Monthly Archives: March 2016

The European Union Can Go Straight to Hell .

Raphael Ahren, writing in the Times of Israel, tells us: Without the Israeli-Palestinian conflict there would be no Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, the European Union’s envoy to Israel said Monday, arguing that the best way to fight BDS is to take steps to advance a two-state solution.  “The most …

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Oz Torah: Torah reading: Tzav

WHO TOOK OUT THE GARBAGE? Aaron the kohen gadol had the duty of taking out the garbage, clad in his priestly finery. The Jerusalem Talmud explains, “This is to teach you that rank does not count in the palace of the king.” The philosopher-ethicist Bachya ibn Pakuda comments, “The Creator …

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Arlene from Israel: Remembering.

This past Shabbat, the Shabbat before Purim, was Shabbat Zahor, which means “remember.” Everyone is obligated to come to synagogue to hear the Torah reading, which ends with Devarim (Deuteronomy) 25:17-19: “You shall remember what Amalek did to you. How he happened upon you on the way and cut off …

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Oz Torah: Ask the Rabbi (Purim)

IN PRAISE OF ESTHER The more we delve into the events of the Megillah, the more questions we have. Nothing and no-one in the story is as simple and straightforward as they seem. In particular, no-one is as interesting as Esther – a humble girl without much yichus who becomes …

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The Moral Bankruptcy of the Progressive-Left

The progressive movement’s main claim to political legitimacy is a moral claim. The movement claims to stand for social justice and equality of rights throughout the world. Any legitimacy the left has as a political movement is grounded in the notion of universal human rights. But if the left has …

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Oz Torah: Torah reading: Vayikra

SHOWING OFF. One of the best known ideas in the Torah arises from the first word of this portion. God calls to Moses – “Vayikra el Moshe” – and the final letter of the Hebrew word is written small. Moses was too modest to think that God had specially chosen …

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Lies and more lies. Raw hate on campus

At what point does a university assist in inciting and supporting violence? How about charities and NGOs that are supposed to be on a mission of peace? These are questions I was left asking myself after recent events at both the University of Kent and UCL. The latest event in …

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Arlene from Israel: In Memoriam.

 It is with sadness that I note the passing on Tuesday of Salomon Benzimra of Toronto.  Originally from Morocco – what was then the International Zone of Tangiers – he was able to trace his family back to Spain prior to the Inquisition. When it became necessary they had escaped …

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Arlene from Israel: Where to Begin?

I frequently feel overwhelmed by the number of critical issues I would like to share with my readers: I must chose among events competing for attention. That said, I begin with the good news, which is of considerable importance.  (But I ask you please to continue reading past the good …

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