A schism between Israelis and Diaspora Jews was growing for most of 2023. Then Hamas attacked

Over 3,000 people attended a rally for the Israelis kidnapped by Hamas in Toronto, Nov. 1, 2023.

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If you’d asked Diaspora Jews earlier this year, in the wake of the mass protests against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s judicial reforms, how they felt about their relationship to the Jewish state, an unusually high number would have said something along the lines of “fraught”. Indeed, the rift caused by Israel’s latest right-wing governing coalition sparked fervent international debate—until the Hamas massacre on Oct. 7, 2023.

So now that Israel is settling into what could become a long-term engagement in Gaza, it’s worth asking how that international relationship has changed. Jews around the world have largely set political differences aside and come out overwhelmingly in support of the Holy Land, but how long will that last? And how do Israelis on the ground feel about this? To find answers, Bonjour Chai co-host Phoebe Maltz Bovy sat down with Lahav Harkov, a senior political correspondent at Jewish Insider based in Israel.

After that, Avi Finegold introduces the long-awaited winner of this year’s Great Canadian Sermon Slam, Rabbi Lisa Grushcow of Temple Emanu-El-Beth Sholom in Montreal. She joins for a deep discussion on her rabbinic duties this past month and what the Torah can teach us about handling trauma.


Bonjour Chai is hosted by Avi Finegold and Phoebe Maltz Bovy. Zachary Kauffman is the producer and editor. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Socalled. The show is a co-production from The Jewish Learning Lab and The CJN, and is distributed by The CJN Podcast Network. Support the show by subscribing to this podcast, donating to The CJN and subscribing to the podcast’s Substack.