A fervently Orthodox mob opposed to the upcoming Jerusalem gay pride parade tried to attack the city’s mayor. (JTA)

Mayor Uri Lupolianski had to be extricated by police late Tuesday after scores of protesters threw stones at a banquet hall he was visiting near the fervently Orthodox neighborhood of Mea She’arim.

He was unharmed.

Lupolianski, himself fervently Orthodox, has long voiced his personal opposition to gay pride events taking place in Israel’s capital.

The White House urged Israel to quickly complete its investigation into the circumstances of an artillery attack that killed 18 Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip. (JTA)

“We deeply regret the injuries and loss of life in Gaza today,” Gordon Johndroe, the spokesman for the White House’s National Security Council, said Wednesday.

“We have seen the Israeli government’s apology and hope their investigation will be completed quickly. We call on all parties to show restraint so as to avoid any harm to innocent civilians.”

Israel said initial signs were that the barrage on the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, which killed mostly women and children, was misdirected fire aimed at terrorists firing rockets into southern Israel.

The Israeli air force killed the commander of Hamas´s rocket units in the Gaza Strip. (JTA)

The Palestinian fugitive, long on Israel´s wanted list, died in a missile strike on his car in Gaza City on Wednesday night. Another Hamas member who was in the vehicle also died.

Security sources said the operation aimed to curb Hamas´s efforts to expand the range and lethality of its homemade Kassam rockets, hundreds of which have been fired into the Jewish state.

Ehud Olmert came first in a survey ranking Israeli government ministers the public considers corrupt. (JTA)

Forty-two percent of those polled for the survey, which was published Wednesday at the annual Sderot Conference on the Economy, named the Israeli prime minister as the “most corrupt Cabinet member.”

He was followed by the minister for strategic threats, Avigdor Lieberman, who took 26 percent, and Defense Minister Amir Peretz, who took 23 percent.

Olmert, who ranked 7th in the poll last year, when he was deputy prime minister, has been dogged by corruption allegations since winning the top office in March elections.

He has denied wrongdoing. Asked which Cabinet minister they believe has the most integrity, 38 percent of respondents said Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and 35 percent said Vice Premier Shimon Peres.

Anheuser Busch Companies, Inc. donated $100,000 to the UJA-Federation of New York. (JTA)

The money will go to support the federation’s nonsectarian education, social welfare and human services, according to a Wednesday news release from the federation.

Since 1993, Anheuser-Busch has donated more than $5.7 million to Jewish agencies, including the New York federation.

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem was named as one of the top 100 universities worldwide. (JTA)

The list, published Wednesday by The Times Higher Education Supplement of London, ranked Hebrew U. at No. 43 in arts and humanities. It outranked Tel Aviv University at No. 87, as well as NYU at No. 47 and Brown at No. 48.

In social sciences, Hebrew U. placed No. 44.

The Jerusalem school was the only one in Israel to be listed in the field of biomedical sciences, at No. 63, and ranked No. 52 in science, two places behind Haifa’s Technion.

Hebrew U. was also ranked No. 29 overall among universities outside the United States, with Tel Aviv listed at No. 35 and the Technion No. 39.


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