Showing posts from December, 2005


One Dream, One People, One G-d

Parshas Mikeitz begins with the Pharaoh dreaming two mysterious dreams which no one can interpret. Finally he is told that a Hebrew slave in a dungeon has some facility in interpreting dreams. He sends for Yosef who interprets Pharaoh's dream, advises him what to do about it and becomes Egypt's viceroy. While everyone knows this story, one of the things that strikes you is that Pharaoh's dreams don't seem that mysterious. Cows and wheat clearly refer to agriculture. Lean vs healthy are not too difficult to interpret either. And the number 7 would seem to refer to a period of time. Since agriculture tends to be seasonal, the most likely meaning of the 7 is years. While we benefit from hindsight in seeing this, it would seem as if Egypt the homeland of magicians and men who specialized in foretelling portents and dreams should have been able to conceive of the answer too. Yosef credits G-d for the answer, but it is not clear that G-d ever provided him with any answers

Israelis and Palestinians United in Thinking Munich Sucks

Israelis and Palestinians United in Thinking Munich Sucks (AMB) When Steven Spielberg set out to make a film about the Munich massacre, that would feature the massacre as flashbacks during a sex scene, based on a discredited book from a man impersonating a Mossad agent, his dream was to bring Israelis and Palestinians together and beyond all expectations he has. Israelis and Palestinians jointly and in perfect unity agree, Munich sucks. "I heard the guy who made ET made a new movie and I went to see it even though he is a Jew and in the final days every rock and tree will cry, a Jew is behind me come and kill him," said Ramallah native Abu Salim, 22. "There was no ET in the movie. The movie made no sense. It was all grainy and hard to see and camera went everywhere for three hours. What kind of movie is this?" "I was hoping Munich was the Indiana Jones sequel where he fights Hitler," Menachem Amron, 31 of Okafim said. "Instead it was all wierd and con

Israel and the Three Bears

Israel faces three bears, bigger, big and little. There are now three candidates running for the top spot in Israel. They hold the same essential philosophy on Israel's most important issue, they all support the transfer of some parts of Israel to the Arabs, even though such concessions have produced nothing but more terrorism and death up until now. The first bear is, Amir Peretz, Israel's answer to Stalin, a union thug with an ugly mustache, is the biggest of the bears. Under him Labor has absorbed most of the Arab parties and supports concessions that may well be limitless. Corrupt even by the corrupt standards of Labor, his only barrier to power is that most of Labor and the left despise him. His poll numbers have been falling in recent weeks. The second bear is Ariel Sharon, a pragmatist with only one goal, remaining in power by any means necessary. That has so far meant destroying religious Jews, centralizing the army and now planning to create a more 'president

Jesus' Parents Find No Room at the Suicide Bomber's Inn

No sooner does Christmas come around than the time emerges for displaying and exhibiting the remaining Christians in Bethelehem for the purpose of complaining about Israel. There is of course a steady decline in Bethelehem Christians under Palestinian rule but this is as usual attributed to Israel, despite Bethelehem being under Palestinian rule and Israeli soldiers never even setting foot there. The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor proclaimed that "Christ was crying for the town of his birth" due to all the Israeli restrictions and roadblocks. Of course the good Cardinal didn't hear any crying when he moved Father Michael Hill, a known pedophile, around to another parish rather than inform the authorities or at least discharge him from the Church. Father Hill of course continued to molest children and was convicted of sexually assaulting twelve children. Back then the Cardinal didn't hear any crying, not Jesus' or the children who we

Three Garments

Parshas Vayeshev features the removal and deceptive use of three garments. Firstly the brothers remove Yosef's garment and dip it in blood and send it to their father implying that it is proof of Yosef's death. Then Tamar allows Yehuda to think she is a prostitute and obtains his cloak among other things as collateral under false pretenses and then sends it to him to see if he will acknowledge it or not. Finally Potifar's wife takes Yosef's garment and presents it claiming that it is proof that he attacked her. Where else prior to this do we see the deceptive use of a garment? With Yaakov himself. When Rivka had Yaakov dress himself in Esav's clothing to obtain his bracha from Yitzchak. Like the brothers and Tamar but unlike Potifar's wife, Yaakov did not explicitly lie but gave answers that allowed Yitzchak to assume that he is Esav. So too the brothers sent a bloodied garment allowing Yaakov to make the inferences and Tamar sent Yehuda's cloak and other co

Ten Little Known Facts about the NYC Transit Strike

10. A key sticking point in the strike negotiations has been the union demand for massages and pedicures during hourly lunch breaks. 9. Transit performance ratings have actually improved during the strike. 8. Hour of exercise gained by walking to work is expected to save over 1 million lives over the next decade. 7. The UN has offered to mediate the strike with the likely result that it will drag on for years and end in mass genocide. 6. Confusion has been caused by the MTA using quantum physics to explain why their surpluses exist and don't exist at the same time in different quantum states. 5. Transit union negotiator demands broadcast incomprehensibly over subway intercom leaving mediators to wonder whether they can really provide them with, "Dbrghst Bdghts Ldfsrt Thgrsth Wtsgrdts." 4. Many fellow transit unions have joined the walkout including Subway Rats Local 302, Crazed Homeless Panhandlers 901 and A Train Muggers 305, promising not to work until their demands are

The Millionaire Peacemakers of Ignorance

It seems to be a rule of nature. No sooner does some Jewish buisnessman make his first million, then even though his knowledge of Judaism extends only as far as not eating pork, which he eats anyway, he declares his dream of bringing peace to the middle-east. In this month's stupendous outpouring of benevolence down upon the proliteriat, Steven Spielberg proclaimed his plan to bring Middle East peace by making a movie. No not 'Indiana Jones VI - The Quest for Arafat's Swiss Bank Accounts,' it's a movie that explains that fighting terrorism is really pointless. Had Spielberg made a movie about the Holocaust that featured Jews and Nazis realizing they're both stuck in a rut and need to make friends with each other instead of fighting, that would be the rough equivalent of Steven's new opus, Munich. The irony that Munich is traditionally known for Prime Minister Chamberlain's craven appeasement of Nazism and that the Munich terrorists who killed the Jewish

German Ties to Al Queda and Islamic Terrorism

On June 14, 1985 Arab Hizbullah terrorists hijacked TWA flight 847 from Athens to Rome. They rounded up passengers with Jewish sounding names. 23 year old Navy diver Robert Stethem was taken off the plane, beaten and tortured and then shot. Mohammad Ali Hamadi one of the terrorists responsible has been released by Germany and returned back to Hizbullah in Lebanon despite American requests to extradite him. Had this been a unique case it might be possible to overlook it but that is far from the case. Instead Germany has proven to be a haven for terrorists. In 1972 the Olympic games were held in Munich when Arafat's terrorists attacked taking Israeli Olympic atheletes hostage. German authorities attempted several failed rescues with unqualified police officers who did not even open fire. While the hostages tried to chew through their ropes, the terrorists murdered them before being killed themselves. The Olympic committee did not halt the games and refused Israel's request for a

Election Night in Israel as Israel struggles to Survive

Netanyahu has managed to prevail in the Likud primaries against two candidates who were nothing more than trojan horses for Sharon. First came Mofaz who spoke out against Sharon and when his numbers looked bad, scampered off right away to Sharon's party. Then came Shalom running on his wife's money, his wife's family being the owners of Yediot. With Mofaz gone, Sharon's people who had remained behind in the Likud turned over the grassroots operations and activists to Silvan Shalom. Sharon's indicted son's top operative worked tirelessly on Shalom's behalf. Polls showed Shalom pulling in high numbers, the polls of course were as reliable as Maariv itself, since Gallup had been pushed out of Israel and the polling handled by local operators. Shalom meanwhile had gotten to know many in the Likud personally. To quote from the Jerusalem Post. "wheeler-dealers on city councils, branch chairmen with nicotine-stained teeth, Egged union leaders - he has nurtured

The Coming Storm

It's always worst before the storm. The sky darkens, storm clouds move across the horizon, wisps of clouds racing like smoke across the heavens. A wind picks up blowing aside leaves and wrappers and raising waves along the water. Seagulls circle and whirl as if blown around by the wind trying to break free and unable to escape its force. Like birds at sea which will take refuge from storms on the ocean on the masts of sailing ships, the seagulls land on the railings near people and do not stir taking refuge from the coming storm. I am reminded of a day like this one early in september. The towers, both of them, stand tall above downtown. At seaport by the Fulton Street fish market, a band is playing poorly, a middle aged couple in worn jeans sway along to the music. Seagulls circle the flagpole from which the american flag hangs like vultures. The flag blows, its redness like a flame, the seagulls whirl agitatedly sensing the coming storm. I did not know then what was to come but I

Why Iran's Anti-Semitism is actually Good Public Relations

On the surface it would seem that the President of Iran's behavior in attacking Israel, Jews and ridiculing the Holocaust at the time the question of Iran's nuclear weapons is being seriously talked about in the international circles is self-destructive. After all it creates a negative picture of Iran and displays its leader as a bigot who hates Jews and wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth. It's however completely naive to think so. Consider two other world leaders who responded to mounting international pressure over their military buildup and territorial invasions of their neighbors with persecutions of the Jews and attacks on Israel. Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein. While on the surface this seems unrelated, targeting the Jews while you are engaging in territorial invasions is good public relations. Let us consider a few things. First the world holds a lot more people who hate Jews than who like Jews by a factor of a 1000 to 1. Attacking the Jews win

Not A Muslim Beach Party

Back when coke came in bottles, Lawrence Welk was in full swing and The Shirelles were topping the charts; this might have been the plot for one of those beach movies with Frankie Avalon and Anette Funicello. Gangs of nasty thugs invade the beach, attack the lifeguards and mess up everyone's good time and it's up to the surfers to drive them off. But it's not 1965 anymore but 2005 and when the thugs are Lebanese Muslims in a Sydney beach in the media retelling the surfers are the violent racists abusing various poor unnamed middle eastern men who then have no choice but to go on a violent murderous rampage. Beachgoers in Sydney had long suffered a situation which Lebanese gangs invaded the beaches, told women there that they were whores and deserved to be raped. They attacked any of their boyfriends and husbands who tried to interfere and then finally attacked and beat two lifeguards, one to unconsciousness. In the Australian beach culture, lifeguards are sacrosant voluntee

Angels, Pillars and Stones and Two Destinies

This week's Parsha begins and ends with angels, oaths and pillars. At the beginning of the Parsha Yaakov sleeps and dreams of angels ascending and descending a ladder, makes an oath that if G-d keeps him safe and provides for him this will be the place of the house of G-d and sets the stone he has slept on as a pillar. At the end of the Parsha Yaakov is pursued by Lavan and after a harsh exchange, he makes a pillar or heap of stones, exchanges oaths and then encounters angels. Both occur in exactly that order which occur in inverse order the second time around. His encounter with the angels follows the oaths and the pillar whereas the first time he first sees the angels, then makes an oath and finally makes the pillar. What occurs between these two series of events comprises the entire Parsha. Yaakov like Avraham and Yitzchak goes into a temporary exile among a people with foreign and immoral ideas who seek to exploit him. After a period of struggle he comes out wealthy and pow

First they came for the Nazis and then the Liars

For all that some Jews embrace Niemoller, he of the famous 'first they came for the communists' poem; he was a Nazi and enthusiastically supported Hitler until Hitler's policies, not those involving Jews of course, violated his Christian principles he also commanded troops in a right wing coup that predated Hitler and described Nazism as based on a 'solid moral christian foundation' He voted for the Nazi party and made speeches on behalf of Nazism and Hitler. His difference with the Nazis came not over killing Jews but killing Jews who had converted to Christianity (a position he shared with the Catholic Church) but he remained an ardent nationalist even from Dachau, he wrote a letter volunteering to serve in the navy when WW2 began. His allies attempted to pass off the letter as a forgery but when Niemoller was rescued, he admitted it was authentic and that he had "never quarreled with Hitler over political matters, but purely on religious grounds".

The Mission of the Mother

As Parshat Toldos begins Rivka is having a difficult pregnancy, her children are fighting inside her. Rivka asks, Im Ken Lama Zeh Anochi, a phrase which can be translated in a number of meanings. But the most literal is, If So Why Am I? Commentaries tell us that Rivka had despaired of her life entirely. G-d then informs her that there are two quarelling nations inside her and that one will go on to oppress the other. How is this remotely reassuring to tell a worried pregnant woman that this state of affairs will continue on into their adulthood and to their descendants as well? It would seem that there could be little better formula for despair for a mother to know her children will hate and fight each other forever. But let us first consider why was Rivka so upset? Was it merely because she had a difficult pregnancy? It doesn't seem that a difficult pregnancy would have driven her to such measures. Her question seems to suggest that the two children fighting inside her makes her e

Money for Barry Chamish, No Money for Gush Katif Families

Over three tons of winter clothing arrived from America meant for expelled families from Gush Katif. Clothing drives were held for warm winter clothing for families who have been cut off from their clothing and posessions. While Israel shipped over 90 tons of relief supplies for Katrina evacuees, its own citizens expelled by their own government have been left without basic necesitties. People who have not forgotten their brothers and sisters, Jews and non-Jews, have stepped forwards and donated clothing, time and money to help. Enter Barry Chamish. Barry Chamish is a UFO researcher, conspiracy theorist and a Jewish holocaust denier who has become affiliated with some on the right, an affiliation that is entirely one sided because Chamish has always been out for himself and only himself. Of all the contempt, apathy and condescension directed at the refugees of Gush Katif, Chamish achieves a new disgusting low of hate and greed. Chamish who has previously directed hateful and contemptou