Massachusetts Jewish Ledger • December 17, 2012 • 13 Tevet 5782

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Friday, December 17, 2021 13 Tevet 5782 Vol. 22 | No. 12 | ©2021

The Start-Up Nation Sets its Sights on Food-Tech

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this week


DECEMBER 17, 2021 | 13 TEVET 5782

6 Around Mass

9 Milestones

10 Jewish Federation of Central Mass.

17 Synagogue Directory


Keeping Israel strong ....................5 and vibrant Southern New England region raises a record $11.4 million for JNF-USA and its One Million Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade

Is the honeymoon over? ................5 Six issues that could drive a wedge between Biden and Bennett

Arts & Entertainment................... 14 Jewish Grammy nominees; Cartman converts to Judaism and considers Israelis mishpocha

What’s Happening

22 Obituaries

Bob Dole .........................................23 Jewish leaders mourn the passing of Sen. Robert Dole

Field of Dreams.................................................................................................. 19 An Israeli baseball field is dedicated to the memory of Sharon’s Ezra Schwartz

Shabbat Shalom

A Reminder From

ON THE COVER: Put together Israel’s vast agricultural and technological know-how, and you’ve got breakthroughs in food production that will feed a fast-growing, climate-threatened world more efficiently, sustainably and securely. PAGE 12

Gary M. Gaffin

Accounting services for all size businesses Gaffin & Associates, LLC 313 Park Ave. Worcester, MA 01609 T: 508-797-4826 F: 508-797-4866



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| DECEMBER 17, 2021

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he votes are in and the fight against Jew-hatred and bigotry continues as names its top three finalists for their Antisemite of the Year Contest. Selected from a pool of 10 antisemites, these three individuals have promoted the most hatred and misinformation about the Jewish people in 2021.

THE TOP THREE FINALISTS ARE: MARJORIE TAYLOR GREENE Republican Congresswoman from Georgia who was stripped of her committee assignments after her many antisemitic conspiracy theories came to light. DUA LIPA British pop star who uses her sizable platform to spread dangerous antisemitic lies. ANURADHA MITTAL Head of Ben & Jerry’s Board of Directors and VP of Ben & Jerry’s Foundation Inc. who spearheaded the company’s antisemitic decision to halt sales in areas of Israel.

“We were flooded with more than 5,000 votes during the first leg of our contest, and while it was close, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Dua Lipa and Anuradha Mittal were deemed to be the most antisemitic of the bunch,” said StopAntisemitism Founder and Executive Director Liora Rez. “From spreading conspiracy theories to demonizing the Jewish state, each of these individuals has repeatedly and significantly propagated hatred, and StopAntisemitism will work tirelessly to hold them accountable.” For more information, visit

Vol. 22 No. 12 JHL Ledger LLC Publisher Henry M. Zachs Managing Partner Leslie Iarusso Associate Publisher Judie Jacobson Editor • x3024 Hillary Sarrasin Digital Media Manager EDITORIAL Stacey Dresner Massachusetts Editor • x3008 Tim Knecht Proofreader ADVERTISING Donna Edelstein Senior Account Executive Non-Profit & JHL Ledger LLC Media Marketing • x3028 Joyce Cohen Senior Account Executive • (860) 836-9195 Trudy Goldstein Account Executive • x3007 Amy Oved Mass Account Executive • x3030 PRODUCTION Elisa S. Wagner Creative Director Christopher D. Bonito Graphic Designer ADMINISTRATIVE Judy Yung Accounting Manager • x3016 Howard Meyerowitz Office Manager • x3035


Samuel Neusner, Founder (1929-1960) Rabbi Abraham J. Feldman, Co-Founder and Editor (1929-1977) Berthold Gaster, Editor (1977-1992) N. Richard Greenfield, Publisher (1994-2014) PUBLISHER’S STATEMENT JHL Ledger LLC 40 Woodland Street Hartford, CT 06105 Phone (860) 231-2424 Fax (860) 231-2485 Editorial Email: Production Email: Editorial deadline: All public and social announcements must be received by Tuesday 5 p.m. 10 days prior to publication. Advertising deadline: Thursday noon one week prior to issue. Advertisers should check ad on publication.


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DECEMBER 17, 2021 | 13 TEVET 5782

Southern New England Community Contributes Record-High Support for Jewish National Fund-USA SOUTHERN NEW ENGLAND – Jewish National Fund-USA (JNF-USA), the leading philanthropic organization for Israel that supports critical environmental and nation building activities in Israel’s north and south has raised a record-high $11.4 million in its Southern New England region, representing a three-fold increase over total donations

“It is imperative that Jews always have a strong and vibrant homeland of their own and the absolute best way that I, as an American Jew, can help achieve that goal is by contributing to JNF-USA,” added JNFUSA’s Southern New England Board of Directors’ Campaign Chair and Co-Founder, Eric Berg. “They have an inspiring vision and


received in New England in 2020. The funds raised by the region are a part of the $120 million 2021 JNF national campaign in support of the land and people of Israel. “Israel has always been extremely important to me and to my family, and we’ve supported many organizations with that in mind,” said David Peskin, president of the Southern New England Board of JNF-USA. “However, no single organization better represents my desire to help the land and people of Israel more than JNF-USA. Philanthropy with a vision that makes an immediate impact on so many lives throughout Israel -- that’s today’s JNF-USA.”

strategy in promoting the development of the underpopulated Negev in the South and the Galilee in the North. Working with their numerous affiliates across the country, JNF USA is enriching the lives of so many Israelis by being at the forefront of agricultural innovation, water conservation, promoting job creation, making Israel a more inclusive society for people with special needs, the building of fortified playgrounds, medical and resilience centers and so much more.” The funds raised by JNF-USA in New England play a pivotal role in helping the organization close-in on it’s One Billion Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade Initiative, with more than $851 million raised

to date. Through the initiative, JNF-USA is developing new communities in the Galilee and Negev, connecting the next generation to Israel, and creating infrastructure and programs that support ecology, individuals with special needs, and heritage site preservation. “People support JNF-USA because their gift is used in a way that maximizes its philanthropic impact,” said JNF-USA New England and Capital District Executive Director Sara Hefez. “As an organization that has been around for 120 years, new donors are drawn to our historic accomplishments, yet, they are equally inspired by our bold plans for the future. Through our lay leaders and professional team, we are truly writing the next chapter in the story of the Jewish People.” The Southern New England JNF-USA board was formed in 2020. “The Jewish community in New England has always been there for Israel, and the fact that we recently established an official JNF-USA Board in this region is exciting. We have so many passionate, dedicate, and philanthropically minded partners (donors) throughout the region who continue to raise their hands and say, ‘Yes! I want to be part of this movement.’ And because of them, we are there for young people with disabilities; families looking to build new lives in the Negev and Galilee; American teens seeking to discover their connection to their ancestral soil; job seekers looking for employment through our Lauder Employment Center; and small businesses in the Negev and Galilee.” JNF-USA’s National Conference will take place in Boston Nov. 4-6, 2022. For more information about JNF-USA in Southern New England, contact JNF New England Israel Emissary, Dar Nadler, at or call (617) 423-0999, ext. 816. To make a donation, visit donate.

IS THE BIDEN-BENNETT HONEYMOON OVER? Here are 6 US-Israel issues that are raising tensions. BY RON KAMPEAS

WASHINGTON (JTA) — “Behind closed doors” is a phrase that crops up a lot in conversation with senior U.S. and Israeli officials these days. That’s the place both sides want to settle disagreements. So far, that strategy has worked to repair the structure of the diplomatic relationship between U.S. Democrats and the Israeli government, frayed by years of open and sometimes heated contentiousness. Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu repeatedly clashed in public. But despite their ideological differences on paper, President Joe Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett have projected a convivial and united front. “Biden, I think it’s visceral with him, given his historic commitment to Israel, and also not wanting a repeat of the Obama years,” said David Makovsky, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a think tank with ties to both the U.S. and Israeli governments. “And with Bennett and Lapid, they don’t want to repeat the Netanyahu years.” Still, an array of issues has begun to swirl over the past several months that threaten the current calm. Bennett has allowed for the construction of thousands of new settler homes. Biden is pushing to reopen the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem, formerly the principal venue for U.S.Palestinian relations. Last month the United States sanctioned two Israeli spyware companies. Then there is the ongoing strife over Iran’s nuclear program, a point of contention that those who analyze the U.S.-Israel relationship say could eventually blow the doors wide open. “The Iran issue is where the two parties don’t control the developments,” Makovsky said. “And that’s where Israel is concerned.” CONTINUED ON PAGE 18


| DECEMBER 17, 2021


The Faces of Chanukah Central Massachusetts celebrated the Festival of Lights with numerous events, including the community-wide celebration at Polar Park in Worcester-sponsored by Jewish Federation of Central Mass., Torah Center, PJ Library, the WooSox, and all the area congregations. How many community members can you identify in this beautiful Chanukah mosaic of faces?



| DECEMBER 17, 2021

Around Massachusetts First Chanukah Festival of (Laser) Light ignites Pioneer Valley


ESTERN MASS -- The Jewish Federation of Western Mass. ignited the laser lights of Chanukah in a galaxy far, far away – actually, it was Northampton – for the first-ever Pioneer Valley public Chanukah “Festival of (Laser) Light” on Dec. 4. The Chanukah Festival of (Laser) Light at the Pines Theater in Florence’s Look Park – enjoyed by community members of all ages -- included a dazzling laser light show, the retelling of the Chanukah story, and a Chanukah singalong with local musician and educator Felicia Sloin. Funding for the festival was provided by the Federation and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and was presented in collaboration with the Jewish Community of Amherst, Congregation B’nai Israel, Lander Grinspoon Academy, Camp Laurelwood, Beit Ahavah, and the Springfield JCC/PJ Library. “This holiday season is an opportunity to come together in hope and joy to celebrate our strength as a unique, diverse Western Massachusetts community in partnership with our friends and neighbors,” said Nora Gorenstein, interim executive director of the Jewish Federation of Western Mass. “We wanted to bring the Festival of (Laser) Light to the Pioneer Valley as part of our commitment to providing accessible opportunities for people of all faiths, ages, and identities to connect and engage with our Jewish community.”

RACHEL’S TABLE ENSURES A TURKEY IN EVERY HOME SPRINGFIELD – Rachel’s Table, the Jewish Federation of Western Mass.’s food rescue program, last month distributed 1,327 turkeys to agencies feeding the hungry. Twenty-eight food agencies in Hampton, Hampshire, and Franklin counties received turkeys purchased by Rachel’s Table, with additional support provided by the Healthy Community Emergency Food Fund of the Jewish Federation. “We recognize the financial challenges many families face this year, so we are truly thankful that we are able to help more households enjoy a traditional turkey for Thanksgiving,” said Sarah Maniaci, associate director of Rachel’s Table. “This year we are also thankful for our friends in the community who have helped us make the purchase and delivery of thousands of turkeys to families across the Pioneer Valley possible.” Arnold’s Meats delivered the turkeys to area food pantries, shelters, and soup kitchens, including the Springfield Rescue Mission, Community Survival Center, Amherst Survival Center, and the Franklin Country Community Meals. The Gray House of Springfield received 100 full turkey dinners including stuffing, vegetables, and fixings, coordinated by volunteer Betsy Gaberman. And kosher turkeys were distributed to those in need who observe Jewish dietary laws. The Thanksgiving Fund is a signature program of Rachel’s Table, established by FROM LEFT TO RIGHT, RACHEL’S the late Daydie Hochberg. Her friends and TABLE VOLUNTEERS family continue to honor her by bringing DELIVERING THANKSGIVING MEALS TO THE GRAY HOUSE: SALLY Thanksgiving to every home. SCHNEIDER, BETSY GABERMAN, For more information or to donate, call JANE ENGELMAN, NANCY NATHAN (413) 733-0084 or visit AND SALLY ANN RESNIC.






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| DECEMBER 17, 2021


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OSTON – Israel “Izzy” Arbeiter, 96, died on Oct. 29, just weeks after being honored by the New England Friends of March of the Living (NEF MOTL) at their Second Annual Tribute Event ‘Voices from the Past… Lessons for the Future.’ The theme of the event was “A promise kept: Honoring the enduring impact of Israel ‘Izzy’ Arbeiter.” Arbeiter, a resident of Newton, received the Stephan Ross Excellence in Holocaust Education Award, named for New England Holocaust Memorial Founder, Stephan Ross. Arbeiter and Ross were lifelong friends after arriving in Boston following World War II. Both men dedicated their lives to ensure critical lessons of the Holocaust would never be forgotten. Arbeiter lost most of his family in Nazi death camps during World War II. He devoted much of the last 75 years to keeping a promise he made to his father the last time he saw him -- to “never forget” and to “continue to tell the world what happened to the Jews.” Arbeiter passionately spoke to audiences of all ages and backgrounds on three continents about his family story and about the roots of prejudice. He was founder and former president of the American Association of Jewish Holocaust Survivors of Greater Boston, was appointed by President Barak Obama to the delegation of the 70th Anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau and received the Order of Merit from his native Poland, presented by the Polish President. He testified at the Nuremberg trials, participated in a World War II documentary film entitled “A Promise to My Father,” and was instrumental in creating the New England Holocaust Memorial. Arbeiter took special interest in the New England Friends of the March of the Living, part of an international organization that annually sends 10,000 Jewish high schoolers on an educational, life-changing heritage mission to Poland and Israel. That involvement also was in keeping with the pledge he made to his father. Via the NEFMOTL, every qualified participant will receive $2,000 toward the cost of the 2022 trip. The N. E. Friends of March of the Living is now recruiting for the 2022 trip. For more information or to donate toward scholarships, contact Irv Kempner, chair of NEFMOTL at or (617) 285-8620.

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ordan A. Kei-Rahn of West Hartford, Conn., formerly of Longmeadow, has elected to attend Yale Law School. A graduate of Longmeadow High School (’17), Kei-Rahn is the son of Leslie V. Kei-Rahn and Jeffrey A. Rahn z”l. He is a 2021 magna cum laude graduate of Brown University (’21), where he studied history (with a concentration in American Legal studies) and biology, and was inducted into both Phi Beta Kappa, America’s most prestigious honor society, and Sigma Xi, the international Scientific Research Honor Society. At Brown, he was also founder and editor-in-chief of the Brown Undergraduate Law Review, where he will continue as a consultant, leader of the Brown Lecture Board, student voice on the University Resources Committee charged with determining the University-wide budget, appointee to the Ad Hoc Committee on Promoting the Financial Health and Sustainability of Brown University, and both a Brown Hillel-RISD and residential peer leader.

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| DECEMBER 17, 2021


News and Jewish Community Update



n Hanukkah we play dreidel with the Hebrew letters Nun, Gimel, Hay, Shin, corresponding to the phrase “a great miracle happened there”, in Israel, where the story of Hanukkah took place 2,200 years ago the phrase is a “great miracle happened here”. While we didn’t have any miraculous experiences with our own Central MA Hanukkah oil, we did have a great Hanukkah here in our community, and given the challenges of COVID it’s a miracle we could celebrate together. There were public lightings every night, menorahs were lit in the Worcester Mayor’s Office, at Worcester City STEVEN SCHIMMEL, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Hall Common, at Kelley Square, at Newton Square, in Shrewsbury Common, at Worcester Art Museum, and new menorahs were lit in Northboro with Beth Tikvah and at B’nai Shalom in Westboro for the first time! There were celebrations at Beth Israel, Shaarai Torah West, and Temple Emanuel Sinai, each and every one of our congregations celebrated with joy. I was energized to see such a great turn out for these events which culminated with a huge community-wide celebration at Polar Park in Worcester that was sponsored by Jewish Federation, Torah Center, PJ Library, the WooSox, and all of our congregations. The lighting on the final night at Worcester Art Museum was especially nice, that event was cosponsored with the JCC and Jewish Federation and included special docent led tours of the Richard Neumann exhibit. I couldn’t help but feel a sense of Jewish pride as the menorah was lit in front of a mosaic floor from Antioch, the capital city of the ancient Syrian Greek Seleucid Empire that the Macabees defeated. Here we



are 2,200 years later lighting a menorah in Worcester, MA in front of that mosiac, what a triumph! Hanukkah is a special time when we are reminded of the ancient struggle for continuity of our beliefs and traditions, and sovereignty over our rituals, and that message rings especially true in modern times as we are constantly challenged to maintain Jewish life in a world that can at times be increasingly hostile. This year as we lit the menorah at Worcester City Hall, I reminded the crowd that this was the spot where the first public reading in New England of the Declaration of Independence occurred, and how in 1776 our American forefathers were fighting against a despotic tyrant, and how in the story of Hanukkah our Macabbee forefathers were also fighting against a tyrant- and in our country we continue to fight to ensure that our values are upheld even today, the message of Hanukkah continues to resonate.

STAY CONNECTED PJ LIBRARY & PJ OUR WAY PJ Library/PJOW Bagels and Books with Congregation Beth Israel, Sunday, January 2nd, 10 am-12 pm


YAD Movie and Chinese Day, December 25th, Time TBA LEAD/YAD with World ORT, January 20th, 7:30 pm, via Zoom LEAD/YAD with Shaliach Aviv Jerbi, February 27th, 2:00 pm

CHAVERIM Cafe Chaverot Meetups (ongoing) Chaverim Night Out at the Jewish Film Festival, February 5th, 7:00 pm

COMMUNITY-WIDE LEAD/YAD with World Ort, January 20th, 7:30 pm, via Zoom KKeep up with other ongoing events and changes via our Facebook Pages and emails, or contact Mindy Hall, Director of Outreach and Engagement,




| DECEMBER 17, 2021



News and Jewish Community Update











| DECEMBER 17, 2021



(Israel21C via JNS) What is the recipe for meat and dairy without cows? Snacks and sauces with less sugar and salt? Longlasting fresh produce and compostable food wrappers? A fast-growing, climate-threatened world is hungry for such recipes. Appropriately enough, the search began in the kitchen—or rather, The Kitchen. The world’s first food-tech hub was launched in 2015 by The Strauss Group, one of Israel’s largest food producers, as part of the Israeli Innovation Authority’s Technological Incubators Program. “This doesn’t exist elsewhere,” said The Kitchen’s vice president of business development, Amir Zaidman, in 2016. Today, The Kitchen has 22 portfolio companies cooking up innovations to feed the world more efficiently, sustainably and securely. But The Kitchen is no longer alone: Governmental, corporate and academic foodtech labs and incubators are opening across Israel. The number of food-tech startups has risen to approximately 400. Food-tech (increasingly referred to as agri-food-tech) combines two of Israel’s best assets, says Nisan Zeevi, head of business development at Margalit Startup City #Galilee. “Our agricultural knowhow, which is one of the wonders of the world, and our technological knowhow that we have built in the past 40 to 50 years. Put them together and you’ve got breakthroughs on a global scale.”


SUCCESS IS STICKY The Israeli Economy and Industry Ministry reports that food-tech investment nearly doubled between 2013 ($52 million) and 2018 ($100 million) with input from multinationals including Coca-Cola, Mars, Tyson Foods, Nestle, Danone, AB inBev, Starbucks, PepsiCo, McDonalds, Heineken and Unilever. Tel Aviv research firm IVC found foodtech garnered $432 million in investments in 2020, less than sectors such as cyber and fintech, but growing fast. “Success stories attract more entrepreneurs into the field,” says The Kitchen’s Zaidman, who was scheduled to speak at the Food Biotech Congress Nov. 8-11 and at the first global virtual food trade show, Nov. 21-24. “Israel is a very entrepreneurial country and both new and serial entrepreneurs are always thinking about the next big thing. They see food-tech is an impact area on environment and health,” says Zaidman. “Maybe they were hesitant before when looking at the money going into sectors like cyber, but now they see they can get capital investment in food-tech that can be gamechanging.” Zaidman predicts major financing rounds for Israeli food-tech in 2022. “Startups like [cultivated steak pioneer] Aleph Farms don’t even have products in the market yet. But what they are doing is so amazing they get a lot of attention.” Indeed, Aleph Farms got a recent investment from Leonardo DiCaprio, while Ashton Kutcher put money into MeaTech.

BREAKTHROUGHS ON A GLOBAL SCALE One of the Israeli companies already making inroads in the global market is InnovoPro. Its proprietary process transforms chickpeas— the humble nourishing basis of hummus—into a neutral-tasting protein concentrate for foods and beverages. InnovoPro has factories in Canada and Germany, and a new subsidiary in Chicago as it launches a chickpea TVP (texturized vegetable protein) for plant-based burgers, nuggets and meatballs. Migros, Switzerland’s largest retailer and supermarket chain, uses InnovoPro’s product in a dairy-free yogurt. “Hummus is a Middle East product. You take the technology and combine it with Israeli knowhow and–boom—you’ve got a successful food-tech company,” says Zeevi. Hoping to create similar successes, Jerusalem-based Margalit Startup City inaugurated its Galilee branch in September. The Kiryat Shmona campus encompasses a food-tech accelerator, institute, executive park and Fresh Start early-stage incubator supported by food giants Tnuva and Tempo along with Finistere Ventures and OurCrowd. “Five years ago, we came to the Galilee and wrote a plan to transform this area into a food-tech and ag-tech center with the involvement of municipalities, service providers, investors, academies and research institutes across the Galilee. The government gave it a budget of 500 million shekels,” says Zeevi. Margalit Startup City #Galilee has attracted satellite offices of Jerusalem Venture Partners, Cisco, Tel Hai College and the Migal Galilee Research Institute of the Israeli Science and Technology Ministry. One portfolio company, DynaFresh, was established by Migal post-harvest experts to optimize the shelf life of fresh produce. “Margalit Startup City is where everything converges at a physical hub and meets the international and business sector,” says Zeevi. Unlike cyber and fintech, a food-tech company not only needs skilled scientists and technicians but also, after scaleup, factory workers. This makes food-tech a promising equalopportunity employment driver for Israel’s northern and southern periphery, says Zeevi.

HEARTY INVESTMENTS Not only existing VCs are investing in foodtech. Israel also has Millennium Food-Tech, an R&D partnership started in June 2020 and traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. “There was no specialized vehicle in Israel for the post-seed food-tech startup with proven technology waiting to be piloted and commercialized,” VP Business Development 12




Yossi Halevy tells ISRAEL21c. “So we built a VC dedicated to food-tech. This is a sector that is untouched.” Among Millennium’s portfolio companies are SavorEat (alternative protein), Tipa (compostable packaging), TripleW (lactic acid and other upcycled products from food waste), Aleph Farms, and Phytolon (natural food colors). Halevy, a certified public accountant formerly with E&Y in Tel Aviv, became interested in venture creation in food and agriculture four years ago, when “the ecosystem was in diapers,” he says. So he jumped at the chance to join his old friend, former Fresh Start director Chanan Schneider, in Millennium Food-Tech. ‘We work with Nestlé and other major food companies,” Halevy tells ISRAEL21c. “It’s a triangle relationship: We use their knowledge for our due diligence, and they use ours for investment and proof of concept.” Halevy sees ingredient development as one of Israel’s strongest capabilities because it maximizes the country’s well-honed, wellconnected multidisciplinary talents. “Israel is unique from many aspects, but most significant is that everyone knows everyone,” he points out. “That’s very helpful in food-tech because it has so many disciplines that need to be combined—innovation, entrepreneurship, biotech, physics, chemistry, robotics, computer vision, artificial intelligence. You can easily assemble a team and cross-mine ideas and development.”

CORPORATIONS GET IN ON FOOD-TECH The food-tech scene in Israel is expanding like a yeasty bread dough into many sectors, from corporate to academic to nonprofit, with governmental participation sprinkled in.

| DECEMBER 17, 2021





International Flavors & Fragrances, a US-based multinational with operations in Migdal HaEmek in northern Israel, runs the FoodNxt incubator in partnership with the Israel Innovation Authority. IFF shares its knowledge about industry processes and technologies, international regulations and general food science expertise. The incubator also provides funding and helps portfolio startups build business plans, develop patent strategies and test products. Salt of The Earth, a global Israeli company in the North founded in 1922, has teamed up with Tel-Hai College for multiple projects, such as testing ingredients at the college’s analytical lab. Tel-Hai students recently were challenged to create innovations emphasizing sodium reduction and flavor enhancement. They were guided by Salt of The Earth R&D technologist and application manager Rakefet Rosenblatt, a food science graduate of Tel-Hai. “We always think about what we can make better,” she tells ISRAEL21c. “Salt is a known product; how can we help the industry use it in a smarter way? Students have great ideas and it’s good to invest in them.” One group proposed a salt product enhanced with mineral-rich seaweed, using a special process to neutralize the seaweed’s strong flavor and color. Another group developed a savory vegan snack based on chickpea flour and Salt of the Earth’s Mediterranean Umami Bold flavor enhancer. At the opposite end of Israel, down south in the Negev town of Rahat, seven major companies with a regional presence, such as SodaStream, Netafim and Dolav Plastic Products, joined with academic and VC partners in the IIA’s InNegev incubator for food-tech, ag-tech, clean-tech and Industry 4.0.

“This is our first year of operation. We’re mostly doing venture creation now, utilizing the capabilities of our partners in the Negev,” says Amir Tzach, InNegev’s VP Business Development & Investments. Among food-tech innovations under consideration at InNegev are post-harvest sensors—one that detects bacteria and another that detects soft rot in potatoes early enough so that the bad potato(es) can be removed before the rot spreads. In the hot field of alternative protein, InNegev is looking at companies in the South engaged in algae production, and may assist local meat-processing facilities in converting space for alt-protein production.

ACADEMIC AND NONPROFIT FOOD-TECH Going back up north, the Carasso FoodTech Innovation Center was inaugurated in September at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa. The center will house R&D for industrial production, a startup hub, packaging laboratory, industrial kitchen, tasting and evaluation units, and an educational visitor area. Prof. Marcelle Machluf, dean of the Technion Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Engineering, said that the COVID19 pandemic “has only emphasized the importance of food and biotechnology in maintaining our existence and meeting future existential challenges. To address the many challenges in this field, including access to healthy, affordable food and innovative medical treatments, we need advanced infrastructure that will enable the integration of new engineering and scientific tools.” In Tel Aviv, the Israeli not-for-profit StartUp Nation Central joined forces with global entrepreneur network TiE to advance Israeli and Indian food- and ag-tech solutions for

novel foods, post-harvest storage, alternative protein, food safety and packaging. Israeli startups selected for the mentorship program so far include multiple award-winning grasshopper protein company Hargol, automated cooking manufacturer Kitchen Robotics, vision-based robotic controller Deep Learning Robotics and produce storage humidity control solution UmiGo.

FIGHTING FOOD SCARCITY FOR THE FUTURE Start-Up Nation Central CEO Avi Hasson notes that farmers face increasingly harsher weather conditions, environmental pollutants and soil depletion. Coupled with population growth and increased product demand, these issues increase global concerns about food security. “Technologies that have the potential to either improve crop yields or transform, preserve, and tailor foods with improved functional and nutritional values will ensure a stable supply of food in the future,” says Hasson. The Kitchen’s Zaidman predicts that as the sector matures, we’ll see more segmentation. “For example, Aleph Farms started working on cultivated meat before there was any existing technology. A lot of the innovation we’ll see in the next two to three years will be much more specialized in certain aspects that support this industry,” he explains. “In terms of global trends, alternative proteins will continue as a strong trend because we’re just scratching the surface of consumer interest. There’s a lot of potential in alternative dairy, seafood and eggs.” Aviv Oren, business engagement and innovation director of the Israeli branch of the Good Food Institute, says Israel hosts about 100 alt-protein startups and 28 altMASSACHUSETTS JEWISH LEDGER

protein research labs in academic institutions. One of the newest ones, Alfred’s, offers an innovative platform for producing plantbased whole cuts for the meat, poultry, meat analog and cultivated meat industry. “Israel now ranks second in the world behind the United States in its total number of fermentation and cultivated meat companies,” Oren notes.GFI Israel Managing Director Nir Goldstein sees Israel’s role as potentially monumental. “With governmental support in this industry, Israel, which currently exports only five percent of the food it produces, could become a global supplier of raw materials and advanced production technologies for alternative proteins,” he says. This article first appeared in Israel21c.


| DECEMBER 17, 2021


A Mass. town apologizes after using Christian menorah in holiday display BY PHILISSA CRAMER

(JTA) — A small municipal holiday event turned into a big problem for Medford, Massachusetts, after a city worker included a menorah picture produced by Messianic Jews in a display about world religions. The suburb of Boston apologized for the display, which appeared during last week’s Holiday Extravaganza, a city event aimed at promoting local businesses. But the episode has left some local Jewish residents asking, not for the first time, whether they are truly considered a part of the local community. Medford, a city that is part of the dense

of Christmas trees. Another featured the kinara, the candelabra used during the African-American holiday of Kwanzaa. And a third showcased the menorah, used by Jews during Chanukah. Although the table held an electric menorah with nine candles, the menorah in a photo placed on the table wasn’t the one used by Jews during Chanukah. Instead, it was a picture of a seven-branched menorah labeled with Christian terms. One branch was labeled “cross,” for example, while another was labeled “resurrection.” The image is widely available online as an illustration of Messianic interpretations of the menorah. Messianic Jews are people who follow many Jewish practices while believing in the divinity of Jesus; no mainstream Jewish movement considers them Jewish. In Medford, some A PICTURE OF A MENORAH INTENDED TO EXPLAIN THE were concerned that OBJECT’S SYMBOLISM WAS ACTUALLY A MESSIANIC IMAGE IN a Messianic Jew WHICH THE MENORAH’S BRANCHES WERE DESCRIBED was responsible AS SYMBOLIZING THE “CROSS” AND “RESURRECTION.” for Jewish affairs (SCREENSHOT FROM FACEBOOK) within the municipal core of Boston’s metropolitan area, is home government, or that City Hall had reached to Tufts University and claims as native sons out to a Messianic Jew for guidance instead both the author of “Jingle Bells” and Mike of to representatives of the local Jewish Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York community. City whose family had to buy a home in the But according to a note posted in a local town surreptitiously to circumvent local Facebook group by the City Hall staffer who antisemitism. said she had created the display, the image Some Medford Jews felt like important did not reflect an ideology at all. Instead, the progress had been made this year after the staffer wrote, she had come across the image city school district, for the first time in recent while researching about religious traditions history, canceled classes for Rosh Hashanah and thought it might be helpful for people and Yom Kippur. attending the event. Sarah Beardslee, a Jewish resident of It quickly became clear to the city that Medford for 30 years, said the city had that was not the case. Late Friday, it issued recently sought to demonstrate that it values an apology on Facebook and the photo of diversity. “This is just another example of the table with the menorah has since been how that’s really not the case,” she told the removed from Facebook. Jewish Telegraphic Agency of the holiday “We sincerely regret the harm and are display. committed to learn from this mistake,” The issue began shortly after the Holiday the apology said. “Going forward we will Extravaganza on Wednesday evening, Dec. consult faith and community leaders, 1, when the town posted pictures from include their experience and expertise in the event. Along with photos with Santa, our event planning processes, and ensure a wreath sale and the lighting of the town that every public-facing item is represented Christmas tree, the holiday event featured appropriately and accurately.” a table inside City Hall with framed The apology followed a day of meetings descriptions of holiday symbols. and conversations, according to Rabbi One set of pictures showcased the history Braham David, who leads Temple Shalom in 14


| DECEMBER 17, 2021

Medford. He and the synagogue’s president sent statements to their community late Friday as Shabbat began. David wrote that he had spent the day speaking with other local rabbis, Jewish community members and clergy from other religions. He also said he had reached out to Medford’s mayor, Breanna Lungo-Koehn, to discuss the situation. “She expressed deep regret on behalf of her staff and the mayor’s office for this careless error,” David wrote, noting that the mayor’s office had received “countless calls” about the display. Gisele Ellis, Temple Shalom’s president, said that she, too, was inclined to accept the city’s apology, citing the example of Julian Edelman, the star Jewish wide receiver for the New England Patriots who retired this year. Edelman prominently sought to teach, not shame, a colleague who made antisemitic comments on social media. But Ellis also conveyed deep distress about the episode, which she said was a departure from past years when the city invited Temple Shalom to participate in

planning the holiday event. “That we have to explain why this is offensive is frustrating. The lack of Jewish involvement in this event makes us feel invisible in the eyes of our city leaders. That this horrible display was put up at City Hall makes us furious,” she wrote, adding, “I have heard this fury from many of you today.” Among those responding was a newly elected member of the City Council, Kit Collins, who is Jewish. “ To all those who spoke up about the erroneous and offensive depiction of a menorah displayed at last night’s holiday festival at City Hall, I see you & I thank you. As a Jew, I understand how frustrating and painful it can be to have one’s faith be so egregiously misrepresented,” tweeted Collins, who will be sworn in next month. “I’m grateful that the Administration responded swiftly to remove the offensive picture,” Collins added. “I’m sorry this happened, but I hope and expect that it will spur us to do better going forward at properly respecting, representing, and celebrating the many cultures that exist in Medford.”

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We join together in saying we will not tolerate domestic abuse in the Jewish community. Rabbi Susan Abramson Rabbi Caryn Broitman Temple Shalom Emeth, Burlington Martha's Vineyard Hebrew Center Rabbi Laura Abrasley Temple Shalom, Newton Michaela Brown, Rabbinical Student Rabbi Alison Adler Temple B'nai Abraham, Beverly Rabbi Danny Burkeman Temple Shir Tikva, Wayland Rabbi Katy Allen Ma'yan Tikvah, Wayland Rabbi Max Chaiken Temple Emanuel, Andover Rabbinic Pastor Matia Angelou Wayland Rabbi Noah Cheses Young Israel of Sharon Rabbi Sharon Cohen Anisfeld Hebrew College Rabbi Micah Citrin Temple Beth David, Rabbi Marc Baker Westwood Combined Jewish Philanthropies, Boston Rabbi Sharon Clevenger The Rashi School, Dedham Cantor Elise Barber Temple Beth El, Springfield Rabbi Howard A. Cohen Congregation Shirat Rabbi Joel Baron Hayam, Marshfield Boston Rabbi Andrea Rabbi Jordi Battis Cohen-Kiener Temple Shir Tikva, Wayland Greenfield Rabbi Laura Bellows Boston Rabbi Alfred H. Benjamin Congregation Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills, Milton

Rabbi David Curiel Asiyah Jewish Community, Somerville Rabbi Braham David Jewish Discovery Institute, Newton

Rabbi Tiferet Berenbaum Temple Beth Zion (TBZ), Brookline Rabbi Justin David Congregation B'nai Israel, Rav Hazzan Aliza Berger Northampton Temple Emanuel, Newton Rabbi Getzel Davis Rabbi Audrey Marcus Berkman Unorthodox Celebrations, Temple Ohabei Shalom, Brookline Cambridge Rabbi Daniel Berman Newton Highlands

Cantor Lisa Doob Temple Isaiah, Lexington

Rabbi Allison L. Berry Temple Shalom, Newton

Rabbi David Ehrenkranz Sharon

Rabbi Moshe Bleich Wellesley Weston Chabad

Rabbi Wesley Gardenswartz Temple Emanuel, Newton Cantor Jamie Gloth Temple Aliyah, Needham

Rabbi Rachel Tali Kaplan Rabbi Yossi Lipsker Hebrew SeniorLife Hospice Chabad of the North Shore, Swampscott Rabbi Aryeh Klapper Center for Modern Torah Rabbi Jessica Lowenthal Leadership Temple Beth Shalom, Melrose

Rabbi Neal Gold Babson College, Natick

Rabbi David Klatzker Temple Israel of Natick

Rabbi Rebekah Goldman Rabbi Daniel Klein Simsbury, CT Hebrew College Rabbi Hayley Goldstein Rabbi Leslie Gordon Temple Israel (senior interim), Sharon Rabbi Andrea M. Gouze Temple Beth Emunah, Stoughton

Rabbi Liz P.G. Hirsch Temple Anshe Amunim, Pittsfield

Neil Hirsch, Rabbinical Student Hebrew College Rabbi Judi Ehrlich Hebrew SeniorLife, Dedham Rabbinical School

Rabbi Neil Hirsch Rabbi Joe Eiduson Congregation B'nai Shalom, Hevreh of Southern Berkshire, Great Westborough Rabbi Elizabeth Bonney-Cohen Barrington Rabbi Lisa Eiduson Rabbi Josh Breindel Congregation B'nai Torah, Rabbi/Cantor Idan Congregation Beth El of the Irelander Sudbury Sudbury River Valley Rabbi Suzie Jacobson Rabbi Mark Elber Rabbi Julie Bressler Temple Israel of Boston Temple Beth El, Fall River

Cantor Vera Broekhuysen

Rabbi Yisroel Freeman Chabad Center of Sudbury

Rabbi Jeremy Master Sinai Temple, Springfield

Rabbi Cherie Koller-Fox Newton Rabbi Neil Kominsky Brookline Grand Rabbi Y.A. Korff Chaplain of The City of Boston/Zvhil-Mezbuz Beis Medrash, Boston

Naomi Gurt Lind, Rabbinical Student Rabbi Jamie Kotler Hebrew College Rabbinical Brookline School Rabbi Jonathan Kraus Rabbi Eric S. Gurvis Beth El Temple Center, Sha'arei Shalom of Belmont Ashland and MetroWest Rabbi Claudia Kreiman Rabbi Vanessa Harper Temple Beth Zion (TBZ), Temple Beth Elohim, Brookline Wellesley & Gann Academy Rabbi David Kudan Temple Tiferet Shalom, Rabbi David Hellman Peabody Young Israel of Brookline Rabbi Judith Kummer Rabbi Greg Hersh Spiritual Support for Life's Temple Emmanuel of Journey Wakefield Rabbi Ben Lanckton Rabbi Amy Hertz Mass General Hospital, Temple Isaiah, Lexington Boston

Rabbi Sam Blumberg Temple Beth Am, Framingham

Rabbi Cari Bricklin-Small Temple Shir Tikvah, Winchester

Rabbi Rachel Maimin Temple Isaiah, Lexington

Rabbi Howard L. Jaffe Temple Isaiah, Lexington

Rabbi Van Lanckton Rabbi Allan Lehmann Newton

Rabbi Joseph Meszler Temple Sinai, Sharon Rabbi David Meyer Temple Emanu-El, Marblehead Rabbi Mimi Micner Rabbi Estelle Mills Congregation Beth Jacob, Plymouth Rabbi Jim Morgan Hebrew SeniorLife, Brookline Rabbi Beth Naditch Hebrew SeniorLife Rabbi Andrew Oberstein Temple Israel of Boston Rabbi Sara Paasche-Orlow Newton Rabbi Allison Peiser Temple Emanu-El, Marblehead

Rabbi Richard Perlman Rabbi David Lerner Temple Emunah, Lexington Temple Ner Tamid, Peabody

Rabbi Steven A. Lewis Temple Ahavat Achim, Gloucester

Rabbi Elias Lieberman Falmouth Jewish Congregation, Rabbi Shoshana Friedman Rabbi Randy Kafka Temple Kol Tikvah, Sharon East Falmouth Hebrew College

Rabbi Liza Stern Congregation Eitz Chayim, Cambridge

Rabbi Avremi Raichik Chabad of Cape Ann, Gloucester

Ashira Stevens, Rabbinical Student Hebrew College Rabbinical School

Rabbi Shayna Rhodes Hebrew College Rabbinical School

Rav Hazzan Ken Richmond Cantor Michael McCloskey Temple Israel, Natick Temple Emeth, Chestnut Hill Rabbi Michelle Robinson & Rabbinical Student, Academy for Jewish Religion, Temple Emanuel, Newton Yonkers, NY Rabbi Michael Rothbaum Congregation Beth Elohim, Rabbi Margot Meitner Acton Jamaica Plain

Rabbi Raffi Leicht Rabbi Carl M. Perkins University of Massachusetts Temple Aliyah, Needham Amherst Rabbi Jay Perlman Temple Beth Shalom, Rabbi Darby Leigh Needham Concord

Rabbi Navah Levine

Rabbi Michael Ragozin Congregation Shirat Hayam, Swampscott

Rabbi Marcia Plumb Congregation Mishkan Tefila, Brookline Rabbi Louis Polisson Congregation Or Atid, Wayland Rabbi Elaine Pollack Newton

Rabbi Richard Rudnick Jewish Health Care Center Inc., Worcester Rabbi Benjamin J. Samuels Congregation Shaarei Tefillah, Newton Rav Ma'ayan Sands Temple B'nai Shalom, Braintree Cantor Nancy Sargon Newton Cantor Hollis Schachner Temple Shir Tikva, Wayland Rabbi Daniel Schaefer Temple Ohabei Shalom, Brookline Rabbi Gershon Segal Congregation Beth El Atereth Israel, Newton Centre Rabbi Rachel Silverman Temple Israel, Sharon Rabbi Becky Silverstein Boston Rabbi Joel Sisenwine Temple Beth Elohim, Wellesley Rabbi Dan Slipakoff Temple Israel of Boston Hazzan Linda Sue Sohn Holliston Rabbi Robin S. Sparr

Cantor Alicia Stillman Temple Israel of Boston Rabbi Jamie Stolper Newton Rabbi Jason Strauss Congregation KadimahToras Moshe, Brighton Rabbi Mona Strick Rabbi Michael Swarttz Beth Tikvah Synagogue, Westborough Rabbi Leslie Keiter Tannenwald Jewish Life Services Cantor Louise Treitman Temple Beth David, Westwood Rabbi Alan Turetz Temple Emeth, Chestnut Hill Rabbi Andrew Vogel Temple Sinai, Brookline Rabbi Dr. Moshe Waldoks Temple Beth Zion (TBZ), Brookline Rabbi Amy S. Wallk Temple Beth El, Springfield Rabbi David Weiner Knesset Israel, Pittsfield Rabbi Ora Weiss Rabbi Alex Weissman Congregation Agudas Achim, Attleboro Rabbi David G. Winship Temple Beth David of the South Shore, Canton Cantor David Wolff Temple Beth Am, Framingham Rabbi Julie Wolkoff Wellesley

Rabbi Toba Spitzer Rabbi Elaine Zecher Congregation Dorshei Tzedek, Temple Israel of Boston Newton Rabbi Henry A. Zoob Rabbi Talia Stein Temple Beth David, Temple Sinai, Brookline Westwood

This project was partially supported by the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance through a Victims of Crime Act of 1984 (VOCA) grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, and U.S. Department of Justice. We deeply appreciate this support.

We are grateful to the Miriam Fund, which supported the Safe Havens/JF&CS Journey to Safety partnership and our past research.


| DECEMBER 17, 2021


ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT 2022 Grammy Awards: The Jewish nominees BY SHIRA HANAU

(JTA) — Some of the music industry’s most popular Jewish artists were included in the 2022 Grammy Award nominations unveiled on Tuesday, Nov. 30. The awards ceremony will take place Jan. 31 in Los Angeles. Here’s a roundup: Doja Cat, a Black and Jewish pop star-rapper hybrid who has become one of the most listened-to artists in the world — Spotify lists her as the 7th-most-streamed musician on its platform as of Wednesday morning — racked up nominations in in seven categories, including Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, Best Pop Vocal Album, Melodic Rap Performance and Rap Song. She has a Jewish mother and a non-Jewish South African father. Jack Antonoff, a Jewish day school grad who wore a Star of David necklace to the MTV Music Awards in 2017, has become one of the most in-demand pop producers in the industry. He was nominated for NonClassical Producer of the Year for his work in the past year with Taylor Swift, Lana Del Ray, Lorde and others. Drake, a Canadian Jewish rapper, winner of four past Grammys (in addition to a record-breaking 29 Billboard Music Awards), was nominated for Best Rap Performance for his hit “Way 2 Sexy” and Best Rap Album of the year for his latest LP, “Certified Lover Boy.” Despite having

Aaron Dessner, part of the indie rock band The National, was included in Taylor Swift’s nomination in the Album of the Year category for the album “Evermore,” which he helped write, along with Antonoff. (The pair did the same with Swift’s “Folklore” album last year.) Dessner’s brother Bryce, who is also in The National and was also included in the nomination for helping in the recording process, wrote a classical music piece in 2013 partially inspired by their Jewish grandmother’s heritage and immigration to the United State. Matt Haimovitz, an Israeli cellist, was co-nominated for his work on an album up for Best Classical Solo Voice Album. He was also nominated last year in the classical compendium category.

Cartman converts to Judaism on ‘South Park,’ after decades of tormenting Jews BY ANDREW LAPIN

(JTA) — One of television’s most notorious cartoon antisemites is now an Orthodox rabbi. Eric Cartman, the egomaniacal, hate speech-spouting grade schooler on Comedy Central’s long-running adult animated series “South Park,” has had a change of heart in a new hour-long special of the show, which is set 40 years in the future. In “South Park: Post COVID,” which debuted on Thanksgiving on the Paramount Plus streaming service, Cartman has converted to Judaism, leads a congregation in Colorado Springs, wears a tallit wherever he goes, and has a Jewish wife named “Yentl” and three children: “Moishe,” “Menorah” and “Hakham.” His trademark blue hat now serves as a kippah. Is Cartman’s conversion for real, or some elaborate scheme directed at his old nemesis, Kyle Broflovski? We won’t know for sure what’s going on with him until the story arc continues sometime this month


Black Eyed Peas lead singer says being in Israel is ‘like being with mishpocha’

once participated in a mock re-staging of his bar mitzvah on “Saturday Night Live,” he has been guarded in recent years in talking about his Jewish identity. Stephen Schwartz, the legendary musical theater writer, was nominated for Best Musical Theater Album for “Stephen Schwartz’s Snapshots,” a scrapbook musical including songs from a range of his musicals, including “Wicked,” “Pippin” and “Godspell.” 16


But his sudden devotion to the Torah is enough of a shocker to send Kyle, the show’s long-suffering Jewish protagonist, into fits of rage, as he becomes convinced his ex-friend’s new life is just a meanspirited ruse. The Cartman-Kyle storyline is only the B-plot of the new special — the rest involves the old schoolyard gang reuniting to try to uncover long-buried secrets of the COVID pandemic — but “South Park” has long used the dynamic between the two as politically incorrect comic fodder, dating back to the show’s debut in 1997. Series co-creators Matt Stone (who is Jewish, and voices Kyle) and Trey Parker (who voices Cartman) have built many episodes around Jewish themes, frequently making note of Cartman’s antisemitism — usually as a way to mock actual antisemites. The pint-sized sociopath has previously impersonated Hitler in an attempt to get “Passion of the Christ” fans to re-enact the Holocaust; faked having Tourette Syndrome in order to spout antisemitic speech in public; and tried to force Kyle to hand over his “Jew Gold”. He’s even jokingly converted to Judaism before, in a 2012 Passover special. But this time, Cartman actually seems serious about his faith — he even yells out Talmudic lessons while in the bedroom with his wife. Kyle, meanwhile, seems to have lapsed from his own beliefs in the intervening decades, noting at one point, “It’s been a long time since I’ve prayed.” So maybe seeing his longtime frenemy embrace the faith he once ridiculed could open up something in Kyle. But if so, that may take some more healing. When circumstances compel Kyle to host Cartman’s family, he instead tries to kick them out. One of Cartman’s kids exclaims, “This is just like when our people were exiled from the Holy Land!” Jewish fans of “South Park” are used to Cartman’s shenanigans: Odds are, there’s something funny going on here. We won’t know for sure what’s up with him until the next made-for-streaming film, which is due next month. “South Park: Post COVID” is now streaming on Paramount Plus.



used a Yiddish word to describe the feeling he gets in the country. While on a visit to Israel to perform with his group,, born William James Adams, Jr., said Monday that he would not boycott the country and added that being in Israel is like being among family — or “mishpocha.” “I always wanted to come to Israel growing up in Los Angeles, a lot of my friends are Israelis,” said, who is not Jewish. “My grandma came here. When she visited, she would say, ‘I’m going to the holy land.’ She came with her church. It was always a place of aspiration and wonder and when I first came, I brought my grandma…I always love coming here. It’s like mishpocha.” The rapper made his remarks at the IMPROVATE technology conference in the Orient Hotel in Jerusalem. This was not the first time the Black Eyed Peas have performed in Israel, where they put on concerts in 2006 and 2007. Speaking at the conference, explained how one of his childhood friends inspired him to throw some other Hebrew words into one of the band’s most popular songs, “I Gotta Feeling.” In that song, famously shouts out “mazel tov” and another band member responds with “l’chaim.” “I wanted to make Benjamin‘s dad proud,” the rapper said of his childhood friend. “So I said, ‘Mazel tov,’ ‘L’chaim’ and he was like, ‘Will, I always knew you are mishpocha. So to me, when I say mishpocha, I mean that dearly. This place is magical to me, for my grandma wanted to come here, and I can’t let politics get in the way of where my heart is going.” also worked the word “mishpocha” into a music video for a song the Black Eyed Peas made with the Israeli pop duo Static and Ben El in 2020. “What’s up, mishpocha?” he asks at the beginning of the music video.

(JTA) — Black Eyed Peas frontman feels at home in Israel — so much so that he | DECEMBER 17, 2021

SYNAGOGUE DIRECTORY Western and Central Massachusetts


Jewish Community of Amherst Reconstructionist Rabbi Benjamin Weiner (413) 256-0160 742 Main St., Amherst, MA 01002


Temple Israel Unaffiliated/Egalitarian Reb Sarah Noyovitz (978) 249-9481 107 Walnut Street Athol, MA 01331


Congregation Beth El Reconstructionist Rabbi Micah Becker Klein (802) 442-9645 225 North St., Bennington, VT 05201


Congregation Shaarei Zedeck Conservative Lay Leadership - Elena Feinberg (978) 501-2744 104 Water St., Clinton, MA 01510


Beit Ahavah, The Reform Synagogue of Greater Northampton Reform Rabbi Riqi Kosovske (413) 587-3770 130 Pine St. Florence, MA 01062


Temple Israel of Greenfield Unaffiliated Rabbi Andrea Cohen-Kiener (413) 773-5884 27 Pierce St. Greenfield, MA 01301


Congregation Rodphey Sholom Orthodox Rabbi Tuvia Helfen Religious Leader (413) 534-5262 1800 Northampton St., Holyoke, MA 01040 Congregation Sons of Zion Conservative Rabbi Saul Perlmutter (413) 534-3369 378 Maple St. Holyoke, MA 01040


Congregation Agudat Achim Conservative Rabbi Eve Eichenholtz (978) 534-6121 268 Washington St., Leominster, MA 01453



Beth Tikvah Synagogue Independent Rabbi Michael Swarttz (508) 616-9037 45 Oak St., Westborough, MA 01581


Congregation B’nai Israel Conservative Rabbi Justin David (413) 584-3593 253 Prospect St. Northampton, MA 01060

Congregation B’nai Shalom Reform Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz/ Rabbi-Educator Joseph Eiduson (508) 366-7191 117 East Main St., PO Box 1019, Westborough, MA 01581


Temple Anshe Amunim Reform Rabbi Liz P.G. Hirsch (413) 442-5910 26 Broad St., Pittsfield, MA 01201



Temple Beth El Conservative Rabbi Amy Wallk Katz (413) 733-4149 979 Dickinson St., Springfield, MA 01108

Congregation B’nai Torah Orthodox Rabbi Shlomo Yaffe Rabbi Yakov Wolff (413) 567-0036 2 Eunice Drive Longmeadow, MA 01106 Neighborhood Minyan 124 Sumner Avenue Springfield, MA 01108


Sinai Temple Reform Rabbi Jeremy Master (413) 736-3619 1100 Dickinson St., Springfield, MA 01108

Congregation Ahavas Achim Unaffiliated Rabbi Dawn Rose (413) 642-1797 Ferst Interfaith Center, Westfield State University PO Box 334, 577 Western Avenue, Westfield, MA 01086 Find us on Facebook:

Central Mass Chabad Rabbi Mendel Fogelman, Rabbi Chaim Fishman, Rabbi Michael Phillips, Cantor Eli Abramowitz (508) 752-0904 22 Newton Avenue, Worcester, MA 01602 Congregation Beth Israel Conservative Rabbi Aviva Fellman (508) 756-6204 15 Jamesbury Drive Worcester, MA 01609 Congregation Shaarai Torah West Orthodox Rabbi Yakov Blotner (508) 791-0013 835 Pleasant St. Worcester, MA 01602 Temple Emanuel Sinai Reform Rabbi Valerie Cohen (508) 755-1257 661 Salisbury St., Worcester, MA 01609

To join our synagogue directory, contact Howard Meyerowitz at (860) 231-2424 x3035 or


| DECEMBER 17, 2021



Here are the issues that could drive a wedge between the two countries.

IRAN This week, talks on what conditions the United States wants to see before reentering

in the West Bank. Some were in “E1,” the corridor that separates the Maaleh Adumim settlement from Jerusalem, and which Palestinians say is critical to the existence of a viable Palestinian state — the Biden administration’s favored outcome to the decades-long conflict. An anonymous Israeli aide described the call by saying “The U.S. gave us a yellow card,” Axios reported. In soccer, a yellow card is a strong warning over conduct handed from a referee to a player; two yellow cards

for the Palestinian people. We support Palestinian NGOs’ role monitoring human rights abuses wherever they occur.” On Tuesday, Thomas-Greenfield told the United Nations Security Council that settler attacks created a “serious security situation” for Palestinians and said she had raised it with Israeli officials. The National quoted her as saying she had heard of “Israeli settlers attacking Palestinians, ransacking homes and destroying property in the West Bank” and that “this is an issue that I discussed extensively with Israeli counterparts.”



the Iran deal, known formally as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, resume in Vienna. The JCPOA swaps sanctions relief for Iran rolling back its nuclear program. Former President Donald Trump, with Netanyahu’s encouragement, exited the deal in 2018, reimposing suspended sanctions and adding hundreds of new ones. Iran retaliated, suspending some of its compliance with the deal. Biden campaigned on reentering the deal brokered in 2015, when he was vice president, seeing it as the best means of stopping a nuclear weapon. Bennett and Lapid are skeptical but have said they are willing to wait and see if Biden negotiates better terms with Iran. Israeli officials have said they believe Iran is weeks away from nuclear weapons capability; the country is enriching uranium to 60% purity, perilously close to the 90% needed for weaponization. This week, Axios reported, Israel warned the United States that Iran is on the verge of 90% enrichment. Makovsky said what Iran does this week could set off any number of calculations from the United States and Israel that could lead to open confrontation between the allies. “I think the U.S.-Israel relationship will be tested in terms of how each side responds to this uncertainty,” Makovsky said.

SETTLEMENTS The call that Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz took Oct. 26 was the first of its kind in almost five years: There was a U.S. secretary of state on the line, livid about the announcement that week that Israel had greenlighted more than 3,000 new units 18

in one game equals an ejection. In other words, Blinken’s dressing down was just a warning, not a signal of a new status quo in U.S.-Israel relations.

PALESTINIAN NGOS Last month, Gantz designated six leading Palestinian human rights organizations operating in the West Bank as terrorist groups. The designation would allow Israel’s government to shut the groups down, although it’s not yet clear if the government has taken those steps. Gantz argued that the NGOs are affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, designated by the State Department as a terrorist group. But the international condemnation of the move was swift. The Biden administration also said it was caught off-guard by the designation. Anonymous Israeli officials countered that the United States was forewarned and that intelligence about the groups had been shared. European officials have said the intelligence they have seen is not persuasive. The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, has signaled that the Biden administration remains less than convinced by whatever intelligence Israel was proferring. She has made a point of expressing support for Palestinian NGOs. “This week, I had the chance to meet with civil society leaders in Ramallah,” ThomasGreenfield said on Twitter on Nov. 20 after a visit to Israel and the West Bank. “I was inspired by their work to advance democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity


| DECEMBER 17, 2021

Biden campaigned on reopening the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem, which was the site of U.S.-Palestinian relations until Trump closed it in 2019. Both Bennett and Lapid, Israel’s more centrist foreign minister who is slated to rotate into the prime minister role in 2023, have said that can’t happen. The Biden administration says it is determined to make good on the pledge, which the president sees as key to reviving Israeli-Palestinian peace talks toward a twostate outcome. Lapid has sought to persuade his counterpart Antony Blinken that forcing the issue could endanger the Bennett-Lapid government. That’s because there’s no way the consulate could reopen without explicit Israeli approval and giving that approval would put the Bennett government in the position of acknowledging a Palestinian claim to the city — the third rail in Israeli politics. The old consulate predated Israel’s existence, which meant that until Trump closed it, there was no need to seek Israel’s approval for its ongoing function. That’s no longer the case, according to Lara Friedman, the president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace think tank, who from 1992-1994 was a U.S. diplomat at the consulate. “A diplomatic mission operates as, literally, an island of foreign sovereignty within the territory of the host country, staffed by foreign diplomats who (for the most part) enjoy immunity from the jurisdiction of the host government,” Friedman wrote last month in her weekly roundup of congressional action related to the Middle East. “No nation can simply rent/buy a property in a foreign country and declare it, unilaterally, under their own country’s sovereignty. The host country must consent to giving up its sovereignty to a foreign nation.”

Israeli officials say that they are seeking a way out that would save face for both sides, perhaps by opening a consulate in an area of the West Bank not seen as Jerusalem.

SPYWARE The Biden administration this month sanctioned two Israeli spyware companies, NSO group and Candira, saying that repressive governments are using the tools to “threaten the rules-based international order.” Apple sued NSO for selling its cell phone hacking spyware to governments that used it to spy on activists and journalists. Israel’s Defense Ministry must approve exports of Israeli security technology, and Biden officials have made clear they want answers. Nevertheless, the Biden administration says no actions against Israel’s government are forthcoming. “We look forward to further discussions with the government of Israel about ensuring that these companies’ products are not used to target human rights defenders, journalists and others who shouldn’t be targeted,” said Ned Price, a State Department spokesman.

CHINA One issue that has simmered over from the Trump to the Biden administrations: Israel’s increasing trade with China. Like Trump, Biden is wary of what he sees as China’s increased belligerency and is set on confronting the country. As of now, he is considering a diplomatic boycott of next year’s Olympics in Beijing. Both the Biden and Trump administrations made it clear to Israel that it was expected as an ally to roll back its ties with China, especially in areas of infrastructure that risk exposing U.S. technology. But Israel has yet to alter its course. In October, Israel refused to sign a U.N. statement condemning China’s treatment of the Uighurs, a Muslim minority group in China that has been forced into “re-education camps,” which some have likened to concentration camps. China was perhaps the most sensitive issue at a meeting between Lapid and Blinken in October. “The importance of China to Israel’s economy is very substantial, and we have to find a way to discuss this subject in a way that does not harm Israel’s interests,” an official close to Lapid said at the not harm Israel’s interests,” an official close to Lapid said at the time.


‘If you build it, they will come’ Israeli baseball field dedicated to terror victim Ezra Schwartz BY DEBORAH FINEBLUM

(JNS) It was evident that organizers had no idea how many people felt they just had to be at a particular park in Ra’anana, in central Israel, on Dec. 3 to dedicate a baseball field in the name of Ezra Schwartz. With every seat taken and a couple of hundred people on the sidelines, remarkably none of them— not even the youngest baby—bore any sign of impatience during the entire 50-minute ceremony. Ezra was the kind of guy who inspired that kind of devotion. Six years have passed since the day when the car the 18-year-old was riding in was attacked by a terrorist who opened fire with a submachine gun on Nov. 19, 2015, killing Schwartz and two others. The car filled with students from Yeshivat Ashreinu in Beit Shemesh had been stopped in traffic at the Alon Shvut junction south of Jerusalem. The young men inside were on their way to beautify an area that serves as a memorial to three Israeli teenage boys who were kidnapped and killed the summer before. But last Friday, as the dazzling autumn sun smiled down on those at the proceedings—from young baseball enthusiasts with their mitts and balls at the ready and olim who hailed from Ezra’s hometown of Sharon, Mass., to American teens in Israel for their gap year and citizens of Ra’anana checking out the newest addition to their town’s recreation scene—everyone was there to celebrate Ezra’s life and legacy. That included his parents, Ari and Ruth Schwartz, who have four more children: Mollie, Avi, Elon and Hillel. The Ezra Schwartz Memorial Baseball Field, a project of the Israel Association for Baseball (IAB), is only the second regulation baseball diamond in the country. And it’s no coincidence that this is the sport chosen to represent this particular young man. As his dad says, “Ezra lived the game, and he loved the game.” So much so that the day before his death, Ezra had sent off an email to the IAB asking to join the league; he’d been a star of the team at the Maimonides School in Brookline, Mass. Instead, a month later, when his parents flew in to meet with his rabbis and friends, the IAB suggested to them that a field be built and dedicated to their son’s memory.

‘WHEN YOU LOSE SOMEONE, IT LEAVES A HOLE’ It took six years for that vision to become real—years marked by bumps along the road, including a substantial pledge that failed to materialize. The fundraising took time and

perseverance with Ezra’s paternal grandparents, Mark and Heni Schwartz of New Haven, chipping away at a project that was eventually set at $500,000. With Ezra’s Uncle Yoav Schwartz, who lives with his family in Ra’anana, managing the multi-year project of raising the money, it was an undertaking that would require the steadfast support of other partners such as Mel Levi of the IAB, as well as IAB board members Ruby Schechter and David Levy, both of Ra’anana. The Jewish National Fund filled the role of sending through donors’ contributions, and also on board was the Jewish fraternity AEPi, including the chapter at Rutgers University, which Ezra was scheduled to attend the following fall. “So many people got behind this project because of Ezra’s endearing personality, his love of baseball and his love of life,” says Yoav Schwartz. His wife, Ezra’s Aunt Pam Schwartz, puts it this way: “When you lose someone you love, it leaves a hole. For Yoav, this project has been a place to put all that love and all that missing into the hole left by Ezra.” She notes that on Yom Hazikaron, when Israel mourns her fallen soldiers and victims of terror, Ezra doesn’t make the list since he wasn’t a citizen. “But we make sure we add his name to those announced here,” she says. According to Peter Kurz of the IAB, the building of the baseball (and soccer) field corresponds with a surge in interest in the sport among new immigrants from the United States and native Israelis alike, with the latter beginning to make up the majority of enthusiasts, both players and fans. “We’ve exploded from 500 players five years ago to 1,500 today,” says Kurz. “And this year, we’re going from one regulation diamond in Petach Tikvah to three—here in Ra’anana, and next month, one is opening in Beit Shemesh.” Other signs of growth: Israel sent its first Olympic baseball team in 45 years to the recent games in Tokyo, where it came in fifth.

‘HIS LEGACY HAS EXPANDED TREMENDOUSLY’ Among the many ways that Ezra is being memorialized is the annual Ezra Schwartz Baseball Tournament through his high school alma mater, as well as scholarships through Camp Yavneh in New Hampshire, where he was a longtime camper and later a beloved counselor. Indeed, summer camp gave Ezra yet another excuse to share his passion for America’s favorite pastime. “I loved watching him play, and he loved that I loved watching him play,” says his dad. After his


aunt cleaned out her nephew’s room in the yeshivah, she brought his mitt to his father during shiva—a mitt Ari Schwartz wore at the field dedication. “Part of Ezra’s soul is in this glove, it was probably his most precious possession,” he said. He further told those assembled: “I’m a better coach and certainly a better father because of him. I’m proud of how our other kids and my wife have dealt with our loss, proud of our community, and now I’m also proud that the kids of Israel who wanted to play but didn’t have a place will now be able to do so—and in Ezra’s name.” There are also now a growing number of living memorials to Ezra—a group of little ones named after him, at least 20 of whom the Schwartzes know about, and whose exuberance would no doubt please their namesake. With his wife Sarah, Rabbi Noah Cheses, who took the leadership of the family’s congregation, Young Israel of Sharon shortly after Ezra’s death, was among those who named a son Ezra. Nearly five years ago, Cheses spoke these words at their newborn’s brit milah: “Ezra was at his core an ozer, a ‘helper.’ He was a person who sized up any situation in terms of the needs that others had and how he could help address those needs. We want our son to be, at his core, a helper— someone who can be counted upon to lend a hand, to pitch in without being asked to do so. Our goal in choosing this name is to make a statement about our hopes and dreams for our little guy.” The rabbi then had a vision: “We hope that all these Ezras, when they get to Israel in 18 years and their friends ask, ‘Why is everyone from Boston named Ezra?’ they will make a trip to the place where Ezra helped out and will say to their friends: ‘This is why we are called Ezra. Here walked a young man who was a uniquely caring friend. We carry his name and his legacy.’ ” That personal style impressed Noam Traum, who was a child growing up next door to the Schwartz family when Ezra was MASSACHUSETTS JEWISH LEDGER

killed. “He was so much older than me, but he included me in every game,” says Noam, who is spending a gap year in Jerusalem and was on hand at the ceremony. “He never left us little kids out.” Indeed, his Aunt Pam said when Ezra would drop by their Ra’anana home for a visit, and afterwards, she’d thank him for spending so much time with his little cousins, he’d always say: “But that’s why I came.” Now the children of Ra’anana are included in that spirit. “This field is a testament to who Ezra was; it’s a bridge between our new olim and the other Israeli families who are learning what baseball is all about, and between Ezra and his family, and the families in Ra’anana,” Mayor Chaim Broyde told JNS. “When I met his family, I felt their pain, and I knew this field was the right thing to do. With all the work that went into it, this field and baseball are Ezra’s legacy, and they will always tie us together.” “Baseball is so familiar to our kids, and having it here makes them feel very much at home,” says Justin Pozmanter, a coach of the local Cadets baseball team, who four years ago made aliyah with his family from outside Washington, D.C. “It’s wonderful to now have an official baseball diamond for our kids and for the Israeli kids, too. It really brings the two groups together.” Ezra’s mother hopes that her son’s philosophy transmits to the new Israeli players. “Some kids have tantrums on the field when the game doesn’t go their way,” says Ruth Schwartz. “But Ezra never did. He was always calm and confident. And not only do all his brothers and sister play the game because of him, but today, his legacy has expanded tremendously, right here on this field. We hope every child who plays baseball here will feel Ezra’s cool, calm support and his love of baseball.” “There’s no better way to keep his spirit alive than this,” adds his father. “Yes, I wish we could have one more catch, but this field is Ezra’s gift to every kid who will ever play here. A little spark of him will enter everyone who sets foot in this place that bears his name.”


| DECEMBER 17, 2021


WHAT’S HAPPENING GREENFIELD – Kabbalat Shabbat with Rabbi Andrea Cohen-Kiener and the band Midwood (in-person and on Zoom), 5:30 – 7 p.m., 27 Pierce St., Registration: https:// tZAlde6trzgtEtKSvGrYJRYql4nJV0x_1HxB

YouTube program with Mak’hela: you will be sent background music tracks, music and directions for recording; you can record multiple family members together; a collaboration between Mak’hela and Jewish Federation/PJ Library, 7:30-8:30 p.m., Register:; $15 per recording




GREENFIELD – “Hebrew is Magic,” a special Hebrew class with Rabbi Andrea Cohen-Kiener for ages 5-9, reviewing Hebrew letters and sounds; 9-10 a.m., Register: LONGMEADOW– Springfield NCSY Youth Organization “Shop & Slide” – pick out and purchase gifts for children at Baystate Children’s Hospital, then play games with friends, 2-4 p.m., at Congregation B’nai Torah, 2 Eunice Drive, Contact: Andrea Olkin - or (413) 519-5328; SpringfieldMaNCSY

WORCESTER – PJ Library & PJ Our Way Bagels and Books with Congregation Beth Israel, 15 Jamesbury Drive, 10 a.m. – noon;

SATURDAY, JAN. 8 GREENFIELD – Etz Chayim! Adventures in Winter Tree Medicine, a three-week series of Shabbat adventures for ages 5-10 with herbalist Alyssa Bauer, 10-11 a.m., a program of Temple Israel, at Griswold GTD Conservation Area; TIG members: $36 for one child, $18 for each additional child; Non-members: $48 for one child, $24 for each additional child; ALSO: Jan. 15 & 22

NORTHAMPTON - LGA & Gan Keshet PJ Pals Solstice Lantern Walk, for families with young children, 3:30-4:30 p.m., at Abundance Farm, 253 Prospect St., Website: solstice-lantern-walk-for-families-withyoung-children-tickets-217914306557 $5 per family

SPRINGFIELD – “A Taste of Italy” through food and film at Temple Beth El; dinner of pizza, salad, fruit and Italian pastry, and film: “My Italian Secret: The Forgotten Heroes,” 6-7:30 p.m., 979 Dickinson St.,

SPRINGFIELD – Temple Beth El’s “Stories of Israel,” series with Rabbi Josh Weisberg via Zoom; documentary and discussion with Meital Sapir, who was raised in Florida by an Israeli father and American mother, and who immigrated to Israel and now serves as a commander in Israel’s Air Force; 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. To register: communications@

SPRINGFIELD/VIRTUAL – Literatour author event and Q&A with Naomi Ragen, author of The Observant Wife, 2-3 p.m., Registration: https://springfieldjcc.wufoo. com/forms/rwnnelk07w392y/

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 22 SPRINGFIELD – Springfield NCSY New Year’s Sledding in Forest Park, 1-3 p.m., Come sled with your friends at Mausoleum Hill, bring your sled, hot chocolate will be provided, Contact: Andrea Olkin or (413) 519-5328; SpringfieldMaNCSY

SATURDAY, DEC. 25 WORCESTER – YAD Chinese and Netflix Day, Time TBA,

TUESDAY, DEC. 28 WESTERN MASS./VIRTUAL –“Celebrating Jewish Music with Our Pioneer Valley Families and Friends,” participatory 20


DEC. 17 – MARCH 8 author of A Better Life for Their Children, 7-8 p.m., Register: https://springfieldjcc. WORCESTER/FLORIDA – The Annual Worcester Florida Party at the Delray Beach Golf Club; a chance to visit old friends from Worcester; 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., Register:

THURSDAY, FEB. 17 SPRINGFIELD – Temple Beth El Film: Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, 7-9 p.m., Zoom. Register: communications@


WORCESTER – Chaverim Night Out at the Jewish Film Festival, 7 p.m., for more information contact

NORTHAMPTON – LGA “Fiber Art for Passover: Learn to Wet Felt,” Zoom program from 10 – 11:30 a.m., Create spring blooms out of soft wool for the Passover table with fiber artist Natasha Lehrer Lewis; for 3-6-year-olds and their grownups; Registration fee of $12 includes one kit from Esther’s Place which will be available for pickup. Registration: https://



SATURDAY, FEB. 5 SPRINGFIELD – “Carol’s Beit Café,” a Temple Beth El event showcasing the musical talents of its members, 7-8:30 p.m., at TBE, 979 Dickinson St., Reservations: TBE office: (413) 733-4149 or office@ (snow date: March 26)

SPRINGFIELD – “A Taste of the Lower East Side,” a Temple Beth El program sharing a taste of the Jewish world through food and film; 6-7:30 p.m.; Registration:

WORCESTER – LEAD/YAD program with Shaliach Aviv Jerbi, 2 p.m. LEAD/YAD with Shaliach Aviv Jerbi, February 27th, 2:00 pm


SPRINGFIELD – Literatour author event and Q&A with Jan Eliasberg, author of Hannah’s War, at Springfield JCC, 1160 Dickinson St., 7-8 p.m., Register: forms/rtncm991b2631i/; FREE to JCC members; $10/general public

LONGMEADOW – Purim Katan Movie Afternoon/Ice Cream Party and Emtza Food Drive Launch, 4-7 p.m., at B’nai Torah, 2 Eunice Drive, Contact Andrea Olkin:, or (413) 519-5328; Fee: $5 per person, $10 max/2+ siblings’


THURSDAY, JAN. 20 SPRINGFIELD – Temple Beth El Film: Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir, 7-9 p.m., Zoom. Register: communications@ WORCESTER - LEAD/YAD with World ORT on Zoom. 7:30 p.m.,

SUNDAY, JAN. 23 SPRINGFIELD – Temple Beth El’s “Stories of Israel,” series with Rabbi Josh Weisberg via Zoom; meet Noa Har Zahav, born into a secular Israeli kibbutz family and her journey to deepen her connection with Judaism, 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. To register:

THURSDAY, FEB. 3 SPRINGFIELD/VIRTUAL – Literatour author event and Q&A with Andrew Feiler,


| DECEMBER 17, 2021

‘CLARITY, CONFIDENCE AND COMPASSION’ Lander-Grinspoon Academy students support refugees on ‘Mission Mitzvah Day’


ORTHAMPTON - Students from Lander-Grinspoon Academy (LGA) spend the day before Thanksgiving every year reflecting on being thankful and learning about a social issue. This year, the focus was on refugees. “In these challenging times, LGA is committed to cultivating citizens and leaders who have the clarity, confidence, and compassion to bring us closer to the world we seek, said Rabbi Debra Kolodny, executive director of LGA. “We are so pleased that for this year’s Mission Mitzvah Day our students were supporting refugees.” LGA’s kindergarten and first grade classes learned about what it means to be a refugee, why someone would leave their home, and reflected on how having to leave their home would make them feel. They also made worry dolls to give to refugee children. Grades 2, 3 and 4 focused on refugees entering the country from south of the border and made and sent them toiletry kits. Grades 5 and 6 have been learning about refugees for several years already. This year, the 5th grade had a successful clothing drive. The 6th grade fundraised more than $400 to supply a refugee family of eight

with bathroom, kitchen, and bedding needs. They also cleaned the apartment and helped ready it for the family. Having already done all this, the 5th and 6th graders on the day before Thanksgiving, helped clean up at the Northampton Survival Center, and listened to a speaker from Jewish Family Services, a partner in setting up apartments for refugees. “While LGA students spent Nov. 24 learning about the issue of refugees, this is not a onetime event,” said LGA Principal Deborah Bromberg Seltzer. “TIkkun Olam (improving the world) is a Jewish principle deeply imbedded in the fabric of LGA. Conversations about problems in the world and what we can do to help fix them take place regularly in all classes. Students routinely participate in a variety of opportunities where they make a tangible difference. In recent years, our students have spoken at climate marches, made food for houseless individuals, written letters to politicians, taught about the importance of solar power, baked for community helpers and more. COVID has made engaging with the community more difficult, and we are thrilled to be live and in person again with our community partners.”





| DECEMBER 17, 2021


OBITUARIES BASKIN Alan E. Baskin, 84, of Longmeadow, died Nov. 17 at home. She was the husband of Judith R. Baskin. Born in Holyoke, he was the son of the late Isadore and Sophie Hirschowitz Baskin. He served his country as member of the U.S. Air Force Reserves stationed in France and Germany between 1959-1962. He was a member of the Masons and a Shriner. His family owned a used car and truck parts yard and he and his cousin later grew the business into the region’s premier Volvo Autocar Truck and parts dealership. In addition to his wife of 62 years, he is survived by a son Peter Baskin (Susan Ferris); a daughter, Mollie (Daniel) Plotkin; a sister, Rita (Arnold) Barr; and eight grandchildren, Noelle (Matthew) Craig, Kelse, Britahny, Jacob (Ashlee), Max, Samuel, Sophie; great-grandchildren, Enzo, Lillian, and Vivienne and Madelyn; and his nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by a sister, Selma Siegal. Memorial contributions may be made to Shriners Hospital for Children in Springfield. ASCHER-ZIMMERMAN FUNERAL HOME DAVIS Arline (Willar) Davis, of Belmont, formerly of Worcester, died Nov. 16. She was the daughter of Henry and Nellie Willar of Worcester. She was the widow of Leo Davis. She was a graduate of the University of Chicago, the Simmons Library School and was a librarian at Northeastern University for many years. She had been an artist, avid swimmer, skier, tennis player, and enjoyed sailing.She is survived by two sisters, her twin Phyllis Heilbronner and Kossiah Orloff; and several nieces and nephews, Jeff Willar (Sherri), Warren Heilbronner (Joan), and Robert Heilbronner (Sarah) and Pietor (Graham). She was predeceased by a brother, Abraham Willar; and a sister, Sarah Siff. Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice. FAY Joshua Fay, 54, of Cambridge, has died. Born in Fitchburg, he was the son of Dr. Stuart Fay and Beatrice (Medoff) Fay of Fitchburg. He graduated Boston University and attended Georgetown Law School. In addition to his parents, he is survived by two sisters, Rachel Cortez and her husband, Luis, of Lexington, and Jethra Fay of Waltham; a brother Dr. Aaron Fay and his wife, Myriam Wright, of Lexington; a nephew, Jonah Fay; and four nieces, Gabriela and Maya Cortez and Noa and


Sophie Fay. Memorial contributions may be made to Chabad of Greater Boston, 491 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215. FLEISCHNER Robert Fleischner, 92, died Nov. 28. He was the husband of Dorothy Fleischner. Born in New Haven, Conn., he was the son of the late Jeanette (nee Isaacs) and Harry Fleischner. He attended American International College (AIC) in Springfield, graduating in 1951 with a Bachelor’s degree in economics. While at AIC, Robert joined the Marines in a program for college graduates to become an officer. During the Korean Warm he was instrumental in defending a 500-yard swatch of territory separating the north and the south. He was awarded two Purple Hearts and a Silver Star for his valor on the field, and after the war, he received a battlefield promotion to captain. Following discharge, he attended Temple University and graduated in 1958 as a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine. He built a private practice in Springfield, lectured at Providence Hospital, and provided podiatric care at the Jewish Nursing Home for several decades. He was the first to hold the chair of the committee for the Kinsler Classic Golf Tournament (now known as the Frankel-Kinsler Classic Tournament), a fundraising effort for JGS Lifecare. Robert and his co-chair Earl Alpert were instrumental in building teams and raising funds to support the care of the elderly community. He served as president of the JCC from 1977 to 1979. In addition to his wife of 57 years, he is survived by two sons, Michael and Richard and his wife, Jennifer; and a grandson, Daniel. He was predeceased by a sister, Carol Saeks. Memorial contributions may be made to Temple Beth El or Sons of Israel. ASCHER-ZIMMERMAN FUNERAL HOME FREEDMAN Debra K. Freedman, 85, of Lantana, Fla., formerly of Longmeadow, died Nov. 10. She was predeceased by her husband, Ned Freedman. Born in Brooklyn to Tabby M. and Rose S. Koff, she was raised in Mount Vernon N.Y. and graduated from A.B. Davis High School. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude. She was a print, television and film actress, model and spokesperson, she was the voice and face of many products and companies throughout New England. She was also a producer, director and writer, with several award-winning documentaries under her belt. Active in charity work, she was the local host for the United


| DECEMBER 17, 2021

Cerebral Palsy Telethon for 10 years. She founded Roundabout Theatre, a five-women Reader’s Theatre company who took their productions all across New England for a decade. She also owned a residential interior design practice, which led to her joining the commercial/contract design division of a regional company. She created the interiors for multiple hotels, corporate headquarters and condominium developments. She is survived by two daughters, Tabi Freedman, of West Dover, Vt., and Marissa Queen and her husband, Jeffrey, of Boca Raton Fla., and Lake George N.Y.; three grandsopns, Eric Freedman and his wife Lori of White Plains, NY and Clinton, CT and Jason and Jared Queen; and two great-gransons, Max and Harris Freedman; in-laws, Ruth Freedman, Joan Koff, Phyllis and Herb Cohen and their children and grandchildren. She was predeceased by a brother, Zale Koff. Memorial contributions may be made to Temple Beth El, 979 Dickinson Street, Springfield MA 01108. ASCHER-ZIMMERMAN FUNERAL HOMLE GORDON Howard M. Gordon, 79, of St. Petersburg, Fla., formerly of Worcester, died Nov. 10. He was the husband of Janet (Plotkin) Gordon. Born in Worcester, he was the son of the late Leo Z. and Mary (Shulman) Gordon. He was a graduate of Classical High School and earned a BA from Clark University. He founded Astro Cleaning Systems, Inc. in the early 1970s, providing commercial cleaning services. He was a longtime member of the former Temple Emanuel and was a pastpresident and “Man of the Year” of the Temple Brotherhood. He was a long-time member of Probus and Holden Towers Tennis Club. In addition to his wife of 57 years, he is survived by three children, Jay Gordon (Bonnie) of Natick, Lisa Schneider of Dunedin, Fla., and Elana Gordon of St. Petersburg, Fla.; and two granddaughters, Mara Gordon of New York City and Hallie Gordon of Natick. He was predeceased by a brother, Bennett S. Gordon. Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice.

KENNIS Goldie (Namath) Kennis, 96, died Nov. 23 at the Jewish Healthcare Center. She was the widow of William Kennis. Born in Worcester, she was the daughter of Israel and Rose (Skiest) Namath, and was a lifelong resident of the city. She graduated from Commerce High School and pursued a career as a medical secretary, working for Dr. Francis Dufault for 25 years, and later for Dr. Gagne for 12 years. She is survived by a son, Glenn Kennis and his wife, Susan, of Worcester; two grandchildren, Mathew Kennis and Michelle Bopp; and four greatgrandchildren, Jackson Kennis, Avery Kennis, Hunter Bopp and Travis Bopp. She was predeceased a daughter, Ellen Dvir Kennis; and a brother, Norman Namath. Memorial contributions may be made to the Jewish Healthcare Center, 629 Salisbury St., Worcester, MA 01609. ROSE Melody A. (Beres) Rose, 64, of Holden, died Nov. 17. She was the widow of David Rose. Born and raised in Chicago, Ill, she was the daughter of of Emma Schieve Blozis and Matthew Beres. She was a graduate of Butler University. She ran her own interior design firm and was an active member of the Jewish community and Federation. She is survived by two children, Alex and Alana; and sonin-law, Jon. Memorial contributions may be made to the Association of Frontotemporal Degeneration at SILVERMAN Stephen Silverman, 81, of Longmeadow, died Nov. 11 at Baystate Medical Center. He was the husband of Sharlene Silverman. Born and raised in Dover, New Hampshire, he graduated from Bowdoin College and Boston College Law School. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve and practiced law in Springfield for more than 50 years, speaking at legal symposia and helping advance civil rights laws. In addition to his wife, he is survived by two children, Aaron (Lucy) and Lisa (Michael); a grandson, Payton; a sister, Joyce Ben-Kiki; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews, and in-laws. Memorial contributions may be made to Baystate Health Foundation, Heart & Vascular Program. ASCHER-ZIMMERMAN FUNERAL HOME


(JNS) Former longtime Kansas Republican senator, leader and 1996 GOP nominee f or president Bob Dole died on Dec. 5 at the age of 98. Dole’s death was announced by the Elizabeth Dole Foundation on Sunday morning, saying that Dole died in his sleep after it became known early this year that he had stage IV lung cancer. His passing was met with words of respect from a bipartisan swath of the Jewish community.

“May Sen. Dole’s memory forever be a blessing,” the Republican Jewish Coalition also tweeted. “Sadly, the passing of Bob Dole marks the passing of an era of political leadership in this country based on patriotism, love of country, honor, decency and a commitment to public service,” said RJC executive director Matt Brooks. “Bob Dole represented the best that this country has to offer—whether it was on the battlefield in World War II or serving the American people in Congress.

At first, he said, few senators supported the bill. He and former Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) visited Dole, who at the time was running for president, to convince him to support the bill. Because of Dole’s agreement, more senators and Jewish organizations joined to support the measure. “Although Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona deserves tremendous credit for the bill to move the embassy, it would never have happened without Robert Dole’s support and lobbying. Dole was the key to having made this happen. If Dole didn’t support it, we wouldn’t have this bill. So he deserves credit for it,” said Klein. William Daroff, CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, who worked for Dole in 1996, said he was saddened to hear of the news and that Dole was a “war hero whose passing marks the end of an era.” Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said he was saddened by Dole’s passing, calling him a war hero and true friend of Israel. Robert Joseph Dole was born in Russell, Kansas, on July 22, 1923, the son of the

owners of a small creamery. His stint at the University of Kansas, was interrupted by World War II when he enlisted to serve in the U.S. Army Enlisted Reserve Corps in 1942. He was seriously wounded in combat in Italy in 1945. He was medically discharged from the Army in 1947, receiving two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star with a “V” for valor. Dole then attended the University of Arizona and Washburn University where he completed his bachelor’s and law degrees. After serving in the Kansas state legislature and as county attorney, Dole was elected to Congress in 1960 and was re-elected three more times. He ran unsuccessfully as vice-presidential running mate to incumbent President Gerald Ford in 1974, and, after two unsuccessful attempts in 1984 and 1988, became the Republican presidential nominee in 1996. He lost to incumbent Democratic President Bill Clinton. In January 2018, Dole was presented with the Congressional Gold Medal at a ceremony in the U.S Capitol.

Proudly Serving the Community for Over 60 Years

Dole was the recipient of the Jewish Federations of North America’s 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award, recognized for his bipartisan work on the Americans with Disabilities Act during a Jewish Disability Advocacy Day. Although Dole was unable to attend the JDAD ceremony to receive his award in person, he wrote a letter thanking JFNA for the honor, saying that the act was a great example of what leaders from both sides working together can accomplish. JFNA tweeted on Monday that it mourned the statesman’s passing. The Anti-Defamation League also recalled Dole with admiration for the American leader. “ADL mourns the passing of former Sen. Bob Dole, a valiant fighter for disability rights from his leadership in passing the Americans with Disabilities Act to his support for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. May his memory be a blessing,” the organization tweeted on Sunday.

“He really was a man of principle; he was a man who stood up for what was right; and above all, he put country above partisanship,” continued Brooks. “That is one of the things that we sorely miss today. There are too many people putting partisanship over country; hopefully, Dole’s legacy will be an example going forward of what we should strive for.” AIPAC tweeted that Dole was an American hero who gave his life to the nation: “Sen. Dole was an outspoken supporter of security assistance to Israel and was the lead sponsor of the Jerusalem Embassy Act.” Mort Klein, national president of the Zionist Organization of America, told JNS that he worked with Dole to pass the Jerusalem Embassy Act in 1995, which recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and ordered the U.S. embassy to be moved there from Tel Aviv, which eventually occurred in May 2018 during the Trump administration.

Funeral Directors: RYAN S. ASCHER • ROBERT P. ZIMMERMAN 413.734.5229 • 888.827.2437


44 Sumner Avenue Springfield, MA 01108 E:

| DECEMBER 17, 2021


As the year starts to wind down...we wanted to acknowledge you, our loyal and wonderful customers, for rolling with the punches of raised prices, out of stock items, supply chain issues and all of the rest of the mishegas we’ve all gone through together! YOU ROCK!

THANK YOU! The Crown Market 2471 Albany Ave West Hartford, CT 06117



| DECEMBER 17, 2021

HKC supervises the Bakery, Five o’clock Shop, Butcher Department and Catering. We’re not JUST kosher...we’re DELICIOUS!