From:                              Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford

Sent:                               Thursday, June 18, 2015 2:03 PM

To:                                   'Jewish Federation NB'

Subject:                          The Bulletin -- A Community Update for June 18, 2015

The Bulletin - A Community Update for June 18, 2015

(Michelle Poirier had an even larger part in this edition of The Bulletin than she does every week.)


12 Days Left - Federation’s Annual Campaign 2014-15

The work of our Federation this year focused on solid programming, engagement and support for causes local and abroad. 

While successful in reaching out to new people in the community this year (thank you!), we must not lose ground.  I call on all who participated in the annual campaign last year and who have not yet pledged to do so this year.  Please consider making a pledge or sending a gift today

Donate online here or mail your gift or pledge to 467 Hawthorn Street, Dartmouth, MA, 02747.


Please note that while we ask for your pledge before June 30, payment can be made through December 31.  Thank you for your support!




Michael Oren and the American-Israeli Divide


Obama and Oren making nice.


Five things to know about Michael Oren, born Michael Bornstein in upstate New York in 1955, before immigrating to Israel in 1979:


1.      He is a well-educated historian.

2.      He was Israel’s ambassador to the United States from 2009 to 2013.

3.      He became a member of Netanyahu’s coalition in the 2015 elections, an MK for the centrist/center-right Kulanu party.

4.      His memoir about his time as ambassador, Ally: My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide, published by Random House, is available for purchase June 23, 2015.

Publicity sells books.  Publishers like publicity.  Authors like publicity.  Mr. Oren very successfully stirred the publicity pot this week, in advance of his book release, with his Wall Street Journal op-ed.  In it, he asserts that Obama abandoned “the two core principles of Israel’s alliance with America” – ‘no daylight’ (the two countries can disagree, just not openly) and ‘no surprises.”


Both American and Israeli publications were quick to respond to Mr. Oren’s assertions with detailed point-by-point refutations.  The Forward's J.J. Goldberg, with all due respect, considers Mr. Oren “wrongheaded.”    Peter Beinart at Haaretz thinks the attack on Obama and America “deeply trivial.”     


“But Obama isn’t Oren’s only target: he is also critical of American Jewish liberals and their ‘religion’ of Tikkun Olam, and turns devastating when it comes to American journalists who are also Jews,” writes Chemi Shalev, also in Haaretz.  Want to read more?  Mr. Oren has a book, available for purchase on Tuesday.   


Close readers will note that the list of five things to know about Michael Oren only listed four.  This last item is tangential to the topic, but certainly of interest to those who appreciate random connections and, oh, a little music history:


5.      He is married to Sally Oren, woman with a past.




And Then There’s Rivlin



The president in Israel does not wield the power.  That’s the prime minister’s gig.  But for a figurehead, Reuven Rivlin has much to say that should be heard.  Read about Ruby's thoughts on the relationship between Israeli Jews and Arabs here.  Progressive, with potential.  Possible?  Time will tell.


Before Dolezal There Was Mesirow


Rachel Dolezal is not the first American with an affinity for African-American culture, though she may be the most preposterous.  Before her came jazz musician Mezz Mezzrow, born Milton Mesirow to Russian-Jewish immigrants in Chicago in 1899.  Read his fascinating story here.


Nancy Spielberg’s Next Project


You loved her film Above and Beyond.  Now there’s Who Will Write Our History, the inspiring story of Emanuel Ringelblum and the secret archive he created in the Warsaw Ghetto.  Visit the Who Will Write Our History website to learn more about how this film is coming together. 


Just this week it was announced that Academy Award-nominated actress Joan Allen will voice narrator Rachel Auerbach in the movie.  One of only three survivors of the Oyneg Shabes Archive, Auerbach was a prolific writer and it is her writing and point of view that will frame the story.






Shabbat Shalom,



 The Bulletin is a weekly email from Amir Cohen, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford.  I welcome your feedback at