Friday, July 7, 2017

Parasha Balak, stories. remember the 3 weeks.

Editorial: The US has become too polarized. We have lost all proportion of sense. Maybe it is that I am older and wiser or maybe it is because I have experience. I go back to my College Days. I was from the conservative right of center and passionate. One of my friends was a card carrying Communist. We had astronomy in common and liked to eat together in the lunch room. One day he told me that the party had given him orders to enlist in the US army to stir up racial tension. He was white and Jewish. He enlisted and then I read that a fort so and so there were race riots among the draftees.

Fast forward 50 years. Chuck Schumer and Donald Trump were quite good friends. In fact, after the election, the two met and talked about cooperation. However, tactics one way for politics and friendship another way. We often see that there are friendships across the aisle in politics. However, the problem lies elsewhere.

The extreme left is making riots and discrediting the president and unlike his predecessors, he fights back. I am watching on Facebook if you are a die-hard Hillary Supporter or die-hard Trump Supporter defriending people. Is that what friendship is based on? In Israel, the children of a 50 plus year marriage had to make peace between Mommy – Labor and Daddy –Likud because they fought so much.



Parsha Balak up to the deed of Pinchas

Although I don’t usually repeat myself year after year this time I will but perhaps different words. With the series of four wars and on the plains of Moav, Yisrael is a formable fighting force. The number of soldiers was 600,000 plus soldiers. Compared to today with the standing army at 160,000 soldiers (females included) and 630,000 reserves (females included). The relative number of soldiers and age group compared to the population is different. A modern army does not need everybody between 20 and 60 and it needs a more specialist and qualified army. Today we don’t have a pillar of fire and clouds of glory. We don’t have a Cohain Gadol with an Urim and Tumim to consult.

Balak was scared. Instead of suing for peace and trying to negotiate an alliance like the deceitful Giveonites did called Nitninim in Hebrew. Balak saw that the Bnei Yisrael were guided by HASHEM. So we wanted his prophet, Bilaam, to use HASHEM to curse them during the morning split second of anger. Instead, there was no anger those days. Balak was a powerful magician using negative spiritual forces but he realized that Yisrael went on positive forces so he called for the great prophet Bilaam.

22:2 And Balak the son of Zippor saw all that Israel had done to the Amorites. 3 And Moab was sore afraid of the people, because they were many; and Moab was overcome with dread because of the children of Israel. 4 And Moab said unto the elders of Midian: 'Now will this multitude lick up all that is round about us, as the ox licks up the grass of the field.'--And Balak the son of Zippor was king of Moab at that time.

He was just about shaking with fear. He had no idea of what had just transpired but the kings Sichon and Og and conquered parts of Ammon on the Golan and they were powerful. Now within a short time, their conquest was easily conquered by the Bnei Yisrael and the king of Arad decimated. He saw that they were going on Chashgacha of HASHEM so he needed a prophet of HASHEM to war against them. It was to his misfortune that Bilaam was not honest in the beginning that the people were blessed. I bring down this Pasuk as this is where he makes a defense alliance with Midian. For Moshe was a son-in-law of Yisro and had no quarrel with Midian. In fact, had he gone to Yisro, if he was still alive or his successor, he would have found out that the people were blessed and leave them alone. They had no design at the time of land on the other side of the Yarden.

9 And God came unto Balaam, and said: 'What men are these with thee?' 10 And Balaam said unto God: 'Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab, hath sent unto me [saying]: 11 Behold the people that is come out of Egypt, it covers the face of the earth; now, come curse me them; peradventure I shall be able to fight against them, and shall drive them out.' 12 And God said unto Balaam: 'Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people; for they are blessed.'

Each year I wonder to myself WHAT IF. What if Bilaam had told Balak that the people were blessed and that he should sue for peace with them and offer them water and trade?

…39 And Balaam went with Balak, and they came unto Kiriath-huzoth.

Kiriat Huzoth: A city full of markets, with men, women and children in its streets, as if to say, See, and have pity, so that all these people are not annihilated. — [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 11, Num. Rabbah 20:17]

There is no accidental mentioning of a name or place in the Torah and each one has significance. Here Rashi explains other times we don’t know the significance.

40 And Balak sacrificed oxen and sheep, and sent to Balaam, and to the princes that were with him. 41 And it came to pass in the morning that Balak took Balaam, and brought him up into Bamoth-baal, and he saw from thence the utmost part of the people.

At this point he was able to see the large numbers of tents at the edge of the encampment.

23:1 And Balaam said unto Balak: 'Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams.'

7 days of creation, 7 days of the week and a basis for this.

2 And Balak did as Balaam had spoken; and Balak and Balaam offered on every altar a bullock and a ram. 3 And Balaam said unto Balak: 'Stand by thy burnt-offering, and I will go; peradventure the LORD will come to meet me; and whatsoever He shows me I will tell thee.' And he went to a bare height.

Perhaps the Lord will happen to appear to me: He is not accustomed to speak to me by day. And he went alone: Heb. שֶׁפִי, as the Targum [Onkelos] renders: “alone.” The term denotes ease and quietness, that he was accompanied by nothing but silence.

4 And God met Balaam; and he said unto Him: 'I have prepared the seven altars, and I have offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar.'

[God] chanced upon: Heb. וַיִּקָּר, an expression denoting [a] casual [meeting or occurrence], and it denotes something shameful, an expression [used for] the uncleanness caused by seminal emission קֶרִי, as if to say, [God appeared to him] with reluctance and with contempt. He would never have appeared to him by day, but He wanted to show His love for Israel. — [Gen. Rabbah 52:5] The seven altars: “I prepared seven altars” is not written here, but “ the seven altars.” He said to Him, “Their patriarchs built seven altars before You, and I have prepared [seven] corresponding to them all.” Abraham built four-“There he built an altar to the Lord Who appeared to him” (Gen. 12:7); “Abraham moved from there to the mountain… [and built an altar there]” (ibid. 8); “Abraham pitched his tent [and built an altar there]” (ibid. 13:18), and one on Mount Moriah (ibid. 22:9). Isaac built one-“He built an altar there” (ibid. 26:25), and Jacob built two-one in Shechem (ibid. 33:20) and one in Beth El (ibid. 35:7). - [See Mid. Tanchuma Balak 11, Tzav 1, Num. Rabbah 20:18] And I offered up a bull and a ram on [each] altar: whereas Abraham offered up only a ram. - [See Mid. Tanchuma Balak 11, Tzav 1, Num. Rabbah 20:18]

5 And the LORD put a word in Balaam's mouth, and said: 'Return unto Balak, and thus thou shalt speak.' 6 And he returned unto him, and, lo, he stood by his burnt-offering, he, and all the princes of Moab. 7 And he took up his parable, and said: From Aram Balak brings me, the king of Moab from the mountains of the East: 'Come, curse me Jacob, and come, execrate Israel.'

He tells them from the start what they want to hear. But now he has no choice but to speak the truth.

8 How shall I curse, whom God hath not cursed? And how shall I execrate, whom the LORD hath not execrated?

Now he shows that he is mere putty in the hands of G-D.

How can I curse whom God has not cursed: Even when they deserved to be cursed, they were not cursed, [namely,] when their father [Jacob] recalled their iniquity, [by saying,] “for in their wrath they killed a man” (Gen. 49:6), he cursed only their wrath, as it says, “Cursed be their wrath” (ibid. 7). When their father [Jacob] came in deceit to his father [Isaac], he deserved to be cursed. But what does it say there? “He, too, shall be blessed” (ibid. 27:33). Regarding those who blessed, it says, “These shall stand to bless the people” (Deut. 27:12). However, regarding those who cursed, it does not say, “These shall stand to curse the people” but, “These shall stand for the curse” (ibid. 13), for He [God] did not want to mention the word ‘curse’ in reference to them [the people]. — [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 12, Num. Rabbah 20:19] If the Lord has not been angered: I myself am powerless, except that I can determine the precise moment when God becomes angry, and He has not become angry all these days since I have come to you. This is the meaning of the statement, “O my people, remember now what he [Balak king of Moab] planned… and what Balaam… answered him… may you recognize the righteous deeds of the Lord” (Mic. 6:5). - [Ber. 7a, Sanh.. 105b, A.Z. 4b]

9 For from the top of the rocks I see him, and from the hills I behold him: lo, it is a people that shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations.

For from its beginning, I see them as mountain peaks: I look at their origins and the beginning of their roots, and I see them established and powerful, like these mountains and hills, because of their patriarchs and matriarchs. — [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 12, Num. Rabbah 20:19] It is a nation that will dwell alone: This is [the legacy] their forefathers gained for them-to dwell alone, as the Targum [Onkelos] renders it [it is a nation that is alone destined to inherit the world]. And will not be reckoned among the nations: As Targum [Onkelos] paraphrases, they will not perish along with the other nations, for it says, “for I shall make an end of all the nations…” (Jer. 30:11); they will not be reckoned with the rest. Another interpretation: When they rejoice, no other nation rejoices with them, as it says, “God alone will guide them [to future happiness]” (Deut. 32:12). And when the nations prosper, they will receive a share with each one of them, but it will not be deducted from their account, and this is the meaning of, “and will not reckoned among the nations.” - [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 12, Num. Rabbah 20:19]

Jews are spiritual mountains and even the weakest among us (modern day J-Street and the Reform) are spiritual hills albeit misguided. Inside they have a spirit ELOKIM from above but the energy is put out in a negative direction do to contamination of Tumay food aka Trafe and Nevailah that makes the brain dull and intermingling with confused nations rather than the wellsprings of Torah. [Having come from there, I was lucky to have the merits of past generations to get help from heaven. This is basically the meaning of the first part of the Bracha. For when I was just a hill, I was so touched by the speech of the older generation Reform Rabbi and their original prayer book which was closer to ours, that I built up some merits of my own and principles. This allowed the Torah hill in me to grow by spiritual tectonic forces and push up towards being a reasonable size spiritual mountain. Mikvah, Kashrus, Shabbos purified my thoughts.] I may rejoice alone in Torah at times as my close friends and family miss out because of assimilation (pity). A Torah Nation must rule by itself. Then we can get to our full potential.

10 Who hath counted the dust of Jacob, or numbered the stock of Israel? Let me die the death of the righteous, and let mine end be like his!

Who can count the dust of Jacob: As the Targum [Onkelos] renders, “the children of the house of Jacob, [concerning whom it was stated, 'they shall be as many as the dust of the earth, or one] of the four camps” - [referring to] the four divisions. Another interpretation: The dust of Jacob-The number of mitzvoth they fulfill with dust are innumerable: “You shall not plow with an ox and a donkey [together]” (Deut. 22:10);“You shall not sow your field with a mixture of seeds” (Lev. 19:19), the ashes of the red cow (19:19), the dust used for a woman suspected of infidelity, and others similar to these. — [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 12, Num. Rabbah 20:19] or the number of the seed of: [The word רֹבַע denotes] their copulations; the seed which issues from sexual intercourse. — [Mid. Tanchuma Balak 12, Num. Rabbah 20:19]
11 And Balak said unto Balaam: 'What hast thou done unto me? I took thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast blessed them altogether.' 12 And he answered and said: 'Must I not take heed to speak that which the LORD puts in my mouth?'

Partially true but he should have said, “How can I curse those whom the L-RD has blessed? I can only say what I am given by prophecy!”

13 And Balak said unto him: 'Come, I pray thee, with me unto another place, from whence thou may see them; thou shalt see but the utmost part of them, and shalt not see them all; and curse me them from thence.'

Curse them for me: Heb. וְקָבְנו ֹלִי. This term is in the imperative: Curse them for me!

14 And he took him into the field of Zophim, to the top of Pisgah, and built seven altars, and offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar. 15 And he said unto Balak: 'Stand here by thy burnt-offering, while I go toward a meeting yonder.' 16 And the LORD met Balaam, and put a word in his mouth, and said: 'Return unto Balak, and thus shalt thou speak.' 17 And he came to him, and, lo, he stood by his burnt-offering, and the princes of Moab with him. And Balak said unto him: 'What hath the LORD spoken?' 18 And he took up his parable, and said: Arise, Balak, and hear; give ear unto me, thou son of Zippor: 19 God is not a man, that He should lie; neither the son of man, that He should repent: when He hath said, will He not do it? or when He hath spoken, will He not make it good? 20 Behold, I am bidden to bless; and when He hath blessed, I cannot call it back. 21 None hath beheld iniquity in Jacob, neither hath one seen perverseness in Israel; the LORD his God is with him, and the shouting for the King is among them.

Balak is typical of Jew Hatred that would replace Bnei Yisrael hatred. Yet the blessings continue and still he persists.

… 28 And Balak took Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looks down upon the desert. 29 And Balaam said unto Balak: 'Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams.' 30 And Balak did as Balaam had said, and offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar.

From the time that he advised Pharaoh over 120 years before, Bilaam too has this hatred for Yisrael. Perhaps he is from the Bnei Lavan and feel that Rachel and Leah took their inheritance. Whatever it is the Yetzer has these two Tumay people trying to use the darker spiritual forces to curse Yisrael.

24:1 And when Balaam saw that it pleased the LORD to bless Israel, he went not, as at the other times, to meet with enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness. 2 And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel dwelling tribe by tribe; and the spirit of God came upon him. 3 And he took up his parable, and said: The saying of Balaam the son of Beor, and the saying of the man whose eye is opened; 4 The saying of him who hears the words of God, who sees the vision of the Almighty, fallen down, yet with opened eyes: 5 How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, thy dwellings, O Israel! 6 As valleys stretched out, as gardens by the river-side; as aloes planted of the LORD, as cedars beside the waters; 7 Water shall flow from his branches, and his seed shall be in many waters; and his king shall be higher than Agag, and his kingdom shall be exalted. 8 God who brought him forth out of Egypt is for him like the lofty horns of the wild-ox; he shall eat up the nations that are his adversaries, and shall break their bones in pieces, and pierce them through with his arrows. 9 He couched, he lay down as a lion, and as a lioness; who shall rouse him up? Blessed be every one that blesses thee, and cursed be every one that curses thee.

Bilaam is at this time just a parrot to what G-D says and he is forced to say the above against his will. Now Balak is furious or as the old expression goes “Fit to be tied”!

10 And Balak's anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together; and Balak said unto Balaam: 'I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times. 11 Therefore now flee thou to thy place; I thought to promote thee unto great honor; but, lo, the LORD hath kept thee back from honor.' 12 And Balaam said unto Balak: 'Spoke I not also to thy messengers that thou didst send unto me, saying: 13 If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the word of the LORD, to do either good or bad of mine own mind; what the LORD speaks, that will I speak?

You were warned of my limitations and this should be of no surprise to you!

… 25 And Balaam rose up, and went and returned to his place; and Balak also went his way.

But from his advice, 24,000 will die. He will return to collect his reward and be killed.

The few lines of the promiscuity of Moav and the deed of Pinchas have been removed for more consistency with next week’s Parsha.


Forwarded to me by Judith:

Newly discovered documents reveal that a reviled Bolivian tycoon was one of the greatest heroes of the Holocaust who rescued over 9,000 Jews.

Newly discovered documents have shown that a long-reviled Bolivian tycoon of the 1940s was in fact one of the greatest heroes of the Holocaust, rescuing over 9,000 Jews and finding jobs and support for them.
Mauricio Hochschild was one of three “Tin Barons” who controlled tin mining in Bolivia in the 1940s. Together, the Tin Barons controlled most of the world’s tin production. They had abysmal reputations.
Hochschild, a Jew, was considered to be short-tempered and ruthless. Born in Germany, Hochschild had moved to Bolivia at the age of 40 and built up a business, only to be driven out of his adopted country in 1944, when he was briefly jailed for not paying a new tax. When he died in 1965, in Paris, his reputation in Bolivia was for being greedy and unprincipled.
All that has changed in recent months, when workers for the Mining Corporation of Bolivia found a trove of old documents. Filthy, ragged, and mixed in with garbage, the pages were in terrible condition. Workers started going through the papers and eventually realized they belonged to Mauricio Hochschild whose business had been nationalized in 1952. The documents contained a huge surprise: far from being a callous tycoon, Mauricio Hochschild worked feverishly for years to save thousands upon thousands of his fellow Jews from the Holocaust, helping them obtain visas, then providing jobs, housing, schools and other aid for them once they reached safety in Bolivia.
Bolivian media has taken to calling Mauricio Hochschild the “Bolivian Oskar Schindler”. The comparison is inexact: while Oskar Schindler saved over a thousand Jews by employing them as slave laborers in his factories, Hochschild saved over 9,000.
Hochschild’s plan started in the 1930s, as he watched the rise of fascism in his native Europe. Hochschild was close to Bolivia’s volatile and short-lived President German Busch, who tried to stimulate Bolivia’s economy by admitting immigrants from Europe. Hochschild helped shape this plan, allowing Bolivia’s consulates in Zurich, Paris, London, Berlin and Vienna to issue visas to would-be immigrants, many of them Jews.
Refugees started pouring into Bolivia. From late 1938 until mid-1939 alone, 12,000 Jews fled Europe to the Latin American state. Some of these desperate refugees sailed on comfortable passenger ships; many more packed into unhygienic, barely seaworthy ships. The ships docked in the port of Arica, in nearby Chile, and then they were taken by train to Bolivia’s capital La Paz. The route became known as the Express Judio, or the “Jewish Express”.
Once in La Paz, there was woefully little infrastructure to help Jewish arrivals. Many were housed in jails until something more permanent could be found. Few of the refugees spoke Spanish and most arrived in Bolivia penniless.
The American Joint Distribution Committee helped settle some of the refugees, but Mauricio Hochschild wanted the refugees to be able to work and support themselves. It seems he also viewed the Jewish refugees as a key opportunity to help strengthen Bolivia’s economy and society. Hochschild helped found two new organizations to help his fellow Jews.
SOPRO, the Sociedad de Proteccion de los Inmigrantes Israelitas, or the Society for the Protection of Jewish Immigrants, provided monetary assistance to help the new refugees get on their feet; Hochschild personally contributed the thousands of dollars each month it took to keep SOPRO running.
He also bought three agricultural estates in the Bolivian province of Nor Yungas where Jewish refugees could work, and founded an organization called SOCOBO, the Sociedad Colonizadora de Bolivia, sometimes translated as the Society for the Protection of Israeli Immigrants, to manage the agricultural projects there. In addition, Hochschild employed Jewish refugees in his mining business.
Hochschild seems to have been known as a philanthropist who could help Jews the world over. One letter in the cache is from French authorities asking Hochschild to receive and settle a thousand Jewish orphans. Another letter, from a Jewish kindergarten in La Paz, Bolivia, asks for Hochschild’s help in expanding the school “in view of the number of children who are here and others who want to come.”
Historians reviewing the papers now believe that Hochschild was instrumental in helping political resistance to Nazi Germany. “I am convinced that Hochschild was part of the anti-fascist apparatus,” explains Edgar Ramirez, the archive director of the Mining Corporation of Bolivia. “In order to do what he did he had to be a man linked to the resistance movements that were operating around the world.”
The documents are causing many Bolivians to question what they know of their history. In Bolivian popular imagination “Hochschild was the bad guy,” Ramirez explains. Now they are realizing he was a national hero. “He saved many souls from the Holocaust by bringing them to Bolivia and creating jobs for them,” explains Carola Campos, head of the Bolivian Mining Corporation’s Information Unit.
In the 1940s, 15,000 Jews lived in Bolivia; almost all of them had come as refugees from Nazi Europe. For years, the community flourished, with synagogues, schools, burial societies, aid organizations, sports leagues, a retirement home, and Zionist clubs. Many Jews have emigrated from Bolivia, joining larger Jewish communities in Israel, Argentina, and the United States. Today, Bolivia’s Jewish community numbers under 500 people.
Thousands of Jews around the world continue to have a key link to Bolivia, having found safe haven in this country. Today, thanks to the a cache of dusty old papers in a company warehouse, Mauricio Hochschild, the man who rescued thousands of more Jews than Oskar Schindler, is at long last being acknowledged and his story rewritten.

The Goy who learned Torah 1 and 2

I talked in Schul this week about the story I told of the Lubavitcher Rebbe and the wedding that wasn’t. 1) In short, a young man learned in the Ponovez Yeshiva which is the Flag Ship for many of the Yeshivos of Yisrael. It came time for him to marry. The girl was from a Lubavitch Family and the father wrote for a Bracha. The Rebbe replied “check the family background”. They did found the school where he learned etc. There was another letter. The Rebbe repeated his request. They checked further and found that the boy was born on a non-religious Kibbutz to a non-Jewish mother. The fellows in Ponovez said, “Well all you have to do is go to Beit Din, immerse in the Mikvah (bloodletting in the Bris area) and be declared a Jew.” He packed up his things, went to England and was never seen again.

2) My friend, Chaim Bretler (not the man who tells Jokes), told me about the Kiruv of Aish HaTorah. One day they found a confused and distraught individual at the Kotel. They invited him in to learn Torah. He stayed in the Yeshiva for a few months. After this time, he said to them thanks but he is a non-Jew and found himself and he went home. They felt really bad that he was a non-Jew who was forbidden to learn Torah. BUT HASHEM YISBORACH WORKS IN STRANGE WAYS. Suddenly, Jews trying to find themselves in England started coming to Aish HaTorah. One, then another and another. It seems that the Goy was helping these Jews as HaKaras HaTov to Aish. So from the strong came out honey!

A very Frum Conservative Giyores asked for the Shiur of taking Challah with the blessing. I remembered and verified that in Israel the standard for the blessing is 1.6 kg. The Star K gives a few Shiurim and the minimum one is 2.6 lbs. or 1.18kg. However, it appears more towards even more than the Israeli Shiur if one reads all the article. I suggest going according to the Israeli Shiur which is standard for the whole country and in lbs. is 3.52 lbs. of dough.

Holocaust Survivor and French Politician passes away.

Co-owner of Charedi advertiser accused.

Wall of dirt collapses leading to an ecological disaster:

Soldier dies from accidental discharge:,7340,L-4984851,00.html

She wanted all now she will have nothing for a number of years.,7340,L-4984665,00.html

Inyanay Diyoma

Again stray shells on the Golan and an Israeli reply:,7340,L-4983067,00.html

Real Journalist Exposes Reform Kotel Plaza and their fake news stories.

Dr. Martin Sherman Israel’s disloyal and dishonest opposition:

 PM of the left:,7340,L-4983705,00.html

IDF demolishes memorial of murderer:,7340,L-4983730,00.html

One part of the travel ban listed as the country pays for US security to prescreen passengers at the airport.

Staged fight of 2007 for fake news. (Trump is a good friend of the family and appointed the wife Linda to head the SBA)

We have to be prepared for the day that the Abbas Era ends:

Ed-Op Hezballah is listening to Israel:,7340,L-4983995,00.html

Putin-Netanyahu discussed demilitarized zone:,7340,L-4985884,00.html

Ed-Op Dr. M. Kedar analysis of the Saudi-Qatar dispute:

A peaceful and healthy Shabbos to all,

Rachamim Pauli