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Showing posts from September, 2010

A Reporter's Walking Tour of Israel: He Finds a "Resilient" People

Very interesting video on the Today Show about a reporter who broke with his years of reporting on the wars and rocket attacks by the Arabs, and decided to walk down the coast of Israel from north to south, just to get a feel for the country and the people.

What he found was very positive: we are great achievers and a "resilient" people.  With our history of being persecuted by everyone and his uncle ("hu lo echad mi-shelanu"), we have to be.


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Israel's Poor Decisions--or Indecisions--Created Today's Political Mess

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In an article on YNet Magazine, Daniel Friedmann writes a sobering report on how Israel itself, through indecisiveness or bad decisions, prepared the ground which strengthened the concept of a "Palestinian" state.  Even though, after the Six-Day War in 1967, Israel officially declared "no" to a Palestinian state with full consensus of the Israeli population, it's actions since then have actually contributed to the opposite.

Immediately following the Six Day War, the Arab League convened in Khartoum and passed the famous three No's resolution: No to peace, no to recognition and no to negotiations with Israel. Meanwhile, Israel also had No's of its own: No to pulling back to the '67 borders and no to a Palestinian state.
There were some weighty considerations behind the decision to oppose the establishment of a Palestinian state that are still relevant today. It was a national consensus that only the radical Left contested. However, despite c…

Shlomit's Sukkah (Israel) is to Blame for Ruining the "Peace"

We are in the midst of the beautiful harvest holiday of Sukkot.  I wanted to upload some pics of our sukkah this year, but with a three-day Yom Tov (Holy days) time and exhaustion (and working in between) did not yet permit.  Instead, I found this:

There is an Israeli children's song called "Shlomit Bonah Sukkah," meaning a little girl named Shlomit (from the root 'shalom,' peace) is building a sukkah--that temporary hut we build to eat and sleep in for the holiday of sukkot, ongoing now.  Latma TV has now used that song in a sarcastic video showing how Shlomit's sukkah--euphemism for Israel--is to blame for ruining the "peace," while the world just looks the other way at the real Jew-haters, war-mongers and terrorists.

Beautiful Haveil Havalim #284

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Maybe it's because, especially right after Yom Kippur (it was a relatively easy fast, thank G-d), I'm still very hungry--that I think Chaviva's Haveil Havalim (the Jewish Blog Carnival) is yummy!  Go check it out.

Why do I want cholent on Sunday, 12:16 p.m.? Oy!  (See ya later. Gonna go down to the kitchen and get some leftover seudat mafseket*!)



*se'udat mafseket: the last meal before the fast of Yom Kippur, eaten this year Friday late afternoon.

It Don't Mean a Thing if you Ain't Got that BLING

I've changed my clock (thank you, Reb Mordechai), and went a little crazy adding crapstuff to my sidebar. I might have gone a little overboard.  It's because of my penchant for bling of all kinds. I am the one who loves those "bells and whistles."  Don't have any new cars (we had to return our leased 2005 Honda Pilot last April and couldn't afford to lease another), but if I did, I would want them with everything: 4-wheel drive, running boards, USB ports, built-in GPS, even a Heads-Up display (I hear they're coming)--basically, computerized everything

But since I can't have any new cars, I decided I'd Bling My Blog  instead.  If you like it, tell your friends (if you have any).  If you don't like it, tell me.  Quietly.

 In the end, I'm afraid I'm just a wingnut, er--Bling-nut!

(This post has nothing to do with anything.  Just have an easy but meaningful fast, y'all.)

"Peace" is Just a Catchphrase

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So we are going at it again, on and on with more "peace talks" between Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas, head of the Palestinian Authority, Fatah faction.  First meeting in Washington, D.C., then in Sharm-el-Sheikh, then in Jerusalem, and on and on---back and forth.
But the world is not aware that the word "peace" is just a catchphrase.  It has no basis in the reality of the way the Middle East is today. This is just a dance that the two leaders and their American advisers, emissaries, and negotiators are stepping to, dancing around the great big pink elephant in the room, which no one wants to identify. And what is it?  The fact that no one is considering that the Arabs have, to this day, not yet declared acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state in the Middle East. They always step around the issue, claiming in their text books and maps the entire region which is Israel as theirs, which was "taken away" by the Jews in the Naqba--the "…

Life Has More Meaning...with Observance

An article on Israel National News indicated that a CBS survey showed more and more Israelis are becoming observant in their Judaism.  Life just has more meaning, when you believe there is more to it than merely the physical world in which we live, when you believe there is an underlying reason for our existence.

 What sense does it make for a tiny nation such as Israel is to exist in an arid, originally inhospitable land, surrounded by many, larger enemy countries seeking its destruction, constantly under physical threat?  It makes no sense at all, except for G-d-given ancient Judaism which gives us Divine reasons for living in the Land of Israel.
 A special Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) survey has found that more Israeli Jews are becoming increasingly religiously observant than the reverse. 21% of those surveyed said they are currently more religious than they were in the past, while 14% say they are less religious.After all, what is the purpose of our being here, in this phy…

Kaparot with Chickens: Custom or Cruelty?

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I grew up doing the ritual ofKapparot (or Kaporos, in Ashkenazic Hebrew), meaning "atonements" in English--with coins to be given for tzedakah (generally translated as charity, although in Hebrew it really means "righteousness").

My parents and grandparents, however, grew up with the more ancient Jewish custom of waving a live chicken or a rooster (depending on the gender of the "sinner") over one's head while uttering a formal statement expressing that one's sins are hereby transferred to the chicken/rooster, which is then slaughtered and given to the poor.

That was the old way of doing the ritual: with live fowl.  In past years (about twenty years ago) we, ourselves also used live chickens and roosters, as that was the custom in our former Hassidic congregation.  These last ten years or so we have reverted back to using coins.

I have mixed feelings about this ritual.  On the one hand, there is a sort of nostalgia for the way of this ritual which…

Ground Zero Mosque is "Bringing a Pig Into a Holy Place"

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So the 'moderate' Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf says to CNN "this is not Ground-Zero proper. No ones' body is in that location". . .Is that so? Not really.  Remains were found 348 feet from the site of the proposed mosque.
 (http://www.nypost.com/rw/nypost/2010/09/10/news/photos_stories/ground_zero_map090251.jpg)

But since when are Muslims, even so-called 'moderate' ones, sensitive to anyone else's feelings and sensibilities? As Miriam Avraham, the mother of Alona Avraham (who was murdered at age 30 on 9/11 while visiting her uncle) said,
"We intend to address the US government together about this. My position is clear – there shouldn't be any mosque there. It cannot happen. I don't understand this government, they invest millions into catching (Osama) Bin Laden but on the other hand they allow this mosque. It's like bringing a pig into a holy place." That's exactly what it is.  Spitting on the victims, twisting the knife a littl…

For Rosh Hashana: The Holiness of the Land of Israel

Upon the season of the New Year, Rosh Hashana 5771, I wanted to post something of significance illustrating the love of the Jew for Eretz Yisrael (the Land of Israel), and its importance.

Here is a little story told by my friend Rabbi Avraham Trugman of Ohr Chadash, illustrating the holiness and centrality of the Holy Land to the Jewish people, from time immemorial.  No matter what anyone says to the contrary.

May all of you have a Shanah Tovah u'Metukah: a Good and Sweet Year!

Remember this False Headline Condeming Israel? Now Victim and Savior Meet After Ten Years

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How many of you remember that ubiquitous photo of "an Israeli policeman and a Palestinian on the Temple Mount" published by the New York Times, AP and other news media in the year 2000?


The headlines implied that an Israeli policeman beat up a Palestinian at the Temple Mount.  The identities, as well as the place--were wrong.
The true story and correct identity of the bloodied victim were brought to light after the victim's father, Dr. Aaron Grossman, sent a letter to the New York Times stating that the young injured man was a Jew, his son Tuvia, who was, along with two friends, dragged from a taxicab on a street in Jerusalem and brutally attacked by Arabs while on the way to the Kotel (Western Wall).

This was the incident that launched the Web site Honest Reporting, and it is they who searched for the young man and the Israeli soldier in order to reunite them. 

Now, ten years after this incident, Tuvia Grossman, the young man who was stabbed and almost beaten to dea…

The Power of the Shofar

Thanks to my blogger friend D for alerting us to this video (and to Jacob Richman for including it on his aggregate of Rosh Hashana videos).

This is the kind of dedication we need to change the world.  Believe in the right.  And fight for it.

No Peace Before Rosh Hashana

I am afraid there will be no peace before Rosh Hashana.  Nor will there be before Yom Kippur, or Sukkot--unless a miraculous redemption happens.  The world is heading down the slippery slope, and kowtowing to rogue states and terrorist supporters.  Already there have been at least four innocent people murdered by Arab terrorists during this month of personal introspection, Elul, approaching the High Holy Days. Here are some reasons why.

There is blatant Anti-Semitism everywhere, it is totally accepted now--even on  Facebook, which apparently is doing nothing about removing the anti-Israel hate sites (I reported two--did you?).

It looks to me as if everyone is capitulating at this time: Netanyahu stated last week that the "construction freeze" would end as originally planned, on September 26th.  I don't trust what he says anymore.  He should have cancelled the meeting with Abbas after the terrorist attacks on four civilians, and ended the construction freeze immediately.

Sick to My Stomach

I am sick to my stomach upon reading of the Arabs' massacre of the four Israeli Jews who were driving on route 60 on Tuesday.  Hamas has claimed responsibility for this brutal, unprovoked attack on unarmed civilians, two of them women, one of whom was pregnant.  It was thought that this was a move to undermine the direct negotiation 'peace talks' which began in Washington, D.C. today.
The reports called these victims "settlers." They are as much settlers as are Americans living in Texas or New York.  They are--were--Israeli citizens, ordinary middle-class people, people with families, children and unborn children, of a country recognized and voted into being by the United Nations in 1948.  A nation which has a perfect right to exist on its ancient lands where it had sovereignty two thousand years before.  A nation which did not even overthrow and conquer another nation in order to exist--no one had sovereignty over what is now Israel, except for the area being a…