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2016-04-22 digital edition

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April 22, 2016  RSS feed
Just a Nosh

Text: T T T

Just a nosh...

Family of Jewish journalist slain by ISIS sues Syria in U.S. court

The family of Steven Sotloff, a Jewish journalist who was beheaded by Islamic State terrorists, has sued Syria in U.S. court.

The lawsuit filed Monday, April 18 in federal court in Washington, D.C., claims the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad provided support to the terrorists who carried out the assassination of a kneeling Sotloff two years ago, The Associated Press reported. It seeks $90 million in compensatory damages, plus up to three times that in punitive damages.

It is not clear that Sotloff’s family, who lives in Miami, would be able to collect money from Syria if they win the case, the AP reported, since it is often difficult to find assets that can be seized to pay off the judgment, which often involves large damage awards. The suit was filed on behalf of Sotloff’s parents and sister.

Sotloff was kidnapped in August 2013 after crossing into Syria from Turkey and was killed on Sept. 2, 2014. The Islamist ISIS organization posted a video showing the beheading. The Sotloff lawsuit claims that Syria is liable because it provided financial, material and military support to the Islamic State.

Sotloff, 31, a native of Miami and grandson of Holocaust survivors, held dual Israeli citizenship. He made aliyah in 2005. Sotloff reported from a number of Middle Eastern countries for publications such as Time, the Christian Science Monitor and Foreign Policy.

Fire caused by Passover preparations damages home of New Orleans rabbi

A fire caused by an oven during its self-cleaning cycle in preparation for Passover destroyed the home of a New Orleans rabbi.

The fire swept through the home of Rabbi Gabriel Greenberg of the Orthodox Congregation Beth Israel on Tuesday afternoon, April 19. No one was injured in the blaze, which caused “substantial” damage, according to fire officials.

The rabbi and his two young children were in the back yard of the home when the blaze started. The family’s possessions, including furniture and clothing, suffered fire, heat, smoke and water damage.

A GoFundMe page called “Help Gabe and Abby” raised more than $13,000 from 161 people in the first two hours it was posted on Wednesday, April 20. The page has a goal of $50,000.

Google gives $700K to Israeli disabilities technology initiative

Google will grant $700,000 to an Israel-based initiative aimed at producing technology to help people with disabilities. The grant to Tikkun Olam Makers, or TOM, was announced April 12 as part of the Google Impact Challenge: Disabilities campaign.

Google’s funding will “underwrite TOM’s plans to support a global movement of innovators creating extremely affordable solutions to neglected needs of people with disabilities,” according to a statement from the Tel Aviv-based nonprofit think tank that started the initiative. Tikkun Olam Makers holds three-day innovation marathons in which engineers and technologists come together to invent products for people with disabilities – like a bionic hand and a walker that helps disabled people climb stairs. It claims to have created 120 product prototypes since 2014.

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