Dr. Edward Alexander, English professor at the University of Washington, and Orthodox Jew, and former contributor to Commentary magazine -- as well as author of numerous books including 1997's The Jewish Wars, writes:

Here are a few very fragmentary jottings. I am, by the way, reluctantly, against publicizing private problems of Jewish leaders.


TIKKUN: came into existence as a kind of anti-Commentary, a journal whose motto might be "nothing antisemitic is alien to us." It also affords a relatively harmless outlet for the untidy passions of its founder and editor, the buffoonish Michael (of Meaning) Lerner.

FORWARD: I ceased subscribing to this shortly after Lipsky was dumped for his deviations from orthodox Jewish liberalism and replaced by Goldberg. There is something outrageous about a Jewish newspaper that employs as a regular columnist someone (Leonard Fein) whose great moment in life was being fed breakfast by Yasser Arafat. People do sometimes send me good things in the paper--the occasional piece by Cynthia Ozick or Ruth Wisse or Alan Nadler--but for the most part the Forward seems a Jewish-accented version of NYTimes fundamentalism, evident in its assumption that homosexuality and abortion are the great Jewish desiderata and that Judaism follows an arrow-straight course from Sinai to the left wing of the Democratic Party. Another irritating feature of the Forward is its beggar-like gratitude for any public demonstration of, or even allusion to, Jewishness by celebrities, especially Hollywood airheads.


COMMENTARY remains indispensable, though I preferred it before I had become persona non grata there. It is the most potent and articulate voice for Israel, which certainly can use such voices, and for Jewish tradition.

JEWISH VOICE AND OPINION (of Englewood, New Jersey): Although graphically hideous, this paper provides a remarkable amount of useful material in nearly every issue, and its editor also has a winning sense of humor.