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As I noted here at GetReligion, I traveled to Israel earlier this year with a group of about a dozen U.S. religion journalists.
I wrote about a missile attack that occurred while I was there. I discovered that it was really no big deal.
Notebook - Lot - Insights - Questions - Way
And I filled up my notebook with a lot of insights and questions that haven’t made their way into a published form. At least not yet.
During my weeklong experience through the American Jewish Committee’s Project Interchange, we stayed a few nights in Tel Aviv and the rest in Jerusalem. I was fascinated to learn of the stark differences between those major cities — one (Tel Aviv) a gay-friendly cosmopolitan metropolis and the other (Jerusalem) an old-time religious mecca still influenced by ancient Scriptures.
Suffice - Trip - Attention - Headlines - Israel
Suffice it say that since my trip, I’ve paid more attention to headlines from Israel, particularly those delving into the secular-religious divide that stresses modern-day Israel.
Speaking of which, maybe you saw The Associated Press story the other day on public buses running on the Sabbath in Tel Aviv. Or maybe you missed it during the Thanksgiving holidays. In either case, the AP story is worthy of note.
Understanding - Politics - Divide - Israel
Read it carefully for a better understanding of the politics and religious divide in Israel:
TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Tel Aviv has taken a major step to cement its status as Israel’s secular mecca, launching public transportation services on the Jewish sabbath and redrawing the lines in the country’s culture wars between religious and secular citizens.
Move - Law - Status - Quo - Transit
The defiant move circumvents the law and upends a decades-long status quo keeping public transit largely off the streets from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday throughout most of the country. It comes amid political paralysis that has cleared the way for what could prove to be the next battleground over the country’s ethos.
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