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Returning to a Home at War

Dispatch from Jerusalem

Never Again?

January 16, 2024

  A deadly virus is on the loose in the world today. It is not a novel virus but an age-old disease that slyly simmers beneath the surface. Transmitted from one generation to the next, the symptoms and prognosis of this virus are well known. Yet from time to time, the virus is cultivated and

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The Most Fruitful Lie

January 16, 2024

    A thrill of anticipation rippled through the crowd. They’d come in their thousands, carrying a sea of red, green, white and black. Some of them shuffled impatiently, eager to move, to fight, to push back against the injustice. Others stared straight ahead, their faces set like flint at the thought of the horrors

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The Head of the Snake

January 16, 2024

  In the aftermath of October 7, as Israel battled Hamas in the trenches of Gaza, the world went to war alongside the fighting forces, pitting Israel supporters against Palestinian sympathizers in the trenches of social media. On the ground and in public opinion, the battle lines seemed clearly drawn: Israel on the one side

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In Every Generation

January 16, 2024

  Since the first time I heard its haunting melody, I have been drawn to the short Jewish liturgical piece put to music entitled “Vehi Sheamda.” The words of the title are translated, “And it is this that has stood,” with the word “this” meaning God’s covenant relationship with Abraham and his descendants. The song

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Debunking the Popular Social Media Slurs

January 16, 2024

  Israel faces unrelenting criticism born of a prevailing false narrative that casts the Jewish state as the colonizing oppressor and the Palestinians as the colonized oppressed. We offer several examples from the most widespread and influential form of disinformation in modern culture: social media, and more specifically, X, formerly Twitter. We then counter that

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The War of Language

January 16, 2024

  “The first casualty of war is truth.” This phrase has echoed throughout the ages and has been attributed to various sources. In regard to the current situation with the enemies of Israel, I would edit it to say, “Truth is conspicuous by its absence.” Unfortunately, the propensity of Palestinian leadership and their supporters to

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A History of Hate

January 16, 2024

  We’ve heard it again and again. The events of October 7 are indelibly imprinted on the minds of countless people the world over. We’ve read about the atrocities, seen the videos and heard the gut-wrenching testimonies of survivors, released hostages and the families of those who are still in captivity. And we wonder, is

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Jewish Values and Ethics in War

January 16, 2024

  We often hear Israeli leaders claim that the Israel Defense Force (IDF) is an ethical, moral army, motivated by Jewish values, while Israel’s enemy is far different. What do they mean? According to the Oxford Dictionary, ethics is defined as “moral principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity.” Values are

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Beauty Amid Devastation

January 16, 2024

  War is ugly. It destroys lives. It steals away innocence. It highlights the evil of which humanity is capable. October 7, 2023 should have been a day filled with laughter and joy on Simchat Torah (Rejoicing in the Torah). But some 2,000 Hamas terrorists shattered the festive morning by storming Israeli communities and homes,

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Halva

January 16, 2024

  Halva is a sweet treat made from tahini or sesame paste. Thought to have originated in ancient Persia, halva has captured the hearts of Israelis and is a sweet treat of choice enjoyed throughout the year. It has become a feature in markets around the country, with Jerusalem’s Mehane Yehuda market boasting a delightful

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