My operation was B”H successful, the troublesome and well hidden Parathyroid gland which had a benign growth on it was isolated by the experts at the NIH and removed from a very difficult spot under instead of over the Thyroid and my Hormone level dropped from 600 to the 20’s and the ionized Calcium is so far remaining within the normal range which means hopefully that I will be out of danger and home for Shabbos.
Every time I look at the Torah, I see another angle to understanding it. I was lying in getting a nuclear 3D CT in the hospital for 25 minutes and I asked myself what could I learn from this Parsha without a Chumash in front of me. I begin philosophizing on the important lessons of life one could learn from the Parsha. The first obviously was the desire to advance one’s offspring with a blessing from a Tzaddik. Yosef asks for a blessing for his two boys and although Yacov is either suffering from cataracts or macro degeneration, he distinguishes between Manashe and Ephraim. He then gives the opposite blessing of what Yosef HaTzaddik wanted. For Yacov did not have the presence of the Shechina for 22 years while he mourned of Yosef and only when he realizes that Yosef is alive and joy could return did the gift of prophecy return to Yacov. Yacov foresees the two tribes in the future with Yehoshua ben Nun and other great leaders and numbers of tribesmen so henceforth the blessing in this manner. The other tribes get their blessings. Some like Reuven look back and some look good. For example Reuven gets the words quick like water. Some of his actions are unstable but sometimes in investment a snap decision based on logic can be good and also sometimes in war. On the other hand, it once happened that during the Yom Kippur war an Israel soldier with an Uzi Gun shot down an Egyptian plane and everybody called him a hero at the time. However, by doing so he called attention to the Israeli Position and other Egyptian Planes then let bombs fly on the area.
I also looked into the most important things for Yacov and Yosef. Yacov wanted to be buried in the tomb of his fathers where he had buried Leah. The interesting fact is that he wished to be buried with Adam, Avraham and Yitzchak and Leah over Rachel. For to Yacov to be in the family grave was must important. Chevron (read it with a guttural CH as in the German ach and not as the gasoline company) was also what the Arabs call the well of souls. The souls go into a well or tunnel or porthole through the corner of the Yitzchak Avinu room into heaven. That is why he wanted to be buried there. Rachel had a job in the next world as a mother watching over all the children of Israel.
Yosef wanted also to be buried in the land of Eretz Yisrael. However what we see here in the Parsha is what really gave him pleasure in life. It was not being Prime Minister of Egypt where nobody moved or raised their hand without the consent of Yosef. No it was his grandchildren and the that he saw the children of one of his grandsons sitting on his knees. That is the true Nachas (enjoyment) that one gets out of life not wealth, not power, not a gold chariot and not land. If nothing else is learned from this Parsha this will suffice.
We have a hit of Moshiach in this Parsha “Until Shilo will come” but this was given as a coded puzzle in three sentences via Gematria. This is still a mystery to most of us when Moshiach will come. A fellow on Facebook calling himself Daas Torah wrote:
48:8 And Israel beheld Joseph's sons, and said: 'Who are these?' 9 And Joseph said unto his father: 'They are my sons, whom God hath given me here.' And he said: 'Bring them, I pray thee, unto me, and I will bless them.' 10 Now the eyes of Israel were dim for age, so that he could not see. And he brought them near unto him; and he kissed them, and embraced them. 11 And Israel said unto Joseph: 'I had not thought to see thy face; and, lo, God hath let me see thy seed also.' 12 And Joseph brought them out from between his knees; and he fell down on his face to the earth. 13 And Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel's left hand, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel's right hand, and brought them near unto him. 14 And Israel stretched out his right hand, and laid it upon Ephraim's head, who was the younger, and his left hand upon Manasseh's head, guiding his hands wittingly; for Manasseh was the first-born. 15 And he blessed Joseph, and said: 'The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God who hath been my shepherd all my life long unto this day, 16 the angel who hath redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named in them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.' 17 And when Joseph saw that his father was laying his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, it displeased him, and he held up his father's hand, to remove it from Ephraim's head unto Manasseh's head. 18 And Joseph said unto his father: 'Not so, my father, for this is the first-born; put thy right hand upon his head.' 19 And his father refused, and said: 'I know it, my son, I know it; he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great; howbeit his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations.' 20 And he blessed them that day, saying: 'By thee shall Israel bless, saying: God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh.' And he set Ephraim before Manasseh. 21 And Israel said unto Joseph: 'Behold, I die; but God will be with you, and bring you back unto the land of your fathers. 22 Moreover I have given to thee one portion above thy brethren, which I took out of the hand of the Amorite with my sword and with my bow.'
Every Friday night hundreds of thousands of Jewish homes bless their children with the above blessing and girls with “Sarah, Rivka, Rachel and Leah”. Rabbi Glixman Ztzal used to bless one by one the congregation with this blessing before we sang the Songs “Shalom Aleichem” and “Aishes Chayil”. I was the only times that I received this blessing and coming from a Tzaddik it was something else.
Rabbi Frand Shlita at the Torah Org writes: Our patriarch models the way future generations of Jews will bless their own offspring. The Targum Yonasan ben Uziel interprets this as referring to the appropriate blessing to give one's son on the day of his Bris Milah [circumcision], rather than as a reference to the blessing parents give their children on Friday night or on Yom Kippur eve. (Both are widely practiced customs.)
There is much discussion among the commentaries as to why Ephraim and Manasseh are the prototypes by which we bless our children in future generations.
In general, there is a concept of the degradation of the generations (yeridas haDoros) – the further we get away from Sinai the weaker we become spiritually. We are not what our parents were, the Torah scholars of today are not like the Torah scholars of one hundred years ago, the scholars of 100 years ago were not like those of 500 years ago, and so forth. The Talmud describes this inevitable rule: "If the prior generations were like angels then we are human, and if the earlier generations were human then we are like donkeys" [Shabbos 112b].
There is only one exception to this rule: Yaakov made Ephraim and Manashe on par with Reuven and Shimon [Bereshis 48:5]. He declared them equivalent to the generation that preceded them. They were not merely like his grandchildren. They were like his children.
The Targum Yonasan ben Uziel is highlighting the appropriateness of this blessing on the the day of the circumcision. When we welcome our son into the covenant of the patriarch Avraham, and the new generation comes online, so-to-speak, the blessing that we give our children is exactly this -- that they not be on a lower level than ourselves but that they should hopefully be (at least) on the sam e level as their parents. Just as Ephraim and Menashe were equivalent to the previous generation (Reuvain and Shimon), so too may this son be equivalent to that of his father's generation and not experience Yeridas haDoros.
The Blessing of Ephraim and Menashe: A Spiritual GPS from Rabbi Pinchas Winston Shlita and the Torah Organization http://www.torah.org/learning/perceptions/5771/vayechi.html?print=1 and www.torah.org
He blessed them that day saying, “Israel will bless through you saying, ‘May God make you like Ephraim and Menashe.’” (Bereishis 48:20)
Irony of ironies. This special blessing which is repeated week after week by so many families as they bless their sons on Friday night and Erev Yom Kippur, is amazing. It is amazing because, of all the many children and grandchildren that Ya’akov Avinu had to choose from as role models for Jewish children until the end of history as we know it, he chose the only two that had been born outside of the Land of Israel.
On one hand, it could have been because they were the sons of his favorite son, Yosef, whom had almost been lost forever. But on the other hand, even were that so, Ya’akov Avinu could still only choose a role model based upon attributes, for his own good, and the good of the future of all of his descendants.
If so, then what was it specifically about Ephraim and Menashe that caught Ya’akov’s attention that they became the symbol of blessing for the Jewish people? And, if the answer is not apparent from this week’s parshah, perhaps it is more apparent from what we learn about Ephraim and Menashe later on in history.
Two specific episodes come to mind, one in the Torah itself, and one in the Midrash. We are told that the descendants of Ephraim were the first to leave Egypt. In fact they left 30 years too early, and as a result, were attacked and killed along the way. They never made it to Eretz Yisroel at that time, but then again, neither did the generation that left Egypt with Moshe Rabbeinu on time.
Indeed, Bnei Ephraim were the ones that the prophet Yechezkel brought back to life in the Valley of Dry Bones. And once brought back to life, they made aliyah and raised families there, unlike the Jews who died in the desert following Moshe Rabbeinu to the Promised Land. It may have been their tremendous yearning to live in Eretz Yisroel that resulted in their early deaths, but it was probably also the reason for their reincarnation and second chance to live in the Holy Land.
Likewise, it was the daughters of Tzelofchad, descendants of Menashe, whose intense love of Eretz Yisroel resulted in their being mentioned in the Torah by name (more than once), a great honor to be sure. And, it also resulted in the introduction of an important law in their names regarding the laws of inheritance, an even greater merit.
As Rashi points out there, we shouldn’t be so surprised. After all, they were descendants of Yosef, whose love of Eretz Yisroel is legendary, perhaps because he spent most of his life away from it. In fact, out of 110 years of life, Yosef only lived on the land between the ages of 8 and 17, nine years altogether, not a lot of time. How does one develop such a love of a land if they spend so little time living there?
In everyday language, we call it a personality type. You see that some people seem to have a ‘natural’ appreciation of Eretz Yisroel, which results in a natural love of the land. However, behind every personality type is a soul-type, and that has a lot, actually almost everything to do with the way we relate to things in life.
Yosef was the attribute of Yesod. Literally, Yesod means ‘foundation,’ and there is a reason for that. But, for the sake of this essay, the main thing to understand about the attribute of Yesod is its role in the system of things. Indeed, understanding the role of Yesod is crucial for increasing blessing in one’s life.
The Zohar compares Yesod to a flowing river, and says that it is responsible for shalom in the world. Indeed, the Zohar says, Yesod is the attribute of peace, which is why the Talmud (Brochos 56b) says that anyone who has a dream of a river will likely see peace in life (Zohar, 1:193b). Hence, the dream that Yosef interpreted for Pharaoh included a river, and Yosef spoke about the ‘peace of Pharaoh.”
Therefore, in spite of the fact that Yosef’s brothers hated him, Ya’akov Avinu, who was aware of this, sent Yosef to check on the shalom of his brothers who were tending their sheep in Shechem at the time. Without shalom, the brothers could not carry on the rectification that began with the Forefathers, and the only one capable of bringing shalom was Yosef, the representative of the trait of Yesod and shalom.
As the rabbis explain, the Hebrew word for ‘blessing’ is brochah, from the word breichah, which is a spring of water. This indicates that blessing is the result of a flow of Divine light from the world above to the world in which we live, something that seemed to happen everywhere Yosef went. Hence, even his master couldn’t help but recognize how God blessed everything Yosef did.
Does Yesod create the flow of light? No. Kabbalah explains that the flow of Divine light is always there, just waiting to come down into our world and bless us with good. However, without a faucet, how can the water go from the sealed pipe in the wall to the shiny new basin that awaits it? Likewise, without Yesod to connect the upper eight sefiros with the final one, the Malchus, which corresponds to the world in which we live, how can the Divine light flow to us in abundance?
The Arizal explains in Sha’ar HaGilgulim that the best teachers of Torah usually function in the role of Yesod. This means that they have opened themselves up as a vehicle to receive Divine light, and to pass it on to those whom they are teaching. For, the knowledge they give over is Divine light that also requires a spiritual ‘faucet’ through which to pour into the world of man.
That is why, like it or not, it was Yosef’s responsibility to feed everyone, including his own father and brothers. They all had different talents and responsibilities, but Yosef was the trait of Yesod, and therefore, the Divinely-ordained conduit through which the blessing of sustenance was destined to flow. And, this is why he was a great educator as well.
Hence, Yosef was a great source of chayn, and people swarmed to be in his presence. Like thirsty people around a single ‘faucet,’ they came to drink from the well-spring of Divine light that could only result in additional blessing in life. And, nothing reveals chayn more than when the light of God passes through a person in an obvious way.
Eretz Yisroel functions in the same way. Kabbalah explains that there is only one opening to Heaven, and it is over Eretz Yisroel, mirroring its borders, something that Ya’akov Avinu’s dream revealed to him, and us. The Divine light that blesses the world descends over Eretz Yisroel only, and especially over the Western Wall, before going out to the rest of the world (Tuv HaAretz; Sha’arei Leshem).
But we are not simply talking about increasing one’s blessing in life, but about increasing one’s connection to the Divine Presence, because they are one and the same thing. This is why Yosef longed to live in Eretz Yisroel, and insisted on being buried there, especially in Shechem. In Eretz Yisroel, he could increase his capacity to act in the role of Yesod, and therefore enhance his ability to draw light down into the world, and increase his connection to the Shechinah—the Divine Presence.
And, since Yesod acts in the same way that Eretz Yisroel does, it is an especially important quality to have while living in the Diaspora. For, it allows a person to do a remarkable thing: to spiritually stretch the borders of Eretz Yisroel to wherever they may be. Hence, though the person may have the physical status of being in the Diaspora, spiritually e may have the status of actually still being in Eretz Yisroel.
This is what happened to Ya’akov Avinu when he fled Eisav and lived with Lavan for 22 years. His love for Eretz Yisroel, evident in last week’s parshah, meant that God allowed some of the kedushah to envelope him while he lived away from the land, since doing so, at that time, had clearly been the will of God. This is what allowed the Shechinah to remain with him even while living in such a profane place with such a person as Lavan.
It is also what protected Ya’akov Avinu all those years from the machinations of Lavan until remaining there ceased to serve any purpose of God’s. Once Ya’akov Avinu had fulfilled in exile all that he had been sent there to achieve, he headed home once again, taking with him the spiritual reality of Eretz Yisroel until he was finally able to cross the actual physical border and allow his physical reality to match his spiritual one.
Being a true disciple of his father, and being rooted in Yesod as well, this was a trait that Yosef had mastered. Hence, even though he had physically lived in Egypt, he had managed, in such an impure place, to live, spiritually-speaking, in Eretz Yisroel. For that reason, he longed to live there physically as well, something that was not only not lost on his two sons, but was given over to them, even though they had never lived in Eretz Yisroel.
Hence, Ephraim and Menashe represent the Jewish people’s ability to not lose our way as we travel through the darkness of exile. Therefore, when we bless our sons to be like Ephraim and Menashe, something that we learn from Bnos Tzelofchad and the women of Moshe Rabbeinu’s time is not confined to the male element of the nation, we are giving over to them a spiritual GPS. We are blessing them with an ability to never get lost as Jews, something that happen even should they continue to keep Torah and perform mitzvos.
“But,” you may ask, “is that not redundant?” Not really. Keeping Torah and doing the mitzvos is one thing. But, remaining focused on the long term goals of the Jewish nation, and trying to fulfill them is something else. This is why, even for those who learn Torah and perform the mitzvos, it is possible to stay too long in exile, and suffer the consequences of doing so. We have so many times already.
As the Maharal points out in his explanation of the Haggadah, one of the main messages of the matzah, which is called ‘Poor Man’s Bread,’ is to live like a poor man, at least inasmuch as we don’t become overly attached to our physical possessions, particularly the land we own in the Diaspora. Every time we have been, we failed to leave exile on time in spite of the warning signs to do so.
Not Ya’akov Avinu, though. When the time came to go, no matter how rooted he had become in the Diaspora, he left immediately. And, so would have Yosef, given the chance, not to mention Ephraim and Menashe. And, hopefully us, b”H, if and when the time comes to move on because the exile has clearly come to an end.
Simeon and Levi are comrades, their weaponry is a stolen craft. Into their conspiracy, may my soul not enter! With their congregation, do not join, O my honor! For in their rage they murdered people and at their whim they hamstrung an ox. Accursed is their rage for it is intense, and their wrath for it is harsh; I will separate them within Jacob and I will disperse them in Israel. (Gen. 49:5-7)
Simeon and Levi avenged Dinah, which constituted avenging Israel. Whoever says that their deed against Shechem was a sin, is mistaken, for G-d commanded (Num. 2:2), “The children of Israel shall camp with each person near the banner having his paternal family's insignia,” and our sages comment (Bamidbar Rabbah 2:7):
Every prince had an insignia. Each had a banner bearing the color of a precious gem on Aharon's heart...The prince of every tribe had a banner of the same color as his precious gem... Simeon's gem was emerald and his banner was green, bearing a picture of [the city of] Shechem.
If Simeon's deed in Shechem were a sin, how could G-d command that it be publicized on his banner?
Moreover, Maharzo explains the Midrash: “Shechem: For their valor and self-sacrifice at Shechem. Although Levi was with him, Simeon was older and the main character. This is his praise for having zealously dealt with sexual sin.”...What occurred at Shechem surely did not constitute sin but self-sacrifice in pursuit of revenge in the right time and place. Whoever examines Scripture well will see that Jacob did not reprimand Simeon and Levi as if the deed were unethical. He only feared the outcome, the danger that might result (Gen. 34:40) “You have gotten me in trouble, giving me a bad reputation among the Canaanites and Perizites who live in the land. I have only a small number of men. They can band together and attack me and my family and I will be wiped out.”
By their response, “Shall he treat our sister like a harlot?” (Gen. 34.31) they meant:”Surely no sin was committed here. We have avenged our sister, the victim of a heinous crime. As for your fear of the nations, to avoid profanation of G-d's name one must surely sacrifice one's life.” R. Yehuda bar Simon said (Bereshit Rabbah 80:12): [They said]:The water was muddy and we made it clear.
...If so, however, the question arises why Jacob cursed them (Gen. 49:5-7, current Parasha, see above). The answer is this: Certainly, after Simeon and Levi gave Jacob their answer - “Shall he treat our sister like a harlot?” - he silently accepted their argument, for all the aforesaid reasons. And there was certainly no sin in their killing the people of Shechem. Quite the contrary, they were fulfilling a great mitzvah of revenge and self-sacrifice. It was for this reason that G-d engraved for all time the image of the city of Shechem on Simeon's banner. Later, however, Simeon and Levi tried to scheme against Joseph and even thought to kill him. As our sages say (Lekach Tov on Gen. 49:23):
“People made his life bitter and attacked him”: These are his brothers. “Masters of strife made him their target”: These are Simeon and Levi, as it says, “They are plotting to kill him” (Gen. 37:18).
We also find (Tanchuma Yashan, VaYeshev 13), “They said to each other, 'Here comes the dreamer! Let us kill him!' (Gen. 37:19): Who spoke to each other? Simeon and Levi.”
Bereshit Rabbah (84:16) teaches: “'They took him and threw him into the pit' (Gen. 37:24). The written form is vayikachayhu, meaning 'he took him'. Who was this? Simeon. When was he punished? Later on when it says (Gen. 42:24), '[Joseph] took Simeon from them.'” Ultimately, it was Simeon and Levi who made Joseph's sale a fact. As our sages said (Midrash HaGadol on Gen. 49:5), “'Instruments of crime are their wares': This refers to the sale of Joseph.”
When Jacob heard all this, he was shocked, and he understood that although their deed at Shechem was an act of revenge, a mitzvah and a duty, they were motivated by wicked anger. Anger is so unseemly that our sages said (Nedarim 22a-22b): “Whoever becomes angry, falls prey to all sorts of hellish forces...Even the Divine presence becomes unimportant to him...It even makes him forget his Torah learning and makes him foolish.”
Jacob now understood that Simeon's and Levi's deeds stemmed from anger. True, at Shechem they performed a good deed, yet motivated by anger, they ultimately went so far as to try to kill a saint like Joseph.
...To conclude, Jacob did not, G-d forbid, curse Simeon and Levi, but their rage, the evil cause of their sin. Zealotry and vengefulness are crucial attributes, but only if exercised for the sake of Heaven, as done by Pinchas, Elijah and others like them. ...Certainly, revenge, violence and murder are all grave acts, and when perpetrated solely for the sake of a king's or a nation's glory, or for personal revenge, they constitute an odious sin. Yet, whoever follows G-d's orders and duly clings to His mitzvot and values, applying mercy, kindness and peace in the right time and place, and cruelty, revenge and war in the right time and place, is serving G-d.
Revenge is rooted in Israel and in their great leaders. We find this with Samson. After he “smote them hip and thigh with a great slaughter” (Jud. 15:8), the base men of Yehuda came to hand him over to the Philistines, claiming fearfully (Jud. 15:11), “ Are you unaware that the Philistines are rulers over us? What have you done to us?" Samson replied (Ibid.), “As they did to me, so did I to them”.
Samson was crowned with the title of tzaddik, “righteous one”.
...So great was he that Jacob thought Samson would be the Messiah (Bereshit Rabbah 98:14):”Jacob saw Samson and thought he was the Messiah. After he died, Jacob said, 'This one is dead too! I waited for your salvation, Oh L-rd!' (Gen. 49:18)
Rabbi Meir Kahane's son Rav Binyamin Ze'ev explains this in The writings of Rav Binyamin Ze'ev Kahane, HY”D:
When Jacob blesses Dan, the sages tell us that through “Ruach HaKodesh”, Jacob saw Samson wreaking havoc upon the Philistines, and thought that he was the Messiah. Only after seeing Samson die did a disappointed Jacob realize that Samson was not the Messiah, and thus he uttered the words in our Parasha, “I waited for your salvation, Oh L-rd”.
There is no more disgraceful or wicked trait than cruelty at the wrong time and place. Possessing this trait can even lead to one's Jewishness being suspect, as in the ruling of Shulchan Aruch, Even Ha-Ezer, Piriah Ve-riviah 2:2:”Whoever is insolent, cruel, hates his fellow man or lacks kindness, is suspected of being a Gibeonite.”
The word “rachamim”[mercy] comes from “rechem”, [womb]. There is no mercy like that of a mother for the child of her womb. There is an inseparable bond between them because the child is part of her body, “flesh of her flesh” (Gen. 2:23). Just so must be a Jew's mercy for his fellow Jew (if that fellow is worthy). It should resemble a mother's mercy for her child.
[Joseph's brothers perceived that their father was dead, and they said, “Perhaps Joseph will nurse hatred against us and then he will surely repay us all the evil that we did him.” So they instructed that Joseph be told, “Your father gave orders before his death, saying:'Thus shall you say to Joseph:”O please, kindly forgive the spiteful deed of your brothers and their sin, for they have done you evil'”; so now, please forgive the spiteful deed of the servant of your father's G-d.” And Joseph wept when they spoke to him. His brothers also went and flung themselves before him and said, “We are ready to be your slaves.” But Joseph said to them, Fear not, for am I instead of G-d? Although you intended me harm, G-d intended it for good: in order to accomplish – it is as clear as this day- that a vast people be kept alive. So now, fear not – I will sustain you and your young ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke to their heart. (Gen.50:15-21)]
[But, as Rabbi Kahane puts it in Peirush HaMaccabee on Shemot, 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 (Tanhuma, Metzora 1); because this convoluted compassion allows the wicked to continue to commit evil.
In The Jewish Idea, the chapter on revenge explains this further]:
Love has its place, as does hate. Peace has its place, as does war. Mercy has its place, as do cruelty and revenge. The Torah dons sackcloth over the distortion of the concept of revenge, which has become a target for the arrows of all Jewish Hellenists and worshipers of the alien culture, as if revenge were negative and evil by nature. The very opposite is true! No trait is more justified than revenge in the right time and place. G-d, Himself, is called Nokem, Avenger: “The L-rd is a zealous and avenging G-d. The L-rd avenges and is full of wrath. He takes revenge on His adversaries and reserves wrath for His enemies.”(Nachum 1:2).
Our sages also said (Berachot 33a), “Shall we say that even revenge is great, because it appears between two names of G-d?” 'A G-d of vengeance is the L-rd' (Ps. 94:1). R. Elazar responded, 'Indeed. Where revenge is necessary, it is a great thing'” [see Rashi].
“It is a great thing!” It is a great mitzvah to take the revenge of the righteous and humble from the evildoer. Whoever forgoes such an opportunity is cruel, and he denies belief in G-d.
Compiled by Tzipora Liron-Pinner from "The Jewish Idea" and "Peirush HaMaccabee" of Rabbi Meir Kahane HY"D
CHAZAK CHAZAK V'NITCHAZEK
Menashe ben Yisrael thanks to the document provided by Dr. Mark Jaffe MD
The original mention of this amazing man was mentioned in the Aish HaTorah Schul in Hollywood. FL. Instead of giving the dates 1604-1657 CE a different date and century was mentioned and I said to the good Dr. “How could he negotiate with Oliver Cromwell 1599-1658 CE and be a friend of Rembrandt 1606-1667 CE so the good doctor found the collection in the Amsterdam University Library and we got the dates straight. Now it was a matter of learning his fantastic history.
70 editions of Bibliotheca Rosenthalina contain a few letters of Menashe and an etching by Solomon Italia and a portrait by Rembrandt. He was born in Lisbon into a family of Marannos and got his godfather’s name of Manuel Dias Soetro. This name was used later by his family during a stay in Spain. Their property was confiscated by the inquisition and they fled to France and then to Amsterdam. Manashe wrote a Hebrew Grammar Book called ‘Safah beroerah’.
He became an Orphan at the age of 18 and the next year he married Rachel Arbarbanel a descendant of Don Yitzchak. At 20 he became a teacher of Talmud studies. He started publishing Hebrew Books with Hebrew type three years later. Among his writings is Conciliador which is an attempt to reconcile discordant passages in the Old Testament it attracted a considerable number of Christians and especially among the Dutch Christians.
In 1636 Rembrandt made a portrait of 32 year old Manashe and was well known in the non-Jewish community. By 1639 Manashe is appointed the third Rabbi in the 3 Schul Sephardic Community. Discord in the community caused a ban to be put on him for one year and he decided to emigrate to Brazil but never did so. A few years later he is appointed Rosh Yeshiva in a Talmudic Academy and delivers a speech to the Prince of Orange and Mary Queen of England. In 1644 Menashe’s printing office is sold but he stays on as editor. Shortly thereafter one of his sons takes over but dies about a year later.
In 1651 Menashe writes a letter to lord protector Oliver Cromwell for formal recognition of a Jewish Settlement. In 1655 he moves to London and a year later publishes his book in Latin “Vindication of the Jews” which was to influence later on the emancipation of the Jews. He never gets to see this though and is buried in Middleburgh next to the grave of one of his sons. It was tragic that both sons died in his lifetime.
His accomplishment some 354 years ago of getting Oliver Cromwell to reintroduce the Jews into England after their expulsion by King Edward 1st in 1290 they were unofficially back before 1656 but it was in this year that Cromwell officially let them back with a series of discussions that started at the end of 1655. The Protestants at the time believed that Yeshu would come when the Jews finally converted willingly.
This year on the 10th Tevet (17th December), is one of the fasts which the Jews participate in every year.
On the 10th of Tevet of the year 3336 from Creation (425 BCE), the armies of the Babylonian head Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Jerusalem. Only 30 months later -- on Tammuz 9, 3338 -- the city walls were breached, and on Av 9th of that year, the Holy Temple was destroyed (A reason why we fast later on in the 9th AV). The Jewish people were exiled to Babylonia for a seventy year spell. In fact the Jews were primarily punished in exile for 70 years, because as the Beit Hamikdash had been standing during the first temple; they had failed to keep and observe 70 years of Shmita (once out of every seven years allowing the land to lay without working on it) properly.
The first temple was destroyed due to the Jews failing to keep to the laws of ‘man to G-d.’ Idolatry had become one of the major transgressions during the time of the second temple era, after the death of King Shlomo, soon after the tribes of Yehuda and Benjamin stayed in Jerusalem while the other 10 tribes rebelled and relocated. As this happened both sides had many King’s over many years. Many of the Kings had been wicked and did what was ‘evil in the eyes of Hashem’. It was a man of the name Yeravam ben Nevat that led Israel astray, he became a king of the ’10 tribes’ and instituted a golden calf in which the 10 tribes worshipped. As time progressed the division amongst the tribes grew, soon after there was the exile of the 10 tribes. A period which had seen King’s increasing the usage of idolatry including King Omri and King Achav.
Before the temple was destroyed as more and more wicked kings came about from the tribe of Yehuda (Davidic Line), including King Menashe, whom came from a righteous father, he did what was ‘evil in the eyes’ of Hashem for many of his years reigning as King, as time went on Torah study became less and less common, which in turn led to the Jewish intermarriage and forgetting of Torah and lack of observance. In turn Hashem brought about the destruction of the first temple.
Tevet 10 (this year December 17, 2010) is observed as a day of fasting, mourning and repentance. We refrain from food and drink from daybreak to nightfall, which this is in fact the shortest fast which we have and we add the Selichos and other special supplements to our prayers. More recently also, Tevet 10 was selected to also serve as a "general Kaddish day" for the people that suffered and were victims of the Holocaust, many of whom the day of their martyrdom is unknown.
'The important significance of the fast of the Tenth of Tevet, as well as that of the other fast days, is not firstly the grief and mourning which they evoke. Their target is to awaken the hearts towards people repenting; to recall to us, both the evil acts of our fathers, and our own evil acts, which triggered anguish to befall both them and us and thereby to make us to return towards doing good.
'The aim of fasting, therefore, is to subjugate our evil inclination by restriction of pleasure; to open the gates to our hearts and bring us to repentance and good acts through which the gates of Divine mercy may be opened for us.
We are going to take out the Torah during the fast and reading sections of Parsha Ki Sisa in the book of Shemos, we will read parts of chapter 32 and 34, this was the parshah in which the Jews and the ‘Eruv Rav,’ instituted the golden calf and Moshe smashed the tablets on the ground in retaliation due to the shocking form of idol worship that had been taking place.
From Michael Zaroovabeli learning at Ohr Samayach Yeshiva.
Wikileaks exposes a weak Obama: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3996770,00.html
Henry Kissinger a self-hating Jew: http://www.jpost.com/DiplomacyAndPolitics/Article.aspx?id=198996
Dancing with bears is this good or bad? http://www.debka.com/article/20457/
Shocking revelations about Arizona State Senator (and soon Arizona Senate President) and his ties to J.R. Ready, which he has steadfastly denied over the years. Apparently Russell Pearce ordained J.T. Ready as an elder in the Mormon Church! It begins with denials, repeated over time, by state Arizona Senate President-elect Russell Pearce concerning his association with the Valley's best-known neo-Nazi, J.T. Ready. Approached by an activist at a 2008 candidate forum during the Republican primary for the hotly contested state Senate seat in Legislative District 18, Pearce was asked point-blank if he was pals with the Mesa swastika-licker. http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/2010-12-16/news/webline/
FIRE OR A MASSACRE? ISRAELI MEDIA DOWNPLAYS ARSON SUSPICION by Emanuel A. Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator
LATEST ON HAIFA/CARMEL FOREST FIRE December 5, 2010 CARMEL FIRE BURNS THROUGH THE NIGHT:
3 DAYS AND NIGHTS. AN APOCALYPTIC INFERNO. FIVE MILLION TREES DESTROYED. OVER 50,000 DUNAMS (12,500 ACRES) OF LAND DESTROYED. MORE THAN 41 KILLED. 17,000 EVACUATED FROM THEIR HOMES IN 15 COMMUNITIES. KIBBUTZIM/MOSHAVIM DESTROYED. EIN HOD Artists colony destroyed, as well as Beit Oren and Ehud Netzer.)
ARSON SUSPECTED AT SEVERAL OTHER POINTS WHERE FIRES HAVE ERUPTED SINCE INITIAL BLAZE TOOK HOLD. FIRE SERVICES HAS HAD TO TACKLE 1,200 FOREST FIRES IN PAST YEAR ALONE, 60% OF WHICH WERE ALLEGEDLY CASES OF ARSON. 30 COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD CALLED BY PM NETANYAHU. MOST RESPONDED WITH AID, AIRPLANES, FLAME RETARDANT CHEMICALS AND FIRE FIGHTING PERSONNEL. TURKISH AND GREEK PILOTS WERE FLYING IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ISRAELI PILOTS TOGETHER.
PM NETANYAHU LEASED THE EVERGREEN SUPERTANKER, BOEING 747, the largest fire-fighting aircraft in the world which can carry 80 tons of water and fire retardant which arrived Sunday morning. SO FAR THE COUNTRIES WHICH HAVE RESPONDED INCLUDE: Russia, Egypt, Jordan, Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Spain, Germany, France, Bulgaria, Britain, Italy, Switzerland, Norway, the Netherlands, Croatia, Azerbaijan and Romania. The Palestinian Authority sent 3 firetrucks; Hamas in Gaza sent nothing.
US RESPONSE - OBAMA AND CLINTON: CONDOLENCES & ONE SUPERTANKER WHICH CAN DROP 42,000 LITERS OF WATER AT ONE TIME ARRIVED SUNDAY 12/5. NYC MAYOR BLOOMBERG SENT INSTANT AID, INCLUDING "FIRE TROLL 931" FOREST FIRE RETARDANT REQUESTED BY ISRAEL’S FOREST FIRE FIGHTERS.
Israeli firefighters, volunteers, police, IDF, et al have been bravely and valiantly fighting these raging blazes to exhaustion. Bibi praised them for their "divine heroism". Scores of families - including in the ‘settlements’, have opened their homes to families evacuated or burned out of their own homes. All 41 victims of the fire were identified over the weekend, and the names of 39 of the victims had been released by Saturday night. The youngest victim was Elad Rivan, a 16 year old student from Haifa, who had volunteered to help firefighters. Elad appeared for duty on Thursday, and was killed as he was working with a firefighting crew from Afula that was trapped by spreading flames. Ten of the victims were buried Friday, and another five funerals are so far scheduled for Sunday.
The Muslim Arabs have been burning fields and forests in Israel for a long time and little has been done about it. Some may have forgotten the huge Jerusalem corridor fire on Route 1 which devastated the forests - most of which had been planted years ago by JNF (Jewish National Fund-Keren Kayemet) with donations from Jews into their little blue box for decades. When this fire started, it miraculously ignited in four different spots at the same time. But, then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin issued statements to the effect that "it was an unfortunate accident". He never blamed Arab Muslim Terrorists because his policy for Israel was to pacify and appease both the Arabs/Muslims and the American State Department.
Emanuel A. Winston, Nov. 11, 2010: AN ARSONIST IS A TERRORIST WILLING TO START FIRES THAT KILL PEOPLE!
"Clearly, they are no different than the Terrorists who set road-side bombs or try to break into schools, homes or places of worship with the intent to commit murder. Most clearly, someone willing to commit murder by fire deserves being tried for a capital crime with the penalty to be summary execution when caught in the act. Some may recall the massive fires in the Jerusalem corridor forests along Route One between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv as well in the Carmel forests near Haifa. Then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said - ‘it wasn’t arson but merely an "accident" despite the observable fact that four fires were started at the same time.
Between Rabin in his time and the Israeli Police protecting the Muslim Arab arsonists of today, Israel’s forests are at risk of disappearing along with the people who died by their fires. This brings a new meaning to the obnoxious concept of "ethnic cleansing" by removing Jews from their ancient homeland. Consider these acts of "ethnic burning" of Jewish trees as comparable to the Arab Muslims taking over lands owned by the JNF (Jewish National Fund) which bought most of the Israel State owned land with contributions by Jews in their little blue-and-white "pushkes" (boxes)."
By Emanuel A. Winston Nov. 7, 2010 Arutz 7
Now we hear Netanyahu offer explanations in a similar vein wherein several of these fires started at the same time were ‘merely’ accidental. Fires ‘spontaneously’ burst open in the Jerusalem Forest, the Negev, Nir Etzion, The token arrest: Police arrested 2 teenage brothers from Ustiya, aged 14 and 16, suspected of starting the blaze by failing to douse a bonfire. They’re suspected of ‘criminal negligence rather than deliberate arson. HOWEVER, ARSON IS SUSPECTED AT SEVERAL OTHER POINT WHERE FIRES HAVE ERUPTED SINCE THE INITIAL BLAZE TOOK HOLD!
Regrettably, the incompetent leadership that followed the Rabin blunders and excuses of ‘accidental’ fires repeats itself by various Israeli governments appointing weak, incompetent political hacks who needed a job to important posts like Fire Prevention and Fighting - or Desalination Plants (Ben Eliezer) especially now during a 7 year drought of Biblical proportions.
Retired generals who were PC (Politically Correct) and loyal to the party were often rewarded with big jobs, despite their ignorance of the field. Israel should have procured or converted some of its own aircraft for firefighting after the Jerusalem Corridor conflagration. Why is serious public service a magnet for some of the most stupid of our people?
Like Rabin, Netanyahu, in deference to his pacifistic policies modeled on American orders will, no doubt, find the coordinated accidental/spontaneous fires merely a coincidence and NOT an act of Terror. But, the Arab/Muslims are enjoying it, singing, passing out candy while they dance in the street. Here follows a snippet from their news:
NORTHERN BLAZE DELIGHTS MANY IN THE ARAB WORLD By KHALED ABU TOAMEH Jerusalem Post 12/05/2010 01:32
Many Arabs also strongly condemned Egypt and Jordan for agreeing to help in extinguishing the blaze, according to Arab media outlets. Many in the Arab world seem to be happy with the big fire that has been raging in northern Israel over the past few days. Judging from comments on the blaze from readers in several leading Arab media outlets and websites, a majority believe that God is "punishing" Israel for occupying Arab lands and killing Palestinians, especially during Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip.
Police allow some fire evacuees to return home Analysis: Heroism, resilience and gnawing questions Many Arabs also strongly condemned Egypt and Jordan for agreeing to help in extinguishing the blaze. Others called on Israel’s enemies, particularly Iran, Hamas and Hezballah, to seize the opportunity and try to wipe Israel off the face of earth. Only a few readers and viewers expressed sympathy with Israel over the tragedy and loss of many lives.
Following is a sample of the comments that have appeared over the past few days in the Arab media:
"May Allah punish all Arabs who helped put down the fire. We pray to Allah... "O Allah, burn them [Jews] before the Day of Judgement. O Allah, destroy them and all the enemies of Islam." "May Allah take revenge against them and displace them together with our corrupt [Arab] governments." "This is the right time for Iran. If one fire has caused panic in the Zionist entity, where are Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hassan Nasrallah? And where is Syria? One rocket could set thousands of fires."
"Allah gives time, but never neglects. The Israelis are being punished for their deeds. We hope their end is nearing." "Sounds strange that Arabs are sending aid to our enemies. Allah is punishing the Jews by making the fire. No military force or US veto can stop the fire." "Thank God for this new Holocaust and shame on the Egyptian authorities who rushed to save the Zionists while continuing to lay siege against our brothers in the Gaza Strip."
"Thank God for burning the Jews the same way they burned our Muslim brothers in Palestine." "To Hezballah, Hamas and all Arabs: This is a golden opportunity to get rid of Israel. The sea and fire are in front of the Jews and weapons are behind them."
"This fire is the result of prayers from our prisoners held in occupation jails. The fire of Hell will be even stronger. May those Arabs who are helping the Jews burn with them in Hell.""Allahu Akbar! This is an effective weapon. We call on our Palestinian brothers to set fire to all forests."
"How many prisoners did the wardens torture? Allah has answered the prayers of the oppressed. "By KHALED ABU TOAMEH, JERUSALEM POST Dec. 5, 2010
IF JEWS WERE LIKE MUSLIMS ... By Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentator
Perhaps it would be best to start in the era when Josef Goebbels enlisted a willing European Media to demonize the Jewish people in order to justify their elimination. If Jews then were like Muslims or Christians for that matter, they would have spent the time on planning and carrying out assassinations of Goebbels and others of Adolph Hitler’s murderous clique of killers.
If Jews had that killer instinct, they would have burned down the Nazi Media outlets and assassinated the reporters and publishers who carried the word that killing Jews was a necessary, even noble, act to advance what they considered to be a higher civilization.
It is now 2010/2011 where many in the World Media have taken to the field of war against the Jewish Nation/State of Israel. While Israel has fought back valiantly against Muslims pledged to decimate the Jewish Nation/State in 7 wars and unremitting Terror by fire, bombs, bullets, explosive belts, knives and even axes, nevertheless, Jews have won and survived – even at great loss of our people: husbands, wives, unborn babies, mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters! Nevertheless, Jews don’t think in terms of wiping out the Muslim/Arab civilizations. Perhaps, as a matter of survival, Jews should adopt the ways of Muslims and their allies?! Perhaps not.
Jews are valiant warriors but, if Jews were like Arab Islamists, determined to eliminate a massive enemy of some Billions who are pledged to Jewish Genocide then the Jews would use their alleged advanced weapons of war to defeat and wipe them out. But, Jews are NOT Muslims. Nor are they like the followers of the Christian Church from its earliest times pledged in theology and practice to please a long-dead Jewish rabbi, borrowed from the Jewish people as their lord, and to kill or convert the Jews of his family lineage.
Sadly, there are Jews who have turned against their own people and discarded our national memories of accepting the Covenant given to us by G-d for eternity and accepted by the Jewish people for eternity. They go by different names, titles, descriptions but, these are the same Erev Rav who attached themselves to Moses when he brought the Jewish people out their enslavement in Egypt. These Erev Rav worked from the inside to bring all Jews back to the pagan worship of Egypt and other gods.
Sometimes we call them Court Jews; sometimes Leftists; and often Left Liberal Journalists or Professors but, in the end, they are all the same – desperate for acceptance and love by the Gentile communities of the world. But, first they must prove their loyalty to those pledged to kill us.
Jews generally want to solve their problems by “having a discussion”, “a meeting”, a “Committee decision”. They believe that reasonable words and offers of compromise will pacify a dedicated enemy. That being ‘reasonable’, all enemies will also be ‘reasonable’. That may work among themselves but, when Muslims are dealing with Jews, there is no ‘reasonable discussion, only an opportunity to trick, mislead and adopt Mohammed’s “Hudna” (temporary peace), wherein IF you are weak as a Muslim, you make fake treaties until you are stronger and then attack your enemy.
We have seen this in practice over the centuries but, few have played it so well as the Iranians as they build their Nuclear Weapons while they agree to more meetings to discuss – which only gives them more time to complete their declared plans to “wipe Israel off the map”.
This is exactly according to Mohammed’s earliest teachings when he made the Hudabaiya Treaty, a 10 year peace treaty with the Jewish Koreish tribe in Medina. But, when Mohammed was sufficiently strong militarily, he returned in 2 years, slaughtered the men of the Koreish tribe by beheading them, and then sold the women and children into slavery. This was Mohammed’s lesson to Muslims, establishing the “temporary peace” practice called: “Hudna”.
Today the Islamists (radical Muslims dedicated to winning by murder) have recruited the Christian nations of Europe to find a way to eliminate the Jews from a virtual speck of land where the Jews were to find refuge from Christians and Muslims in order to build a Jewish homeland – according to the San Remo Agreement of 1920 which was never abrogated and is still legally in force.
Muslims and Christians displayed a killing rage against Jewish messengers who brought the world G-d’s message as to how humans were to live and conduct themselves. The Jews completed part of their commitment by becoming a “Light Unto The Nations”. The Nations did change a bit from their pagan worship of a panoply of gods but, they never forgave the messenger for bringing them a cosmological, universal doctrine of restraint as in the Torah.
The Christians and Muslims hated the restraint and, above all, they hated a One G-d who interfered with their priest cults, the privileges they bestowed upon themselves and the priests’ blood cults with which they practiced their pagan rituals of child sacrifice, etc.
So, they made new gods with bits and pieces of the One G-d of the Jews but, they kept a great deal of their pagan worship and former gods, denials notwithstanding.
Clearly, if they were to claim superiority and the right to claim G-d’s Covenant for themselves, then they must eliminate the Jewish people and the Jewish Nation/State of Israel.
Wherever a Jew has stepped and built a civilization, the Muslims and many Christians believe they must be eliminated and a Mosque or Church built over their Jewish holy sites, eradicating any and all presence of the Jewish people. Jews must be converted to the challenging religion so the history of the Jews from Adam and Eve, Abraham, Moses and all the ancient Prophets can be absorbed whole, making the new religions the “rightful heirs” to G-d’s Covenant, at least according to their theology.
Once the Jew is absorbed and virtually disappears, then his national memory can be inserted into the worship ritual of later formed religious. Not surprisingly, the Muslims already say that Abraham was born a Muslim while Moses and David appear in well-carved statues in Rome – along with masterful paintings in cathedrals of the Prophets. Trapped in stone and painting, surely G-d must belong to the “new claimants”, or so they believe.
Now all they have to do is actually find the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, present their claim of superiority and receive a deed from the Hand of G-d, carved in Stone Tablets as G-d gave Moses on Mount Sinai.
But, until then they will have to make do with statues, paintings and manuscripts produced in the scriptoriums by scribbling monks, given free rein to exercise their imaginations as to who G-d blessed as His servants. If imagination was the criteria, then the Muslims and their self-appointed clerics exceed all others. The Muslims, too, borrowed from all other religions to assemble the Koran, replete with many anti-Semitic commands to kill Jews. Islam is also full of fables, like the “story” about the magic horse el-Buraq (Barak). After Mohammed's death, a myth was created which was rejected by serious Islamic scholars. According to this myth, one night as he slept and in the time it takes a pitcher of water to tip and spill one drop, Mohammed flew on a white horse called el Buraq which had the face and breasts of a woman, the tail of peacock and great wings to the farthest place, al Aqsa, at the edge of Medina. (Al Aqsa in Jerusalem wasn't built until 683 CE, 51 years after the death of Mohammed in 632 CE).
According to the myth, Mohammed leaped skyward to the Seventh Heaven on el Buraq where Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Moses and Jesus blessed him as the last prophet of G-d. Ostensibly Mohammed absorbed the older religions of Judaism (The Root) and Christianity.
This fable has become the basis for Muslims claiming prime ownership of the Temple Mount, with the al-Aksa Mosque taking prime dominance.
Now the Muslims await the Muslim “Mahdi” (messiah) who will appear in a conflagration, possibly Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on his way to Allah’s Courtyard as a “Shahid” (Martyr).
Well, as I started, IF Jews were like Muslims, they wouldn’t wait for their enemies to fulfill their pledges of Genocide.
THE COURT JEW By Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentator
The following speaks to a release of tapes between President Richard Nixon and his Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. No doubt, they were never meant to see the light of day. Prior documents disclosed that Nixon was a bigot and a Jew hater from his earliest days. What did come as a shock is the content of documents released of conversations between Nixon and Henry (Heinrich) Kissinger. Wherein Kissinger said: “So what if the Soviets put Jews into Gas Chambers.” (The article spelling this out by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu can be read at the end of this commentary.)
Kissinger was only one of what are called “Court Jews”. History is replete with these perfidious traitors who advised the Church of the Inquisition and other enemies of the Jews – through to today.
I am mindful of the Leftist Jews in Israel who are far more dedicated to the Palestinian Muslim Arabs and even hostile states like Iran and Syria among the most radical Islamists. Israel’s Supreme Court is loaded with Leftists who support much of the Muslim Arab agenda while aggressively tilting against the Political Right, especially the valiant pioneering settlers of Judea, Samaria, the Jordan Valley, the Golan Heights and all of Jerusalem.
Here we find such illustrious names as Shimon Peres, Ehud Barak, Ehud Olmert, and Tzippi Livni who would find the policies of Heinrich Kissinger compatible with that of a Court Jew. A Court Jew will do anything to seek the approval of Gentiles, no matter how hostile they are to the Jewish Nation/State and her people. Often it comes from weakness of character. The willingness to give up what little land the Jews claim as their own is a strong indicator of that person belongs in the club of the Court Jews.
But, Court Jews need a person or place to use their perfidious nature. They need someone of power to solicit their betrayal. Hopefully, one day there is a leaker who will provide the documents, tapes, Emails of Presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt, George Herbert Walker Bush, James Baker, the Clintons, George W. Bush and Condoleezza Rice. There were, indeed, many Americans who were quick to bond with enemies of the Jews.
But then too, there were enough perfidious Jewish Leftists who were eager to be recruited as Court Jews hoping their betrayal of their own people would make them acceptable in the eyes of Gentiles.
As for Henry (Heinrich) Kissinger, he was only one prominent role model of the Court Jew, there are regrettably many more generally called Leftists. For this reason alone we need Maccabees and settlers to preserve the noble and patriotic Jew.
SHOCKING NIXON-KISSINGER TAPES: 'SO WHAT IF SOVIETS GAS JEWS'
by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu Sunday, Dec. 12 '10, Tevet 5, 5771
White House adviser and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger once told President Richard Nixon, "And if they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern. Maybe a humanitarian concern," according to newly-released tapes from the Nixon library.
The shocking statement from Kissinger, a Jew, was followed up by an agreement from Nixon, who said, "I know. We can't blow up the world because of it."
Kissinger also advised Nixon when he was president during the campaign to free the Jews from the Soviet Union, "The emigration of
Jews from the Soviet Union is not an objective of American foreign policy."
The shocking statements contradict an image among some American Jews that Nixon was a friend of Israel and the Jews.
Nixon also is quoted as saying an anti-Semitic generalization, "What it is, is it's the insecurity. It's the latent insecurity. Most Jewish people are insecure. And that's why they have to prove things."
The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg, a usually constant critic of Israel, responded on his blog, "I suppose he [Nixon] is right, at least
on the narrow subject of Henry Kissinger."
The conversations that were recorded on secret tapes followed a March 1973 meeting between Nixon and Kissinger with former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir, who pleaded with the United States to help open the barred gates for millions of oppressed Soviet Jews, denied religious freedom, wanting to flee the Communist regime. Eventually, the freedom for Soviet Jews campaign broke the ban in later administrations and allowed massive immigration of Jews to Israel as well as to the United States.
Nixon's disgust with minorities was not restricted to Jews. He labeled Irishmen as drinkers and Italians as "wonderful"; people
but who "don't have their heads screwed on tight."
The American Jewish Committee stated that the revealed conversations displayed a shocking level of bigotry in the Nixon White House from the President downwards; the AJC was also dismayed by the remark made to the President by his Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, in which the latter stated, "[I]f they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern.";
"The Nixon Oval Office was clearly a place where bigotry and prejudice were normalized," said AJC Executive Director David Harris. "It is deeply saddening to observe that the person elected to our nation's highest office employed such crude, vicious stereotypes in referring to a range of groups."
"That a German Jew [Kissinger] who fled the Nazis could speak of a genocidal outcome in such callous tones is truly chilling. Perhaps Kissinger felt that, as a Jew, he had to go the extra mile to prove to the President that there was no question as to where his loyalties lay. That he used such graphic language in doing so speaks volumes about the degree of prejudice inside Nixon's Administration. It's hard to find the right words to express the degree of our shock and revulsion at Kissinger's remarks."
Nixon and Kissinger were seen as heroes in 1973 for staging a military airlift to help Israel fight Egypt and Syria in the Yom Kippur War,
which inflicted heavy casualties on the IDF. However, the airlift did not begin until the second week of the war, while the Soviet Union was resupplying Egypt and Syria with weapons throughout. More cynical observers said that the United States could not let the Soviet Union's allies win the war.
The New York Times reported three years afterwards that Kissinger delayed the airlift because he wanted to see Israel "bleed just enough to soften it up for the post-war diplomacy he was planning."
WINSTON ADDENDUM from John Loftus: Henry Kissinger was NOT the US official who resupplied Israel with the airlift during the Yom Kippur War.
"The real hero who saved Israel was the White House Chief of Staff Alexander Haig. In order to curry favor with the Arabs, the Nixon/Kissinger White House ordered the NSA (National Security Agency) to suppress information that a sneak attack on Israel would take place on October 6, 1973. However, Gen. Haig held up the multi-national oil companies' the letters recommending a price increase for Arab oil producers for several crucial days. Behind Kissinger's back on October 6th Gen. Haig to Israeli Intelligence that a new weapons system could stop the Arab tank onslaught. If they could get a team to the US, he would give it to them.
John Loftus was duty officer at battalion H of the US Army Officer Candidate School in Fort Benning, Georgia. His CO told him: "A CIA plane is en route from Israel with about 40 Israeli field-grade commanders. You hide them in an empty barracks. Give them an aorienttion on the TOW missile system. The Israelis will be here for training while we ship every TOW we have over there."
The TOW was a new weapon, a Tube-launched, Optically tracked, Wire-guided (TOW) missile. The "kill ratio" for the TOW was 97%.
While Kissinger was playing games with Israeli re-supply, Al Haig was stripping every TOW missile off the eastern seaboard and from Germany and shipping them to Israel. 4000 TOW missiles could make quite an impact. Haig had saved Kissinger's reputation by sending Israel the TOWs that blunted the Egyptian offensive, turning it into a rout. Before the first official U.S. airlift had even started to unload weapons on Sunday, October 14, the crucial defensive battle in the Sinai was all but over." (1)
1. "THE SECRET WAR AGAINST THE JEWS: HOW WESTERN ESPIONAGE BETRAYED THE JEWISH PEOPLE - 1920-1992 by John Loftus and Mark Aarons St. Martins Press 1994
Now for M. Wolfberg’s Good Shabbos stories “Oldie but goodie” and “Bag it”
Good Shabbos Everyone . In our weekly portion Vayigash, the Torah tells us that "All the people of the house of Yakov who came to Mitzraim - Egypt were seventy." (Bereishis - Genesis 46:27) The Torah then goes on to list the people who came down to Mitzraim - Egypt. However, the Torah only lists 69 people. Why then does the verse say that 70 members of the house of Yakov Avinu (our patriarch) descended into Mitzraim?
Some commentators count Yocheved, who was born at the entrance of Mitzraim, as the 70th descendant.(Rashi and the Midrash cited by Stone Chumash, p.261) Other commentators tell us that Yakov Avinu himself is counted among the 70.
A third interpretation is perhaps the most inspiring: The 70th member of the house of Yakov Avinu was the shechina - the divine presence of Hashem. When the Bnai Yisroel - the children of Yisroel went down into Mitzraim, the holy shechina descended with them. (Ibid)
The lessons of the Torah are eternal. The Egyptian Exile was the first of a series of Exiles which the Jews have experienced over the millennium. It is possible to say that the Egyptian Exile is the paradigm of all other Exiles. Therefore the Torah is teaching us that just as the shechina accompanied the Bnai Yisroel in the Egyptian exile, so too does the shechina - the divine presence of Hashem accompany us in our current exile.
Even though Jews may go through difficult times in exile, Hashem is always with us, as the Prophet tells us: "But fear not, O Yakov My servant, neither be dismayed, O Yisroel, because I shall redeem you from afar, and your children from the land of their captivity; and Yakov will again be quiet and at ease and none shall make him afraid." (Jeremiah 46:27:28)
The following is truly one of the most amazing stories ever told. It shows that wherever a Jew is in exile, and no matter how far a Jew is away from Torah, the shechina - the divine presence of Hashem is always with a Jew.
David (his real name) grew up in a totally secular American Jewish family. As a young boy and later a teenager, Dave had little idea of what it meant to be a Jew. All of this changed however, when Dave decided to take a tour of Europe and Israel with some friends.
When the group eventually made their way to the Eretz Yisroel, Dave was immediately struck by the strong emotional pull that he had for the Holy Land, even though Dave had never had any real connection with Judaism or the Torah. Dave found his way to the holy city of Jerusalem, where the spiritual draw is the most powerful.
While in Jerusalem, Dave was inspired to sit in on some classes at a Yeshiva - a school of Torah learning for Jewish men. Dave enjoyed his learning very much and decided to stay in Eretz Yisroel after his friends returned home to the states. Little by little, Dave took upon himself more and more mitzvahs such as tefillin, kosher eating, and Shabbos.
By the end of a year, Dave's parents in Florida were begging for Dave to return home. Dave wanted to honor his parents, but he was concerned about keeping up with his observance in a secular environment. In the end, Dave's parents were adamant that Dave return home. Finally, against his better judgment, Dave gave-in and returned home.
At first, Dave was able to keep up with his mitzvah observance in Florida. It was difficult, but he was still able to manage with kosher food and Shabbos. He was forced to pray alone, however, because in his town, there were not ten for a minyan (traditional quorum required for communal prayers.)
Unfortunately though, the strain became very difficult on Dave. He was the only one who kept kosher in the home; this made it hard to keep separate dishes. He was the only one who kept Shabbos at home; this made it hard to feel the Shabbos spirit with televisions and phone calls blaring. Prayer also became difficult, praying alone was arduous on Dave.
Little by little, Dave lost the vestiges of his Torah observance. Kosher went out the window along with Teffillin and the yarmulke. One mitzvah that Dave did hold onto was Shabbos. Eventually, however, even Shabbos was to fall...
One Friday night, Dave was sitting at home trying desperately to feel the light of the holy Shabbos. There were no Shabbos candles, kiddush wine, chalah, songs or words of Torah. Dave felt alone in the spiritual backwaters of his parents' Florida home. Dave was about to give up on Shabbos and Torah observance altogether.
Thinking for awhile, Dave turned his eyes upwards towards heaven and said "G-d, Show me a sign that you are there." Dave waited and waited, but he did not see a sign. That was it, he was giving up. He was finished with G-d and with Torah.
He reached over and turned on the television. Just as the tube turned on, there was a view of a person's mouth saying "Shabbat Shalom Dave!" Dave sat in front of the television and was flabbergasted. He could not believe his ears. He nearly fainted. He stepped back away from the television set.
Needless to say, this was his sign. Dave immediately began his return to mitzvah observance and Boruch Hashem (Thank G-d) today he is leading a Torah true lifestyle!
Now, for the rest of the story... When Dave turned on the television, he joined the "David Letterman Show" (a variety show with guest stars) already in progress. On that particular night, there was a guest on the show who told the story of her travels around the world.
The host of the show David "Dave" Letterman asked his guest what the best part of the trip was. The guest said that her trip to Jerusalem was most impressive. The guest said that it was amazing how everyone in Jerusalem on Friday afternoon wished each other "Shabbat Shalom." "These people did not even know me, yet they were so warm, you would have loved it... Shabbat Shalom Dave." Good Shabbos Everyone.
Good Shabbos Everyone . In this week's parsha Yakov Avinu blesses his sons, the 12 tribes. There are many deeper meanings which are hinted to in the blessings. Regarding the blessing for Yehuda, his father Yakov says, "Red eyed from wine, and white toothed from milk." (Bereishis 49,12) The Sages say that in this blessing is hinted to the idea that it is better to smile at someone than to give him milk; meaning that it is even better to be nice to someone than to give them something. The following story illustrates the importance of being kind to others.
One Friday morning in December 1996, Sheppy Borgen was driving from Williamsburg to Boro Park. The corner of Bedford Avenue and Keap Street is an unofficial meeting place for religious Jews seeking rides to Boro Park. Dozens of people get their rides there every day.
As Sheppy came to the light at Bedford and Keap, just two blocks before entering the Brooklyn Queens Expressway, he noticed a chassidishe fellow waiting on the corner, peering into each passing car hoping for a ride. Sheppy slowed to a halt, opened the passenger-side window, and called out in Yiddish, "Do you need a ride?" The chassid said “yes,” and Sheppy motioned for him to get into the back seat of his Town Car and told him to make himself comfortable.
Sheppy, who lives in Forest Hills, Queens, is a tall and imposing fellow with a heart to match. He is admired and liked by everyone. He was president of his shul for many years, has been honored by numerous organizations, and is an easy conversationalist. He and the chassid made small talk as traffic, in a rare departure from the usual, moved swiftly through downtown Brooklyn under the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges past Atlantic Avenue onto the Prospect Expressway. Since it was Friday, the chassid spoke of the upcoming parshah. Sheppy countered with a relevant story from his repertoire of favorite stories.
The chassid spoke of his children and grandchildren and Sheppy spoke of the upcoming wedding of his daughter in three days. When they arrived in Boro Park the two wished each other "Gut Shabbos" and "mazel and simchas" in each other's families.
Within minutes of leaving the car, the chassid realized that he had left a bag with very valuable contents in Sheppy's car. He became frantic because he didn't know the driver's name, only that he lived in Queens and was about to marry off his daughter.
Later that morning when Sheppy came to his office in Long Island City, he emptied the contents of his car and he, too, realized that the chassid had left a bag in the back seat. He looked into the bag and saw that there were numerous brass pipes and tubes that seemed to be of little value. He put the bag in his office and figured he would deal with it when he got back on Monday. He, too, had no idea of the identity of the chassid except that he lived in Boro Park and had nice things to say about the parshah.
That afternoon, the chassid went to the Skulener Rebbe, Rabbi Yisrael Portugal, and worriedly told his Rebbe of his loss. "Much of my parnassah (livelihood) for the next year is in that bag," he cried. "How can I get it back?" The Rebbe thought for a moment and then called in his gabbai (attendant) and gave him instructions.
Rabbi Peretz Steinberg, Rav of the Young Israel of Queens Valley and former president of the Vaad Harabbonim of Queens, was surprised to get a call from the Skulener gabbai that erev Shabbos. "The Skulener Rebbe wants to know if you know anyone in Queens that is making a chasuna for a daughter in the next few days." The gabbai explained that the contents in the missing bag were valued at close to $40,000. It was actually unprocessed gold that would be used for bracelets, earrings, and necklaces.
"Queens is a big place," chuckled Rabbi Steinberg, "there is Kew Garden Hills, Kew Gardens, Rego Park, Forest Hills, Hillcrest, Jamaica Estates — a Yid from any of those places could have given the chassid a ride."
"The owner thinks that the driver said he was in the chemical soap business. Does that help?" "That helps," said Rabbi Steinberg. "I'll see what I can find out."
"Please," the gabbai pleaded, "the man is desperate and he stands to lose a fortune."
Friday night as Rabbi Steinberg peered at the balabatim (business people) in his shul, he noticed Mr. Jerry Meyer.
"Jerry is a photographer," thought Rabbi Steinberg. "He might know." After davening, Rabbi Steinberg approached Mr. Meyer and said, "Jerry, I'm trying to help a Yid in Boro Park. Are you by any chance doing a wedding for a Queens family next week?" Jerry thought for a moment and said, "Yes, I'm doing a wedding for Sheppy Borgen, Tuesday night in Westchester."
"Do you know what he does for a living?" Rabbi Steinberg asked anxiously. "Isn't he in the industrial cleaning business or something like that?" asked Jerry. Rabbi Steinberg was elated at the possibility of having solved the mystery so quickly. He couldn't wait to call Sheppy Borgen, who lives a few miles away in Forest Hills.
After Shabbos, Rabbi Steinberg called Sheppy and, in his usual upbeat cheery voice, wished him mazel tov on the upcoming wedding. Then, laughing, he asked, "Did you by any chance pick up a chassid yesterday in Williamsburgh?" Sheppy laughed, "Rabbi Steinberg, are you a navi - prophet? How do you know? I actually did and he left a bag in my car."
"That's exactly why I'm calling. It's not some bag. It's got close to $40,000 dollars worth of unprocessed gold in it!"
"What?" exclaimed Sheppy. "It looked like cheap pieces of piping. But okay, if you say it's expensive, I'll bring it back on Monday when I go into the office."
"No," said Rabbi Steinberg. "I'm sorry to bother you, but it's too valuable to leave unattended for that long. Could I trouble you to get it to me soon as you can, tonight?" When Sheppy readily agreed, Rabbi Steinberg called the Skulener gabbai and told him the good news.
By Sunday morning the material was in the hand of its rightful owner! "Mi K'Amcha Yisroel!" - who is like you Israel among the nations! Good Shabbos Everyone.
M. Wolfberg’s stories are sponsored by: Mazal Tov to Reb and Mrs. Yanky Leib Cantor on the occasion of the birth of their son Refuah Shleima to Mordechai Menachem Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta Refuah Shleima to Tsviah bas Bracha Leah Refuah Shleimah to Chana Ashayra bas Dodi.
Have a wonderful Shabbos and thanks to all who prayed for my health and welfare,