Hamas War

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

ENGAGE- For a Secure Israel (EFSI)


A new blog to strengthen and secure the State of Israel, to be a resource for the pro-Israel, anti-disengagement

ENGAGE - For a Secure Israel (EFSI) .

Take a gander and let others know. Link it if you can. Join it, too, details on the blog. Any suggestions, comment, don't be shy. We have a country to save!

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Monday, March 28, 2005

#107 Trust and Insecurity

Musings #107
March 28, 2005
17th of Adar Bet

Trust and Insecurity

Part of the terrorist war we’re fighting is the one for our souls. Our hearts are being raped by agent provocateurs abusing our innocence. We are being forced to lose our trust in our friends, neighbors and even family. It is impossible to know if someone is sincerely concerned and enthusiastic, or just acting a role to tempt and trap us.

Avishai Raviv was neither the first nor the last Jew to earn his living destroying Jewish lives. Reliable sources keep telling us that there are “Avishai Raviv’s” in every yishuv and every high school, yeshiva, women’s seminary, hilltop, university etc. The Shabbak is probably the second biggest employer after the Ministry of Education. Is it true? There’s no way for ordinary people like me to know.

What are the implications of this? It’s very simple. We can’t trust anybody. Even married couples have discovered that one was an agent.
http://www.israelnn.com/news.php3?id=67853 Avishai was married and divorced during his decade working for the Shabbak. Yes, he was active in a wide variety of nationalist political groups, which attracted youth, from the mid 1980’s until he was finally exposed after the Rabin assassination. He always had the money the kids needed to cover expenses, and who looks a gift-horse in the mouth? The students on limited budgets were easily trapped by his looks and generosity.

And how can an average person like myself know whom not to trust? Can the agent be the neighbor always available to help, lend a hand or an ear? Could it be someone who’s always complaining? Maybe it’s the unemployed neighbor? Or could it possibly be the one who has a job in the community or in a position of authority? Is it the one who always knows what’s going on? Or maybe it’s someone with radical ideas, or the one who seems so quiet? Or is it someone in high office making decisions that seem, not the wisest?

Just the fact that we’ve reached the stage that we take for granted that there are spies in our midst, like lice in the kids’ hair and viruses in the computer… There’s an inherent danger in all of this. It causes serious cracks in our social structure, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this wasn’t one of the primary aims. All the government has to do is plant rumors, laced with a few true tidbits, and human nature will do the rest.

What’s the truth? Honestly, I don’t know. Whom can I really trust? Just G-d, but we mustn’t live alone, without support and companionship. As it says in Pirkei Avot, Ethics of the Fathers, Chapter 1, Mishnah 6: “Yehoshua Ben Perachya said: Provide yourself with a rabbi (teacher); acquire a companion; and judge every person with merit.”

We must find ourselves someone from whom we can learn Torah, which encompasses every facet of life. “Acquiring” a companion requires an investment; true friendship isn’t superficial and fleeting. And lastly, judge others, as you would wish to be judged. None of us are perfect; we all make mistakes.

And if we’ve made mistakes, there’s tshuva, repentance. That’s one of the beauties of Judaism; it’s aware of human frailties. We must constantly improve ourselves; focus on what we must do in both the personal and public parts of our lives.

These are very difficult and frightening times, and we mustn’t lose our trust in our friends and family. I have absolutely no idea if any of my friends and neighbors are employed as agent provocateurs. I must focus on what I believe is right and not let myself be drawn off the track, because the final responsibility for my actions lies here with me.

May G-d give us the strength to know what’s right.

Batya Medad, Shiloh
Copyright©2005BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Terri Schiavo and modern morality

The court decision to starve Terri Schiavo to death, because she has damaged brain function, is related to the same philosophy that allows abortion by demand.

Yes, think about it.

Unborn babies are examined and if deemed "faulty" they can be deleted from the system, their cords, their life support's pulled, they're ripped out of their nourishing and protecting home.

The court has decided that Terri's life is not worth living. Who's life is it anyhow? She has no control, only reacts, feels, pain and pleasure and the company of loved ones. But the court decided to let her die. It's not enough that she's locked in her unresponsive, uncontrolable body.

The method of death is the cruelest possible. Slow, tortuous death by starvation. Tubes were pulled. Since she can't protest, she's not worth the efforts to keep her alive.

That's the American justice system and philosophy.

And that brings me back to today's politics. Years ago I remember hearing that , contrary to Israeli expectations and presumptions, America does not help dying regimes. Meaning, if Israel is in mortal danger after amputating its heart and spinal column, the United States will treat it just the way it's treating Terri Schiavo.

Think about it.....

And there is precedent, think of what America did to Israel during the Yom Kippur War in 1973.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Let's work together!

Israpundit is hoping to start a new blogger ring, for those blogging against "disengagement." If any of you are interested, read this .


Purim Sameach!
Great News!
Baile Rochel is back!!!!

Read her latest words of wisdom and have a wonderful Purim, wherever you are.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

new link

You should be able to guess from the color. Yes, I put a link to the Gush Katif site on my sidebar. The link goes to a blog that's featured on the site.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005


please ask everyone pray that the sweet little girl will have a refuah shleimah

Tizku b'mitzvot


Musings #106
March 22, 2005
11th of Rosh Chodesh Adar Bet


I must admit; I try to stay disengaged from the news. Unfortunately it’s hard to do. Like the bird with his head in the sand to avoid air pollution but gets sick from the contaminated dirt, try as I might to avoid it, I am forced to listen when traveling/tremping in vehicles not my own.

Just today, for instance, I heard a newscast that put thoughts in my head that could get me arrested. The reporters were reporting, with such admiration, how the government was meticulously planning how to disengage Jews from their homes in Gush Katif and Northern Shomron. They stressed the professionally detailed procedures that not only included the humane removal of animals, but the timing of the funerals for all the bodies that will be ripped out of their graves and transferred to new ones in other cemeteries. The staff qualified to do this very sensitive job is limited in the amount they can handle per day. Remember that this must be dignified; respect the dead.

These newscasters are so professional, so disengaged from the strong emotions troubling others. They mentioned the debates among the government officials as to what to do to the homes, stores, schools, factories and other buildings that would remain in the Judenrein territories. Apparently the experts believe that it would be best to destroy them totally, like what was done to Yamit and the agricultural communities that populated the Sinai until Menachem Begin decided to give it all away.

Do you know why these buildings must be razed totally? Did you think like I did that it was to keep the terrorists from enjoying them? No, I was wrong. It was to keep the refugees from having something to return to.

And then they discussed the expensive infrastructure “the Israelis” built in the area. Yes, the broadcast was in Hebrew, Kol Yisrael, and they used the words: “HaYisraelim,” “the Israelis.” Totally disengaged from being personally connected with Israel.

I felt like I was participating in an episode of “Twilight Zone.”
I knew that the media and many of the politicians were disengaged from our Land, but I still thought that they considered themselves Israelis. Apparently I’m naïve. This is just a few days after their pro-disengagement demonstration where the slogan “A settler is not my brother,” was prominently heard. “The demonstration was planned in conjunction with the Prime Minister's strategic advisors. They examined promotional messages, the wording of signs and the language used in advertising…”
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArtVty.jhtml?sw=pro+disengagement+demonstration&itemNo=553715 Apparently, it wasn’t an easy demonstration to pull off, since even their most prominent fans preferred a soccer match.

Believe me this isn’t a Purim Spiel.

Just like no fiction can beat the surprises, twists and ironies of true life, today’s news reports are traumatic in their unexpectedness. “Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.” Mark Twain,
http://www.bartleby.com/66/33/62133.html Even when we think that G-d has deserted us, He’s here, behind the scenes. But like the story of Purim, there may be things He’s waiting for us to do.

NaHafoch’hu! Let the Evil be reversed!

Chag Purim Sameach!

Batya Medad, Shiloh
Copyright©BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


Please pass on to any relevant people you know in the US or Canada(school kids, teachers, etc...)
and tell them you saw it here..

Nefesh B’Nefesh (www.nbn.org.il) is running a plane logo design competition for their summer Aliyah flights for 6th-8th graders. The contest - which is both fun and creative - is enabling students across North America to learn about Aliyah and the return to the Jewish homeland - a perfect "project" as we approach "Yom Haatzmaut". It is a great educational tool for both students and teachers to reconnect with the vibrant side of Israel as opposed to just learning about it in historical textbooks.

NBN is offering three free round trip tickets for the winner, parent and school rep which will allow the student artist to actually experience "homecoming" and internalize it as they sit on the plane bearing their design. As for the other competitors - the contest can serve as a wonderful educational tool surrounding the theme of Yom Haatzmaut - by initiating exhibitions of the various submissions within your school and enabling your teachers to get their students excited through the contest surrounding the concept of Aliyah and Israel.

The object of NBN's logo contest, entitled "Homeward Bound" is to create and design a logo for their “Summer 2005” chartered airplanes of Olim to Israel. The winning logo design, capturing & depicting the essence of ‘Aliyah & Homecoming’, will be painted on the body of one or more of the flights bringing hundreds of Olim from North America to Israel. The winning artist will be invited to accompany this special flight, joined by his/ her parent and/or school representative.

FULL DETAILS & SUBMISSION FORMS: www.nbn.org.il/logocontest

important to read

I'm forwarding this to you--

-------- Original Message --------
Does this apply to current Israeli policy?: A US law which forbids US Foreign Aid Recipients from using US- supplied law enforcement equipment to subjugate human rights and civil liberties

Tue, 22 Mar 2005 00:55:20 +0200

Israel Resource News Agency media@actcom.co.il

Does this apply to current Israeli policy?: A US law which forbids US Foreign Aid Recipients from using US- supplied law enforcement equipment to subjugate human rights and civil liberties

BY: DAVID BEDEIN, Bureau Chief, Israel Resource News Agency

This week, at Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon, in southern Israel, the Israel Defence Forces will conduct an exercise to conduct a “dry run” to practice bringing dead and wounded Jewish Israeli residents to the hospital, following the summer plans of the Israeli government to forcibly remove all 8,000 Jewish men, women and children from their 21 farming communities in the Jewish communities of the Katif district in Gaza and another 2000 Jews from 4 communities in Northern Samaria.A senior official in Israeli intelligence estimates that at least 100 Jewish residents will be killed in the expulsion process, since these residents have no intention of leaving their homes and farms voluntarily, and since the IDF has every intention of using live ammunition to facilitate the expulsion of Jews from Katif and the Northern Samaria, while razing their houses, farms and synagogues.In late February, at the closing press conference of the annual Israel convention of the Conference of Major Jewish Organizations from North America, a journalist asked Conference Chairman James Tisch how Jewish Americans will react if the Israel Defence Forces use American-supplied law enforcement equipment to kill Jewish Israelis. The journalist also asked Tisch if it was legal to use US made law enforcement equipment in that process.Here is the law in question:

The US Foreign Assistance Act , which is available on the net at: www.fas.org/asmp/campaigns/legislationindex.htmlClause (a)(1) of the Human Rights amendment to the US Foreign Assistance Act clearly states that “ a principal goal of the foreign policy of the United States shall be to promote the increased observance of internationally recognized human rights by all countries …no security assistance may be provided to any country the government of which engages in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights…Assistance may not be provided… to a country the government of which engages in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights”

The law goes on to state that “The President is directed to formulate and conduct international security assistance programs of the United States in a manner which will promote and advance human rights and avoid identification of the United States, through such programs, with governments which deny to their people internationally recognized human rights and fundamental freedoms, in violation of international law or in contravention of the policy of the United States”.This law also mandates that “United States has taken to promote respect for and observance of human rights in that country and discourage any practices which are inimical to internationally recognized human rights, and publicly or privately call attention to, and disassociate United States and any security assistance provided for such country from, such practices”. This US law defines ''gross violations of internationally recognized human rights'' includes …flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, or the security of persons”Prof. Eliav Schochetman, Hebrew Professor of Law Emeritus and Dean of the Shaari Mishpat Law College, testified last month at the Israeli Knesset Parlimentary Law Committee that the decision of the state of Israel to demolish the homes and villages of 10,000 citizens, represents the kind of human rights infraction that is described in the human rights amendment to US Foreign Assistance Act would violate the constraints of Israel’s own “Basic Human Rights Law" which oversees Israeli democratic institutions in matters of human rights and civil liberties, in the same way that the US Bill of Rights ensures that the US government can never trample on the human rights and civil liberties of American citizens. In his testimony, Schochetman noted that this Israeli government decision represents a violation of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, to which all democratic governments are adherents. Schochetmen added that Israel’s decision to expel Jews from their homes, would represent a wanton violation of basic human rights and civil liberties that are protected under Israeli and international human rights law.Prof. Schochetman cited clause 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, whichmandates that it is illegal for sovereign governments to expel their citizens and ethnic minorities from their homes, from their private properties or from their farms.Since the only group that Israel has slated for expulsion would be Jews, it may be recalled that the government of Serbia was recently held liable for international prosecution at the International High Court of Justice in the Hague, under the charge of "ethnic cleansing", after leaders of Serbia expelled an ethnic minority, solely because of their religion.Schochetman also mentioned the clauses in the San Remo Treaty that was ratified by the League of Nations and then by the United Nations which provide international protection for Jews to purchase and dwell in the "Jewish Homeland", defined as any land which lies anywhere east of the Jordan River.

Since the Israeli government intends to use US supplied law enforcement equipment in its proposed expulsion, the question remains: Will the US Congress and will the American people allow for the use of US supplied law enforcement equipment in such a process that violates human rights and civil liberties?This has now become an American issue.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Na'hafochu, Reversal of Reality

One of the aspects/characteristics of the Jewish month of Adar, doubled this year, is "na'hafochu," reversal, opposite, maybe even deception.

Is that the reason why Arik Sharon's policies are the opposite of what they once were?

Is that why the government is implementing policies that endanger civilians?

Is that why when demonstrators incite against Yesha, they are not prosecuted ?

We have only one G-d, and that's why, like many Jews, b'ezrat Hashem, I'll be joining my neighbors to say T'hilim on Ta'anit Ester. As one neighbor said,
"I've had it with the political demonstrations; the only one to talk to is G-d."

Sunday, March 20, 2005

this week's Hevel Hevelim

This week's Hevel Hevelim features both me-ander and Shiloh Musings. So take a gander and see what Multiple Mentality recommends.

call a spade a spade

Yes, call a spade a spade. And a rose by any other name smells just as sweet. And a refugee camp is a refugee camp, no matter how the politicians try to justify it. Dragging innocent, law-abiding, patriotic Jews from their homes is immoral, anti-Semitic, self-defeating, sadistic, cruel, perverse...

Do you have any better adjectives?

Saturday, March 19, 2005


I mentioned some news on me-ander, and now things are getting even more rediculous.

Incitement against Effy Eitam, not my idea of the most effective politician, but really, an outlaw , or worse ?

The WITCH HUNT is on! I hate to think of who's next. I thought I had finished writing this, but then I read this perfect example of incitement . Well, maybe "perfect" isn't quite the adjective, since how can such vicious words be "perfect?"

We live in dangerous times, and Effy Eitam isn't the danger.

The danger is that policians in power think they were elected to be dictators. They don't understand that if this is a democracy, then they are dependent on the people, and if the people object to their policies, they are the ones who must change or be changed.

I'm posting this now, but I'm sure that more rediculous, but inciteful statements will be made. Send them.

Shavua Tov!

Friday, March 18, 2005

#105 Marbim B'Simcha--Increasing Joy

Musings #105
March 17, 2005
6th of Rosh Chodesh Adar Bet

Marbim B’Simcha
Increasing Joy

The Jewish month of Adar, which falls at the end of the winter, the dawn of spring, is known as the season on “increasing joy.” This year, doubly so, since it’s a Jewish leap year, meaning we have two months of Adar. In the nineteen year, Jewish calendar cycle the extra Adar is added seven times. It is very significant that it takes seven extra Adar’s to complete our calendar. Seven is the traditional number for “wholeness,” completion.

The Jewish calendar is the only one that unifies both the lunar and solar. Our months are counted strictly by the phases of the moon. The month ends when it’s almost impossible to see even the thinnest crescent, and it begins with the first showing of a strip of light from the “new moon.” If we only followed the moon, like the Moslems, we would find ourselves celebrating spring holidays in winter, and winter in summer. Holidays wouldn’t appear the same season year after year. If we went strictly by the solar calendar, like the Christians, our months would not be related to the moon.

Our sages found a solution to have the best of both worlds, a calendar that follows both the moon and the seasons. This year is one with two months of Adar. How ironic, just when our country is in mortal danger, from it’s own political “leaders,” we have double the joy according to the calendar. Not only that, but we have a “weekend” Purim holiday, a Purim “m’shulash,” a “tri-cornered” Purim. This is the only timing of Purim on which all Jews hear the “Megillat (Scroll of) Esther” on the same day.

Generally there are two days of Purim, one immediately after the Fast of Esther, before one even has a chance to eat, and the later one, for those who lived in cities that were walled, like Jerusalem, at the time of the Purim story. And there are cities like Shiloh, where Purim is celebrated on both days.

This year The Fast of Esther is on Thursday, and that evening regular Purim begins with Megilla reading, even for those who will be celebrating a “postponed” Shushan Purim on Sunday, instead of the proper calendar day on Shabbat. In the Megilla, we read a very interesting and unusual story. Considering that it’s about a miracle and strong faith, you’d expect to hear about G-d, but His Name isn’t mentioned even once. This isn’t a story like the exodus from Egypt with the splitting of the Red Sea and other very obvious miracles by G-d.

The story of Purim is a story of how a couple of Jews, the minority of the Persian Jewish community, managed to turn a critically dangerous situation into victory. The Persian king and his government, especially his chief minister, Haman, were not sympathetic to the Jewish community at all. The Jew, Mordechai, was valued only because he had been useful to the king, informing him of sedition.

Mordechai wasn’t even particularly popular amongst his fellow Jews who had gone to the king’s parties, where he ridiculed them by using precious ritual objects he had stolen from the Holy Temple. If there had been a referendum or elections, Mordechai would have lost. Your ordinary Jew was interested in being part of Persian society, not like the old-fashioned Mordechai who stationed himself by the king’s gate and refused to bow down to Haman. Ironically, Mordechai, the proud Jew, sent his Cousin Esther incognito into the king’s harem. She was instructed not to say that she was a Jew until absolutely necessary to save her people.

Only when Haman was given permission to destroy the Jewish community did they look to Mordechai for leadership. They had been certain that they were in a civilized, cultured country and wouldn’t be in danger if they assimilated. Assimilation didn’t save them. They were saved only when they united, prayed to G-d and fought together against their common enemy.

And, davka, this year, when our Nation is so divided and endangered we will all be reading the Megillat Esther on the same day. G-d willing this unity will bring us Full Redemption.

Chag Purim Sameach,

Batya Medad
, Shiloh
Copyright©BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA

Last Year's Purim Musing #36

Musings #36
February 13, 2004

If You Love Purim, Move to Shiloh!!!

This should be the marketing slogan to attract new families to Shiloh. Don’t get me wrong; it’s not that Shiloh’s a joke or anything like that, G-d forbid. It’s just that for us, Purim’s double. That is, we celebrate two days of Purim, both regular Purim and Shushan Purim for the walled cities at the time it all happened.

Think about it:
· Two festive meals
· Two days dressed in costumes
· Two days shlepping around mishloach manot
· And four readings, or listenings, of the Megilat Esther!!

As in everything, there are advantages and disadvantages. The advantages: well, great for those who like to cook, bake, eat and don’t gain weight. The kids love it. An extra day of vacation and an extra night to party. We also really get to know the Megilat Esther. So well, that one year when my daughter was living in Jerusalem, she and her friends overslept, missing all the readings, so she told her friends to borrow a scroll, and then she read it to them.

I’m sure that some of you are muttering: “Why? Isn’t one enough?” Good question. There is no doubt that Shiloh existed as a walled city at the time of Mordechai, Achashverosh, Haman and Esther, and there probably were Jews here. But the big problem is the thousands of years in between when Shiloh was, let’s say, Judenrein, empty of Jews. On the first day, regular Purim, we read the Megilla with the required blessings, and we add the “Al Hanissim—For the Miracles” prayer in the Grace after Meals and other prayers. The second day, Shushan Purim, we celebrate without the special prayers. In a sense it’s a celebration of our return to our Biblical Home.

Shiloh is not just a piece of real estate, a place with a great view and clean air. We are in the Shiloh of the Bible. We are the Shiloh of Eli the Priest and Shmuel (Samuel) the Prophet. It was here in Shiloh that the Twelve Tribes became a Nation with a King. By celebrating Shushan Purim we are affirming our G-d-given right and obligation to be here. We are home.

Purim Sameach. May you all have a joyful Purim, and may all of the Hamans of the world be destroyed.

Batya Medad
, Shiloh

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Please forward this


On Thursday, March 24, 2005, Jews all over the world will fast and pray in commemoration of the 3 days of fast and prayer of the Jews of Persia more than 2,500 years ago. Then, the Jews of Persia were threatened with annihilation by the wicked Haman and they were miraculously saved. Now, the Jews of Samaria and Gaza are threatened with forced evacuation and we are praying for divine intervention.

The leaders of the US and Israel are certainly not wicked Hamans. But they are misguided. They believe that withdrawing from Gaza and Northern Samaria will save Israel. We are convinced that it will seriously endanger Israel, both from a spiritual and from a natural perspective. Spiritually – for how will God view the voluntary relinquishing of His land to another? Naturally – for how will Israel defend itself when Gaza and Northern Samaria become terrorist states?
Christians and Jews will join hands on the Fast of Esther, to pray for Israel and its territorial integrity.
On that same day American Christians and Jews will bombard the White House with phone calls and e-mails. The message will be short and clear: President Bush – Honor G-d’s covenant with His people. Stop Disengagement.
On Thursday March 24, 2005, phone the White House at 202-456-1111
On Thursday March 24, 2005, fax the White House at 202-456-2461
On Thursday March 24, 2005 send an e-mail to
If millions will contact the White House on the same day, we will be heard.
May G-d bless you all.
Hebron adds:

Press the button twice:
On Thursday March 24, 2005, phone Ariel Sharon at 972-2- 670-5555
On Thursday March 24, 2005, fax Ariel Sharon at 972-2-670-5475
On Thursday March 24, 2005 send an e-mail to pm_eng@pmo.gov.il

If millions will contact the Prime Minister on the same day, we will be heard.

The Jewish Community of HebronPOB 105 , Kiryat Arba-Hebron 90100
hebron@hebron.org.il Tour Hebron: Tel 972-64-371257 or write: simcha@hebron.org.il
The Hebron Fund1760 Ocean Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11230hebronfund@aol.com 718-677-6886
www.hebron.org.il Ma'arat HaMachpela: www.machpela.com Visit Hebron: www.visit.hebron.org.il Gift shop:www.gifts.hebron.org.il
You too can Help Hebron - http://www.hebron.org.il/contrib.htmhttps://wwws.teamgenesis.com/secure/hebron.org.il/hebdonate.php3
To subscribe to the Hebron list, simply email:hebron_today-subscribe@hebron.org.il

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


This is also on me-ander, though I planned it for here.

It just occurred to me that the incitement against us has been going on for a very long time. I should include the fact that the police's investigation of the terror attack that injured me was inciteful against us. It was easier for the police policy to believe that a yeshiva student/soldier could murder an Arab who had just murdered and injured Jews, than to believe that he saved us. That is incitement against us. It's a psychological war, a war of words and feelings and slogans.

Bli neder, I'll soon write more, hopefully in a more thoughtful and rational/logical way.

I know that this annoys people, presses certain buttons, but it really bothers me that the Holocaust is such big business and so easy to raise money for. Especially when the same people don't see the modern parallels. They don't see that making us, the Jews in YESHA, into "non-humans," "settlers," instead of bonafide Israeli citizens, is the same as putting on a "yellow star."

Why should people be more horrified at a terror attack in Petach Tikva or downtown New York? There's no difference between a terror attack on the World Trade Center and Neve Dikalim. By distinguishing between the two, nothing has been learned from the murder of 6 million Jews.

Monday, March 14, 2005

still hurts

Thank G-d the foot injured in the terror attack nine years ago is long healed, but it still hurts deep in the soul when I think of how the police and politicians tried to prove it "an accident." Israpundit did a great job researching what happened then. I've added a comment with a bit more. It's also posted on Soccer Dad , actually I don't know which of the two did the research/writing.

But this is definitely one of those classic proofs for "Everything in the news is true, except for the things you personally know about."

Sunday, March 13, 2005






Thursday, March 10, 2005

Leave the Driving to Us!

Musings #104
March 10, 2005
Erev Rosh Chodesh Adar Bet

“Leave the Driving to Us”

Yes, we don’t have a car. What type of suburban matron am I? Not quite the Long Island type, but this isn’t a sign of “rebellion.” When we made aliyah, soon after our wedding in 1970, cars were the luxury items in Israel, and few people had them.

At the time, I was the only licensed driver of the two of us, and I didn’t enjoy being in the driver’s seat. Public transportation in Israel was perfectly fine, certainly a lot better than driving on Israeli roads, with its totally foreign traffic system and culture. I wasn’t tempted, not even for a second. Add to that my trepidation of dealing with every country’s least trustworthy professionals, in a foreign language, no less; I passed on the opportunity to be dependent on car repairmen.

“Leave your driving to us,” was a popular TV ad when I was a kid, and though nobody can confuse Egged with Greyhound, I got the message. And it’s no secret that I “tremp,” or hitchhike. Really, it’s a lot more fun, convenient, amazing at times, than you can imagine. Of course, sometimes it’s a big time waster, but so are traffic jams. And even more important, there’s a strong spiritual component. Yes, spiritual, and for more than one reason.

The first is the simple one, in that I consider it “The Siyata d’Shmaya--G-d’s Help--Transportation System.” G-d is the sadran, the arranger. I’m repeatedly amazed at His efficiency. On many occasions, frequently after waiting aggravatingly long periods of time for a ride, I end up with someone with whom I needed to speak. And if it’s a sensitive topic, we find ourselves without other passengers; definitely better than a phone call.

Part of our modern mentality is that we believe that we can control things and be in control at all times. Modern technology gives man the feeling that we can reach G-d, construct a tower, cure the incurable and replace the broken. Sometimes we forget that we’re only people.

It’s humbling to travel as I do. I’m at the mercy of others; I’m not in control of anything the minute I leave my home, place of work, or whatever is on my route. I used to be the most hysterical, compulsive person when it came to arriving anyplace on time or catching a bus or train. I drove people crazy with my fear of being late, or missing things.

Living in Shiloh contributed to my change, though it took a lot more than a long time. In the first ten years here, I hardly left to travel anyplace, being the mother of young children, working on the yishuv and restricted by limited transportation. Once my kids got older, I got jobs in Jerusalem and had to travel anyway I could. But still I was very tense and worried.

I only learned to calm down and trust G-d after I survived a terror attack. Suddenly a peace came over me, and I realized that G-d and only G-d is in charge. Less than two months later, I missed being at another terror attack by a fluke. At the community gathering to thank G-d that all of us in the car were saved I was asked to speak. There I was before all my neighbors, including distinguished rabbis, and they wanted to hear my message after being saved twice in a short period of time.

I told them that we shouldn’t waste our requests of G-d on lottery tickets and material things. We must save our luck for more important things, like life.

Next week on the Jewish calendar it will be nine years since the terror attack. It happened on the sixth of Adar, just before Shabbat Zachor, the Shabbat before Purim. On Shabbat Zachor we read a special Maftir, Deuteronomy 25, 17-19 from the Torah and the Haftarah, from First Samuel 15, 1-34.

The message is both simple and timely. We were commanded by G-d to destroy our enemies. The leader of the Jewish People is responsible for the total destruction of our enemies and that includes their property. And if the leader doesn’t fulfill this requirement completely, he will be deposed. These are G-d’s instructions to us for all time.

It is customary for the Maftir to be read according to all the traditional “trops,” or tunes and accents: Ashkenazi, Yemenite, Moroccan, and more. This is to make it clear to all that the mitzvah to eradicate Amalek, our ancient/modern enemy is for all of us, until the job is done.

There are things for us to do, and there are things for G-d to do. Once we understand who’s really in charge, life becomes much better.

Chodesh Tov and Shabbat Shalom,

Batya Medad, Shiloh
Copyright©BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA

another old one, from last year, #38

Musings #38
February 27, 2004

Too Close for Comfort

4. A Day in Recent History – 26 February 0154
(IsraelNN.com) 2001 - Dr. Mordehai Shefer, 56, of Kfar Saba, was shot to death in an orchard of Moshav Hagor.

1996 - Flora Yechiel was killed when an Arab drove his vehicle onto the sidewalk at the “Trampiada” hitchhiking post in Jerusalem’s French Hill neighborhood. The terrorist was shot dead.

Generally, I force myself to avoid these announcements in the news digest I read daily. They’re depressing, always about death, murder, terrorism. Unfortunately, this time I failed; it somehow caught my eye. You may not know it, but seconds before the terrorist rammed his car into Flora Yechiel, HaYa”D, he drove it over my left foot and knocked me down.

I try not to think about it. Even though I have a great memory for birthdays and yartzeits, it’s a date I had never managed to learn. I do remember that it happened before Purim, before Shabbat Zachor, when we are commanded to remember what Amalek did to us. Maybe I’ve been sinning these eight years. I should remember what happened to Flora, whom I didn’t know, and what happened to the more than twenty more seriously injured than myself, and I should remember how traumatized all those children and adults who saw the attack were and in some ways still are.

I remember noticing a badly driven car approaching, but I didn’t think he’d mount the sidewalk and run over us. I turned my back on it and planned on telling a neighbor that “Even if he’s going to Shiloh, we’re not getting in.” She looked up and then saw him ram into me and I was knocked down. She was unharmed, as he had turned sharp left on my foot and mowed down people the length of the sidewalk. I was still on the ground when I suddenly heard shooting.

I was confused. It was hard to realize what had happened. I knew that I should be afraid of the shooting, but I wasn’t. Afterwards I found out that some hesder yeshiva (a yeshiva that combines army service with Torah learning) boys studying in Shiloh shot the terrorist with their pistols as he exited his murder weapon, his car. Then there was silence, the silence that everyone mentions. There’s a shocked, numbed silence after a terror attack. Literally like the earth standing still, stunned and horrified by the barbarity of humans. At first no one even screams; there are neither moans nor cries. Just silence, painful, dead silence.

Then the wonderful people began to move around trying to help the wounded in body and spirit. And there were cries of warning: “Quick! Escape! The car may blow up!!!!!” My friend helped me up, and we ran.

I had no idea that other neighbors, much better people than myself, were hysterically searching for me among all the injured females, immobilized on the bloody sidewalk.

And now, eight years later, I finally check the Jewish/general calendar on my computer and discover the Hebrew date, the date my life was saved. February 26, 1996, was the 6th of Adar, my Aunt Sadie’s yartzeit. Now, I won’t forget the date.

And I haven’t forgotten that Amalek is still alive, still attacking and murdering us. Our first King, Saul, was commanded to kill him, his family and his livestock. He disobeyed G-d, thinking that his interpretation of “mercy” was more moral than that of G-d. For that sin, he lost his kingship. For that sin, we’re still paying. The terrorists are Amalek’s descendents. We will never know true peace until they are destroyed.

Chag Purim Sameach,

Batya Medad, Shiloh

Tuesday, March 8, 2005

Baruch Dayan Ha'emet

With great sorrow we mourn the passing of our neighbor and friend,
Shimon Sydney Simons, who passed away suddenly earlier tonight.

We wish heartfelt condolences to Sophie and their whole family.

For funeral details, please contact the Shiloh office.

Monday, March 7, 2005

the unexpected

A few weeks ago I saw an article on Arutz 7 and knew who wrote it. At least I knew him years ago; he had been a student in our local yeshiva. During that time I had been working in public relations for the yeshivat hesder here. I liked the article and wrote to him. It's great seeing how these kids are so grown up and successful, though sad that he has made his life and career in the states. But he still remembers Shiloh fondly.

And just tonight, I got a letter from one of the students who used to talk to me and visit the house a lot during his year in Israel. I hadn't had any contact for over fifteen years, and all of a sudden he saw my Frankenstein article on arutz 7 and wrote.

...and now a different surprise. The doorbell rang, and someone was there, whom I had once met. But I've seen his emails; he's a friend of my husband. He was here in an army uniform, so I invited him in and he said he's with a staff, so they were invited. And then they told me what they were doing in Shiloh. They were called to care for an elderly man who had had a heart attack. Unfortunately, he passed away. Baruch Dayan Ha'emet.

But I served the soldiers coffee, tea, cookies and cake. And I wished that they had visited Shiloh for more pleasant reasons.

And tomorrow there's a funeral.

May G-d give strength to his wife. Hamakom y'nachem....

PARTY TIME!!! Next week's.....

Next week's host for Hevel Hevelim will be IsraPundit!


Sunday, March 6, 2005

Which type of Jew can always get honored?

I may turn this into an official numbered musing, but in the meantime.....

Ok, do you have an answer?

It's easy. What's the richest Jewish "educational institution/museum" in the world? Thirty heads of state are expected to celebrate...Oops! commemorate dead Jews . Yes, Yad Veshem, the super-gigantic Holocaust Museum, is opening another new wing and the same heads of state who wouldn't come to celebrate live Jews are willing to pay their respects to those murdered in Europe by Nazis and others, enthusiastically "obeying orders," or just taking advantage of the situation. Or like the Americans, who wouldn't bomb the camps or accept refugees, sending them back to "where they came from" and from where they were trying to escape.

But when it comes to memorializing the victims, six million who can be counted and named, it's easy to raise the money. And the international bigshots are enthusiastic about coming.

Let them stay home!

Saturday, March 5, 2005

Teacher Education--Do the Degrees Help?

This is from someone who read my anti-Dovrat pieces. One of the things that the Dovrat Commission is recommending is that teachers get higher university degrees. They think that pedagogic courses make for better teachers. As someone who began teaching without any formal training, I didn't even touch on the topic. Considering that a cousin on each side did the same (plus other relatives, including my mother), I just figured that it was genetic, one of my oddities. I did get my teaching license later, on a special program for those of us teaching without, and it was fun, and we were respected by the staff in David Yellin.

This is something I mentioned to you a while back. I said something to
the effect that someone had found out that the more educated the teacher
the worse the teacher.

More information can be found on this web site:
The Literary Council of Long Island.

Two letters were printed a while ago in the New York Sun, which I saw:

Letters to the Editor
New York Sun Staff Editorial
January 11, 2005
Ph.D. Holders Poor Teachers

Regarding Paula Sutter Fichtner's "Dressed for Success" [Opinion, January 5,
2005] on the surfeit of Ph.D.s in humanities and social sciences: Many such
doctorates are acquired in education schools whose academic standards have
been tainted by political/ideological agendas that have harmed our public
education system. I am speaking particularly of the field of
reading/literacy where our children's capabilities have been in decline for
years. A 40-year emeritus professor colleague has confided to me that, in
recent decades, any thesis favoring phonics and critical of whole-language
would be automatically rejected.

In 1999, The Literacy Council conducted a computer-driven study of factors
affecting the performances of Long Island school districts, and found
advanced teacher education to exert a strong negative effect on pupils'
Regents exam successes. A sophisticated spreadsheet program was engineered
to analyze all 98 Long Island school districts with enrollments of 100 or
more that administer Regents exams. Using data from both the Census and the
New York State Education Department's Web site, the program generated
"predictions" of district "performance," defined as their percentages of
students passing all eight Regents exams, averaged over the past 5 years.
Letting the computer repeatedly re-compute, while assigning weighting
factors to the "inputs" (class size, etc.), the program achieved an
astounding overall prediction correlation (R) of 0.977, far higher than any
known efforts heretofore - roughly equivalent to a prediction accuracy of
97%. Input data included average class size, expenditures per pupil, years
of teacher experience, etc. As the computer sought to optimize its overall
prediction "R," it computed for each input a partial correlation "r," a
number showing the strength and direction of that input's influence.
Standing out above the herd with an 'r' of +0.245 was the Census item giving
the Percentage of Adults with Bachelor's Degrees or Higher. (Though this
item may align as much with ZIP codes as with school district boundaries,
its predominance was undeniable.) The next two positive influences were
Attendance Rate at +.074, and Median Years' Experience of the Teaching Staff
at +.073. The most startling finding concerned the "Percentage of District
Staff with Doctorates or Masters-plus-30-Credits:" That item's 'r' was the
strongest school-related factor: -0.106 - but carried a negative algebraic
sign. Thus, the more graduate credits acquired by a district's teachers, the
worse its pupils scored on regents' exams
. Copies were sent to all of the
Regents, but they have gone ahead with the requirement that all teachers
acquire master's degrees nonetheless.

South Setauket, N.Y.

A slightly earlier letter went:
Letters to the Editor
New York Sun Staff Editorial
January 4, 2005


Non-Phonetic Teaching Impairs
In response to "Schools and Juvenile Detention" by Sarina Roffe [Letters,
December 23, 2004]: The arguments in support of youths getting a General
Equivalency Diploma make sense for many students, but Ms. Roffe rightly
points out that more than half of the children in detention have "some kind
of learning disability." For that substantial population, the greater good
is to teach them to read accurately.

In concert with involved Suffolk County professionals, The Literacy Council
has begun a reading project for youths on probation or community service
that not only arranges for multisensory reading tutoring, but also pre- and
post-tests, for diagnostic and progress monitoring purposes. The pre-testing
includes an assessment, which reveals whether a person was introduced to
reading by phonics or by whole-word-whole language teaching, as the latter
emplaces a disability that the assessment quantifies. We find angry,
frustrated teens with reading levels from zero to 5th grade, many receiving
no help but ours.

Scientific foundations for our work date back to the 1980s when Michael
Brunner studied educational factors affecting incarcerated juveniles for the
U.S. Department of Justice. His book "Retarding America - The Imprisonment
of Potential," found that:
-- Teaching incarcerated juveniles to read via multi-sensory phonic methods
reduced recidivism significantly;
-- Sociological background studies on persons committing violent acts showed
the strongest statistical connection to be failure to learn to read, a link
which, in the light of Pavlov's research on behaviors under sustained
frustration, Mr. Brunner believes to be causal;
-- College professors of reading hold beliefs contrary to the weight of
research, leading to inappropriately trained teachers and instruction.

The damage from whole-word teaching appears twice as severe among
Afro-American children as among Caucasians. (We don't know why, but the data
are very consistent and accounts for the disproportions in special-ed

Mr. Brunner has devised a remedy, available on our Web site:

Founder and chairman
The Literacy Council
Setauket, N.Y.

Thursday, March 3, 2005

Dr. Frankenstein’s Peace

Musings #103
March 3, 2005
The 22nd of Adar Alef

Dr. Frankenstein’s Peace

I’m assuming that you all know the classic story of Dr. Frankenstein, a great scientist who discovered the “secret of life” and decided to “create a man.”

This morning as I was dovening Shacharit, the morning prayers, suddenly I noticed a phrase that appears in many, but this morning, it stood out. "Baruch Atah …oseh shalom uvoray et hacol.” “Blessed are You…who makes peace and creates everything.” Then the phrase “Hu oseh shalom,” “ He makes peace” kept going through my mind, the words and an old song, taken from the words of the Kaddish prayer, “Hu ya’aseh shalom aleinu, v’al col Yisrael, v’imru, AMEN!” “He will make peace for us and for all the People of Israel, and respond: AMEN!”

And then what should appear soon after on the computer screen?

President Katzav: Painful Sacrifices For Peace Needed 08:42 Mar 03, '05 / 22 Adar 5765

We’re being plagued by “Dr.’s Frankenstein” trying to play G-d. Dr. Frankenstein meant well when he created his man, but we all know about “good intentions.”
“It is melancholy to reflect that Mankind has suffered more from ill-judged philanthropy than [from] calculated malice. The road to Hell is no less harrowing for being paved with good intentions.”
-Giles St. Aubyn, Biography of King Edward VII

I’d say that the greatest fault in the entire Zionist “enterprise” has been this compulsive search for “Peace.” We’ve endangered our existence, time after time. We’ve wasted the lives of our soldiers, letting them die for nothing, by “returning” land to invaders and being so “noble” that self-respect is unknown in the Israeli psyche. Even our “greatest leaders” have been infected by this syndrome. Herzl said: “If we will it, it isn’t a dream.” And he was right. The problem is that his followers kept adding “if’s.” “If the British approve…” “If the Americans approve…” “If the United Nations approves…” And then even worse, the desperation for “peace.”

When Menachem Begin, in 1976, finally broke the Labor monopoly on the Premiership of Israel, instead of implementing a program to encourage Jews to live in all of the Land Of Israel, he decided that his priority was “making peace.” As if Israel was responsible for the unceasing war. “And so reborn Israel always strove for peace, yearned for it, made endless endeavors to achieve it.” (Begin’s Nobel acceptance speech.)

Begin’s rationale was that he would give away the Sinai and destroy the Jewish communities there in exchange for the recognition and guarantees that the rest of the Land of Israel would remain as part of Israel. All that did was to start the “intifada,” a war of grinding terror against Jews all over the Land.

The more the Israeli government offered, the stronger the terror became. Oslo, which gave the Nobel “P” Prize to Rabin, raised terror even further, and then during Ehud Barak’s short and weak rule, when he offered even more to the Arabs, terror became a daily nightmare for Israelis. And it didn’t end there. He was succeeded by Arik Sharon, who had promised Israel security, but instead of security, he, too, got bitten by the “peace” bug and decided to turn thousands of Jews into refugees. Without demanding anything in return, he declared that Jews in Northern Samaria and Gush Katif were to be thrown out of their homes, businesses and schools.

Sharon Offers More ´Painful Concessions´ 14:14 Feb 20, '05 / 11 Adar 5765
Sharon also said he wants to be considered a man of peace. "I have been portrayed as if I want wars and the truth is other than that," Sharon told the Egyptian daily.

In T’hilim, Psalms 125, 5, King David says that there will only be “Shalom al Yisrael,” Peace upon/in Israel,” “when the corrupt element is removed from Israel…the nation will enjoy external peace and security.” (According to Radak, Artscroll)

The Frankenstein story is a tragedy. All of the people he loved were killed as a result of his creating a “man.” Recently people have asked me if my home in Shiloh is one of those being given to the Arabs. My answer is simple. If, G-d forbid, it ever comes to that, the country won’t survive.

“Oseh shalom b’mromav, hu b’rachmonav ya’aseh shalom aleinu…” “He Who makes peace in his Heights, He, in His compassion, will make peace on us…”

Batya Medad, Shiloh
Copyright©BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 559 Nathan Abbott Way, Stanford, California 94305, USA


Ok, I'm one of the first to be wary of polls. They're not the G-d given Torah, but two very interesting ones have been reported. One reflects Israelis' opinions on Sharon, and the other confirms what we have been warning, that present government policy--withdrawal/disengagement etc--only encourages more Arab terrorism .


Our days are getting blacker. Israeli society is being flooded with incitement. And it's directed against us, loyal, patriotic, hardworking Zionists. Unfortunately, according to MK Arye Eldad, things will only get worse .

I hope he's wrong but fear he's not. He's one of the wisest and most honorable Israelis in politics. He left his successful career as a plastic surgeon, burns specialist. He gave people a chance at a normal life, covering their body with protective skin, after severe burns and accidents.

Dr. Eldad, MD, succeeded in getting skin to graft where other techniques failed. I've heard these stories from the grateful patients and families. He lives in a YESHA community of mixed religious and less religious, Kfar Adumim.

Now that he is in politics, I hope and pray that he will succeed in grafting true moral and Jewish values, freedom of thought, respect for others on Israeli society. He is a member of the "Ichud HaLeumi," National Union.

Tuesday, March 1, 2005


A Note I got from Sharon Katz:

Guess what?

Our show is coming to Kedumim on Monday, IY"H, March 7th.

A very Zionistic and amazing anonymous donor (I don't even know who he is) donated the entire cost of a "NOAH!" production in Gush Katif and one in the Shomron.We did the Gush Katif show last week, and as you know, it was phenomenal, B"H.On Monday, IY"H, we're going up to Kedumim, and the donor is taking care of all our travel expenses, plus the buses from any yishuv in the Shomron or Binyamin.The tickets are 10 NIS each, and that includes the bus.It's supposed to be for all the yishuvim there - Kedumim, Har Bracha, Itamar, Yitzhar, Tapuach, Emanuel, etc. etc. etc. - but women from Binyamin can come too.

So, if you have friends or family in any community of the Shomron or Binyamin who would like to come to the Kedumim show on Monday March 7th, please have them call the Matnas of Kedumim for tickets and bus information 09-792-2781. We are really looking forward to this performance, and since we're traveling all that way, we'd like to have as many women there as possible.

We can't wait to greet the women of the Shomron and Binyamin for an evening of music and hope that will truly RAISE their SPIRITS.So, please pass the word, and let me know if there are any specific folks in any yishuvim that I should contact in order to get the women from that community coming.


SharonSharon Katz
Producer, NOAH! Ride the Wave!Founder,
Raise Your Spirits