Friday, September 4, 2009

Elul, Parsha Ki Savo, Halacha, Stories, Gog and Magog

Baruch Dayan Emmet (blessed be the true Judge) Elisheva Sulamit bat Yehudit passed away. OTOH Esther bas Ilana recovered praise HASHEM. Moshe Halev ben Gittel needs our prayers. Benzion Michael ben Chaya Tzipporah too.

Major General Paul E. Valley sent me this about a 1938 Movie: The IRS Agent comes a-knocking and collecting at the door of “Grand- Pa”. IRS agent queries “Grand-Pa” as to why he has never paid his income taxes. Grand-Pa says “Show me what you are going to do with my money”. The IRS says. “Well, you know we have to pay for all those buildings in Washington, etc., etc.“ Grand-Pa says no money unless you can tell me how you are going to spend it. Priceless!!!!

Note due to my computer ignorance those who get my blog spot have to copy and paste links.

Mussar (Ethics) for Elul

This past Motzei Shabbos most of us in Israel blessed the new moon. I am writing this already on Yod-Aleph (the 11th) and by the time I post it, it will be mid month and half-way to Judgement Day. Eliyokum HaCohain Shlita was crying to his readers on the “Sell me your Jewish Soul” group about Torah and Mitzvos. I wrote him the following: I watched your videos and you are trying hard and well. Keep up the good work. As for Shabbos if you read my blogs if not once a month on the average, twice a month I mention to a few thousand people the importance. I can take a Jew to Torah but I can't force him to drink. Eliyokum being much younger than I and burning with the fire of Torah wrote back - You won’t believe some of the brain dead emails i keep getting from people on my site.

At the gym, while I work out I often watch either National Geographic or Dr. Phil. Time and time again the theme is a husband bullying a wife or a wife trying to dominate a husband – and finance plays a big role in the disputes or foolery. It is more than just a matter of trust or not. I am busy with Torah and buy things on my Israel credit card – food, gasoline, etc. I give the check books and watching of the bank account over to “Bone of my bones, flesh of my flesh.” If I need a check, if we happen to have an extra book around I make it out – if not I ask for one. I don’t purchase anything that I can’t pay for in cash or in a few installments and be comfortable with it. The result, my household has financial peace and tranquility at home and no debit. The added benefit is that there are no complaints over the money handling.

As for cheating on a partner, under the original Torah laws, a man could have more than one wife and there are 819 cases today in all of Judaism because of extenuating circumstances – and that is perhaps one in 15,000 Jews on the average. Avraham was given Hagar by Sara in order to produce off spring. Yitzchak had no need for another one with Rivka and Yacov only had more than one wife because Leah was sort of rammed down his throat. The Rabbis ordained that one could marry another wife if the first wife agreed. Once, Rebbe Meir Baal HaNes (the miracle worker) boasted that if he had been in David HaMelech’s place that he would not have succumbed to his Yetzer Hara. The Satan immediately asked permission to tempt Rebbe Meir for his Chutzpa (audacity). G-D permitted the temptation but on the grounds that Rebbe Meir would be only taught a lesson and remain pure. Soon Rebbe Meir was walking by a wide stream and on the other side there was a woman (HaSatan) calling him “Meir, Meir let’s get together and we’ll be all right”. The woman looked much more attractive than Marilyn Monroe or which ever Hollywood actress that you could imagine. Rebbe Meir stopped what he was doing and began looking for wood to make a raft and a paddle to the other side. While he was working hard, suddenly the woman flew across the river and revealed that he was the Satan and gave a Mussar Sermon to Rebbe Meir for making fun of a Tzaddik from a pervious generation who was tempted by viewing Bat Sheva.

A cheating husband shows a sneaking character and also undermines the trust of the wife. A cheating wife is worst in one respect. The husband does not know if the children are really his. Both of these acts are bad, Dr. Phil says, “The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior.” In the days before the Moshiach comes and we are not on the Level of Rebbe Meir and working miracles, the Satan doesn’t even have to bother tempting people. The mass media does it for him.

The points that I want to make about a happy marriage is:

1) One must do their utmost to have financial stability. If one has to live on bread and potatoes with a little grape juice or wine for Shabbos and Shabbos candles to make ends meet – then do it. The late Torah leader Shmuel Zalman Auerbach ZTZAL of Yerushalayim used to say that when he was a child every few days, the parents would buy the children an egg for a treat. Otherwise it was bread and potatoes. And he became one of the leading Torah Authorities of his generation.

2) A marriage is a bond between husband and wife. The contract is for mutual honor, trust and respect then comes lasting love. Infatuation which young couples have a first for silly reasons wear off like because she has green eyes or he is tall and thin wear off within the first year of marriage. It takes an effort 24/7 to commit to a good marriage with compromises on both sides. No such thing as bossy husband or wife – it can only last for so long until the partner begins thinking that there are other fish in the sea.

3) Once trust is breached in a marriage, it is almost impossible to repair.

4) Marriage is a complete partnership preferably for life and one should view the partner as part of his/her body. Since the right hand does not hit the left hand in anger, nor the right leg begrudge or belittle the left leg – so should be a marriage. If the wife has a back ache and the husband has an acid stomach, it should bother the other partner just as much as if it were part of his/her body.

Another point that I want to make this week is about the simplest and easy Mitzvos. Last week’s Parsha had the story of sending away the mother bird from the nest. One could collect the young Pigeons, Chickens, Goslings, Ducklings and Quail for ones own purpose. It certain is not a major Mitzvah like Shabbos, Kashrus, Taharos Hamishpacha, not committing murder, adultery, etc. And yet one should according to Perkei Avos be cautious with simple easy Mitzvos as with the major difficult ones. The reason given by our Sages is that one does not know the reward for a Simple Mitzvah vs. a Major Mitzvah. One could not foresee that returning a silly bracelet that a woman lost would bring her to convince her husband to repent after he was nearly electrocuted. She saw that the righteous path was above money and worldliness and could recognize G-D’s Chessed on her husband.

Based on the Rambam (Maimonides) in his Hilchos Tshuvah an almost perfect quote is: “One should view the entire world as half guilty and half innocent and one more Mitzva will tip the scales in a Judgement of Life for all mankind.” My paraphrasing for our mass media era: “One should view the whole world as being guilty of death and scales of heavenly justice unbalanced, one Mitzva would put the scales in balance and just refraining from doing a sin by the Mitzva of repentance would tip the balance in the favor of a judgement of life for all mankind.” And why did I paraphrase different from the original? The reason being that in our days just before the salvation by the Moshiach, we are so involved in the material world that a money making “Rabbi???” can deceive an unlearned non-Jewish immodest material girl with a stud thirty years her junior into believing that she is saintly and learning sacred Kabbala. Rabbi Mimran Shlita and perhaps I am on the level or really digging into Kabbala but it is not the be all end all solution. Kabbala is a tool which one can use when he has mastered Halacha. There are rich stories and Pshat from the Zohar that the masses can learn but that is not the real secret of Torah within the secret. As for simple folks like us, we have to be like field soldiers in the war against the evil inclination and not fall into the various mine fields and traps that the Yetzer Hara has set for us but to do the Mitzvos and learn Torah to strengthen the Yetzer HaTov. If you do so, happy will you be in this world and even happier in the next.

Regarding about following trends and fads. About two weeks ago, Chabad was short of a Minyan for Shabbos afternoon and Maariv. The Rav of the Schul went out and managed to get 3 fifteen year olds. The Cohain was given an Aliyah to Torah and had an earring in one ear. We of course were happy that he had come. I pulled the Rav aside with a question that neither of us answered – if an earring would produce a blemish that would make him unfit to offer a sacrifice on the Altar? One the other boys, a ‘Yelled Tov Yerushalayim’ (a well behaved and nice mannered youth) was the son of a neighbor down the block. After Schul, I pulled him aside and said, “I am not your father and as for your friend the Cohain I could not care less – but you are a good boy so I wanted to tell you and not your parents that in the days of the Bible a hole in one’s ear was sign of a permanent slave. You can wear the earrings if you want like the generation leaving slavery from Egypt – but I want you to think about it.” With that I finished the conversation. Whether or not I influenced him I have no idea. Today in a different Schul I was talking a Kabbalist about Madonna and “Rabbi” Berg. He told me about all the Tattoos and the damage they cause to Jewish souls and we just shook our heads.

All my life I have treated maids, waitresses, secretaries, receptionist with great honor as if they were the CEO of a company. The reason being is that they have the same equipment that a loose woman has and yet they chose any form of work even with low pay to make an honest and G-D fearing living.

From Chaya Yocheved:

Epstein Barr Virus and H1N1 Virus danger especially among ultra Orthodox Jews

The Ultra-Orthodox Jewish Community in Eretz Yisrael does not watch TV, some have no radios and it is rare that they have internet due to the cost and their low Kollel income. With this in mind I will tell of the Epstein Barr Virus breakout in Israel some 13 years ago.

I was running around on the mountains in Rocky Mountain National Park at 14,000 feet and in great shape. Almost as soon as I landed I was invited to Sheva Berachos of a cousin in Bnei Berak. I went there. The place was not the richest or most sanitary place in the world and I thought nothing of it. I had come in late. There were no serving spoons in the middle and I took the salads and whatever with my knife and began eating the Seudat Mitzvah.

About a week later, I felt very weak. I was still going into work but becoming weaker and weaker and becoming lethargic. I felt like I was dying and began crying. It was before Rosh Hashana and my daughter was expecting my first grandchild. Would I live to see him? Finally, that night or the night after I had no strength and went to Tel HaShomer Hospital. When I got there the doctors were talking about a CAT Scan from head to toe and possible cancer. EBV was also mentioned as a possibility. My General Physician, Dr. Rabbi Shalom Freedman Shlita, recommended before an expensive test to look into EBV via a blood test. I did so. Soon people from my Yeshuv, Kiriat Sefer and elsewhere connected to weddings in Bnei Berak developed EBV. I make doubly sure today that since it is still in my blood that I hold on to my knife, fork and plate at Frum Weddings and am the first at the table to ‘dive’ into the food or not take anything.

This week, I had an honor to be at a different wedding. I watched as people dipped their forks into the serving plate or others sat down and took their plates and utensils while they were dancing to honor the groom. The fellow was serving the main course and I was called away for about 45 seconds to a minute from my place with some food on my plate. Before you could say Jack Robinson, my fork was gone. Well after 13 years, perhaps I can’t spread EBV any more or can I as the level in my blood is many times the normal level.

Now picture yourself at a wedding, bar mitzvah, bris with the same people but the H1N1 Virus is spreading rapidly. Would you eat with them based on past behavior where the death rate is close to 1 in 1000 (this is better odds than the Lotto or Power Ball). Just think about this. WHO WILL EDUCATED THE HAREDI COMMUNITY IN ERETZ YISRAEL? My influence is close to zero.

Parsha Ki Savo (or) Tavo

The lack of the Temple in our days hits me with the first 5 Pasukim in such a way that I would like to repeat what I wrote last year before going on. I am so longing to share my one fig, one olive, vines and two pomegranate trees when the Beis HaMikdash will be rebuilt speedily in our days. The olive yields fruit every other year and the date tree has many years to go before I will see one date.

26:1 And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and dost possess it, and dwell therein;

And it will be, when you come… and you possess it and settle in it. This [verse, which is immediately followed by the commandment of bringing the firs fruits,] teaches us that they were not obligated [to bring] “first fruits” until they conquered the Land and divided it. – [Kid. 37b]

This is first section of the Parsha is read on Pessach and spoken when bringing the Bikurim (first fruits) from Shevous through Sukkos. Originally the person was called up to read from a Torah Scroll the confession. When the illiteracy rate increased after the destruction of the first Temple and in my case the inability to read Trop (proper cantillation of the Torah) the person bringing the Bikurim was read to and he repeated it.

2 that thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which thou shalt bring in from thy land that the LORD thy God giveth thee; and thou shalt put it in a basket and shalt go unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to cause His name to dwell there.

Of the first. But not all the first, because not all fruits are subject to [the mitzvah of] “first fruits”-only the seven species [for which the land of Israel is noted]. Here, in our verse, it says the word אֶרֶץ, “land,” and there [in the verse describing the praise of Eretz Israel], it says, “A land (אֶרֶץ) of wheat and barley, vines and figs and pomegranates, a land of oil-producing olives and honey” (Deut. 8:8). Just as the earlier verse (Deut. 8:8) is referring to the seven species through which Eretz Israel is praised, here too, [the verse is dealing with] the praise of the Land. [Rashi proceeds to explain two expressions in Deut. 8:8, which are relevant to the mitzvah of first fruits, in light of the connection taught by our Rabbis above:] oil-producing olives. [refers to]“ אֲגוּרִי olives,” [see Sifrei 26:2, meaning superior quality] olives that retain their oil, keeping it gathered (אָגוּר) [as it were] inside it. [Hence, it is the superior fruits which must be brought here]. — [Ber. 39a] [And in the same verse (Deut. 8:8):] honey. That is the honey of dates. — [Sifrei 26:2] of the first [of all the fruit]. [What is the process of taking these fruits?] A man goes down into his field and sees a fig that has ripened. He winds a reed around it for a sign and declares: “This is the first fruit (בִּכּוּרִים) .” – [Mishnah Bikurim 3:1]

When one brought Bikurim, he would bring let us say large figs as Bikurim, smaller figs as addition to the Bikurim and dried figs for the display too.

3 And thou shalt come unto the priest that shall be in those days, and say unto him: 'I profess this day unto the LORD thy God, that I am come unto the land which the LORD swore unto our fathers to give us.'

You have only the kohen in your days, whatever he is [and although he may not be as wise or holy as those of previous generations, you are obliged to address him with the respect due to his office as an agent of God]. — [Sifrei 26:3] and say to him. That you are not ungrateful [for all that God has done for you]. I declare this day. [The expression, “this day,” teaches us that the one who brings the first fruits must make this declaration] once a year, and not twice [even though he may return with more first fruits later that same year]. — [Sifrei 26:3]

So you should know that not every Cohain is like Rav Kuk Shlita of Rehovot or Rav Shar-Yeshuv Cohain Shlita of Haifa but perhaps only a Reform or Conservative Cohain with good genealogy back to Aaron HaCohain. The Torah comes to tell us that if he is a Kosher Cohain, you get the Mitzvah anyway just as if you brought it to a Cohain Rabbi and Gadol B’Torah.

4 And the priest shall take the basket out of thy hand, and set it down before the altar of the LORD thy God.

You have only the kohen in your days, whatever he is [and although he may not be as wise or holy as those of previous generations, you are obliged to address him with the respect due to his office as an agent of God]. — [Sifrei 26:3] and say to him. That you are not ungrateful [for all that God has done for you]. I declare this day. [The expression, “this day,” teaches us that the one who brings the first fruits must make this declaration] once a year, and not twice [even though he may return with more first fruits later that same year]. — [Sifrei 26:3]

The Cohain could be the age of your child, a boorish person, etc. but if he receives the basket from you Rashi comes to explain to us that he is an agent of G-D.

5 And thou shalt speak and say before the LORD thy God: 'A wandering Aramean was my father, and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there, few in number; and he became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous.

Shevous is called Chag HaBikurim and related to Pessach in that wheat and barley were brought. The Haggadah of Pessach and the confession of Shevous have this section in common.

6 And the Egyptians dealt ill with us, and afflicted us, and laid upon us hard bondage. 7 And we cried unto the LORD, the God of our fathers, and the LORD heard our voice, and saw our affliction, and our toil, and our oppression. 8 And the LORD brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs, and with wonders. 9 And He hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 And now, behold, I have brought the first of the fruit of the land, which Thou, O LORD, hast given me.' And thou shalt set it down before the LORD thy God, and worship before the LORD thy God. 11 And thou shalt rejoice in all the good which the LORD thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thy house, thou, and the Levite, and the stranger that is in the midst of thee.

NEW: The section ends and the Cohain now has the basket after the confession or declaration that the fruits were grown on land owned by the person bringing it. It would be that when the people brought the fruits. The people of Modiin Illit bring, the people of Ganei Modiin bring, the people of Bnei Binah bring, the people of Ramat Modiin bring, the people of Modiin bring, the people of … bring, etc. until the whole greater Modiin area is covered including the rest of the Yeshuvim. A holiday atmosphere existed and it was a day of joy and even shopping in Yerushalayim with the people eating Maaser Sheni during the years when it was propitious to bring to Yerushalayim or buy other food in exchange. Of course in the modern cities both Cohanim and Leviim are in the city and the later could share the fruits with the duty Cohanim.

Note the following is a repeat of the theme of the land of milk and honey and the swearing of G-D by his holy name to give the land to the children of Yacov not Esav or Yishmael.

15 Look forth from Thy holy habitation, from heaven, and bless Thy people Israel, and the land which Thou hast given us, as Thou didst swear unto our fathers, a land flowing with milk and honey.'

16 This day the LORD thy God commands thee to do these statutes and ordinances; thou shalt therefore observe and do them with all thy heart, and with all thy soul.

[Tanchuma 1] You will observe and fulfill them. A heavenly voice is blessing you: “You have brought the first fruits today- [so] will you merit to bring them next year!”

The message that HASHEM is sending us is one of zeal to follow the commandments. Below I wrote about the Mitzvah of buying new clothes for the wife for Yom Tov and jokingly the zeal in which women perform that Mitzva. The zeal of a woman looking for a Yom Tov dress within her budget going from store to store or shop to shop or to a seamstress is the same zeal that all of us should put in for each and every Mitzvah. Both you and I know that saying Shemona Esray daily is sometimes with zeal on this part and sometimes on that part and other times just a chore. We should perhaps be more diligent. However, the fact that we are even mouthing holy words at Pentium dual speeds at times is still better than nothing. At lease we are devoting what little time we can spare unto G-D.

Now when I write this, I am not speaking of anybody else but myself. I am busy in worldly matters. It bothers me that this or that is occurring and I put things in Inyanay Diyoma. I have to shop for food. I do some sport to keep my body as healthy as I can. I try to eat the right foods and invest for my future and that of my children and grandchildren. I am concerned about my Torah learning too and my Torah teaching. I often question if my energies are going into the right place.

My main goal is to be healthy enough, wealth enough and knowledgeable enough to perform the will of the CREATOR. But in the end I can only come to this conclusion. OUR FATHER, OUR KING, BE GRACIOUS UNTO US AND ANSWER US BECAUSE WE HAVE NO DEEDS – DO UNTO US CHARITY AND MERCY AND SAVE US!

17 Thou hast avouched the LORD this day to be thy God, and that thou would walk in His ways, and keep His statutes, and His commandments, and His ordinances, and hearken unto His voice.

The Mitzvos are not for G-D as he was, is and will be. They are for mankind to improve this planet and their own souls which were cast out of Gan Eden. I almost feel like Moshe when I write the above until and hearken unto His voice – sometimes I feel like shouting at people “Yet you have rebelled and not observed this, that and the other thing.” As I wrote last week from Daf 5 of Gemara Berachos that Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai says that Torah, Eretz Yisrael and Olam Haba (the next world) are earned through hardship and basically hard work. Sometimes a person could easily be in Eretz Yisrael like many spiritual leaders outside of Israel. However, they remain in Galus to keep HASHEM’s flock in line with Torah.

18 And the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be His own treasure, as He hath promised thee, and that thou should keep all His commandments; 19 and to make thee high above all nations that He hath made, in praise, and in name, and in glory; and that thou may be a holy people unto the LORD thy God, as He hath spoken.

You will come to me by saying Sweden accuses you of false things, Norway just dumped its stock in Elbit, Russia is selling MIG 31 planes to Syria, etc. Yet, the Pasuk only means that we will be held on high IF WE FOLLOW THE MITZVOS PROPERLY. Spiritually with 613 Commandments vs. 7 we are on a higher level. This does not mean that there are times when the Nations of World show HASHEM’s glory by doing a Mitzvah outstandingly like the story of Ben Duma in his honor for his father and generosity towards the Cohanim. Jews should never think themselves the be all end all for doing the 7 Mitzvos and things we can learn. However, over all we should strive to really be the be all end all for each and every mitzvah.

27:1 And Moses and the elders of Israel commanded the people, saying: 'Keep all the commandment which I command you this day”.

This means that one cannot choose to void a commandment because it is easy for himself. He cannot be a robber or thief because making money is easier. A married woman cannot be a prostitute because it pays better than a maid. All my life I have treated maids, waitresses, secretaries, receptionist with great honor as if they were the CEO of a company. The reason being is that they have the same equipment that a loose woman has and yet they chose any form of work even with low pay to make an honest and G-D fearing living.

2 And it shall be on the day when ye shall pass over the Jordan unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, that thou shalt set thee up great stones, and plaster them with plaster.

The stones existed for centuries and there were still three standing in the river at the time of the Gemara from eye witnesses. However, with the various invasions and characters trying to erase and rewrite history the witness stones disappeared – they would have been a world wonder like the stones of Easter Island. Instead nothing is left. Sefer Yehoshua specifically states that the stone were taken and set up. People who had been slaves building Pyramids would know the technology and have the energy to move these stones from below sea level to the elevation of Schem. It is sad that this element of history is missing. Perhaps someday, when the Moshiach comes and the blight is removed from Schem shall we find these stones in a home or archeological dig.

3 And thou shalt write upon them all the words of this law, when thou art passed over; that thou may go in unto the land which the LORD thy God gives thee, a land flowing with milk and honey, as the LORD, the God of thy fathers, hath promised thee.

Again milk and honey and a gift from the L-RD. (Aside for Israeli ‘Leaders’ – don’t throw G-D’s gift away.)

4 And it shall be when ye are passed over the Jordan, that ye shall set up these stones, which I command you this day, in mount Eval, and thou shalt plaster them with plaster. 5 And there shalt thou build an altar unto the LORD thy God, an altar of stones; thou shalt lift up no iron tool upon them. 6 Thou shalt build the altar of the LORD thy God of unhewn stones; and thou shalt offer burnt-offerings thereon unto the LORD thy God. 7 And thou shalt sacrifice peace-offerings, and shalt eat there; and thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God. 8 And thou shalt write upon the stones all the words of this law very plainly.'

Nowadays it is life threatening to drive through this area. The area around Schem and the mountains is basically a natural passage from Nahar HaYarden (Jordan River) to the mountains. If it were not for the current animosity of the wicked inhabitants it could be a bustling thoroughfare of commerce enriching everyone involved. The order to write the Torah on Stones there is the equivalent of putting the Torah on Bill Boards in Times Square, Tzomet Geha, Arch De Triumph, Red Square, Tinaman Square, Piccadilly Circus, etc. G-D chose the place carefully for it was a natural route between the Galil, Shomron and Golan to the south. Pilgrims to Beit El, Shilo, Yerushalayim would prefer the route near Schem.

9 And Moses and the priests the Levites spoke unto all Israel, saying: 'Keep silence, and hear, O Israel; this day thou art become a people unto the LORD thy God. 10 Thou shalt therefore hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and do His commandments and His statutes, which I command thee this day.'

This is a major and one time only happening. Perhaps it will occur again when the 10 lost tribes come from the areas of China, the Himalayas, Afghanistan, Pakistan and return. The Lubavitcher Rebbe wrote a commentary on why each tribe on each mountain. Reuven moved his father’s bed so he children was given the side of the curse about lying with his father’s wife. There was a reason why some tribes received blessings like Yosef who withstood the overtures of a married woman who eventually became his mother-in-law. I haven’t read the writings of the Rebbe but I can tell you with certain that Yehuda admitted his behavior with Tamar and took complete responsibility for Benyamin which is something our leaders are lacking today.

11 And Moses charged the people the same day, saying: 12 'These shall stand upon mount Gerizim to bless the people, when ye are passed over the Jordan: Simeon, and Levi, and Judah, and Issachar, and Joseph, and Benjamin; 13 and these shall stand upon mount Eval for the curse: Reuben, Gad, and Asher, and Zebulun, Dan, and Naphtali. 14 And the Levites shall speak, and say unto all the men of Israel with a loud voice:

Another feature about the Schem area is that it is good for Acoustics. If all the Leviim chant the blessings and the curses in unison it can be heard by the six tribes on Har HaBracha and the six tribes on Har Eval.

15 Cursed be the man that makes a graven or molten image, an abomination unto the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret. And all the people shall answer and say: Amen.

If a Gentile sets up a statue on an island in a harbor of one of his main ports to symbolize freedom, justice, equality in his land and it is not used for worship the curse does not apply and even the non-Jew does not worship that statue. However if a Ben Yisrael would set up a statue in his house or in some heathen temple a god or saint, on a bridge or at the entrance to his city, the curse does apply. For the delicate balance between good and evil has been broken. That does not mean that the Bnei Yisrael have a mission in life to go around the world attacking Buddhist, Hindu, Confucius, etc. and other statues – this is our internal thing and our Mitzvah not to set up Statues of our Kings, Rabbis or Prophets. If a Michelangelo goes and makes a Statue of David 2500 years after the man passed away – so what.

16 Cursed be he that dishonors his father or his mother. And all the people shall say: Amen.

One of my projects is to work with Rav Mimran Shlita and to produce on this Drasha a translation of Yoreh Deah 240 about honoring parents. I have already written a thesis earlier this year about grandparents and great grandparents but I have not covered the laws governing the subject.

17 Cursed be he that removes his neighbor's landmark. And all the people shall say: Amen.

A little story before I return to how things were in ancient times. It happened on two sides of my property. My neighbor and I were missing a joint marker but had the two ends. We were really pressured for money at the end of our building as the construction costs kept rising all the time. Therefore, we strung up a string between the two existing markers and estimated the position not knowing that the border was indenting a little into another neighbor above my immediate neighbor. By a joint agreement, my neighbor and I built a wall most of it was precisely along the border but the ending gave me a tiny bit more in my favor – but it was done on agreement we are talking about centimeters off but still the border has been moved. On the other hand, the neighbor above my next door neighbor lost a small piece which he could have claimed had he wanted to. The neighbor above me had workers who overbuilt a joint wall after ripping down my precise wall and essentially took land from me again centimeters but in both cases over some meters add up. The problem is not as simple as one thinks. One is removal by accident due to a bulldozer or worker and another is to steal land. These things happen all the time. The difference between agreement and non-agreement also is a factor. As easy as the Mitzvah looks, it is a lot harder with modern precision that in ancient times. Also in modern times, the parcels of land are not the same size as though divided in the time of Yehoshua where centimeters were not factors. Measurements were in strides and neighbors were of the same tribe and usually related with some elder as their guide.

18 Cursed be he that make the blind to go astray in the way. And all the people shall say: Amen.

In Kedoshim we had the Mitzvah of not putting a stumbling block before the blind. Here we have a curse of the who wants to make a fool out of a blind man. In Kedoshim we also had a Mitzvah against cursing the deaf. For a fool or youngster it may be funny to watch the blind man bang himself or say to the deaf man – if you’re an idiot remain silent. It takes a stronger Neshama to help these people and also not upon us retarded individuals. To make fun of them is easy to aid them is a challenge but the reward is great. To help make a Shidduch for a deaf person or a blind person with another person of the same caliper is a bigger Mitzvah than making 10 Shidduchim for people who can easily help themselves. Deaf and blind people can make good parents to normal children but might need just a little more instructions. When the kids cry for a deaf mute lights flash nowadays and it is time for a feeding and a changing. Once a blind mother or father are instructed in changing diapers, they can manage quite well.

19 Cursed be he that perverts the justice due to the stranger, fatherless, and widow. And all the people shall say: Amen.

The Ger has not family to give him or her backing, the orphan has no guiding father and in some cases both parents – the person becomes automatically shy and is insecure by nature and the poor widow is left suddenly alone in the world to fend for herself. I just watched the widow of my dear friend Yacov. Suddenly, she had to do everything by herself. He used to take care of the legal things, banks, transportation, getting her the cancer medications and nursing her. Suddenly, she was alone in the world with his pension and other sources of income but without guidance. It is not easy for any of these to step up and be their own defender in court cases.

20 Cursed be he that lies with his father's wife; because he hath uncovered his father's skirt. And all the people shall say: Amen. 21 Cursed be he that lies with any manner of beast. And all the people shall say: Amen. 22 Cursed be he that lies with his sister, the daughter of his father, or the daughter of his mother. And all the people shall say: Amen. 23 Cursed be he that lies with his mother-in-law. And all the people shall say: Amen. 24 Cursed be he that smites his neighbor in secret. And all the people shall say: Amen.

Does that mean if you bash his head in public it is OK – rather that one is harboring a grudge and then ambushes his neighbor this could lead to murder.

25 Cursed be he that takes a bribe to slay an innocent person. And all the people shall say: Amen.

Any Judge who takes a bribe even to tilt the scales in favor of the poor man over the rich man is like one who slays a person. He can eventually cause the rich man to have health issues which can kill. Bribes pervert truth and justice and their punishment in the next world is just as bad as murder, incest, adultery and idol worship that are previously mentioned because of the close proximity.

26 Cursed be he that confirms not the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say: Amen.

Torah violators on purpose are cursed just like the above. Is it really worthwhile being part of the group to eat fried ants, chocolate covered worms, delicious snake, bacon, etc. ?

28: 1 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all His commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all the nations of the earth. 2 And all these blessings shall come upon thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God. 3 Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. 4 Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy land, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the young of thy flock. 5 Blessed shall be thy basket and thy kneading-trough. 6 Blessed shalt thou be when thou come in, and blessed shall you be when you go out. 7 The LORD will cause your enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thee; they shall come out against thee one way, and shall flee before thee seven ways. 8 The LORD will command the blessing with thee in thy barns, and in all that thou put thy hand unto; and He will bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. 9 The LORD will establish thee for a holy people unto Himself, as He hath sworn unto thee; if thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, and walk in His ways. 10 And all the peoples of the earth shall see that the name of the LORD is called upon thee; and they shall be afraid of thee. 11 And the LORD will make thee over-abundant for good, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy land, in the land which the LORD swore unto thy fathers to give thee. 12 The LORD will open unto thee His good treasure the heaven to give the rain of thy land in its season, and to bless all the work of thy hand; and thou shalt lend unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow. 13 And the LORD will make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if thou shalt hearken unto the commandments of the LORD thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them; 14 and shalt not turn aside from any of the words which I command you this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.

29:1 And Moses called unto all Israel, and said unto them: Ye have seen all that the LORD did before your eyes in the land of Egypt unto Pharaoh, and unto all his servants, and unto all his land; 2 the great trials which your eyes saw, the signs and those great wonders; 3 but the LORD hath not given you a heart to know, and eyes to see, and ears to hear, unto this day. 4 And I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes are not waxen old upon you, and thy shoe is not waxen old upon thy foot. 5 Ye have not eaten bread, neither have ye drunk wine or strong drink; that ye might know that I am the LORD your God. 6 And when ye came unto this place, Sihon the king of Cheshbon, and Og the king of Bashan, came out against us unto battle, and we smote them. 7 And we took their land, and gave it for an inheritance unto the Reubenites, and to the Gadites, and to the half-tribe of the Manassites. 8 Observe therefore the words of this covenant, and do them, that ye may make all that ye do to prosper.

Going to NY and you feel hungry but don’t know where you can pick up a bite to eat? Thanks to R’ A.L. :

לא-יִשָּׁמַע עוֹד חָמָס בְּאַרְצֵךְ, שֹׁד וָשֶׁבֶר בִּגְבוּלָיִךְ וְקָרָאת יְשׁוּעָה חוֹמֹתַיִךְ, וּשְׁעָרַיִךְ תְּהִלָּה.; Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, desolation nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise. – Isa. 60:18 from this week’s Haftorah which deals with the coming of the Moshiach talks here about removing Violence (Hamas in Hebrew) forever.

Rabbi A.L. sent me this post from Rabbi Eli Mansour: Description: The Communal Obligation of Bikur Holim

Rav Eliezer Waldenberg (Israel, 1915-2006), in his treatise "Ramat Rahel," cites the ruling of the Shulhan Aruch that one should not visit an ill patient if this would cause the patient inconvenience. Although there is an obligation of Bikur Holim, to visit ill patients, it applies only when the visit would be beneficial to the patient, but not when a visit would cause him further grief. At times a patient is not in the condition or the mood to entertain guests, and sometimes his family members are not in a position to have company. One who wishes to visit an ill patient must therefore take this into consideration when planning the visit, and ensure to visit at a time when he would be assisting the patient in his time of need, rather than contributing further to his distress, Heaven forbid.

The work Leshon Hachamim gives the example of a wealthy, prominent person who is not accustomed to welcoming townspeople in large numbers in his home. If such a person takes ill, it would certainly cause him hardship and inconvenience if everybody in the community comes to visit him. Therefore, only those who are close to the individual and can ascertain that their visit would be beneficial should visit the ailing patient.

Interestingly, the Chafetz Chaim (Rabbi Yisrael Meir Kagan of Radin, 1839-1933), in his work Ahavas Chessed, laments the fact that many people incorrectly excuse themselves from this great Mitzva of Bikur Holim because of this Halacha. Rather than carefully consider whether they could assist the patient by visiting, many people simply assume that a visit would inconvenience the patient, and therefore decide not to go. The Chafetz Chaim urges us to assess each situation honestly to make the best decision, and not to carelessly excuse ourselves from this very important Misva.

Rav Waldenberg notes that in principle, the obligation of Bikur Holim applies to every member of a community anytime somebody in the community takes ill. Many people erroneously assume that they bear the obligation to visit only patients whom they know personally, such as friends and family members. In truth, however, the entire community bears the obligation to visit every sick patient in the community. Of course, in large communities, visits by every member would cause the patient considerable hardship. Rav Waldenberg therefore advises every community to establish a Bikur Holim society, a volunteer group that would ensure that every ill patient in the community has visitors and people caring for his needs. These volunteers function as the Shelihim (representatives) of the community, so that everyone in the community fulfills his obligation through the visits made by these volunteers. Rav Waldenberg compares this arrangement to the "Ma'amadot," the rotation of Jews who observed the sacrificial offerings in the Bet Ha'mikdash. Since these offerings were brought on behalf of the entire nation, it was necessary for the nation to have representatives present at the time of the offerings, so that all members of the nation could fulfill their obligation through these representatives. Likewise, Rav Waldenberg writes, every community must establish a Bikur Holim society to fulfill the community's obligation of Bikur Holim every time somebody takes ill.

Of course, this does not mean that people should not pay personal visits, as they fulfill their obligation through the Bikur Holim volunteers. People in a position to help an ill patient must certainly do so, even if there are already volunteers caring for the patient.

Summary: One should not visit an ill patient if this would cause him inconvenience. In principle, everyone in the community bears an obligation to visit every ill patient in the community. It is therefore imperative for every community to establish and maintain a Bikur Holim society to fulfill the community's collective obligation to visit and care for sick patients.


Tzitzit that were removed from a Talit, or fell off, should not be thrown into the garbage, since they were once used for a Mitzva. Some people use them as bookmarks. An old Talit - even after the Tzitzit are removed - should not be treated disrespectfully, such as being used for a cleaning rag. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 9:19

During the week one says מִזְמוֹר לְתוֹדָה - Mizmor L'Toda (Tehillim Ch. 100) after Hodu. One should stand up while reciting Mizmor L'Toda. Mizmor L'Thoda should be said with joy - since it replaces the Korban Toda - the thanksgiving offering. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 14:4
Serve Hashem with gladness: come before Him with singing. (Tehillim 100:2)

Sometimes one finds himself on a plane, train or bus as the sun is about to set. For example, he left west coast in the morning on a non-stop flight to the east coast but suddenly he sees out of the plane’s window the sun turning red or his watch is telling him that sun down is near. What should he do? If he has a compass he should try to find where the east is (from the USA and Europe) to face towards Yerushalayim or whatever direction from other places such as Yemen, South Africa, Russia, Iraq, the Dead Sea, etc. One should face Jerusalem during Davening, especially during the silent Amida. In Jerusalem one should face the Temple Mount, and the place where the Kodesh-Kedoshim (the Holies of Holies in the Bet Hamikdash) was. If one started the Amida facing the wrong direction one may not change direction, though - if practical, one should turn ones face to the correct direction. If there is non-Jewish religious emblems in ones line of vision, one should pray towards another direction. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 18:10

Further to the above Halacha, if one has immodestly dressed people in front of him such a locker room or a public place where non-Jewish and non-Religious women walk about exposing parts of their bodies that halachically should be covered, a place of stench such as alley ways and other places where one sometimes does his business, or one feels the necessity to relieve himself, he must first do so before praying. A person can pray in the direct line of sight of child’s potty across a glass door as a Mechitza (separator) but not where immodesty is exposed as the glass does not separate from this. – rendered by heart from the theme of the Shulchan Aruch.

Upon hearing really bad news one says the Bracha of Dayan Ha'Emet - the True Judge. דַּיַּן הָאֱמֶת בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה' אֱלקֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם
This is the Bracha one says when a close relative dies. If the person who died isn't a close friend or relative, one says the abbreviated form:
בָּרוּךְ דַיַּן הָאֱמֶת Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 59:6

It's a great Mitzva to comfort mourners - we learn (Beresheis 25:11) that Hashem comforted Yitzchak Avinu when Avraham Avinu died. When comforting mourners one should not initiate a conversation. It's up to the mourner to speak first. If a mourner hints that the comforters should leave, they are not permitted to stay.
Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 207:1

Borer Heb: Separating is one of the more complicated of the 39 forbidden categories of work on Shabbat. Borer refers to separating bad from the good. Separating good from the bad is less of a problem - though certain conditions apply. "Good" being the item wanted now, "bad" being the item not needed / wanted at the moment. If a fly falls into a liquid, one may not remove the fly by itself. One may scoop it out along with some of the liquid; thereby separating some "good" and "bad" from the "good". Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 80:19 – for those of you who know the joke-and the waiter said, “He’s swimming the back stoke very nicely”.

Taking revenge is a Torah prohibition. One may not refuse to lend a person something only because that person refused to lend us something. One may not even say to them: "I'm lending you this, despite the fact that you didn't lend me something." The way to take revenge is to become a better person, your good name and sterling character will upset your enemies more than anything else. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 30:7, 8.

The custom is to blow the Shofar after Shacharis (the morning prayers) from tomorrow, until Thursday, 28 Elul (17 September) , as a reminder to start improving ones Torah observance and to repent for past misdeeds. On Erev Rosh Hashana the Shofar is not blown, so as to create a break between the custom of blowing Shofar in Elul and the Torah-commandment to blow Shofar on Rosh Hashana. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 128:1, 2

Danny wrote me that he receives the Halacha from his Rabbis and forwards it. So he is a faithful messenger and I don’t intend to shoot the messenger even though I would have preferred the laws of Rosh Hashana. In the school, my 5th grade grandson is learning the laws of Sukkos while my 8th grader is learning the laws of Rosh Hashana so there is some method here by the Rabbis as to priorities. On Sukkoth there's a Mitzvah to shake the four species; a Lulav, 3 Haddasim, 2 Aravot and an Etrog. Each Haddas is a branch of a myrtle bush, and is at least 3 Tefachim (24 cm - 10") long. Myrtle leaves grow on the stem in groups of three or more. A Kosher Haddas needs to be Meshulash; with each group of leaves growing out of the branch at exactly the same height. Preferably the Haddas should be Meshulash its entire length, though it's Kosher if only the top half is Meshulash. The entire Haddas needs to be covered in leaves, the top of the lower leaves must reach the bottom of the higher ones. Myrtle bushes have berries growing on them. A Haddas should not have any berries on it; berries should be removed (with their stems) before Yom Tov. Make sure that the top of the Haddas is not cut off; it usually ends in a set of tiny leaves. Haddasim need to be kept fresh; dried out Haddasim are not Kosher. Source: Shulchan Aruch 646.

On Sukkoth there's a Mitzvah to shake the four species; a Lulav, 3 Haddasim, 2 Aravot and an Etrog. The Aravah comes from a known type of willow tree with long leaves, non-serrated edges, and its bough turns red when mature. The Aravah must be at least 3 Tefachim (24 cm - 10") long. If possible one should get Aravot from a tree that grows alongside a river. Willows dry up very quickly. A wilted Aravah is not Kosher. Some say that once its leaves start drooping it is not fresh enough to be a Kosher Aravah. Many have the Minchag to get fresh Aravot every day of Chol HaMoed Sukkoth. An Aravah is no longer Kosher if most of its leaves have come off, or its tip is cut off. This can happen if they are wilted, have been shaken too hard or while replacing them.
Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 136:5, 6, 7 and 137:6

On Sukkoth there's a Mitzvah to shake the four species; a Lulav, 3 Haddasim, 2 Aravot and an Etrog. The Etrog is a citron; Citrus Medica. It is held in ones left hand when shaking the four species, with the stem (where it was cut off the tree) facing downwards. By nature the Etrog tree is very soft (mine buckled during a light Jerusalem snow storm), therefore it is often grafted onto other trees to make it stronger. An Etrog from a grafted tree cannot be used when shaking the four species. (Grafted fruit is Kosher to eat, despite the prohibition against grafting trees.) The Etrog needs to be whole; scratches and dents may invalidate it. The Etrog should not have dark dots on it, though it may have light scabs that are a result of leaves and thorns brushing against it while it grows. (Etrog trees have thorns that grow to about 2" long.) The "nose" of the Etrog - from where it starts getting narrow - should be perfectly clean.
Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 174:2, Shulchan Aruch 648

There's a Mitzvah to relish Jewish Holidays and therefore one must eat two Yom Tov meals; one at night and one during the day. (Seudat Shlishi - the 3rd meal - is only eaten on Shabbat and is not required on Yom Tov.) Each meal starts with Kiddush over wine and two Challos (loaves of bread) and should include meat and other delicacies. It's also a Mitzvah to ensure that others are happy:
- Children should be given treats
- Wives should get new clothes and jewelry according to ones budget (This is one of the Mitzvos that women perform with greatest of zeal :>})
- Men should be served meat and wine

In order to prove that the extra expenses are for Yom Tov and not simply for self-indulgence, one must ensure that the poor and needy are also supplied with their Yom Tov needs; invite some over for the meals and donate generously to reputable charity funds before Yom Tov. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 103:3, 5, 9
Ktiva Vechatima Tova; may you always be on the giving end Shabbat Shalom, - Danny

From Kim a story of a Calcutta Jew: Who is Lieutenant General JFR Jacob?

Lieutenant General JFR Jacob (Jacob-Farj-Rafael Jacob) is one of the great Indian Generals who played an instrumental role in liberating Bangladesh during the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971.

Early Life:

He was born in Kolkata (formerly Calcutta), West Bengal in 1923, when what is now India was part of the British Empire. His family were Baghdadi Jews originally from Iraq who settled in Kolkata in the middle of the 18th century. At the age of nine he was sent to boarding school by his father, a successful businessman named Elias Emanuel. Jacob's school, named "Victoria School", was located in Kurseong near the city of Darjeeling, about 500 kilometers from Kolkata. When he turned 18 in 1941, he enlisted in the Indian army, which was under British command at the time. His father objected to his enlisting. However, Jacob was motivated by reports of the Holocaust of European Jewry during World War II to join the British Indian Army. The various atrocities perpetrated by the Nazis of the Third Reich, including their genocide against the Jews, were instrumental in his decision to become a military man.

Military Career:

Upon his graduation from officer's training school in 1942, he was posted to northern Iraq. He trained with Glubb Pasha's Arab Legion. Jacob then joined an artillery brigade that was dispatched to North Africa to reinforce the British army against the German army under Field Marshal Erwin Rommel. From there, Jacob's unit was sent to Burma where he fought for three years against the Japanese. In the wake of Japan's defeat, he was assigned to Sumatra. Jacob attended and graduated from artillery schools in England and the United States and specialized in advanced artillery and missiles before returning to an independent India.

During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, he commanded an infantry and artillery division in the Indian state of Rajasthan, where he composed a much-praised manual on desert warfare. He was promoted to Brigadier in 1963 and became a Major General by 1967. He was appointed Chief of Staff, Eastern Army Command in 1969 by Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw, the Chief of Army Staff. His tactical abilities were widely regarded as "brilliant".

Role in Bangladesh Liberation War:

In 1971, East Pakistan rebelled against the ruling elite of West Pakistan. The violence escalated when Yahya Khan, Pakistan's ruler, retaliated, with massive loss of life and the ethnic cleansing of Bengalis (both Muslims and Hindus), driving 10 Million refugees from East Pakistan into India. When India's prime minister, Indira Gandhi, extended assistance to the ethnic Bengalis in East Pakistan, Indo-Pakistani tensions rose and war was declared. Having watched these developments with mounting concern, Jacob realized that conflict was imminent.

After consulting with superior officers, he chalked out a plan for engaging Pakistan in a "war of movement" in the difficult and swampy terrain of East Pakistan. An initial plan, given to the Eastern Command by General Maneckshaw, involved a brief incursion into East Pakistan and the capture of two provinces, Chittagong and Khulna. Senior members of the Indian Army were reluctant to execute an aggressive invasion for fears of early ceasefire demands by the United Nations and a looming threat posed by China. That, together with the difficulty of navigating the marshy terrain of East Pakistan through three wide rivers, led the higher-ups to believe that the capture of all of East Pakistan was inconceivable. Jacob, however, disagreed and favored his "war of movement" plan which aimed to take control of all of East Pakistan. Jacob felt that the capital city of Dhaka, located deep in East Pakistan, was the geopolitical center of the region and therefore any successful campaign had to involve deeper incursions into East Pakistan and the eventual capture of Dhaka. He realized that any campaign had to be successful and swift as the United Nations was pressing for a ceasefire (which would have been advantageous to Pakistan) and the Soviet Union (an ally of India at the time) were not interested in exercising their veto anymore. He realized that the Pakistani Army commander, Gen. Niazi, was going to fortify the towns and "defend them in strength". Jacob's plan was to bypass intermediary towns altogether using subsidiary tracks to get to Dhaka directly. His plan was eventually approved by the Eastern Command. The strategy would eventually lead to the capture of Dhaka, the heart of East Pakistan. The Pakistani forces would be bypassed, their communication centers would be secured and their command and control capabilities destroyed. His campaign plan would take three weeks, but was executed in two.

Jacob understood that a protracted war would not be in India's best interests. As fighting raged, he flew to Dhaka and wrested an unconditional surrender from Pakistan's military commander Lt.General A. A. K. Niazi.
The war was a significant victory for India, with nearly 45,000 Pakistani soldiers surrendering to the Indian Army. The war led to the independence of East Pakistan from the rest of Pakistan, and the new nation of Bangladesh was formed.

Post-retirement Life:

Jacob is a bachelor, preferring to remain unmarried due to his complete devotion to his chosen profession. He retired from the military in 1978, following 37 years of service

In the late `90s, he joined the Hindu right wing Indian political party "Bharatiya Janata Party" or Indian People's Party. For many years, Jacob served as the party's security adviser and was eventually appointed the governorship of the state of Goa, and subsequently became the governor of the state of Punjab . He is a staunch supporter for better India-Israel relations.
Lt. General Jacob is the author of the book: "Surrender at Dacca : Birth of a Nation" ISBN 984-05-1395-8. Jacob, whose book is "the most authoritative and objective account of the war to date, ascribed his victory to a few factors – imaginative planning, flexibility of approach, the capacity to react to shifting and perhaps unforeseen events and, of course, luck". A keen student of warfare, Jacob attached critical importance to historical context. As he puts it, “I’ve learned from every campaign since Alexander the Great and Napoleon.”

Source : Wikipedia.

A public service announcement for NYC residents who need spiritual guidance:

In Israel we get some Fox News features that most people miss. One of them was on health with Dr. Manny Alberez: It is an established fact that babies can remember sounds in the womb at 30 weeks for 10 minutes and 34 weeks for 4 hours.

From Gene Alberts: There was once a king who had five yards of the world’s most beautiful fabric created, and then had his loyal tailor custom-tailor an exquisite suit out of it. A problem arose when one of the king’s jealous advisors suspected the tailor of using less than the five yards of fabric and stealing the remnants.

The king was extremely perplexed by the accusation that his tailor had stolen any material, and insisted the tailor prove to him that all five yards had been used to make the suite. The tailor claimed that the only way he could prove it would be to take apart the sit piece by piece, which would destroy it. The king was so baffled that he agreed.

The servants bought in a fifteen-foot table, and the suit was laid out. The tailor began by cutting the cuff off the jacket sleeve and exposing the inner lining. “You see, Your majesty,” he began, “an ordinary suit has just one inner lining. A better suit has two, and a great suit has three linings. I used no less than six linings!” As he spoke, he carefully laid out each small piece of material.

Then he continued to cut the inner fabric of the sleeve. He explained how a regular suit was constructed, how a better quality suit was made, and how he had used a totally different method of construction to design this suit. “Because this suit was for Your Majesty, I wanted it to have every possible quality. In order to achieve this I used fabric in ways never before conceived.” The tailor continued painstakingly to cut each layer of the fabric he had so lovingly fashioned.

After he had taken apart the entire jacket and laid out each scrap of material on the table, he began to do the same with the vest and the pants. Slowly and meticulously, he cut each layer and carefully laid it out on the table.

The king and his entourage were all watching with rapt attention as the tailor took apart the last few inches of what had once been a pair of pants and laid it out on the table.

As the last piece of fabric was set down, the king gasped because there on the table lay exactly five yards of fabric!

There was not an inch of material missing!

The tailor had clearly shown not only how honest he was, but how well he had constructed the world’s finest erstwhile suit.

“Your majesty,” the tailor said, “now you see how everything fit. Now you understand how every piece of fabric was used. Now you appreciate all the genius that went into the creation of this most wonderful garment. How it pains me that now there is no longer any suit!

Don’t take apart Hashem’s world (like the tailor).

Difficulties are custom tailored for you. There is nothing missing. So enjoy!

Binyamin Jadidi

The journey of a soul: Upon death, the soul does not rest until it comes to its final resting place. It took a lot for me to convince the widow of my friend Yacov to have him buried as soon as possible. The Nations of the World do not understand the dynamics of the Neshama. I was not a fan of Michael Jackson and neither did I go bananas over his music and some of his gestures in his early songs left a lot to be desired. However, when the poor man died, I felt sorry for his Neshama. It could not rest in this world or reach judgement in the next. It was like the Mitzvah of the Dead Body along the way which even the High Priest should bury. Finally after around two and a half months, he was buried. What the family did to his soul by not burying him as soon as possible is beyond normal human imagination. Even the Harry Potter, Indiana Jones and Spielberg movies don’t come even close to what happens.

Inyanay Diyoma

A story behind a story and a few answers to some interesting questions in the mean time the CIA and Israeli Electronic Engineers are analyzing certain things:,7340,L-3770801,00.html

GOG AND MAGOG NEWS pre- Armageddon:

I posted about an Acorn person calling on making a list of rich whiteys. Deborah M. sent me this about people standing in Grand Central Station cursing whites – especially Jews and Israel:

The Defense Dept. and the State Dept. have some different views of the world.

STATE OF TERROR by YORAM ETTINGER Forwarded with comments by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator

How is it that America’s "Foggy Bottom" diplomats at the U.S. State Department have been fostering Terrorism first by Yassir Arafat and now by Mahmoud Abbas, his heir, to create a Terror State of "Palestine" which will bring down the Saudi and Jordanian government in a very short time.

I, among others, have written extensively about how another State of Palestine would likely assassinate key members of the Royal Saudi Family or the King of Jordan from their new base of a "Palestinian" State.

As the bumblers at State will scramble to lie and protect their jobs for their roles in creating a Palestinian State of Terror and the fall of an oil source.

The Israelis, the only ones able to keep Palestinian Terrorists in check, is constantly attacked by U.S. Arabists who are insisting that Israel assist in the creation of a State that will attempt to also kill the Jewish Nation/State. But, Palestinian Terror will also destroy the Saudi and Jordanian Kingdoms. Granted the Saudis may deserve elimination as a prime funding source of Terror (15 of the 19 Terrorists of 9/11 were Saudis), nevertheless, making this Oil State a captive of Palestine and their allies of Iran and Syria is stupid as it is dangerous.

Yoram Ettinger, as usual, has laid out the facts and the future precisely.



STATE OF TERROR By: Yoram Ettinger Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Why a Palestinian state would be a threat to American, Israeli and even Arab national security.

The idea that a Palestinian state can lead to enduring peace in the Middle East has become a diplomatic obsession for American policy makers. Bringing such a state into being has become the equivalent of finding the Holy Grail. In fact, however, a Palestinian state would not only fail to bring peace and stability to the region, but would make it an even more dangerous place than it already is. And ironically, given its adamant backing for a government that would have been led by Yasser Arafat and now would be headed by Abu Mazen, U.S. support for the creation of "Palestine," which would immediately ally itself with and become a client of rivals and enemies of America such as Iran, would harm American, Israeli, and even Arab interests.

The history of the PLO's Abu Mazen – who is hailed by the US administration as a peaceful leader – tells us something important about the likely character of a Palestinian state. As a graduate of Moscow University (Ph.D. thesis: Holocaust Denial) and a beneficiary of KGB training, he managed the logistics of the Munich Massacre of eleven Israeli athletes in 1972. He was the architect of PLO ties with ruthless communist regimes until 1989 and, since 1993, a series of PLO accords with Hamas. In 1950, 1966 and 1970, he was forced to flee Egypt, Syria and Jordan, respectively, for subversive activities. During the 1970s and 1980s he participated in PLO attempts to topple the Christian regime in Beirut, which resulted in the 1976 Syrian invasion of Lebanon and a series of civil wars, causing close to 200,000 deaths and hundreds of thousands of refugees. As Yasser Arafat’s confidante and first deputy for over fifty years until Arafat's death, Abu Mazen is one of the engineers of contemporary Palestinian hate education, which has become a production line for terrorists. In 1990, he collaborated with Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait, despite the Gulf country’s unique hospitality to 400,000 PLO-affiliated Palestinians.

This history is not that of a peace maker, and the PLO's track record of inter-Arab treachery, non-compliance, corruption, repression and terrorism does not give evidence of peaceful Palestinian state of the future. Since its makeover from a terrorist organization to a semi-independent entity in 1993, the Palestinian Authority, which has been led by PLO graduates of terrorist bases in Iraq, Yemen, Sudan, Lebanon, Syria and Tunisia, has become an incubator for terrorist tactics, which have been exported to Iraq, Afghanistan, England, Spain and other countries.

The 1968-70 and 1970-1982 PLO autonomy in Jordan and in Lebanon respectively provided training and inspiration for scores of international terror organizations; introduced the first wave of commercial aircraft hijackings; and facilitated the murder of 300 US Marines in the 1983 attack on the US Embassy and Marine Headquarters in Beirut. The year 1993 – when the PLO catapulted to prominence – marked a wave of anti-US Islamic terrorism, starting with the first bombing of the World Trace Center in 1993 and ending with the September 11 attacks.

The proposed Palestinian State would inflict destruction upon America’s Arab allies and would enhance the fortunes of its rivals and enemies. Other states in the region know this. During the October 1994 signing of the Israel-Jordan peace treaty, top commanders of the Jordanian military urged their Israeli counterparts to stop short of a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River, "lest it destroy the [pro-US] Hashemite regime east of the River." Home to the largest Palestinian community in the world, Jordan is considered by the PLO to be Palestinian land. Why would the US support the Hashemite regime on one hand, but doom it to oblivion, by promoting a Palestinian State, on the other?

Even more worrisome are the ties between the PLO and Iran. The PLO was one of the earliest allies of the Ayatollah Khomeini when he toppled the Shah of Iran in 1979. After his 2005 election to the chairmanship of the Palestinian Authority, Abu Mazen’s first visits were to Teheran and Damascus. A Palestinian state would extend Iran's long terrorist arm, facilitating subversive operations against pro-Western Arab regimes. It would also enable Iran to enhance its intelligence and military operations in the region, including port facilities in Gaza.

A Palestinian State would be a tailwind to insurgent terrorists in Iraq. With its long record of connections to Soviet intelligence, it would provide Russia and possibly China and North Korea with a foothold in the eastern flank of the Mediterranean at the expense of vital US interests. The increasingly Islamist

and anti-US direction of Abu Mazen's educational and media efforts indicates that a Palestinian state would export terrorism to Egypt, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states.

The long and determined effort by American administrations to soften the Palestinian Authority’s harsh features cannot change the fact that a Palestinian State would add fuel to the fire of terrorism in the region. In tying its fortunes to the creation of such a state, the United States may be signing a suicide note for its Middle East policy.

Ambassador Yoram Ettinger served as Minister for Congressional Affairs at Israel’s Embassy in Washington and Director of Israel’s Government Press Office, in addition to other posts. He speaks frequently on U.S. college campuses about the conflict in the Middle East.

THE BIG ISRAEL LIE BY "SULTAN KNISH" Forwarded with comment by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator



There are two interconnected lies that reside at the heart of any American discussion about Israel. The first lie is that the road to peace in the Middle East lies through Israel. The second lie is that Israel controls American policy toward itself. Those lies are not the product of ignorance or misunderstanding; they are the product of an effective propaganda campaign by the unofficial suit and tie spokesmen of the Saudi lobby who dominate American policy in the Middle East. The goal of that campaign has been to make Israel seem like the axis on which the Middle East and America turn, in order to put Israel on the firing line. And it is a campaign that has been wickedly successful up until now.

Let's take a moment to examine those lies now.

Within the Middle East, Israel is physically insignificant. At 8500 square miles, Israel could not just fit comfortably into Pennsylvania, it is 1/5th the size of Jordan, 1/8th the size of Syria and 1/12th the size of Egypt. Simply put, Israel is smaller in land and population than every country that borders it. If you looked at the Middle East from space, you could easily put a fingernail across all of Israel.

Israel has beaten all of these countries in wars and has the best military in the region, but that is because if it didn't, it wouldn't exist. Israel's military is not the product of a will to conquer, but of an attempt to maintain its own territorial integrity and protect its citizens from attack. Israel's neighbors have never needed to work as hard or spend as much to maintain their own armed forces, because they don't truly need them. For them a strong army is not a survival strategy, it is optional.

All those who rant endlessly about Israel's settlements in the West Bank and Gaza as proof of Israel's desire to seize land, forget that Jordan annexed the West Bank only two years after its forces captured it in the 1948 War of Independence. Israel has not annexed the West Bank even after more than 40 years, and has continued to offer it in peace negotiations year after year. That is not the policy of an aggressive land hungry regime. It is not the behavior of a country that keeps its neighbors up late at night. While Israel's leaders have spent over half a century staying up late at night worrying about a war, Israel's neighbors know that war is their choice.

But what this means in practice is that Israel has very little influence beyond its own borders. With a small size, no expansionist program beyond its own territory, and as one of only two non-Arab states and the only non-Muslim state in the region... Israel's impact on the rest of the Middle East is surprisingly limited. To get a proper picture of Israel's role in the Middle East, imagine plopping Singapore in the middle of a war torn part of Africa. It can be attacked, it can fight back, but it cannot have any real local influence.

That is why Israel remains an outsider in the political trends and turmoil of the region. The shift between Arab Nationalism and Islamism, the coups and the bloodletting between Shiite and Sunni, are all events that Israel watches from a distance. Israel is not a political participant in the ideological conflicts of the Middle East, because it does not share a common religion or ethnicity or much of anything with its neighbors. Its diplomatic relations are primarily formal, not intimate. As a result Israel has very little political influence on the Middle East, and what little influence it has, is on its immediate neighbors, such as Lebanon and Jordan, who are fairly small on the scale of the Middle East as well.

Furthermore Israel and its neighbors are in part of the Middle East that has become largely irrelevant because of its lack of oil. While Egypt and Jordan were once considered major regional players, both have long ago been sidelined by the oil rich Saudi Arabia, Iran and the UAE. None of these countries share a common border with Israel. While diplomats and pundits obsess over the West Bank and Gaza, what happens there has virtually no impact on what happens where the oil and power lie.

Not only does the road to peace in the Middle East not run through Israel, it doesn't even run anywhere near Israel. A quick look at a map shows you just how off the beaten path Israel is when it comes to the true token of global power, oil. And it is not some Elders of Zion fantasy of the Israel lobby that defines global power to the Middle East; it is who has the oil. And while Israel has plenty of olive oil, it has none of the kind of oil that the world is interested in.

Since the 70's, the Middle East's real power struggle has shifted to the oil rich states, to Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states. Iran and Iraq chose to build up their armies, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states instead built up their political influence in Washington D.C. and let the United States fight for them. This strategy paid off in the Gulf War and Operation Iraqi Freedom when Kuwait was liberated and Saudi Arabia got Saddam's boot off its throat. Israel was never at risk of anything more than bomb blasts and rocket shelling from Saddam. By contrast Saudi Arabia and Kuwait had their survival at stake.

With Saddam gone, Iran and Saudi Arabia are funding Sunni and Shiite insurgencies within Iraq in order to seize Saddam's oil. As a fallback position in case Iran manages to swallow Iraq and then moves on to them, the Sheiks and Princes continue buying huge stakes in American and European companies and property, in case they suddenly find themselves having to take a quick plane trip away from the region.

Remove Israel from the region, as so many diplomats and pundits would like to, and this picture remains exactly the same. How influential is Israel in the region then, and why does the path to Middle Eastern peace run through it? The answer is that it doesn't. Some diplomats choose to blame America's alliance with Israel for its image problems, but alliances are dictated by interests. American's alliance with Israel, much like Saudi Arabia's alliance with America, are the products of interests, not emotions. Iran's hostility to America is the product of religious hostility, historical animosity and its own desire to grab as much of the Middle East for itself as it can.

Let's turn to Washington then. The myth of the All-Powerful Israel lobby has been extensively marketed for decades. But let's actually take a look at how powerful this lobby is.

If the so-called Israel Lobby is so powerful, why after all these decades, has the United States failed to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital? Presidential candidates routinely visit AIPAC to promise that Jerusalem will be recognized as Israel's capitol. Bill Clinton did it, Bush promised that it would be one of his first acts in office, Obama implied it. And once in office, not only did they not keep the promise, but they routinely signed waivers to prevent Jerusalem from being treated as Israel's capital.

There is only one nation whose capital is not recognized by the United States. That nation is also the one who the wisdom of the mainstream media and many of the suit and tie unofficial members of the Saudi lobby, would have you believe controls America. The narrative of the powerful Israel lobby before whom everyone in D.C. trembles cannot be reconciled with this simple fact, or with many others.

For example, in every peace agreement completely under US mediation, Israel has given up land and never gained any permanent territory. If Israel were as expansionist and as in control of the United States government, should it not have been the other way around? Yet at Camp David, Carter pressured Begin into turning over land that was several times the size of Israel. Carter did not pressure Sadat to turn over land to Israel. The last four US administrations have pressured Israel into a peace process with the PLO that required Israel to transfer a sizable portion of land to their control. At no point in time were Egypt and Jordan expected to do the same. Does this sound like the product of an all-powerful Israel lobby.

Defenders of the "Israel Runs Washington" meme will argue that the US should have pressured Israel to do much more. As if Israel could do anymore without committing suicide. But then why hasn't the United States pressured Turkey to stop its occupation of Cyprus or demanded that Spain create a state for the Basque? Either the Turkish Lobby or the Spanish Lobby is far more powerful than the Israel Lobby, or Israel is singled out because of pressure from a much stronger lobby, the Saudi Lobby.

What the "Israel Lobby" mainly deals with is the back and forth arms trade between the United States and Israel, partially packaged as foreign aid, and non-binding congressional resolutions that have as much force as a municipal resolution naming Tuesday, Global Twig Day. Most congressmen identify as Pro-Israel, mainly because it's easy, costs them nothing and lets them pick up a few votes here and there. It is easy enough to vote on or co-sponsor the occasional pro-Israel resolution that does nothing but gather dust in the record cabinets, because it has no actual application. It is so ridiculously easy that even Barack Obama has done it. And it's so meaningless that no President takes them seriously. Any measure that actually has legislative force is routinely crafted so that the President can waive it or set it aside if it interferes with administration policy. Which is exactly what happens much of the time.

As a result most congressmen can mention a pro-Israel bill that they voted on or co-sponsored around election time to gullible Jewish audiences who fail to understand that the 2012 Israel Friendship Act or the 2043 No Money Given to Terrorists, We Really Mean It This Time Act, has as much practical utility as a cell phone in the Sahara. And few of these same congressmen are actually pro-Israel when it matters. They're pro-Israel when it's an exercise in public relations. That is not what a powerful lobby's grip on a government looks like. If you want to see that, take a look at the lobbyists for the pharmaceutical industry or the cable industry. Or the Saudi lobby, which doesn't waste time holding rubber chicken dinners for politicians, but instead has built a massive contact base of unofficial suit and tie lobbyists, former politicians, diplomats and journalists who are expert at peddling the Saudi agenda.

To determine the power of a lobby, you look at what it can do when it matters, and when the odds are against it. The one direct collision between the Pro-Israel lobby and the Saudi lobby over the AWACS sale to Saudi Arabia, ended with a Saudi victory, despite overall public and congressional opposition to the sale. The Pro-Israel lobby was vocal and public. The Saudi lobby was in control behind the scenes. And just as it had when Saudi Arabia took over ARAMCO, and forced the United States to pay for it too... the Saudi Lobby won.

That is what a lobby that controls Washington D.C. does. It doesn't put out a nameplate. It doesn't waste time on rubber chicken dinners. It instead funds a host of organizations officially headed up by Americans with influence and power in Washington D.C. It gives them the funds to cultivate ties, to build think tanks and to build relationships behind the scenes. It doesn't care whether it's dealing with Republicans or Democrats. Come one, come all. We can put you to use too. And it makes sure that nobody pays very much attention to what is going on. Instead it dips into well worn propaganda to spread the idea that the Jews control Washington D.C., knowing that there will be plenty of eager takers to polish and pass on the meme.

If you look at what some of the most powerful people in the last few administrations had in common, the simple answer is oil. Saudi oil. The woman in control of foreign policy in the second half of the Bush Administration, Condoleeza Rice, did not have her name on an Israeli oil tanker, but a Chevron oil tanker, the former parent company of ARAMCO. The man quietly dominating US foreign policy under Obama, James L. Jones did not serve on the board of directors of Manischewitz, he served on the same Chevron board of directors that Rice had formerly served on. And Rice did everything but outright appoint him as her replacement.

But of course no one could possibly believe a wild conspiracy theory like that, not when the obvious answer is that the Israel Lobby controls Washington D.C. and keeps demanding that administration after administration force it to hand over land to its worst enemies. And for some reason forces successive administrations to not recognize its own capital city, encourages them to constantly threaten it and prevent it from defending itself.

The Pro-Israel Lobby is a charade, a showpiece for people with too much time on their hands and too little subtlety. If half the claims about the Israel Lobby were true, IsraelIsrael has been pressured like no other country has, to appease and accommodate terrorists at the expense of the lives of its citizens, its national security and even its survival... by a foreign policy crafted to fulfill Saudi interests.

The Big Israel Lie is that Israel is powerful in Washington and mighty in the Middle East. The real truth is that Israel is a tiny country that commands emotional affinity from a limited percentage of Jews and Christians, whose diplomacy abroad is clumsy, and whose regional influence is small, whose military is handicapped by liberal hand wringing and whose leaders would rather negotiate than fight... until there is no other choice.

This lie is meant to make Israel seem strong, in order to place it at the center of every problem and turn it into the nail that needs to be hammered down for everything to stand straight. But the easiest way to clear up the lie is to simply look at the reality of the Middle East and see that Israel vanishes beneath a single fingernail.

Randy sent me this about a Black Reverend Paterson coming out and supporting Glenn Beck as non Racist. It is about time the truth gets out there.

I thought that I would publish this letter from obviously a concerned person who has been overwhelmed by negative propaganda on Israel. I don’t usually have the time to answer each and every letter in such details but this time I felt it note worthy.

Neither did I put in an effort to give my best answer especially after taking Rythmyx which makes me tired. However, on general issues I did feel like answering.

Dear Rabbi,

one of the things that surprised me in reading some of the articles you post is how conservative Israeli society has become, however given the events of the last 15 years, that is certainly understandable. So do you think that all lands currently within the borders should belong to Jews, do you think that Palestinian Arabs have rights to any of the land? If not, where should they go? Given the problems with the terrorists, do you think every use of forced is justified, even killing unarmed civilians? Over the past weekend, I read the Human Rights Watch and Breaking the Silence reports in full; I was really shocked and dismayed by what I read. It took me 3-4 days of continuous prayer just to overcome the sorrow that I felt. Do you think those reports are completely untrue? I'm not trying to be critical, and I know it must be more difficult than I can possibly imagine, certainly I am in no position to judge. Jesus had a saying "Don't fear him who can kill you, but rather He who after you are dead can throw you into the pit of Hell" - I don't fear Hamas, Hezbollah or Iran (easy to say living 6000 miles away), I fear the judgement of G-d. I'm not sure that Israel is living up to G'd's purpose for re-establishing it, which I believe was to demonstrate His goodness, faithfulness, loving kindness and commitment to keeping His covenants to all the Earth. It seems to me that amid all the turmoil, the vision of the larger purpose has been lost; or maybe it never existed. And I'm not sure Christians who tell you that you can do whatever you want, no consequences, people like Huckabee, are really doing you a favor. They tell you what you want to hear, but maybe they are just encouraging you into a path which leads to judgment and destruction...


Dear Bill,

Regarding Judgement and Destruction let me see if I can answer some of your questions.

There never ever was a land of Palestine most are Iraqi and Egyptian immigrants to here. They are called Arabs because that was the original point of origin. When you write about unarmed are you talking about the hundreds of Israeli school children killed on the buses, the women in the Ashkelon shopping center with her baby hit by a missile or the infant in Netanya killed by a Grenade in a hotel? We have land without borders run by the Israeli Equivalent of the Reverend Wright.

Sometimes Israel tries to target a terrorist in his car. His car is loaded with rockets which we don't know about. We take him out but the rockets then kill innocents in Gaza

Also a few times including the Al Dura film, the whole episode was faked and the 'dead' child was seen in a Hamas training camp later. There is too much propaganda by 22 Arab Nations against Israel.

If one believes in the L-RD G-D CREATOR of the Universe dictated the Torah to Moses, promised the land of Israel to the seed of Avraham, Yitzchak and Yacov and not the seed of Yishmael. It is as simple as that.

If one believes in historical owners then the land should be returned to the Hittites, Jebusites and most of the southern USA from Texas to CA to Mexico and the rest to the Native American peoples.

Otherwise everything else is fabricated and blown out of proportion one sidedly. Nobody shows films of Hamasniks slaughtering Fattah people at a wedding because they were relatives of somebody in the "West Bank" aka Yehuda and Shomron which they did not like.

Stay healthy

Rachamim Pauli

PS I am sure that I will be swamped with dozens of letters on this issue on how I could have answered better. I just want everybody to know that I am busy at this time of year helping Jews repent so that Am Yisrael will have a good Judgement from HASHEM and to bring about Moshiach ASAP. I cannot take out too much time on politics even though I am active and not passive.

From Shoshana and Hadassah:

And from Hadassah probably the most important Inyanay Diyoma in Years:

Stephanie K. sent me this link with more information about the proposed bill:

Now the President wants to talk to school children. It will not be in Haredi Schools that don’t allow TV sets but all over the States like Hamas with their Mickey Mouse and Bee talk for children – there will be some education. On the day after Pearl Harbor or 9/12/01 neither president thought that school had to be interrupted for a presidential address. My friend whom I shall call a baseball fan sent me this about educating young children the ‘right way’ :

The rigged game by Caroline Glick another wake up call:

In Texas freedom of speech one the day:

The following comes with a U-tube parody from Israel:

Small time patriots of Israel:,7340,L-3769371,00.html

Economics 102:

Gog and Magog drill:

Who says that feminists can’t be mothers and wives and value human life?

Further to my good bye and good buy post of last week thanks to Lynette:

The Fox has entered the Hen House from Lynette:

Cypress sent me more on Pastor Boden quoting a non-Jewish Scripture on the 912 project which basically says wake up to the truth (Toras Emmet) and don’t be fooled by fads, talks and phases of being ‘in’, ‘hip’, ‘with it’ , etc. Remember Avraham Avinu was not any of these when he smashed the idols and spread the information that there was only one G-D. If you have 20 minutes you can view or listen to him by googling Pastor Boden 912


Modern Orthodox Jews wake up and speak up at a Synagogue Town Hall meeting:

Gail Winston sent this originally on Dec. 7, 2007 to perhaps remember Pearl Harbor before Israel has one. She resent it this week. The map that was in PDF to me showed what former COS General Earl Wheeler thought of defensible borders. It is more that Israel has today opposite Egypt. As for the Golan we cannot spare an inch – just opposite what Ehud Barak thinks. In the Shomron we have a little flexibility regarding the Jordan River Valley but not the mountain area which E. B. is busy dismantling. The Torah gave us borders, we are told to live by Torah and Mitzvos “V CHAI BACHEM”. It is a real tragedy that this government who allows for

a gray and black market, homo/lesbian parades, and many disgusting anti-Torah things has the power. Every single time the people vote for the right they get the policy of the left.

BARAK QUOTES U.S. JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF ON BORDERS by Gail Winston, Director of MEIR, Mid East Information Resource, Chicago & Jerusalem

I don’t like to give Ehud Barak credit for doing anything good for the Jewish people and the Jewish Nation/State of Israel. We have written extensively about all the many things Barak has done which are detrimental to Israel and our people.

Now we read by Chaim Levinson in Ha’aretz. (1) that as current Defense Minister Ehud Barak intends to evacuate all ‘unauthorized’ West Bank outposts within weeks. He says: "...the evacuation of ‘illegal outposts is our obligation as a democratic state".

However, Barak did do one thing which was exceptionally good and meaningful for Israel and all our people to remember. First of all, Barak should remember his own words!

On December 8, 2007 when Admiral Michael Mullen, (still the current) Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff was coming to visit Israel, we suggested the following - which still holds:

1. Ask visiting Admiral Michael Mullen, the current Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff about confidential, Top Secret 1967 Report on Israel’s defensible borders.

2. As alleged in the New York Times December 6th, the whole NIE (U.S. National Intelligence Estimate) downgrade of Iran’s nuclear weapons’ capability was based on "notes acquired last summer from discussions between [un-named] Iranian military officials where they complain about Iranian leaders 2003 decision to shut down efforts to develop nuclear weapons." (2)

3. Ask Admiral Mullen if he believes what Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says rather than "some notes".


On May 4, 1999 we sent out the following article about the 1967 Secret Map by Gen. Earle Wheeler then Chief of the Joint Chiefs of Staff referencing the "Secret" Map of June 29, 1967. January 26, 1996, I published the following analysis of a May 20, 1993 interview with then Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Ehud Barak.

Note the following points:

Item #1. Barak’s professional, military, strategic opinion as to what borders would be defensible for Israel’s security and to ensure that Israel would remain a strategic asset to America were exactly what the US Joint Chiefs of Staff delineated when asked by President Johnson. See enclosed map which was Top Secret until March 1983.

The May 1993 interview:

"Ehud Barak as Israel's Foreign Minister under Shimon Peres is [was] negotiating the surrender of the Golan Heights. But on 5/20/93 when Lt. General Ehud Barak was Israel's Chief of Staff, he addressed an American Jewish Press conference. Asked to express his professional military, strategic opinion as to what borders would be defensible for Israel's security and to remain a US strategic asset, Gen. Barak quoted the 6/29/67 US Joint Chiefs of Staff memorandum, which was top secret until THE WALL STREET JOURNAL reported 3/9/83: "President Johnson asked 'what minimum territory Israel should retain for effective defense against conventional Arab attack and terrorist raids?"

The Joint Chiefs under Gen. Earle G. Wheeler said: "returning Israel to pre-1967 boundaries would drastically increase its vulnerability. Israel would be threatened by West Bank artillery and tactical SAMs - a sword constantly over its head and the need to maintain readiness with prohibitive mobilization costs. For stable future Arab-Israeli agreements, Israel must feel it can wait out a crisis rather than strike pre-emptively. Israel should retain...the Gaza Strip, Wadi El Girali (around Eilat), Al Awja on the Sinai border with Israel’s Negev, the mountains and plateaus of the West Bank, the tip of the Sinai (Sharm el Sheikh), the Golan Heights west of Quneitra, and all of Jerusalem." [SEE ‘SECRET’ MAP ATTACHED]

Four were negotiated away. [Now five, including the Gaza Strip - as of August 2005]. The last three are presently on the table. Directly contravening the US Joint Chiefs, Rabin and Peres agreed to abandon the only deterrent/defensive positions which until now have guaranteed peace. They'll give the entire Golan Heights to Syria and most of the West Bank to the PLO. But, Jews willing to live under Arab Muslim sovereignty and police force can stay - if they want. The Muslim Arab s say all Jews must go. [Israel’s current PM Ehud Olmert has said he’s willing to give up crucial parts of Jerusalem as of December 2007].

This Top Secret deep analysis by US Army, Navy, Air Force and Intelligence agencies assessed Israel's vulnerability according to U.S. interests. The US Administration did not want to be in the position of having to rescue Israel. The Wheeler recommendation was considered the best military option in order to protect Israel.

In May 1993 when he was a General [before he was a politician], Barak said that: "Israel's qualitative edge has disappeared as the West arms the Arabs with top-of-the-line planes, tanks and missiles - the same models Israel receives in much smaller numbers. Israel can't afford to maintain present defense levels and has cut its defense budget from 15% of the GDP to 9%; in dollars from $7.2 billion to $5.8 billion and going down." Gen. Barak described "national, ethnic and Islamic Fundamentalism as the tribal motive driving the Arab countries' arms race. They are achieving nuclear capability; receiving and developing unconventional weapons; and virtually all are dictatorships."

He continued, "Short run, with Iraq defeated and 'de facto' peace with Jordan, only Syria can make war. [While Israel sits on the Golan facing Damascus, Assad does not attack.] Long run, non-conventional weapons development will be resumed in Iraq as soon as the US leaves.

Iraq, Iran and Syria will have chemical, biological and nuclear weapons in 1-5 years. They have the whole spectrum of technological know-how in their minds." [As of May 1993. You do the math! Such catastrophic weapons of mass destruction are probably operative now. Ed. note.]

Gen. Barak emphasized that, "Israel needs to maintain its armed strength. The combination of (our) conventional capability, Arab perception of (our) non-conventional capability and US aid gives Israel stability the way a three legged table is always stable. He asked: "Are the intentions of the Arab countries honorably peaceful? No! The Arabs declare openly their goals are to return to Jaffa, Haifa, Lod and especially Jerusalem, as the capital of ONLY the State of Palestine. They are arming prodigiously. Total Arab arms ratio in all categories runs against Israel from 10:1 in men, 5:1 in tanks, 3:1 in planes, 3:1 missiles, at minimum." [as of 1993]

Some say territory is not important in this age of missiles. However, in the WASHINGTON TIMES Oct. 1988, 100 retired U.S. Generals and Admirals urged Israel NOT to withdraw from Judea and Samaria. The headline was "RETAIN THE ISRAEL ASSET": "The Samarian and Judean high ridges cannot be effectively demilitarized or adequately inspected. If Israel loses its extensive early warning line, it would have no warning of attack. Now [1993] the Arab armies are at least four times their size in 1967. Even with missiles and supersonic aircraft causing great devastation, they cannot occupy. Only infantry and armor can overrun a country. Those are vulnerable to natural barriers. To remain strong Israel must retain the Jordan River as its eastern border. Pressing Israel to withdraw from this line will neither bring peace nor serve America's interests." (3)

The 'root cause' of Arab attacks against Israel isn't Arab frustration or poverty, but hatred of the non-Moslem 'infidel'. Peace talks with unilateral territorial concessions foster the impression that Israel is weak. Perceived weakness invites Arab attack.

The American military knows these territories are minimal for Israel's security and would keep Israel strong enough to be the primary US strategic ally against violent Islamic Fundamentalism in the region.

Why doesn't the Obama administration and all of his Middle East advisors know?

Why don't Israel's leaders know?


We have included the Original "Secret" Map of the Secret Memorandum of the Joint Chiefs of Staff dated 6/29/67 in this Email as an attachment.

1. "Barak Vows Outposts Will Be Evacuated Within Weeks" by Chaim Levninson Ha’aretz August 25, 2009

2. "IDF To Present Iranian Nuclear Evidence to U.S. Military Chief" by Ya’akov Katz Jerusalem Post Friday Dec. 7, 2007 (Pearl Harbor Day)

3. "Retain the Israel Asset" 100 retired U.S. Generals & Admirals Washington Times October 1988

Obama and Envoy Michael Oren among guests paying tribute to "great religion... committed to justice, progress.":

John Holden, the Science Czar, what is his philosophy?

The Republican Jewish Coalition:

Regarding anti-Israel propaganda from Zvi A.

Hit them in the pocketbook:

DEMOCRATS RIDING ON KENNEDY’S COFFIN by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator

The Democratic Left Liberals have wrapped rubber arms around Ted Kennedy’s coffin with a theme that could have come straight out of the mouth of PR professional David Axelrod, advisor to Obama. (Do it for Ted!)

If that wasn’t crass enough, The Huffington Post published the rationale that the dead Mary Jo Kopeckne would have been somehow proud of inspiring Kennedy to become the Liberal Senator he had become. Now the Democrats are riding two coffins to advance President Obama’s HealthCare Plan. So....let’s take a closer look at what appear to be a vulgar misuse of the dead.

No one has forgotten Ted Kennedy’s nighttime drive off a bridge with Mary Jo Kopechne as his passenger. Kennedy managed to swim out of the submerged car but couldn’t or wouldn’t dive in to rescue Mary Jo. (Read The Chappaquiddick Incident in Wikipedia at In my opinion, it speaks of a cover-up for a rich and very powerful family).

Recall that the Kennedy family were very sports oriented and excellent swimmers from childhood. Kennedy claimed he tried but, there was always a great doubt as to whether he, in fact, tried.

In addition, he avoided an alcohol level test by leaving the scene of the accident and didn’t report it until the next day. The diver who found Mary Jo’s body the next day opined that he could have saved her because she was found in an air bubble. She didn’t drown or die from impact; she was asphyxiated when that air ran out.)

The question remained as to who he consulted with as to what they advised him next to do? Was it family, priests or lawyers? Wikipedia’s Report names individuals. As the Huffington Post suggests, Mary Jo would have approved of how Kennedy led his life as a Left Liberal. Oh. Really? One cannot help but wonder if Mary Jo would, from her grave, applaud Ted Kennedy and his inability or reluctance to dive into dark water to rescue her.

I have little doubt that Ted Kennedy, a believing Catholic, truly regretted his role in her death. No doubt, he pledged himself to spend his life atoning for his role in her death and the belief that, as a Catholic that, having committed a mortal sin, with a possible sentence before G-d to spend some time in hell. Kennedy did try to do penance but, that was his business between him and his Lord.

For the Democrats to celebrate his life as a noble Senator to push through President

Obama’s Health Care bill the nation doesn’t like or to use the dead Mary Jo as hypothetically speaking for Kennedy Liberalism is a low-low-low trick.

However, I do think Kennedy lived every day with a pronounced feeling of guilt and that he tried to make up for it as a matter of penance. Yes!

Do I think that President Barack Obama’s political spin team is using Kennedy’s death for political purposes? Yes, I do.

Would the Obama Democrats like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod approve of such tactics? A resounding Yes!

This is a gang that wants to rule America, if not the Planet and they don’t care how they do it.


P.S. This just in: We have heard that next week President Obama will speak to both Houses of Congress. His message is being designed by his Public Relations point men, David Axelrod and Rahm Emanuel. We are further informed that Obama will invoke the name of Senator Kennedy and his urging Americans to accept his Government-run Health Care plan.

I wonder if he will convene a Kenyan style séance to bring up the voice of the dead Mary Jo Kopechne forgiving Ted Kennedy and agreeing Kennedy is right to support Obama - even in death.

"Something Wicked This Way Comes" is from Shakespeare’s "MACBETH" by the 2nd witch about King Macbeth.

Now for Matis Wolfberg’s Good Shabbos Stories – Aurel Torah and Spare Change.

Good Shabbos Everyone. As Reb Moshe passed the synagogue, he noticed a sign which caught his eye “Attention: This coming Thursday night our guest speaker will be Dr. Aurel Stein, the prominent humanitarian physician. His topic: Judaism Superior. Don’t miss it!” Reb Moshe stopped suddenly. Where had he heard this name before? His mind led him back 35 years earlier to 1944 in war-torn Hungary. Reb Moshe now remembered. He knew Dr. Aurel Stein from their time together as forced Jewish laborers in the Hungarian army.
We read about war in this week’s portion Ki-Seitzei, as the opening verse tells us, “When you go out to war against you enemy...” (Devarim-Deuteronomy 20:1) This verse begins a discussion of some of the rules that a Jewish army must observe when battling the enemy. On a deeper mystical level, the holy commentator Ohr HaChayim explains that this verse is referring to a different battle: the battle which rages within every individual.
We are referring to the battle between the good and evil impulses. Every Jew is born with an impulse to do good and an impulse to do bad. The impulse to do good tells a Jew to do mitzvahs, to help others and to be a faithful servant of Hashem. The impulse to do bad tells a Jew not to do mitzvahs, to hurt others and to be a rebellious servant of Hashem, heaven forbid. Why did Hashem create us with both impulses? In order to answer this question, we must discuss the meaning of life according to the Ramchal, Reb Moshe Chayim Lutzatto, of blessed memory. (brought by Rav Amnon Yitzchok, Shlita)
The Ramchal explains that Hashem is good. The way of being good is by doing good for others. Hashem therefore created the world to benefit others.
In order for someone to feel benefit, he needs to be lacking something. For example, if you give a hungry person food to eat, you have not done him any favor. Therefore, in order for the creation to be able to feel the good that that Hashem wants to give, Hashem created us with deficiencies. For example, we need to eat; Hashem gives us food; we appreciate Hashem because we need food to survive; and Hashem has therefore done good for us.
Now that we have determined that Hashem wants only the highest good for us, we must discuss the issue of what is commonly called in America “a free lunch.” Most people are embarrassed to receive handouts. The same is true with us; if Hashem gave us everything for free without us having to put in any effort, we would be embarrassed; consequently, Hashem would not be doing good for us. Therefore, Hashem created us with two impulses: the good impulse and the bad impulse. If we were only created with an impulse to do good, we would have no free choice in life, we would always do good. We would be robots.
Because we have two competing impulses, we have an inner struggle to do the right thing according to the Torah or to violate the Torah, heaven forbid. Therefore, Hashem can reward us for choosing to do good and for doing the mitzvahs. The reward for doing Hashem’s will is the highest good, because we have earned it; it is not a free lunch.
To recap: Hashem is good. The way of good is to do good for others. So, Hashem created the world. In order for us to feel the good, Hashem created us with deficiencies, because a hungry person receives no benefit from receiving food. In order that the good be on the highest level of good, it must be a good that we earn. Therefore, Hashem created us with both good and bad impulses. Consequently, the good that we receive for following our good impulses and for doing the mitzvahs, is the ultimate good, and it is a good that we have earned. This is the meaning of life, doing mitzvhas….
Reb Moshe’s mind wandered back to some abandoned horse stables on the Hungarian plains nearly 35 years earlier. In April of 1944, Reb Moshe Holczler, of blessed memory, and many other unfortunate Jews were forced to work in the Hungarian army.
Jewish laborers enjoyed a relative safety in the Hungarian army; however, this safety was very fragile. At that point in War War II, nobody cared much about saving Jews. Among the Jewish workers was Dr. Aurel Stein.
Dr. Stein had come to the workers one Sunday afternoon to offer them a way out of the approaching German danger. “His high honor the Prince Primate of Hungary is offering a helping hand,” Dr. Stein began. “The protective umbrella of Christianity.” The was a hiss among the assembled Jewish laborers. “The holy Church guarantees safety from any further deportation procedures to anyone willing to enter its ranks and be baptized. Those who accept the loving hand of the Church... will be transferred to a different squadron together with me.” The air was filled with indignation and disgust at the offer to convert. Although not all the soldiers were observant Jews, none of them could bring themselves to commit such a treacherous act against the religion of their fathers. Dr. Stein quickly left the horse stable without anyone joining him.
Eventually, the war was over and the few survivors made their way out of blood soaked Europe. Moshe Holczler and his family eventually made their way to America where they rebuilt their shattered lives. 35 Years after his experiences in the forced labor camps, Reb Moshe had nearly forgotten about his horrible experiences as a forcer laborer. One day, Reb Moshe found himself walking down the street in the Flatbush area of Brooklyn, New York. As Reb Moshe passed by a synagogue, he noticed a sign which caught his eye “Attention: This coming Thursday night our guest speaker will be Dr. Aurel Stein, the prominent humanitarian physician. His topic: Judaism Superior. Don’t miss it!”
Reb Moshe could barely contain himself. Dr. Stein speaking the about the benefits of observant Judaism? The same Dr. Stein who had been baptized in the Church during the war? Reb Moshe showed up that Thursday night to hear Dr. Stein speak. Not wanting to embarrass Dr. Stein in front of others, Reb Moshe quietly made an appointment with Dr. Stein to speak with him about the developments of the last 35 years. Dr. Stein did not immediately recognize Reb Moshe as a fellow member of the forced labor brigade of 35 years ago.
Soon after, Dr. Stein and Reb Moshe were sitting together in Dr. Stein’s office. By then, Dr. Stein was reminded that he and Reb Moshe had worked together in the Hungarian army during the war. Dr. Stein began to tell his story. Dr. Stein told how he initially had mixed feelings about his conversion. Soon however, after seeing the full extent of the death and destruction, Dr. Stein became a committed member of the Church. He was very thankful to the Church for helping to save his life during the war.
After the war ended, Dr. Stein embraced his new identity in the Church with full gusto, as Dr. Stein told Reb Moshe “I diligently observed the ways of thinking of the gentiles and I wanted to assimilate myself to the best possible extent... My interest did not let me stop halfway. I wanted to see and understand everything about the church.” Dr. Stein proceeded to tell Reb Moshe about his trip to the Vatican in Rome, Italy, the largest and most important church in the world.
Dr. Stein recounted his mixed feelings as he entered the dark and musty church chambers. The highlight of the tour came when the group entered the main section of the giant church. There was a giant statue of an angel of marble with wings spread out from its back. As Dr. Stein examined the huge statue, he noticed that the angel held something in its marble hands. The hands of the gigantic statue were stretched out, pointing towards the throne of the Pope. Dr. Stein told Reb Moshe how he craned to see what was written on the tablet in statue’s hands, he could see that there was something written on the tablet in golden letters.
Dr. Stein became very curious to read what was written on the tablet high above. He borrowed a fellow tourist’s binoculars and focused in on the marble tablet. “I was taken aback. I was startled to discover Hebrew letters on the tablet...” Said Dr. Stein to Reb Moshe. Then I started to read the letters slowing, using my long-forgotten Hebrew knowledge “Onochi Hashem Elokecha... I am Hashem, your Lord. The first of the Ten Commandments! And these words were facing the Pope’s throne!?!” Dr. Stein was shocked. He quickly and quietly made his way out of the building.
Once out of the building, Dr. Stein paused to reflect on what he had just seen. So this is all their knowledge? They base their entire religion on the revelation of Hashem to the Jews? They have to put Jewish commandments in their holiest place? Why then should they be considered superior to the Jews?
A few days later, Dr. Stein arranged for a visit with the Chief Rabbi of Rome. Dr. Stein was told that the Vatican museum contained some of the utensils of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem which the Romans had destroyed almost 2000 years earlier. Dr. Stein returned to the Vatican museum and saw for himself ancient articles of the Holy Temple, including the Kohen Gadol’s golden forehead plate engraved with the words “Kodesh L’HaShem.” Dr. Stein left Rome with his faith shaken. Perhaps he had made a mistake in converting. Nevertheless, Dr. Stein continued in his assimilated lifestyle in the church.
A couple of years later, Dr. Stein made a trip to Israel. By then, he was disenchanted with his assimilated lifestyle and he was reconsidering his choices in life. As he approached the Western Wall, he became consumed with emotion. He began to cry uncontrollably. “On that same day, I approached the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem to discuss my problem and I returned to Judaism, never to part again.” (from Late Memories, Moshe Holczler, p.160-175)
Dr. Stein’s amazing story of his return to the faith illustrates one Jew’s victory in the war against the evil impulse. As Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur approach, we must follow Dr. Stein’s lead and go to war against our evil impulses.
The evil impulse stands in the way of spiritual growth and happiness. We must therefore take up arms in battle against the evil impulse. By beating the evil impulse we can improve our lives and the lives of others. The best way to beat the evil impulse is by learning torah and by doing mitzvahs, as the Hashem tells us, “I have created the evil impulse and I have created the Torah as a treatment against it. If you busy yourselves in Torah, you will not fall into its (the evil impulse’s) hands.” (Kiddushin 30b)
By increasing our mitzvah observance, we will fulfill our true purpose in life and we will be able to receive the true Good that Hashem has in store for us. Good Shabbos Everyone.

Good Shabbos Everyone. The Torah tells us this week, “…you shall observe them (the mitzvahhs) and perform them with all your heart and all your soul.” (Devorim – Deuteronomy 26:16) The verse is hinting to a foundation of Jewish belief: We must serve Hashem with an intense feeling in our hearts. As the mystical Zohar teaches us “Hashem wants the heart.” (Parshas Ki-Seitzei, part 3, page 281b) Practically speaking, when we do mitzvahhs, we should always do them with a feeling and a knowledge that we are fulfilling Hashem’s will. The following interesting story will inspire us to do mitzvahhs with feeling.
This true story happened during the Jewish month of Elul 5749 (September 1989). I was driving home from a bris in Elizabeth, New Jersey. On the way I stopped at a branch of the bank that I use to make a deposit. I parked in the lot behind the bank. I got out, locked the door and then remembered that the check was in the car.
I opened the door, found the check, turned to close the door, and gasped. Three men surrounded me. They wore tattered jeans and filthy t-shirts. Though it was before noon, they reeked of alcohol. The guy on the left was clutching a whiskey bottle like a hammer. He had a desperate, mean look in his eyes. The guy on my right almost looked friendly, but a little scared and hungry. He was about my size. But the one in the middle--he was big, bad and ugly. He loomed above. He had tattoos up the entire length of his bare arms. "Got some change?" he said, extending his huge hand towards my neck.
Three teeth were missing from his grin. A deep scar ran from his chin to his cheek. Thoughts raced through my head. Think fast, stay calm. Everything happens for a reason. All is for the good. Only fear Hashem. All the Chasidic dictums about life were running through my mind. They made sense in yeshiva. But now?
Now it was Elul, when Hashem is supposed to be very accessible, like the King who leaves his palace and is in the fields and streets listening to the requests of the ordinary folks. "Yes, I have some change for you," I said, while dropping the check back in the car, locking and closing the car door behind me.
Everything happens for a reason. "Any of you Jewish?" I asked. I knew it was next to impossible. "Yeh, I'm Jewish," the big guy said.
"You're Jewish?" I said in disbelief. It must be a ploy. "You have a Jewish name?"
"Shmuel Yankel ben Moshe," he said with pride, like a boot soldier responding to his officer. In his eyes I probably looked like a rabbi. "Did you have a Bar Mitzvahh?"
I asked. "Yuh. Baruch ata..." The big guy, nee Shmuel Yankel, began singing the Haftorah blessings. "Why are you asking for a few cents? You should be asking for millions. It's right before Rosh Hashana and you can ask Hashem for anything. He's here in the streets with you and me and we can ask Him for anything now. On Rosh Hashana, Hashem goes back into His palace and it's not so easy for us to get in, but now He's taking requests. I might have some change, but Hashem has millions.
"You know what tefilin are? Put them on, Shmuel Yankel. I'm sure Hashem will hear you." As I spoke I slipped the car key out of my pocket and got my tefilin out. "Put out your arm." The sleeve was torn off his shirt. That made it easy to slide the tefilin over his arm, past the chorus line of tattoos and rows of little holes. Those must be needle tracks, I thought.
"Here," I said, as I took off my yarmulka from beneath my hat. "Let me put this on you so you can say the blessing with me." He lowered his head so I could reach it. "Baruch ata..." We said the blessing and then I reached up and put the tefilin on his head. Shmuel Yankel said the Shema and his eyes became wet.
"Hashem's right here with you, Shmuel Yankel. Ask Him whatever your heart desires." He was quiet. A tear rolled into the scar groove. One of his partners was pacing back and forth on the asphalt, like a shark swimming in front of his prey. "Let's go already," the Shark snapped. "You just wait. I'm praying," Shmuel Yankel said. The Shark backed off like a guppy. The third guy looked with amazement at the whole ceremony. Why was he so interested? I asked him his name.
"Michel," he said with a slurred French accent. "Are you Jewish, Michel?"
"No, I'm Catholic. My mother was Jewish but she became Catholic. The Nazis killed her parents and a Catholic monastery raised her."
"You're Jewish," I told him. "If your mother was born Jewish, then nothing can take that away. Once a Jew, always a Jew," I said.
"Today is like your Bar Mitzvah. Put on these tefilin and we'll make a Bar Mitzvah celebration." Michel repeated the blessings for tefilin as best he could. The tefilin sat on his greasy, long, black hair. His eyes sparkled with life, and Michel began to look like a scraggly Jewish boy, like the lost prince who had been dragged through the mucky alleys of medieval Europe, beaten and abused, and now has finally stumbled across his royal home. The King met him in the streets, and Michel recognized his Father. "You can take them off now," I said.
Michel held out his arm and let me unwrap them as if he were a gentle baby. I had some cake with me from the bris. The four of us split the two slices of cake. "L'Chaim. To life," I said, raising my cake. My two Jewish friends thanked me. We shook hands and hugged. "Wait," I said, running after them, "here's some change." "No, that's all right," Shumel Yankel said as he waved good-bye. Good Shabbos Everyone.

Mr. Wolfberg’s stories are sponsored by: Refuah Shleima to Mordechai Menachem Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta Refuah Shleima to Tsviah bas Bracha Leah

In memory of Shosha Malka bas R' Avrohom 21 Cheshvan Refuah Shleimah to Chana Ashayra bas Dodi

Be well and have a great Shabbos and may your Elul Repentance, Prayers and Charity help,

Rachamim Pauli