Ties between American Jews and Israel, while still strong, are fraying. With the help of rabbis and scholars, historians and journalists, diplomats and activists, Moment explores the forces pulling the Jewish state and the American Jewish community apart—and holding them together...
The year 2017 was another rocky one in the relationship between Israel and many American Jews, punctuated by conflict over matters once considered common ground. Some controversies—including a backlash over comments about American Jews’ military service by Israeli deputy foreign minister Tzipi Hotovely—suggest a level of misunderstanding that could end up harming both sides.
Misogyny has deeply shaped me, and nearly stifled me. From growing up in a Jewish world where boys were golden, to pursuing an academic and journalism career rife with outright gender discrimination, to taking over the old boys’ club that was Moment in 2004, I found that men around me too often treated me as if I were a child or their lover.
In an election year, only four of our top stories concerned American politics. Instead, our readers sought out stories about culture, history and complex ideological divides. But most of all, our readers wanted to learn about people.
“The Orthodox monopoly on Israel treats Reform and Conservative denominations as second-class Jews, which is another reason why the American Jewish community is feeling less and less connected to Israel.”
The story of Israel’s founding usually goes something like this: Sun-kissed male and female pioneers plowed the fields by day, danced the hora by night, did guard duty until dawn and together built an egalitarian utopia. The equality of men and women, the narrative continues,
“Going to college and learning about the occupation for the first time made me reflect back on my 11 years of Jewish education with sadness and anger, realizing that our Israel education had been misleading and one-sided.”
The very meaning of intermarriage has shifted with these demographic changes. In earlier periods, intermarriage was generally seen as a rejection of Jewish identity and a form of rebellion against the community. These days, intermarriage doesn’t necessarily spell the end of an active Jewish life or of Jewish lineage.