Put a Mirror on Your Seder Table

Leah Sarna argues that this is the Passover to tell the stories of enslaved Jewish women: of the victims of October 7, who were and likely still are subjected to sexual violence, and of the heroic women in the era of the Exodus, who fought to ensure the perpetuation of the Jewish people.

Is Liberal Zionism Dead?

Steven Gotlib reviews Shaul Magid’s new, provocative book about a contemplated “counter-Zionist” future for Israel.

Is Silence Complicity?: An Analysis of Shtikah Ke-Hoda’ah from Classic Halakhah to Current Events

Moshe Kurtz explores the different meanings of silence in Halakhah in light of recent political events

Separation of Powers and Majority Rule: Insights from the Talmud, Maimonides, Spinoza, and Mendelssohn

This article was written and accepted for publication in the summer of 5783/2023 and scheduled to appear after the holidays. Because of the outbreak of Israel’s “Iron Swords” war with Ḥamas following the murderous attack on Israel on Shabbat/Simḥat Torah (7 October, 2023), we agreed that publication needed to be postponed. Now, five months into the war with no end in sight, we are nevertheless witness to renewed political tensions, public demonstrations, disagreements and paralysis in appointing judges and the President of the Supreme Court, together with resumption of talk of the “judicial reform.” Despite the continuing tragedy of the war in the south and warfare in the north, a review of how our sources treat the separation of powers and majority rule may help us avoid repeating some of the mistakes of the pre-war political and ideological divisions in Israel and contribute to a more reasoned consideration of the issues.

Purim and the Joke of Jewish Sovereignty

Zach Truboff argues that Purim reminds us of our vulnerability even with the State of Israel.

The Child at this Moment, the child that Could Become: A Torah Meditation in...

Dan Ornstein examines the rabbinic interpretation of the phrase "ba-asher hu sham," and applies it to the current conflict in Israel.

A Philosophical Reflection on the Halakhification of Warfare

Alex Ozar explores wartime law in the Rambam.

Insanity and Hope

Warren Zev Harvey reflects on the pain and fear of Israel’s current moment, finding unexpected hope in R. Joseph Kaspi’s anti-deterministic theory of history. The essay was originally published in Hebrew and translated by the author.

Is Reciting Tehillim and Avinu Malkeinu after October 7th Enough?

As we near 150 days since the murderous attack by Hamas, Chaim Trachtman wonders whether continuing to recite Tehillim and Avinu Malkeinu is the best way to keep Israel front-and-center in our prayers.

Modern Orthodoxy at the Crossroads: Past, Present, and Future

Steven Bayme reviews Joseph Kaplan’s diverse collection of essays on the history and future directions of Modern Orthodoxy in America.