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The Jewish Report Editorial

    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Deconstructing the ritual

    Jun 03, 2015 2 Comments
    The planning of our children’s coming of age party - their bar- or batmitzvah - is an event of profound importance. We have all either been through - or will go through - what has become for many a costly, stress-inducing process.
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    • Vanessa

    Buses, bloodshed and apartheid

    May 27, 2015 3 Comments
    Last Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cancelled a proposed plan from his new defence ministry that would have forced Palestinian day labourers returning home from jobs inside Israel, to take separate buses from Jewish settlers who live in the territories after crossing back into the West Bank.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    A woman’s right to choose

    May 20, 2015 1 Comment
    Last week the United States House of Representatives passed a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy because it is assumed that is the point when a foetus begins to feel pain.
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    • Vanessa

    To speak or not to speak

    May 13, 2015 Go comment!
    Two high profile figures have got themselves into hot water recently for publicly praising controversial leaders for their smarts.
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    • Vanessa

    Differ on strategies, but not on goals

    May 06, 2015 3 Comments
    For the first time in our history, South African Jewish communal organisations have publicly criticised the Israeli government for denying South Africa’s Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande a visa to visit the Palestinian territories.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Hebrew dilemma runs deep

    Apr 29, 2015 4 Comments
    Last week, South Africa’s Jewish day schools put considerable effort into their celebrations and commemoration of Israel’s important milestones - Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut. Yet Hebrew, considered by many to be the bedrock of Zionist and Jewish identity, is no longer compulsory, nor a popular subject choice at most of these schools.
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    • Vanessa

    Transcending the anger and injustice

    Apr 22, 2015 Go comment!
    Whether the brutal looting and violence that has accompanied the xenophobic attacks on the streets of Johannesburg and Durban this past week will do anything to improve the economic frustrations of the perpetrators is a worthwhile question.
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    • Vanessa

    Feed our children positive narratives

    Apr 15, 2015 5 Comments
    Teach your children the history of freedom if you want them never to lose it, Lord Jonathan Sacks wrote in a piece published in the London Times at Pesach a few years ago. He said that freedom was won not on the battlefield but in the classroom and the home.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Change what you look for to change what you see

    Apr 01, 2015 4 Comments
    Two weeks ago, in a much publicised incident, Jewish teenagers wearing yarmulkes were assaulted by three unidentified men, apparently of Muslim origin, at The Zone in Rosebank. While one of the Jewish students was being hit, another assailant swore at him, saying: “You f***ing Jew” and “Your f***ing people are killing our innocent children”.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Reflections on liberation

    Mar 25, 2015 1 Comment
    Pesach, the Jewish festival that celebrates our delivery from slavery in Egypt, is the theme of this week’s issue. Yet freedom is often only the start of the journey - as the Jews left Egypt, their real journey, wandering in the desert and preparing for the Promised Land, began.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Israel: a defining feature of diaspora Jewish identity

    Mar 18, 2015 Go comment!
    "The world, in recent weeks, has watched with fascination as Israel’s exciting election process unfolded and, earlier this month, its prime minister stood on a powerful platform - the United States’ Congress floor - to speak on behalf of all the Jewish people about a potential major world threat in the form of Iran," writes editor Vanessa Valkin in her weekly ediorial comment.
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    • Vanessa

    Jerusalem’s secret revolution

    Mar 11, 2015 5 Comments
    Visiting South Africa last week as a guest of the 48th Annual Zionist Federation Conference, Jerusalem’s Mayor Nir Barkat approached the trip as he might have a roadshow when he was once a high flying venture capitalist.
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    • Vanessa

    Counting and recording ourselves

    Mar 04, 2015 1 Comment
    "I am frequently asked the question, how many Jews live in South Africa. I have also been told with a surprising certainty by a non-Jew that there must be at least a million living here," writes SAJR Editor Vanessa Valkin in her leader this week. "They were shocked when I told them our community had a mere 60 000. At the time, in the late ‘90s, that seemed to be an accepted figure. People assumed there were 120 000 in the heyday and that the figure had halved." REad on...
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    • Vanessa

    Jewish philanthropy: keep it young, hip & sexy

    Feb 25, 2015 2 Comments
    This week I attended the Chabad Miracle Drive, which is one of the biggest fundraisers on the South African Jewish calendar. Its success is less the cause (although a worthy one) and more the driving force behind it: the indefatigable Rabbi David Masinter. SA Jewish Report editor Vanessa Valkin, gives her take on the state of Jewish philanthopy in South Africa - and concludes with two important lessons on the subject. READ WHAT SHE HAS TO SAY...
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    • Vanessa

    Countering the Israeli apartheid metaphor in SA

    Feb 19, 2015 5 Comments
    When former Deputy Foreign Minister Ebrahim Ebrahim in 2012 instituted a de facto ban on South African government ministers visiting Israel, it epitomised the souring of a once very close relationship between the two states. T
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    • Vanessa

    Living in dark times

    Feb 11, 2015 3 Comments
    South Africa’s current energy crisis looms large over all of us. As I write this editorial, I have been interrupted by Stage II load shedding twice, and Jewish Report’s staff are plagued by the anxiety of not having the paper print ready before threatened power cuts. These are a miniscule tear in the giant crack of chaos this electricity crisis is causing and we have no idea how long it will continue.
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    • Vanessa

    Advocating greater CT & JHB connectedness

    Jan 28, 2015 6 Comments
    When I was asked on ChaiFM last week what in my experience were the differences between the Cape Town and the Johannesburg Jewish communities now that I am living in Cape Town but spending part of the week working in Johannesburg, I touched upon a few of the obvious ones.
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    • JNF - Tu B'shvat

    Many versions of Islam’s religious authority

    Jan 21, 2015 Go comment!
    Two Sundays ago more than 1,5 million people and 44 heads of state marched in the streets of Paris to express their support and commitment in the fight against terrorism. And last Sunday Israeli security forces arrested seven Arab citizens accused of plotting terror attacks in Israel and of planning to join the Salafist jihadi group Islamic State in Syria.
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    • Vanessa

    What is rightwing and what is leftwing?

    Jan 14, 2015 14 Comments
    It is with some trepidation but a great deal of excitement that I begin as the new editor of the Jewish Report. Taking the wheel from Geoff Sifrin who so ably steered this vessel since its inception 16 years ago, is an honour and a responsibility.
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    • Je Suis Charlie

    We are Charlie Hedbo - Jewish Report Online

    Jan 08, 2015 11 Comments
    The citizens of the free world have stood up and said: “I Am Charlie” – the global media, some with a modicum of embarrassment have stood as one and said “We are Charlie”. The editorial board of the Washington Post suggested that some publishers had disgraced themselves in recent years to avoid being targeted. The Daily Beast said “cowardly media must grow a civic backbone”; the M&G quotes Zapiro as saying the Charlie Hebdo attack is the “Worst we've seen in recent times” and Time says “#JeSuisCharlie became a declaration of solidarity.”
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