Recent Posts

Russia, And Perhaps Ukraine, Are Using Antisemitism For Political Purposes

Filed in Jewish Affairs by on April 24, 2014
Russia, And Perhaps Ukraine, Are Using Antisemitism For Political Purposes

Russia, and perhaps Ukraine, have cynically manipulated antisemitism for opportunistic political ends. It’s a disgusting practice, enough to make one’s stomach turn, and it should cease immediately. Antisemitism, an age-old phenomenon deeply ingrained in Russia and Ukraine, reared its ugly head as an issue after Ukraine’s pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovych, was driven out of office […]

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Red Lines Takes You Inside Syria’s Civil War

Filed in Arts by on April 23, 2014
Red Lines Takes You Inside Syria’s Civil War

Syria has crumbled into the maelstrom of civil war, but its descent into violence, anarchy and despair doesn’t deter two young Syrian activists from striving to create a secular democratic republic out of the smouldering rubble. Mouaz Moustafa, the executive director of the Syrian Emergency Task Force, and Razan Shalab al-Sham, his assistant, are consumed […]

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Herb Gray — Canada’s First Jewish Federal Cabinet Minister

Filed in Guest Voices by on April 22, 2014
Herb Gray — Canada’s First Jewish Federal Cabinet Minister

Canada’s first Jewish federal cabinet minister, Herb Gray, has died at the age of 82. In a way, his career is the story of the coming of age of the Canadian Jewish community in the political life of the country. Many Jewish politicians have been more exciting and flamboyant – David Lewis, the long time […]

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Ford Motor Makes History

Filed in Jewish Affairs by on April 22, 2014
Ford Motor Makes History

On April 22, The New York Times reported that Mark Fields, the 53-year-old chief operating officer of Ford Motor, the second-largest car manufacturer in the United States after General Motors, had been chosen to be its next chief executive, succeeding Alan Mulally. Normally, an announcement of this sort would elicit little interest outside the auto […]

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Toronto Jewish Film Festival (3)

Filed in Arts by on April 22, 2014
Toronto Jewish Film Festival (3)

This year’s edition of the Toronto Jewish Film Festival runs from May 1-11 and features a wide assortment of feature-length movies, shorts and documentaries from around the world. A sampler: Lucia Puenzo’s Argentinian feature film, The German Doctor, focuses on Josef Mengele, the Nazi war criminal who found a haven in South America after the […]

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Last of the Unjust Probes A Terrible Dilemma

Filed in Arts by on April 20, 2014
Last of the Unjust Probes A Terrible Dilemma

Long after his nine-hour documentary on the Holocaust, Shoah, was released in 1985, the French filmmaker, Claude Lanzmann, reviewed footage he had been forced to cut. He was probably flabbergasted by what he had left out, particularly an intriguing interview with Rabbi Benjamin Murmelstein, the last living “elder” of a Nazi ghetto. Murmelstein, who died […]

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Portrait Of A Palestinian National Poet

Filed in Arts by on April 20, 2014
Portrait Of A Palestinian National Poet

Mahmoud Darwish (1941-2008) was the national poet of the Palestinians, a man whose lyrical poetry distilled the essence of loss and exemplified the dream of statehood. Ibtisam Mara’ana Menuhin’s empathetic biopic, Write Down, I Am An Arab, will be screened at the Canadian International Documentary Festival (Hot Docs) in Toronto on April 27, April 29 […]

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Toronto Jewish Film Festival (2)

Filed in Arts by on April 19, 2014
Toronto Jewish Film Festival (2)

This year’s edition of the Toronto Jewish Film Festival, a major event in the city’s cultural agenda, runs from May 1-11 and lives up to expectations, judging by the roster and quality of the movies. A sampler: If you’ve ever visited the Lower East Side in New York City, you may have come upon a […]

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New York’s World Fair, 50 Years On

Filed in Guest Voices by on April 18, 2014
New York’s World Fair, 50 Years On

It had no fewer than three official themes, “Man’s Achievements on a Shrinking Globe in an Expanding Universe,” “Peace Through Understanding,” and “A Millennium of Progress.” Its symbol was a 12-story high, stainless-steel model of the earth, the Unisphere, which still can be seen in Queens, New York, where it was held. The New York World’s Fair […]

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Nikolai Gogol’s Influence On Sholem Aleichem

Filed in Arts by on April 18, 2014
Nikolai Gogol’s Influence On Sholem Aleichem

A portrait of the Russian novelist Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852) adorned the  office of Sholem Aleichem (1859-1916), the renowned Yiddish writer. According to Amelia Glaser, a professor of Russian and comparative literature at the University of California in San Diego, Sholem Aleichem’s attachment to Gogol  was anything but surprising. Sholem Aleichem, whose real name was Sholem […]

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