Jewishupdates's Blog

December 28, 2009

Dec. 28: Last Jews of Selma, Housing in E. Jerusalem, Beware Israeli Drivers

Filed under: Uncategorized — jewishupdates @ 6:09 pm

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Closing in on the 250th Daily Briefing of the year (and it’s been our pleasure) We’re happy to be sending you the 250th Daily Briefing this year (approximately).  How much is that worth to the Jewish community?  To you? In this last week of 2009, can you help us reach our goal? No gift is too small (or too big!). Please donate now.

Featured Stories Jews of Selma struggle to save historic temple Members of the dwindling Jewish community of Selma meet in the city’s public library, Dec. 8, 2009. (Ben Harris) The Jewish community of Selma, Ala., is down to its final dozen or so members. Facing extinction, community members have invested their hopes in a plan to transform their historic but little used synagogue into a museum dedicated to the history of a Jewish community that was once an important civic presence in the American South. Read more » Israel to build housing in eastern Jerusalem Israel has solicited bids to build nearly 700 new apartments in Jewish neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem. Read more » Op-Ed: The challenges and opportunities of Jewish social entrepreneurs The executive director of the Joshua Venture Group responds to the claim that Jewish social-innovation incubators are not providing enough funds or demonstrating enough flexibility to accommodate social entrepreneurs of modest means. Read more » Editors’ Picks Jewish praise for Pius (N.Y. Post) The Jewish president of the Pave the Way Foundation writes that after years of research, he found nothing but praise for Pope Pius XII’s actions from every Jewish leader of the Holocaust era. Who was Ari Halberstam? (N.Y. Times) Sam Roberts of the Times tells the story behind the 13 signs on a Brooklyn Bridge approach announcing the Ari Halberstam Memorial Ramp. JTA Managing Editor Uriel Heilman fills in some of the missing details. U.S. State Dept: Beware Israeli drivers (Ynet) The U.S. State Department considers Israeli drivers so dangerous that it warns about them in its travel guide for American tourists to Israel. “The Israeli driver tends to make sudden stops in the middle of the street without any forewarning, particularly in the right-hand lane,” the guide warns. (Footnote: More Israelis are killed on Israel’s roads than in Israel’s wars.) Yiddish budget cuts (Baltimore Sun) It survived Hitler, Stalin and the decision to make Hebrew the official language of Israel. Now Yiddish, for 1,000 years the everyday language of European Jews, is facing another threat: budget cuts. Converts and Christmas (N.Y. Times) The New York Times explores the challenges Christmas poses for people leaving Christianity for Judaism. ©2008 JTA, Inc. Reproduction of material without written permission is strictly prohibited. To unsubscribe, click here. Breaking News Kadima party lawmakers unanimously rejected Benjamin Netanyahu’s offer to join his government. The number of immigrants to Israel this year rose 17 percent over last year, posting the first increase in 10 years. Palestinian attackers threw a firebomb at an Israeli bus near Hebron, wounding an Israeli teenager on Sunday. Muslims placed personal messages against anti-Semitism on the Facebook page of a Muslim reformist and author. Israel’s Ben-Gurion International Airport increased security following an attempted terrorist attack on a flight to the United States. Micah Naftalin, a leader in human rights activism on behalf of Soviet Jews, has died. Israeli soldiers killed three Palestinian men allegedly involved in the shooting death of an Israeli motorist in the West Bank. A siren sounded throughout the Gaza Strip to memorialize the Palestinian victims of Israel’s Operation Cast Lead one year ago. Thousands of fervently Orthodox demonstrators in Jerusalem protested against Intel, which operates a plant in the city on Saturdays.

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