On Syria, France, and Jewish Education
A few thoughts on matters concerning Israel and the Jewish people…
- A new United Nations report found that Syrians have become the largest refugee population under the UN Refugee Agency’s mandate (Palestinians fall under the care of UNRWA). The media largely turns a blind eye to this issue, which some have deemed the largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. Hundreds of thousands are dead – ten times more than those killed by Israeli and Palestinian violence. Talk about a heinous double standard.
- As someone who spends summers in France, I know that the country is under attack by radical Muslims and it won’t get better anytime soon. The France Tourism Development Agency recently placed an ad seeking a Media Relations assistant to aid “the promotion of France as a tourist destination to tourism professionals, both trade and press, with some general public outreach.” I found this a little comical. A $45,000 media assistant will not help tourism when the country is under attack.
- Interesting news that has largely been overlooked by the American Jewish media: Israel’s Ministry of Education will invest millions of dollars to fight assimilation in the Diaspora, according to a recent report in leading Israeli business publication The Marker. The program aims to “prevent assimilation of Jewish students abroad, and strengthen the Jewish identity of students in different countries, including the U.S., Germany, and France.” Millions of dollars spent by Israel to educate American Jews- it’s an issue that I have written about before on these pages. Shouldn’t someone be asking where all the money raised by American Jewish groups goes? Is it effective?
- It was great to see The Jewish Week feature RAJE (Russian American Jewish Experience) on its cover this week, highlighting a survey that was recently completed. The survey found that RAJE is making unprecedented inroads in educating Russian Jews, which is partly responsible for the unprecedented 94 percent in-marriage rate. One of the few bright spots in American Jewish education.
As Ze’ev Jabotinsky, the great Zionist leader, said, “Tell them [the Jewish People] three things in my name, and not two: they must get iron [i.e. weapons]; they must choose a king; and they must learn to laugh.”