Hamas War

Friday, July 31, 2009

Swearing On The Bible

It's an old American custom. When one wants to prove that he or she won't be lying, a Bible is taken out, and the person swears on it.

This is a very common and accepted and required custom. Christians swear on the Jewish Bible and their additional writings.

Jews are allowed to just use the original Bible. Some people use family Bibles. Yes, even George Washington swore on a Bible over two hundred years ago.

Two hundred years may seem like a long time ago, but it's nothing compared to Jewish History.

Jewish History, yes, the history written in that Bible they all swear they'll live by.

The Story of Shiloh and the Jewish Nation are in the Bible, yes that book that smiling Michelle Obama is holding while her husband, Barack Hussein Obama places one hand on, that same Bible, and raises his other and promises, swears on the Bible to be a good President of the United States of America.

Now for a small question, a minor detail:
If he makes demands that deny the validity of the Bible, what does that do to the legitimacy of his presidency?

Just one of my dumb questions. Food for thought.

Shabbat Shalom

They Can't Even Agree On The Beer

United States President Barack Obama invited the warring policeman and professor for some unifying beer on the White House lawn. All four attendees, including Vice President Biden (who had a non-alcoholic version,) ordered different beers.

"For the record, it was Bud Light for Obama, Sam Adams Light for Gates, Blue Moon for Crowley and nonalcoholic Buckler for Biden."

I'm no beer maiven, barely knowing the difference between the light and dark colors, so I'm lost when it comes to all this. If I'm not mistaken, the "light" referred to in Obama's and Gates's beers has nothing to do with color. I guess beer is the "new wine."

The bottom line here is that it takes more than a round of beer to unify Black and White (and Yellow, Red and mixed) in America.

A "good mug of beer" means different things to different people. The spin on their meeting was positive, of course, but its real aim was making Obama look better.

Celebrating On Tisha (the 9th of) Av

When I attended the Study Day about Har HaBayit, The Temple Mount, organized by National Union MK Dr. Michael Ben Ari, one of the things mentioned was that on Tisha B'Av there would be a festive inauguration of the building of the Temple Altar in Mitzpeh Yericho.

We didn't attend it but, there's a report here.

As we had been reminded by most of the speakers on Monday, the Temple Mount is still in our hands, regardless of the mistaken policies of the Israeli Governments during the past forty-two years.

It is up to us to build the Bait HaMikdash, The Holy Temple.

Sitting Shiva Once Again

It's that time of year again. Every time the Tisha B'av season rolls around, I feel my chest tighten up. Both our holy Temples were destroyed on that date, but sadly, I'm not on a spiritual level to feel this in any but an abstruse sense. The expulsion of our brothers and sisters from Gush Katif, on the other hand, seared my heart and scorched my soul.

Only one who has sat shiva can fully relate to what I am writing. Only if you have buried a loved one can you comprehend the most heartbreaking despair that exists in our world. That despair revisited my life for a second time four years ago. I can say without hesitance, that had I been one of the brave Jews forcibly evicted back then, I believe today I'd be in a lock-down ward in a psychiatric hospital somewhere.

I had already decided to make aliya at age nine, six years before I became religious thanks to my grandparents. (They themselves made aliya, but returned to the USA because they couldn't abide living so far from their children.) They bombarded their grandchildren with stories, postcards, and books about Israel throughout the year. Aged nine, I told my parents,"When I finish college, I am going to live in Israel." My parents were certain it was a phase that would pass. Thankfully it was not.

In the months leading up to the Gerush I participated in all the anti-expulsion demonstrations. Even though a alumni of the famed black hat Ponevitch Yeshiva, my husband asked me, "What will we say after 120 when we are asked in Shamayim what did we do for Eretz Yisrael??" I went to demonstrate; he sat and learned praying his zechuyot would help strengthen the fight to keep Gush Katif ours. Sadly, this was not standard practice for people in neighboorhoods such as mine. Tehillim for the Gush, yes; demonstrations, no.

The week following Tisha B'av was one of the most traumatic in my life. On the radio I heard distraught cries of many of my friends. For, the Ulpana where I teach has many teachers formerly from the Gush Katif settlements. The voices from the radio during those days will never be forgotten.

Aderet, an English speaker, moved to a settlement from Sederot two years before the expulsion. One grandmother was not told of her move; the other gave her a "shachpatz" (bulletproof vest) for her birthday!!!I recall hearing her cries as she was forcibly removed from her home in Morag.

Miriam and Shabtai Namburg were evicted from Yamit years ago before their second expulsion. Rav Shabtai was a Ram in Yeshivat Yamit. This couple ran an unofficial "Yad Eliezer," distributing cash and food to the needy for many years.

Smadar and her dear husband, Rav Gabi Kadosh lived through many trials during their lives while at Ganei Tal. Rav Gabi picked up a hitchhiker once who was shot dead from point blank range. How calmly the commentator spoke, "The Rav of Ganei Tal is now being led from his home...."

Bat Oren Mazaki recieved a troubling phone call while on our Ulpana's school trip one spring. "Don't worry," (When someone says this you know you have reason to worry!)"but a patzmar mortar landed in your living room. Your children were there but Boruch Hashem, nobody was hurt." What took the cake was that after this attack on his way home from work, her husband's station wagon took a direct hit through its back window. Mercifully, the mortar lodged in the back of the driver's seat without exploding.

One of the things I could not accept at that time was the apathy of many people in our country. I would speak to folks here in Netivot begging them to join me at rallies. "Even if you are not pro-settler," I would argue, "be selfish! Think logically: if these brave people are no longer there in the Gush WE in Netivot will sustain rocket attacks." People looked at me as if I was crazy! I hate saying, "...told you so!"

So tonight, tired from the fast I brace myself emotionally for a difficult week. A week steeped in memories made even more poignant when I see the sad situation of so many of these dauntless settlers. Unemployed, many have used much of their meager compensation payments to keep food on their tables. Compenation settlemnets? What a joke- as if anything physical could possibly compensate them for the horror they endured!

Let us pray as one that next year at this hour we'll be drunk with elation. Dancing, leaping and singing in ecstasy at the Kotel Ha'maaravi with the coming of Mosiach, no longer in fear of yet another expulsion led by those blind with self-importance and drunk with narcissism.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

"Electric" Words Have Power, Too

According to Jewish Law, all of our words have power. We have to be very careful about what we say about others. Even "gossiping" nice things are forbidden.

The internet, blogging, facebook, twitter etc are now proving examples of how careless words prove expensive.

A woman is being sued after twittering something nasty about her landlord. Her twitter account is "public," and apparently the company she rents from has a "search" which discovered the mention.

Facebook isn't any safer (more private.)

"Lee Landor, a shoot-from-the-lip aide to Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, was booted over her commentary on the arrest of black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates." (complete article)

She said:
"I get it -- white men have dominated for hundreds of years and there's a lot of anger there. But HOW MUCH MORE can the white people do to correct past injustices of their ancestors?"

Not only is "big brother" listening. Anyone can tune in.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

We Are Doing It!

In the face of the world’s mesmerized fascination with the power of the marching army of the Islamic Uma, the Nation of Islam, there is only one true adversary -- the Torah. The Christian and post-Christian world, which denies nationalism as a legitimate power, has disqualified itself from the struggle. It will continue to turn the other cheek and avoid resisting evil. Indeed, the post-Christian, post-modern, relativistic West denies the existence of evil. They have their truth and we have ours, and who is to say which is better? Chas v’shalom, G-d forbid.
Torat Chutz L’Aretz, the Torah of the Jewish people in exile, is incomplete because it has lacks the national aspect of the Torah. The Jewish people and its Torah suffered from two millennia of amputation of the national aspect of Judaism in order to survive in other people’s lands.
B'nai Akiva, the world religious Zionist youth movement, is at the forefront of developing the connection of young Jews to Torah and the Land of Israel. For many years groups of youth came from the Diaspora in a program called Hachshara to spend a year on a religious kibbutz in Israel to enhance this connection. Over the years the variety of year-in-Israel options for religious Zionist youth has increased. A recent reorganization of the Hachshara program has all of the participants spending two months of the year program in intensive Torah study. Since the level of background and commitment of the various participants is not compatible with placement in existing Israeli yeshivot, a team of scholars led by Rabbi Nachum Neria built a tailor-made program to work with these groups. They have located the program in a building in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Katamon, where it also serves as a focus for Torah activity in the community.
Rav Nachum Neria is a son of Rav Moshe Zvi Neria zt”l, a direct disciple of the first Chief Rabbi of Eretz Yisrael, Rabbi A. Y, Hacohen Kook zt”l. Rav M. Z. Neria was the founder of the first Yeshivat Bnai Akiva in Kfar Haroeh. As such he was involved in the creation of the prototype of Religious Zionist Yeshiva high school education in Israel. Rav Nachum spent many years as a Ram (teaching rabbi) in Yeshivat Hakotel. A true son of his illustrious father, he eats, breathes and lives Torah education.
The yeshiva is a living, breathing laboratory of developing tools for Religious Zionist outreach in Hebrew, English and Spanish. The Israelis develop a heightened appreciation of the problems of Jewish youth in the Diaspora, while the young men from America, Europe and the Southern Hemisphere develop close relationships with the Jews of Eretz Yisrael. I firmly believe that the day is coming when there will be a mass aliya of Jews from the western world, and sooner than we all think! When it comes there will be large numbers of Jews who will have a lot to learn and fast. At that time the tools and skills developed here and the young people who have passed through these portals will be instrumental in dealing with what would otherwise be a major crisis in Israel. Until that day these fine Jews are doing their work little by little and Yiddel by Yiddel.

"Aichah!" Why Is It...?

While our pre-Tisha B'Av meal is cooking on the stove, the words I heard in the Knesset two day ago, at MK Dr. Michael Ben-Ari's seminar about Har HaBayit (the Temple Mount) are "cooking" in my mind.

This morning I read something from Aish.com which raised the flame, or made it more like a "pressure cooker."

The prophet describes all of the suffering that befell the Jewish people at the time of the destruction of the Temple. "Eichah! How is it possible? The proud majestic city of Jerusalem, in ruins! Her inhabitants in exile! Her enemies rejoicing!"
The sages point out the similarity of the word "Eichah" (How!) and the word "Ayecha?" in Genesis when God asks "Where are you, Adam?" The answer to Jeremiah's question - How did it happen? - is that the Jewish people disregarded the Almighty, just as Adam did in the Garden of Eden
For years it has been bothering me that we, as a nation, people, religion, failed to do something crucially important as the 1967 Six Days War ended. G-d performed a miracle for us on the level, size of a Biblical miracle and we have been rejecting it.

The miracle is two-fold, and I'm using the present tense, because it still holds, bli eyin haraa, (keep away the evil eye.)

One is that the State of Israel, the first Jewish State in two thousand years survived the well-planned military onslaught from the north, south and west, which aimed to literally throw us into the sea. When the Jewish People left Egypt, G-d had to make miraculous passages through the water. In 1967, we stayed on dry ground.

The second miracle is the gift of the HolyLand, Judea, Samaria, Gaza, Sinai, Jordan Valley, Golan and the missing parts of Jerusalem including the Temple Mount.

One of the speakers on Monday, (sorry, but I didn't take detailed enough notes,) reminded us that although two hours after we, with the help of G-d, liberated the Temple Mount government ministers decided to give the keys to the Wakf, the Temple Mount is still in our hands. Not all is lost. We can fix it. We can fix it if we want to.

Judea and Samaria, where most of our Biblical History took place are also still in our hands.

"Eichah! How is it possible?" How is it possible that Jewish leaders, rabbis from all over the world haven't returned home and settled our precious land?

"Eichah! How is it possible?" How is it possible that we haven't built our Holy Temple in the forty-two (42) years since Har HaBayit b'yadeinu, The Temple Mount is in our hands?

Remnants of the Inquisition

This week my local Movie Club has concentrated on the Anousim, aka Marrano Jews, the descendants of Jews forced to convert and lead double-lives as Catholics out of the home and Jews in the privacy of their home and family.

A member of the club borrowed a movie from the Van Leer Institute. I think it's this one, The Last of the Marranos.

It tells about residents of a village in the Portuguese mountains, in which lives a clan of Jews. The Jewish customs had been passed from generation to generation, mother to daughter for five hundred (500) years.

We had the advantage of getting added explanations from our neighbor, Rabbi Nissan Ben Avraham, who grew up in Majorca and is descended from his father's side, from Anousim. When he discovered that as a child, he became interested in Judaism, moved to Israel, converted, married and moved to Shiloh. He is a world renown expert in the history of the Anousim/Marranos.

Even in recent years, when there's no legal problem about living as Jews, out in the open, in public, you can see the fear in this community. The movie was filmed twenty-five years ago, when there was still isolation. I wonder how the younger generation identifies with their special customs and history.

Rabbi Nissan told us that "normative," standard Judaism was brought to the community, but it hasn't been fully accepted. The men are somewhat interested, but not the women. In their own version of Judaism, the women have been the Jewish leaders, and the men would go out in general society. I don't think that the Jews who came to the village understood that the key was winning over the women.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Reporters are People, Too

Growing up, I didn't know anyone in the media, politics, famous etc. We were very ordinary people, I guess. And the United States is a big place.

Israel is something else. When my kids were little, they knew, then Knesset Member Geula Cohen and other public figures like family members. When I was pregnant with our firstborn, I noticed then Opposition Leader and MK Menachem Begin when we were meeting someone in a hotel lobby. We walked over to pay our respects, and as soon as he heard my husband's name, he got all excited. He had recently been in New York, and because of a taxi strike a friend of ours had been appointed his driver and made a request:

"You're bound to meet my friend, Winkie, in Israel. When you do, please send my regards."

We used to be "the (sic) settler family" for journalists to meet, so our kids learned public and media relations from a very young age.

Why all the reminisces? A New York Times byline has just come to life for me. Sheryl Gay Stolberg wrote a personal piece with her daughter, Olivia Robinson, because the fourteen year old ended up spending most of her study trip to China in the hospital, thanks to swine flu.

The article definitely puts a very human slant to the epidemic.

Vigil, Anyone?

I'm extremely heartened by the response to my post, I'm Not Going To Be At That Demonstration.

Many caring and thinking and dedicated Jews, Israelis and righteous gentiles agree that Israel is responsible for its own security and independence. The problems and the source of our problems are neither Obama, the United States, Europe nor the United Nations.

Our Israeli politicians must cease their worship of foreign leaders. It doesn't matter what an American President says or demands. We're wearing the "ruby slippers" and we must say "no." The power, the force is with us. We just have to recognize it and activate it.

We don't need one-time large or even massive demonstrations. I picture small vigils, of an hour or so, for two or more people at a time. The location should be The Israeli Prime Minister's Residence. A small demonstration/vigil does not need a police permit, just a clearly written sign or two. It should be in English and Hebrew and any other languages.

All we are saying is:

Bibi: Israel is an Independent Country
Bibi: Do What's Best For Israel and Israel Only
Bibi: Don't Take Orders From Foreign Leaders

I'd suggest always photographing the vigils and sending out the pictures and reports. Please contact me if you're interested in this sort of protest. shilohmuse at gmail dot com Thank you

Monday, July 27, 2009

A Day At The Knesset

Today my husband and I attended an event at the Knesset. He managed to get a better entry pass and was able to take pictures at the event.

I had to make do with photographing only from the outside.

We attended a very interesting series of talks about Har HaBayit, The Temple Mount and Israel's sovereignty.

It was organized by MK Dr. Michael Ben Ari of the Ichud Le'umi, National Union Party.

I'm too tired at the moment to write about it in any detail, but I must say that it was the perfect way to spend one of the days leading to Tisha B'Av when we are commanded to mourn not only the destruction of our Beit HaMikdash, Holy Temple, but to also mourn the fact that although The Temple Mount has been in the possession of The State of Israel for forty two years, since it was liberated during the 1967 Six Days War, we have yet to rebuild it. Not only haven't we rebuilt it, but the government is going against official laws by forbidding Jewish Prayer in the Holy Site.

Israel Should Stop Taking American Support For Granted

American Congressmen/women are visiting Gaza.

The bottom line is that:
America will take care of America. The "sentiment" for Israel is a delusion blinding Jews in the states and Israel from the truth.

Yisrael b'tach b'Hashem!
Israel, trust G-d, and only G-d!

Short Note About U.S. "Aid" to Israel

Some people have asked me what Israel would do without American "aid."

As you know, I'm a former English teacher, and there must be a very good reason for me to put quotation marks around the word, "aid."

That's because the real beneficiary is the United States, not Israel. This so-called "aid" is just to beef up the American economy. Israel gets shopping coupons, like those "gift certificates" sent out by fancy stores offering a $10- free purchase in a store that sells nothing for under $25.

Other "aid" consists of what gets cleaned out of American surplus storage.

Israel would have a healthier economy if we produced our own weapons. Then we could market them sans American vetoes.

The American economy is in very bad shape. Industry and production are down. Unemployment and foreclosers are up.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

I'm Not Going To Be At That Demonstration

I've been asked by a number of people if I'll be at that demonstration against United States interference in Israeli affairs. No, I won't be there.

It's not that I'm in favor of America butting in, giving us orders. G-d forbid.

Simply, I don't put the blame on America. Israel just has to say:
"Mind your own business!"
"We're an independent country and don't need your string-tied help!"

Tell the American envoys, ministers, ambassadors etc that we don't have time to talk.

I'm willing to demonstrate by the Israeli Prime Minister's Residence and remind him that he was empowered (there's no direct election for PM) by the Israeli citizens to be Israel's Prime Minister, not Obama's "poodle."

Especially having been raised and educated in the United States, I have no doubt, no doubt at all that America would cut out the pressure if we sent them packing. The American government has enough trouble with a sinking economy, health care issues and Iraq. They wouldn't fight us if they saw they would lose.

Our security is up to us! When we do the right thing, G-d will give us more strength. If we act weak and tired, it will be a self-fulfilling prophesy.

We’ve got mail – from missionary Shani Ferguson

Posted by Jewish Israel

Last Friday, Jewish Israel received an email response from Shani Sorko Ram Ferguson of yeshuaisrael.com in reaction to our posting, “The Anti-Semitic "Messianic" Apple doesn’t Fall Far from the Tree. In that posting we link to an excerpt of one of Shani’s video blog postings which smears Orthodox Jewry.

Shani is the daughter of Tel Aviv missionaries Ari and Shira Sorko Ram of Maoz Israel, and the granddaughter of the late Pentecostal evangelist leader, Gordon Lindsay of Christ for the Nations.

You can read what Shani wrote to us, followed by Jewish Israel’s response....more

The United States Is Butting In Again

U.S. President Barack Hussein Obama has sent his envoy George Mitchell to Syria. They're trying to cook up a deal which would award them with a "Peace Prize."

I'm going to ask you something:
Since when has the United States made the right
decision about world peace?

They royally flubbed it in Vietnam, and Iraq is one big mess. All of the Israel plus "peace plans," they've encouraged/brokered, have just caused us more war, terrorism, death and destruction. So, why would anybody in their right mind listen to the United States?

Obama is also sending his Secretary of Defense Gates to Israel, which has Iran all riled up.

Actually, whatever the United States does and says, Israel ends up on the short end.

And, just in case you're wondering, I'm not going to any of the "U.S. butt out" demonstrations, because the real solution isn't from the United States.

Our problem is that successive Israeli Governments have been and continue to listen to and even obey the United States.

Israel must take full responsibility for its independence and stop this terribly dangerous policy of acting like we owe something to other countries!!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Supply and Demand, Human/Civil Rights

The world practices a very tyrannical form of hypocrisy when it comes to Jews. Of course, the major practitioners deny any anti-Semitic overtones, but "a rose is a rose" and anti-Semitism is still anti-Semitism no matter how you window dress it. That includes when it's practiced by Jews.

How anyone who claims to be liberal, democrat (small "d,") pro civil rights etc can be in favor of forced apartheid to create judenrein territory (Jews out/forbidden) is beyond my simple intelligence.

There's a town in California, United States, named Shiloh. It would be illegal to ban Jews from buying land, building homes etc. The basis for that name is the Shiloh where I live, in the Biblical HolyLand.

Prior to the establishment of the State of Israel, the Zionist leaders had no problem defying the British Mandate rulers building Jewish communities wherever they felt it important.

There's a waiting list for homes in Shiloh, especially for small rentals for young couples. Shiloh is an easy commute to most of the country, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and the Jordan Valley.

Once people are more established, they're happy to buy new homes. And yes, as you can see, we're building.

We don't need anyone's approval!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Real Prayers, Fake War

Yesterday was Rosh Chodesh Menachem-Av, and an international group of us went to pray at Tel Shiloh. We were a few thousand years too late to pray with Chana, of Bible fame, but we could feel the same magic, the same spirit and smell remnants of the Ketoret which burnt for almost four hundred years in the Mishkan, the Tabernacle at Shiloh.

To our surprise we came upon some young campers, all geared for "paintball," a fake war game.

It may seem absurd to some, but for us and the Jewish children growing up here, Shiloh is a real home, vibrant and dynamic. We don't live in some sort of petrified museum.

Our children run among the same hills as our ancestors. The path that Yosef took on his way to his brothers or David to his are the childhood geography of a new generation of Jews.

G-d gave us this Land for living, not to give away.

We have Women's Prayers every Rosh Chodesh, the beginning of the Jewish Month. Contact shilohmuse@gmail.com for details.

For tourist information about Tel Shiloh, either email telshilo@gmail.com or call 02-994-4019.

A Legend Visits Shiloh

For those of us who consider watching the final round of the International Jewish Youth Bible Contest a highlight of Yom Ha'Atzma'ut, Israel's Independence Day, the year a blind boy from Netivot won was certainly one of the most thrilling. But I don't remember anyone mentioning that without his twin hearing aids, he couldn't hear a thing, because he's deaf, too.

Last night, Avichai Shelli came to Shiloh and told his story.

It's an amazing story of perseverance and faith. Avichai was born perfectly healthy with all his faculties and senses. He lost his hearing from an illness and the medication prescribed to save his life, and he became blind as the result of six unrelated accidents.
Avichai held the attention of the youth and adults in the audience as he told of his attempts to win the Bible contest, starting in his first year of high school. Each year he progressed but just missed getting into the next stage. He told his story with wry humor. Even though we all knew that he'd win in the end, there was still suspense considering all the obstacles in his way.
His parents raised him to be strong and not consider himself handicapped. They fought the system, refusing to allow him to be shunted into any Special Education facility. When the Ministry of Education "experts" refused him transportation to the regular school as sanctions against his parents' refusal to enroll him in special ed, the parents took him to school themselves and made sure he got the help he needed. Eventually, the school system gave in when they saw that he was getting good grades.
And when Avichai decided that "three strikes were out," and he wasn't going to try to win the Bible Contest a fourth time, his parents then egged him on until he was willing to try just one more time. Yes, the rest is history.
Avichai also took on the army and got his way serving three years in Modi'in, Information. Then he decided to be a stock broker and passed those tests, too. Now he's studying law and refuses to tell what his next goal is. I guess it's either being a judge or a politician.
Good Luck! No doubt he'll succeed.

Peace, Not On The Menu

Hat tip: IMRA

Fatah, considered the "moderate sic Palestinians," have no plans for recognizing Israel.

"We will maintain the resistance option in all its forms and we will not recognize Israel," senior Fatah official Rafik al-Natsheh said. "Not only don't we demand that anyone recognize Israel; we don't recognize Israel ourselves. However, the Palestinian Authority government is required to do it, or else it will not be able to serve the Palestinian people."

There's nothing vague or subtle. You can't make peace with people like that. The problem is with the Arabs, not with us Israelis. Israel is not at war, but the Arabs are.

Actually we'd have peace if we'd only fight to the finish and defeat the terrorists. You can't have peace with people who don't recognize your right to exist and live in freedom and security.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Two "Sides" of Jerusalem

I took these pictures the other day in Jerusalem.

Jerusalem Israel

Jerusalem Israel

There's a lot of construction at the Israel Museum. I get it from a very good source that the newly enlarged and renovated museum, scheduled to re-open to the public next May, on Jerusalem Day, will be much easier to access for all. In the meantime, there are still exhibits, changed every few months, and of course there's the Billy Rose Sculpture Garden, Shrine of the Book and the Model of the Old Jerusalem from Temple times.


Jerusalem Israel

Jerusalem Israel

Downtown Jerusalem gives me views and scenes to rival anything I find in the museum!

Summer in Shiloh

There's plenty going on in Shiloh. I wonder in what category of "natural growth" we should put this "baby."

Shiloh Israel

Our very crowded neighborhood synagogue is being renovated and expanded.

Shiloh Israel

And of course, children play...

Shiloh Israel

Shiloh Israel

Bad messianic apples or rotten evangelical roots?

Posted by Jewish Israel

Anti-Semitic "Messianic" Apple doesn’t Fall Far from the Tree

Christian Missionaries Ari and Shira (Carole Lindsay) Sorko Ram of MaozIsrael Ministries target Jews for conversion and propagate “messianic judaism” in Israel. They enjoy support and endorsements from the biggest names in the "Christian Zionist” world - because they have yichus.

Writing and vlogging anti-Semitic ravings and accusations against the Orthodox Community and Torah Judaism has become a family affair as Shani(Sorko Ram)Ferguson joins in the family plan “to help further the evangelistic thrust into Israel”. Does the Lindsay-Sorko Ram-Ferguson clan represent a few bad apples, or are they at the core of a tree that is rotten – all the way down to its very evangelical roots?...Jewish Israel investigates.

Batting for Jesus: Baptist Village update

Last week Jewish Israel reported on an overt and growing missionary presence at the Baptist Village, in Petach Tikva, in anticipation of the Maccabiah 2009 baseball and softball games. We have an important and disturbing update to that report.

[note: Jewish Israel in no way wants to put a damper on the Maccabiah games nor discourage participation in a great event and sporting opportunity for Jewish athletes, and for Israel. However, we do feel that ground rules and guidelines must be established in order to ensure that those with an evangelizing agenda do not have access to our youth and other vulnerable sectors of Jewish and Israeli society. Those affiliated with the Baptist Village and the Southern Baptist Convention make no bones about their missionary intentions and aspirations. To promote the Maccabiah games as a missionary opportunity for targeting Jews is inappropriate, shameless and makes a mockery of the Jewish state. Submit your protest to the proper authorities listed in the report]

Is Obama's Popularity Really Dropping?

No surprise that Rush says it is. Rush Limbaugh could never stomach the guy. It's a straight Right vs Left scene.

Early in Bill Clinton's presidency, Hillary ruined her credibility with a Health Care Reform package. Obama's attempt is, also, making him less popular.

In Israeli politics, Education reform knocked down Limor Livnat and Yuli Tamir. They both made similar mistakes, treating teachers like lazy factory workers, demanding more from teachers instead of looking carefully at curriculum, teaching methods etc.

American health care is the pits. It's expensive and complicated. Something must be done, but is the program Obama's staff concocted the solution? Will the American health care industry accept change?

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Why Aren't There International Complaints And Cries?

Jordan's King Abdullah is following his family's tradition of treating his fellow Arabs badly. His grandfather and afterwards his father, the smiley, friendly, westernized womanizer, Hussein did it, too.

What did they all do? And now Abdullah is taking it even further.

They wouldn't absorb the Arabs who had fled Israel during the War of Independence. Jordan led all other Arabs in establishing permanent refugee camps, supported by the United Nations.

And now, even the former refugees who have made new lives are being told to get ready to pack. They have to leave their Jordanian citizenship. Actually, it's worse. Jordan is stripping the "Palestinians" of their Jordanian citizenship.

Israel, from even the pre-state time has been absorbing hundreds and hundreds of thousands of Jews from North-Africa, Arab countries, Europe and North and South America.

The Hashemites who rule Jordan are foreigners. The British sent them there to the empty desert east of the Jordan. There had never been a separate independent country there. It had no tradition, no history, so it was easy to plunk an ambitious sheik and his clan.

Now the Hashemites are trying to do ethnic cleaning in Jordan. If it goes too far, Abdullah will have to divorce his wife...

Hard Sell At The Soft Ball Camp

Missionaries are batting for Jewish souls on the sports fields of the Yarkon Sports Complex which is inside the Baptist Village. They are being very upfront about their aim, and their aim is to convert as many Jews as possible to Christianity.

They're very excited by the opportunities the Maccabee games have given them, exposing more and more innocent Jews to their well-trained missionaries.


For more information and updates read Jewish Israel.

Kike Like Me

Yesterday, when I was visiting my sons' Jerusalem abode, I was shown the "trailer" of a movie which had impressed one of them, Kike Like Me.

He once saw it on Holocaust Day. Since then he found the trailer but not the movie. Kike Like Me is written, directed and produced by Canadian, Jamie Kastner.

It's a documentary, a serious one which uses the same basic structure, a series of interviews, Sacha Cohen employs, but this is a serious and definitely subtle movie.
Mr. Kastner shows that to be a Jew still matters in the 21st century, he added, even though “sometimes his glibness gets in the way” of making that point.
Mr. Kastner, however, was not so glib when asked what his road trip revealed.
“The conclusion, such as it is, is depressing, really,” he said. “You’re pinned down potentially to what your worst enemy says you are, given the current state of identity. You become heir to the Auschwitz nightmare or the kid on the street who says ‘dirty Jew.’” (complete article)

Now, I'm also curious to see it. Please be warned that the clip contains offensive visuals, just one short scene, obviously I have no control over it. I guess that means that the movie has more. Sorry

Monday, July 20, 2009

We Need "A Winston Churchill"

Why are Israelis (and Jews all over) so fearful of demanding victory over our enemies?

Yesterday's New York Times commemorated the anniversary of Churchill's great "V" for Victory campaign.

Mr. Churchill's message was as follows:

"The V sign is the symbol of the unconquerable will of the occupied territories and a portent of the fate awaiting Nazi tyranny. So long as the peoples continue to refuse all collaboration with the invader it is sure that his cause will perish and that Europe will be liberated."

We in Israel have a lot to learn!
The Arab terrorists who are attacking us, trying to destroy the State of Israel, are the same as those who attacked New York, 9-11. They are the ones endangering the entire world.
"This is not a question of fighting for Danzig or fighting for Poland. We are fighting to save the whole world from the pestilence of Nazi tyranny and in defense of all that is most sacred to man. This is no war of domination or imperial aggrandizement or material gain; no war to shut any country out of its sunlight and means of progress. It is a war, viewed in its inherent quality, to establish, on impregnable rocks, the rights of the individual, and it is a war to establish and revive the stature of man."

Just change a few words in Churchill's speech, and you can see that nothing's new. As a Jew and Israeli, I have no illusions about Churchill's war aim. It was not to save Jews, not at all. It was to protect Great Britain and free Europe from the Nazi regime:

"...we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight 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 the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a 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, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old." (complete speech)

Israel must defend itself, take off the gloves and stop looking over its shoulder to see who's behind us!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Remember The Alamo! Israeli Style

How about:
  • Remember Gush Katif!
  • Remember Chomesh!
  • Remember Kfar Darom!
  • Remember Neve Dekalim!
  • Remember Netzarim!
  • Remember what Moetzet YESHA did verses the promises they made to their public!

Cell Phone Menace

Israeli accident rates on the road would be a lot worse if Israelis weren't so gadget crazy. One life-saving gadget I see lots more in Israel than in the states is the automobile cell phone hookup.

Americans are discovering competition for drunk drivers as most dangerous. Those drivers trying to punch in numbers, text messages and drive simultaneously are a real danger.

For a while Israelis were buying phones with voice activated dialing. The phones are mounted, or attached to the front facing the driver. With voice activated phones, the driver doesn't even have to look at the phone. It's "trained" to recognize the owner's voice and automatically dial the phone or turn the call on/off.

Even without voice control, the phones are on loudspeaker, not hand held.

That's safer than when the driver turns his/her head to address someone in the back seat... We've all witnessed that dangerous act.

Roads are getting faster, and distractions are getting greater. We should all thank G-d when we arrive safely to our destinations!

That Doctored or Miss-identified Picture of Ofra in The Jerusalem Post

The settlement of Ofra with...

The settlement of Ofra with the outskirts of Ramallah in the background.
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski


I've written about this picture before.  My daughter lives in Ofra, and we pass Ofra when traveling to Jerusalem.  I can't see how this is an accurate picture.


The Jerusalem Post has used it to illustrate many articles, including one on the site right now.  First of all, Ofra is not next to Ramalla, not even close.


There are two other yishuvim much closer to Ramalla.  One is Beit El, north of Ramalla, which I know well.  It can't be Beit El.  Psagot is next to Ramalla, just east of it.  I'm not familiar enough with Psagot to identify it.


Whatever, that archives picture the Jerusalem Post keeps using is false, and I've blogged about it before and sent it around, and I can't understand why they haven't been sued.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Another Miscalculation by Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton's entire, long-planned presidential campaign was obsolete before it began. That's why she lost. And now it seems that her compensation is a rip-off, too. Being Secretary of State isn't all she was hoping for.

I'm no Hillary fan, but I'm of a similar generation, so I find observing her very interesting. As I've written before, she's an archaism mired in the Twentieth Century and has no idea how politics has changed.

Forget The Iron Dome! Stop The Attacks!!!

All this "Iron Dome" stuff is just typical of the pathetic, misguided ghetto mentality which dominates Israeli and Jewish socio-political-philosophy. An "Iron Dome" isn't the solution to the Arab attacks on southern Israel.

We have to destroy all the rocket launchers and their production sites. Otherwise their technology will continue to improve, and more and more of Israel will be vulnerable to attack by the Arab terrorists on our borders.

We must cease all support for increased Arab sovereignty (two state solution.) If things are bad now, they will only get worse if there's a sic "Palestinian" State. The Pseudistinians are a modern invention to destroy Israel. There never was such a people. They have no history. They were invented to counter the Balfour Declaration, which gave modern international diplomatic "rights" for a Jewish Homeland.

Actually, we never needed anyone's approval. The Jewish People and Nation long precede Great Britain. We won't have peace and quiet until we stop looking to the world for support!

Shabbat Shalom u'Mevorach
May You Have A Peaceful and Blessed Shabbat

Thursday, July 16, 2009

I Could Never Understand The Mentality

When I taught in our local elementary school, I couldn't fathom how the kids were allowed to run wild out in a berserk way every "hour" for their break. Lessons, in theory, lasted 45 minutes, but far less in practice.

I was the only teacher who arrived before the bell and waited, and waited and waited for all the kids to enter. The others, after hearing the bell, would begin gathering their books, bags and papers and then calmly saunter to the classroom.

The custom, I discovered, was for the kids to wait for the teacher and rise when he/she entered. That was a sign of respect. Then they had the lesson and as soon as the bell rang, they were out like a flash.

I don't remember this in the very early years of the school, when the classes were various caravans, shacks and other prefabricated structures. But by the time we had a real building, the kids couldn't wait to leave.

When I was a kid in New York City, we didn't have all those breaks. And nobody would dare run around the school building screaming.

Now, why am I reminded of the anarchy?

Yesterday, my friend's daughter drove me from their apartment to the corner of French Hill, Ramat Eshkol and the road to Mt. Scopus. We traveled on "Kvish Echad," Jerusalem's Highway #1, which borders a chareidi Jewish neighborhood and an Arab one. Traffic was all snarled on the side going to the Old City and the Jerusalem Municipality. Chareidim were out protesting.

They were in "pre-riot" mode. The rioters were further in the neighborhood, destroying and burning public property. Jerusalem's Mayor Nir Barkat decided that they shouldn't get any repairs, any services. He's right.

It doesn't matter how Hadassa Hospital and the police may have miss-handled the business with the mother who may be abusing her child, but burning garbage cans is not the way to react. Aren't there Halachot, Jewish Laws regulating how one is to treat public property? I have no doubt that those rioters are sinners. There's no excuse for such destructive behavior.

No, I don't live in a Chareidi community, nor is my school in that "stream."

But just like I wondered, when I'd see the kids running around all hyper, why aren't they playing organized games? They could use up energy, but they won't lose control. After a good game it would be easier to concentrate in class.

In the same way, I feel that there's excess energy in those rioting chareidim which gets out in negative behvior. Not all in that community participate in the riots. And not all the men who are registered to sit in the Beit Medrash (Study Hall) full-time are suited for such an occupation.

G-d made us all with different talents and different needs.

Chareidi leadership should take a good look at their society and find useful and productive ways to utilize their potential energies.

Refuah Shleimah
A Complete Recovery
To That Sick Child

Possible "Spy"

A couple of weeks ago, we got an email from one of the yishuv employees asking us to contact a "PhD" student who needed to interview "settlers." So, being rather under-employed, I agreed and emailed him.

The guy came over. I met him and we talked. We sat in the park at the entrance to Shiloh and found ourselves breathing in lots of hot tar. Considering all the construction around us, I wasn't surprised that he asked a lot about building here and now.

It ended up that he had interviewed my husband a couple of weeks earlier about Moetzet YESHA, and my husband was going to talk to him after we finished. NO, we don't do joint interviews.

When my husband and I met up again after his talk, he said that he thought something was peculiar, because the guy didn't give straight answers about his studies and doctorate.

So, I guess that from that we should remember to ask those sort of questions before agreeing to meet strangers who want information. I don't think that I gave out any secrets. Anyone taking the bus to, or passing Shiloh, can see the building going on. And my opinions on politics and Moetzet YESHA are posted here for all the world to read.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Baptist Village makes Illegal Pitch at Maccabiah

Posted by Jewish Israel

UPDATE: Softball competition back on as Petah Tikva grants license

It was most likely a bureaucratic or careless mistake, but that didn’t stop the Petah Tikva Municipality from throwing an unexpected curve ball at the 2009 Maccabiah Games. Play was halted when Israeli police came onto the field to inform participants that the Baptist Village was operating without the proper business license.

Jewish Israel feels that another venue might not be such a bad idea, for an entirely different reason.

The Baptist Village uses baseball as a “sports ministry” (“sports outreach”) which “opens the door to gospel witness”
And missionaries from the United States had been invited to volunteer to come to the games and partake in “an incredibly unique ministry opportunity" ...there's much more on this angle at Jewish Israel

If that doesn’t make you want to take the game elsewhere, consider that Pastor Dan Sered, the head of Jews for Jesus in Israel (the dude who plasters Israel with Jesus billboards and claims Jewish converts on a monthly basis), is the Pastor of the All Nations Baptist Church which holds its services at the Baptist Village

So Maccabiah participants who take the preservation of their Jewish heritage seriously should be singing, “Take Me Out of the Ballgame”, until the Maccabiah organizers can find a more kosher venue.

UPDATE (June 16th):
In addition to Alabama congregations, the Southern Baptist Churches in Southwest Ohio are sending two groups of missionary volunteers to the Baptist Village to assist with the Maccabiah 2009 games.

They are praying for us. Far be it for Jewish Israel to intrude into the heads and hearts of Southern Baptists, but seeing as they published it...

You can read excerpts from "The Prayer guide for 13 days of Maccabiah Games in Israel" at the updated post at Jewish Israel

If a missionary presence, agenda, and venue at the Maccabiah games disturbs you
Write to the Maccabiah: info@maccabiah.com
Write to Limor Livnat, the Minister of Culture and Sport: llivnat@knesset.gov.il
Write to Stas Misezhnikov, the Toursim Minister: smiseznikov@knesset.gov.il
Write to the Ministry if the Interior: pniot@moin.gov.il

One of Those Good News-Bad News Posts

Here's for the good news:

La Scala brings Verdi's Requiem to Tel Aviv - for free
By Haaretz.com Staff

Daniel Barenboim will conduct more than 200 singers and musicians as part of Tel Aviv's 100th birthday celebration.

Milan's world famous La Scala opera will be performing Verdi's Requiem in Tel Aviv on Thursday night, in a free open-air concert at Yarkon Park.

The bad news is the date, according to the Jewish Calendar. It's in the three weeks between the 17th of Tammuz and the 9th of Av. That's the time of the year, in deference and mourning the destruction of our Holy Temples, it is forbidden to go to attend large events and musical performances. That means that the opera is not the place for Jews to be on that date.

"I'd Rather See You Jailed Than Dead."

There has always been a strange double-standard when it comes to Israeli self-defense. The world, and too many Jews, have been "turned on" by the images of the ragged, starving Jews discovered in the ruins of Nazi Concentration Camps. The international do-gooders are comfortable with weak malnourished Jews and don't feel threatened by them.

No other country, only Israel, is expected to absorb constant terrorism, bombs and rockets. Only Israel is required to fight a war with "restraint." And very unfortunately, very dangerous indeed, the Israeli media and self-appointed morality experts keep trying to brainwash us that it's a legitimate request.

Obama to U.S. Jewish leaders: Israel must engage in self-reflection

Actually, I agree, but I expect very different conclusions. Let's return to the title, what a neighbor said to her husband and sons:

"I'd Rather See You Jailed Than Dead."

Self-defense is to stay alive. Think of your own life first.

We don't owe anything to our enemies, nor foreign countries, nor the United Nations.

Those who hesitate are those who get attacked and killed. We are the continuation of the Jewish Nation whose history is recorded in the Bible. Yes, that very same Bible westerners, including United States President Barack Hussein Obama swears on. By denying our full national rights to our entire historic homeland they prove themselves liars.

Reflect on That!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Not Just Doing Their Jobs

A little justice will hopefully go a long way. Today the news here in Israel mentioned two cases in which workers are to be punished for doing their jobs badly, dangerously, injuring and in one case killing many.

One was the bus driver whose bad driving was blamed for the accident near Eilat where the bus went off the road, down a ravine killing over twenty tourists. The tourists were Russian travel agents on a promotion junket to Israel. Most went home in coffins or badly injured.

The second was the mounted policeman who rode his horse into protesters demonstration against government destruction in Amona.

The horse trampled Yehuda Etzion, of Ofra, a middle-aged grandfather.

G-d willing these cases will help educate the public that there's a consequence to their actions and they must pay for "mistakes."

Why Won't Leonard Cohen Perform Here?

I understand that Leonard Cohen had tried to set up a performance in Ramallah, besides Tel Aviv, when he visits in the fall.
He'd be welcome here in Shiloh. Maybe our venue is a bit too small, but there's a nice concert set-up in Ariel.
And since he plans on being here during the High Holidays, I trust he'll sing "Who By Fire."
When I taught English EFL, I used this poem as literature.