Thursday, October 31, 2013

Jewish Olive Trees Damaged

You may have read the story of Arabs assaulted near Adei-Ad and olive tress cut.

All criminal activity such as destroying property and causing physical injury are wrong, should be punished and denounced so that no more people join in this type of activity.  I have done so multiple time in this blog as regards the "price-tag" policy.

According to this Tatzpit report, we are informed us that Jewish trees were cut up in the same area today.

Let me know if any Palestinian Authority official or even a local village mukhtar repeats my declaration.

As for an Arab B'tselem, does it exist?


Futures in Wine

My attention was drawn to this news item by my friend Tommy Waller of HaYovel:-

According to a report released this week by Morgan Stanley Research, there was a global undersupply of about 300 million cases of wine in 2012, the largest deficit recorded in almost 50 production in Spain, France and Italy--the world’s three largest wine-producing countries making 60 percent of the world’s wine--has sharply decreased...Meanwhile, wine consumption worldwide has increased 8 percent since 2000...

“The data suggests there may be insufficient supply to meet demand in coming years, as current vintages are released,” the report concludes.

Tommy, of course, thought divinely:

This report comes out on the day we finished planting 10,000 vines on Mt Gerizim. Coincidence? How can anyone not believe in the God of Israel?

I also recalled the verse "Again shalt thou plant vineyards upon the mountains of Samaria; the planters shall plant, and shall have the use thereof" in Jeremiah 31:4.

But, I'll admit, I also thought of the market value rise.  But we still have three more years before harvesting those grapes:-


Fruit is forbidden for the first few years after the tree is planted. The first three years of produce is called orlah...We may not benefit from it at all.

In any case, drink the wine of Binyamin (Shiloh; Psagot; Tanya; Gvaot;) and Samaria (Tura; and others)

And, ''l'chayim". 


GraphicZionism: A Halloween To Gag On




A Guest to Tel Shiloh

A Guest at Tel Shiloh:

MK and Deputy Minister Ofir Okunis.


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Breakdown of Israel's Foreign-Funded Left

I had a morning with the EU Partnership for Peace.   Here's what they think in depth.  In 2009, the headline was:

EU urges Israel to share holy city as the capital of two states

As reported the day previous, the conference I attended was to be

held at the Jerusalem Cinematheque under the title, “Jerusalem: Two Capitals for Two States – From Breakdown to Breakthrough.”  There will be both Israeli and Palestinian speakers, including Ron Pundak, Israeli co-chair of the Palestinian- Israeli Peace NGO Forum; Meir Margalit, who prior to last week’s elections held the East Jerusalem portfolio on the municipal council; Saman Khoury, secretary-general of the Palestinian Peace NGO Forum; and Rami Nasrallah, chairman of the International Peace and Cooperation Center.

Jerusalem, a city that was always geographically 'united' except fro the 19-year period of the Jordanian illegal occupation, is being touted as a place where Israel is destroying the right of the Arabs to be a community with the right to plan their spatial future.

The greetings came from the UN's Robert Serry, Mark Gallagher, a representative of J Call, David Chemla of French Peace Now and Yael Patir, Director of Israel Programs for J Street.  Danny Seidemann, formerly of Peace Now (we debated together multiple times in the 1980s), formerly of Ir Amim and now of Terrestrial Jerusalem, briefed us on his talk with Dennis Ross, Aaron David Miller, Robert Malley and Hussein Agha in July 2000.  He claimed they nothing of the details of Jerusalem and he had to use a table napkin in lieo of maps which no one had brought along.

In all the two hours I spent there were wonderful.  There were presentations by Yehudit Oppenheimer and Meir Margalit all bemoaning the situation as did Seidemann.  The views began to get more and more extreme, inviting intervention from abroad.  Already the EU funding is 5 million Euros.  They spoke in the name of democracy but their operations all intend to circumvent the democratic decisions made by Israel's voting public and their financing is from Israel's adversaries.

This aspect of an anti-democratic behavior is also apparent in other groups, notably "Breaking the Silence".

Here is an email l received concerning a tour taken the other day that illustrates the intolerable situation these foreign-sponsored groups engage in.  It is a chilling and disappointing testimony:

Yesterday I went on a trip to the southern Hebron hills with Yachad [the British J Street].  We were a minibus full of Brits who knew relatively little of the Israel Palestine dispute.

In the bus ride from Tel Aviv to the southern West Bank, we were addressed by Avner, a member of "Breaking the Silence", who subjected us to a litany of accusations about how Israel governed the area.  I have studied the conflict for some time and most of his accusations were new to me and did not ring true. Some of his statements I knew to be false (for example that the West Bank had been quiet for recently, suggesting that the security at the checkpoints was more there to harass the Palestinians than to enhance security) and saying that the most aggressive act that the PA had done was in a speech at the UN, while Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigade, under the direct authority of the PA had carried out recent acts of terrorism and been praised for it, and the PA have continued to incite acts of terrorism ever since it was created in the Oslo accords (see articles published by PMW from this Israel List).  Avner at first denied to me that it was certain Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigade was directly connected to the PA,  It is anyway an extremely well attested fact that even the BBC now confirm.  (The story of the start of the Al Aqsa Martyr's Brigade is well attested in "Son of Hamas", which aver says he has read.)  Avner also talked of "continuing Israeli occupation and control of the Gaza Strip".  It was absolutely untrue, as were several other accusations that he made with regard to international law.

Hannah Weisfeld mentioned further talks that Yachad is doing on "the legality of the occupation".  There is no question of the presence of Israeli forces on the West Bank being illegal but she just wanted to put the thought that it was into our minds.

She calls Yachad a "pro Israel pro Peace" that is committed to a two state solution, but my impression is very much that her intention is to lessen the support of British Jews for Israel, and to get Israel out of the West Bank even as the PA and all Palestinian political movements call for Israel's destruction.  If Israel did that the level of violence would increase dramatically.  Many more people would be killed and life for Jew and Arabs alike would become far more dangerous.  It would also kill any chance of a peaceful two state solution.

In my opinion she is committed to undermining support for Israel and her commitment to a two state solution is a sham.

Her slogan "Pro Israel Pro Peace" seems to be pure propaganda of the type seen in George Orwell's 1984. She is garnering opposition to Israel and seems to be trying to undermine the prospects for peace.  She is succeeding in hardening attitudes against Israel, and praising the Palestine Authority even as it is inciting people to murder Jews.  Somehow we need to get the message across about PA incitement of Palestinian children and adults to hate and commit violence against their Jewish neighbours.  Until the incitement hate propaganda stops, (and the trip included a lot of hate propaganda) there is no prospect for peace.

Taken together, this email and my observations today at the conference indicate that the frustration the progressive, radical leftist camp finds itself in is leading them into illiberal, immoral and dangerous directions.


From Their Mouths to God's Ears


The Israeli government has discussed with a special committee a Judaization project that aims at turning Buraq Square into a large Jewish synagogue divided into three sections...aiming to blur Islamic monuments [??].  Two governmental committees have been formed at the behest of Netanyahu to follow up the Judaization project, the Foundation added.

The supposed synagogue extends 150 meters starting from the south-western corner of Al-Aqsa Mosque, passing through the Bab-al-Magharibe and Buraq Wall till Tankaziya School north of Buraq square.

The Foundation stated that the construction work has been already started two months ago and it will be completed after the approval of the project.


Does the Picture Match?

Does this picture

fit this description?

...dozens of settlers and Jewish students stormed on Tuesday morning the Al-Aqsa Mosque through the Mughrabi Gate guarded by Israeli forces. The 33 settlers stormed in the morning the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and wandered in different parts. One group of 52 Jewish schoolpupils between the ages of 6-16 years old also stormed the mosque and desecrated courtyards .
...this group entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque en masse provocatively amid heavy occuptation police guard...

Or is that reflective of an immoral, irresponsible, fanatic and fundamentalist outlook?


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

So, You'd Like to Tour?

I have noted these tours previously.

Here's another one, of the Green Olive Tours:

Bethlehem is a Palestinian city in the central West Bank...

According to Christian tradition, Bethlehem is the birthplace of Jesus of Nazareth and the town is inhabited by one of the oldest Christian communities in the world, though the size of the community has shrunk in recent years due to emigration. According to Biblical tradition, the city is also believed to be the birthplace of David.


The Christian tradition also holds the city to be David's birthplace.  So why the difference?

And why the element of doubt in this: "also believed" whereas in the Christian tradition Bethlehem "is"?

After all, here is from their statement of principles:

Green Olive Tours is a social enterprise tour agency providing tours that are informative and analytical, covering the history, culture, and political geography of Palestine (West Bank) and Israel. The tours provide benefit to the indigenous population through the hiring and training of tour guides, overnight stays with families & small guest houses, and encouraging visitors to purchase local crafts.
The wide range of itineraries include interaction with Palestinians and Israelis, and visit areas that embody the history and current status of the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank and Jerusalem, and between Israel's Jewish, Palestinian-Arab, and Bedouin citizens. The complex mosaic of religions, nationalities, and political viewpoints in the Holy Land are explored in depth.

Is this matter so complex that it needs to be biased?


Yes, There Is A Security Risk

Yousef Munayyer, Open Zion regular, and executive director of the Jerusalem Fund for Education and Community Development, a Palestinian advocacy group in Washington, gets to enjoy the freedom of the press of the New York Times and published a op-ed, A Lopsided U.S. Visa-Waiver, and its main point is:

...Israelis can enter the United States without a visa.

Israel has long sought this prized designation but has always faced resistance from the State Department because the program requires reciprocity. Israel has been known to routinely deny entry to American citizens, often Arabs or Muslims or others sympathetic to the Palestinian cause, under the usually bogus pretext of “security concerns.”

This discriminatory treatment of U.S. citizens prompted several members of Congress to write to Israel’s ambassador expressing concern that Israeli border officials were “disproportionately singling out, detaining and denying entry to Arab and Muslim Americans,” and requesting all Americans be “treated equally at Israeli ports of entry.”

Oh, you mean there isn't a security concern?

Who killed Robert F. Kennedy?

And he gets personal:. 

I am routinely held up for questioning and inspection while watching Jewish Israelis zip by [at Ben-Gurion airport].

And makes a demand:

As an American citizen, I’m outraged that Senator Boxer and her colleagues are trying to pass a law that allows Israel to discriminate against U.S. citizens...American citizens will continue to get turned away by Israel because of their ethnic background while the United States opens its doors to all Israelis. This unequal treatment should not be permitted. Under no circumstances should the United States extend visa-waiver privileges to Israel, or any other state, unless it is willing to guarantee and demand equal treatment of its citizens and their protection from discrimination based on religion, ethnicity or national origin.

It is not a quite a matter of 'Palestinian' ethnicity but of the violence that Arabs practice against Jews as a matter of a rejection or opposition to out ethnicity.  And that violence makes them a risk that requires extra measures.


Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Religion of Liberalism Among Jews

This was written 15 years ago by Steven Plaut:

...(there) emerged a new form of Jewish assimilationism, the “Liberalism-as-Judaism” form of pseudo-Judaism. Especially in the United States, this “school of thought” held that Judaism was nothing more nor less than the American liberal political agenda, including the advocacy – in the name of Judaism and “Prophetic Ethics” – of liberal fashionable political ideas...

...The “Liberalism as Judaism” School argued that all of Judaism and Jewish tradition could be boiled down into a search for civil “justice” and secular “freedom”. Since it was axiomatic, in the eyes of Jewish liberals, that the liberal political agenda was synonymous with justice, freedom, and righteousness and that the opponents of liberalism were evil and unjust, “Judaism” itself could be conscripted in the cause of promoting liberal partisanship...


Poor Yesh Atid

They've gone up against the Muslim Waqf.

The suggestion that a Second Temple period mikveh be restored for use by women ascending to the Temple Mount by MK Aliza Lavie is stirring things up:

According to Al - Aqsa Foundation in a statement Sunday...MK Aliza Lavie from the party "Yesh Atid", which is led by Yair Lapid "- seeks to transform one Islamic sites of archaeological historical, located next to the Al-Aqsa Mosque for bathing and sanitizing to serve religious Jewish women who are venturing into the Al-Aqsa mosque, is a blatant assault on Aqsa mosque and its affiliates, and on the ancient Islamic monuments

and the Judaization of the vicinity of Al -Aqsa mosque.  ...
according to press sources, the MK promised during the meeting held recently in the Knesset, to work on the the request of the organization "Women for Temple", within her authority as head of the Commission on the progress of women in the Israeli Knesset , and in addition to being the Chairperson of the Committee for archaeology...

Why No Room?




Ever Heard of the Jerusalem Mines?


Like in land mines.

Like before 1967.

Here's a screensnap of a George Jessel promotional film of hi svisit to Israel in 1953:

This film:

(Kippatip = Treppenwitz)


Saturday, October 26, 2013

When A Muslim Becomes a "Kohein"

...Initially, her new book appears likewise to be set in a narrow Jewish Jerusalem world...Isaac Markowitz...takes up a new position as the right-hand man for an Israeli kabbalist, Rabbi Yehudah, and his wife, Shaindel Bracha, and strives to keep order in the courtyard of the title...
...Quickly it becomes apparent, though, that we are to be transported further afield than in the previous book, for we are introduced to Mustafa, an Arab with a deformed neck who works as a garbage collector on the Temple Mount, no less. By dint of his menial job and marginalized status in his society, Mustafa is constantly observing others (and, indeed, with his crooked neck he can hardly do otherwise); while to them he is invisible.
In dreaming up this surprising protagonist, whose language and thinking differ so vastly from those of the “yahudi” who visit the Noble Sanctuary (as the site is known to Mustafa and all Muslims) - the population that one might imagine would have been the American Jewish author’s more natural subject - Feuerman demonstrates no small amount of moxie. day, these two misfits first meet, the course of their respective fates is altered forever. Mustafa finds himself deeply touched by Isaac’s remark: “You clean the mountain. This is a great deed. You are keeping our holy mountain clean and wonderful… like the kohein [Temple priest]…”
As we all know, no good deed goes unpunished, and this small gesture of kindness will eventually lead Isaac – and Mustafa – into a whole mess of trouble, involving professors, police commanders, a flame-haired religious girl on a motorcycle, a shady reporter and a gang of rowdy prisoners in search of a route to true repentance.
When Mustafa discovers some archaeological artifacts in the rubble of the Waqf’s Temple Mount construction, he decides to save them from oblivion. (This actually happened in real life, and is still happening, though replace Jewish archaeologists for a crook-necked Muslim custodian.) Mustafa presents Isaac with one of these, an ancient clay pomegranate, but it ends up being confiscated by police commander Itai Shani, who is fearful of the international repercussions if the delicate balance of power at this holiest of sites is disturbed....
...Writers often imbue Jerusalem with a mystical, mysterious aura, which at times borders on the cloying. Feuerman’s eye, in contrast, tends here toward the earthy and does not shy away from the less aesthetic sides of life. The reader must be prepared to encounter flatulence, skin conditions, mouse turds, burps and all the vagaries of human nature. Mustafa’s and Isaac’s flaws are ever-present, without whitewashing or rosy colors; and this staunch realism is preserved even – or especially – in the face of such obviously romantic elements as the Temple Mount and kabbalists.
The only dreamy romanticism lies in Mustafa’s imagination. The idea of being kohen-like has taken hold of him, and he begins to try to act the way he imagines a priest would, and to hungrily watch the priestly blessing at the Western Wall, peering from his perch above...

Friday, October 25, 2013

This is ObamaCare


Report: Iran may be month from a bomb


and last May


Obama: Iran a 'year or more' away 

from nuclear bomb




GraphicZionism: Begin and the Two States



BC = Before Balfour Cambon


Suggested from here, where it is noted:

The original language of the declaration that was approved by the British foreign office and Prime Minister Lloyd George on September 19, 1917 specifically stated that Britain accepted the principle that "Palestine should be reconstituted as the national home of the Jewish people."

Use of the term "reconstitute" meant that the land was once their homeland before and should now be restored to them. It meant that the Jews had historical rights. For that reason, this language had been sought by the Zionist leadership led by Chaim Weizmann and Nahum Sokolow who wanted it indicated that the Jewish people had a historical connection to their land. This original formula had been approved by President Woodrow Wilson, to whom the text was submitted in advance.

It was not such a far-fetched goal to seek formal acknowledgement of Jewish historical rights. A little over two decades earlier a well-connected Protestant clergyman from Chicago, Reverend William Blackstone, received broad backing for a petition for a Jewish homeland signed by the chief justice of the Supreme Court, the speaker of the House of Representatives, university presidents and the editors of The New York Times and The Washington Post. Top industrialists, like John D. Rockefeller and J. P. Morgan, also lent their support. In short, the idea of the Jewish people re-establishing their country had become acceptable in the elite sectors of the American establishment.

Blackstone's petition specifically characterized the connection of the Jewish people to Eretz Israel as "an inalienable possession from which they were expelled by force." In other words, the Jewish people had not willingly given up their claim to their land. Indeed, there was no act in which they relinquished title to the Romans or their successors;


We're Back 160 Years Previously? Who Has The Keys Now?

Sound familiar?

The causes of war

During the years leading up to the Crimean War, France, Russia and Britain were all competing for influence in the Middle East, particularly with Turkey. Religious differences were certainly a catalyst in the Crimean War. Control of access to religious sites in the Holy Land had been a cause* of tension between Catholic France and Orthodox Russia for a number of years and in 1853, the conflict came to a head with rioting in Bethlehem, which was then part of the Ottoman empire ruled by Turkey. A number of Orthodox monks were killed during fighting with French monks. [The Orthodox denied the right of the Roman Catholics to place a silver star over the manger and to possess a golden key to the church door, and this summer of 1853 a serious riot took place; the Roman Catholics succeeded after a prolonged struggle in placing their star over the manger, but not before several Orthodox monks had been killed.] Tsar Nicholas I blamed the Turks for these deaths. [
It was puzzling to find the British nation fighting on the side of Mohammedans against Christians]

The war fully broke out in 1854.

That was 160 years ago.

To me, there is a contemporary resonance.

Oh, and the Charge of the Light Brigade?


None of the personalities involved in initiating the charge appear to have acted well. Raglan's order was imprecise, Airey's drafting of the order was ambiguous, Nolan failed to explain the order to Lucan adequately, Lucan failed to question Nolan properly to establish his commander's intent and Cardigan failed to seek adequate clarification from Lucan. Lucan also failed to provide the support from the rest of the cavalry and the horse artillery mentioned in the order.

...the immediate causes of the war — ostensibly, at least — were over religion, particularly over the protectorship of the Holy Places in Jerusalem...The Turks disliked the Russo-French conflict that was taking place on Turkish territory and the Sultan established a commission to examine the claims of the French. France suggested that the Catholic and Orthodox Churches should have joint control over the Holy Places: this led to an uproar in Russia and then deadlock. In February 1850 the Turks sent a diplomatic note to the French, giving two keys to the great door of the Church of the Nativity to the representatives of the Catholic Church. At the same time, the Porte sent a firman [decree] giving secret assurances to the Orthodox Church that the French keys would not fit the lock. However, by the end of 1852 the French had seized control of the Holy Places. This was seen by the Russians as a challenge to their prestige and policy; the Czar also saw Turkey falling under 'foreign' control.


A major point in dispute was whether the Greek Orthodox should continue in exclusive possession of the keys to the main door of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, on the spot where the baby Jesus was born and cradled in the manger. The Latins had their own keys, but they were to a side door and not to the main door. There was also a row about a silver star with Latin inscriptions in the sanctuary, which had mysteriously disappeared in 1847, as well as disputes over the Latin claim to the right to repair the principal cupola of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and over the right to officiate at the Tomb of the Virgin Mary at Gethsemane. Feelings ran so high that Greek and Latin monks came to blows with crosses and candlesticks in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Lord Malmesbury, British Foreign Secretary in 1852, remarked on ‘the melancholy spectacle’ of a quarrel ‘for exclusive privileges in a spot near which the heavenly host proclaimed peace on earth and goodwill towards men … and rival churches contending for mastery in the very place where Christ died for mankind.’

Looking to gain Roman Catholic support at home, in 1852 Napoleon III demanded that the Sublime Porte in Constantinople recognise France as the protector of Christian monks and pilgrims in the Holy Places. As a hint he sent a French warship up the Dardanelles and the Porte bowed to his wishes and had a key to the Church of the Nativity’s main door handed over to the Latins.


A Temple Mount Mixed-Imagery Theme in Hungary


Iván Fischer’s New Opera ‘The Red Heifer’ Fights Anti-Semitism in Hungary
This opera has been composed on a notorious 19th century incident -  the 1883 accusation in the Hungarian village of Tiszaeszlar that Jews had killed a Christian girl...[
an incident in the Hungarian village of Tiszaeszlar, where Jews were accused of killing 14-year-old Eszter Solymosi] in 1883 Some 15 Jews faced trial. They were acquitted, but the blood libel persisted...And Fischer...underline[s]: « The same responses, stereotypes and petrified, unreasonable prejudices appear nowadays as if we were back in the Red Cow Inn in Nyíregyháza in 1883. Following in the footsteps of Gyula Krúdy, who wrote a beautiful book on this subject, I too do not endeavor to be objective.  There can be no objectivity in the blood libel case. The main topic of the opera is not the court case itself, but rather the ‘psychological mystery’ (Krúdy), how the conjecturers of the showcase trial won 13 year-old Móric Scharf over to be their crown witness.

Móric Scharf, who as a child had accused his father and his companions of murder, was interviewed 45 years later, in 1927. Scharf said he had been severely tortured and threatened and felt he had been used by the anti-Semitic county lords for their political purposes. After the verdict he moved abroad and returned to the Jewish religion. »

You'll notice, though, that the "Red Heifer" is a reference to the "Red Cow Inn", not the heifer that affords cleansing from ritual impurity.


NYTimes Admits: Sara Netanyahu Respected

Respected as a child psychologist, that us:-

Corrections: October 23, 2013


Because of an editing error, an article on Oct. 12 about the increasing isolation of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, especially when it comes to his insistence that Iran completely halt its uranium enrichment program and that there be no halt to the economic sanctions against Iran, described incorrectly the criticisms that many Israelis have voiced about Mr. Netanyahu’s wife, Sara. While her purported temper has been widely faulted, her child-rearing methods have not. (Ms. Netanyahu is a respected child psychologist.)

Now, how isolated is Benjamin Netanyahu?

Well, Jodi Ruderon wrote:

when Mr. Netanyahu has recently tried to focus the world on the Iranian nuclear program, using ancient texts, Holocaust history and a 2011 book by Iran’s president, Hassan Rouhani, he has sometimes come off sounding shrill...the Israeli leader risks seeming frozen in the past amid a shifting geopolitical landscape... such isolation is hardly new to a man with few personal friends and little faith in allies, who shuns guests for Sabbath meals, who never misses a chance to declare Israel’s intention to defend itself, by itself.

But she admits:

The prime minister’s stance on Iran, his signature issue, though, is popular with the public. 

And someone I know, helps Ruderon:

Mitchell Barak, a Jerusalem political consultant who worked for him in the early 1990s and has watched him closely since. “The problem is now he’s lost momentum. His message is clear, his message is the same, the situation is the same, but everyone else’s perspective has changed. It’s like you’re the only one in a dark room with a flashlight.”

Mitch's last job was PR for the Foreign Media for Shimon Peres.

And Jodi's last word:
Critics and admirers alike say it is a Messianic crusade. Mr. Netanyahu is not religious, but he does see himself as a leader of destiny. 

“We’re here for a purpose — I’m here for a purpose,” he said Thursday night. “Which is to defend the future of the Jewish people, which means to defend the Jewish state. Defending it from a nuclear Iran.  “I’m not going to let that happen,” he added. “It’s not going to happen.”


A friend noted:
In fact polls show significant Israeli support for Netanyahu. Mistakes will creep into stories when we report about what we wish were true instead of what really is true.


Thanks to Simon's Father, Grandmother and ... Girlfriend

While a Jewish grandmother and a Jewish father can help instill values such as charity,

Simon Cowell Makes Major Pledge to IDF at Haim Saban’s $20 Million LA Fundraiser

British music and television producer Simon Cowell has reconnected with his Jewish roots, pledging a large donation to the executive Haim Saban, creator of television’s Power Rangers, who pledged to donate $1 million if Cowell would accompany him in singing the show’s theme song, “Go, Go Power Rangers,” the Jewish Chronicle reported. Cowell began to sing, but then said he would make a donation if Saban allowed him to stop.

Last year Cowell told an audience at a similar Jewish non-profit fundraising dinner, in Britain, “My dad is Jewish. He never told me or my brother or his wife. It’s in my blood and drew me to the charity.”

Cowell’s paternal grandmother was Jewish and immigrated to the UK from Poland.

a nice Jewish girlfriend helps:

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Looking for a Great Date? Don't Be Fooled!

Don't let the label fool you, they're from Judea and Samaria:-

Credit: BarryS
The UK.

When Methodists Were 'Menschen'


More details here.

And when they aren't.


Uri Avnery - 90

How do we celebrate Uri Avnery's 90th birthday?

 Uri Avnery's 90th birthday
 Monday Oct. 28, Tel Aviv,
starting at 6pm  with informal reception
 from  7pm:  

Bible reading
  Amikam Gurevitch
A short film
90 turning points in Uri Avnery's life
edited by Eran Vered and Shlomo Chayon
"Will Israel exist in 90 years from now?"
Meron Benvenisti,
Shlomo Sand,
Itzhak Livni,
Talia Sasson
Uri Avnery
Gal Gabay
Rona Keynan
Entrance free - Hebrew spoken


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Feverish Zionism

Stated clearly:-

Sheikh Mohammed Hussein, the Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestinian territories, has denounced “Zionist feverish attempts” to divide the Aqsa Mosque temporally and spatially between Muslims and Jews.  He said in a statement on Wednesday that the Aqsa Mosque would remain solely Islamic and would not be divided.  Sheikh Mohammed said that the Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) were continuing in their attempts to Judaize the Aqsa Mosque, pointing to the ceaseless excavations underneath it amidst absolute secrecy and media blackout.  The IOA would not succeed to change the fact that the Aqsa Mosque, with all its yards, buildings and whatever was above or beneath its ground, was and would continue to be solely Islamic, the Mufti underlined.


Talking Settlements

When Dayan told the Americans that settlements were good:-

General Dayan expanded on the refugee question, saying that unless it were solved, no real settlement of the conflict was possible. One could see in Lebanon and in Jordan, and to some degree in Kuwait, the nature of the problem. The question is where the refugees will settle permanently. There is no other solution than for them to settle in their respective countries. Some may claim compensation. Even a Palestinian state in the West Bank cannot absorb the one half million refugees now in Jordan. None of the refugees come from Nablus, and they are not wanted there. Dayan once tried to convince the Gazans to move to the West Bank, and offered to build them accommodations, but they would not move and they would not have been welcomed. Israel wants to solve the problem and to provide the refugees with a normal status. They should move out of the camps, should get work, and should obtain citizenship. Israel can deal with the 190 thousand refugees in Gaza. Israel can give them accommodations, and can end the camps. Whoever wants to claim Israeli citizenship can do so. They will not be pressured and citizenship will not be imposed on them, but this is Israel’s obligation to give them the option.

August 10, 1977
(p. 446)

And did he say anything about the Arabs who weren't refugees?  

Yes, on page 448:

General Dayan repeated that Israel rejected any contact with the PLO, but stated that Israel does want to talk to the Palestinian Arabs in the administered territories about how to develop a modus vivendi. In Gaza, one half of the population consists of refugees. They work in Israel and he sees no solution other than their being combined with Israel. They should have work and they should have places to live. In Jerusalem and in the surrounding areas, the people are also tied to Israel...Israel wants to live together with the West Bank and Gaza. This is a very general idea and Dayan had no practical proposals to make. But he emphasized again that he wanted to discuss how Arabs and Israelis could live together.

Menachem Begin participated in the meeting with then-Secreatary of State Vance and

Prime Minister Begin added to General Dayan’s remarks by saying that he would propose that the Arabs in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza should have full cultural autonomy. Israel would not interfere in their lives. They would have schools based on their own heritage. They should have the free option of citizenship in Israel. Now in Judea and Samaria the Arabs are citizens of Jordan. Israel will not force its own citizenship on them, since that would be wrong. But Israel is prepared to give them options. If they ask for Israeli citizenship, Israel will grant it. They will be entitled to vote in Knesset and will have full equality. There are now in Israel 100,000 Jews [Arabs?], who are permanent residents, but who are not citizens. They enjoy all rights except voting. If they become citizens, then they vote; if they are resident non-citizens, they have all rights, but they do not vote. There should be complete equality of rights for Arab and Jewish residents, and Arab and Jewish citizens. Israel has proved that Arabs and Jews can live together. Israel will not interfere in their lives.

Police Shoot 13-Year Old

On many occasions, Israeli soldiers and other security personnel have been accused of unnecessary lethal violence directed at Arab youngsters who are either demonstrating in a violent manner, usually stone-throwing and sometimes tossing molotov cocktails or, being wanted, are shot during an arrest procedure.

Here's one example:

Nadim Melham was shot dead in unclear circumstances by the Israeli police at his home in the Arab village of Arara in northern Israel on January 19...They claim he tried to escape and, when cornered, pulled out a gun and cocked the trigger. He was shot in the chest by officers defending themselves, say police.

The family, however, say Melham was sleeping in his room when the police broke in and that he was shot in cold blood. One relative alleges that the police had been trying to recruit Melham as an informer for some time and that he had angered officers by repeatedely [sic] refusing to cooperate.


Anti-Israel protests in Hebron quickly turned into violent riots on Thursday, as tempers flared a day after the killing of a Palestinian teen who assaulted border police with a fake gun.

Hundreds of Palestinians threw rocks at the Israeli guard post where the teenager, Mohammed Salayme, who accosted an officer at the inspection point with a pistol, was shot by a second police officer. Later, the gun turned out to have been a fake.

Some 40 protesters were reported injured, many from inhaling teargas. Next to the Cave of the Patriarchs, rioters hurled a firebomb at Israeli soldiers.

Is this perhaps an evil policy of the IDF, to target youngsters, innocent of any wrong doing?

Or can such things happen in the course of policing activity, whether or not the youngster is guilty of anything?

For example, what happened today, in the United States:

California Sheriff's Deputies Shoot, Kill 13-Year-Old

Northern California sheriff's deputies shot and killed a 13-year-old boy who was carrying a replica assault rifle after repeatedly telling him to drop it, sheriff's officials and family members said.  Two Sonoma County deputies on patrol saw the boy walking with what appeared to be a rifle around 3 p.m. Tuesday in Santa Rosa, Sheriff's Lt. Dennis O'Leary said. The replica gun resembled an AK-47 with a black magazine cartridge and brown butt, according to a photograph released by the sheriff's office...Deputies would only learn after the shooting that it was a replica, according to O'Leary.
After spotting the boy, the deputies called for backup and repeatedly ordered him to drop the weapon, O'Leary said in a news release. They fired several rounds from their handguns immediately afterward, according to O'Leary.  A neighbor in the area, Brian Zastrow, told the Santa Rosa Press Democrat he heard seven shots...The boy fell to the ground on top of the rifle, according to O'Leary. O'Leary said the deputies ordered him to move away from the weapon before approaching him and putting him in handcuffs.

Is it a problem of police mentality?


An Observation on Biblical Archaeology


While Israel Finkelstein has long abandoned looking to the Bible for any authentic historical information that might shed light on the ‘actual’ origin(s) of Israel, Eilat Mazar announces the discovery of King David’s palace in the archaeological excavations of the Iron Age city presently bearing his name. The Bible is pronounced both ‘boon’ and ‘bust’ by scholars of equal acumen!

Steven Collins is Dean of the College of Archaeology & Biblical History at Trinity Southwest University.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

I Did Not Set That Fire

Between Turmos-Aya and Silwad:

as seen from Shiloh.


A Drought? Like in a Famine?

From the NYTimes:-

More than 3,200 years ago, life was abuzz in and around what is now this modern-day Israeli metropolis [Tel Aviv] ... To the north lay the mighty Hittite empire; to the south, Egypt was thriving under the reign of the great Pharaoh Ramses II. Cyprus was a copper emporium. Greece basked in the opulence of its elite Mycenaean culture, and Ugarit was a bustling port city on the Syrian coast. In the land of Canaan, city states like Hazor and Megiddo flourished under Egyptian hegemony...Yet within 150 years, according to experts, the old world lay in ruins. believe that by studying grains of fossilized pollen they have uncovered the cause.

In a study published Monday in Tel Aviv: Journal of the Institute of Archaeology of Tel Aviv University, researchers say it was drought that led to the collapse in the ancient southern Levant.


I originally thought the Ten Plagues.

But on second reading, I lean (sorry for the pun) to the content at Genesis 41:25 -32:

25 And Joseph said unto Pharaoh: 'The dream of Pharaoh is one; what God is about to do He hath declared unto Pharaoh. 26 The seven good kine are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years: the dream is one. 27 And the seven lean and ill-favoured kine that came up after them are seven years, and also the seven empty ears blasted with the east wind; they shall be seven years of famine. 28 That is the thing which I spoke unto Pharaoh: what God is about to do He hath shown unto Pharaoh. 29 Behold, there come seven years of great plenty throughout all the land of Egypt. 30 And there shall arise after them seven years of famine; and all the plenty shall be forgotten in the land of Egypt; and the famine shall consume the land; 31 and the plenty shall not be known in the land by reason of that famine which followeth; for it shall be very grievous. 32 And for that the dream was doubled unto Pharaoh twice, it is because the thing is established by God, and God will shortly bring it to pass.


This Wouldn't Relate to Some Plagues, Would It?


A study of fossil pollen particles in sediments extracted from the bottom of the Sea of Galilee has revealed evidence of a climate crisis that traumatized the Near East from the middle of the 13th to the late 12th century BCE. The crisis brought about the collapse of the great empires of the Bronze Age. The results of this study will be published in the coming days by Dr. Dafna Langgut and Prof. Israel Finkelstein of the Institute of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University and Prof. Thomas Litt of the Institute of Geology, Mineralogy and Paleontology at the University of Bonn, Germany. The results appeared today in Tel Aviv: Journal of the Institute of Archaeology of Tel Aviv University<> and can be read online at<>.  Prof. Mordechai Stein of the Hebrew University also participated in the research.
"In a short period of time the entire world of the Bronze Age crumbled," explains Prof. Finkelstein. "The Hittite empire, Egypt of the Pharaohs, the Mycenaean culture in Greece, the copper producing kingdom located on the island of Cyprus, the great trade emporium of Ugarit on the Syrian coast and the Canaanite city-states under Egyptian hegemony – all disappeared and only after a while were replaced by the territorial kingdoms of the Iron Age, including Israel and Judah.
The researchers drilled through 300 meters of water in the heart of the Sea of Galilee and retrieved a core of sediments 20 meters long from the bottom of the lake. The goal was to extract from the sediments fossil pollen grains. "Pollen is the most enduring organic material in nature," explains palynologist Dr. Dafna Langgut, who carried out the actual work of sampling. "Pollen was driven to the Sea of Galilee by wind and river-streams, was deposited in the lake and was embedded in the under-water sediments. New sediments that are added annually create anaerobic conditions which help preserve the pollen particles. These particles tell us about the vegetation that grew in the vicinity of the lake in the past and therefore testify to the climatic conditions in the region." The chronological framework of the sediment core was established by radiocarbon dating organic materials that were preserved in the sediments. The counting and the identification of the pollen grains revealed a period of severe droughts between ca. 1250 and 1100 BCE. A core of sediments from the western shore of the Dead Sea – also studied by the research group – provided similar results...


A famine?


Sari Nusseibeh: Arab Jerusalemites "Not Really Rational"; 'Unreasonable'

as part of a broader “anti-normalization” campaign, the Palestinian leadership has for decades warned residents against casting ballots. So a vast majority do not vote, despite the possibility that their large numbers could win a solid blocking minority on the 31-member City Council, if not a winning coalition with sympathetic Israelis.

The whole thing is not really rational,” said Sari Nusseibeh, president of Al Quds University, whose family has 1,300-year roots in Jerusalem. “It’s not by reason that people are guided; it’s by sentiments and feelings and fears and histories.”

From his mouth to our ears.

And some other things I found peculiar:

a)  "There are about 360,000 Palestinian residents in this officially united but deeply divided city of 800,000..."

Is the city truly "deeply divided" or is that the catch-phrase that everyone in the media and on the Left employs - to further divided the city and keep it apart?

b)  Alaa Obeid, 23, a student who briefly flirted with running for City Council this year...said.  “In our society, it’s very important what the public thinks...If all these years, people have boycotted the elections, I might be in a place where there’s a risk to my future. I’ll be an outcast.”

That is "thinking"?  Or is that fear of being killed by the PLO or Hamas?  That's public opinion"?  So, it's easier and braver to shoot a Jew, stab him or throw a rock at her than to buck Arab public opinion?

c)  and on the contrary to the above, consider this: "Mr. Barkat’s opponent in Tuesday’s balloting...has accused the incumbent of threatening Israel’s sovereignty in the capital by giving “the extreme left”

So, what is going on in Jerusalem?  Are Jews also irrational?


I received this from a smart friend:

There is another key line in the piece: “defending his support of Jewish settlement in Arab areas seized by Israel in 1967.”

1.       Arab areas? Is the Jewish quarter of the Old City an Arab area? French Hill? Ramat Eshkol? Ramat Shlomo? What makes them “Arab”? An 18-year Jordanian occupation? (especially if they were empty land since before the Muslim conquest, or Jewish residential quarters for the centuries preceding the Jordanian occupation)?
2.       Seized? Is that what happened in the Six Day War? Israel grabbed?
3.       Settlement is a loaded term, as she well knows.

How about a neutral phrase:
“defending his support of Jewish residence in parts of Jerusalem occupied by Jordan from 1949-1967.”


Now We're Guilty of Alcoholic Imbibement

A screen snap from here (until fixed), and here:-




Make Up Your Minds - Poisoned or What?

(Reuters) - The head of a Russian forensics agency said on Tuesday that samples from the body of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat had revealed no traces of radioactive polonium, a Russian news agency reported.

AFP - Swiss radiation experts have confirmed they found traces of polonium on clothing used by Yasser Arafat which "support the possibility" the veteran Palestinian leader was poisoned.


Monday, October 21, 2013

On Rav Soloveitchik's 'Confrontation'

Unfortunately, my adviser’s reaction to my desire to concentrate on Rav Soloveitchik was far from encouraging. “How can you possibly write about a person who opposes Jewish-Christian dialogue?” was his reaction, more or less. I had discussed my project with very few people, and the even fewer among them who had heard of Soloveitchik knew little more about him than his refusal to engage in dialogue, because the Rabbinical Council of America had publicized his essay “Confrontation.” The image of the Rav held by non-Jews did not bother me, because my interest in him had nothing to do with his views on Christianity or his attitude toward dialogue. 

Nevertheless, I was very pleased when, during the months of my stay in Jerusalem, I heard a shiur by David Hartman, a student of Soloveitchik, in which he refuted the too simplistic interpretation of “Confrontation.” Hartman showed that the Rav was not fundamentally opposed to dialogue, but insisted on certain conditions. Actually, for me the Rav represented exactly the type of qualified Orthodox figure who would be necessary for a serious interreligious dialogue. Later, subsequent to my own analysis of Soloveitchik’s writings, I could only agree with Hartman, especially after I realized that the Rav must have seriously studied Christian theology in connection with his encouraging selected educated people to take an interest in this field.

From Christian M. Rutishauser’s book, recently being published, The Human Condition in the Thought of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik.


The Left's Fault Line of Hypocrisy

Well, would you believe this:-

Jerusalem's holy sites must be protected, open to all to conduct their religious rites and to enable people from all religions to appreciate the cultures and civilizations that exist there.  Today Jerusalem is not open, it is not united and there is no free and protected access for all to religious sites. There cannot be peace in Jerusalem unless this changes.

Jerusalem's religious sites, if not treated with their due respect and honor, have the potential of becoming the ultimate weapon of mass destruction, bringing the entire region to explosion. For this reason, it is essential that we all know more about each other and our connections to the holy city of Jerusalem.

That is an auspicious introduction to a  reaction to Islamic radicalism asserting Muslim intolerance and unwillingness to coexistence and share a holy site that is sacred to not only Islam and Judaism but also Christianity.

However, its author, Gershon Baskin, continues:

The flashpoint holy referred to as the Temple Mount...Judaism's mainstream rabbis, the official Rabbinate of the State of Israel and the vast majority of ultra-Orthodox rabbis have all determined that Jews should not even step foot on the site...but there is a small minority amongst extremist right-wing elements in Israel that call for Jews to defy the status quo and enter the site anyway.

...But there are no Israeli plans to take over al-Aqsa. There are no plans to demolish the mosque or to divide it and allow a space for Jewish prayer. The Israeli government is well aware of the extremely sensitive nature of this issue.

Those who raise the threat level surrounding al-Aqsa or the Haram are being dangerously irresponsible. Al-Aqsa is not in danger. Those who spread the rumors and the fears otherwise are playing with fire. These kinds of rumors could easily cost countless innocent human lives.

It is absolutely mandatory that responsible people on both sides calm the atmosphere regarding the Haram and al-Aqsa...

That is a major contribution to pacification efforts but I would wish to read Sheikh Raas Salah's response.

Here's a statement from last by Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, Chairman of the Supreme Islamic Council in Jerusalem and preacher at the Al-Aqsa Mosque that:

 Al-Aqsa mosque is an Islamic Waqf and it is only for Muslims

Also last year we read that

Abdul Rahman Abbad, the head of the Muslims’ scholars council in Jerusalem, told Ma'an, “Muslims are the only ones who own this mosque.”  He insisted that religious authorities are not bound by Israeli decisions, and warned of Israel's intentions in issuing such a statement ahead of the holy month of Ramadam, when Muslims flock to the compound.

and last month, we read this:

“We are asking the Israeli police not to provide permission for the huge numbers of Jews who visit and especially to bar the extreme Jews from entering the Noble Sanctuary,” says Sheikh Azzam al-Khatib, director of the waqf...

President Obama couldn't visit because he'd be accompanied by Israeli officials.

Even Abbas is no moderate:

  “Israel has no right to split up the Al-Aqsa Mosque, neither physically nor in terms of prayer times,” Abbas said, and stressed that “all East Jerusalem is Palestinian.”

Hamas is opposed, it goes without saying, to any overt Jewish identity with and on the Temple Mount.  And so, yielding to extremism and to those who deny equality of rights, Baskin continues:

Israel should repeatedly announce that when there are no threats to public safety, free access to the Haram is ensured, as was demonstrated during the holy month of Ramadan. The policy of free and safe access to holy places must be guaranteed by religious leaders and political authorities.

And by free access, he knows he supports denying Jews freedom of worship and access, despite the law.  Jews are excluded from human rights considerations.  All of a sudden, he supports the Rabbinate and its interpretation of the Halacha.
That is another example of what I call The Left's Fault Line of Hypocrisy.