This week in Germany, former SS guard Oskar Groning is on trial for his role in Auschwitz more than 70 years ago. The 93 year old said that as a bank accountant, he had been responsible for collecting cash from prisoners arriving at Auschwitz. Groning also witnessed atrocities, including one night in 1942 when he saw prisoners herded into a farmhouse and an SS officer spray gas into it. The screams “grew louder and more desperate, and after a short time became quieter and then stopped completely,” he said. “That was the only time I saw a complete gassing. I did not take part.” To learn more about this and the history of Holocaust trials, Moment spoke to Frank M. Tuerkheimer, professor of law emeritus at the University of Wisconsin and co-author of the new...
What is the Future of Religious Freedom in the United States?
We talk to some of the “rock stars” of First Amendment scholarship: Marci Hamilton, Charles Haynes, Douglas Laycock, David Saperstein, Marc Stern, Jeffrey Toobin, Asma Uddin and others to explore contested issues—from contraception to sharia—and shed light on what they think will happen next.
Michael Pollan: High Priest of American Food
Michael Pollan, the poster boy of America’s “new food” movement, talks about the role his Jewish upbringing plays in his approach to food, his disagreements with Leviticus and how cooking for yourself is the key to healthy eating and changing the world.
Vegan Cooking: Deliciously Metaphysical
Vegan food: A metaphysical delight!
The Madeleine Effect
Madeleine Albright became secretary of state in 1997. Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton followed. Has foreign policy become women’s work? There’s a story Madeleine Albright likes to tell. She tells it to reporters, colleagues, students and friends—and halfway through our conversation, she tells it to me. “My youngest granddaughter,” she says, “when she turned seven a couple of years ago, said, ‘So what’s the big deal about Grandma Maddie being secretary of state? Only girls are secretary of state.’” The anecdote, which has become so much a part of Albright’s mythology that nearly everyone recounts it to me, signifies the enormous progress women have made in the past 15 years since Albright became the first female secretary of state and the highest-ranking woman in government in U.S. history. Women’s leadership is now so accepted that it obscures...
Mayim Bialik Goes Vegan
Mayim Bialik is speaking out about the benefits of a meat-free diet in a new ad for PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals). Bialik, star of “The Big Bang Theory” and a longtime vegan, says much of the inspiration behind her decision to shun all animal products was Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals. “There were two major shifts for me when I became vegan,” the Emmy Award-nominated actress tells PETA in a video interview. “I never had a sinus infection or been on antibiotics since cutting out dairy… I’ve noticed that my true seasonal allergies are much less severe… But I think he most significant shift for me was I used to feel guilty, even as a child, I felt very guilty about eating animals and never knew there was something to...
Debating War With Iran
As Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad visits New York this week for the UN General Assembly, the question of Iran and what the United States and Israel should do is on everyone’s minds. Here’s a roundup of opinions on both sides of the debate. A top Israeli security official explains the Iranian nuclear threat, saying, “A nuclear Iran is one of the gravest things that could happen to Israel. If Iran goes nuclear, everything here will be different. Everything. We will shift into a different state of existence.” Jamie Fly and Bill Kristol call on President Obama to take action against Iran, writing, “The real and credible threat of force is probably the last hope of persuading the Iranian regime to back down. So: Isn’t it time for the president to ask Congress for an Authorization for...
The Jewish Presidential Candidate You Don’t Know
You won’t see her in the debates, but the Green Party’s Jill Stein has a lot to say
The New Religious Intolerance: An Interview with Martha Nussbaum
By Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil From Switzerland’s ban on minarets, to France’s ban on headscarves, and the controversy that raged over Park 51, the “Ground Zero Mosque” in lower Manhattan, religious fear is on the rise, writes Martha Nussbaum. In her latest book, The New Religious Intolerance, the University of Chicago law professor tackles the politics of fear, and lays out a roadmap for society to overcome its fear of the other, which she warns, “currently disfigure all Western societies.” To learn more, Moment spoke with Nussbaum about religious fear, anti-Semitism, burqas, Mitt Romney’s Mormonism and more. MM: You write, “We should be worried about the upsurge in religious fear and animosity in the United States, as well as in Europe. Fear is accelerating, and we need to try to understand it to think how best to address...
Election 2012: The Jewish Vote
By Monika Wysocki For the past two decades, Jews have been a strong Democratic constituency; the party has consistently been able to rely on at least three-quarters of the Jewish electorate for their votes. In fact, Jewish support for the Republican party plummeted to nearly an all-time low in 1992 when George H.W. Bush received only 11 percent of the Jewish vote—the lowest of any GOP presidential candidate since Barry Goldwater, who in 1964 garnered only 10 percent despite having a Jewish family background. But according to recent studies, Jewish voters are turning away from the party of President Obama. A recent analysis by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life found that the number of Jewish voters who identify as a Democrat has declined, while the number saying they lean toward the GOP has risen....