NewsBits: Around the Jewish Web

from Haaretz

Sharansky, the JA’s nightmare and hope

There are huge obstacles in his path. Dismantling a large bureaucratic apparatus is never an easy task, and the Jewish Agency has one of the most powerful and entrenched employee unions, which will fight him every step of the way. In addition, throughout his career, Sharansky has proven himself a poor politician; he is the first person to admit this. He isn’t much of a manager either, he’s a visionary. But visionaries have their limitations.

Sharansky understands the Agency’s fundamental weakness. That despite all it has accomplished over the decades in encouraging immigration and working with communities in the Diaspora and Israel, it has always suffered from the lack of a clear mission.

from The Jewish Journal; an opinion piece by Michael Berenbaum

Has Federation Abandoned Its Central Role?

One could quarrel with the conclusions of The Federation’s leaders, but the process was somewhat clear and somewhat transparent, and the purpose was both clear and important. A gift to The Federation was essential to maintaining the infrastructure of the Jewish community, the many essential and worthwhile – and oftentimes unglamorous – activities that a Jewish community must undertake and the responsibilities we bear for local, national and international Jews.

As I understand it, this is no longer the case.