Although we have been pressured into accepting a cease-fire, which will only give our enemies an opportunity to rebuild their war machine meant to destroy the Jewish people, this war has not come to an end. As with our previous wars, beginning with the war of liberation in 1948, we are continually forced to fight for the very existence of our people and the independence of the Jewish homeland.
During a recent trip to Israel, I couldn't help but notice the dearth of fellow visitors and think of the many religiously observant American Jews who stridently demand that Israel never cede any land.
There is a story told about the great Mirrer rosh yeshiva, Rav Chaim Shmulevitz, zt"l. During the Six-Day War a bombshell landed near the yeshiva, just missing it. No one was injured. Rav Shmulevitz decided to make a seudas hoda'ah, a festive meal thanking God for this nes nistar (hidden miracle) that spared his students any injury.
The war in Lebanon should not have surprised anyone. For many years, Hizbullah, which is funded, equipped and ideologically supported by Iran and Syria, has made it crystal clear that its goal is to conquer Israel, expel its Jewish inhabitants, and place the entire land under Islamic rule.
There is a good reason that Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah has accepted UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which sets the terms for a cease-fire between his jihad army and the State of Israel.
Islamic terrorists routinely kidnap the most vulnerable civilians and hold them hostage. Hamas and Hizbullah, like Arafat's PLO, hold their own people hostage as well, and hide both themselves and their weapons among Muslim civilians.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - The close of another day that I had hoped would be the beginning of an epitaph, the inscription commemorating the end of this war. However, it wasn't meant to be. Instead, another day of enduring news of rocket fire, wounded, and dead.
The world is full of Israel-haters. I don't know why. It probably has something to do with anti-Semitism - and even more to do with lack of knowledge and understanding about the Middle East.
A democratically elected government's ultimate responsibility is the safety and security of its citizens. Accordingly, achieving that goal is the task facing the Israeli government in its dual war against Hizbullah terrorists on its northern front and Hamas terrorists in Gaza.
Ladies and gentlemen, leaders of the world. I, the prime minister of Israel, am speaking to you from Jerusalem in the face of the terrible pictures from Kfar Kana. Any human heart, wherever it is, must sicken and recoil at the sight of such pictures. There are no words of comfort that can mitigate the enormity of this tragedy. Still, I am looking you straight in the eye and telling you that the State of Israel will continue its military campaign in Lebanon.
In 1967 Israel defeated the combined armies of the Arab world in six days.
"Just like Hitler fought the Jews, we are a great Islamic nation of jihad, and we too should fight the Jews and burn them." - Hisham Shamas, political science student, at a symposium hosted by Hizbullah's Al-Manar TV at Lebanon's largest and only government-run university, Université Libanaise, November 29, 2005.
Whenever Israel uses military force, there is always a cadre of Jews who feel it is their duty to undermine the Israeli government. They begin arguments by claiming moral superiority through their Judaism.
I hate making this call about my Orthodox Jewish brother Joe Lieberman, but he almost certainly will lose next week's Connecticut Democratic Senate primary. He will be defeated, as predicted by the polls and pundits, primarily because of his support for the Iraq war and his refusal to join in the demonization of George W. Bush.
The news that I, along with Rabbi Avi Weiss (Rav Avi), would be embarking to the north of Israel on a mission of solidarity and unity was met by many friends and colleagues with a myriad of responses. Many were supportive of the mission, all were apprehensive about the dangers, and yet some were cynical about our motives and chances of success.
The Washington Post's Richard Cohen, in a July 18 op-ed on the current fighting between Israel and Hizbullah ("Hunkering Down With History"), declared that Israel's creation was a "mistake." He based this judgment of Israel on its Arab Muslim neighbors' opposition to its existence.
People have very short memories.
When our son phoned to say he was coming over with his wife and children, my husband said, "Fine, we're home tonight, and for a change there's real food. Ima prepared supper for other family members that are on their way over."
Northern Israel is a vacationer's paradise. From hiking trails to walk on, to rivers to swim in, to luxury hotels to bask in, to mystical sites to seek inspiration from, it has something for everyone. This is why, when last week I took my first vacation in four years, I made my way to the North.
The fires that consumed the First Temple on the Ninth of Av continued to burn until the middle of the following day. The Talmudic sage Rabbi Yochanan stated, "Had I been alive in that generation, I would have fixed [the day of mourning] for the Tenth [of Av] because the greater part of the Temple was burnt on that day."
July 21 - Five Israeli soldiers were buried today. Among them was Benjy Hillman, 27, the son of one of my oldest friends. Benjy, z"l, was a commander in the elite Egoz unit, who was killed fighting Hizbullah terrorists in southern Lebanon last night.
There are things that should not be said out loud, at least by people with little authority, because they might come out wrong. They might be construed as arrogant, naïve, impossible. The tone of voice must be just right, timbre calm and measured - even the pauses between words dare not be too great or noticeable, or you run the risk of being dismissed as preachy and holier-than-thou.
I must begin by expressing that our hearts are with our soldiers on both the northern and southern fronts, and our prayers beseech the Almighty to protect them so that they all return home safely.
As I write this, Israel is being heavily bombed. City after city in the north, like Sderot in the south, is reeling from the intense rocket attacks. The streets are empty. The people of Safed, Nahariya, Carmiel, Meron, Kiryat Shmona, Shlomi and Haifa are huddled in their safe rooms and community shelters. The rockets are deadlier and far-reaching.
In 2001, Mexican president Vicente Fox made something of a splash when he, contrary to his campaign rhetoric, came out in support of the decriminalization of small amounts of illicit drugs for personal use. Fox noted that, despite the number of people imprisoned for drug trafficking, and despite the legal penalties for the possession and use of substances, drug use was going up, not down.