Hamas War

Friday, August 31, 2007

The Two Ehuds and Their Plan for Israel's Destruction, G-d Forbid!

Recently, we've been hearing rumours and reports that "the two Ehuds," Olmert & Barak, have been negotiating with the terrorist entity whose aim is the destruction of the entire State of Israel.

First of all, forget everything else, including the fact that I live in Shiloh. Just think about it rationally. Is it wise and reasonable for one to "negotiate" with people who want you gone and dead? And remember this isn't a "personal thing" between the two Ehuds and the Arabs. This is something that seriously affects the security, viability and future of the State of Israel.

During the terrorist-plagued rule of Barak, he offered something similar, and the Arabs rejected it. Thank G-d for the fact that the Arabs gave us that chance to breathe, but what did Israel do in response? Encouraged by Olmert, Ariel Sharon (Barak's successor) announced Disengagement at the Herzliya Conference. There was no government or military debate, discussion, feasibility research, just:
We're going to destroy the Jewish Communities of Gush Katif and Northern
Shomron and hand over the territory to the PA. Any government minister who protests strongly will be fired, and it will be illegal to protest. Criminal Records and jail time for demonstrators, even children. (my words for the summary of what happened)
Sharon, as Prime Minister, wouldn't accept any discussion or debate. After becoming comatose, due to a stroke, Olmert took over. Technically, he shouldn't have been in that position, since every medical expert knew that Sharon would never again function well enough to resume office. The position of Prime Minister was supposed to go to the elected party, the Likud, but Olmert got some doctors to sign that "that there was a possibility that Sharon could recover," so he could be the "temporary" replacement.

Olmert hadn't even been elected when, again at a Herzliya Conference, he announced that he was giving the Arabs almost all of Judea and Samaria, the Jewish HomeLand, the locations of our Biblical history which explain how our People developed. He was in a rush to do it and talked of a time-table of less than a year. This was only a few months after thousands of innocent Jews had been exiled from their homes in Gush Katif and Northern Shomron, and were holed up in hotels, because of Disengagement.

Olmert had no authority, and like with Sharon's Disengagement, no government planning, feasibility, national viability, future ramifications, discussions or anything had taken place, at least not officially or publicly. Olmert's behavior is far from anything a democratic leader does in a true democracy. The Olmert-Sharon leadership style is that of a totalitarian dictator. Don't forget that Olmert and Soviet-raised Avigdor Lieberman are trying to change the Israeli government-system to one in which it's "more stable."

It's not even two years since Olmert's big announcement and he's doing everything he can to hand Jewish Land to the terrorists. Now, again, his plans are in the headlines.

Olmert Offers Judea, Samaria, Divides J'lem in Draft Accord
by Gil Ronen

(IsraelNN.com) Israel has agreed, in writing, to hand over 6,250 square kilometers of land – the equivalent of its entire biblical and strategic heartland - to an Arab terror state. Details of negotiations are being reported by Dr. Guy Bechor, a leading expert on Arab affairs.
Bechor reports that it is known for certain that Israel has, in the past few days, presented Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas at least one draft of an "agreement of principles." (Complete article in link which is before the headline.)
Since he plans that a few "enclaves" will remain Israeli, he wants to be generous to the Arabs and give them land which has been part of the State of Israel since 1948.

Baruch Hashem, the Arabs keep asking for more and have been refusing the package. The more Israel offers, the more the Arabs demand.

Olmert's approval rating is low; for the past year it has been in single digits. His plans haven't been brought for discussion, neither in the government or by the public. We don't have a true democracy. It's winner take all, and tough luck to the loser.

  • Disengagement refugees are still unemployed and in deteriorating refugee camps.
  • Sderot, southern Israel, is being attacked by the "PA" terrorists daily, Kassam Slams into Sderot; Damage and Shock .
  • Gilad Shalit just spent a second birthday captive, and he isn't the only soldier being held incommunicado by our Arab enemies.
  • Residents of the north fear another war. The war, just over a year ago, was totally traumatic. Haifa, one of Israel's major cities, was blitzed by Arab rockets launched from southern Lebanon, a result of Ehud Barak's campaign promise when he first ran for Prime Minister.

Olmert & Barak must be stopped. Lovers of freedom and democracy all over the world must protest against them!

Olmert & Barak' policies endanger world peace, since they are strengthening and encouraging Arab terrorism.

Don't be afraid and don't be silent.

Only international pressure can stop Olmert & Barak!

Shabbat Shalom U'Mevorach

May you have a Peaceful and Blessed Shabbat

Destruction of History

An opportunity to discover more of what once existed on the Temple Mount is being denied forever. The Arabs have been allowed, by the Ehud Olmert Government, with Yuli Tamir as Minister of Education, to seriously damage and destroy parts of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

The Temple Mount is the Holiest Spot in the entire world for Jews. It is the location of the Two Holy Temples of Biblical Times.

It is feared that the digging will also seriously damage the "Kotel," the support wall of the Temple Mount. Jews have been praying at the "Kotel," rather than on the Temple Mount itself because of religious controversies regarding which places on the Mount are too Holy to walk on.

Peretz Out, But No Improvement for Gilad Shalit

This cartoon is from Arutz 7

Thursday, August 30, 2007

CNN Alert:
Theopolitcal Climate Change

August 30, 2007
Ellen W. Horowitz

She literally embraced Jimmy Carter while baring her claws at Jerry Falwell. Her body language revealed her agenda - even when cloaked behind the veil. With all of its inaccuracies and inconsistences, Christiane Amanpour¹s six-hour presentation of
G-d's Warriors was as slick and effective as it was slanted - and it did the damage. Pro-Israel bloggers and media watchdogs can whine, and activists can kvetch to the very heavens; but until we can go on the offensive with effective presentations and magnetic personalities of our own, Christiane rules the day.

Amanpour doesn't play devil's advocate, she is the devil's advocate. And according to my religion, that makes her one of G-d's most dangerous warriors (as everything comes from G-d and is under His direction - including CNN and the devil himself). Those of us with any fight left should thank Amanpour for giving us yet another golden opportunity to rise to the challenge, and use our own intellect, talent and resources to present a dynamic and corrective response (because that's what G-d expects from us). But many would prefer to let Pastor Hagee handle things for us, because he's got the numbers - both demographically and financially - as well as the charisma, devotion and passion.

Amanpour missed her own golden opportunity to corner former President Jimmy Carter - the one man who, more than any other politician to date, bears responsibility for unleashing the fanatics who have engulfed the world in global Jihad. That Southern Baptist Carter campaigned as a Born Again Christian, and was hailed as America's first Evangelical president, gave Amanpour every reason to pursue her theme by focusing on whether or not demonstrative religious fervor in combination with ardent political ambition plays a role in the wretched handling of foreign policy.

In 1979 it was the Carter administration that initiated an estimated $40 billion covert program of training and aiding Islamic fundamentalists in Pakistan and Afghanistan. In a 1998 interview, former National Security Advisor to President Carter, Zbigniew Brzezinski, was asked if he regrets having supported Islamic fundamentalism and giving arms and advice to terrorists. His response: "What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred up Muslims or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the Cold War?"

President Carter's shortsighted and faltering policies empowered an 1978 Islamic revolution in Iran by his weakening the Shah, propping up of then exiled Ayatollah Khomeini, and mishandling of the Iranian hostage crisis.

Carter's lauded but faulty Camp David Peace Accords of 1978 brought Israel a cold peace and a hot Egyptian border with Gaza. The new lines drawn in the sand enabled massive arms smuggling and support of the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza. Egypt is now well-positioned to fight Israel via its proxy Palestinian army.

During Carter's presidency his brother worked as a foreign agent of the Libyan government and received a $220,000 "loan". His dealings led to a 1980 Senate investigation dubbed "Billygate". Billy's defense:
"The only thing I can say is there is a hell of a lot more Arabians than there is Jews." He also argued that the "Jewish media [tore] up the Arab countries full-time," and defended Libya against charges of state-sponsored terrorism by saying that a "heap of governments support terrorists and [Libya] at least admitted it."

And it was Jimmy Carter who inadvertently exposed the shortcomings and dangers of ramming American-style democracy and liberty into a region which is aching for the rule of law and authority. It was he, who as an election observer, praised the 2006 Hamas victory over Fatah as being "completely honest, completely fair, completely safe and without violence." The very antithesis of today¹s reality.

It was Oslo facilitator Bill Clinton who, as a presidential candidate in 1992, managed to garner a staggering percentage of the Jewish Republican vote by evoking his dying pastor's warning, "If you abandon Israel, God will never forgive you." Those words reassured Jews who were disgruntled with the Israel-hostile administration of President George H.W. Bush.

A recent article in The Economist claims that former President Clinton evoked the name of Jesus in public remarks more often than present President Bush (who counts this stuff?)

U.S. Elections are fast approaching and the very pious and dynamic duo of Carter and Clinton have joined forces in order to redeem G-d from His Christian Right captors.
Meanwhile, the gospel according to the very scholarly team of Walt and Mearsheimer has deemed Israel a liability.

A multi-cultural, pluralistic America is ideologically floundering and can offer no dynamic and determined alternative with which to counter and temper Evangelical zeal and influence. When coupled with the purported strength of the American Jewish lobby at a time when America just happens to be mired in a Mideast war, the Jewish-Christian alliance becomes downright threatening. So an unholy trinity of Judeo-Evangelaphobic media, political and academic personalities have picked up the gauntlet and they promise to make this election year hell for those Jewish Americans who still have a spot in their hearts for Israel. Christians united for Israel are also on the line, as they will have to run the gauntlet over their dual devotion to Israel and America.

Not all Americans are ready and willing to join hands with Israel and go to the brink over global terror and the Iranian nuclear threat. But attributing the source of concern and hesitation to liberal politics, anti-Semitism, a media smear campaign, or denial, is not totally fair. It could simply be that some citizens are not "rapture-ready".

The Christian Right may have overplayed the televangelist End-of-Days card. Hosts of preachers have made their deepest darkest armagedonish thoughts available via cable, satellite, and radio channels; on DVD at Walmart ; in print publication through Amazon;and in Cyberspace through blogs and YouTube. Rapture has been lampooned by the Simpsons
and harpooned by Max Blumenthal
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mjMRgT5o-Ig ,
while being seriously discussed in White House prayer meetings and consultations.

I believe most Americans just want to make sure that, if faced with an awesome decision, those designated the job of picking up red phones and pushing red buttons will be able to come down from their heavenly fog, close the book of Daniel, and use their G-d given earthly sense to make a wise choice for the good of mankind.

The pastors are not immune to public opinion or election fever, so it's image-makeover time. Because as one evangelical academic recently expressed,
"Many evangelicals are tired of being painted as ignorant huckleberries who follow the dictums of preachers with bad hair."

Suddenly progressive voices in the evangelical movement are stepping forward and putting poverty and environmental concerns at the top of their agenda. They are meeting with Arab ambassadors, distancing themselves from Israel¹s national camp, and promoting a two-state solution.

The ever-shifting theopolitical winds are kicking-up again, and that Israel's storm -tossed dinghy is floating amongst a lot of sharks is all the more reason for our being reluctant to hop abroad any lifeboat christened the S. S. Jesus. Israelis, Diaspora Jews and pro-Israel advocates best keep their options open in case changing political fortunes require that they abandon that "uncondtional" vessel.

Temperance for America means that it's reckonin' time for Israel, A change of strategies is called for. We should focus efforts on strengthening an independent Israel, rather than tying her to America - because in the long run we may have to go it alone.

With America in transition, our rock solid Biblical claim should be presented in a way which enables a broad spectrum of individuals to take a moral/heartfelt stand with the Jewish State. Whether the driving inspiration comes through theological scripture, personal experience, philosophical/intellectual exercise, heartfelt meditation, or by reading superhero comic books, is not important. It need not be shared with CNN, as it has to do with one's personal truth and intimate relationship with G-d.

The writer lives in the Golan Heights, is a painter and the author of The Oslo Years: a Mother's Journal (available through Gefen Publishing)

Reuters Does It Again!

Just a year ago, a blogger realized that Reuters was using a doctored picture to make Beirut look more damaged than it actually was in the war, which Lebanon had started against Israel.

Now Reuters has done it again, manipulating facts to make Israel look like an aggressor:
Reuters News Agency Alters IDF Statement
(IsraelNN.com) The Reuters News Agency informed readers around the world Wednesday night of the IDF strike on a rocket launching cell that killed three children but altered an IDF statement on the incident. After stating that the children were "spotted near rocket launchers," Reuters quoted the IDF's "sorrow for the use the terror organizations make of the active participation of teenagers in terror attacks." The IDF also was quoted that "more than 90 rockets fired by Palestinian militants in Gaza in the past month landed in Israel." The report failed to include the IDF's description of the "cynical" use of children by terrorists. It also failed to mention that "close to 300 Kassam rockets and mortar shells were launched at Israel" from Gaza in the last month."

"turn over stones"

Being a high school English Teacher in Israel makes me an "expert" in the language according to some of my neighbors.

Today a neighbor called with a question. She had been listening to a "Torah lesson" about a famous rabbi in English on a cassette and didn't understand everything. The Ashkenaz accented Hebrew words were confusing.

The lesson mentioned "angels." Each angel has one specific assignment, which we see in they story of when three angels visited Abraham.
  1. one came to tell Sarah that she would have son
  2. another came to heal Abraham after his circumcision
  3. and another came to "turn over stones"

"Turn over stones"? What does that mean? I'd never heard of that.

I had a vague memory of a Rashi, sort of on that topic and took out my old linear Hebrew-English Chumash with Rashi, first five books of the bible, Bereishit, Genesis.

Bereishis (Book 1: Genesis) Vayera

Chapter 18 - Rashi

Verse 2: And behold three men.14
One to foretell to Sarah,15 and one to overturn Sedom,16 and one to heal Avraham, because one angel cannot accomplish two missions.17

Well, it seems like "stones" was really Sodom, but what's this "overturn" (in my Internet Bible) or "turn over" from the Bible on the shelf? The Hebrew did say "lahafoach," which means turn over or overturn or reverse, or maybe my everyday Hebrew isn't enough. So I looked for a good Hebrew-English dictionary and found the Jastrow on a different shelf. According to Jastrow, the English definition is "to destroy."

No "stone" was left "unturned" as we searched for a solution.

PS The men may not like this, but that taped shiur was about a rabbi compared to an angel, how he took on one important project and concentrated on it. In contrast when it mentioned his wife, it pointed out how she took over a multitude of roles in order to free him to do his "angelic" work. We women can multi-task. That's why we thank G-d, in the Morning Blessings, for making us "kirtzono," according to His Will.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

More about CNN's series "God's Warriors"

hat tip-Ellen

Check this out:

MSNBC's Abrams Hits CNN's Amanpour for Defending Islamic Fundamentalism

Money makes the world go around!

One of the movies I bought (DVD) during my recent visit to New York was Cabaret. Its plot is disturbing, showing the bad side of human nature. The only positive subplot is, davka, about Jews. I won't say more about the plot, in case you're not familiar with the story.

For money makes the world go around, the world go around,
the world go around.
Money makes the world go around,
the clinking, clanking sound
of Money, money, money, money,
Money, money, money, money,
Get a little, get a little,
Money, money, money, money,
Mark, a yen, a buck or a pound,
That clinking, clanking clunking sound
is all that makes the world go round,
It makes the world go round.
for complete lyrics click this
That's the music I heard in my mind after reading this:
Barak hints debts will keep party in government

You're on the Internet; Big Brother's watching you!

We don't have all that much privacy on the internet, and I'm not just referring to the "cookies" various programs embed into our computers.

When I check to see how many people visited my blogs, I'm totally amazed at all of the information available to me. I really don't care which internet provider you use or your screen resolution. I'm more curious about the "referrer," how you got to my blog. If I see that another blog or site referred a number of visitors, I visit them, and if I discover that someone mentioned my blog, I try to thank them in their comment section.

That's the innocent use of all this data. Apparently in totalitarian regimes, it's not so easygoing.

Police in China's capital said Tuesday they will start patrolling the Web using animated beat officers that pop up on a user's browser and walk, bike or drive across the screen warning them to stay away from illegal Internet content. click here for entire article
I just wonder. Whose blogs be on their banned list?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Rosemary's Baby

As soon as I saw this headline, all I could think of was Rosemary's Baby.

PM Olmert, Min. Lieberman Will Push Electoral, Gov't Reform

What kind of government will these two wily guys cook up?

  • strong presidential system
  • "stability"
  • the government's ability to "rule"
  • the Knesset's effectiveness
  • limit the use of no-confidence votes
  • raising the the minimum vote threshold for parties to enter the Knesset

I don't claim that the present system is great, but do you want Ehud Olmert and Yvette Lieberman to create a new one?

What they call "stability," is a fancy name for "dictator."

Olmert has a single digit approval rating, and he behaves as if the country is behind him.

Olmert is mired in corruption charges and he talks like he's the country's savior.

And now we know why Lieberman won't join up with Bibi.

Remembering Gush Katif

An orange ribbon isn't enough.

My neighbors have shells from the beach of Gush Katif hanging on theirs.



ISRAEL UPDATE, the Cable TV program dedicated to telling the truth about what is happening in Israel today, now in its 8th year, is co-hosted by Helen Freedman and Charlie Bernhaut. It can be seen in your community, if it is not already there. Please write to Helen and Charlie at israelviews@aol.com to learn about the simple procedures to be followed in order to sponsor ISRAEL UPDATE on your local Cable TV channel, at no monetary cost to your self. Helen and Charlie welcome your inquiries.

As CNN’s anti-Israel bias was revealed once again in the three part series equating Jewish, Muslim and Christian “warriors” for G-d, Helen Freedman and Charlie Bernhaut are pleased to announce that they are starting their 8th year of Cable TV programming that dispels the myths and lies swirling about the true history and happenings of Israel.
Our eighth season will kick off with a fascinating taping of a talk given by Elie Wiesel at the Gershon Jacobson memorial, held at the Museum of Jewish Heritage on June 11, 2007 . In this talk, Wiesel maintains that the events of the 1967 Six Day War are still affecting the soul and spirit of Israel today. As a witness to the events forty years ago, Wiesel describes the mystical event that took place as atheists and religious, soldiers and civilians, came to the retrieved Wall in Jerusalem and cried as one.
He also describes the unilateral withdrawals from Lebanon and Gush Katif as actions that have only drawn the net closer around Israel . He asks, “How far can we go?” without complying with the Hamas and PLO charters calling for Israel ’s destruction.
Our next interview is with Rabbi Waldman, the Head Rabbi of Yeshivat Nir in Kiryat Arba/ Hebron . He was eager to talk when I met with him on July 17, 2007 , in his office in the Yeshiva. President Bush had given a speech about Israel, and Rabbi Waldman wanted to make it clear that Israelis don’t need Bush’s suggestions about where to settle, and don’t need other people’s recognition of Israel’s right to exist. He maintains it is a G-d given right. Rav Waldman asserts that Israel IS the New Middle East. It is the only corner of light in the darkness of despotism and dictatorship in the Middle East .
The program continues with a brief meeting with Yifat Akobi, a good friend and true heroine in modern Israel , who lives with her husband and six children, one of them a newborn, in Beit HaShalom. She gave me a short tour of the building, and expressed the simple desires of the Jewish people, to raise their children in freedom, in their homeland. She describes the land of Israel as one that lifts her up, rather than weighing her down with the burden of preserving every inch that is threatened.
A third interview gives a continuing true picture of the Jewish people in the Hebron community. I meet with David Wilder, spokesman for the community. David takes me on a tour of Beit HaShalom, the 35,000 square foot building which is a strategic asset to the IDF in Hebron . From the rooftop one has a full view of the city. Yet, the matter is in the Israeli courts as to whether or not the building, purchased legally by the Jews, will remain in their hands. David maintains we must put our foot down in Hebron and that U.S. pressure on Israel will boomerang on the U.S. He has had conversations with Muslims who state, in a matter of fact manner, that Washington , DC will become the capital of the Islamic empire.
A fourth program covers my experiences in Israel on July 15, when I attended a demonstration in Jerusalem for the displaced farmers of Gush Katif. We see on-site interviews with Laurence Beziz, one of the leaders of the displaced Gush Katif community, Judy Balint, well known journalist and author of “Jerusalem Diaries”, Yehudit Tayar, journalist and military analyst, Anita Tucker, displaced farmer from Gush Katif, and MK Dr. Arieh Eldad, who is working tirelessly to change the draconic law of expulsion and inadequate compensation for the Gush Katif refugees.
The program shifts focus to July 25, the day dedicated to commemorating the second year since the expulsion from Gush Katif. In Kissufim, where the day’s events began, I interviewed former residents of Nevei Dekalim, who lived in beautiful homes in that seaside community. Rachel Saperstein and her husband, Moshe, live in the caravan community of Nitzan. Dror Vanunu, spokesman for the displaced persons of Gush Katif, speaks about the events of the commemorative day and the thousands who have turned out at Kissufim, Netivot, and Sderot, to dedicate the Gush Katif Torah scroll. He also speaks about hopes for the future Nitzan, which is already showing signs of becoming a reality. The majority of the Nevei Dekalim refugees will be moving to that site, if the infrastructure continues to be put in place. Unfortunately, since many of the people have been living on their compensation money, because of the fact that they were forced to be unemployed, they will need additional help in building their homes. Also, the public buildings, such as synagogues, youth centers, medical centers, schools, and social centers, are not provided for in the government compensation plans, so efforts will be made to raise funds from private sources and foundations. Anyone wishing to help may write to Dror Vanunu at: gkatif@netvision.net.il.
Another program focuses on Chaim Silberstein, head of Uvneh Yerushalayim, speaking about Kever Rachel, the grave of Mother Rachel in Bethlehem , which is now a military camp enclosed in 25 foot high cement walls. Chaim is hoping to open a Bat Mitzvah Center at the Kever. He speaks about the sanctity of this special grave and the difficulty in holding onto Jewish holy sites. Not surprisingly, the Arabs, in their predictable style, have declared Kever Rachel one of their holy places, and have placed a cemetery around the outskirts of it, prohibiting any further expansion of the site.
All of this and more will be seen in the upcoming programs of Israel Update. The programs can be seen in Manhattan on Monday nights, 7 PM , Channel 57 Time Warner and Channel 85 RCN. Please check with Brooklyn , Queens , and northern New Jersey Cable networks for viewing times in those communities. Be assured that the programs you will be seeing are authentic and truthful presentations of the people and concerns in Israel today. Contact Helen Freedman and Charlie Bernhaut at: israelviews@aol.com

"Sending her away from this hospital, out of Israel, is like sending her to hell"

That's the reaction of the father of a Gazan girl being cared for in an Israeli hospital.

At the same time that Israeli handicapped are demonstrating for better conditions and financial support, the Israeli Government has been covering all expenses for the treatment of a Gazan child injured in an Israeli attack.

The girl's family is protesting the decision to send them back home to Gaza. I wonder if the father's statement that Gaza is "hell" will endanger him and his family if they do go back.

We all know that no other country would have shown such generosity to its enemies. My friends' son/grandson/brother died of blood loss in a Hebron hospital after being stabbed by an Arab terrorist. They knew that he was a Jew, when, injured, he was carried from the street to a hospital. There he was hidden away and kept from getting medical care.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Playing G-d

After the YESHA Council's totally disastrous "attempt" to stop Disengagement ended in total failure, they should have resigned and taken full responsibility for the destruction of the Jewish Communities in Gush Katif and Northern Shomron.

they're planning the destruction of more Jewish Communities. They are meeting with the government, making lists of communities to live and to be destroyed.

  • There should be no more destruction of Jewish Communities!
  • No more Jews should be exiled from their homes!

  • The YESHA Council must resign and its members cease all public activities as "representatives" of the Jews in YESHA!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Call me paranoid

Call me paranoid. I'm proud of it. At least I'm cautious.

1973 Israel was over-confident and trusted its defense barriers. The Arabs, Egypt and Syria, attacked on Yom Kippur and easily ran over the lines, killing Israeli soldiers and endangering the existence of the State of Israel.

So I suggest we take these two articles seriously:

Israel to wait? 'Hamas planning mega-terror attack in Israel'

IDF - OK since terrorists stopped Top IDF officers: Terrorist groups have learned our defense systems

Proposed "Education Reform," Like "Dovrat" Doesn't Improve Israeli Education

I'm the last person who would claim that the Israeli Education System is perfect, but Yuli Tamir's "reforms" are no better than Limor Livnat's Dovrat Commission.

The new "reforms" are similar to Dovrat in that they blame elderly teachers, like myself, for the problems in the system, and they demand that teachers spend much more time in the schools for just a drop more salary.

Of the two Israeli teachers unions, one, the Histadrut approved the agreement, but the Irgun Morim, Organization of Teachers, which I belong to, has rejected it.

In Israel it's possible for teachers to work part-time and overtime. That helps prevent burn-out and enables those who can't, for various reasons, work full time teach. Also in smaller schools, and most schools aren't all that large by American standards, there aren't enough hours available for every teacher to teach his/her specialty full time. It also makes it possible to earn more by working more than what's considered a "full time" job.

Only non-teachers claim that teaching is "easy" and consider the "long vacations" inefficient and money-wasters.

The problems with Israeli education are because of faulty curriculum. For instance, similar to the trends in the United States and other "enlightened" places, language "fluency" has replaced "accuracy" as goal, so that basic grammar is no longer emphasized. Not only has the students' "native tongue" deteriorated, but it caused learning a second language to become more difficult. I'm supposed to teach Israeli high school boys English, but I find myself teaching general grammar and composition skills they should have had been taught in Hebrew.

This is ongoing, not new, and a generation of young teachers don't know Hebrew as well as they should. Demanding that they spend more hours at work won't correct this, and pushing out the veteran teachers won't improve matters.

Modern children, used to quick flashes of facts and ideas, don't know how to get to the depth of texts and ideas nor concentrate on texts for long periods of time. They are visually superficial. Their "gist of it" is frequently inaccurate. This is seen in all of the subjects demanding language skills.

In Mathematics, there are different problems. Most children aren't required to memorize basic arithmetic skills, like addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. From the youngest age, they're told that it's perfectly fine to use an electric gadget, such as a calculator, cellphone or mp3 to calculate the simplest things. Add to that the digital clock, which just gives numbers and doesn't help the child develop a lasting visual memory of half, quarter, third etc which they would have by looking at an old-fashioned clock face.

Another problem is the prevalent use of workbooks, instead of copying material and questions from the board. The workbook is a "pre-digested" lesson for the teacher, less efffort to prepare. By not preparing the lesson it's harder for a teacher to explain the material to the student whose learning style, due to Mild Learning Disabilities or Giftedness, doesn't suit the workbook. Workbooks prevent the flexibility needed in all classrooms, whether heterogeneous or homogeneous. Not all students comprehend and process the same way.

Requiring teachers to teach longer hours and spend more time in the school building will not help the students. It will force some teachers out of the profession, but it won't attract any into it.

Education isn't a factory; it's more an art. And we teachers need the freedom and support to create the best possible lessons for our students.

How popular is George Bush?

There's an interesting op-ed in the New York Times, which describes the techniques used by the US President's staff to orchestrate demonstrations to make it appear that everyone supports Bush.

Noisy protest? The rally squads’ response must be immediate choruses of “USA! USA!” to muffle the moment with patriotic chaff.

This is why we have to inspect the Arabs at the Checkpoints

There are "civil rights activists" who claim that Israel is being cruel, racist, discriminatory, and worse for checking Arabs at various checkpoints. Last night a couple of Arabs were found with long knives.

If there wasn't a constant ongoing problem with Arab terrorism against Jews, we wouldn't have to check them. In the good days, before terrorism became so common, there weren't all these checkpoints.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Comment Moderation

This blog has gotten some very nasty comments recently. I deleted them. this isn't the type of blog, nor me the kind of blogger, who goes for trading insults.

I consider my blog an "alternative media," to give people a chance to read what they won't see in the mainstream media.

I have no interest in arguing with people who consider me some sort of evil enemy. This is the wrong address if you're looking to vent your hatred.

If this continues, I guess I'll have to set up comment moderation, which I'd rather not do for various reasons.


Shabbat Shalom

Arab Kassam Rockets Damage Jewish Home

A 21st Birthday Card for Gilad Shalit Campaign

Hat tip: Lady OK, thanks!

A 21st Birthday Card for Gilad Shalit Campaign

The Israeli kidnapped soldiers' plight and the despair and anguish of their families moves me deeply. I hope you feel the same. I keep trying to put myself in their shoes and my heart weeps.

Our Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier Arab terrorists from Gaza snatched from Israel will turn twenty one on August 28th 2007. Unless there is a sudden change in circumstances, this will be Gilad's second birthday spent in captivity.

So how about sending a birthday greeting card to Gilad? Noam Shalit, Gilad's father approved the idea.

We need to make our point loud and clear: Gilad is in our hearts and we want him released NOW!

Please enlist your friends and acquaintances and ask them to do the same.

To: Gilad Shalit, in the care of Mr. Ban Ki Moon. Sec. General of the United Nations.
lst Ave.and 42nd Street, NY l00l7 U.S.A.

To: Gilad Shalit in the care of
International Federation of the Red Cross.
800 Second Avenue,
New York, NY l00217

To: Gilad Shalit in the care of the
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
International Red Cross
19 Avenue de la Paix
CH 1202, Geneva, Switzerland.

To: Gilad Shalit in the care of
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
International Red Cross,
PO Box 372
CH 1211, Geneva, l9 Switzerland.

Let us flood them with our mail.
Initiated by
Rabbi Kenneth A Stern
Park Avenue Synagogue
50 East 87th Street
New York, NY 10128

Tel: 212 369 2600 ext 123

Fax: 212 410 7879

Many thanks for your efforts.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

CNN Distorts God's Jewish Warriors by Yakov Dov

This letter to the editor about CNN's "God's Jewish Warriors" was written by one of my correspondents.

To: Times Union Editor
Subject: CNN Distorts God's Jewish Warriors

CNN aired their TV documentary God’s Warriors, 8/21, first focusing on Jews. They had a biased selective view, distorting history and the current Mideast conflict.

CNN never mentioned that Arab leaders urged local Arabs to flee Palestine during Israel’s 1948 war of independence so that 5 Arab armies could destroy Israel. This resulted in over 700,000 Palestinian Arab refugees that the Arab League refused to repatriate, and used as pawns and terrorists in their struggle to destroy Israel, which still continues .
CNN never noted that Israel only has about 20% of the lands of Palestine, Jordan occupying about 80%, and that there were former Jewish settlements in the West Bank destroyed by Jordan in 1948-49.
CNN never mentioned that during that time until the mid 50’s, Arab nations expelled about 800,000 Jews who lost their homes and property. Israel resettled these refugees.
CNN never mentioned that the PLO was formed in 1964 who’s charter is to destroy Israel. Fatah and Hamas still have the same goals. Egypt and Jordan controlled Gaza and the West Bank and there was no quest for a Palestinian state then, why? We only heard of Palestinians Arab nationality after the 1967 defensive war, after Israel reclaimed her former homelands.
CNN mainly focused on the Jewish settler “underground” a small group of people who used violence and were arrested and imprisoned, not representative of the majority of these people who are peaceful “revenants”, who returned to their ancient homeland.
CNN never mentioned that surveys reveal that about ¾ of Palestinian Arabs subscribe to terror and Israel’s destruction.
CNN pictured the Jerusalem Mufti as a peaceful person in a suit, claiming exclusive rights to the Temple Mount, and lying about a historic Jewish presence there. They never showed him in his religious garb preaching hate and terror and murder against Jews, and calling them pigs and apes. He was following in the footsteps of the former Mufti, Arafat’s uncle Haj Al-Husseini, who was an ally of Hitler, and a WW2 war criminal.
CNN showed Dov Hikind,a NYS Assemblyman and others, also Christians, who donated moneys to settler communities in Israel. They depict these Christians as religious fanatics. They also showed Jimmy Carter who denounced Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands. However they failed to mention the millions of dollars that Carter received from Arabs for his library. They also showed similar criticism by former Secretary of State James Baker, but failed to mention that he was a lobbyist for the Saudis.
Jerusalem was always the capital of Israel, for thousands of years, and was divided by Jordan in 1949, when Jews were excluded from their holy places, many of which were destroyed and desecrated. Israel reunited Jerusalem in 1967.

CNN has a long record of bias to Israel, as documented by others such as CAMERA. They also have significant Arab stockholders and a seemingly biased owner.

Christine Amanpour of CNN promotes the basic lie that it is the settlements that inflame the Arab world, and not the existence of Israel; she repeats the canard about Jewish money and power in America. She also further characterizes religious Jewish settlers in Judea and Samaria as fanatics by focusing on Jewish religious symbols that many don’t understand.

Israel occupies only her own homelands set forth by the Bible and their historic rights to such lands, also recognized in the Balfour declaration. Britain created Jordan on the former lands of Palestine to establish their hegemony in the MidEast. Contrary to the biased CNN, UN, and some other legal opinions, there are sound arguments that Israel’s settlements in Judea and Samaria are legal, and not on occupied Arab lands.

If peace is to be achieved in the MidEast, the Palestinians must end their barbaric reign of terror, adopt democratic ways, and educate their children in science, business ,medicine etc, not in terror and the destruction of Israel.

Yakov Dov


I'm taking this from the CAMERA site.

August 22, 2007
God's Jewish Warriors -- CNN's Abomination

CNN's "God's Warriors," hosted by Christiane Amanpour, is a three-part series intended to examine the growing role of religious fundamentalism in today's world. Unfortunately, the first program in the series, "God's Jewish Warriors," is one of the most grossly distorted programs to appear on mainstream American television in many years. It is false in its basic premise, established in the opening scene in which Jewish (and Christian) religious fervency is equated with that of Muslims heard endorsing "martyrdom," or suicide-killing. There is, of course, no counterpart among Jews and Christians to the violent jihadist Muslim campaigns underway across the globe, either in numbers of perpetrators engaged or in the magnitude of death and destruction wrought.
While in reality Jewish "terrorism" is virtually non-existent, the program magnifies at length the few instances of violence or attempted violence by religiously-motivated Jewish individuals - including having to go all the way back to 1980, for example, to explore a bombing campaign by a small group of Israeli Jews on West Bank Arab mayors. By dredging up such an old incident Amanpour unintentionally undermines her own thesis.
Settlements are likewise a key focus of the program, their residents and adherents being deemed "God's warriors" – along with those Americans, Jewish and Christian alike, who support them. American presidents and Members of Congress are said to be held hostage to the so-called "Israel Lobby," ostensibly dark forces consisting of AIPAC and other pro-Israel groups who supposedly enable the nefarious expansion of West Bank communities.
Disproportionate reliance on partisan voices, some extreme figures, skews the message dramatically. Jimmy Carter and John Mearsheimer, chief proponents of the discredited canards about Jews subverting American national interests to those of Israel, are repeatedly and respectfully interviewed. Carter, for example, claims that no American politician could survive politically while calling for settlement-related aid cuts to Israel: "There's no way that a member of Congress would ever vote for that and hope to be re-elected."
That would be news to politicians like Senate Majority Leader Robert Byrd, who has long been a critic of aid to Israel and opposed loan guarantees to Israel in 1992. As well, contrary to Amanpour and Carter, Representatives James Trafficante, Dana Rohrabacher, Nick Smith, Fortney Pete Stark, Neil Abercrombie, David E. Bonior, John Conyers Jr, John D. Dingell, Earl F. Hilliard, Jesse L. Jackson Jr., Barbara Lee, Jim McDermott, George Miller, Jim Moran, David R. Obey, Ron Paul and Nick J. Rahall II, have voted against aid to Israel and/or opposed other resolutions favoring Israel.
Amanpour ignores all this, and turns instead to former Senator Charles Percy, who joins in denouncing Jewish political influence. Only Morris Amitay is presented as balance on this critical issue.
Whether wittingly or not, Amanpour's program, with its reliance on pejorative labeling, generalities, testimonials, and a stacked lineup of guests, is a perfect illustration of classical propaganda techniques. Unfortunately propaganda is the opposite of journalism, the profession Amanpour is supposed to practice.
The program was misleading and inaccurate in many other ways as well:
Amanpour says: "But it is also Palestinian land. The West Bank - it's west of the Jordan River - was designated by the United Nations to be the largest part of an Arab state."
This is highly deceptive. The United Nations 1947 Partition Plan proposed dividing all the land west of the Jordan into a Jewish and an Arab state; the Arabs rejected the plan, choosing instead to launch a war to eliminate Israel. The land did not become "Palestinian land" via this UN Plan. Likewise, UN Security Council Resolution 242, passed after the Six Day War, underscored that territorial adjustments related to the West Bank were to be expected.
• Amanpour suggests settlements are the cause of Arab anger: "the Jewish settlements have inflamed much of the Arab world," yet the Arab world was just as anti-Israel (actually more so) before the settlements were built.
• She presents at length the views of Theodor Meron asserting the illegality of settlements as the definitive word, but makes no mention of more senior Israeli experts such as former Supreme Court Chief Meir Shamgar, who disagreed with Meron. Nor does Amanpour mention such foreign experts such as Professors Julius Stone and Eugene Rostow who also argued for the legality of settlements. (See for example CAMERA BACKGROUNDER: The Debate About Settlements and From "Occupied Territories" to "Disputed Territories" by Dore Gold.)
• She grossly misleads about America's position on settlements in the following sequence:
WILLIAM SCRANTON, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO U.N. UNDER JIMMY CARTER: My government believes that international law sets the appropriate standards.
AMANPOUR: From the earliest days of the settler movement, even the United States, Israel's closest ally, blasted Israel's settlement policy.
SCRANTON: Substantial resettlement of the Israeli civilian population in occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, is illegal.
AMANPOUR: Ever since American presidents both Democrat and Republican have spoken from virtually the same script. They consistently oppose settlement growth.
RONALD REAGAN, FORMER PRESIDENT: The United States will not support the use of any additional land for the purpose of settlements.
In fact, while the Carter administration did deem settlements illegal, President Reagan very much did not speak from the "same script." He explained: "As to the West Bank, I believe the settlements there — I disagreed when the previous Administration referred to them as illegal, they're not illegal" (NYTimes, Feb. 3, 1981). Other presidents, including Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, also did not term settlements "illegal."
• Amanpour does not discuss Jewish habitation in the West Bank and Gaza in post-Biblical times, before 1948—for example, in Hebron, Kfar Etzion, Kfar Darom (See: CAMERA BACKGROUNDER: The Debate About Settlements) but instead portrays Jewish settlement in the West Bank as an encroachment on "Arab" land—repeatedly referring to disputed territories as "Arab" or "occupied" land (22 times throughout the program).
• Amanpour continuously discounts the context of the Arab world. She says with regard to the post Six-Day War period: "But the Israeli government was divided - trade the captured land for peace or keep it and build Jewish settlements." Unmentioned is the Arab refusal to "trade" anything for peace as embodied in the three "no's" delivered delivered by Arab leaders at a summit in Khartoum shortly after the Six-Day War, declaring there would be no negotiation, no recognition and no peace with Israel.
Jerusalem/Temple Mount, and The Holy Places
• Amanpour says: "It was from here, according to Muslim scripture, that the Prophet Mohammed ascended to heaven around the year 630. But Hebrew scripture puts the ancient Jewish Temple in the same location, destroyed by the Romans in the year 70. For the next 1,900 years, even the last remnant of the temple known as the Wailing Wall, or the Western Wall, was lost to the Jews."
a) Muslim scripture refers to Mohammed ascending to heaven from the "farthest mosque," which could not have been on the Temple Mount, since the mosque there wasn't built until well after the death of Mohammed. b) The Western Wall is part of the Temple Mount complex—not the actual Temple. It is a remnant of the retaining wall built to extend and flatten the Temple Mount. There are indeed actual remains of the First and Second Temples on the Temple Mount.c) Although Amanpour notes the holiness of the Temple Mount to Jews and Muslims, and some Jews in clips say that it is the holiest site for Jews, she never points this out herself, nor does she mention that Hebron is Judaism's second holiest city with its second holiest shrine. d) Amanpour interviews the Muslim Grand Mufti of Jerusalem to give a Muslim perspective on the Al Aqsa Mosque, but no Jewish Rabbinical figure is presented to discuss the paramount religious importance of the Temple Mount to Jews.
• Amanpour ignores the devastation of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City and the expulsion of its residents by the Jordanians in 1948, as she does the Jordanian destruction and desecration of synagogues and cemeteries in eastern Jerusalem .Nor does she discuss the denial of Jewish access to holy sites and restriction of Christian religious freedom after Jordan’s illegal annexation of eastern Jerusalem in 1950. Instead she redefines the history of the conflict over Jerusalem with a new timeline, alleging, "the 40-year tug of war over Jerusalem began when Israel bulldozed the Arab neighborhood next to the Western Wall and built a plaza where Jews now pray."
Carter and Mearsheimer
Amanpour states: " Most recently, former President Carter was criticized for criticizing Israel's treatment of the Palestinians. In his book, "Palestine: Peace, not Apartheid."
Carter was, of course, "criticized" for purveying multiple false statements about Israel and the Palestinians. See, for example, A Comprehensive Collection of Jimmy Carter's Errors.
Professor John Mearsheimer is also invited on to explain to viewers the allegedly pernicious effects of the "Jewish Lobby," with no mention by Amanpour of the extremely serious flaws that critics have identified in Mearsheimer's work.
Israel Lobby
Amanpour also grossly misleads the public about a dispute in the early 1990s between then president George Bush and Israel's prime minister at the time, Yitzhak Shamir. President Bush decided to withhold American loan guarantees to Israel unless that country froze settlement activity. In CNN's version of events, the Israel lobby kicked into gear, and "Congress got the message." (For Amanpour, it seems, it is a given that members of Congress were responding to "the message" sent by the lobby as opposed to acting on their own convictions.) Then, "just a few months later, the very week of the Republican National Convention, the pro-Israel lobby had something to celebrate." President Bush announced his support for the loan guarantees. Clearly, according to Amanpour, the lobby forced Bush's hand.
What is absent from Amanpour's version of events is the reason why the Bush administration eventually reversed its position. A new Israeli government, willing to compromise on the issue of settlements, had come to power . The new prime minister, Yitzhak Rabin, backed down from previous Israeli Prime Minister Shamir's positions by promising to curtail settlement growth. Israeli-American relations subsequently improved.
Muslim "Anger"
Interviewed by Amanpour, Gershom Gorenberg states: "You can't understand the anger of radical Islam unless you understand the conflict between you know, the Jews and the Palestinians." The false implication is that such "anger" is primarily rooted in the Israeli-Palestinian issue, disregarding the far greater forces driving radical Islam, including the titanic struggle between Shiites and Sunnis triggered in large measure by the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, the Khomenist revolution and the expansion of Saudi Wahabism, Saudi-sponsored mosques and schools built all over the globe inculcate vast numbers of Muslims with extreme, supremacist views.
As even the Ayatollah Khomeini put it, the United States was the "Great Satan," while Israel was only the "Small Satan."
And of course, the rise of the Internet and satellite TV has greatly amplified the false and misleading information put out by Muslim supremacist propagandists, inflaming the Muslim masses.
You can reach CNN's online comments page by clicking here.

Oy, Politics

Here are a couple of interesting things to think about:

That's not saying much, but just remember that as Prime Minister, he was worse than weak. Terrorism has never been worse. I wouldn't give him another chance!

Analysis: Barak has already shown he is tougher than Peretz

Unlike his predecessor, who supported restraint, Barak has allowed the IDF to take greater risks in Gaza.

Those Kadima MK's would do anything to keep the perks of power, and remember, I've been predicting that Bibi is trying to seduce them back into the Likud.

Exclusive: Rebel Kadima MKs plan split before war report

Likud tells them: "Come now, before it's too late"; Olmert ally: PM wrong in assuming he won't face political crisis until Winograd out.

CNN's G-d's Warriors on "youtube"

The show can be seen via the internet on your computer. Here are the links:

God's Jewish Warriors on CNN
Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkKhPLAyDsM
Part 2http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g47YAGodTs0
Part 3http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vN0S0FsE_Sw
Part 4http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPa9Q6YN9HU
Part 5 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1QKb7Sp40o
Part 6http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oAAmhFkZvkE
Part 7http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9HnqC541l0
Part 8http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdFir1MOVKg
Part 9http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIjUP7Xw_3Y
Part 10http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EsgrG-84nBo&NR=1

thank to Ellen

Just like in the movies!

I've written about the movie, The Siege, a few times. For me the most important of the many plots in it is that the Americans actually trained the Arab terrorists who are murdering innocent civilians in New York City.

And now here's an article from The New York Sun:

Fatah Militant: U.S. Training Was Key to Intifada's Success

hat tip: IMRA

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Let's UNinvite the UN!

The United Nations is doing its best to endanger Israel by sending a team to change the border with Lebanon.
The defense establishment is fiercely opposed to a United Nations initiative to redraw Israel's border with Lebanon and ultimately revoke Israeli sovereignty over the Shaba Farms.
Why doesn't Israel just tell them not to come?

“The rockets are continuing to fall on Sderot every day.”

Are you surprised?

You shouldn't be. At no point did the Arabs ruling in Gush Katif and Gaza ever decide to stop attacking Israel.
Most of the media here is ignoring it, with quick, short reports, like this one in The Jerusalem Post:
Kassam damages factory near Sderot; no casualties

A Kassam rocket was fired at the western Negev from the northern Gaza Strip Tuesday night, landing in a factory outside Sderot.
There were no reports of casualties but the factory sustained damage.
Ynet generally goes into more detail, like here where it reports that residents are still in danger:
Parents in the city are continuing to voice their protest over the fact
that many educational institutions have not been fortified with only two weeks
remaining before the opening of the new school year.
Only four out of nine schools in Sderot have been completely fortified, despite an order by the High Court of Justice to complete the fortification of all schools in the town by the beginning of the school year.

As a result, many of Sderot’s children have not enrolled in the town’s schools due to the Qassam threat. (for complete article, click here)
Honestly, I can't imagine how a city can be protected against missiles.
Wouldn't it be more effective to destroy the terrorist bases?
And, of course, the international media is ignoring these attacks, so it's important to let people know.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Uniquely Israel!


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
This is your chance to produce a prize-winning short video, just one to two minutes, about something uniquely Israeli about living in Israel.
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Nefesh B'Nefesh wants your "movie!"
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
First prize will be $3,000 and 2nd prize will be $1,000, (USD.)
That sure buys a lot of felafel!
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Video submissions must be received at the Nefesh B'Nefesh office at Beit Ofer, 5 Nachum Hefzadi Street, Jerusalem, 95484, Israel in DVD or mini-DVD tape format by no later than 5:00pm, Monday 08 October, 2007.
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
For more information, click Uniquely Israel!
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


by Norman Cohen (Aug. 2007)
Adapted from an article by David Jacobson (June 2001)
"When Palestine Meant Israel"
Biblical Archaeology Society, Online Archive Search

The Greek word for a "wrestler" is paleistes.
You can look it up.

Philistines are believed to have come from a region of early Greece (Ionia, Yavan in Hebrew), probably the Isle of Crete, and were named for their favorite sport which was wrestling:
the paleistes people, p'lishtim in Hebrew.

When English spells an "f"- sound or a related "p"-sound with "ph", you can tell that it is of Greek origin.
We see how "f" and "p" are linguistically related in Hebrew, because the letter looks the same for both .... "p" is represented as a hard "f".
When you lose your teeth, your attempt to say an "f" will come out as a "p".

The Philistines lived in the Mediterranean coastal region of Israel and eventually died out.

Centuries later, The Greeks came and occupied the land.
Wrestling was still a favorite sport of the Greeks.
Noting that the Jewish people called themselves "Yisrael", and learning what it meant in Hebrew ... "one who wrestles with G-d" ... they resorted to their Greek and referred to the Jews as paleistes people.

But, unlike the Philistines, the Jews occupied all of the land of Israel --including deep into the interior -- and this was centuries after the time of the Philistines.

So the reference to the Jews as paleistes people, people who wrestled with G-d, could not have been a reference to Philistines.
But the root word was the same.

Greek was for the Jews, in those days, like the Yiddish of the times.
Also Aramaic, but that's another story.
So Jews also made reference to themselves as paleistes in speaking their Greek.

We still have many Jewish residuals from the Greek experience.
For example, the name Kalman and its derivatives as both a family name and a given name evolved from the Greek Kalonymos .... "a good name" .... shem tov in Hebrew.

Next came the Romans.
The Romans formally named the land "Palaestina" in a Latinized version of the Greek for "land of the wrestlers".

Some scholars believe that this was done as a put-down, an insult, after the Bar-Kochba revolt. Rome wanted to show the pesky Jews that they were under Roman control. Keeping the Jewish name "Judaea" might be interpreted as acknowledging Jewish aspirations for independence.

Jews were wrestling with Rome as well as with G-d.
Scholars believe that the way the Jews kept the Roman legions busy to put down insurrections on the "eastern front" of the Roman Empire contributed to the eventual fall of Rome.

"Palestine" is the Anglicized version of Palaestina.

Thus "Palestine" and "Philistine" came from the same Greek root, but one did not follow from the other.

Palestine was not named for the Philistine people; it was named for the Jews who were also "wrestlers".

And so, of course, the original "Palestinians" were and are the Jews.
Yisrael ----- The people who wrestle with G-d.

Norman Cohen
Los Angeles

Monday, August 20, 2007

Shemitta Wars -- Major Battle

Shemitta is not my favorite year in the Jewish cycle of things. There are too many "options," and few people accept the others' as in "let's agree to disagree." It's more like: "If you don't buy according to my psak, Rabbinical decision, I won't eat your food.

Over the years few and fewer rabbis have been willing to publicly declare that they agreed with "Hetter Mechira," when the farmland is "sold," like chametz on Pesach to a non-Jew.

Arabs and food importers make lots of money from the fact that many Torah-observant Jews won't eat the produce of the "sold" fields. This year there will be more "Otzar Beit Din" produce.

But now some of the rabbis are speaking up in favor of Hetter Mechira. One of the rabbis is Rabbi Aviner of Beit El.

In response to those who ask, "Our agriculture is not really that important anyway. What would be so terrible if Jewish agriculture would take a year off?", Rabbi Shlomo Aviner, head of Yeshivat Ateret Cohanim in Jerusalem's Old City, writes:

To whom is our agriculture not that important - to the consumer, or to the farmer whose staff of support you would like to break? And it's not only an issue for this coming year, but in general: If he stops for a full year, others from outside Israel will take his place in the world market. We sell Biblically-forbidden chametz before Pesach in order to save a few boxes of food; we can certainly do so for the Shemittah year. For we are not forcing anyone to use the heter, but just those who wish to. And of course, no one can sell the land himself, but must do so only via the Chief Rabbinate...

The fact that we can import food does not make our agriculture not important. A country must never allow itself to be dependent on others for food, because then it can be liquidated from without. Even the liberal-capitalistic US supports its agriculture in various ways... And regarding the Torah's command to be 'heroic' in observing the Shemittah, this applies to the farmer, not to the consumer who buys foreign produce [and therefore there is no 'heroism' involved in not buying heter produce].

I guess the world's ordinary people aren't so dumb

A recent poll shows that less than one percent of the people in Europe think that Israel is a danger to the world. (hat tip IMRA)

Q1660_1 "Which one, if any, of the following countries do you think is the
greatest threat to global stability?"
Base: All EU adults in five countries and in the U.S.

Great Britain
28% US
13% China
12% Iran
11% Iraq
12% N Korea
11% Russia
* SaudiArabia
* Israel

28% US
17% China
20% Iran
16% Iraq
7% N Korea
4% Russia
- SaudiArabia
* Israel

23% US
23% China
22% Iran
17% Iraq
3% N Korea
2% Russia
* SaudiArabia
* Israel

29% US
16% China
14% Iran
17% Iraq
8% N Korea
6% Russia
* Israel

14% US
16% China
22% Iran
14% Iraq
22% N Korea
2% Russia
1% SaudiArabia
* Israel

*Less Than 0.5%
"-" Not Applicable

Of course the international media and diplomats keep trying to brainwash us all to think otherwise, like the quotation by Carter used in the CNN program blaming the "settlements" for preventing peace.

Still Camping Out in Downtown Jerusalem

That homeless group is still camping out in downtown Jerusalem.

When I passed by there was a photographer, with a camera much bigger than mine, taking pictures.

I don't hear anything on the news about it, but I also don't hear too much news.

School resumes next week, and there are kids out there by the tents.

Does anyone know more about that homeless group?

Political Education Minister

Extreme Left Wing Yuli Tamir has a mission, an agenda, and she's unabashedly using her power as Israel's Minister of Education to accomplish it.

Her latest target is the Sherut Le'umi, National Service Program. Most religious girls serve in it instead of serving in the army.

My three daughters each served two full years helping in education and absorbing new immigrants. My eldest worked in Kiryat Shemoneh, spending most of her time in an elementary school, assisting the teachers in the classroom. My second daughter, stationed in Haifa, helped new immigrants from the former USSR pass their "bagrut," national high school finals, teaching them Hebrew, English and all the other subjects. My youngest daughter, also in Haifa, worked with immigrants from Ethiopia and even spent time in the "Compound" in Addis twice, lecturing about Israel and Judaism in Amharit.

Tamir doesn't want the religious girls in the classrooms. She's cutting the budgets and giving money to the Arab sector.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

She may be smart and pretty, but she's not perfect.

Of course, nobody really is perfect.

I'm referring to the Jerusalem Post's Caroline Glick. Read Carl's excellent post:
(Mis)Placing her hopes on Netanyahu

"The Impossible Dream," Israel Zwick's version

Think what you want about me, but one of my great literary heroes is none other than the idealistic Don Qixote, Man of La Mancha, and I just adore the music from the Broadway show and subsequent film.
Israel Zwick did a great job in his very serious "parody," The Impossible Dream.
To give you just a "taste" of it, here's the theme song:
Rebbe of the Menchen
Adapted from “Man of La Mancha”
Lyrics by Joe Darion, Music by Mitch Leigh

Hear me now, Oh thou
bleak and unbearable world
Thou art based and debauched as can be
And a knight with his banners all bravely unfurled
Now hurls down his gauntlet to thee!

I am I, Dovid Chaim, the Rebbe of the Menchen
Destroyer of evil am I
I will march to the sound of the Shofars of glory
Forever to conquer or die.

Hear me heathens, and wizards and serpents of sin
All your dastardly doings are past
For a holy endeavor is now to begin
And virtue shall triumph at last!

I am I, Dovid Chaim, the Rebbe of the Menchen,
My destiny calls and I go
And the wild winds of fortune
will carry me onward
Oh whither so ever they blow
Whither so ever they blow
Onward to glory I go.

CNN's G-d's Warriors

More and more of CNN's upcoming series "G-d's Warriors" is beginning to be available on the internet.

We don't get CNN on our TV, so I won't be able to see the entire production. If you can, please report on how it turns out.

I got a kick out of the early promotional material which showed one Jew, verses the masses of Arabs. Do they see us as David vs Goliath, or some monster with super powers?

Of course it's a "given" that it won't be pro-Jewish rights to Eretz Yisrael. One of the promotional pieces has Jimmy Carter saying that the "settlements" are preventing peace. But I was pleasantly surprised by one of the sections, now available online, about Hebron.

What do you think?

Saturday, August 18, 2007

American Friends of Hatikvah


Dr. Arieh Eldad is Hatikvah

Please join Dr. Eldad for a special reception
Sunday, August 26, 2007 4:00 p.m.
“To bring us hope”
Private home in Woodland Hills, California
(location and directions will be provided with RSVP)

If you are interested in making a difference in Israel during this particularly dangerous time, we invite you to this exclusive event to support the strong leadership Israel so desperately needs.

Dr. Arieh Eldad, a member of the Knesset, is an M.D. specializing in the treatment of burn victims, a Brigadier-General in the Israel Defense Forces (Reserves), for 25 years and has been the chief medical officer and senior commander of the IDF Medical Corps.

Dr. Eldad is one of the few leaders who had the foresight and courage to oppose the forced evacuation of Gaza in 2005. He is a forceful advocate of a strong Israel, and recognizes that the first priority of a government is to provide for the safety of its citizens. His integrity is without question and believes that eliminating corruption in the Israeli government is an urgent priority. Dr. Eldad has the strength to resist the pressure on Israel to surrender territory to allow for the formation of a Palestinian terrorist state.

Hors d'oeuvre and wine reception hosted by Steven Goldberg, Esq.Catered by BBC Cafי (Bistro Baguette Cafe)

Shifra's in the Jerusalem Post

Shifra Shomron, who sometimes posts to this blog, is featured in the Jerusalem Post!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Have you heard any security warnings not to visit Europe?

This morning, my husband was supposed to host a US Consular official. Honestly, I was relieved when the visit was cancelled. The house is a mess, and I wouldn't have had been ready by the appointed time of 11am.

It was cancelled, because of security alerts. OK?

Now I've been taking a quick pre-Shabbat look at the headlines:
Gadhafi's son: Terrorists will hit Europe again

I wonder if the American officials are telling American tourists to return home or evacuating their families...