Sunday, May 8th, 2011...1:15 pm

Op-ed: Alienation from Israel hitting liberal seminaries

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By GARY ROSENBLATT

NEW YORK (N.Y. Jewish Week) — A second-year rabbinical student at the Jewish Theological Seminary (www.jtsa.edu) says her year-in-Israel experience, as part of her academic training, has been “enriching and incredibly painful” in terms of what she sees of Israel’s relationship with the Palestinians.

“The Israel I see does not seem to reflect so many of the Jewish values that my family and community raised me with,” she wrote in an e-mail to The Jewish Week.

The woman, who asked that her name not be used, said she is part of a group of American rabbinical students in Israel who meet every other week “to share our struggles and hopes and dreams for Israel.” She added that “it was through this group that I ended up” at a “birthday party in Ramallah” for a fellow student at a bar featuring anti-Israel slogans in Arabic.

The birthday incident was cited in a recent Jerusalem Post opinion piece by educator Daniel Gordis as an example of the disturbing level of discontent with the Jewish state among a number of Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist rabbinical students spending a year in Israel.

Read the rest of this article at the New York Jewish Week: http://www.thejewishweek.com/editorial_opinion/editorial/future_rabbis_conflicted_about_israel

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