Among much else, the High Holy Days are the time that American Jewish congregations hold fundraising drives on which their financial survival often depends. Many synagogue budgets also count on selling seats for services on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. But an economic downturn and, for the non-Orthodox, the prospect of praying over Zoom threaten theses sources of income. While it is too soon to know the effects of the most recent holidays, Menachem Wecker notes that there is good news as well as bad:
The Pandemic Might Spell the End for Some Synagogues, but It Is Helping Others to Revive
British Universities Have Become Safe Spaces for Anti-Semitism
Last month, David Miller, a sociology professor at Bristol University, attracted the attention of the Anglo-Jewish press with a rant about the supposed danger posed to civic and campus life by Zionists. Such rhetoric is nothing new for Miller, who has argued—in his academic work as well as in other contexts—that campus Jewish societies are in the employ of a nefarious “Israel lobby,” and that interfaith activities involving Jewish and Muslim communities are “a Trojan horse for normalizing Zionism.” He is likewise convinced that Bashar al-Assad’s mass slaughter of his own people is a hoax perpetrated by a similarly nefarious conspiracy. Unsurprisingly, David Hirsh observes, Miller also believes complaints of anti-Semitism are Isra made in bad faith.