Before I revise my prayer request list, I ask about the people who are ill. I am personally in contact with the father of Zvi Moshe ben Miriam Rachel and know a few of the women on the list perhaps not well but that they are still undergoing treatment. Please add David Yosef ben Feige Perel who was in a car accident.
Naphtali Moshe Ben Tzipporah, is starting again with the chemotherapy. Zvi Yechezkel Ben Leah, has the Diabetes, and now a severe case of Neuropathy. Shaul Ben Sirrel, is taking chemotherapy for cancer of the stomach, and he comes to Schul, only when he has the strength.
Yosef Moshe Ben Perel, had successful cancer surgery, but they had to remove one lung and one rib, and the voice has not come back yet. During the surgery, when they put the tube down his throat, the Drs. scratched his vocal cord. After the surgery, he had 5 more chemotherapy treatments, just in case. Avraham Ben Devorah, still has a severe case of Diabetes, Neuropathy and now Colitis, also a Charcoal fracture of the left foot, 5 torn tears in the right knee, …
As written in the original request please remove Rafael Alexander Alter ben Sheina as of June 30th.
Much Ado about Gilad
I would be happy it Gilad Shalit could be safely extracted from Gaza.
Gilad Shalit is a poor individual who did not fight back against a gruesome adversary but surrendered to compound that the rulings of the courts and the then Defense Minister and his left wing predecessors was not to do hot pursuit into Gaza and that would have ended the whole thing at once. Yosef Stalin was not a saint by any means. In the battle of Stalingrad his son fell captured. The Nazis were willing to trade his son for Field Marshall Paulus if not he would be killed. Stalin said – A private for a private a Field Marshall for a Field Marshall. Paulus was killed after his son was murdered. We cannot allow one front line cowardly soldier who goes into the front line knowing what can happen to be exchanged for 400 terrorists and murderers. This was my opinion when I was on the front line and my son was on the front line and has not changed. As sad as the truth might be it is a bitter pill to swallow. Israel has given in above and beyond what they should have done. I think it is now time to say the truth after 4 years. Hamas is only using Gilad to pressure Israel for more and more concessions and has no apparent reason to want to exchange him.
The whole demonstration encourages Hamas to demand more and more instead of freeing Gilad.
Correcting a misnomer
D.A. asked me about the Money Changers in the Temple. Some of you might have heard this story from the New Testament on Yeshu being angry at the Money Changers in the Beis HaMikdash. They took a profit to pay for their salary and the Temple upkeep instead of just giving the exchange rate. What they did was no difference from any foreign currency exchange at a bank or at an airport.
Why were money changers necessary? First of all money with the image of the Roman Emperor or Greek King on one side and what not on the other side was not a kosher nomination for use in the Temple. The question was if one could buy pure gold or silver in weight for the Roman or Greek coins. Obviously I could not have Caesar on one side and Jupiter on the other in the Temple. So they were exchanged for Shekel HaKodesh. Had they have been a pure weight of silver or gold that would also have been Kosher. There are laws regarding money found on the floor near the money changer or near the client and who then can claim the money if the was no reason to believe that it was dropped in the current exchange.
The prices were supposed to be supervised by Beis Din so that there would be no overcharging.
Yacov Ariel asked me: Rabbi - I realize that the Priests were due their fair payment via a Beis Din since the Laws of Moshe are still as relevant today as it was in the Days of Moshe so what possibly could Yeshu have been so offended that would have caused him to conduct himself in this manner? Could the issue at hand been the exact particular location that Yeshu was upset with?
I do not know the Kavanah of Yeshu (his intent) I only think that he thought that a silver Shekel would be worth the same as a Temple silver shekel. But this is not so due to wear and on the coins so a small extra would have had to been added even so. Today with our digital scales down to a milligram we could assess that but not back then. Rabbis are always cautious regarding holiness.
This week I am going into some of the secrets of the Torah. However, it will go in one ear and out the other unless one does a few simple things. It can be one or the other or all it is the code and password for learning the Torah Secrets. In order to get from G-D one must give to G-D. For example pray the Shemona Esray a little slower and reading each word instead of by heart or setting up the Shabbos table hours before the entrance of the Shabbos. This can be Thursday night or Friday morning. Or maybe taping over the light switches or unscrewing the light in the refrigeration by noon or lighting the hot water boiler and using a dry cup to transfer to your drinking cup for coffee or tea. Putting in the tea bag first or the coffee first so that the water will not be colored on Shabbos, taking the wash off of the clothes line an hour before Shabbos or using the dryer or washing clothes by Thursday at the latest. These little things in honoring the Shabbos and the laws of G-D go a long way in holiness. Women can also dress more modestly and men to control their 4 letter words when they get angry also help.
25:10 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 11 'Pinchas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned My wrath away from the children of Israel, in that he was very jealous for My sake among them, so that I consumed not the children of Israel in My jealousy.
Up until this point Pinchas was an ordinary Cohain who killed a person (not violating the command – You shall not murder). For a Priest that kills is disqualified from participating in the Priesthood. However, this was in the name of a Kiddush HASHEM and therefore the Priesthood participation was not taken from him. In any event his children could have been priests.
According to the Kabbalists when Pinchas saw that the tribe of Shimon was about to attack him for killing their Tribal Leader, he soul sort of left his body to return to the source. At this point there was a transmigration of souls and the souls of Nadav and Avihu (the sons of Aaron) joined with him into his body to strengthen his holiness. For what reason did such Tzaddikim Souls have to join the soul of Pinchas in his body? For the reason that they died by offering strange fire in the Holy of Holies and only a High Priest could do that. In their greatness they both being equal could not reincarnate into two different people. Therefore their souls joined together with Pinchas. (One of the most dangerous books I read by a non-Jew was a story about out of body experiences and how to do that – in one of the cases mentioned an evil spirit tried to occupy a body of somebody trying this man’s method. I had taken the book because of traffic accidents, near death experiences, etc. but he went beyond that – when one goes into the mystical the difference between a kosher method and a one that is dangerous for the soul is only a hair breath and not recommended for unlearned persons such as myself.) That is why the Torah goes on to say the son of Eleazar the son of Aaron to tell us by twice the word – son – that these two souls joined with Pinchas.
12 Wherefore say: Behold, I give unto him MY covenant of peace;
Did not Moshe Rabbaynu deserve this covenant of peace as he performed more Kiddushei HASHEM than the one time event of Pinchas? Therefore HASHEM asked permission of Moshe to give up the covenant to Pinchas through his free will would Pinchas receive it. Moshe did so gladly.
Pinchas son of Elazar the Kohen turned My wrath away from the Children of Israel by zealously taking up My cause among them, so that I did not consume them in My own zeal [kin'ah]. Therefore say, “Behold, I give unto him My covenant of peace.” (Num. 25:11-12)
Precisely he who takes G-d's revenge merits an “everlasting covenant” and a “covenant of peace”.
Zeal [kin'ah] is a Divine trait:
“I, the L-rd your G-d, am a zealous G-d” (Ex. 20:5). Kin'ah is a Divine attribute, and it is the trait of any Jew who zealously takes up G-d's cause.
It always involves revenge, as Rashi explains (Num. 25:11):
“By zealously taking up My cause”: By executing My vengeance, by displaying the anger that I should have displayed. “Kin'ah” always denotes glowing with anger to execute vengeance for a thing.
For this G-d praised Pinchas.
Revenge is zeal for a good cause. By switching the order of letters, “lekanot”, to be zealous, becomes “lenakot”, to cleanse. Whoever is zealous on G-d's behalf cleanses the evildoer through his revenge. Until he does so, the evildoer remains unclean.
G-d is also the “G-d to whom vengeance belongs” (Ps. 94:1), and “a zealous G-d” (Ex. 34:14). Likewise, He is a G-d Who does not clear the guilty until He takes revenge on His enemies: “He will by no means clear the guilty” (Ibid. v. 7).
Yet besides fulfilling G-d's command, Pinchas also saved Israel from destruction. After all, Israel were duty-bound to take revenge and they did not do it. Following is S'forno (Num. 25:11):
“By acting zealously in their midst for My sake”: He avenged Me for all to see, so that when they saw his deed and did not protest, they would find atonement for having seen the sinners and not having protested. In this way, he turned My wrath away from them.
Ibn Ezra wrote, “He was zealous like his Maker, Who is described as being zealous on this earth. Had Pinchas not acted zealously, G-d would have annihilated Israel with a pestilence in His zeal.”
Passing up the opportunity to carry our zealous, halachically mandated revenge is such a terrible sin that whoever refuses to do so deserves annihilation! Such was King David's intent in (Ps. 106:30), “Pinchas rose and wrought judgment, and the plague was stopped.”
The avenger, Pinchas, merited not only a covenant of peace, but that the priestly gifts should be named after his deeds. Our sages say (Chulin 134b):
Those who expound on unclear verses would say, “The shank bone corresponded to the hand [of Pinchas]: 'He took a spear in his hand' (Num. 25:7). The jowls corresponded to [his] prayer: 'Pinchas rose and prayed' (Ps. 106:30). The stomach corresponded to the belly in “[He drove the spear] through the woman's belly” (Num. 25:8).
Since G-d leaves it to good men to further the cause of goodness, after Pinchas took G-d's revenge against Zimri ben Salu and Kozbi bat Tzur, Moses appointed Pinchas leader when he sent G-d's hosts to take His revenge against the Midianites (Num. 31:6): “Moses sent forth the thousand men from each tribe as an army, along with Pinchas son of Elazar the Kohen.”
Who won the “covenant of peace”, the everlasting reward of peace, if not Pinchas? Pinchas acted zealously on G-d's behalf, taking G-d's revenge, and becoming the first “mashuach milchama”, or Kohen anointed to lead the nation in war (Deut. 20:2-4). Yet G-d said (Num. 25:12), “Tell him that I have given him My covenant of peace”.
Here we have a reward well-suited to the deed. Precisely he who gives up his peace and tranquility, devoting himself to G-d's battle and to taking G-d's revenge, merits everlasting peace. And precisely he who rebels against G-d, treating His command to fight and root out evil and evildoers with contempt , will never have peace, for there is no peace for the wicked, those who cast off their yoke.
Today, people have risen up to destroy us who are smitten with the alien [Western secular] culture.
Tragically, these include even Torah scholars and learned Jews who have pronounced that, halachically speaking, there is no state of war between us and the Arabs in our land, hence we are forbidden to treat them as enemies.
They have gone so far as to rule that if an Arab tries to attack or even to kill a Jew with a stone or weapon and flees, one may not kill him, but may only catch him and deliver him to the authorities, our impoverished regime which is better off ceasing to exist.
If someone renders a halachic ruling that there is no state of war between us and the Arabs in our midst, that we are obligated to treat them with mercy, and that it is forbidden to kill one of them even after he tries to attack and kill a Jew, that person is nothing but a “rodef” [one who attacks with the intent to kill], who collaborates with the gentiles in the killing of Jews.
[As Rav Binyamin Ze'ev Kahane puts it in his commentary on Parshat Pinchas]:
Pinchas' act of killing Zimri and afterwards meriting the peace covenant teaches us that the Torah's way of bringing peace is by making the world a better place. The first step towards this goal is the uprooting of evil and evil-doers from the world. “Depart from evil” (Ps. 34:15) – this is the first step in making the world a better place. On the other hand, making peace with evil, or even worse, giving in to it, is the very opposite step that one can take if he wants to arrive at peace.
Peace is not the mixing of good and evil and the attempt to create a co-existence between them, as we have been trained to think! The very opposite. There is no co-existence between good and evil, nor is there partnership between good people and evil people! The Master of the Universe demands of the righteous that they burn out the evil from the world - “and you shall burn out the evil from thy midst”, the Torah commands us in so many places, for only in such a way will peace reign in the world.
[See also Perush HaMaccabee on Shemos, Chapter 1]:
To burn evil out of our midst – this is the greatest compassion for the world, for all who are compassionate to the cruel will eventually be cruel to the compassionate (Tanchuma, Metzora 1); because this convoluted compassion allows the wicked to continue to commit evil. Can clay say to he who forms it, What are you doing?! (Isaiah 45:9); rather, we willingly accept upon ourselves the yoke of His Kingdom in love, in understanding and faith that He is indeed truth, and all His words are truth and justice.
On the commandment to walk in all His paths and to cleave unto Him (Deuteronomy 11:22), the Ibn Ezra comments: And cleave unto Him – ultimately; and this is a great secret. The Avi Ezer (super-commentary on the Ibn Ezra, written by the Gaon Rabbi Shlomo ha-Cohen of Lissa) explains:
The words of the Rav [i.e. the Ibn Ezra] are true, for Hashem's secret is given to those who fear Him (Psalms 25:14), who cleave unto His attributes, as Chazal said: Cleave unto His attributes. And in the cleaving itself there is a great secret: not to confuse one person’s task with another’s, to show compassion in a place where one must be angry (for instance against a student or a sinner), or to be humble in a place where one must garb himself with pride or vengeance, as with the actions of Pinchas. And few indeed are the people of greatness who cling to the attributes in truth and do not stumble in them. Are these not the greatest people in the world…?
Engrave these words deep on your heart.
Compiled by Tzipora Liron-Pinner from 'The Jewish Idea' and 'Peirush HaMaccabee on Shemot' of Rabbi Meir Kahane, HY"D, and from 'The writings of Rav Binyamin Ze'ev Kahane, HY"D'.
13 and it shall be unto him, and to his seed after him, the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was jealous for his God, and made atonement for the children of Israel.' 14 Now the name of the man of Israel that was slain, who was slain with the Midianitish woman, was Zimri, the son of Salu, a prince of a fathers' house among the Simeonites. 15 And the name of the Midianitish woman that was slain was Cozbi, the daughter of Zur; he was head of the people of a fathers' house in Midian.
16 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 17 'Harass the Midianites, and smite them; 18 for they harass you, by their wiles wherewith they have beguiled you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of the prince of Midian, their sister, who was slain on the day of the plague in the matter of Peor.'
26:1 And it came to pass after the plague,
24,000 perished in the plague. If you recall my post on reincarnation that Rabbi Akiva was Zimri given a second chance, Rachel his wife was Cozbi and Kalba Sauva was the prince of Midian Zur who Cozbi listened to but Rachel did not listen to and Pinchas was Eliyahu a Novi. Rabbi Akiva’s 24,000 students perish on a Kiddush HASHEM in the Bar Kochbar revolt while in the reincarnation Zimri who dies on a Chillul HASHEM is Rabbi Akiva who dies on a Kiddush HASHEM. One fought against the Torah Authority and the other became basically The Torah Authority, one had Yechus (pedigree) and one lacked Yechus. The measure for measure came back to all to repair the souls.
As long as I am mentioning reincarnation known in Hebrew as Gilgul Neshamos, I also want to write about Techiyas HaMaysim (resurrection of the dead). Rabbi Pinchas ben Yair was on his way when his donkey stopped and he said to his companion surely somebody is coming this way and my donkey smells it. Soon came Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai. Rabbi Pinchas said – I had a dream and I saw the Shechina giving me beautiful presents! Rabbi Shimon then said – Let us go into the shade so that I can give you some. They found some trees with a spring of water next to them and sat down. Rabbi Pinchas said that he was reflecting on the resurrection of the dead and how G-D will reverse the order of the world that we know now. (Who is at the head will be a servant and who is in a lowly position will be at the head – place your politicians, bosses, community and even religious leaders on the balance very few will remain where they are unless they were humble and truly G-D fearing) Rabbi Pinchas explained how he knew it - from Yechezkel 37:7,8 as first the bones got together, the sinews on them, flesh came up and finally the skin. We see that what a man is first divested from will be last. Said Rabbi Shimon that the ancients marveled at this (Rabbi Shimon live 1800 years ago) However, what really happens is written in Iyob 10:9,10 Remember how you made me of clay. Would you then not pour me out like milk and congeal me like cheese. At the time of the resurrection, G-D will melt that bone for all time pour it out and congeal it and bake it. Then skin, flesh, bones and sinews will drawn over it and at last the spirit of live will be put into them as it says above – and YOUR charge preserved my spirit. YOUR charge refers to the Shechina who is in charge of all the spirits. Rav Pinchas wept for joy and said – Did I not tell you that the Shechina will give me beautiful presents. Rabbi Pinchas further enquired so much for that bone but what about the others? - They will be put together that bone and the others into one dough and shape it.
that the LORD spoke unto Moses and unto Eleazar the son of Aaron the priest, saying: 2 'Take the sum of all the congregation of the children of Israel, from twenty years old and upward, by their fathers' houses, all that are able to go forth to war in Israel.' … And Kohath begot Amram. 59 And the name of Amram's wife was Yocheved, the daughter of Levi, who was born to Levi in Egypt; and she bore unto Amram Aaron and Moses, and Miriam their sister. 60 And unto Aaron were born Nadav and Avihu, Eleazar and Ithamar. 61 And Nadav and Avihu died, when they offered strange fire before the LORD. 62 And they that were numbered of them were twenty and three thousand, every male from a month old and upward; for they were not numbered among the children of Israel, because there was no inheritance given them among the children of Israel. 63 These are they that were numbered by Moses and Eleazar the priest, who numbered the children of Israel in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho. 64 But among these there was not a man of them that were numbered by Moses and Aaron the priest, who numbered the children of Israel in the wilderness of Sinai. 65 For the LORD had said of them: 'They shall surely die in the wilderness.' And there was not left a man of them, save Caleb the son of Yephunneh, and Joshua the son of Nun.
From here we learn a number of things. That despite all the deaths of the Bnei Yisrael in the wilderness the numbers stayed the same. Secondly that each and every individual for the tribes of Yisrael are holy unto HASHEM Yisborach and HE is concerned about them. HE numbered them like a shepherd who numbers his sheep (Medrash) or a father or grandfather who worries about the progress of each and every one of HIS children.
WHEN THE MOSHIACH COMES ONLY THE TRULY DESERVING RIGHTEOUS PEOPLE DESERVE TO MERIT TO BE WITH HIM. This does not preclude elder Torah leaders who pass away from age prior to his arrival but those that are not pure and simple G-D fearing and loving people. As I have mentioned many a time even my non-observant brothers and sisters may be saved for this due to their honesty, humility, doing things for the sake of heaven even if indirectly in our eyes and for their purely simple belief in a G-D too big to worry about their own mitzvos even if they forget that HE is their Father and a Father does care.
27:1 Then drew near the daughters of Zelophehad, the son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, of the families of Manasseh the son of Joseph; and these are the names of his daughters: Mahlah, Noah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Tirzah. 2 And they stood before Moses, and before Eleazar the priest, and before the princes and all the congregation, at the door of the tent of meeting, saying: 3 'Our father died in the wilderness, and he was not among the company of them that gathered themselves together against the LORD in the company of Korah, but he died in his own sin; and he had no sons. 4 Why should the name of our father be done away from among his family, because he had no son? Give unto us a possession among the brethren of our father.' 5 And Moses brought their cause before the LORD.
I again repeat the biggest revolution in mankind happened in these sentences. Up until now we have learned in the Torah ZACHAR U’NIKAVA BARA OTAM (male and female he created them). Physically the male is larger than the female in mammals and birds and more colorful or bearded so that the predator will attack him over the weaker female. That she was HELP MATE with a different view or perspective than him. We also learned that Avraham was commanded regarding Hagar and later Yishmael to listen to Sarah. (We would learn later in Tanis 20B that the wife of Aba Chilkiya had her prayers answered before him because of her charity to the poor) Yitzchak was comforted by Rivka who took over the running of the household (tent and home area) in place of his mother. Yacov loved Rachel but ended up being buried next to his wife Leah in the family grave site. Up unto now a woman like Rivka and Rachel also had responsibilities in managing the sheep and other animals. Now the revolutionary question arose regarding ownership of property and completely managing an entire household like a man. The domestic partner was now going to become a complete business partner.
6 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 7 'The daughters of Zelophehad speak right: thou shalt surely give them a possession of an inheritance among their father's brethren; and thou shalt cause the inheritance of their father to pass unto them.
From here we learn not only about the equality of women in all physical matters.
8 And thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel, saying: If a man die, and have no son, then ye shall cause his inheritance to pass unto his daughter. 9 And if he have no daughter, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his brethren. 10 And if he have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his father's brethren. 11 And if his father have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his kinsman that is next to him of his family, and he shall possess it. And it shall be unto the children of Israel a statute of judgment, as the LORD commanded Moses.'
Above I mentioned physical matters. Now a woman is build differently than a man not only physically but hormonally. This makes women more emotional and a man more calculating and logical in his approach to matters. In religion, a man is more built for the logic of Talmud that a woman and a woman is more built in the emotion of prayer and charity than a man. These are irrefutable hormonal facts within us. This did not disqualify Devorah from being a Novi and among the Judges of Yisrael but she is a rarity. Men are not built for raising and caring for infants and toddlers and their needs as a woman is. That does not mean that my son cannot take care of his children while mommy is out being a nurse but it puts a strain on him that mommy does not feel the burden of. For she has a built in patience for her children while daddy does not.
12 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Get thee up into this mountain of Abarim, and behold the land which I have given unto the children of Israel. 13 And when thou hast seen it, thou also shalt be gathered unto thy people, as Aaron thy brother was gathered; 14 because ye rebelled against My commandment in the wilderness of Zin, in the strife of the congregation, to sanctify Me at the waters before their eyes.'--These are the waters of Meribath-kadesh in the wilderness of Zin.
Moshe was granted not only a physical view from the mountain but also a telescopic and spiritual view from the mountain.
… 15 And Moses spoke unto the LORD, saying: 16 'Let the LORD, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over the congregation, 17 who may go out before them, and who may come in before them, and who may lead them out, and who may bring them in; that the congregation of the LORD be not as sheep which have no shepherd.' 18 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Take thee Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is spirit, and lay thy hand upon him;
This was the original Rabbinic Ordination by placing a hand on the head of the man who will become a Rabbi.
19 and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation; and give him a charge in their sight. 20 And thou shalt put of thy honor upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may hearken.
If Moshe does not stand with Yehoshua then there is a chance that the Population will not accept him.
21 And he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall inquire for him by the judgment of the Urim before the LORD; at his word shall they go out, and at his word they shall come in, both he, and all the children of Israel with him, even all the congregation.' 22 And Moses did as the LORD commanded him; and he took Joshua, and set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the congregation. 23 And he laid his hands upon him, and gave him a charge, as the LORD spoke by the hand of Moses.
The new generation is ready to take over. What is left for Moshe to do now is to take vengeance on Midian and to repeat the Torah again to the Bnei Yisrael before passing on sort of a going away Shuir from the Rebbe.
28:9 And on the sabbath day two he-lambs of the first year without blemish, and two tenth parts of an ephah of fine flour for a meal-offering, mingled with oil, and the drink-offering thereof. 10 This is the burnt-offering of every sabbath, beside the continual burnt-offering, and the drink-offering thereof.
Rabbi Y. Y. Jacobson Shlita wrote regarding the Ultimate Mission Statement of Judaism:
Bill Gates and GM
Bill Gates is spending the day with the chairman of General Motors.
"If automotive technology had kept pace with computer technology over the past few decades," boasts Gates, "you would now be driving a V32 instead of a V8, and it would have a top speed of 10,000 miles per hour. Or, you could have an economy car that weighs 30 pounds and gets a thousand miles to a gallon of gas. In either case, the sticker price of a new car would be less than $50."
"Sure," says the GM chairman. "But would you really want to drive a car that crashes four times a day?"
The Verse that Says It All
A fascinating Midrash credits an isolated verse in this week's Torah portion, Pinchas, with encapsulating the quintessence of Judaism (1).
The Midrash quotes four opinions as to which biblical verse best sums up the ultimate message of Torah.
One sage, by the name of Ben Azzai, believed it was the verse in Genesis (2): "This is the book of the chronicles of man; on the day that G-d created man He created him in the image of G-d."
Another sage, by the name of Ben Zoma, holds a different verse to be more central to Jewish thought: "Hear O Israel, the Lord is our G-d, the Lord is One (3)."
A third Talmudist, Ben Nanas, chooses this verse: "You shall love your fellow man like yourself (4)."
Finally, the fourth sage, Shimon, the son of Pazi, casts his pitch for the epic verse of the Bible. It is culled from the section in this week's portion that deals with the obligation during the time of the Temple to bring each day two lambs as an offering to G-d. "One sheep you shall offer in the morning and the second sheep in the afternoon (5)." This verse, according to Shimon, the son of Pazi, is the defining verse of Judaism.
The Midrash concludes: "One of the rabbis stood on his feet and declared, 'The verdict follows the opinion of Shimon the son of Pazi!'"
The Big Question
Now, there is something in this Midrash that seems really amiss.
The first three opinions are logical. The notion that all of Judaism can be traced back to the idea that a human being reflects G-d, makes perfect sense. The same can be said about the concept of a single and universal G-d, or the injunction to love our fellow man like ourselves-these ideas, introduced 3300 years ago by the Hebrew Bible, vividly embody the essential weltanschauung of Judaism and its contribution to human civilization.
But how does the verse "One sheep you shall offer in the morning and the second sheep in the afternoon" represent the core essence of Torah? How can one even begin to compare the message about offering two lambs with the global and noble ideas contained in the other three opinions?
What is even more astonishing is that the final verdict in the Midrash selects this verse about the sheep as the "winner." The biblical verses dealing with love, monotheism and human dignity, the foundations of morality and civilization, did not "make it" in the contest; it is precisely this verse enjoining us to offer a lamb in the morning and a lamb in the afternoon -- that was chosen as the "representative" of the Jewish paradigm!
The Depth of Perseverance
One of the most seminal Jewish thinkers in the post-medieval period was Rabbi Judah Loew (1525-1609), who was known as the Maharal of Prague and served as the Chief Rabbi of Prague. In one of his works (6) he offers a rather moving answer to the above query.
What the fourth and last sage, Shimon, the son of Pazi, was suggesting is that the verse that ultimately defines what it means to be a Jew, is the one that speaks of unwavering consistency, "One sheep you shall offer in the morning and the second sheep in the afternoon." Every single morning and every single afternoon you shall make a sacrifice for your Creator.
Of course, the biblical declarations that reveal the philosophical depth of Torah and its grand vision for humanity-monotheism, love, human dignity-are powerful, splendid and revolutionary. But what makes living a Jewish life unique is the unswerving commitment to live and breathe these truths day in, day out, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
One can be moved to tears by the notion of tikkun olam, of healing the world; one can become aflame with a burning passion toward the ideals of human dignity, love and peace. One can be inspired to make a donation, to give a speech, to shed a tear, to attend a rally or to write an article.
But the real and ultimate power of Judaism is that it always inspired its people to cultivate their relationship with G-d on a continuous basis, every day of their lives. Judaism asks the human being to make daily sacrifices for truth, for love, for peace, for G-d. "One sheep you shall offer in the morning and the second sheep in the afternoon."
During exciting days as well as monotonous days, on bright days and bleak days-"One sheep you shall offer in the morning and the second sheep in the afternoon." In the morning, when you awake, you are called to make a sacrifice to G-d. In the afternoon, when your day is winding down, you are called, once again, to sacrifice something of yourself for G-d.
Judaism is not only about a moving Yom Kippur experience or an emotional memorial ceremony; it is something the Jew lives every moment of his life. It is the dedication of ordinary people to construct, through daily ordinary acts, a fragment of heaven on planet earth.
(To watch a more elaborate video presentation of this class by Rabbi YY Jacobson, please click here.)
1) The Midrash is quoted in the introduction to Ein Yakov, compiled by Rabbi Yaakov Ben Chaviv. He writes there that he found this information recorded in the name of the Midrash, but could not discover the original source. He proceeds to present his own explanation to the Midrash.
2) Genesis 5:1.
3) Deuteronomy 6:4.
4) Leviticus 19:18.
5) Numbers 28:4.
6) Nesivos Olam vol. 2 Nesiv Ahavas Ria chapter one.
My gratitude to Rabbi Nir Gurevitch, spiritual leader of the Australian Gold Coast community. I first heard this Midrash and Maharal from Rabbi Gurevitch, when I visited his community several years ago.
11 And in your new moons ye shall present a burnt-offering unto the LORD: two young bullocks, and one ram, seven he-lambs of the first year without blemish; 12 and three tenth parts of an ephah of fine flour for a meal-offering, mingled with oil, for each bullock; and two tenth parts of fine flour for a meal-offering, mingled with oil, for the one ram; 13 and a several tenth part of fine flour mingled with oil for a meal-offering unto every lamb; for a burnt-offering of a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD. 14 And their drink-offerings shall be half a hin of wine for a bullock, and the third part of a hin for the ram, and the fourth part of a hin for a lamb. This is the burnt-offering of every new moon throughout the months of the year. 15 And one he-goat for a sin-offering unto the LORD; it shall be offered beside the continual burnt-offering, and the drink-offering thereof.
The most frequent Korbanos that are offered are the Tamid which is the Daily Sacrifice followed by the weekly Shabbos Sacrifice and then the Monthly Sacrifice. All the Korbanos are listed in Parsha Pinchas but I only mention the three most frequent in order show how important each and every day, week and month are to the HaKadosh Baruch Hu (The Holy One blessed be HE).
Halachos and Mitzvos from Danny Shoemann
It's a Mitzva to separate Challa from dough and give it to a Cohen. (Nowadays, since the dough is impure, the Challa is burned, and not given to a Cohen.) Applies to dough made of the 5 types of grains: wheat, barley, oats, spelt or rye. Applies to dough the size of at least 43 1/5 eggs. (Opinions vary between 1.2 Kg and 2.5 Kg)
Applies to everybody, always, in Israel, and by Rabbinic decree outside of Israel, where it is burned. Verse: "The first of your dough you should separate " (Bamidbar 15:20)
Source: The Chafetz-Chaim's Sefer HaMitzvos HaKatzar; Positive Mitzvah 57
One may not marry and woman and her daughter. One who marries a woman and then has relationships her mother or daughter gets burned to death by Beth Din.
If his wife died and then has relationships her mother or daughter he gets Kares.
By Rabbinic decree it's forbidden to have relations with a mother and daughter even if neither are married to him. Applies to everybody, everywhere, always
Verse: "The nakedness of a woman and her daughter you shall not uncover" (Vayikra 18:17)
Source: The Chafetz-Chaim's Sefer HaMitzvos HaKatzar; Prohibition 121
One may not marry a woman and her son's daughter. One who marries a woman and then has relationships her father's mother or her son's daughter gets burned to death by Beth Din. If his wife died and then has relationships with her father's mother or her son's daughter he gets Kares. By Rabbinic decree it's forbidden to have such relations even if neither women are married to him. By Rabbinic decree this applies to great-grandchildren as well. Applies to everybody, everywhere, always Verse: "...her son's daughter..." (Vayikra 18:17) Source: The Chafetz-Chaim's Sefer HaMitzvos HaKatzar; Prohibition 122
One may not marry and woman and her daughter's daughter. One who marries a woman and then has relationships her mother's mother or her daughter's daughter gets burned to death by Beth Din. If his wife died and he then has relationships her mother's mother or her daughter's daughter, he gets Kares. By Rabbinic decree it's forbidden to have such relations even if neither are married to him. By Rabbinic decree this applies to great-grandchildren as well. Applies to everybody, everywhere, always
Verse: "...her son's daughter..." (Vayikra 18:17) Source: The Chafetz-Chaim's Sefer HaMitzvos HaKatzar; Prohibition 123
The woes of the Churban - the destruction of the Bet Hamikdash - began on 17th Tammuz and ended with the Bet Hamikdash being set alight on the afternoon of 9 B'Av. The fire burnt until sunset the following day. This period of 23 days - which start on Tuesday - is know as "the 3 weeks" or Bein HaMetzarim - בין המצרים.
As we then approach the 9th of Av - 3 weeks later - the laws of mourning intensify, as we will learn in the coming days. The mourning continues until the day after the fast of 9 B'Av; i.e. 10 Av - July 21. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 122:1, 124:20
Danny writing about 17th of Tammuz and 9 B’Av is stricter: The fast starts at dawn actually when the sky lightens while Tisha B’Av starts at sundown and ends at nightfall.
Pregnant and nursing mothers are exempt from fasting. Anybody who isn't healthy shouldn't fast. When in doubt, consult your LOR (Local Orthodox Rabbi). Children are not allowed to fast. Sometimes for the purpose of education from 10 and above the child fasts until 9, 10, 11 AM depending on the age and strength of the child but the parent should emphasis that it is voluntary and it is a Mitzvah to eat. Those who are not fasting should limit their food intake to the bare minimum; only bread and water if possible. May Rabbis say eat and drink as usual including meat or poultry if normally eaten at certain hours of the day. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 121:9
Today - Tuesday - is the fast of 17 Tammuz which commemorates 5 major misfortunes which happened to the Jewish people on this date:
- Moshe Rabbeinu broke the Luchos - the tablets - upon seeing the Golden Calf being worshiped
- The daily Tamid sacrifice was suspended in the first Bet Hamikdash as a result of the siege
- At the time of the 2nd Bet Hamikdash the walls of Jerusalem were breached by the enemy, three weeks before the destruction
- Apustumus the wicked [Roman] burned a Sefer Torah
- An idol was placed in the Bet Hamikdash
On every fast-day there is Krias HaTorah (Torah Reading) at both Shacharis and Mincha. At Mincha, the 3rd Aliyah also reads the Haftarah (from Yishayahu 55:6). Only somebody who is fasting should be called up to the Torah on a fast day. During the Mincha Amida, individuals add the "Aneinu" prayer into the 16th Bracha; Shema Kolienu. If one forgot, one does not need to make amends. The Chazzan adds Aneinu during both Shacharis and Mincha, as a separate Bracha before Refaainu.
Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 23:15, 19:14, 20:8
Is all music forbidden in the 3 weeks? The period between the fast of 17 Tammuz and the fast of 9 B'Av 3 weeks later is known as Bein HaMetzarim, or "The 3 Weeks"!
Since the destruction of the Bet Hamikdash (Temple) started on 17 Tammuz with the breaching of the walls, and ended 3 weeks later when it was set alight, this period of 3 weeks has been set aside as a time of mourning. If one plays a musical instrument for a living, one may continue to do so for non-Jews until Rosh Chodesh Av. Some have the custom of refraining from meat and wine during the entire 3 weeks, except on Shabbat and Mitzva-meals (like at a Brit Mila). Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 122:1 - Danny
Wednesday, 18 Tammuz 5770 Please daven for a complete recovery for Chagai Yitzchak ben Pnina - חגי יצחק בן פנינה
From Miriam: TRAIF BUSTERS...I have a question. If I am not able to get anyone here with a blow-torch, if I clean the oven the best I can (it is not self-cleaning) can I heat up food if I double wrap it in tin foil?
I assume that you did not use it for 24 hrs. Clean it out with oven cleaner then put it for an hour on the maximum. Then it is kosher for Pessach. I suggest that if you put in Fleischig try to cover it but if not put in Parve and leave the oven open a crack for the Parve, The problem is between cheese cake and regular meat. You can still play around with Milk and Meat by leaving the oven off 24 hrs and repeating the koshering.
For the gas burners I take care of them with caution and two pliers to hold them up until they are red and turn around but only for Pessach. If electrical use oven cleaner on them and then heat them up for an hour after 24hrs non-use. In the last 20 years I have bought 2 sets of burners one for Pessach and one for the rest of the year and it works out fine and convenient. As for tin/aluminum foil that is OK for a tourist on a trip or a rent a house with an oven for a week but not for a permanent solution.
From Rabbi A.L. a guide to preventing dressing in wool and linen mixtures: http://www.hakhel.info/archivesShatnez/ShatnezGuideJune10.pdf
Sometimes halacha or how to act comes from a consensus of Rabbis: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/138298
Confidant Emuna Braverman
In 1985 the average American had three people in whom to confide matters of importance. According to a 2006 study, that number as dropped to two (and presumably does not include radio talk show hosts!). Additionally more than 25% of Americans admit they have no confidant at all. While many Americans do enlist the help of professionals as a safe place to entrust their problems, this is not what I understand to be meant by a confidant, and certainly not what it means to have a friend.
A friend is someone who has your back, who takes your needs seriously, who rejoices in your joys and mourns in your sorrows. And this type of friendship is actually quite rare. Someone recently invited my husband out to lunch. “I like what you said at that meeting and I look forward to getting to know you and your ideas better.” This seemed like an auspicious beginning to a new relationship. But relationship turned out to be the wrong word. As soon as they sat down to eat, his host began to speak and didn’t stop until my husband finally excused himself – two hours later! This is actually not such a unique experience.
Many people briefly feign interest in others as a way to get an ear to listen to them. That’s okay. It’s wonderful to be a good listener. It is kind and caring. It just doesn’t create a real friendship; there is no mutual interest and concern.
It’s not easy to find others who care about you as much as you care about them, who take your ideas, your challenges, your concerns (almost) as seriously as they do their own. It’s not easy but when it happens it can be so rewarding. We are taught that a good friend carries the burden with you; he or she empathizes. I think it’s even more. The caring and compassion of a good friend eases the burden, takes a weight off our shoulders. They lift the pain away from us through the power of their love and concern. Because they identify so strongly with us, the pain becomes their own, it is shared and thereby diminished.
If we are lucky enough to have this type of friend, we should be grateful; it’s rare indeed. True friendship is life-changing. It helps us find the power and will to cope – and sometimes steers us away from negative choices or destructive behaviors. A good friend reminds us of our inner strength and encourages us to make full use of it.
Studies even document that those of us with good friends remain physically healthy longer. I think it’s because they help carry the aforementioned “burden,” because we know we’re not alone. Of course, if we stop and realize it, we’re never alone; we never have to carry that burden by ourselves. The Almighty is always there for us, He’s not distracted by His own needs or concerns, He carries not just our burden; He carries us as well. We just have to make Him our friend. http://www.aish.com/print/?contentID=96961319§ion=/f/mom
A Yad LeAchim Story as told by Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu Shlita (son of the late Tzaddik)
I have been working personally involved in my younger days with Yad LeAchim saving Sephardic Children from bad environments and wrote previously about the girl sent to the USA for education after her brothers murdered her grandmother for 600 Liras which was $170 plus dollars in those days but a good sum of money at the time especially for youths. I assume that the woman now is living happily married in Williamsburg Brooklyn.
The following names are completely made up but the story is real. Jew Dee was a teen from a dysfunctional home. She was flung around here and there and unable to fit herself into normal society. She met in her home town of Haifa at that time a worker from across the green line. At first she was put on the proverbial pedestal by the man. He then asked her to marry him and live with him in the family home across the green line. She agreed and they wed.
A very short time after they wed he let her know who was boss. She was only allowed out of the house to walk with him or her two sisters-in-law. As time went by she bore him son number one and then son number two. Slowly, she had less and less freedom. Then she had a daughter and a younger son. Her freedom went further down and she was unable to have the children in the home until she converted to Islam. Her life became hell. She could visit the children at her in-laws. One day she fled with her for hours on foot. Then she was befriended by a sympathetic older family and she hid out by them and gradually made her way to the Israel check post and into Haifa.
She had no roof over her head, spare clothing or food. There with the help of Yad LeAchim, she was able to via the Israeli Courts obtain her youngest son who was underage. Yad LeAchim continued to support her until she gradually was able to get back on her feet. Her children are now being educated in Jewish Schools and have a lot of catching up to do.
The French Goya and the Jihad
The evening before I left the States, I attended a meeting of Americans against Hate in FL. (Check out the Organization it is run by a young man named Joe Kaufman) The meeting exposed how the FBI and the courts of law let an illegal terrorist slip through their hands and remain in the States even after 9/11. I was pressed by time and could not stay too long but just for this story it was worth it.
The lady spoke of her first years of marriage to her specialist doctor husband. He was making a good salary they dated while he worked at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital and she learned in the University. After a year they got married and were very happy. They married and moved to another State and were living in a nice home and a loving couple. Then one day he received a letter from his brother. His face turned white and she knew something was wrong and something was bad about it. He called up work and told her that he must go to Canada to see his brother.
She did not know Arabic but a mutual friend read the letter and translated it for her. He said that brother was going on a Jihad. She did not know what a Jihad was at the time. However, when her husband returned he was a different man. He was not the same happy doctor that she married. He told her that brother was going to come to their home for a while to live with them soon. As soon as the brother came things got worse she could see that he was a very evil man. She told her husband that she wanted him out of the house. The husband did not listen but eventually he flew home to Saudi Arabia or another Arab country. However, since the Jihad started the house was not what it was.
She went on a visit to France to see her family for a short round trip stay. While she was in France she contacted her father confessor and spoke to him about the Jihad. He told her not to worry, not to go to the FBI with what she knew and keep her nose out of it. In the meantime there children kept growing. Eventually after returning to the USA she decided that it was not enough to stand-by and watch this Jihad happen on the USA. She went to the FBI and gave them some copies of the letters and other information.
Her local agent told her to continue to inform him but the higher up did nothing. When the first World Trade Center Attack occurred they still had not put two and two together.
One night her brother-in-law told her to watch the news. She watched and there was nothing special. The next night he asked her again to put on the news and this time around mid-night there was a Jihad attack on the Kobar Towers in Saudi Arabia. He knew all this in advance.
This time the FBI took notice. In early 2000 she warned them of a plane hijacking attack on important American Installations in the States. Somewhere between 2001 and 2003 she left her husband and his brother and the FBI apparently was without enough proof to prosecute either of them. The man is still a specialist in a hospital in the DC area and may be treating somebody you know.
She has moved out with her children from the rich doctor’s life and now divorced and out of the Jihadist Family, but I assure you that neither Jew Dee or this lady are alone.
The Jewish Ethicist: Product Safety
Q. What does Judaism say about product safety?
A. Product safety has become a major legal and regulatory concern in recent decades. From a previous legal regime whereby safe use of products was primarily the responsibility of the consumer, in recent years increasing liability has been placed on producers. Many jurisdictions now place strict liability on producers, so that they can be held responsible even if there is no negligence on the part of the producer and sometimes even if the consumer was not sufficiently careful. The theory is that the producer is in the best position to know and mitigate the hazards of his product and therefore should bear the costs resulting from these hazards.
Jewish law also puts responsibility on sellers to refrain from selling hazardous products, although the requirement is not through imposing monetary liability. The source is a verse in the Torah (Deuteronomy 22:8, Living Torah translation):
When you build a new house, you must place a guard-rail around your roof. Do not allow a dangerous situation to remain in your house, since someone can fall from [an unenclosed roof].
Although this verse refers specifically to a roof, the Talmud extends it to additional hazards:
Rabbi Natan stated, Whence to we learn that a person may not raise a vicious dog in his house, or place a flimsy ladder in his house? As it is written, "Don't allow a dangerous situation to remain in your house". (1)
Maimonides explains that all these are examples of a general principle:
A roof or anything else that presents a hazard with a potential that someone may endanger himself and die – for example, a well or a pit in the courtyard . . . it is necessary to make a barrier around it, or a cover so that no one will fall and die. And likewise any hazard that presents a danger to life, it is a positive commandment to remove it, and to be careful of it, and to be very cautious regarding it. As it is written (Deuteronomy 4:9), "Watch yourself and be very careful of your soul". And anyone who didn't remove [the danger] and allowed the hazards to remain, failed to fulfill a positive commandment and transgressed "don't allow a dangerous situation to remain in your house". (2)
Selling someone a hazardous product is placing a hazard in their way. If you are not allowed to leave a flimsy ladder in your own house, where you know about it, certainly you would not be allowed to sell one to someone to put in their house without full knowledge of the hazards.
A question often raised regarding product safety is why it would not be enough to include a warning or disclaimer. The same question could be asked regarding the commandment to place a railing. Couldn't the owner just warn visitors or family members that there is no railing? Or we could put a sign on the ladder saying: "Caution: rotted rungs!"
This question is discussed by a number of recent rabbinical authorities, including Rabbi Betzalel Stern. Rabbi Stern relates to a complex passage of the rabbis of the Talmud given various kinds of structures that are obligated in or exempt from a railing. He explains that while engaging in everyday household or work activities it is impossible to adequately pay attention to safety as well. (3) The prominent recent authority Rabbi Yeshayahu Karelitz, the "Chazon Ish", adopts a similar approach. He points out that workers can go out on a roof (one not usable as a porch) to fix it, and workers are allowed to go onto the roof to put on the railing in the first place. But in this case their attention is fixed on dealing with the danger. (4) However, when a person is involved in everyday activities he will almost invariably be unable to maintain concentration on safety.
I think this is also the rationale for product safety regulations. A consumer product is meant to be used by normal people under normal circumstances. It is impossible to expect that everyone can be focused on complex safety requirements.
A householder is not allowed to leave a dangerous situation to persist in his own house. People at home are occupied in their normal activities and can't be expected to be constantly on guard for flimsy ladders and precipices at the edges of porches. The same principle applies to many consumer goods; if they will be used by average people during average activities, they should be safe for use without requiring constant attention to special safety procedures.
SOURCES: (1) Babylonian Talmud Ketubot 41b. (2) Maimonides' Code, laws of Murder and Preserving Life, 11:4. (3) Responsa Betzel HaChochma IV 114 (4) Chazon Ish Yoreh Deah (Chullin) 214.
Kashrus Standardization to apply to Europe: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3910086,00.html
Thanks to Elizabeth for the next two sites: An oldie but goodie about the 3 weeks: http://www.aish.com/h/9av/oal/96779149.html
Judaism does not look for Converts but many look for us: http://www.aish.com/jl/jnj/nj/48962366.html
A REVOLUNTIONARY HALACHIC RULING BY RABBI OVADIAH YOSEF: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3911420,00.html
Miracles on the battlefield a Radio Show: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Radio/Player.htm#0#2336
Will the Green Prince face death by terrorists: http://video.foxnews.com/v/4265580/exclusive-will-us-deport-green-prince?playlist_id=87937
This sounds like normal electronic surveillance: http://www.debka.com/article/8868/
On Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court: http://cnsnews.com/news/article/68444 and http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3910619,00.html
The average American slept 7.6 hour last night. While you are dreaming, the Government spends a nightmarish - $2,688,284,160.00.
How to target tourists and Israelis and be good Al Qaeda members: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3911857,00.html
Rumors have it: http://www.debka.com/article/8878/
Congressional Candidate in North Carolina 13th District Bill Randall sent me this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gNW0lkjTxAQ&feature=player_embedded
Kassams are alive and well in the south of Yisrael: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3912852,00.html
'Liberals, Allah and Kristallnacht' By Stephen Guy Hardin June, 23, 2010
French comic-politician Dieudonne, who has been convicted more than once for anti-Semitic speech, has teamed up with Iran, which is funding his production of a new anti-Israel comedy. Dieudonne recently visited Iran and met with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Deputy Culture Minister for Cinematic Affairs.
"We received a substantial budget allowing us to make movies on par with Hollywood, which serves as the long arm of Zionist culture," he told the Tehran Times.
Dieudonne told his hosts, "It is forbidden to talk about the Holocaust in France [sic], but I have arranged the comedy in such a way that it ridicules the issue of the Holocaust. Comedy is an influential tool and now that we cannot speak directly about it, this is the best approach to use. Today, there are only a few countries like Iran that are open to joint productions on these types of issues."
Dieudonne, who previously ran for the European Parliament as head of an anti-Zionist party, was fined earlier this year after he invited a convicted Holocaust denier to receive an award from someone dressed as a Nazi concentration camp victim.
French judges also fined him two years ago for comparing Jews to "slave-traders." by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu (http://www.facebook.com/l/e3b3dcxLU0gn2TcqNhUCQrbf1lw;IsraelNationalNews.com)12/01/2009. Guess whom in the name of Allah were really slave traders – hint they were people from a very rich oil producing country.
Is it any coincidence that the dramatic rise in Muslim immigration into Europe has also seen a dramatic increase in the level and intensity of anti-Semitism? Of course not.
In a western European culture that has grown increasingly distant from it's sad 20th century history of hatred and genocide, anti-Semitism and anti Israeli feelings are becoming a commonplace news statistic. In point of fact Leftist media outlets throughout Europe are only adding fuel to the growing fire.
"Dutch media may be playing a significant role in the rise of anti-Semitic incidents in Holland over the past year. So say the heads of two watchdog organizations, the Israel Facts Group and the WAAR Foundation of the Netherlands."
"...Almost simultaneously, CIDI researcher Wim Kortenoeven published the findings of his study on the way Dutch media are reporting on the Middle East conflict, and how those reports are influencing public opinion on the issue. Kortenoeven found that Dutch media are no longer neutral in their reporting, but instead have become "the third party in the Mid East conflict."
"...Slager cited similar examples of other media outlet distortions as well. "In its reporting on Israel, [the respectable newspaper] NRC published many unsubstantiated reports about supposed Israeli misbehavior and cruelty," Slager observed. "Palestinian incitement and violence was almost completely ignored. Even the right of reply to the biased reports was subsequently denied by the editors of NRC."
"Although the situation in the Netherlands (Holland) is not as alarming as it is in Sweden, where an exodus of Jews was reported recently in Malmo, the writing is on the wall," Visser added. "The arrest of a Dutch youth last month who declared before a camera that 'Jews must be killed' should be a wake up call to the 'newsmakers' in the Netherlands." (http://www.facebook.com/l/e3b3dS9DoB0tsh0LqzxPn4RE0dQ;IsraelNationalNews.com) 3/25/2010.
Israel is learning the harsh reality of living under the hostile eyes of the Obama administration. Hillary Clinton , Joe Biden and the rest of the Leftist cadre that currently serve in the Obama regime have made the humiliation, endangerment and possible extinction of the modern state of Israel, if not a spoken goal, an unspoken sentiment that has and will continue to influence American foreign policy in the Middle East and beyond. The sacred dogma of the radical American Left has made the extinction of Israel and the false and illegal creation of a Palestinian state their un-Holy Grail. His protests to the contrary, Barack Obama has no respect for the history, tradition and religious significance of Israel. His anti-Christian indoctrination at the hands of the reverend Jeremiah Wright and the Black Liberation Theology movement, combined with his hard Left political indoctrination makes these dangerous times for Israel and for Jews the world over.
Dangerous times, indeed.
Earlier this year, El Mundo published a cartoon that demonized the Jewish people by portraying a Hasidic Jew with barbed wire sidelocks and plumes of smoke in the background. One of its columnists, Antonio Gala, regularly traffics in anti-Semitic stereotypes of Jews.
In February 2009, an ADL ( Anti- Defamation League) survey of Attitudes Toward Jews in Seven European Countries found that in Spain, a large percentage of the population holds classic anti-Semitic beliefs. More than 64 percent of those surveyed believe that "Jews are more loyal" to Israel than to their own country, and 74 percent agreed with the statement that "Jews have too much power in international financial markets."
The age of the unbiased, objective press has degenerated into the age of the Leftist/Progressive media acting as advocate for any Radical Leftist cause they can lower themselves to. Journalism is only considered legitimate and respectable when it denigrates and demeans the known social structure of society. Any absurd cause is embraced by the media in the name of anti-imperialism and freedom of expression, even when those very causes that are embraced represent evil and totalitarianism in it's purest form. Thus, the Left's enduring hatred of Israel is finding increasing resonance in the television studios and newspaper editorials across Europe. Apparently it is considered a symbol of your love for the world's oppressed classes if you support anti-Israeli terrorism and the murder of innocent men, women and children. If Europe regresses any further they may find themselves wearing togas and selling young boys into the sex trade.
"Leftists are a dominating force and determine public opinion. If you look closely at the European protests against Israel, you won't see PA flags. Instead, there are flags of leftists, and that also is the nature of the media. From the standpoint of Europeans, the United States and Israel are evil, but they have a hard time starting up with the Americans, so they pick on Israel."
Several months ago, Sweden's largest daily published a blood libel article falsely stating that Israeli soldiers harvested organs of terrorists. (http://www.facebook.com/l/e3b3dS9DoB0tsh0LqzxPn4RE0dQ;IsraelNationalNews.com) 12/09/2009.
As Muslims and other anti-American organizations gather encouragement from the Obama administration, Jews throughout Europe must prepare themselves for an approaching tsunami of anti-Semitism that has been unseen for generations. Gone are the days when the talk of concentration camps and forced labor and genocide was considered verboten. Now Judaism and Israel must prepare for a new generation of hatred and violence fueled by the Islamic enemy living among them in Europe. Iran and the oil bankrolled hatred of the mullahs and sheiks has created a climate of contempt and virulence unseen since the days of the Nuremberg Laws. The days of tolerance and shame and remembrance are past and soon Europe will fall prey to the dark days of Liberals , Allah and Kristallnacht.
JOYS OF MUSLIM WOMEN by Nonie Darwish Forwarded with commentary by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator
One can understand why Muslim women (and their husbands) prefer to stay to in Israel rather than under the rule of Muslim Palestinian Arabs AKA Terrorists: Hamas, Hezb’Allah, Syria, Iran or any other Arab Muslim country where they beat the hell out of women, their husbands are tortured if they step out of the Islamic line.
So far this has made little difference to President Barack Hussein Obama because he seems to have relatives among the Muslim Arabs. I wonder if he would dare to beat Michelle that way?
Naw! She would kick his rear all over Hell’s half acre.
COMMENTARY BY EMANUEL A. WINSTON
Joys of Muslim Women by Nonie Darwish
She recently authored the book, Cruel and Usual Punishment: The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law.
Darwish was born in Cairo and spent her childhood in Egypt and Gaza before immigrating to America in 1978, when she was eight years old. Her father died while leading covert attacks on Israel. He was a high-ranking Egyptian military officer stationed with his family in Gaza.
When he died, he was considered a "shahid," a martyr for jihad. His posthumous status earned Nonie and her family an elevated position in Muslim society.
But Darwish developed a skeptical eye at an early age. She questioned her own Muslim culture and upbringing. She converted to Christianity after hearing a Christian preacher on television.
In her latest book, Darwish warns about creeping Shari’a law - what it is, what it means, and how it is manifested in Islamic countries.
For the West, she says radical Islamists are working to impose Sharia on the world. If that happens, Western civilization will be destroyed. Westerners generally assume all religions encourage a respect for the dignity of each individual. Islamic law (Sharia) teaches that non-Muslims should be subjugated or killed in this world.
Peace and prosperity for one's children is not as important as assuring that Islamic law rules everywhere in the Middle East and eventually in the world.
While Westerners tend to think that all religions encourage some form of the golden rule, Sharia teaches two systems of ethics - one for Muslims and another for non-Muslims. Building on tribal practices of the seventh century, Sharia encourages the side of humanity that wants to take from and subjugate others.
While Westerners tend to think in terms of religious people developing a personal understanding of and relationship with God, Shari’a advocates executing people who ask difficult questions that could be interpreted as criticism.
It's hard to imagine, that in this day and age, Islamic scholars agree that those who criticize Islam or choose to stop being Muslim should be executed. Sadly, while talk of an Islamic reformation is common and even assumed by many in the West, such murmurings in the Middle East are silenced through intimidation.
While Westerners are accustomed to an increase in religious tolerance over time, Darwish explains how petro dollars are being used to grow an extremely intolerant form of political Islam in her native Egypt and elsewhere.
In twenty years there will be enough Muslim voters in the U.S. to elect the President by themselves! Rest assured they will do so... You can look at how they have taken over several towns in the USA. Dearborn Michigan is one... and there are others...
I think everyone in the U.S. should be required to read this, but with the ACLU, there is no way this will be widely publicized, unless each of us sends it on!
It is too bad that so many are disillusioned with life and Christianity to accept Muslims as peaceful.. some may be but they have an army that is willing to shed blood in the name of Islam.. the peaceful support the warriors with their finances and own kind of patriotism to their religion. While America is getting rid of Christianity from all public sites and erasing God from the lives of children the
This is your chance to make a difference...! Pass it on to your email list or at least those you think will listen.
TRUST CAN KILL A SMALL NATION By Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator (errors corrected in part two below)
It has been reported on TV and in U.S. DEFENSE NEWS that several U.S. Aircraft Carrier Task Forces have been sent to position themselves off the coast of Iran in the Gulf of Hormuz.
I wondered: What was their mission? I also wondered about the practice take-off and landing sessions of U.S. and French aircraft on each other’s aircraft carriers. It sounds like a good idea if their likely targets are nuclear sites in Iran.
BUT, what if it wasnt? What if their alternate mission was to protect Iran from a pre-emptive or retaliatory strike by Israel on those Iranian nuclear sites?
What if their plan is as Zbigniew Brzezinski counseled President Barack Hussein Obama to shoot down Israeli aircraft in order to insure that Iran reaches full maturity in its nuclear capability?
Do Obama and his advisors wish to see Iran and Syria achieve hegemony and dominate the entire Middle East because Obama finds it easier to deal with dictators? Now we come to the issue “TRUST”, honoring ones word comes into play.
How can we forget the deliberate betrayal of Israel when, during Desert Storm, the First Gulf War January 16, 1991 to March, Saddam Hussein launched 39 SCUD missiles at Israel, hitting mostly Tel Aviv. Then Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir was prepared to order Israeli pilots sitting warmed up on the tarmac (runways) ready to find and kill the SCUD missile launchers.
“The Patriot anti-missile missiles of that day hit the motors of the incoming SCUDS. Their shrapnel and explosives hit residential areas [in Israel]. Israeli pilots, trained to fly at deck level could have found and hit those SCUDs and maybe could have saved the 28 American soldiers who were killed when their barracks in Saudi Arabia was hit by a Saddam SCUD.” (1)
BUT, President George Herbert Walker Bush, his Secretary of State James Baker, Secretary of Defense Colin Powell and Chief of Staff Norman Schwarzkopf assured Shamir that America would send out U.S. aircraft to eliminate the launchers.
The reason given to Israel is that by Israel entering the war, it could break up the Arab Muslim coalition against Saddam.
However, Bush and group lied. They never issued those orders for U.S. strikes on Saddams launchers a fact which was later confirmed by the U.S. GAO (General Accounting Office). Bush and his advisors were artfully protecting Iraq, based upon the philosophy that Saddam would be helpful in fighting Iran.
Perhaps so, but, they were willing to sacrifice Israel to Saddam’s SCUDs which could have been loaded with Chemical and Biological agents.
[Proof from the scene: At 3:59 am in Israel on January 16, 1991 after Saddams first SCUD attack, former Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger said in a BBC radio interview: “It’s a particular tragedy that Nerve Gas was used.” He would know that Saddam had Nerve Gas. Israelis spent Desert Storm in sealed rooms with gas masks and protective baby tents because the American Administration knew Saddam had Nerve Gas.] (1)
Allowing Israel to take the SCUD hits was acceptable in the Americans plans then and perhaps by Obama now.
When Bush and group succeeded in getting Syria to join a fake coalition, Syria was paid off in several ways. First, Syria arrived to the U.S.-led coalition mobilization Headquarters without arms and with no intentions of actually joining the U.S. in fighting Saddam. Syrians were stationed well away from the actual fighting.
For this great sacrifice on Syria’s part, the U.S. arranged a safe air corridor for Iraq’s aircraft (a mix of approximately 75 Russian fighters and cargo aircraft) to be shipped to Iran – who didn’t have the necessary Russian maintenance facilities and, therefore, had no use for the beneficent gift.
However, the planes were disassembled, crated and then shipped to Syria. Payment to Saddam for this strange transfer came in several Billion dollars from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait – paid to Iraq so Iraq could buy armaments from the U.S. and other international arms’ dealers. Saddam had used up his credit line in the arms market and desperately needed a cash infusion – which was why he attacked Kuwait in the first place where he stole $80 Billion in liquid assets.
One should ask James Baker, III and the others about this ‘little’ Kuwaiti hustle. After all, it was he who would ostensibly have ordered America’s Ambassador to Iraq, April Glaspie to give Saddam the “green light” by having her tell Saddam: “We’re not interested in your border disputes.”
Getting back to the matter of today’s mission for several (possibly four) U.S. aircraft carriers sitting off the coast of Iran, let us speculate on a few scenarios.
Israel has several missile capable submarines tasked as a backup threat to Iran if Ahmadinejad should use a Nuclear Weapon on Israel. Are they to be tracked and targeted by U.S. destroyers lest they launch their missiles at Iran?
The question remains: Why would Obama and his advisor wish to protect Iran and Syria? (Note! The American people and most of Congress consider Israel to be a valuable and loyal ally. But, certain Arabists in Washington act in concert with hostile Muslim Arab nations, both for oil and because of their deep-seated animus against the Jewish State.)
Unconfirmed reports indicate that the Saudis are so fearful of a nuclear-armed Iran that they will allow Israeli aircraft to use Saudi airspace to bomb Iran. Sounds good going in but, how good is the Saudis’ word to allow returning Israeli aircraft to refuel in the air or on the ground on their return and not to launch the very large Saudi (American-supplied) Air Force against the returning Israeli aircraft? After all, the Israeli’s would have done their good deed by (hopefully) eliminating all of Iran’s Nuclear R&D facilities. So would they still be needed?
Let’s remember the Good Deed Israel did by destroying the Osirik Nuclear Reactor in Iraq, an act which was condemned by the U.S., E.U., U.N. and Arab/Muslim bloc nations but, was celebrated in the Congressional cloak room and the very happy Saudis (all in secret).
Would Israel have to guarantee the safety of both its air re-fueling cargo planes and returning Israeli aircraft by having a sizable squadron of F-16s and F-15s flying near the Riyadh and Tobruk Air Bases in case the Saudis broke their agreement, no doubt, at the urging of the Arabist State Department?
The matter of trust and confidence building is based upon prior experience and words kept (or NOT kept). Israel has been lied to by both friends and dedicated enemies who rarely keep agreements when their interests have become mired in their vested self-interest and not in their integrity.
I have offered the reader my speculations in part, of what may be a Future War. Israel remains a small, even minuscule nation which could (G-d forbid) be snuffed out by enemies and supposed friends, anxious to pacify Israel’s enemies.
“Trust” can be a very expensive commodity when you can possibly disappear in a puff of smoke!
President Obama has demonstrated a decidedly pro-Muslim attitude and a hostility toward Israel never before seen by Israel or the American Congress. Both Houses of Congress have signed letters recognizing Obama’s hostility toward Israel and stating plainly that they view Israel as America’s staunch and valuable ally. Obama seems not to share the opinion of his Congress as he reaches out to Iran, Syria and other Islamic nations.
As is said: “ 'Trust' but verify.”
1. “Feelings From A Sealed Room in a Gas Mask” by Gail Winston JEWISH PRESS Jan. 25, 1991
2. “Ordered To Die Quietly” by Emanuel A. Winston MACCABEAN ONLINE from Freeman Center for Strategic Studies April 2003
TRUST CAN KILL A SMALL NATION - II
THIRD US CARRIER, 4,000 MARINES & NAVY AUGMENT US ARMADA OPPOSITE IRAN
by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator
CORRECTIONS BY EMANUEL A.WINSTON: We have 2 major corrections to this article of June 27th. Thanks to a loyal friend and careful reader for catching them and notifying us.
General Colin Powell was NOT U.S. Secretary of Defense during the First Gulf War, Desert Storm 1991 but rather, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dick Cheney was Defense Secretary. And General Norman Schwarzkopf was NOT Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Gen. Schwarzkopf was the Commander of the Allied Forces in the Gulf War.
We apologize for the unchecked glitch. The lesson to working in “Journalism on the fly 101” is: Check your facts! NOT your memory! As good as you think it might be.
THIRD US CARRIER GROUP, 4,000 NAVY & MARINE CORPS PERSONNEL AUGMENT US ARMADA OPPOSITE IRAN DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 28, 2010
DEBKA reports today that America has posted a Third Carrier Group opposite Iran’s shores in the Persian Gulf.
The USS Harry S. Truman with 12 warships are cruising the Arabian Sea opposite Chai Bahar, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards biggest naval base not far from the Iranian-Pakistan border. That’s where most of Iran’s special commando units are housed.
The USS Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Force and its accompanying US warships plus an Israeli and German battle vessel each, transited the Suez Canal June 18. First, from June 6 through June 10, the Truman Strike Force deployed 50 miles off Israel’s southwestern shore, secretly drilling the interception of incoming Iranian, Syrian and Hezb’Allah missiles and rockets against US and Israeli targets in the Middle East. (DEBKAfile June 21, 2010)
Also posted in the Arabian Sea, further to the west, is the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Strike Group. (DEBKAfile June 28, 2010)
Please log on to DEBKA.com to get the complete list of forces but, here is their listing of those ships, planes and soldiers in this Third Carrier group.
1. The USS Nassau Amphibious Assault ship is not just an enormous landing craft for the 3,000 Marines aboard; its decks carry 6 vertical take-off AV-HB Harrier attack plans; four AH-1W Super Cobra, twelve CH-46 Sea Knight and CH-53 Sea Stallion helicopters, as well choppers convertible to fast V-22 Osprey airplanes capable of landing in any conditions. This vast warship has 1,400 cabinets for sleeping the entire Marine-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit aboard.
2. The amphibious transport dock ship USS Mesa Verde which carries 800 Marines equipped for instantaneous landing.
3. The amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland which carries 400 Marines and 102 commandos trained for special operations behind enemy lines.
THESE MASSIVE FORCES ARE VERY IMPRESSIVE. What does it really mean to those of us who doubt President Barack Hussein Obama’s resolve to prevent Iran’s use of nuclear weapons against Israel, Europe and American military bases in the Middle East and Europe (with from 300,000 to 500,000 American soldiers in harm’s way)?
It appears to me that, having failed to assemble a strong U.N. coalition mandating severe punitive sanctions to halt Iran’s head-long enterprise to achieve a Nuclear Weapons’ capability, Obama has resorted to a show of force. It seems he’s following in the old tradition of Teddy Roosevelt’s gun-boat diplomacy. The difference between Teddy R. and Obama is that Teddy meant business and Obama is making a threatened show of force, assuming that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be cowed and too frightened to continue developing his highly prized Nuclear Weapon, let alone use it.
I don’t think he knows that Ahmadinejad will NOT be cowed or what he is capable of doing – even risking his own population to retaliatory or pre-emptive strikes. After all, he believes that the Muslim “Mahdi” (Messiah) is to arrive in a great war to lead Islam to victory over the infidels (all non-Muslims).
It was interesting to hear Leon Panetta, current Head of the CIA, state that Iran will not have an operating atomic weapon for “at least 2 years”. We’ve been seeing that same “two years” since at least 1998! Since the CIA has rarely been right in their forecasts of the nuclear developments of North Korea, Pakistan, India – nor the fall of the Soviet Union under Perestroika, it looks like Panetta has been assigned to give Obama a “two-year” false breathing space to actually deal with Iran through appeasement.
I would add that Israel – under Prime Minister Binyamin (Bibi) Netanyahu, has been promised this show of force in gun-boat diplomacy, assuring Israel that it’s not necessary to pre-emotively strike Iran’s nuclear facilities because Iran will be too frightened to do anything provocative.
I do not trust Obama’s military abilities to forecast or “organize” anything – let alone plan an actual war against an implacable enemy under the flag of Islam.
Now for M. Wolfberg’s Good Shabbos Story: Tephillin Just Doing it.
Good Shabbos Everyone. Having gotten his Tefillin from one of the most prominent scribes of his time, Reb Michel Prager was quite proud of them. He would always point out how dear they were to him and how rewarding it was to wear them.
Throughout his lifetime he had been faced with numerous challenges and difficulties, but never did he miss the opportunity to wear his tefillin. As a Chassidishe Yid, Reb Michel's davening played a major role in his life, and knowing that his tefillin were so special made it all the more gratifying.
Although be knew that there were some opinions that encouraged checking tefillin every so often, Reb Michel was careful not to have the sealed boxes opened for fear of exposing them to air and dust, and perhaps ruining them. And so, the tefillin were never checked.
One day, however, seventy-two years after he first put on the tefillin for his bar mitzvah, someone inadvertently switched their tefillin with his, and this man gave what he thought were his tefillin to a sofer (scribe) for checking.
The sofer (scribe) carefully checked all the words, scrutinizing them to ensure their validity. Suddenly, he let out a gasp. "Oy Gevalt! These tefillin are missing an entire word!" He continued to check the shel yad (hand) portion of the tefillin and found a missing word in them as well, rendering the entire pair pasul (invalid).
The man who had brought the tefillin to be checked was quite upset, but soon realized that these were nor his tefillin at all. Upon closer examination he was able to determine that they were Reb Michel's tefillin. It was unbelievable! Reb Michel's tefillin were posul.
How would they break the bad news to the elderly man? He was 85 years old and the shock, horror, and disappointment of never having fulfilled a mitzvah of which he had been so proud could possibly cause him enough grief to endanger his life.
Several of the elderly members of the shul conferred and decided that they had no choice but to tell him. A doctor was brought along just in case, Reb Michel experienced any medical problems. "Reb Michel." one or the elder gentlemen said, "we have something important to tell you,"
Slowly they spelled out the story — how the tefillin were switched, how the tefillin were taken to a sofer, and how Reb Michel's tefillin were found to be posul - invalid. They didn't have to explain further. Reb Michel understood that he had never properly fulfilled the mitzvah of tefillin. Not even once.
At first Reb Michel sat there frozen. They worried. Had he heard them? How was he going to react? They were wondering what else they should do when suddenly Reb Michel stood up and started smiling. At first Reb Michel began to laugh and then he started to sing and dance, instead of joining him they watched with pity, assuming that he was "losing it," This was someone who look more pride in his tefillin than in any other mitzvah. Who could blame him now for losing control? He sang and danced around the room, skipping with joy. To see an 85-year-old act this way was quite unusual and, under the circumstances, very sad. But, no one dared to interfere. After all, he was entitled.
Finally he finished dancing and singing. Suddenly he looked up and noticed everyone staring at him. He then explained. "Do you know what this means? Had my tefillin never been checked, I never would have had [he opportunity to fulfill this precious mitzvah. But now I will. For this, I am very grateful."
And then, with tears screaming down his eyes, he began to unwrap a pair of kosher tefillin and put them on his head and on his arm. With a smile on his face and rears running down his checks. 85-year-old Reb Michel Prager fulfilled the mitzvah of tefillin for the very first time. (Touched by a Story, p. 205, Reb Yechiel Spiro.)
In this week's portion Balak, we read about the attempts of the evil Bilaam to curse the Jewish people. When Bilaam opens his mouth intending to curse the Jewish people, Hashem causes Bilaam instead to utter praises of the Jewish people. In Bilaam's first "blessing" he says about the nation of Yisroel, "Behold! It is a nation that will dwell in solitude and not be reckoned among the nations." (Bamidbar 23,9) When the verse states that the Jewish nation will "not be reckoned among the nations," it means that we are different and special. We Jews have different priorities in life than the nations. We get excited about mitzvahs such as tefillin while the nations are busy rioting when their sports team wins.
Tefillin are referred to as a sign, a sign of being a Jew. Every male must put Tefillin on daily except Shabbos and Yom Tov. If Let us all be inspired to dedicate and rededicate our lives to doing that was distinguishes us from the nations, namely the performance of mitzvahs such a Tefillin. Good Shabbos Everyone.
Mr. Wolfberg’s Shabbos 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
Have a great and peaceful Shabbos,