Beyond the Cusp

January 16, 2016

Israel and the Jews

 

Allow us to revisit some of the items we have had in articles and draw them together here in one article. This will not be a rehashing of the legal matters, treaties, conventions and other documents and agreements. This is about the Jewish People and the Land of Eretz Yisroel and there are effects which can be observed often only through experiencing and seeing the changes and other effects between the Jewish people and Israel, the land itself. The first thing is that Israel in modern times attracts Jew for any number of reasons. There are two main groups which sometimes cross over and merge for some Jews. There are Jews who feel this strange pull that can only be fulfilled by making Aliyah and return there to their ancestral home which is exactly how many Jews explain there coming to Israel. For some it is the commandment to settle the land which commands the Jewish people to sojourn and commit their only expansive conquest taking the lands promised to Abraham, Izsak and Yaakov in Genesis in the Bible, the Old Testament, the Jewish Bible. Some come to Israel to escape anti-Semitism as Israel is the sole nation which promises to take whatever necessary actions to protect Jews from persecution.

 

Despite the actions of the world to tie Israel’s hands by court threats, protests world-wide, coordinated violence from the Arabs both within Israel and from the areas of Judea and Samaria which have been granted autonomy where their government rewards families whose members attack and murder Jews with higher rewards for more Israelis murdered or mutilated for life. This is what drives the suicide bombers as they know their family will receive a greater salary for life called a pension for a martyr of the cause of freedom, which means literally that they died in the attack, often due to being a walking human bomb, making their family honored and given a pension which is often higher than most Arabs make even those working for their government. This pension, blood money, is an incentive for Arabs who find they are poor and have little hope of providing for the family, often a wife and more than four children that the only way an Arab may decide that a suicide assault on the Jews is their only hope for their family. There have been Arabs from the autonomous region, who have charged at IDF soldiers at a checkpoint with a knife in their hand hoping to be caught and not shot so they can be sent to an Israeli prison as, and some have confessed this, their life would drastically improve where he would have better food and general conditions. Some attacks are carried out by the younger males in a family who know that they will receive next to nothing as an inheritance and for a farming family that is close to a condemnation to poverty and helplessness and they believe their only hope is to kill Israelis so their family will receive a pension should they be martyred and a salary should they be caught and imprisoned.

 

Jews native born to Israel, Sabras (Hebrew: צבר‎), is the name of a cactus Opuntia cactus (pictured below, known in Israel as “tsabar” (צבר) and as the fruit of the Sabra cactus has a hard and thorns outside and its fruit is sweet, soft, juicy and did I mention sweet. That description is really fitting in describing many original Israel born native Jews, some of which are my family. A few native families have resided in Israel since the early and mid-1800s while others have their family’s tree going back beyond and to before the 135CE and earlier 70CE Roman destruction of the Holy Temple and dispersal of the Jews from their land. This was executed in the hope that would destroy the Jewish people as they would no longer be attached to the land. This had worked just as they had done to the remnants of Carthage and possibly numerous other civilizations which we never knew as they did disappear from the face of the Earth. Some have family records which show their families having returned to Eretz Yisroel from the Babylonian Exile when Cyrus the Great of Persia conquered the Babylonian Empire on his way to establishing the Persian Empire, one of the largest and most storied in all history. Cyrus the Great gave the Jews his blessings to return and rebuild the Holy Temple and serve Hashem as directed by Torah. Some Israeli families arrived from Europe after the calamities of the Shoah and World War II. An equal or potentially greater number were expunged and forced from the Arab and Muslim nations of MENA (Middle East and North Africa) as well as Iran through edict, pogroms or legal restrictions making life next to or actually impossible. In most cases all property and wealth was confiscated and in the worst instances, forced out with one suitcase per person and those were inspected and anything of worth was removed.

 

 

Sabra Cactus with Fruit and Flowers

Sabra Cactus with
Fruit and Flowers

 

 

When they claim that the Jews of Israel return to their real homeland they are actually there. When the demand is for the Jews return to the lands where they arrived from, do they include the approximate half of Israelis whose former nation was throughout the Islamic world. Further, look at Europe with the European Union and their labelling of products from parts of Israel and the numbers of Jews literally fleeing European nations such as France, Sweden and others as well as the clincher, the unapologetic denunciations of Israel in every manner such that these are so egregious as they can only be described and blatantly anti-Semitic coming from the Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom. Her inflammatory accusations and denunciation along with her prejudging determinations which would be ruinous for Israel and against every agreement, convention, treaty, Mandate and other legal arrangements and pronouncement or still to be determined through formal negotiations and not the decree of some other nation not involved or even mentioned as a party to the situation are simply over the top. An example of her adamant refusal to take any moderation of her views is easily displayed in this recent debate in the Swedish Parliament where a member demanded of her an explanation of her extremist views shown below.

 

The lands of Israel have been conquered by nearly every empire which showed out of the Middle East, Europe and even from the Mongols from Asia and Egypt from Africa. The only empire to ever get production from the lands of Israel, which did not include simply ruling over and taxing Jews working the lands, were the Egyptians. There are those who claim the lands which today make up the nation of Israel, even if one were to concede Israel all the lands except Gaza from the Jordan River west to the Mediterranean Sea, were originally inhabited by a group of peoples, numerous tribes and city states, known as the Canaanites. This was a valid point in the times of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob but by the time the Israelites left Egypt this was no longer the case as the Egyptians collected taxes and provided protection against the Hittites who resided further north possible within what is today Turkey, and from any other invaders. As the Exodus from Egypt was a revolt against Egypt, there would be a natural series of events that a group who had been originally welcomed and over time and a change in the lineage of the Pharaoh that they had been enslaved as had much of the Egyptian people who revolted with a shove and assist from Hashem who arranged ten incentives to persuade Pharaoh to allow the Israelite nation to leave and have their own homeland. The lands the Israelites took forty years later, give or take a few months, was land which belonged to the Egyptians and it was the tribal chiefs and some Egyptians that were defeated over some time and finally the lands were solidified by King David and King Solomon with a fair bit to spare. This marked the end of Israelite expansive designs. Here are some maps of the areas in question.

 

 

Left side map depicts the division of the Promised Land amongst the tribes and right side map compares the modern promised land from the Jordan west to the Mediterranean Sea compared to the maximum of area during King David’s and King Solomon’s reigns.

 

 

Eventually the land fell to the Babylonians who forced the Israelites into exile working them in Babylon. What is interesting is that the records show next to no Babylonians remaining in the Promised Land more than likely because it refused to produce a decent crop or provide grazing lands. The Persians having some knowledge about the Hebrews and the Promised Land had those Israelite who desired to return to their lands to do so and required only a tax be paid each year. This arrangement worked for a while and the Persian Empire finally fell to the Greeks led by the Macedonian Alexander the Great. The land was again worked by the Israelites but rifts politically had split the lands with the norther ten tribes taking the name of Israelite with them and the southern kingdom was largely made up by the tribe of Judah along with the considerably smaller Benjamin. These were called Judea and had control of Jerusalem and the Temple. The northern tribes were conquered by the Assyrian Greeks and were dispersed throughout their holding and eventually went their separate ways becoming the ten lost tribes of Israel, literally. Judea fell eventually as well but remained in the lands. The Romans replaced the Greeks and from this point forward the life of the lands of Judea and their people who were called Judeans which eventually shortened to Jew.

 

The next part of the lives of the Judean, Jews, was related by a former MK Yaakov Katz in an editorial 407,118: The up to date number of Jews in Judea and Samaria, not counting Jerusalem. In the article he gave a description of what is a Jew which I hope to never forget as it was very relevant to Jewish history, our history. He said that the way to define a Jew is to define us by what others destroyed in order to eradicate the Jewish People, a depravity which has a way too often horrific number of repetitions throughout human history. The Egyptian by restricting us through slavery kept us from our Promised Lands yet we did not simply accept their gods, their idols or leaders who claimed they were gods. The Babylonians destroyed the Holy Temple hoping that would dishearten us and we would assimilate and they would be done with us. Then the Romans dispersed us such that we were scattered with only a few families in any one location which the Romans had done to others to destroy their cohesion and family. This, the Romans hoped would put an end to the Jews. Eventually, after many centuries it was the Catholic and, in turn, other Christians who forced conversion and removed us from our Torah and normal prayers hoping this would end the Jewish problem. Finally we would face the Nazis who decided they would simply annihilate the Jews and finally solve the Jewish Problem. So, if we learned anything, it is that we are defined as Jews by all of our enemies starting with the Egyptians through the Nazis and we find a Jew is the Promised lands of Eretz Yisroel from the covenant made with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. A Jew is the Holy Temple, may it be built in our lifetime. We find a Jew is community and one another as then we have a support group with whom we are more able to remember our commandments and perform mitzvahs and observe the Sabbath. The Jew is nothing without Torah and finally the Jew celebrates life. So, what is a Jew? A Jew is the Promised Land as we were made for each other as well as we are enriched by the Holy Temple which allows for certain Commandments to be fulfilled as they require the Holy Temple and we are to complete the Commandments but those remain unfulfilled. Our need for community becomes evident when after the Roman dispersal we quickly gathered where and how we could and made our little communities where we observed our customs which with time were adapted to the world around us. A Jew without Torah is a Jew unstuck and disconnected from the commandments and mitzvoth which was part of the reason that the greatest of the Rabbis wrote commentary and put the oral law into writings. And finally, a Jew is all about the celebration of life and the great gifts that Hashem has shared with us. What is a Jew in the fewest words possible? I will give it a try. A Jew is the land of Israel with the Temple in Jerusalem and community to be a part of with Torah and celebrating life, Torah, Mitzvoth, and Hashem.

 

All the empires, the Babylonian, Egyptian, Persian, Greek, Assyrian, Roman, the various Islamic and Christian conquerors, the Ottomans and the British all could not make the land bloom; but bloom they finally have done. But that works both ways. The Jews make the land and the land completes the Jew.

 

Coming home to Eretz Yisroel was the most wondrous thing in my life and has lifted burdens from me in ways I find impossible to quantify, let alone to define. For the first time I feel accepted to an extent which surpassed even Colorado in the 1970s and I thought that was heaven yet that barely compares with the coming to Israel. I often need to go look out the window to once again impress on me that I truly am home. The people I meet are mostly willing to go out of their way to help and their efforts mostly are beyond belief as they put up with us not having learned to speak Hebrew. We have found a couple of closely defined niches where we can speak freely and not fear being told to never return. As I explain, we have finally found the Jews we had searched for in the United States and they are all mostly here. I have likely been exposed and learned more about being a Jew here in the last couple of years and the rate of learning is only increasing daily. There are so many people making sure I get things correct that my biggest hope is that I remember one third and I will be far wiser than I was upon our arrival. How would I sum up Israel and the Jews in the fewest words possible? Mutual Fulfillment.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

November 7, 2015

Peter Beinart Lies Again and the Ramifications

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Beth Chayim Chadashim Progressive Synagogue in Los Angeles hosted Peter Beinart who gave what has been termed a provocative, anti-Zionist speech on Wednesday, November 4, 2015. One quote from his presentation encapsulated the tenor of his entire presentation which repeated much of his leftist, borderline J-Street, refutable tripe where he claimed, “While we condemn Palestinian violence, we must recognize this painful truth: that Israeli policy has encouraged it. Israel has encouraged it by penalizing Palestinian nonviolence, by responding to that nonviolence by deportations, teargas, imprisonment, and the confiscation of Palestinian lands. Hard as it is to say, the Israeli government is reaping what it has sowed.” Some of the largest holes in his arguments are his definitions of nonviolence which he maintains the Israeli government overreacts was the weekly riots in the village of Bil’in, which involves such provocations as striking IDF soldiers, yelling curses in their faces, spitting on the soldiers, attempts to steal their weapons, pulling on arms, tearing at their uniforms, yanking on their equipment and other edgy but technically non-violent acts which take a well-disciplined, well-trained and well-ordered units of soldiers to take with only the mildest of self-defense and conservatively measured responses which does not include any of the reactions stated by Mr. Beinart. To rise to the level of simple response of teargas, and possibly detainment but not leading to any charges but simply detainment for a period until the riots are disbanded, these riots regularly rise to stone throwing which sometimes included rather large stones as in the second picture below and these rocks are more accurately described as small boulders. I would love to see Mr. Beinart placed within one of these IDF units and see his reaction to the kinds of provocations commonly utilized at this particular site as these provocations are most often orchestrated and led by the Bilal Tamini family who seek violent reactions and often will continue their provocations for hours in an attempt to provoke any video which can be used to claim IDF overreaction and often leave without film. Bilal Tamini have been known to use false videos which use Arabs dressed in IDF styled uniforms for some of his claims which have been debunked but are still shown as if they were accurate displays of IDF violent actions against innocent Arabs. Perhaps these are that which Mr. Beinart keeps referring to as they reinforce his perception of Zionist Israelis as all Nationalists in his views and are automatically violence prone fascists. Sorry that Mr. Beinart has a pacifist filter he uses when judging Arab actions making their antagonistic violence as respectable acts as they are the oppressed fighting against imperial colonialists which is likely his picture of Israelis, as if they were real Jews with proper values, they would live in the United States instead of stolen lands of the Middle East as if the United States was founded entirely in virgin lands free of prior habitation.

 

Peter Beinart Gave What has been Termed Provocative Anti-Zionist Speech on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 at Beth Chayim Chadashim Progressive Synagogue in Los Angeles

Peter Beinart Gave What has been Termed
Provocative Anti-Zionist Speech on
Wednesday, November 4, 2015 at
Beth Chayim Chadashim Progressive
Synagogue in Los Angeles

 

 

Rocks, These are not Rocks, These are more Accurately Described as Small, Medium to Large Boulders Fully Capable of Murdering Somebody if Thrown Through a Windshield of an Automobile Going at Speed or if Launched from Above onto an Unsuspecting Crowd as not Unlike Thrown from the Temple Mount Down into the Kotel on Such a Day as when the Priestly Blessings are Given and the Plaza is Front to Back Completely Packed with Jewish Worshippers.

Rocks, These are not Rocks,
These are more Accurately Described
as Small, Medium to Large Boulders
Fully Capable of Murdering Somebody
if Thrown Through a Windshield of an
Automobile Going at Speed or if Launched
from Above onto an Unsuspecting Crowd
as not Unlike Thrown from the Temple Mount
Down into the Kotel on Such a Day as when
the Priestly Blessings are Given and the
Plaza is Front to Back Completely Packed
with Jewish Worshippers.

 

 

We will not bother to dispute Mr. Beinart’s speech line-by-line or even concept-by-concept, as such had been done on many occasions elsewhere, but instead a discussion of the situation in Israel which makes virtually all the criticisms by Beinart, J-Street and the other faux-peace, faux-pro-Israel, faux-pro-Zionist faux-pro-Jewish NGOs supported by the New Israel Fund points mute. Neither will we go item-by-item on the many European donors and governments which spend almost all their efforts criticizing Israel and forgiving any and all provocations and even terror attacks claiming that any Jews residing in Israel are guilty of heinous crimes against the Arabs and deserve whatever happens including being murdered by terrorist acts. Having lived across the United States, we have experienced leftist Jews who cannot find it in their heart to care for Israel unless Israelis are able to live up to some perfection beyond even the most righteous of prophets from Biblical eras. They set an unattainable expectation and then support any acts against Israel for not meeting their unhinged expectations. We have met Jews who question fellow Jews who are making Aliyah and simply state that such Jews are not mentally stable as they are leaving the real promised land which they define as anywhere where liberal policies are enforced by law and public expectations as peer pressure. Their view is the United States is the enlightened Nirvana which should be considered to be the new Promised Land while Israel should be a vacation resort like a holy land version of Disneyland. If they were to visit Israel they would likely stay in Tel Aviv, a city which can be favorably compared with New York or Los Angeles in the United States with malls, five star hotels, and a political leftist liberal progressive the American Jews understand and can maintain their comfort zone. Us, we reside in what is referred to as the periphery and loving it. What distresses the leftists is that Israel is turning back to our religion and the religious and the Jabotinsky Zionists are both sectors of Israeli society which are growing. The interesting reality is that the Jews making Aliyah when they arrive in Israel, most become more Zionist and nationalist and the majority begins to make a slow, or even a sudden sharp turn towards keeping the commandments and becoming more religious.

 

The United States is welcome to be the Nirvana the leftist Jews believe it to be, but it will never be the Promised Land as that title resides in Eretz Yisroel. There are things about Israel which if you tell people who are unknowing, they will at best laugh and at worse scorn, never speaking with you ever again as they will have permanently judged you as suffering some form of dementia or other mental disorder. Allow me to relate a story I once read about which tells a truth which any of the myriad of empires who tried to get the lands to produce and failed so miserably that many sent only their most cursed to assignments here as a form of punishment yet, as modern Israel had proven as did our forefathers proved long ago, Eretz Yisroel gives up her treasures and produce, her fruit and benefits, her grazing lands and fills her wells for the Jews and denies these gifts to others.

This story involves a family farm where the father comes in from tending their small farm and comments that the rains have been ample and they have a great crop coming in this year. He claims that Allah has been kind. His elderly grandfather clears his throat and starts to almost whisper in a hoarse throaty voice which comes from years of smoking kief mixed with tobacco. He starts telling about the years of the skies holding on to their rains refusing to feed the parched lands. He tells how his childhood they are the most poor quality grains and how his family, like all those who came before, were barely able to produce sufficient for their own consumption but then the rains began to return. But the rains fell mostly on the Galilee and it took a while before the rains fell in the Gaza. Finally, around the turn of the century the rains returned to the Gaza and the fields began to produce. The rain was reason enough to accept and believe that the old writings were true, this was the land of the Jews and would only produce for the Jews and those who befriend them. This was the take the old man told his grandson and he advised he too love the Jews or the rains would once again fail.

One wonders how the rains are on the family farm now under Hamas, but that does not matter as Israel provides enough water for the fields and cities of Gaza and does so without receiving payment. The same goes for two-thirds of the electricity in the Gaza. Perhaps it matters little as Israel allows for tons of food and medical stores and supplies to enter Gaza every day and even did so last summer the entire time of the offensive against Hamas. Where else does any nation provide food, medical provisions and other materials including construction materials while engaging in a fight for the safety of the entirety of the nation providing these goods to basically their enemy. Only Israel bothers and takes such care to differentiate between the people and the terror masters who rule over the people and intentionally endanger these same people by their tactics of firing their rockets often from immediately next to their safe buildings. One might expect the world or at least the Europeans would be able to observe that the Israelis and the IDF in particular, go to extremes to preserve life, both their own and that of the Arab foes, especially noncombatants. This truth was most brought to the foreground by the The Turkel Commission which included Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg, Vice–President of the Europa–Universität Viadrina in Frankfurt sitting as a member of the commission which found the IDF not only met standards of the International Rules of Warfare but went to such lengths to avoid collateral deaths and to limit damages when engaging targets such as using multiple methods to warn of coming military assaults such that Hamas and the other enemy force actually had time to prepare for the IDF assault knowing where they would be attacking, from what direction the attack would originate, the time the attack would commence and whether there would be any artillery or other softening of the target area before the assault. This has also been quoted by numerous other studies and actual formal complaints from separate western nations complaining that their militaries would be unable to meet the standards set forth by the IDF and that the use of IDF standards were counterproductive to their militaries as they might also be held to such standards. Despite such feigned praise, the United Nations and collected organizations still found reasons to claim that the IDF caused far too much damage, used collective punishment, and used disproportional force as well as there was an unhealthy divergence in casualties between the Arab combatants and civilians compared to those suffered by the Israelis which was largely, if not absolutely, the result of the use of shelters and the unbelievable accuracy and kill percentage of the Iron Dome anti-missile system and also, in at least one case, the hand of Hashem.

 

None of this really matters as the truth has become malleable in this age and people can introduce their own delusions as facts and if they match and support some groups feelings, whether warranted or not, then those delusions will take on the weight of truth. One need not look any further than the BDS movement which desires to economically cripple Israel, not help the Arabs living amongst the Jews largely in peace even beyond the Green Line. Their attempts to boycott all goods coming from Israeli owned companies beyond the Green Line in order to punish Jews for living and working beyond what these self-appointed harbingers of all that is righteous and lawful are actually robbing the Arabs they claim to be supporting as the Israeli companies they are boycotting employ large percentages of their staff from the Arab villages near their locations and the supermarkets serve the Arabs as well as Jews with some locations of these markets within Arab communities. These employers also pay at a far higher rate than do the Arab employers and provide better benefit packages, but why should the truth ever enter into the argument. These businesses actually are examples of what the likes of Roger waters claim to desire, Jews and Arabs working side by side as equals with both Arabs and Jews in management positions and such are awarded according to merit and not at all as Mr. Waters protests. Needless to say, Mr. Waters has never come to Israel and toured these companies to see the truth because he, like much of his ilk even to include the self-loathing Jews who protest right there with the other leftist extremists against Israel, do not care about the truth, they are haters of one of two of the greatest evils leftists have always hated, the Jews and religious people of any Judeo-Christian faith. That is the truth that so many refuse to state as doing so labels you as a hater which in this case means that it is permissible to hate one who holds such beliefs, it says nothing about that person, it says volumes about those making the accusations.

 

Maybe this would be a good time to explore the real reason that so much of the world is attempting to throw off the perceived yoke with which they view the Judeo-Christian ethic. Hitler stated his basis for hatred of the Jews and disdain for Christianity, the later he mollified later as the Christians were to become a necessary group if he was to achieve his ultimate goals, something which took the inhuman struggle and sacrifices to prevent his madness from eclipsing the entire globe. Others throughout History have also taken on the struggle to end the Jews and always for the same reason, morality. The introduction of Judaism, which gave the world the Ten Commandments and a code of laws which formed the basis for Western Civilization and its morality and was the impetus to end idolatry and the sexual perversions, child and human sacrifice, established the basis for economic transactions including the requirements which formed the prerequisite for selling and establishing deeds for the purchase of lands and residences which are still used to this day. The Jews also set up the required steps for business transactions and many other economic codes, requirements, documentation and financing manners. Further, as for much of their existence after the destruction of the Second Temple by the Roman Empire in the year 73 and their eventual dispersion across the face of the Roman Empire and subsequently further dispersed by the Mongols and the Caliphate then by the European colonialists, the Jews though small in numbers, never acquired a population which exceeded one percent of the world’s population and managed to reside in every continent and in almost every nation throughout history. This gave the Jewish people two important items which both were important at some time during our history. The first was whenever the Jews were expelled from a nation as resulted from the Spanish Inquisition, the purging of the Jews by the British Isles, the pogroms of Russia and several exiles by different Islamic leaders over subsets of the Ottoman Empire at one time or another, there were always some Jews wherever they ended being able to rest their feet and resettle. It also gave the Jews different sets of knowledge and a broad understanding which resulted from these various cultures and their ability to take the different strengths while knowing which weaknesses and ill-advised paths to avoid allowing for Jews to succeed and flourish wherever they ended up residing. This success also helped the nation in which they resided as the Jews always seemed to find a way for increasing the wealth of their host nation while also enriching their own community which had the unfortunate result of jealousy and eventual expulsion or worse, violence against them during which their wealth was redistributed, to put it politely.

 

Ten Commandments Arranged in Hebrew Reading from Right to Left with English Translations Underneath the Hebrew

Ten Commandments
Arranged in Hebrew
Reading from Right to Left
with English Translations
Underneath the Hebrew

 

 

This effect of the Jews was also true of the early Christians and later for many Christians living outside the Western world. There were wars in the Western world fought between the different forms of Christianity but these eventually became less likely once the concept of separation between religion and the powers of the state became the norm. For the approximately first twelve to fifteen centuries when Judaism was the sole religion which believed in Hashem, an invisible and sole force which was the explanation for all creation and everything which preceded, currently was and ever would be and beyond even the end as Hashem was before the beginning, Hashem was the force behind all the triumphs and seeming invincibility of the Hebrews for as long as their lives kept the covenant and they followed the commandments laid out for them at Mount Sinai and taught them through Torah. Other nations feared that the Hebrews would war against them and this was one reason they were attacked but as the Hebrews would stray from their laws and the path of the straight and narrow, most often by engaging in idolatrous devotions and practices and the debauchery which often accompanied such observances which brought punishment of Hashem down upon them. Eventually, after the tribes split into the northern ten tribes known as Israel and the remaining two tribes and their priest class of Judea (which included the tribe of Benyamin), the Assyrians conquered the northern tribe of Israel around 740 to 733 BCE which became lost until recent times as they have been discovered residing in many numerous and disparate places on the globe and rejoined into the modern Jewish State of Israel. What spurred many to desire to destroy the Hebrews, and later the Jews as the remaining Hebrews became known, as the majority was from the tribe of Judah, was a desire to prove that their idols, reason, knowledge, codes or whatever they held sacred and based their civilization upon was superior to Hashem. Since there was no manner of attack which could be mounted against Hashem, the next best thing would be to destroy utterly his people, the Hebrews or Jews ending their covenant with Hashem and by destroying the people of Hashem, it would be proven that Hashem was false and belief in Hashem did not protect the Jews.

 

This concept of destroying the Jews to prove that Hashem was false may seem like an insane idea today yet the idea is as valid today as it ever has been. One of the promises made by Hitler was to free the German people from the conscience which was invented by the Jew and living a life guided by Christian morality as he would restore their individual rights where their sole loyalty was to the State and there was no higher entity than the State itself. Further, the Nazis promised a return to a more carefree society where hedonism would no longer be considered a sin and people would be freed from the Jewish presumably false concept of conscience and also from the Christian structured morality. The Nazis never relinquished their disdain for Christian morality but ceased emphasizing it as openly as this was not as well received as was the assailing everything Jewish including especially the Jews. Once again we witness the attempt to destroy Hashem but this time by the destruction of the Jews and the abandonment of Christian faith which would have solely been eradicated as well had the Nazis succeeded in their lust for world conquest. There was also over fifteen-hundred plus years where the Catholic, and subsequently the other Christian sects such as Protestantism, also attempted to eradicate the Jewish faith and people. They practiced forced conversions or pogroms, burning at the stake, drowning, witch trials, and a plethora of other manners of shaming, murdering or making an outcast of the Jew. The claim was often that one did not hate the Jews generally as they all had dealings with or a friend who was Jewish, it was the faith of the Jew which had to be eradicated and the Jew forced to accept Jesus that was all that was necessary for their lives to be spared. Then there was Communism which again, like Nazism, desired to murder Hashem so they forbid Judaism and Christianity, both the Orthodox Church and Catholicism along with the other Christian sects and any other religion as once again the state had to rule supreme and thus could not accept any person or deity to supercede the authority of the State. Once again we have an attempt to destroy Hashem that ended in failure.

 

The final chapter brings us to the challenge of the Twenty-First-Century where once again there are those plotting to destroy the faith in Hashem. This one may be the most insidious of all the attempts to end the rule of Hashem over the planet and beyond into the universe. We the believers in Hashem, the Jews and Christians, are the current targets and we are both in the same boat. What makes this latest attempt to destroy those whose faith is in Hashem is that the destroyers are selling a lie that they too believe in Hashem as their supreme being despite the obvious fallacy of their claims. Some of their fellow believers might honestly believe that they are worshipping the same deity as Jews and Christians but their true recipient of their prayers and supplications is not Hashem. Their deity is named Allah and is not simply another name for Hashem but rather an entirely different entity. This can be seen as Hashem is the Holy One of Abraham, Isaac and Yaakov while Allah is the deity derived from Abraham but not of Isaac or of Yaakov but rather Ishmael and Muhammad, an entirely different lineage. This is further proven by the desire of Muslims, the followers of Islam declaring their war towards the destruction of all Jews and Christians as well as their holy sites which will either be destroyed or repurposed solely for the use of Islam. The final strike is from the Torah, which Muslims believe the Quran replaced, not added to or even amended but replaced, and repeated in the Passover Haggadah where it says, “In each and every generation they rise up against us to destroy us. And the Holy One, blessed be He, rescues us from their hands.” While it is written in a similar text, Exodus 17:16 it states, “They have raised their fist against the LORD’s throne, so now the LORD will be at war with Amalek generation after generation.” Such it must be and if any group deserves to be the next incarnation of Amalek after the Nazis and have the all-fired hatred of that which is Holy in Torah, that title easily belongs to the most fanatical Islamists. Where we would not use a broad brush and color every member of Islam automatically guilty of such unbridled hatred against the Jews, and in this case also the Christians, and against the Bible, be it Old Testament or the New Testament or both together, and demand that all within has been bastardized over time, such is an assault on the word of Hashem and the direct assault on His peoples, the Jews. This is the fight which Israel must realize is the seminal struggle for the existence of the Jewish People and our renewed nation of Israel and if we love our land, brothers, sisters and the rest of the generations of our heritage and family, then we need to fight this like the struggle for survival that it is. Granted, not all Muslims are evil and desire us dead, but until they stand up and take their religion back and renew what they claim is an nonviolent religion and that the Quran teaches about Islam being the religion of peace, until then it must be assumed that Allah and Hashem are as different as their religious adherents actions and desires for the world make them out to be and that those not speaking out and retaking their religion must be taken as agreeing with the most ardent Islamist and treated as such. Should the presumed silent majority take that first step towards reconciliation, then the rest of the world can step up and give them all the assistance required, but until then their silence speaks all we need to know, and that is the sorriest thing of all.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

September 30, 2015

Historic First Tashlich Observed at the United Nations

 

There should be joy simply that such a Jewish custom as Tashlich, which literally means to toss, was being observed with a ceremony at the United Nations attended by Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and United Nations Ambassadors from over ten countries and other dignitaries presided over by Rabbi Arthur Schneier of the Park East Synagogue. But there is so much more to find as a blessing than this event having taken place, and the bread cast into the East River may be a blessing to any fish sturdy enough to reside in these waters, as this idea was not a result of anything done by the Israeli United Nations staff or by the Jews of the United States but by a group of Europeans who call themselves the Forum for Cultural Diplomacy (F4CD). The ceremony was held in the resplendent Rose Garden of the UNHQ, and allegorically threw the bread of their “sins” into the East River, may the waters of the East River ever survive and recover from the shock of such a casting of sins. The real miracle is the Forum for Cultural Diplomacy which is a pro-Israel European Christian group and is wholly responsible for this miracle of so many dimensions. Probably the best ways to reveal the scope and breadth of this not so minor miracle might be to allow the video of the event speak for itself.

 

 

 

 

There were two founding members from the F4CD, Dr. Gregory Lafitte and Tomas Sandell, who spoke and told of their reasoning behind their initiative. Dr. Gregory Lafitte spoke clearly and succinctly demanding that, granting the Jewish People “Tolerance is not the answer. It is not enough to ‘tolerate’ the Jewish people, but we need to honor and celebrate their culture and their many contributions to mankind.” Dr. Lafitte went so far as to conclude his speech with a rendition of the Avinu Malkeinu prayer. It is nested here in the declaration by Dr. Lafitte that we come upon the miracle, the gem in the center of this entire event, the demand by Righteous European Christians for humankind to not simply tolerate the Jews but to thank them for the basis for so much of our modern society, the Jews contribution to not only justice but to justly work towards justice with no regard for wealth or lack thereof, position of importance or one of meager standing, king or pauper, man or woman, elder or the youngest amongst you, to justly apply justice with complete blindness to the petitioner or the petitioned, with only the inward seeking eye of fairness and impartiality, this amongst all the gifts societies have garnered from the Bible and its lessons. Dr. Lafitte also alluded to the rising groundswell of anti-Semitism sweeping Europe and that at the United Nations there is the “Isaiah Wall” featuring the verse from Isaiah, Chapter 2, prophesying a time when “swords will be turned into plowshares.”

 

Outgoing Israeli Ambassador Prosor addressed the gathering stating, “We are here today to participate in a unique tradition – Tashlich, which literally means to toss. It’s an opportunity to symbolically cast off the sins of the past and let the flowing water carry away the shortcomings of the previous year. As we mark the 70th anniversary of the United Nations this is an opportunity to reflect off this institution where it has fallen short and where we have not done enough to alleviate human suffering. Seventy years on, it is time for voices of reason, of tolerance and moderation to reclaim the public space.”

 

Rabbi Arthur Schneier stated, “The fact that we are gathering here at the UN shows the respect that the United Nations has for all faiths, their holidays and for their stress on human dignity. Day of Atonement means to be at one – at one with God and one with man.”

 

The reason this struck me as being so meaningful is because there is now a balance with the F4CD group of Christians in Europe added to groups such as CUFI (Christians United for Israel) in the United States that maybe the world will have finally found the track which will grant the Jewish People the respect for their existence, their homelands and their contributions which continue to this day in so many fields of endeavor contributing to the advancement of human knowledge that perhaps the waves of anti-Semitism can start to be turned back and not just contained but eliminated. I have known that even if the Jewish People were to stand with one voice and demand as proud and loud as possible for their being tolerated and given what is due them even if not respected in all manner of dealings; such would be as a whisper in the hurricane that is modern society. The Jews pleading their case is but a weak cry from deep within the wilderness, a sound which can never carry the fury to demand to be heard as we are barely one-fifth of one percent (0.2%) of the world’s population.

 

If the Jewish People are ever to be allowed to live even vaguely resembling normal lives treated as equals with guaranteed rights it will take voices supporting the Jewish People, and by extension, Israel, from outside the Jewish communities. It literally comes down to a game of numbers and in the world we Jews are far too few to make our own case without outside support, and it needs to be unwavering and unconditional support. With these Christian groups willing to stand with us, or almost basically for us, we then have one obligation which we owe these wonderful people willing at last to risk alienation and rejection to stand with us, to stand with the Jew, both as a people and as a nation, Israel, and that is to remain honorable, upright, caring and most of all deserving of their support. Yes there exists the need for those who have wronged the Jews throughout history, and that list is a virtual list of who’s who of nations and backgrounds stretching from one side of the globe through to the other, with hatred of Jews and by implication, Israel, almost the constant which ties the world as one and to be in the Jews corner at long last.

 

 

UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon celebrating Historic First Tashlich Observed at the United Nations

UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon celebrating Historic First Tashlich Observed at the United Nations and United Nations Ambassadors from over ten countries and other dignitaries presided over by Rabbi Arthur Schneier of the Park East Synagogue. The Forum for Cultural Diplomacy facilitated the ceremony which was held in the resplendent Rose Garden of the UNHQ where the diplomats and attendees cast their bread upon the water an thus rid themselves figuratively of their sins.

 

 

Having Christians willing to stand for Israel and for the Jewish People is a very healthy start and we can only pray that these groups gain in strength and numbers as those are the things which grease the skids upon which all civilization rests. The Jewish People, often as individuals, have contributed so much to the modern limited government concepts through the limitations placed on a King or other sovereign against their gathering unto themselves riches at the expense of their subjects and instead demanded of each sovereign to write their very own Torah Scroll such that their everyday is another lesson in humility and sacrifice for the betterment of the people. All too often Jewish and Israeli leadership has seemingly lost their way and thus lost their perspective and gathered themselves riches in direct contravention of the Biblical directives. This new group of friends needs to be cultivated and worked alongside with to provide them a clearer picture of the state of the world, the anti-Semitic, anti-Zionist and anti-Israel NGO, government or other grouping all of which can be competed against utilizing simple facts. These very same facts require our assistance in defining the areas where their assistance can produce the greatest return on their efforts.

 

These groups need be armed with facts and the reality and ramification of the San Remo Conference, the Mandate Systems, the Churchill White Papers, the occupation of Judea and Samaria by Jordan, the Golan Heights by Syria and Gaza by Egypt. The rightful demands of the Israelis need to be heard above the cacophonous din of lies, half-truths, innuendo and outright deceit spread far, wide and loudly. These allies will need to study research of the past in order to form an unbiased decision, one that is probably not going to rest well with those demanding that the Jews have no claim for visiting the Temple Mount or that there need be another nation called Palestine, let alone replacing Israel with such a state. Still, it is of paramount importance that Jews and Israel continue to cultivate acceptance where possible and true friendship with those who know Jewish history and support Israel in her struggles for peace, a just and true peace which will last forever. The reality is that in Europe, as in the rest of the world, Israel and the Jewish People have some very staunch supporters and a general support amongst those who understand the problems Israel faces daily and must find means of dealing with a very vocal minority in most instances whose incessant demands often in the form of the BDS movement such that they lose the support of those who still regard Jews as an evil blight to be wiped from the face of what they consider their planet. These are the flies in the ointment which must be isolated, something Prime Minister Netanyahu claims he can accomplish by speaking at the United Nations this week. If only his words were sufficient to drown out the raucous few who largely occupy the extreme ends of the political spectrum, both extreme right and left. If only his words would suffice.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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