Chillul Tefila Bifarhesia, as well as halachicly challenged verbiage and dress, are external manifestations of a critical lack of personal yiras shomayim which has lethal consequences.
The barrages of homemade Grad rockets and Iranian produced Fajr-5s that were fired by Tehran’s proxy Hamas and Islamic Jihad militias at Israeli population centers in southern and central Israel during the recent fighting were reportedly not only meant to kill and maim civilians but also to wreck Israel’s economy. The militias’ goal was to exact revenge on Israel, the U.S. and the EU for the stifling sanctions imposed on the Iranian regime.
Prior to the relentless rocket attacks on Sderot, Beersheba, Ashkelon and Ashdod, among other towns and cities, Israel’s Ministry of Finance said that despite a significant slowdown in various exports due to the EU’s ongoing recession, the Israeli economy was growing at a higher rate than the economies of the U.S., UK and EU. In addition, Israel’s foreign tourism industry was in the midst of its best year ever, with close to three million tourists having booked trips through the first quarter of 2013.
Several days after Fajr-5s were fired at Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, an Israeli Hotel Association executive told an Israeli business news site, “[It is] time to write off the winter season.” Sources say that a significant number of Christian groups canceled their pilgrimage missions planned for the forthcoming holiday season, while bookings from foreign individual tourists for the December-January winter vacation respite were down by nearly 25 percent. During a meeting of tourism industry leaders last Thursday, Israel Ministry of Tourism (IMOT) representatives said that, “The damage could be minimized, and it was estimated that the potential for rehabilitation is large in relation to other crises the industry has dealt with.”
The IMOT representatives stressed the urgency to implement rehabilitative actions because the tourism industry, unlike other industries, is highly unlikely to retrieve much of its lost revenue. They also said that a return to normalcy after the fighting is a crucial incentive for future tourists to visit Israel, thus enhancing the tourism industry’s ability to increase its profit margin. According to the IMOT, The Federation of Israeli Tourist Organizations has pledged to contact organizations that have canceled trips in an attempt to have them rescind their cancellations.
Tel Aviv, the headquarters of many of Israel’s major business entities (including the country’s stock exchange and a number of hi-tech and real-estate companies), was also battered during the past two weeks. Israel’s leading business dailies, Globes and Calcalist, reported that many foreign investors had stopped investing in the Israeli economy. This was especially so in the real-estate sector, as many foreign Jewish investors from Russia, France and the U.S. had been purchasing properties in a number of affluent Tel Aviv residential and commercial projects. The startling pictures of a severely damaged apartment building in West Rishon LeZion, less than five miles from Tel Aviv, in the aftermath of a Fajr-5 strike sent shudders throughout the Israeli real-estate marketplace. The damage to the relatively new building was estimated at nearly $1.5 million.
According to Israel’s Tax Authority, the overall indirect damage (loss of work and production) to the Israeli economy as a result of Operation Pillar of Defense is estimated at $100 million. But senior economists told Globes that when all of the damages are factored in, including damages to homes, infrastructure and tourism, the loss to the Israeli economy could approach $500 million.
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The recommendations determine new rules for sharing the security burden equally.
Judging by the sheer onesidedness of the parts I’ve read, I cannot see how the report can serve as a foundation for discussion.
Arab stone throwing and other violent disturbances near Efrat continues. Following in the footsteps of the pipe bomb found near the northern entrance last week, a girl was hurt Thursday when rocks were thrown at a car she was riding in. A number of cars were hit and damaged near Efrat’s northern entrance. Last week [...]
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed deep disappointment with the members of Detroit City Council and local clergy who met with and embraced the antisemitic and racist leader of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan, during his visit to the city last week. During his visit to Detroit, Farrakhan was invited by Rev. Wendell Anthony, President [...]
A number of bills targeting Iran’s suspected nuclear weapons program have advanced in the U.S. Congress. The U.S. House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday approved and sent to the full House a bill backed by Reps. Ed Royce (R-Calif.), the chairman of the committee, and Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), its senior Democrat, that would [...]
Former Minister of Science and Technology, Professor Rabbi Daniel Hershkowitz was appointed the new president of Bar-Ilan University. Hershkowitz’s appointment was approved unanimously on Monday during a meeting of the university’s board of trustees. He will begin serving in October, at the start of the 2013-14 academic year. The Haifa native succeeds Moshe Kaveh, who [...]
Former Iranian president Akbar Rafsanjani on Wednesday strongly criticized the leadership of his country, following his disqualification as presidential candidate this week. “I don’t think the country could have been run worse, even if it had been planned in advance,” the 78-year-old Rafsanjani reportedly told members of his campaign team. “I don’t want to get [...]
An eyewitness fought back tears as he recalled seeing the killers attacking the man “like a piece of meat.”
Observers of the world body in Geneva said the annual hypocrisy reached a new low this year.
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Some 25,000 Belz chassidim packed the wedding ceremony of Rabbi Shalom Rokeach, Grandson of the Belzer Rebbe, and Chana Batya Pener, May 22, 2013, in Jerusalem. Pretty amazing images. It says something about these people’s comfort with one another in close quarters. I find it very difficult to be standing or sitting so close to [...]
Let everyone know of the shelter at Chabad
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Two New Jersey men, indicted in March for arson and attempted murder and terrorism, pleaded not guilt in a New Jersey court this week. Anthony Graziano of Lodi and Aakash Dalal of New Brunswick, both 21, were arrested after the northern New Jersey’s Bergen County bombings, one of which injured Beth El Congregation Rabbi Nosson [...]
JERUSALEM – As Shiite Hizbullah and Sunni anti-Syrian government rebels battle across Syria and Lebanon, and Egyptian and Jordanian forces confront al Qaeda terrorists in the Sinai and southern Jordan, the emir of Qatar blamed Israel for the chaos that threatens to plunge the entire region into war.
JERUSALEM – Rabbi Shlomo Amar, Israel’s current Sephardi chief rabbi whose 10-year term is set to expire in the coming months, and Ramat Gan Chief Rabbi Yaakov Ariel, a leading Ashkenazi rabbi, announced their intention to force a legal change in the chief rabbinate selection process.
JERUSALEM – Despite heightened tensions with Lebanon and Syria, including Israel Air Force sorties over Damascus, a group of stars from two ABC-TV hit shows, “Scandal” and “Once Upon A Time,” participated last week in numerous indoor and outdoor activities in northern Israel, including the Golan Heights. The stars said that the American public is served a steady diet of warped images of Israel.
JERUSALEM – With strong evidence that Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad have used chemical weapons against civilians, Israeli and Western military commanders are contemplating a series of air strikes and commando operations against a select group of targets inside Syria.
JERUSALEM – During his first visit to Israel as President Obama’s new secretary of defense, Chuck Hagel said Tuesday it was vital for the U.S. and Israel to maintain a strong alliance, particularly in the wake of growing security challenges.
JERUSALEM – Even as millions of Israelis celebrated the country’s 65th birthday with prayers, lavish barbecues and star-studded entertainment in city squares, many citizens expressed worry about troubling domestic and foreign developments.
JERUSALEM – After attending a somber ceremony at Yad Vashem on Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry began shuttling between Ramallah and Jerusalem in an effort to jumpstart the long stagnant Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
JERUSALEM – Reports are circulating that in the days leading up to Yom HaShoah – to be commemorated this year in Israel next Monday – a group of global cyber-terrorists, many of its members based in Arab countries across North Africa and the Persian Gulf, are readying for major cyber attacks against a large number of important Israeli websites. Being targeted are banks, credit card companies, telecom outlets and government ministries.
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