May 23, 2019

Facebook Status of the Day







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Shalva Band - A Million Dreams - Interval Act - Second Semi-FInal Eurovision 2019 (video)







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Israelis: Are you your ethnicity? (video)







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Koolulam | Free The Music | AIPAC & The Tower of David in a Duet | March 24th, 2019 (video)







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8th Day - "We All Belong" (Official Music Video)







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Watch Live: Lag Ba’omer in Meron 2019 (video)







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May 22, 2019

Iceland anti-semites complain about El Al seats

This is funny.

Many are familiar with the heavy metal band from Iceland that performed in Eurovision this past week in Israel. Initially they wanted to boycott as part of the BDS movement but then decided not to. They turned their already bizarre performance into a political spectacle as they waved Palestinian flags during the voting. They have since come under heavy criticism and Iceland might actually be banned from future participation because of them.

It turns out they flew El Al and did not like their seats on the return flight home. They say they were each assigned of the worst seats on the flight (middle of row, near bathrooms, etc). They claim it was intentional due to their political views and behavior during the Eurovision. After landing back in Iceland they decided to file a formal complaint against El Al.

If they are in favor of BDS, while I understand forgoing that to perform in Eurovision, I do not know why they flew El Al. Perhaps they should have flown a different airline. Or maybe that was the only flight available between Iceland and Israel. I don't know - it just sounds strange for such people.

If El Al really "punished" them and gave them the worst seats, that is childish, funny and wonderful. Take that!

El Al denies it, and says everyone is treated equally by El Al, some might say equally bad, regardless of their race, gender or political views.

The thing is, whatever seats they were, they are regular seats on the flight. Assuming a full flight, some people are going to be assigned those seats. Presumably they are as inadequate as all the other seats on a commercial airline, so I am not really sure what they have the right to complain about in this instance. If this person was not assigned that seat, someone else would be. Can anybody seated in an undesirable seat file a complaint? Should El Al rip those seats out of the plane so nobody has to suffer in them? As long as they were given regular seats and treated the same as everyone else regarding service offered on the flight, they don't seem to actually have much of a complaint.

Regardless, welcome to the club of passengers not happy with El Al service...

source: Mako News





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Mass graves from The Holocaust uncovered in Brisk

This is so painful to discover but at least these bodies will be brought to kever yisrael.

When digging on a construction site in the town of Brest-Litovsk in Belarus, otherwise known as Brisk, worker discovered a thousand bodies, in two mass graves. The bodies showed indications of having been executed. These are victims of a mass execution by the Nazis.

The discovery happened in February and they began work to remove the bodies. Zaka is now involved as well and volunteers have flown to Brisk to help recover the bodies and re-inter them elsewhere. It looks like they will be re-interred in the Severnoe cemetery, as per the suggestion of the governor in consultation with the Jewish community.

Personally I think the bodies of these kedoshim should be brought to Israel for burial

sources: Hamodia and Hamodia


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Roseanne Barr moving to Israel?

So Roseanne Barr, while speaking to Shmuley Boteach on his podcast, annouced that she will be going to Israel for a few months to study, and she might even move to Israel...
source: TMZ



Is it good for the Jews?

Any Jew that moves to Israel or comes to study and deepen their relationship with God, the Land and the Jewish people is a good thing - it will be good for her and it will be good for us.

Roseanne just doesnt say when she is moving to Israel. She did come recently for a visit, but that was short. She actually said this about half a year ago



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Tweet of the Day






haha!


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Monsey Resident Says Getting Measles Was No Party (video)







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2019 Riesman Forum: Changes in Israel and the Rising American Jewish Generation )הןגקם(







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Meet the man known as the “Tactical Rabbi.” Raziel Cohen (video)







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Motty Ilowitz - Yedidim - Berl Parody with Oorah (video)







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May 21, 2019

triage for shabbos-observance in the hospital

According to Haaretz, Rav Moshe Klein, the rav of Hadassah Hospital, has requested the staff of the Hadassah Hospital emergency room deal first with cases, on Fridays, of religious people, and only after that with the cases of non-religious people.

The idea would be to enable the religious people to get out of the hospital quicker and to be able to go home for Shabbos, when possible, rather than delays in treatment causing them to be stuck in the hospital for Shabbos.

According to Rav Klein, this is already the protocol in place and meant to be used in the emergency room, as per the directives of the director of the hospital. The Director, Professor Zev Rosenstein denies the existence of such a protocol..

According to Haaretz, sources at the hospital say that the rav recently made this request requested and said that Shabbos observance should be the main factor in triage, even higher than medical urgency of the cases present and higher than the consideration of who came in for treatment earlier or later and how long people have been waiting.

An emergency room's main priority should always be urgency of cases. Hadassah has a triage room right at the entrance to the emergency room and patients go through there first so the urgency can be evaluated. I have a hard time believing that Rav Klein requested anything be given higher priority than medical urgency - perhaps he made this request regarding cases that have equal levels of medical urgency, and then Shabbos-observance should be taken into account as well. I would have no problem with that - everyone wants to get out of the hospital faster. Nobody wants to be stuck for a few extra hours or a day. It also affects the mental state of the patient, as he is concerned about being unnecessarily stuck for too long (in cases where he or she will be treated and released). Taking Shabbos-observance into account, when medical urgency is equal, seems reasonable to me.

Regardless, it seems to be of only minor importance. Once word gets out that this is a factor, all sorts of people will say they need to be home before Shabbat, and I am not sure how a nurse or doctor will be able to decide who is really shomer shabbat and who is not, nor should it really be their job to try to make such evaluations. It would be a shame if they only go by stereotypical dress (someone obviously religious compared to someone else less obviously religious) and as a result some shomer shabbos people get priority and other somer shabbos people are pushed lower down the list because of a dress code they don't adhere to.




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Twee of the Day






yes, this is a true story. happened with Chabad students at the Mesivta of Boston


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Daniel Gordis AIPAC Policy Conference 2019 (video)










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Yaakov Katz on Connect the World with Becky Anderson on CNN International (video)







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Clash Of Cultures (Israeli Vs Persian) (video)







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Synagogues of Italy (video)







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Avrum Mordche Schwartz - Kretshnif: Nishmas (video)







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May 20, 2019

MK Rav Peretz refuses to speak to females joining the IDF??

According to this report on Kipa, MK Rav Rafi Peretz, head of the Ichud Hayemin party, was in the town of Elazar for Shabbos, at the same time a group of young wmoen from Midreshet Lindenbaum were also in town for Shabbos.

According to the report, after davening one of the young women approached him and asked that he speak to the group. Rav Peretz refused due to the fact that these were young women planning to draft into the IDF in the summer draft (though they already have the status of soldiers). A staff member requested that he speak to them and give them encouragement and tips how to serve in the best possible way, as he often does for young men in the process of being drafted, but Rav Peretz refused saying that he is opposed to women serving in the IDF.

I hope the report is not accurate. At the end of the article Rav Peretz responds that it had not been coordinated and because he was there for a family event he did not have time to meet with them. As Robert Evans said, there are three sides to every story - my side, your side and the truth. It would be a shame if that was really Rav Peretz's approach. Even if he is opposed to female soldiers, and he has every right to be, once they are in the system, they no longer have a choice. Even if it is before they are in the system, people sometimes make choices we don't like. If he wants his political home to be inclusive to the Dati community, he has to find a way to deal with the large segment of the Dati community that thinks differently than he does, whether on the issue of females in the IDF or regarding other issues. If he is going to push people away just because he personally has a different opinion, he won't have much of a political party to run.

And besides for that, just from the human aspect. Rav Peretz is in a unique position. He was Chief Rabbi of the IDF, and now he heads the home political party for that sector. Peretz is in a unique position to help, to inspire, to influence, and to really make a difference in the lives of these young people. It would be a shame if he took the approach of pushing people away for making choices he personally does not like.

I hope this was just a misunderstanding.





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Quote of the Day

if Poland will ever be in a situation in which it pays compensation sums for World War II, it would be as if Hitler had won. As long as the Law and Justice [PiS] party is in power such a thing will never happen.

  -- Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki

Morawiecki's words are being explained to mean that ultimately Germany occupied Poland and was responsible for the war, including what happened in Poland. If Poland pays, it indicates guilt of the Poles when it was really the Germans at fault.

He might have a point about Germany occupying the Poles and being responsible for the war, but at the end of the day if it was Poles that took the property of their Jewish neighbors, they should have to give it back to the inheritors, or pay for it. If the Germans took it, the Germans should pay. If the Ukrainians took it, they should pay. And if the Poles took it in Poland, they should pay.



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Zionism Vs. Neturei Karta - Anti-Israel Jews 4,088 views (video)










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Palestinians: If Israel left the West Bank and Gaza, would there be peace with Israel? (video)







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The Story of Israel (video)







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We Are Going (video)

nothing to do with Israel specifically, but very cool...





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Hallelujah - Milk and Honey - Eurovision 1979 (video)







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May 19, 2019

Quote of the Day

I am sorry to say, he [Gideon Saar] did not vote for me [in the Likud primaries] and I did not vote for him. I said on the broadcast the day after the primaries that I had voted for him for the elections. Sometimes you are allowed to say things just for unity in the Likud. He also knows that he did not vote for me nor I for him. Unity of the Likud was more important in my eyes than if I had voted for Gideon Saar or not. Gideon Saar is a Member of Knesset. He was a minister and will be a minister, but we are all needed for unity of the Likud. 

  -- Minister Miri Regev

So, did Regev really vote for Saar in the primaries ad is now only saying she had not because now Saar is back on Netanyahu's bad side (as he was before the primaries), or did she really not vote for him, as she is saying now, and only said so then for unity purposes?

I don't think it matters or that anyone actually cares. Not everyone voted for everyone, and she had every right to vote for Saar or to not vote for Saar. Life goes on either way. A big deal is being made out of nothing





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fighting against chilul shabbos

I am not one for telling others to live their lifestyle as I do. I am not one for telling others what they should or should not do. I recognize we live in a largely secular state, and I am happy we are afforded the religious freedoms to live our lives as we please, and everybody can, for the most part, live each person according to his and her desires.

The Eurovision was a big deal. It caused mass chilul shabbos, even though the performance itself was not on Shabbos. It upset many. But only sort of. Only superficially. I am pretty sure even the Haredi community who wants the public face of Israel to be "more Jewish" in nature with no public officially sanctioned Shabbos-desecration are really ok with it and just feel the need to make an official protest. to be yotzei zein, as they say.

This past week it seemed as if the rabbonim and askanim suddenly woke up and discovered the Eurovision had fallen upon Israel. At the last minute the rabbonim are declaring their shock and anger, as if this has not been a year in the planning, with Haredi representatives in powerful positions in the government and part of the decision-making process. Suddenly, at the last minute we have to have a mass tefila rally, we have to add time to our shabbos observance, we have to threaten the government, postpone coalition negotiations, etc.

For a year it was worked on. It was going to be in Jerusalem, as it had been two times previously without any trouble, but Israel decided Tel Aviv would be a better venue and would "hurt" the Haredim less out there. And UTJ and Shas were part of that decision-making process. Eurovision, and its schedule, was not a surprise to anybody in Israel. For weeks just a few months ago the biggest point of discussion was what Shalva would do about competing and the rehearsals that had to be on Shabbos with no exception. Nobody can say they were surprised at the last minute by the schedule of Eurovision. Instead of planning a proper response, at the last minute they came up with a few ideas of protest, and barely had time to promote these ideas to the public, so it would look like the religious don't approve.

Now it turns out, that the religious representatives in Tel Aviv, and specifically the Gur chassid rep (with Gur often leading the Shabbos fights around the country) were perfectly fine with staying in the local municipal coalition despite the chilul shabbos, while doing nothing of note to minimize or stop it.

Just today the mayor of Ramat Gan announced he is going to start public transportation on Shabbos. The Shas rep who is Deputy Mayor has refused to comment, has not resigned, and seems to prefer the national reps make noise about it while actually not doing anything at the local level.

I am in favor of recognizing that we are living in a secular state and the secular state has its way of life and the residents want what they want. I have no interest in forcing them to live a Shabbos-observance lifestyle - I prefer they come to that lifestyle on their own. Forcing Shabbos observance on people does nothing to bring them closer to religion and.or Torah and mitzvos. Until they do, it is not my place to force them to do what I want.

So, better to not turn these things into big fights. Especially when there is already some sort of quiet understanding and agreement about it. If you are going to fight about it, there is no reason to just fight so you can say you fought, but be real about it. And if you aren't going to be real about and fight for real with all the repercussions, don't bother.




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Congrats to Speedy Beatie

Congrats again to "Speedy Beatie" Beatie Deutsch on winning another [half] marathon, this time representing Israel in Riga...

Beatie kept Shabbos and put on a better show than Eurovision, and specifically Israel's representative at Eurovision...




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Facebook Status of the Day





translation:
Father in heaven, I am doing this for you..
With great difficulty  am giving up on my dream and I am canceling my participation in the competition in Spain.
The reason is that the competition was mean to be held on Shabbos which connects to Shvuos on Motzei Shabbos. That is where something started to arouse in me, as someone Shomer Shabbat, I already felt my conscience about competing on Shabbos and Shvuos which is the time of the giving of the Torah, despite the fact that I had planned on competing on Shabbos, I began to find all sorts of reasons, I planned to stay in a hotel near the competition so I would not need to travel in a car to get there on Shabbos, and I would not actually desecrate the Shabbos in any way with my actions, even though competing on Shabbos is a desecration,  but the honor and glory of the competition blinded me...
But what stopped me is the Shvuos holiday. I will not stand on the stage in briefs at the time of the giving of the Torah, when the Jewish people received the Torah.
Thank you, Father in Heaven for opening my eyes.
I know that my reward in heaven is definitely humongous for giving up something I wanted so much after so many years of hard work..

This was written by Israeli bodybuilder Mordy Harosh from Jerusalem. Relevant background is that Harosh used to be Haredi, but is no longer - I saw descriptions of him as no longer being frum but in his post he says he is generally shomer shabbos.




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5/18/19 Training and Arming our Shuls in Halacha and Hashkafah (audio)







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Israelis: Describe Israel in one word (video)






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Guatemala Embassy Move to Jerusalem - Interview With Guatemalan Ambassador (video)






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Synagogues of Italy (video)







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Naftali Blumenthal - ACAPPELLA - Tefilat Hashla (Cover) (video)







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May 16, 2019

Picture of the Day

you often see IDF soldiers playing on these public pianos.. you rarely see this..

Picture taken/posted by Oreet Segal

The hat looks a bit misshapen, but that's a Toldos Ahron chassid playing a piano in a train station...



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Tweet of the Day





MK Yair Lapid tweeted:
I just said on the radio what you all know. If Lieberman goes into the government he will need to compromise on the pensions and the Russian community will again not get anything. If he waits a few months he will get our 55 sure votes in order to increase the pensions to the size he promised. Together with him, we will have 61 votes. A definite majority.

Lapid put this up on Twitter this morning and became an immediate laughing stock, once again. This time, his math is off. Lieberman's 5 seats, plus Lapid's 55 (which are also not definite and he does not explain where he gets 55 from), is only 60 - not quite a definite majority of at least 61, yet in his tweet he says you (5) with our 55 is 61.

Lapid did not respond to most of the challenges and comments to his tweet, but he did respond to one, that of journalist Amit Segal. Lapid's response was "guess who my 61st vote is". So he might, or might not, have a secret supporter from another party who would not be in his coalition that would turn it to 61, but his tweet was about 55 + 5 being 61. Anyways, it is highly unlikely he would have 55 as the haredim wont join his coalition (almost definitely not), the Arabs would almost definitely not join, and the Likud would almost definitely not join.





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Vaccines in Bet Shemesh

In light of the recent report placing Bet Shemesh so high on the list of cities with measles outbreaks, the Health Ministry is opening a vaccination station so people can get vaccinated easily and for free.

Take advantage if it is relevant to you!

Details from Shemeshphone:
Beit Shemesh has the second largest amount of measles cases in the country, after Jerusalem. Because of this, a measles vaccination station will be running in the Cheftziba neighborhood every Monday afternoon for all the residents to come and receive their vaccine, starting this Monday, May 20.
Chetziba neighborhood
4:00 pm - 7:30 pm.
All residents are urged to come and get vaccinated!



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Quote of the Day

The people of Israel deserve a full-time Prime Minister. After I finish serving as Prime Minister I will deal with defending myself from the legal issues. The citizens of Israel knew my situation and elected me anyway. If I were to consider only my personal interests, I would defend myself as Prime Minister and not as a private citizen, but I understand that is not what is best for the people of Israel..

  -- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

so honorable and altruistic! 


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Charitable organization to support needy Arabs during Ramadan

A charitable organization called Yad bYad, led by a Rav Yaakov Gloiberman, in the Lod and Ramle area, has made an interesting decision for the coming period. They are going to support needy arab families during the month of Ramadan.
source: Srugim

I am not completely clear as to what is special about this announcement, as the article says that the organization helps both Jews and Arabs in need all year long, so what is special about helping Arabs in need during the Ramadan season? Perhaps they are increasing their support for the Ramadan month - I am not sure.

Either way, it looks like this organization is doing good work, though I am sure some people do not like it.




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Health Ministry to punish anti-vaccine doctors

As reported in JPost, the Health Ministry in Israel is starting to fight against the anti-vaxxers movement.

The Health Ministry announced it will take legal action against two doctors for advising thousands of patients against vaccines. If convicted of this serious negligence, these doctors could have their medical licences revoked.

I am happy they are finally starting to deal with the issue. I do not know the right course of action. While I fear this will not help much as anti-vaxxers will see this as proof of their "big pharma" conspiracy to silence doctors who are against vaccines and doctors who "speak the truth", I do not know what the best solution is. But at least they are doing something now.

Also even if anti-vaxxers see this as part of the big conspiracy, at least two doctors promoting the agenda and advising patients will now, if convicted, will now not be able to push people in that direction.

Happy something is finally being done, and hopefully it is just the start of a broader campaign.


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Ambassador Friedman delivers remarks at event marking anniversary of Embassy move, May 14 2019 (video)







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Meet The 1st Hasidic Jew In Israel To Go To Med School (video)






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Turning To A Lantzman, City Appeals To Chasidic Holdouts With New Pro-Vaccination Video (video)







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Gaza FAQ (video)







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Malchus Choir & Zanvil Weinberger - Vocal : Pirkei Avos (video)








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May 15, 2019

Picture of the Day


what you are looking at is a photograph released by NASA of the moon precisely where the Beresheet lunar module crashed. There is now a small crater, a few tens of meters wide. They have before and after pictures, with a shot from December that has no such marking on it, and this new shot from April that shows the crater.

Beresheet left its mark on the moon!

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Mentos mistaken hechsher

this is an important kashrut announcement, as Mentos is a very popular candy around here...


basically, the hechsher of Badatz Chatam Sofer Petach Tikva is announcing that Mentos made in Vietna is not under their hashgocho, despite a mistakenly printed label that says it is.

I have no idea if the Mentos sold here are these or not, and dont have any handy to check, but pay attention..


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Quote of the Day

The Haredi parties got slightly stronger with the number of mandates they achieved, so now they want to put shtreimels on all our heads...

  --MK Eli Avidar (Yisrael Beyteynu)

the conflict between Yisrael Beyteynu and the Haredi parties seems to be at an all time high. There were some good zingers in both directions over the past day as the coalition negotiations look to be at a real dead end, but this one was the best...






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International Bible Quiz (video)


it came down to the wire!




כי מציון תצא תורה...


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PM Netanyahu at ceremony commemorating 1 year anniversary of US Embassy move to Jerusalem (video)








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One Liners | Simcha Leiner on The Crockpot Show | Ep. 04 (video)







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Eurovision bloggers feel safe and happy in Israel (video)

other bloggers, like me, also feel safe here...





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Amiran Dvir and Yeshivas Volozhin: Hanissim Hagedolim (video)







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May 14, 2019

Bet Shemesh is one of the leading cities in Israel... with measles

According to Ynet, the Health Ministry published a table of the countrywide measles outbreak.

It might be a surprise to you, but the leading cities on the list are all haredi cities, or cities with substantial Haredi populations. Only one in the top ten is a secular city with no significant Haredi population.

The city at the top of the board is Jerusalem with 1403 diagnosed cases of measles, followed by Bet Shemesh with 430. This is followed by cities such as Tzfat, Beitar, Bnei Braq and others. The secular city in the list is Tel Aviv, taking 8th place with 109 cases.



These numbers are absolute - the number of cases diagnosed. I would like to see the ratings per capita and see which city places where. Tel Aviv might drop off the list entirely, while Bet Shemesh, Beitar or Tzfat might jump out in front.

With Bet Shemesh normally coming in at the tail end of various statistics, this is not the one we finally want to be leading in.

And, again, I hope the Minister of Health, outgoing and whoever the incoming will be (likely the same but not definitely), is putting together a plan to combat this outbreak. We've heard nary a word about it until now from the Deputy Minister of Health. I think that needs to change.



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Every little bit counts

Don't think of your empty Coca-Cola can or water bottle as a worthless piece of garbage, not worth your time and energy to go collect your 30agorot in recycling fees. Think of it just one step in getting your sefer torah.

A community in Upper Nazareth, Nazareth Ilit, the community of Bnei Hayeshivos Ohel Yaakov, decided to put together a massive collection and recycling program, with everyone collecting every qualifying bottle and can they could, mostly worth 30agorot each.

So this community collected and turned in all these cans, and used the money to buy a mehudar megillas Esther. They are now collecting cans and saving up to buy a scroll of Koheles.

And it does not stop there. According to Ladaat, they already have plan for the next stage - collecting cans to raise money for a sefer Torah!

Every little bit counts. Every little bit adds up.

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Ministry of Interior think sparks should have entrance fees

It used to be that various cities would try to block visitors from other cities, usually from Haredi cities, from visiting and enjoying the local parks, crowding the park and leaving their mess behind. They did this by making rules that local residents can enter for free but non-locals would have to pay an entrance fee.

People would get upset, words would be exchanged, protests with the Ministry of Interior would be filed, MoI would express outrage at such anti-haredi moves, and eventually the decision would be reversed and the park would, usually, remain open and free for all.

It seems from this Mako News report that the Ministry of Interior is now being proactive and changing tactics. Instead of insisting, as they have in the past, that the parks remain free for all, they are now initiating a plan by which the parks will be open to all but will all charge an entrance fee.

The new rule would have any public park larger than 100 dunam can have an entrance fee. The fee will be decided practically by the local municipal government and it will be dependent upon the expense of cleaning and maintaining the park. According to the MoI, the local authorities are in favor of this arrangement.

A citizens rights watchdog does not like this potential arrangement suggesting that it will cause a division among the people with there being parks for rich people and parks for poor people. Being that this plan is in the initial stages, now is the time to protest it in the hopes that it will be canceled and not advanced.

I am not sure if this is going forward or backwards.

I would at least hope and expect that if this goes through and they start charging an entrance fee that will will at least actually clean and maintain the parks properly, including having the water fountains working along with trash pickup.

.




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Quote of the Day

Believe it or not, the Bible, written some 3,500 years ago, doesn’t talk about the NBA or even the Knicks, but the Bible does instruct us that we have a mitzvah, an obligation, to be supporters of Zion and lovers of Zion. So God, we ask you: Please let the lottery fall to the Knicks tonight so that we can be lovers of Zion and supporters of Zion, for many years to come.

  -- Rabbi Adam Mintz, of the Kehilat Rayim Ahuvim synagogue on the Upper West Side, offering his prayers for the Knicks to be blessed with the #1 pick in the upcoming NBA draft so they can land the phenom Zion Williamson... Mintz took his turn offering his prayers along with "a miracle healer and medical medium, a shaman, a member of the Eckankar clergy and two witches all came to the Garden in recent days. What ensued was a mix of blessings, cleansings and other-worldly manifestations in an attempt to reverse the Knicks’ fortunes"

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Interesting Psak: Smile!

Two similar questions were recently sent o Rav Yitzchak Zilbershtein, rav of the Ramat Elchonon neighborhood of Bnei Braq.

In the first, an avreich walks every Shabbos from Bnei Braq to Givatayim to give a shiur torah to a group of people. The walk is two hours long, so he is very dedicated in his attempt at bringing Torah to a secular/traditional crowd and possibly bring them closer to religious Judaism!

In the second question, a Hassidic woman who gives a shiur on Shabbos in a secular neighborhood had the same issue and question.

The avreich weekly encounters a parent of one of the young men in his shiur who lies in wait along the route, snaps a picture of the avreich and then sends the picture out on a local Whatsapp group warning people to stay away from, and keep their kids away from, this missionary.

The Hassidic woman also encounters a woman who snaps her photograph and sends it out warning others about the taliban woman who comes to the neighborhood.

The questions presented were, are they allowed to smile for the camera? The avreich asked the question suggesting that perhaps if he looks friendly rather than dour, people receiving the picture will be less afraid of him and will perhaps even increase the number of attendees in the shiur. The Hassidic woman said she smiles for the camera and each week at least one additional woman attends the shiur - so is that ok?

After debating the issue and weighing arguments to both allow it and prohibit it, Rav Zilbershtein paskened that they should smile for the camera so as to teach the father and other woman to not bother as it wont help, similar to the rule by wine when a goy touches the wine intentionally and we make an exception allowing the Jew to drink that wine so as to deter the goy from doing this.
source: Kikar


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Israelis: Do you see Arab Israelis and Palestinians as the same? (video)







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Balhabos Attitude | Michoel Pruzansky on The Crockpot Show | Ep. 03 (video)







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Tactical Rabbi Trains Synagogues in Self Defense (video)







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Soul Key Choir pays tribute to Avraham Fried (video)

nice





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May 13, 2019

Picture of the Day


In this picture is Aryeh Eldad and Ben Caspit. Ben Caspit is a journalist and Professor Aryeh Eldad is a former MK (from Ichud Haleumi and Otzma LYisrael parties) and is a Har Habayit activist. Eldad and Caspit had a bet for the elections if Zehut would pass the threshold or not. Eldad bet that Zehut would not pass the threshold, and if he would be right Ben Caspit would have to go up to Har Habayit with him. Ben Caspit bet that Zehut would pass the threshold and if right Eldad would have to open a Twitter account.

As we know, Zehut did not make it into the Knesset, rendering Aryeh Eldad as the winner of the bet. The picture above is of Ben Caspit on Har Habayit with Aryeh Eldad. Eldad said that Caspit is honorable and respected the bet.



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Book Review: Mossad Exodus: The Daring Undercover Rescue Of The Lost Jewish Tribe

A Guest Post by Dr Harold Goldmeier

A Book Review of Mossad Exodus: The Daring Undercover Rescue Of The Lost Jewish Tribe, by Gad SHimron

Some of my international university students just returned from Ethiopia. The trip is optional for gap year students learning about the Jewish People There is a backstory to the Ethiopian Jews returning home to Zion that is more exciting and fraught with Israel’s good intentions that continues decades later.


Their travel guide was one of my Ethiopian Jewish former students who is now a serial entrepreneur living back in Ethiopia. “It’s not like anything in any country I’ve seen before,” one young woman from South Africa tells our class in Middle East politics. And the students joined Ethiopians still living there in prayer with tallis and tefillin. The women dress modestly. They eat kosher, observe the Shabbat, and study Jewish texts with visiting rabbis, she told the class. But controversy rages in Israel whether these remaining practicing Jews have any claim to Jewish lineage. Yet, Israel is bringing them home to Zion because nobody gets left behind.

“Why don’t they bring the rest of (the Ethiopians) to Israel,” asks another incredulous student? “There’s only a handful left and they told us their relatives are already here. It’s really wrong what Israel is doing.” Right or wrong, this student and other observers give short shrift to the nuances and definitions of “who is a Jew.”

Rachel Sylvetsky, editor at Aurutz Sheva, on the other hand, has the first-hand experience in this field. She explains the situation to me like this:

“There is a vast difference between the Ethiopian Bete Israel who walked through Sudan in the first aliya, one of whom I hired as the first Ethiopian oleh rabbi in the Israeli educational system, and the later falashmura who converted to Christianity decades ago for economic reasons.  Israel accepted them anyway and they underwent conversion as families because it was really 'return' not conversion, but it was far from an easy decision.” Those remaining in Ethiopia are being “returned`’ by Israel to Zion on humanitarian grounds and offered the opportunity to undertake special conversions.


Israel’s seminal mission is to never leave behind a Jewish refugee. It has fulfilled the mission triumphantly. There are 65 million refugees worldwide in 2019, and not refugee one is a Jew without a country to flee.

Israel’s Operations Moses, Brotherhood and Solomon decamped nearly 100,000 exilic Ethiopian Jews in the 1980s and1990s. In thrilling adventures, the kind of which books are written and Hollywood movies are made, teams of Mossad agents, IDF members and civilians, with the help of America and other countries, planned, organized and went deep into hostile nations of Ethiopia and Sudan. Sudan sent armies in ‘48 and ‘73 to fight against Israel. It was in Khartoum following the Six Days War the Arab Summit rejected any peace with Israel. So, Mossad had to construct cover stories for its Operations.

Nothing stopped the Israelis or the Jewish Ethiopians. The forlorn walked across vast deserts to meet Israeli agents who packed them into the largest airplanes on earth and transported others aboard camouflaged ships. They bravely flew miles above and across unsuspecting African countries and waterways sandwiched between enemy Arab countries in their Return to Zion.

The stories about Operation Moses are engrossingly told in Mossad Exodus (Geffen Publishing House, 2018).  Former Mossad agent Gad Shimron is an author with boots on the ground experience. The book is hard to put down. It is gripping. Shimron writes like any great spy novelist fraught with background, but these are true adventures. The reader feels the pain and angst of the Ethiopians and the brotherly commitment of the Israelis. That’s why a Hollywood movie based on the book is in production.

The inspiration came from newly elected Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Begin beseeched the Mossad Chief, “I ask you to use the Mossad to find a way to bring these dear Jews to Israel. Bring the Ethiopian Jewry to me.”

The Jews in Ethiopia suffered from famine, political and religious oppression, violence, and were under the suspicious eyes of neighbors willing to inform authorities. The Israelis needed a cover story. The Mossad purchased from Italians and remodeled a bankrupt tourist resort on the sea as cover for the true mission. They refurbished an abandoned, dusty airstrip. Both were staging areas to extricate the Ethiopians. There are eight pages of pictures in the book giving gravitas and color.

There is plenty of gossip Shimron shares. He talks about interpersonal relationships. There are swashbuckling characters. One has the courage that borders on insanity. Field agents resent the big egos of their bosses they find mendacious and petty. His Khartoum bar description and encounters remind me of Bogart in Casablanca. “A couple of Hungarian musicians, a pianist, and a violinist, provided musical ambiance in the bar, which boasted the romantic name Sunset.” Then there are the peripatetic international agencies representatives, charity workers, and Swedish nurses.

The reader learns from Shimron operations are lurching works in progress despite planning to the smallest detail. Timing and preparedness build teamwork. Practice turns behaviors into habits and instinct.


Then there are the unanticipated buggers making the reader bite nails to the quick. Things turn bad for the most innocuous reasons and nearly scupper the operations:
•    Avoid suspicious looking phone activity; it is best to stay in touch with headquarters calling “from the outhouse.”
•    Sand dust eats away at mechanical devices causing trucks to breakdown.
•    Food storage and distribution equipment must be upgraded in the field or famine lurks.
•    Threaten the mission to medevac a young girl with a high fever.
•    Chase an elderly woman who has run off into the desert fearful of the noise from the huge airplanes.
•    Do not engage when a Sudanese unit fires a SAM missile at a Hercules transport plane and another launches a high-speed chase after the Mossad.
•    A foreign aid worker starts talking in Hebrew to the agents and nearly blows their cover. “I know you are Israelis…Only Israelis cut their salad vegetables so thin.” 

Shimron movingly writes, “I’m no longer objective about anything pertaining to Ethiopian Jews. I admire them, their inner calm and the stamina that enabled them to stand up to terrible hardships on their way to freedom. It is the stamina of heroes. And their smiles and the sound of laughter of Ethiopian children have a unique sound. I heard it for the first time in that remote wadi somewhere in eastern Sudan.”

About Israel, “Our mission in Sudan was one of the sorts that made the Mossad a legend in the spy world. What other country would be ready to invest tens of millions of dollars to set up an operational infrastructure for secret activity in an enemy country, involving large army forces, only to save several thousand famished refugees in civil war-torn Africa?” Only Israel!



Dr. Harold Goldmeier teaches Middle East Politics in Tel Aviv and is a free public speaker to business and community groups. He was an R&T Fellow at Harvard and manages an investment fund.












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Interesting Psak: Using child gemach as babysitting service

In Israel there are gemachs for just about everything. I remember when I first learned of the "child gemach". Based on the normal usage of the gemach, it sounds like this would be a gemach you would go to when you need to borrow  child for a while. I later learned that this gemach, common at least in Haredi neighborhoods, is for lost children - if you find a lost child wandering in the streets or in the park and cannot figure out where the child is supposed to be, you can drop the child off at the child gemach, and the parents will go to the child gemachs looking for their missing kid, and the gemach people will also spend time looking for the parents. I learned about this many years ago in Har Nof when we found such a child and were directed to such a gemach. The lost child and the parents were reunited a few hour later.

Kikar is reporting about a case in which a mother needed to go out but could not find a babysitter to watch her child. She came up with a brilliant but devious plan. She brought her child to the child gemach claiming she had found the child. She left the child there urging them to watch the child until the parents could be located.

Sure enough, a while later, after "mom of the year" finished her errands or watching her movie or suntanning on the beach or dancing at her friends wedding, she decided to pick up her child from the gemach. But she couldn't. The benevolent people running the gemach would realize what had been done, and nobody wants to look bad like that.

So, mom sent an older daughter to pick up her lost kid from the gemach! Baruch Hashem the child was found safe and sound!

The article does not say who said what to who and how the story became known, and that is a point I would really like to know. Did the gemach people find out they had been grossly taken advantage of? Did mom feel bad about what she had done and want to know how to make it right and if it was really so bad? Did the older daughter tell her friends and then word spread? Somehow else?

The cased was brought to a few rabbonim. The question asked was if it is ok to use such a gemach for such a purpose. In the halachic paper in which it was published, the case is made that it is clear one cannot take advantage of other people's chessed in this fashion. The question remaining open though is if mom would need to pay, after the fact, for the babysitting services she took advantage of, and if yes, how much - at what rate?

Rav Nussbaum, Rav Stern, and Rav Klein all paskened that mom must pay the going rate for a babysitter. The chessed family was not offering to provide free babysitting services for moms in need - they only watched this mom's kid because she falsely presented herself as having found a lost child.

Rav Yitzchak Zilbershtein paskened the same question differently. Rav Zilbershtein, Rav Weiss and Rav Monderer paskened that she does not owe them any money.

I would like to know the logic behind each opinion. I suspect the opinion to pay is based on the halacha that you have to pay for services you received, even if there was no agreement of purchasing said services. The opinion to not pay might be based on the fact that the only service offered is a free service. This is only a guess and I would like to hear more details to explain.  Personally I would think such a mother taking advantage of such a service like this should be fined by a beis din and have to pay even more, both as punishment and as a deterrent from turning it into a babysitting service.




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