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Rav Avrohom Yitzchak Levene was born for rabbanus. As the grandson of Rav Aryeh Levine of Yerushalayim and Rav Yehuda Leib Levene of London, he merited to connect to the greatest Torah personalities of the past generation. Nearly 50 years after transforming a “little house” in Philadelphia into a thriving Torah center, Rav Levene reflects on what it means to bring the old-world rabbinate to a changing America.
Before the March 17 election, things were looking bleak for both the Likud, and for Tzipi Hotovely, placed in what was considered an “unrealistic” spot on the Likud party list. But thanks to Binyamin Netanyahu’s unexpectedly high margin of victory, Hotovely found herself catapulted into the foreign ministry. As deputy foreign minister, she is exerting all of her talents and efforts to change the dialogue between Israel and the nations of the world.
Ten years ago this week, the residents of Gush Katif lived through a second Tishah B’Av as they were wrenched from their land in a drastic, controversial operation that was supposed to bring peace and calm to the Gaza region. Last summer, dozens of young people traumatized by the expulsion found themselves back — this time as soldiers fighting the terrorists who launched missiles and dug tunnels from the ruins of their former homes.
The women are draped in saris and the men have that unmistakable swarthy Indian visage, but the yarmulkes on their heads, the rousing clapping in rhythm to the traditional Jewish songs, the supplications for peace in Israel, and the mechitzah make us do a double take. Are we really in a Christian village somewhere in southern India?