"From Moshe till Moshe, there arose none like Moshe." (famous Jewish folk saying)

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Uncertainty, insecurity and feeling settled. All in the same day.

I have learned about myself that I do not deal well when things are not settled and are not in my control. Is anything? It may be a false sense of thinking, but since leaving my position as “director” I deal with a new reality that I am no longer in a position to “call the shots.” It is one thing when things are not settled and you have the ability to do something about it. It is another when you have to wait for someone else to determine your fate…it can get you thinking.

I have been working for the last 18 months for a wonderful organization. I sincerely believe that the type of work we do, and the people we work with have the ability to impact and change the world in a remarkable way.

When I was hired, the head of our organization said that although I was offered the position, it could not be official until I met with the organizations largest benefactor. 18 months have come and gone and until today, this had not happened. I have been living with the uncertainty and insecurity that although, I have been working hard, am being productive, my boss likes me, my job could still be jeopardized if the “bal habos” did not like me. It’s that way in Jewish organizations.

So today, I finally met with the benefactor for 20 minutes…. And after 18 months, 12 trips to the US, Canada and France, over 75 Cites, 22 states, I was officially offered the job. So am I settled now? Not a chance!

Resilience

As I was leaving shul this morning, there were little children standing around an elderly man admiring his right hand. They were playfully asking him questions, touching his fingers, squeezing his hand to their delight. As I passed by, I heard him, say to the children, “if I can serve HaShem with one hand, imagine what you can do with two!

On March 27, 2002 this man and his family were celebrating Passover at the Park Hotel in Netanya. Terrorist came into the dining room during the seder and started shooting and throwing grenades. “I saw the grenade between my legs, I said Shema Yisrael twice and that is all I remember.” I heard him say this some time ago. With one leg and one arm, this man davens with me in shul each day. As we were leaving shul on one morning, I asked him how he was feeling. He said, Toda La’Kel, I thank G-d each day.

To be continued...

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Just imagine if Israel had done that

If Israel had killed an innocent civilian, the world reaction would have been fast and furious. UN condemnations, Security Council Resolutions, etc., would have been too many to count. I bet the front page of all the international news outlets would say, “Lynching by Israel.”

London is living under fantastically difficult times they say. I feel bad for the innocent Brit’s who now have to endure what has become standard procedure for us in Israel. The traditionally anti-Israel rhetoric verbally vomited by BBC, Jack Straw, Mayor Ken Livingstone must now look inward at their own failures and not place the blame for their internal problems on Israel. However, we all know that today, blame on Israel is being offered wholesale. Psychology 101, is much easier to deflect blame by making others look bad than it is to reflect on your own failures. This fellow writes what I am thinking. Wish I could do that.

Monday, July 25, 2005

We are not afraid


I saw this URL on CNN and then again it was referenced on Jewlicious. Yes, I look at that periodically. So, I decided to send in a submission. A few weeks ago someone at our shabbos table said they were afraid to live in Israel. Our 12 year old daughter looked at them and point blank, asked, "what are you afraid of?"

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Sarah is missing!

With all that is going on In Israel, this should be the least of our worries.

In the wrong place...Maybe

I took DB back to the NCSY Kollel last night and picked up our friend Dovid G. who made a run to KFC in Mivaseret for pre-Fast spicy Wings and a Zinger. We downed 18 wings before 2am…I’ll let you know if this was a good idea later. So far so good.

As we were getting on highway 1, I noticed an increased presence in Police activity. There were just a few more police cars than usual for 11pm on a Saturday night. Plus I saw 3 dude teams. The Dude's, as we call them, are the 1st responder anti-terror teams that ride around on motorcycles with body armor and enough artillery to take on a small army. So I figured something must be going on.

The police car in front of me was driving way below the speed limit so I did what we usually do, I passed him in the right lane. And then all of a sudden, 3 more dude’s passed me on the left, several white vans, plus an entire motorcade of vehicles. If you know rout 1, it’s not the safest place to just pull over, and before I knew it, I was driving in the motorcade. I looked to my left just in time to see the primary vehicle of interest, a black Volvo sedan escorting Dr. Condoleezza Rice. Someone really messed up in their traffic control b/c I should not have been driving with them.

It was a cool experience but I am still waiting for the Shin Bet to show up at my house to interrogate me. If I had known that she had congratulated Abbas for his crackdown on terror, maybe I would done something different. (probably not) I mean in her comments, she is basically ignoring the fact that there have been suicide bombings, barrages of 100’s of rockets, shootings and murders. People have died in the Abbas so called crack down on terror. This is not diplomacy…it is idiocy.

Israel is the safest place

Yesterday before Shabbat, I spoke with my Dad about the recent developments in London. Specifically, news reports that the British security had claimed that had identified chased down and killed a suspect. It all did not make sense to me. The obvious is the MO of a suicide bomber. They don’t run. Once detected, they attempt to detonate them selves, as they would rather die than get caught. Unfortunately the news has been released that this poor fellow had no link to 7/7 and that the actions of the British police were regrettable. A case of mistaken identity by a bunch of boobies with overactive testosterone and very big guns. Sounds like a formula for disaster to me. As events of the weekend develop, Sharm el-Sheikh, Beirut, Iraq, I am thinking more and more that Israel is most likely the safest place in the world to be.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

If you have a few minutes, it's worth it.

Regardless of your positions, this video is painful to watch.

On the lighter side, only in Israel

I was on the bus and an elderly woman was sitting in front of me. She was talking to herself and seemed to be somewhat frantic. As I listened to her monologue, I began to understood that she could not remember where to get off the bus. So she asked me if she could borrow my phone. I said no problem; I mean what’s 39 agurot per minute between friends?

She made the call and spoke to someone; it may have been her daughter, for a few minutes. After the call was completed, she gave me my phone back. A few minutes passed, and I could hear the woman talking to herself again. She still sounded like she was in a panic and a bit confused. So, she turned around, and asked me to borrow my phone. In my previous life, I may have offered my business card and offered a consult for admission to my nursing home. But in this life, I gladly offered what I could do; I lent her my phone for another 5-minute conversation. After she completed the call, she gave me the phone and thanked me.

I sat back, relaxed, and enjoyed the solitude of the ride and the beauty of Israel…. And then my phone rang. An unfamiliar voice on the other end said, “Hello, are you on bus number 330?” Yes, who is calling? I asked. And then this unfamiliar voice proceeded to ask me if she could speak with the elderly woman sitting in front of me on the bus! This would only happen in Israel! You got to love it.

I don’t think it means what he thinks its means

The atmosphere in the Holy Land is very thick right now. Thick with tension as our Country teeters on the threshold of the disengagement. I have already expressed my views and on the disengagement. My feelings and sentiments have only been reinforced by the barrage or mortars shootings, homicide bombings and bombings attempts over the last several months. As Israel is poised to enter Gaza, the PA reaction has been predictable. The escalation by Israel will only compromise the cease-fire agreement. I always want to barf when I see this in print. Because there are people who actually believe that the PA has committed itself to a cease-fire, please!

As the news that collations forces have killed over 25,000 Iraqi’s since the beginning if the conflict (a nice military word) I wonder if and when we begin to hear the word massacre? This is a rhetorical question because it won’t happen.

In the famous movie classic, The Princess Bride, Vizzini, the Sicilian villain repeatedly exclaims, “Inconceivable!” Finally the Spaniard, Inigo Mantoya exclaims, “you keep using that word, I don’t think it means what you think its means.”

For years, we have been bombarded by the Palestinian propaganda machine exclaiming, massacre, massacre! We heard it in Jenin when news headlines plastered across the world, proclaimed that the Israeli assault on Jenin killed between three and six hundred people. The international press reported, based on Palestinian reports that Israel intentionally targeted and massacred a group of bystanders who were loitering around a destroyed car that had been carrying Palestinian terrorist. The Palestinians decried of Massacre after a 13-story building was destroyed outside of Netzarim and after Operation Days of Penitence and Operation King’s Court we heard the same song, massacre, massacre!

But we have always known the truth. A United Nations investigation has rejected Palestinian claims that a Massacre took place in Jenin. A drone plane documented the IDF attack on the terrorist’s vehicle and the pictures clearly show that the 13-story building in Netzarim was incomplete and unoccupied.

So how are we to understand the Palestinian claims of Massacre? To start, I would say to Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian Authority's senior spokesmen, I don’t think it means what you think it means! A massacre is not when armed terrorist are targets of any military. Let us remember, these are terrorist and murderers who’s sole purpose, mission and motivation is to kill and maim innocents. A massacre is when old, young, men, woman - pregnant woman, and children are going about their lives are killed for just being Jewish and wanting to live their lives in the Holy Land or in London for that matter. A Massacre is when parents are murdered and children are orphaned. A massacre is when a chatan (groom) buries his kalla (bride) on their wedding day. A massacre is when children are playing in a schoolyard and Qassam rockets slam into their playground. A massacre is when a Jewish Mother and her 4 children are brutally murdered by spraying their car with bullets and then proceeding to shoot each child repeatedly at point-blank range. Unfortunately, we have thousands of examples.

We know (but have forgotten) that the roadside bomb that targeted and tragically killed 3 members of the United States security team was planted less than 300 meters from a Palestinian checkpoint. What did the PA security team at the checkpoint do when they saw (at 300 meters, they had so see something) a group burying a large metal object on the side of the road? Maybe it was the PA beautification committee planting flowers? The FBI was/has been on the case but will we ever hear the truth revealing PA complicity?

What would happen in any society when a criminal, never mind an armed terrorist would hide out in a hospital? Maybe someone one would call the authorities? This could have been the PA’s opportunity to “crack down” and arrest these fugitives. No way. Instead Erekat and Kofi Annan exclaim, “a dangerous escalation by the IDF.”

One would hope that after all this time the world would catch on to Palestinian propaganda. But, I’m not sure if that has happened yet or if it ever will.

It seems that Mr. Erekat, and his un-credible crony’s need to learn new adjectives that more accurately reflect the reality. It would be wise for Mr. Erekat, to recommend to the Palestinian people and residents of Gazza to stay as far away as possible from their terrorist friends and murderous neighbors. The IDF has been given the green light to once again, go after these fugitive terrorist (not militants). The rocket launching brigades and terrorist cells will once again be viable targets of the IAF unless the PA does something to rein in on their plans for continued terrorism. Since that wont happen and unless that means something different than he thinks it means, the message of the IDF will continue to be very, very clear. And would not want any "innocent" (future hammas recruits and their families) to get caught in the cross fire, would we? It makes for bad press. Go get’em boys.


PS. I wanted to keep this light, but it diddn't happen....sorry.





Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Some things you will only see in Israel

From the "makes me feel better about my spelling" archives.....


Not sure if I would trust their kasharus

Could I get in trouble for this....?

Not something you would see in Washington Heights!
Or Brookline.....
Not that I condone it, but this graffiti you will only find in Israel!
Give thanks to G-d, becasue he is good!

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Some humor on shopping in Israel!

Very funny!
If you have a sick sense of humor like me.
Enjoy.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Just in case anyone had any illusions about "peace" and the objective of the Palesininians.

Palestinian Friday Service by Shiek Ibrahim Mudeiris

Palestinian Authority TV

May 13, 2005

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Now this is something you dont see everyday

I was walking yesterday on Emek Rafaim and I saw a Chatan and Kalla eating at Pizza hut. Yes, Pizza Hut! I asked them if they just got married and they said, YES! Either their wedding meal was terrible and they were still hungry or this is the cheapest wedding meal in history. May they build a hut ne’man b’yisroel!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

A story you wont read on CNN

Maybe Tony Blair will thank Israel an not blame her for his own problems...probably not!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

They are everywhere!

Its been a while since I have had the time to post. There has been a lot going on personally and professionally and so much is up in the air. But it always is. I read a great book by Rabbi Benjamin Blech, If God Is Good, Why Is The World So Bad? I highly recommend this book. It’s clear and an excellent read. Not that it answers the question, but for those of us who constantly search for meaning in today’s world and personal events, this book shares and amazing perspective.

Just a quick story about my last trip. I was driving through RockHill, North Carolina. It was late and I was tired so I checked in to a very small motel an hour outside of Charlotte. If was one of those places where their motto should be, “if we knew you were staying the night, we would have changed the sheets!” Definitely not the Ritz. I usually wear my Red Sox hat because I meet with so many people during the day, I am usually not so interested in schmoozing with the natives. They love to talk. So I checked in and went to sleep. I checked out at about 6:30am. As I was leaving, the young fellow behind the counter asked with a very strong southern drawl, “are you Jewish?” I looked up and I was still wearing my red Sox hat, so how could he tell? So I asked him, “Do I look Jewish.” He answered, I can tell from your fringes!” The long and the short is that that his grandmother is Jewish, yes, his mothers mother and yes, that makes him Jewish. So we did schmooze for a few minutes, I gave him my e-mail, the web site for birthright, etc. He’ll probably be doing kiruv somewhere in the south, Tattoos and all in about 3 years.

CNN will print anything

Once again the world stands in shock and disbelief as terror and terrorist strike the heart of what many of us hold on to, our freedom and our innocence. But as world reaction is quick to condemn, they are just as quick to vindicate. I am not sure if it was Tony Blair’s first or second public statement that read, this is not the way for the majority of Muslims. So quick to protect against backlash that he looses focus on what created this event in the first place, Muslim fundamentalists!

But as CNN polled world reaction, the had the friggen chuztpa to include condemnations by, Iran and Syria, both on Washington's list of states sponsoring terrorism as well as the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, and Hezbollah. The Hamas spokesman said “there could be no justification for the London bombings.” And in the most unbelievable demonstration of hypocrisy I have ever seen committed to print, "Targeting civilians in their transport means and lives is denounced and rejected," A Hezbollah statement on the blasts denounced attacks on civilians, citing humanitarian, moral and religious grounds.

Hello? Is anyone is the world home. Does anyone realize that the word of these people have no credibility. Do I have to write how many innocents have died at the hands of Hamas, the PA, etc?

Well it once again leads me to the same conclusion. There are different sets of rules that are used to judge crimes against the general world population and atrocities committed targeting Jews. According the Muslims, the Jews are not innocents and we are not civilians. We, according to the Muslim world are infidels and it is and will always be open season on infidels. What is a crime to a Muslim is wasting explosives on the Brits when they could have killed more Jews in Israel.

Muslim leadership is very clear in their wording and it is for this very reason, they can never be trusted. And at one moment, a person, a community and a country can change from being innocent to being infidels; this is something that the world will never understand.

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