Tuesday, January 31, 2006
By Shifra Shomron
18 years old
2 Shvat 5766/ 31.1.06
Nitzan Caravilla site
The names "Tiferet, Asaf, Yisrael HY"D" jump boldly out of a large sign fastened to a prefab shul here in the Nitzan Caravilla site. The thick white letters stare down at me from the depths of their engravement.
I didn't even have to think twice. After all, Tiferet Tretner, Asaf Tzafira and Yisrael Lutati are not only engraved in a cold metal sign high up on a prefab shul in temporary Nitzan; they are also engraved deeply in our beating hearts. How can I forget those three vibrant youths severed from our midst so cruelly? Tiferet was killed by a mortar that smashed through the roof of the house; its sharp shrapnel pieces piercing her soft flesh. It was on the eve of Yom Kippur, the holy day when G-d puts the seal on our verdicts, and our government had once again committed the unforgivable sin of standing idly by their brothers' blood. Asaf was shot to death by the Arab workers near the hothouses of Rafiah Yam. In the midst of all the vegetation, a budding Jewish sapling was hewn down. Yisrael was a soldier, "killed in the line of duty". What a blank description that is of a handsome young man shot while protecting a Jewish community from enemy infiltration!
We, the Gush Katif family, honored our fallen – our heroes! Our youth built a wooden shul in their names. And they planted beautiful flowers around it. And they made a path that led from Neve Dekalim to the 'Tiferet Yisrael' shul.
And these wonderful Gush Katif youths found themselves, for the first time in their young lives, confronting Jewish soldiers. Staying up all night – so that the army wouldn't destroy this 'illegal outpost'. It was a rude awakening for the Gush Katif youth who had spent the winter baking cakes and serving soup to the soldiers. Yes, a rude awakening. And also a taste of what they would have to digest in the summer.
Did we digest it? It was forced down our throats.
And once again a shul carries the names of Tiferet, Asaf and Yisrael.
Tiferet means glory.
Asaf means gathered.
Yisrael means the Jewish nation.
May Hashem return the glory that has been gathered from the Jewish nation.
And may their blood be avenged.
Solidarity rallies for the threatened community of Amona are scheduled for various intersections around the country this afternoon. A fax-and-phone protest campaign is also underway.
At 5 PM, rallies will be held at intersections outside Ofakim, Haifa, Raanana, and Shilat. Rallies are also scheduled at that time at the Bar-Ilan Junction, Pisgat Ze'ev in Jerusalem, and the Jerusalem city entrance.
Another protest will be held at 5:30 outside IDF Samaria Headquarters.
The protestors will rally under the theme, "I'm Frustrated! The Terrorists are Building - While Jewish Homes are Being Destroyed!"
Tzmatim today (Tuesday) at 5 PM in Jerusalem, Ramat Gan, Haifa, Raanana, Shilat (near Modiin) & Ofakim.
See particulars below. Thank you for participating. You can dress up as a Hamas terrorist with covered face and bring a provocative sign (Hebrew wording above) -- "I'm mad: terrorists' houses are raised - Jews' houses are razed!"
www.amona.org.il - כל הפרטים באשר להגעה לעמונה
All particulars re getting to Amona at their website www.amona.org.il
Susie Dym, spokesperson for the Cities of Israel grassroots organization, said,
"Olmert and Mofaz are trying to keep the settlers busy, so that they won't have time to win over the voters' hearts.
"Olmert knows that if the residents weren't so busy trying to defend their homes, they would go out in a national face-to-face campaign, and grab from under his nose all the Kadima voters and bring them all back to the right-wing camp - just like they did in one month of hard work before the Likud referendum.
"At that time [May 2004], they came from behind and won the referendum by a large margin, to the astonishment of Olmert and Sharon and their people."
A "protest from home" campaign is also underway. Home-bound objectors to the Amona destruction have been asked to phone or fax the following officials and register their opinions:
Police Chief Karadi - 02 5308100 fax 02 530 8118
President Moshe Katzav - phone: 02 6707211, fax 02 5671314
State Comptroller's Office - 02 666 5000, fax 02 666 5204
PM's Spokesman - 02 5666920 fax 02 566 9245
Olmert's personal spokesman - 02 6662301 fax 02 666 4400
Chief Rabbi Metzger 02 5377872
Chief Rabbi Amar 02 5371305
MEANWHILE OLMERT HAS THE AUDACITY TO PARTY AT BINYANEI HAUMA NATIONAL CONVENTION HALL IN JERUSALEM TONIGHT AS HE ANOUNCES HIS PERSONAL CANDIDATES FOR THE KADIMA PARTY'S KNESSET SEATS.
GET OUT AND PROTEST OR CALL THE PHONE NUMBERS LISTED ABOVE
I just got a call from the yeshiva high school where I teach that almost the entire student population has transferred to Amona, most with parents' permission, which the school required. They are among the many thousands protecting Amona from the army's expected assault.
There are conflicting reports, such as ynet's vs Arutz 7's vs The Jerusalem Post's descriptions of demonstrators attacking an army base.
Big news is the first refusenik, the soldier who refused to obey orders. I'm sure that there will be more.
More news later...
The Arab terrorist Hamas Party leader announced:
Now, most of us just thought that they were like the stripes on the " Tallit." (Thanks, Judith)
This makes me wonder. The American flag has lots of stripes, actually thirteen to represent the original thirteen colonies/states. Six are white, and seven are red.
Now, just to take this further according to Hamas leadership. The Israeli flag has only two blue stripes. If the stripes connote or symbolize "occupation," then America with 650% more stripes than Israel must be considered six and a half times more an occupier, or imperialist nation, than little Israel.
And if we want to talk symbols, let's look at the colors. The Israeli flag is sky blue and white, while the American one has a dark, midnight blue and bright red with white. Israeli stripes are blue, the color symbolizing freedom, vigilance, perseverance, justice, prosperity, peace, and/or patriotism. But the American flag has red stripes, the color of war and violence.
Let's put this all together according to the statement of Hamas leader, Zahar, just a little logic, please. Israel's flag, with a dominance of blue on white symbolizes a peaceful, just country, and that's even when if finds itself as an "occupier." While the United States has a flag with seven bright red stripes, which symbolize a violently aggressive imperialist society.
I didn't say it; I just took Zahar's demand a little further...
Monday, January 30, 2006
January 30th, 2006
IDF SPOKESPERSON UPDATE
Entry of media personnel into the area of Amona
In preparation for the scheduled evacuation of Amona, the IDF Spokesperson Office would like to clarify the following issues to all media personnel planning to enter Amona upon declaration of a closed military zone in the area.
Entry of media personnel into the area of Amona will be conditioned upon prior coordination with the IDF Spokesperson Unit. Media Personnel will be required to present a valid GPO card and sign the attached waiver forms (to be signed by the media company and its representatives).
These forms are to be submitted to the IDF Spokesperson Unit.
Media personnel must maintain a signed copy and present it upon request at crossing points on the routes leading to the area of Amona, along with a valid GPO card and passport/ID card.
Note: In addition to the forms designated specifically for media coverage of the evacuation of Amona, media personnel with an Israeli citizenship or dual citizenship are also requested to verify that their regular documentation for entry into Area A territories is up-to-date.
Due to space constraints, only one broadcasting vehicle will be allowed into the area. The IDF, in coordination with the FPA, has set up a media pool for TV crews wishing to receive filmed footage of the evacuation. The vehicle allowed into the closed area will belong to the AP media company. Press wishing to receive the footage should contact Tzion from APTN at 02-5376660.
Please contact the IDF Spokesperson's News Desk with any further inquiries or problems you may have, 03-6080245/248/308.
Big talk in the Beit El yeshiva high school where I work was about tomorrow, Amona. Over the afternoon students disappeared, and we knew where they were going. They were sneaking off to Amona to try to save it. Places to sleep thousands were being set up in Ofra.
I wonder if I'll be expected to get to work, since the roads will be closed. I have to pass Ofra to get to work. And there probably won't be anybody to teach. Even the kids who are afraid of the possible violence, or whose parents won't give permission, won't be hanging around the school waiting for an English lesson with me.
Will the soldiers allow buses? and private vehicles? There are people who must travel. Some people need to go to work and others to doctors appointments, and others have social and family obligations. No, not everyone, not even all those who are pained and frightened by the government's dictatorial destructive policies will be resisting the soldiers in Amona.
Amona is this peaceful hilltop near Ofra. The government's attitude is inexplicable, unforgivable.
The recent Parshot Shavua, Torah Portion of the Week, Va'era and Bo, mention how Pharoah's heart was hardened, making it more and more difficult to change his mind and free the Jewish People from slavery in Egypt. This just set him up for more and more punishment, more plagues. Is that what's going on here?
Are the politicians dictating all of these disgraceful policies, the destruction of Jewish homes and communities, part of a divine process? Are they being set up so that either their fall will be greater, or if they can overcome the evil and repent, their tshuva, repentance, will be so massive, extraordinarily large, that they will save us all?
I believe that man must take responsibility for the evil he creates. We can't expect G-d to just keep fixing everything.
We all must find a role and do something to save our Land.
Attacking last summer's unilateral withdrawal from Gaza and northern Samaria, Blumenthal called the pullout "a disaster" and asked "what logic was there in giving back land to terror?"
I don't like her use of the verb "give back." It means that the Land was, or even is, really owned by the Arabs. We have to use the verb "give away." It's our Land according to history, tradition and G-d. By relinquishing sovereignty, throwing out loyal, peaceful citizens, we are giving it away, G-d forbid.
Sunday, January 29, 2006
This happened almost fifteen years ago. We were hosting an official of the American consulate, and my husband brought up the sensitive subject:
"Why do you invite local Arabs to various official events, but you don't invite Jews from the yishuvim?"
His answer: "But we don't invite Hamas terrorists either."
Well, I blew up: "Are you comparing us with the terrorists who murdered my friend Rachella Druk, who's buried just past that house in our cemetery?!"
They started inviting us to the annual 4th of July event, where the most kosher of the food is the Hagen Daz ice cream. And I don't speak to too many journalists, especially since the time I refused to pose for the camera serving my family food. The consulate/embassy people don't meet me much either. And some years I don't go to the 4th of July event, since it falls during the "three weeks" between the 17th of Tammuz and the 9th of Av when attending festive events is forbidden.
"We shall not flag nor fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France and on the seas and oceans; we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our island whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on beaches, landing grounds, in fields, in streets and on the hills. We shall never surrender and even if, which I do not for the moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, will carry on the struggle until in God's good time the New World with all its power and might, sets forth to the liberation and rescue of the Old."
Winston Churchill, June 4, 1940, speech before the House of Commons
"We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies, we want that we will be able to live in an entirely different environment of relations with our enemies."
-- Ehud Olmert, June 9, 2005, speech to Israel Policy Forum in New York.
Saturday, January 28, 2006
Baruch Dayan Ha'emet, the Kabbalist, HaRav Kaduri passed away. Here's a very nice article about him. Jerusalem streets and traffic are going to be a mess tomorrow as people go to the funeral.
It seems like MK Dr. Aryeh Eldad is running a one-man campaign against Olmert. We're two months before elections; why isn't more going on?
Friday, January 27, 2006
Amona is different from the rest of Ofra. All of the homes in Ofra are built by the "Ofra building company." In Amona people are allowed to build privately. There are businesses in Amona, including a goats dairy, which makes yogurts and cheeses.
Forty Israeli families live in Amona. There are no Arabs in the area at all. Arabs never lived there. Jews bought the land from the Arabs, but the land wasn't transferred in Tabu, since Arabs who sell land to Jews get murdered by their fellow Arabs. The contracts exist.
For some strange reason, Amona is one of the big targets of Olmert. Olmert wants to destroy Amona.
The residents of Amona have appealed to the Supreme Court to cancel the destruction order. While waiting for the decision, the Binyamin Regional Council inexplicably sealed some of the homes.
My husband just came in to tell me that the High Court agreed to Amona's request to delay destruction.
Which side is the council on?
Thursday, January 26, 2006
The fact that people like U.S. President Bush and other world leaders are surprised that Hamas won just shows how little they understand. Too bad they're not given articles to read by Arlene Kushner, who has a better grasp of the reality here than all the big shots.
Israeli politicians are no better. They didn't understand the situation before, and they certainly don't understand it now.
Not only don't we have "partners for peace" among the Arab politicians, but your ordinary man-in-the-street Arab is not interested, and peace cannot be legislated. It must come from the heart, and the Arabs have terror in theirs.
Former U.S. President Carter thinks that the PA (sic) deserves to be funded, since they're "poverty stricken." He thinks that they just need more money. He has no idea what they really want, and doesn't care. He hasn't investigated what happened to all the billions given so far.
In two months we have elections here in Israel. They are very important elections. Our country is in danger, and most Israelis are ignoring reality.
I can see more and more clearly how easily six million Jews were murdered. Even the Jews who had a chance to leave stayed. The world was silent. The official Jewish leaders made the wrong decisions. They led the people in the wrong direction and condemned those, like Jabotinsky who kept warning of impending doom.
The Israeli establishment keeps repeating that we have a state because of the Holocaust and takes foreign visitors to Yad Veshem, which successfully raises more money than any other Jewish institution. This is all so wrong. That's why we are in such serious trouble right now.
We, the Jews, are a noble and ancient people. We had a state long before any of the modern ones. We have always mourned the loss of our Land, and now we are back. We don't need European history, nor the UN to give us legitimacy.
The Arabs around us voted for terrorism. They're not fooling, unlike all those fooling themselves into believing that money and a state will make them want peace.
And whatever happens to our "State of Israel," someday there will be a true Jewish State here. I have no idea what will be in between.
Someday the Third Holy Temple will stand in Jerusalem, G-d willing.
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
"Your settlement's illegal, right!"
"Prove that you're not breaking the law!"
"Can you show that every piece of land there is 100% legally yours, above board?!"
...and similar accusations and demands.
The poor guy just didn't have the answers. He spoke very calmly and politely, pointing out that...
"...the forty families in Amona are simple law-abiding citizens, professionals, businessmen and civil servants. The neighborhood is ten years old. It has been supported and recognized by all of the government bodies including Bezek (phones), Mekorot (water) and the electric company. Nothing was ever done without approval."
She didn't listen and kept hounding at him, accusing them of breaking the law.
Then he tried a different tack.
"You know, we're part of the national religious sector. Just a few months ago we suffered a major trauma. We're still licking our wounds. It's not nice to hit us when we're down."
"So, will it be OK to remove you in a few months?"
"We're going to the Supreme Court to argue our case. Just give us more time. Olmert shouldn't be threatening us right before elections. It's bad timing."
"So, he should remove you after the elections?"
I'm not exaggerating. I found it embarrassing. I found it depressing. He must have had been coached by Moetzet YESHA.
- Where is the vision?
- Where is the confidence?
- Where are the historical and national importance of settling our Land?
Nebich! Why don't we have leaders? Our people are rudderless. Even in Judea and Samaria people in power have no idea why we're here. And they have no idea how to defend themselves. Why are we constantly on the defensive?
I feel so powerless, not against my enemies, but against my friends, the public officials who should be leading us, helping us, defending us. But they seem to be our greatest problems.
G-d willing, very, very soon,
Geula Shleimah, Bimhairah Biyameinu!
Complete Redemption, Quickly in Our Time
My worry is how easy it now is to manipulate "news" facts by publishing "falsified" pictures.
Ha'aretz had written about Olmert getting bribes from Appel, so Olmert was suing it. That's when Olmert was considered "right wing." Now that he has put up his Teflon-left-wing shield, he feels safe enough to drop charges. Notice that I'm not linking Arutz 7 news articles on this. Left-wing Ha'aretz has enough dirt on the Kadima founders and standard-bearers.
Here are some quotations from the bribery indictment against Appel:
2. Starting in the 1990s, Accused #1 began to be active part in various party affairs, including those relating to appointments to political and public positions and became known as someone with power and influence in this regard.
1. During the periods relevant to this charge sheet, Ariel Sharon served as an MK as well as in the following public positions: from July 8, 1996 to July 6, 1999 he was minister of national infrastructure and responsible for the ILA; foreign minister, acting chairman of the Likud Party, chairman of the Likud Party and a candidate for prime minister. On February 7, 2001, he was elected prime minister and on March 7, 2001, he was sworn into office. Therefore, while serving in all of the above positions, Ariel Sharon was a public servant as defined by law.
2. During the periods relevant to this charge sheet, the following public servants served in the following positions: a. Ehud Olmert was the mayor of Jerusalem (and therefore a public servant). b. Shula Zaken was the senior adviser to the mayor of Jerusalem and his office director. c. Amos Radian was the political adviser of the mayor of Jerusalem, on loan to the Jerusalem municipality from the Foreign Ministry. d. Ruchama Avraham was employed on the project as the material coordinator.
Corruption seems to be rampant. Note that Ruchama Avraham is one of those "unknowns" who suddenly became high up on the Likud election list for Knesset Members. Her Appel connection explains it.
Now, who is David Appel? According to some, he's a "right wing" businessman, but I find that description rather suspect, since his influence has moved them all drastically leftward.
And to make it even easier for you to research more on the Appel, Sharon, Olmert connection, here's the Google site/link.
Monday, January 23, 2006
I'm referring to Sharon's son Omri, who has already been convicted and is now trying to find a way to stay out of jail.
Our acting Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, is also being investigated for corruption. His partner in crime is none other than David Appel, who is involved in other bribery cases, including Ariel Sharon.
Now, think about it...
Until fairly recently Sharon and Olmert did not get along in any sense of the word. Political pundits were more than surprised when suddenly Olmert usurped Bibi Netanyahu's place as Sharon's "number two."
Could Mr. Appel have been the one behind Olmert's sudden rise and promotion?
And I'd like to remind you to get your kosher recipe posts to email@example.com for the first ever Kosher Cooking Carnival! Anything, as long as it's kosher! G-d willing, bli neder, the carnival will be monthly. And put a blurb on your blog inviting one and all to send in recipes. Thanks
Sunday, January 22, 2006
A shockingly large percentage of Israeli Knesset Members are criminals, and I'm not referring to the "founding fathers" who were considered "rebels" and "terrorists" by the British sixty years ago. I'm referring to bribery and all sorts of financial crimes. Of course the really big ones seem immune from punishment, but many societies seem to think that there are different laws for the powerful.
Today while riding home to Shiloh from Jerusalem I was amazed at the fantastically gorgeous, enormous mansions being built by the Arabs. They're allowed to expand their settlements without anybody showing concern or threatening them with expulsion. There are no UN resolutions or statements by Bush and Rice calling them obstacles to peace. They can build and plant to their hearts' desire, and not only doesn't anyone think it's bad, they're encouraged. People come from all over the world, even Jews, to help them. Today I spoke to an old friend who said that a Jewish relative of theirs came to help the Arabs pick olives, to make up for the "crimes" the Israelis have done. Duh? What crimes? We're the victims here!
A short distance from the Arab mansions we passed Givat Asaf, a small Jewish community of young Jewish families living in old decrepit caravans, mobile homes. They're at the junction that leads to Beit El. It's the spot where Asaf Hershkowitz, of Ofra, was murdered by Arab terrorists, just a couple of months after the terrorists murdered his father nearby. This is one of the neighborhoods being threatened by Sharon and now Olmert, even though the land isn't owned by Arabs. The only land owners in the area are Jewish.
It has finally been revealed that anti-Disengagement demonstrators did not throw acid onto the police. Here we are a half a year later, and really do you think that the police and the media will apologize for depicting the young, teenage demonstrators as willfully injuring and endangering the big burly police?
Israel's recent Nobel Prize winner for Economics, Prof. Yisrael Aumann of Hebrew University , spoke at the opening of the 6th Annual Herzliya Conference , calling the treatment of the Disengagement evictees, "a national disgrace." He spoke well, but I'm afraid to hear what great announcement Olmert is planning.
I can't forget that Sharon announced his Disengagement Plan to expel thousands of peaceful Jews from their homes in Gush Katif and Northern Samaria two years ago at the 4th Herzliya Conference. Olmert seems to be in a hyper rush to make his mark and mutilate our Land as fast as he can.
We failed in our attempt to stop Disengagement, and now more and more Jews, thousands more are in danger. Olmert is planning on making our main road Judenrein. That's the road we take to Jerusalem. That's the road to Ofra, where my daughter lives with her husband and children. That's the road I travel to get to work. That is the central access road for most people in Shiloh, Eli, Maale Levona, Shvut Rachel and many in the Shomron.
Our basic civil rights are in danger.
If he, G-d forbid, succeeds in closing the road:
- we will not be able to get to work
- we will not be able to visit family and friends
- we will be deprived of our regular commercial and cultural connections
Where are all the "peace loving" "human rights" activists?
Saturday, January 21, 2006
When I was in NY last week, the big topic of conversation was Spielberg's "Munich." Couples fought over it. Was it good, or bad? One person I spoke to insisted that it really was OK. He felt that the Jewish-Israeli issue was sympathetic.
I haven't seen the movie, and I have no idea when I will. It's a movie made for Hollywood. It wasn't made to be a documentary. It's not a news article, which is supposed to be objective and free of emotion. When the NY Times features a sympathetic story of an Arab terrorist as "news," what can you expect from Hollywood? Even if the movie was from one of the "prouder" Jews in the business...
Thursday, January 19, 2006
...well, honestly, they don't know!
It makes you wonder, doesn't it. Actually, it's the best results I've seen so far. Sure gives me some hope, G-d willing, that maybe my fellow Israelis will get some "seichel," common sense.
The various TV stations are competing for viewers, trying to make the elections more exciting. For us it's just academic, since we get only one channel, Channel One. Last night they compared the "three top teams," Likud, Labor and Kadima by comparing the chosen candidates, number by number. (It could have had just been Labor and Likud.)
They said that the elections should be seen as a sports event. Line up the opening fives and see how they compare. And they went on until about twenty. The Jerusalem Post has a poll asking readers to vote which top ten, Labor or Likud, is better. The results at this moment are strongly for the Likud. I guess The Jerusalem Post readership doesn't watch Channel One.
Ha'aretz's poll asks what we think of Olmert's "war" on the outposts. I didn't like the choices, and not too many voted for what I chose.
The "poll" that has me the most worried is my own private one. It's the conversations I've had with people who tell me that they aren't planning on voting at all. What's terrifying is that we agree on all of the issues. They should be voting for the same party I will vote for. The problem is that they just don't see the point in voting. They don't trust the system; they don't trust the politicians, even "ours;" they don't trust the judicial. They are seriously depressed about the state of our nation. I also agree with all of that.
The difference is that I think that we still have to vote. I will not abandon my country to the people who want to destroy it. That's the aim of all that has been going on. The media, the Left, the self-hating Jews cheered on by anti-Semites all over the world all want us to give up, fade away, shuffle off and disappear. They want us to DISENGAGE from our Land and history, from our restored country.
I'm not "...tired of fighting... " Mr. Olmert. You'd be surprised. I know what you've been trying to do to us, demoralize us, exhaust us. We're the David to your Goliath. We're the David to your Saul. And we're the Maccabee to your Hellenist.
I realize that the most important campaign is to convince my friends and neighbors to vote against you in Kadima and against your supporters in Labor and Likud and even Mafdal, because you're all the same. You all believe that parts of our Holy Land should be Judenrein, empty of Jews. As far as I'm concerned, there's no, absolutely no reason for us to abandon our Land and hand it over to terrorists. Neither praise nor prizes could ever tempt me.
Money can't buy me love and Land won't buy peace.
No, I'm not confused, Baruch Hashem, Thank G-d.
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
It was only when Ariel Sharon turned on his friends that the Israeli media, the "tzfonim," (Israeli elite,) the UN and international movers and shakers decided that he was Santa without the red hat. And now, when he's in that "living death" in Hadassa Hospital, we see that the disengaged from Jewish values, tradition and Land policies are continuing with Ehud Olmert, as Prime Minister.
Actually, it's becoming very clear that Ehud Olmert was directing things all along. Now, even though he's technically just a "substitute" Prime Minister, he's making real policy, dangerous policy. He has "declared war" on what he terms "illegal Jewish settlements," even neighborhoods that have gotten government support. He has been sending dozens of riot police to terrorize Jewish families living in Chevron. Any complaint by Arabs against Jews is taken more than seriously, while Jews are punished for defending themselves against Arab aggression.
The transition between Sharon and Olmert is too smooth for Sharon to have had been calling the shots.
Tonight I made a point of watching some news on TV. I had been away for a week and needed to get a handle of what was really going on, the "mood" of the country and all that.
I was surprised to see an unusually animated Tzachi Hanegbi explaining how Kadima's internal structure, where a small elite, even one person, will choose the list of Kenesset candidates, is perfectly fine.
"In actuality, the people don't really care if it's a committee of a few dozen, hundred, thousands or just one."
He went on voicing a cynicism that saddened me for two reasons. One is that it's still hard for me to see Geula Cohen's son as a cold, unprincipled cynic and also, because it's probably true. It really hurts that so many Israelis support what Sharon did in Disengagement.
Why are people attracted to bullies? Is it related to the Stockholm Syndrome? That's the phenomena in which victims become emotionally attached to the abuser, even defending him and being fearful of leaving him.
I was just in New York for a week, and I couldn't get over the concern for Sharon's health. People keep hoping that he'll recover. I keep seeing the Disengagement victims before my eyes, and I'm more concerned about them. But it was rare to hear anybody voicing concern over the people Arik Sharon "disengaged" from their homes.
Now I'm back, and see that Ehud Olmert is very comfortable in the role of Prime Minister. Tzachi was trying to paint a picture of a lovely "supermarket of opinions," within the leadership of Kadima. He considers it one of the strong points of his new party. Olmert to the left and him to the right; that's what he's selling. But remember, you had the same spread in the Likud. It just had a different reputation. It was considered "right wing."
But Kadima's modern, up-to-date. Within a couple of days of opening membership, thousands signed up by internet. I can't answer "why?" None of it attracts me. I want a political party with ideals and faith.
Friday, January 13, 2006
When I checked in with my family this morining, I heard that cynics are having a field day in Israel. The Shinui Party is "imploding" in my husband's words. It's not enough that the polls have been predicting/reporting that the voters are disenchanted, it seems like its politicians are also giving up on it.
And the Likud? Bibi and ? The experienced Likudniks, those who didn't Kadima! have been given very low, possibly too low to be MK's numbers. But if the polls are right, then Kadima! is searching for more opportunists, so they may as well...
and bad news for the anti-Disengagement crowd, the politician/MK who did the most was not given a better spot. MK Dr. Arye Eldad is only #6 in Moledet. He's #1 with me!
And is Sharon alive or dead? Philosophical question as much as medical. At this point it doesn't matter, as far as the State of Israel. Olmert is the prince, and ....
In the States people are spending more time judging a judge than a president. There have been lots of news aboaut hostage situations. And I think I'll me-ander on it all...
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
They hated him for supporting settlement in the Land of Israel. They hated him for being the bulldozer who cleaned terrrorists out of Gaza, the City of Gaza. They hated him for his role in defeating Egypt in the Yom Kippur War.
Then he was elected Prime Minister, and the still hated him.
But then he announced that for absolutely no reason, without Israel's getting anything in return, he was going to throw good, hardworking innocent Jews out of their homes in Gush Katif and Northern Shomron, and suddenly, they--the "world" and Israel's media and left-wing forgot all the past and loved him.
Did he do it for that love? I don't know. Could be. At the same time, it was discovered that he and his sons were involved with all sorts of "shady dealings," bribes and the like.
It makes you wonder.
Monday, January 9, 2006
That's what I just asked my neighbor as he jogged past my merpesset, terrace or balcony in Hebrew.
Just a few minutes before I had carefully checked the view through my small western kitchen window. That's where rain clouds gather and warn me of impending storms. All I saw was blue, lovely sky blue, called, "techelet," in Hebrew. So I closed the clothes dryer door, buttoned my bathrobe, put the wet laundry into a basket and went out the door to the merpesset. Boy, was I surprised at the wetness of it, like the rain had been falling until just a second before. The floor and chairs were dripping. So, too, were the tree branches.
Which signs should I be trusting? The cloudless sky to the west or the clouds on the east or the dripping wet surfaces all around?
I decided to take the risk and hang out the wash.
Yesterday, the electrician was over for a few minor repairs after a major one on Friday. Actually, I had asked him to do the minor ones before Friday's emergency. As usual I told him to use the best stuff, whenever there's a choice, and as usual we talked politics. I asked him if, taking into account the politicians' predictions that we'll be "disengaged" from our homes, should I have him use shoddy products that will cost me less and won't last as long.
Olmert's "We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies." policy is bad news for the Jewish People and the State of Israel.
Listening to Olmert is like following the grey-black clouds in the sky, when I have laundry to dry. We have to remember that the sun is actually in its proper place, shining brightly, even when the black clouds are accompanied by thunder and lightening. If G-d sends rain on my laundry, I have to perceive it as free "laundry softener." Today, during our Israeli winter, the 9th of the Hebrew month of Tevet, it should be raining. And the rain is a bracha, a blessing.
Ehud Olmert may be the Prime Minister, call him "acting," "temporary," "lame duck" or whatever. He also may get the position after the results of the March 28th elections. But neither he, nor any other politician, is G-d.
It's G-d who put the sun and the clouds and the moon and the stars in the sky. It's G-d who causes the rain to fall and the flowers to whither from drought.
And it's to G-d, whom we must answer when we leave this world.
And yes. The sun is really shining, even if my laundry gets wetter outside, hanging on the clothesline.
Sunday, January 8, 2006
Whole lot of shaking going on by Bill Haley and His Comets
It sure does!
Arik Sharon, who not even the most "optimistic" prognosis, will no longer be Prime Minister, is under deep sedation in Jerusalem's Hadassa Hospital, Ein Kerem. In the meantime, Israeli politicians seem to be running around, like chickens without heads.
Actually, I'd like to correct that. Everybody but Ehud Olmert is running around clueless. I'd say the Olmert is well prepared for his new role. That's not to say that I want him as Prime Minister. Though I must admit that I did predict that he'd hold the office. He has more administrative experience than any other politician. He was Mayor of Jerusalem and was a very involved mayor. Most other Knesset Members and ministers are incapable of running their offices, while Olmert ran a city, one of the most complex in the world.
On the left, the Labor Party is trying to convince its members to return from Kadima. And the Likud seems paralyzed, trying to decide whether to stay in the government or not.
Not much is being heard from the NRP, which seems to be like a childless woman desperate to marry before her "biological clock" stops. The only problem is that it wants its partner to adopt all of the traditional NRP "values." And I doubt if it'll find a partner under those conditions.
We don't seem to be hearing much from Moledet and Tekuma, AKA the National Union, which seems to be shorn of Avigdor Lieberman's party.
All the while, thousands of good Jews are still homeless and unemployed. Most haven't received any compensation, and they're living on bank loans and charity.
But the Kadima crowd is jostling for power. And according to the polls, they will do well, but, it's two and a half months before elections, and who knows what will be by then, because there's "a whole lotta shaking going on."
Saturday, January 7, 2006
So now all of the donated goods are in storage, because he wants tens of thousands of shekels in taxes. And now's the time to protest.
Here are some suggestions:
I would suggest lots of anti-Olmert protests, now especially, when everything is so sensitive. Small, with big signs, just a few people, so you don't need permits.
Olmert robs Disengagement victims!
Olmert prevents humanitarian gifts to Disengagement victims!
This should be all over the world.
Also, now there will be lots of articles and programs about Olmert, so the world should know who he is, since he's the "acting, or substitute" Israeli Prime Minister, and he's the new "number one" in the Kadima Party. It's the perfect time to write your newspapers and call radio shows to tell of his cruelty.
G-d willing, we'll be able to change his mind! He'll have to see the the world is shocked by his policies.
Friday, January 6, 2006
There was a time when he did more than anyone else to settle our Holy Land. He is the one who told the founders of modern Shiloh that the mountain overlooking the ancient tel would be the perfect place for a nice big neighborhood. I've lived here since September 1, 1981. It was Arik Sharon who brought in the first houses, and so many communities in YESHA can tell you similar stories.
Something happened to him after he became Prime Minister. He changed and went from being a builder to being a destroyer. He announced Disengagement that turned thousands of good Israeli Jews into refugees. So we mourned for the Arik we once knew. That Arik has been dead for a couple of years. Some "other being" has been inhabiting his ample body. Now the body is going to its maker. I'm not a prophet and can't tell you when it will no longer breathe.
The soul left it a long time ago.
Baruch Dayan Ha'Emet
Emotions are high, strong. We debated the timing of all this. Some wished it had been sooner, to wishfully have cancelled Disengagement, but that's a moot point now. Others had wished his medical crisis had been a bit later, like a few weeks before elections, since Olmert now has plenty of time to reorganize, or organize the Kadima Party under his direct leadership. Yes, direct, since I'm sure he had been playing Sharon as a master puppeteer.
Beit El, where I teach and Shiloh, where I live are far from the ghetto walls being built in our holy land. We're being locked out by Sharon and Olmert's government. Of course that colors our thoughts and feelings. We don't want to be included in the walled ghetto, we just don't want a wall!
So, yes we're praying. We're praying for the survival of a country. Please join our prayers.
Thursday, January 5, 2006
I'm sure that Olmert, the acting Prime Minister is happy that he has lasted this long. On his own, Olmert would never have made it so big so fast. His grass-root support in the Likud wasn't strong after a couple of terms as Jerusalem Mayor. That is especially after a statement of his was used to support Ehud Barak in his PM campaign against Bibi.
Now we have Olmert, since there's no way that anyone, young or old can function after the massive brain damage Ariel Sharon suffered last night.
Olmert stated that Israel needed Disengagement, because it was "too tired to fight!" Those aren't the words of a leader. Let him retire and leave politics, but instead we're now stuck with Olmert, whom I believe has been the power/brains behind all of what Sharon has been doing these past couple of years.
Now the question is whether all of those who have been telling the pollsters that they'll vote for Sharon will be willing to vote for Olmert and the pathetic crew of opportunists who have been fleeing their previous political parties to join Kadima.
Simply put, my read on the subject is that most Israeli voters are confused and will decide at the very last minute. That means that there's very little accurasy to the polls.
Of course, we have no way of knowing what other "bombshells" will explode on the political scene, and that includes the bombs that have been falling on the north
and south of Israel since Disengagement.
Wednesday, January 4, 2006
And Likud? They're in such bad shape, they need some new blood. I guess that will leave Moledet and Tekuma as the true patriotic parties in the National Union.
Of course, it may never happen...
Israeli politicians, especially those who have fled veteran parties and joined Kadima are in special need for strong Teflon coats. It seems that considering their varied political backgrounds, the one thing they have in common is corruption charges, not very attractive to some Israelis, but according to the polls, they're doing very well.
There are daily revelations of Prime Minister Sharon's dirty dealings. The latest is a three million dollar bribe.
A year and a half ago, I accompanied my parents to the Israeli Supreme Court to watch my daughter in action as a lawyer with the Israel Movement for Quality in Government. They were petitioning against the court's ignoring bribery charges against Sharon and son, Gilad.
I had the challenging task of translating hours of Hebrew legalese and double-talk into basic English. Simply, the court decided that Mazuz's excuse that he had "secret reasons" was sufficient. That's Israeli justice. They definitely use special tools to keep the Teflon scratch free. The Supreme Court President Justice Aharon Barak has an agenda, as he calls it. It's promoting his vision of what Israel should be, and he unabashadly makes his court decisions to suit. No, this isn't "government" as I learned it in America.
The big question is: Does the Israeli public fry its eggs on Teflon? I don't. I don't trust that it's healthy. We're going to have to clean out all of the corruption. Let's get out the steel wool and start scrubbing.
Tuesday, January 3, 2006
January 3, 2006
The 3rd of Tevet
The Red Line
The weather in Israel can be considered the barometer of our spiritual level. According to Chazal, our sages, it depends on how well we observe the "mitzvot," the commandments G-d gave us. Israel is presently suffering a drought. No surprise!
This winter has been pretty dry, and there's no rain on the horizon. For a few weeks, the rabbis had ordered us to add a special prayer, traditionally said during droughts, but after one nice rainfall, it was cancelled, and then the drought resumed.
Last night, the second of January and the very end of Chanukah, we were at a wedding. The "chupah," ceremony was out of doors under a clear and starry sky. It was so "pleasant," that I didn't even put on my gloves, and we were in Jerusalem. It made a nice wedding, especially for the visitors from the southern hemisphere, but what price will we be paying for this consistently warm, dry weather?
I've been in Israel thirty-five years, and during years like this, we'd be hearing how the water level of the Kineret, Sea of Galilee, has dropped below the red line. We'd be advised to save water and other practical measures. This year, the "red line" is rarely mentioned, and saving water never is. Cleaning with high powered hoses is common, so are water-guzzling lawns and flower gardens.
I'm scared. This "lovely weather" isn't a blessing; it's a curse, a punishment from G-d. At some point we will have to pay for it, and the price will be very heavy, very high and unpleasant.
As of today, January 3, 2006, according to the Israel Meteorological Service the Kineret, Sea of Galilee is minus 211.66 meters, and we're in the middle of the winter. In recent years, the Israeli policy has been to just lower what it calls the "red line." That way there's no need to panic and take precautions. As long as the government says there's plenty of water, most people happily go on wasting water. Why should they skimp and suffer, if there's government approval for all the excess? A couple of years ago there were plans of importing tanks of water from Turkey. It just costs money, and the voters reject politicians that make them face reality.
The Jewish religion is agricultural; the early, non-observant Zionist pioneers accurately took advantage of this fact, making up new ceremonies to suit their lives. Traditional Jews pray for rain at the end of the fall Succot holiday and then continue with a phrase asking for a quantity of precipitation that would be a blessing each time we say the "Amida," or "Shmoneh Esreh" prayer.
The Bible clearly states in Deuteronomy 11:13–17 that the quantity of rain is a direct punishment or reward according to how we obey G-d.
13 So if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today-- to love the LORD your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul--
14 then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil.
15 I will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied.(NIV)
Israel was restored in 1948 after a long difficult war, not only against the Arab countries, but also against Great Britain which didn't want to give up the Mandate and allow us independence. I strongly suspect that many of the countries of the United Nations which voted in favor of an independent Jewish State only did so, because they were certain that we wouldn't succeed and would have to either call in international help or even be wiped out. Don't act so shocked! Remember that during the Holocaust, when six million Jews were being murdered, not a single solitary country attacked the Nazis to save the Jews.
Less than twenty years later, in 1967, there was a miraculous Israeli victory over the Arab aggressors, resulting in Israel liberating its Biblical, Historic Homeland. Nobody could have predicted it. It was a total act of G-d. While that was still fresh in our minds, and we were over-confident, the Arabs attacked us again, on our holiest day, Yom Kippur, 1973. It looked like Israel was finished; but again, a great miracle and we were victorious. And now, what has Israel done to thank G-d?
We have rejected, wasted and destroyed G-d's gifts to us. No People has ever been luckier, more blessed, and no People has ever been so foolish, no let's use the real word, suicidal.
Since Menachem Begin's election as Israeli Prime Minister in 1977, and his announcement that he would "make peace" and give Egypt a gift of the Sinai and destroy all Jewish communities there, we have been weakening and destroying our country. That was followed by Shamir's Madrid Conference, the Rabin-Peres Oslo Accords, Bibi's Wye and Sharon's Disengagement. Each one chipped away more and more of our security, sovereignty and Precious Land; this resulted in the successful use of "salami tactics" in order to gradually weaken and destroy us, G-d forbid.
Considering all, I'm not at all surprised that there's a drought this year. We deserve punishment from G-d. We crossed the red line.
And now we must gathers our forces and sincerely repent.
Batya Medad, Shiloh
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Monday, January 2, 2006
I must be nuts, since I really do want to start the Kosher Recipe Carnival. Please spread the word, and get your links to kosher, not necessarily Jewish, recipes in by the third Thursday in each month. Please make sure the links work, and the post tells something about the recipe. I won't be surfing/searching for recipes. So it's up to you! Send to: shilohmuse at yahoo dot com
"A lie told often enough becomes the truth."
Lenin, Russian Communist politician & revolutionary (1870 - 1924)
and according to Mark Twain:
The history of our race, and each individual's experience, are sown thick with evidence that a truth is not hard to kill and that a lie told well is immortal.
Mark Twain (1835 - 1910), Advice to Youth
You know what they say about telling lies, tell them often enough, and people will believe them. Does that make them "true?"
The entire "Palestinian people" is a legend. There's no historical proof, no history, no unique culture. It was invented in the 20th century.
And the Israeli insistence that terror decreases after each territorial withdrawal is another lie. Pre-Oslo Israel was a safer place. The same about Disengagement, though the government wants us to believe otherwise. The truth is that Israel is in more danger now than it was before.
Sunday, January 1, 2006
I hadn't heard or read much news since Shabbat which is actually Thursday's stale news in the papers. So, even though I'm not a fan of Moshe Feiglin, I was dissapointed that he got out of the saddle of sorts and won't run for Knesset. This seems especially foolish, since the law would also apply to icon Sharansky and others considered upstanding, respectable Israelis. I also have major problem with his statement:
Don't forget, our goal is not necessarily to be in the Knesset, but to take leadership.
The power and pressure of a group of Knesset members is far superior to those on the outside of the government. We saw that his summer during the build-up to Disengagement. There is no effective leadership outside of the government. Having followers and "being right" aren't enough.
He should have fought, and he should have used that "law" to compare himself to Sharansky and others accepted by the establishment and masses.
But, then again, I never agreed with his strategies, though I did vote for him in the Likud elections.
Here are Uncle George and his younger, by 19 months brother, my father.
and now for...
Havel Havelim #51
Celebrates Chanukah and Uncle George's 87th Birthday!
There are eight days in the Chanukah holiday, and it takes eight days for me to "do" a Havel Havelim. This will be presented in "diary form" from today, Sunday the 25th of December, or the 24th of Kislev, and G-d willing, I'll complete this one week from now on January 1, Rosh Chodesh Tevet.
Even before Soccer Dad and this week's host, Daled Amos, have presented this week's edition, I'm already hard at work writing the introduction. I also cleaned out the old "hh" mailbox in my yahoo and even added a few new posts and links. Since my last edition I've been adding to my email list of bloggers, and as soon as this week's is out, I'll send a reminder to everyone.Let's start with something cheerful. If you haven't seen this, now's the time!
First prize for the very first submission goes to Crossing the Rubicon2; yes it's just perfect to open the show. I promised Arlene Peck that I'd post her when she opened a blog, so read her latest.If you're still looking for easy-to-make sufganiyot…they really are easy.
Yes, there was a Judah Maccabee, and if you have any doubts, ask Blog d'Elisson.
I blogged in the morning, and I blogged at night, day one.
It's late and I'm tired.I blogged in the morning, and I blogged at night, day five.
Good morning. It's Friday, and we're getting towards the end of creation, creation of #51 that is. I requested that posts be sent to me before Shabbat, so I could have it mostly complete by then. Of course, I also have to look for some new bloggers. And I found an "olah chadasha," new immigrant to Israel. Read about Yael's adventures.
And for More on Munich read Jewish Current Issues.
Rachel Ann gets it right; mazal tov.
Mirty has Mixed feelings about Chanukah. Did I spell it right?
And Blogus Erratus has complications.
Ezzie tells us about the new blog for Jewish professionals.
Jewschool takes us to a wedding.
Growing evidence of hidden Jewish communities in unlikely places on Yeshaya 62:1.
Meryl Yourish.com has a great post on A.P.
Jameel spends some quality time with his daughter.
Ben Chorin tells us about an evening with Nobel Prize Winner Prof. Aumann.
If You Will It, it's a small world, and read his daily Chanukah diary. Celestial Blue notices some unpleasant things happening in Israel.
Joe Settler takes us to an illegal outpost.
And since the Rock of Galilee is gathering no moss this Chanukah, where should they light candles?
I agree with westbankmamma in that we are giving our kids childhoods that resemble the middle of the previous century, like when I was raised. And I think that it's wonderful!The Balabusta in blue jeans mentions that her husband takes his latkes with ketchup. It reminds me that my daughter was horrified to see her 9 month old baby grab and gobble up a greasy latke at the Betar Reunion. Even worse, she grabbed it from my hands. Bad Savta Batya!
Shaister tells us about the Avengers, who are now in their eighties. Read what they did when much younger.
Daled Amos writes about Spielberg's Munich.
And I had better get back to the kitchen and laundry and other Shabbat preparations.
Two washes on the line
and another in the machine,
so it's time to get back
to Havel Havelim!
One of the newer bloggers is well-known Jewish writer, Chava Willig Levy, an old friend of mine. Her grandmother, "Bubby" Willig, was a neighbor of ours in Bayit V'Gan, Jerusalem, and during that time we discovered that Chavie's mother and mine had been friends in high school.
Israel Perspectives gives his opinion about the Labor Party campaign.
And now, before I return to the kitchen and Shabbat preparations, here's A Simple Jew on being a father.
Last try before Shabbat.
Here are Chanuka Belz from Heichal Hanegina.
Check out the Orange Revolution! And a way of saving a life!
I blogged in the morning, and I blogged at night, day six.
Day 7 Shabbat Kodesh
Day 8 of Havel Havelim, and Day 7 of Chanukah and the first day of the week and the first day of the Month of Tevet!
I just got back home and I found a lot of "last minute" posts, so here goes:
Daled amos tells the truth about the "truce."
A whole slew from Ezzie. A couple I may have already been included, but I don't have time to check. It's faster to just put them in again. One, and another about his late grandfather-in-law. About auctions and raffles by SIL. Abbas' hypocrisy and two Chanukah posts. Thanks Ezzie, and will I meet you at the Ben Zakkai dinner?
Something about women from Jameel.
And four just arrived from Israel Perspectives; I don't have time to read them to choose, so I'm linking them all. One, two, three, and four. Judeopundit spins about the "border incident.
"I guess Mirty's hankering to host another, being so helpful and all. She sent me this from the NY's Funniest Rabbi. And one from herself and one from Gil's Hirhurim "musings," Who can retell?A Simple Jew provides questions and answers.
And that's it.
Chodesh Tov, Shavua Tov and Chag Urim Sameach!!!
Send your links for the next edition via Conservative Cat’s handy form, and at the same time you may discover other “carnivals” to visit and enter. If you want to host, then contact Soccer Dad at dhgerstman at hotmail dot com.
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Please put up a blurb on your site alerting readers to Havel Havelim.
It will also be posted on me-ander, where the links usually come out better. Just give me another few minutes.