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Friday, September 26, 2003

Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem

papercut by Jerusalem artist, Archie Granot
On Rosh Hashanah will be inscribed and on Yom Kippur will be sealed how many will pass from the earth and how many will be created; who will live and who will die; who will die at his predestined time and who before his time; who by water and who by fire, who by sword, who by beast, who by famine, who by thirst, who by storm, who by plague, who by strangulation, and who by stoning. Who will rest and who will wander, who will live in harmony and who will be harried, who will enjoy tranquillity and who will suffer, who will be impoverished and who will be enriched, who will be degraded and who will be exalted.

But repentance, prayer and charity remove the evil of the decree.

May you all be blessed with a healthy and peaceful New Year.
Tikatevu v'Techatemu B'Sefer ha'Chaim.
May you be written and inscribed in the Book of Life.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

IDF Soldier Killed in Gaza
From DEBKA: 1st Sgt. Avihu Keinan, 22, from Shiloh, was killed, 5 Israeli soldiers injured – one seriously – in firefight at Gaza Strip Bureij refugee camp early Thursday. Two Hamas operatives were killed.

Avihu Keinan. May his family and friends be comforted . . .

In West Bank town of Hebron, two regional Jihad Islami commanders were killed resisting arrest. IDF detained 16 suspected terrorists in Hebron, Nablus and Halhoul.

Also in the news, twenty-seven reserve IAF pilots, including a brigadier general, have refused to "take part in air strikes in civilian population centers." The pilots apparently made no mention of where else the war on Arab terror might be fought, if not in the civilian population centers where terrorists live and hide.

At the same time, many are crediting the policy of targeted assassination for the relative lull in terror attacks. More at JPost.

El Al is blessed . . . again

Thailand's police thwarted an al-Qaida plot to attack Israeli passengers inside Bangkok International Airport and also down an El Al passenger plane taking off or landing from the same airport, Channel 2 news reported Tuesday evening.

Bangkok police arrested a suspicious man three months ago as he was filming with a video camera near the El Al counter at Bangkok International Airport.

After questioning the man, police searched his home and found detailed plans to attack El Al passengers on their way from a plane to the arrivals lounge in the airport, and from the departures lounge to a plane.

According to the TV report, the attack was meant to take place in the very near future, and the man arrested is more than likely an al-Qaida operative.
More on this story from the Jerualem Post.

Master Terrorist awards medal to parents of Terror Advocate

Associated Press: Cindy and Craig Corrie, right, parents of late American peace activist Rachel Corrie display the Bethlehem 2000 medal awarded by the Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat at his office in the West Bank town of Ramallah Thursday Sept. 25, 2003. Corrie was run over and crushed to death by an Israeli army bulldozer on March 16, 2003, while she was trying to stop it from tearing down a building in the Rafah refugee camp, witnesses said. (AP Photo/Hussein Hussein, HO)

Rachel Corrie was NOT a peace activist. She was a stupid young ninny who devoted her short adult life to hate-mongering and terror advocacy. She was killed while trying to thwart Israeli army operations being carried out to prevent terrorist attacks. Apparently, her folks are not too bright, either.

G-d protect us from the well-intentioned idiots of the world.

An Open Letter to Avraham Burg by Arthur Cohn

Dear Avrum,

I know you - within our long-time family friendship - for many years. I never commented on any of your political statements when you gave them to Israeli newspapers. However, your article "A failed Israeli society is collapsing" is especially disappointing because it was not only published in Israel, but also abroad in the "International Herald Tribune", "Le Monde" (Paris) and "Suddeutsche Zeitung" (Munich). Under these circumstances I cannot restrain myself from reacting to it.

I must protest against your level of argumentation and the style of your essay. Your way of presenting issues is irresponsible, undemocratic and lacks basic honesty. It ignores all the great values which are the basis of the Jewish State up to this day.

In very general accusations - which are characteristic of the whole article - you say that the Israeli nation (!) today rests on a "scaffolding of corruption." No word about Israel being a state with a most developed judicial system and courts which are open to all parts of Israeli society (Arabs included) in order to supervise justice in the State of Israel and to fight corruption in all its manifestations - a tiny state surrounded by totalitarian governments which are not bound by the rule of law. No word about the vast majority dedicated to Israel without any personal corruption whatsoever. No word about the tremendous job done in Israel with the huge immigration from Russia and Ethiopia. No word about the thousands of volunteers fulfilling a wonderful task for all underprivileged people - from handicapped children to helpless aged persons. No word about the free press of Israel which detects openly any irregularities within the Government and its branches. No word about the unlimited devotion to Israel's security even by regular citizens who endanger their lives in order to minimize the destruction done by terror acts.

You write that settlements are "run by an amoral clique of corrupt lawbreakers." The settlements were built since 1967 with the help of the Israeli government (Labor and Likud alike) and even their political opponents know that most of the settlers are great idealists. Far from being corrupt and amoral, they are loyal citizens. It is one thing to advocate removal of settlements, and another to demonize the settlers in such an unjust way.

How can you ignore the Jewish historic approach in your analysis of events? One example: Tens of thousands of Arabs worked for many, many years in Israel. Their entry to Israel started to be made difficult only after terrorists were smuggled in with the workers. To speak about the Palestinian difficulties with the roadblocks without mentioning the reasons which brought them about is morally questionable.

What is even worse: You invent the lie that Israel has "ceased to care about the children of Palestinians." You describe all of Israel as an inhuman entity and cause with this statement irreparable damage to Israel's moral image. As you surely know, the truth is the opposite: Despite the Palestinian children being educated to become genocide murderers and despite their being abused as shields for terrorists, Israel does whatever possible to avoid unnecessary damage to the lives of Palestinian children. Examples: The deaths of 23 soldiers in Jenin which were sacrificed in order to avoid a massive attack on the civilian population. Another recent example: Israel could have last week killed the main heads of the Hamas movement in Gaza, but refrained from using a stronger bomb in order not to endanger too many civilians. I don't know any other nation in the world which would act with such moral considerations even in their fight against frightfully inhuman terrorists.

"We must remove all the settlements - all of them&" - what an odd, unreflective statement! If Israel has no rights in the disputed territories gained through the '67 war, how will you react to the request of the Palestinian prime minister that Israel has to go back to the 1948 borders and quit the "occupied territories" of the Independence War? And how will you morally reject the PLO argument, taught in the Palestinian schoolbooks, that all of Israel is "occupied" territories?

Can it be historically justified that Israel leaves Hebron, Gush Etzion or even great parts of Jerusalem, so that a future Palestinian state becomes 'judenrein' while now, in Israel, there live more than a million Arabs with political rights?

Never in your article do you mention 'peace' (perhaps you don't believe in the possibility of a peace treaty after the Barak experience), but you still expect - in a most irresponsible way that Israel go back to the 'Auschwitz' borders of '67, even without a permanent peace process.

Your appeal to "Israel's friends abroad, Jewish and non-Jewish alike, presidents and prime ministers" to influence the road Israel is going on is a clear undermining of Israel's democracy. Now, that you and your party are a minority, you appeal to political forces outside Israel to interfere in Israel's affairs. Who would believe that this undemocratic view is expressed in a call from a man who was speaker of the Israeli parliament?

"The Arabs, too have dreams and needs." The majority of Israel would like to assist the Arabs to fulfil these needs. But as long as their dream is "to kill Jews wherever you find them", Israel cannot be expected to assist them in making this dream reality.

It is truly unbelievable that a man of your position should have no hesitation, as a Jew and as a Zionist, to weaken the struggle of the Jewish People in Israel with an article full of generalizations, platitudes and baseless accusations, not mentioning with one word the high level of Jewish values and humane behaviour kept alive in the State of Israel, despite the brutality used by its neighbours during all the years of its existence.

An old Jewish saying states that one of the greatest sins is to humiliate another human being in public. It is your right (and perhaps even your duty) to publicize your political views, but I am afraid that with your irresponsible article in significant publications worldwide you transgressed this basic rule by humiliating the People of Israel in a most unqualified, ugly manner.

[Courtesy of the Jerusalem Post]
Sadly, even tragically, these words should be read in the spirit of teshuvah [return], by oh, so many Jews in Israel and in the diaspora . . . read, and taken to heart.

Temple Mount Wall Collapsed on Tuesday

from Arutz Sheva
One side of a wall in the Temple Mount compound - completely visible to worshippers at the Western Wall - collapsed on Tuesday, uncovering an area of some 40 square meters of dirt and fill. The wall belongs to the Islamic Museum on the Temple Mount, a building to the right and above the worshipers at the Western Wall, identified by a small gray dome.

Archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar, a member of the Committee to Prevent the Destruction of Temple Mount Antiquities, said that the collapse is connected with the illegal construction works being carried out on the Temple Mount by the Moslem Waqf. Speaking with Yisrael Medad on Arutz-7's "Freedom of Broadcast" program, Dr. Mazar said that these works have been ongoing for many years without supervision by either the Planning and Construction authorities or the Antiquities Authority.

"No one is concerned about preserving the ancient compound," she said, "nor has anyone mapped, surveyed or buttressed the hollow areas under the Temple Mount and under the mosques... It is frightening to think of this collapse, and of what could happen in the future when many tens of thousands of people visit the Temple Mount, and tractors and trucks - and all of this atop hollow areas that have never been professionally checked. This collapse should be a warning bell. If a catastrophe occurs, the whole world will blame Israel."

She said that opening the compound to Jewish visitors is "just the beginning; pressure must be exerted in order that the supervisory authorities do what they are supposed to. The press must get involved in this cause."

These photos are by Yisrael Lowenstein:

Before the collapse


Columbia Professor Edward W. Said Died Today

NEW YORK - Edward W. Said, a Columbia University professor, literary critic and leading spokesman in the United States for the Palestinian cause, has died, his editor at Knopf publishers said Thursday. He was 67.

Said died at a New York hospital, said editor Shelly Wanger. He had suffered from leukemia at least since the early 1990s.

More at Newsday. . .

Jesus was a Jewish Settler

Rabbi Tovia Singer on the Mel Gibson movie
Will The Passion Crucify the Jews?

Like other curious Jews observing the commotion over The Passion, I have not yet seen Gibson's portrayal of Jesus' crucifixion.

If it turns out that the controversial film is as brutal as the already-released trailer, then Israel may have to absorb a massive flight of European Jewry this coming spring, when the Jews get all the credit for committing deicide.

Don't get me wrong, the anticipated release of Gibson's upcoming theological film is not the most nagging crisis on Israel's busy radar screen - at least not yet.

The phased Road Map has the potential to destroy far more lives than anything Hollywood can create.

Bear in mind that there is absolutely nothing that Mel Gibson can have Jesus say on the silver screen that will produce as many Jewish orphans as the Palestinian Authority - Sharon's partner for peace.

Unless, of course, the film's bloodied Jesus suddenly stares straight into the camera in the middle of his crucifixion and yells, "Support the Road Map!"

The chances of that happening are dismal given that Jesus, who was purportedly born in Bethlehem, was one of the better-known Jewish settlers in history.

Yet, even if that were to occur, we Jews might still be out of the woods because Gibson, in an effort to keep everything in the movie authentic, has Jesus say his lines in Aramaic.

So, as it turns out, the only people on earth who will actually understand the Christian savior's unexpected support for the Quartet are Talmudic scholars.

And Talmudic scholars don't go to the movies anyway, and even if they did, yeshiva guys would never support the Road Map, even if Jesus told them to.

If, however, the film is shown with French or German subtitles in Europe, the threat to legalized Jewish ritual slaughter will become the least of European Jewry's problems.

In an ill-conceived attempt to defend Gibson's film from tough critics, producers of The Passion rushed into the fray.

In a huge media blitzkrieg, Icon executives argued in numerous interviews that "the film is not anti-Semitic at all !" And then, in a not-too-ingenious effort to demonstrate this point, they insisted that "the movie will meticulously follow the New Testament's narrative of the crucifixion." How comforting. I wonder which PR firm came up with that talking point.

No response could be less encouraging.

To put it politely, the Gospel authors didn't go easy on the Jews when they penned their crucifixion narratives, nor did they place any of the blame for Jesus' execution on Pontius Pilate or his henchmen.

As far as John is concerned, it is the Jews who bare the sole responsibility for murdering Jesus.

Mark's Gospel is equally damning, as he has the bloodthirsty Jewish crowd cry out to a bewildered Roman governor "Crucify him! Crucify him!"

In Matthew's Passion Narrative, the miserable fate of the Jews is completely sealed when the ruthless mob of Jews scream to the ambivalent Roman procurator, "His blood be on us and on our children!"

More Jews were slaughtered for that phrase than any other in the annals of Western literature. If that line makes it into the movie, there will be celebrations on the streets of Ramallah.

Although there are numerous variations in the four New Testament accounts of Jesus' crucifixion, there is one consistent theme that its authors never abandon: The Jews, who were the villains, wanted Jesus dead, and the Romans, who were their patsies, didn't, and only relented to the uncompromising horde of Christ-killers.

Simply put, if in fact it turns out that Gibson relied on the Christian Bible for the script of The Passion, as Icon's executives suggest, every advance in Jewish-Christian relations over the past half-century may be in jeopardy.

Under ordinary circumstances, we could feel somewhat confident that no normal American film writer would ignite millennia-old anti-Semitic ideas by using an inflammatory script.

After all, history books are filled with the bitter consequences of what befell the Jewish people when they were portrayed as hardened Christ-killers.

But, as fate would have it, Mel Gibson isn't normal, and the fanatical church that he staunchly supports isn't ordinary.

As it turns out, Mel Gibson belongs to a radical splinter group of the Catholic Church that is not Jew-friendly.

Most importantly, it rejects vital ecumenical advances made in Rome over the last half century.

These "traditionalist" churches, as modern Catholics politely like to call them, are roughly as anti-Semitic as the Catholic Church of the 19th century, and they have no plans to change a thing.

Gibson is no ordinary parishioner at the church's 16-acre property right outside of Malibu.
He is its director, chief executive officer, and sole benefactor, making more than $2.8 million in contributions over the past three years.

The most notable schism between traditionalists and the Vatican hinges on the modern innovations of the Roman Church, especially those of the "good pope," Pope John XXXIII.

The landmark Second Vatican Council of 1962-1965, that he convened but did not survive, changed the way the Roman Catholic Church officially views the Jewish people. In every way, it was a change for the better.

In a celebrated document entitled, "Nostra Aetate", meaning "In Our Time", the Second Vatican Council declared that the Jews, as a nation, are not culpable for the crucifixion of Jesus.

Moreover, the horrendous phrase from the Catholic liturgy of Good Friday, "Perfidious Jew," was officially expunged from the Roman prayer book.

Gibson's church rejects these and other innovations, and views such progressive reforms as the work of an apostate church.

For many traditionalists, Pope Pious XII, Hitler's pope, was the last legitimate heir to the Throne of Peter.

Even more troubling, it turns out that Mel's father, Hutton Gibson, who is a traditionalist Catholic as well, is an outspoken Holocaust denier who has little affection for Jews.

In a shocking interview in the New York Times Magazine, the elder Gibson insisted that the notion that six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis was preposterous.

"Go and ask an undertaker or the guy who operates the crematorium what it takes to get rid of a dead body," Hutton Gibson told The Times. "It takes one liter of petrol and 20 minutes. Now six million?"

While the son cannot be held accountable for the sins of the father, logic would suggest that if Mel embraced his father's shocking opinions, he would say nothing, and if he found his father's ideas revolting, he would publicly distance himself from them.

Mel remained silent.

Although Mel Gibson is not saying much about the controversy surrounding the film publicly, other Christians are already beginning to vent some irritation toward Jewish critics of The Passion.

Surprisingly, some of this displeasure is coming from the highest and most unexpected places in Christendom. After a private viewing of the film in Colorado by top evangelicals, Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals, which represents almost 50,000 churches in America, warned, "There is a great deal of pressure on Israel right now and Christians seem to be a major source of support for Israel. For the Jewish leaders to risk alienating two billion Christians over a movie seems shortsighted."

Apparently, Haggard liked the film.

Although Haggard later claimed that his words were not to be understood as a threat, but rather as "a word of caution," the effect that The Passion had on this friend of Israel has been duly noted.

Are the Jewish people in trouble this coming Lent if The Passion portrays our forbears as responsible for the ruthless killing of the second Person of the Trinity?

There are three answers to that question: location, location, and location.

American Jewry has little to worry about in this matter.

For the most part, their Christian neighbors are far too angry at those who carried out the killing of 3,000 innocent people two years ago in lower Manhattan to even think about who carried out the killing of Jesus two millennia ago on a hilltop in Jerusalem.

As far as American churchgoers are concerned, whatever the Jews did at Golgotha 2,000 years ago was way back then, and now is now.

They understand that the enemies of America are the enemies of Israel, and their real adversaries are terrorists from Arabia, not accountants from Brooklyn.

In European countries, however, where anti-Semitism flows through the breast milk, The Passion is going to play to audiences who regard Jew-hatred as a national pastime.

Even before the lights dim, French moviegoers will be seething at the Jews for crucifying the Palestinians.

By the time the first nail is hammered into the cross, viewers in Germany will be passing around knife sharpeners in the theater.

In centuries past, when Europeans attended passion plays, Jews looked for a place to hide.

If a severe economic downturn hits countries like France, Germany, and England just when The Passion is making its worldwide premier, European Jewry may have to start brushing up on its Hebrew skills.

Gibson could save the world much unneeded misery by visiting Poland, the world's largest Jewish cemetery, before releasing his film.

There, he will discover why those who have a long memory are now pleading with him to reconsider his theological venture.

He should take a long, hard stare at what is left of Auschwitz. It's a startling mass grave that bears witness to the bitter consequences that emerge when a religion is transmitted irresponsibly.

The medieval Christian mindset that is ensconced in the stubborn European mentality is so venomous that it spawned a society that committed the most unspeakable crime in human history.

Ironically, while the Germans were gassing the Jews, and the British cut off the only escape route - to Palestine - for those fleeing Hitler's ovens, the Japanese, who were an ally of the Nazis, were saving Jews by the thousands.

Creators of The Passion have much to learn from that significant historical paradox. The Japanese were a largely pagan society, unpolluted by the pervasive brutal imagery that portrayed the Jews as subhuman Christ-killers throughout the Anschluss.

With violent outbursts of anti-Semitism on the rise in cities throughout Europe, and the blood of Jewish children pouring down the streets of Jerusalem, this is not the ideal moment to announce to moviegoers that the Jews did it.

Interestingly, a number of those who already viewed The Passion in closed-door showings conceded that extra-biblical adjustments and enhancements have already been made to the film, and none of them seems to be complaining.

Moreover, the "Who did it?" question is completely irrelevant to Christian theology.

Clearly, the creators of the film have the ability and flexibility to save the world an enormous headache, and leave the bloodthirsty Jews out of the picture. If, however, they feel compelled for some reason to award the credit for the crucifixion to anyone, let the Romans have it.

They are not around any longer to take the heat, and it was their cross anyway.

If Gibson doesn't make that trip to Poland before the film's release, let's just pray that he doesn't use subtitles.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Quote of the Day: HAMAS to BUSH

HAMAS leader, Ahmed Yassin, gave his first press conference today since Israel attempted his assassination on Sept. 6 --

"In the eyes of Bush, terrorism is embodied by Islam and Muslims. But he must understand that believers are not worried by threats and that Islam is stronger than Bush and his country and that Islam will be victorious."

See full Yahoo! News/AFP story

More on Anti-Israel Conference at Ohio State University

Third National Student Conference on the Palestine Solidarity Movement
November 7-9, 2003
Ohio State University
Columbus, Ohio



The PSM is made up of activist groups across the country working on Palestine who agree to five points of unity (decided at the D.C. organizing session - recorded in minutes posted by Charlotte L. Kates 1/6/03):

1. End the Israeli occupation
2. Right of return for Palestinian refugees
3. Equality under law
4. Divestment is our strategy of solidarity with the Palestinian people
5. Oppose racism and all forms of oppression

The first conference was in February of 2002 at University of California at Berkeley, the second was held in October at the University of Michigan, and the third will be at Ohio State University.


2:00pm: Registration Begins
5:00pm: Indigenous Solidarity Action and Rally
7:00pm: Opening Panel (Speakers TBD)
8:30pm: Social and Cultural Event


8:00am: Registration Begins
9:00am: General Body Meeting: Report backs from Schools and Organizations and Assessment of the Movement
12:15pm: Lunch
1:15pm: Concurrent Workshops (Action/Proposal Oriented and Educational/Skill Building)

Action/Proposal Oriented Sessions:
1:15pm: Session I
3:15pm: Session II
5:15pm: Session III

Educational/Skill Building Workshops:
1:15pm: Session I
2:45pm: Session II
4:15pm: Session III
5:45pm: Session IV

7:00pm: Dinner
8:00pm: Cultural Event


9:00am-3:00pm: Concurrent Sessions (Closed Organizing Session with 2 reps from each organization and Open Educational Workshops)

Educational Workshops:
9:00am: Session I
10:25am: Session II
11:50am: Session III
1:05pm: Lunch
2:05pm: Session IV

3:30pm: Closing Session (Organizing Group Reads Decisions Made)
6:00pm: Rally

* * * * * * *
1. Media Committee

2. Security Committee

3. Finance Committee

4. Brochure-Literature Committee

5. Web Committee

6. Registration Committee

7. Proposal/Resolution Collection Committee

8. Workshop Selection Committee

9. Facilitation Committee

10. Outreach

If you are interested in having delegates on the national organizing committee, joining one of the subcommittees listed, or have questions/comments about the committee structure, please reply to organizingcommittee@palestineconference.com

Governor of Ohio
Governor Bob Taft
(614) 466-3555
Email Governor.Taft@das.state.oh.us

Ohio Office of Homeland Security
Ohio Department of Public Safety
(614) 387-6171
Email jgrayson@dps.state.oh.us

Karen A. Holbrook, President
Ohio State University
(614) 292-2424
Email holbrook.79@osu.edu

William H. Hall
Vice President for Student Affairs
Office of Student Affairs
Ohio State University
(614) 292-9334
Email hall.26@osu.edu

Elizabeth Conlisk
Director of Media Relations
Ohio State University
(614) 292-3040
Email conlisk.3@osu.edu


Published by the Office of University Relations
Editor: Joni Bentz Seal
(614) 292-8309
Email seal.8@osu.edu

Community Bulletin Board
Email osutoday@osu.edu

Alumni and Friends Newsletter
Email atohiostate@osu.edu

Student Media

The Lantern: The Student Voice of Ohio State University

Buckeye Net News
Email studentnews@osu.edu

Yikes! I'm late!

Boulder Zionism Class Started Yesterday
My sincere apologies to Moshe Ha'Levi and Morah Yehudis Fishman for not posting this announcement earlier. ACT IMMEDIATELY to get involved in this class, and tell them it's Yael's fault that you're late.
The Center for Religious Zionism

Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook's
Orot Ha-Teshuva

Rabbi Kook, the first Chief Rabbi of the State of Israel, delighted in
bringing down Torah esoterica to practical applications. With Morah
Yehudis Fishman's guidance, students will experience Rav Kook's
intellectual and spiritual development of the notion that teshuva
(repentance/return) requires the return of the Jewish People to the Land
of Israel as a prerequisite for their return to the spiritual wholeness
shattered by the galus (exile).

The entire book, copies of which will be provided, will be covered in twenty 90-minute classes over 2 semesters.

Tuesdays beginning September 23
7:00-8:30 pm
1871 Folsom Street

$180/person requested donation for each 10 class semester

Contact Matt Finberg (moshe@kolhamacabee.org) or
Yehudis Fishman (sorayehu@earthlink.net) to register

Class size limited to afford an intimate learning environment.

* * * * * * *

The mission of KOL HAMACABEE - The Center for Religious Zionism, with offices in Boulder and K'far Tapuach, Israel, is to provide education in Jewish and Israeli history, heritage, and culture; teach effective leadership as brought down in and from the Torah; engender love of Torah and the Land of Israel; build self-esteem, strength, and honor in the Jewish People; encourage and support Torah-based living;
provide moral support and assistance to individuals who desire to relocate to the Land of Israel; and foster mutually beneficial relations and relationships between the People of the United States of America and the People of Israel.

Support HonestReporting.com in the fight against Demonization of Israel in the Media

On January 27, 2003, The Independent (UK) published the outrageous editorial cartoon above, picturing Ariel Sharon eating Palestinian babies.

Then last week, the cartoon was adopted by radical Islamic groups in India as part of their vicious anti-Israel campaign:

Your generous donation to HonestReporting will support the fight against bias in the media. DONATE HERE. NOW.

Everyone keeps telling me that most Palestinians want peace with Israel

The problem is just a few radical extremists on the fringe

Palestinian Fatah activists carry their weapons during a pro-Arafat demonstration in the Beach refugee camp, Gaza Strip, Monday Sept. 22, 2003. Over 300 gunmen participated in the demonstration. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

Socialist International Middle East Committee meets at Arafat's headquarters

International dignitaries pay homage to terror

From left to right, former Norwegian Prime Minister Thorbjoern Jagland, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Secretary General of the Socialist International Luis Ayala of Chile and Palestinian Prime Minister designate Ahmed Qureia answer questions after attending a Socialist International Middle East Committee meeting at Arafat's headquarters in the West Bank town of Ramallah on Tuesday Sept. 23, 2003. (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)

IN SUPPORT OF THE SETTLERS: Let Jews live on homelands

"If you support the expulsion of Jews from Europe, America or anywhere else, you're a racist. But if you advocate the expulsion of Jews from the heart of their homeland, you're a liberal."

Excerpt from op-ed by Israel Harel, in USA TODAY

The term Judenrein means an area cleansed of Jews. In the past, this German concept was applied throughout Europe. Now we hear American and other liberals saying that Jewish communities on the biblical land of Judea and Samaria [West Bank], the cradle of the Jewish nation, must be emptied of all their inhabitants, so that even in a Jewish homeland there can be Judenrein areas.

The expulsion of the Jews from Europe, which reached its height during World War II, was a manifestly barbaric and inhumane act. But there, at least, the Jews were unwelcome guests, having lived in that area for merely a thousand years or so. However, to drive out the Jewish community of Hebron, where the matriarchs and patriarchs of the Jewish people are buried and King David first ruled 3,000 years ago, is unthinkable.

The United States is dotted with towns named for biblical cities in Israel: Hebron, Shilo, Bethlehem. But according to the terminology of many in the U.S. press, the Israeli Shilo, the original one, is a "settlement," and consequently must be cleansed of Jews.

If someone decided to expel Jews from Shiloh, Ohio, or Hebron, Neb., USA TODAY might be among the first to come out against what it would likely term racism. Why then does it support the expulsion of Jews from the original Shilo — the Jewish one? Why are Jews living in their own homeland considered "an obstacle to peace"?

Blessings for the New Year

from Naomi Ragen
Dearest Friends,

The Jewish New Year is just a few days away. Unlike secular New Years, which are ushered in with a great deal of noise and shouting, lots of booze and celebrating, the Jewish New Year comes in almost silently, in the wake of hours of synagogue prayers and soul searching, as we become acutely aware of the joysa and the terrors that lie in wait, shadowing the days to come.

When I began this mailing list, almost three years ago, we were just at the beginning of the Intifadah. Hopes were still high for Oslo, and Israelis and Jews still vehemently disagreed over the so-called peace process. I began sending out my e-mails as almost a form of self-therapy, a need to validate the obvious truths that were so clear to me as I lived the day to day experiences of being under attack by Arab terrorists, clueless politicians --local and foreign-- and the complicity of the world press in finding a sympathetic human face in those committing recurring crimes against humanity. I felt that the reason most people didn't see things as I did, was because they didn't know and experience what I had, living in Jerusalem. I had twenty subscribers.

We took on CNN for its pro-Palestinian terrorist bias, and its local bureau chief, Mike Hanna, imported from South Africa and intent on making Arafat the next Nelson Mandela.... We took on the BBC. We sent out the information about anti Semites, holding them to account all over the world. We showed the true face of trendy leftists like ISM, who were terror advocates. We cried over victims, and shared the small joys of being survivors in this heartbreaking country, this beloved place on earth, that is the Jewish homeland, the only place we Jews will ever be the native people.

Sometimes, the attempt to fight the tidal waves of hatred and lies washing over us felt like bailing out a sinking oceanliner with a teaspoon...And sometimes the horrors were too terrible to comprehend, and the political game too cynical to endure.

But as we come to the end of the third year of our relationship, I feel our journey together is reaching a different place. The war with the media is ongoing, but we have made inroads. I thank CAMERA and Honestreporting for doing a wonderful job. And I thank each and every one of you who ever took the time and trouble to write a letter to an editor, or a company, or a university or a network, holding them to account for misrepresenting the truth. Mike Hanna is gone, for one thing. And CNN isn't as gung ho as they used to be, although I still avoid watching them. But I'll give them credit for hosting Daniel Pipes last week...It's progress. If it keeps up, maybe next year, I can turn them back on. BBC is still a lost cause, but at least the British government now realizes it.... Yasir Arafat and his thugs are now revealed in all their gory truth as the murderers they always were, and we are united in the decision to get rid of them. There is no more useless debate in Israel over that.

I hope that all the television cameras of the world will turn their blind eyes towards us in the year to come and instead of broadcasting torn flesh and charred metal, will beam images of our continued faith, our strength, our love of life and mankind, and our loyalty to our country and people into the living rooms of the world, images that will enter the minds of hearts of people everywhere, bringing them blessing, and turning their hearts of stone into hearts of flesh.

To all those thousands of readers who have written me such wonderful words of support, strengthening my spirit, and taking away the terrible sense of isolation, I thank you and bless you. I apologize for not writing every, single one of you back personally. It would have taken me months.

And to those who disagreed and were offended by what I had to say, I can't apologize for my beliefs. But I ask your forgiveness if I sometimes answered your letters with a sharp pen and no patience. The Intifadah hasn't sweetened our tempers or helped us to suffer fools more gladly....

To the thousands and thousands of you now on this list, let me wish you and yours every blessing. May you stay with me for the year to come and read only hopeful reports about how God blesses the land and people of Israel, Jews everywhere, good people everywhere. Shana Tova.

Naomi Ragen
If you don't subscribe to Naomi's mail list, you absolutely should. To do so, send an empty email to naomiragen-on@mail-list.com

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Guess what. Global Antisemitism is UP

From the ADL: Selected Incidents Around the World in 2003

August 4, 2003 - Sydney – The walls of the Liverpool Regional Museum were sprayed with anti-Semitic and racist slogans and covered with swastikas, posters and stickers. Fliers from two extremist groups left at the scene – the White Power Coalition and the National Salvation Front of Australia – made reference to “the white resistance” and carried a skull and crossbones with the message, “Death to Israel.” The museum was hosting “Courage to Care,” an exhibition about Australian survivors of the Holocaust.


May 10, 2003 – Vienna – A rabbi was physically assaulted by two youths as he was walking home from prayer in eastern Vienna. After shouting anti-Semitic slurs, the youths kicked the victim and struck his head with a beer bottle. According to the Austrian Anti-Terrorism Bureau for Protection of the Constitution, the suspects were in custody with charges pending.


August 27, 2003 – Minsk – A synagogue in the Belarusian capital was set on fire by unidentified assailants who doused the building’s main entrance with kerosene. Firefighters managed to save the edifice, but its façade was damaged, according to Yuri Dorn, President of the Jewish Religious Union of Belarus. The attack was the fifth attempt to burn the synagogue over the last two years.

May 26, 2003 – Minsk – Vandals desecrated a memorial to the thousands of Jews slain in Minsk during the Holocaust. The vandals scrawled swastikas, Nazi slogans and anti-Jewish threats on plaques at the Yama memorial, which marks the site of the ghetto where more than 100,000 Jews were exterminated by Nazi troops during World War II.


June 13, 2003 – Charleroi – A 32-year-old man of Moroccan descent attempted to explode a vehicle loaded with gas canisters in front of a synagogue. He was arrested by police shortly after the incident. The man reportedly set his own car on fire, but it did not explode. Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt condemned the attempted attack but said he saw no need to raise security around Jewish buildings and institutions. In April 2002, the same synagogue, situated on the edge of the city, was hit by gunfire from unknown assailants


July 25, 2003 – Paris – A synagogue in the Paris suburb of Saint-Denis was ransacked and desecrated with anti-Semitic graffiti. Prayer books were scattered on the floor, the Torah scrolls opened and money was stolen. “Juif=mort” (Jew = death) was scrawled on an outside wall.

July 20, 2003 – Venissieux – Two plaques at a Holocaust memorial were defaced and broken. The plaques mark the site of a transit camp where hundreds of Jews from the Lyon region were rounded up before being sent to Nazi death camps in August 1942.

March 22, 2003 – Paris – A number of Jews, including teenagers, were chased and attacked by anti-war protesters outside the headquarters of a Jewish youth organization. The protesters were described by witnesses as “wearing kaffiyahs.” One teenage boy was hospitalized for injuries he sustained while being beaten by demonstrators.


August 15, 2003 – Kassel – More than 50 graves were vandalized at a historic Jewish cemetery in the central German city of Kassel. Some gravestones were overturned, while others had headstones weighing up to 2,000 pounds toppled on them. Police were investigating.

July 28, 2003 – Saxony-Anhalt – Vandals defaced a memorial to Nazi victims of a Buchenwald subcamp, plastering the buildings with anti-Semitic newspapers. Visitors to the Langenstein-Zwieberge memorial reported the damage to the police, who said that the perpetrators had used copies of anti-Jewish newspapers from 1933 to 1945, the years the Nazis ruled Germany.

July 8, 2003 – Berlin – A Jewish memorial in Berlin was vandalized. The vandals apparently threw small paving stones, gouging the surface of a memorial dedicated to the former Levetzowstrasse synagogue, which was used by the Nazis as detention center to deport Jews. According to the police, the incident took place in broad daylight, but the perpetrators escaped before they could be arrested.

June 27, 2003 – Berlin – A 14-year-old girl wearing a Star of David necklace was attacked by a group of teenage girls on a bus in the German capital. According to reports, the group first insulted the girl because of her religion and her Ukrainian nationality and subsequently hit and kicked her, injuring her slightly. Police were investigating.

May 14, 2003 – Berlin – A 19-year-old Orthodox Jew from the U.S. was beaten by a group of youths believed to be Arabs. The youths followed the victim, a student whose faith was easily recognizable due to his hat and beard, out of the subway throwing fruit at him and demanding to know if he was a Jew. When the victim refused to answer, they beat him with their fists.

May 11, 2003 – Berlin -- A man wearing a Star of David pendant was attacked by a group of teenagers who spat at him, kicked him in the face and shouted anti-Semitic slurs. The 56-year old man, who told police he was not Jewish, was riding a bus when the assault occurred. The attackers, identified as foreign youths, fled the scene.

April 29, 2003 – Ravensbrueck – Vandals smeared paint on the tablet at the former Ravensbrueck concentration camp in northern Germany. The tablet, erected last year by camp survivors, commemorates female inmates who were forced to build an access road using primitive equipment and their bare hands during World War II. Police were investigating the incident.

March 23, 2003 - Berlin - A 21-year-old American rabbinical student, in traditional Orthodox dress, was assaulted on Berlin's main shopping boulevard in an attack described by police as anti-Semitic. The student was struck in the face and an object was thrown at him, but he was otherwise unhurt. The assailants were described as Middle Eastern in appearance.


August 4, 2003 – Ioannina – Vandals sprayed swastikas and Greek nationalistic slogans on the outer walls of a synagogue. The town’s Jewish community condemned the attack and urged the police to investigate.

February 1, 2003 -- Thessaloniki (Salonica) – Two swastikas were spray painted on a Holocaust memorial. The memorial honoring the tens of thousands of Salonican Jews killed by the Nazis has been vandalized before.


March 9, 2003 – Milan – Anti-Semitic graffiti appeared on the office of the RAI, the Italian state-owned radio and television network, after a journalist of Jewish origin was named director. The graffiti read "RAI for Italians, no to Jews." The messages were condemned by political and popular figures.


June 21, 2003 -- Kuala Lumpur -- Copies of “The International Jew,” an anti-Semitic book originally published by the industrialist Henry Ford Sr., were distributed to delegates at a party gathering of the United Malays National Organization, where outgoing Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad delivered his final speech as party president to tens of thousands of Muslim Malays. Later, at a press conference, Mohamad claimed he was “not responsible for the distribution.” It was not the first time there has been anti-Semitism in this country that has no Jews.


September 2, 2003 – Novgorod – An object resembling a bomb with an anti-Semitic slogan attached was found at a local synagogue in Novgorod, 400 miles northwest from Moscow. The “bomb” was determined to be a fake when no explosives were found.

June 28, 2003 – Pyatigorsk – On the last weekend in June, a Jewish cemetery in the town of Pyatigorsk, in the North Caucasus, was desecrated. Vandals smashed 10 tombstones, including those of Russian World War II soldiers. It is the only Jewish cemetery in the multi-ethnic Stavropol Region.

June 22, 2003 – Yaroslavl – Windows were shattered and anti-Semitic graffiti painted on a synagogue in Yaroslavl, a town 300 miles northeast of Moscow. No one was injured in the incident. The police were investigating.

April 2, 2003 - Makhachkala - Vandals smashed ten graves in the Jewish section of the city's Old Cemetery. According to the deputy interior minister of the republic of Dagestan, marble plaques and monuments had been shattered. There were no suspects.


January 21, 2003 – Banovce nad Bedravou - A 19th-century Jewish cemetery was desecrated in the western Slovak town of Banovce nad Bedravou, about 100 kilometers northeast of the capital, Bratislava. Thirty-five tombstones were toppled and vandals drew a swastika in the snow by the gate to the cemetery.


April 27, 2003 – Malmö – Unknown assailants attempted to set fire to the purification room in the Jewish cemetery in Malmö. The attackers threw firebombs into the building, but the structure was still standing. It was the eighth time the purification room at the cemetery has come under attack

United Kingdom

August 5, 2003 - Manchester - Vandals smashed and toppled 20 headstones in an attack at a Jewish cemetery in Prestwich, in Greater Manchester. Police are treating the incident at Rainsough Hebrew Burial Ground as a racially motivated. The cemetery has been targeted in the past.

July 8, 2003 – Southampton -- Eleven tombstones in the Jewish section of the Hollybrook cemetery were desecrated with Nazi slogans and swastikas. Six others were toppled. A spokesman for the Community Security Trust, which provides security and defense advice for the Jewish community across Britain, said it was the second attack on Jewish graves in Southampton in seven months. Police were investigating.

May 15, 2003 – London – Police discovered the desecration of 386 Jewish graves at the Plashet Cemetery in East Ham. The gravestones had been pushed over. Police are treating the incident as a racially motivated attack. In addition to three youths, all under 17 and who were subsequently released on bail, four more youths have been arrested and were being held in custody.

Now swastikas at Rutgers

story via LittleGreenFootballs
NEWARK, N.J. - Police are investigating a graffiti attack on several buildings on Rutgers University's main campus in New Brunswick, including a Jewish community center and a fraternity house, as a bias crime.

On Saturday morning, swastikas were found spray-painted on Rutgers Hillel. They were also painted on the porch and front door of Alpha Epsilon Pi, an historically Jewish fraternity.

Three other buildings were damaged by spray paint, but no swastikas were painted on them, police said.

Emmet Dennis, Rutgers' vice president for student affairs, decried the incidents.

"The despicable acts of anti-Semitic vandalism that were committed on and around the Rutgers College Avenue campus in New Brunswick this weekend were not only an attack on our students and our friends at whom they were aimed, but on the dignity and civility of the entire university community," he said.

An anonymous caller to New Brunswick police reported seeing two men defacing the buildings early Saturday, but no other information on the suspects was available.

The Anti-Defamation League is offering a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible.

Victims of Arab Terror and Jewish Cravenness

by Rabbi Aryeh Spero, published in the Jewish Press
Many of our family had gathered in Israel to attend a wedding; instead, that day they attended a funeral. On Tuesday, the day before my cousin Nava was to be married, she and her illustrious father, Dr. David Applebaum, became the 850th and 851st Jews murdered since September 2000 by Palestinian Arabs bent on methodically killing innocent and productive Jews living in Israel.

Having just returned from a short visit to the United States to brief American doctors on how to save the lives of people attacked by terrorists, Dr. David scheduled a late night get-together with his daughter at Jerusalem’s Cafe Hillel to proffer his blessings and meet one last time before she left his household to set up her own. All that was left for him to do after that was to walk by Nava’s side down the aisle to her chupah. Father and daughter were together that next day -- eternally, not at the chupah but buried in the graveyard – almost side by side.

David Applebaum was the director of the Emergency Unit at Jerusalem’s famed Shaarei Tzedek Medical Center. Over the years he developed innovative medical techniques for saving the lives of those rushed through the doors after Arab death squads attacked Jewish civilians. At other times and in other venues he simply ministered to those needing immediate medical care, be they Jew or Arab. He never differentiated. But his murderers, the Arab jihadists, do differentiate, specifically targeting Jews, often delighting in snuffing out the lives of those like Dr. David who routinely sustain life.

Years ago, after leaving Cleveland for Israel, David established Terem, Israel’s first walk-in neighborhood clinics, more accessible to many than the ones located at big hospital centers such as Hadassah or Shaarei Tzedek. He also pioneered procedures in preventing blood clotting in heart attack victims. Nava continued the tradition by working with children with cancer as part of her sheirut leumi, the national service for army-age girls.

Ironically and grotesquely, these cousins who were devoted to sustaining life are dead, while the terminator of life, the mastermind behind decades of Jew killing, Yasir Arafat, is allowed to live.

What comes to mind when writing this is the chapter in Samuel which describes how King Saul spared the life of Agog, the king of Amalek, who led his people in a vicious campaign of killing Jews during the First Commonwealth. For political reasons or out of fear of what others might think or due to misguided ideology or ancient realpolitik, Saul spared the life of Agog and simply expelled him from the land. Agog refreshed, and the Amalekites rose once again to afflict the ancient Israelites. Saul lost his kingship, for G-d let it be known that Saul’s lack of grit at the moment when courage was needed disqualified him for continued leadership of the Jewish nation.

The buried can no longer feel. But the living, David’s five remaining children, and Debra, his widow and the grieving mother of Nava, will live daily with the ache for which there is no medicine, no doctor; with the loss that can never be made whole. Nava’s future generations will never be. And so it is with the thousands similarly robbed of life by Palestinian Arab terror as well as the thousands of other victims wounded for life.

David Applebaum was energetic, with an everactive mind conjuring up new and practical solutions for quandaries in medicine as well as halacha. A man of big ideas yet gentle; professional yet warm; involved in serious community matters yet fun; opinionated yet modest; confident in his ideas yet knowing when to back off. And always busy.

He was a devoted disciple of the late Rabbi Aaron Soloveichik, who was his rebbe at the Brisk Yeshiva in Chicago, where he received s’micha, ordination. David was a walking repository of homespun Rabbi Soloveichik stories. He treated Rav Soloveichik wonderfully prior to and during his illness. . .

. . . Though David lived in rabbinics, he practiced medicine, made it his career. David was actively involved in every institution touching his life. No doubt Nava would have achieved much in the years to come, but that future was stolen from her by the enemies of Israel and the Jewish people.

We all ask: When will this terrorism end? It will end when Israel uses the military force required to end it. “Cycles of violence” continue only as long as neither side is capable of ending it. Israel has the capacity to end it just as the Americans stopped the Nazi brutality in World War II. Thus far, however, we Jews have displayed neither the will nor the stomach to achieve the victory that will finally subdue the other side and end the “cycle.” The current stalemate will end with one of the sides being victorious. It had better be us, for the fatwas issued by almost all of Arabia’s mullahs call first for the slaughter of all Jews in Israel, then throughout the world.

For years now Israel has made major concessions, including the irrational gestures of freeing terrorists and withholding retaliation after terrorist attacks, providing guns to the “police” of the Palestinian Authority, and forfeiting land, communities, and our historic and holy sites. None of these capitulations has ended the “cycle of violence”; instead they have emboldened an enemy seeing in these surrenders a fearful Israel willing to amputate itself, to twist and accommodate itself to every terrorist demand, in hopes of pleasing the jihadists into ceasing their murder. It has brought not peace but more murder: more affirmation that Allah is slowly defeating Jehovah.

Patience is a virtue; unlimited patience, however, bespeaks a fear to act. Making periodic overtures is understandable; ignoring the stated aims of your enemy calling for your destruction is suicidal. Watching the murder of those entrusted to your care is immoral: “Thou shalt not stand by idly while the blood of your brother is spilt.”

Being concerned more about – and feeling greater “nobility” in safeguarding – the innocents among the enemy, when such restraint results in the death of the innocents among your own people, is a false ideology, especially when the so-called innocents crave your death and root for those murdering you. Some call such “concern” sophistication, when in truth it is self-indifference. Not valuing the total worth of one’s loved ones and people is not civilized; it leads to a society’s inner demise. Such behavior is craven.

Crucifixion is an alien concept. Even G-d did not allow Isaac to be sacrificed in the worship of Him. Nor should we allow akeidahs to be erected to the worship of the concept of “How good and noble we feel that we treasure the enemy’s children more than our own.” Since when has heroism become accepting death instead of fighting it – fighting the source of that death? Certain rabbis and intellectuals notwithstanding, this is simply old-fashioned avodah zorah, strange ideologies. These false ideologies never bring peace.

Where is our outrage? In the name of sophistication, we have muffled the normal and requisite response of outrage. Anger born of petulance is immature, rage raised against those who have forever taken that which is yours is necessary and moral. The suppression of justified anger leads to human beings no longer human but mindless, walking cliches – politically correct robots. It leads to the easy acceptance of injustice. So many officials in our community express outrage only when those of other groups claim a civil rights infraction. Yet they display amoral indifference to the murder of Jews by the hands of others.

So many Jews the world over extol how they value life by citing how protective they are of Palestinian Arab life. But by accepting the ever-increasing loss of their own, are they not elevating the life of Arabs over their own? What kind of demented “celebration of life” is that?

The Applebaum-Spero family residing in Israel are the embodiment of what the Bnai Akiva/Mizrachi movement envisioned. Good citizens, whose sons fight in their country’s army, whose daughters serve in noble work projects; who live by the laws of G-d while contributing their talents, energy and vision to the society, Israel, in which they live. They gave up the comforts and earning power of America to live not simply in a country of Jews but in Eretz Yisrael – the historic, G-d given land, the Jewish state.

Foolishly and ironically, Israel has allowed its power to be its own albatross by invoking the fashionable theory that the powerful must show more restraint than those perceived as less powerful. The result is many more Israeli civilians dead than should ever have been allowed, and rendering to the Palestinian Arabs more power than when decades ago they faced Syria’s Assad and Jordan’s Hussein.

Thinking that with its power it always can stop Arab aggression tomorrow, Israel allows countless todays to go by wherein the Arab terror apparatus carries out its bloody slaughter. Perhaps if we were weaker, with our back up against the wall, we would fight with everything we have, and do so today. But because we are more powerful, we tie our own hands and act as if the real fight can wait until tomorrow. Tomorrow, when 2,000 will be dead?

Many are confusing the Palestinian Arab situation with the American civil rights movement of the 1960’s. They’re dead wrong. This is not a social issue where we must understand what motivates the aggrieved. Let us confront the reality that war has been declared by Islam against Israel, indeed against Jews the world over. We therefore must react as those involved in war and be guided by principles of war and not those of social work. No “understanding” on our part will change the creed which lies deep in the pan-Arabic heart. It is hubris to think we can change these deeply-rooted emotions and religiously-based attitudes, these internalisms. Only the Arabs themselves can make that metamorphosis.
Thus far the Arab world is not reversing itself but is daily increasing its threats, diatribes, and theological assertions against Jews. Though all of mankind is born with a common human nature, our minds and hearts – our attitudes – are molded by the teachings we are taught from early on. Here we are dealing with a culture intoxicated by a barbaric bloodlust as well as a craving for power and death masquerading as a desire for statehood. This evil is found not only in the religious elements but the secular ones as well, for example the Baathists in Iraq and Syria.

This is a war, and any concession made to the enemy on the battlefield is dangerous, displays fear, is suicidal. It will bring defeat, for the other side will not stop if we don’t stop it first. We still are powerful enough to make a choice: instead of a political Masada, I prefer Chanukah.

David Applebaum’s journey began in Detroit and took him to Cleveland, to Chicago, to Toledo, back to Cleveland, and finally Jerusalem. Deborah joined him during this journey. So many others – relatives, friends and colleagues – met him on the way. There, in Jerusalem, father and daughter, David and Nava, rest with so many before them. We, however, cannot rest.

Throughout Tanach, the ancient Israelites were victorious when leaders arose willing to fight the enemy head on, with all at their disposal: the nation, while fighting, looked up to Heaven.

No attempts at peace treaties were efficacious during the First and Second Commonwealth when attempted with those who did not crave peace as much as the Jews. Defeat came when ancient Israel was led by leaders no longer sure of the relevance and importance of Israel as a distinct unit – witness the Jewish Hellenist kings who were “internationalists” first, and the earlier secular kings allured more by power and comfort than the religious ideal of Israel’s Divine destiny. False prophets twisted the religion to weaken it; intellectuals demoralized the people by intoning how Israel could not win and through moral relativism expressed that the Jewish cause was no more just than that of its enemies.

Prior to past ravages of the Jewish people, our communal leaders told us to be quiet and rely on their high-powered negotiations. The masses followed; absent an army and state, we were powerless. Now we have a state and our elites still tell us not to use our power. They, the “smart” Jews, will negotiate for us. Effectively, nothing has changed. So to those who wish to make yet more concessions to the Palestinian jihadists, I say: Not in my name.

The Patriot Act: Balancing our safety and our civil liberties

"Don't deny government useful anti-terror tools"
USA Today editorial, posted here in its entirety:
The second anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks seemed the perfect occasion for President Bush to ask Congress for expanded anti-terror investigative powers. Yet the response was downright chilly.

Republican leaders in Congress said they would hold lengthy hearings to assess the plan's impact on individual rights. Meanwhile, civil liberties groups accused the administration of ramming an expansion of the controversial USA Patriot Act through Congress with the same haste lawmakers showed in passing the original law in the wake of 9/11.

For all of the furor stirred up by the administration's request, two reassuring facts have been overlooked: Not only does the federal government have a history of using the same powers responsibly, but tools exist to ensure that anti-terror investigations are conducted properly.

The combination of past experience and mandated protections highlights a relatively risk-free way for Congress to test whether expanding the Patriot Act can aid the government's anti-terrorism efforts without endangering civil liberties.


•Precedent. A key new provision in what is being dubbed Patriot Act II — expanded subpoena power — is currently used in 300 other types of law enforcement investigations, from medical fraud to illegal dumping of toxic waste. And it has not prompted widespread allegations of civil rights abuses.

In fact, the administrative subpoenas proposed by the Justice Department currently are issued by virtually every federal agency. They are especially common in obtaining hospital records in cases when a doctor is suspected of overbilling Medicare.

Department officials in these cases can approve their own "administrative subpoena" rather than get a traditional subpoena from a judge or grand jury.

By giving Justice Department investigators similar authority, the government would be able to pursue terrorist suspects even at night and on weekends, when getting a judge's approval can be time-consuming. For example, if the FBI gets a tip that a terrorist suspect is in a certain location, it could issue its own subpoena to access the airline, rental-car and hotel records potentially helpful in tracking down the suspect.

•Protection. To guard against abuse in anti-terror cases, the administration has included a safeguard: Any recipient of a subpoena who feels it may be unjustified is entitled to demand a judge's approval.

But an additional common-sense way exists to protect against government abuse of expanded powers. In 2001, the Patriot Act gave federal investigators broad authority to track suspected terrorists. This included access to an individual's library records, bookstore purchases or Internet usage with just the permission of a special terrorism court.

To protect against overly aggressive investigators, Congress insisted on accountability provisions. The most powerful: a four-year sunset provision under which parts of the Patriot Act will automatically expire unless renewed by lawmakers. It gives Congress time to judge whether the law is being used properly and deserves to be extended.

Similar safeguards would allow Congress to test whether civil liberties are violated under an expansion of the Patriot Act. Even so, critics argue that the new subpoena power would let federal agents go on fishing expeditions that violate constitutional protections against unreasonable searches.

Opponents of the legislation predict that once the Justice Department is allowed to bypass court authorization, it would blanket the nation's libraries and bookstores with demands to know about persons interested in, say, books advocating radical Islam.

To a large extent, critics are letting emotional arguments trump factual ones. But the administration has only hurt its cause by mocking detractors instead of addressing their legitimate concerns.

As recently as last week, Attorney General John Ashcroft ridiculed librarians for "baseless hysteria" over whether agents would be poring over library records. The Justice Department also dragged its feet in reporting to Congress on its use of the Patriot Act until being pressured by lawmakers.

Instead of ridiculing critics, the Justice Department should stick to the facts. In spite of some predictions that the government would use the Patriot Act to invade the privacy of law-abiding citizens, Justice officials disclosed last week that they have yet to track anyone's library or bookstore activity.

Such reassurance is due in large part to the fact that Congress has demanded updates on the Patriot Act, which Justice has provided to intelligence committees.

Rather than deny anti-terrorism investigators additional tools that are widely used to combat lesser crimes, Congress could build on its Patriot Act successes. Temporarily offering the administration the new powers it wants in exchange for close congressional monitoring won't cure the Justice Department's cavalier attitude. But it's the best way to assist terror investigations while providing the public with assurances that their civil liberties won't be exploited.

* * * * * * *


The USA Patriot Act was enacted six weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. It broadens law enforcement agencies' authority to conduct surveillance on U.S. citizens and residents. Some provisions expire in 2005, unless renewed by Congress. Others are permanent.

The Justice Department says that since the act was passed:

*Hundreds of suspected terrorists have been identified and tracked in the USA.

*Anti-terrorism investigations and intelligence sources have doubled.

*More than 18,000 subpoenas and search warrants have been issued.

*More than 100 individuals have been convicted of or pleaded guilty to federal crimes.

*In 2002, more than 1,000 international terrorists suspected of threatening national security have been targeted by U.S. law enforcement authorities.

*More than 1,000 FBI agents have been assigned to counterterrorism and counterintelligence. Staffing of joint terrorism task forces has increased 337%..

The Big IF: Can they "abandon grievance and victimhood"?

A Palestinian shoots in the air with his AK47 during a Fatah rally in the Shati refugee camp near Gaza City in support of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. (AFP/Jean-Philippe Ksiazek)
"If they can abandon grievance and victimhood . . . they can once again make the Middle East, in modern times as it was in antiquity and in the Middle Ages, a major center of civilization. For the time being, the choice is their own." -- Bernard Lewis, in What Went Wrong? The Clash Between Islam and Modernity in the Middle East.

See "Lewis of Arabia: A visit with America's greatest Middle East sage" by Tunku Varadarajan in today's Wall Street Journal.

Our thanks to a Zulu prince

South African interior minister: ISRAEL IS NOT APARTHEID
by Yossi Melman, in Ha'aretz
"I certainly understand," says Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi as he passes through the metal detector like everyone else in the strict security screening at the entrance to the Tel Aviv University auditorium.

South Africa's minister for home affairs rejects calling the Israeli occupation and its treatment of Palestinians "apartheid," as do Palestinian leaders and their supporters in the European left and the Third World.

"The Israeli regime is not apartheid. It is a unique case of democracy," he said in an interview with Haaretz yesterday between debates in the conference marking Shimon Peres' 80th birthday.

If the Palestinians asked him, he would advise them to avoid violence and to prefer negotiations. "Armed struggle and violence do not solve problems, only create them, and generate more violence, in a vicious circle of revenge and counter revenge, as happened [in South Africa]."

Continue reading.
Do you think the ISMers are listening? Charlotte Kates over at Rutgers?

Monday, September 22, 2003

Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, right, listens to Lord Levy, British Prime Minister Tony Blair's mideast envoy during their meeting at his office in the West Bank town of Ramallah, Monday Sept. 22, 2003 in this photo supplied by the Palestinian Authority.
(AP Photo/Palestinian Authority, Hussein Hussein, HO)

Is that Lord Levy, as in Ha'Levi? No wonder no one in this picture looks very happy.

Rutgers Hillel to increase security

This from the Daily Targum
Pie in the face prompts Hillel to improve security at events

By Carmen Cusido, University Editor

After Israeli Minister for Jerusalem and Diaspora Affairs Natan Sharansky was hit with a pie in the face as he prepared to address a large crowd on peace in the Middle East last Thursday on the College Ave. campus, Rutgers Hillel said they would conduct bag checks for future events and speakers.

Uniformed officers, Community Services Officers, and plainclothes officers were all present at the event, said Lt. John O'Neill of the Rutgers University Police Department. O'Neill said the initial plan was to monitor the crowd. There were approximately eight RUPD officers and at least two CSO's, he said.

Bag checks at controversial events are really left to the discretion of the organization sponsoring the event, O'Neill said.

"If there's a controversial speaker, [the event sponsor] should let us know so we can better prepare," O'Neill said. He also said organizations should directly contact the RUPD to properly prepare for an event.

Rutgers Hillel Rabbi Esther Reed, the staff coordinator for Sharansky's talk, said if the security risk is significant enough for speakers considered controversial, then bag checks should be performed.

There were no refreshments served at the event, and Reed said the pie-thrower "must have brought his own pie." Despite the incident, "Sharansky handled it beautifully by making a joke," Reed said. "The event was a success despite the actions made."

Reed also said Rutgers Hillel worked with the RUPD for the event, and Sharansky had brought his own security.

But Abe Greenhouse, a University College senior, said he was tackled by the RUPD when he was arrested and claimed he threw an alleged kosher strawberry cream pie. He said he would not comment further about the event or whether or not he was searched, because he hadn't had the opportunity to speak to an attorney.

According to O'Neill, Greenhouse was arrested by Capt. Laura Kull of the RUPD and charged with disorderly conduct after the pie incident. He was later released.

"The rest of the events went without incidents," O'Neill said.

Greenhouse said he suffered a black eye and a broken nose at the event when he was restrained. "I didn't see who hit me," he said. He said he had no opinion on whether security should be stepped up at events featuring controversial speakers.
This kid, who assaulted a visiting dignitary from another country, is allowed to continue in good standing at Rutgers? faces no disciplinary action? Excuse me?

Richard L. McCormick, President
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Telephone: 732/932-7454
Fax: 732/932-8060
Email: president@rutgers.edu

Emmet Dennis,
Vice President for Student Affairs
Email: dennis@oldqueens.rutgers.edu


Must-Read by Ion Mihai Pacepa, in today's Wall Street Journal

via Naomi Ragaen
The Israeli government has vowed to expel Yasser Arafat, calling him an "obstacle" to peace. But the 72-year-old Palestinian leader is much more than that; he is a career terrorist, trained, armed and bankrolled by the Soviet Union and its satellites for decades.

Before I defected to America from Romania, leaving my post as chief of Romanian intelligence, I was responsible for giving Arafat about $200,000 in laundered cash every month throughout the 1970s. I also sent two cargo planes to Beirut a week, stuffed with uniforms and supplies. Other Soviet bloc states did much the same. Terrorism has been extremely profitable for Arafat. According to Forbes magazine, he is today the sixth wealthiest among the world's "kings, queens & despots," with more than $300 million stashed in Swiss bank accounts.

"I invented the hijackings [of passenger planes]," Arafat bragged when I first met him at his PLO headquarters in Beirut in the early 1970s. He gestured toward the little red flags pinned on a wall map of the world that labeled Israel as "Palestine." "There they all are!" he told me, proudly. The dubious honor of inventing hijacking actually goes to the KGB, which first hijacked a U.S. passenger plane in 1960 to Communist Cuba. Arafat's innovation was the suicide bomber, a terror concept that would come to full flower on 9/11.

In 1972, the Kremlin put Arafat and his terror networks high on all Soviet bloc intelligence services' priority list, including mine. Bucharest's role was to ingratiate him with the White House. We were the bloc experts at this. We'd already had great success in making Washington -- as well as most of the fashionable left-leaning American academics of the day -- believe that Nicolae Ceausescu was, like Josip Broz Tito, an "independent" Communist with a "moderate" streak.

KGB chairman Yuri Andropov in February 1972 laughed to me about the Yankee gullibility for celebrities. We'd outgrown Stalinist cults of personality, but those crazy Americans were still naïve enough to revere national leaders. We would make Arafat into just such a figurehead and gradually move the PLO closer to power and statehood. Andropov thought that Vietnam-weary Americans would snatch at the smallest sign of conciliation to promote Arafat from terrorist to statesman in their hopes for peace.

Right after that meeting, I was given the KGB's "personal file" on Arafat. He was an Egyptian bourgeois turned into a devoted Marxist by KGB foreign intelligence. The KGB had trained him at its Balashikha special-ops school east of Moscow and in the mid-1960s decided to groom him as the future PLO leader. First, the KGB destroyed the official records of Arafat's birth in Cairo, replacing them with fictitious documents saying that he had been born in Jerusalem and was therefore a Palestinian by birth.

The KGB's disinformation department then went to work on Arafat's four-page tract called "Falastinuna" (Our Palestine), turning it into a 48-page monthly magazine for the Palestinian terrorist organization al-Fatah. Arafat had headed al-Fatah since 1957. The KGB distributed it throughout the Arab world and in West Germany, which in those days played host to many Palestinian students. The KGB was adept at magazine publication and distribution; it had many similar periodicals in various languages for its front organizations in Western Europe, like the World Peace Council and the World Federation of Trade Unions.

Next, the KGB gave Arafat an ideology and an image, just as it did for loyal Communists in our international front organizations. High-minded idealism held no mass-appeal in the Arab world, so the KGB remolded Arafat as a rabid anti-Zionist. They also selected a "personal hero" for him -- the Grand Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini, the man who visited Auschwitz in the late 1930s and reproached the Germans for not having killed even more Jews. In 1985 Arafat paid homage to the mufti, saying he was "proud no end" to be walking in his footsteps.

Arafat was an important undercover operative for the KGB. Right after the 1967 Six Day Arab-Israeli war, Moscow got him appointed to chairman of the PLO. Egyptian ruler Gamal Abdel Nasser, a Soviet puppet, proposed the appointment. In 1969 the KGB asked Arafat to declare war on American "imperial-Zionism" during the first summit of the Black Terrorist International, a neo-Fascist pro-Palestine organization financed by the KGB and Libya's Moammar Gadhafi. It appealed to him so much, Arafat later claimed to have invented the imperial-Zionist battle cry. But in fact, "imperial-Zionism" was a Moscow invention, a modern adaptation of the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion," and long a favorite tool of Russian intelligence to foment ethnic hatred. The KGB always regarded anti-Semitism plus anti-imperialism as a rich source of anti-Americanism.

The KGB file on Arafat also said that in the Arab world only people who were truly good at deception could achieve high status. We Romanians were directed to help Arafat improve "his extraordinary talent for deceiving." The KGB chief of foreign intelligence, General Aleksandr Sakharovsky, ordered us to provide cover for Arafat's terror operations, while at the same time building up his international image. "Arafat is a brilliant stage manager," his letter concluded, "and we should put him to good use." In March 1978 I secretly brought Arafat to Bucharest for final instructions on how to behave in Washington. "You simply have to keep on pretending that you'll break with terrorism and that you'll recognize Israel -- over, and over, and over," Ceausescu told him for the
umpteenth time. Ceausescu was euphoric over the prospect that both Arafat and he might be able to snag a Nobel Peace Prize with their fake displays of the olive branch.

In April 1978 I accompanied Ceausescu to Washington, where he charmed President Carter. Arafat, he urged, would transform his brutal PLO into a law-abiding government-in-exile if only the U.S. would establish official relations. The meeting was a great success for us. Carter hailed Ceausescu, dictator of the most repressive police state in Eastern Europe, as a "great national and international leader" who had "taken on a role of leadership in the entire international community." Triumphant, Ceausescu brought home a joint communiqué in which the American president stated that his friendly relations with Ceausescu served "the cause of the world."

Three months later I was granted political asylum by the U.S. Ceausescu failed to get his Nobel Peace Prize. But in 1994 Arafat got his -- all because he continued to play the role we had given him to perfection. He had transformed his terrorist PLO into a government-in-exile (the Palestinian Authority), always pretending to call a halt to Palestinian terrorism while letting it continue unabated. Two years after signing the Oslo Accords, the number of Israelis killed by Palestinian terrorists had risen by 73%.

On Oct. 23, 1998, President Clinton concluded his public remarks to Arafat by thanking him for "decades and decades and decades of tireless representation of the longing of the Palestinian people to be free, self-sufficient, and at home." The current administration sees through Arafat's charade but will not publicly support his expulsion. Meanwhile, the aging terrorist has consolidated his control over the Palestinian Authority and marshaled his young followers for more suicide attacks.

Mr. Pacepa was the highest ranking intelligence officer ever to have defected
from the former Soviet bloc. The author of "Red Horizons" (Regnery, 1987), he is finishing a book on the origins of current anti-Americanism.
URL for this article (subscribers only):


By Bernard J. Shapiro, founder of the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies in Houston, TX
As I survey the fragile planet we call home, my mind makes note of the chaos, blood, and tears. The cries of a million lost souls shatter the night in a million corners of the earth. The sensitive, compassionate among them try to feed the hungry, heal the sick, clothe the naked. One by one their energies dissipate. They try to hold back the tide with a teaspoon and then see the impossibility of the task. The Jewish people are but a cosmic speck in this universe. To many Jews who feel deeply about their own people, that speck becomes the whole world. Other Jews are irrevocably tied to non-Jewish pursuits.

May we as a people open our eyes and begin to see the world as it really is. Without becoming depressed and morose, we must realize that there are powerful forces in the world that wish us ill. May we mobilize our strength to fight our enemies until they are defeated. May we not succumb to false prophets of peace. We all want peace. We pray for peace in our Sabbath services every Friday night. After thousands of years, being victims of persecution, expulsion, extermination, and discrimination, it is natural that we yearn for peace with every ounce of our bodies and souls. It is because our hunger for peace is so strong that we must be doubly cautious not to fall for a pseudo-peace. Today none of us believe Chamberlain really negotiated "peace in our time" with Hitler. Why do some Jews believe that Peres and Rabin really negotiated "peace" with Arafat, one of today's Hitlers? The Jewish people must learn the value of unity in the face of so many enemies who wish them ill.

I pray that Israelis who have fought in countless wars will understand that there is no magic cure, though they crave to be free of constant conflict. As Jews we are all involved in this historic struggle to survive. It is not our fate or that of the Israelis that we should retire from this struggle.

There is another battlefield here in America where the Jewish people is being tested and I pray that they win. That is the battle with assimilation, the struggle for continuity of Jewish life. History very clearly tells us that Jews can survive any persecution, but show a great tendency to assimilate and disappear where conditions are favorable. This seductive kiss of death is very hard to fight and I don't have all the answers. One thing is clear: where there is a strong intensity of religious upbringing, complete with Jewish day schools, the process of assimilation can be slowed.

My prayer for the Jewish people would be a rapid growth in attendance in Jewish day schools. Also the Jewish population will have to shift to a more traditional form of Judaism. In two or three generations more than 80% of Reform Jews will have disappeared. The main survivors will be Orthodox and Conservative Jewry and the Lubavitch Movement.

In 1967, during a visit to Israel immediately following the Six Day War, I prayed at the Wall for the first time. I had expected the stones to be rough and weathered after all this time, but they were smooth from 2000 years of touching and kissing. The gentle caresses of Jews over the ages had worn soft finger grooves in the hard rock. As I placed my hands on this magnificent relic of our forefathers, I felt a surge of light and energy the likes of which I had never known. In what had to have been but the flash of a second, I felt at one with Jews from all periods of history.

In an instant I saw the continuity of Jewish history and its unbreakable connection with Eretz Yisrael (Land of Israel). I understood how modern Israel is the beginning of the Third Temple Period and the spiritual heir to Joshua, Saul, David, Solomon, the Maccabees and Bar Kokhba. I frequently write about the security reasons for incorporating Judea, Samaria, and Gaza into the body of Israel. There is another side to this issue and that is the spiritual-religious side. The truth, which many find inconvenient, is that the Land of Israel was promised by G-d to Abraham and his seed in perpetuity. The Land of Israel is not speculative real estate to be bartered away for seductive promises of peace. The hills and valleys of Judea and Samaria contain the collective memory of the Jewish people. It was here that the Israelites first entered the Holy Land. And it was here they fought the battles, built the towns, elected their kings and were preached to by their prophets and judges. And it was on this soil that they wrote the Holy Scriptures we call our Bible.

In my blinding flash of insight at the Wall, I also understood that Israel on its own soil was more powerful than the sum of its weapons and men. Jews who had wandered the earth powerless for two millenniums attained great power when re-united with the soil of Israel.

One thing is clear to me: the Lord has blessed Israel by re-uniting Jerusalem and bringing Judea, Samaria, and Gaza back under its control. It would be a horrendous sin against G-d and common sense for Israel to renounce this inheritance to which it is entitled. Israel holds these lands as a sacred trust for the Jewish people in perpetuity. It would not only besinful, but also criminal, to abuse that trust by denying future generations of Jews their Holy Land -- the Land of their Fathers -- the one tiny spot on planet earth given to them by G-d.

As we approach Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, I see Am Yisrael in great pain.I say to the suffering people of Israel. We are an ancient people with a glorious history. Though we suffer from weak leadership, we are greater than our leaders. Our souls are greater than the terrorists and their allies in the Palestinian Authority. We will never be defeated by their bullets and bombs. We have never submitted. We have never renounced our claim to Eretz Yisrael. We are a Holy People, despite our pain. We have vision where our leaders sometime are blind. Our courage is greater than the mean and cruel world which has oppressed us.


I have a vision and a dream that I must reveal as we approach these Days of Awe: In the name of G-d, the Almighty, Defender of His People, Israel, I say to my people's enemies: Beware of the thing that is coming, that will take what you would not give. That will free the people of Israel from your atrocities. I say to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon: Be aware of the Risen People who will sweep the Arab scourge into the dustbin of history.

Know that the Jewish soul will be set free. The spectacular victories of the Israeli army and the return to Zion demonstrated that power. But it wasn't a miracle. It was just the soul of the Jew coming to its own. It was just the Jewish soul freed at last to be itself.

And I see it coming, the Jewish soul released to be itself. I see a new proud Jewish government coming to power in Israel. A government that reclaims the Jewish Holy Places and restores Jewish sovereignty in all of Eretz Yisrael. I see Moslem control and Islamic sites removed from the Temple Mount to make it ready for Moshiach. I see the enemies of Israel, who raise up their hands to murder or injure Jews, driven from our Holy Land. I see the secular Jews of Israel and the world becoming more observant and returning to the Torah. I see religious Jews becoming more tolerant of diversity in Jewish practice.

I see a new Israeli foreign policy that grovels before no nation, no matter how powerful. I see Israel's Foreign Minister informing every nation that their embassies must be in Jerusalem. If they don't respect Israel's capital, then may have a consulate in Tel Aviv. I see the government demanding that the Vatican return all the property it has stolen from the Jewish people during the last 2000 years. Maybe they will refuse and we
could always hold their property in Israel as a down payment. The Vatican has been used to dealing with obsequious groveling Jews, but now they would see proud fearless Jews. I see an Israeli government that would change its relationship with America from one of subservience to one of equal alliance.

Yes, I have a dream (apologies to MLK) that Jews will no longer debate the obvious: like whether to hold onto what is theirs or trade it away; whether to struggle for survival or to give up from fatigue. I have a dream that the Jews of the kibbutz and the Jews of YESHA will be reborn as brothers and patriots. From the Galilee to Eilat, all the people of Israel will share the same dream of a powerful independent Zionist nation. I have a dream that this strong, proud independent Israel will win the respect of all the nations of the world, including the Arabs. Instead of the contempt it has earned in recent years, Israel will again be a light unto the nations. And finally, I have a dream that this new Israel will find the peace it so dearly deserves. A peace with strength and self-respect. As I look back at 4000 years of Jewish history, I have but one urgent hope and prayer: We must make this dream a reality. There is no alternative.

May the Lord bless the leaders of Israel with the courage to pursue peace, and the wisdom to know when it is not attainable. May the Lord bless the Jews who return to Zion and give them jobs and new friends to ease their transition into Israeli life. May the Lord bless the war-weary Israeli people with the stamina to bear up under the strain, if peace not just around the corner. May they understand that their fate may be that of
endless struggle to survive in a hostile world and may they have the strength to understand that there is still no alternative (ein brera). May the people of Israel prosper and go from success to success never forgetting that their destiny lies in their might, their righteousness and their faith in HaShem. SHANA TOV!