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Can you believe Hanukkah is almost here? I can’t. As I’m writing this, there are a million things to do and not enough time. Life has been getting frantic again, something I vowed I wouldn’t let happen after COVID-19. This was a chance to learn, I thought; we don’t have to be this busy all t…

Four Jewish friends were in a cafe. One exclaimed, “oy.” The second sighed, “oy vey.” The third moaned, “oy veyzmir.” The fourth said, “if you fellas don’t stop talking about politics, I am out of here!”

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(JTA) — An exhibit at the Jewish Museum in Manhattan, “Afterlives: Recovering the Lost Stories of Looted Art,” examines the Nazis’ theft of masterworks from the collections of the Jews they persecuted and of others they merely exploited. Andrew Silow-Carroll, the New York Jewish Week’s edito…

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(New York Jewish Week via JTA) — Our oldest son is named Noah, and as a result we collected a lot of children’s books based on the Bible story (which will be read in synagogues this Shabbat). On its face, the story of Noah and the flood, with its parade of animals, is just right for kids. In…

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Judaism has two major week-long holidays, but one goes largely unobserved in the diaspora.  While the Passover Seder has become a touchstone of Jewish identity, the same cannot be said for a meal in a sukkah.  The situation is understandable.  The High Holidays grab all one’s attention, leav…

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   It’s a new year, a new day. Starting again, a new beginning, a second (or third) chance, an opportunity for a do-over. There are all these words with which we often approach the New Year, but now that it is here and we’ve had our fill of apples and honey and cake and chocolate (ok, that l…

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    It’s time for my yearly love letter about the Jewish Federation of Omaha Annual Campaign. I’m not going to be shy about it: everyone should be excited to be part of the Campaign—and I’m not saying that just because I really like all the lay leaders who are involved (although, if you coul…

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(JTA) — Fasting and praying for 25  hours — many of them sweltering — isn’t anyone’s idea of summer vacation. But that’s not the only reason Tisha B’Av (the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av, which begins Saturday night at sundown) is among the least observed days on the Jewish calendar, des…

(New York Jewish Week via JTA) — The two of us have spent most of our lives working for two causes: Israel and the Democratic Party. For a long time we experienced very little dissonance or disagreement. If you were pro-Israel, you were most likely a Democrat. If you were a Democrat, you wer…

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For someone growing up on the American system of democracy, Wednesday June 2 left me doubly dumbfounded.  On that day Yair Lapid, the leader of the Yesh Atid (“There Is a Future”) party, told President Reuven Rivlin that he would be able to form a government.  The new government, which was s…

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On page 7 of this paper, you might have noticed the announcement for our Centennial Endowment drive. We were all set to do it more than a year ago, but we all know how that ended up. So here we are, in 2021, trying again. We’re asking for your help.

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    My sister and I were driving around Omaha, wasting time, when we got to the intersection of 72nd and Dodge, trying to see how much of Crossroads Mall was demolished. Instead, we saw a “Pro-Palestine” demonstration occupying all four corners of the intersection. At red lights, they would …

   All the news is bad. Anti-Semitism is up by 80%, the headlines tell us. There’s a teacher’s union that announced support for BDS. Random citizens in America and Europe are attacked because they are Jewish and are held personally responsible for lives lost in Gaza. A Holocaust scholar was …

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    It’s only one of the many stories I’ve read this week: “Israeli flags were burned in front of two synagogues in Germany and the words “Free Palestine” were spray-painted on another one in Spain. This came in the midst of an international reaction to the escalating conflict in Israel.