Friday, November 21, 2014

Parsha Toldos, 4 stories and not so pleasant news

This issue is dedicated to the soul of my mother who passed away 8 years ago on the 29th of Mar Cheshvan. Charlotte Jacqueline bas Yosef HaLevi, may her memory be blessed and her soul ascend to higher heights. 

Long term prayers and guarding of the tongue for Nehemiah Arieh Laib Peretz ben Esther Rachel Please pray for Aytan ben Sara he got an axe to the head in the attack. Also from the attack Chaim Yehiel ben Malka, Shmuel Yerucham ben Baila, Avraham Shmuel ben Shayna, Yitzchak ben Chaya

From L. Smith – the caption of the week: B Hussein Obama: In “Audacity of Hope” he writes: “I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.” The quote comes from page 261 of the paperback edition of “The Audacity of Hope.

Parsha Toldos

As for the rule that there is no early or late in the Torah. We ended Chayei Sara with the passing of Avraham. Now we return back to Avraham being 140 and well alive and Yitzchak and Rivka settling down. But we see that 20 years pass until Rivka conceives. This is not completely uncommon a neighbor of mine not far from my age after years of marriage in her 40’s managed to become a mother of 4 and both Yitzchak Isaac S. and my son Chaim and their spouses waited around 14 years before they had children. However, the worst thing is those who are blessed with children that abuse them. (I am not talking about a strapping, paddling or washing ones mouth with soap that many in my generation experienced and in the generations before but psychological and physical abuse and neglect.)

So finally at the age of 60, Yitzchak is about to become a father and although Avraham is a grandfather from Yishmael, his spiritual inheritance will go Yitzchak. So at the age of 160, he sees his spiritual potential is going to continue further.

I have written about the horrible deeds Esav did on the day that Avraham passed away. For Avraham should have lived five more years like Yitzchak to the age of 180, but due to the sins of Esav, so as not to pain Avraham more in this world, HASHEM gathered him in early.

25:19 And these are the generations of Isaac, Abraham's son: Abraham begot Isaac. 20 And Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebekah, the daughter of Bethuel the Aramean, of Paddan-aram, the sister of Laban the Aramean, to be his wife. 21 And Isaac entreated the LORD for his wife, because she was barren; and the LORD let Himself be entreated of him, and Rebekah his wife conceived.

Prayed: Heb. וַיֶעְתַּר. He prayed much and entreated [God] with prayer. Accepted his prayer: Heb. וַיֵעָתֶר. He (God) allowed Himself to be entreated and placated and swayed by him. I say that every expression of עתר is an expression of entreaty and increase, and similarly (Ezek. 8:11):“and a thick (וַעִתַר) cloud of incense,” [meaning] the immensity of the ascent of smoke, and so (ibid. 35:13):“And you have multiplied (וְהַעְתַּרְתֶּם) your words against Me,” and so, (Prov. 27:6):“whereas the kisses of an enemy are burdensome (וְכַעְתָּרוֹת) .” They seem to be many and are burdensome, accroissement in Old French, excessive. Oopposite his wife: This one (Isaac) was standing in this corner and praying, and that one (Rebecca) was standing in that corner and praying. Aaccepted his prayer: But not hers, for the prayer of a righteous man, the son of a righteous man, does not compare to the prayer of a righteous man, the son of a wicked man. Therefore, [He accepted] his prayer and not hers. — [Yev. 64a]

This is just the opposite of the story in Tanis 20B where Rebbitzen of Abba Chilkiya has her prayers hear because she gave the charity while he worked.

22 And the children struggled together within her; and she said: 'If it be so, wherefore do I live?' And she went to inquire of the LORD.

Struggled: Perforce, this verse calls for a Midrashic interpretation, for it does not explain what this struggling was all about, and [Scripture] wrote,“If it be so, why am I [like] this?” Our Rabbis (Gen. Rabbah 63:6) interpreted it [the word וַיִתְרוֹצִצוּ] as an expression of running (רוֹצָה) . When she passed by the entrances of [the] Torah [academies] of Shem and Eber, Jacob would run and struggle to come out; when she passed the entrance of [a temple of] idolatry, Esau would run and struggle to come out. Another explanation: They were struggling with each other and quarreling about the inheritance of the two worlds (Mid. Avkir). If [it be] so: that the pain of pregnancy is so great. Why am I [like] this?: [Why did I] desire and pray to conceive?- [From Gen. Rabbah 63:6] And she went to inquire: to the academy of Shem. — [Aggadath Bereishith, ch. 73, Targum Jonathan and Yerushalmi] To inquire of the Lord: that He should tell her what would happen to her in the end.

When Rivka passed by the Beis Medrash of Shem and Ever (Pronounced Ay) she felt a kick of the child as if it wanted to get out. Then should would pass by some Avoda Zara and the child would kick. Did she have a schizophrenic inside here?

23 And the LORD said unto her: Two nations are in thy womb, and two peoples shall be separated from thy bowels; and the one people shall be stronger than the other people; and the elder shall serve the younger.

Shem prophesized that one will be physically stronger than the other and the other spiritually stronger than the other. Note Yacov was no weakling as he moved the stone from the well with intelligence and strength in next week’s Parsha. However, Esav was built like Mr. Universe with core strength like Shimshon. We have seen Rome which is attributed to the children of Esav and the Roman Church ruling the world with the split with the Greek Church and Protestantism. Symbol of Rome was the Eagle, the Nazis had the Eagle and now the US has the Eagle. For even prior to destruction of the Beis HaMikdash Rome basically ruled over Judea. Their 2000 years are closing and as the US in part aids Am Yisrael but for their own interests. The western influence is setting the influence of Yishmael is temporarily rising but as the prophecy states which must apply to the end of days. In the end those that remain of the nations of the world will come on Sukkos to Yerushalayim instead of Mecca or Rome and serve HASHEM for Zachariah: 14:9 And the LORD shall be King over all the earth; in that day shall the LORD be One, and His name one. There will be no more trinity but unity and all the remnants of Avoda Zara will be gone.

24 And when her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb. 25 And the first came forth ruddy, all over like a hairy mantle; and they called his name Esau.

He had a coat of hair, hirsute like that of a lawn. He was a deep red-head like the Viking Ericson or Barbarossa.

26 And after that came forth his brother, and his hand had hold on Esau's heel; and his name was called Jacob. And Isaac was threescore years old when she bore them.

Even in the womb he fought for the right of offering up sacrifices and inheritance of Eretz Yisrael so he grabbed Esav’s heel and he was named for that. Since Yacov as we see later on was smooth, they were paternal twins.

27 And the boys grew; and Esau was a cunning hunter, a man of the field; and Jacob was a quiet man, dwelling in tents.

Yacov knew how to use a weapon in self-defense and ward off attacks of wild animals on the flocks and herds but he was interested in intellectual pursuits of understanding the dynamics of the creation of the universe and serving HASHEM. He learned well the guide-lines of Avraham and Yitzchak that were just below the standard of Halacha from Sinai. He would learn from time to time in the Beis Medrash of Shem and Ever and next week the Midrash tells us that he learned there for 14 years on his way to get a Shidduch.

28 Now Isaac loved Esau, because he did eat of his venison; and Rebekah loved Jacob.

A mother is often wiser as she sees the children when they are little and their personalities. Yitzchak on the other hand was busy with Torah and Kiruv he left the Chinuch (education) of the children up to Rivka. As a result, he was happy to receive the honor of Esav’s hunt and being naïve and partially losing his sight at the time did not see really that Esav was not like him. Yacov was Ish Emmes and to deceive his father for the blessing went against his very nature but he would pay dear for this as his children would deceive him regarding Yosef. Everything comes measure for measure. There are times that I have done no wrong to people and they have caused a lot of wrong to me. I hold my peace for if I did something in a past life I am getting it back. If not in the next if I do not make it as a Tzaddik, I will get paid back by them. There is what the common man calls Karma but in Hebrew is called Mida K’neged Mida or measure for measure or in plain English what goes around comes around. THERE IS A TRUE JUDGE WHO KNOWS AND SEES EVERYTHING AND JUDGES IN PROPORTION TO THE BEHAVIOR AND MITZVOS/AVAIROS OF THE INDIVIDUAL.

29 And Jacob sod pottage; and Esau came in from the field, and he was faint. 30 And Esau said to Jacob: 'Let me swallow, I pray thee, some of this red, red pottage; for I am faint.' Therefore was his name called Edom. 31 And Jacob said: 'Sell me first thy birthright.' 32 And Esau said: 'Behold, I am at the point to die; and what profit shall the birthright do to me?' 33 And Jacob said: 'Swear to me first'; and he swore unto him; and he sold his birthright unto Jacob. 34 And Jacob gave Esau bread and pottage of lentils; and he did eat and drink, and rose up, and went his way. So Esau despised his birthright.

The lentils were the mourning meal Yitzchak after the burial of Avraham as Esav was so hungry from killing, raping, stealing, eating a limb from a living animal etc. that he needed food poured down his gullet and not eating in the normal way. Animalistic behavior turns a human with good parentage and upbringing into an animal. The most cultured nation in the world with their BITTE SCHON AND DANKE SCHON became the most brutal murderers on earth. And Communism under Stalin and Mao instead of helping the common man gain equality murdered millions upon millions. I need to add nothing about the extreme Islamists today who drink the blood of their enemies, rape their women and behead others just for fun. It is not that Rivka did not try to educate Esav or Avraham not try to educate Yishmael but rather a failure of the child to comprehend and transmit further the Torah of his father and with Esav his mother. In this week’s Parsha: 27:46 And Rebekah said to Isaac: 'I am weary of my life because of the daughters of Heth. If Jacob take a wife of the daughters of Heth, such as these, of the daughters of the land, what good shall my life do me?' it is only then that Esav begins to understand that his parents are upset with him and he looks for a “better” wife: 28:9 so Esau went unto Ishmael, and took unto the wives that he had Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael Abraham's son, the sister of Nebaioth, to be his wife. But this is only after. 28:1 And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him: 'Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan. 2 Arise, go to Paddan-aram, to the house of Bethuel thy mother's father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughters of Laban thy mother's brother. 3 And God Almighty bless thee, and make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, that thou mayest be a congregation of peoples; 4 and give thee the blessing of Abraham, to thee, and to thy seed with thee; that thou mayest inherit the land of thy sojournings, which God gave unto Abraham.' 5 And Isaac sent away Jacob; and he went to Paddan-aram unto Laban, son of Bethuel the Aramean, the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother. 6 Now Esau saw that Isaac had blessed Jacob and sent him away to Paddan-aram, to take him a wife from thence; and that as he blessed him he gave him a charge, saying: 'Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan'; 7 and that Jacob hearkened to his father and his mother, and was gone to Paddan-aram; 8 and Esau saw that the daughters of Canaan pleased not Isaac his father; So we see that Yacov is continuing the tradition of his parents while Esav is a very physical and crude fellow for who swallows lentils instead of eating them.

I have skipped the blessings of Yitzchak this year as I have covered them in past years and prefer to bring different and newer ideas each year. For a further depth study of the blessings refer to my rabbipauli.blogspot past issues.

This week I already had Gail’s Letter and two stories from Kirk Douglas when I got this baseball-spy story from Gail Winston.

From my son Chaim posted on the Har Nof Group (no translation of Hebrew words written in English)

We heard the ambulances. We heard there was a terrorist attack. Then we heard it was at our shul down theroad. We got a phone call from Chaya Levine asking my husband to please look at the shul next door to see if Rav Kalman was there. My husband had dovened neitz with him just a short time ago. Rav Kalman gave him a hearty “yashar koach” for his duchening, and went back to learn. My husband came home to get Binyomin Dovid ready for the school bus. You see Tuesday morning is Abba day- Binyomin Dovid looks forward to Tuesday morning all week-. maybe because Abba puts ketchup onthe cheese sandwich- or puts more pretzels in the bag than Ima does, or moresalt on the salad. Or maybe because he so loves his Abba and their special morning together. And because Tuesday is their special day, my husband dovens at the neitz minyon next to our house,  instead of his regular minyon in Kehillas Bnei Torah. My husband might have gone to his regular minyon anyway. Since he was often the only Kohen, on Tuesdays he would pop infor chazaras hashatz  just to duchen for them. The carnage occurred during chazaras HaShatz. But Hashem had other plansfor my husband.  A few months ago a member of the shul, a Kohen, became an avel-a mourner- and he asked myhusband if he could be the regular ba'al tefila. This Tuesday my husband did not go back to duchen, because he knew there would be a Kohen in his minyon. So after neitz at HaGra, he came home from shul. ButKalman- where was Kalman? My husband went back to HaGra to look for him. But he had left. Kalman had gone to Rav Rubin’s shul to ask the Rav a question. And Kalman did not come home.

We heard names- we heard rumors- we didn’t want to believe they were true. Rav Moshe Twersky- the kind talmid chacham who always made time for those who came to him for guidance and halachic advice, and then taught and learned until late at night. He was the one to whom my husband would turn with questions that came up in the minyon. It was Rav Moshe who said at his son’s aufruf that this minyon was like mishpacha. We had lost a family member.

R’ Aryeh Kupinski.  R’ Aryeh? No- not R’ Aryeh? Haven’t they suffered enough? When his daughter Chaya died suddenly in her sleep he was mekabel the din with pure deep faith- and went on to be mechazek others.  R’ Aryeh- always running to help others; always a smile on his face- despite constant challenges. R’  Aryeh was the one who yelled “you run, I’llfight”  using a chair against a gun and a hatchet to buy time so that others could flee. The ultimate chesed.
The names todoven. Shmuel Yerucham ben Baila. Chaim Yechiel ben Malka. Eitan ben Sarah. Yitzchak ben Chaya. All still in need of tremendous Rachmei Shamayim. Pleasecontinue to storm the gates of rachamim on their behalf. Avraham Shmuel benSheina. Then the rumors turned to agonizing truth- Avraham Shmuel ben Aharonhy”d.  Mr Goldberg. That nice warm smileygentleman who loved Torah and Torah scholars, and every single Jew. Who learnedevery morning and only then went to work.  My husband would set up a shtender for Mr.Goldberg and he in turn would lay out a siddur for Rav Twersky.  That was the kind of minyon it was. It can’tbe. But it was.
What aboutRav Kalman? We still didn’t know for sure – rumors flying- but Rav Kalman wasthe most alive person in the world. He was the reason many people came to ourshul on Simchas Torah-  to see RavKalman’s ecstatic dancing with his beloved Torah.  We should have known if he didn’t come homeand didn’t call something was terribly wrong. But we couldn’t believe it couldbe. And then we heard. The brutal animals shot as they yelled out their viciouswar cry. They butchered Rav Kalman as he stood in the hallway absorbed in asefer-those few seconds gave some of the men in the minyon time to flee outanother door.  Rav Kalman’s last act ofahavas Yisroel was to save the life of his friends. 
And now- RavMoshe הי"ד, Rav Aryeh הי"ד, Rav Avraham הי"ד, Rav Kalman הי"ד are in the Beis Medrash shelmaalah- with their beloved Torah.
Between thehope and the tears we spoke. “Chaya, do you remember….”.  Binyomin Dovid was a sickly baby with Downsyndrome and a host of medical issues and I needed chizuk. I made my way toBnei Brak to see Rebbetzin Kanievsky.  Iwaited outside until it was my turn. I came in to her- a sleeping baby in myarms. Rebbetzin Kanievsky took one look at him and said “you don’t know whatshmira (protection) you have in your home”. I thought I understood. Perhaps, Ithought, other things would be easier because this would be difficult. But now,almost 13 years later, I understand.  BDwas the only reason my husband was not in his minyon that morning. And becausehe knew my husband wasn’t coming, his post dovening chevrusa- a stalwartregular in that minyon, decided to doven elsewhere that morning.  We could not have imagined so many years agothat our son would save his father’s life and the life of his chavrusa.
The storiesabound. Those who were saved- Rav  E- anelderly gentleman who takes a cab the half a block each morning- but THISmorning the cab didn’t come. Rabbi L was on his way to that minyon and for somereason he cannot explain, found himself turning into a closer shul, and stayedthere.  A. was up during the nighthelping his wife who felt unwell, so he decided to doven elsewhere. R’ S whosmashed a terrorist over the head twice with a chair to try to stop hisshooting, and somehow managed to run out unscathed. Rav P, Reb B, Rav Pr andRav F who somehow ran through the line of fire out the door. Rav S who washiding behind the bima until something told him to get out- and he managed torun through the side door.  Rav I saw oneof the terrorists in the kitchen on his way in earlier. He thought he was oneof the many who come into the shul to take a free cup of coffee in the morning.Why didn’t he shoot him then? He escaped through a side door when the shootingstarted in the shul. Dr. H and Rav W who ran out after throwing a table at theterrorists.  HaRav B, who is not a youngman, heard the commotion and came downstairs. As he was trying to help one ofthe victims, he was shot repeatedly by the terrorists- but the guns misfiredfour times. When they pulled out a knife he ran upstairs. An old man outrunningtwo young terrorists? 
And thosewho were not saved.  Rav Kalman regularly dovens shacharis elsewhere and only came to ask a question of a Rav whom he didn’t know was not yet there. Rav Aryeh came perhaps once or twice a month tothat minyon.  The first chovesh(paramedic) who appeared at the scene always carries a gun- but he left it at home that morning. One thing was clear-it appeared random- butit is only random in the eyes of the world- we have to know that it is exacting in the eyes of Hashem, and that while we cannot possibly understand theequation we know it is the Truth.
To us, it is clear that the world is run with exactitude- and that this brutal butchering of innocent souls had purpose and meaning. We must focus inward- -avoiding politics and rage.  We must focus our energy inward by asking what each of us can do better than before. That is the Jewish response.
Wednesday morning my husband dovened in his minyon. He set out no shtender, laid out no siddur. R’ Chaim, fighting for his life, was not there to call out “kohanim”. Rav Moshe was not be there today to lein. He will not ask for an Aliyah for his grandmother’s yahrtzeit R”H Teves. My husband took out his gabbai book and added הי”ד to four names.
AsRav Rubin said at the levaya, we must strengthen ourselves in Emuna. We must internalize the knowledge that nothing is by chance, nothing is without purpose and meaning
 We must strive in some small way to emulate the kedoshim- so different on the surface but so very much the same- each a true lover of Torah and Talmidei chachamim, each a true lover of his fellow Jew, each a ba’alchesed, each a man with true simchas hachaim. Each of us must look inward; ask “what can I rectify?” Each one of us must make some small yet powerful change.  
The family of the kedoshim asked those who came to the shiva to please take on something for Am Yisrael. This is derech HaTorah. This will give nechama to the widows, the orphans. This will be a z’chus for a refuah for the injured.
And we can pray, that this will be the final chapter in the long and painful history of golus- and this will bring the Geula bimheyra biyameinu


 Here is history few ever knew:
When baseball greats Babe Ruth & Lou Gehrig went on tour in baseball-crazy Japan in 1934, some fans wondered why a third-string catcher named Moe Berg was included.  Although he played with 5 major league teams from 1923 to 1939, he was a very mediocre ball player.  He was regarded as the brainiest ballplayer of all time.  In fact Casey Stengel once said:  “That is the strangest man ever to play baseball.”  When all the baseball stars went to Japan, Moe Berg went with them & many people wondered why he went with “the team”

The answer was simple: Moe Berg was a Unites States spy working undercover with the CIA.  Moe spoke 15 languages - including Japanese - Moe Berg had two loves: baseball & spying. In Tokyo, garbed in a kimono, Berg took flowers to the daughter of an American diplomat being treated in St. Luke's Hospital - the tallest building in the Japanese capital.  He never delivered the flowers.  The ball-player ascended to the hospital roof & filmed key features: the harbor, military installations, railway yards, etc. Eight years later, General Jimmy Doolittle studied Berg's films in planning his spectacular raid on Tokyo..

Berg's father, Bernard Berg, a pharmacist in Newark, New Jersey, taught his son Hebrew & Yiddish.  Moe, against his wishes, began playing baseball on the street aged four.  His father disapproved & never once watched his son play.  In Barringer High School, Moe learned Latin, Greek & French.  Moe read at least 10 newspapers every day.  He graduated magna cum laude from Princeton - having added Spanish, Italian, German & Sanskrit to his linguistic quiver. During further studies at the Sorbonne, in Paris, & Columbia Law School, he picked up Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Indian, Arabic, Portuguese & Hungarian - 15 languages in all, plus some regional dialects.  While playing baseball for Princeton University, Moe Berg would describe plays in Latin or Sanskrit.

During World War II, he was parachuted into Yugoslavia to assess the value to the war effort of the two groups of partisans there.  He reported back that Marshall Tito's forces were widely supported by the people & Winston Churchill ordered all-out support for the Yugoslav underground fighter, rather than Mihajlovic's Serbians.  The parachute jump at age 41 undoubtedly was a challenge. But there was more to come in that same year. Berg penetrated German-held Norway, met with members of the underground & located a secret heavy water plant - part of the Nazis' effort to build an atomic bomb.

His information guided the Royal Air Force in a bombing raid to destroy the plant. The R.A.F. destroys the Norwegian heavy water plant targeted by Moe Berg.

There still remained the question of how far had the Nazis progressed in the race to build the first Atomic bomb.  If the Nazis were successful, they would win the war.  Berg (under the code name "Remus") was sent to Switzerland to hear leading German physicist Werner Heisenberg, a Nobel Laureate, lecture & determine if the Nazis were close to building an A-bomb.  Moe managed to slip past the SS guards at the auditorium, posing as a Swiss graduate student.  The spy carried in his pocket a pistol & a cyanide pill. If the German indicated the Nazis were close to building a weapon, Berg was to shoot him - & then swallow the cyanide pill. Moe, sitting in the front row, determined that the Germans were nowhere near their goal, so he complimented Heisenberg on his speech & walked him back to his hotel.

Moe Berg blocked the Nazis from acquiring an atomic bomb.  Moe Berg's report was distributed to Britain's Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, President Franklin D. Roosevelt & key figures in the team developing the Atomic Bomb.  Roosevelt responded: "Give my regards to the catcher." Most of Germany’s leading physicists had been Jewish & had fled the Nazis mainly to Britain & the United States .  After the war, Moe Berg was awarded the Medal of Freedom – America’s highest honor for a civilian in wartime.  But Berg refused to accept, as he couldn't tell people about his exploits.  After his death, his sister accepted the Medal & it hangs in the Baseball Hall of Fame, in Cooperstown. March 2,1902-----May 29, 1972  Presidential Medal of Freedom (the highest award to be awarded to civilians during wartime)  Moe Berg’s baseball card is the only card on display at the CIA Headquarters in Washington DC

A beautiful letter from Gail Winston about Yiddishkeit it went out to about 5000 or more people on her list:

Dear Family & Friends,                                                                                    

I thrilled to see the Law declaring Israel is the Jewish Nation-State of the Jewish People, with Hebrew as the only official language of the State!
Manny & I worked our whole life together & now I, in both our names, for the survival of the Jewish People & the Jewish State of Israel (in no order)!   We went from being typical American good Jews, Reform, no Jewish education of depth, to being mostly Observant with all of our children knowing & loving being Jewish. They may all do it a bit differently from each other, but all children need to find their own niche – & then keep learning more & growing. They are all passionate about being Jews, as are we. 
Sadly, intermarriage is reducing the Jewish People’s ‘footprint’ in the wide world & endangering our miracle.  The Jewish People are the only people to have endured for 3000 plus years, with the same Language, culture, Torah – unchanged by no jot or tittles, & the same Land – Always Eretz Yisrael.  We may have lived successfully or under totalitarian domination after we were dispersed by tyrants but, we always prayed to return to our Land, to our Eternal State & her capital: the Golden Capital of Jerusalem!
No other People in history have done so.  We have gathered Jewish People from 70 Nations around the world, back into our Land.  No way we could ever be called racist or apartheid.  Our State accords all the freedom to worship as they will, as long as they do not use violence to dominate us or others.
Why does the jealousy & envy of the “Others” keep the violence of word & deed aimed at us, from Time Immemorial?  We always declaimed that the Temple Mount, Har Moriah, the site of our 2 Temples was intended for all the world’s people to pray in peace to G-d – as He is the Only One.   We never insisted that they do it ‘our’ way, as they do demand of us.  We only asked Jews to follow our G-d’s Commandments & Mitzvot to lead good lives & care for the human family – which we have always done – as Jews.
Enjoy Life!  They worship death.  How sad.  How unnecessary. How destructive.
Have a wonderful night, beautiful day.  All the very best,
Gail/Geula/Savta/Savta Raba/Mom

Climbing the Mountain: Essay and Interview with Kirk Douglas by Kirk Douglas
After more than 80 movies, surviving a helicopter crash and a stroke, the famous actor finds fulfillment in Torah study.

It all started in 1991. I was in a helicopter and we had just lifted 50 feet above the ground. At the same time, a small plane was taking off with an instructor and his student. We collided. Our helicopter crashed to the tarmac. But the plane exploded. Its two passengers were killed.
I woke up in the hospital, tormented by a wave of guilt – why did those two young people die? Why was I alive? That haunted me. And I tried to find the answer.
Where do you find an answer to a question like that? Where would you go? See a fortune-teller – have your cards read? An astrologer? Or maybe go to India – find a guru? An audience with the Dalai Lama?
But I never thought of Judaism for the answer.
See, Judaism and I parted ways a long time ago, when I was a poor kid growing up in Amsterdam, N.Y.
Back then, I was pretty good in cheder, so the Jews of our community thought they would do a wonderful thing and collect enough money to send me to a yeshiva to become a rabbi.
Holy Moses! That scared the hell out of me. I didn't want to be a rabbi. I wanted to be an actor. Believe me, the members of the Sons of Israel were persistent. I had nightmares – wearing long payos and a black hat. I had to work very hard to get out of it.
But it took me a long time to learn that you don't have to be a rabbi to be a Jew.
A Frightening Story
I got frightened away from Judaism at age 14 after reading the story of Abraham and Isaac: God orders Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac.
I remember the picture in my hebrew school book. Abraham with a long beard. In one outstretched hand holding a large knife, in the other – a frightened little boy. And that kid looked an awful lot like me! A hovering angel was having a hard time restraining Abraham. How could he convince him that this was only a test.
Some test!
That picture stayed in my mind for a long time as I drifted away from Judaism.
I grew up, went to college, but my Judaism stayed stuck in a 14-year-old boy's hebrew school book.
It has been pointed out to me that no rational adult would make a business decision based on what they knew when they were 14. You wouldn't decide who to marry based on what you knew about love and relationships when you were 14. But lots of us seem satisfied to dismiss religion based on what we learned at 14, and I was one of those that stupid.
Of course, I always knew I was a Jew. I even auditioned to join a Yiddish Theater in New York. They looked at my blonde hair and blue eyes and said: "If we have a part for a Nazi, we'll call you."
Although I felt drawn to the drama and the mystery of Judaism, other aspects pushed me away. What did I have in common with those black-hatted, bearded men with their long payos?
But as time went on, I began to see it a little differently.
The catalyst was my son Michael. One day he asked me: "Dad, where did our ancestors come from?"
That startled me. I wasn't sure. I knew my parents came from Russia, someplace called Mogilev.
I suddenly realized that I knew nothing about my background. Anyone who could tell me was now long dead. I had no ancestors.
This thought depressed me. It haunted me. I had no ancestors! Can a man know who he truly is, if he doesn't know his ancestors?
I was lying in my room pondering this question for the umpteenth time, when I happened to look up over my bed. There on the wall hangs my collection of Chagalls – the lithographs from his Bible series. It hit me. Here were my ancestors!
Famous Ancestors
They were more famous than movie stars!
Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Solomon, David, Rebecca, Rachel, Ruth, Esther. There were musicians in my family, warriors, poets, lawgivers.
I started to read about them and the more I read the happier I felt. Why? They all came from dysfunctional families. Like me. They all had problems.
Cain kills Abel. Jacob deceives his father. Joseph gets sold into slavery by his brothers. One sinner after another and despite that they were given a second chance. They all overcame the odds and accomplished great things!
What an inspiration to a sinner like me. And what a load of guilt off my shoulders.
I was very grateful to Chagall for reminding me what an incredible lineage I had come from. Then I found out that Chagall, a Russian Jew, came from a town near my parents' in White Russia. In fact, my father and Chagall both left that region, known as Pale of Settlement, about the same time. Chagall became a famous artist in Paris, and my father became a famous ragman in Amsterdam, New York. Jews have diverse talents.
The Wonder of Jewish Survival
How did we survive? Lost in different parts of the world, among strange cultures – constantly persecuted. Yet, our tormentors rose and fell, and we still hung on. The Babylonians, the Persians, Greeks, Romans, all are long gone but we remain.
And that is when I realized that we should thank those pious, black-hatted, bearded Jews – for keeping Judaism alive for so long.
They understood something very deep that we more secular types never learned. God gave us the Torah – and that made us the conscience of the world.
The ideas of love, compassion, kindness to strangers and the poor, the ideas of holiness of human purpose, a reverence for life and self-discipline all – all come from the Torah.
Even if we Jews sometimes forget that, our persecutors remember.
Here is what Adolf Hitler said:
It is true we Germans are barbarians; that is an honored title to us. I free humanity from the shackles of the soul: from the degrading suffering caused by the false vision called conscience and ethics. The Jews have inflicted two wounds on mankind: circumcision on its body and conscience on its soul. They are Jewish inventions. The war for the domination of the world is waged only between these two camps alone, the Germans and the Jews. Everything else is but deception.
Hitler was right. It's all about the battle between good and evil. I'm just beginning to realize what that means for us Jews, and it scares me. It carries such an enormous responsibility.
No wonder that so many Jews have tried to escape into the safety of assimilation. But that safety always turns out to be a trap.
Amazing isn't it – before the Nazis came to power, Germany was the country where Jews had assimilated to a staggering degree. Judaism was dying out. And then the German people, who had absorbed the Jews with such open-arms, turned on them with such hatred.
It has happened over and over again.
How odd that, with all the persecutions we have been subjected to, the worst comes when we've moved away from Judaism. Is God telling us something? I'm beginning to think so.
Throughout my life, when I was moving farther and farther from Judaism, I always clung to a single thread – Yom Kippur. On that one day I fasted. I might be shooting it out with Burt Lancaster or John Wayne but I always fasted.
You see, there was something frightening to me about that book in which is written – who shall live and who shall die – who will survive a helicopter crash, like me, and who will be killed.
Coming Home
My helicopter crash brought to my consciousness what had been roiling under the surface for all those years.
I made a visit to Israel after a 12-year absence. I had filmed four movies there. I had been there many times but I stayed away too long. I was excited.
We drove up to the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. Everyone seemed so glad to see me again. They ushered me and my wife into our room. I walked to the window and stared out at the magnificent view of the Old City, the Ottoman Empire walls surrounded by grass and flowers.
The first time I looked out of that same window more than 40 years ago, I saw Arab soldiers, pacing back and forth, keeping me out of the Old City, making sure I couldn't get to the Kotel, the Holy Wall.
How Israel had changed since then. So many new things. But more important, so many OLD things.
The OLD is what brought me back. I didn't wait to change my clothes. I rushed out of the hotel. The sun was just setting.
The Wall was crowded with worshippers. The energy emanating from all the praying Jews, davening at a wild pace, was overwhelming. I moved through the crowd. It was difficult to find a place to touch the wall.
I looked around for a crevice where I could put the tiny piece of paper with my prayer. I found one. As I reached deep, my fingers touched other pieces placed there before me. Had those prayers been answered?
I think so. Because God answers all prayers, but sometimes the answer is "no."
Confronting the Past
I took a walk through the tunnel along the foundations of the Temple. That tunnel takes you deep along what once was the most sacred place to all Jews.
As I slowly walked along following my guide, I let my fingers caress the huge blocks of stone that enclose the mountain where the Temple once stood.
And then we stopped at the point where we could touch bedrock. My guide, a young girl from Pittsburgh who had moved to Israel, spoke softly: "This is the rock of Mount Moriah."
I looked at this rough, black stone. "Mount Moriah?" I asked. "You mean..."
She finished for me. "Yes, this is where Abraham took his son Isaac to be sacrificed."
The picture from my hebrew school book flashed into my mind. But it no longer frightened me. Now I knew that Abraham lived at a time when sacrificing your son to idols was a common practice. The lesson of Mount Moriah was precisely that God does not want human sacrifice – that God is not Someone to be afraid of.
It was very quiet in the tunnel, dimly lit, cool.
My guide's voice was barely above a whisper: "This is where it all started."
I couldn't speak. She was right.
This place represented the beginning of my doubts. And, at long last, the end of them.
Here in the dark tunnel, touching the rock of Mount Moriah, I grew up.
That night I had Shabbat at a home in the heart of the Jewish Quarter. We sang songs, happy songs. I felt good. Through the open window I could hear the same songs echoing in the night, and see other houses lit by the warm light of candles.
I closed my eyes and I could see the face of my mother through the candlelight, saying the Shabbat prayers.
That night I felt that I had come home.
A Long Way To Go
And yet I know that my journey is not over. I still have a long way to go.
When I first picked up the Torah, I was encouraged. It has only 350 pages. But when I began to study seriously, I realized why they say that Judaism is a lifetime of learning. It took me more than two months just to get out of the Garden of Eden.
Before I could finish my back gave out and I had an operation. Two weeks later I had a stroke.
After that my life was consumed by having to learn to speak again.
Now I am not as cocky as I used to be. I no longer take speech for granted. When I had no trouble with it, it seemed so natural. You think a thought and then you express it vocally. You don't realize that there are thousands of nerve endings in your cheek, your tongue, your lips. You never think of the movement of your tongue against your teeth – all coordinated with your vocal chords. It's a miracle.
Miracles come only from God. And they are all around us. I remember being suddenly awakened by an earthquake. I was almost thrown out of my bed. Such power – where did it come from? Have you ever watched a hurricane and seen large trees uprooted like toothpicks. It is awesome.
Have you ever looked up at the sky on a dark night? There are a hundred billion stars in our galaxy alone and there are billions of other galaxies. Billions of light years away!
Such a huge miracle staggers the mind.
But I am hoping for a small miracle.
I am hoping it's not too late for me.
If God is a patient God, maybe He'll give me enough time to learn the things I need to know to understand what it is that makes us Jews the conscience of the world.
Buy Kirk Douglas's books Climbing the Mountain and Young Heroes of the Bible from Interview With Kirk Douglas By: Ayala Dean

Q: What inspired you to have a second Bar Mitzvah?
A: I heard that in Jewish wisdom a man gets to live 70 years and then he starts to live all over again. So when I hit 83, I was 13 again and I had a second Bar Mitzvah. I really did feel that I was given a second chance because I was in a helicopter crash some years back. When I woke up in the hospital, I was in awful pain, but I felt so guilty because two young people had died. And I said, "why am I alive?" After my helicopter crash and my stroke, I think I began to think of other people. And then I began to study the Bible.
You know, I wrote a book for children called "Young Heroes of the Bible" because I became very fascinated with the Bible. It is the greatest human drama. It has everything you can think of. And I wrote this book to try to get kids interested in reading the Bible. They'll see that there were kids like Abraham and Miriam and David who were heroes. Abraham as a young boy worked in his father idol shop and he broke all the idols. So far people have liked it, and I like writing.
Q: How did the day of your second Bar Mitzvah affect you?
A: I felt good, because I felt now I'm 13-years-old again! I can start all over. It was very touching. People said, "Kirk, now you've gotten religious." I don't think so. 'Religion' implies too much ritual. I prefer to say I have become more interested in the spiritual side.
Q: What did you think of the big celebrity/media turnout for your Bar Mitzvah?
A: I was intrigued that people, especially non-Jews, found it so fascinating. It was very, very exciting really. There were about two hundred people – many more people than when I was first Bar Mitzvah'd.
Q: You referred to 'starting all over again,' yet you don't strike us as being a man who looks back with regrets.
A: I don't. You know, that's very discerning because I don't generally look back. But when I wrote my first book, "The Ragman's Son," I said, "wait a minute – I have to take inventory. Where did I come from? Where am I now? Where am I going?" And I think everybody must do that from time to time, take stock. But it's true, in general I like to look ahead. But I think at the same time, it's important to occasionally take inventory and look back a little bit.
Q: You're a beloved Hollywood figure, especially by your fellow actors. Do you feel loved by the general public when you go out?
A: I don't know. The one thing I don't want is pity [because I had a stroke]. I want to be judged based on what I am. I realize that I have always been attracted to people who overcome handicaps. A became friends with Jim McLaren who lost his leg in college. At the time I was writing a novel about a bullfighter who loses his leg. I wanted to know about it, so I met him. He was the world's champion triathlete among handicapped people. He had a prosthesis. He invited me to see him race once in Orange County, but I couldn't go. Well, the last part of the triathlon was the bicycle race, and a truck ran the police barrier and Jim hit a lamp post. I went to see him the next day in the hospital, and now he was a paraplegic. He is handsome fellow, 6-foot-5, and had been functioning without one leg. Now he couldn't move anything. I admire him. I saw him three weeks ago, and he's taking some classes in Santa Barbara. He doesn't ask for pity. He's functioning and I admire that.
Q: What do you think about the buzz in Hollywood concerning a possible Oscar nomination for your performance in "Diamonds?" [In his newest movie, "Diamonds," Mr. Douglas stars as a former boxing champion who, in his twilight years, is a widower recovering from a stroke. The movie's title is inspired by its plot, where his character teams up with his son and grandson to recover some diamonds they suspect were stolen from him. It also stars Dan Ackroyd and Lauren Bacall.]
A: Listen, I have been nominated three times – for "Champion," "The Bad and the Beautiful," and "Lust for Life," but I never won. But that's not so bad. The bad thing is each time I had the most beautiful acceptance speech, and I couldn't get the chance to use it! Yes, there's been some talk that I might be nominated for "Diamonds," and of course I would love it, but I will not be annihilated if I don't get nominated, or if I do get nominated.
Q: In an interview with the "Los Angeles Times", you were asked how you would like to be remembered, and you responded, "I tried." Any additional thoughts?
A: I tell my kids, "All you can do in life is try." I tried my best. If you don't succeed, you can say to yourself, 'I tried.' That's the most important thing in life. I tried.

You do not need to be a movie star to stand up for basic human freedom.

Kirk Douglas' recently published his tenth book, "I Am Spartacus! Making a Film, Breaking the Blacklist."
When you reach 95, after you get over your surprise, you start looking back. I've been thinking a lot about my parents, Russian immigrants who came to this country in 1912 – exactly one hundred years ago.
For them, the United States was a dream beyond description. They couldn't read or write, but they saw a better life for their children in a new country half a world away from their tiny shtetl.
Against all odds they crossed the Atlantic. And like millions of people before and after, they passed close to the Statue of Liberty as they entered New York Harbor. Perhaps someone who could read English translated the beautiful words of Emma Lazarus, etched in bronze on the pedestal:
"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-toss to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
What would my parents think about America if they arrived here today? Would they even want to come? I wonder.
A century ago, America was a beacon of hope to the world. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness were ideals not clichés. Any boy could still grow up to be president. Today, few boys–or girls, for that matter–dream of that. The American dream has become about quick fame and easy fortune, not public service and hard work.
I know something about this. I have been an actor for most of my life. When I started out, I didn't think about anything except what was good for me. Like many movie stars, I became all wrapped up in myself. When I threw off the wrappings, I wrapped myself in the character I was playing.
Related Article: Touching Bedrock
My change came suddenly when I heard these words spoken by President Kennedy in his Inaugural Address in 1961:
"Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country."
It was a moment of clarity for me – like somebody had flipped a switch and the lights came on.
I had been lucky. Fame is as much about luck as it is about talent, perhaps more. My luck hadn't come without a lot of hard work, but I now realized that it carried a responsibility along with it. JFK's call to conscience made me understand that.
His words also reminded me of something my mother taught me.
For years we lived in a little town called Amsterdam, New York. We had a house near the carpet mills and the railroad tracks. We were very poor and often didn't have enough to eat. Although we had nothing to spare, the hobos from the trains still came knocking on our door in the evening, asking for food. It scared me to look at them–disheveled, dirty. My mother was never frightened. Somehow she always found a little extra food to give them.
Then she said something I never forgot: "Issur,"–that was my name then–"even a beggar must give to another beggar who needs it more than he does."
I was an American movie star whose pictures were seen all around the world. This gave me the opportunity to do something for my country that most Americans couldn't do. So I became an Ambassador of Goodwill for the State Department and traveled to 40 countries talking about America. I wasn't viewed as a Democrat or a Republican. They only saw me as an American. By the way, I paid all my own expenses–I didn't want anyone to say that Kirk Douglas traveled abroad on the taxpayers' dime.
But you do not need to be a movie star to stand up for basic human freedom. The fight against oppression and tyranny depicted in Spartacus is still going on all over the globe from Syria to Egypt to Iran. Even the Russians are once again facing the threat of a popular uprising.
Related Article: I Am Issur
I believe much of the divisiveness in the world is caused by religious fanaticism, even in the time of Spartacus when they worshipped many gods. As you study history, you find that millions of people have been killed because of religious divisions based on false orthodoxy, not genuine spirituality.
After 95 years on this planet, I have come to the conclusion that the human spirit can never be crushed, no matter how cruel the oppressor or fanatic the belief. If we remember that simple truth–and act on it every day in small ways and sometimes in large movements–then freedom will ultimately win.
And then we are all Spartacus.

Israel goes on a buying spree but not at home due to taxes:,7340,L-4593042,00.html

Fe fi Fofo, Fofo fum I smell anti-Semitism in the auditorium: Dear Family & Friends,
Manny Winston wrote his first of dozens of articles defending Jonathan Pollard on the day Jonathan was arrested – in front of the Israeli Embassy – with the full Media Circus in attendance.  The FBI, et al, NEVER arrested someone with the Media as its witness. 
Manny noted that was the year 1985, when Israel was slammed 3 times by accusations of technology improprieties on the Front Pages of all the Media…& exonerated 3 times in the back pages.  Jonathan’s arrest was at the end of that year & the fourth smear of that year.  His arrest was the most explosive accusation against Israel which the U.S. could ‘use’ to ‘blackmail’ the Jewish State to do their will.
During the “Save Jonathan Pollard” extensive campaign, we became friends with Molly & Dr. Morris Pollard, a premier Cancer Researcher at the Lobund Cancer Research Labs at Notre Dame U.  Both died without Jonathan being allowed to visit them or attend their funerals.
The history of his vile treatment, in court, the blackmail using his wife, Anne’s very ill heath, in jail, in solitary confinement at a Hospital for the Criminally Insane, the set-up of the so-called ‘illegal’ interviews that the prison ‘allowed’ in order to trap him for ‘violating their rules’, that history we’ve written about over the years & published it all for those who want to find in-depth research.
America & Israel had an MOU, a Memorandum of Understanding, signed by all the presidents to that date, to transfer vital information, life-&-death information that covered existential threats to Israel’s survival from the arms & intentions of the Muslim Arab world surrounding Israel.  When Jay spotted such arms transfers, especially about Saddam’s growing capabilities for SCUD missiles loaded with deadly Gas &/or Chemicals, he told his superior at the Department of Naval Intelligence.   He replied:  “O, Don’t Tell the Jews about the Gas [Saddam has]. They’re too sensitive about Gas.”   
This reckless, deliberate & anti-Semitic endangerment of the Jewish State of Israel by the U.S. government was the only motivation for Jonathan to transfer this information to Israel. By giving Israel this crucial data, Israel was able to begin the manufacture of gas-masks for the entire population….And, Israel created the ‘baby tents’ so the babies & toddlers would be safe IF Saddam used his Nerve Gas in his SCUDs.  Israel also invented special masks with air pumps to allow young children to breathe properly.  And a similar type for men with beards to be able to seal the masks to their faces.  During the 1991 Gulf War when the shooting war began on January 16, 1991, we carried our masks & baby tents everywhere.  People called their masks their “Pollies” in honor of Jonathan’s life-saving gift to them.
I was in Israel during that whole war.  The first night, January 16, 1991, in my sealed room, in my gas mask from midnight til early morning…my son & I heard on the radio at 3:49am, a telephone interview with Caspar Weinberger who said:  “It’s a shame about Saddam using nerve gas on Israel.”   Full admission of his guilty knowledge!  I hope that radio show interview is recorded somewhere.  Before he died Weinberger said Jonathan should be released.
At first, we thought Jay was trapped into exposing his transfer of the information America was supposed to trade with Israel regarding the arms & intentions of Israel’s proclaimed enemies:  the Muslim Arab world. 
Later we learned that when he saw a ship carrying arms he thought were to Yasser Arafat, he really exposed the first “Arms-for-Hostages” deal by President George H.W. Bush & Secretary of Defense Casper Weinberger.  THAT DEAL exposé was what originally, probably & totally unfairly, buried Jay deep underground in the prison system to this day.
          Manny & I wrote continually in Jay’s defense over the years.  We organized a “Save Jonathan Pollard” Rally with the newly returned Soviet Jewish Prisoners of Conscience, including Ida Nudel & many other Soviet Jewish Heroes.
          Of course, there is so much more to write & share.  Many Jewish & non-Jewish writers, thinkers, leaders know more parts of the tragic betrayal of a Jewish American hero, who may have saved Israel from Saddam ever using his Gas – because he enabled us to be prepared.  I hope they all come forward with their memoirs of this dreadful epic stain on the honor of my other, mother country.  I hope we can be privileged to welcome Jonathan Pollard home to Israel where he longs to come & live – very soon!  Please G-d!
I promised Molly & Morris that I would be at that Party of Thanksgiving.
Gail Winston A foot note J. Pollard’s plea was rejected this week despite all his years in prison – unprecedented for a spy from a friendly country.

Inyanay Diyoma

Shin Bet profiling settlers at Ben Gurion Airport:

Druze and Muslims fight each other in one town.,7340,L-4592172,00.html

My mother took me to view Dr. Martin Luther King on at least two occasions when I was about 8 years old. I did not fully understand what a black Reverend was doing speaking in our Schul. I did not like his stand on the Viet Nam War and I thought he should stick to Black Civil Rights Issues when I grew up a few months before he was assassinated. But this is horrifying and it appeared in the Israeli Press minus the details of his escapades.|htmlws-main-bb|dl1|sec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D563419

Ben Dror is a moderate to left of center Israeli patriot but is becoming disillusioned I believe:,7340,L-4592033,00.html

A deluge of rain shuts down parts of Israel:,7340,L-4592033,00.html

Jackie Gleason the comedian had a character which he sometimes portrayed called “Charlie Bratton the loud mouth”. Twice in Perkei Avos it says “A fence for wisdom is silence” and “Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said ‘All my days I grew up with Chachamim and found no better tool other than silence: Regarding the dispute between the IDF and the General Security Services:,7340,L-4592414,00.html

A personal analysis. Based on a similar one from the radio/papers this morning: The unstable coalition brought about because Sarah Netanyahu did not like Naftali Bennett brought in Lapid. The combination of Lapid, Livni and Leiberman was doomed from the start. The Charedi Parties were interested in only furthering their population (as well as the Nation of Israel) but they would go along with most of the laws of the Likud. Instead because of this hatred for Bennett and the dispute between the Charedim and the Modern Orthodox Bennett made the famous Bris with Lapid. As a result Livni and Lapid started to put their plans together and the law making only Hebrew the official language of Israel which Bennett was pushing was stopped. The straw that appears to have broken the camel’s back is that the first reading of the law called “freedom of the press”, an Orwellian Law that would ban the distribution of free daily newspapers (i.e. Yisrael Hayom) which is more pro-Netanyahu was the straw that broke the back of the camel. It looks like elections anytime between January and March as Leiberman refuses at this point to sit in a government with Charedim. Groundless hatred destroyed the second Beis HaMikdash and prevents the Moshiach from coming early (ACHISHAYNA) and is essentially destroying the current coalition in Israel.      

Regarding the Olmert corruption trial: Editorialist Shalom Yerushalaymi was dismissed from the Maariv Newspaper due to the owner’s closeness to Olmert when the scandal broke. It was only after the paper changed hands did he come back. I saw him on TV yesterday in a discussion and Ed-Op. He is older than I and breaks stories in his analysis like a young man. Honest and dedicated reporters are needed in this country and not propagandists as some are.

I would not want to be in Europe when the Moshiach comes:

Horrible bigotry that I experienced in the army still exists it is in Hebrew.

Who brought the terrorists from east to west Yerushalayim? The story is that an Arab Israeli from East Yerushalayim committed suicide in his bus that he drove for the Israel Egged Bus Cooperative. His body was autopsied by the family and even their doctor concluded that it was a suicide but it was an excuse for murder of Jews. In a well planned attack two terrorist one with a pistol and the other with an axe an knife entered a Synagogue in Har Nof. The first victim wearing his Tallis and Tephillin was shot in the head. They ran into various pray rooms and a Beit Medrash. A paramedic trying to deal with the wounded was shot in the leg before two police shot the terrorist dead. A search is on for their driver and if there was more. The total as of now 4 dead 1 in grave condition and 3 in critical both from stabbings and shooting on some. It is not determined that two policemen were injured. The Defense Minister cancels his tour of the southern front with the press.

In an interview to the TV the paramedic who arrived on the scene asks for his staff to evacuate a man who claims that he has been shot but shows multi-stab wounds. As he goes up the stairs he pull out a body and shots are fired at him he jumps and his team member Yacov jumps but he breaks his ankle and is pulled to safety as shots ring out. The police come and shots are exchanged a policeman is seriously wounded and brought by the medics to an ambulance. From there another policeman is shot before the terrorists are neutralized. It turns out that the terrorist worked in the Synagogue and came by his own car.

Egypt increases the size of the buffer zone after learning that the chief of Hamas planned the attack on the Egyptian Soldiers anybody resisting is shot on the spot.

IDF officer loses two fingers in fireworks attack:

Here are some pictures from the victims and the aftermath of terror attack on the Synagogue. Some people miraculously escaped but the five pictured here the four Rabbis and the Druze Policeman HY”D. He must have done something special in his life to die at the time with the Rabbis. There is a reason when HASHEM takes good people perhaps to save us all from the viciousness of Iran, I cannot tell. Of the Rabbis one had nine children, two others six and one three all in all from them 24 orphans. Zidan, a traffic policeman, lived in a Druze village in the Western Galil (Galilee). He got there as fast as he could after hearing a terrorist attack was taking place nearby, together with two other policemen, and together they killed the terrorists. Zidan was mortally wounded and died of his injuries last night. Zidan was married and the father of a new 4-month-old baby. My dear Saif family and the Druze community as a whole - Zidan is the model for all Israeli fighters. Aytan ben Sara needs prayers he is suffering from an Axe to the head.,7340,L-4593647,00.html

From “The Israeli Network”.
Of the dead three were US Citizens and the fourth a Briton only the Druze was not with a second nationality. From Sheldon See also:
CNN The first headline to flash over the network was “Deadly attack on Jerusalem mosque.” That was followed by, “4 Israelis, 2 Palestinians Killed in Jerusalem.”

Limit cooperation between N. Korea and Iran or the agreement will mean nothing:

There were more rocks thrown at cars, a fire-bombing of Jewish Homes in East Yerushalayim and a stabbing near the office of a Jerusalem Newspaper but they did not make the headlines on the internet. Also four teenage girls pepper sprayed an Arab in Yerushalayim last night under investigation. What was hushed up for months has just come to light about a plot to assassinate the Foreign Minister:

The population speaks out although let me remind everybody that some Bedouins and Christian Arabs serve in the IDF. But on the other hand how can a city keep employed the sister of the terrorist.,7340,L-4594525,00.html

Egypt cracks down on Sinai terrorist not only for us and vows to keep border safe.

The Charedim are fighting to preserve the Jewish Nature of the State of Israel so thank them:,7340,L-4593426,00.html

Good Shabbos try to fortify your prayers, deeds and love for your fellow Jews so that the Moshiach can come speedily,
Rachamim Pauli