The Limits of Empathy: “Eyeless in Gaza”

From Ernest R. May’s “Lessons of the Past” (1973) to Yuen Foong Khong’s “Analogies at War” (1992) to Jeffrey Record’s “Making War, Thinking History” (2006), historians have argued about the use—and abuse—of historical analogies by decision makers. It is now conventional wisdom that Lyndon Johnson’s advisers were misled into going to war in Vietnam by “the Munich analogy.” Yet liberal historians who agonize other the misuse of Munich are often quite happy critiquing American intervention in Iraq as “another Vietnam.” Conservatives or neo-conservatives in the Dick Cheney mold retort that it is Obama liberals who were misled by their Vietnam obsession to make American defeat in Iraq a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It is now clear from an lengthy, interesting account by Ben Birnbaum and Amir Tibon in the “New Republic” of the Obama-Kerry failed Mideast peace mission how the Vietnam analogy was central at least to Secretary of State Kerry’s belief that Israel, led by Prime Minister Netanyahu, was not doing enough to “empathize” with the Palestinians:

“The prime minister opened the meeting by playing Kerry a video on one of his favorite topics: Palestinian incitement. It showed Palestinian children in Gaza being taught to glorify martyrdom and seek Israel’s destruction. ‘This is the true obstacle to peace’, Netanyahu told Kerry.

“‘It’s a major issue’, Kerry replied. ‘And nothing justifies incitement. I hate it. I’ve read Abbas the riot act about it. You know I have. But it is worthwhile to try to understand what life looks like from the Palestinian point of view.’

“‘This has nothing to do with the occupation and the settlements’, Netanyahu said.

“Kerry pressed on: ‘When I fought in Vietnam, I used to look at the faces of the local population and the looks they gave us. I’ll never forget it. It gave me clarity that we saw the situation in completely different ways.’”


The Perils of Proportionality

With Israeli special forces starting operations in Gaza to complement the IDF’s surgical air campaign against the indiscriminate, increasingly long-rage terror barrage from “Hamastan,” the international community , quite predictably, is beginning to rev up its favorite mantra, i.e., that the Jewish state is guilty of “disproportionate response.” After all, Palestinian civilians—ordered by Hamas to stay in their homes rather than evacuate terror targets in residential areas as well as in mosques and hospitals—have begun to die as “collateral damage” in Israel’s anti-terror campaign to protect its own civilians, so far psychologically traumatized but not slaughtered because of Iron Dome and the option of bomb shelters or safe rooms. Hamas prefers to use its cement to build terror tunnels rather than bomb shelters for Gazans.

Such protections that Israelis enjoy are not available to the exposed Jews of France where synagogue goers were terrorized by an enraged French Muslim mob, at first barely contained by five gendarmes whose initial orders seem to have been to act more like World Cup soccer refs than enforcers of the law. Did they have implicit orders from the French government whose commitment to be in neutral in “thought and deed” in the Mideast may have translated into a policy of semi-neutrality against terror in the Paris streets”? Was this a case of “disproportionate response” on the domestic level, but in the sense of inadequate response by a twenty-first century western government that has forgotten that the fundamental definition of the state is “the monopoly over the means of legitimate violence within a given territory” (Max Weber’s definition) and which doesn’t understand that failing to defend that monopoly by the use of force against violent challengers will ultimately undermine the survival of the state as well as the security of its law-abiding citizens?

Internationally, in the Mideast, Israel is, to some extent, being hoisted on its own petard by its ritual adherence to a strict self-imposed code of military ethics, devised primarily by Moshe Habertal, something of a peacenik professor, who believes it is better for Israel soldiers to die than to recklessly risk the lives of Palestinian innocents in ways that dishonor the Jewish state. Despite the aspersions of its critics, Israel is the only country in modern history that in wartime has avoided intentionally using its air force to target the enemy’s civil population. Israel refuses to practice vendetta against Palestinian civilians (as distinguished from Hamas’ terror operatives) for complicated reasons. It doesn’t want to betray Jewish values, alienate international opinion, or encourage civil strife between Israeli Jews and Israel’s Muslim minority.


The “New York Times” Perverts Poetry to Dispense Anti-Israel Propaganda

“Commentary” and other outlets are condemning the “New York Times” for distorting the clear meaning of Haim Nahman Bialik’s poem, “On the Slaughter” (1903), about the Kishinev Massacre to slander Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu called—contrary to the “Times”—for foregoing revenge in the wake of the kidnap-murder of three Jewish teenagers. He quoted the…


The American Founding and Human Rights According to “The New Republic”

“The New Republic”—whose founding editor Walter Lippmann outgrew radical “new psychology” to found a conservative “public philosophy” based on natural reason—graced the Fifth of July with a breathless review of some new books arguing that the American founding fathers were flaming “free thinkers.” The purpose of this agnostic bombast was, in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, to stick a finger in the eyes of conservative Christians who see the American founding as a sacred event.

In truth, most of the Founders were moderate Deists, meaning that they believed in a benevolent but removed deity who crafted the universe’s natural laws. They had left behind dogmatic Calvinism, but were far removed from the authentic atheism of radical Enlightenment thinkers like Julien Offray de La Mettrie who wrote L’homme machine or “The Human Mechanism” (c. 1750).

At the popular level, the American Revolution if not the Constitution was rooted in evangelical religion. There might have been a Revolution without freethinking Tom Paine (who nevertheless admired Quakers), but it would have been impossible without the religious enthusiasm unleashed by George Whitefield and Jonathan Edwards and the First Great Awakening that convinced many colonists that George III was the Antichrist.

After the Revolution, the Jeffersonian Republican Party relied on the popular support of anti-religious establishment Baptists and Methodists. This is not so surprising given recent scholarship showing that Jefferson himself was not a Deist but a Unitarian who believed in a large moral agency for a heroic if not divine Jesus. After Deism went into eclipse, Unitarianism and “the New England conscience” remained a powerful spur to reform movements including both temperance and antislavery.

This history matters because, as far as I know, there has been no human rights movement in American history without a religious dynamic. This was true of Progressive social reform of the early twentieth century and of the civil rights and antiwar movements of the 1960s. It might seem not to be true of the labor movement of the New Deal Era, but even that had a serious theological component in Reinhold Niebuhr and the Catholic Worker Movement.


Vendetta Claims a Victim

Arab teenager

According to Lee Smith whose beat is the Mideast, Arabs are better at feuding than making war. This is why it was not only a terrible crime, but a tragic mistake when apparently Jewish extremists—outraged by the kidnap-murder of three teenage Jewish boys, Naftali Fraenkel, Eyal Yifrach and Gil-ad Shaar—invited an Arab-Jewish blood feud by kidnapping and killing an innocent Palestinian teenager in Jerusalem. Multiple arrests have been made in Israel with relative alacrity—in contrast to the Palestinian Authority which lacks the will or the ability or both to arrest those responsible for the triple murder. Whoever killed the Arab boy, Mohammed Hussein Abu Khdeir, should be prosecuted and punished to the maximum extent of the law for a terrorist crime that weakens the moral foundations of the Jewish state. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said as much and virtually every other Israeli in publish life has said as much.

“The abduction of the Arab teenager was carried out by extremists, acting on their own, who stand condemned by every sector of Israel’s democratic society. The kidnapping and murders of three Israeli teens, who have not been yet captured, was carried out by members of a terrorist group (Hamas) that is part of a Palestinian government,” declared Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. The young men arrested for burning alive the Arab boy are being compared to European berserk “football hooligans.” No analogy is adequate to the depravity of the crime, but a better one is the kidnap-murder in Paris in 2006 of Jew of Moroccan descent, Ilan Halimi.

There are those among left-wing Jewish commentators whose initial reflex was to demand that we place the kidnap-murder of three Israel teens “in political context.” “Providing this context may be taboo at a time when the entire country is focused on the fate of three kidnapped Israeli teens, wrote journalist Mairav Zonszein, “but it is part and parcel of the story here.” Gidean Levy in “Haaretz” went so as to declare: “Only Israel is permitted to carry out illegal, immoral operations. Only it is permitted to be sanctimonious, to be shocked and to shout from the rooftops when others do the same thing to Israel.”

Zonszein, Levy, and other critics of the Jewish state in western newspapers as well as Israel should take more seriously the perverse reactions—and not only by Palestinians—to the kidnap-murder of three Jewish teens whose deaths should give us all pause.


The Worst Campus Anti-Semitic Incidents of 2013-2014

This past academic year was a turbulent  one on many college campuses, keeping the Brandeis Center’s legal advocacy initiative busy from coast-to-coast protecting Jewish students from hostile environments.  Which incidents do you think were the worst?  Unfortunately, there have been many to choose among.  Here are a few to consider:

BDS protestASA – On December 15, the American Studies Association (ASA) voted to endorse the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.  By a membership vote of 2-to-1, the association supported a limited academic boycott of Israel, the first country the ASA has treated this way.

AASA – Before there was the ASA, there was the AASA.  Earlier this past year, the Asian American Studies Association unanimously approved a resolution endorsing a boycott of Israeli universities.

Vassar SJP neonat HolocaustVassar – Vassar College’s chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) posted a 1944 German poster on its Tumblr page portraying a many-handed monster wearing a KKK mask, holding a little man grasping a moneybag, while stomping over a European town. The Brandeis Center urged Vassar to take swift disciplinary action against the student group.

New York University – At NYU, SJP members shoved mock eviction notices under students’ dormitories room doors and into their private rooms at two NYU dormitories.  One of the dormitories is known for its high concentration of Jewish students.  The Brandeis Center and The Lawfare Project have urged NYU to “firmly and forcefully” discipline the students.

Michigan IIMichigan – In mid-March, Jewish pro-Israel students were called “kikes” and “dirty Jews,” threatened and otherwise harassed by BDS activists.   The Brandeis Center has urged the university to respond.

San Francisco State – Mohammad Hammad, a then-San Francisco State University student, late last year posted pictures on his Tumblr account with him holding a long knife captioned, “Imagine me cutting off the heads of those in the Israeli Defense Forces with this.” More recently, the Brandeis Center has joined an AMCHA Initiative letter calling for investigation into the use of university funds to sponsor a faculty member’s trip to the Middle East to meet with groups designated as terrorist organizations by the U.S. Department of State. In the past, San Francisco State has been very strong at responding to problematic incidents, and we are hopeful that President Wong will maintain former President Corrigan’s strong legacy.

Northeastern University School of LawNortheastern – Northeastern University’s chapter of SJP has been charged with many offenses including sliding unauthorized documents under students’ dormitory doors, not obtaining required permits, and defacing school property.  Northeastern placed the chapter on probation, later reinstating them subject to various important conditions. The Brandeis Center has established a chapter at Northeastern School of Law.

Temple – Recently, a Temple University professor questioned the deaths of 6 million Jews in the Holocaust. These comments come during unsuccessful efforts to convince MLA to adopt resolution critical of Israel. According to a spokesman from the University, Professor Alessio Lerro is “entitled to promote his controversial ideas.” The Brandeis Center has urged Temple President Theobald to respond more forcefully to these outrageous statements.


July 9th Symposium: 10 Years and Counting

The Brandeis Center is pleased to co-sponsor The July 9th Symposium: 10 Years and Counting…” with Heideman Nudelman Kalik and several major national organizations. The event will take place at 10:00 am at the United States Congress’ Capitol Visitors Center.  Ambassador Ron Dermer and former Canadian Prime Minister Irwin Cotler will deliver keynote addresses.  LDB…


The More Things Change…

The late Gary Tobin was often ahead of his time.  Here is what he said about the Presybterian Church nine years ago: The vast majority of Presbyterians are neither anti-Semitic nor anti-Israel.  Yet, a few activists were able to capture the institutional decision-making processes to pass anti-Israel resolutions.  This phenomenon is widespread on campuses as…


Aleksander Dugan: Rasputin Redux?

Speculation is percolating about an emerging “new fascist international”—stretching from France (stamping ground of the Le Pens and the National Front), to Spain (whose extremist rightist figure head is Prince Sixtus Henry of Bourbon-Parma, leader of the Catholic-monarchist Carlist movement), to Austria (where Heinz-Christian Strache heads the fascist Freedom Party), to Greece (where “Golden Dawn” is headed by Nikolaos Michaloliakos), to Hungary (where Marton Gyongyosi heads the vicious Jobbik Party), to Bulgaria (where Volen Siderov is founder to the far-right Ataka Party), to Vladimir Putin’s expansive-minded Russian Federation.

To the extent that there is a nucleus of fact beneath overblown hype, the question emerges who might provide the ideological glue for such a new alignment?

The cultural and religious gaps among these right-wing forces is such that the probable answer is nobody. Yet Putin’s Russia—the prime mover behind the new far right—is also providing the movement with a primus inter pares.

His name is Aleksandr Dugan who is being pictured, not without some plausibility, as a sort of reincarnated Rasputin, the “Mad Monk” whose unbridled charisma helped lead the Russian Empire presided by the last of the Romanovs over a cliff. His roots are uncovered in several recent books including James D. Heiser’s “‘The American Empire Should be Destroyed’: Aleksander Dugan and the Perils of Immanentized Eschatology” (2014).


The Presbyterian Church and the Ku Klux Klan

At their General Assembly on Friday, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted to divest from three companies that supply Israel with equipment used in the West Bank and in the blockade of Gaza. Enemies of the Jewish community are rejoicing.  Former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke  exulted, “Bravo to the Presbyterian Church for standing up to Jewish racism and supremacism!”  Duke is right to praise the Presbyterian divestment vote, which supports what the Ku Klux Klan stands for.

David Duke’s endorsement will undoubtedly embarrass the Presbyterian Church, since it underscores the anti-Semitic character of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.  Regardless of the Presbyterian delegates’ intentions, they have made common cause with a global movement that aims to marginalize and delegitimize the Jewish state.  In this sense, the BDS movement continues longstanding efforts to marginalize and delegitimize the Jewish people.

The connections between BDS and anti-Semitism have not been lost on the Presbyterian Church.  The divestment resolution (Resolution 04-09contains an unusual formal comment by the Church’s Advocacy Committee for Racial and Ethnic Concerns (ACREC).  In this statement, ACREC addressed the anti-Semitism charge explicitly, endorsing the unusual argument the Jewish community should “suspend their campaigns against anti-Semitism indefinitely” in order to focus exclusively on the Palestinians.  In other words, their official position is that it does not matter whether their resolution is anti-Semitic, since anti-Semitism is not as important as Jewish organizations say it is.

This extraordinary argument is taken from American-born Israeli journalist Larry Derfner, whom ACREC quotes as arguing last year:

The ADL [Anti-Defamation League] goes after anti-Semitism with a fist, it goes after Israeli racism with a sigh. As a matter of fact, the ADL and the entire American Jewish establishment should suspend their campaigns against anti-Semitism indefinitely and take a look at what’s going on in Israel.

It is not hard to see why this would be appealing to David Duke, but it is disappointing to see it adopted by a mainline Protestant denomination.  This argument, coming from within the Jewish community, supports Duke’s efforts to convince people to tolerate anti-Semitism. Derfner may not be a household word, but if he is known for anything, it is that the Jerusalem Post fired him a few years ago after he tried to justify terrorist attacks on Israelis, writing, “I think the Palestinians have the right to use terrorism against us.”  Derfner has apologized for his apparent defense of terrorism, which may be explained by his tendency to write hyperbolically.  Unfortunately, the Presbyterians have taken his arguments literally.

What is remarkable is that the Presbyterian Church would find it necessary to adopt Derfner’s argument about anti-Semitism as part of a resolution that does not purport to address anti-Semitism at all.  But the connection makes sense.  After all, the Church delegates must have felt some discomfort at advancing the BDS movement in light of that movement’s unsavory aspects.  Derfner’s argument gives them the blessing they need, even if it comes from a man who seems to have tried to justify terrorism against the Jewish people in the past.

This argument, if taken as literally as ACREC appears to take it, is that Jews exaggerate the extent of anti-Semitism in order to diminish the suffering of other peoples.  This is an example of what is called “anti-Semitism denial,” because it mimics the logic of Holocaust denial.  The global resurgence of anti-Semitism is now well-established.  Those who deny the existence of global anti-Semitism, or argue that it is greatly exaggerated, do not merely express an erroneous opinion.  Rather, their position is that Jews abuse their power to intimidate governments and major institutions, deceiving others in order to gain unfair advantage.  This argument would be entirely implausible, except that it relies on deeply entrenched anti-Semitic stereotypes, that even well-meaning Presbyterian delegates have apparently found convincing.


Brandeis Center and AMCHA Initiative Seek Answers in Potential Misuse of Taxpayer Dollars

The Brandeis Center has joined the AMCHA Initiative in pressing for an investigation into San Francisco State University Ethnic Studies Professor Rabab Abdulhadi’s potential misuse of public university funds.

The organizations have sent a letter asking California State Controller John Chiang to investigate “a serious and blatant misuse of University and state funds.” Documents obtained by AMCHA through a California Public Records Act request suggest that Professor Abdulhadi received more than $7,000 from the University, after she misrepresented her intended destinations on forms needed for insurance and administrative purposes. On these forms, Abdulhadi had claimed she would be presenting a paper in Beirut at an academic conference, but she in fact went on a “political solidarity tour.” The AMCHA letter continues, “As part of the delegation organized and led by Abdulhadi, the group met with known PFLP terrorist Leila Khaled, as well as with Islamist leader Sheik Raed Saleh, who has been incarcerated by Israeli authorities for aiding and abetting Hamas, an organization who charter calls for the murder of Jews.”


The PCUSA General Assembly’s Latest Betrayal of Israel and the Jewish People

In 2004, the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) broke new ground by voting to “initiate a process of phased selective divestment in multinational corporations operating in Israel.” Though the PCUSA voted against divestment in Israel in 2012 by the thinnest of margins, the General Assembly has now again revealed its true colors such as adherence to pro-Palestinian “replacement theology” delegitimating Judaism as well as the Jewish state.

This is the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Statement denouncing the PCUSA Genral Assembly latest anti-Israel resolution including distancing the Church from the quest for a “two-state solution.”


PCUSA Divestment Resolution Bolsters Anti-Peace Extremists

The Simon Wiesenthal Center denounced today’s votes of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) (PCUSA) in Detroit to reconsider its long-standing support of a two-state solution in the Holy Land, and to divest from a number of American companies doing business with Israel.

“We are shocked beyond words. With the crimes against humanity occurring in Syria and Iraq, with the Middle East in chaos, with African Christians regularly selected by terrorists for murder because of their faith, PCUSA chooses to flex its moral muscles by aiding and abetting those pledged to do away with the Jewish State,” said Rabbi Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center.


Brandeis Center Receives Three New Team Members

It’s that time of year again! The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law has extended warm welcomes to three new members of the team: Steven Isaacson, Mandy Jiang, and Kaitlyn Boyle. Said LDB President Kenneth Marcus, “We are very excited to introduce Steve, Mandy, and Kaitlyn to our team. They will be…


Good News from Western Washington

StandWithUs is reporting that the student government at Western Washington University unanimously voted yesterday not to consider boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) based on national origin.  The Student government’s “Resolution Regarding International Divestment, Boycott, and Sanctions” is an extraordinary response to the BDS resolutions adopted at other schools. In a powerfully written statement, the Western Washington student…


Left, Right, and “What’s Good for the Jews”

The resurgence, now on both sides of the Atlantic, of what is usually interpreted as extreme conservative politics—but might better be called right-wing populism—is likely to spark a new debate about present and future threats posed by political extremism to Jews.

Since the Revolution of 1848—when according to a story an Orthodox rabbi with a long beard who preferred to sit on the left side of the Frankfurt Assembly was asked “why” and answered “because Jews have no Right”—the predilection of Jews to believe that they have enemies only on the Right has been demonstrated and documented. Sometimes, it has had disastrous consequences as with the Old Left’s blind spot to Stalin’s anti-Semitism and the New Left’s flirtation with Stokely Carmichael’s.

But the history of Jews in relation to right-wing politics has yet to be fully written. The reflexive anti-Semitism of the European Right—from France’s Dreyfus Affaire to the Russia’s “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” to the pre-WWII French Right’s declaration “Better Hitler than Blum”—is of course well known. There is even an American parallel in the propensity to anti-Semitism of late nineteenth-century American Populists obsessed with the world’s crucifixion on “a cross of gold,” though New Left historians are still arguing that Populists like William Jennings Bryan (who wanted the U.S. declared “a Christian nation”) were somehow immune to anti-Semitism because their “progressive” economic nostrums somehow cancelled out their right-wing religious and racial prejudices.


Does Anti-Semitism Threaten American Jews?

The following article by LDB President Kenneth L. Marcus is distributed via — In a recent issue of Time magazine, Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie, former president of the Union for Reform Judaism, writes that anti-Semitism is “not a threat to American Jews.” He could not be more wrong.

Let us start with the obvious. Any threat to world Jewry is a threat to American Jews.

According to the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) important newstudy, there are now one billion adult anti-Semites in the world. As Rabbi Yoffie acknowledges, this is fully a quarter of the world’s adult population. Can American Jewry shrug this off?

One can quibble with the ADL’s methodology, but it is not far-fetched. ADL considers a person to be anti-Semitic if they give a positive response to six out of 11 survey questions like these: “Jews are responsible for most of the world’s wars,” “People hate Jews because of the way Jews behave,” and “Jews have too much control over the United States government.”

Consider the magnitude of this finding. In 2012, according to the Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry at Tel Aviv University, there were 686 reported incidents of physical violence, direct threats, and major acts of vandalism against Jews and Jewish institutions worldwide. This is bad enough on its own, representing an increase of approximately 30 percent over the prior year.

Worse, these figures understate the problem. According to the European Union’s Fundamental Rights Agency, 64 percent of European Jews who have experienced physical violence or threats do not report even the most serious incident.  If this holds true for Jews elsewhere, the actual incident rate is approximately three times higher than reported, reaching 2,000 serious incidents annually.

But it gets worse. Even the adjusted figures suggest that Jews and Jewish institutions are enduring only one serious anti-Semitic incident per 500,000 anti-Semites annually. This means that in any given year, the overwhelming majority of anti-Semites are not acting on their aversions. Their reasons may be lack of opportunity, want of courage, fear of consequence, or adherence to convention. Economists call this “pent-up demand.”

As the post-Holocaust taboo against anti-Semitism erodes, the ramifications are troubling. Suppose that one in ten thousand anti-Semites should physically harm or threaten Jews or Jewish institutions in a given year. Under this scenario, serious anti-Semitic incidents would increase to 100,000 per year, even if anti-Semitic attitudes remain constant. In other words, things can get much worse.


Terrorism and Anti-Semitic Violence: Complex New Realities Defy Simple Ideological Labels

It’s not much of an exaggeration to say that we live in an age when almost every headline story has become a Rorschach Test for spin doctors on cable news or in cyberspace. Their purpose is not to promote dialogue leading to some sort of shared understanding but to further fuel current political polarizations with wildly different, ideologically driven interpretations.

A case in point: Elliot Rodger who went on a killing spree near UC Santa Barbara. He was a product of America’s misogynist culture. Or he was a gun fanatic acting out violent video games or shock films like “American Psycho”—the moral: censor pop culture and more gun control. Or he was a psychotic loner driven by homicidal-suicidal delusions—the moral: more mental health spending. Prepackaged, often contradictory theories were offered up almost before the crime scenes were roped off.

Another dynamic fueling polarization is built into the psychic economy. Across the political spectrum, there seems to be a compelling need to prove novelist Charles Dickens’ at least half right when he wrote: “These are the best of times. These are the worst of times.” Our current updates of Voltaire’s arch-optimistic Dr. Pangloss believe that—despite the last century’s calamitous wars and economic depression—human life has never been healthier, longer-lived, or more literate and economically advanced than today. But we also have our Doomsayers who see Apocalypse around the corner because of climate change or the next pandemic or a new nuclear-chemical-biological-cyber world war triggered by global inequalities.


The Tikvah Fund Issues a Call for Applications and Nominations

Tikvah logoThe Tikvah Fund is has invited our nominations for potential attendees to its very well-regarded Fall 2014 Tikvah Advanced Institutes. This round, Tikvah will offer institutes in both New York and Jerusalem on topics including Religious Freedom in America, Israeli National Defense, The Hebrew Bible and Jewish Excellence, The Case for Nationalism, and more.  Please let us know if you are interested in further information in the nomination process.  The applications for these programs are open through August 10th, and Tikvah is now beginning the recruitment effort. There is no charge for the institutes, and the opportunity comes with a stipend to cover time and expenses. Below is a list of the topics of the fall institutes. Details about the Tikvah offerings and how to apply can be found at