board of the Federation utilizing a very thorough six-month process that determines how community campaign contributions are allocated locally and to Israel and overseas. The Jewish Federation of Cincinnati Board of Trustees approved the recommendations of the Planning and Allocations Committee for 2012 at its meeting on Sept. 27. The allocations will take effect on Jan. 1, 2012. Since 2009, the economy’s effect on the Federation’s annual campaign has left the allocations committee with more and more challenging decisions to make. The committee approached the allocations process “knowing that the community expected strategic decisions with limited resources,” said Barbara Miller, director of Planning and Allocations. Under the strong and capable leadership of Suzette Fisher’s third year as vice-president of Planning and Allocations, Billy Bie and Susan Brenner, co-chairs of the Youth and Family Council; Kathie Kaplan and Dr. Sidney Cohen, cochairs of the Senior Adult Council; and Sandy Kaltman and Tamar Smith, co-chairs of the Council of Jewish Life and Learning, they led the Planning and Allocations process. Members of the planning and allocations umbrella committee and the three local councils were charged with making recommendations for distributing the available dollars from the Federation’s 2012 community campaign, which at $5.1 million remained about even with the 2011 campaign. “Our Federation continued its tradition of outstanding service to the community again this year. With clear vision, strong leadership, and dedicated volunteers and staff, we overcame many obstacles to achieve our goal. That said we also recognized that community needs and program costs are rising therefore making this year’s campaign even more critical to our future success” said Bie, cochair of Youth and Family. The allocations process has evolved over many years, but in its current state it has been greatly influenced by Fisher and her prior experiences with United Way and the YWCA. The process involves 77
dedicated volunteers responsible for thoroughly evaluating and assessing the agency programs and budgets that are funded through allocations. Approximately 44 individual site visits were made this year to 39 local agencies’ programs. These visits included several one-on-one meetings and interviews by individual council members with agency personnel, executives, board presidents and clients served. Site visit reports were prepared by each of the volunteers and program evaluations and assessments utilizing a standardized rating process instrument were presented at all the council meetings. Once agreement and consensus was achieved about funding a program, a final funding recommendation was made. Council members carefully evaluated each program by measuring the impact, quality and cost effectiveness of the program. Council members determined how efficiently the programs were operating by assessing how many people were being served and how much need or demand was required for the service. In some cases council members recognized where improvements or enhancements to a program could be made. However, in most cases, council members witnessed the top notch, dedicated work of the agency professionals who, on a daily basis, are providing meaningful services and programs to those in need. “It was an honor and a privilege to be involved in this important endeavor. Analyzing and evaluating so many incredible community programs that will help determine the future of Cincinnati's Jewish community is a sacred task” said Smith, co-chair of CJLL. With no clear path to economic recovery, the Federation saw an increase in the number of community members facing hardship. Requests for financial support services offered by our partner agency Jewish Family Service (JFS) grew to unprecedented levels. Last year, in 2011, for instance, the JFS Chaver Emergency Assistance Fund, which is supported largely by community campaign contributions, ran out of money in July 2011, although the funding was expected to last through this coming December. Meanwhile, the local senior population, which is growing exponentially, created more demands on the Federation’s partner agencies addressing senior needs— the JCC and JFS—both offering such services as transportation, case management, adult socialization opportunities, hot congregate meals and meals on wheels to homebound seniors. “Serving as co-chair of the Senior Adult Council was a mixture of satisfaction and frustration,” said Cohen, co-chair of the Senior Adult Council. “The wonderful enthusiasm of all the committee members
and the interest and compassion that they displayed in conscientiously evaluating the various programs was an example of true philanthropic behavior. The detailed evaluations that each council member prepared demonstrated the important work and services of the various agencies. I can honestly say that I was extremely proud to be part of the ongoing effort to make our community a better place to live, not only as a bright and cultured environment for our young but as a wonderful caring shelter and protective environment for our elderly. “On the other hand, when we had to face the actual allocation process and attempt to put a dollar value on each of these essential services, it became highly frustrating to be faced with a significant shortfall in dollars to be distributed. The idea that we would have to take funds away from some programs in order to make even suboptimal allocations to other programs became a terrible moral dilemma,” continued Cohen. For 2012, the following programs directly impacting the quality of life of local children, families and vulnerable populations including seniors, the mentally and physically challenged and the poor, will receive increases; while most other programs will experience either a flat or decreased allocation. Local and national allocations total $2,291,296. Four of Federation’s six partner agencies (Jewish Vocational Service, Jewish Family Service, Cincinnati Hebrew Day School and Mayerson JCC) received overall increases; while Rockwern Academy and UC Hillel remained flat. As has been historically the case in our community, 35 percent of all the allocable dollars goes to Israel and overseas programs, or approximately $1,785,000. The Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA), the umbrella organization of the Jewish Federation system, funds programs in partnership with the Jewish Agency for Israel (JAFI) and the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). While the community campaign struggled to reach last year’s level, the Jewish Federation responded by working with individual donors who wished to make a personal impact in addition to supporting the annual campaign. Through these efforts the Federation raised $1.6 million on behalf of critical community programs, more than triple the average raised in previous years. These supplemental contributions helped either to support local programs that otherwise would have received fewer dollars or to create new programs that would enhance the local community or the work of various agencies.
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4 • LOCAL
JFS receives grant to help Holocaust survivors Jewish Family Service was awarded a $25,000 grant from The Bahmann Foundation to support a hearing service program for Jewish Holocaust survivors in the Greater Cincinnati area. The grant will provide them with hearing tests, interpretive services, assistive listening devices, and other adaptive technologies. “We are very appreciative of The Bahmann Foundation’s continued support for this work,” said Gail Gepsman Ziegler, MSW, LISW, program director for the Jewish Family Service Center for
Holocaust Survivors. Jewish Family Service has worked with The Bahmann Foundation since 2004. “Studies indicate that approximately 10 percent of age related hearing loss is misdiagnosed as early stage dementia,” said Ziegler. “Addressing hearing loss can increase the quality of life by encouraging aging survivors to become more engaged with others thereby decreasing their depression and isolation.” Because many of Jewish Family Service Holocaust survivor clients receiving assistive listening devices
are Russian speaking, the grant will also provide medical interpretation for hearing tests, appointment scheduling and home visits. “The success of the hearing aid program is directly related to the follow up care that is provided,” said Ziegler. She often schedules routine follow up appointments with Dr. Tom Goldman at The Jewish Hospital. In coordination with Lorraine Croft, nurse liaison with The Bahmann Foundation, Ziegler visits with survivors to ensure proper hearing aid use. “Meeting with clients in their
home or in accessible locations, such as the Jewish Family Service offices, allows us to monitor and support clients as they learn to use this new technology,” explained Ziegler. Jewish Family Service Center for Holocaust Survivors is a program of its Aging and Caregiver Services department, which receives funds administered by the Council on Aging of Southwestern Ohio. Social services for Nazi victims have been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
Bring your kids to the JCC for a night of fun “Sweet” is what your kids will say when you tell them about the fun evening they will have at the Mayerson JCC on Nov. 19. Kids in grades 6 – 8 can party from 7 – 11 p.m. at the “JCC Tween Scene,” planned by and for tweens. Make sure your tweens are ready for non-stop fun —they can swim, munch their favorite foods and play games in the gym and other areas of the J.
Children in grades K – 5 will also want to hang out at the J on Nov. 19, from 7 – 11 p.m. at “Hang at the J.” They can splash in the water park, play games in the gym, create great art projects, enjoy the awesome game room and some delicious, kid-friendly food. “‘Hang at the J” is such a fun, safe atmosphere. No matter what your kids like to do, there is an
activity planned for them to enjoy themselves. Parents and kids always say it’s a great experience,” said Matt Miller, JCC Youth and Family coordinator and director of camps. Debbie Lempert’s two children have attended almost every “Hang at the J” and “Tween Scene” at the JCC, and plan to enjoy both again this year. “My son goes every time he can. And my daughter loves to
go to ‘Hang at the J.’ As soon as the dates are announced, we mark them on our calendar. We are planning on sending them both again this year,” Debbie said. Everyone is welcome—membership at the J is not necessary to join in the fun, but J members will enjoy a special admission price advantage. For information about the Nov. 19 events, call Matt Miller, or visit the JCC website.
The American Israelite “LET THERE BE LIGHT” THE OLDEST ENGLISH-JEWISH WEEKLY IN AMERICA - EST. JULY 15, 1854
VOL. 158 • NO. 15 THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011 6 CHESHVAN 5772 SHABBAT BEGINS FRIDAY 6:17 PM SHABBAT ENDS SATURDAY 7:18 PM THE AMERICAN ISRAELITE CO., PUBLISHERS 18 WEST NINTH STREET, SUITE 2 CINCINNATI, OHIO 45202-2037 Phone: (513) 621-3145 Fax: (513) 621-3744 firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org RABBI ISSAC M. WISE Founder, Editor, Publisher, 1854-1900 LEO WISE Editor & Publisher, 1900-1928 RABBI JONAH B. WISE Editor & Publisher, 1928-1930 HENRY C. SEGAL Editor & Publisher, 1930-1985 PHYLLIS R. SINGER Editor & General Manager, 1985-1999
How the Jewish community is tapping into young professional talent While they can’t always offer the kind of wealth or seasoned wisdom that some of the older, more experienced community members can bring to a board or committee, today’s young professionals have the kind of energy, enthusiasm, creativity and time that make them perfect candidates for helping organizations become more innovative and in touch. From management and marketing professionals, to financial analysts, educators and health care consultants, there is an increasing pool of talented young people who are getting connected to the Cincinnati Jewish community through programs such as The Mayerson Foundation’s Access initiative for Jewish young professionals, and the Jewish Federation’s LEAD program, that prepare young people to take leadership positions within the Jewish community. Tapping into this kind of young talent used to be a lot more difficult. However now it’s often just a matter of making a phone call. “With a database of Jewish young professionals nearly 1,000 strong it’s not difficult for us to find people who fit the profile of what many organizations are looking for,” explained Pam Saeks, director of Jewish Giving for the Mayerson Foundation. “We work hard to understand each organization’s expectations and then identify just the right person or persons who will not only bring a certain ability or
expertise to the table, but who seem ready to move from simply participating in social events to deepening their connection through Jewish communal service,” she added. “From basketball coaches and youth group advisors, to focus group participants and committee/board members, we are asked to make referrals on a pretty regular basis. We are delighted to be able to play a role in helping to match these organizations with some great future leaders who might not have ever gotten on their radar screens otherwise!” “Thanks to The Mayerson Foundation’s Access initiative, and the Young Adult Division (YAD) of the Jewish Federation, our community can sleep well at night knowing that some great future leaders are emerging,” said Barbara Miller, director of Planning and Allocations of the Jewish Federation. “Through referrals from both organizations, we have been fortunate to recruit some phenomenally talented young leaders to serve on our local allocations councils,” she explained. “Some work for major corporations such as Procter and Gamble and Children’s Hospital, and others come from fields such as social service, health care and education,” she added. “All are bright, young professionals who bring their current knowledge and expertise to the table when reviewing specific agency programs that are related to
their fields. They are contributing so much to making Jewish Cincinnati a vibrant place to live.” As part of the Jewish Federation’s allocation process, these young professionals are asked to take time out of their busy work and social lives to make site visits to various local programs funded by the Federation’s annual campaign. They not only evaluate and assess the programs being funded, but make keen observations and give tremendous feedback and suggestions on ways to improve programs that often impact the Jewish community’s most vulnerable populations. According to Miller, their expertise in areas such as product development and evaluation has greatly enhanced and improved the allocations’ evaluation process. A team of young professionals, including Andrew Davis, Heather Kaplan, Jack Rubin and Jessica Goldberg are working on ways to improve assessment and evaluation tools and refine the current program evaluation system by applying the latest knowledge in technology, product evaluation and development to the process. Their goal is to insure that every program that is evaluated is impactful, cost effective, and meets the needs of the target audience. While involving these young professionals brings a significant benefit to the organizations, their
participation reaps just as many personal rewards, including the chance to give back at a high level, network with others and gain valuable leadership experience. One such person is Andrew Davis, a Cincinnati newcomer who has an MBA from Cornell University and is a Senior Associate at River Cities Capital Funds. “Through my involvement with Access, I met Pam Saeks who introduced me to Barbara Miller at the Jewish Federation. Now as a member of the allocations committee, I’ve been able to apply some of my professional experience to my new role. Access helped open the door that enabled me to discover the broader activities available throughout Cincinnati’s Jewish ecosystem for community engagement and service.” Although Access and YAD make many referrals of this kind to organizations, they also facilitate important connections by introducing young professionals to the various organizations in the Jewish community. “Through partnering with ACTout, a volunteer initiative of Access and the Jewish Federation, on a meaningful Holocaust awareness and remembrance project called Light the Spark last spring, several young Jewish adults have become involved in the work of The Center for Holocaust and Humanity TALENT on page 19
MILLARD H. MACK Publisher Emeritus NETANEL (TED) DEUTSCH Editor & Publisher BARBARA L. MORGENSTERN Senior Writer YEHOSHUA MIZRACHI RITA TONGPITUK Assistant Editors ALEXIA KADISH Copy Editor JANET STEINBERG Travel Editor SONDRA KATKIN Dining Editor MARIANNA BETTMAN NATE BLOOM IRIS PASTOR RABBI A. JAMES RUDIN ZELL SCHULMAN RABBI AVI SHAFRAN PHYLLIS R. SINGER Contributing Columnists LEV LOKSHIN JANE KARLSBERG Staff Photographers JOSEPH D. STANGE Production Manager MICHAEL MAZER Sales ERIN WYENANDT Office Manager
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LOCAL • 5
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
NHS Sisterhood features ‘Victoria in Song’ at paid-up membership brunch The Sisterhood of Northern Hills Synagogue - Congregation B’nai Avraham invites the community to get “in tune” and join in the fun of “"Victoria in Song” at the annual paid-up membership brunch. The event will take place on Sunday, Nov. 13, at 11 a.m. at the Synagogue.
The program will feature Victoria Cook, a senior at the University of Cincinnati’s College Conservatory of Music. Cook has performed in a number of CCM productions. Her credits include Sandy in “Make Me a Song,” Juno in “Out of This World,” and Reno Sweeney
in “Anything Goes.” Upcoming is a performance as The Witch in “Into the Woods” at CCM, and her New York debut in her Senior Showcase at the Alvin Alley Theater. Her selections at the Sisterhood brunch will feature classic American songs and a sing-along.
Wise Temple welcomes consecrants On the eve of Simchat Torah, Wednesday, Oct. 19, 41 children of the Isaac M. Wise Temple were welcomed as consecrants into the study of Torah at the Plum Street Temple. This beautiful ceremony was a very exceptional and meaningful milestone in the lives of the children and their families. Wise Temple’s consecration service—the creation of the late Rabbi Samuel Wohl—began with students carrying their own small Torahs as they walked down the aisle of Plum Street Temple behind the Temple’s Board of Trustees. The children sang songs from the bimah, danced around the sanctuary in celebration of Simchat Torah, received individual blessings from the rabbis
and were presented with a certificate of Consecration. The consecration of a new generation of Jews, as they begin their formal education, coincides with the occasion of Simchat Torah on which our faith celebrates the beginning of a new cycle of Torah reading. Wise Temple’s consecration students begin their Jewish education on Sunday mornings in the “Open Room”. The recently renovated Open Room is a welcoming environment where children explore big ideas of Jewish learning through four activity centers: “Sarah’s Tent,” where the main lesson takes place; “Jacob’s Ladder,” where students do art related to the theme of the week; “Miriam’s Tambourine,” where they
sing songs, play games and act out stories; and “Mount Moses,” where they engage in creative free play. All four stations are built around a detailed week-by-week curriculum. The children have their snack each week in the “Motzi Café,” and the last rotation of the morning is reserved for a music period for the entire room. The children come to know the Jewish calendar cycle of holidays as well as ceremonies, symbols and reasons for celebration. Other Jewish topics are explored including Jewish values, symbols and selected bible stories. In addition, the Open Room program helps children make Jewish friends and gives them the experience of being a part of a caring Jewish community.
6 • LOCAL
Wise Temple’s sixth annual Tikkun Olam-athon Hundreds of Wise Temple congregants will once again experience the excitement, meaning and power of coming together to engage in “tikkun olam,” meaning “repairing the world.” On Nov. 6, congregants will participate in the sixth annual Tikkun Olam-athon, a marathon day in which volunteers of all ages join together to make the world a better place, one mitzvah at a time. The beauty of this event is that there is something for everyone, so getting involved is easy. Nearly 30 projects throughout the Greater Cincinnati area focus on various groups in need such as elderly, children, homeless and animals.
Projects also highlight various activities such as interacting with those in need, maintenance, cleaning, cooking and crafts. No matter one’s passion, location or abilities, there’s a project that fits. Tikkun Olam-athon is also a way to inform congregants of the dozens of agencies who need volunteers all year long. Through Tikkun Olam-athon, congregants often find an agency that resonates with them and they continue volunteering with the agency throughout the year. A sampling of the agencies Wise Temple will work with this year are Bethany House, Caracole House, Panorama Senior Center,
Israeli Defense Forces, Cincinnati Icebreakers, Fernside Center, Halom House, SPCA, Interfaith Hospitality Network, People Working Cooperatively, Project Linus, Drop Inn Center, Cincinnati Veterans Administration, Share the Luck, Welcome House and Over-theRhine Soup Kitchen. Tikkun Olam-athon offers two ways for congregants to participate, as a family or as an adult. Adults join together at Plum Street for breakfast and a motivational speaker prior to dispersing to their projects. This year’s speaker is Peter Block, author and partner in Designed Learning, a training
company that offers workshops designed to build skills outlined in his books. His work is in the restoration of communities and creating systems that restore our humanity. Block will discuss the limits of systems and the marketplace to deal with our concerns about education, health care, safety, our economy, the environment and those who are vulnerable. Families will join at Wise Center immediately following Sunday School. They will enjoy lunch sponsored by the Brotherhood and then disperse to their projects, where parents and children will work side-by-side to make the world a better place.
Collection bins will be in both locations for donations of school supplies and winter wear. Donations will support FACES without PLACES, an organization that works with Project Connect to provide funding and awareness to support children experiencing homelessness. “I look forward to this day every year. Even though my family participates in community service throughout the year, there’s nothing like the energy that is created when hundreds of people from Wise Temple come together to make such a big impact in one day,” commented Kari Fagin, Wise Temple congregant.
“Communicating with God” is made relevant to today’s wired young people through the wallsized “i(communicate-withGod)Pad” that greets them as they enter the building each week. Second and third graders’ parents will join them on Nov. 20 for a family education day. Through activities and small group interactions the parents and children will learn together what it means to be “Standing at Sinai.” On Nov. 19 and 20, Rockdale Temple’s seventh and eighth graders will travel to the Goldman Union Camp Institute near Indianapolis for an educational retreat. Along with fun, sports and crafts, the students will engage in discussions about “Israel: Somewhere between Haven and Heaven.” Students will
consider Israel’s history from World War II and the Holocaust to the current events that are daily headlines. Topics will include philosophies of Zionism, the Oslo Accords, and key issues for Israel such as border security, water, and right of return. Students will participate in mock negotiations between Jews and Palestinians. Founded in 1824, K.K. Bene Israel, better known as Rockdale Temple, is the oldest continuous Jewish congregation west of the Allegheny Mountains. Rockdale is known for its outreach to a diverse membership. A progressive spirit and recognition of the need for change and growth characterize Rockdale Temple—a place where you are valued and where values matter.
Rockdale Temple’s four pillars Worship, education, social action and community building are the four centers of Rockdale Temple’s programming. The month of November features activities in each of these areas. Family Game Night on Nov. 5 builds community with a festive dinner followed by activities for gamers of all ages. Two popular worship services are included for November. Tot Shabbat, a brief service intended for infants to Kindergarten and their parents will be held on Nov. 11. Families are invited to join for a free Shabbat dinner immediately following the service. According to 4-year-old Rachel, she likes Tot Shabbat because, “I can be with
Daddy and we sit on the floor when Rabbi Sissy reads a story.” On Nov. 18, all are welcome to jam with us at Rock Shabbat. “Rock Shabbat is a musical worship opportunity that is designed for a multi-generational congregation but that is also accessible to children,” explained Rabbi Sigma Faye (Sissy) Coran. The fourth annual Mitzvah Palooza is the centerpiece of Rockdale Temple’s commitment to social action. A full day of volunteer activities for younger and older members alike will be held on Nov. 13. A blood drive, flower planting and visiting Cedar Village are just a few of the good deeds families can do together. After lunch, children and their parents are invited to make
Chanukah and Purim cards for soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Life-long education is a focus of Rockdale Temple, with adult education programs such as Hebrew Marathon and lectures titled, “Jews, Superheroes and Comic Books” and “How to Capture an Oral History,” planned for the fall months. Education programs for children at Rockdale are challenging and age-appropriate. The 20112012 theme for Rockdale’s Kindergarten through 8th grade is “Communicating with God.” Every Sunday morning the children learn different ways to talk to God from silent prayer to meditation. Learning at Rockdale is experiential and hands-on.
Hero or Traitor? Wise Temple, Cincinnati World Cinema and The Center for Holocaust and Humanity Education will host a premier screening of the documentary “Killing Kasztner,” including a Q & A with the director, Gaylen Ross. There will be two screenings of the film, each beginning at 7 p.m.: Sunday, Nov. 13, at Wise Center and Monday, Nov. 14, at The Carnegie Center, Covington, Ky. This chilling documentary uncovers Israel’s most inflammatory political trial and assassination of the 1950s, of Rezso Kasztner, including the first stunning interview with his murderer. Kasztner, a Hungarian Jew negotiated with notorious Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann to spare the lives of nearly 1,600 Jewish citizens from Hungary. Hailed as a hero by some, denounced as a traitor by others, Kasztner was assassinated in Tel Aviv in 1957, just one year before his name was cleared by the Israeli courts. In the 50 years since Eichmann’s own sensational trial, Kasztner has nearly been forgotten. Featuring interviews with
Kasztner’s kin and killer, the documentary provides a glimpse at the complexities in Israel following the Holocaust. Just recently, in an article on the release of Gilad Shalit in The New York Times, reporter Samuel Freedman discussed the concept of pidyon shvuyim, redeeming the captives. Even though the Shulhan Arukh, a legal code compiled in the 16th century states, “redeeming captives takes precedence over sustaining the poor and clothing them, and there is no commandment more important than redeeming captives,” Freedman calls the Shalit deal “an anguished decision” for Israel. Similarly, Freedman explained that “Israel was torn apart in the 1950s by a libel trial involving Rezso Kasztner, a Jewish activist in Hungary who had paid cash, gold and jewels to the Nazi officer Adolf Eichmann in 1944 to save about 1,600 Jews headed for death camps.” By the end of Killing Kasztner, the film poses more HERO on page 19
NATIONAL • 7
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
Islamists’ success in Tunisian elections fuels mix of optimism, anxiety By Ron Kampeas Jewish Telegraphic Agency WASHINGTON (JTA) — It was an orderly, peaceful election — a rarity in the Arab world. And it was won by Islamists. How observers view the Tunisian elections and what they mean for the West, Israel and the North African country’s tiny Jewish community depends in part on which of the two facts they see as more significant. In the Oct. 24 elections, the Ennahda Party won 90 seats, making it the largest bloc in the 217member assembly. The Islamist party is now negotiating with other parties to form a government. Many see the Tunisian election results as a harbinger of Islamist electoral success in a post-Mubarak Egypt and a post-Gadhafi Libya. Those who have welcomed the Arab Spring see Tunisia’s relatively peaceful transition to democracy and Ennahda’s professed commitments to tolerance and pluralism as positive omens. But other observers of the Arab Spring detect in the Tunisian elections the seeds of an Islamist winter. They question the sincerity of Ennahda’s professions of moderation, and see the Tunisian election results as heralding a much more
Courtesy of Houda Trablesi for Maghrebia, via Creative Commons
Secular protesters march against Islamism in Tunis ahead of the Oct. 24 elections in Tunisia, Oct. 14, 2011. The placard reads “Free to speak to say nothing.”
dangerous Middle East. Many supporters of Israel particularly fear the likelihood of a politically empowered Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, where a peace treaty for decades has protected Israel’s southern flank, though the threat is tempered somewhat by the continued hand of the Egyptian military on the levers of power. Jason Isaacson, the director of international affairs for the American Jewish Committee, which maintains close ties to Tunisia’s Jewish com-
munity, says there is much to praise in the country’s transition from dictatorship to democracy within such a short period of time. But, he warned, “It could go south. There’s no question that promises and commitments made in an election campaign may be forgotten. It’s too early to celebrate.” Skeptics of Arab Spring doubt that there will be cause to celebrate anytime soon. ISLAMISTS on page 20
Wine, broken promises and ‘Isratine’: Gadhafi’s strange courtship of the Jews By Ron Kampeas Jewish Telegraphic Agency WASHINGTON (JTA) — Now it can be told: For the last decade or so, the Jews had secret back channels to Moammar Gadhafi. What led the pro-Israel community into a careful relationship with Gadhafi 10 years ago were considerations of U.S. national interests, Israel’s security needs and the claims of Libyan Jews. After his overthrow by Libyan rebels and his killing last week, the conclusion among many pro-Israel figures in America is that it was worth it, despite the Libyan strongman’s erratic behavior and his ignoble downfall. The reason: Gadhafi’s shift away from state terrorism after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks eliminated a funder and organizer of threats to Israeli and U.S. interests. Gadhafi’s overtures to the proIsrael community began in 2002, when a leader of the Libyan Jewish community in exile, David Gerbi, returned to Libya to bring an elderly aunt to Italy, where he and his family now live. His aunt, Rina Debach, is believed to be the
last Jew to have lived in Libya. Through interlocutors, Gerbi told JTA, “Gadhafi asked me if I could help to normalize the relationship between Libya and the United States.” Gadhafi’s motives were clear, according to Gerbi: Saddam Hussein was in the U.S. sights at the time and Gadhafi, who already was tentatively reaching out to the West through Britain, did not want to be next on the list. “He saw what’s next, he was on the list of terrorist countries,” Gerbi said. Gadhafi agreed to end his nascent weapons of mass destruction programs and to a payout in the billions of dollars to families of victims of the terrorist attack that brought down a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988. Gerbi, who still hopes to reestablish a Jewish presence in Libya, immediately launched a tour of the United States in hopes of rallying support for bringing Libya into the pro-Western fold. He met with pro-Israel groups and lawmakers. “There were extensive discussions about what would be appro-
priate and not appropriate,” recalled Malcolm Hoenlein, the executive vice president of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, the Jewish community’s foreign policy umbrella group. In the end, “we didn’t want to stand in the way of Libyan Jews having the opportunity to visit.” Especially notable was the fervor with which the late U.S. Rep. Tom Lantos (D-Calif.), a Holocaust survivor who then was the senior Democrat on the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, embraced the cause. Lantos, with the blessing of a George W. Bush administration seeking to contain radical Islamist influence, visited Libya five times. “I am rational enough to recognize that we must accept ‘yes’ for an answer,” Lantos told the Forward newspaper in 2004 following his first visit. “Gadhafi’s record speaks for itself — it’s an abominable record — but the current actions also speak for themselves. He has now made a 180degree turn.” GADHAFI on page 21
8 • NATIONAL
On Arlington’s Chaplains Hill, fallen rabbis get a place of honor
Sex segregation spreads among Orthodox
By Karen Wendkos Jewish Telegraphic Agency
By Naomi Zeveloff Jewish Daily Forward
ARLINGTON, Va. (JTA) — Fourteen Jewish military chaplains who gave their lives in service to their country finally have a place of honor in Arlington National Cemetery. Family members of the fallen chaplains were joined Monday by community leaders, politicians, and current and retired military personnel for a ceremony marking the unveiling of the Jewish chaplains memorial on Chaplains Hill. The new monument features a plaque inscribed with the names of the 14 Jewish chaplains, who died serving during World War II, the early years of the Cold War and in Southeast Asia. It stands beside separate monuments honoring fallen Protestant and Catholic chaplains that have been present on Chaplains Hill since 1981 and 1989, respectively. “Chaplains Hill now represents the diverse fabric that has made our nation stronger,” said U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.). “Faith is the most powerful weapon in our military’s arsenal,” said Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Veterans Affairs. “Through the service of our military chaplains, our soldiers are never alone.” Several hundred people gathered in the Memorial Amphitheater at Arlington National Cemetery for
NEW YORK (Forward) — When a recent online expose revealed that women on a New York City-franchised bus were required to sit in the back, those who seemed to be least outraged were the women who actually ride the bus and live in the two heavily Orthodox Brooklyn neighborhoods it connects. “It never bothered me,” said Rachel Freier, a lawyer from Borough Park who rides another segregated bus to Manhattan from her summer home in the Orthodox enclave of Kiryas Joel. “It is not that I feel I am being segregated. As a woman, it is my own sphere of privacy.” The revelation that gender segregation was enforced on a bus franchised by the city raised the hackles of New York officials, who soon pressured the private bus company holding the city franchise to reverse its policy. But to many who live in the haredi Orthodox world, the practice of sex segregation, which appears to be spreading increasingly into the public sphere in Orthodox communities, is an unremarkable fact. In early October, in the largely Chasidic community of Williamsburg, Yiddish signs hung on trees shading public sidewalks instructing women, “Precious Jewish daughter, please move to the side when a man approaches.” The signs, whose existence was first highlighted on the website Failed Messiah, eventually were taken down by city workers because it is illegal to place private signage on public trees. But in New Square, N.Y., a Chasidic enclave upstate, similar signs remain posted, and residents walk streets strictly divided by gender, with women on one side and men on the other. Local women also are not allowed to drive, though this restriction stems from their deference to rabbinic decree and communal pressure rather than from injunctions promoted via public means. Orthodox individuals interviewed by the Forward insisted that they were hewing to age-old traditions by separating men and women in public spaces. But outside observers said that the gender segregation on city buses — as well as other recent incidents — pointed to the fact that sex separation in the haredi world has become more entrenched in recent years. What’s more, they say, by taking these practices from private worship halls and extending them into public spaces like buses and streets, the haredi Orthodox com-
Courtesy Sons of the American Legion Radio
The monument to Jewish chaplains, right, joins those honoring chaplains of other faiths on Chaplains Hill.
the ceremony, which included the Presentation of the Colors and musical entertainment by the West Point Jewish Choir. The unveiling marks the culmination of several years of effort to create a memorial for Jewish chaplains. The push began with a discovery by amateur historian Ken Kraetzer of White Plains, N.Y., related to the famous story of four World War II chaplains — two Protestants, a Catholic and a Jew, Rabbi Alexander Goode — who perished aboard the USS Dorchester in 1943. As the troop transport sunk after being torpedoed by a German submarine, the four chaplains gave away their life jackets to other military personnel, prayed and consoled others aboard. The Catholic and Protestant
chaplains were represented on the other monuments on Chaplains Hill, and Kraetzer was surprised and dismayed on a 2007 visit to the site to learn that there was no recognition of Goode or for that matter other fallen Jewish chaplains. The realization set off a whirlwind of phone calls, letters and meetings, fundraising, advocacy on the part of Jewish groups and other supporters of a Jewish chaplains memorial and ultimately a congressional resolution that was approved unanimously in May. “And here we are today, three years later,” Kraetzer said, “with this fitting monument to honor much loved husbands and fathers and sons and brothers, each with his own personal biography that ended too soon.”
munity is asserting itself in new ways, staking its claim as a cultural force of American life. “What is special about this isn’t the segregation of sexes but the segregation in the public domain,” said Samuel Heilman, a sociologist at Queens College who has written extensively on the haredi Orthodox. “That didn’t happen before. They separated men and women, but they would have never thought to do it on turf that isn’t completely theirs. They are saying, ‘We own the street, we own the bus, we own the public square.’ ” The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism’s news site, New York World, first reported Oct. 18 that a woman boarding the bus was told forcefully by the other passengers to move to the back. A follow-up report in The New York Times noted that the rule consigning women to the back also was posted in writing on the bus. Though operated by a private, Orthodox-owned company, the B110 bus, which runs between Borough Park and Williamsburg, trolls a public bus route that the city awarded to the company as a franchise in a competitive bidding process. Therefore it must play by the city’s rules, which in line with local and federal public accommodation laws bar discrimination on the basis of gender or race. The story was widely reported in the media and garnered a response from Mayor Michael Bloomberg at a news conference. “Private people, you can have a private bus. Go rent a bus, and do what you want on it,” the mayor said. On city buses, he said, sex segregation was “obviously not permitted.” For many in the secular world, the Borough Park-Williamsburg bus story evoked memories of civil rights activist Rosa Parks, who refused to sit at the back of the bus in Montgomery, Ala., during the era of legal segregation in the South. But for haredim, the practice of sex segregation on private and public buses alike has a reference point in Israel. In Jerusalem, gender segregation on city buses has been a flashpoint of controversy for years, pitting haredim who want separate-gender seating on bus lines against their secular counterparts. In early October, the Israeli transportation minister said that while the haredi were free to do what they wanted on private buses, the Israeli government could not enforce segregation on city lines. SEGREGATION on page 22
INTERNATIONAL • 9
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
International Sacha Baron Cohen a Jewish parliamentarian? One reason to doubt new Euro Jewish parliament Briefs By Toby Axelrod Jewish Telegraphic Agency Swiss Muslims’ protest with yellow star called ‘idiotic’ BERLIN (JTA) — Discrimination against Muslims is a serious phenomenon in Switzerland, but using a yellow star as a symbol of protest is inappropriate, local Jewish leaders said. A conservative Islamic organization in Switzerland on Oct. 29 protested against antiMuslim discrimination by wearing a yellow star sticker printed with the word “Muslim,” reminiscent of the one that the Nazis forced Jews to wear during the Third Reich. Some 2,000 people showed up for the demonstration in Bern initiated by the Islamic Central Council of Switzerland. Some protesters constructed a plastic model of a mosque with minarets, which are banned in Switzerland. The choice of symbolism irked Muslim groups as well: Two mainstream Muslim organizations reportedly stayed away from the event as a result. Edith Bino, president of the Jewish community in Bern, told the Basler Times that she found the use of the yellow star “so obviously wrong that it could not be taken seriously.” And Yves Kugelmann, editor in chief of the Jewish newspaper Tachles, said he found the choice of symbols “simply idiotic.” “It is regrettable when legitimate concerns are raised using false comparisons,” Kugelmann told the Basler Times. He said that discrimination against Muslims is a theme that must be taken seriously in Switzerland, “but not in this cheap way.” Nicolas Blancho, head of the Islamic Central Council, defended his choice of symbols, telling the Tages Anzeiger newspaper that “Muslims are treated as second-class citizens and are discriminated against, for example because they wear a headscarf or because of their name when they look for an apprenticeship or are looking for an apartment.” Among the speakers were British journalist Lauren Booth, sister-in-law of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Booth, who has converted to Islam and wears a veil, told demonstrators she sensed that Bern citizens had glared at her as she passed them on the street.
BERLIN (JTA) — If the slate of candidates is any indication, the European Jewish Parliament faces an uphill battle to be taken seriously. Among the candidates for election announced by the new body: soccer star David Beckham, filmmaker Roman Polanski, comic actor Sacha Baron Cohen, fashion designer Diane von Furstenburg, and other famous and less-famous European Jews who likely never expressed an interest in running — if they even knew anything of the planned parliament at all. Already, a number of Jews from around Europe after learning they were on the list have demanded to be taken off. Viviane Teitelbaum, a former head of the Belgian Jewish community who is a member of Brussels’ regional parliament, said she found out she was a so-called candidate only when people started writing to say they had voted for her. “I said, where, why, how?” said Teitelbaum, who asked to be removed. “I was wondering, how is it going to function? How is it going to be representative? How many people are going to vote? And they could have asked people if they wanted to be on the list.” But at least one unwitting candidate said he liked the idea. “I was indeed surprised to find my name on the list; nonetheless, the idea is an interesting one,” said Joel Rubinfeld, former chairman of the Committee for the Coordination of Jewish Organizations in Belgium. Rubinfeld said he once tried to introduce something similar in Belgium, “So of course I think it’s a good project, but a difficult one, too.” Nevertheless, he said, elections for the parliament must “be conducted in a more professional way. For instance, it is not very serious to open elections with candidates who don’t even know they are on the list.” The proposed parliament, which aims to bring issues of Jewish concern to the European Union — a role other groups already play — is the brainchild of billionaires Igor Kolomoisky and Vadim Rabinovitch. The two Ukrainian Jewish businessmen and philanthropists have been seeking leadership positions recently in European Jewish life, and in the spring they launched a new organization called the European Jewish Union. Last month they also established a new pro-Israel channel on YouTube
Courtesy of Berlin Chabad
The European Jewish Parliament is the brainchild of Ukrainian billionaire businessmen Igor Kolomoisky, left, shown with Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger at Berlin’s Chabad center at an October 2010 conference of the European Council of Jewish Communities, and Vadim Rabinovitch.
called Jewish News One, or JN1. According to Tomer Orni, CEO of the European Jewish Union, the Jewish parliament will have offices adjacent to the European Parliament in Brussels and will hold regular assemblies there. The Jewish parliament’s budget will be covered by the European Jewish Union and the agenda is to be set by elected members. Orni said the idea of the parliament — inspired by Israeli President Shimon Peres’ call for a Knesset of the Jewish Diaspora — is to be a “platform for Jews from
all corners of the continent,” including the former Soviet countries. “It brings new and high hopes for what could be a genuine move forward, away from behindclosed-doors community dealings to the next stage: democracy, representation from all across Europe, and West and East together as equals,” Orni said. “Every Jew in Europe should have a voice.” It’s not clear that Kolomoisky and Rabinovitch’s latest project will bring them any more success than their previous ones. One thing
seems clear: The parliamentary election process has sparked annoyance and irritation among European Jewish leaders. After the European Jewish Congress leaders began receiving calls from members confused at how they had landed on the list of candidates, the organization circulated a memo assuring members that they are “not connected in any way to this initiative and do not support it.” “Let’s be honest, it does not look serious,” Serge Cwajgenbaum, secretary general of the Brussels-based EJC, told JTA. “How can you bypass organized European Jewry and through the Internet call for people to elect or appoint whomever they have selected on whatever ground, on what basis G-d knows? It does not bring any plus to organized European Jewry and will only create tension in a time when it is necessary to be strong and united.” The parliament brouhaha comes a year after Kolomoisky tried to become president of the European Council of Jewish Communities — a low-profile organization founded more than 40 years ago to promote Jewish culture, heritage, education and community — by pledging $14 million to the group over five years. Rabinovitch already was an ECJC vice president.
10 • ISRAEL
Planned housing puts forlorn Jerusalem hilltop at center of international controversy
Courtesy of Jessica Steinberg
The Israeli government's plan to build 2,600 housing units in the vicinity of the Givat Hamatos neighborhood, seen here, has stirred debate.
By Jessica Steinberg Jewish Telegraphic Agency JERUSALEM (JTA) — The entrance to the neighborhood of Givat Hamatos isn’t immediately apparent. Accessible only from the winding roads of the Arab community of Beit Safafa next door, or via a sharp right off the five-lane Hebron Road, the eastern Jerusalem hilltop that once hosted caravan housing for immigrant Ethiopians and Russians is now the focus of international controversy.
The Israeli government recently announced plans to build 2,600 housing units in the vicinity of Givat Hamatos. Together with nearby Gilo and Har Homa, the new neighborhood in Givat Hamatos would create a near-contiguous chain of Jewish neighborhoods along the Jerusalem’s southern fringe, all in portions of the city captured in the 1967 Six-Day War. While the Israeli government has been adamant in asserting a right to build in all parts of its capital city, foreign governments
have criticized the planned construction. The Palestinians and Israeli peace activists see the Givat Hamatos plan as a land grab and part of an effort to cut off eastern Jerusalem’s Arab neighborhoods, which the Palestinians envision as their future capital, from the West Bank. Palestinians’ negotiator Saeb Erekat said in a statement that the location of Givat Hamatos makes it “one of the most damaging settlements” that will “turn the Palestinian town of Beit Safafa into a ghetto” because the site is between the Jerusalem Arab neighborhood and the West Bank city of Bethlehem. “As we approach Christmas,” Erekat said, “for the Palestinians in Bethlehem, who live just a few kilometers away from the Holy City, Jerusalem might as well be on another continent.” Not all of the planned housing, however, is intended for a new Jewish neighborhood. Under the plan, 800 of the new housing units are intended as an expansion of Beit Safafa, a comfortably middleclass Arab neighborhood of approximately 5,500 people that has an unusual history and is home to a joint Arab-Jewish school. HOUSING on page 22
Courtesy of Alon Alsheich
Jason Alexander receives a Sderot tulip from JNF CEO, Russell Robinson.
Actor Jason Alexander visits JNF’s Sderot Indoor Recreation Center By Ariel Vered Jewish National Fund Jewish National Fund (JNF) welcomed actor Jason Alexander to the Sderot Indoor Recreation Center last week. Alexander was very impressed with the center: “It’s amazing, it’s really amazing,” he said. Alexander, best known for his role as George Costanza on NBC’s “Seinfeld,” toured the “Blue Box,” as the center is referred to in Sderot. CEO Russell Robinson gave Alexander a Sderot tulip, which is crafted from the metal of Qassam rockets that
have landed in Sderot. Since its grand opening in March 2009, JNF’s 21,000-sq. ft., $5 million secure indoor playground and community center has become an important part of daily life in a region that has endured continual rocket attacks from Gaza for nearly a decade. Visited daily by hundreds of children of all ages, the center’s attractions include a soccer field and volleyball court, movie theater, disco, rock climbing wall, snack area, computer center, and jungle gym. Play areas double as bomb shelters, ensuring that all occupants can quickly reach safety in the event of a rocket attack.
Grapel, freed in prisoner exchange with Egypt, reunites with mother By JTA Staff Writer Jewish Telegraphic Agency JERUSALEM (JTA) — Dual American-Israeli citizen Ilan Grapel was reunited with his mother in Israel after being freed by Egypt in a prisoner exchange. Grapel landed in Israel from Egypt Thursday evening and hugged his mother, Irene, a New Yorker, at Ben Gurion Airport outside Tel Aviv. He then met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who shook Grapel’s hand as both men smiled. Grapel, who has been held in Egypt since June and accused of being a spy, boarded the plane after 5 p.m. Thursday with Israeli lawmaker Israel Hasson and attorney Yitzhak Molcho, who helped broker the prisoner exchange between Egypt and Israel. Grapel had been handed over to Israeli authorities in Egypt several hours earlier.
While Grapel was being freed, 25 Egyptians who had been released from Israeli prisons crossed the Taba border crossing into Egypt. The Egyptians released in the Grapel deal, including three minors, are criminal and not security prisoners, according to the Prime Minister’s Office. U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (DN.Y.) arrived in Israel late Wednesday to escort Grapel back to his parents’ home in New York, a statement from his office said. Grapel’s parents are Ackerman’s constituents and Grapel worked as an intern for the congressman. Ackerman’s office said that the congressman had “personally” intervened with the Egyptian Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, the prime minister of Israel and the U.S. State Department to secure Grapel’s release. GRAPEL on page 22
SOCIAL LIFE • 11
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
SHALOM FAMILY’S DREAM JOB-A-RAMA On Sunday, October 2nd, hundreds of families in the Jewish community came out for Shalom Family’s Dream Job-a-Rama: a Hands-On Career Fair for kids, to learn about all the future career possibilities in store for them when they grow up. From an architect to a zoologist and everything in between, children met people representing dozens of fascinating careers, saw the special clothing and uniforms they wear on the job, and participated in dozens of interactive demonstrations and hands-on activities. There were also FREE giveaways at every station! Kids checked out police and fire vehicles, an ambulance and special effects limousine and other cars, trucks and equipment used on the job. Plus they got to see and pet live animals from the farm, the Cincinnati Zoo, Newport Aquarium and the veterinarians office. Children even had the opportunity to report the news on camera with anchormen from WCPO and WLWT! This event was cosponsored by Rockwern Academy. Shalom Family is an initiative of The Mayerson Foundation for families in the Jewish community with children 12 and younger.
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12 • CINCINNATI SOCIAL LIFE
SHALOM FAMILY’S DREAM JOB-A-RAMA
A future scientist peers through the microscope!
Orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Glenn Reinhart, was there to teach how to wrap a cast!
Kids got to explore careers that are out of this world!
A zoologist from The Cincinnati Zoo brought some friends to see and touch!
Hundreds of families came out to explore nearly 40 different careers!
Children volunteered to help the scientist do an experiment!
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
CINCINNATI JEWISH LIFE • 13
Children got behind the wheel of police cruisers and fire trucks… and even got to try on firefighting gear!
Some learned how strong Bounty paper towels really are by adding pool balls on top of wet paper towels at the P&G booth.
In the Kids’ Cupcake Café, little ones got to see what it’s like to take and fill orders!
Children welcome in the new year with toy Shofars they got from Mayerson JCC’s Rabbi Shena Jaffee!
14 • DINING OUT
Casual classics with a gourmet twist at the Firehouse Grill By Sondra Katkin Dining Editor Combine a talented chef, a “grand” location and a personal vision and you have the formula for Firehouse Grill’s early success. Only six months old, but this “baby” can fly. Molly Davis, marketing director and co-owner with her husband Bob, a former fire fighter, touted the unique amenities of the restaurant: “Our huge capacity — including an outdoor patio that can seat 220 people, an indoor area for 300 more, our eclectic menu and our wonderful chef and his ‘family’ in the kitchen.” She added, “The Grill exceeded our expectations. Who opens a restaurant in this economy, especially without a restaurant background?” Molly and Bob were committed to their vision and quick learners. Molly was charming and informed. She introduced me to executive chef, Jason Goldschmidt, a slender, handsome young man who had been the sous chef at Mitchell’s in Newport. A graduate of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, cooking was his second love. Since orchestras were shrinking but waistlines weren’t, the writing was on the menu. On the day of my visit, the sun was shining and the two tiered patio couldn’t ask for better weather. Sometimes, people pick restaurants just because they have a small outdoor dining area and sure enough, everyone crowds to these places. That won’t be a problem for the Firehouse Grill’s al fresco dining. There is room for multiple guests (220) with a vibrant view of a small lake and lovely landscaping — even a fragrant magnolia blossoming in September. The umbrella-covered tables promise shady comfort and a fireplace will keep diners warm when the weather chills. Molly is proud of the setting, since it’s rare to have a patio that doesn’t face a busy street or parking lot. It’s also handicap accessible with two entry ramps. The menu features what Polly Campbell, the Enquirer food critic, calls “casual with a twist.” The hamburger comes accompanied by fresh homemade kettle chips and is “twisted” with an avocado hot sauce dressing that may make you glad there is a commemorative fire truck with its gigantic hose parked outside. Oh yes, hot and spicy, just the way my husband Steve likes it. He says that if it makes his forehead moist, it’s good stuff. This sandwich passes with flying colors. For those looking for the best hamburger, not only did it satisfy our “yummy” test for the beef, it had a true chargrilled flavor—the smoke can give you a legal high. If you suffer from jalapeno pepper repugnance, the Firehouse Grill will gladly serve it your way. Their
(Clockwise) Chargrilled hamburger, moist and beefy; Molly and Bob Davis, proud owners of the Firehouse Grill; Talented executive chef, Jason Goldschmidt, standing on the two tiered patio with lake view; Large, attractive banquet room; Wonderful key lime pie; Architectural design details of a fire station decorate the big bar area; Delicious combination of ingredients in the Southwestern pizza; Firelight chargrilled salmon salad, tastes as good as it looks.
consideration for their guests with allergies was also impressive. Goldschmidt explained, “We make sure we use freshly cleaned pans and separate cooking areas, uncontaminated by other foods.” They are working on a gluten free menu. He added, “I want you to eat the food that I would want to eat.” Salmon salad lovers (like me) will be pleased with the delicious “Firelight” salmon spinach salad. The plate’s palette of colors will ply your palate with taste sensations of sweet red strawberries, pleasantly sour goat cheese and earthy toasted walnuts decorating the dark green baby spinach. A light dressing of sugar cane vinaigrette unites all the disparate ingredients into the perfect flavor accompaniment for the thick, fresh Atlantic salmon, enhanced by its chargrilled preparation. You could eat this and congratulate yourself for choosing such a healthy meal, and then go ahead and splurge. Indulge yourself with the grand finale, the homemade key lime pie. Years ago, a friend in Miami introduced me to a “Florida” signature dish, preparing a key lime pie from scratch with love and skill. Goldschmidt’s version was a remi-
niscent delight. The interesting “twist,” toasted macadamia nuts, added another layer of flavor to the real key lime juice in the creamy filling. The graham cracker crust completed the comely confection with the necessary crunch. While staying well away from the crust, Steve, my gluten averse spouse, competed with me for spoonfuls of the tempting tart. “The service is surprisingly good,” according to Campbell. To achieve this accolade, chef Goldschmidt holds menu discussions and tastings for his workers, sometimes numbering well over 100 people. He explained, “That way they become a knowledgeable serving staff.” He believes he’s found the ones who want to grow with the company. This is what people take for granted when they rent the spacious banquet facilities for bar mitzvahs, showers and corporate presentations (power point ready with any type of audio/video and multiple large screen TV’s). They have a full time event coordinator on staff to make sure the parties are events to remember, and there is free rental with a minimum food order. Goldschmidt added, “the sheer size of the place allows
us to accommodate large parties almost anytime, but reservations are best.” One large party occurs each Friday when they host the Bengal’s pep rally, broadcast on ESPN radio (1530). From 3 – 6 p.m. there is commentary on the team’s game from the previous week and the upcoming game. Many other sports oriented patrons like to gather around the huge bar for Alabama and Notre Dame games. They may also be drawn by the number of craft beers (draws) on tap. People are taking their beer very seriously now — a growing group wants IPA (India Pale Ale). I was fortunate to take a sip of Kentucky Bourbon Ale, a stronger brew, aged in bourbon barrels and served in a 10 ounce snifter. It was smooth and creamy with “a hint of butterscotch” according to Molly. I caught the hint of bourbon and wished it weren’t so early in the day, and that I didn’t need to keep a clear head. They also serve wine by the glass or bottle and cocktails, including the popular house cosmopolitan. Another bonus for me was their Southwestern pizza. It made me remember that it takes a good,
yeasty bread dough to make an excellent pizza crust. How often do you want to eat the rims, the “bones” of the pizza? You’ll want these. The talented chef has created a wonderful topping of basil pesto sauce, spinach, caramelized red onions, artichokes, roasted red peppers and feta cheese. I was glad I didn’t have to share this one (gluten). Molly pointed out that “All the menu items (which range from tempting appetizers, soups, salads, sandwiches, wraps, steaks, hamburgers and desserts) are priced under $21, so people can afford to come back frequently; our food is a splurge someone can feel good about.” Happy Hour is every day from 4 – 6 p.m. The restaurant is conveniently located near the intersection of Reed Hartman and Pfeiffer with plentiful parking. Operating hours are from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to midnight (the kitchen closes at 11 p.m.); Sunday, from 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. The Firehouse Grill 4785 Lake Forest Drive Cincinnati, OH 45242 513-733-FIRE (3473)
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16 • OPINION
‘A Modern-Day Patriarch’ Dear Editor,
I learned from a letter in The American Israelite that Hillel at UC sponsored “Heneini: Coming out in a Jewish High School.” I understand that there are many in the Jewish community who have no problem with the gay lifestyle. However, there are also many who believe that the Torah forbids a gay lifestyle. For an organization that depends on a diverse community for its sustenance, this was an ill conceived action. We can be tolerant of others’ beliefs, but we don’t have to help support those beliefs. My advice to those who are offended by Hillel’s action is to deny them any of your support. Don’t support those who try to mold young impressionable minds in directions that you feel are wrong. Jerome Liner Cincinnati, Ohio Dear Editor: I was sickened by your misguided choice for the cover story which appeared on the entire front page of the October 27, 2011 issue, “ADL guidelines help Miami cope with controversial picketing.” Although your staff writer, Barbara
Morgenstern, may have thought her article was about the AntiDefamation League’s (ADL’s) guidelines helping to deal with controversy and picketing, I unfortunately found it to be much more about the actions of Westboro Baptist Church (WBC). In fact, the ADL and its advice were referenced in a mere three paragraphs, but WBC was referenced in eight of the total of 11 paragraphs of the story. What were you thinking to give them this much [front page] publicity with a photo that includes such signs as “G-d hates Jews” and “G-d is your enemy?” Wouldn’t a much better choice have been either the article [printed on page 5] regarding the “Occupy Wall Street” protests and Anti-Semitism; or the article [on page 10] about the “Shalits trying to adjust” after the return of their son, Gilad, who lived through more than five long years in captivity, and whose story we continue to follow? I realize that you may need articles to fill your specific categories of news (National, Israel, etc.), but the hatred of WBC members should not have been given front page publicity. The article even stated that fact in two quotes by Miami University Dean of Students, Susan Mosely-Howard: “Every
mention of WBC in the media is considered a victory by the group,” citing the ADL on the subject. [Emphasis added.] Mosely-Howard went on to say that “[T]heir goal is publicity.” It is ok to report the news, but to choose that story over others in the same issue was a disgrace to the legacy of The American Israelite. Additionally, I do not automatically think of the “Miami University” simply as “Miami,” even though I have lived in Ohio all of my life. When I read this headline, I thought of Miami, Fla., not Oxford, Ohio. Even when you have a “location” from where the story originates, it would have been helpful to understand from the headline that you were writing about the university located northwest of Cincinnati, also known as “Miami of Ohio.” On the issue of a headline, isn’t it proper journalism to accurately match your headline to your article? Note to those readers thinking to themselves “Hey, this is publicity for WBC as well!” My response in a “Letter to the Editor” is an opinion of a reader, not a paid piece of journalism by newspaper staff that was published on the FRONT PAGE! Mindy Nemoff Blue Ash, Ohio
T EST Y OUR T ORAH KNOWLEDGE THIS WEEK’S PORTION: LECH LECHA (GENESIS 12—17) 1. Whose shepherds fought? A. Abraham and Nimrod B. Abraham and Lot C. Abraham and Pharaoh
of the kings? A. Israel B. Egypt C. Babylon
2. What was the result? A. They fought for years B. They made peace C. They split up
4. Did Ishmael have a circumcision? A. Yes B. No
3. Where were the battles
5. Where is Chazzan Tamar?
cattle grazed in other people's property 2. C. 13:8-11. The Midrash says that Lot lost his connection to Hashem
when he separated from Abraham. 3. A. Chapter 14 4. A. 17:25. 5. 14:7. Rashi says this is Ein Gedi.
Rabbi Shafran is an editor at large and columnist for Ami Magazine
Do you have something to say? E-mail your letter to email@example.com
says that Lot mistakenly felt he was Abraham's only heir and the land belonged to him. Ramban says that the dispute started because LotÅfs
The first notice, shortly before Rosh Hashana, came from “Tehilla.” The subject box of the e-mail read: “Baruch Dayan HaEmet/URGENT, YOSEF PASSED AWAY!” and the message began: “I can’t believe this rabbi. I can’t believe he has left us. He was so concerned for me and my family….” Tehilla is not her real name. She is a non-Jewish resident of a Muslim country, and is married to a Hindu man. But she is a “Noahide,” a person who has accepted the Torah’s universal “Seven Commandments” for humankind. In fact, she studies the works of, among others, the Chofetz Chaim, and pines for the day for when her adult sons, who are following in her path, will find wives ready to do the same. And for Moshiach’s arrival. Yosef was Yosef ben Shlomo Hakohen, an American-born Jewish returnee to Judaism (his original family name was Oboler) who lived in Bayit Vegan, Jerusalem, and who made it his life’s work to bring Jews closer to their heritage and to be a source of encouragement and direction to non-Jews who have found their way to realizing the Torah’s truth. And so the anguish at Yosef’s unexpected passing was felt not only by Tehilla but by countless people around the world, in the strangest of places, who had benefitted from his writing — and, in many cases, his personal interaction with them. I never had the honor of meeting Yosef in person but knew him from numerous electronic conversations we had. He was a remarkable man. In fact, I had begun asking him about his background and work, hoping one day to make him the subject of an Ami interview. Now, sadly, I can share only the few facts I came to garner; and, incomparably sadder still, not in an interview but an obituary. Yosef, the child of leftist social activists, discovered Torah in his youth and was captivated by a deep desire to reach out to Jews who shared his parents’ convictions, to help them better understand the true raison d’etre of the Jewish nation. “I wanted,” he wrote me, “to help them to understand that it is through the study and fulfillment of the Torah that we make our contribution towards a better world.”
In 1995, Feldheim published Yosef’s “The Universal Jew: Letters to a Progressive Father from his Orthodox Son,” telling the tale of his parents’ dedication to the poor and underprivileged, and about his own personal journey, which led him to dedicate his own life to outreach. The following year, in a Jewish Observer article entitled “And He shall turn the Hearts of the Fathers to the Sons,” Yosef reprised some of that story. And he established “Hazon — Renewing Our Universal Vision,” a study program/Internet resource that touched untold numbers of hearts and minds. In one of his many communications to his followers, Yosef quoted Rav Avrohom Yoffen, zt”l, the Rosh Yeshiva of Bais YosefNovardok, as noting the significance of the fact that our forefather Avrohom is the archetype of both kindness toward others and intolerance for idolatry. The latter, he explains, is based on a belief that various forces in nature are in competition with one another. That antagonism, he continued, is paralleled in, and connected to, human beings’ alienation from one another. Avrohom Avinu embraced lovingkindness to counter that disaffection, and he fought idolatry to undermine its root cause. That well describes Yosef’s life-mission itself. On Yom Kippur, “Tehilla” lit a yahrzeit candle for Yosef, who left no blood-relatives. I remember how she expressed her feelings about meeting and corresponding with Yosef and other Jews who have offered her encouragement and guidance. “With all the sufferings [the world has] inflicted on you all,” she once wrote, “I still cannot fathom how magnanimous you all are in being a light to all nations. “After meeting your people [by e-mail], I cannot understand how such a warm, compassionate and humane people can be so persecuted and so misunderstood. “All I can pray is when Hashem decides it’s time for all your sufferings to be over, He will show us Gentiles the compassion we failed to show you all.” “Soon G-d is going to say ‘enough’ to your tears…” And to hers as well, may the day come soon.
Written by Rabbi Dov Aaron Wise
ANSWERS 1. B. 13:6-12.The land was not big enough for AbrahamÅfs and LotÅfs cattle so they parted ways. Rashi
Rabbi Avi Shafran Contributing Columnist
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
JEWISH LIFE • 17
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
Sedra of the Week
SHABBAT SHALOM: PARSHAT LECH LECHA GENESIS 12:1 –17:27
After a number of peregrinations and a war against the four tyrants by Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel — “Who is a Jew?” is a question that has plagued Israeli society since the inception of the state, and at times threatens the crucial alliance between American Jewry and its Middle Eastern motherland. I suggest that without a clear understanding of the covenant between G-d and Abraham described in this week’s biblical reading, little light can be shed on the issues. Maimonides in his introduction to the Laws of Idolatry maintains that Abraham (Abram), the first Hebrew, had already deduced the new revolutionary faith in a single, unique, non-corporeal G-d before the Almighty spoke to him. At the opening of this week’s reading, G-d commands Abram to leave his “country, birthplace and father’s house” and set out for the Land of Israel. G-d pledges to make him the paterfamilias of “a great nation through which all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12: 2-3). After a number of peregrinations and a war against the four tyrants of the fertile crescent which Abram miraculously wins, G-d enters into a formal covenant in which He guarantees Abram innumerable direct descendants and their eventual possession and control of the Land of Israel (Gen. 15). Clearly, progeny and a homeland are the two fundamental ingredients of a family-nationstate — a peoplehood, if you will. It is important to note that G-d is the proactive partner in this covenant. Moreover, from their very first encounter, G-d charges Abram with becoming a source of blessing for the entire world. In the next chapter, Abram is given a son, Ishmael, who will be blessed and from whom will emerge 12 princes. Then, in chapter 17, G-d gives Abram an ethical command to walk before Him and be wholehearted as the necessary condition for the covenant (17:1). He changes Abram’s name to Abraham (father of a multitude of nations) and ratifies His covenant with Abraham’s biological descen-
of the fertile crescent which Abram miraculously wins, G-d enters into a formal covenant in which He guarantees Abram innumerable direct descendants and their eventual possession and control of the Land of Israel (Gen. 15).
dants (through Isaac, 17:19, 21) with the rite of circumcision — a patently religious ritual. All of this comes together in chapter 18 when, after again declaring that “through Abraham all the nations of the earth shall be blessed,” G-d explains that He initially chose and loved Abraham “in order that he may instruct his children and his posterity to keep the way of the Lord by acting with compassionate righteousness and moral justice” (Gen. 18:18-19). Hence the very roots of our nationality and peoplehood were informed with the G-d-consciousness of ethical monotheism, “whole-hearted” compassionate and moral conduct, and male circumcision. Abraham was given a mandate to transmit our mission to subsequent generations in order that we may truly become the blessing for the nations that G-d promised we would be. This covenantal idea is fleshed out in Exodus, when the descendants of Abraham emerge from Egypt as a full-fledged nation. Under the leadership of Moses, all the children of Israel are confronted with G-d’s revelation of the Ten Commandments at Sinai (Exodus 20) and then, after receiving many other civil and ritual laws, as well as a confirmation of G-d’s pledge to give us the Land of Israel, G-d repeats His covenant with the nation (Ex. 24). What emerges is a nation formed from the matrix of a G-d Idea and Ideal – a national and a faith community inextricably bound together. Are we a nationality or a religion? The truth is we are both
together and each separately. Because we are a nation, those who have biological roots through a Jewish mother, although they may be atheists, are nevertheless Jews; and because we are a religion, we managed to survive and even flourish as Jews during a 2,000-year exile. As a result of this unique hybrid status, we cannot simply dichotomize between state and religion the way Americans can. Our religious narrative and mission is also our national origin and culture. Jewish law provides for conversion, and no ancient halachic authority demanded total compliance with “Orthodox” law as a necessary condition. The convert must be taught “several of the more stringent and several of the more lenient laws” (the Talmud in Yebamot 45, 46 mentions the Sabbath, parts of kashrut and the tithes or charity), he must in principle formally accept all the commandments, and must undergo ritual immersion in a kosher mikve. Further, all males must be circumcised. Ritual immersion symbolizes entry into the Jewish nation; the acceptance of commandments symbolizes entry into the Jewish religion. For Russian citizens of Israel whose fathers were Jewish and who serve in the IDF, there are even further leniencies, and it is certainly in our national interest to convert these citizens. Shabbat Shalom Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Chancellor Ohr Torah Stone Chief Rabbi — Efrat Israel
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18 • JEWZ IN THE NEWZ
By Nate Bloom Contributing Columnist REVENGE AND STONER ADVENTURES BRETT RATNER, 42, (“Rush Hour”) the director of the “Tower Heist,” must be thanking his lucky stars that he stuck with this action/comedy film for six long years as plans to film it fell through. Now the movie, which opens on Friday, Nov. 4, seems “ripped from the headlines,” with echoes of the BERNIE MADOFF and other Wall St. scandals. BEN STILLER, 45, stars as Jason Kovacs, a building manager. A Wall St. billionaire, Arthur Shaw, (Alan Alda), who lives in the penthouse of the building Kovacs manages, is under house arrest for stealing $2 billion from investors. The pension fund of the building’s employees has been wiped out by Shaw. Kovacs enlists his brother-in-law (Casey Affleck); a Wall St. investor whom Shaw bankrupted (MATTHEW BRODERICK, 49); and a smalltime thief (Eddie Murphy); in a scheme to steal $20 million in cash that they learn Shaw has stashed in the penthouse. Also opening on the 4th is “A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas,” the third installment in the comedy film series. Former college students Harold (John Cho) and Kumar (Kal Penn) have grown apart in the six years since we last saw them. The movie opens with Kumar getting a package of marijuana that he re-directs to Harold’s house. A series of mishaps results in the pot and Harold’s father-in-law’s prize Xmas tree going up in smoke. The duo then spend X-mas eve searching all of New York City for a replacement tree. Neil Patrick Harris co-stars, with series regulars DAVID KRUMHOLTZ, 33, and EDDIE KAYE THOMAS, 31, reprising their roles as the “stoners” Goldstein and Rosenberg. The director is TODD SCHULSON-STRAUSS, 31, who is making his feature film debut. Soon after graduating college, he began directing music videos for top acts. In the last six years, he has directed a slew of short films and TV shows that starred big names like Stephen Colbert, LEWIS BLACK and JACKIE MASON. Usually it’s hard to confirm that a first time feature director is Jewish. Schulson-Strauss is an exception. The first line of his bio page on his official website says: “Ever since his grandfather gave him a video camera for his Bar Mitzvah (after years of relentless pestering), Todd has been a one-man movie-
making machine — directing, writing, shooting and editing all of his own work.” MARLO’S MEMOIR Speaking of Ben Stiller — he is one of 20 prominent comedians who is interviewed by actress Marlo Thomas in her 2010 book, “Growing Up Laughing.” I recently came across this inventive combination of personal memoir and interviews (which is now out in paperback) and it is a delightful gem, chock full of funny and interesting anecdotes. Thomas, 73, is, of course, the daughter of the late comedian/singer/actor Danny Thomas. As Marlo notes, her father, who was the child of Lebanese Catholic Arab parents, was often taken to be Jewish. His looks were “stereotypically Semitic” and, in 1952, he played the lead in a re-make of “The Jazz Singer,” about a Jew torn between his faith and his career. Marlo says that the vast majority of Danny’s friends and business associates were Jewish. Many of them, like GEORGE BURNS and JACK BENNY, belonged to the Hillcrest Country Club, a Los Angeles club founded in 1921 by Jews who were barred from the area’s “Christian-only” clubs. In turn, for decades the Hillcrest didn’t allow non-Jews to be members. Thomas was a constant Club guest in the ‘50s and ‘60s, and his Jewish pals got the club board to make Thomas an “honorary member” in the early ‘60s. GROUCHO MARX, Marlo says, had the most memorable comment at the board meeting about Thomas. Tongue-incheek, Groucho said: “I don’t mind making a non-Jew an honorary member. But couldn’t we at least pick a guy who doesn’t look so Jewish?” AL DAVIS AL DAVIS, the owner of the Oakland Raiders, died on Oct. 8, age 82. A member of the pro football hall of fame, he was a talented college and pro coach who parlayed his coaching skills into a minority ownership of the Raiders. In 1972, he gained complete control of the team and, as its general manager/owner, put together squads that won three Super Bowls. Unlike most fans, I knew Davis was Jewish. But until his funeral, I didn’t know that Davis and his wife were members of an Oakland Modern Orthodox synagogue. Davis’ funeral was held, however, at an Oakland Conservative shul where his only child, his son, MARK, belongs. Mark, now the team’s owner, is reportedly a regular Shabbos worshipper.
FROM THE PAGES 100 Y EARS A GO Mr. and Mrs. Josh Frohman of 847 Rockdale Avenue, Avondale, announced the betrothal of their daughter, Florence, to Mr. Milton Katz of Piqua, OH. “The American Citizen’s Clubs,” one of the organizations which meets at the Jewish Settlement House on Clinton Street, has issued a booklet of instruction for new voters which is of inestimable value. It is printed in English and Yiddish and contains full information concerning the coming election, setting forth its importance, the names of all of the candidates, how to cast a ballot properly, etc. The pamphlet is absolutely non-partisan. While the Israelite is taking no part in the campaign, which is to be ended by the election next Tuesday, it cannot refrain from commending to the favorable consideration of its readers one of the most valued members of its editorial staff, Dr. Gotthard Deutsch, who is a candidate for the Board of Education, at large, so that he could be voted by electors in all parts of the city. Dr. Deutsch has all of his life been closely affiliated with professional work and has been a member of the Board of Education for the past four years, during which time he has proved that he possesses exceptional qualifications for the office. He has a knowledge of details that enables him to understand which is best for the children, and at the same time a full appreciation of what the city can and cannot do. Dr. Deutsch is a full believer in thorough instruction of German in the public school and a staunch maintainer in the secular public schools. So that he can be faithfully trusted to work in the best interests of all, regardless of religious affiliations. Women electors will do well to remember that they can vote for two candidates at large, so that those who desire to vote for Miss Campbell can do so and also vote for Dr. Deutsch at the same time. — November 2, 1911
75 Y EARS A GO Mr. Ralph Pappenheimer has been elected president of the ParentTeachers Association University School, with Mrs. Arthur H. Morse, first vice president; Mrs. Benjamin G. Lehenbauer, second vice president; Mrs. Max Elton, recording secretary; Mrs. W. C. F. Dietz, corresponding secretary, and Mrs. L. J. Carpenter treasurer. Officers of the High School Group are Mrs. Charles H. Tobias, chairman; Mrs. Laurence Chenoweth, vice chairman; Mrs. John Garber, secretary; Mrs. Philip Trounstine, Mrs. Walter Sibbald and Jack Guggenheim, board members; Miss Genevieve Dennison and Miss Julia E. Dearsley, faculty members. The cake which Mrs. Sam Becker of Ft. Thomas, Ky., presented to President and Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt when they were in Nippert Stadium recently seems destined to go
down in campaign history along with other famous incidents such as the Social Security controversy and dictators, alleged and real. To paraphrase that famous observation that “a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach,” we may opine that “a way to page one of a newspaper is through a well-baked cake.” The human-interest appeal around the cake and the President’s request for it struck the fancy of editors throughout the country and Mrs. Becker still is receiving queries for interviews and photos of herself. She recently received letters of thanks for the gift from Mr. and Mrs. Roosevelt. — November 5, 1936
50 Y EARS A GO Mr. Louis Ehrenfeld, chairman of the Women’s Division of the 1962 Jewish Welfare 2001 Fund campaign announced the following appointments: Mrs. Carl Gutmann, overall vice chairman in charge of initial gifts; Mrs. David L. Graller, overall vice chairman in charge of special gifts; Mrs. Clarence Gall, overall vice chairman in charge of general gifts. All four have been active in the Women’s Division for a number of years and hold key positions in community organizations. Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Hauptman of this city announced the marriage of Mrs. Hauptman’s daughter, Mrs. Harriet Stix, to Mr. Philip Bernstein, son of Mr. and Mrs. Martin Bernstein of Cheyenne, Wyo. The ceremony was performed by Dr. James G. Heller Friday, Oct. 27, at the residence of the bride’s mother. The bride was graduated from Smith College. She is a granddaughter of Mrs. Robert Kuhn. Mr. Bernstein was graduated from the University of Colorado. The couple will live in New York City. Mrs. Minnie Fischoff Simons, 1840 Larchwood Place, passed away Tuesday, Oct. 24. She is survived by her husband, Charles Simons; two sons, Irvin Simons, of Cincinnati, and Robert M. Simons of Ashland, Ky.; three sisters, Mrs. Bess Kraus and Mrs. Clara Bass of Cincinnati, and Mrs. Rose Korros of Middletown; and two brothers Irvin Fischoff, of Cincinnati, and William Fischoff of Dayton. Mrs. Simons was a member of Roselawn Synagogue, the Ladies Benevolent Society and the American Beneficial Society. — November 2, 1961
25 Y EARS A GO “Hats off to Phyllis Singer” will be the theme for the Cincinnati Hebrew Day School PTA annual luncheon. Phyllis Singer, editor/general manager of The American Israelite, has been an active member of the PTA for over 20 years. She will be honored for her long service at the luncheon, Sunday, Nov. 9, at 12 noon at the school, in addition, a hat show will be featured by Chapeau creations.
The combination of the “technicolor canvas” of the autumn foliage and the many shades of humor and historical insight provided by Dr. Jacob R. Marcus in his Keynote speech made the Oct. 26 dedication for the new memorial garden at the United Jewish Cemetery in Montgomery a memorable ceremony. Looking back 100 years, Marcus recalled a butcher known as Kahn (not related to the present Kahn family) who decided to live it up and move to Clifton — known at that time as a village. “Along came a delegation of respected people from the area,” Marcus said. They told Mr. Kahn, “We don’t want you here in Clifton.” Mr. Kahn then sold the land to an Orthodox Jewish congregation — who turned it into a cemetery. “He told the people of Clifton, “If you don’t want to live with living Jews you can live with dead Jews!” On a more serious note, he added: “The attitude of a community towards its sick, its old and its dead is a barometer of a culture. We are a very cultured people. We take care of and revere these people, following a fine tradition.” — November 6, 1986
10 Y EARS A GO Sol Augenbraun, 81, passed away October 23, 2001 after a short illness. He was born in pre-war Poland, and was a son of the late Avrohorn Nimretzki and Golda Pyhia Augenbraun. He took his mother’s name because he felt his life in post-war Europe might be facilitated by a simpler name. Mr. Augenbraun was the husband of the late Leah Augenbraun, who predeceased him in 1996. He is survived by his children, Gail Augenbraun of Dayton, Ohio and Abe and Sara Augenbraun of Boca Raton, Fla. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Rochelle Walingford, Ryan Boggs, Eliana Augenbraun, Ariella Augenbraun and Avishai Augenbraun. Mr. Augenbraun was the brother of the late Esther Banks of Marseille, France. The estimated two Jews now living in Afghanistan are heirs to a 2,700 year-old Jewish presence that may include members of the tribe that makes up the ruling Taliban. Jews first came to what is now called Afghanistan in the seventh and eighth centuries BCE, following the first biblical exile at the hands of the Assyrians. The inhospitable, mountainous country — which has a harsh climate and is populated by fierce indigenous tribes — long had served as a place where empires dumped their dissidents and established colonies. According to legend, the 10 tribes of northern Israel were dispersed in 722 BCE. According to several researchers — including Israel’s second president, Yizhak Ben-Zvi — the Pashtun believe they are descended from the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel, and later were forcibly converted to Islam.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
CLASSIFIEDS • 19
COMMUNITY DIRECTORY COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS Access (513) 373-0300 • jypaccess.org Big Brothers/Big Sisters Assoc. (513) 761-3200 • bigbrobigsis.org Camp Ashreinu (513) 702-1513 Camp at the J (513) 722-7226 • mayersonjcc.org Camp Livingston (513) 793-5554 • camplivingston.com Cedar Village (513) 754-3100 • cedarvillage.org Chevra Kadisha (513) 396-6426 Cincinnati Community Mikveh 513-351-0609 • cincinnatimikveh.org Fusion Family (513) 703-3343 • fusionnati.org 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) 514-1200 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 Shalom Family (513) 703-3343 • myshalomfamily.org The Center for Holocaust & Humanity Education (513) 487-3055 • holocaustandhumanity.org Vaad Hoier (513) 731-4671 Workum Fund (513) 899-1836 • workum.org YPs at the JCC (513) 761-7500 • mayersonjcc.org
CONGREGATIONS Adath Israel Congregation (513) 793-1800 • adath-israel.org Beit Chaverim (513) 984-3393 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
Congregation Ohr Chadash (513) 252-7267 • ohrchadashcincinnati.com Congregation Sha’arei Torah shaareitorahcincy.org Golf Manor Synagogue (513) 531-6654 • golfmanorsynagogue.org Isaac M. Wise Temple (513) 793-2556 • wisetemple.org 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 Chai Tots Early Childhood Center (513) 234.0600 • chaitots.com Chabad Blue Ash (513) 793-5200 • chabadba.com 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 Kehilla - School for Creative Jewish Education (513) 489-3399 • kehilla-cincy.com Mercaz High School (513) 792-5082 x104 • mercazhs.org Kulanu (Reform Jewish High School) 513-262-8849 • kulanucincy.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 Discovery Center (513) 234.0777 • jdiscovery.com Jewish National Fund (513) 794-1300 • jnf.org Jewish War Veterans (513) 204-5594 • jwv.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 TALENT from page 4 Education,” explained Sarah Weiss, CHHE’s executive director.“This helped us connect with this demographic which will insure that our efforts continue,” she added. “Bree Rosen, one of the Light the Spark participants, is now one of CHHE’s newest board members. From exposing young adults to our work and helping to provide us with valuable volunteers, Access and YAD are enormous assets to our young adults as well as to our community agencies. I look forward to continued partnerships that create gateways for young adult involvement in our Jewish community.” Sometimes, it’s not just staff referrals or being exposed to an organization that is responsible for facilitating a connection between young professionals and organizations, sometimes the best matches are made over a glass of wine, on a volleyball court, at a ‘70s disco party, or at any number of the 50+ events that Access hosts for this demographic throughout the year. Often it’s through the connections the young professionals make with one another at these events that lead to greater involvement in the community. “We know the value that comes from providing networking opportunities of this kind,” said Saeks. “In addition to meeting friends and potential life partners, giving Jewish young professionals the chance to socialize with one another opens the door to lots of other important possibilities.” “Access was my first introduction to Jewish life in Cincinnati. I started coming to Access programs the week after I moved here,” said Jamie Dalin, a recent transplant from St. Louis via the University of Illinois. “Since my involvement with Access, I have been able to build a foundation for myself in Jewish life. I learned more about LEAD and now am a member of HERO from page 6 questions than it answers: Was the saving of a selected number of Jews an act of righteousness or an act of collaboration? What actions are acceptable in the name of survival? If you know the name Rezso Kasztner, you won’t need any encouragement to see “Killing Kasztner: The Jew Who Dealt With Nazis.” If you don’t, that is
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Up to 24 hour care Meal Preparation Errands/Shopping Hygiene Assistance Light Housekeeping
(513) 531-9600 this year’s LEAD class. I was also approached to get involved in BBYO, and am now one of the girls’ advisors. I have also been given an introduction to synagogues within the area thanks to the High Holiday tickets that Access provides. Access offers a lot of ways for Jewish young professionals, both new and native to Cincinnati, to get involved in the community!” Todd Charna, a Miami University graduate said, “I have always been involved in the social and cultural aspects of the Jewish community, through BBYO in high school, and AEPi and Hillel in college. When I moved to Cincinnati, it was really cool to find Access, an organization devoted to young Jewish adults looking to get to know each other. It was through my association with someone at an Access event that I learned of an opening as a volunteer BBYO advisor and jumped at the opportunity to give back to the next wave of future Jewish young adults.” From helping Children’s Hospital recruit top young Jewish talent and welcome 20 and 30 something doctors visiting from Israel, to exposing constituents to many important organizations such as Crayons to Computers and the Freestore Foodbank, Access and YAD have helped make a difference in the broader community as well. “I had spent very little time in Overthe Rhine growing up and had never heard of the Peaslee Neighborhood Center prior to attending an ACTout event in 2008,” explained Ed Kuresman, a Financial Analyst with Madison Wealth Management. “The event introduced me to an amazing organization that serves a critical need in the community. To say the least, I was deeply inspired and have served as treasurer of the board ever since. It is unlikely that I would have crossed paths with Peaslee had it not been for ACTout.” even more reason to see this documentary on the strange and compelling life and death of one of the most morally complex figures to come out of the Holocaust.— Kenneth Turan, L.A. Times. Please contact The Center for Holocaust and Humanity Education to reserve a seat at either showing. Tickets will also be available at the door at Wise Center and at The Carnegie Center.
20 • BUSINESS / LEGAL
Keeping baby Kosher Pain-Free Nursing Cream Bonds Mother/Baby, Eliminates Common Breastfeeding Problem Breastfeeding is the most natural way to feed and bond with newborn babies. It is well documented that breast milk is the best nourishment for newborns, providing the nutrients and immunities that growing babies need and making digestion easier. Moms benefit
from the uterine contractions caused by breastfeeding, alleviating blood loss and helping new mothers regain their shapes faster. Breastfeeding, however, is not always easy, especially for new, inexperienced mothers. For some women, frequent nursing can cause chafing, sores and irritation that makes feeding baby a challenging and uncomfortable experience, instead of the loving, bonding experience it is intended. Motivated by guilt, shame and love for their children, mothers — Jewish mothers in particular —
press on, often in excruciating pain, to provide their babies with the best possible sustenance. EasyNurse™ Natural Nursing Salve is an all-natural, kosher ointment that soothes, replenishes and conditions sore nipples chafed by breastfeeding. Made from a unique blend of 11 ingredients, this kosher cream (imported from Israel) is derived from herbs and other naturally occurring substances, with no chemical additives, making it safe for mothers and babies so it doesn’t need to be rinsed off between feedings.
Absorbing easily into the skin upon contact, EasyNurse™ Natural Nursing Salve does not need to be rubbed in as much as other creams, making for less irritation and providing instant relief. Further, regular use of EasyNurse™ during the final trimester of pregnancy may prevent sore, irritated nipples from even occurring. To learn more about EasyNurse™ Natural Nursing Salve, visit the website. “In my twenty years of practicing family medicine, this is the first ointment I’ve encountered
which gives consistent rapid results to alleviate the suffering of mothers with sore and cracked nipples at the onset of lactation,” noted Dr. Louise Fisher, Family Practitioner. “The immediate soothing effect and the fact that it does not need to be removed before the next feed are features which will help the new mother to breastfeed successfully.” Known as Rafael’s Nursing Mother’s Ointment in Israel, EasyNurse is kosher under the supervision of Rabbi Rubin of Rechovot.
Preview of Coming Attractions Legally Speaking
by Marianna Bettman The U.S. Supreme Court always begins its new term the first Monday in October. The Ohio Supreme Court doesn’t have terms, but its schedule is lighter over the summer, and it starts work in earnest right after Labor Day. I thought I’d use this column to preview some of the cases from the Ohio Supreme Court’s “new term” this fall. The cases previewed have been very recently argued, and I’ll revisit them when they have been decided. The Supreme Court of Ohio does one thing the U.S. Supreme Court doesn’t do. Twice a year, it leaves its formal chambers in Columbus, and hears cases in one of the outlying counties. This is part of the Court’s Off-Site program, initiated by the late Chief Justice Thomas Moyer. The purISLAMISTS from page 7 “Anyone claiming that this is a moderate group is either lying or has been deceived,” wrote Barry Rubin, director of the Global Research and International Affairs Center at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, Israel, in an analysis of Ennahda’s electoral success. In his analysis, Rubin cited a 1994 article by Middle East scholar Martin Kramer on the rhetoric and writings of Rachid Ghannouchi, Ennahda’s founder and current leader, who at the time was seeking a visa to tour the
pose is to give students a chance to learn about the judiciary. On October 19, the high court heard cases at the Highland County Court House in Hillsboro, Ohio. There are a number of interesting criminal/constitutional issues on the Ohio Supreme Court’s docket. One of the most interesting is the question, in State v. Johnson, of whether the police need a warrant to place a GPS under a person’s car, and then to track him 24/7, or whether warrantless tracking in this manner violates the Fourth Amendment or the Ohio Constitution. The Butler county sheriff’s office did this, and ultimately was able to make a major arrest for trafficking in cocaine. But the defendant is arguing that the police should have gotten a warrant before placing the GPS under his van. The prosecution is arguing that the defendant had absolutely no expectation of privacy in the undercarriage of his van, which was parked on a public street when the officers installed the device, nor any expectation of privacy in his travel on public roads. The United States Supreme Court has an almost identical case, State v. Jones, on its docket on November 8. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals held that the warrantless use of GPS tracking devices for constant surveillance
violates the Fourth Amendment. Whatever the U.S. Supreme Court decides in the Jones case about the Fourth Amendment will of course be binding on the Ohio Supreme Court. Another Fourth Amendment case before the Ohio Supreme Court involves a car stop by police based on a citizen tip to the dispatcher that the driver of a tow truck was possibly suicidal and had a gun in his truck. The police found and stopped the truck and later found a loaded gun in the glove compartment. The driver was arrested and charged with improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle. (he was also taken to the hospital). But other than the tip, the driver had not violated any traffic laws. Was it fair to pull him over at all? The case is State v. Dunn. The Ohio high Court is tackling a very thorny domestic violence issue in State v. Ginley. It is sadly common in such cases for the victim to make a report to police about the abuse, but later recant her (yes, it could be a him, but in the overwhelming majority of cases the victims are women) testimony. Under existing rules of evidence, when the prosecution knows the victim is going to recant her testimony at trial, the prosecutor cannot use the earlier statement at trial. Usually that means the defendant cannot suc-
cessfully be prosecuted. In this case the state is asking the Ohio Supreme Court to allow the court to call the recanting victim as the court’s own witness, which would allow the case to go forward. On the civil case side, the Court will be deciding some eminent domain issues. That’s when the government takes a person’s property, either physically or by regulating it to death. Usually a government’s power of eminent domain only extends to its boundaries. But in two cases before the Ohio high court, Clifton v. Village of Blanchester and Moore et al. v. City of Middletown, landowners whose property is outside the boundaries of the municipalities are trying to sue the municipalities for zone changes that adversely affect their property to the point that they argue they must be compensated for taking. In a case of interest to new home buyers, Jones v. Centex Homes, purchasers of new homes with steel joists that became magnetized during construction found that their electronic equipment didn’t work. They sued the builder for this, even though the contract they signed contained a waiver of all warranties except what was covered in a separate Limited Warranty Booklet (the magnetized joists weren’t covered) available to the buyers if they’d asked for it.
The buyers say the duty to build a new house in a workmanlike manner cannot be waived. The home builder says yes it can, and it was. Another case on the Ohio court’s docket, Jackson v. Bartec, Inc, is a challenge by Zeno’s bar in Columbus to the Ohio Smoke Free Workplace Act. This law, enacted by popular initiative in 2006, banned smoking in public places in Ohio (with few exceptions) and granted power to the Ohio Department of Health to promulgate rules of enforcement. Zeno’s, a multiple offender under the act, argues that the law is unconstitutional, and that the Ohio Department of Health exceeded its authority by making it responsible for the actions of third parties (the smokers) on its premises. Of 33,000 citations issued, only the bars, and never the smokers, have ever been cited. Zeno’s also argues the regulations amount to a taking of its property. The Attorney General is defending the constitutionality of the law, arguing that it is a perfectly proper exercise of the state’s power to regulate the health and safety of its citizens. This is just a sampling of a very busy fall for the Ohio Supreme Court.
United States. Kramer, then affiliated with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, cited Ghannouchi’s support for Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, who had been defeated recently by a U.S.led coalition in the first Gulf War. “We must wage unceasing war against the Americans until they leave the land of Islam, or we will burn and destroy all their interests across the entire Islamic world,” Ghannouchi said at the time. Ghannouchi hewed to the typical Muslim Brotherhood stance on Israel: He backed Hamas and fervently wished for Israel’s disappearance.
“I think that the approach of Palestinian Islamists must be the liberation of Palestine from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea,” Ghannouchi said. “Any part that is liberated is a gain, provided the price is not the sale of the rest of Palestine. Palestine belongs to the Muslims and must be liberated in its entirety.” Kramer also cited a statement by Ghannouchi that the Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization were part of “a Jewish-American plan encompassing the entire region which would cleanse it of all resistance and open it to Jewish
economic and cultural activity, culminating in complete Jewish hegemony from Marrakesh to Kazakhstan.” In his article, Rubin expressed doubt that Ghannouchi had changed. He also predicted that Ennahda’s success, together with reports of Islamist gains in Egypt and Libya — two other nations that shucked off secular dictators — portends decades of unrest. “We’ve been handed 30-50 years (that’s the optimistic assessment) of bloodshed, oppression, social stagnation, war, terrorism, and anti-Western hatred,” Rubin wrote. “We must now devise a
strategy to deal with this situation and survive it.” That sort of outlook is a surrender to despair, according to Joel Rubin, director of government affairs for the Ploughshares Fund, which funds projects aimed at advancing peace and ending conflicts. “Tunisia is a society that is going to trend to moderation,” he said, noting pledges by Ennahda to protect minorities and the status of Tunisian women — among the most advanced in the Arab world. “One can’t wish Islamism away, so one should see what it’s going to look like.”
Marianna Bettman is a professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Law.
FIRST PERSON • 21
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2011
This Year in Jerusalem Singer Says
by Phyllis Singer October marked a time of prisoner exchange in Israel. On Oct. 18, Gilad Schalit, who had been captured by Hamas terrorists in a cross-border raid in June 2006 and had spent 1,941 days in captivity, was freed and returned to his family home in Mitzpe Hila in Northern Israel. The price was high: Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Cabinet agreed to a deal with Hamas that freed 1,027 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for Schalit. Many of those released had blood on their hands; they had been convicted of killing many Israelis (and some tourists) in terrorist attacks and had been GADHAFI from page 7 Lantos, associates said, delighted in showing visitors a gift he had received from Gadhafi: a copy of his book “Isratine,” his idiosyncratic proposal for a single IsraeliPalestinian state. Steve Rosen, now a consultant to a number of groups on Middle East issues, was at the time the director of foreign policy for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. He said the pro-Israel community decided not to stand in the way of U.S. rapprochement with Libya because of the relief it would offer Israel. Rosen and Alan Makovsky, a staffer for Lantos, were surprised when around 2002 — the same time that Gerbi was making the case for Libya in New York and Washington — Gadhafi’s son, Seif al-Islam, sought them out at a conference on the Middle East in England. “He kept finding ways to bring us into the dialogue,” Rosen recalled. “It became plain we were the reasons for his coming to the conference. He considered us influential in Washington because we were pro-Israel.” Rosen took the younger Gadhafi’s case to the Israelis, who gave AIPAC a green light not to oppose Libya’s overtures — but they also counseled caution. “Most of them raised an eyebrow, saying you can’t trust Gadhafi, but the idea of a rogue state becoming moderate appealed to them,” Rosen said.
sentenced to life in prison. On Oct. 27, Ilan Grapel, an American-Israeli citizen who had been arrested in Egypt in June was freed – perhaps on the coattails of the Schalit deal. Grapel had first been accused of spying for Israel’s Mossad, but later the charges had been reduced to incitement during the Egyptian revolution. The Egyptians had never substantiated any of the charges. Both Israel had the United States had pressured Egypt to release the 27-year-old Emory law school student, who had served in the IDF during the Second Lebanon War. Twenty-five Egyptian prisoners in Israeli jails were released in exchange for Grapel. According to the government, those prisoners were criminals, not terrorists. The Schalit exchange generated much emotion in Israel, while the Grapel deal hardly evoked any reaction. Nevertheless, according to The Jerusalem Post, former Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin said during a speech on Oct. 26 that the exchange deals “aren’t good for the state of Israel, and the state would do well to stop them.” In contrast to Diskin’s negative assessment, Yoram Cohen, the current Shin Bet
chief, has said that the exchange deal with Hamas for Schalit is manageable. He maintains that most of the released prisoners have been banned from returning to the West Bank, where they could reactivate terrorist networks. Those that have returned to the West Bank and East Jerusalem are under close watch by Israeli security forces, he said. According to public opinion polls about the Schalit exchange, an overwhelming majority of Israelis were in favor of the deal, even though many had fears that it would lead to an increase in terrorism. A poll by the Dahaf Institute found that 79 percent of Israelis favored the deal, while 14 percent opposed it. Another poll broadcast on Channel 10 found that 69 percent backed the deal and 26 percent opposed it. Opponents and proponents were vociferous in their comments – as exhibited in letters to the editor and commentary pieces in the Israeli newspapers. Many of the opponents proposed that Israel should institute the death penalty for terrorists who have committed attacks that murdered innocent civilians. On the other hand, proponents saw Schalit as their own son – not only as the son of Noam and Aviva
Schalit, who maintained a vigil in a protest tent near the residence of Prime Minister Netanyahu in Jerusalem. On the days leading up to Schalit’s freedom – after the deal had been announced – supporters and protesters – many of whom were members of bereaved families whose relatives had been killed in terrorist attacks carried out by the prisoners – gathered on the street outside the protest tent to voice their support and opposition. Two of the most interesting and poignant articles appeared as a counterpoint in The Jerusalem Post. One was written by Sherri Mandell, whose son Koby was murdered in 2001 at age 13 in a brutal attack as he and his friend were hiking in a wadi near his home in Tekoa. “Yes, I want Gilad Schalit released,” Mandell wrote. “But not at any price. Not at the price we have experienced. “Most people don’t understand the continuing devastation of grief: fathers who die of heart attacks, mothers who get sick with cancer, children who leave school, families whose only child was murdered. We see depression, suicide, symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. … We see the pain that doesn’t diminish with time.
We literally see people die of grief. … I wish that I could rejoice with the Schalit family. But I can’t. The price is too high.” On the other hand, Esther Wachsman, whose son Nachshon was kidnapped by terrorists in 1994 and killed by them as a rescue attempt by the IDF failed, supported the deal. “When the news broke last week that a deal had been struck for Gilad Schalit’s release, my husband and I wanted to get to the tent and to embrace Noam and Aviva and to rejoice with them,” Wachsman wrote. “I had no mixed feelings then, only relief and joy that Gilad would be coming home. A mother was to get her precious son back from hell. “God has been merciful, has listened to our prayers and said ‘yes,’” Wachsman wrote. “A young soldier would be released and would return to the bosom of his family and of his people.” Two poignant articles, two poignant points of view. But one cannot help but wonder what Sherri Mandell and other bereaved relatives might have said if their loved ones had been captured and held as prisoners instead of being brutally murdered. There are no easy answers.
That view seemingly was vindicated when Libya destroyed its weapons of mass destruction under U.S. supervision. “Israel and its friends are nothing if not pragmatic,” Rosen said. “There are no permanent friends and no permanent enemies.” AIPAC would not comment on the affair. Keith Weissman, Rosen’s deputy at the time, confirmed the account, recalling his own trip to England, at Seif elIslam Gadhafi’s invitation, in 2003. “The Israelis liked it because there was one less guy with a lot of money to spend on bad things,” Weissman said. “They were very nice, we drank wine and stuff,” he said of the Libyans. “They were mostly interested in that we wouldn’t screw up the normalization process.” Congress removed Libya from the 1990s Iran-Libya sanctions act, and Western oil companies returned to the country. Most Jewish groups chose not to respond to invitations to visit Libya, noting that while Gadhafi had removed himself as a threat to others, he was still dangerous to his own people. “Nobody was fooled, everybody knew what Gadhafi was,” said Hoenlein, who like Rosen had turned down invitations to visit Libya. Yet a few of Libya’s new Jewish-American interlocutors didn’t stop at merely not standing in the way of normalization; they seemed to embrace the Gadhafi
regime. Lantos became a strong advocate for normalization, setting up a U.S.-Libya student exchange. “I am very proud of America’s success in convincing Gadhafi to become a decent citizen of the global community,” Lantos said at a hearing of the Foreign Affairs Committee in 2007, when he was chairman. “Our relations with Libya today are in a much better place than they were just five years ago. Our engagement with Gadhafi and the prosperity it has brought Libya serves as a model to countries currently sponsoring terror or compiling weapons of mass destruction. They should know that they, too, can come in from the cold.” Jack Rosen, then the chairman of the American Jewish Congress, met in 2007 with Gadhafi and counseled greater outreach. “He represents a model of a leader who chose to take a risk in talking to the West, and we need to reinforce the path he chose,” Rosen told the Forward. Rosen did not return requests for comment for this story. Such hopes were soon dashed by Gadhafi. He grew closer with the anti-American president of Venezuela, Hugo Chavez, dabbling in the internal affairs of other African countries. In 2009 he delivered a long, bizarre rant at the U.N. General Assembly. He pursued a weird one-sided courtship with Condoleezza Rice, Bush’s secretary of state, which she once said gave her the chills. His promises of restitution to
Libya’s Jewish exiles — driven out two years before Gadhafi took power in 1969 — came to naught.
prime minister — into embarrassed silence. Much hope now rests on the provisional government that has replaced Gadhafi. Gerbi advocates caution. At the revolutionaries’ invitation, since May he has spent weeks on and off in Libya assisting its people overcome post-traumatic stress. Yet at Rosh Hashanah, when Gerbi attempted to reopen a shuttered, neglected synagogue in Tripoli, he was met with a virulently anti-Semitic Facebook-organized campaign. Protesters outside the synagogue held up signs proclaiming what Gadhafi had once promised: no Jews in Libya. The incident prompted 16 Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives, including 10 top Jewish members, to write to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging her to use her influence to preserve Jewish sites in Libya. “They are tangible evidence of a once open and tolerant chapter in its past and can serve as a visible symbol of a more hopeful future,” said the letter, which was spearheaded by Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.). Gerbi left at the transitional government’s behest but says he will go back, albeit with a more skeptical eye. “After the international community recognized Gadhafi, he stopped being afraid — and he became inflated,” Gerbi said. “It’s the same pattern” with the rebels, he told JTA. “Gadhafi instilled a lot of hatred. The situation has to evolve.”
Courtesy David Gerbi
In this undated photo David Gerbi poses in front of Sla dar Bishi, the synagogue in Tripoli that he hopes to renovate. Gerbi, an Italian Jew born in Libya, played a central role in 2002 in the rapprochement between Moammar Gadhafi and Libyan Jews.
Gerbi, a psychologist invited to Libya in 2007 to assist in Libyan hospitals, suddenly was thrown out of the country, and the items and money he had brought to refurbish synagogues was confiscated. When the Libyan revolution began earlier this year, Gadhafi’s seemingly delusional claims of victory drove one-time Western advocates — notably Tony Blair, the former British prime minister, and Silvio Berlusconi, the Italian
22 • OBITUARIES D EATH N OTICES SKUROW, Max, age 92, died on October 27, 2011; 30 Tishrei, 5772. LEWIN, Karl, age 87,died on October 30, 2011; 2 Cheshvan, 5772. COHN, Helen Harris, age 96,died on October 30, 2011; 2 Cheshvan, 5772. BLATT, Hilda, age 75, died on October 31, 2011; 3 Cheshvan, 5772. SEGREGATION from page 8 According to Gershom Gorenberg, author of the upcoming book “The Unmaking of Israel,” pressure for sex segregation in public spaces is part of a ramped-up religious vigilance in the haredi world caused in part by a lack of passed-down direct knowledge of how traditional Jews in earlier generations actually lived day to day. Many such religious and cultural practices were obliterated during the Holocaust, he said, and in their absence, haredi communities in Israel and beyond have adopted a “stricter is better” approach to Jewish, or halachic, law. In fact, they are innovations, Gorenberg said. “What I think is remarkable about this is that it is taking place in a community which is declaredly conservative and anti-innovation,” he said. According to Heilman, when American haredi Jews visit their Israeli counterparts, a kind of cultural cross-pollination takes place, with New Yorkers adopting the practices of their peers in the Holy Land. “In Brooklyn they are getting their cue from Israel,” he said. “The difference is that in Israel, it is a Jewish state.” In America, he said, the significance of the practice is more subtle. Signs, such as those posted in Williamsburg urging women to step aside when men approach, promote communitywide norms with which the observant, and even the non-observant, feel bound to comply. By this means, Heilman said, haredi Jews extend religious rules to public spaces, thus flexing their muscles as major players in American cultural life. Ezra Friedlander, a Borough Park native and CEO of the public relations firm the Friedlander Group, disagreed, saying that the community’s rules were not meant to apply to outsiders. In the case of the Williamsburg-Borough Park bus, he said, the haredi riders likely were unaware that they were riding a public bus instead of a private one. Now that they know, he said, they won’t be caught off guard should a secular woman decide to sit in the front with the men.
Cincinnati Jewish community mourns the loss of friend and benefactor, Mr. Carl H. Lindner Jr. On behalf of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati and our partner agencies, we extend our condolences to the Lindner Family on the death of Mr. Carl H. Lindner Jr., a beloved supporter of our local Jewish community and the State of Israel. “I don’t share your religion, but I share your faith,” Mr. Lindner once remarked at a major dinner of the Jewish community in his honor. An esteemed fixture in the Cincinnati community, Mr. Lindner exemplified humility and graciousness. Beginning in the late 1960s, with the guidance of his business associate Manuel Mayerson, Mr. Lindner quietly became the largest non-Jewish donor in the country to the United Jewish Appeal (UJA) campaign— the predecessor of today’s Jewish Federations of North America. In recognition of his outstanding generosity, in 1978 he was named the Man of the Year by the United Jewish Appeal at a gala reception at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. Other accomplishments HOUSING from page 10 Following the 1948 War of Independence, Beit Safafa was divided, with half in the Jordanoccupied West Bank. After Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War, the two parts were reunited within Israeli Jerusalem’s expanded municipal boundaries, but the Palestinian residents of eastern Beit Safafa today mostly hold Jerusalem identity cards, while the residents of the western portion of the neighborhood are Israeli citizens. But while international attention has focused on what the new development means for IsraeliPalestinian relations and the struggle for Jerusalem, the story also has an overlooked element. For the dozen down-on-their-luck Israeli families who are still living in caravans on the hill — long after most of the hill’s residents have decamped for more settled environs — the planned construction has stirred a sense of uncertainty about their future. “I don’t know where my parents will go,” said Barak Hasid, 29, an GRAPEL from page 10 Grapel, who has refuted the spying charges, is scheduled to be debriefed by Israeli defense officials before he leaves for New York. The United States on Thursday evening denied Arab reports, including in the Palestinian news agency Maan, asserting that the United States, which was heavily involved in the prisoner swap
included being named a recipient of the Tree of Life Award for the Jewish National Fund (JNF), being recognized as the largest non-Jewish purchaser of Israel bonds, co-sponsoring the celebration of Israel’s 60th Anniversary
on Fountain Square and being a member of the Jewish Federation’s Moss Society, which honors significant contributors to the Jewish community’s endowment fund. Mr. Lindner was also a major supporter of the Jewish Community Center (JCC) when it was located in Roselawn, a neighborhood of Cincinnati. In 1985, along with his good friend Dr. Sidney Peerless, he made a major gift to the renovation of the JCC, creating the Lindner-Peerless Pavilion. In 1989, Jerry Teller gathered donors of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati to thank Mr. Lindner for his years of generosity and asked him how they could make a contribution in his honor. Mr. Lindner wanted support for Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy, which he and his family founded and loved. The donors made a gift in his honor to the CHCA library. In 1991, the Jewish Federation honored Mr. Lindner at a fundraising dinner for Naharia, a poor
development town in Israel, which, at the time, was the sister city of Cincinnati’s Jewish community. Mr. Lindner personally contributed $1 million of the $3 million goal and persuaded a friend and business partner to contribute the remaining $2 million. In 2004, Mr. Lindner was honored by Jewish leaders from across America to thank him for his longtime support of Israel bonds. Supporters raised $71.5 million at the dinner of which Mr. Lindner personally purchased $5 million. Mr. Lindner remarked at the dinner that an early loan from the English financier Sir Isaac Wolfson inspired him to never forget his gratitude to the Jewish people for helping him get his start in the world of finance. Modern Jewish thought stresses involvement in Tikkun Olam, the ongoing effort to repair the world. Mr. Carl H. Lindner Jr. will be remembered in our hearts for his passion to aid this effort through his many acts of loving kindness.
Israeli fireman who was raised and still lives on Givat Hamatos. “They don’t have any money to buy anywhere.” Hasid’s story is similar to that of the other poor Israeli families who ended up on this nearly abandoned hill, living alongside several hundred Ethiopian and Russian immigrant families who have since left. Hasid’s father lost all his savings on two apartment deals that went sour, his son explains. The family lived in a series of temporary housing situations, eventually ending up with several hundred Russian and Ethiopian immigrant families in the Diplomat Hotel, a previously abandoned hotel in Jerusalem’s Talpiot neighborhood, before moving to Givat Hamatos. “All my friends were Ethiopians, not just one or two but nine or 10,” Hasid said. “The night they arrived here, my father and I went from house to house setting up their washing machines and televisions. They didn’t know what to do with them.” The immigrant families eventually headed to new homes bought
with generous government assistance. But the Hasids and some other Israeli families stayed, many adding onto their simple caravans for lack of a better plan. They pay a small rental fee, as well as property taxes, electricity, water and gas. The Hasid family’s once-simple caravan is now a four-room complex, but it’s no “villa,” he jokes, using the Israeli term for a single-family home. But there is plenty of space, a great view and the feel of a pastoral moshav, says Hasid, a decorated army veteran who has created his own little Shangri-La behind the caravan with an outdoor bar, poker table and living room carpeted with artificial turf. “It’s a great place, the best in Jerusalem,” he said, adding that he and his pregnant wife will soon move to a newly purchased apartment in Petach Tikvah. The neighborhood’s name means Airplane Hill, for an Israeli jet that crashed there in 1967, and there is a small memorial at the entrance. “Givat Hamatos was an empty
hillside, cold and windswept in the winter, in the far south of the municipal area,” wrote Ira Sharkansky, a Hebrew University political scientist, in an article on the subject of immigrant populations. “It was close to the Arab cities of Bethlehem and Beit Jallah, and included a minefield left over from a previous war. No one could complain that housing for immigrants would cause a drop in their property value.” When the government first placed caravans at the site, the Jerusalem municipality was concerned that the area would become a slum. In time it became a neighborhood with several kindergartens and day care centers, synagogues, a club for youth, adults and the elderly, and a health clinic, as well as sidewalks, lighting and playgrounds — even an office of the Immigration and Absorption Ministry and a contingent of social workers. All that remains is a smattering of dilapidated caravans, an abandoned playground and a few turkeys whose owner lets them wander around.
negotiations, agreed to sell to Egypt several F-16 fighter planes in order to grease the wheels of the swap. Grapel, arrested in Cairo in June, was accused of espionage. Later he was accused as well of incitement and the attempted arson of the country’s Interior Ministry building and police headquarters in Cairo during January’s riots in the capital. The agreement comes slightly
more than a week after captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was exchanged for more than 1,000 Palestinian prisoners in an agreement reached with the terrorist organization Hamas. Egyptian security officials said Grapel entered the country shortly after the start of the Jan. 25 uprising that led to the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak and posed as a foreign correspondent. A law student at Emory
University, Grapel allegedly said he was Muslim on the visa application that he filed with the Egyptian Embassy in Tel Aviv and then entered Egypt using his American passport. Grapel moved to Israel following his graduation from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, served as a paratrooper during the Second Lebanon War and was wounded in Southern Lebanon in August 2006.
Carl H. Lindner Jr.
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