Beyond the Cusp

April 8, 2019

The Israel the Media Ignores Intentionally

Filed under: Israel — qwertster @ 1:02 AM
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There are two sides to virtually every story and by describing only half the story, the media shapes public opinions. This is especially true once political opinions and editorial censors cherry-pick what news to show and when media moguls frame an entire conflict, then the news can lead to damages which can never be reconciled. This has been very true about President Trump and especially the presumed guilt of Russian Collusion, but that we will leave for others to rectify which somehow the Mueller Report failed to close that in many eyes and they will continue to dig and claim to have found evidence demanding another Special Council. Where President Trump might lead in the one sided news stories and the framing such that every last accusation must be treated as the impeachable offense, but coming in second and being such a story for far longer has been Israel which has been hounded and scapegoated by the media consistently since even before President Carter, though his Presidency could be termed as the turning on Israel pivot by the media. We will begin our story with the Gaza regions of Israel and their largely untold story. The map below shows the Israeli cities, towns and Kibbutzim in close proximity to Gaza and there is where we begin.

 

Gaza Communities and Relative Sizes

Gaza Communities and Relative Sizes

 

There is one thing that is universal, children at play. Even in the above-pictured towns, one will find children at play. Like many children in the world, they play soccer and any picture of them playing soccer would appear to be totally normal until a second sharper and more detailed look provides what did not quite feel right upon the first glance. What appears wrong is in fact quite normal in these regions. The kids play soccer placing their goals along the mid-field stripe, one just past one end and the other just past the other end. Then they play running across the field placed sideways using the other lines on the field to designate out-of-bounds. Why would they play their games sideways when they have a complete soccer field for their use? Why would they use those easy to move goals when the field had very good permanent goals? It is not that they actually desire to play on a truncated and shortened field, but it has one extremely important quality, it helps them survive. These communities are not protected by the Iron Dome anti-projectile systems. This is because this may be the one improvement which hopefully can be made soon in the future. The reason the Iron Dome is unable to protect these places and the reason the children play soccer on a truncated-sideways field are the same, time; and its being measured at approximately fifteen seconds give or take three seconds depending on out of where in Gaza a rocket or mortar was fired. That fifteen seconds is how long these children, and all the other children outside playing, have to take shelter in any of the public shelters, the shelters which are basically shrapnel catchers often made from large pipes which are also used for water transport (see below). These shelters, which are places strategically in this region’s common areas, playgrounds, shopping centers and wherever a need is recognized, have to be close with easy access as the people and children all have that fifteen seconds to dash into one of these or other shelters. The schools of the region have been fortified with walls and especially roofs thickened with reinforced concrete such that even a direct hit would not penetrate and potentially kill children. Daycares, preschools, many shopping malls, and other stores are reinforced often at the expense of the owners and sometimes with government funding. Fifteen seconds, think about how far you can run in fifteen seconds, how about your mother or your aunt with a hip replacement, the more you think about it, the shorter fifteen seconds becomes. But running does one no great favor unless they have chosen the object into which they are running, and that fifteen seconds after the siren may be a mere seven or eight seconds as the detection took slightly longer to project potential areas which could be struck. The shelters around soccer fields are on both sides of the field at the mid-field stripe close to the benches and where fans would most likely to be situated. This is why the children bring their own goals and set them near the benches on both sides of the field, from this truncated soccer field they can play and reach the shelters most likely in under ten seconds, thus they are playing as safely as can be expected. But that is when they are even permitted to go out and play, as when the chances for Hamas or Islamic Jihad rockets is high, the children are kept at home where there is a safe room, a bomb-proof room built as a government program to retrofit every house with one such structure, most often the smallest bedroom. We would like to show a video but we are forced to provide a link and hope you view it, you will not be sorry.

 

Sderot Rocket Shelters Come Plain and Beautified

Sderot Rocket Shelters Come Plain and Beautified

 

The next subject we are going to address is a specific form of terrorism which one would not expect to specifically target children. Still, somehow it seems that the only people who suffer injury or worse, death, are inevitably children, by which we mean kids under age thirteen. One of the more recent of these events was editorialized over in this article which is just one of far too many similar events. The place for these terror strikes is almost always a window facing an Arab village in relatively close proximity, and these can be beyond the Green Line or within the Green Line, that boundary makes no difference and this proves that the Palestinian Arab fight is against all of Israel, not just the Green Line. So, it is a sunny Sunday morning and a younger child innocently walks to a window to see the wonderful sights along the valet below. The youth has stood at that window a thousand times and walked away unharmed. Yes, their overly protective mother has yelled and pleaded that they stop standing at that window, but it has the best view and we all know kids will be kids everywhere. This time there is the sound of glass being punched through leaving a hole with three or four cracks spreading a few inches. Almost like a delayed reaction, the child falls to the floor with blood dripping from their soaked shirt and they lie there motionless. The child has been shot by somebody within an Arab village hundreds of meters distant. This is exactly what happened on Sunday March 24, 2019, to a seven year-old boy in Beit El, as in the article. Just imagine that there is a potential for a person to be shot simply because they were visible through a window in the home. What is the answer to this dilemma; homes with fake windows fed either by a camera on the house or any of numerous scenes and themes from the Internet. But, honestly, there has to be a better means of addressing this potentially deadly situation. The youth referenced earlier was severely injured by the bullet but was saved by surgeons at the hospital where he was rushed. In Israel, one of the things we do with great speed and quality is emergency treatment. Most often, the first to arrive are the medics on motorcycles which carry a good-sized compartment with most of what they might require. Next will be the arrival of the ambulance with more EMT’s and these two working closely with hospitals often mean the difference between life and death. These heroes have saved many a life here in Israel and the motorcycle EMT volunteers are one of the reasons, as they can get through traffic far more easily than the ambulance even with sirens as both have sirens to alert other traffic to yield. The first few minutes after an injury are the most vital and often make the difference between life and death which is why the very rapid response in motorcycles EMT’s are such a blessing.

 

Sample of Fake Windows

Sample of Fake Windows

 

There are more threats such as Hezballah which all but rules Lebanon and has reached an agreement, informally, with the Lebanese military, as a fair number of its recruits are also part of Hezballah as this is how they manage to train their people to use modern heavy military equipment. In our little cozy corner in Nahariya, we are informed that when the sirens sound, we have at the most thirty seconds to reach our Apartment safe room. We tested it and when the dog figured out what we were doing, well, you can guess who was the only one who made it in under twenty seconds. Were we to take the precaution of dropping all of the window steel covers before heading into the safe room it would take closer to four or five minutes. There is nowhere in Israel where one had over three minutes from siren to rocket or missile strike. If an Arab state were permitted in the Shomron, then once Hamas has again taken over the region and Iran has sufficiently armed them in the Shomron areas as they have Hezballah in Lebanon, then nowhere in Israel would more than forty-five seconds between siren and strike (see map below). The map does not show the complete range of Hamas and Islamic Jihad who can readily strike Tel Aviv if they desired so, thus one would be required to extrapolate the times reaching to Haifa and Jerusalem and figure which attack would be more imminent, Hamas and Islamic Jihad or Hezballah, but such would complicate the map considerably.

 

Time From Siren Launch Warning and Expected Strike

Time From Siren Launch Warning and Expected Strike

 

Shootings, knifings and rockets can strike anywhere in Israel, but there is another form of lethal terrorism which all Israelis need to keep eyes open seeking a safe wall or other obstacle capable of stopping anything from a car to a ten ton truck to a front loader to any other heavy equipment to sooner or later an APC or Merkava Tank. All of these can be utilized in what we refer to as ramming attacks. Our government reacted fairly rapidly to this threat and put in place at bus stops and light rail stations steel posts cemented into the ground to prevent any vehicle striking any group of people waiting for a ride. This was seen as the best means of protecting the people of Israel, specifically those simply awaiting transportation. There were certain bus stops and light rail stations which appeared to be the favorites of these vehicular terrorists. Perhaps it was ease of access, maybe a long run-up in which to reach speed, or perhaps it allowed numerous escape routs. All too often, these vehicular terrorists will race through an area attempting to ram every bus stop along the way almost inviting an Israeli to shoot if they have a carry license. These terrorists of all stripes appear to have suicidal desires as if their death while committing acts of terror against the general public but more often than not, when the terror becomes an individual attack, inevitably they tend to choose a woman. What some have done to these women is enough to cause one to be sick to their stomach. The fact that they almost always rape their victim, but it is also obvious and included in the death reports that the victim had been brutally tortured and often this brutalization would continue until their victim expired. Coroner reports have, on occasion, been unsure if the rape intercourse came before or after the victim passing from the brutalization.

 

Often, and here is a crucial point, the terrorist is incapable of understanding that they committed any criminal act. Under Palestinian Authority legal procedures, were one to even face a trial for the murder of a Jew, there would be no possibility for any conviction and by later that afternoon, they would be celebrated in their hometown and across the Palestinian Arab Territories. Yes, there are two regions where the Arabs are ruled over by their own people, Gaza under a Hamas dictatorship and Area A and B under Oslo Accords where they are ruled by the Mahmoud Abbas dictatorship as he is in the fifteenth year of his four-year term as Chairman of the Palestinian Authority. Their oppressions are at the hands of the terror masters ruling them, not Israel. In these regions, Israelis are warned not to enter due to the threat to their lives (see photo below). Should one stray into these regions, their murder would go unpunished and their body also might simply vanish from the face of the earth. Within these regions, terrorism is taught in the schools, broadcast on their televisions where it aggrandized as a courageous way to act, their streets and parks and so much more are named after the terrorists who murdered Jews. Once, a while back, two reservists took a wrong turn ending up in Nablus where they were brutally torn limb from limb by a mob which had surrounded the police building and since the lynch mob was too large for all to take part in the acts, a youth poked out a window and extended his bloodied hands for them to see and gleefully yell with excitement. This photo taken at risk to life and limb by a brave reporter and can be viewed here, warning, violent content. Just to clarify, there are no similar warnings for the Arabs residing in these Arab ruled semi-autonomous regions when they come to enter Israel. There have not been but a few cases of Jewish terrorism against the Arabs, and they have all been imprisoned or died in the commission of their attack. In the Arab media, textbooks, newspapers, radio and virtually every other medium they are fed propaganda, the same tropes, and other traditional anti-Semitic undertones. When it comes to interaction, violent or otherwise, there is only one thing which might cost a Palestinian Arab their life, which is should they sell land or any residence to a Jew. That is against the law while murdering a Jew is considered an impossibility as by murder can only be perpetrated by one human being against another human being and under their laws, a Jew is not a human being and thus cannot be murdered. The closest one can get to the way the Palestinian Arab society views Jews would be to use a term recently used by Louis Farrakhan who stated, “I‘m not an anti-Semite, I’m anti-termite.”

 

Sign Warning Israelis it is Illegal to Enter Arab Region for Safety Reasons

Sign Warning Israelis it is Illegal to Enter Arab Region for Safety Reasons

 

Children in Israel are generally unbothered by the threats which abound. This is because even with terrorism, they know that it is unlikely to strike them. Many of the teenagers, like teenagers everywhere, they believe that they are invulnerable, invincible and indestructible. Israel remains within the first dozen nations of the world for happiness and our children bring us joy and are the definition of joy. What is a terrible thing is explaining to a child, five, six, seven years old, that they must never stand before the living room windows because they might be shot. We do not always see the scars caused by running to shelters sometimes multiple times each day for weeks on end. It does become evident on some children but others find some means of coping and even reaching a level of understanding. The fact that this is even permitted to pass without a solid effort to protect and serve the people, especially the youth who are our future, is a disgrace. The time has come where the citizens of Israel need to ask themselves what nation and what problems are they willing to pass off to their children. Can anybody claim that we need to pass the present broken system which allows citizens to be bombarded for as much as a week, a month or even longer off to our children where they will one day face this same dilemma? Israelis are electing the next government on Tuesday, April 9, 2019. We all need to think long and hard as to what we expect of our government. Do we want to remain with the kick the can down the road because to do what is necessary might upset much of the world. Well Boo Hoo I could cry you a river.

 

We need to report here that we belong to Jewish Home and thus are not exactly impartial. With the expected reelection of Bibi Netanyahu, we can expect that can to be kicked further down the road almost as if he prefers to retain the problems which allow him to retain his position AS Prime Minister. But perhaps the Israelis are ready to try a new and fresh approach. This could be a dangerous proposition as who would make a better Prime Minister would become the question. What we would need is somebody who understands the problems and who actually would prefer not to ever become Prime Minister and had to be coaxed to even enter the political ring. We have always thought that those who prefer not to hold power are often the most suited to wielding that same power and doing so with pinpoint accuracy. Currently, General Gantz is considered to be the main rival and he comes with Yair Lapid being Prime Minister after two years. With each man taking two years, it is doubtful much could be accomplished. Of course, that might be a good thing, as their stance on many issues would lead inevitably to a final Arab Israeli war, as the next war will end very abruptly and in a conflagration unseen by the world to our knowledge. This would be a very bad result but it would be an unavoidable result of simply providing a Palestinian State through another disengagement except this time the IDF will still patrol in the region. Their plan is to take the fiasco of the Gaza Disengagement and apply this to the Shomron and pull out the established cities and infrastructure leaving everything beyond the Security Barrier to the Palestinian Authority and top this off by leaving the IDF within lands Israel has discharged all claims of her sovereignty which is exactly the situation in Lebanon which eventually led to a disorderly and disgracing evacuation of the IDF which led to numerous complications. But General Gantz claims he has learned how to do these things correctly and yet that does not fill me with calm acceptance that he would be anything but a disaster. Of the remaining candidates, none of which have anything better than a hope and a prayer, but Israel is the land of hopes and prayers and where they can come together at the strangest times and ways. The main two choices would be Bennett and Peretz which would be a difficult choice. Of the two, General Peretz is the unknown while Bennett, along with Shaked, is known from their years with the Jewish Home Party. Well, they left that party in an absolute disaster of a state which appeared initially would be the end of Jewish Home as a viable party to reach the Knesset. Bennett claims he would be completely different from Bibi Netanyahu and that he left Jewish Home because we had caved to Netanyahu too often. Well, he was the party chairman who decided when we were to cave to Netanyahu and it was he that made those policies which we were to follow. We will allow you to draw your own conclusions from that. Ayelet Shaked did perform well and brought some miracles into the Justice System. The work there is far from done and short of forcing many of the Justices to pick up and leave a vacancy, which is unlikely. Former General Peretz is the wildcard. He was happily retired when he was approached and invited to take the lead of a damaged and injured party limping off to lick its wounds and possibly die if it failed to make the Knesset. Rafi Peretz is a man of moral leadership which he proved in numerous different roles during his time with the IDF. He was initially a combat helicopter pilot while later in his career he was the Chief Rabbi of the IDF. As a Rabbi, you know Rafi Peretz would be a moral leader, not just because he was a Rabbi but because he was selected as the Chief Rabbi of the IDF. Then one has to consider his other service as a combat helicopter pilot. This implies a man with great coordination, able of complex thoughts while engaged in the challenging piloting of the helicopter. He also knows the horrors of warfare but appreciates the greater risk sometimes caused by not acting. He has had to work as part of a team and also been responsible for actions he undertook on his own as a pilot. Where I cannot claim to have great insight into General Rafi Peretz (Ret.), my gut tells me that this is probably just the man Israel has been seeking. We will see his performance as we proceed and should he rebuild Jewish Home and make it into a party capable of challenging Likud, then we will see how much Israel can love him. Rafi Peretz taking the lead of Jewish Home has already had effects upon some friends and acquaintances who served in the IDF when he was Chief Rabbi and they respect the man so much that a fair number of them are switching parties. We are simply fortunate that such a leader has taken charge of rebuilding our party and now we will get the true measure of the man as time proceeds. Maybe the next election he can challenge for the top spot as Likud cannot last into eternity, or can it?

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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November 29, 2018

Why the Left Hates Competitive Education

 

First, please allow us to define “Competitive Education.” All Competitive Education entails is allowing there to be competition in educating our most precious asset, our children. Whenever this is suggested, big money from the Teachers’ Unions and Labor Unions in general start claiming that if we go away from general public education, then there would be no schools operating in the inner cities, the children will all receive subpar education, only the wealthy children will be permitted into the best schools and a myriad of false accusations and strawman arguments which a casual investigation would reveal their complete vacuity. The accusation that only the wealthy would receive a decent education is so absurd simply because the wealthy already are not sending their children to the public schools and are instead using Competitive Education in choosing in which of the elite academies they will educate their children. They often make their determination after a serious assessment of their child’s particular needs. If their child is rebellious, they might decide that a strict academy where they children wear uniforms and rules are strictly applied and if their child has a learning disability, they choose a school which is suited to such challenges and lastly, if their child shows a particular proclivity towards some subject or ability, they would choose appropriately. But the omniscient overlords of the public school system wish to deny to everyone who is not wealthy the exact same system which the wealthy are able to afford. What if instead of forcing everyone into the one size fits all and often-subpar education system provided by the government, after all, name something the government provides which has proved superior to the same service provided privately. We often immediately hear that law enforcement, and we agree that the level of protection provided by those dedicated individuals who choose to train and provide law enforcement are above the average, but we will also point out that the wealthy often have private patrols and other applications of security which augments, and in some gated communities replaces, publically provided law enforcement.

 

Allow us to make a few other potential areas where the identical argument about public education would apply and we would like to see how many would prefer the government take over these other areas of products, after all, education is a product in which we are given limited and too often no choice beyond the location where we reside to determine the educational level our children will receive. The first and most obvious would be grocery stores. After all, without the government providing our groceries, how do we know that just because we live in a poor neighborhood that we are not going to receive second or third rate food choices or no food choices? Would we not desire that the government provide grocery stores with government distributed groceries and government employees stocking the shelves and as cashiers and every other position right down to government run farms to assure the right measure of fertilizer is used and only approved pesticides which will not harm the environment and water rationed to prevent runoff and on and on. This was how food was grown, harvested and distributed in Soviet Russia as well as a number of other socialist nations such as Zimbabwe which had been the highest food producing country in Africa and when a new governance took over the entire economy and placed their own people to raise their crops and tend their herds and they became the least productive food producing country within a matter of three or four years, the length of time it took to replace all the existing farmers, or at least most of them. We already have heard that people want healthcare provided from the government. In our studies of such systems, we have found one which performs adequately and it does so by allowing competitive healthcare facilities and private hospitals and physicians and with the competition for members in the separate plans offered by these companies, quality remains quite high and prices remain relatively low. In the purely one size fits all nations there are prolonged wait times for surgical procedures, cancer treatment, diagnostic tests (the one place the system in our preferred nation could use an upgrade), permission to see a specialist, for physical therapy and so many other items and unlike our preferred nations where private practice is permitted as long as you also provide a set amount of your services in one of the plans, most of the socialized medical systems forbid private practices. What about socialized, government clothing? Everybody gets the same styles from which to choose. China had this at the start of the Mao Zedong rule and it was wonderful seeing all the happy people dressed identically. Let’s face it, there is nothing that the government does better than private providers, with the grave exception of military power, something which any sane people would never entrust to private companies as then the wealthy would have too much power.

 

School House

School House

 

So, let us talk private schools and see what we can learn. First and foremost, there would be testing which would demand that students meet a minimal level of education in the necessities such as reading, writing, arithmetic, history, civics, sciences and even physical training for a level of fitness. The way these schools would be largely financed would be by having the monies currently spent on education divided by the numbers of students and the money would go to each school with each student. This would set a level of tuition which the most basic schools would charge with specialized schools potentially charging a higher tuition. Special needs education students would receive an additional amount divided from the current additional expenditures on a per student rate as the general education funds were divided. The general education schools could also provide specialization with the level required in the other subjects still requiring to be met. With private schools, the better schools would receive more students and be able to fill classroom sizes which could be regulated such that class sizes could not exceed a set figure, probably thirty or less as per regulations in each state. The states could be placed back as the primary sculptures of their school systems through their specific requirements. It would make sense for schools in central Nebraska to be more oriented to farming and such technologies while schools in the major cities would have less of an emphasis in these areas. Such decisions are best left to the individual states and counties, as they understand the requirements of their communities far better than would any bureaucrat in Washington D.C., where the current curriculums are mostly regulated. The testing regimens could be set at a level desired as minimal acceptable requirements from Washington D.C. but the specific requirements should be left to the individual states to determine any additional emphases. The better schools would survive and spread as their reputations spread and those whose level of proficiency was of a lesser quality would soon go out of business. Another advantage of such a system is that these schools would be answerable to the parents and far more approachable than the current public education systems which in many instances have virtually no means for parents to have any measurable influence. Teachers also would be rated individually and as such be more inclined to add to their education and become more qualified as well as staying up to date on the latest changes to their subject matter. We know that most of these reasons are an anathema to the teachers’ unions; who once a teacher gets tenure, they can coast along with no fear of being removed from their position. Further, the teachers’ unions in the majority of instances have become political influence peddlers and less education monitors. Their main interest is the continuation of schools as is and bigger salaries, less required class time, more specialized advisors, more counselors, administrative positions and a myriad of items with little if any influence on the level of education provided.

 

The argument is that schools would not be provided to remote regions such as low density farming communities or to many central areas in major cities where there are problematic reasons for low performance and other scare tactics. The city argument is ridiculous, as the students in these areas would take with them a premium fiscal incentive to provide education. This alone would be a great incentive as money talks. The arguments that in some areas the schools would choose not to admit troubled youths could be remediated by providing an additional scale for payment for schools taking any youth who had been expelled from another school. These children could be considered to be youths with special needs. Such schools should be given some additional leniency concerning their maintaining order in their classrooms. Further, an allowance might be made to have law enforcement officers stationed at these schools which would tend to blunt any precocious student deciding that they were permitted to have a violent outburst. Further, the schools would be responsible for student safety and in preventing the kind of incidents which have become all too common in schools. These incidents have occurred despite the availability of psychologists and other professionals placed in schools who are supposed to see such problems before they occur and not to provide the reasons why such events take place after the fact. With schools free to accept and expel, the environment in the classroom will become more conducive to learning, a major plus. One of the greatest problems in discipline was when because of costs, reform schools were dropped and new age approaches of placing discipline problem students into normal regimens in the claim that such an environment would prevent their acting out, and this was applied even to students who it was known had violent tendencies. Some schools may even provide special programs for just such students where a more regimented system where outbursts are not tolerated and other older tried and true methods applied to such students. Not everything is better just because it is a new approach; sometimes the old-school approach is more effective. Most difficulties would have applications which, as long as there is a need, there will be somebody to fill the niche, often at a price.

 

Schools could once more offer a series of hands-on job training giving student a skill which they could become licensed and qualified for apprenticeships or trade school certificate which would create graduates who could take any of the myriad of unfilled positions in what we derogatorily refer to as manual labor. There is nothing wrong with making a living using hands-on skills such as carpentry, plumbing, roofing, electronics repair or any of the many other skilled professions. We must refer to them as skilled professions and as an alternate route for those who choose to create actual physical objects which create the houses, malls and other structures or that repair medical equipment and other electronic items or even factory work with assembly, calibration and testing. Below is Dirty Jobs host Mike Rowe in a suit speaking at the Independent Women’s Forum where he was awarded the Gentleman of Distinction award speaking about the growing gap of jobs which need filling which do not require a college education and the burdensome debt which comes with it. We also can bet that when they make education free for everyone, these free educational opportunities will exclude the menial positions, the way the elites in the ivory towers refer to those of us who perform the jobs which keep their worlds running smoothly with plenty of items produced by people without a college education. The stigma placed on these honorable professions is really doing our children a disservice as instead of running up a debt to gain a degree a youth could apprentice in a profession or even go to Caterpillar’s free school too become a heavy equipment operator and where they will place you in a job near whatever city you desire. For the professionals out there with the six-figure incomes, a heavy equipment operator after four years on the job which includes the first year with Caterpillar will match your six-figure salary working near New York or other major metropolis.

 

 

Many parents argument for why they are unable to place their children into a private educational facility is cost. For those who claim that their children are their most precious darlings of their lives, to them we simply ask, are such darlings not worth a small outlay of funds beyond what the government provides for worthwhile to provide the best for them? With the government outlays per student now given to the child to take with them, the cost of that private school may just have come within the reach of many such a parent, and would that not be worthwhile for them to finally be able to place their children in the schools they desire? The answer to both questions should be a resounding, “yes,” and is another reason privatizing education is something whose time has come. What will happen to all those educators currently in the public school system? Well, they will be able to find jobs with these private schools which will start to appear almost like weeds once they know that the money is there. Competition will keep the prices in check and competition will provide the best teachers receiving the higher salaries. Can you imagine teachers being given raises commensurate with the results of the education they provide the children and the decorum they manage in their classes? Schools will retain their best teachers and slowly weed out those whose methods and results prove to be less than expected. Those who are back to thinking that private schools would be a horrific idea, would you also desire government grocery stores and government clothing stores along with your government education system. Education is a lot like the weather, so many people complain about it but nobody does anything about it. Maybe the time has come to try something different. As Einstein was reputed to have said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” The reality is that the United States had private education for much of its history and the argument for public education was made to provide every student with an equal education which followed the prescribed curriculum such that the workforce would have a standard upon which they could depend. Many of the current results from the government run schools lays lie to such result, as many school systems no longer provide equal education in their schools or even an adequate level of education. Colleges at all levels are finding that they are required to provide remedial education in the most basic subjects without credit for incoming students often adding another year to their time required to graduate. What does this tell you about the level of education the average student are receiving in government schools; perhaps we should try something else and see how it turns out. We would love to see a state decide to try private education taking whatever Federal money they receive and taking the money they provide and dividing it into a per student amount. They could even sell off their school buildings to any system and making sure that different systems are provided with these facilities thus increasing competition. If any state were permitted to try this as a test case and the bureaucrats in Washington D.C. could permit their control freak tendencies to go into remission just for one state, then that could be the test case and any problems addressed as they are encountered. Imagine if such a test were permitted in, oh let’s pick someplace which would represent the nation as a whole, how about Illinois as it has Chicago plus a fair number of decent sized and small metropolitan regions as well as some rural farming communities thus it just might make a representative test case. Would it be simply unthinkable to Americans to accept private education where they would actually have to make decisions as to their children’s education? They choose the food their children eat, the clothes they wear and almost every other aspect of their life, but education which should be amongst the most important items just has to be trusted to the government. That simply does not make sense and is completely counterintuitive.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

July 20, 2018

The True Future of Diaspora Jews

Filed under: Israel — qwertster @ 2:06 AM
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The Jews residing outside of Israel run a great risk of assimilation and leaving the faith as described in the article “Dear Israelis, America is not Israel.” This is even more likely when they live outside a traditional Jewish neighborhood, defined as, where all the children attend a Yeshiva, the family attends religious functions, the boys attend daily services preferably with the father and the home is kept properly kosher, will likely leave the religion within the next generation or two, three at the outside barring outside intervention. This will get a howl out of many who will claim that they have the magic formula by which to instill the balance of Judaism and secular community involvement. They may keep kosher at home; but not necessarily when eating out, especially at that great Chinese restaurant that all their friends rave about and where they eat with other families on special occasions. Perhaps the non-kosher outing is monthly pizza night. What about their children when attending school, do they necessarily keep kosher or might they sneak a non-kosher snack every now and again? Are their children hanging mostly with other Jewish children or a mixed crowd? When dating starts, are their dates from known families or sometimes are they dating from an unknown family and if so, what guarantees assure the person they are dating is Jewish? The potential for dangerous situations which will grow more and more prevalent as time progresses and once they are away at college it has become far too late to make corrections. The truth is even if your children are presently retaining a Jewish lifestyle while under your roof, will it be strong enough that they will do the same with their children, and then again through to their children? From what we have seen and even personally witnessed, this is not the case.

 

Youth who were raised with a complete Jewish background, Bar Mitzvah, president of their B’nai B’rith youth chapter, hooked into the Hillel House when attending university, and intermarried and children brought up in both religions which is almost the same as no religion; their children’s children will likely not be Bar Mitzvah and will float even further adrift with the generation after that not even knowing they came from a Jewish background looking back a few generations. We have a Mormon friend whose grandmother in his mother’s side was Jewish. Legally, he could make Aliyah to Israel on his maternal grandmother’s having been Jewish. They are but one example of how quickly a family can drift from Judaism. The reality can be seen ever so clearly just by looking back into Jewish history. The first mass scale assimilation came early on in Egypt. The Jews may or may not have been slaves or an indentured workforce and may have simply been workers whose only available employment was working on the construction projects. This was apparently the case for many Egyptians, so why not the Jews in Egypt. The truth according to most recounting is that a mere 20% of the Jews left Egypt while the majority preferred the security of what they knew over their faith. Then there was the sorry story about the Ten Lost Tribes which went into exile under the Assyrians and were never heard from until the present day. There is no proof these tribes of Jews coming from all corners of the earth are from the Ten Lost Tribes, but it makes for a very romantic tale. Finally, we have the Babylonian Exile. This was brought to an end by the conquest by Persia under Cyrus the Great. He was named Cyrus the Great by the Jews because he permitted their return to their homelands and with instructions to rebuild their Temple, what would in time become the Second Temple. Here the Jews were liberated from a cruel exile and still, once again, 20% returned to Israel, then known as Judea. The rest saw the wealth and glitter of Persia and decided to take their chances with a complete unknown rather than return to their homeland and rebuild their lives. It was easier to simply melt and assimilate into Persian life. Why should this return be any different other than we have already had more than 20% of the Jewish population, perhaps we should say known Jewish population, return to modern Israel. The number is still under 50%, but at least this time it will end up being over 20% and for that, we can be thankful. The sad news is that mostly parents who are not residing in a close knit Jewish neighborhood and whose children are not attending Yeshiva, the likelihood that their grandchildren will be within the Jewish fold is a slim bet. Yes, some will manage to hold on to that slim thread of tekhelet (blue) from their father’s or grandfather’s Tzitzit, but most will lose their grip and wander astray. This will be the sad end of many a Jewish family line.

 

But this is not the only influence that America has on Israel. Much of Israeli culture is Middle Eastern but with a definite American flavor. Nowhere in Israeli law is there a guarantee of free speech yet that is often part of a judicial ruling. Now if only Israel would write a Constitution and even include much of the Bill of Rights as there are worse examples of governmental theories. Israel is a liberal democratic nation with many of the equalities written into her laws. Many come from Britain while others from America and the Weimar Republic, the German governance before the Nazi hijacked the nation and too many of its people. There is also the fable that the United States has supported Israel from her inception. There is a partial truth to that as President Truman did advise the American Ambassador to the United Nations to vote in favor of the formation of Israel, or at least the UNGA Res 181. What people are less aware about is that Truman then immediately signed an arms embargo which included Israel. During the Eisenhower administration there was still an arms embargo on Israel including for the duration of the 1956 Suez War. Israel was also insisted upon to return all lands and properties to Egypt at the conclusion of that war by President Eisenhower. Truth be told, the start of American aid to Israel came in the 1970’s with the initial trickle in the late 1960’s. The earnest beginnings of the aid to Israel came during the Yom Kippur War where Israel was desperate for a resupply of arms from anywhere willing. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger advised President Nixon to wring some concessions from the Israelis before sending any aid. President Nixon ignored him and commanded the Secretary of Defense to send whatever the Israelis required immediately. That did run into a small problem, Europe. Every American base in Europe was immediately closed by their hosting nation to any aircraft resupplying the Israelis. The Europeans saw this as finally the opportunity to have Israel removed from the map and their “mistake” of allowing her formation erased. This threatened the entirety of Operation Nickel Grass as the United States could not fly these provisions directly and air refueling was not a viable option. In the end, despite every European nation refusing American use of their airspace for this operation, Portugal was willing to help allowing the aircraft landing and refueling permission at Lajes Field in the Azores Islands. This was the start of the American-Israeli cooperation and interdependence as Israel provides the United States with a good amount of intelligence which they otherwise might not have and cooperation on some operational missions providing deniability for both nations. Still, the United States is dearly loved by the average Israeli. Even during the Obama administration there was the feeling that Israel would not be sacrificed, as the American people would never stand for such. This was the general belief and it has definitely carried over to the Trump administration whose moving the embassy to Jerusalem sent waves of joy and appreciation of the promise fulfilled through the tiny nation.

 

There are things which can reinforce one’s connection to the Jewish faith, though such is not the desired means of having one return to the faith. There are many in Europe who are finding that they are very Jewish, at least as far as those who find hatred of a Jew as part of their callings. When Synagogues in your town or the city just down the highway is being firebombed and Jews who wear an identifying piece of jewelry or clothing are being attacked regularly as happens in certain places and cities in Europe, then one remembers their attachment to Judaism, as they have no choice. It is known that anti-Semites will check birth certificates and trace people’s heritage back even two or three generations and if anyone in your family was Jewish, to the anti-Semite you are Jewish and are a target. Some places in Europe rabbis are advising their congregants not to wear a kippah in public and to remove them when they leave prayers for safety’s sake. When the people around you in the public start to treat you differently because, as they would state it, you have Jewish blood, then you realize that for many once your family was Jewish always your family is Jewish, and this includes you. Even those who intermarried are not free of such hatred but their non-Jewish spouse will be considered contaminated by marrying you. This anti-Semitism is returning to Europe in all of its ugliest phenomena. This disease is growing and it is infecting the youth in Europe, especially the Muslims but it is far from limited to just Muslims. There are still the old right wing anti-Semites, some neo-Nazis and others just neo-fascists. The problem is that there is another form of anti-Semitism rising in Europe which many have tried to ignore or even claim cannot exist, but the reality is there. Anti-Semitism is becoming adopted by the far-leftists and even some presumably liberals. These groups include pro-Communists and socialists as well as the militant left. In too many places the name Jew and Israel are used interchangeably and with equal animosity. Jews will soon come to a choice in Europe, either go underground and hide their having Jewish roots until they are found out or get out of Europe. If leaving Europe is your choice, a small piece of advice, choose Israel for reasons we are about to make evident.

 

The United States also is facing increasing anti-Semitism. Most of it is in the form of anti-Zionism and anti-Israelism, but in the end, it will be played out as anti-Semitism. Even in New York where Joe Crowley in the 14th congressional district just lost the primary to challenger Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an outspoken BDS supporter who is strongly pro-Palestinian and believes Israel is illegal. Our bet is she probably does not like Jews period. Ocasio-Cortez spoke out strongly against the Israeli army’s actions on the Gaza border on May 14, tweeting, “This is a massacre. I hope my peers have the moral courage to call it such. No state or entity is absolved of mass shootings of protesters. There is no justification. Palestinian people deserve basic human dignity, as anyone else. Democrats can’t be silent about this anymore.” When asked about the Tweet, Ocasio-Cortez replied, “I think I was primarily compelled on moral grounds because I could only imagine if 60 people were shot and killed in Ferguson. Or if 60 people were shot and killed in the West Virginia teachers’ strikes. The idea that we are not supposed to talk about people dying when they are engaging in political expression just really moved me.” She also claimed to support Bernie Sanders who is also outspokenly anti-Israel, and yes, he is supposedly Jewish.

 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Tweeting as an Outspoken BDS Supporter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Tweeting as an Outspoken BDS Supporter

 

The waves of anti-Israel protests on major American college and university campuses as well as intimidation of Jewish students with mostly verbal abuse but some numbers have been spat upon and more recently attacks have taken place. Those inciting such actions against Jewish students will also be amongst the leaders in the future after these students graduate and take their place in the society. These positions are taking on a following strongly along the lines of the activist left. Apparently, if one is a Zionist, you cannot be an honest feminist, honest. Some say that supporting Israel bars one from all pro-rights and leftist protests and movements. The writing is on the wall even in some high schools where anti-Semitism has reared its ugly head. These types of things grow slowly and almost unperceived and eventually hit a tipping point, and then people turn around and start asking things like how did this happen and where did it come from. It came from not paying enough attention to what was growing in the shadows simply waiting for the best time to jump out and take center stage. The United States is approaching just such a tipping point when it comes to Jew hatred. This hatred has been festering in the background since the early 1980’s, and had never completely disappeared. Now it is growing with the aid of Islamist groups who are painting hate for Israel as protecting human rights and using that as the introduction to all Jews equal Israel. Even Courtney Love has referred to Linda Sarsour as an “anti-Semitic terrorist” stating in a Tweet, “I won’t follow anything that’s being led by an anti-Semitic terrorist that’s using feminism as a tool to promote her radicalism.” This is going to heat up and catch many Jews, especially those who have wandered from the religion and are completely unaware of what is coming their way.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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