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An interview with the chair of the Jewish Community Foundation of Central New York Restricted endowments are ensuring the Federation’s Camwonderful; however, we also paign success, we feel a great realize the need for unrestricted deal of satisfaction that we have endowments which, along with already made a great impact on PACE gifts, would benefit the our Jewish community. Federation’s Annual Campaign What changes have taken to help it reach its goal each place since you took over as year. That is why we undertook chair ? the challenge of establishing Our foundation has grown the Director’s Centennial Fund by $3.47 million in the past to encourage unrestricted and year. We have also begun the Neil Bronstein PACE fund gifts. PACE stands process of bringing in younger for Perpetual Annual Campaign leaders so that we may transiEndowment and those gifts endow a tion properly for decades to come. Given donor’s gift to the Federation Campaign our size, we understand that the prudent forever. It worked and this spring we were action is to transition over to professional able to send over to the Federation a total of managed investment services. We have $188,000, which was a great help in having already obtained the services of Alliance Federation reach its $1.2 million goal. By Bernstein and the Vanguard Group, and we are actively looking for other money managers. Our investment committee will continue to meet to oversee the performance of the professional managed investment services. How do you see the Foundation impacting the community in the years Syracuse’s four pulpit rabbis – Rabbi Andrew Pepperstone, Rabbi Evan Shore, ahead? Rabbi Paul Drazen and Rabbi Daniel Fellman – will lead a 10-12-day Israel trip The Foundation has become a source in the fall of 2018. The proposed departure date is Sunday, October 21, 2018. The of great pride for our community. Having trip is aimed at adults – those who are going for their first time, as well as those reached assets of more than $14 million, who have already toured Israel. There will be multiple tracks for first-timers or we have a secure base to build on. Through returnees. The rabbis are working on an itinerary with Da’at Travel, which focuses the Foundation’s Endowment Fund proon educational tours around the world. More details on the trip will be coming as gram, donors can designate their dollars they are available. to exactly which non-profit, Jewish and non-Jewish, they want to benefit forever.

BY LINDA ALEXANDER AND BETTE SIEGEL Neil Bronstein is the chair of the Jewish Community Foundation of Central Net York. He began his term as chair in July 2016. Neil, it has been a year now since you became the chair of the Jewish Community Foundation of Central New York. What have been the challenges and the rewards? Throughout the past 16 years since we started, we have had a steady stream of donors setting up more than 70 Restricted Endowment Funds to benefit their favorite program or organization. These have had a great impact on many of the organizations in our community, giving them extra dollars they can depend on year after year.

Syracuse rabbis to lead Israel trip in October 2018

Maccabiah Games yield “positive connections” to Israel for athletes worldwide BY ADAM ABRAMS Some 7,000 Jewish athletes from 80 countries prepared to head back to their home countries following the 20th Maccabiah Games, a two-week event held from July 4-18 in Israel that is being praised for helping create “positive connections” to Israel. The Jewish athletes from overseas had arrived in Israel in early July, joining 2,500 Israeli contestants in the world’s third-largest sporting event, which convenes every four years and is often dubbed the “Jewish Olympics.” This year’s games, hosted in Jerusalem, had the added significance of coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Israel’s capital city. Tamir Goodman, a former Maccabiah athlete who gained fame during his high school basketball career in 1999, when Sports Illustrated magazine nicknamed him the “Jewish Jordan,” told, “The 2017 games were all-around great – great for the athletes, great for Israel and

great for the thousands of fans who got to watch and cheer on the teams.” Contestants competed in 43 different sports at complexes throughout Israel. Soccer was the largest competition, with more than 1,400 athletes from 20 countries participating. In addition to the athletes, as many as 20,000 international visitors attended the games, injecting around $100 million into Israel’s economy. “Most of the Federations who sent athletes to Israel took the competition very seriously,” Ilan Kowalsky, head of the Sports Department at Israel’s Interdisciplinary Center research college in Herzliya and a basketball coach, told JNS. org. “They did not send third-[division] or fourth-division athletes. Only the top swimmers, basketball players and lacrosse players came to compete.” Some of the top Israeli and international Jewish athletes who competed in the 2017 Maccabiah Games were Israeli Olympic judo bronze medalists Ori Sasson and Yarden Gerbi, French Olympic gold medalist swimmer Fabien Gilot and

American Olympic gold medalist swimmer Anthony Ervin. Ervin – who has won four Olympic medals – finished the Maccabiah Games with three gold medals, in the 100-meter freestyle, the 50-meter freestyle and the 4×100m medley relay, setting Maccabiah records with his times in the latter two events. “Thousands of people came from all over the world and connected with Israel during the Maccabiah Games. This is very important for Israel,” said Kowalsky. “Israel is in a difficult political situation with issues such as the recent anti-Israel motions passed at UNESCO, and constant attacks from the BDS movement… these young athletes, who travel here for the games with their families, and may have encountered antisemitism and anti-Israel

Through the Foundation’s Donor Advised Fund program, we can facilitate a donor’s annual giving, both Jewish and non-Jewish, throughout the year. We write the checks within days of the request, acknowledging that the gift is coming from the donor’s fund. Many have found it a much easier way to do their annual charitable giving through the Foundation as our record keeping shows the donor all of their charitable giving in one report. Both of these programs, Endowment and Donor Advised, have sent many more dollars to charities in our community. As we continue to grow our assets, the Greater Syracuse community is taking notice, including our elected officials, business leaders and our sister charitable organizations. What kind of gifts can you give to the Foundation? Donors can establish a fund during their lifetime through cash or appreciated securities, where there is no capital gains tax on the gain of the stock. Other forms of donations can be the life insurance policies that you may no longer need, or life income plans where the foundation provides lifetime income for you and a partner through annuity trusts or gift annuities. Donors who are required to start receiving their minimum distribution from their retirement fund can have the amount sent directly to the Foundation without having to pay any tax on the distribution. See “Chair” on page 6

2017 Federation Annual Campaign Goal: $1,200,000 $1,261,586 as of July 31, 2017 t ighes H r u O ever!

To make a pledge, please contact Colleen Baker at (315) 445-2040, ext 102 or

See “Games” on page 6


August 4.......................... 8:04 pm............................................. Parasha-Vaetchanan August 11........................ 7:54 pm......................................................... Parasha-Ekev August 18........................ 7:44 pm....................................................... Parasha-Re’eh

INSIDE THIS ISSUE Congregational notes

Funds benefit JCC

SHDS technology

Upcoming classes, dinners and The JCC has received grants from SHDS has received funding from more are announced by local Matthews Children’s Foundation the Jewish Federation to upgrade and the Jewish Children’s Fund. technology features in the school. synagogues. Story on page 5 Stories on page 4 Story on page 7

PLUS A Matter of Opinion............... 2 Calendar Highlights............... 6 Obituaries................................. 7 Women in Business................ 8


JEWISH OBSERVER ■ AUGUST 3, 20176/11 AV 5777

A MATTER OF OPINION Federation Board letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu on the Kotel

At its July 19 meeting, the Jewish Federation of Central New York’s Board of Directors approved the mailing of a letter and its publication in the Jewish Observer. The letter reflects the current position of the Federation on the global issue of religious pluralism, one of Federation’s core values. In June, Israel’s Cabinet voted to freeze the January 2016 agreement to establish an egalitarian prayer space at the Kotel, The Western Wall or Wailing Wall, in Jerusalem. This agreement contains three major components: management of the site, renovations of the physical space and construction of a new joint entrance to the entire Kotel site.

Press reports indicate that the Israeli government is willing to move forward immediately with enhancing the physical space, while suspending the other two elements of this agreement. The Honorable Benyamin Netanyahu Office of the Prime Minister of the State of Israel 3 Kaplan Street Kiryat Ben-Gurion Jerusalem, Israel 91919 Dear Prime Minister Netanyahu: On behalf of the Jewish Federation of Central New York, we write to express our deep disappointment in the recent decision of the Israeli Cabinet to suspend the agreed-upon plan to create a pluralistic prayer area at the Western Wall.

We call upon you as Prime Minister and upon the government of Israel to honor this agreement. Enabling pathways for Jews to connect with their deepest values should be a shared concern of both the Jewish communities in the Diaspora and in Israel. At a time when, in particular, various international bodies such as UNESCO are attempting to weaken the ties of the Jewish people to the land of Israel, it is particularly important that we maintain and strengthen connections and emphasize the importance of our bonds as one people. We strongly support the message from Israel about its role and responsibility ensuring the well-being of all Jews and Jewish communities around the world.

We represent the community of Jews in Central New York State. In rescinding the agreement on the Kotel, you are sending a mixed message to us which may result in some Jews feeling disconnected from Israel. The Jewish Federation of Central New York will continue our vital work connecting Jews to Israel and to our heritage and values. We believe that the promise of the Kotel – one wall for one Jewish people – as agreed upon in January 2016, must be implemented. We strongly urge you to reverse your decision. Sincerely, Ellen Weinstein, Chair of Board Michael Balanoff, CRC Chair Linda Alexander, President/CEO

A MATTER OF OPINION Rabbinical Council of America condemns terrorist murder of three Israelis This statement by the Rabbinical Council of America condemning the terrorist murder of three Israelis was issued on July 23. It is reprinted with the council’s permission. The Rabbinical Council of America, the leading organization of Orthodox rabbis in North America, extends its deepest condolences to the Salomon family on

the vicious murders of Yosef Salomon, Chaya Salomon and Elad Salomon, may their memories be a blessing. “The brutality of murdering a father and his two children in their home on Shabbat while they were preparing for a family celebration of a new grandchild shows utter depravity. We support the government of Israel and its security

forces in whatever steps they undertake to protect the citizens of Israel. Multiple murders as a response to the legitimate safety measures instituted at the Temple Mount to protect innocent people is vile,” said RCA President Rabbi Elazar Muskin. RCAVice President Rabbi Daniel Korobkin added, “We call on the world community and, in particular, the Palestinian Authority

to condemn the murder of innocent people in the harshest terms. We call on those countries who offer their largesse to the Palestinian Authority to make their support contingent on definitive condemnation of terror.” In these days before Tisha B’Av, the time of our national mourning, may the comforter of all bring comfort to the bereaved and to our beloved state of Israel.

A MATTER OF OPINION Temple Mount BY RICHARD D. WILKINS For nearly a century, “Al Aqsa is in danger” has served Arab demagogues as a rallying cry for inciting murder and mayhem against Jews. Concocted by the grand mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, this diabolical libel led, most devastatingly, to the mass murder of Jews in Hebron in 1929, and the total dispersal of that centuries-old community. Even with the passage of time, this monstrous lie has lost none of its surefire explosive potency. Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, on which sits the Al Aqsa Mosque, is once again embroiled in controversy. On July 14, three Arab-Israeli gunmen who were exiting the Mount fatally shot two Druze Israeli policemen who were guarding the site in the back. The weapons had been smuggled onto the Mount by a fourth Arab-Israeli accomplice. After the attack, Israel shut down the site and found additional secreted weapons in the mosque. Closure of the Mount lasted for about a day, during

which time, metal detectors and special surveillance cameras were installed at some of the entrances to that sacred space. The Waqf, Muslim custodians of the mosque, vehemently objected to such “breaking of the status quo,” though not to the more destructive double murder on the Mount. There was no concern for such sacrilege, or desecration of turning their holy place into an armory. They evinced zero understanding of the need for expanded security measures to prevent any reoccurrence. Though they couldn’t care less if Jews were attacked, they could neither care less about any potential threats to Muslim worshipers there. It’s an unfortunate reality that metal detectors have become nearly universal at potential targets of terrorism. They have been installed even at the Grand Mosque in Mecca. A previous agreement with Jordan would have placed cameras on the Mount, but that was vetoed by the Palestinians. Not only would that have detected weapon smuggling, but it would

A MATTER OF OPINION How numerous are Your works, O Lord BY RABBI IRVIN S. BEIGEL I never thought that I would write a eulogy for a dog. It is not my style to do so. Jack, however, was very special. It may be that only those who have lost a beloved pet will understand. Jack was a rescue dog who was part of our family for 11 years. In his younger years, he would jump up on the fence surrounding our backyard. He got close enough to the top to get us worried. He was a wire fox terrier with lots of ener-

gy and lots of love to offer. He played well with other dogs, no matter how much bigger they were. He was always affectionate to people. Some of my fondest memories are of bringing Jack to long-term care facilities, particularly Rosewood Heights where I was the Jewish chaplain, and Loretto, where I still serve as the Jewish chaplain. Suffice it to say that Jack’s pastoral interventions were uniquely canine. He brought joy to See “Works” on page 6

have displayed the Murabitun Moslem women in action, aggressively harassing non-Muslim visitors to the Mount. Waqf protests ring very hollow indeed, as does its promotion of massive Muslim prayer services in the streets around the Mount. Muslims are not being barred

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from the Mount, and many continue to go there to pray. What is really going on is standard Palestinian political theater and Western media manipulation. It is all intended to elicit undue sympathy for an inherently unsympathetic cause, See “Temple” on page 5 All articles, announcements and photographs must be received by noon Wednesday, 15 days prior to publication date. Articles must be typed, double spaced and include the name of a contact person and a daytime telephone number. E-mail submissions are encouraged and may be sent to The Jewish Observer reserves the right to edit any copy. Signed letters to the editor are welcomed: they should not exceed 250 words. Names will be withheld at the discretion of the editor. All material in this newspaper has been copyrighted and is exclusive property of the Jewish Observer and cannot be reproduced without the consent of the publisher. Views and opinions expressed by our writers, columnists, advertisers and by our readers do not necessarily reflect the publisher’s and editors’ points of view, nor that of the Jewish Federation of Central New York. The newspaper reserves the right to cancel any advertisements at any time. This newspaper is not liable for the content of any errors appearing in the advertisements beyond the cost of the space occupied. The advertiser assumes responsibility for errors in telephone orders. The Jewish Observer does not assume responsibility for the kashrut of any product or service advertised in this paper. THE JEWISH OBSERVER OF CENTRAL NEW YORK (USPS 000939) (ISSN 1079-9842) Publications Periodical postage paid at Syracuse, NY and other offices. Published 24 times per year by the Jewish Federation of Central New York Inc., a non-profit corporation, 5655 Thompson Road, DeWitt, NY 13214. Subscriptions: $36/year; student $10/ year. POST MASTER: Send address change to JEWISH OBSERVER OF CENTRAL NEW YORK, 5655 Thompson Road, DeWitt, NY 13214.

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AUGUST 3, 2017/11 AV 5777 ■



AROUND CENTRAL NEW YORK Colleen Baker is the new Jewish Federation of Central New York Campaign associate BY BETTE SIEGEL When Jewish Federation of Central New York Campaign Associate Jessica Lawrence told her superior, Federation President/CEO Linda Alexander, in May that she would be leaving the position she had held since September 2016, Alexander immediately started looking for a replacement as that position is considered an integral part of Federation’s Annual Campaign. She soon found one in Colleen Baker. Baker has a bachelor’s in sociology from St. Lawrence University. A Baldwinsville native, she recently moved back there from Potsdam, NY. She spent the past eight

years at Clarkson University, where she was the director of philanthropy research. Prior to that, she spent a year at State University of New York at Potsdam as the associate director of fund-raising and the year prior to that as a development associate. She taught in the Jerome and Phyllis Charney Early Childhood Development Program at the Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center of Syracuse. She said, “I was interested in this position because I heard wonderful things about working with Linda [Linda Alexander, Federation

Free Rocky Mountain Jewgrass concert August 13 Jewish bluegrass music will be performed live for the first time in the Syracuse area. Rocky Mountain Jewgrass, a band based out of Denver, CO, will perform on Sunday, August 13, at 4 pm, at Temple Adath Yeshurun, 450 Kimber Rd., Syracuse. The event will be presented by the Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center of Syracuse and Temple Adath Yeshurun. Doors will open at 3:30 pm and light refreshments will be available. Reservations have been requested and can be made by calling 315-445-0002 or e-mailing The Rocky Mountain Jewgrass concert is made possible by a grant from the Philip L. Holstein Community Program Fund of the Jewish Federation of Central New York. “We are so excited to partner with Temple Adath Yeshurun to bring Rocky Mountain Jewgrass to Syracuse,” said Marci Erlebacher, JCC executive director. “It’s sure to be an entertaining, family-friendly time for both Jewish and non-Jewish concertgoers alike. Their fun and unique take on bluegrass music will get you moving and put a smile on your face.” The four-person group blends traditional bluegrass-style playing with contemporary and classic Jewish themes and music. The band has been praised for its stage presence, “inundated with a heavy dose of humor” and combined with “beautiful harmonies and skilled musicianship” to create a Jewish musical entertainment said to be suitable for all ages. The group’s performances are known for

president/CEO], but also, because I am excited about the opportunity to work part-time while still being able to make a meaningful impact on a worthwhile organization such as the Jewish Federation. I have a 2-year-old son and am looking forward to my partner Jeff joining us here in Central New York in the near future. In my spare time (Hah – I have a 2-year-old. If I have spare time, I’m cleaning or sleeping!), I enjoy traveling and playing golf.” Baker thinks that of all the things she brings to this position, the fact that she is Colleen Baker most definitely a people person is the most important. She loves connecting with others and really tries to make a positive difference in everything that she does. Alexander, her new boss, said, “We were very lucky to fill this position with someone as qualified as Colleen. I’m sure she’ll fit in and has already hit the ground running. She will be a great addition to our team.”



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L-r: Members of Rocky Mountain Jewgrass include Gail DeVore (fiddle and vocals), Ben Cohen (banjo, mandolin and vocals), Saul Rosenthal (guitar and lead vocals) and Eric Roberts (bass and vocals). The quartet will perform on Sunday, August 13, at 4 pm, at Temple Adath Yeshurun, 450 Kimber Rd., Syracuse. embracing a multitude of instruments, including a banjo, acoustic guitar, fiddle, washboard and bass guitar. Dancing during the show is encouraged. Some of Rocky Mountain Jewgrass’ compositions are based on Jewish liturgy, while others are inspired by popular music. “We are looking forward to hosting this fun and energetic show,” said Barbara Simon, Temple Adath Yeshurun executive director. “Not only because they are wonderful musicians, but they also have a special connection to Temple Adath Yeshurun. Our rabbi, Paul


Wednesday, August 2..................... August 17 Wednesday, August 16................... August 31 Wednesday, August 30..............September 14 Wednesday, September 13........September 28

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See “Concert” on page 4

Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center senior dining menu AUGUST 7-11 Monday – dinner at 5 pm – brisket Tuesday – hot corned beef sandwich on rye Wednesday – spinach cheese quiche Thursday – chicken fried rice Friday – Marsala meatballs AUGUST 14-18 Monday –dinner at 5 pm – panko-encrusted honey mustard salmon Tuesday – beef stew over egg noodles Wednesday – baked ziti Thursday – imitation crab cakes with lemon dill sauce Friday – birthday celebration – roast turkey The Bobbi Epstein Lewis JCC Senior Adult Dining Program at the Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center


of Syracuse offers Va’ad Ha’ir-supervised kosher lunches served Tuesday-Friday at noon. Dinners are served on Mondays at 5 pm throughout the summer, due in part to the Dr. Morton and Mrs. Libby Maloff Summer Senior Dinner program. Reservations for dinner are required by the Wednesday before each dinner. Lunch reservations are required by noon on the previous business day. There is a suggested contribution per meal. The menu is subject to change. The program is funded by a grant from the Onondaga County Department of Aging and Youth and the New York State Office for the Aging, with additional funds provided by the JCC. To attend, one need not be Jewish or a member of the JCC. For more information or to make a reservation, contact Cindy Stein at 445-2360, ext. 104, or


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JEWISH OBSERVER ■ AUGUST 3, 20176/11 AV 5777

CONGREGATIONAL NOTES Temple Concord THREE HONORED AT TEMPLE CONCORD ANNUAL MEETING At its June 16 annual meeting, Temple Concord honored three congregants for their contributions and years of service and dedication. Mark Kotzin received the Margie Markson Johnson Heart and Soul Award for his leadership activities and commitment to Temple Concord and the community. Kotzin has been a trustee and vice president, involved with synagogue youth, and an organizer of the Samaritan Center Christmas Dinner volunteer effort. He is best known as the “Temple Vampire,” as he established and continues to oversee the Temple Concord blood drives twice a year.

Sandra Gingold was awarded the Volunteer of the Year Award. She is a trustee and has coordinated and worked on many volunteer activities throughout the years. Noted in particular was her planning and organizing of Shabbat and holiday dinners, and organizing the TC kitchen. Stewart Koenig received the President’s Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to Temple Concord and the Jewish community. Koenig, most recently was first vice president of Temple Concord and has been communications, membership chair and a chorus member. He was also involved in coordinating Temple Concord fund-raising events.

Temple Adath Yeshurun PAUSE BUTTON AT TAY BY SONALI MCINTYRE On Saturday, August 5, Temple Adath Yeshurun will host its monthly Pause Button led by Rabbi Paul Drazen and Esa Jaffe, ba’alat tefillah. In preparation for the coming High Holidays, August’s topic is “A Look at Who Shall Live and Who Shall Die.” Rabbi Drazen explained, “We will review the text of the prayer, as well as the melody with Esa.” Shabbat morning services will begin at 9:15 am, pause at 9:45 am for snack, study and singing, and then go back to complete the service. For more information about Pause Button, contact the rabbi at or call the TAY office at 315-445-0002. HAZAK Temple Adath Yeshurun Hazak will hold its annual officers and board installation dinner on Wednesday, August 9, at 6:15 pm, at Pascale Italian Bistro at Drumlins. The installation will be held prior to dinner. New and current officers and board members will be recognized. Nominated are JoAnn Grower, president; Joanne Greenhouse, vice president programming; Cindy Goldstein, new membership chair; Rita Shapiro, recording secretary; and Marcia Mizruchi, corresponding secretary. Board members include Dolores Bluman, Ruth Borsky, Cecile Cohen, Lynn Cohen, returning board member Elaine Meltzer, Steve Meltzer and Susan Miller. Hazak is the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism’s organization for Jewish adults 55 and over. It promotes Judaism

Danielle Finkelstein held up the “Fairy Fruit Wand” she made during “Once Upon A Time: Fairytales, Legends and Myths” week at the TAY Camp Rothschild. through projects and experiences in the synagogue environment, as well as on a community level. TAY Hazak has social, educational or spiritual programs every month of the year. There continues to be a minimal dues payment. The group is open to the community, with the membership year beginning on August 1. A paid-up membership lunch will be held in October. At its annual meeting, Hazak will again be selling SaveAround® books as its major fund-raiser, which helps pay for the group’s annual summer trip. For more information, or to reserve a SaveAround® book, contact JoAnn Grower at 315-463-9762, or Joanne Greenhouse at 315-446-3592.

At right: Mark Kotzin received the Margie Markson Johnson Heart and Soul Award at Temple Concord’s annual meeting on June 16. L-r: TC President Joe Greenman, Kotzin and TC Rabbi Daniel Fellman.

Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas CBS-CS ANNUAL BACK-TO-SHUL BBQ Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas will hold its annual Labor Day backto-shul barbecue on Monday, September 4, from 4-6 pm at CBS-CS. The event is open to the community and provides an opportunity for those who do not know the congregation to learn about CBS-CS. Clergy, staff and lay leaders, as well as congregants of all ages, can eat at the barbecue and talk to people. In addition to the bouncy house, there will be other activities for children of all ages. Donations are encouraged to help defray the costs of the bouncy house and the food. Participants are encouraged to bring school supplies, especially pens, pencils and crayons for students in the Syracuse City School District. There will also be a food barrel for the CBS-CS year-round collection of food for the Temple Concord Food Pantry and toiletries for Operation Soap Dish, which collects items for food pantry clients. SaveAround® coupon books will be available for sale. Reservations are requested and may be made by contacting the CBS-CS office at or 315-446-9570 by Thursday, August 31. BEGINNING ADULT HEBREW CLASS STARTS SEPTEMBER 19 Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas and Temple Concord are collaborating to offer a class on prayer book Hebrew to adults and teens. The class is for anyone who wants to learn from the beginning or just review the basics. The class is open to the public and will be held at Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas, starting Tuesday, September 19, from 7-8 pm, for 10 sessions. It will be taught by Ruth Federman Stein. Its focus is on the letters

and sounds, and it will progress to simple reading and vocabulary. There is a fee for participants who are not members of CBS-CS. The textbook, “L’Shon Ha-Kodesh, a Beginning Hebrew Book for Adults,” will be available for purchase at the first class. Pre-registration may be made by contacting the CBS-CS office at 446-9570 or There is a required minimum enrollment for the class to run. For more information, contact Stein at or 315-751-5377. WELCOME CO-PRINCIPALS CBS-CS welcomes Jessie KerrWhitt and Elyssa Rosenbaum as co-principals of the CBS-CS Sunday morning religious school. Rosenbaum is currently a physical education, Hebrew, Jewish social Elyssa Rosenbaum studies and health teacher at the Syracuse Hebrew Day School. She has a bachelor of arts in media arts and design, and a master’s in education. Her experience includes creating and implementing curricula, as well as coordinating and Jessie Kerr-Whitt supervising informal experiences for college-age students in Israel. She is a graduate of the Syracuse Hebrew Day School. See “CBS-CS” on page 7

On July 19, more than 40 members of Temple Adath Yeshurun’s Hazak group took a trip to Seneca Lake for lunch, a boat ride and a winery tour. L-r (front): Jack Schultz, Sybil Schultz, Joan Schuls and Esther Hurwitz. Back: Sandra Townsend, Phil Schuls and JoAnn Grower.


Drazen, was the rabbi to Rocky Mountain Jewgrass’ guitarist and lead vocalist, Saul Rosenthal, back in Omaha, NE. This should make for a nice reunion for these two gentlemen.”

Continued from page 3

For more information or to register to attend the free Rocky Mountain Jewgrass show, contact Temple Adath Yeshurun at 315-445-0002 or, or visit

The CBS-CS Sisterhood sponsored a trip to Glimmerglass Opera in Cooperstown on July 18 to see “Porgy and Bess.” Included in the trip was a backstage tour and a tour of the costume shop.

JCC’s early childhood program receives Matthews grant BY WILLIAM WALLAK The Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center of Syracuse has been awarded a $1,000 grant from the Matthews Children’s Foundation to benefit its Jerome and Phyllis Charney Early Childhood Development Program. This latest round of funding is the result of JCC Board President Steven Sisskind’s ongoing efforts to facilitate the JCC’s grant application. “I can’t overstate how wonderful the Matthews Foundation has been in its continued support of our children’s programs,” said Sisskind. “The foundation’s generosity and commitment to funding our programs to benefit the families we serve has been outstanding.” The early childhood program is using the grant to create a third infant room. The

funds will go toward purchasing materials to support the babies. Matthews Children’s Foundation awards grants to nonprofit organizations whose purpose is to support children. It has contributed millions of dollars to date to such charities. “I am so grateful for [Sisskind’s] efforts and his relationship with the Matthews Foundation,” said Marci Erlebacher, JCC executive director. “The fantastic support from this organization and from all of our donors helps strengthen our programs and services, and allows us to better serve our members and the community.” For more information about the JCC and supporting its programs serving infants-seniors, contact Erin Hart at 315445-2040, ext. 112, or

At right, l-r: Steven and Robin Sisskind’s grandchildren, Ari Gnacik (left) and Eli Gnacik (right), helped JCC Executive Director Marci Erlebacher (center) display the JCC’s latest grant check from the Matthews Children’s Foundation. Steven is the JCC’s board president and has facilitated the Matthews grant application for many years.

Jewish Children’s Fund approves gifts to JCC BY JUDITH L. STANDER The Syracuse Jewish Children’s Fund, administered at the Jewish Community Foundation of Central New York, has voted to award financial gifts to seven local organizations that currently serve the needs of children who reside in Central New York. The organization was started in 1870 and incorporated in 1878 as the Jewish Orphans Asylum of Western New York. It served the communities of Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse. Syracuse was represented by then 22-year-old Louis Marshall, along with Isaac Danziger, in what was the first known regional Jewish assembly of upstate cities. In 1883, a property in Rochester was acquired and the Jewish Orphan Asylum was established and functioned there until 1928, when it was no longer needed. Proceeds from the sale of the property were divided among the three communities and, in Syracuse, ultimately became the base for the Jewish Children’s Fund of the Jewish Foundation of Central New York. Over the years, income from this fund has been used to benefit a variety of children’s causes. This year’s gifts are being directed for use to the Charity for Children, Friends of Israel Scouts, InterFaith Works, Jewish Federation of Central New York, Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community

Temple while advancing an ongoing Palestinian campaign to deny Jewish history and marginalize the very presence of Jews on Judaism’s most sacred site. What should have been a non-issue turned into a major crisis, testing which side would blink first. Not for the first time, Israel’s government seemingly has buckled, and has begun removing the metal detectors. At this writing on July 25, the Palestinians, who are still boycotting the site and rejecting any new surveillance

L-r: Michael Kalet, chair of the Syracuse Jewish Children’s Fund Committee, handed a check from the organization to Marci Erlebacher, executive director of the Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center on June 12. Center, Syracuse Jewish Family Service and Temple Concord. The funds are held by the Jewish Foundation of Central New York as a donor advised fund. The current membership of the Jewish Children’s Fund Committee includes Barbara Baum, William Berinstein, Gary Grossman, Mary Jumbelic, Michael Kalet (chair), Tobey Kresel, Bonnie Leff (secretary), Michael Moss (chair emeritus), Margie Johnson, Rob Rothman, Robert Sarason and Jennifer Satterlee.

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devices, may yet overplay their hand. Making the Mount safe for violence cannot possibly end well. Nevertheless, this affair has once demonstrated how Palestinian threats of violence, combined with massive international pressure from friends and foes alike, can force Israel’s abandonment of even the wisest and most defensible positions. Richard D. Wilkins is a member of Shaarei Torah Orthodox Congregation of Syracuse.

AUGUST 3, 2017/11 AV 5777 ■




JEWISH OBSERVER ■ AUGUST 3, 20176/11 AV 5777

Calendar Highlights

To see a full calendar of community events, visit the Federation's community calendar online at Please notify of any calendar changes.

Wednesday, August 16 Deadline for August 31 JO Sunday, August 13 “Rocky Mountain Jewgrass” to perform at Temple Adath Yeshurun at 4 pm Wednesday, August 16 Menorah Park Open Golf Tournament with lunch at 11:30 am, golf at 1 pm and dinner following Thursday, August 17 Temple Adath Yeshurun will hold a book discussion on “Hidden Figures” by Margot Lee Shetterly, at 7:30 pm Friday, August 18 Temple Concord Shabbat service at 6 pm, with dinner following at Onondaga Lake Park Saturday, �ugust 19 TC Cinemagogue will show “The Jazz Singer” at 7:30 pm Sunday, August 20 PJ Library will be at the pavilion by the Secret Garden at the Stone Quarry Art Park in Cazenovia from 10 am - noon Friday, September 1 Temple Concord welcomes back Syracuse University students with an outdoor barbeque in the TC parking lot at 6 pm Wednesday, September 6 Federation and the community will honor President/CEO of the Jewish Federation of Central New York and Executive Director of the Jewish Community Foundation of CNY Linda Alexander at TAY at 6:30 pm


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Donors can also leave a bequest in their will as a legacy gift to the Foundation. What is the mission of the Foundation and how can you get the message out to the community? Our mission is to provide donors with opportunities to fulfill their philanthropic desires. We facilitate their wishes. Our goal is to make it easy for donors to show their true charitable intent. Why do you support the mission of the Foundation with your time and money? Communities and organizations secure their futures by creating endowments where the principal continues to grow and the money earned is poured back into the community. I strongly believe that doing this is our most important mission because every Jewish organization in our community will thereby derive the lasting benefit.


Continued from page 2 elders who had not smiled or laughed for a long time. Although it has been several months since Jack has accompanied me on these visits, he is still asked for by elders and staff alike. Throughout the last three years, Jack had a number of medical problems, but he survived them all. His dementia had worsened recently. The frequency of his need to go out during the night had reached the point of leaving us in a permanent state of exhaustion. We faced a painful decision. Should we continue like this with a deteriorating quality of life for Jack and for us, or should we put Jack to sleep, to use the euphemism? If Jack were a human being, the considerations and our decision would have been different. After all, human life has a sanctity that animal life does not have. Yet, animals are part of God’s creation, and we are not allowed to treat any of God’s creation lightly. The principles that guided us were the prohibition of allowing an animal to suffer unnecessary pain (the Hebrew phrase is tzaar baalei chaim) and, secondly, that animals were created for the benefit of human beings. They do not have rights in the way that human beings do. After much struggle, we finally decided to bring Jack for his last appointment with the veterinarian on July 13. The staff was very kind. Jack died peacefully as my wife, Jane, and I held him. The loss of a pet is one of those losses that has no prayer or ceremony to bring comfort. Nonetheless, we have been grieving for this loss. We deeply appreciate the words of condolence that we have received. “How numerous are Your works, O Lord; You made them all with wisdom.” (Psalm 104)


Parasha Ekev – the most profound prayers BY RABBI LEAH FEIN My grandfather loved to tell Jewish-themed jokes around our Shabbat dinner table. One of his favorites was about the man who was driving around and around looking for a parking spot, with no luck. After several minutes of frustration, the man exclaims, “Please, God, I’ll give up bacon and I’ll keep Shabbat – just help me find a parking spot!” Mere moments later, the man miraculously finds his perfect parking spot and says, “Never mind, I found one.” In parasha Ekev, Moses prepares the Israelites for entering the land of Israel and describes the abundant food that God has provided for them in the land. Then Moses instructs, “When you have eaten your fill, give thanks to the Lord your God for the good land which God has given you.” (Deuteronomy 8:10) The Talmud explains that this verse is the reason we say Birkat Hamazon (the blessing after a meal) since the verse states that it is a mitzvah to thank God after being sated. (Berachot 48b) Saying a prayer before eating makes logical sense, since there is a specific need that one wants granted. Reciting a blessing after eating, however, is less

logical. As Reuven Hammer wrote in “Entering Jewish Prayer,” “One might have thought that after eating is precisely the moment when we need to say no blessing at all. Does not a blessing imply some need which must be met? In this case, the opposite is true... It is not when we are hungry that the most important blessings are recited, but when we are sated” (p. 264-265). By highlighting the blessing that is less obvious, Jewish tradition teaches a meaningful lesson about the importance of articulating and appreciating our blessings, even – and especially after – our needs have been met, not just before. Prayer often comes naturally when we are acutely aware of what we want or need, whether it be food, a parking spot or anything in between. But once that wish is granted, we are all too quick to forget not only the feeling of need, but also the source of our fulfillment. Surely every moment is an opportunity for prayer; but as Moses teaches us in parasha Ekev, the most profound prayers can come by humbling ourselves when we are fortunate enough to be satisfied. Rabbi Leah Fein is the campus rabbi at Hillel at Syracuse University.

Big Galut(e) to perform at Glimmerglass The Glimmerglass Festival in Cooperstown will present a concert by klezmer ensemble Big Galut(e) on Tuesday, August 8, at 5 pm, in the Pavilion, behind the main stage, in Cooperstown. In keeping with this season’s theme of “Home and Community,” the five-member ensemble will present a variety of music from the Jewish Diaspora’s homelands, including Old World dances, traditional folk songs, jazz tunes and “Yiddish-flavored” takes on classic musicals. Winners of the Simcha Prize at the 2017 International Jewish Music Festival in Amsterdam, the crossover quintet has performed for area audiences through their appearances at the Syracuse Jewish Music and Cultural Festival and Temple Concord’s Goldenberg series. They have been heard on Public Radio International’s “The World” and WNYC’s “New Sounds,” and have appeared at colleges and universities from Stanford to Oberlin; on chamber series from Hawaii to New York; at the National Yiddish Book Center and New York Klezmer Series; and at

L-r: Big Galut(e)members Rich Sosinsky, Sasha Margolis, Robin Seletsky, Michael Leopold and Mark Rubinstein will perform on Tuesday, August 8, at the Glimmerglass Festival in Cooperstown. synagogues and Jewish Community Centers nationwide. There will be a charge to attend. For information or tickets, visit or call 607547-2255.

Israel and France set to launch joint microsatellite to monitor climate change BY JNS STAFF Venus, a micro-satellite weighing 585 pounds that was jointly designed by Israeli and French aerospace firms, was to launch in early August with the aim of monitoring climate change. The mission, which will closely monitor the impact of human activity on vegetation as well as monitor water and carbon levels, aims to observe 110 sites on five continents every two days, according to Venus project leader Pierric Ferrier. The micro-satellite was built as part of collaboration between Israel Aerospace Industries and France’s space agency. Additionally, Israel’s Rafael Advanced


sentiments in their home countries, experience Israel in a very positive way, through sport, and take these experiences back home with them,” he said, adding, “Sports, and the arts, are the only things that can make such positive connections to Israel.” Kowalsky’s perspective comes from his decades of experience using sports to break down cultural and political barriers. He served as head coach of Israel’s under-20 women’s basketball team in the 2009 Maccabiah Games, guiding the squad to win gold in the finals against the American team. Kowalsky was due to participate in the 2017 competition as the technical delegate for 3-on-3 basketball, which had been billed as a highlight of this year’s games, but the event was cancelled because not enough players signed up to compete. In addition to working with Israeli athletes, Kowalsky in 2006 headed an initiative dubbed the “Friendship Games” in collaboration with Ed Peskowitz, former co-owner of the National Basketball Association’s Atlanta Hawks. The initiative offered college students from 17 different countries and territories the opportunity to compete in a basketball tournament and tour Israel together. Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians all participated.

Defense Systems provided the micro-satellite’s electric propulsion system and Elbit Systems provided its high-resolution camera. Jean-Yves Le Gal, president of the French National Center for Space Studies, hailed the French-Israeli collaboration. “Venus is a Franco-Israeli satellite with a scientific as well as a technological goal,” he said, Reuters reported. “Scientific, because it will enable us to observe vegetation with a two-day frequency and a high precision, and this within a specific environment in the context of the fight against climate change. It is definitely a satellite at the service of the fight against climate change. ... And technological, because for the first See “Climate” on page 7

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“For seven days, players from 17 countries played basketball and stayed in the same hotels together. Within just a few days, these athletes became friends and many stayed in touch with each other,” said Kowalsky. Kowalsky’s involvement with the Friendship Games led to him serving as head coach of a Palestinian Authority basketball team after he originally volunteered to coach the players without pay. Kowalsky continued in this capacity for two years until “politics came inside,” he said. “The president of the Palestinian International Olympic Committee (Jibril Rajoub) said to the players, ‘If this Jewish coach from Israel will continue to practice with you, you cannot play in the Palestinian league,’” Kowalsky said. Ironically, it was Kowalsky who founded the P.A.’s basketball league. “When politics comes inside [sports] we have a problem, but when you take sport in its purest form, people are coming to have fun and enjoy their time and to get to know each other. This is why the Maccabiah Games is such a great idea,” Kowalsky said. “You know that peace between China and the U.S. started with table tennis,” he said. “My belief is that sport can open a door for the next peace movement.”

AUGUST 3, 2017/11 AV 5777 ■


Moses V. Habib died on July 17. Born in Benghazi, Libya, he was placed in a concentration camp during World War II. He later became a successful businessman in Libya. In 1967, he escaped religious persecution and arrived in the U.S. as a refugee with his wife and three small children. He brought with him an extensive knowledge of Torah and Judaism. He worked at American Granby in Liverpool. More recently, he worked at Syracuse University up until May. For more than 25 years, he was the Torah reader at Temple Beth El and ran its children’s congregation. He founded the Sephardic Congregation of Syracuse, where he led the Jewish High Holiday services for 48 years. He spoke seven languages, loved to dance, and played soccer in his day. Guided by his faith, he was full of life and love for everyone with whom he came into contact. He was predeceased by his six brothers and two sisters. He is survived by his wife, Tina; his daughters, Judy (Nick), Kaye (Steve), Tikvah, Aviva and Dayana (Berel); his sons, Ralph and Tino (Yuliya); 11 grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and his sister, Sara Hasson, of Israel. Burial was in Israel. Birnbaum Funeral Service had local arrangements. Contributions can be made to the Friends of the IDF, P.O. Box 4224 New York, NY 10163; or the Jewish Guild for the Blind, 15 W. 65th St., New York, NY 10023. 


Arthur Lehrman, 87, died suddenly in his sleep in Raleigh, NC, on June 23. Raised in Forest Hills, NY, he graduated from Hofstra College in 1951. He continued his education at the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands through 1955. In 1958, he graduated from Albany Medical College. He interned at the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, MN, where he finalized his training as a plastic surgeon in 1964 and was a pioneer in this specialty. Over the next 30 years, he improved the lives of thousands of patients through reconstructive surgery, particularly for hand and burn injuries. He built his plastic surgery practice in Syracuse, NY. The foremost joys of his life were being a doctor, leader, teacher and mentor within this early plastic surgery community. He also served in various academic and association positions in the upstate New York medical community. He was honored to volunteer his medical skills in Afghanistan, India and Cameroon. He was also a People to People Delegate to the then-Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. He retired in 1994 and moved to Palm Beach Gardens, FL, for 10 years before settling in Raleigh, NC. He enjoyed wildlife photography, classical music and opera, reading in English, Dutch and French, cooking, Shakespeare, algebra, classic movies, sports, history, astronomy, botany, traveling and sailing. He maintained a lifelong interest in genealogy and kept in touch through all the years with his relatives in France. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Beverly Karp Lehrman; his children, Marjorie Ellen Lehrman, of Morrisville, NC; Robert Charles (Margie Slusher) Lehrman, of Vienna, VA; and James Matthew (Paula Vogt) Lehrman, of Raleigh, NC; and four grandchildren. Burial was in the Raleigh, NC, Hebrew Cemetery. Brown-Wynne Funeral Home had arrangements. Contributions may be made to the Beverly and Arthur Lehrman Library Endowment Fund, Albany Medical Center Foundation, Office of Gift Planning, 43 New Scotland Ave., Albany, NY 12208; and/or http://www. (for youth education in Kenya); and/ or Temple Beth Or, 5315 Creedmoor Rd., Raleigh, NC 27612. 

How to use Federation’s Community Calendar BY JUDITH STANDER The Jewish Federation of Central New York hosts an online Community Calendar to keep the community updated on events and meetings throughout the year. To see the calendar, visit and click on the Community Calendar tab. Every Jewish organization has been encouraged to post meeting dates and times on the calendar. When special events are scheduled, posting them on the community calendar prevents overlapping events and activities from being scheduled, which could affect attendance. The sooner activities and events are posted to the Federation’s Community Calendar, the easier it is said to be to make plans throughout the year. To list information on the Community Calendar:


‹‹ E-mail the details to ‹‹ Click on the “Submit a Calendar Event” tab and fill

in the information. ‹‹ Fax the details to 315-445-1559 ‹‹ Call Judith Stander at 315-445-0161, ext. 114 It is hoped that event planners will communicate with one other if they discover that their organizations are planning events on the same date. In some cases, it is possible that each group is targeting a different audience, so holding multiple events at the same time may not be an issue. However, it is also possible that there are alternative dates to be considered that would work for each event. For more information about the Federation’s Community Calendar, contact Judith Stander at 315-445-0161, ext. 114.

DO YOU KNOW? Your Federation dollars at work – SHDS technology BY JACKIE MIRON The Allocations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Central New York awards Philip L. Holstein Community Program Fund Grants each year in addition to the annual allocations made in the spring. Based on the success of the 2016 annual Campaign, community program grants are available to Jackie Miron all Jewish organizations, agencies, and synagogues in the Central New York community. The Allocations Committee reviews the grant requests and makes recommendations to the board, which votes on the recommendations. As a 21 st-century “learning community,” the Syracuse Hebrew Day School is committed to creating students who are proficient in every content area, including technology. Over the past 20 years, SHDS has had access to wireless Internet, but the needs of the students and teachers have surpassed the current bandwidth, connectivity and processing speeds. Along with the SHDS board, and $3,000 from the Jewish Federation of Central New York, SHDS has received funding to upgrade many technology features in the school. New access points have been installed, and bandwidth increased. Laptops and iPads can be used in most of the school’s areas, instead of in just a few places.

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Students may now fully explore the possibilities of new curriculum options. A technology teacher will now be more able to continue programs in building computers, enhancing robotics, coding, and social media. In the past, groups of students trying to access information at the same time presented challenges. The New York State Technology Curriculum encourages the use of technology in every subject area, including art and music. In addition, as the SHDS students spend half of the day learning Hebrew and Judaic studies, it is imperative to have reliable Internet connections to run Hebrew language software, and steam videos of current events in Israel. The Jewish Federation of Central New York recognizes the need to strengthen formal and informal education at SHDS and the community. Updating technology and providing students with the most current curriculum is of vital importance to their future.


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time we are going to use a plasmic propulsion designed by Israel and it will enable us to test this propulsion while in orbit. It is a great example of successful space collaboration between France and Israel.” The satellite was scheduled to be launched on August 1 from French Guyana, with its mission scheduled to last three and a half years.

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Continued from page 4 Kerr-Whitt has 33 years of experience teaching at the Syracuse Hebrew Day School (general and Jewish studies) and Temple Concord Religious School (including Hebrew and bar/bat mitzvah tutoring). She has led junior congregation services at various congregations throughout the community. She has volunteer experience serving on multiple committees at Temple Concord and providing cantorial support. She has a bachelor of science in education and a master’s in curriculum development, and is certified in New York state in nursery through sixth grade education. She will also be teaching in the pre-k/kindergarten room and the monthly “Oys and Joys” program for children from birth to 4 years old. This summer, both women attended the New Director Institute, a mentoring program of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, to give them support as they begin the religious school year as a team. They may be contacted at or 315-446-9570, ext. 3.



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JEWISH OBSERVER ■ AUGUST 3, 20176/11 AV 5777

A tale of two Palestinian worlds

BY SEAN SAVAGE For slightly more than a decade, the two main areas slated for a future Palestinian state – the disputed territories and the Gaza Strip – have been ruled by competing factions, the Palestinian Authority and the Hamas terror group. While many in the international community continue to endorse the idea of a two-state solution, with Israelis living in peace alongside a contiguous and stable Palestinian state, the reality on the ground seemingly tells a different story. The United Nations recently released a new report suggesting Gaza may become “unlivable” by 2020. According to the report, Gaza’s population is growing faster than the coastal territory’s infrastructure and economy, which are deteriorating more rapidly than expected. “We predicted some years ago that Gaza would fast become unlivable on a host of indicators and that deadline is actually approaching even faster than we predicted – from health access, to energy to water,” Robert Piper, the U.N. coordinator for humanitarian aid and development activities, told AFP. The report said Gaza’s two million population is projected to grow to 2.2 million by 2020 and is being squeezed as resources like food and clean water become scarcer, and while pollution and energy shortages become more prevalent. Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon said the U.N. report shows Hamas “has brought nothing, but pain and destruction to the residents of Gaza. ...The continued exploitation of humanitarian aid by this terrorist organization harms Palestinian civilians and sabotages the efforts of the international community,” he said. Grant Rumley, a research fellow at the Foundation for

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Defense of Democracies think tank and an expert on Palestinian politics, told the situation in Gaza is “dire” and similarly blamed Hamas. The terror group, Rumley said, has “squandered international aid to fuel their war preparations, using imported concrete to construct tunnels and other raw materials to make rockets. Gazans are well aware of this, but their options are limited. “A protest in January saw 10,000 take to the streets to protest Hamas’ handling of the electric crisis, and yet months later the P.A. plunges the Strip into another electric crisis,” he said. “So I think Gazans feel that neither their local leadership in Hamas nor their West Bank leadership in the P.A. care for them.” Yet Hillel Frisch, an expert on Palestinian and Islamic politics at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, dismissed what he called the “doomsday pronouncements” for Gaza. “The truth is that life expectancy in Gaza is 74, five years above the world average, above the average in the Arab world, and three years above life expectancy in Egypt,” Frisch told “Gaza is the second-most-subsidized population in the world, receiving 15 times more aid per capita than Ethiopia, even though GDP per capita in Ethiopia is one-third that of Gaza’s... At least one-third of the world’s population lives in much more dire straits than in Gaza,” he said. THE VIEW FROM THE DISPUTED TERRITORIES At the same time, the humanitarian situation for Palestinians living in the disputed territories is “considerably better” due to closer economic cooperation with Israel, Frisch said. “The situation in Judea and Samaria and in the West

Bank is considerably better due to the fact that 150,000 workers from the West Bank work in Israel,” he said. Frisch also noted the contrast in Gazans’ employment situation between the early 1990s and today. “In Gaza, Hamas terrorism killed the goose that laid the golden egg,” he said. “Before the wave of terror in 1995-1996, more workers from Gaza proportionately were employed in Israel than workers from Judea and Samaria. Now there are none. This is where Hamas hurt the Gaza population most.” Rumley similarly pointed out the “serious gap” between the disputed territories and Gaza as a result of Hamas’s preoccupation with terrorism. “Hamas has oriented its governing structure towards fighting Israel while the P.A. has, at times, tried to set itself on a course for state-building,” Rumley said. ISRAEL-P.A. COOPERATION Israel and the P.A. recently announced two economic cooperation agreements, though peace negotiations between the parties have been stalled since 2014. P.A. Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah and Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz both attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 10 to inaugurate the first Palestinian-owned power station. “Israel is interested in improving the Palestinian economy, and here we have a project that is beneficial for both parties,” Steinitz said. A few days later, President Donald Trump’s international negotiations representative, Jason Greenblatt, announced an agreement between Israel and the P.A. on a historic Red Sea-Dead Sea canal. The deal involves the sale of 33 million cubic meters (1.2 billion cubic feet) of water to the P.A. to relieve water shortages.

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August 3, 2017 Issue of Jewish Observer