Ultra-Orthodox Control of the Israeli Rabbinate Stands in the Way of Resolving the Conversion Question

Jan. 22 2020

With another election approaching, issues of religion and state have again raised their head, with politicians from the militantly secular Yisrael Beytenu party trading barbs with the Sephardi chief rabbi. The bone of contention relates to the conversion of immigrants from the Soviet Union and their children—many of whom are of only partial Jewish ancestry. Behind such controversies, writes David M. Weinberg, is the ḥaredi takeover of the institutions of the chief rabbinate in the early days of the peace process:

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Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Conversion, Israeli Chief Rabbinate, Peace Process, Religious Zionism, Ultra-Orthodox

Bernie Sanders Denounces AIPAC’s “Bigotry” after Headlining a Conference of Bigots

Feb. 27 2020

The Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has declared that he won’t attend the annual conference of the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), which begins this Sunday, because of the “platform [it] provides for leaders who express bigotry and oppose basic Palestinian rights.” While Sanders has no qualms about libeling AIPAC—until recently a regular stop for political candidates of both parties—he has never attended one of its gatherings. Last year, however, he was the speaker for the annual conference of the Islamic Society of North America, where, writes Asra Normani, no small amount of bigotry was given a platform:

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Read more at Jewish Journal

More about: AIPAC, Anti-Semitism, BDS, Bernie Sanders, Ilhan Omar, Linda Sarsour