Hot Topics

Makom’s Hot Topics aim to ask Jewish questions of Israeli current affairs.

Designed to be short, accessible, and challenging, each Hot Topic attempts to ask us to align our Jewish identity with the ongoing drama of Israel and the Jewish People.

We are currently experimenting with a double-format – two pieces from two different perspectives on the same issue… Comments are welcome!

The limits on Israeli Democracy

January 16, 2009

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In 1985 the racist fundamentalist Kach Party of Meir Kahane was banned from running in the elections, after an amendment to Israeli Election law was passed. This amendment prohibited a party to campaign for election if it either opposes Israel as a Jewish state, or incites to racism.

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Waltz with Bashir wins the Golden Globe

January 12, 2009

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It is an astonishing film. Stunning animation, beautiful soundtrack, and a storyline that penetrates your soul. A deserved winner of the Golden Globe best foreign film (not that we’ve seen any of the other films!), and we wish it all the best for the Oscars. We recommend you go to see it, and offer you a free download of our Makom guide.

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Gaza:changing priorities for Israel

January 7, 2009

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The task of any country’s army is to protect its citizens, to protect itself, and to avoid injuring civilians while doing battle with the enemy. After having targeted Israeli civilian targets for years, and after having invested in developing longer range missiles at the expense of its people’s welfare, it would seem that Hamas, in this sense, is no army.

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The end of heroism in Gaza?

December 26, 2008

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“Who is a hero?” asks Ben Zoma in Ethics of the Fathers (4:1).

The popular translation offers the anwer: “He who conquers his own rage.”

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Gilad Shalit and the Talmud

December 12, 2008

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Maimonides said that “there is no greater mitzvah than paying the ransom to free captives.” The Jewish People has a long and honorable history of following Maimonides’ injunction. The Shulhan Aruch even judges that ransoming captives is more important than feeding or clothing the poor.

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It’s the vision thing

November 10, 2008

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Barack Obama presented a vision of the future to the American people, and they responded.

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