The Soviet Jewry Movement

May is Jewish American Heritage Month. At first glance, a discussion of the Soviet Jewry Movement may seem like an odd choice for Jewish American history, but the movement had a powerful…

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Join Worldwide Jewry this Shabbat in Remembering the Victims in Pittsburgh

Join worldwide Jewry this Shabbat in remembering the victims in Pittsburgh. Participate this Shabbat in Jewish Federations of North America's “Solidarity Shabbat,” and online in…

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The Crémieux Decree

On October 24, 1870, The French government issued a decree to recognize the Jews of Algeria as French citizens. The law had been written and passed after much campaigning by powerful…

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Sources Commentators

Abarbanel (1437-1508, Spanish statesman, philosopher and commentator) Achad Ha’Am (Asher Zvi Hirsh Ginsberg, 1856-1927) AJOP (Association for Jewish Outreach Programs) Akeidat Yitzchak…

The Dreyfus Affair

The Dreyfus Affair is a story of intrigue and espionage, false accusations and hidden biases. It was also a demonstration that the so-called “enlightened” world of the late 19th century…

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A Turn in History

While many people know that Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday, a fair number would struggle to tell you why the day is significant. On May 5, 1862, the Mexican Army was unexpectedly…

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Situation in the Suez

The Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea, and thus to the Indian Ocean, was built in the 1860s through a French-Egyptian partnership. In 1875, debt forced the…

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A Turn in History

While many people know that Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday, a fair number would struggle to tell you why the day is significant. On May 5, 1862, the Mexican Army was unexpectedly…

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A Ten-Light Chanukah Menorah?

In a summary of the Chanukah customs of Persian Jewry (Shlomo Tal edition, 1981, pg. 189-190), three options are offered regarding how to kindle the Chanukah lights. First, the common…

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Matot 5768-2008

"Striving for Refined Speech" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Matot, we learn of the laws that govern vows and oaths, known in Hebrew as nedarim and…

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Mikeitz 5774-2013

"What’s in a Name? Zaphenath-Paneach" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Mikeitz, Joseph interprets Pharaoh’s dream and is elevated to serve as viceroy of…

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Hail The Accuser

In the era of social media, it is almost an everyday occurrence to be asked to sign a petition or to “like” a cause. When Emile Zola, the celebrated French novelist, published J’Accuse on…

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Baba Sali – Praying Father

Although it is not uncommon for Jewish sages to be known by a pseudonym, such names are most often either abbreviations of their full names (e.g. RaMBaM, an acronym for Rabbi Moses…

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A Chocolate Treat

How does a Jewish Treat become a chocolate treat? When the topic of the day is about the Jewish connection to the early trade of chocolate, we find the perfect reason to feature a Treat…

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Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi

While Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi (1745 - 1812) did not come from a family of Chassidim, he would become not only a follower of the new movement, but also the founder of what is today…

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Righteous Americans

Given that the Holocaust was, on the whole, a European event, it is not surprising that there are only three Americans listed as the Righteous Among the Nations at Yad Vashem, the Israeli…

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The Author of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

In honor of Human Rights Day, December 10, Jewish Treats presents a brief biography of René Samuel Cassin (October 5, 1887 - February 20, 1976), the author of the Universal Declaration of…

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Hail the Accuser

In the era of social media, it is an almost everyday occurrence to be asked to sign a petition or to “like” a cause. When Emile Zola, the celebrated French novelist, published J’Accuse on…

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Baba Sali – Praying Father

Although it is not uncommon for Jewish sages to be known by a pseudonym, such names are most often either abbreviations of their full names (e.g. RaMBaM, an acronym for Rabbi Moses ben…

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A Ship’s Tale

Well sit right back and you'll hear a tale...Alas, this ship’s tale is no three-hour tour, but the story of the birth of Jewish life in North America. It is well-known that the first…

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Napoleon’s Sanhedrin

On June 18, 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte suffered his final defeat at the Battle of Waterloo. While it was the end of an era, it was an era that had already changed the entire course of…

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Presidents’ Day: The Jews and Martin Van Buren

In 1840, the news of the terrible fate of the Jewish community of Damascus (Syria) reached the shores of America and brought the disparate Jewish communities of the young American nation…

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A Ship’s Tale

Well sit right back and I’ll tell a tale...Alas, this ship’s tale is no three-hour tour, but the story of the birth of Jewish life in North America. It is well-known that the first…

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Colonial Outreach: Alliance Israelite Universelle

North American Jews often hear of organizations created for the benefit of both Judaism and Israel, such as Hadassah, Bnai Brith, the Jewish National Fund, etc. And while these…

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Hail The Accuser

In the era of social media, it is almost an everyday occurrence to be asked to sign a petition or to “like” a cause. When Emile Zola, the celebrated French novelist, published J’Accuse on…

Read More

Baba Sali – Praying Father

Although it is not uncommon for Jewish sages to be known by a pseudonym, such names are most often either abbreviations of their full names (e.g. RaMBaM, an acronym for Rabbi Moses ben…

Read More

Presidents’ Day: The Jews and Martin Van Buren

In 1840, the news of the terrible fate of the Jewish community of Damascus (Syria) reached the shores of America and brought the disparate Jewish communities of the young American nation…

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Chukat 5775-2015

“Accepting the Inscrutable” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Chukat, we learn of the statute of the Red Cow, also known as the Red Heifer. The ashes of an…

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Vayishlach 5767-2006

"The Lonely Patriarch" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Vayishlach, the memorable confrontation between Jacob and Esau takes place, a confrontation that is…

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Kedoshim 5776-2016

“Tattoos" In Parashat Kedoshim the Torah proclaims the prohibition of making cuts on one’s skin as a sign of mourning and forbids drawing permanent tattoos on the body. Scripture, in…

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