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YouTube cuts off terrorist’s talk, Israel tightens lockdown, Mayim Bialik’s Yom Kippur lesson
Daily Update

YouTube cuts off terrorist’s talk, Israel tightens lockdown, Mayim Bialik’s Yom Kippur lesson

HAVING A BLAST: Theodora Helfand, age 6, blows the shofar at 106th and Broadway during Romemu's Rosh Hashanah celebrations, Sept. 20, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Howard Weiner)
HAVING A BLAST: Theodora Helfand, age 6, blows the shofar at 106th and Broadway during Romemu's Rosh Hashanah celebrations, Sept. 20, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Howard Weiner)

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death felt personal to a Jewish Week reporter whose grandmother, like the late Supreme Court justice, was from Midwood, Brooklyn and was one of the few women of their era to attend Harvard Law School.

“They shared an identity as Jewish daughters of immigrants who were lucky enough to escape Europe before the Holocaust,” writes Hannah Dreyfus. “And they share a place in feminist history.”

Related: A rabbi recited psalms and said the traditional prayer for the departed as the Supreme Court launched its formal mourning of Justice Ginsburg on Wednesday. And one of Ginsburg’s signature white lace jabot collars, donated by the late justice, will go on display at the Museum of the Jewish People in Tel Aviv.

New York’s oldest yeshiva is at the center of a new book about the purposes and pleasures of studying Torah and the decline of the Jewish Lower East Side.

In “Yeshiva Days,” Jonathan Boyarin writes about his year of full-time study at the Mesivtha Tifereth Jerusalem yeshiva at 145 E. Broadway. “The yeshiva is treasured in large part because it is one of the major remaining functioning Jewish communal institutions of the Lower East Side, a continuation of Reb Moshe Feinstein’s legacy and a mark of continuity and vitality,” Boyarin tells the Jewish Week’s Andrew Silow-Carroll.

Actress Mayim Bialik writes about the lessons she learned from the book of Jonah in an essay written for Yom Kippur.

“My religious tradition reminds me of my smallness and my powerlessness,” writes the “Big Bang Theory” star in a JTA essay. “And my tradition also has ways for me to try again. To not give in to despair or to my weakness and insecurities.”

YouTube suspend a livestreaming video featuring a roundtable conversation from San Francisco State University with a former Palestinian hijacker.

Terrorist Leila Khaled’s talk at the university was organized by San Francisco State’s Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies Department; at least 900 viewers were watching live when the stream went dark, replaced by a message reading, “This video has been removed for violating YouTube’s Terms of Service.”

The day before the event, Zoom announced that Khaled’s participation would violate company policy and it would not allow its platform to be used as the host.

Khaled was part of a team that hijacked TWA Flight 840 on its way from Rome to Tel Aviv in August 1969. A year later she participated in the attempted hijacking of an El Al flight from Amsterdam to New York City.

As a counterpoint to the Khaled event, the San Francisco Hillel was scheduled to host a “Vigil for Victims of Terror” on Wednesday.

Israeli cabinet ministers voted early Thursday to dramatically tighten the country’s coronavirus lockdown amid fears that the infection rate is spiraling out of control.

The new restrictions come a week after the current lockdown began and as new daily confirmed infections neared 7,000 on Wednesday for the second straight day, the Times of Israel reports.

President Trump said Jews “stick together” and are “only in it for themselves” following a phone call with Jewish lawmakers, The Washington Post quoted senior White House officials as saying.

The quotes are in a lengthy article quoting anonymous current and former officials describing Trump’s attitudes on race.

Jews in Halle, Germany are remembering the one-year anniversary of an attempted synagogue shooting there on Yom Kippur.

The attacker, a neo-Nazi sympathizer, tried to enter the building last Oct. 9, but the main door held fast. He instead shot and killed a passerby before firing into a nearby Turkish kebab shop, killing a customer.

JTA reports on a small community still recovering from the attack, and their guarded optimism about the future of Jewish life in Germany.

Related: Jewish students in Germany are raising money to help the owner of the kebab shop in Halle, which has lost many customers since the attack.

The Jewish Advocate, a 118-year-old newspaper in Boston founded by Theodor Herzl, is the latest victim of the coronavirus crisis.

The weekly announced Wednesday that it will suspend publication, and plans are being developed to launch a digital edition focusing on advocacy for Jews, the Jewish community and Israel.

Financial stress has taken a toll on a number of major Jewish newspapers, including several for whom the drop-off in advertising during the pandemic spelled disaster.

United Airlines rescheduled a flight from Newark to Tel Aviv when a passenger complained to the airline’s CEO and chairman that she wouldn’t be able to make it because of Yom Kippur.

The woman, identified only as Miriam W. by DansDeals, explained in an email to the executives that the fast day ends at 7:30 pm on Sept. 28, leaving observant Jews like her no time to make the 8:05 pm flight. United’s executive offices called last week to tell her that the flight schedule would be changed.

Around the Agencies

Ari L. Goldman

Ari Goldman, a Modern Orthodox journalist and longtime professor of journalism at Columbia University, will receive the 2020 William A. Reed Lifetime Achievement Award at the Religion News Association’s first-ever virtual convention on Sept. 24. The annual prize is presented to individuals who demonstrate exceptional long-term commitment and service to RNA and its members, and to the field of religion reporting. A 1971 graduate of Yeshiva University, Goldman was for two decades a reporter at The New York Times.

The Jewish Education Innovation Challenge is offering specially curated online Judaic Studies courses as an alternative to “Zoom fatigue” and long video conference calls in the classroom. “Asynchronous learning programs” from leading program providers—Lookstein Virtual, Sulamot and VHS Learning’s Online Judaic Studies Courses—offer a high level of flexibility in terms of length, pace and size of class, along with virtual coaching and related support for educators. “These courses feature self-paced weekly units in which students take ownership of their learning and still offer teachers the opportunity to work directly with students,” according to a release. JEIC, with the support of the Mayberg Foundation, is subsidizing the courses so that schools can access them at half-price. For more information and to see the full catalogue of ALP courses, visit, an affiliate of the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, has launched a new partnership to integrate an index of data from nearly 50,000 Jewish Holocaust survivor testimonies found in USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive. The biographical data includes more than 250,000 possible names and aliases — which in turn contain information on more than 600,000 additional relatives identified in survivor questionnaires. Details can include name, place of birth, date of birth, relationship to interviewee, date of death, and more. All individuals listed in the database link back to USC Shoah Foundation Visual History Archive portal. The index to the Visual History Archive records can be freely accessed via the JewishGen Holocaust database.

Streaming Today

The Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University presents the first Schusterman Seminar of Fall 2020, “Rockets, Nukes and Cyber Too — Israel’s Current Security Challenges,” featuring Charles Freilich, Goldman Senior Fellow and Lecturer in Politics, Crown Center for Middle East Studies, Brandeis University. Cosponsored by the Crown Center for Middle East Studies at Brandeis University. 12:30 pm.

Back To Blue PA presents historian Dr. Deborah Lipstadt, moderating a panel discussion on the importance of elevating Jewish values in the voting booth, and the historic and religious contexts thereof. The panel includes Reconstructionist Rabbi Doris Dyen, Reform Rabbi Jamie Gibson, Conservative Rabbi Seymour Rosenbloom and Orthodox Rabbi Joshua Runyan. Sign up here. 2:00 pm.

Jewish Center of the Hamptons presents a virtual conversation between authors Richie Jackson and Steven Gaines, as they discuss Jackson’s new book, “Gay Like Me: A Father Writes to His Son.” In this love letter to his son, Jackson, an award-winning Broadway, TV and film producer, reflects on his experiences as a gay man in America and the progress and setbacks of the LGBTQ community over the last 50 years. Steven Gaines is the author of “Philistines at the Hedgerow: Passion and Property in the Hamptons” and co-founder and a past vice-chairman of the Hamptons International Film Festival. Register here. 5:00 pm.

Commonpoint Queens presents child psychologist Abigail Gewirtz, discussing how to help your child deal with the worries, stress, and other negative emotions caused by real problems, from the pandemic to active shooter drills to climate change. Click here to register. Cost is $8 member/$10 non-member. 7:30 pm.

Hadar presents a drasha on Shabbat Shuva from Rabbi Ethan Tucker, discussing what makes a Shabbat that falls within the Ten Days of Repentance different and significant. Leave with the tools to spend Shabbat Shuva engaging in meaningful discussion and continuing to do teshuvah. Register here. 8:00 pm.

Join the Jewish Week and UJA-Federation of New York on Oct. 13, 12:30 pm for a conversation with A.B. Yehoshua, one of Israel’s finest novelists, and Stuart Schoffman, the translator of Yehoshua’s new novel, “The Tunnel.” Recently named an “Editor’s Choice” by The New York Times Book Review, “The Tunnel” is a suspenseful and poignant story of a family coping with the sudden mental decline of their beloved husband. Moderated by Sandee Brawarsky, culture editor of The Jewish Week. Free to UJA donors, $18 for new donors. Register here.

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