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JTNews | August 31, 2012

JTNews | August 31, 2012

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Published by Joel Magalnick
JTNews | The Voice of Jewish Washington for August 31, 2012
JTNews | The Voice of Jewish Washington for August 31, 2012

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Published by: Joel Magalnick on Aug 30, 2012
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@jew_ish • @jewishcal
h ic f
W W W . J t n E W S . n E t
august 31, 2012
13 elul 5772
volume 88, no. 18
connecting our local Jewish community
find your high holiday services page 9the corrie verdict page 6
 An exocise in dybbuk extemination
On page 23
Diyah Pera
JTN .
friday, augusT 31, 2012
For complete details about these and other upcoming JFS events and workshops, please visit our website: www.jfsseattle.org
Early Fall Family Calendar
AA Meetings at JFS
 Tuesdays: 7:00 p.m.
(206) 461-3240 or ata@jsseattle.org
1601 16th Avenue, Seattle
(206) 461-3240 • www.jfsseattle.org
Endless Opportunities
 A community-wide program offered in partnership with Temple B’nai Torah & TempleDe Hirsch Sinai. EO events are opento the public.
(206) 861-3155 • www.jfsseattle.org
 or volunteer@jsseattle.org
Programs of Project DVORA (DomesticViolence Outreach, Response & Advocacy)are free of charge.
Support Group for Jewish Womenwith Controlling Partners
Location, Date and Time are strictlyconfdential
Project DVORA,
(206) 861-3186
Bringing Baby Home
 Sundays: October 7, 14 & 219:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Marjorie Schnyder at (206) 861-3146or
Preparing Nutritious Meals on a Budget 
 Tuesday: September 44:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Food Budgeting & Resources
 Wednesday: September 124:00 – 6:00 p.m.
to Anna Goren, (206) 861-3179 or
The “War” in Cyberspace
 Thursday: September 1310:30 a.m. – Noon
to Ellen Hendin, (206) 861-3183 or
L’Chaim: Eat with Good HealthDuring the Holidays!
 Thursday: September 2710:30 a.m. – Noon
to Ellen Hendin, (206) 861-3183 or
Food Drive Food SortVolunteer Activity
 Sunday: September 3010:30 a.m. – Noon
to Jane Deer-Hileman, (206) 861-3155or
Food Drive
 September 17 – October 9
Carol Mullin, (206) 861-3176 orcmullin@jsseattle.org
Food Collection Blitz atGrocery Stores
Sunday: September 23 •
All day
Truck Unloading inSouth Seattle
Thursday: September 27 • Morning
Food Drive Sort Event
Pre-registration required
 Sunday: September 3010:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Pre-register with
Jane Deer-Hileman(206) 861-3155 or
Kosher Food Bank Event
Pre-registration required
 Wednesdays: September 5
& October 3 • 5:00 – 6:30 p.m.
Jana Prothman(206) 861-3174 or jprothman@jsseattle.org
Challah Palooza
Friday: September 7
4:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Marjorie Schnyder at (206) 861-3146or
Shaarei Tikvah: Gates of Hope
A Celebration of Rosh Hashanahfor People of All Abilities
 Monday: September 174:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Marjorie Schnyder at (206) 861-3146or
friday, august 31, 2012 .
jtnew OpiniOn
“She didn’t move away like anyone of sound mind would.”— Judge Oded Gershon, in his verdict against Rachel Corrie’s family’s wrongful death suit. See the story on page 6.
the rabbi’s turn
Write a Letter tO the eDitOr: W would lov o  fom you! Ou gud o wng  l o  do cn b found  www.jnw.n/ndx.pp?/l_gudln.ml, bu pl lm you l oppoxmly 350 wod. t ddln fo  nx u  spmb 4. Fuu ddln my b found onln.
Stning up fr yursf:Intrfith igu
Rabbi James L. miReL
Tmpl B’n Torh
Rabbi Raphael Levinewas a great mentor to meand many other rabbis andministers over the years.Rabbi Levine came toSeattle and emple DeHirsch in 1942, and servedthe temple until his deathin 1985. Beginning in 1960,Rabbi Levine with FatherWilliam reacy and a rotat-ing panel o clergy led theweekly V program “Challenge,” whichor 15 seasons discussed issues o the day in a multi-religious context.He was one o the oremost advo-cates or interaith dialogue in our nationand he was duly honored or that duringhis long lie. One o the most impor-tant lessons he taught and lived throughexample was that there was no room orundue deerence in true dialogue. He wasalways proud o his Jewish aith and neverminced words or kowtowed to anyone,whatever their status.I believe, as he did, that respectul inter-aith — and indeed, intraaith — dialogueserves an important purpose; but only i conducted on a level playing eld. He wasadamant that he would not be set up as astraw man or be anyone’s patsy, which isnot uncommon when asked to representJudaism in a Christian or Muslim setting.Recently, we hosted a Muslim groupat our synagogue as part o a joint ishaB’av/Ramadan pray-and-break-the-astevent. It was one o the rst times thesetwo holy days o Judaism and Islam,respectively, were marked together. As webegan to plan the gathering, I was directand absolutely clear that it had to be agathering o equals and that each aithmust have a balanced role in terms o timeand content.It worked out quite well, given thechallenge. My remarks ocused on thestrengths and beauty o our heritage. My Muslim counterpart spoke poetically and clearly. However, there was one di-erence, which was to be expected. Heasserted in a subtle way that Islam is animprovement on Christian-ity and Judaism and that theirprophet was superior to thosewho had come beore and thatthere would be no one greaterin the uture.Islam is a proselytizing reli-gion and that is part and parcelo its message. Fair enough.I knew that while some Jewsmight be oended, there was virtually no chance any wouldembrace Islam. It is air to say that webelieve that Judaism is the best religion,but we do not eel the need to assert that orto try to make converts. It really is a mattero style and not o substance.But the principle is important: Insist onbalance and equality. For example, i thereis a presentation o Islam, Christianity andJudaism, do not accept that it will be in theorder o origin: Judaism, Christianity andthen Islam. Tat implies a kind o hierar-chy. Historically, Christianity portrayeditsel as the ulllment o Judaism; just asIslam says the same about the other two.I insist that we ip a coin or draw lots todetermine the order.In a similar way, when the Summit atFirst Hill invited an Orthodox rabbi and aConservative rabbi along with me to dis-cuss the meaning o lie (a light topic) Isimilarly insisted that our denominationsbe listed alphabetically in the publicity —which turned out O, R and C — no hier-archy implied.Some people might argue that suchinteraith and intraaith gatherings are somuch “sound and ury signiying noth-ing.” Maybe so. I preer to believe thatwe can learn rom one another and be asource o light and not just heat. We canmodel respect while maintaining our ownsense o integrity and strength.Tat is what Rabbi Levine was ableto do in the 40-plus years he served ourcommunity as our emissary to the largercommunity. We who engage in interaithollow in his ootsteps as Joshua and Calebdid in those o Moses.
Th UN scrtry-gnrn Mry Rbinsn’s Irninbc
GeRaLd m. steinbeRG
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon —who decided to visit ehran Aug. 29–31or the conerence o the Non-AlignedMovement (NAM) — would have beenwise to more careully ponder the lessonprovided by Mary Robinson.During her tenure as UN Commis-sioner or Human Rights in 2001, Rob-inson authorized, planned and chaireda disastrous meeting in Iran, and is stillpaying the price or this undamentalmoral ailure.Robinson’s Iranian misadventuretook place in the context o the Asianregional preparatory session or theUN’s World Conerenceon Racism — the ina-mous Durban coner-ence, which took placein September 2001. Teplanning or the Durbanhuman rights disaster,over which Robinsonalso presided, took placein the Iranian prepara-tory conerence, whichadopted the poison-ous anti-Israel texts thatlaunched a decade o political warare. Underthe açade o humanrights, Robinson wasresponsible or this moral debacle.Robinson’s record o ailure beganwhen she ailed to act to prevent the selec-tion o Iran as the venue or the prepara-tory conerence. In placating the powerulIslamic bloc in the United Nations, shelent her name and reputation to the white-washing o the Iranian regime. Te prom-ises that she and others made to hold aserious and civil discussion o humanrights, without the hate-lled and anti-Semitic language usually heard rom Iran’sleaders, were clearly not credible comingrom a country run by Islamist clerics whooppress Bahais, Jews and other minorities.Robinson also blindly repeated theIranian government promises to provide visas to the ocial Israeli delegates and theJewish NGO representatives, as requiredby UN regulations or any host coun-try. As predicted, the Iranians never pro- vided these visas, and while she could andshould have cancelled at that point, Rob-inson instead chaired a conerence with-out Israelis or Jewish NGO ocials. Tehate-lled texts were the entirely predict-able result.But instead o learning the lessons andchanging course, Robinson continued toturn two blind eyes to these results, as didher allies rom powerul groups such asHuman Rights Watch and Amnesty Inter-national, or whom moral objectives havebecome empty slogans. Te planning orDurban continued apace despite the Ira-nian debacle, with Robinson acting as i nothing signicant had happened. It wasonly aer the NGO Forum at Durban,characterized by blatant anti-Semiticattacks and crude Israel-bashing, thatRobinson was orced to pull back.By then, the damage had been done,and her reputation con-tinues to be tied to theehran-Durban disas-ters. Robinson’s prom-ising career, includingbeing the irst womanto have served as presi-dent o Ireland, and thenas the UN human rightscommissioner, reached adead end, and her cam-paign to become Sec-retary General o theUnited Nations nevergot o the ground.Instead, whenever sheappears on university campuses to speak or accept honorary degrees, particularly in the United States,demonstrators, oten including aculty members, remind her and her support-ers o her Iranian legacy. Members o theU.S. Congress voiced the same criticismswhen she received the Presidential Medalo Freedom in the White House.Tese are important lessons shunnedby Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Terecan be no compromise with the blatantracism, anti-Semitism and other ormso hate heard daily rom the leaders o the Islamic Republic o Iran. Te geno-cidal threats and the requent reerencesto Israel and Zionism as “cancers” haveeven drawn the condemnation o Euro-pean political leaders and ocials. Tehead o the UN’s decision to go to Iran willbe seen as an endorsement o the regime’slegitimacy and another whitewashing o hatred and anti-Semitism, as in Robin-son’s precedent.In addition, Iran has been ound to bein massive violation o its commitmentsunder international agreements — partic-ularly the 1970 Nuclear Non-Prolierationreaty — and is running an illicit nuclearweapons program, as the United NationsSecurity Council (belatedly) determined.Given Iran’s illicit drive or nuclearweapons and penchant or anti-Semitismand hatred, Ban Ki-Moon should haveavoided Mary Robinson’s ate by stayingaway rom ehran.
Gerald M. Steinberg heads NGO Monitor 
and isa professor of political science at Bar IlanUniversity.
WorlD ecoNomic Forum
Bn Ki-Moon.

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