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Thursday, May 30, 2019

Lieberman versus Likud in a Nutshell


I listened very carefully to Avigdor Lieberman's press conference. As much as don't like the man, either he's a totally amazing actor, or he revealed his real dilemma, if you listen carefully.

Bibi learned how to stress his love of the Bible
and keep a kippah handy.
There is something very basic that holds Leberman back from fully assimilating into the world of Israeli Right wing politics. Unlike your typical Likudnik, Avigdor Lieberman is an avowed securlarist. He comes to his Rightist policies devoid of religion, spirituality and sentiment.

Lieberman is the product of Soviet Society and values. His discomfort and can we call it hatred of the chareidim is most like the Labor Zionists of old, the ones who assigned young religious new immigrants to secular boarding schools and proudly served ham on Yom Kippur.

voting for new 2019
Knesset Elections
voting for new 2019
Knesset Elections
The biggest difference between Lieberman and the early Leftist Zionists is that they, on the most part, came from a traditional Jewish world, and Lieberman didn't.

There are many ways of "dividing" Jewish Israeli society. For Lieberman, religion is a big factor. He is very blunt about not wanting the State of Israel to be ruled in any way by Halacha, Jewish Law. Lieberman's definition of Right doesn't seem to be based on anything, unlike dati leumi, religious nationalist, or your typical Likudnik who treasures the Bible and Jewish Tradition.

Lieberman's supporters are mostly Russian speakers, while the mainstay of Likud voters are Sefardim, descended from Jews who made aliyah from Arab and North African countries. The Likud also has support from those who follow Jabotinsky, aren't Histadrut socialists and those who consider the Etzel and Lechi the heroes of the struggle against the British Mandate.

I'm sure that Lieberman's supporters absolutely loved his press conference, and I'm just as sure that others are even less enthused, even where they may agree with some specific points.

Also many Israelis want a government that will unite us, not divide us. Avigdor Lieberman is a divisive politician, not a national leader. He is too Right wing for the secular Left and too secular for the Right. Although Lieberman has been in Israel for decades, he just doesn't understand Israelis.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Will Bibi Pull The Rabbit Out of The Hat?


Tonight Prime Minister Binyamin Bibi Netanyahu made a short speech, and he didn't stay for questions. He didn't even turn his head in the direction of those shouting questions. He said there is still time to prevent new elections if Avigdor Lieberman would be willing to join the coalition.

Lieberman seems to want some of the Blue & White votes, so he's going rabidly against Netanyahu. Leberman is betting that he'll do better in new elections.

If we really are going to suffer through another round of elections, no doubt they'll be even nastier more childish than the previous ones. There was one basic issue in those, pro-Bibi or anti-Bibi. The antis, especially the Gantz-Lapid-Bogie-Ashkenazi Blue & White insisted that they could do a better job at running the country, because... they're not Bibi. They never really got down to basics on how they'd make the State of Israel better, safer etc. They did not appear competent. They didn't have very detailed or well thought out policies or plans. They just didn't want Bibi. And the parties to the Left of them, like Labor, wanted their votes, so they campaigned that Blue & White was Right. Likud campaigned that Blue & White was Left. While Blue & White just kept hammering it in that they're not Bibi.

I shudder to think of what the next election campaign will sound like.

I have a rather revolutionary idea. The top four of each party elected to Knesset must resign, leave politics and let the lower numbers get in and take over. Maybe they can form a good working coalition for the good of the country, instead of just increasing hatred.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Where's The Idealism in Israeli MKs?

Maybe I'm just too much a product of the idealist 1960s America. You can bookend my formative years with the most iconic line of John F Kennedy's Inaugural Address and the 1967 Six Days War.
Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
I somehow tweaked Kennedy's idealist and patriotic challenge and transferred my loyalty to the Jewish People, Jewish Religion and Jewish Land. Here I am a just over half a century later, not only living a Zionist version of Kennedy's ideal, but naively and idealistically expect to see that idealism in those elected to Israel's Knesset, the politicians.

Just weeks after the recent Knesset Elections, our experienced and wily Prime Minister Binyamin Bibi Netanyahu is ready to throw down the towel and give up trying to find enough MKs and political parties willing to work together, compromise and form a viable government coalition for the good of the State of Israel.

Bibi is my age and spent a lot of his youth in the United States. No doubt he is extremely familiar with Kennedy's cry to galvanize idealism for the good of the country. Unfortunately the attitude of most of the Israeli party leaders who should be negotiating with Netanyahu is horrendous. They each announce to the press that the will not compromise their cabinet demands, and they expect Bibi to give in. This is awful and bodes badly for Israeli society and the State of Israel.

We may need to go through elections yet again, Gd forbid.

There was a time when MKs were willing to cross lines and form National Unity Governments, but since Gantz, Lapid, Bogie and Ashkenazi made their entire campaign the demonization of Binyamin Bibi Netanyahu and insisted that they wouldn't work with him...  A National Unity Government isn't on the menu. The "Blue and White" wannabes didn't campaign that they'd put their egos aside and do what's best for the country.

So unless a miracle happens, we're going to be suffering through another few months of election litter.

May Gd help us.


Thursday, May 23, 2019

Israel's Burning, And The Fires Could Have Been Prevented

Summer came with a bang, exploded in fiery heat. Just a few weeks ago, we had been complaining about unseasonable cold. Now the temperatures are at record highs. And to make things hotter and much more dangerous, there are horrendous fires all over the country.

Some of the fires are caused by Arab terrorism. The Gazan Arab terrorists have turned balloons into weapons. That's because they've developed a way to send incendiary devices into Israel carried in the air by balloons. This has been going on for a year already, and the Likud, led by Binyamin Bibi Netanyahu hasn't had the guts to destroy the terrorist in their nests. It shouldn't concern us if there's collateral damage, meaning "non-combatants" being injured or killed. The main job of the Israeli Government is to protect Israeli citizens, not protect the enemy. At this point, I blame the government for the fires and subsequent loss of agriculture and damage of the Land.

Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should)

Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should)

For more information about the Arab terror in Israel's south check out Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should) on facebook. The photos above are from that facebook page.

There are also large uncontrollable fires in the center of the country. On the whole they were caused by human carelessness. It's a Jewish/Israeli custom to light bonfires on the eve of Lag B'Omer, which we celebrated today. I wrote about our bonfire, which was on a paved surface, here. In some parts of the country, which are most susceptible to brush fire, people had been asked to refrain from lighting bonfires. Unfortunately they ignored the warnings. Also, some bonfires got out of control or weren't completely extinguished. And after the celebrants left the fires got stronger and spread.

This is not good. Israel are a small country and every drop of water is precious. We can't expect rain for over six months. All of this damage is an ecological disaster for Israel. Gd willing the fires will be put out quickly and the Arab terrorists will be destroyed.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Israel-Palestinian "Peace Plan" Oxymoron

It seems that Donald Trump let his son-in-law Jared Kushner talk him into a stupid, useless and inevitably dangerous policy, presenting an Israel-Palestinian "Peace Plan." The term is pure oxymoron for sure. The so-called Palestinians sic have no desire for peace. They were invented to terrorize and abort a Jewish State by the British.

This fiction of a "nation," which has no history is the "pet" of innumerable countries, NGOs, media, celebrities etc.

Early on in Donald Trump's career as a politician, he had announced that it was up to the two opposing sides, Jews and Arabs, to negotiate. Too bad he didn't stick with that policy.

It doesn't matter how creative or practical or revolutionary the "peace deal" Kushner and co have come up with, it won't bring peace to the middle east. And they should know perfectly well that a "deal" can't be imposed from outsiders.

These same Arabs that celebrate murder of innocent Jews will not change their deadly cruel culture for anything. They still, supported by the EU, UN and too many others, educate their children to kill, and until this changes and takes effect, there's no chance for peace.

Gd willing, some day there will be true peace, but that will only come when the State of Israel fully annexes all of the Land of Israel and executes all Arab terrorists.



Sunday, May 19, 2019

Bibi's Latest Coalition Woes

Israeli Knesset Elections 2019 still aren't officially settled. Votes may have been counted, but the lame duck government is still holding court. That's because although the results may look like an "easy Right wing coalition" for sitting Prime Minister Binyamin Bibi Netanyahu, none of the potential coalition partners seem to have signed on the dotted lines. They're all making demands and even threats.

This is no doubt a "headache" for Bibi, but it is even worse news for the citizens of the State of Israel.

We don't see the newly elected Knesset Members as  idealists wanting to serve the State of Israel. We see a bunch of egotistical, immature selfish people who show no signs of willing to compromise and work together for the good of our country. Even the political parties which campaigned promising to support Netanyahu and the Likud are making trouble.

Netanyahu doesn't have too much time left to present a working coalition. Honestly, I don't blame him for the situation. And I don't believe the talk that he and his legal problems are to blame. If he really was corrupt, like Ehud Olmert who had to leave office, he'd be out of office and in court already.

I want to see the MKs lining up asking how to help and figuring out the coalition puzzle for the good of the State of Israel. We have a dangerous enemy that must be defeated, and we need a serious government in charge, not a bunch of selfish schemers.


Monday, May 13, 2019

Apartheid, The Basis for "Two State" Solution

Looking east from Shiloh, which has a very long and well-documented Jewish History, though people all over the world want it Judenrein, clean of Jews.

Read this New Yorker interview with Michael Oren, former Israeli Ambassador to the United States, by Isaac Chotiner to get to the nitty gritty of "anti-settlement" pro-Apartheid vs Jews world view and their worship of the "Two State" solution. In Oren's favor, I must say that he seems to be evolving Rightwards in terms of policy/ideology.

When Michael Oren was first appointed as Israel's Ambassador to the USA, lots of people were concerned about his Leftist reputation, but he did well. In the New Yorker interview he didn't go far enough, as far as I'm concerned. I would have liked for him to out and out call Isaac Chotiner pro-apartheid and anti-Jewish/antisemitic. Oren wimped out; instead he just ended the interview and hung up on Chotiner.

I have a strong feeling that Chotiner hasn't a clue that he came out sounding anti-Jewish, pro-Apartheid. Oren had requested that the interview be scrapped, if I understood him correctly. If I'm not mistaken, Chotiner just edited the transcription of the interview, in which he said some ridiculous things, and Oren tried to show him his hypocrisy. I guess that Oren wanted it scrapped, because he was understandably wary about what Chotiner could do with it as an article. B"H, Chotiner chose a format that allowed Oren's words to appear without much change.

What's most disturbing to me about the interview is that Chotiner seems totally oblivious to his pro-apartheid antisemitic ideology/position. This is so typical of those who promote the so-called Palestinians. They endorse as an acceptable requirement that Jews be banned from "Palestine," and they don't think it immoral that Jews are banned from quite a number of Arab countries. For some inexplicable reason they don't see the banning of Jews as apartheid. 

It's too bad that Michael Oren wasn't willing to confront Isaac Chotiner with the truth. That would have brought the interview to a much higher level. Oren should have recorded it, continued it making the truth clear and of course publicize it.

Jews are being discriminated against, and hypocrisy rules the media, diplomacy, universities etc.

Biblical Shiloh, one of Judaism's Holy Cities, well-documented Jewish History, though people all over the world want it Judenrein, clean of Jews.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Israel 71 Independence Day, From Sadness to Joy


Is it really only in Israel where a nation first gives thanks and honor to those who gave their lives for our country, honoring them and their families? We include not only those who died bravely in battle, but also those civilians who were murdered by cowardly terrorists.

Barely a week after the Israeli media and schools focused on stories from the Holocaust and how those who survived rebuilt their lives, again national mourning and sadness set in as we remember those whose lives had been cut short. Again sirens blast, even on the busiest highways, and cars pull over in advance of the piercing sound. My friend found herself totally amazed at how, just before the siren was expected, car after car pulled over to the road's shoulder, so drivers and passengers could get out and stand at attention together as the siren ripped through the air and our hearts.  Is it really only in Israel?

Immediately after Israeli Soldiers and Terror Victims Memorial Day ends, each community celebrates Independence Day in its own way. One thing you'll notice all over the country is that the celebrations are for the family. This is a time when you're not going to find willing babysitters. Young and old participate in Independence Day festivities.

I don't have any comparable memories from my childhood in New York about American Memorial and Independence Days. Only here in Israel do I feel connected to the past, present and future. 


עם ישראל חי
AM YISRAEL CHAI
THE NATION OF ISRAEL LIVES
חג עצמאות שמח
CHAG ATZMAUT SAMEACH
JOYFUL INDEPENDENCE DAY



Tuesday, May 7, 2019

ANGRY! Again Israel Gave in To Terror

Deja vu, been there; done that.

Israel Just The Facts

Again, Israel took an easy, though terribly temporary, way out from the barrage of deadly rockets and gave the Gazan Arab terrorists another chance to reload.

A quick google search of
ceasefire reload Gaza
And one for the first links if for:
Published: 11.27.06
There's anger here in Israel. I'm not exaggerating when I write "deja vu."

Close to a thousand rockets were launched at Israel in barely twenty four hours, and that's after over a year of deadly incendiary balloons and kites, which have caused awful damage. If the Gazan Arab terrorists have such an enormous amount of rockets and the capabilities of launching them at Israel, there's no reason why Israel can't bomb them to smithereens.

Who care about what "the world" may say?

Did "the world" protest and condemn the attacks on Israel? No

For those of us who grew up post-Holocaust, this certainly clarifies how Nazi Germany succeeded in murdering six million Jews and a few million others. Nobody aka "the world" actually cares.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

When Terrorists are The Enemy, Pussyfooting Doesn't Help

You don't need to understand Hebrew all that well to see what's on the map. The red things represent the missiles fired by the Gazan terrorists. There are basically two targeted areas, Israel's south and up the coast until almost Tel Aviv. 

Tel Aviv is on the coast at almost the top of this map. And if you'd like to know where Shiloh is, just look to the east (right) of Tel Aviv, while your finger is moving north (up) from Jerusalem. That should give a pretty good approximation.

The history of Israel's wars have three highlighted as great miraculous victories. They are the 1948-9 War of Independence, the 1967 Six Days War and the 1973 Yom Kippur War. The first two wars were fought by Israel totally alone. We just did what we had to do, and Gd helped us to win.

The War for Israeli Independence, the ragtag army of sabras, newly arrived refugees, foreign volunteers and almost no weapons knew that had no choice other than to win. So they just kept on fighting. By the time there was a ceasefire, the State of Israel had begun to function, and the Jewish State was reborn. And without thinking twice, new immigrants were sent to live in the buildings abandoned by the Arabs who had fled. Mansions were renovated into small apartment houses, and villages kibbutz fields and orchards.

Actually, in 1967, when it was clear that the Arabs were going to attack, we surprised them by shooting first. And that's why we won, against all odds in just six days. The importance of taking the initiative was because in order to win we had to destroy the enemy air force and break them psychologically.  We succeeded beyond our wildest dreams. Nobody in the government or IDF expected not only such a rapid victictory, but nobody thought or planned for us to liberate all the Land from the Golan to the Suez Canal and eastward to the Jordan River. Once we got started, Gd took over. But instead of encouraging, or at least allowing Jews to settle in the Biblical Heartland liberated in the war, most of the Land was held for Arabs in a mistaken belief that they'd be happy to accept it "back" in exchange for peace with us.

The 1973 Yom Kippur War was a bit more complicated. Israel was taken by surprise and accepted help and advice from the Americans. That "advice" almost caused our defeat and the end of the State of Israel. We finally defeated Syria and Egypt, even liberated more Land but quickly "gave it back" in exchange for nothing.

Now the Israel Government has gone from bad to worse. Gaza has been attacking Israel for well over a decade. Their rockets are getting bigger and go further. Instead of bombing and destroying the Arab Gazan terrorists, successive Israeli Governments just keep pussyfooting around by sending warning letters, bombing empty buildings and then during periodic "ceasefires," we pay the terrorists enough money, so they have oodles to spend on war, weapons to attack us.

It's time for the State of Israel to act like a truly independent proud country. We have to flatten, destroy our enemy completely. And yes, civilians, too. Today's wars aren't like field games where the armies fight far from civilian centers. The Gazan terrorists have their rocket launching pads within residential areas, schools and hospitals. To protect the State of Israel and all its citizens, the IDF must attack without trying to protect the enemy civilians. Protecting Israeli civilians is supposed to be the priority.  It's time to fight like we mean to win, Gd willing. 

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Terror has Returned to Israel's South, Courtesy of Gazan Terrorists

life in the shelters Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should)

a house hit by Gazan rocket Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should)
These pictures are used with permission from the facebook group,  Life on the border with Gaza - things people may not know (but should).

While we here in Shiloh had a nice quiet, pleasant Shabbat, Israelis living in the south, near Gaza and not so close to Gaza were attacked by Gazan terrorists. At first when I turned on my computer and saw some posts from friends, I hadn't a clue to what they were referring to.
Shavua Tov! Southern gals, are you all ok? We even had a siren in Beit Shemesh!
But then I found out that hundreds and hundreds of rockets had been fired at Israel by the Gazan terrorists. Some actually hit homes and people and did major damage.

At present Israel has a "lame duck" government, since there isn't a new coalition yet. But since there will probably be a similar one to what we had with a lot of the same political parties and ministers, there's no excuse for inaction. We're angry. The country has been through this too many times before.

Gaza was given "independence," and in exchange Israel got just more terror. Arik Sharon and his Disengagement Plan only increased the terror. The foreign backers of the Gazan terrorists have given them more and more weapons/rockets and worse.

In a few days we're celebrating Israeli Independence Day 71, and I pray that we act like a proud independent country and destroy our enemies, Gd willing.



Thursday, May 2, 2019

Heroism, Gevurah גבורה Yom HaZikaron LiShoah UliGevurah

Holocaust and Heroism Memorial Day

Since last night we've have the television on quite  bit. Some of the stories, first person survivors have been rather amazing. They sound like fiction, but we all know that real life is sometimes more amazing and unreal than fiction. Writers wouldn't dare write things that nobody could believe.




If I'm not mistaken, today used to be called Holocaust Memorial Day, without the Heroism. Also, the standard way Israelis liked to describe the Holocaust was to give the impression that the Jews went passively to slaughter, like sheep. That fit the prevailing labor zionist image of the strong, daring secular Jew versus the weak cowering, religious galut Jew.

As the Holocaust survivors who made aliyah gained their confidence as Israelis, and historians began hearing more of what really happened during the Holocaust, Jews under Nazi persecution began looking stronger and braver. Survivors began demanding a change in the name.

The small number of minimally armed Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto fought a longer battle against the Nazis than some European countries.

A surprising number of Jews in the concentration camps defied the Nazis by managing to keep mitzvot, such as praying with Tefillin, conducting Passover seders and more. Each story defies all the previous stereotypes.

In addition, don't forget the bravery, true heroism that it took for the survivors to start their lives all over again, mostly in totally new countries and languages. Many, whose school years were spent hiding or as prisoners, still managed to learn professions, start businesses, etc. Some, whose families had been murdered in the Holocaust, married again and were blessed with more children. These are all examples of Heroism no less impressive than those who fought with the partisans or managed to kill their Nazi captors.

Today, despite the physical infirmities and weaknesses caused by the survivors physical suffering, many are miraculously survived by children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren, ken yirbu. That's the true revenge over the Nazis.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Holocaust Remembering Day

I usually "ignore" official Holocaust Memorial or "Remembering" events. To be honest, they make me feel rather "left out." Speakers, whether first generation survivors themselves or those my age who are called "second generation"  use too much of the "we" and "our" presuming that we all have the same sort of family history. No, I'm not from one of the Jewish communities from "Arab countries" that hadn't been affected by the the Holocaust. I'm just as Ashkenazic as your typical Holocaust survivor, but all my grandparents had moved to New York in the early twentieth century. Apparently, all of their relatives who had remained in Europe were killed in the Holocaust, but I never heard anything of it while growing up.

Bell Park Gardens, Bayside, NY, was a new neighborhood built for American military veterans after World War Two. All the other parents were raised and mostly born in America, just like mine. We grew up hearing of Anna Frank's Diary and then the legendary capture of  Adolf Eichmann and his trial in real time.

Mayor Moshe Leon and two "survivors"

But last night I found myself at a Holocaust Memorial event, davka, at the home of the Mayor of Jerusalem, Moshe Leon. We heard amazing stories from these two men.

I've always wondered how people could find the strength to go on with living after experiencing the hell and cruelty of the Holocaust. The one on the right didn't want to talk about how he had suffered, only how he started a new life in Israel. The one in the middle had a truly amazing story. Two neighbors helped hide him and seven relatives for four years. First they had been crowded into a specially built "double wall." They couldn't stand, walk or speak during that time. Afterwards they were moved to the basement of a preschool, where they stayed until it was safe to leave. All but one of that group made aliyah, moved to the Land of Israel, which was under British rule at the time. The British tried to keep them out.

I'm glad to have had the opportunity to hear these brave men speak.

I recorded some of the talk, and posted it to youtube. If you understand Hebrew you can listen.