Jul 27, 2017

Synagogues of South Carolina (video)









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Jul 26, 2017

Interesting Psak: alcohol addiction is a reason for divorce

The beis din in netanya issued an interesting psak in a divorce case they were presiding over. The wife was demanding a divorce while the husband was refusing and insisting on "shlom bayit" counseling.

the wife's claim, among others, was that her husband drinks a lot and gets inebriated and gets violent in the house. This happens during the week, but it happens especially on Friday nights, and his violent behavior messes up their Shabbos and the atmosphere and order.

After much research and discussion with social workers they decided that because this was not a one-time event but a regular addiction, she is justified in demanding a divorce and he has to grant it along with the money obligated in the ketuba. They said a person who is addicted to alcohol cannot properly support his family and maintain a normal marriage and relationship.

According to the decision, the husband must grant the divorce, arrange for a date within 30 days to hand over the gett, and if he refuses the beis din must set a schedule for sanctions against him as per the guidelines of the batei din.
source: Haredim10 and others






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Rav Yosef supports the kashrut of the Rabbanut

Chief Rabbi of Israel Rav Yitzchak Yosef spoke recently at a conference in which he used his podium to speak in support of the Rabbanut and to strengthen the Rabbanut. He discussed various aspects of the Rabbanut.

You can read, or watch, much of what he said at the report on Kikar, but I am going to refer to just one part of it here - the part where he talks about the kashrut aspect of the Rabbanut.

Rav Yosef said "the rabbonim need to prop up the name and reputation of  the Rabbanut in kashrut, so people should not say "oh, that's rabbanut", as if the hechsher of the Eida Hachareidis came down from heaven. That is not correct - it is a mistake. With meat, one needs to be strict about the best hechsher possible - there are many hiddurim with  meat, and one should definitely look for the best possible hechsher that is chalak. But regarding everything else, a person buys Osem noodles or chocolate.. what's the difference? It is all business, not always but very often. The Rabbanut and the rabbonim of cities need to be more aggressive and prop up the kashrut of the Rabbanut"..

Rav Yosef should put his money where his mouth is, and I do not know that he doesn't but if he already does he should have publicized it right them and there. Rav Yosef should have announced that when buying meat he only buys with hechsher x, probably the hechsher of Beit Yosef - his family's hechsher business - but with everything else, or at least with almost everything else, he and his family buy Rabbanut and cook with Rabbanut foods in their houses because it is all just business and there is usually no difference.

If he himself does not follow the instructions he is telling everyone else to follow, it is very nice he is strengthening the Rabbanut but he really isn't doing anything.Nobody will listen to him if he himself is seen as not trusting the Rabbanut. He wants everyone else to eat Rabbanut except for him and his family. If he already does eat Rabbanut, he should use himself as an example saying that he relies on it completely. If he does not, he should say starting today I am going to be buying foods with the Rabbanut hechsher and I expect the general public to do so as well. That is something that would really strengthen the Rabbanut in the eye of the public.





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Quote of the Day

the issue of Eretz Yisrael is the most important, in the second place....
I did not say that I am closer to the Left than to the Right.. the truth is that I feel much closer here, as there [at the Haaretz Conference] I didn't have a minyan for Mincha..

  -- MK Moshe Gafni (UTJ), speaking at the Katif Conference...



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Ethnicities of Israel: Ethiopians (video)








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One on One with Alan Dershowitz - July 20, 2017 (video)







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Chaidak Politi with Minister Avigdor Lieberman (video)

these interviews are always interesting..




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Fight Brews Between Jewish Community and Mahwah Residents About Eruv (video)








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Yossi's Choir & Cantor Shlomo Seletski - Mimkomcha (video)








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Jul 25, 2017

who cares if the Arabs pray?

I am not sure why we are expected to care, and why so many people seem to care, that the Arabs refuse to go pray on temple Mount, even after Israel has removed the magnetometers.

What do we care? We did what they wanted, in order to avoid conflict, for better or for worse, and now who cares what they do? They want to pray, fine, they don't want to pray, that is their business. Why are we so nervous about them saying they still won't go up? As far as I am concerned, the longer they stay off the better - every moment they are on Har Habayit, praying or not, is a chilul hashem. Every moment they stay off is another moment of less chilul hashem.



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Picture of the Day

as originally posted by Daniel Schwartz on FB


caption contest!

My submission is:
Women of the Wall Street
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The eruv as a social construct

A town in northern New Jersey called Mahwah is fighting against the influx of new Jewish residents by fighting the eruv. They assume that if they can get the eruv removed, the Jews won't want to live there.

We will see if they are right or not. They did successfully get the eruv banned and removed. 1200 signatures on a petition made the township force its removal. The eruv builders had received permission to attach plastic tubes to utility poles, and the city is considering these tubes and pipes to be signage that must be removed.

According to INN:
Many of the dozens of comments accompanying the petition, titled “Protect the Quality of our Community in Mahwah,” refer to “these people” and express concerns about falling property values. Most of them are anonymous.
“I don’t want these rude, nasty, dirty people who think they can do what they want in our nice town,” one of the comments reads.
Another says: “I do not want the town of Mahwah to turn into an undesirable place to live. These people do not assimilate with other people outside their community. I do not want them controlling our school board and siphoning funds for their yeshivas. Also, they buy houses which they claim is for religious purposes and do not pay taxes. They should stay where they are and leave our town alone.”
Notwithstanding individual people, Jews in general are not dirty and they are not ruder or nastier than anyone else - even East Coast Jews relative to East Coast EveryoneElse. When Jews move in, real estate prices generally go up, not down. And nobody knows who else is paying or not paying taxes - at least not until people get arrested for it. Basically this is all just anti-semitism, or a convenient cover for trying to prevent your hometown lifestyle from changing.

I have no problem with them trying and find it totally understandable, as long as real anti-semitism isn't involved, but it is unlikely to work, as at the end of the day market forces will win the day. If they organize, the way some other groups do, and refuse to sell homes, they might succeed. If they do not, individuals will take the higher prices offered by a few buyers to start, and then a  trickle will become a flood.

What is more interesting is the idea that the presence of the eruv means Jews will move in and its removal means Jews will stay away. Let us not forget that the communities with an eruv in the USA were rare until recently. Now people are used to having an eruv, but it is still a relatively recent phenomenon. I think people will still move in even without an eruv, unless they find a better town to take over, and when they achieve critical mass they will get their eruv approved.




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BDS Hypocrites

BDS activists try to prevent everyone and their cousin from coming to Israel, but they have no problem coming to Israel themselves and then cry when Israel prevents them from doing so.

If they want to boycott Israel, boycott us completely and just stay away. And if they think it is ok to boycott Israel, they should not cry when Israel decides to boycott them.


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telling the Rosh Yeshiva what to do

There was supposed to be a fundraising dinner in Lakewood during the Nine Days for some benefit called "the good of Clal Yisrael".

I don't know what that means, but it seems this is a backdoor way of raising money for the yeshiva BMG in Lakewood. I don't know why they need to do it like this and can't raise explicitly for Lakewood, but this besides the point.

The dinner was set to be an uppity dinner with seven courses of gourmet meat dishes, and obviously open exclusively to a select list of invited guests.

Rav Malkiel Kotler, Rosh Yeshiva of BMG, was set to participate in this dinner and was scheduled to be making a siyyum at the dinner.

It seems this created an uproar. How can the Rosh yeshiva participate in such a dinner and make the siyyum, and, for some reason, this is inappropriate - maybe to make a siyyum in order to eat meat during the Nine Days or that he is participating in such a gourmet event, maybe the entire thing being in the Nine Days... it is unclear, but people were upset and the event was changed to a pareve menu.
source: Haredim10

Appropriate or not, I don't know. I would think if the Rosh Yeshiva was participating in it, with an active role, he must have decided it was ok. Perhaps because it is a dvar mitzva, raising money for the yeshiva or whatever the good cause is, or maybe for other reasons. I find it interesting that the people do not follow the lead of the Rosh Yeshiva, especially in such a town as Lakewood where, I would think  fealty to the gedolim and the local rosh yeshiva is of utmost priority, but basically tell him what he can and cannot do - what is appropriate for him to do and what is not.




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you cannot live amongst us but we must be able to live amongst you

The Haredi news sites are carrying to unconnected, but connected, stories about Haredi communities around Israel.

Both stories are about local askanim, in each community, setting the tone for the community and saying only people who fit a certain model can live within. Anybody else has to leave and if they stay or buy within the community, without conforming to the rules, will be kept at arms length until they give up and leave.

1 story is about the community in the Haredi community of Har Yona (Gimmel) in Upper Nazareth. It seems there is some tension between the local Chabad community and the local Litvishe community. Despite having supposedly come to a working agreement, the Litvishe neighborhood council has decided to chase out one of the Chabad residents, Michal Ifergan, saying she does not dress modestly enough for the neighborhood. Her family is both sefardi and Chabad, a double whammy, and is being chased out of town.

Ifergan's opponents claim they are not upset at her because of her being sefardi or because she is a Chabadnik, but for tzniyus issues as she is "charedi lite". They say, there are various streams of Chabad in the area and their hashkafa is far from Chabad. As if they have the right to decide who is close and who is far from the belief system of someone else and of a different group. They also say "would you want your children to be living next door to a family who's father can be seen taking a television out of the car? These people are not appropriate for our lifestyle.

The 2nd story is about a community in Givat Zeev that is making rules that will keep out people who do not follow them, and the rules naturally exclude sefardim. The rules include items such as the wife must wear a specific length wig, another that limits what newspapers can be read -  with the sefardi shas-affiliated paper not included in the list, and more. Acceptance into schools will have to go through the acceptance committee - meaning, even if someone buys or rents in the area circumventing the acceptance committee and does not follow the rules, their kids won't be accepted to local schools.

Right? Wrong? Bad? Good? I am not going to talk about that. What do I know? Self-appointed rulers deciding who is and who is not kosher, who can live where and who cannot live where, is not to my taste.

The only thing I will say is that I shake my head when I see this all too common phenomenon and then read about the Haredi community complaining about how other communities refuse to agree to build housing projects and neighborhoods for Haredim so as not ruin their city and community. Haredi communities feel perfectly fine blocking out everyone not like them, even Haredim who are slightly different, but do not like it when other people block them out.






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Israelis: What do you think of Messianic Jews? (video)






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I hope it comes to violence.. (video)

she says some really crazy stuff...




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Amb. Danon stuns UN Security Council (video)







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Mayor Moshe Abutbol at the cornerstone laying of Yeshiva Ketana Orchos Moshe (video)







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Synagogues of North Dakota and South Dakota (video)







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Jul 24, 2017

Picture of the Day


Shlomi beat off a terrorist in Petach Tikva, as the Arab terrorist attacked an Arab bus driver in a shawarma shop two doors down, with a pizza tray.

Add it to the list of household items used to beat terrorists with.

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Is chilul shabbos really a priority for Haredi MKs?

The Haredi MKs have expressed frustration with the knowledge of continued chilul shabbos for work on the rail lines.

I am not sure which it is, but this seems to possibly show the actual weakness and ineffectiveness of the Haredi MKs on things connected to the general public and Shabbos, as they continue to threaten about this but the work goes on anyway.

Or, perhaps, it shows how little the Haredi MKs actually care about the issue themselves, and perhaps their vocal protests are lip service anyway - if they wanted to put a stop to it they could, the same way they succeeded in turning back everything from Lapid's days and getting almost everything they have wanted in this government. Maybe they care about Shabbos, they surely do, but are not willing to put that issue above the other issues that they consider a higher priority - money for yeshivas and kollels and the like.

I don't know what it is, but I continue to be surprised by the frequency of the threats and the fact that the work continues to proceed, especially when they are such a central piece of the coalition.


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Reform protest male-only conference

Kikar has a report about a conference to be held for [male] directors of Haredi organizations and says that the Reform leaders are protesting the conference and demanding that women be allowed to participate. According to their demands, the organization putting on the conference will have to change their plans and also advertise from scratch specifically that women are invited to attend.

The organizers say this is a private affair and they put on similar conferences for the general public to which all are invited, including women and anybody else.

This fighting won't end any time soon. The Reform lost, so far, at the Kotel with the arrangement being cancelled, so they have opened up new tactics and targets. Eventually they will even petition to stop discrimination in shuls and remove mechitzas, and try to force yeshivas to allow entry to women. Anything in Haredi society where men and women are kept separate will soon become a target, especially, but not only, if they receive State funding for that event or institution.



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Jews not being allowed to pray in Jordan

A common destination in recent years for small groups of Israelis, and especially Breslavers, has been the grave of Ahron Hakohen in Jordan.

According to a report on Kikar, the authorities in Jordan have told a group of Israelis who are there to daven by Ahron Hakohen's grave for his yahrtzeit, that because of the tense situation (with the shootings by the Israeli Embassy in Jordan), they will not be allowed to pray at the grave. Anybody seen doing so, will be arrested.

Rav Zalicha from Bnei Braq, who is present in Jordan, also says that the Jordanians are not letting them daven anywhere in Jordan, not just at the grave of Ahron, even in the privacy of their own hotel rooms, and not to put on tallis and/or tefillin. I am not sure how they can know that unless they have video cameras in all the rooms in the country, or at least where it is common for Israelis to stay.

The connection to Har Habayit is greater than just blaming Arab violence on Israelis actions at Har Habayit. If Israel does not allow Jews to pray on Har Habayit, and if the Arabs don't allow Jews to pray on Har Habayit and Israel lets that go with no outcry, how can we be upset when Jordan does not let Jews pray, whether in a hotel room or at the grave of Ahron Hakohen?





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Israelis: Do you care about the opinions of Diaspora Jews? (video)








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MK Eichler: We Mustn't turn Har Habayis or the Kosel into a battleground (video)







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Temple Mount: What's the point in praying if you can't bring your gun? (video)



This week a lot of people died in Israel. How did it all happen? What critical facts did the media leave out? And why do some headlines make it look like there's no moral difference between the victims and the attackers who killed them? We break down the events, the facts and the media failures.




and when they called for the raping of Israeli women.. at least they weren't being racists like the soldiers of the IDF who refuse to rape Palestinian women because they are racists...

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Meilech Zilbershlag on freckles (video)








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a different view of the situation.. (video)


hmmmm




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Jul 23, 2017

easy conversion for new immigrants drivers license

Good news for new immigrants to Israel, and for many other people..

Yisrael Katz, the Minister of Transportation, has announced new reforms in the transportation industry. A number of these reforms might be thought of as a big deal for a lot of people.

The reforms include issues such as:
 - extending the age of the drivers license to 70 instead of requiring it to be renewed every ten years. Once the driver reaches 70, he or she will have to renew it every 5 years until the age of 80 and then every two years.
 - adding more automated machines around the country, called RishyoMat, from the current 50 to the eventual 100. This makes it easier to print licenses and pay fees without having to step into the DMV and wait in line
 - providing more DMV services via the post office. nobody really wants to wait in line at the post office either, so I am not sure this is a big deal, but maybe even the post office is better than waiting at the DMV
 - installing an appointment system for the DMV
 - new DMV offices around the country in cities that until now never had one
 - more hours open to the public at the DMV
 - and more
 - and perhaps the biggest reform for many of the people I know... new immigrants will no longer need to go through the same bureaucracy when coming and converting the foreign license to an Israeli license. Until now new immigrants had to take a lesson and a test. This was basically part of the same scam the entire licensing procedures follow, just to get more money out of people while not necessarily producing better drivers. Now new immigrants will just be able to go to the DMV and convert their valid foreign drivers license to an Israeli license without going through the lesson and test procedure. The foreign license will have to have been valid for at least 5 years in order to be converted like this. this one is a big deal.
There are still a lot of uncertainties and questions as to how this will work, but hopefully that will be cleared up soon. Will it apply to people who have already gone through the procedure and failed the exam - will they now be able to get the Israeli license without further testing or are they up a creek because the failed exam is on their record? Will this apply only going forward or also to new immigrants already here under the old system?

This will ease the pain for many people, and thank you to whomever lobbied to get this done.


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Facebook Status of the Day




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Palestinians: Do you want the Islamic Caliphate to be restored? (video)








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One on One with Alan Dershowitz - July 20, 2017 (video)







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how Israeli police are catching people using cellphones while driving (video)

don't say you weren't warned...





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Synagogues of North Carolina (video)










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B.G.B ELBAZ - Sh'Ybaneh Accapella (video)








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Jul 20, 2017

Interesting Psak: false claims in divorce proceedings

Oftentimes, or at least sometimes, divorces can get pretty nasty. Sometimes, in the heat of the moment, one spouse might use dirty tactics to get an upper hand, such as making false claims against the other that can result in restraining orders.

The beis din in Tel Aviv has issued a psak that would take away her "kesuba money" and her alimony for making a false claim against her husband.

The specific case they were dealing with involved a Real Estate Broker and his wife a Veterinarian, with two children.

Mr Real Estate filed for divorce, and Mrs Veterenarian filed to reject divorce and demand shlom bayit counseling, as a tactical move to get the upper hand, as if she is willing to stay married and work out the issues, when she really was not.

At some point she filed a complaint (probably that he was abusive, but it does not specify what her accusation was) with the police and he was removed from the house for 5 days, which she then had extended by the courts for 90 days.

After some investigation by the police, the case was closed against him due to lack of any evidence. They also discovered that she has previously threatened to make false claims against him. And they discovered that in the past she had demanded a divorce numerous times, so they realized her demand now for shlom bayit counseling was simply a tactical move - to get a better financial settlement in her favor.

With this background, the beis din decided that she should be punished for making false claims against her husband. The punishment is that the divorce must happen and she loses her alimony and her "kesuba". A beis din in Haifa recently also decided similarly that if a false claim is made by any party in divorce proceedings, that party is causing significant damage and will lose out.
source: Haredim10


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Picture of the Day


many Arabs are still protesting the installation of magnetometers at the entry to Har Habayit and are refusing to enter to pray. to that end, they held prayer services just outside the entrance.

Pretty soon they'll have their own version of the Kotel and insist it is a holy site for prayer and worship. Or maybe they'll demand ours.

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the divorce over the cellphone

A divorce case in beis din between a haredi husband and wife revolved around the usage of a smartphone.

It seems the husband does not like that his wife allows their son to use a smartphone, and for that he is divorcing her.

Husband says boy (11 years old) is addicted to the smartphone, and it is his wife's fault.
Wife, a clinical psychologist, says boy is not addicted to the phone, but he simply uses it like any normal child. She says it enriches his life. He uses it for his homework, and he uses it all the time as any child does. He eats with it and he sleeps with it.

her claim that this is normative does not sound reasonable to me - she says he uses it like any normal kid, while he eats with it and sleeps with it. That isn't a sign of being addicted? especially for a young boy that does not sound healthy. If he isn't addicted to it yet, it is surely heading down that path.

Husband stands strong and says the smartphone is poison to intellect and to faith and it must be cut off.

Wife claims that even in parts of the Haredi community, filtered smartphones, kosher smartphones, are allowed, and she has this phone monitored and controlled as to what he has access to and what he does not have access to.

At some point Husband asked the neighborhood rabbi to intervene and pasken to the wife that she must cooperate and put the child in therapy to break the smartphone addiction. Wife refused the demand, said the rav should educate his own kids and not her's and that she won't throw away money on that.

This fighting over the child's use of the phone led to the filing for divorce. Beis Din so far isn't allowing it, as she wants to go through "shlom bayit" counseling and the husband also says she is a good wife besides for this specific issue. Beis Din therefore says that there must be a way to resolve the issue of the phone and divorce is not an option right now.
source: Maariv

It seems like divorce is the extreme nuclear option here, and in truth it would not even help, as she could still give her son the phone to use when he spends his time with her (whether it is most of the time or even if only half the time)...

It is a shame that a good marriage, that they both seem to say they have, has to be destroyed over such an issue and the two can't find a way to work out some sort of compromise...





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the young Haredim leaving Bnei Braq (video)

interesting..






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Uber Driver Helps Deliver Jewish Baby in His Backseat (video)










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Operation Good Neighbor (video)

Operation Good Neighbor is a mission of compassion for those in need and of hope for a better, more secure border between Israel and Syria. Over the past six years, we’ve seen war destroy the lives of Syrian civilians. We couldn’t stand by and watch. While carrying out Operation Good Neighbor, we’ve had the honor of meeting our neighbors and hearing their stories.





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Not Your Typical Exam (video)








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Rav Shlomo Amar Lipa Schmeltzer - Bar Mitzvah, Kotel (video)








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Jul 19, 2017

Picture of the Day


this is a picture from yesterday, not from last Sukkos.

I had seen a flyer last Shabbos for the "hilula" of Shimshon HaGibor. It would be commemorated by a group of mekubalim with a ceremony including circling the grave with the 4 species (lulav, esrog, hadasim and aravos).

I do not know why - not why in general (ie.e why circle a grave with lulav and esrog) nro why specifically the grave of Shimshon (i.e. I have never seen this ceremony, or it advertised, by other graves).

Nor do I know where they can even get a lulav and esrog in Israel at this time of the year.



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Supreme Court rules on women as equals

The Supreme Court issued an important decision today that significantly changes society. Or maybe it reflects a significant change in society.

The Supreme Court today decided that divorced parents of children (between the ages of 6-15) will both need to pay child support and split it each according to his or her financial capabilities.

Until now the father always paid child support to the mother, no matter if the mother had greater financial means or earning power than he did, or not.

To me this makes sense and fits today's world far more than it did previously. Today women work and often the wife might earn more money than the husband (about as often as the husband earns more than the wife), and it makes sense that the wife should contribute equally (from a sense of equal responsibility) as the husband.

As has been pointed out, this is not just making the women pay, but it is recognizing their role, or at least another stage in recognizing their role, in society today as being equal to men and not just as a recipient from her husband.





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stain on the Rabbinate

A[nother] sad day in the [Israeli] rabbinate.

Rav Avraham Yosef, Chief Rabbi of Holon, has come to a plea arrangement with the prosecutors and has agreed to step down from his position as well as removing himself from his position in the Rabbanut Religious Council. As well, he agrees to not submit his name for any public position for a period of 7 years. To remind you, Rav Yosef was convicted of promoting his families kashrut business over others using his position of chief rabbi to pressure people to take on that hechsher, thus his conviction for breach of trust. This was actually his second conviction for the same issue, as his first, for the same breach of trust, was during his days as a municipal politician on the city of Ohr Yehuda.

Rav Yosef gives a wonderful halacha shiur on the radio, and that is my exposure to him. For a long time I listened to that shiur regularly, and it is very interesting and he has a clear expertise and control of the materiel according to various customs and not just for sefardim (or for any one specific group). And he speaks nicely and is pleasant to listen to.

This is another stain, in a long line of recent black marks, on the [Israeli] Rabbinate.


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Proposed Law: Faster elections for city Rabbi

Sometimes it happens that a city rabbi dies or retires and no new rabbi is appointed for a very long time. Sometimes this happens because of fighting among the politicians involved as to the identity of the new rabbi, and other times because of apathy to the issue or even because of finances as a city that might feel less of a pressing need for a new rabbi prefers to save that salary.

MK Betzalel Smotritch (Habayit Hayehudi) is proposing a new law that would require elections for a new city rabbi within 6 months of the post being vacated. The process would have to begin within 60 days of when the local council head approaches the Minister of Religious Affairs, kicking off a four month election process.
source: Srugim

There are debates raging as to which political party this would benefit most in future rabbinical appointments.

Whichever party that might turn out to be, the debate itself is an indication that the entire process is faulty. The city rabbi is meant to be there to help the residents and the city, not the politicians. If the appointment process is being done in a way that is something for the politicians to fight over and benefit from, there is something wrong with the process.





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Synagogues of North Carolina (video)







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Comedian Elon Gold's Most Jewish Interview Ever (video)

Coming soon to the 2017 Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal (July 26-29 2017), Elon Gold chatted with Jewlicious about Comedy and Jews. And bagels. And circumcisions. And Jewish babies! 





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Jul 18, 2017

Facebook Status of the Day



Naftali Bennett posted the following story from Galit Itchoub (sp?):
It is exactly 9:24am. I go down to the Binyamina train station, and this is the picture in front of me. I go down to the station to wait for my bus and before me I see another woman photographing something and out of curiosity go look to see what is happening. I ask her what is happening and she tells me the soldier over there noticed that this elderly woman is holding up a newspaper to provide some shade form the hot sun, and she is tiring out form holding it up over her head. So the soldier decided to take the paper and stand there and help her, despite it causing him to be late to returning to his army base. Despite the fact that he too is hot. Despite the fact that he too is tired., And, he decided to wait there until her bus would arrive and only then go on and do what he needed to do.
Galit continues that she was speechless and got very emotional. She says, I don't know who you are but you are surely a good and fabulous person and there should be many more like you!
Bennett himself adds compliments to the IDF and its soldiers.




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Interesting Psak: prayers blocked by metal detectors

I am really not sure what to do with this. It is a prime example of misusing "halachic" (for lack of a better word) decisions for political purposes.

In light of the decision by Israel to add metal detectors to the Muslim entrance to Har Habayit, the Muslims have been protesting and refusing to go on to Har Habayit and conduct their prayers. In addition, the Mufti of Jerusalem, in an attempt to strengthen the position of the boycott, announced his "psak" that anybody who concedes and goes through the new security measures of Israel and agrees to be checked by the metal detectors and then goes on to pray, his prayers will have been blocked by the metal detectors and will not be accepted by Allah.

The Mufti has since retracted this statement or said he was misunderstood or he did not say quite that...

In the meantime, anonymous people in Israel's government have said the Arabs should take the same position regarding the metal detectors stationed at the entrance to the Bituach Leumi offices and should refuse to go in and collect their money.




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Picture of the Day


as seen in RBS B - changed Chardak graffiti to "Chayal Charedi Kadosh"


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Headline of the Day

Waqf urges Muslims to boycott Temple Mount over metal detectors


  -- Times of Israel

I fully support this boycott and hope it lasts a long time


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Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbi and Chipotle (video)

as described in the description of the Youtube video, though the channel is clearly biased against YCT so maybe take it down a notch and it is out of cnotext, but still.. what he says is pretty crazy... and here is the description..
After making an off color joke about the meaning of "kosher style", a graduate of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah speaks publicly about ordering non-Kosher food from Chipotle and holding hands with a strange woman.

While we should support all those who are struggling spiritually, is this the type of behavior we expect from our Orthodox spiritual leaders?





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Jul 17, 2017

Tweet of the Day

This tweet by Mk Betzalel Smotrich has broken the Internet today and upset many people, both Israelis (leftists) and Arabs.

The picture is of Arabs on Har Habayit bowing in prayer, while Israeli police stand in front of them. The pasuk saying the slaves will serve you and the nations will bow to you is superimposed over the picture. Smotrich also references the verse from the prophet Yeshaya saying "The children of your oppressors will come bowing before you; all who despise you will bow down at your feet and will call you the City of Hashem, Zion of the Holy One of Israel."






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Ahavat Chinam is more important

There is an article in the online publication called MehadriNews (based in Bet Shemesh) about an incident that took place in which extremist thugs attacked a non-religious family living in the Yefe Nof neighborhood of Bet Shemesh. They broke the lock during the night, essentially blockading them in the house, and spray painted graffiti on the door of the house saying "enough of the immodesty". It seems this is not the first time this family has been attacked.

In the article, they speak to the victims and they say they have Haredi nieghbors and have a good relationship with them and everyone shows mutual respect and they have no problem with Haredim and it is a shame these extremists give all the Haredim a bad name..

The title of the article is "This is not how to Increase Unmitigated Love (Ahavat Chinam)".

As if the biggest problem with what was done is that they might make some people not like Haredim. That is worse than the violence, worse than the pain caused, worse than the financial damage caused, worse than the trauma caused. None of that is as important as making a non-religious family like the Haredi community..




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Proposed Law: Kollel Avreichim will be considered Working Men

MK Uri Maklev (UTJ) has proposed a law that would consider avreichim, and academy students, to be working men. At least for certain purposes.

According to the current law, an employee is granted 8 sick leave days per year for children who get sick, but that is conditional on the employee's spouse also being a working person and declaring they were working that day. They dont want people taking a family vacation and logging 8 days as sick days. As well, if the employee's spouse is a housewife or house husband, there is no reason to grant the employee the day off, if the stay-at-home-spouse can deal with the sick child.

Maklev says that the families of avreichim have been discriminated until now in this sense. They are not considered working men, so the working wife did not qualify for the 8 sick days per year. Meaning, the child is sick and his or her mother cannot take the day off of work to care for the child or to take him or her to the doctor. the father also cannot as he earns a kollel stipend and it is often dependent upon attendance records. and if he does because he earns less money anyway, his studies are disrupted, along with some of his pay being docked (in many cases).

The proposal passed through the Ministerial Legislative Committee after winning the approval of a committee of employers. Initially they had opposed it pointing to the high costs that would be absorbed by employers, but eventually MK Moshe Gafni somehow won them over.
source: Kikar

When I studied finances in university, they spoke about a method from John Maynard Keynes how governments can combat unemployment, by which they would hire people to dig ditches, and then hire others to fill the ditches in. Just keep finding ways to call avreichim "employed" and Israel will no longer have a underemployment or unemployment problem!

It makes more sense to me to not make the sick days dependent on a spouse but to grant 8 sick days that can be used between the two spouses over the course of the year then to grant non-working people the status of working. Then the husband and wife can between them decide which of them will take off when to care for the sick child.







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Unaccompanied Jews on Har Habayit

Har Habayit has been closed since the terror attack last week in which 2 policemen were shot and killed.

This morning Har Habayit was reopened and Jews were allowed on. The news sites are making a big deal, and it is a big deal, about the fact that while normally Jewish groups on Har Habayit are escorted by the police and by representatives of the Waqf, today there were no Waqf reps present.

While publicly prayer is still not allowed, I did hear from people that as long as they did not do anything publicly against the rules on Har Habayit, without the Waqf reps present the police were more lenient in what they allowed the Jewish visitors to get away with.

Baby steps, as they say. Little by little. It is a marathon, not a sprint.

The one thing I am not sure about is why the Waqf representatives were not present. None of the articles I read explained why. Was it because the police "punished" them and did not allow them to escort the Jews? Was it because they are protesting the Israeli police/government installing metal detectors through which the Arabs have to pass upon entry to Har Habayit? Is this a temporary change or a permanent one?

Even if only temporary, it is good to see the symbolic "shualim" - foxes - as referred to in Rabbi Akiva's vision - not scampering around Har Habayit.



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Facebook Status of the Day




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Are Divorce Lawyers Putting Innocent Men in Jail? (video)

I know someone (a divorced male) who always talks about how the system is biased against men..





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U.S.-mediated water agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Jerusalem, July 13, 2017 (video)







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Israeli Frenemies - July 14, 2017 (video)








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Synagogues of North Carolina (video)







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Behind The Scenes: The Evolution of Jewish Music (video)







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Jul 16, 2017

The Evil Trinity of Judaism according to Haaretz

So, as a result of the wedding that took place recently during the Maccabia games, Haaretz has declared that both the Maccabia and Jewish weddings are racist.

(note - the article is behind the Haaretz paywall. I dont think you can see the entire thing from the direct link posted above, but if you go through the link posted to Facebook, you should be able to see the entire article. At least i was able to)

The Maccabia is racist because of being an event just for Jewish athletes. Jewish weddings are racist because they promote weddings only between Jews and do not include non-Jews. And being proud and supportive of someone who converted to Judaism is also racist. Combine the three together, as the recent Maccabia wedding did, and you have the evil trinity.

A discussion around the Maccabia games would not be so bad. I think they are unnecessary now in the format they have been running. Perhaps they can be changed to being something supportive of Israel and opening it up to non-Jews. Plenty already participate anyway, just make it more official.

Regarding weddings and conversions, I am not even sure what to say. Haaretz thinks Jewish weddings are racist and conversions are racist? We shouldn't promote Jewish marriage? Have they fallen off the planet? Has the extreme heat in Israel gotten to them?





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Proposed Law: Jerusalem Laws

There are two Jerusalem Laws being proposed and on the docket.. both are a big deal and will, and already have, invovle a lot of fighting, dealing and opposition.

Minister Yisrael Katz is proposing a law that would expand the borders of Jerusalem to include within it the surburban towns around, such as Maaleh Adumim, Gush Etzion, Efrat, Beitar, Givat Zeev, and more. This will add 150,000 or so residents to Jerusalem.

Somehow Katz's proposal will add them to Jerusalem while allowing them to somehow keep a level of independence as well. Residents of the affected areas will vote in Jerusalem elections, but will also continue to have their own local elections as well.
source: Kooker

I wonder about arnona payments. Will they go up in line with the rates used in Jerusalem? EVen if they don't go up right away, maybe they'll sneak in the increases in ten or fifteen years... Will residents have to pay twice in some way - to local authorities and also to Jerusalem? Will they all have problems with further construction now that they would be a part of Jerusalem?

The second Jerusalem law is the one proposed by Minister Naftali Bennett that is meant to protect Jerusalem from attempts to divide it. Bennett has proposed a law that would require a special vote of at least 80MKs in support of dividing Jerusalem in order to do so.
 source: Kipa

This proposal was threatened by some coalition in-fighting, but it has successfully passed the Ministerial Legislative Committee, meaning it will move along through the regular channels now and has a good chance of passing.

Obviously its supporters think that it is very unlikely 80 MKs will ever support dividing Jerusalem and giving parts of Jerusalem to the Palestinians in negotiations. Just like this was passed, it can be overturned by a future government. As well, it will raise issues as to how to define dividing Jerusalem - meaning, if a government wants to give the Palestinians a neighborhood in, say East Jerusalem populated entirely by people who identify as Palestinians, will they be able to simply define it as not a part of Jerusalem? Will the definition be set in the law as the municipal borders?







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Interesting Psak: Flying Motzash

It seems recently the rabbis have either discovered ethods of chilul shabbos they were not aware of before or they are just taking on more issues than before..but it seems that this topic of chilul shabbos keeps somehow expanding, especially very recently.

Rav Meir Mazuz said in his shiur that one should not fly out of Israel on Saturday night flights. The reason being that the preparations made by the airlines for the flight take place on Shabbos and involve chilul shabbos.

Rav Mazuz refers to a time when he first flew out of Israel and it was on behalf of his yeshiva. The flight was at 10pm, and he started to have strong pains, as well as having forgotten half his medications on the plane and half his seforim as well. When trying to figure out why this was happening to him, he came across an article written by the Lubavitcher Rebbe about not flying on Saturday nights because of the preparations done for the flight on Shabbos, and he realized this was the cause.

Rav azuz concludes by saying that everyone is worried about preventing the flights from leaving on Shabbos, and as long as the flights go on Motzash everyone is happy...but that is wrong, as chilul shabbos still happens in preparation for the flight.
source: Kikar

Rav Mazuz does not say when it is ok to fly, how much in advance before the flight is needed in order to avoid chilul shabbos. Meaning, is a midnight flight ok with enough time to prepare after Shabbos? Maybe not any flight before, say, Sunday at 6am? At what point does the flight no longer incorporate chilul shabbos?




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Facebook Status of the Day




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Likud Anglos Interview with MK Oren Hazan (video)








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One on One with Alan Dershowitz - July 13, 2017 (video)







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Jon Stewart Crashes Jimmy Kimmel's Interview with Bar Mitzvah Kid (video)







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Israelis turn off the A.C. in solidarity with Gaza (video)

major show of solidarity...

actually this was funny because they got the title backwards. the title on the video actually says they turn the AC "on" in solidarity, rather than saying "off"





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Ambassador Friedman throws first pitch in Maccabiah final Baseball game 07/14/2017 (video)









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Jul 14, 2017

Shabbos Medley - FDD Vocal (video)

The singing group known as FDD Vocal from the FDD Production team is raising a storm for the new season of Bein Hameitsarim bringing a taste of things to come with this exciting and tasteful Video clip of multiple popular Sabbath melodies. The clip shows a special Sabbath experience with vocal accompaniment, beginning with the receiving of the Sabbath and carrying on through to a musical Havdala. 





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Jul 13, 2017

Interesting Psak: Guns N Roses concert attendance

Gun N Roses is coming back to Israel for another concert. The concert is scheduled for this Saturday night and was originally scheduled to begin shortly after the conclusion of Shabbos. Even though many religious fans would have had to come a little bit late to the concert, they got upset when GNR announced the concert was being lengthened to 3.5 hours and therefore advanced to begin at 8pm, while it is still Shabbos. Now, despite more concert time, the religious fans are missing a more significant part of the concert. After some complaining, GNR agreed to refund tickets for religious people who felt they could not participate.

But there is another problem.

Much, probably all, of the preparation for the concert is going to be done on Shabbos. Even though Axl Rose and Saul Hudson (Slash) are not Jewish, the people putting the event together are the Israelis in the production company hosting the performance. With all that chilul shabbos going on for the concert, is one allowed to attend, even after Shabbos?

Rav Benzion Algazi, head of the organization Tzurva mRabanan, responded to this query explaining that it is simple and clear that it is a problem to attend the concert. Because all the prep is being done for the people who bought tickets, the chilul shabbos is therefore being done for them specifically. Therefore it is prohibited to go to the concert, regardless of the fact that they will be beginning on Shabbos.

Can one sell his tickets to the concert? Rav Algazi says one could return the tickets to the box office for a refund, even though the tickets will be resold to other people, but one cannot sell the tickets directly to other people. That would be "lifnei eever" because by selling them the tickets they will be benefiting from the chilul shabbos of the concert.
source: Kipa

I find it interesting that not a word is mentioned of either the "Three Weeks" or the appropriateness of attending such a rock concert in the first place.

Regarding the Three Weeks, the rav is Sefardi, so Three Weeks is not an issue. Maybe an Ashkenazi rav would have related to this problem.

Regarding the appropriateness of the concert... I am no major prude but I am surprised the rav did not even relate to the issues of tzniyus, drugs, and everything else that goes along with the genre. Perhaps it is to his credit, knowing that people going are going anyway and talking about that would not change anything, but I am surprised because from my history and experience, the rabbonim I have always seen and heard would always have talked about this issue and raised it as a problem, whether or not people would listen.





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Facebook Status of the Day




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Boomerang: A brave Muslim woman bashing UNESCO's resolution (video)

Despite threats on her life, Sara Zoabi - a brave Israeli Muslim - decides to stand up for the truth and bashes UNESCO's resolution.






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Tel Aviv street survey: what rav are you familiar with? (video)








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Deputy Foreign Minister Hotoveli to Arab MKs: you steal Jewish history (video)








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NYC Version of Sharktank Gives Entrepreneurs Chance to Pitch Investors (video)

BizTank, the frum version of Shark Tank, made the news recently.. here are some clips











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Synagogues of New Jersey (video)









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