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  • Trump, the Jews and the political weaponization of anti-Semitism

    (JTA) — Was that so hard? At some point in the past week, it looked like President Donald Trump was never going to use “anti-Semitism” in a sentence. It took a fourth series of hoax bomb threats at JCCs around the country and imprecations from Jewish groups across the ideological spectrum for the president to at…

  • Chuck Todd and others ask: Why won’t President Trump denounce anti-Semitism?

    (JTA) — Asked twice in two days to address an uptick in anti-Semitic attacks during and after the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump answered in ways that left many observers baffled. On Wednesday, asked about anti-Semitism during a joint news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump answered by talking about his Electoral College victory and…

  • President Trump answered a question about anti-Semitism by boasting about his election victory

    (JTA) — During Donald Trump’s joint news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu on Wednesday, the president was asked a direct question from an Israeli reporter about “a sharp rise in anti-Semitic incidents across the United States” — on the same day that the Southern Poverty Law Center reported that the number of hate groups…

  • NFL players flap upends Israel’s PR game plan

    (JTA) — Almost 30 years ago, the late theater impresario Joe Papp got into hot water when he canceled a scheduled production of a pro-Palestinian play at his flagship Manhattan theater, the Public. Rumors flew at the time that he caved in to pressure from wealthy Jewish donors, but Papp — born Joseph Papirofsky but…

  • Bannon and the Jews: A conditional kind of love

    (JTA) — Reports that White House Svengali Steve Bannon once referred to the American Jewish community as enablers of Islamist jihad revived accusations that the former Breitbart News publisher is an anti-Semite. On its face the accusation, like the oft-repeated charge that Breitbart itself is an anti-Semitic news site, is weak. Bannon’s point about jihad’s…

  • Trump: Jared Kushner a ‘natural’ to solve Mideast conflict

    (JTA) — President-elect Donald Trump reiterated that his son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner could head efforts to broker a Middle East peace deal. In an interview with the German newspaper Bild and The Times of London published Monday, Trump was asked what role Kushner, husband of Trump’s daughter Ivanka, would play in his role as an…

  • In England, Christmas week of Jewish study means outreach to Sikhs and Muslims

    BIRMINGHAM, England (JTA) — If you think the United States overdoes Christmas, you haven’t been to London in December. The main drags are a riot of Christmas lights and gewgaws, the pubs overflow with midday revelers starting the week before and the Christmas shopping is no less intense at Selfridge’s and Primark than it is…

  • Jewish Federations’ consultant says he erred in sharing comment on Bannon petition

    (JTA) — A consultant to the Jewish Federations of North America retracted a statement he had shared with JTA commenting on a petition urging the umbrella body to condemn the appointment of Stephen Bannon as President-elect Donald Trump’s chief strategist. The consultant said he had not been given authorization to comment on the petition or Bannon and…

  • George Washington U opens center for Jewish education and leadership

    (JTA) — Erica Brown, a popular Washington-based author and educator on Jewish values, will lead a new academic center at George Washington University focusing on Jewish education and training Jewish communal leaders. The Mayberg Center for Jewish Education and Leadership, named for university trustees Louis and Manette Mayberg, will offer graduate-level training and convene symposia…

  • Federations raising funds for Hurricane Matthew relief

    (JTA) — The Jewish Federations of North America is opening an emergency fund for Hurricane Matthew relief. As the Category 3 storm whipped Florida’s Atlantic coast with 100-mile-per-hour winds Friday, forecasters warned about a storm surge in parts of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina that could bring widespread destruction to homes, businesses and infrastructure. The National Weather Service warned…