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Chutzpah and The Petulant Zionists

For our non-Jewish readers: the past week has been the lead up to the eight-day Passover festival.
It’s a time of frantic and compulsive cleaning and bizarre shopping practices in preparation for eating far too much. A post about the nature of this festival is coming in the next couple of days.
What this means for the [...]


Homosexuality, Judaism, and Hypocrisy – by Rabbi Yaron Gottlieb

This is a word that seems to unite religious people of all backgrounds around the world.
It also drives a knee jerk reaction, causing them to panic, babble incoherently, or simply pretend the word doesn’t exist.
I’ve been asked to explain the Orthodox Jewish response to homosexuality, and while I’m not going to panic or babble, I [...]


More Than Three Opinions: A Map of The Jewish Australian Blogosphere

“Two Jews, three opinions,” is a cliché. It’s also a gross understatement.
The ease with which a blog can be set up combined with my people’s natural tendency to debate anything, means that there is now a cornucopia of Jewish Australian opinion available online.
Left and right, centre and periphery, religious and secular, Zionist and anti-Zionist – [...]


Mossad and Our Passports

In the current debate surrounding the Australian passports used in the assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai, there are two equally unsound positions.
Firstly, there’s the shrill (if exultant) Anti-Zionist response, that often tips over into outright racism. (see readers comments at the end of the stories)
On the other side, Jewish Australian leadership still hasn’t managed [...]


Winning Friends and Influencing People 3: Anti-Semitism, The Hiatus, and Secret GLBT Business.

I’ve written before about the story of my paternal grandmother’s Holocaust survival. In short, her father, a religious Jew, made friends with the local priest long before the catastrophic events that wiped out Polish Jewry.
As Jews from my family’s village were packed off to the concentration camps, this priest managed to forge papers for my [...]


Oh Dvir! Now It’s Official

Dvir Abramovich was at it again.
Yet another piece about how Jews and the Holocaust don’t get the respect they deserve.
Yet more responses from puzzelled or angry non-Jews.
Yet another attempt by me to demonstrate to non-Jews that Jews who cry wolf regarding anti-Semitism are not representative of the community as a whole.
Even I’m bored…
Or I would [...]


Interfaith Conference 2: Answers… Some to Questions I Hadn’t Thought to Ask

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series interfaith conference

Today’s morning session of the conference was something of a revelation.
One of the highlights of this conference was meeting a young woman who is part of the Muslim roof body.
Did you know the Muslim community has been having many similar debates to us regarding roof bodies and representation?
Did you know that they had their own [...]


The Subtle Art of Talking to Non-Jews

This entry is part 2 of 1 in the series Women in the media

Broadly speaking, Melbourne Jewry can be divided into two camps – those with regular and deep social connections with non-Jews, and those whose associations beyond the confines of the community only exist professionally or incidentally.


A Fascinating Meeting With the Women of the ZCV

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Meeting with the women of the SZC

As Ginette Searle expounded on the work of her organisation (the ZCV), and as Emily Chrapot and Elly Shalev explained their strategies, I asked all three why it was that they were not front and centre in media representation for their organisation. All three women exhibit intelligence, directness, and an extremely pleasant manner that could present the Zionist Council in the best possible light.


Les Rosenblatt Writes about Expressing Unpopular Opinions at the Ramadge Address

No prize for guessing what the attitude was of the 150 or so attendees at the talk by the Age’s Editor- in- Chief, Paul Ramadge, to the Plenum of the JCCV (Jewish Community Council of Victoria) on Monday night. He was the ‘roo’ in the spotlight, feeling the heat as they flung repeated accusations of pro-Palestinian, anti-Israel and anti-Semitic editorial/journalistic bias as their reasons for cancellations of their Age subscriptions. They were already indignant and vexed before being well cued by John Searle (President of the JCCV) and Danny Lamm (President of the ZCV) who led Ramadge deftly into firing range. Searle cracked the old joke about ‘ journos not allowing the facts to get in the way of a good story’ as a tone-setting standard.