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Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Inaugural Rose Dialogue Series Event is a Success!

Highlights from Last Night’s “Israel vs. Iran –
Is War Imminent?” Discussion

Thank you to the friends and guests of the Riverdale Y — especially Dr. Ronen Bergman, Rabbi Yitz Greenberg, and Richard Joel — for making the inaugural event of The Rose Dialogue Series a success! More than 200 people came out to listen to and discuss the past, present and future of relations between Israel and Iran.

The evening was full of thought-provoking conversation with global Jewish leaders and community members alike. After drinks and dining with friends, guests made their way to the Riverdale Y theatre for the main panel event.

Renowned Israeli journalist and political expert Dr. Bergman, Riverdale’s own Rabbi Yitz Greenberg and Yeshiva University President Richard Joel engaged in an enlightening discussion about the past, present, and future of the conflict between Israel and Iran, taking into particular account the legacy of the Holocaust on the psyche of the modern Israeli state and global attitudes toward Israel.  Some of our favorite quotes from the evening include:

“The good news is that in the last three to four years, Israeli intelligence has gained the upper hand in the clandestine war against our enemies. The bad news is that, in spite of a series of Israeli army successes, the situation with Iran has deteriorated.” – Dr. Bergman

“Israel’s success depends on 1) The ability to penetrate the enemy 2) The ability to translate information into operational capabilities and 3) A willingness to authorize the intelligence community to take on risky operations.” – Dr. Bergman

“Israeli soldiers go to work every day with a sense of a mission…2011 was the quietest year in the last twenty years, and this is thanks to the achievements of the Israeli intelligence community.” – Dr. Bergman

“Syria becoming a nuclear state would be catastrophic to the Israeli mindset, the Israeli spirit.” – Dr. Bergman

“The Holocaust has a very direct impact on what we do in Israel today.” – Dr. Bergman

“I think that Iran is creating a bomb to have an insurance policy, so that they can do whatever they want without fear of consequence or retribution.” – Dr. Bergman

“If there’s anything we’ve learned from our history, it’s to take people seriously when they say they want to destroy Israel.” – Rabbi Greenberg

“It has been less than seventy years since the Holocaust, and that fact has to guide our understanding of this issue. …No prime minister who feels responsible for the fate of the Jewish people could simply stand by and do nothing.” – Rabbi Greenberg

“There are profoundly important American interests here too; starting with the fact that Arab nations will start a nuclear arms race once Iran develops a nuclear bomb…There is also a moral responsibility. In the past, the abandonment of the Jews has meant the abandonment of our shared values.” – Rabbi Greenberg

“The main lesson of the Holocaust is that you have to have the power to protect yourself. Groups that feel oppressed learned that they can’t count on the general goodwill.” – Rabbi Greenberg

“I agree with those that claim that even if the Palestinian dispute was off the table, there would still be hatred toward Jews and Israel” – Dr. Bergman

“I don’t think the Iranian leaders are crazy. They work from a different set of interests.” – Dr. Bergman

Like all compelling conversations, the Dialogue left room for questions and provided fodder for discussion long after we left the theatre. We hope the event sparked your curiosity and that you will join us for future installments of The Rose Dialogue Series – stay tuned, and we’ll see you soon!

Posted by: Marti Michael @ 12:00:00 am  Comments (0)
Sunday, April 29, 2012
The Rose Dialogue Series Inaugural Event is Near!

Ronen Bergman, Rabbi Yitz Greenberg and Richard Joel Participate in the First Dialogue Event on May 1

Here at the Riverdale Y, we’ve been eagerly anticipating the event that will kick off our brand new Rose Dialogue Series: 'Israel vs. Iran – Is War Imminent?' This fantastic new series will contain provocative and thought provoking discussions, addressing relevant subjects and hot button issues impacting individuals worldwide.

This Tuesday, May 1, at 6:30pm, community members and Jewish leaders will come together at the Riverdale Y to enjoy stimulating conversation about the historic and present-day relationship between Israel and Iran. The discussion between Dr. Ronen Bergman, senior political and military analyst for Yedioth Aharonoth, and Riverdale’s own Rabbi Irving Greenberg will be moderated by Yeshiva University President Richard Joel. This is event is sure to spark conversations at the dinner, the reception afterward, and in car rides home.

The Dialogue will address questions like: How do Jews—and how does the international community at large—perceive Israel in terms of the escalating tension with Iran? If Iran attacks Israel, what is Israel’s defensive capability against such an offensive? What are the repercussions of an attack?

Are there other questions you want to ask these intellectual leaders? Audience participation is encouraged, so come to this exclusive dinner event with probing questions and an open mind.

Tickets to the dinner, discussion, audience Q&A, and dessert reception are still available online. We are extending a 50% discount to students and seniors…email cgalik@riverdaley.org. We look forward to seeing you at the first installment of the Rose Dialogue Series!

Posted by: Marti Michael @ 11:00:00 pm  Comments (0)
Thursday, April 26, 2012
Welcome to The Riverdale Y’s New Blog!

Welcome to The Riverdale Y’s brand new blog! We are excited to share community news, tell you about what’s going on at the Y and engage in interesting discussions that impact Riverdale residents.

Each week, we will bring you commentary from the people who work at the Y as well as local residents — if you want to write a guest blog, let us know! We hope to have a dialogue with you about what’s going on in the community, what issues are on your mind and what you’d like to see from your local Y.

We know that Riverdale is a hub of interested, committed individuals who care about issues that affect all of us domestically and internationally. We hope this blog will help foster a sense of community where people throughout the Greater New York Area — particularly the Bronx, Westchester, New Jersey and the Upper West Side of Manhattan — will be able to come together to express their views and obtain insights that will broaden their awareness and thinking on critical issues. We are committed to this cause and look forward to welcoming Riverdale and non-Riverdale residents into our community.

A little more about us: The Riverdale YM-YWHA is a multi-generational agency providing informal education, leisure time activities, and social services to meet the recreational, social, and cultural needs of the Jewish and the general community. The services, programs, and facilities of the Y are available to all residents of the community regardless of race, color, religion, or sex.

You can also check us out on Twitter and Facebook for more news, announcements and great discussions within the community.

We hope you enjoy the blog!

Posted by: Marti Michael @ 8:00:00 pm  Comments (0)
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