Friday, October 30, 2015

Another American victim of Palestinian terrorism was buried this week. Does it matter that he was an American? Why should the American government, or American Jews, take any more interest in the latest victim than in any other victims?

Another American Victim of Palestinian Terror: Why it Matters

Richard Lakin, who succumbed to wounds he sustained in a terrorist attack on a bus in Jerusalem. Photo: courtesy.
Richard Lakin, who succumbed to wounds he sustained in a terrorist attack on a bus in Jerusalem.

JNS.org – Another American victim of Palestinian terrorism was buried this week. Does it matter that he was an American? Why should the American government, or American Jews, take any more interest in the latest victim than in any other victims?

Richard Lakin, a 76-year-old former Connecticut school principal, died Oct. 27 of wounds he suffered in a recent Palestinian terrorist attack in Jerusalem. He was the 137th American citizen murdered by Palestinian terrorists since the 1960s.

Since he was an American citizen, Lakin’s death will merit a brief mention in many American newspapers, and newspapers in his hometown will give more extensive coverage.

That’s the first reason the American identity of these victims matters. If not for the sense that “he was one of us,” these terror victims would be completely forgotten. Newspapers have limited space. They choose the stories they will cover based primarily on what they think will interest their readers. They believe that Americans will care more about other Americans than about other victims, and that residents of Connecticut will be more interested in what happens to other residents of their state than residents of other states. And that’s a reasonable assumption, whether we like it or not.

Richard Lakin was Jewish. As a result, American Jews will take a particular interest in what happened to him. And they should. The organized American Jewish community actively encourages Jews to visit Israel. The community, as my family does through the Alisa Flatow Memorial Scholarship Fund, also supports “study abroad” programs at Israeli schools, seminaries, and universities in order to attract American Jewish college students to study there for a semester or a year. And a number of Jewish organizations provide financial assistance and other incentives to American Jews to move to Israel.

These American Jewish initiatives to send Jews to Israel are an expression of the strength and warmth of the ties that bind Israel and the Diaspora. We derive inspiration and spiritual sustenance from our relationship with the Jewish state. We want our children to share in that. And if we are going to encourage American Jews to go to Israel, then we have a special obligation to care, and to act, if any of those Jews are harmed by Palestinian terrorists in Israel.

Moreover, American Jews have the ability to make a difference. Our relationship with the White House and Congress, our electoral clout as a community, and our skills at reaching out to the wider public enable us to influence America’s policy on these issues.

The American public should care, too. The people of the United States have always had a special attachment to Israel, because the Jewish state shares our democratic, humanitarian, and Judeo-Christian  values. Americans who visit or even live in Israel are putting into practice the heartfelt sentiments of millions of their fellow American citizens.

American taxpayers should care for another reason: the US government sends $500 million of their tax dollars to the Palestinian Authority (PA) every year. So the public has a right to expect the government to intervene when PA employees or PA-incited terrorists murder our citizens, or when the PA names streets, parks, and soccer teams after murderers of Americans.

The American government, too, has a special obligation with regard to American victims of Palestinian terrorism.

First, there is a legal obligation. American citizens, whether they are visiting, studying, or living abroad, are still American citizens. They pay taxes just like the rest of us, and in return the US government has a legal responsibility to act when they are harmed by terrorists abroad just as it would have an obligation to act if they are harmed by terrorists within the US.

Second, the US government has a strategic obligation to act. Fighting Palestinian terrorism must be part of America’s global war on terror. Bringing Palestinian killers of Americans to trial in the US would contribute significantly to anti-terror efforts, by making it clear to Palestinian terrorists that they could face the death penalty, or at least life in prison with no hope of release in a prisoner exchange — something that is not the case when they kill Israelis.

So, yes, it is relevant that Richard Lakin was an American. It’s not just a question of narrow national pride, or ethnic solidarity, or curiosity. For important moral, legal, and strategic reasons, the American victims of Palestinian terrorism should matter to American Jews, to the American public, and to the American government.
Stephen M. Flatow, an attorney in New Jersey, is the father of Alisa Flatow, who was murdered in an Iranian-sponsored Palestinian terrorist attack in 1995.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

"A scholar of Biblical texts, Jewish law and Hasidic philosophy, Leifer is a mother of eight. But evidence given earlier this year in a civil case in the Victorian Supreme Court portrayed her as a calculating, predatory paedophile...."

Charismatic school principal Malka Leifer was adored within a strict Jewish sect in Melbourne’s east. Despite whispers of inappropriate acts with students, it was years before her dark secrets were exposed.
"My childhood was very difficult,” Sarah* says, in a matter-of-fact way. Now in her mid-20s, she has a quiet voice, but speaks with a forceful elegance. 

“I just knew that when my mother hit me and when she screamed at me, I couldn’t tell anyone. For anybody to know would be the scariest thing.

“We weren’t allowed to go to the toilet. We weren’t allowed to sleep, or we had to sleep in the way she wanted us to. We’d go to bed and she’d decide she wanted some food made for her in the middle of the night, so she’d wake up. But we had to be dressed in a certain way.”

Sarah and her siblings would dress in socks, dresses, dressing gowns; layer upon layer, so that they appeared “modest”.

“She’d wake us up, just as we’d fallen asleep, make us get her food, and then go back to bed. Ten minutes later, she’d wake us up because she wanted a glass of water.”

“I knew what that looked like, though,” she says. “I’d go to friends’ houses and see how their mothers would feed them, how they would look at them and give them hugs.”

None of the children were exempt from abuse, but Sarah and her youngest brother suffered most. They were also the darkest-skinned and looked more like their mother.

“She used to tell us all the time how ugly we were,” says Sarah, “and how she wished we would die.”
The children “self-diagnosed” their mother as having borderline personality disorder.

“There was no love, there were no hugs, there was no encouragement. It was basically trying to survive.”

Sarah says her mother routinely hit her until she turned 16 and was “very smart about it”, hitting her in places covered by her clothes – places even an observant teacher wouldn’t notice.
Malka Leifer
Malka Leifer
“A teacher with the right knowledge would be able to see that we looked… haunted,” Sarah says.

That teacher was Malka Leifer.
“I would say it took her about two years to work her magic,” Sarah says.

Malka Leifer was principal of the ultra-Orthodox Adass Israel School in Elsternwick, Melbourne from 2002 to 2008, a pillar of her tight-knit community. At 48, Leifer was, according to parents of former students, recruited specifically because of her ultra-Orthodox beliefs.

At the time of her appointment, she was widely regarded within the community to be its second-holiest member, behind spiritual leader Rabbi Avrohom Zvi Beck.

A scholar of Biblical texts, Jewish law and Hasidic philosophy, Leifer is a mother of eight. But evidence given earlier this year in a civil case in the Victorian Supreme Court portrayed her as a calculating, predatory paedophile.

"She knew exactly when to do it,” alleges Sarah.

“It was all planned. Slowly, when she set herself up in the community and had their love and respect, at the point when such a thing would never enter their minds, that’s when she started.”
Sarah claims she was systematically abused by Leifer for years, along with “seven or eight” other female students.

“I don’t know how I could explain how charming she was,” says Sarah.

“The community absolutely respected and loved her. They basically treated her like God.”

“The way she played her game was… she’d start by calling you out of class, in the middle of a lesson, and would sit with you and ask you how you were doing, how you were feeling. When I finally, eventually opened up to her and told her that things were really bad, that’s when she made her move.”

Sarah says she heard whispers about Leifer’s relationships with other students, but was not equipped to comprehend the implications behind the rumours.

“I heard little things, but I didn’t really understand. All I knew was that at school if she likes you… that’s what you should aim for.”

Adass Israel is a strain of Hasidism, a movement which was founded in the 18th century by Jewish mystics and quickly became a populist alternative to traditional Judaism. The Hasidim, or “pious ones,” are an ultra-Orthodox movement with a focus on self-preservation.

After generations of persecution, many Hasidic Jews today are second- and third-generation Holocaust survivors, who take quite literally the Lord’s order to “be fruitful and multiply”, to replenish a devastated population. Today, Australia has the second-highest population of Holocaust survivors per capita in the world.

The insularity of the movement is, in part, born of the caution that comes of a history shaped by adversity. It’s also the product of a rich cultural heritage and religious strength that has allowed it, and others like it throughout the diaspora, to flourish and bring new prosperity – both to itself, and to its adopted home of Melbourne. That same insularity has also allowed it to harbour dark secrets. Growing up in the Adass community, Sarah tells me, is to grow up in a culture of humiliation and shame, particularly centred around the body.
Sexual education exists only in the form of a special lesson administered by a community member – with a strict focus on procreation – after a young man or woman is already engaged.

Sarah recalls reading Enid Blyton books at school, where every third or fourth paragraph would be missing a word. Sarah read the whole of The Magic Faraway Tree without knowing the names of two main characters: Dick and Fanny.

“We wouldn’t have even known what ‘Dick’ was supposed to mean, because we didn’t know what a dick was,” she tells me. “Their crossing it out only made us more inquisitive, but biology wasn’t even a subject.”
Outside school, a few of Sarah’s classmates had read different books without their parents’ consent and they shared with friends what they had learned.

“We knew that a penis goes into a vagina when you get married,” she recalls. “And I remember a friend saying, ‘There’s no fucking way I’m letting that near me’.”

Sarah grimaces. “I also said that I was never going to let that happen.”

Without sex education, Sarah had no defence against sexual predators.

“I’ve always wanted to share my story,” Sarah tells me on a particularly bleak morning, over three cups of strawberry tea. But it has taken her seven years to feel comfortable doing so.

I ask about her earliest memory.

“When people ask me my memories of my childhood, the good things don’t come to my mind,” she says. “I try not to dwell on that too much. The main good thing about my childhood was having my siblings. If I didn’t have them, I probably wouldn’t be alive.”

She talks about being eight years old.

“We used to go on family holidays and we couldn’t go to the beach because it wasn’t modest enough. Or we’d walk down the street in summer and everyone else would be in shorts and singlets, and we’d be wearing long dresses and tights.

“I remember thinking even at that age that I didn’t want to be different, I just wanted to be the same as everyone else,” she says.

Sarah’s entire universe was contained in one suburb: “We went to Carnegie once, and that felt like going to the end of the world.”

Her parents had moved to Australia fleeing disapproval of their marriage, and soon started a family. “Then they decided to become religious, and they went all the way to the extreme," Sarah says.
“I think a lot of that shift has to do with my mother’s extreme nature,” Sarah says. “She needed to grab onto something and when she encountered someone from our community who was really kind to her, she decided they were the type of people she wanted to be around.”

Sarah believes her mother’s urge to fit in prompted her to join the community.

“Only if you become so extreme can you become one of them,” she says.

“There’s no middle ground. You’re either extreme or you aren’t part of the community.”

When Sabbath begins on Friday evenings, what is already the quietest neighbourhood in Eastern Melbourne becomes almost eerily silent. Restaurants close down, cars are parked in driveways where they remain for the next 24 hours, and families gather indoors to feast and to pray, shutting out the white noise of contemporary life even more resolutely.

Without the internet, television, media or movies, she says, “you don’t have much to talk about.” Sarah characterises the community as “a world of nothing”.

“What do they talk about? Who has the nicest car. Who has the nicest house. Who has the nicest clothes. I find all that stuff really trivial.”

“It sounds very… strict,” I offer.

Sarah corrects me. “It was a cult.”

The Adass community is the most insular of the Haredi or ultra-Orthodox spectrum of Jews. Melbourne’s Jewish communities have long dominated the Eastern suburbs of St Kilda East, Balaclava and Caulfield; the Adass community is confined to a small grid bordered by Brighton, Orrong, Balaclava and Glenhuntly Roads.

The concept of an eruv encircles this boundary: all buildings within are ritually integrated into a private domain where residents may carry objects that are otherwise forbidden to be held on the Sabbath: prams, house keys, tissues, medicine and babies.

They have their own telephone directory, schools, ambulance service, synagogue, shops, cemetery, bathhouses, security patrols and rabbinical court system.

Male “Adassniks” have long, dark beards and wear black silk coats that reach their knees over white pantaloons and stockings. Twin sideburn ringlets curl down beneath enormous mink fur hats. Female members of the community wear thick tights, long skirts and loose blouses. Married women wear wigs, in keeping with the law that their heads must be covered for modesty’s sake.

Adass Israel School is responsible for the education of 600 students from preschool to year 12. The girls’ and boys’ campuses are strictly segregated, separated by a two-minute walk and gated security. The VCE curriculum that is the benchmark for university entry is not offered: boys leave around the age of 16 to pursue religious education, while girls complete a vocational certificate – if they aren’t married off beforehand.
Adass Israel School, Elsternwick Victoria  |  © Google Images
Adass Israel School, Elsternwick Victoria

Mornings are dedicated to Jewish history and scripture. Three hours in the afternoons are spent studying maths and science. 

“I was very under-stimulated and very under-challenged,” Sarah says. “Kids would play up because they didn’t care about secular subjects, because their parents kept instilling ‘this is not important, you don’t need to know this,’ because you get married and then that’s it. You won’t ever get a degree because you don’t need one.”


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

"There’s no way in the world that the ultra-Orthodox community in 30 years will look in any shape or fashion the same way it looks now."

Ultra-Orthodox Jews are using WhatsApp to defy their rabbis’ Internet ban . The popular messaging app has made it difficult for Hasidic leaders to keep the secular world at bay...

Ultra-Orthodox Jews' Anti-Internet Rally

Like most people, Moshe spends a lot of his time messaging friends on his smartphone. Unlike most people, he can’t openly talk about it.

As a Hasidic Jew living in Brooklyn, Moshe’s online activities are extremely limited. His ultra-orthodox sect has long banned internet use, on the grounds that exposure to the secular world would lead to moral corruption, sexual promiscuity, and infidelity. The insular community has allowed for some exceptions, acknowledging that smartphones and computers are now essential for business, though its leadership still requires members to install web filters on their devices, blocking all social media services and all but a few whitelisted websites. Internet use among children remains strictly forbidden.

Moshe, like many other Hasidim, regularly skirts these rules with WhatsApp — the popular messaging application that Facebook acquired for $19 billion in 2014. On his second, unfiltered smartphone, he uses the app to share news articles and local gossip across several group chats, some of which include up to 100 members.

WhatsApp has become popular among the Haredi community — an umbrella term for ultra-Orthodox Jewish sects that include the Hasidim. For Moshe and other Hasidim, the app provides a window into the outside world, and a forum for candid debate and discussion. In their view, it’s a closed network that’s not explicitly connected to the open web. For Hasidic leaders, it’s the latest threat to centuries of tradition and insularity.

Earlier this year, a forum of leading Haredi rabbis in Israel issued an injunction against using WhatsApp, which they described as "a great spiritual danger." A 2014 article in a Yiddish-language newspaper pointed to WhatsApp as the “number one cause of destruction of Jewish homes and businesses," citing rabbis who oversee divorces. Hasidic leaders have yet to fully ban the app, though they only allow it to be used with strong filters that block images and video. Those found to be using non-filtered phones could be ostracized from the community and have their children thrown out of ultra-Orthodox schools.

That’s why Moshe, 40, requested that his real name not be published. "We are playing with my kids’ lives," he told me.

Hasidic leadership has in recent years mounted a concerted campaign to control the web. In 2012, ultra-orthodox leaders held a massive anti-internet rally at Citi Field baseball stadium in New York, where they called for tighter restrictions on internet use. Ultra-orthodox rabbis have effectively limited outside media in the past, with edicts against television and radio, and tight controls over Yiddish-language newspapers. But the internet has proven more insidious, and with the rise of smartphones, it’s become even harder to control.

Ysoscher Katz, a former ultra-orthodox rabbi, says the community’s insularity stems from the belief that strict adherence to tradition is the best way to preserve Jewish identity. "The idea is that once you adopt contemporary names, contemporary clothing, and contemporary language, then eventually that’ll lead to assimilation and dissolution of the Jewish community," says Katz, who grew up in the Hasidic sect but eventually left to become a rabbi and teacher at a more progressive orthodox community in New York.

"They’re very worried and very afraid. And very anxious."
He recalls Hasidic leaders "aggressively fighting back" when the internet began gaining traction more than a decade ago, with strict bans on household computers, and those efforts have only amplified as technology has evolved. "I would lie to you if I said I don’t sympathize with their concerns," Katz says. "They’re very worried and very afraid. And very anxious."

So far, the community has policed smartphone use through a small group of approved filtering companies. Whitelisted sites and services are determined by local rabbinical boards, and the parameters can change from one community to another. But the guiding principle is that if it’s not business-related, it’s blocked. "The assumption is that any website could potentially lead to something inappropriate, or something dangerous or titillating," Katz says. "So the starting point is very low and the bar is very high."

With WhatsApp, Haredi leaders face a new dilemma. At its core, the app is a messaging service, and ostensibly permissible for business use; but it also incorporates elements of social networks, which remain strictly forbidden. And with more community members, like Moshe, secretly carrying unfiltered phones and sharing links from the wider web, it’s become nearly impossible to keep the outside world at bay.

Samuel Heilman, a professor of sociology at Queens College CUNY who has spent his career studying contemporary orthodox Jewish communities, describes Hasidic WhatsApp groups as vibrant forums where users share "everything from jokes to news accounts." He says that the group’s moderators are very "plugged in" to the news cycle. Last month, for example, Heilman first learned of the deadly stampede at Mecca through one of the group chats he was invited to join.

"A real threat for their insularity."

"There’s nothing now of the outside world that doesn’t find its way into these Haredi enclaves," he says.

"And so this represents a real threat for their insularity."

Last week, Moshe added me to a few of the dozen WhatsApp groups he created. One is devoted to business (he works in marketing and finance), and another for a small group of his close friends. The largest, and most active group, is primarily for general news and discussion. It includes around 100 members, though Moshe estimates that he personally knows around 30.

Much of the discussion last week focused on the latest developments in Israel, and the escalating violence there, though group members shared links and media about other stories, as well — everything from the presidential primary race to local news. The conversation would shift between Yiddish and English, and at times, it was difficult to keep up. One minute, I would be scrolling through photos of Jimmy Kimmel shooting a segment in their neighborhood, or videos of young Hasidic men dancing at a recent event. Seconds later came videos of a bus that had caught fire near LaGuardia Airport, or news that a New York police officer had been gunned down.

"I show him the middle finger, that I still have an opinion. He cannot censor my opinion."
There was plenty of debate, and things sometimes got heated. But Moshe says that’s exactly the kind of dialogue that’s too often stifled by censored Yiddish media. He sees himself as a kind of editor for the group, dropping in links to spark discussions that wouldn’t happen in public. For him, it’s a quiet form of rebellion.
"What is a filter? A filter censors you," he told me last week. "He wants to censor my mind. And I show him the middle finger, that I still have an opinion. He cannot censor my opinion."

jew hat phone

Yet despite his misgivings about the community and its approach to the internet, Moshe admits that he would never leave. That would involve abandoning his family, isolating his children, and leaving the only life he’s ever known. Instead, he’s forced to lead a double life. In public, he dutifully uses his flip phone and feigns ignorance of the outside world; in private, he scours the web for news stories and memes to share. It’s a delicate balance that he maintains for the sake of his children.

When parents enroll their children in ultra-orthodox schools, known as yeshivas, they’re often obliged to register their phone numbers and sign a form saying that they won’t allow their children to access the internet at home. "The goal of that letter is either to discourage people from having internet or to make it very clear that if they do have internet, this kid better not have access to it," says Naftuli Moster, a former Hassid who left the community to start an advocacy group for yeshiva reform. "And that part is very strictly enforced."

"They need their kids to go to that school. It's not like there are options."
Proving that people have internet for the wrong reasons can be difficult, Moster says, though authorities can be tipped off if children talk about it at school, or through community gossip. And the threat of having their kids pulled out of yeshiva is serious enough for parents to keep quiet. "They need their kids to go to that school," Moster says. "It’s not like there are options."

For now, it appears that the leadership is treading lightly with regards to WhatsApp. A representative from Geder, a New York-based filtering company, says community leaders decided that the app is necessary as a messaging tool for business purposes, but ordered all images and videos sent within it be blocked. All of the major Hasidic filtering companies use the same basic software, called Livigent, though Geder’s incorporates "live filtering" technology that automatically scans every web page and blocks any offending content. If it detects an image with skin tones, for example, it will replace it with a black box.

Moster believes rabbis could effectively crack down on WhatsApp if they wanted to, though he says they would risk backlash if Hasidic businesses begin suffering, adding that the app has already become ingrained within the community. Perhaps in anticipation of a crackdown, many within Moshe’s social circle have begun using Telegram — a similar messaging app that offers encrypted texting and doesn’t link user accounts to phone numbers. Moshe believes the app offers stronger privacy protections than WhatsApp, underscoring fears that their online conversations could be monitored. Last week, two filtering companies, Geder and Meshimer, sent emails to clients notifying them that Telegram would now be blocked.

"There’s no way that the ultra-orthodox community in 30 years will look the way it looks now."
In a phone interview, the Geder representative said a local rabbinical board decided to block it after
determining that it wasn’t necessary for business use, and denied that the move had anything to do with the encrypted communications that Telegram allows. He added that customer data is stored on secure servers and not shared with anyone else, though Moshe and some others in his WhatsApp groups remain wary.

For Moshe and other Hasidim carrying unfiltered phones, stronger censorship won’t make much of a difference. They’ll continue sharing links and information through WhatsApp or other messaging platforms, and they’ll continue pretending like it doesn’t happen. Less clear is how the leadership will respond going forward.

"I think it could go both ways," Katz, the former Hasidic rabbi, says of a potential crackdown. "It could either be a huge success, and they will ultimately succeed to isolate those who don’t adhere to their wishes, or it might be a failure and they might ultimately concede."

In the long run, though, he thinks change is inevitable. "There’s no way in the world that the ultra-orthodox community in 30 years will look in any shape or fashion the same way it looks now."


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

What Did Rabbi Hutner Do When He Was Captured? How Did He Conduct Himself? Did He Assist Fellow Passengers? Did He Act As A Gadol Would?....And Should We Care?


Allenby Bridge across the Jordan River, 11:30 AM. A lone U.S. embassy official walked up to the Allenby Bridge, an unimpressive, steel and wooden structure spanning the Jordan River at a narrow point between Israel and Jordan. He carried a box marked "special foods for [the Red Crescent] Amman." Inside were canned Israeli goods and a note that read "Kosher food for Rabbi Hutner."

TWA Flight 741

TWA Flight 741
TWA Boeing 707 Volpati-2.jpg
A TWA Boeing 707 similar to the hijacked craft
Hijacking summary
Date 6 September 1970
Summary Hijacking
Site Brussels, Belgium
Passengers 144
Crew 11
Injuries (non-fatal) none
Survivors 155 (all)
Aircraft type Boeing 707–331B
Operator Trans World Airlines
Registration N8715T
Flight origin Ben-Gurion Int'l Airport
2nd stopover Ellinikon International Airport
3rd stopover Frankfurt International Airport
Destination John F. Kennedy Int'l Airport
TWA Flight 741 (type Boeing 707, serial 18917/460, registration N8715T[9]) was a round-the-world flight carrying 144 passengers and a crew of 11. The flight on this day was flying from Tel Aviv, Israel to Athens, Frankfurt am Main and then to New York City, and was hijacked on the Frankfurt-New York leg. In an interview for the film Hijacked, Flight 741's purser, Rudi Swinkles, recalled, "I saw a passenger running toward first class. I ran after him, and when he came to first class to the cockpit, he turned around, had a gun in his hand, and pointed the gun at me, and said, 'Get back, get back.' So right away, I dove behind the bulkhead first class divider, and I hid behind it, over here."[10]

It landed at Dawson's Field in Jordan at 6:45 p.m. local time.[11]

Hijackers gained control of the cockpit and a female stated, "This is your new captain speaking. This flight has been taken over by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. We will take you to a friendly country with friendly people."[5]

Yitzchok Hutner[12] and Tova Kahn and her children were also on the plane.[13]

Two days earlier, the American embassy in Amman learned that Rabbi Isaac Hutner, "a strict adherent to the dietary laws of Judaism, has refused to accept food which he believes to be not kosher." (In fact, eight other hostages, including me, were doing the same.) The embassy asked other U.S. embassies in the region to "obtain canned kosher items and forward [them] to Amman as soon as possible for relay to the captors." The next day, the U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv offered to do so. The Amman embassy advised it to deliver the food in "inconspicuous packages" to the Jordanian police at the Allenby Bridge and request that it be turned over to the ICRC in Amman. Despite a day-long effort, the Amman embassy could not reach the ICRC to alert it to the possible arrival of the food.

Now the official walked across the bridge hoping to find someone on the Jordanian side willing to accept the package. Finding no one at the Jordanian end of the bridge, he walked about a kilometer into Jordan where he finally encountered a group of Jordanian soldiers. The corporal in charge was sympathetic but had no clue what to do; he phoned an officer. Instructed not to accept the parcel, the corporal suggested that it might be possible to deliver it in a couple of days, perhaps on Sunday. So, the official returned to the Israeli side and entrusted the parcel to the bridge commander, one Captain Ilan, who agreed to hold onto it until new arrangements could be made.

The food never reached Rabbi Hutner.


The Hijacked Rosh Yeshiva

In a lecture on rabbinic biographies for Torah in Motion, Orthodox rabbi and history professor Marc B. Shapiro says: “I think the [Nathan] Kamanetsky book was too voyeuristic in those areas. There are times when it is going to be rough to tread.

The story of the famous rosh yeshiva who was involved in a hijacking. His behavior on the airplane was very questionable. He separated himself. He got his family there to convince the hijackers that he’s special and that he should be separated. His students in America thought they could raise money to ransom him.” ( Rav Yaakov Kaminetzky said it was forbidden to pay ransom for him....)

According to Wikipedia on Yitzchok (Isaac) Hutner (1906–1980): In the late 1960s he began to visit Israel again, planning to build a new yeshiva there. On 6 September 1970, he and his wife, daughter, and son-in-law Yonasan David were returning to New York when their airplane was hijacked by the PFLP Palestinian terrorist organization. The terrorists freed the non-Jewish passengers and held the Jewish passengers hostage on the plane for one week, after which the women and children were released and sent to Cyprus. The hijacked airplanes were subsequently detonated.

 The remaining 40-plus Jewish men – including Rabbi Hutner, Rabbi David, and two students accompanying Rabbi Hutner, Rabbi Meir Fund and Rabbi Yaakov Drillman – and male flight crew continued to be held hostage in and around Amman, Jordan; Rabbi Hutner was held alone in an isolated location while Jews around the world prayed fervently for his safe release. The terrorists tried to cut off his beard, but were stopped by their commanders.

 Rabbi Hutner was reunited with the rest of the hostages on 18 September, and was finally released on 26 September and flown together with his family members to Nicosia, Cyprus. On 28 September Rabbi Hutner and his group were flown back to New York via Europe, and were home in time for the first night of Rosh Hashana.”

"Among the documents that the hijackers discovered were precious handwritten manuscripts of seforim that Rav Yitzchak Hutner had painstakingly compiled over years. The terrorists confiscated the manuscripts, claiming they contained secret plans for espionage. Years of efforts to retrieve those manuscripts proved fruitless — they were probably incinerated when the planes were blown up. The terrorists also discovered in his possession documents relating to the purchase of two apartments in north Jerusalem, one for him and one for his daughter. The terrorists were enraged by his plans to buy apartments in territory that had been “stolen” from them. “It’s ours! It’s ours!” they shouted repeatedly."



Sunday, October 25, 2015


 Rabbi Hutner sitting - 2nd from right.

... Further, Professor Kaplan described “the whole notion of Daat Torah [as] to close and suppress discussion [and thus enable] one person or group to impose, ex cathedra a personal, particular viewpoint on all persons or groups -- and no questions asked!” [All footnotes omitted.]4
In his longer 1992 essay, Professor Kaplan again cited Rabbi Weinberger's statement in The Jewish Observer about Daat Torah “bordering . . . on the periphery of prophecy,” describing Rabbi Weinberger's writing as “perhaps the clearest exposition of Daas Torah . . ..” 5 Developing the various fundamental flaws (in his mind) relating to “Daat Torah” that he first publicized in Tradition and attempting but (again from his perspective) failing to find traditional “sources” for the concept, Professor Kaplan concluded -- citing Professor Ephraim Urbach -- that “Daat Torah ideology has never been based upon authoritative halakhic sources . . ..” 

 "Let us ignore the Agudah's ritual invocations of  Daat Torah. Let us be wary of separatist groups, which are led by  their philosophy to engage, albeit unwittingly, in highly selective forms of Ahavat Yisroel. Instead, let us continue in our classic tradition of working from within for the advance of our old but ever new goal of Klal Yisroel, the land of Israel, for the people of Israel, in accordance with the Torah of Israel"

 "But one thing is certain: the fact that the philosophy of Agudat Israel can, for whatever reason, result in such distortions should serve to prevent Orthodox Jews who are committed to the principles of religious Zionism from being seduced by the siren song of Agudah, to wit: that their viewpoint and only theirs represent the view of Daat Torah. And here we come to the final and perhaps most fundamental point. On its cover page The Jewish Observer described Rabbi Hutner's discourse as offering "a Daas Torah perspective" on the Holocaust. I believe that Orthodox Jews who are not adherents of Agudat Israel and its philosophy should be wary of the entire concept of Daat Torah and its all too casual use, both in the pages of The Jewish Observer and on the part of Agudah spokesmen in general...."

Friday, October 23, 2015

"But now many of the big suns in our world today lack conviction, while the distant factions at the margins of society are full of passionate intensity. Now the gravitational pull is coming from the edges, in sphere after sphere. Each central establishment, weakened by its own hollowness of meaning, is being ripped apart by the gravitational pull from the fringes...."

Enter the Age of the Outsiders

As every schoolchild knows, the gravitational pull of the sun helps hold the planets in their orbits. Gravity from the center lends coherence to the whole solar system.

I mention this because that’s how our political and social systems used to work, but no longer do. In each sphere of life there used to be a few big suns radiating conviction and meaning. The other bodies in orbit were defined by their resistance or attraction to that pull.

But now many of the big suns in our world today lack conviction, while the distant factions at the margins of society are full of passionate intensity. Now the gravitational pull is coming from the edges, in sphere after sphere. Each central establishment, weakened by its own hollowness of meaning, is being ripped apart by the gravitational pull from the fringes.

The same phenomenon can be seen in many areas, but it’s easiest to illustrate in the sphere of politics (religion), both global and domestic.

In the 1990s, the central political institutions radiated confidence, derived from an assumed vision of the post-Cold War world. History would be a slow march toward democratic capitalism. Nations would be bound in peaceful associations like the European Union. The United States would oversee a basic international order.

This vision was materialistic and individualistic. Nations should pursue economic growth and a decent distribution of wealth. If you give individuals access to education and opportunity, they will pursue affluence and personal happiness. They will grow more temperate and “reasonable.”

Since 2000, this vision of the post-Cold War world has received blow after blow. Some of these blows were self-inflicted. Democracy, especially in the United States, has grown dysfunctional. 

Mass stupidity and greed led to a financial collapse and deprived capitalism of its moral swagger.

But the deeper problem was spiritual. Many people around the world rejected democratic capitalism’s vision of a secular life built around materialism and individual happiness. They sought more intense forms of meaning. Some of them sought meaning in the fanaticisms of sect, tribe, nation, or some stronger and more brutal ideology. In case after case, “reasonableness” has been trampled by behavior and creed that is stronger, darker and less temperate.

A group of well-educated men blew up the World Trade Center. Fanatics flock to the Middle East to behead strangers and apostates. China’s growing affluence hasn’t led to sweetening, but in many areas to nationalistic belligerence. Iran is still committed to its radical eschatology. Russia is led by a cold-eyed thug with a semi-theological vision of his nation’s destiny. He seeks every chance to undermine the world order.

The establishments of the West have not responded to these challenges by doubling down on their vision, by countering fanaticism with gusto. On the contrary, they’ve lost faith in their own capacities of understanding and action. Sensing a loss of confidence in the center, strong-willed people on the edges step forward to take control.

This happens in loud ways in the domestic sphere. The uncertain Republican establishment cannot govern its own marginal members, while those on the edge burn with conviction. Jeb Bush looks wan but Donald Trump radiates confidence.

The Democratic establishment no longer determines party positions; it is pulled along by formerly marginal players like Bernie Sanders.

But the big loss of central confidence is in global governance. The United States is no longer willing to occupy the commanding heights and oversee global order. In region after region, those who are weak in strength but strong in conviction are able to have their way. Vladimir Putin in Crimea, Ukraine and the Middle East. Bashar al-Assad crosses red lines in Syria. The Islamic State spreads in Syria and Iraq. Iranian proxy armies roam the region.

Republicans blame Obama for hesitant and halting policies, but it’s not clear the foreign policy and defense apparatus believes anymore in its own abilities to establish order, or that the American public has any confidence in U.S. effectiveness as a global actor.

Where is this all heading? Maybe those on the fringes of politics really will take over. Say hello to President Ted Cruz. Writing in The American Interest, Joshua Mitchell of Georgetown argues that we are heading toward an “Age of Exhaustion.” Losing confidence in the post-Cold War vision, people will be content to play with their private gadgets and will lose interest in greater striving.

I only have space to add here that the primary problem is mental and spiritual. Some leader has to be able to digest the lessons of the last 15 years and offer a revised charismatic and persuasive sense of America’s historic mission. This mission, both nationalist and universal, would be less individualistic than the gospel of the 1990s, and more realistic about depravity and the way barbarism can spread. It would offer a goal more profound than material comfort.


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Obama's Moral Equivalence in the Middle East

The West has developed a dangerous concern for ‘proportionality.’ In the current epidemic of Palestinian violence, scores of Arab youths are attacking, supposedly spontaneously, Israeli citizens with knives.

Apparently, edged weapons have more Koranic authority, and, in the sense of media spectacle, they provide greater splashes of blood. Thus the attacker is regularly described as “unarmed” and a victim when he is “disproportionately” stopped by bullets. The Obama State Department has condemned the use of “excessive” Israeli force in response to Palestinian terrorism. John Kirby, the hapless State Department spokesman, blamed “both” sides for terrorism, and the president himself called on attackers and their victims to “tamp down the violence.”

 In short, the present U.S. government — which is subsidizing the Palestinians to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars a year — is incapable of distinguishing those who employ terrorist violence from the victims against whom the terrorism is directed. But why is the Obama administration — which can apparently distinguish those who send out drones from those who are blown up by them on the suspicion of employing terrorist violence — morally incapable of calling out Palestinian violence?

After all, in the American case, we blow away suspects whom we think are likely terrorists; in the Israeli instance, they shoot or arrest those who have clearly just committed a terrorist act.
 Two reasons stand out. 

One, Obama’s Middle East policies are in shambles. Phony red lines, faux deadlines, reset with Putin, surrendering all the original bargaining chips in the Iranian deal, snubbing Israel, cozying up to the Muslim Brotherhood, dismissing the threat of ISIS, allowing Iraq to collapse by abruptly pulling out all American troops, giving way to serial indecision in Afghanistan, ostracizing the moderate Sunni regimes, wrecking Libya, and setting the stage for Benghazi — all of these were the result of administration choices, not fated events. One of the results of this collapse of American power and presence in the Middle East is an emboldened Palestinian movement that has recently renounced the Oslo Accords and encouraged the offensive of edged weapons.

 The Obama Intifada Mahmoud Abbas, the subsidized president of the self-proclaimed Palestinian State, and his subordinates have sanctioned the violence. Any time Palestinians sense distance between the U.S. and Israel, they seek to widen the breach. When the Obama team deliberately and often gratuitously signals its displeasure with Israel, then the Palestinians seek to harden that abstract pique into concrete estrangement. Amid such a collapse of American power, Abbas has scanned the Middle East, surveyed the Obama pronouncements — from his initial Al Arabiya interview and Cairo speech to his current contextualizations and not-so private slapdowns of Netanyahu — and has wagered that Obama likes Israel even less than his public statements might suggest. Accordingly, Abbas assumes that there might be few consequences from America if he incites another “cycle of violence.”

 The more chaos there is, the more CNN videos of Palestinian terrorists being killed by Israeli civilians or security forces, the more NBC clips of knife-wielding terrorists who are described as unarmed, and the more MSNBC faux maps of Israeli absorption of Palestine, so all the more the Abbas regime and Hamas expect the “international community” to force further Israeli concessions.

The Palestinians hope that they are entering yet another stage in their endless war against Israel. But this time, given the American recessional, they have new hopes that the emerging Iran–Russia–Syria–Iraq–Hezbollah axis could offer ample power in support of the violence and could help to turn the current asymmetrical war more advantageously conventional.
 The Palestinians believe, whether accurately or not, that their renewed violence might be a more brutal method of aiding the administration’s own efforts to pressure the Israelis to become more socially just, without which there supposedly cannot be peace in the Middle East. Share article on Facebook share Tweet article tweet But there is a second, more general explanation for the moral equivalence and anemic response from the White House. The Obama “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” administration is the first postmodern government in American history, and it has adopted almost all the general culture’s flawed relativist assumptions about human nature.

Affluent and leisured Western culture in the 21st century assumes that it has reached a stage of psychological nirvana, in which the Westernized world is no longer threatened in any existential fashion as it often was in the past. That allows Westerners to believe that they no longer have limbic brains, and so are no longer bound by Neanderthal ideas like deterrence, balance of power, military alliances, and the use of force to settle disagreements. Their wealth and technology assure them that they are free, then, to enter a brave new world of zero culpability, zero competition, and zero hostility that will ensure perpetual tranquility and thus perpetual enjoyment of our present material bounty.

 Our children today play tee-ball, where there are no winners and losers — and thus they are schooled that competition is not just detrimental but also can, by such training, be eliminated entirely. Our adolescents are treated according to the philosophy of “zero tolerance,” in which the hero who stops the punk from bullying a weaker victim is likewise suspended from school. Under the pretense of such smug moral superiority, our schools have abdicated the hard and ancient task of distinguishing bad behavior from good and then proceeding with the necessary rewards and punishments.

Our universities have junked military history, which schooled generations on how wars start, proceed, and end. Instead, “conflict resolution and peace studies” programs proliferate, in which empathy and dialogue are supposed to contextualize the aggressor and thus persuade him to desist and seek help — as if aggression, greed, and the desire for intimidation were treatable syndromes rather than ancient evils that have remained dangerous throughout history. Under the canons of the last 2,500 years of Western warfare, disproportionality was the method by which aggressors were either deterred or stopped. Human nature is not so easily transcended, just because a new therapeutic generation has confused its iPhone apps and Priuses with commensurate moral and ethical advancement.

Under the canons of the last 2,500 years of Western warfare, disproportionality was the method by which aggressors were either deterred or stopped. Deterrence — which alone prevented wars — was predicated on the shared assumption that starting a conflict would bring more violence down upon the aggressor than he could ever inflict on his victim. Once lost, deterrence was restored usually by disproportionate responses that led to victory over and humiliation of the aggressive party. The wreckage of Berlin trumped anything inflicted by the Luftwaffe on London. The Japanese killed fewer than 3,000 Americans at Pearl Harbor; the Americans killed 30 times that number of Japanese in a single March 10, 1945, incendiary raid on Tokyo. 
“They have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind” was the standard philosophy by which aggressive powers were taught never again to start hostilities. Defeat and humiliation led to peace and reconciliation.

 The tragic but necessary resort to disproportionate force by the attacked not only taught an aggressor that he could not win the fight he had started, but also reminded him that his targeted enemy might not be completely sane, and thus could be capable of any and all retaliation. Unpredictability and the fear sown by the unknown also help to restore deterrence, and with it calm and peace. In contrast, predictable, proportionate responses can reassure the aggressor that he is in control of the tempo of the war that he in fact started. And worse still, the doctrine of proportionality suggests that the victim does not seek victory and resolution, but will do almost anything to return to the status quo antebellum — which, of course, was disadvantageous and shaped by the constant threat of unexpected attack by its enemies. Westerners are either unwilling or unable to distinguish the more culpable from the more innocent.

 They lack the confidence to make moral judgments. Applying this to the Middle East, the Palestinians believe that the new American indifference to the region and Washington’s slapdowns of Netanyahu have reshuffled relative power. They now hope that there is no deterrent to violence and that, if it should break out, there will be only a proportionate and modest response from predictable Westerners. Under the related doctrine of moral equivalence, Westerners are either unwilling or unable to distinguish the more culpable from the more innocent. Instead, because the world more often divides by 55 to 45 percent rather than 99 to 1 percent certainty, Westerners lack the confidence to make moral judgments — afraid that too many critics might question their liberal sensitivities, a charge that in the absence of dearth, hunger, and disease is considered the worst catastrophe facing an affluent Western elite.

 The question is not only whether the Obama administration, in private, favors the cause of the radical Palestinians over a Western ally like Israel, but also whether it is even intellectually and morally capable of distinguishing a democratic state that protects human rights from a non-democratic, authoritarian, and terrorist regime that historically has hated the West, and the United States in particular — and is currently engaged in clear-cut aggression. —

 NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author, most recently, of The Savior Generals.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/425787/obama-palestinians-istaelis

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

There's Nothing Worse and More Dangerous Than Pious Fools in Positions of Authority! --- "The majority of cases (90%) are children aged less than 19 years (median age 4 years), of whom 52% were unvaccinated or not up to date with pertussis-containing vaccine."

Photo credit: CDC/ Amanda Mills

From October 2014 through October 2015, 109 cases of pertussis have been reported to the New York City (NYC) Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH), with an increase in cases over the past four months.

Delays in on-time initiation and completion of the pertussis-containing vaccine series remain problematic in the affected communities, facilitating ongoing transmission. Young infants are at greatest risk of severe pertussis infection and its complications.

. The majority of cases (90%) are children aged less than19 years (median age 4 years), of whom 52% were unvaccinated or not up to date with pertussis-containing vaccine.

Infants aged less than1 year account for 34% (37) of cases. Of the 37 mothers of infants with pertussis, only 3 (8%) received the recommended tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccination during their most recent pregnancy. Five infants were hospitalized, including one who had pneumonia.

Recommended strategies to protect these infants include ensuring that the mother receives Tdap during her pregnancy and that the infant starts the vaccine series on time at 2 months of age. Subsequent doses should be given 4, 6 and 15-18 months and at 4-6 years of age.

Pertussis-containing vaccines are required for children to attend child care, head start, pre-kindergarten and both private and public school programs. Providers caring for patients in the Orthodox Jewish communities should recall patients aged 2 months and older and who have not received recommended pertussis containing vaccines for immediate vaccination.

Pertussis is a highly contagious bacterial infection that begins with nonspecific upper respiratory symptoms that last for 7-10 days, followed by onset of cough. The classic pertussis cough includes persistent paroxysms (coughing fits), an inspiratory “whoop”, apnea, and/or post-tussive vomiting. Cough may last weeks to months if not treated early.

People with prior history of disease or vaccination may have milder symptoms and lack classic features of disease, making diagnosis more difficult. Maintain a high level of suspicion of pertussis in all patients with a persistent cough. In infants, apnea can be a prominent feature and complications of pertussis include pneumonia, encephalitis, and death. In adults, complications of pertussis include post-tussive syncope and rib fracture, in addition to persistent cough. Individuals are infectious for up to three weeks or until 5 days after the start of effective antimicrobial treatment.


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

“You can actually save a kid from the abuse they are experiencing by recognizing, reporting and removing it.”

Child Sexual Abuse Content - The Numbers

Sources: Internet Watch Foundation, U.K. National Crime Agency

Netclean, a private Swedish tech firm established in 2003 and still owned by its founders, as well as original and angel investors, says that few firms initially accept its assertion that 1-in-1,000 corporate machines are used to view illegal images.

“A lot of companies don’t believe us when we say that number. But if you don’t look you won’t find it,” founder Christian Berg says.

Alarm, Raid, Conviction 

In late August 2012 an Ericsson network engineer in Texas remotely logged onto the firm’s network using a company laptop, triggering a Netclean alarm. Ericsson reported the incident to local law enforcement on Sept. 7, according to court documents from a prosecution in the Western District of Texas Court.

FBI officers (file picture)

On Dec. 14, 2012, 17 law enforcement officers, including FBI agents, arrived at the engineer’s house. He refused to let them in, so they broke down the door and began searching the building while he and his wife lay on the floor, the court documents show.

Told that his employer had traced child pornography to his laptop, the engineer said they would find more images on his flash drive. Even as the search continued, he prepared a written statement: yes, he said, he had visited child sexual abuse websites, but he had never harmed any children. He planned to beg his family for forgiveness, he said.

Court documents show that the engineer later told the court he had been coerced into making the statement. The judge rejected this and denied his request to have the evidence struck out. The engineer’s attorney didn’t respond to e-mails and phone calls seeking comment.

In March this year the engineer – no longer an Ericsson employee – pleaded guilty to receipt of child pornography, after losing his application in front of the judge. On Aug. 26 he was sentenced to five years in federal prison at Bastrop, Texas.

When he’s released he will have to attend a sex offender treatment program. He faces 20 years of supervision by probation officers.

No Privacy

Netclean says its software is unique and effective, but British lawyer Myles Jackman urges caution, warning that companies could trigger a “witch hunt” based on what he sees as potentially flawed evidence. Jackman, an obscenity law specialist, denounces genuine indecent material, calling it “reprehensible.” But while the technology may not deliver false positives, he says he knows of numerous occasions where police have misclassified images as illegal. Misclassified images, once in the police database, would still trigger a Netclean alarm.

“The reality is that the basic data-entry inputting is done by humans and humans get things wrong. It happens in every database,” says Jackman.

He also highlights a “grey area” in countries such as the U.K., Canada and parts of the U.S., where the age of consent is lower than the age of majority.

“Between 16 and 18 a child has the right to have sex, but as soon as they create an image of that act they are in possession of an illegal image and are committing an offence by distributing it. That disparity is a problem and our legal system simply has not caught up with morality and social values,” Jackman adds.

New technology giving companies the power to monitor employees’ online behavior can raise uncomfortable questions for managers who spot their workers viewing illegal content.

The Internet Watch Foundation, a British industry body set up with a global remit to tackle criminal content, says misuse of corporate equipment is a “genuine issue” – particularly now that more people work from home.

Ericsson employees sign a form consenting to being observed. Does that equate to spying on staff? As long as companies are upfront and explain to employees they are being monitored, there “can’t be any expectation of privacy,’’ says Stuart Neilson, a London-based employment lawyer.

That’s important, because there are also risks for any company that knows its equipment is being used illegally and doesn’t act. “If the organization has evidence that an employee has been accessing these sites but has done nothing with that evidence, then the employer might be liable,’’ Neilson says.


Monday, October 19, 2015

In reality, the newscaster should have said that; “an Arab stabbed a Jew by a bus stop in Ra’anana” and “an Arab stabbed a Jewish boy while on his bicycle in Givat Ze’ev”... "1 Arab Stabbed 6 Jews in Beer Sheva"...

Don’t Call them Terrorists:


A media war against Israel has begun. I call it “joining in the fun” and it has become rather routine for MSNBC, CNN, the NY Times and thousands of others to side with Israel’s enemy by attacking Israel with every media tool at their disposal. In the summer of 2014, for example, when Hamas sent hundreds of rockets into Israeli towns forcing the IDF to (finally!!) respond, the international media joined the war against Israel by inventing the ridiculous term “disproportionate response”. Thousands of articles, all over the world, were written against Israel, which – instead of hitting Hamas even harder – ultimately backed off and responded to each of these claims. The annihilation of Hamas was not accomplished because Israel felt the need to spend more of its time, energy and resources in the PR war than the real war. The result was victory for Hamas because, although much of their infrastructure was destroyed, their leaders and fighters are still breathing. There is no question that the international media had a part in the victory and they will gladly do it again when Hamas comes back for another round.

The recent knife attacks throughout Israel are no different. Once again, it is the media that claims that Israel is acting with “extreme aggression” by shooting these murderers. The reporters state how many of these 17 year old Palestinians were unarmed when shot by IDF soldiers. I’m sure you have seen all the video clips of how these are all lies but it doesn’t matter. The international media is just getting started! More and more articles will be written against Israeli aggression and I promise you that demonstrations will start in universities and major cities around the world condemning Israel. It is just a matter of time.

The #1 question people ask me is “Who is to blame”? Is there a source for this media war against Israel? Where does all this stem from? I will shock you with the answer, so hold on to your seat. There are several sources for the media’s Israel-bashing, but I consider the #1 reason to be from… Israel’s own media!

Allow me to explain.

While many news outlets have local representatives in Israel, nobody has national coverage like Israel’s own newspapers or radio and tv stations. The local reps from the NY Times, MSNBC and others are all based in Jerusalem so if an attack happens in Ra’anana, Afula, Hebron or Ashkelon, the international media relies on the local Israeli news. In today’s “instant information” world, these local Israeli guys are not merely reporting the news to people inside the country. Their reports are transcribed, translated and sent all over the world in a matter of minutes. Therefore, it is crucial that they watch each and every word they say and write… something they are not doing at all!

It was Israel’s media that coined the term “Jewish terror” after an Arab house was fire-bombed a few months ago. To this date, not one arrest has been made in connection with that attack. There are no suspects and no evidence that this was done by Jews yet Israel’s media, led by the self-hating Ha’aretz and Yediot newspapers and TV Channels 2 and 10, condemned Jewish extremists, mentioned names of young men (who had nothing to do with the attack) and were the judge and jury on this case. Naturally, the entire world media followed suit and in a very short time were writing articles about the horrific Jewish terror gangs that burned Arab children and destroyed the lovely coexistence that existed between Arabs and Jews until these hoodlums ruined everything. I never saw the word “alleged” used, as is customary until someone is actually convicted of a crime, and I never read or saw an interview with people discussing the actual facts. This entire fiasco – which mushroomed into an international “attack-fest” against Israel – began with Israel’s own media.

The recent wave of knife-terror is no different. It began on Chol HaMoed Succos when Arab women starting screaming curses at Jews walking to the Kotel. I’m sure you saw the horrible scene where a father was walking to the Kotel, through the Arab shuk, holding the hands of his 2 children. The small boys are crying in fear as Arab women scream and curse at them. It was a scene straight out of Germany or Poland in 1938. What you don’t know is that this Chassidishe father was interviewed on Israeli TV the next day and the first question asked of him was; “What were you looking for over there?” (As if to say, it was HIS fault for provoking the peaceful Arab women into cursing his kids!) The father couldn’t believe the question and answered with a shocked look on his face; “I wasn’t looking for anything. I daven at the Kotel every day and this is how I walk there from my house. I go through the Damascus Gate, walk via the public street that is in the shuk and then out to the Kotel. That is simply how I walk there!” Therefore, instead of bringing into the TV studio some of the women who verbally assaulted this beautiful Jew and asking them tough questions, they brought in the Yid and made him look like he brought it all upon himself. Just 2 days later, close to the very spot where this attack occurred, 2 Jews were murdered in cold blood, knifed to death. You had to know it was coming…


How did Israel’s media report on this and every attack since then? By telling us – and the world – how a “terrorist” stabbed a Jew. Excuse me, but that is not what happened. In 99% of these attacks, an Arab between the ages of 17-20 attempted to murder a Jew. That Arab was not a terrorist! Bin Laden was a terrorist. Yasser Arafat was a terrorist.

 These people planned attacks for years. Hamas is a terrorist organization where they train fighters and arm them with modern weapons. However, these young kids who are running around Israel stabbing Jews are not terrorists… they are ARABS! They were all born in Israel and were educated there. They live good lives and have all the modern gadgets a teenage can ask for.

They are on Facebook, have cellphones, own plasma tv’s with 50 cable stations and wear the most modern clothes on the market. They are not terrorists who have been training in guerrilla warfare for the last 10 years.

 They are 18 and 19 year old Arabs who nursed from milk of hatred and who were poisoned by their families and schools ever since they could read. These kids do not live in Hamas controlled Gaza… they live in Jerusalem! They are “regular” Arab kids who decided one day to take a knife from the kitchen and kill some Jews.

However, when you listen to the Israeli news – which is then copied by the entire world – the report states that a “terrorist stabbed a Jew by a bus stop in Ra’anana” or that a “terrorist stabbed a Jewish boy while on his bicycle in Givat Ze’ev.” In reality, the newscaster should have said that; “an Arab stabbed a Jew by a bus stop in Ra’anana” and “an Arab stabbed a Jewish boy while on his bicycle in Givat Ze’ev”.

What’s the difference, you ask? Big, huge difference!! 

 If we think these animals are terrorists, then Israel simply joins the world in the fight against terror. Terrorists attacked New York, terrorists attacked Paris so terrorists also attacked Afula… what’s the big deal? The USA is dealing with it, France is dealing with it so now Israel has to deal with it. However, when it’s not “terrorists” who are attacking, stabbing and murdering innocent people but Arabs who live next door, work in Jewish schools and drive public busses then Israel has a very serious problem!!

Of course, none of these sentiments are reflected in the BBC, LA Times or even the Wall St Journal (which is moving more to left each day)… and do you know why? Because they are not stated this way in Israel’s own media… so what do you expect from the world press?

This is one of the things that must be changed quickly. The Israeli media must use the right words and send the correct message. We can yell and scream at MSNBC – and in many cases, rightfully so – but the source of the problem is right here in Israel. Here is where we need to make the changes.


Arab areas of Jerusalem blocked off in crackdown

Amid wave of Palestinian attacks and West Bank protests, capital’s Arab residents wake up to a new reality

October 19, 2015, 2:59 am 

Israeli border policemen walk by the wall being built between Palestinian and Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem Sunday, Oct. 18, 2015. (AP Photo/Mahmoud Illean)
Israeli border policemen walk by the wall being built between Palestinian and Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem Sunday, Oct. 18, 2015