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62% of Israelis support women's Torah reading at Western Wall

62% of Israelis support women's Torah reading at Western Wall

Following the Supreme Court’s issuance of a Show Cause Order to the Government regarding the prohibition against women’s Torah readings at the Western Wall: Among secular Israelis 86% expressed their support, as did 61% of the traditional Jewish community.


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69% of Jewish Israelis support women's candle lighting ceremonies at Kotel

69% of Jewish Israelis support women's candle lighting ceremonies at Kotel

69% of Jewish Israelis favor allowing women to light Chanukah candles at the Western Wall. This principled position also enjoys a high level of support among voters for the non-Haredi Coalition parties.

Bill would anchor Orthodox practice in law at the Western Wall

Bill would anchor Orthodox practice in law at the Western Wall

Lawmakers from Shas and United Torah Judaism, as well as Likud’s Oren Hazan, David Amsalem and Miki Zohar and Jewish Home’s Betzalel Smotrich, Moti Yogev, and Nissan Slomianksy, have endorsed the proposed legislation, officially lodged on Sunday, that would anchor Orthodox practice in law throughout the entire Western Wall vicinity.

Shas Party proposes a bill to outlaw mixed prayer at Western Wall

Shas Party proposes a bill to outlaw mixed prayer at Western Wall

The Shas party declared on Monday that it would propose a bill that would make it illegal to hold pluralistic prayer services at the Western Wall plaza.

Knesset Internal Affairs Committee Chair stoops even lower!

Knesset Internal Affairs Committee Chair stoops even lower!

The Jewish Federations of North America convened their General Assembly earlier this week, and impressed upon Prime Minister Netanyahu how strongly they feel about implementing the Western Wall Agreement that his Government reached with Women of the Wall, and the Reform and Conservative movements. While the Prime Minister reiterated his commitment to the agreement, but pleaded to them for patience & silence, MK David Amsalem, a senior member of Netanyahu's Likud party, in his official capacity as Chairman of the Knesset Internal Affairs Committee, attempted to sabotage the agreement because it offends his religious sentiments. In doing so he had no compunction acknowledging that this would offend American Jewry.

MK Amsalem's ugly disdain for Diaspora Jewry

MK Amsalem's ugly disdain for Diaspora Jewry

We who truly care about Israel's well-being and bond with world Jewry must not continue tolerating such contempt for (and humiliation of) Diaspora Jewry and the largest Jewish religious streams at the hands of the leaders of the parties that serve in his Government Coalition.

PM to Diaspora Jews: Be Patient! We say: NO!

PM to Diaspora Jews: Be Patient! We say: NO!

Hiddush's simple, straightforward review of the comments regarding the Western Wall made by the Prime Minister, the Speaker of the Knesset, and the Head of the Opposition during the Jewish Agency's Board of Governors meeting this week, teaches us much about how Israel's political leadership prefers to deal with crises in Israel's relations to the Diaspora: it's called "Damage Control."

A Missed Opportunity to Support Secular Life in Israel

A Missed Opportunity to Support Secular Life in Israel

The rabbinate sees itself as waging a culture war, and it has been winning. Since the state’s founding rabbinic power thwarts the development of a secular conception of citizenship. Hiddush polled Israeli Jews and found that 71% support the freedom to marry and divorce independent of the Orthodox rabbinate.

Minister Azoulay heeds his rabbis rather than his government

Minister Azoulay heeds his rabbis rather than his government

It has almost become a painful routine to update our readers on the all too frequent outrageous statements made by Israel's ultra-orthodox cabinet members and MKs, which go against all commonly accepted norms of rule of law and democracy.

71% Israeli Jews attach importance to marriage & divorce freedom

71% Israeli Jews attach importance to marriage & divorce freedom

60% of the Jewish Israeli public supports the involvement of American Jewish organizations in advancing marriage freedom in Israel. There is no doubt that for Israelis – breaking the yoke of the fundamentalist Orthodox Rabbinate in marriage and divorce is a top priority among the religion/state battles. Israelis welcome American Jewish partnership in advancing this cause, both for the sake of Israel and for the sake of world Jewry!

Updates: the Kotel agreement & Supreme Court mikva'ot ruling

Updates: the Kotel agreement & Supreme Court mikva'ot ruling

In the last week, there have been a number of developments in the ultra-Orthodox political and rabbinical leadership's battle against the implementation of the Kotel agreement, as well as their battle against the Supreme Court's ruling to make Israel's public mikva'ot available for non-Orthodox conversion ceremonies.

Israel pushed towards theocracy

Israel pushed towards theocracy

Minister Rabbi Litzman: "Netanyahu either loves the Reform Jews of the Diaspora, or the Haredim of Israel; it's either-or. There are no two ways about it... The Supreme Court is destroying everything good related to religion & state, and... the only way to stand against it is by passing legislation."

The Kotel Agreement – Multiple Perspectives

The Kotel Agreement – Multiple Perspectives

The picture that emerges now is fuller and more complex. On the side of those involved in reaching the agreement, additional perspectives have been emerging. Below, we will attempt to organize the primary views and arguments that were heard following the agreement, both pro, con, and those in-between.

After Kotel compromise, dramatic changes still needed

After Kotel compromise, dramatic changes still needed

The progress made over the Kotel should convince communal leaders that we need to further engage in the religion-state clash, and that Israelis need support in advancing the Jewish state’s own core founding principles of religious freedom and equality for all.

Is the Kotel Deal Merely a Fig Leaf For Rabbinic Tyranny?

Is the Kotel Deal Merely a Fig Leaf For Rabbinic Tyranny?

The historic Kotel Agreement represents laudable progress in Israel’s stormy sea of religion, state and politics, but it is important to remember that the issue of prayer at the Kotel is only one of many in the arena of ​​religious freedom. We do not have the luxury of sitting back and relishing this.

Women of the Wall's historic decision will reshape the future of the Western Wall

Women of the Wall's historic decision will reshape the future of the Western Wall

The decision to move Women of the Wall's prayer space from the women's area of the Western Wall to an egalitarian area will end this conflict and allow the Israeli government to approach the religion and state crisis in a more thorough manner.

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