Hamas War

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Is There any Country in the World Like Israel with the Best Emergency Rescue Services?

Again Israel is proving itself the bravest most generous country in the world by sending the largest, most professional and amazing rescue team to Nepal. The aim of the team is twofold.

  • to search for and rescue Israelis in danger
  • to provide medical care and rescue to all they can reach
Gen. Strick said he’d received hundreds of applications from men and women of all professions and rescue groups who volunteered to be part of the rescue efforts in Nepal.
“We have set out on a mission that symbolizes all that the IDF stands for and we are greatly proud of this,” the general said.
The tiny Jewish state has one of the top disaster relief teams in the world. It's usually among the first to offer substantial aid to countries in distress from natural and other disasters. (CBN)

The IDF's humanitarian mission to Nepal is preparing to build Israel's largest ever field hospital, where somewhere between 200 patients will be treated daily. (MFA)

From the IDF Blog:
Day 4 (April 29)We completed the construction of the field hospital and began seeing our first patients. We treated 98 people by the end of the day!IDF Field Hospital in NepalWe welcomed a baby boy to the world, in the late afternoon.Baby born by Israeli Medical Team in Nepal

The efficiency and competence of the Israeli teams that has been sent out, and not for the first time., boggles the mind. As we all know, Israel is certainly not a large country. It is one of the smallest in the world. We have very few natural resources, other than intelligence and innate goodness.

Israelis take this for granted and even attempt to send rescue crews to countries that are far from being our allies and are best described as enemies. Are we crazy?

Another thing, why don't the larger and wealthier countries have rescue and quick to assemble field hospitals like ours or better?

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

OurCrowd Boosts Messianic Christian Movement in Israel

Posted by JewishIsrael.com
This week from April 27th through May 1st Israeli Messianic and Arab-Christian entrepreneurs will be gathered at "the Israel Business Forum", at Hotel Yehuda in Jerusalem, with the mission of economically empowering and developing the messianic Christian movement in Israel.
A conference in Jerusalem of this nature should no longer come as a surprise. This year in particular has seen a glut of major conferences in both Israel and abroad that demonstrate an open collaboration between Christian Zionist leaders and missionary and messianic leaders, which overtly focus on evangelizing the Jews and empowering the local messianic community in Israel.
What is newly alarming is that the highly reputable venture capital firm, OurCrowd, is sponsoring and partnering with this week's messianic Christian business forum alongside messianic-run entities…more

Soon The Jewish Month of Sivan

This is to invite women to join us in Rosh Chodesh Prayers at Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh.

Women's Prayers at Shiloh Hakeduma, Tel Shiloh Rosh Chodesh Sivan
Tuesday May 19, 2015
1st of Sivan, 5775, 8:30am
Tour of Tel Shiloh
Dvar Torah, Short Torah Lesson
Please come and invite family, friends and neighbors
תפילת נשים ראש חודש סיון בשילה הקדומה, תל שילה
יום ג' 19-5  א' סיון, תשע"ה 8:30
יהיה דבר תורה קצר וסיור בתל
כדאי לבוא ולהזמין חברות, משפחה ושכנות

Please save the date, publicize it and join us.
Please mark it on your calendar and make arrangements to come. Also, whether you can come or not, please let friends and family know about it, thanks.

You're welcome to join our facebook page.

Mark your calendar, and join us. For more information, please contact me at shilohmuse@gmail.com with "Rosh Chodesh at Tel Shiloh" as subject, thanks.

You can visit the holy site anytime. Guided tours can be arranged through the Shiloh HaKeduma, Ancient Shiloh office. Email visit@telshilo.org.il or phone 02-994-4019. 

Have a wonderful and blessed month. May the rain be a blessing for all, G-d willing.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Apartheid, The Truth

Apartheid is the epitome of segregation. It was the official term in South Africa for the legal policy of restricting rights of the native Black Africans. Nowadays, people claim that it exits in Israel against Arabs, but the truth is very different.
n.noun  An official policy of racial segregation formerly practiced in the Republic of South Africa, involving political, legal, and economic discrimination against nonwhites.
A policy or practice of separating or segregating groups.
The condition of being separated from others; segregation.
There are many more restrictions of Jewish Israelis than on Arabs in Israel. OK, to be clear, I define "Israel" as the Land of Israel and all of the Land the League of Nations mandated to Great Britain to develop into a Jewish State and Land that Israel liberated in the 1967 Six Days War.

This is the map of the land that the League of Nations had decided should be a Jewish State.

Franco-British Boundary Convention Mandate for Palestine Map

Great Britain illegally chopped off much more than half, everything east of the Jordan River and gave it to the Hashemites who were not native to the area at all. They then declared Abdullah the Hashemite as Emir of Transjordan.
The Jordanian monarchy was set up in 1921, with the help of Britain. The sons of Hussein bin Ali, the Sharif and Emir of Mecca from 1908 until 1917, were set up as kings of Iraq and Jordan. In Jordan, Abdullah I was made Emir ofTransjordan, a post he held from 11 April 1921 until Transjordan was granted independence on 25 May 1946 as the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan. Abdullah was crowned the country's first king. The country's name was shortened to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan on 3 April 1949. (Wikipedia)
That's illegal occupation if anything is!!

And if you want to check out a Jewish community and Jewish Rights in Jordan, then and today, you'll easily discover that it's judenrein, yes, the Nazi term for an area cleansed of its Jews.
Judenfrei ("free of Jews") or Judenrein ("clean of Jews") was a Nazi term to designate an area "cleansed" of Jewish presence during The Holocaust.[1]While Judenfrei referred merely to "freeing" an area of all of its Jewish inhabitants, the term Judenrein (literally "clean of Jews") was also used. This had the stronger connotation that any trace of Jewish blood had been removed as an impurity.[2] (Wikipedia)
Please don't ignore the timing of the invention of Jordan. It's barely a decade before the beginning of Nazism and explains why the Government of Great Britain never protested the Nazi persecution and murder of its Jewish population. Even though the the League of Nations was clear in what it demanded of Great Britain, the British did its best to sabotage the creation of a Jewish State. It only fought the Nazis to preserve its own sovereignty.

Transjordan/Jordan was established for the sole purpose to keep Jews out-- apartheid- of the historic and documented Land of Israel.

Post-World War Two, when the Zionists finally lost patience with the British and realized that we would only get a Jewish State if we took unilateral action and declared one, the British helped the Arabs in their attacks on the State of Israel and was one of the only two countries to recognize Jordan's illegal occupation of what they called the "West Bank," which was the land between the ceasefire lines and the Jordan River. Jewish communities in those areas, such as Gush Etzion, were massacred or forcefully taken from their homes, held in Jordan and eventually released to Israel.

And today most of the world, including a shocking amount of Jews and Israelis, still support apartheid against Jews in the Land of Israel.

We're condescendingly told that it is for our own good and safety, because if we enter, we may not come out alive. Now, they see nothing wrong or immoral in Arab terrorism. They do not condemn or try to stop the terrorist activity, but they placate them by giving them freedom of movement. Yes, the Arabs can travel all over, but we Jewish Israelis can't. That is the "apartheid" we have here. It is against Jews!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Will There Ever Be a President Hillary Clinton?

Considering her massive
funding, you'd think that
Hillary would have a full-time
24/7 hairdresser
Eight years ago I wrote that Hillary Clinton was running the campaign she had envisioned a couple of decades earlier and it would fail. I was right. She was playing the game that had gotten other women in top office, succeeding the husband, but that wouldn't fly in the United States of America.

Standing by her man through thick, thin, blondes, redheads and brunettes isn't the way to get votes in 2016 or even in 2008. It may have worked in the 1960's or 1970's when the American public still lied to themselves about the "perfect marriages" of their political leaders.

But now Hillary is plagued by very different scandals, ones that aren't sexist or feminist, and it makes you wonder what was really behind husband Bill's victories. The one that may turn Americans against her is the money factor. The Clinton Foundation is funded by foreigners, and a major corruption scandal is brewing.
Hillary Clinton is making her life more difficult than it needs to be.
I’m speaking in this instance of the donations by foreign governments to the Clinton Foundation. As Jonathanmade note of yesterday, a New York Times story on the forthcoming book by Peter Schweizer, Clinton Cash, asserts that “foreign entities who made payments to the Clinton Foundation and to Mr. Clinton through high speaking fees received favors from Mrs. Clinton’s State Department in return.”
When the secretary of state has a policy of pay-to-play, that is bad enough. It reinforces the impression that Mrs. Clinton is a tangle of corruption, dishonest and untrustworthy, and playing by rules that apply to her and her husband but not to others. That has happened time and again with the Clintons; it’s the pattern and habits of a lifetime. And there’s no indication it will change. The portrait of Mrs. Clinton is that of a hardened, brittle, unreflective, and self-justifying individual. Whatever problems she faces are always the result of others, often the “right-wing conspiracy” she has invented in her over-active imagination... full article in Commentary
What really bothers many Jews and Israelis is the Hillary-Suha kiss and hug, rewarded to Arafat's wife after her hateful and lie-filled anti-Israel talk. We find it unforgettable and unforgivable.

Another thing that really bothers me is that there will be women especially voting for her just because she's a woman and not because she is at all the best candidate. It's just like those who voted in the most racist way for Obama, just because he has Black genes. Qualifications for high office aren't supposed to be based on genetics or gender.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Rabbi Riskin’s Protégé Conducts Christian Interfaith Worship Service in Orthodox Jerusalem Synagogue

posted by JewishIsrael.com

Contrary to Rabbi Riskin's statements in media outlets accusing the Haredim of launching a campaign against his joint Christian-Jewish worship event in Jerusalem on Israeli Independence Day, it was rabbis and activists solidly in the Zionist national camp who questioned the endeavor and who approached Chief Sephardic Rabbi of Jerusalem Shlomo Amar in a meeting held on Israel's Memorial Day.
The “Day To Praise” venture was an idea conceived by David Nekrutman while he was studying Christian theology at Oral Roberts University. The event, held at Hatzvi Yisrael Synagogue, was promoted as being affiliated with Ohr Torah Stone. It was expected to be both "controversial and revolutionary" according to the Voice of Israel radio…more
Prominent scholar Rabbi Dr. Aharon Lichtenstein passed away this week. He was the director of Har Etzion Yeshiva, a renowned authority on Jewish law, and a recipient of the Israel Prize.
Despite being considered "modern" and "open " in his worldview, Rabbi Lichtenstein, an eminent student of the late Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (known as "the Rav"), upheld the Rav's traditional position on interfaith dialogue and relations with the Christian world...more

Is Bibi's Coalition Anarchy Connected to Recent Terror Attacks?

In the past few days, there has been an increase in terror attacks in Israel, more specifically Jerusalem by the "seam." At the same time, time is running out for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to craft together his fourth 4th government coalition.

I trust that Bibi likes doing jigsaw puzzles or he'll never form a new government.
Bayit Yehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett asked to be Education Minister Saturday night, giving up his previous demand of the Foreign Ministry in order to ensure his party will have two more ministers.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Bennett he would give him an answer in the coming days.
Bennett’s move could pave the way for Netanyahu to bring Yisrael Beytenu into the coalition by offering Avigdor Liberman a third term in the Foreign Ministry. (Jerusalem Post)
News headlines are full of coalition possibilities, but the truth is that the job isn't over yet for him. Who will get what and whether or not Bibi will succeed is a more complicated guess than whether or not Princess Kate Middleton will have a girl or boy or even if her husband Prince William will make it back from royal duties on time.
Likud officials said Netanyahu wants the first coalition agreement to be with Kulanu at the beginning of next week. UTJ and Shas will come the day after. Only then will talks with Bayit Yehudi and Yisrael Beytenu become more serious.
“Moshe has to authorize every agreement,” a source close to Kahlon said. “If not, everything will get too complicated.”
Netanyahu received a mandate from President Reuven Rivlin to form a government by May 6. (Jerusalem Post)
I just wonder if the recent increase in Arab terror attacks is related to the fact that there is no new government. Just like the Biblical Amalek, today's Arab terrorists look for weakness on our part. The Israeli Justice System is very soft of Arab terrorists and few stay in jail very long, since they are traded for Israelis held by terrorist organizations.

At least there have had been more terrorists executed on the spot after terror attacks. That's the way it should be. It saves a trial and all the expenses of prisons. And I firmly believe that if anything will reduce terrorism, it's the knowledge that the terrorist won't live after attempting to harm Jews.

Shavua Tov
May This be a Wonderful Week for All
Geula Shleimah Bimhaira Biyamainu
Full Redemption, Speedily in Our Days

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Post Independence Day, Omer #22, Combined HH and KCC

This was cross-posted on me-ander.

Yes, this is a combined Havel Havelim and Kosher Cooking Carnival. They are the two Jewish blog carnivals I run. KCC, the monthly blog carnival about all aspects of Kosher food, is really "my baby," since I started it host most of them. It does have a facebook page, which helps, and sometimes it's on other blogs, like Tzivia's. If you'd like to host an addition you can sign up on fb or email me. Also email your links to me (shilohmuse@gmail.com) with KCC as subject or to the upcoming host. The Kosher Cooking Carnival comes out around Rosh Chodesh, the beginning of the Jewish Month, so this is the Iyyar edition.

Havel Havelim is the very long running weekly international Jewish blog carnival started by Soccer Dad who no longer blogs. We now coordinate on facebook. Next week's will be hosted by Tzivia of Adventures in AliyahLand; please submit your links before Shabbat (your time) to tzivia@aliyahland.com with a one-line description of your post and HH as subject.

When I host the blog carnivals, I include posts sent to me plus those I've chosen mostly from blogs I know about and my own blogs, too. Since this past week we celebrated Israel's Memorial and Independence Days, there will be posts about them and also what's happening in Israel and other Jewish issues, plus more personal blogs. And the kosher food posts will be more than just recipes.

Please read, comment and share the posts included. I'm sure that you'll find something of interest. Also, please share this blog carnival, which is a floating Jewish Internet Magazine!
Remember, you don't have to be a blogger to enjoy, read, comment and share Havel Havelim and the Kosher Cooking Carnival!!
Now, on with the show:

I'm starting with the April Jewish Book Carnival, which includes links to reviews of Jewish books on various blogs all over the world.
From Rabbi Ben-Zion Spitz a couple of posts, Weapon of Mass Education, My Lodestar, My Rosh Yeshiva, in memory of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein ZaTZ"L.
From Lady Light on Tikkun Olam, Some Recent Israeli Accomplishments in her 67 Years: Independence Day 2015.
Enjoying The Bible, About the Omer.
Here's a Real Jerusalem Streets post with great Israeli Independence Day photos and from Memorial Day.
Varda Epstein, over at Israellycool has unearthed a treasure: The Mystery of the Jews, a short film which packs the entire, unbelievable, amazing history of the Jewish people, beginning with Abraham the Patriarch into 21 minutes. And here's another from Varda. This one from 2006, when a rather more hirsute, and definitely prescient Binyamin Netanyahu made a guest appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher.
Ruti blogged about the wonderful Yom Ha'atzma'ut in Neve Daniel.
We must thank G-d that my dear friend Miriam is alive. Read her blog, her story.
In my neck of the woods, the kids celebrate Israeli Independence by standing along the road waving flags.
I've come up with a low carbohydrate version of "Savta Brei," faux "potato" pancakes aka latkes, and the recipe can also be used to make a very healthy low carb kugel.
Thankfully, G-d has sent me some great miraculous rides, aka tremps or hitchhikes.
Aviva put out a notice about  Sexual abuse awareneness events in RBS and Jerusalem, April 26 and 27.
Tzivia writes about a book she is working on about Tisha B'Av for kids.
Paula asks What's Wrong with American Jewry....
The Lost Kitchen, Poached Salmon.
Here in Israel, names of towns are after people. And in my neck of the woods, I can say that I knew some of them. Israeli Soldiers and Terror Victims Memorial Day- People Not Places
From my vantage point working with Arabs.
From The Sussmans, First the Tears.
IsraelSeen.com Dreams Really Do Come True in Israel
Elder of Ziyon Israel ranked 11th happiest country in the world; Falk justifies Hamas terror
May I Have That Recipe 26 Amazing Vegetarian Passover Recipes You’ll Want To Make All Year Round
Avi's Kosher Kitchen Garlic Stuffed Lamb Shanks in Mint Wine Reduction

Please join our Jewish blogging community, and remember that you don't have to be a blogger to read, comment, share and enjoy the blog posts featured here!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Lesson to be Learned from Israel's War for Independence, Recent Past and Present

We have no true ally, other than  G-d Almighty!!!

This isn't a pleasant thought for most Israelis. But, in all honesty, the truth isn't always pleasant.

I'm no expert on Ancient History, nor the history of what happened over a hundred years ago. I have a pretty good knowledge and recollection of what has happened to the Jewish People during my life and the decade plus before I was born.

The history that is embedded in my mind and soul starts with the very first signs of the Modern Zionist Movement and the Holocaust. Separate Jewish Nationalism aka Zionism was a reaction to the antisemitism in Europe. Europe at the time was very strictly Christian, meaning Catholic and Protestant which has one guiding principle-- the Jews killed their god. On that they are united. In recent years, to be PC (politically correct) there have been some theological changes by some sects, but if you look at the very basis of Christianity its aim is to replace Judaism. It adopted our Bible and added more material which totally contradicts the Jewish Religion.

They claim to follow the Ten Commandments but that's an out and out lie. The very first Commandments (Exodus Chapter 20) are:
ב  אָנֹכִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, אֲשֶׁר הוֹצֵאתִיךָ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים:  לֹא-יִהְיֶה לְךָ אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים, עַל-פָּנָי.
2 I am the LORD thy God, who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before Me.

ג  לֹא-תַעֲשֶׂה לְךָ פֶסֶל, וְכָל-תְּמוּנָה, אֲשֶׁר בַּשָּׁמַיִם מִמַּעַל, וַאֲשֶׁר בָּאָרֶץ מִתָּחַת--וַאֲשֶׁר בַּמַּיִם, מִתַּחַת לָאָרֶץ.
3 Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth;

ד  לֹא-תִשְׁתַּחֲוֶה לָהֶם, וְלֹא תָעָבְדֵם:  כִּי אָנֹכִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, אֵל קַנָּא--פֹּקֵד עֲו‍ֹן אָבֹת עַל-בָּנִים עַל-שִׁלֵּשִׁים וְעַל-רִבֵּעִים, לְשֹׂנְאָי.
4 thou shalt not bow down unto them, nor serve them; for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Me;...
ז  זָכוֹר אֶת-יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת, לְקַדְּשׁוֹ.7 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.
ח  שֵׁשֶׁת יָמִים תַּעֲבֹד, וְעָשִׂיתָ כָּל-מְלַאכְתֶּךָ.8 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work;
ט  וְיוֹם, הַשְּׁבִיעִי--שַׁבָּת, לַיהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ:  לֹא-תַעֲשֶׂה כָל-מְלָאכָה אַתָּה וּבִנְךָ וּבִתֶּךָ, עַבְדְּךָ וַאֲמָתְךָ וּבְהֶמְתֶּךָ, וְגֵרְךָ, אֲשֶׁר בִּשְׁעָרֶיךָ.9 but the seventh day is a sabbath unto the LORD thy God, in it thou shalt not do any manner of work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy man-servant, nor thy maid-servant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates;
י  כִּי שֵׁשֶׁת-יָמִים עָשָׂה יְהוָה אֶת-הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֶת-הָאָרֶץ, אֶת-הַיָּם וְאֶת-כָּל-אֲשֶׁר-בָּם, וַיָּנַח, בַּיּוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי; עַל-כֵּן, בֵּרַךְ יְהוָה אֶת-יוֹם הַשַּׁבָּת--וַיְקַדְּשֵׁהוּ.  {ס}10 for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested on the seventh day; wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.{S}
So how can the Christians worship a man? And how can they call the first day of the week, Sunday their Sabbath? Three out of the Ten Commandments are about these two simple and basic points, principles.
1. Belief in G-dThis category is derived from the declaration in Ex. 20:2 beginning, "I am the L-rd, your G-d..."
2. Prohibition of Improper WorshipThis category is derived from Ex. 20:3-6, beginning, "You shall not have other gods..." It encompasses within it the prohibition against the worship of other gods as well as the prohibition of improper forms of worship of the one true G-d, such as worshiping G-d through an idol.
4. Observance of Sacred TimesThis category is derived from Ex. 20:8-11, beginning, "Remember the Sabbath day..." It encompasses all mitzvot related to Shabbat, holidays, or other sacred time. (Judaism 101)
And they are expounded on to make sure we understand what G-d is commanding us.

The survival of the Jewish People, especially since we had been exiled and persecuted by killings and the banning of the practice of Judaism is a totally incomprehensible fact and proof that G-d cares for us and wants us to be here, not any other religion or people.

Experts were certain of our end and didn't care during the Holocaust, ditto for the Israeli War of Independence, the 1967 Six Days War and the 1973 Yom Kippur War.

It is time for the Israeli public and politicians to stop trying to get support of others. They won't save us!!

עם ישראל חי!!
Am Yisrael Chai!The People of Israel (Jews) Live and Thrive!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

The State of Israel, Celebrating 67 Years, 5775, 2015

Chag Atzma'ut Sameach!!
Have a Wonderful Israeli Independence Day!!

This was cross-posted on me-ander.

Thank G-d, the doomsday predictions which have followed the State of Israel even before David Ben-Gurion made the official Declaration of Independence on May 14, 1948, have been proven wrong. The State of Israel may not be perfect, as if there is a country someplace that really is, but it's alive, vibrant, successful, financially stable, the source of innovative technology, medicine and more. Here we are celebrating sixty-seven 67 years of independence, having survived wars and threats, we are one of the most open and democratic countries in the world. We certainly have a lot to be thankful for.

I have been living in Israel since 1970, when my husband and I, newlyweds at the time, docked at Haifa Port on the Queen Anna Maria-Greek Lines, along with about four hundred 400 other olim chadashim, new immigrants. I have seen an enormous amount of changes here in Israel. In 1970, Israelis lived under very difficult conditions compared to the United States, and today Israel is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world. Considering that we rather frequently are forced to fight wars for our very existance, survival and security, it's amazing--yes, definitely a sign that G-d is helping us-- that we not only exist, but we have thrived and outpaced most countries in the world.

Following are photos from Independence Day, Yom Ha'atzma'ut Prayers and Celebrations in Shiloh, where we have lived since 1981.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Israeli Soldiers and Terror Victims Memorial Day- People Not Places

In Israel many towns, villages, cities, kibbutzim and moshavim are named after people. That includes quite a number of yishuvim in Judea and Samaria, such as Givat Assaf, established in memory of Assaf Hershkowitz of Ofra murdered as he passed there, the junction to Beit El where school girls stood yesterday waving Israeli flags to the passing cars, Jewish, Arab and all those "diplomatic plates" on their way.

Yesterday I caught a tremp (hitchhiked) from the Sha'ar Binyamin to Ofra with a young woman. We began to talk, and she told me that she lives in Givat Harel. I asked her how many families now live there; sixty 60 was her reply. I was obviously impressed at its growth.
"You probably remember when there were only ten families" she said.
"I remember Harel" I replied.
Yes, for me they are people, these communities and towns. I taught Assaf's brother, know Harel's family well, and Rachalla Druk, for which Shvut Rachel and Rechallim were named, was a very good friend.

When I look at these places, the homes, gardens, children and public institutions I feel a sadness and also a wonder. I wonder if the precious people whom they are named for are observing and guarding them from their status in Olam Haba, the Next World.

And for many years I've felt that if only we had established these communities sooner, then the victims would not have been killed. This is because the communities in the locations where they now are would never have had been established there if we hadn't been looking for a way to memorialize their lives and values.

Last night as I walked around our traditional display of victims of Arab terror connected to Shiloh, whether residents or family members of those who live here, again, like every year I felt that it had become harder for me than the year before. It just hurts more. I look at the pictures of those I knew and whose families I know and the pain is endless, reverberating as I see those optimistic faces. I see their siblings, parents and grandparents. I see the grandchildren, nieces and nephews they never knew. I see those named after them who will G-d willing be granted long, healthy and successful lives. Recently friends wrote a moving letter that they took their grandson, the first-born grandson of an IDF solder, a friend of ours, who had been killed in action, to enter the IDF. I tried to find the right response as I fought back tears.

"May he merit to bring his grandchildren to join the army, just like you are doing."

We in Israel know very well that our independence did not come easily nor cheaply, and the struggle hasn't ended. I fully approve and agree with the custom of having Israeli Independence Day follow immediately after Memorial Day.

יהי זכרם ברוך
Yihi Zichrom Baruch
May Their Memories be Blessed

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Greatest Thing About These Flags and No Current Israeli Government

I photographed these in Rami Levy, Sha'ar Binyamin this week. There are two things I love about it. One is the simple beauty of all those Israeli flags flying overhead. and the other is the fact that they were hung by Arabs. Yes, it is the job of the Arab workers to do things like change light-bulbs and decorate the store for Jewish and Israeli Holidays. That includes hanging Israeli flags. Two years ago, I wrote about the worker who begged me not to take his picture doing it.
"They'll kill me" he said, "and you know who they are."
This year two Arab workers worked as a team to put up more flags than ever before. They were smiling as if having a grand old time. The past few months, ever, since last summer's war, there haven't been many Arab shoppers in Rami Levy and Yafiz, but lately they seem to have returned. It may be different on "the other side of the green sic line," but I think that the percentage of Arabs working in Rami Levy may be higher than a few years ago.

Contrary to the ideological hallucinations of the loony Left, I see that local Arabs are very happy living under Israeli rule, getting Israeli salaries, benefits, low (yes, we do charge less for many things than in Arab stores) prices and security. Everyone knows that non-Israeli Arabs, even from enemy countries, take advantage of the world-class top Israeli medical care. The Arab clans that work for Rami Levy take care not to get involved in anti-Israel terrorism, because it can endanger the employment of all the family. They do not want a change in the political status quo, since a "Palestinian State" sic would mean the end of their jobs and security.

And that's where our present lack of new coalition government comes in. Bli eyin haraa, all the while that we're without a proper government we haven't seen our representatives negotiating for a Two State Solution sic. Crafting a new and stable coalition is taking up all of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's time. Also without a stable, reliable and disciplined coalition, Netanyahu can't rely on getting Knesset approval for an agreement.

So, at this point, I'm happy. I loved watching Arabs decorating the stores for Israeli Independence Day, and I feel safer knowing that Bibi's hands are tied.

I just hope that Herzog (Tsipi Livni has been kept out of the news) sticks to his principles of not joining with Netanyahu! And if after all the time has expired to make a Likud government, and then Herzog tries and fails, we end up again with elections, so be it. Maybe the so-called Right will get it right and do the Right thing, G-d willing.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Memories of the JTS Library

Some of you may be surprised at this title; that's for two reasons. One is that the JTS, Jewish Theological Seminary is the academic center of Conservative Judaism, and I'm Orthodox, and another is that I'm not an academic, intellectual type. Those precious old books of Jewish Law aren't what draws me at all.  So, why am I suddenly writing about the JTS Library?

Honestly, I haven't thought about that library for decades. But just now I saw an article in the Jewish Forward about major changes in JTS and how they are packing up the library for a move.
The library at Manhattan’s Jewish Theological Seminary — Conservative Judaism’s largest rabbinic seminary — holds the most impressive compilation of Jewish historical materials outside of Jerusalem: hundreds of ancient Jewish marriage contracts, thousands of unique manuscripts, and tens of thousands of fragments recovered in Egypt from the famed Cairo Genizah.
Now, the future of this collection is a matter of heated debate in Jewish scholarly circles as JTS sells off real estate assets to help ease a years-long financial crunch. Over the next few years, JTS plans to sell two buildings now serving as residence halls to developers, along with air rights to its main campus. The school will also replace its current library building with a new library and conference center. (Forward)
I was in that library once, almost fifty years ago. I was not there to do research, study or anything like that. I was there because of a call many of us young Jewish activists got because of a major emergency. There had been a fire in the Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary, and precious irreplaceable historic books and documents had been damaged and worse.
The Jewish Theological Seminary library fire was discovered on Monday, April 18, 1966 at 10:15 AM when smoke was seen pouring from one of the small upper windows of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America library tower at Broadway and 122nd Street in New York City.
The tower, with only few small windows, was the perfect environment for a major conflagration. There were no floors separating one level from another, only steel library stacks surrounded by catwalks. The tower was like an oven and the fire spread quickly. Extinguishing it was extremely difficult, with only one entrance and stairwell from the bottom and limited window access.
Fire Chief Alfred Eckert dispatched masked firefighters to the highest floor that could be safely reached. The firefighters spread canvas tarpaulins over as many shelves of books as they could, while hook and ladder trucks sprayed water through the highest openings in the tower, cascading down to the fire below. (Wikipedia)
Jews of all stripes  gathered there to rescue and clean the books. I was one of them. We went into a massive room that smelled of the recent fire. Books and papers were charred. I don't quite remember everything we did. I do remember checking for dampness and sorting the various books and papers according to their condition.

The collection of Judaica, historically important Jewish books and documents in the Jewish Theological Seminary of America library is precious to all Jews and predates the rather modern "inventions" of Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist Judaisms. What is today in America called "Orthodox Judaism" was once the standard, the only Judaism in existance. The old books in the library are Jewish treasures for all Jews, not just for those who consider themselves  Conservative Jewish. That's why we all went running to help. I do not know how davka the Conservative Jewish library ended up with such an incomparable collection.

I hope that the JTS Library's treasures will be stored and displayed as safely as possible, so that future Jews will have them for study and research.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Bad Deal by Bibi; We Should have Demanded IDF Bodies for PA Money!

Again, one of the reasons I'm not really happy with the Likud in the helm of our precarious ship the State of Israel...

Binyamin Netanyahu's government has agreed to give the PA (Palestinian Authority) money not only without deducting all that they owe to us, but without demanding the return of the soldiers from the Gazan Arab terrorists.
Following international pressure, Israel agreed last month to resume the transfers and said it would pay $400 million, having deducted money it said the Palestinians owed for utilities and medical treatment.
However, Abbas said he would not accept this sum since Israel had made its deductions unilaterally. The current agreement appears to have resolved this issue.
"An agreement was reached to send three months' worth of funds in full and a joint (Palestinian-Israeli) committee will discuss all the amounts that belong to us and what we owe," Abbas said. (Reuters)

Our enemies are holding Jewish bodies, the bodies of IDF soldiers brutally murdered in last summer's war, and they refuse to hand them over to Israel for proper Jewish burial.

Oron Shaul, Hadar Goldin, both murdered last summer by Arab terrorists from Gaza, 
IDF Spokesman

Last October, there was talk in Hamas of a swap of Arab terrorists in exchange for the bodies of Givati Brigade officer Hadar Goldin and Golani Brigade combat soldier Oron Shaul, although the deal never materialized.
Now, in an interview with Tayaf radio in Gaza, Mashaal said Hamas would not sign any agreement to release terrorists in exchange for thebodies, "before Israel fulfills its earlier commitments regarding the release of prisoners" - a reference to the fourth tranche of terrorist releases Israel halted in 2014 after the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas declared a unity government.
Mashaal also demanded that all terrorists rearrested after being released during the 2011 Gilad Shalit deal be re-released. (Arutz 7)
Considering that Israeli policy is to connect Gaza and the area administered by the PA as a future "Palestine" sic, and the PA gives payments to Gazan terrorists who are held prisoners by Israel, I see a direct connection between the two.

To repeat what I've been saying for a long time:
PM Binyamin Netanyahu gives a great speech, especially when talking to foreigners, but when it comes to policy, he's very weak.