The “Deeds Done” Edition

Photo: David Cohen/Flash90

Allison Kaplan Sommer, Don Futterman and Noah Efron discuss three topics of incomparable importance and end with an anecdote about something in Israel that made them smile this week.

The Year That Was
The Talmud says that on Rosh Hashanah God judges the deeds of all creatures over the prior year. We figured, we’d get a jump on the job, giving God a hand, and figure out what we did right and what we did wrong over the past year.

The Defense Minister & the President
Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas meet on the down-low to talk about anything but peace. What’s it augur?

Afghanistan and the Jewish Question
Do Israelis have anything to learn from the heartbreak in Afghanistan? (Because, you know, it’s always, at least a little, about us.)

Is Canceling This Year’s High Holiday a Retreat From All That Has Preserved Judaism Forever?
For our most unreasonably generous Patreon supporters, in our extra-special, special extra discussion, we talk about the brouhaha over an essay in Tablet in which Liel Leibovitz takes American rabbis to task for being overly COVID cautious. Liebowitz writes that “Jews celebrated Shabbat in silence under the Inquisition, lighting candles in darkened basements even though the flickers of holy light could attract the penalty of death. Jews baked matzo in the ghettos and observed Yom Kippur in the camps.” To cancel the high holidays now, he suggests, is a craven retreat from all that has preserved Judaism forever. Might he have a point?

All that and music of inspiration and atonement for the new year!


  • Yuval Dayan & Shai Tzabari, Zeh ha-Zeman Lisloah
  • Riff Cohen, Eilekha Adonai – Words by R. Hananya Ha-Cohen
  • Idan Amadi, Adon ha-Selihot
  • Ravid Plotnik & Eviatar Banai, Ha-Reini

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2 comments on “The “Deeds Done” Edition

  1. Thank you Noah and the Team for the weekly Promised Podcast. It is a favorite part of my week and a bridge to Israel.

    Shanah Tovah

    1. Noah says:

      What a lovely thing for you to trouble to write, Scott! And it makes a difference. Thanks!


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