Today, more than at any other point in history, the Jews are confronted by a world of uncertainties. Spin the globe and watch the countries whirl by—a nuclear Iran, Israel besieged by terrorists, the rising tide of antisemitism in France, rampant intermarriage in America—the list goes on and on. Not only can no one predict what the Jewish future will bring, no one can even agree on what it should. Yes, everyone believes in Jewish continuity, but what sort of Jewishness should be continuing? We at Heeb are not ashamed to admit that we don’t have all the answers; we’re not even sure we have some of them. But we know the questions, and, most importantly, we know who to ask. In the hopes of uncovering ways to address the most pressing and complex concerns facing the Jewish world today, we assembled a panel of experts in the field: Max (8), Ari (6), Sam (5) and Noah (3).
_What actions can be taken to counter the spread of antisemitism worldwide, and specifically, the disturbing rise of anti-Semitic sentiment in Europe and the United States?_
Ari: Who doesn’t like Jews?
Sam: The goyim!
Max: All the bad people. But in America? I dunno… uh…let’s see… not that I remember.
_How will the powerful terrorist group Hamas continue to affect the security of Israel and the safety of Israeli Jews?_
Max: I dunno. It’s bad. Israel should get really, really powerful weapons and then they won’t want to attack them.
Ari: Is that near Egypt?
Noah: I want to go home!
Sam: I think they’re poo poo heads!
_What does the Lebanon War of 2006 suggest about Hezbollah’s determination to eliminate the existence of Israel?_
Sam: I was in Israel!
Max: They don’t like Jews. But they should look at the Bible and then they’ll see how powerful Jews are.
Ari: Who cares?
Sam: I like Israel because you can swim every day! It’s hot!
_With surveys estimating a population of only about 14 million Jews in America, does interfaith marriage pose a threat to the longevity of Judaism in this country?_
Sam: What does that mean?
Max: They’re not as religious.
_How will tensions between secular Jews and religious Jews play a role in shaping the future of Judaism in the United States?_
Max: I’m friends with mostly Jewish people. I don’t know people that celebrate Christmas.
Max: I celebrate Purim, Pesach and Hannukah.
Ari: What the heck is Pesach?
Max: It’s Passover in Hebrew.
Sam: Hannukah is my favorite one! Pesach is my favorite one!
Ari: I like Shabbat at camp because we can eat.
_How will the anti-globalization movement have an effect on increased anti-Semitism worldwide?_
Max: What’s that?
Noah: I want to go home!
Max: This isn’t going so well….