Current Issues in Israel

Resource page for the Current Issues in Israel class (Fall / Winter 2023) with Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum and Rabbi Marisa James.

Class Recordings

Current Issues in Israel

4 Videos


Resources referenced in the 11/20/23 class:

Reading List & More

Referenced in the 11/20/23 and 11/27/23 classes:

  • A very good overview of history with significant time discussing the American Jewish connection to Israel is Daniel Sokatch’s “Can We Talk About Israel?” Here’s a concise review.
  • A very good recent NY Times piece on why the Oslo peace process failed (with thanks to Lise for sharing!) is here; this is a gift link that you don’t need a subscription to read.
  • If you prefer memoir as a genre, I highly recommend reading these two together: “A Tale of Love and Darkness” by Amos Oz, and “Once Upon a Country” by Sari Nusseibeh. These two gorgeous memoirs, one by an Israeli Jew and one by a Palestinian Muslim, overlap the same time periods in the same places in and around Jerusalem, from two very different historical experiences.
  • Here is the information about the Shoah Foundation collecting testimonies from the October 7th attacks, with links to the recordings which are starting to be made available publicly.
  • We also really appreciate Ezra Klein’s NY Times podcasts these days, including this one, an interview with Rabbi Sharon Brous of IKAR in Los Angeles.
  • If you haven’t yet read Rabbi Kleinbaum’s letter to the CBST community on her trip to Israel, you can read that here.
  • And this article in Ha’aretz about Rabbi Kleinbaum & Randi Weingarten’s trip to Israel is here as a gift link, and also attached as a PDF.
  • And we’ll say it again: if you haven’t subscribed to Ha’aretz, it’s really worth doing so – their coverage and podcasts are unparalleled. 


Here are the maps referenced in the 12/11/23 class, in order:


We highly recommend preparing for the 12/18/23 class by reading Rabbi Jill Jacobs‘ excellent 2018 article in the Washington Post, “How to tell when criticism of Israel is actually anti-Semitism,” watching her on MSNBC in 2021 discussing “5 ways to check if you’re being anti-Semitic when criticizing Israel,” and downloading T’ruah’s excellent booklet “A Very Brief Guide to Antisemitism.” (Note that all of these are linked from CBST’s Antisemitism Resources page.) Rabbi Jill Jacobs is the CEO of T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights.

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