Israel Independence Day is a very special celebration.
One of the most frequently asked questions about Jewish life in Poland is, "Are there still Jews there?"
Whenever I meet people, and they find out I write about Jewish life in Poland, invariably they have questions.
'Faced with imminent and existential attacks, Israel − properly taking its cue from The National Security Strategy of the United States of America − could decide to preempt enemy aggression with conventional forces.
The exhibit "And I Still See Their Faces," at the Yeshiva University Museum in the Jewish History Center in N.Y., was the site of a gala reception honoring two of Polish Jewry's greatest friends, Mr. Sigmund Rolat and Wayne Zuckerman.
"The horror, the horror," mumbles the Marlon Brando character in the film, Apocalypse Now. How thin, he reflects, is the veneer of our planetary civilization. How entirely inadequate, he understands, are the unsteady fences that protect us from humankind's most ruinous inclinations.
One would think, certainly by now, that foolish optimism about Iran should have been swept completely away. One would now assume, with altogether good reason, that Iran has absolutely no intention of abandoning its nuclear program, and that it does not display markedly genocidal stripes only for Islamic public consumption.
Good morning. Thank you, John (Loftus) and Bob [Dr. Robert Katz). The conference main theme is in essence: Our individual and collective survival amidst growing global chaos. With this in mind, the Irish poet Yeats reminds us: "The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned."
Whenever I go to Poland I make a point of visiting the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw.
"The more things change," goes the well-worn maxim, "the more they remain the same." Readers of The Jewish Press are already well acquainted with now incessant Iranian calls for the annihilation of Israel. What might not be so apparent, however, is that such calls to "wipe Israel off the map" constitute a serious crime under international law.
Half of the 20 tombstones in the Jewish cemetery of Swidin were broken March 1, according to Albert Stankowski of the Foundation for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in Warsaw. "This was done during the same time as the Claims Conference was visiting in Poland, and I have no doubt that the act against the cemetery was related," he said. Stankowksi was referring to a Claims Conference meeting last week with the government about compensation for Jewish property stolen by the Nazis and Communists.
On its face, it would surely be foolish to blame Daimler-Chrysler's extraordinary woes on the very dark history of Daimler-Benz. On its face, the combined company's deep decline is manifestly a function of bad economic judgments. After all, from the very start, the 1998 decision by Germany's Daimler-Benz to merge with Chrysler simply made no financial sense.
When people hear of those honored as Righteous Among The Nations by Yad Vashem, they automatically think of the most renowned, such as Oscar Schindler or Raul Wallenberg.
Now that Israel is again being pressured to follow a self-destructive "Road Map," a 23rd Arab state called Palestine is again in the process of being born. One serious but largely unforeseen effect of this grotesque birth (one in which only a gravedigger could wield the forceps) is greatly diminished "strategic depth" for Israel. Consequently there is a heightened probability of both conventional and unconventional war.
Restoration And Future Plans Of The Yeshiva
Following every suicide bombing in Iraq, one crucial point is always overlooked. This point is rooted in the confining space of each individual human body. It has to do with the general incommunicability of physical pain. No human language can ever really describe agony. In consequence, the monstrousness of terror-violence - never truly palpable - is generally reduced to an anesthetized inventory of "casualties."
Last week's column, mostly pictures, on the rededication of Yeshiva Chachmei Lublin, could only partially describe the joyous event.
It has been said that Poland is a country of ghosts and for the past 68 years, since the invasion of Poland by the Germans in 1939, there has been little to celebrate.
My daughter once worked on a kibbutz near Eilat, so the suicide bombing on January 29 in that normally tranquil Red Sea resort is especially sobering. This Palestinian "freedom fighter" struck a small bakery, killing three shoppers who had stopped by for bread and cakes. The two groups taking responsibility for the terror, Islamic Jihad and the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, were ecstatic about the success of their "military operation."
As President Bush likely realized in his recent speech, the true state of our union is intimately intertwined with the state of our whole world. Our fate as Americans will depend upon our willing identification as citizens on an imperiled planet. Surely we now have the Iraq War to re-evaluate, but even so substantial and overwhelming a problem is just the tip of much larger iceberg. This "iceberg" is the always-universal nature of humankind.
Question: Have you ever visited Israel?
Jews and justice can never be uttered in the same breath. So it is too for the Jewish State, always the individual Jew in macrocosm. Whether it wishes to acknowledge the existential danger or not, Israel's only hope for survival now lies in a well-reasoned and coherent nuclear strategy for dealing with nuclearizing enemies.
I am upset. I am embarrassed. I am touched by the righteous anger of the average man. I am saddened by the lessons being learned by our children.
With the upcoming anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, I thought it would be appropriate to write about Yizkor Books.
Following the Iraq Study Group report, it seems clear that legally-binding non-proliferation expectations for Iran may soon be abandoned, and that Israel - once again - may be offered as a convenient sacrifice to civilization's irremediable enemies.