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©Yavneh Times Staff
IN THIS May 2010

Yavneh Middle School Newspaper
The Holocaust

Yavneh Academy
The 155United
Farview Avenue
Paramus NJ 07652
States and
Israel: A
Relationship inMind, Nourishing the Soul
Stimulating the

School Next

What’s Hit

An Interview
The Holocaust Play
By: Ilana Karp ‘10

The Holocaust play preparation was a major success! This year a group of 8 th
graders were even invited to help Mrs. Lopkin make the background sets for the
play. The play was called, "An Unlikely Hero, the Pinchas Rosenbaum Story." The
story is about the life of Pinchas Rosenbaum, the son
of a Rabbi from Hungary, who saved thousands of
Jews. Pinchas Rosenbaum was played by Philip
Meyer. His father, Rav Shmuel Shmelka, was played
by Josh Birnbaum. Dovid Asael, another lead role,
was played by Ariela Rivkin. Young Pinchas was
played by Leora Hyman.
Students are so excited
about the play, as are the
teachers. “We have a great
story this year, one I have
wanted to do for several years. Many of the students are
stepping up to the plate and showing great talent,” said
Rabbi Shmuel Burstein, Director of Holocaust Studies
before the play. Everyone worked very hard with
Dominique Cieri, the director of the play, to make this event truly wonderful. “It’s
been so much fun coming to rehearsals,” said eighth grader Marlee Goodman, just
days before the event. “It’s such an amazing story. Pinchas is such a great person. I
can’t wait to see how it comes out.” The formal dress rehearsal was May 5 th and the
final performance was May 6th at Paramus High school. This Holocaust Play was an
amazing show, and everyone agreed that it was worth the wait!
The United States and Israel-
A Relationship in Jeopardy?
By: Sarah Hiller ‘11

A month ago, U.S. Vice President

Joe Biden, traveled to Israel. His
goal: to restart peace
negotiations between Israelis
and Palestinians. He did not know
that the situation would erupt due
to the shocking statement of the
Israeli interior minister, Eli
Yishai, the leader of the right-wing
Shas Party. In this statement, Yishai
announced that Israel is planning
to build 1600 building Vice
units in theBiden
President now and Prime Minister Netan-
yahu before the shocking announcement.

predominately Palestinian Eastern Jerusalem. Biden was offended by this

statement, as this was a blatant rejection of Biden’s efforts towards peace
between the two nations. This led Netanyahu to apologize for the
unfortunate timing of the announcement, claiming that he did not think that
this statement would be released while Biden was in Israel. Biden was still
upset that the announcement would have been made at all, as Eastern
Jerusalem is a place which, in addition to being claimed by Israel, is also
claimed by Palestinians as their rightful land. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton, another long time supporter of Israel, called Prime Minister
Netanyahu and demanded an explanation for the shocking statement.
Clinton also said that the decision was an “insult” to the U.S. "We objected
to this announcement because we are committed to Israel and its security,
which we believe depends on a comprehensive peace -- because we are
determined to keep moving forward along a path that ensures Israel's future
as a secure and democratic Jewish state living in peace with its Palestinian
and Arab neighbors," Clinton said. When asked about a possible crisis with
Israel over the settlements, she said, "Oh, I don't buy that. We have an
absolute commitment to Israel's security. We have a close, unshakable bond
between the United States and Israel and between the American and Israeli

In East Jerusalem, Yishai’s announcement was followed by violence by

Palestinians who object to the settlements being built by the Israelis because
the Palestinians want East Jerusalem for their future capital. Israel’s decision
has aroused an assemblage of Palestinians who want to take revenge on the
place that the Israelis intend to become a new settlement. Palestinian
leaders have refused to rejoin peace talks until Israel freezes the
construction of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Repeating her comment from earlier, Clinton said that the relationship
between Israel and the U.S. was not in danger. “We have an absolute
commitment to Israel’s security…we have a close, unshakable bond between
the U.S. and Israel,” she said at a
news conference. U.S. president
Barack Obama said that Israeli
plans to build more homes in East
Jerusalem were not helpful for the
Middle East peace process, but
the issue had not led to a crisis
with Israel, one of the U.S.’s
closest allies. Obama said, “Israel
is one of our closest allies, and we
and the Israeli people have a
special bond that’s not going to
go away...but friends are going to
disagree sometimes.”

Netanyahu has not taken any

action to halt the building
process. He issued a statement
saying that Israel appreciates and
respects the warm words said by Clinton on the relationship between Israel
and America. He said that the building plan in East Jerusalem “in no way”
hurts the Palestinians. Israeli
officials say that the Obama
administration misread the situation
and that stopping the building
process was never an option.
Obama believes that Israel should
not build in a Palestinian area,
because it will only increase tension
in the area.

The U.S. - Israeli relationship

is not in jeopardy. Biden, Clinton,
Obama, Netanyahu, and other
members of both governments have
assured reporters and others that there is an unshakable bond between the
two nations, and that is not going to go away. Netanyahu claims that Israel
has the right to build in East Jerusalem, as that is truly Israeli property.
Obama acknowledges that Israel has the right to, but it is not helpful to
peace negotiations at this point. As supposed to some former presidents,
such as George W. Bush, who have had more of an undying support for
Israel, Obama will support Israel, conditionally. He wishes that Israel
wouldn’t do such things which are going to hurt peace negotiation.

Obama doesn’t want Israel to simply give up East Jerusalem or any other part
of their country any time soon. He wishes that Israel would attempt to make some
sort of treaty or agreement with its Palestinian neighbors concerning the disputed
areas as supposed to building there without Palestinian knowledge and agreement.
School Next Year…
By: Corey Berman ‘11

School next year for the middle school will end at

4:40, as opposed to the current time of 4:25! This
new schedule will have some benefits for the middle
schoolers, however. The new model will give students
additional time for breakfast. This has been a heavily
discussed topic in the middle school for quite some
time. This will hopefully give students time to have a
quick bowl of cereal, fruit, or drink before classes
begin. The new schedule will also put Mincha, the afternoon service, into the
middle of the day, as opposed to its current place at the end of the day.
According to Rabbi Knapp, this will “highlight the importance of tefillah
[prayer] and not making it seem like an afterthought to be rushed through as
the buses queue outside.” Next, the new timetable will give a little more
time for lunch/recess. This is very important for
middle schoolers. Kids have been pushing for
this for years, and it is finally going to be a
reality. There is one last issue that the new
construct will address: there are currently two
times a day when students attend a cycle of
four, uninterrupted class periods. This can
difficult for
many, as
that totals
each forty
minutes- a total of 160 minutes of
straight learning! Middle school kids
need to have unwinding and reflecting
time just as adults do, and this schedule
will address that need. Therefore, there
will be a mid-morning and mid-afternoon
break/snack time. Some feel that by making these changes, Yavneh
Academy is showing its ability to be a
school which is constantly trying
to make whatever adjustments
necessary to keep up with the
academic and social needs of its
students. Others are frustrated that
their school day will be extended. As
soon-to-be graduates, two
eighth grade girls, who requested
their names be kept anonymous, said
that this decision is, “Brilliant! It’s
good for educational purposes, as
children need breaks in order to nourish
the mind.” A seventh grade
boy who also did not want his name to
be published, shared that, “It’s a bad
decision because you get less time
at home to play around and do
homework, but it’s good because you
get more breaks and time outside
during school.” Seventh grader Elisheva Fridman has an alternate
suggestion; she believes that, “If Yavneh would shorten class periods to
thirty-eight minutes instead of the current time of forty minutes, then there
would be over fifteen minutes for all of the benefits of the new schedule,
without extending the school day one minute!” Obviously, some are
opposed to this decision while others are comforted that Yavneh is taking
many important factors of student life into account and giving more
opportunities for them in the school day. This decision has aroused much
disagreement among the students of the junior high school. Only time will
tell what kind of environment these changes will bring to the middle school.
We’ll see on September first!
Shrek Forever After
After defeating a dragon, rescuing
a princess, and saving a kingdom
from destruction, Shrek doesn’t
know what to do next. After
settling down with his wife Fiona,
and their three children, Shrek
beings to lose his edge. He used to
send villagers running in terror of
the big-bad-ogre; he now
autographs pitchforks and torches.
He longs for the good old days of when he could terrorize
the villagers. The sly Rumpelstiltskin gets Shrek to sign a
contract. The pact causes Shrek to realize what life
would’ve been like in Far Far Away without him.
Ke$ha is the popular artist who
sings the songs TiK ToK and Blah
Blah Blah. She was born on March
1st, 1987 with the name Kesha Rose
Sebert in Los Angeles, California.
Kesha has had a rough life growing
up with her mother, Pebe Sebert,
and her two brothers, Lagan and
Louis. She writes her songs based on life experiences, like
the storytelling style of country music. Ke$ha has been
described by The New York Times as a “female rapper
into pop music” for her song TiK ToK. Some enjoy her
style of singing and see it as fresh, new and cool, while
others dislike her way of speaking in her songs, as
supposed to singing the whole way through.

Halo: Reach
The game Halo: Reach takes
place in the future, around the
year 2552. It is a prequel to the
popular Halo trilogy of XBOX
games. It is about a raging war
between the humans and an
alien race known as the
Covenant. At the time of this game (the year 2552), most
of humanity’s interstellar colonies have been destroyed.
One stronghold remains: the planet Reach. Players
assume the role of Spartans, a group of specially
manufactured super-soldiers, who will attempt to fight
the Covenant, and preserve humanity’s biggest secret
from the Covenant: Earth. Comes out in fall 2010.
Based on the novel The Fall of Reach by Eric

American Idol
American Idol is a TV show
where people can show off
their talent and passion of
singing. The show is in its 9th
season, and is still going
strong. The top 12
contestants this season are
Aaron Kelly from PA, Andrew Garcia from CA, Casey
James from TX, Crystal Bowersox from OH, Didi Benami
from TN, Katie Stevens from CT, Lee Dewyze from IL,
Michael Lynche from FL, Paige Miles from FL, Siobhan
Magnus from MA, Tim Urban from TX, and Lacey Brown
from TX. After performing, the contestants are judged by
judges Randy Jackson, Ellen DeGeneres, Kara DioGuardi,
and Simon Cowell. This competition gets more and more
exciting every week!
An Interview With…
Rabbi Knapp
By: Elijah Lippe ‘11 and Gabe Haymes ‘11
YT: Rabbi Knapp, what inspired you to become a principal?
RK: Originally I started out as a Talmud and Torah teacher.

YT: What year did you become principal?

RK: I became assistant principal in 2001 and then became
principal in the 2005-2006 school year.

YT: Did you have any occupation before you started teaching
here, like, the military, etc.
RK: At first I was going to take part in the army as Chaplain, but I
got married instead.

YT: Where were you born?

RK: I was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

YT: Where do you live currently?

RK: I currently live in Bergenfield, New Jersey.

YT: Like Rabbi Schreiber?

RK: Correct.

YT: Rabbi Knapp, do you think that the recent recession in the
economy will/has effected Yavneh in any manner?
RK: No, Yavneh is a stable school.

YT: Did you play any sports when you were in school or now?
RK: I was once the starter on a hockey team. In addition, I just
retired from the Bnei Yeshurun Softball League, where I was a
third baseman.

YT: In all the years that you have been in Yavneh, have there
been any drastic changes?
RK: When I got here, it was already a great school. But, in
addition, we added some new things to go with the old.

YT: Rabbi Knapp, we have so far gotten lunches from Burgers Bar,
Chopsticks, Dougies, and Chickies. What do you think about this
lunch program?
RK: I find it to be great and for it, you can thank the student
council and Morah Baruchov.

YT: Since we are concluding our interview, I would like to ask a

final question. How many kids are there in Yavneh?
RK: There are 716 kids in Yavneh, currently.

YT: Wow! In my last school there were only 100 kids. Thanks for
the great interview Rabbi Knapp.
RK: It is my pleasure.
Benji Dukas ‘11

*based on many 7th graders and some 6th and 8th graders
Thank you for

Sarah Hiller and Corey Berman

Ilana Karp, Sarah Hiller, Corey
Berman, Lisa Appelbaum, Elijah Lippe,
Gabe Haymes, Benji Dukas

Yair Berger

Faculty Advisor
Rabbi Aaron Ross
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newspaper for future editions, please see
Rabbi Ross or e-mail

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