Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Footsteps on the Mount are Footsteps of Redemption

Last year 10 million people, mostly Jews, visited the Kotel/Western Wall.  How many Jews visited the Temple Mount?  Nine thousand.  What keeps Jews standing with their faces against a wall instead of ascending to the most important spot on earth?  How often does a person get to go to the very place that G-d described as “the place of My feet?”

Which according to many of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, I just answered my own questions.  Because of the holiness of the Temple Mount, Jews should not visit it, so they say. 

As Jewish desire to visit the Temple Mount increases, the Chief Rabbinate declarations for Jews to keep off the Mount also increases.  They declare that it is halachically forbidden to ascend the Mount.  They warn that it is a spiritual risk for Jews to walk on the Mount in case they tread somewhere impermissible, therefore risking spiritual excommunication.  Even though the Temple buildings occupied only 15% of the original Temple Mount, which size has doubled over the centuries due to construction by different occupying forces; hence, there is ample space for a Jew to safely walk on the Mount.

Although some of the Chief Rabbinate acknowledge that great rabbis throughout history visited the Temple Mount after the Second Temple’s destruction, they still believe that letting the common Jew visit the Mount today would be logistically challenging, i.e. Jews would have to be educated on proper halachic requirements and a Jewish presence would change the political status quo.  Rabbi Ratzon Arusi, a member of the Council of the Chief Rabbinate, said that issuing a blanket permit for Jews to ascend would be “very problematic.” 

Problematic?  Let’s look at a few other situations that might be considered problematic in Israel today:
·      Arab propaganda is becoming the accepted narrative regarding no Jewish historical ties to the Temple Mount.
·      An Arab mosque continues to stand in the place where G-d asked the Jews to build Him a house.
·      Scaffolding used during repairs in the Dome of the Rock was nonchalantly placed on the Even Shtiya, the Foundation Stone of the universe.
·      Arabs play soccer on the Temple Mount (after all they’ve got plenty of room since Jews are discouraged from going up).
·      A Palestinian flag was recently hoisted atop the Mount. 
·      Over 12,000 rockets have been fired into Israel from Gaza.
·      Jews have been continuously killed terrorists basis despite the “peace process.”
·      Iran is planning to nuke Israel.

The funny thing is that even I, a non-Jew, realize that the answer to every problem mentioned above lies squarely on the Temple Mount.  Because that is the precise spot where the Temple will be rebuilt.  Which will be the seminal event to usher redemption into the entire world.    

The real problem in Israel today is not whether Jews are halachically permitted to ascend the Temple Mount.  Perhaps the problem is that many of the religious leaders in Israel believe that the Temple will fall out of the sky or be built by the Messiah.  Therefore, why risk or bother to go up on the Mount when one can sit back and wait for events to unfold.  As Chief Rabbi Itzhak Nissim said after the liberation of the Temple Mount in 1967, "We have entered the palace, and even reached the table but we are not yet accepted before Him. We have done all that is in our powers to do. All that is left to be done is in the hands of Heaven.”  How ironic to say these words after witnessing Heaven give Jerusalem back to the Jews via the blood, sweat and tears of the IDF and Jewish people.     

I don’t ask lightly, but what if some of the Chief Rabbinate are wrong regarding the Temple Mount?  What if they are as wrong today as the Chief Rabbinate were in 1967? 

In an Arutz Sheva interview, Rabbi Yisrael Ariel bemoaned the fact that it was the Chief Rabbinate in Israel who instructed Moshe Dayan to immediately give control of the Temple Mount back to the Arabs. “He handed over the key [to the Temple Mount], because he was the one who held it, but someone persuaded him to do this," Rabbi Ariel said.  The article goes on to say that Rabbi Ariel learned this from a Bamishpacha magazine article, and then verified the truth of the claim with hareidi former Knesset member Rabbi Menachem Porush, who was quoted in the article.  Rabbi Ariel stated, "According to what he [Porush] said, the greatest hareidi rabbis, led by Rabbi Yechezkel Abramsky, went to Dayan and told him to tell Levi Eshkol to give the Arabs the Temple Mount since, 'The People of Israel have no interest in the Temple Mount.' They also said the UN should be notified that we have no interest in the Temple Mount."

Why should the world today think that Israel feels any differently from the sentiments expressed by those rabbis in 1967?  Recently, a Palestinian flag was hoisted atop the Mount.  The Israeli leadership shrugged its shoulders.  Hence, so does the world.  Only 9,000 Jews showed enough interest in the Temple Mount to actually take the time to visit it last year.  So why should Israeli politicians, or politicians around the world for that matter, think that Jewish rights on the Temple Mount are a priority? 

Thankfully, there is a growing outcry among Jews in Israel over discrimination of Jews who do ascend the Temple Mount.  But actions speak louder than words.  If Jews really do care about the Mount, and I believe a great many do, then it is time for them to put feet to their sentiments.  As Moshe Feiglin said in a 2012 Temple Mount Awareness Day interview, “Every Jewish step on the Temple Mount will bring back sovereignty of the Temple Mount to the Jewish people.”

It is time for a grassroots movement among Jews to show Hashem and the world that they actually do care deeply about the Temple Mount.  It is time to upset the status quo.  It is time for Jews to leave the Western Wall, which is a symbol of exile, and ascend the Temple Mount, a symbol of redemption, sovereignty, and freedom. 

Even some members of the Israeli police have expressed that an increased presence of Jews on the Temple Mount would create drastic changes.  At a conference in Jerusalem in 2009 regarding Jewish ties to the Temple Mount authorities said, “If only more Jews would visit the Temple Mount on a regular basis, the entire balance of power would shift. There would be a paradigm shift; the attitude of the government and the police would be different towards the Jewish visitors on the Temple Mount. The Muslim terror would be abated. Many Jewish people visiting the Temple Mount would be the cure to the overall security situation.”

Yet, the fact that very few Jews try to exercise their rights on the Temple Mount makes it convenient for the Israeli police to dismiss the lawful rights of Jews and instead indulge the demands of the Arabs.  The adage, “The squeaky wheel gets the grease,” rings true.  The Arabs simply make more noise over the Temple Mount than Jews do. 

The novelist Anthony Trollope once said, “My belief is that in life people will take you at your own reckoning.”  If only Israel would grasp that concept.  When Israel takes its own rights, sovereignty, and destiny seriously the world will follow suit.  

Yet, as stated earlier, leading rabbis staunchly disagree with the idea that a Jewish presence, much less a proactive Jewish presence, on the Temple Mount could lead to anything positive.  In 2009, the late Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv emphasized that Jews should not visit the Temple Mount because their visits could provoke bloodshed.  "I have declared this in the past, and I repeat once again my statement that beyond the halachic aspect, it is also a kind of provocation of the world's nations that could lead to bloodshed, and this would be one sin leading to another."   

Again, I don’t ask lightly, but what if he and rabbis like him were and are wrong regarding the Temple Mount?  How has “keeping the peace” worked out for Israel so far?  No one truly knows how the fulfillment of the Prophets’ visions of peace will come to pass.  Will there be bloodshed first?  I don’t know.  But what I do know is that the Torah and Tanach are filled with incidents of the Jewish people following the commands of Hashem that led to bloodshed.  Unfortunately, if the enemies of Israel will not relent what rightfully belongs to Israel, including Israel’s right to exist, Biblical history and modern history shows that it has to be taken by bearing arms.  But what if bearing arms could be avoided by Jewish feet ascending the Mount?   

It’s somewhat incredulous that some Jews have fallen into the belief that a Temple Mount left in the hands of the nations will bring peace.  Who was chosen?  Ishmael or Isaac?  Then why do the descendents of Isaac continue to let the descendents of Ishmael influence and even dictate decisions made regarding the Temple Mount?

The Temple Mount is the portal for redemption to enter the world.  The Jews were chosen to usher in redemption.  They were given back the keys to the portal in 1967, but tragically shunned the privilege. 

However, there is a growing number of Jews who feel the intensity of the Divine Spark within them leading them to action.  They are being drawn to the Temple Mount.  Should the Chief Rabbinate continue to reign in this innate desire within these Jews?  By trying to prohibit Jews from ascending the Mount, they seem to be asking Jews to continue to sit back and take the chance that things will take care of themselves when the Temple falls into Israel’s lap.  Answers rarely fall into one’s lap.  A person has to become the answer. 

The Torah has always called Jews to action - into an active partnership with Hashem.  And rabbis like Rabbi Yisrael Ariel and Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute, along with other Jewish leaders are putting feet to that call.  The Temple Institute is not a corner curio shop for tourists to visit and see how things used to be.  It is a living, breathing call to action for Jews to fulfill their destiny.  And it is the perfect place for Jews to learn how to ascend the Mount according to halachic standards based on years of Temple research.

In summation of events surrounding the liberation of the Temple Mount and the Chief Rabbinate’s reaction to it, Yoel Cohen of Jewish Political Studies Review said, “The capture of the Temple Mount presented two possible scenarios: the reintroduction of Temple worship - bringing the biggest revolution in Jewish religious life for 1900 years - or to seek to ‘incorporate’ the Temple Mount within existing patterns of Jewish religious behavior.” 

Hindsight reveals which scenario the religious establishment chose.  The current state of the world and of Israel begs the question whether they chose correctly.

The world desperately needs the Jews to fulfill their destiny of partnering with Hashem to bring about redemption.  I, along with the nations, can only hope and pray that the Jews will rise to the occasion.  Literally.  Arise and ascend the Temple Mount.  Jewish footsteps on the Temple Mount are equivalent to the footsteps of redemption.  

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Rachel's Children on Fire

If you’re not a mom, you might not fully understand the luxury of a “Girls Night Out.”  That occasional night when the kids stay home with dad or a sitter while mom goes out with her friends to relax and unwind.  A “Girls Night Out” usually involves dinner, movie, and a cocktail or two.  But unfortunately, a “Girls Night Out” in Israel can involve a different kind of cocktail.  A Molotov cocktail.

I have the honor of knowing what the world refers to as a “settler” in Israel.  I have another name for the “settlers” though; pioneers.  Pioneers reclaiming the Land of Israel.  I also refer to them as prophets.  Prophets, because they are doing one thing better than anyone else in the world; telling the truth.  But they don’t just tell the truth, they live the truth.  And bottom-line, that’s what prophecy is.  The truth.  But more on that in a moment.  Back to the “Girls Night Out” with a splash of Molotov cocktail thrown in.

My friend, who lives in the Judea and Samaria region, recently went with her sister and three other friends for a “Girls Night Out.”  Their night included an award-winning movie, Fill the Void, produced by a chassidic woman.  They enjoyed the movie almost as much as they enjoyed being out together.  Their enjoyment came to an abrupt end though.  On their way home, they experienced an all-too-common incident throughout Judea and Samaria.  A Molotov cocktail was thrown in the road in front of them.  Fortunately, the women knew that it was a ploy to scare them out of the car, and if they had got out, I hate to think what kind of barbaric acts could have been inflicted on them.  Instead, they quickly made a u-turn and sped away.  Eventually they were able to find members of the IDF who helped them get home. 

In describing the incident, my friend said, “This is what we go through.  Every time my family leaves the house, these are the kinds of situations we have to think about.”    

She is not exaggerating when she says that every time her family leaves the house they have to be aware of impending dangers.  Ask Jews what can happen if one makes a wrong turn and ends up in an Arab neighborhood.  If they could speak from the grave, Jews would tell you how they were lynched and killed after making a wrong turn.  Ask Jews what can happen if a rock is thrown at their car while driving through Judea and Samaria.  Some of those Jews and their children would also have to speak from the grave.  Ask off-duty soldiers what can happen during a hike in the hills outside of Hebron.  You guessed it.  They would have to speak from the grave too.  Rocks.  Molotov cocktails.  Ambushes.  No big deal, right?  After all, these attacks are happening to “settlers,” who in many peoples’ eyes are only getting what they deserve for living in so-called “disputed” or “occupied territories.”  When people fall prey to the propaganda that the "settlers" are illegally occupying Jewish land, they can also easily fall prey to thinking that terrorists acts against the "settlers" are justified, perhaps even deserved. 

My pioneering friend not only has to be concerned about impending danger when she leaves home, but while she is at home too.  Far too often Shabbat has ended with a mob of Arabs with weapons rioting in her neighborhood chanting, “Death to the Jews!”  Thank G-d, she and her family have not been harmed.  The same cannot be said for some of their vineyards.  But again, who cares?  She is only a “settler.”  By living beyond the “green-line,” otherwise known as the heartland of Israel, she chose to put herself and her children in harms way, right?
To sum up the events of her night out, my friend said, “We felt Hashem guiding us and leading us out of danger.  Thank you Hashem!  No matter what we go through we feel safer here and we know this is our home!” 

I’m not surprised by her reaction.  It is the reaction of a true pioneer, of a true prophet.  It is the reaction of one of Rachel’s children responding to Rachel’s cries per Jeremiah 31.  It is the response of someone who has truly come home. 

There are many Jews living in Israel.  But not all of them are really living in Israel.  They are living in a faux, political dream.  They are living according to how the nations are telling them to live instead of how the G-d of Israel instructed them to live.  If a Jew is living in the Land while trying to give the Land away, he or she has not truly come home yet.  Rachel still weeps for them.

The pioneers, though, they are the epitome of living in the Land; of being home.  Besides the IDF, they are another line of defense, staking claim and protecting the Land of Israel against enemies within and without who are not only trying to steal the Land of Israel, but are actually trying to end Israel’s very existence.  But, instead of being lauded as a second line of defense, the pioneers are considered by many, including fellow Jews, as the #1 roadblock to peace.  An Arab terrorist can, G-d forbid, don a suicide-belt, launch rockets, and slit Jewish women and children’s throats.  But in the twisted logic of liberals, barbaric acts of terrorism are nothing compared to a Jew picking up a hammer to build a home in Judea and Samaria.

In Obama’s first term, he launched his presidency with his famed speech in Cairo.  In the speech he was quick to point his finger, as other US administrations before him did, at the “settlers” in Israel for being the biggest obstacle to peace.  Yet, what the pioneers are really an obstacle to are the plans of the nations to continue to shrink Israel until, “Poof!” it no longer exists.  While the nations push for pre-1967 borders, while liberal Jews continue to dream of a two-state solution, while the Israeli government bulldozes pioneers’ homes in cowardly acts of appeasement, the pioneers continue to stand on one simple truth – every inch of Israel belongs to the Jews.  Period.

In a world of revisionist history, in the midst of the conniving schemes of Peace Now, and despite many members of their own government and population being against them, the pioneers are a beacon of unadulterated Biblical truth: the Land of Israel was given to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and that has never changed.  Twenty-first century politics and “peace accords” will not cause the pioneers of the Land to sway.  If anything, the liberal ideas of man will only make the pioneers stronger in their stance to live out the promises given to their forefathers.  In the long run, revisionist history and propaganda are no match against pioneers who are the living embodiment of Biblical prophecy coming to pass.  

After the most recent “cease-fire” in Israel, hundreds of Arabs rioted throughout Judea and Samaria throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at Jews in buses and cars and at Israeli soldiers and police.  Much of the rioting took place at Rachel’s Tomb where Arabs threw 73 Molotov cocktails at the tomb’s compound and at the security forces there.  (It is worth noting that Rachel’s tomb is just one of several historical sites in Israel that Arabs have tried to claim as their own, with the help of UNESCO, and then desecrated the site with barbaric acts, just as they did with Joseph’s tomb.) 

The flames of Molotov cocktails, though, pale in comparison to the holy flames Rachel’s children have become.  Rachel's children have returned to their land.  There, they will stay.  The House of Jacob.  The House of Joseph.  A fire and a flame, in the guise of hammers and nails, consuming those who would oppose their existence.   

                              Dedicated to Hela - the beautiful, indomitable pioneer. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Israel, Fight Like a Girl!

After the attacks by Muslims on U.S. embassies in the Middle East, which included the murder of four Americans, a college student posted the following comment on Facebook:  “My heart goes out to the families of the people killed in Libya. But I hope we can be filled with forgiveness towards all this baloney. I feel like this secret desire for vengeance and calling it ‘justice’ is exactly what led us into the hell-hole we're currently in. Come on, Christian nation. Forgive them 70 x 7 times.”

I know this kid. (When you get to be my age, you can call college students "kids").  He’s smart, rather brilliant actually.  He’s of upstanding moral character.  He’s even a supporter of Israel, which makes him a rare-breed on college campuses.  And even though he’s a Christian, he doesn’t completely blow-off the teachings of the Torah or the Prophets.  Well, at least he doesn’t intentionally blow-off those teachings.  Knowing all of this about him, I was disappointed, yet not surprised by his comments, as it represents what many of his generation believe.  

His comment led me to ask myself, “WWJD?”  No, not that J?  I’m going back a bit further and looking at the actions of, brace yourself, a woman.  To get a Biblical perspective of what a godly response to murderous hatred, violence, and imposing danger should be, I’m asking, “What would Jael do?”

The story of Jael is found in Judges 4 & 5.  Jael was a contemporary of a judge in Israel named Deborah.  During Jael’s and Deborah’s lifetime, the Jews were threatened by Jabin, King of Canaan.  The general of Jabin’s army was Sisera, who forcefully oppressed the Jews for twenty years.  

To make a long story short, Jabin was an enemy of the Jews and he picked the wrong tent to take a nap in after tiring on the battlefield.  He went into Jael’s tent and asked for water and demanded that she keep mum regarding his whereabouts.  He then went to sleep.  Forever.  At the hands of Jael.   

The Bible describes Jael’s actions as, “Jael, wife of Heber, took a tent peg, placed a hammer in her hand, came to him stealthily, and drove the peg into his temple and it went through into the ground and he died.”

Talk about moxie.  Talk about seizing the moment.  But was she right?  Was it right in God’s eyes for her to kill someone in cold-blood?  The reader of the story is not left to wonder.  Deborah’s reaction to Jael killing Sisera answers that question.

It is worth noting that Deborah was one of the most righteous people in Israel’s history.  She was both a prophet and a judge, i.e. she had the final say regarding the laws of the nation.  She decided what was right or wrong.  What Deborah said was law, literally.  Or perhaps better said, what Deborah sang was law.

Judges 5 records the "Song of Deborah."  A song in the Bible is not just an ordinary song; it denotes a rare spiritual phenomenon.  A “song” meant that someone was having a very clear vision of why certain events occurred and how and why those events fit into the bigger picture.  A “song” is a lucid moment of God’s complete sovereignty and Divine design.  So it is interesting that a large portion of the "Song of Deborah" is about the heroine Jael.

The end of the song goes a little something like this, “Blessed by women is Jael, wife of Heber the Kenite; by women in the tent will she be blessed.  He asked for water, she gave him milk; in a stately saucer she presented cream.  She stretched her hand to the peg and her right hand to the laborers’ hammer.  She hammered Sisera, severed his head, smashed and pierced his temple.  At her feet he knelt, he lay.  At her feet he knelt, he fell; where he knelt, there he fell, vanquished.  Through the window Sisera’s mother gazed, ‘Why is his chariot delayed in coming?  Why are the hoofbeats of his carriages so late?’ The wisest of her ladies answer her, and she too offers her responses, 'Are they not finding and dividing loot?  A comely captive for every man; booty of colored garments for Sisera, booty of colored embroidery for the necks of the looter.’  So may all Your enemies be destroyed, O God!  And let those who love Him be like the powerfully rising sun.  And the land was tranquil for forty years.” 

Did you get that connection?  An act of aggression led to peace.  Repeat that a few times to yourself.  An act of aggression against Israel’s enemy led to peace.  Also, Deborah made the correlation that an enemy of Israel is considered an enemy of God.  Deborah had no secret desire for justice or vengeance.  She openly desired justice and vengeance, and showed no remorse for such.  She even mocked Sisera’s mother who awaited her son’s return.

Another Biblical example of a Jewish woman taking the Jews' survival into her own hands by causing the death of their enemy is Esther.  I admit I used to be in the same boat as others when it came to typical thinking about Esther.  To me Esther was just a beautiful queen who was the epitome of white-washed slogans like, “for such a time as this” and “one night with the king.”  Let’s get real.  “Such a time as this” and “one night with the king” led to a blood-bath for the enemies of the Jews.

Esther’s actions and desires didn’t just lead to Haman’s and his sons’ deaths.  That wasn't enough.  Esther asked for the blood of all those who were against the Jews. And she got what she asked for - the deaths of over 75,000 anti-Semites. She understood the words of her ancestor King Solomon. She understood that there is a time to kill. Who knows?  Perhaps Esther hummed the "Song of Deborah" as she walked towards her fateful meeting with the king.

Since it’s rebirth, Israel has been in a constant war with Arab nations who want to destroy her.  And for decades, the U.S. government has been the biggest proponent of trying to create peace in the Middle East through the “peace process” which would be more aptly called the “appeasement process.”  It has been an epic failure.

Capitulating to people and a cultural mentality that desires to destroy does not work.  It does the opposite.  It emboldens their desire and plans to destroy.  Have you ever asked yourself why God sometimes instructed Jews to "utterly destroy" certain nations?  They were being instructed to destroy entire cultures.  Cultures of destruction.  

Most Americans are oblivious to the fact that the culture which has called for the destruction of Israel for the last several decades, has included America in that same sentiment.  “Death to Israel, the little Satan!” Muslims have chanted for decades.  Along with those chants are calls to destroy the “big Satan.”  Guess who the “big Satan” is? 

This hatred has been smoldering for decades and it is igniting before our very eyes.  It is not “baloney” as the college kid called it.  It is a deep-seated hatred that has led to the murder of thousands of Jews since 1948 and recently the murder of thousands of Americans on 9/11/01 and Americans on 9/11/12. 

A deep-seated hatred has led to hundreds of cowardly acts by militant Muslims, including: 
     Killing an American Jew who was in a wheelchair.  He was murdered and thrown overboard from the cruise ship he was vacationing on.  
     Flying airplanes into buildings in America.  
     Teenagers slipping through a window of the home of a Jewish family and slitting the throats of a baby, two young boys, and the father and mother.  The mother walked out of her bathroom before being killed, though, and most likely saw her baby’s head nearly decapitated before she was murdered.  I’m sure her last thought wasn’t, “This is all just a bunch of baloney.”  

The uprising of Muslim hatred is a matter of life and death.  And according to Biblical principals, and I’m not speaking of Biblical principles that have been reduced to politically correct “turn the other cheek” clich├ęs, I’m talking, bold-faced, when-you-live-in-the-real-world instructions from a Bible that has ample examples of righteous men and women fighting to the death for their families, for the land of Israel, and most importantly for the honor of the God of Israel.  Those kinds of principles teach that if someone tries to kill you, God forbid, you should try to kill them first. 

That is why it is past time for Israel to fight like a girl.  A Jewish girl.  And it’s time for America to fully back Israel in the fight and to begin fighting to win its own wars too.  It’s time for cunning, calculated, take-no-prisoners Esther-type policies.  Would Esther continue to negotiate with Abbas after years of failed “peace talks” while terrorists continue to murder Jews and while over 12,000 rockets are launched into Israel?  Would Esther wait a few more months for Iran to build a nuke?  

It is time for the bold, audacious, seize-the-moment actions of Jael. Would Jael consider a cease-fire before winning a war?  Would Jael release terrorists from Israeli prisons?  Would Jael put Gitmo prisoners into art therapy? Would Jael let Ahmadinejad walk the streets of New York City?  No, a modern-day Jael would put a bullet in his head.

The right thing for Israel to do will not always appear "civil" as noted in Isaiah 63’s description of God’s desire for justice through vengeance:  
“Who is this coming from Edom, with sullied garments, from Bozrah?  This One Who is majestic in His raiment, girded with His abundant strength? 
It is I, Who speaks with righteousness, abundantly able to save!
Why is there red on Your raiment, and why are Your garments like those of someone treading in a wine vat?
I alone have trodden a winepress, not a man from the nations was with Me; I trod on them in My anger and trampled them in My wrath, and their lifeblood spurted out on My garments, so I soiled all My garments.  For a day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redemption has come.  I looked, but there was no helper; I was astounded that there was no supporter; so My arm wrought salvation for Me and My wrath was a support for Me.  I stepped on peoples in My anger and made them drunk with My wrath, and I threw their lifeblood to the ground."

Do you know what the very next line in Isaiah says?  It says, “God's kindnesses will I proclaim as the praises of God, in accordance with all that God has bestowed upon us and the abundant goodness to the House of Israel that He has bestowed upon them in His compassion and in His abundant kindness.” 

God's ways are definitely not our "civil" ways.  We are given a description of a blood-bath and how does Isaiah sum it up?  As God's kindness.  The destruction of Israel's enemies will be an “abundant goodness, kindness and compassion” for Israel.  

And what happens in Israel does not stay in Israel.  What happens in Israel spills over into all of the world.  When Israel rises up to partner with the God of Israel's vengeance and justice, and rises up to fulfill it's destiny to be the Light to the world, “abundant goodness, kindness and compassion” will fill The Land and then fill the world.

The world has seen Israel aroused as it fights against the terrorists in Gaza. We can only hope and pray that Israel will not retreat this time, but finish the job.  If Israel is smart, it will follow the example of its matriarchs and fight until all of its enemies are destroyed.  

Monday, September 24, 2012

Obama and Ahmadinejad Share Same Opinion

In 2010 Obama refused to meet with Netanyahu.  And here we are again in 2012 watching the same circus play out again.  

Letterman.  The View.  Jay-Z.  They all merit Obama's time.  But not Netanyahu, who has a mad-man, Ahmadinejad, playing with nukes breathing down his neck.

To make things worse, more surreal, more obscene . . . I'm not sure which word or phrase to use.  You fill in the blank.  However you want to describe Ahmadinejad and Obama being on the same page, using the same word to describe Israel's concern with Iran obtaining a nuke.

On Sunday, a 60 Minutes interview with Obama, regarding Israel's concern with Iran, went a little something like this:
STEVE KROFT: “You don’t feel any pressure from Prime Minister Netanyahu in the middle of a campaign to try and get you to change your policy and draw a line in the sand? You don’t feel any pressure?”
OBAMA: “When it comes to our national security decisions — any pressure that I feel is simply to do what’s right for the American [Arab] people. And I am going to block out — any noise that’s out there.”

Not to be outdone, in an an interview with The Washington Post, published on Sunday, Ahmadinejad said, "We, generally speaking, do not take very seriously the issue of the Zionists and the possible dangers emanating from them. Of course, they would love to find a way for their own salvation by making a lot of noise and to raise stakes in order to save themselves. But I do not believe they will succeed."

You just can't make this kind of stuff up.  Please tell me Jews who are Democrats, that this matters to you.  Please tell me that is isn't just "noise" to you too.

Egypt and Libya, Obama's Frankenstein

Originally Posted at American Thinker

In Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein is responsible for creating a monster.  Realizing his mistake, however, Victor becomes horrified of his own creation.  Victor grows even more despondent with the knowledge that the monster he created is guilty of murder. 

This is the point in the story where the similarities between Victor and Obama, who have both created monsters, end.  One is horrified and remorseful over the monster he created.  The other feels no remorse.  It is left to the reader to decide if this lack of remorse is due to Obama’s inability to recognize that he has created a monster.  Or is remorse missing because the monster is exactly what Obama intended to create in the first place?

The civilized world was horrified, yet not surprised to see the monster Obama created rear its ugly head in Egypt and in Libya.  Many were equally disturbed by the actions of an administration bent on convincing people that the monster is tame and wouldn’t hurt a fly if only people would quit prodding it with the stick of religious bigotry.  After all, monsters have feelings too.

The Obama administration acted quickly to distance itself from the U.S. Embassy in Cairo’s apology that seemed to justify the monster’s behavior in Egypt.  After all, it is an election year.  In an interview with Steve Kroft for 60 Minutes, Obama said of the apology, “In an effort to cool the situation down, it didn't come from me, it didn't come from Secretary Clinton. It came from people on the ground who are potentially in danger.”

In other words, “I didn’t try to pat the monster on the head.  And I didn’t try to blame the people who made the monster mad.”  When in fact, that’s precisely what Obama has done and taught his administration to do from the minute he was sworn into office.

Since coming into office, Obama has used the platform of his presidency to continuously laud Islam, portray Muslims as victims of Islamophobia, and to defend the rights of Muslims around the world before defending the rights of U.S. citizens.  He has become the poster boy and puppet of the Organization of the Islamic Conference who for over a decade has systematically worked to criminalize the “defamation of Islam” and to protect Islam from “blasphemy,” i.e. telling the truth about it.  In yearly resolutions at the UN on “combating defamation of religions” the OIC complains that, “Islam is frequently and wrongly associated with human rights violations and terrorism."  That claim would be hysterical if it weren’t so tragic.

To the delight of the OIC, Obama and his administration have worked hard to reprogram America’s collective consciousness regarding Islam by instructing us that: Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance, Muslims who kill in the name of Islam or Mohammad don’t really represent Islam, and that America never has been, nor will be in a war with Islam.  Such are the nuts and bolts of building a Frankenstein.

In his 2009 Cairo speech Obama said, “I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”  He continued, “As a student of history I understand more about civilization's debt to Islam . . . I also know that Islam has always been a part of America’s story.”  He failed to mention that the most significant chapter of that story happened on 9/11/01.

At a White House interfaith dinner honoring Ramadan in 2009, Obama reiterated, “The contribution of Muslims to the United States are too long to catalog because Muslims are so interwoven into the fabric of our communities and our country.” 

In 2010 in Mumbai, India, Obama said, “Islam embodies a religion of peace, fairness and tolerance.”  How appropriate to say in a country where hundreds of people have been killed by Islamic terrorists.  Who cares about the feelings of the victims’ families?  It’s the Muslims’ feelings. stupid.

The same sentiment was echoed in his address to the Turkish Parliament and in Indonesia.  He said, “Let me say this as clearly as I can. The United States is not and never will be at war with Islam. In fact, our partnership with the Muslim world is critical.  We will convey our deep appreciation for the Islamic faith, which has done so much over so many centuries to shape the world for the better, including my own country."

Helping him build the monster, John Brennan of Homeland Security and Counterrorism said, “Tolerance and diversity define Islam,” while Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough added that mosques were a "typically American place." 

Backing his rhetoric with policy, Obama gave NASA a new charge.  The 21st century final frontier; going forth into Muslim countries to bolster their feelings.  NASA administrator Charles Bolden said in an interview with al-Jazeera that NASA was not only a space exploration agency but also an, "earth improvement agency."  Bolden said, "When I became the NASA administrator, Obama charged me with three things. One, he wanted me to help inspire children to want to get into science and math; he wanted me to expand our international relationships; and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science, math, and engineering."  There’s that touchy feely thing again.  Is it any wonder that workers at the US Embassy in Cairo were worried about the feelings of Muslims? 

Besides NASA, Obama’s monster reared its head in the Department of Justice.  In 2011, Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole said, “I recently directed all components of the Department of Justice to re-evaluate their training efforts in a range of areas, from community outreach to national security.” This “reevaluation” included the removal of all references to Islam in connection with any investigation of jihad terror activity perpetrated by, you guessed it, adherents to Islam.  Think Fort Hood.  A Muslim cries “Allahu Akbar!” before killing soldiers and citizens on U.S. soil, but the administration won’t call it an act of jihad or terrorism.

In helping Cole, Dwight C. Holton, former assistant U.S. Attorney, emphasized that training materials for the FBI would be purged of everything politically incorrect, i.e. purged of any insinuation that a terrorist act might be committed in the name of Islam.  Holton said, “I want to be perfectly clear about this: training materials that portray Islam as a religion of violence or with a tendency towards violence are wrong, they are offensive, and they are contrary to everything that this president, this attorney general and Department of Justice stands for. They will not be tolerated.”  Imagine if he condemned acts of terrorism as strongly as he condemned political incorrectness.

Holton said that he discussed the FBI training materials with Attorney General Eric Holder.  He told Holder that the materials were “egregiously false,” and that Holder was “firmly committed to making sure that this is over” and that “we’re going to fix it.”  Holton said that this “fix” was particularly urgent because the rejected training materials “pose a significant threat to national security, because they play into the false narrative propagated by terrorists that the United States is at war with Islam.”  Yet another example of blaming the supposed stick that prods the monster, rather than blaming the monster.

The aforementioned Deputy NSA Denis McDonough reiterated Obama’s focus on America’s indebtedness to Islam, rather than finding it necessary for national security to focus on the dangers of Islamists.  In praise of Obama’s Cairo speech, McDonough said, “So the message the President wants to send is not different, frankly, than the one he’s been sending since he was inaugurated, namely that we believe that this is an opportunity for us in the United States, who, frankly, have arrived at a place here based on many of the advances that come out of the Muslim world, be it science out of Baghdad, be it math and technology out of Al-Andalus or otherwise.”

Three years later is it any surprise that McDonough chose to call the video used as justification for the attacks in Egypt and Libya “truly abhorrent” rather than calling the attacks abhorrent?  Yet, another example of blaming the supposed stick that prods the monster rather than the actions of the monster.  While describing the utopian vision of learning to live with the monster, McDonough said that he endorsed efforts to create "a world where the dignity of all people and all faiths is respected," i.e., a world where people shut-up and tolerate the murderous behavior of Muslims who get their feelings hurt. “This work takes on added urgency given the truly abhorrent video that has offended so many people -- Muslims, and non-Muslims alike -- in our country and around the world."

After the horrors committed by the monster in Egypt and Libya, Obama told Egyptian President Morsi that he still “rejects efforts to denigrate Islam.”  No surprise there.

What is most telling about this sordid, pathetic tale is the way that some of the embassy officials chose to use their time as the monster neared the embassy.  They tweeted.  In their Obama-induced delusion they actually thought a tweet would stop the monster their leader had created.  That is one of the scariest parts of the tale.  That an adult, working for the U.S. government, could be that stupid, passive and appeasing when being threatened and then attacked.  And Obama is counting on “we the people” being that stupid, passive and appeasing too.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Fish, Jewish Democrats, and a Bottle of Pantene

I saw a Pantene shampoo add on TV.  Although the commercial promised no more split ends, the best thing about buying a bottle of Pantene was that you were getting 2 for 1.  You were also getting a big bottle of altruism. 

The bottle of Pantene had a pink ribbon on it.  You know what that means.  If you are caring, compassionate, and socially conscious, then you will buy it.  Because the truly compassionate people are those who buy products that support breast cancer research. 

The commercial ended by reminding the dumb-downed audience that they aren’t just buying Pantene because they don’t want to have split ends anymore.  They are buying it because, “Buying a bottle of Pantene means that you care.”

Please tell me that I wasn’t the only one screaming in my head that one of the reasons there is even a need for cancer research treatment in this country is because of products like Pantene that are filled with unpronounceable ingredients that are carcinogens. 

The Pantene commercial reminded me of Jews who are going to vote for Obama.  They’ve laid aside all modes of critical thinking while they reach for the party that reminds you that, "If you vote for us, that means that you care."

A comment on Facebook today by a Jew said, “No committed observant Jew could vote for Romney/Ryan. Mr. Romney and Ryan are proposing to introduce levels of inequality, poverty, intolerance, discrimination, and legalized predation unseen since before the Civil War. Their policies stand in direct opposition to the moral teachings of Judaism and the ethical conduct that is required of Jews.”

Nevermind that, ahem, the KKK was started by democrats, that Abraham Lincoln was a republican, as well as Martin Luther King.  Nevermind that it was a democratic president who turned away the SS St. Louis, a ship full of Jews trying to escape Hitler.  Nevermind that Clinton perhaps was the biggest womanizing president in history.  But hey, he stood for women’s rights, so who cares if he was getting on top of women as often as possible.  Is that ethical conduct required by Judaism?  Nevermind that Obama supports governments, hell he's practically in bed with them, who prohibit women from driving, from holding a job, and from going in public without being covered from head to toe.  Ask one of those women about the purported republican's "war on women" and she'd probably laugh her burqa covered ass off.  And nevermind that Obama suggested that Israel return to its indefensible 1967 borders.  I guess Jews in America forget about that little snippet of moral teaching in Judaism, the little part about the Land of Israel belonging to the Jews.  Guess Jerusalem seems a lifetime away from the breezy retirement villages in Florida or the Jewish delis in New York. 

One of my biggest pet peeves is when people replace critical thinking with rhetoric.  Don’t get me wrong.  The man who posted that on Facebook, along with all the other anti-Romney posts I’ve seen by Jews, has every right to his opinion and to vote for Obama.  But I hate the fact that he is basing his opinion on rhetoric that the media and democrat party spoon-feeds to the masses.

Critical thinking is defined as the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.  In other words, you actually think before believing something.

Jews have been so loyal to the democratic party for so long, that they’ve forgotten to think about or even care that the party has actually evolved away from the tenants of Judaism. 

I love the fact that much of Judaism is a discipline of pragmatism.  The ancient teachings of Judaism house the secrets of the operations of the universe.  But Jews are prone to say, “So what?” to that kind of knowledge if the application of that knowledge fails to make one a better person.  Judaism is more about transformation than education.  Long story short, I love that Judaism is practical.  It teaches one to act like he is the only gardener in this world, the only one that can fix things in a world that needs fixing.  It is Judaism’s way of saying, “Get off your butt, and do your part because no one else can do it for you.”  Which leads me to the irony of Jews being so loyal to the democratic party.  

The democrats laud themselves, and Jews have swallowed it hook, line, and sinker, as being the compassionate party.  The party who cares for all and who will take care of all (nevermind that they will do this with money that doesn’t exist, but hey who cares about the details when you’re being so nice.)  Which reminds me, I’d like to buy you a new house, and new car, and pay for your education, as soon as I go find someone richer than me to gladly give me his money so I can be nice and buy all that for you.  Sound like a plan? 

But according to Judaism, guess what the highest form of charity is?  Oh, handouts make the list.  It’s a nice and honorable act to give to someone less fortunate than you.  But that’s not the highest form of charity.  The highest form of charity is to either give someone a job or to help him start his own business.  Gee, which party does that sound like?

Creating a sense of entitlement might sound nice, might look nice, but it is not nice.  Because creating a sense of entitlement is like buying a bottle of Panteen with a pink ribbon on it.  You think you’re changing the world, but you’re really not doing squat.  

I had a Jewish friend who is also a Torah teacher tell me something one time that has stuck with me.  He said, “The most righteous person isn’t always the nicest person.”  Touche.’  

Do you remember the brewhaha in the media a few months ago when then presidential candidate hopeful Newt Gingrich told people camped out at Occupy Wall Street sites day and night to do something positive for themselves and, “Go get a job!”  According to the knee-jerk media what he said was reprehensible.  So maybe according to Judaism he should have said, “Let me help you go get a job.”  But what he said and what republican capitalists believe is closer to Torah than the “compassionate” let-me-help-you-depend-on-the-government perpetual mode of the democrat party.  

It’s the old adage of teaching a man to fish or giving him a fish.  It’s time for Jews to awaken out of their loyalist stupor and realize that the fish that’s been handed out by the democrats for decades stinks.  Just like the duplicitous bottle of Pantene shampoo that has a pink ribbon on it.  It’s full of fragrant carcinogens.  And it stinks.