Apr 1, 2020

Sue China for Corona

What do you think the chances are of a lawsuit against China for starting and spreading the COVID-19 CoronaVirus?

I guess we will soon find out.

Calcalist is reporting that an organization from Herzliya wanting to represent the residents of Israel has filed a class action lawsuit against China for 100 billion shekels for spreading the CoronaVirus. The citizens of Israel have been harmed and incurred damages from the negligence of China.

the suit claims that the State of Israel is undergoing one of its worst crises since its inception. Tourism, air travel, restaurants, leisure and other industries have all completely crashed. The education system is shut down. A million employees have been fired or sent on unpaid vacation. Hundreds of thousands of freelancers are looking at their businesses failing with no income. Every single citizen in the country has been affected by this, no matter what industry he works in or what type of work he does. The damages are estimated at 100 billion shekel.

I don't know how they came to that number. Nobody knows how long this will go on for. By the time this is all over, it could be much more. I await my check.



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Tweet of the Day





Translation:
Pay Attention to the detail... Where was a 5000nis fine handed out today for services being held in a shul? 
Isn't this the shul that was founded and is controlled by MK Moshe Abutbol, of Shas?
How much does he control the shul? If I am not mistaken, for many years already Abutbol holds many of his private meetings in one of the rooms next to the Bet Knesset

1. so it is not just the extremists in RBS B
2. If government officials are not going to cooperate with the rules and shut their own shuls down, how do they expect and demand that other people follow the rules?



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Book Review: Palestine Posts

NOTE: I was not paid to review this book. It is an unbiased and objective review. If you have a book with Jewish or Israel related content and would like me to write a review, contact me for details of where to send me a review copy of the book.

Book Review: Palestine Posts, by Daniel S. Chertoff, based on the letters of Mordechai S. Chertoff
 

Palestine Posts, by Daniel S Chertoff, is a unique history book. Most history books are written by scholars, historians, looking back at the archives and other information about something that happened [usually] a long time ago, and then telling the story of that event in book form. A history book might be written today about World War II or the Vietnam War, and each book will tell it from the perspective and angle the author/historian wants to tell and point out, but it will generally be a rehashing of historical information.

Palestine Posts is different. It is a history book, but it is a history book that was mostly written while the historical event was happening. In Palestine Posts the reader is reading history through the lens of the person who actually experienced it, while he was experiencing it! It is truly a unique form of a history book and of the retelling of a historical event, and it puts the reader right there in the middle of it!

Daniel Chetrtoff discovered a cache of letters his father, Mordechai, had written when he spent time in Palestine back in the mid 1940s. Mordechai spent some years in Israel and he worked as a journalist at the time for the Palestine Post. He sent letters home, he corresponded with his family, and these are some of those letters. Some of the correspondence was on more personal matters, and much of that was no included in the book, though some of his personal affairs are included, but he also wrote home a lot about what was happening in Palestine at the time, and also sent home clippings of articles he wrote for the newspaper.

Daniel discovered this cache of old letters, and realized he never even really knew his father all that well. He knew almost nothing about his father during that time, and this was an astounding discovery for him on a personal level - getting to see this background of his father, and also on a historical level.

The time period is the days leading up to the foundation of the State of Israel, the Foundation of the State, and the War of Independence. Again, you are reading a practically first-hand account of the foundation of the State of Israel as it happens - not just a historical retelling of the events that led to the foundation of the State.

Daniel posts many of the original letters, interspersed with his own additions for putting the letters into context. He adds historical information so you know what the letter is referring to, and his footnotes give background to many of the things Mordechai writes about in slang or shorthand - both translations of Hebrew or Yiddish words so the reader can understand and names of people referred to by their nicknames with some background about them. This si not even a first hand retelling of an historical event - it is a first hand telling of the event, as his letters telling about the event were written as the events were happening!

Besides for the first hand telling of history, Mordechai had amazing connections and friendships and the book is full of name-dropping, though obviously at the time he was just telling his family about people he was in contact with on a personal and professional level - he was not bragging or name dropping then, as they are only in that status many years later to be worthy of name dropping. He is telling this over all naturally and innocently.

Palestine Posts is truly a unique look at history, not from the perspective of 70 years later, but 70 years later from the perspective of the 1940s. Anybody interested in the history of Israel, the Jewish 1940s, the foundation of the State of Israel, and the War of Independence, should read Palestine Posts.


You can buy Palestine Posts on Amazon.com

NOTE: I was not paid to review this book. It is an unbiased and objective review. If you have a book with Jewish or Israel related content and would like me to write a review, contact me for details of where to send me a review copy of the book.


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the yerushalmi head vs the police

The community of Mea She'arim (or parts of it) is one of those that has been in conflict with the police in recent days over the regulations form the Ministry of Health. The police go in to break up illegal gatherings and minyanim, and the fights break out, arrests and fines, police leave, and then the cycle starts again. This is also true in parts of Bnei Braq as well, and RBS B, but right now let's focus on Mea She'arim.

The :shtieblach of Mea She'arim is a good example of the innovative and adaptive capabilities and of the wit of the Yerushalmi head.

The police closed them down, shut the shul. In its place the yerushalmim there decided instead to open a kiosk, a makolet, selling food.

A makolet is allowed to have 4 people in line at each cash register, standing 2 meters apart, plus the cashiers.

So they opened a makolet in the place of the shul, and set up two "cashiers", allowing 4 people in each line. That is a total of ten people. And then they daven while in line for the cashier (who are also davening as part of the minyan).



It is a cute attempt to try to get around the rules. I doubt it will hold the police at bay for long.

The biggest problems I see with it:
1. are you allowed to use a shul as a makolet?
2. They are now running an [almost definitely] unlicensed business and can be shut down for that instead.
3. They can almost definitely all be arrested for tax evasion and all those types of crimes for not filing taxes, not recording transactions and all the rest of the fraud crimes they are committing.

Cute, but I doubt it will last long.


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Isolated Together: 25 Artists Virtually Cover “Someday” (video)

beautiful

An all-star cast of Jewish singers has come together virtually to cover the classic “Someday” for a good cause. The music video, shot entirely on cellphones, was produced in support of Chai Lifeline’s Isolated Together emergency response campaign to help children with life-threatening illnesses and their families who have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. www.isolatedtogether.org Song composed by Dina Storch Originally Performed by Mordechai Ben David Featured Artists: @Avraham Fried אברהם פריד @Mordechai Shapiro @Gad Elbaz Official @Benny Friedman @Zusha Music @Levy Falkowitz Joey Newcomb Eli Marcus Eli Levin Eitan Katz Baruch Levine Shloime Dachs Michoel Pruzansky Yossi Green Yoni Z Yumi Lowy Aryeh Kunstler Yitzy Spinner Menachem Weinstein Moshe Storch Zalman Pollack Levi Cohen Yidi Bialostozky Don Stern Nati Broyde





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Israeli Police Enforces Coronavirus Orders in Bet Shemesh (video)









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Tour of Beit HaNasi, the President's Residence - Part I (video)







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Khad-gadyo – Yiddish Passover song (video)







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REGEV HOD MAMIN BENICIM (video)







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Mar 31, 2020

Interesting Psak: messenger to burn chametz

While hagala seems to be out of the question this year before Pesach, except for things you can do yourself at home, burning of the chametz, for some reason, has been particularly worrying for many people.

There really are easy solutions for getting rid of chametz, without burning it and having a conflict with the ban on gatherings, or even just going outside. One can crumble it up and flush it down the toilet, one can eat it, one can pour bleach on it in the garbage, one can burn it on his personal property, and there are probably a few other solutions.

Yet people are still worried - what about burning the chametz? How will we be able to burn the chametz?

And I am pretty confident that on Erev Pesach we will still see images of large groups of people burning their chametz out in public, the police trying to break them up, handing out fines, arresting some...

Rav Chaim Kanievsky has come up with an innovative solution in a psak he issued today on this matter.

According to Behadrei, Rav Kanievsky said that because of the overcrowding and population density in the Haredi neighborhoods, burning the chametz as is normally done will be a significant pikuach nefesh situation. Rav Chaim said that arrangements should be made to burn chametz using a shliach, an appointed messenger, to burn everyone's chametz together and it will be done without gatherings of people. And God Forbid anybody should breach this protocol. Community representatives should make arrangements for this to be done so that no danger to life will be caused.

I don't know if it is connected to this psak or not, but I saw a notice on a Whatsapp group I am on that city leadership is working on a plan now to deliver bags to every home in the city for people to put their chametz in. The chametz will be picked up and collected by designated people and will then be burned on behalf of everyone together. We'll see if it happens or not, but even if not, there are enough alternate solutions available that every person should be able to figure out a way to rid his home of chametz.




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Israel safest country

Good Job Israel! Let's hope we stay at the top of the list of safest countries.. though this almost feels like the Eurovision rankings...




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Bet Shemesh and CoronaVirus

the City of Bet Shemesh, led by Mayor Dr Aliza Bloch and Deputy Mayor Rena Hollander are working hard to get the city through the CoronaVirus crisis with as little damage as possible, and also to help as many people as possible, especially the elderly population, get through it as well.

There is constant encouragement to keep to the Ministry of Health guidelines, and city leadership is working closely with the Ministry of Health and security forces to keep the virus contained and slow the spread as much as possible. The City also sends out a car blasting music with a singer, every day to the streets of a different neighborhood, to bring some cheer and fun to the residents, who are encouraged to sing along and dance on their porches.

But specifically, the city is working hard to support and take care of the elderly. The elderly are encouraged to stay indoors and avail themselves of other people's assistance to do anything that is needed outside the home, such as shopping and whatever. The city made a list of elderly residents and said - we will deliver meals to your door every day so you do not have to go outside and buy food. I registered my parents for this, and they got the meals delivered to their door.

they set up a war room in the RBS Sport Center to deal with the logistics of the meal delivery program, and in conjunction with various chessed organizations and flocks of volunteers, they got it done.


The City of Bet Shemesh also sent out letters to residents letting them know that the city staff is available to assist them in whatever they need and they should not hesitate to call the municipal hotline in this challenging time.

Kudos to the city leadership for working hard to get its residents through this as well as possible!



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Live Tefilla event for Eli Beer's recovery from CoronaVirus

Eli Beer, Director of United Hatzalah, has been in a Miami Hospital being treated for CoronaVirus. His situation was pretty bad for a while and then started to improve. I have not seen any official update in a few days, though I did hear a rumor of a worsening of his situation.

Regardless, it was pretty bad at least at some point and he clearly is not out of the woods yet - there are calls for a nationwide tefilla event for his recovery.

Eli's name for tefilla is Eliezer Yehuda ben Chaya
Join together with thousands of Ichud Hatzala members, friends and supporters LIVE to pray for his full recovery.

The event will include:

  • the Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel, HaRav Dovid Lau Shlita 
  •  The Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem, HaRav Amar 
  •  The rav of the Kotel, HaRav Shmuel Rabinowitz Shlita 

The event will be broadcast live from the Kotel TODAY, Tuesday March 31st, at 4pm

Click here to join on Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UneplZQUndM
To join through the phone, call: 0723181719, 0765980010, 0799716522




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the old trope of haredim/Jews carrying disease

So, the City of Ramat Gan will not be building a wall on the border of Ramat Gan and Bnei Braq to protest its residents form the virus possibly spreading from Bnei Braq.

Instead they are just appealing to the Supreme Court to force the State to impose a full closure and lock-down on the city of Bnei Braq. Mayor Shama Hakohen does not want the wall, or realizes he cannot build it, but he also does not want the COVID-19 virus spreading from Bnei Braq, and a full closure might be the only way to do that. If the State won't impose it on its own, even though, reportedly, the Minister of Health Yaakov Litzman has requested it of the Prime Minister, perhaps the Supreme Court will mandate it.

It is not just Ramat Gan. It seems that it is possible that many infected residents of Bnei Braq might be headed to Tzfat for their isolation period, and the people there don't want the Bnei Braqis to come and bring the virus to their city.
source: Actualic

There was also a post on Facebook (in a closed Kfar Saba group so I cannot link to it) in which someone writing, and warning the community, about the area in the Industrial Zone near an egg factory saying the area is packed with Haredim from Bnei Braq (probably having gone there to buy eggs) - while not wanting to be racist or discriminatory, she also wants to prevent them from bringing the virus in massive numbers to the people of Kfar Saba.

Is she being "racist" against Haredim? Is Mayor Shama Hakoen being "racist" against Haredim? Are the people of Tzfat being "racist" against Haredim? Or do they legitimately want to prevent a disease from spreading? Nobody is accusing the Haredim of spreading the disease as if they created it ina  malicious way, but according to all reports, the Bnei Braq population is extremely infected in staggering numbers disproportionate to their place in general society and it is understandable that people would want to keep them at an extra long arm's length and not come into contact with them right now.




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Bennett to the Jewish World: “This year we do a REMOTE Passover Seder. That’s an order! :-)" (video)

I forbid it!






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Orthodox Jewish Couples Get Creative to Celebrate Weddings (video)







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