Sunday, March 30, 2014

Rabbi review of Noah movie Rabbi Jonathan ginsburg Jewu

analysis of Noah movie

Bashers of the Noah Film Should Re-Read Their Bibles

Spoiler Alert: This review of the Darren Aronofsky film “Noah” reveals plot details and analysis you may not want to know beforehand if you plan on seeing the film.
Darren Aronofsky’s new $100m blockbuster film “Noah” opened on Friday in 3936 theaters to a huge wave of media attention. Google News lists over 1400 stories on the film this morning and IMDB lists 2217 articles–many of them evaluating its merits or assessing the public reaction. Mainstream reviews are mostly solidly positive (Rotten Tomatoes 73, Metacritic 68) but the film is being blasted, damned, and condemned in many conservative Christian circles. So far it has been banned in Indonesia, the largest Muslim country, as well as Qatar, Bahrain, and the UAE–but here in the U.S. those objecting most strongly to the film are Christians who find its portrayal of the Noah story “unfaithful” to the Bible.
noah-film-700x464Ken Ham, the self-styled “Creationist” of recent fame for his disastrous debate with Bill Nye on “Evolution,” tells TIME magazine that the film is an insult to Christians, with “barely a hint of biblical fidelity,” and thus “unbiblical” and “pagan.” Glenn Beck, labels the film a “100 million dollar disaster,” objecting, among other things, that it is “pro-animal” and “anti-human.” Erick Erikson, on his “Redstate” blog, concludes his scorching review with the suggestion that “we might should consider burning at the stake any Christian leader who endorses this movie.” His Tweet was picked up by MSNBC and other TV media last night and has now gone viral. Brian Godawa calls the film “Godawful” in the Christian Post, referring to “the sick twisted agenda that seeps through every frame of this movie.”
None of these Christian critics explain why this ancient story, written by Jews, and part of the Hebrew Bible, should fall under Christian purview or guardianship in terms of its interpretation. But that aside, these two Jewish guys, Aronofsky and his former Harvard roommate and writing partner, Ari Handel, in aiming for what they call the “least biblical” of Bible themed films, have ended up in my view producing a film that profoundly reflects biblical themes that have been lost in most common readings of the Noah story in Genesis 6-9. I find myself in agreement with Christopher Orr’s most perceptive review in The Atlantic,
But despite its flamboyant, and at times goofy, fantasy trappings, Noah is firmly anchored by the fierce moral intensity of Aronofsky’s vision, which is, if anything, more Old Testament than the Old Testament itself.
What I want to do here is to touch on just a few of the most common Christian objections that I reference above.
The Film Never Mentions God
I have heard this objection repeatedly this weekend, particularly on FOX news and Talk Radio outlets, and it is blatantly false and ridiculous. The very word translated “God” in Genesis is not a name but a generic reference that might be translated as “The Powers” (Elohim). One can only imagine the uproar had Aronofsky chosen to call the Creator “The Powers”–which would have been quite biblical. In the Noah film this nameless One is constantly referred to as “the Creator,” but used in a very personal way by all the characters in the film–good and bad. According to Exodus 6:3 God did not make Himself known by His personal name Yahweh (YHVH) or “the LORD” until the time of Moses. The references to God as “the LORD” in Genesis 6-9 in the Flood story are accordingly anachronistic—so it turns out, ironically, that Aronofsky’s designation of God as “the Creator,” is more biblical than his critics have imagined.
The Film is Pro-Animal and Promotes Vegetarianism and Environmentalism
Here I would have to say “guilty as charged”–and thus thoroughly biblical.  What few realize is that according to the Bible humans before the Flood were never given permission to hunt, shed blood, or eat the flesh of living creatures. In Genesis 1:29 God says “I give you every seed-bearing plant that is upon all the earth, and every tree that has seed bearing fruit; they shall be yours for good.” It is only after the flood, that permission to “shed blood” and eat meat is given to humans, though it is stipulated that God will hold humans accountable even for the blood of an animal. According to the Rabbis, this means that the life of an animal must be taken without cruelty and with reverence (Genesis 9:3).
Aronofsky portrays the righteous descendants of Seth–through Methuselah, Lamech, and Noah, preserving this “peaceable kingdom” of non-violence and harmony with nature, whereas the murderous descendants of Cain had filled the earth with violence  and “corrupted its ways upon the earth.” God’s decision is to destroy humankind “along with the earth” they have corrupted (Genesis 6:12-13). The barren wasteland, and specifically the abandoned strip-mining scene, is a testimony to what humans have made of the “good Earth” that was the original Creator’s handiwork.
Noah’s family represents the last remnant of hope for humankind’s peaceable ideal in which violence toward humans or beasts is quelled and warfare ceases. This is the vision of Isaiah the prophet for the ideal human future–swords beaten into plowshares and the wolf lying with the lamb with none hurting or destroying. In fact Isaiah pictures a time when “slaying an ox” will be considered as weighty a matter as killing a human being (Isaiah 65:25-66:3).
The Film Devalues Humans
Again, I have to say, “guilty as charged”—and thus thoroughly biblical. There could be no stronger expression of the “devaluing” of humans than we find in the Bible in the time of Noah. The Creator says that He regrets that he has created the human species and that it grieves Him to his heart. The entire species is characterized as hopelessly “wicked” with every thought of the heart only evil continually (Genesis 6:5-7). It is an open question then–as Aronofsky so profoundly portrays in the film–as to whether humankind should continue. This is not a Christian text, with presuppositions about God so loving the world and sending his Son to die for sinners–with infinite love for every wicked person and their eternal salvation. That simply is not the biblical story here in Genesis 6. The issue is whether the Creation itself has been so marred and destroyed by human behavior that it is best wiped away as a failed attempt by God to create creatures in His image–who nonetheless have free will and the “knowledge of good and evil.” The Flood story touches upon the essential existential issue of our own time—our “human all-too-human” role on a planet upon which our dominant place as moral beings with choice is continually being weighed in the balance.
Noah and his family are to be spared–since they have not gone the “way of Cain,” but Noah himself, in the film, wrestles with the central dilemma of the text–should the human race be spared at all? The key point in the film, which I will not explicitly give away, is when Noah sees an evil “Serpent” reflection of himself on one of the Tubal-Cain character’s faces—a kind of flashback to the Garden of Eden–and it suddenly dawns on him that we are all of one species. This means that all of us have the potential for horrible evil manifesting itself in our lives, or in the lives of our descendants. His wife, played by Jennifer Connelly, presents the other side of the conundrum–arguing that “we are good, our children are good,” and thus should be spared to inhabit a new world in which peace and righteousness would prevail and create a new world order.
It is not a matter of Noah favoring a flower over the life of the two newborn infants (again I will not elaborate this plot line here)–but wrestling with the moral dilemma–which is the Creator’s Dilemma–of whether or not the race should continue. Not picking even a flower is the very point. This “environmentalism” represents the “good way” of caring for the earth, for its creatures, and for one another and living in peace—in sharp contrast to the way of power and exploitation of the descendants of Cain.
Tubal-Cain, played by Ray Winstone, represents an ultimately opposite perspective. For him what makes a man truly a man is the complete independence from any Creator or any other moral code–forging his individual way in the earth through his power and his choices.  As he says to Noah just before he dies—“I told you the Creator’s miracles mean nothing to me.” Thus when Ham ends up killing him to save his father he tells him–”Now you have become a man,” just because Ham has finally acted autonomously and thus gone “beyond good and evil.”
The Hebrew Bible, unlike the Christian New Testament, explores this theme of the ultimate fate of humankind and the “good earth” in any number of places. In fact, in the closing book of the Prophets, the book of Malach, which ends the Christian Old Testament, we find the sober warning that if humans do not find peace among themselves the Creator will come and “strike the earth with a curse.” The word translated “curse” (Hebrew cherem) here means an “ban of utter destruction.” So even at the end of the Hebrew Prophets humankind is pictured as standing on the brink of judgment with a choice of death or life before them.
The Film Does Not Follow the Bible
In addition to addressing these various controversial points I should add that the film has lots more–with special effects, bizarre phenomenon, and all sorts of creative and artistic embellishments on the rather “bare” story of Genesis 6-9. One must remember, however, that Genesis is not our only account of the Flood. There are other literary sources such as the Gilgamesh Epic and the mysterious books of 1 Enoch and Jubilees–revered by both ancient Jews and early Christians–but not included in the Bible–but found among the Dead Sea Scrolls. There one does read more of the mysterious heavenly “Watchers,” fallen down to earth, who teach humankind all the skills that the descendants of Cain pervert into selfish ends. There is a wonderful and emerging web site that deals broadly with this whole topic, many of the other texts, and a wide range of insightful commentary and discussion– I highly recommend this site to my readers. And I hope you will all see the Noah film and decide for yourselves about its value and its merits.

posted by Rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg

Dershowitz on J street

Dershowitz eviscerates Jeremy Ben Ami and J Street

Jeremy Ben Ami and J Street   J Street’s hypocrisy must be exposed  (Jeremy Ben Ami and J Street) J Street’s ‘Big Tent’ is open only to one side – the anti-Israel and BDS-supporting hard left of its own position; pro-Israel centrists are censored.

Jeremy Ben Ami and J Street

From Haaretz:
Thanks to Elder of Ziyon
By Alan M. Dershowitz
J Street, the American organization that calls itself pro-Israel and pro peace but that always seems to be taking positions that are anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian, is asking America’s Jewish leadership to have a big tent and to open its doors to J Street. While I generally support that position, it is imperative that J Street’s hypocrisy be exposed. J Street insists that all major pro-Israel organizations be open to speakers who favor opposing views—such as supporters of the BDS movements, supporters of the single secular binational state approach, and those who oppose Palestinian recognition of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.
In the abstract, this open tent policy seems commendable. We should be committed to the open marketplace of ideas in which views prevail on their merits not on the basis of exclusion.
Now let’s see how J Street itself fares with regard to an open tent policy. It has categorically refused to allow speakers like me, who oppose J Street’s policies on Iran and other security matters, to speak to its members at its conventions. I have repeatedly and persistently sought an opportunity to present my perspective—which is shared by many American supporters of Israel—at the J Street convention, or at otherevents officially sponsored by J Street. When J Street invites BDS supporters and those oppose Israel’s right to exist as the nation-state of the Jewish people to speak at itsevents, it claims that it does not necessarily support these positions, but it believes in encouraging its members to hear views that are different from its official positions. That is total nonsense. J Street only wants people to hear views to the anti-Israel hard left of its position. It categorically refuses to allow its members to hear views that are more centrist and more pro-Israel, such as my own.

And there is a good reason why they have placed this cone of silence over its critics. J Street survives, and even expands, largely as the result of speaking out of two sides of its mouth. It seeks to attract centrist members by advocating the two-state solution, an aggressive stance towards peace negotiations and criticisms of Israel’s settlementpolicies. These are positions I fully support, and if they were J Street’s only positions, I would have joined that organization many years ago. But in an effort to expand leftward, particularly hard leftward, it has taken positions that undercut Israel’s security and that virtually no Israeli center-leftists support. It placed its imprimatur behind the despicable and mendacious Goldstone Report by bringing Richard Goldstone to Capitol Hill and introducing him to members of Congress. In doing so it undercuts the efforts of the Obama Administration, which was supportive of Israel’s self-defense efforts in Gaza and not supportive of the Goldstone Report.

J Street has also spoken out of both sides of its mouth on the issue of whether the Palestinian leadership should recognize Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people. While first appearing to oppose such recognition, it now seems to be saying that this issue should be left to final stage negotiations, but it leaves open the possibility that it will continue to oppose such recognition if and when such negotiations are reached.
Moreover, J Street has accepted funding from sources—such as George Soros—who are openly anti-Israel, and have kept this fact secret so as not to alienate its centrist supporters.
It is easy to understand therefore why J Street doesn’t want me, or others who holdpositions like mine, to enter into its tent. It does not want its own members to be confronted with the reality of J Street’s double talk. If I speak at its convention, I will be speaking at the same time to those centrists it seeks to attract and to those hard leftists it wants within its tent. Both sides will be shocked by J Street’s duplicity in telling each what they want to hear.
So here is my challenge: at the next J Street convention, show the film The J Street Challenge: The Seductive Allure of Peace in Our Time to all of its members, invite me to speak to them, allow me to distribute its conflicting position papers and positionsand let the marketplace of ideas remain open to its members. Only when J Street opens up its tent to views critical of its own should it be demanding that pro-Israel groups open its tent to them.

Now look at Ben-Ami’s “response” where he doesn’t respond at all:

…Instead of organizing to meet this existential threat, some on the far right of the American Jewish community are focusing their effort and their fire in a different direction – on members of their own community. In particular, there is a new well-funded and energetic campaign to defame and delegitimize J Street, centered on an hour-long attack-umentary called the “J Street Challenge.”
Sadly even a couple of mainstream, established Jewish organizations and figures are associating themselves with it – contrary to our community’s firm commitment to civil debate on issues of legitimate disagreement.
Those who’ve made the film and are hawking it are, however, missing the real challenges that J Street is posing to the Jewish community. Here are a few of them:
• With the world losing patience with Israel’s policy toward the Palestinians, will we rally to urge the national homeland of our people to change course before it loses its democracy or its Jewish character?
• As the BDS Movement against Israel gains traction, will we recognize that the best way to defeat it isn’t spending our energy on preventing its supporters from being heard, but on ending the conflict in two states for two peoples?
• If you recognize the existential necessity of a two-state solution for Israel to survive as a Jewish and democratic homeland, isn’t it time to acknowledge the price that has to be paid to achieve it? How can we say we support a two-state solution but oppose establishing borders based on the pre-67 lines with swaps? How can we say we support two states and oppose a Palestinian capital in the Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem?
• Is it appropriate to call those who criticize Israeli government policy anti-Israel or anti-Semitic? Plenty of Israelis including security chiefs, former Prime Ministers and Members of the Knesset are critical of present policy, and they’re certainly not anti-Israel. In fact, using the anti-Semitism label to describe criticism of Israeli policy demeans the horror of real anti-Semitism.
• Is it right or smart to limit the right to speak in Jewish communal spaces to those with whom you agree? The more we limit admission to Jewish communal spaces by imposing ideological litmus tests regarding Israel, the smaller our Jewish community will be.
• Are we, as a people, treating the Palestinian people the way we ourselves want to be treated? Are we living up to the moral standards of our people and have we learned the lessons of our own oppression through the centuries and across the globe?
• Can we finally stop ignoring what is happening beyond the Green Line? The day-to-day maintenance of a 47-year occupation of another people runs counter to the interests and values of Israel and the Jewish people. It places all the wonder and accomplishment of the state of Israel at risk. It is time for the occupation to end.
We urge those attacking us to spend a little less time leveling baseless accusations against a now-established Jewish organization and a little more time addressing these fundamental challenges facing the Israel we love.

(Jeremy Ben Ami and J Street) In Jewish communal venues here and across the globe, let’s call an end to the attack videos and mudslinging and let’s start discussing the significant challenges that really threaten not just Israel but the heart and the soul of the Jewish people.

posted by Rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Fun Noah facts Jewu 573 Parashat Noah Noach

Noah and the flood JewU 60 Did it really happen? Is it a unique story? R...


Abbas kills peace process

World Jewish Digest

Dead as a doornail. In the waste basket of history. Dead on arrival.
Whatever cliche you want to use, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas officially killed peace talks Wednesday by unilaterally rejecting any recognition of a Jewish state. He was backed up his his Arab League colleagues unanimously.
This means a few things. First, the Arabs have not given up their dream of destroying Israel. Recognizing the Jewish state is a simple confidence-building gesture but they won't do it because they don't believe the Jewish state should exist.
Two, any Israeli government that agrees to a peace agreement after a statement like this will surely lose power and its right to govern.
Three, this is the latest evidence that all of President Obama's foreign policy initiatives have failed. One can not point to a major area of foreign policy where Obama has seen a success. Six years after winning the presidency, U.S. relations are worse off with Russia, China, Saudi Arabia, Israel and our former allies in Europe's east. They are only better with Iran, which still has not given up its desire to destroy both the U.S. and Israel.
Which is part of the reason Abbas sees no reason at all to accede to American demands. A weak president who wishes to withdraw from the world stage means that new alliances will be formed, likely to Israel's detriment. Obama is not only a disaster for Israel; he's a disaster for the world.

posted by Rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Pesah Passover seder songs and prayers 1 Jewu 379 Rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg

Passover Haggadah explained briefly JewU 6 rabbi jonathan ginsburg

Passover joke: Why is this night JewU 5 rabbi jonathan ginsburg

Munther Isaac Tells Antisemitic Joke at CATC Peacemaking Conference, Gets Laugh

Munther Isaac Tells Antisemitic Joke at CATC Peacemaking Conference, Gets Laugh

Audience Response to MIs AS Joke.jpg
The audience at Christ at the Checkpoint, held in Bethlehem during the second week of March 2014, responds to a joke about Jews and money told by Palestinian Christian Munther Isaac. (Screenshot.)
Munther Isaac is a clever and well-educated man who did a very stupid thing at the Christ at the Checkpoint Conference that took place in Bethlehem a couple of weeks ago.
He told an antisemitic joke that, sickeningly enough, elicited laughter from Evangelical Protestants in attendance at the conference. The joke is easy to follow for people who know their New Testament.
What is most astonishing is that Munther’s joke, and the audience’s response, is all there for people to see on video here. (The joke is told at about 17 minutes and 20 seconds into the video.)
Here’s the set up.
Isaac, a Palestinian Christian and CATC conference organizer who is about to receive his Ph.D. from the Oxford Center for Mission Studies, spoke on the night of Thursday, March 13, 2014, the second to last day of the conference. The scripture he was using in his talk was the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:29-37), which tells the story of a man being robbed and left for dead by the side of the road.
According to the parable, two religious men a priest and a Levite (Jews) walk passed him ignoring his plight. Finally, a man (known as the Good Samaritan), stops and helps him. Isaac then says the following:
By the way, the two religious people, why did they not stop? This question was asked to a Sunday school boy and the boy answered, “Well because he had no money left.”
The implication is that if the man suffering by the side of the road, the priest and the Levite, both Jews, would have stopped to help the man if he had ... money. A slight smirk can be seen on Isaac’s face before the camera cuts to the audience to show many (but not all) of them laughing.
Isaac elicits more laughter when he jokes that the reason why the two religious men did not stop was that they were on their way to a Christian conference.
Nice try, Munther, but the whole premise of the joke is based on the association of Jews with greed and money.
It was an inappropriate joke for Isaac to tell at a peacemaking conference, especially after he himself condemned the antisemitic words his fellow Palestinians have used to describe Jews. “Many [Palestinians] call Jews by names that I am ashamed to utter and sometimes it comes from religious people I call preachers of hate.”
It doesn’t help that in this same speech, Isaac stated that Israel is unreasonable in its demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as the Jewish state. And it doesn’t help that Isaac told this story at a conference where three of his countrymen lied about the security barrier.
But there it is.
Munther Isaac, a Palestinian Christian leader, and peacemaker, told an antisemitic joke about Jews and money to an audience of Evangelical Protestants 20 different countries around the world.
And he got a laugh.

Posted by Rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg

Monday, March 24, 2014

Leprosy? House Fungus? Torah portions Tazria Metzora and todays news Jew...

New Jews today from our online conversion course Thailand and Arkansas

New Jews today from our online conversion course Thailand and Arkansas
You too can become a Jew!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Chicago area High Holiday cantorial soloist needed

Chicago area High Holiday cantorial soloist needed for 5775 High Holidays to work with me for 5 2 hour services: Erev Rosh, Rosh Hashanah day 1, Kol Nidre, Yom Kippur morning and minha/Neilah for Chicago North suburban service of approx. 400. We use Reform machzor. contact Charles Horowitz at 224 766 6121 email resume to…

Friday, March 21, 2014

J street's continued betrayal of Israel

J Street Endorses Palestinian Refusal to Recognize Israel as Jewish State

Jeremy Ben-Ami
Jeremy Ben-Ami /
In a development that is not sending shockwaves through the pro-Israel community, the “pro-Israel, pro-peace” advocacy group J Street has declared its support for the Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. 
In a statement posted on the group’s website, executive director Jeremy Ben-Ami says that to “keep moving forward, both [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas] now need to give a little.”
Netanyahu, he says, must drop his insistence that Abbas recognize Israel as a Jewish State because “it is simply unrealistic and unreasonable to expect any Palestinian leader to consent” to such a demand.
Ben-Ami never goes on to say what Abbas “needs to give.”
J Street’s advocacy for the Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state follows a nearly unbroken period of advocacy for Palestinian and Iranian interests since the group’s founding in 2008. J Street took the Hamas position on Israel during Operation Cast Lead later that year, accusing the IDF of war crimes and promoting the discredited Goldstone Report. It lobbied for the Iranian regime’s position against Iran sanctions. It defended the terrorists who attacked IDF soldiers on the 2010 Gaza flotilla. J Street also took the Palestinian and Arab League position on a UN Security Council resolution on Israeli settlements in 2011.

Seder Plate Basics for Passover JewU 23 Pesah

Are we supposed to tithe?

According to the Rabbis, the laws of tithing only apply to the land of Israel, and farmers in the Diaspora have no obligation to give tithes, although there is some evidence of communities outside Israel, in Egypt for example, having a system of tithing.
Again according to the Rabbis, the full tithing laws apply only when the majority of Jews live in the land of Israel and since, in the absence of the purification rites of the red heifer, everyone today suffers from corpse contamination, the terumah is inoperative in any event. Moreover the purpose of tithing, for the upkeep of the priests and Levites, has no meaning nowadays. The present practice in the State of Israel is to have only a token separation of the tithes.
Some Rabbinic sources make reference to a tithe of money as well as of produce, although it is not too clear whether this was seen as a voluntary contribution rather than an obligation. Nevertheless, many observant Jews today do donate a tenth of their annual income to charity. This is known asmaaser kesafim, 'the money tithe' or 'wealth tax.'

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Hillary on Israel

Hillary Clinton? you can't be serious /
no friend of Israel
Jennifer Rubin's Washington Post
 Clinton spins her record on Israel
March 20 at 12:14 pm
Hillary Clinton is trying to impress voters that she’s a true friend of Israel, which is odd given that relations with the Jewish state reached a low point while she was secretary of State. The Post reports: “Hillary Rodham Clinton cast doubt on the interim nuclear agreement with Iran, saying in a muscular policy speech [in New York] Wednesday night that she is ‘personally skeptical’ that Iran’s leaders will follow through on a comprehensive agreement to end their march toward nuclear weapons. Still, the former secretary of state and potential 2016 Democratic presidential candidate told a pro-Israel audience in New York that she stands behind the Obama administration’s negotiations with Iran, and she commended the work of her successor, John F. Kerry.”
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 07: Former United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attends the event "Equality for Women is Progress for All" at the United Nations on March 7, 2014 in New York City. The event was part of the United Nations International Women's Day, which is celebrated tomorrow, March 8. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)
Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton attends the event “Equality for Women is Progress for All” at the United Nations. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Hmm. That raises a bunch of questions.
If she is personally skeptical of a negotiated deal with Iran, sought to slow down sanctions when in office and now opposes new sanctions, how does she propose to get a deal?
If she was skeptical that this entire approach would work, what was her back up plan?
Does she agree with the president that Iran can be a threshold nuclear state so long as it doesn’t possess a nuclear weapon?
Does she think President Obama’s New Year’s greeting to Iran praising its presidential election, as if it were free and fair, and ignoring its atrocious human rights record was something she’d deliver?
Why do Israel, Iran, our Gulf allies and Congress not think Obama would use military force? How did we lose credibility on that?
Was it a masterstroke to let Syrian President Bashar al-Assad stay in power, give up only a fraction of his WMD’s and continue to slaughter innocents? Does she think the president’s Syria policy was a success? Has it made Hezbollah stronger?
Was it a mistake to stiff arm the Green Revolutionary dissidents? Did she place too high a premium on useless engagement with Iran?
If she was such a good friend to Israel why did she continually berate the Jewish state for building in its capital while ignoring the exchange of letters between Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and President George W. Bush setting out the parameters of acceptable building?
Did our renewed participation in the United Nations Human Rights Council achieve anything?
Why did she ambush the Israeli prime minister with the “1967 borders” announcement?
What did she do for the oppressed women of Gaza and the West Bank who suffer grave discrimination and are subject to honor killings?
Is the president right that Mahmoud Abbas is a man of peace? Is there anything to talk about so long as the Palestinian Authority won’t give up the right of return? Why then does the president keep publically haranguing Israel?
What was her policy on the Arab Spring? Did she have one? What did she do to further women’s rights in these countries?
Was it foolish to send then-Senator John Kerry to sweet talk Assad? Did she actually think Assad could have been helpful in the peace process?
If and when she ever agrees to let the press ask questions there is a lot there to explore. And if she in fact runs for president, the GOP had better have a nominee who knows enough to take her on and show just how fraudulent is her reputation as a great friend of Israel.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Obama's threat to Israel based on false data

Obama's threat to Israel based on false data
Commentary mag. blog
Stats Debunk Demographic Threat to Israel
Figures released today show that Israel’s demographic situation continues to move in a direction that is positive for the future of the Jewish state, quite in contravention to the prevailing wisdom about Israel’s impending demographic peril. Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics has released the birthrate figures for 2013, revealing that the Jewish birthrate is continuing to rise as the Muslim birthrate is continuing to decline. While population projections are by their nature often inaccurate on account of the myriad unforeseeable variables, it seems that this is a front on which Israelis can afford to feel some optimism. Yet, despite the growing body of evidence to the contrary, there is no shortage of voices warning Israel of imminent demographic doom. This is a central tenant of the doctrine of the Israeli left, and it is also a threat with which President Obama has increasingly been seeking to panic Israel

Passover Haggadah explained briefly JewU 6 rabbi jonathan ginsburg

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


Israel “beacon of democracy to the region,”

British Prime Minister David Cameron speech  in the Knesset this week:. Visiting for the first time since becoming PM, Cameron’s passionate and eloquent speech celebrated the relationship between these two democracies, a relationship built on historical ties, shared values, and mutually beneficial cooperation.
It was clear that Cameron is not only appreciative of Israel’s contributions to the world, praising it as a “beacon of democracy to the region,” and of the immense benefits Britain gains from trading and working with one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world, but also sympathetic towards the unique challenges that the Jewish nation-state faces.
These challenges include the need to balance striving for peace whilst also defending herself against those who would do her harm. David Cameron’s references to Israel’s vulnerability to attacks from rockets were especially well-timed, as on that day militants from Gaza fired a barrage of over 50 rockets at civilian targets in the south of the country.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Its still Haman and Iran

3400 yearas  after Iran and Purim, its Iran Iran Iran again and Obama just wants to talk.

World jewish digest  today
A former El Al security expert says all evidence points to Iran being behind the hijacking of a Malaysian airlines flight that has still yet to be found.

The Times of Israel reports that Isaac Yeffet bases his evidence on the two stolen passports used by Iranian nationals to board the flight.

“What happened to this aircraft, nobody knows. My guess is based upon the stolen passports, and I believe Iran was involved,” he said. “They hijacked the aircraft and they landed it in a place that nobody can see or find it.”

Investigators have still not found the plane, but now believe it might have been in the air up to seven hours after it last made contact with ground control. One theory circulating holds that the plane landed in an undisclosed location and will later be used in a terror act.

Yeffet added that he doesn't believe the two Iranians acted alone.

However, it would have taken more than just a pair of Iranians with forged documents, Yeffet said, to pull off such an astonishing crime. “I can’t believe for a second that if these people planned to hijack the aircraft, it was just them,” he said. But based upon the tried-and-true Israeli intelligence strategy of profiling, the pilots, he said, are unlikely suspects. “We are talking about a captain who is 53 years old, who has worked for Malaysia Airlines for 30 years, and suddenly he became a terrorist? He wanted to commit suicide? If he committed suicide, where is the debris?”

Meanwhile they are hard at work moving toward Nuk capability
US official: Iran pursuing banned items for nuclear, missile work
State Dept. official says Tehran is still 'very actively' pursuing clandestine nuclear procurement efforts by setting up front companies and falsifying documents.
Published: 03.16.14, 18:07 / Israel News

DUBAI - Iran has pursued a longstanding effort to buy banned components for its nuclear and missile programs in recent months, a US official said on Sunday, a period when it struck an interim deal with major powers to limit its disputed atomic activity.

Vann Van Diepen, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Non-Proliferation, said Iran was still "very actively" creating front companies and engaging in other activity to conceal procurements.

The reported supplies do not contravene last year's breakthrough agreement between Tehran and six world powers to curb its most sensitive atomic activity in exchange for some limited easing of sanctions damaging its economy.

But such trade would breach a 2006 UN embargo banning the provision by any nation to Iran of materials related to its nuclear and missile development work. Western experts say such low-profile procurement efforts by Iran date back many years, perhaps decades in the case of its nuclear activity.

Asked if he had seen a change in Iranian procurement behaviour in the past six to 12 months, a period that has seen a cautious thaw in US-Iranian relations after decades of hostility, Van Diepen replied: "The short answer is no.

"They still continue very actively trying to procure items for their nuclear program and missile program and other program," he told Reuters in an interview.

"We continue to see them very actively setting up and operating through front companies, falsifying documentation, engaging in multiple levels of trans-shipment ... to put more apparent distance between where the item originally came from and where it is ultimately going."