First Read For March 28
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News RoundupThe headlines American Jews are talking about today.

First Read For March 28

Nikki Haley undisputed star at AIPAC; Joan Rivers' seder plate to be auctioned off; Noted Holocaust refugee dies; Ancient Roman road discovered in Israel; Sabbath-observant traffic signal installed...

Nikki Haley, then, US Ambassador to the United Nations, arrives to address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington, DC, on March 27, 2017. Getty Images
Nikki Haley, then, US Ambassador to the United Nations, arrives to address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy conference in Washington, DC, on March 27, 2017. Getty Images

Nikki Haley: No repetition of U.N. vote

The Trump administration will not allow a repeat of last year’s United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning Israel for its settlements, the ambassador to the body, Nikki Haley, told AIPAC yesterday, JTA reports. “Never again do what we saw with resolution 2334 and make anyone question our support” for Israel, Haley said at the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference.

The Obama administration allowed through the anti-settlements resolutions in December as one of its last acts, triggering bitter recriminations from Israel’s government.

Haley described her determination to help steer the course of the U.N. and its agencies from anti-Israel bias, noting her intervention keeping Salam Fayyad, the former Palestinian prime minister, from becoming the body’s envoy to Libya, and in getting Secretary General Antonio Guterres to withdraw an ffiliate’s report likening Israel to an apartheid state.

Haley was among several speakers at AIPAC who drew a sharp contrast at the conference between President Donald Trump’s administration and his predecessor, President Barack Obama.

Do you want to spend $5,000 on a seder plate?

Just in time for Passover – Passover 2018, that is. A seder plate owned by the late Joan Rivers will go on auction on Long Island on April 24.

JTA reports that her seder plate, made in the 1980s by Spode Judaica in England, will be auctioned at J. Greenstein & Co. in Cedarhurst.

This piece of Joan Rivers’ Judaica is up for grabs at a Long Island auction. JTA

“If it didn’t belong to Joan Rivers, a used one like this would probably be worth about 100 bucks,” auction house owner Jonathan Greenstein said. “But this one is worth about $5,000 because it belonged to her.”

Ms. Rivers, born Joan Molinsky in Brooklyn, died at 81 in September 2014 following complications from throat surgery.

Passport signed by Raoul Wallenberg to be auctioned

And another auction story.

A passport signed by Raoul Wallenberg — the Swedish hero of the Holocaust who saved tens of thousands of Jews in Nazi-occupied territory— is slated to go under an auctioneer’s hammer in Los Angeles on Thursday, the Times of Israel reports.

The document, issued in Budapest in September 1944, is a “protective” pass, a fake permit, often accepted as authentic by German and Hungarian authorities, which enabled the holders to claim that they were actually Swedish citizens waiting to go home.

Raoul Wallenberg: Taken by Soviets in 1945 and never seen again.

Bidding on the document is expected to start at $8,000.

Wallenberg, who was caught in 1945 and never seen again, was thought to have died in a Soviet prison soon after the war, and was not officially declared dead until October last year.

Holocaust refugee who received her medical degree after 80 years dies at 104

Dr. Ingeborg Syllm-Rapoport, a German neonatologist who passed her doctoral defense exam nearly eight decades after she was denied the opportunity by the Nazis, has died at 104, JTA reports.

Dr. Syllm-Rapoport, a former professor of pediatrics and head of the neonatology department at Berlin’s prominent Charite Hospital who retired in 1973, passed the exam on May 13, 2015, at the University of Hamburg. She completed her thesis on diphtheria in 1938, but was refused entrance to the oral exam by the Nazi authorities because her mother was Jewish.

Syllm-Rapoport immigrated to the United States in 1938 and was required to study for two additional years to be certified as a doctor.

Dr. Ingeborg Rapoport (2nd from left) in 1985. WIkimedia Commons

Coming soon – Temple Mount bar mitzvahs?

Under the headline “Don’t settle for the Wall,” a new initiative was launched by the Students for the Temple Mount movement, seeking to bring bar mitzvah boys to the site to celebrate their special day, according to Arutz Sheva.

Maayan Magen, the organization’s spokeswoman, said “We all know of the Bar Mitzvah celebrations at the Kotel [Western Wall], and many families come to celebrate there and hold a tefillin ceremony and a Torah ceremony with musicians, etc. We want to focus attention back to the Temple Mount,” where the Holy Temples once stood.

Access to the area now is largely under the control of the Waqf Islamic trust.

Sabbath-observant crossing lights installed in Phoenix

A ceremony celebrating a new HAWK traffic device was held in front of an Orthodox synagogue in Phoenix that had been the site of several traffic accidents, according to the city’s Jewish News.

The traffic device, a traffic signal invented by city engineers in Tucson, helps give pedestrians a safer way to cross busy streets mid-block. Circumventing the halachic prohibition of turning off and on a light on Shabbat, the new system uses a FLIR infrared heat detection camera, activating the streetlight after a short delay when someone simply stands on the pink, studded ramp on the north or south side of the new crosswalk.

Work has already begun to install the same kind of traffic device in front of Chabad of Arizona.

Ancient Roman road discovered in Israel

Israel Antiquities Authority archaeologists have discovered a 164-yard section of an ancient Roman road during salvage excavations ahead of the installation of a water line about 20 miles west of Jerusalem, Archaeology magazine reports. The cobbled road is thought to have connected the ancient town of Bethletepha to the highway that stretched from Jerusalem to Eleutheropolis, a city located to the south.

The road is thought to have been built after Emperor Hadrian’s visit to the country around 130 C.E.

A 2,000 year-old road was exposed in Bet Shemesh. Courtesy IAA
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