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December 7, 2016 / 7 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Holocaust Remembrance Day’

The Three Little Kosher Pigs

Monday, April 28th, 2014

It is always amusing to see the look on the faces of fellow American Jews when they discover that I am a Republican. Lacking originality, they typically say, “A Republican Jewish woman? Now that’s an oxymoron!” Well no, not at all.

Sadly, Israel has become a partisan issue. But it is the Republicans who are her staunchest supporters. Yet ironically, the vast majority of American Jews, whose progressive values are flaunted with elitist moral authority, have found a home in the Democrat party — the one whose members boo any mention of God and Jerusalem and whose policy makers formulate plans and strategies that are simply dangerous for Israel.

As we finish celebrating Passover during which time we remember our peoples’ exodus from bondage in Egypt to a life of freedom in Israel and observe Yom Hashoah — Holocaust Remembrance Day — it is an appropriate time to reflect on the state of Jewish Zionism in America.

What does it say about a people who align themselves with  political organizations that at best feign support for Israel for fundraising purposes but in reality take measures that could possibly harm that country’s long-term survival? In the face of existential dangers including growing Islamic fundamentalist death threats that are ignored around the world (including in the UN, EU and US) and growing apathy of Jews in the diaspora, perhaps a brief history of the Jewish peoples’ struggles against anti-Semitism is worth a revisit.

A modern version of Jewish history can be analyzed through the lens of the Three Little Pigs. In the Jewish version of this fable, the Jewish people are the three pigs (the kosher version, of course) looking to build a home to live as Jews in peace. The anti-Semites are the big bad wolf (of which there is no shortage) intent on ripping the pigs from their homes and destroying them.

The Jews in ancient times built houses of straw that were blown awayby anti-Semitic wolves during the Roman Empire, the Spanish Inquisition, and centuries-old pogroms. By the time they reached the shores of Europe in the later part of the 20th century, Jews built wooden homes believing themselves safe to practice their religion among the wolves in sheep’s clothing. We all know how that ended.

In the Jewish version of the story, the third pig represents two brothers that I’ll call Cain and Abel. Abel smartly moved to the land of Israel. The Jews in Israel learned their lessons of history, recognized their responsibility as God’s Chosen People, and built homes of bricks. And every time the big bad wolf attempted to climb down the chimney and destroy them, they further fortified their cities with concrete walls and missile defense systems. After thousands of years of wandering the global desert, they understood the gift – and obligation – bestowed upon them by God. To call these Jews survivors would be an understatement.

Cain moved to the U.S. and presents quite a different story indeed. American Jews have not learned the lessons of history and ignore their responsibilities to God and the Jewish people as a whole. Instead of building houses of bricks they have chosen to build a “big tent.”

They emulate their European ancestors who focused so intently on assimilating into society that they could not see the fires of the Holocaust burning around them. They worship false idols and pray at the Torah of abortion rights, environmentalism, and socialism much the way the Jewish people fell for the golden calf while waiting for Moses to descend Mt. Sinai with God’s Commandments.

Like their ancestors, American Jews may find themselves forced to wander a desert of secular empty activism in the hopes of one day returning to their homeland if they do not wake up to the dangers surrounding them. A big tent is no way to survive when big bad wolves are looking to destroy you.

Lauri Regan

Jewish Ukrainian Mayor Shot, Worry Rises as Separatists Seize More Towns

Monday, April 28th, 2014

The Jewish mayor of the eastern Ukrainian town of Kharkov was shot in the back by unidentified masked gunmen on Monday and is now fighting for his life, even as Israel’s president warned Jews around the world on Holocaust Remembrance Day to watch for signs of rising anti-Semitism.

Pro-Russian separatists captured Kharkov, eastern Ukraine’s second-largest town, on Monday, according to a report by RIA Novosti. The news outlet quoted a friend of Mayor Gennady Kernes who said, “They shot him in the back from the forest…  His lung is pierced and his liver pierced all the way through.”

Aides said the mayor had recently received numerous threats,  RT News reported. The attack, which came less than 24 hours after a clash between anti-government protesters and nationalists in the city left 14 people injured, left Kernes critically wounded.

Speaking at the opening ceremonies Monday for Holocaust Remembrance Day, President Peres spoke of the death of his family in the little town of Vishnyeva, in Poland. Two thousand Jews all died there after being locked into the wooden synagogue building by the Nazis, and then burned alive.

“Half of the Jews of Vishnyeva made aliyah to Israel, the other half, which did not, were burned alive,” the president said. “Our body was slashed in two – but our spirit remains undivided, pulsating here in Israel as a locked memory, an independent Jewish renaissance never again to be destroyed.”

The clear warning issued by the president is one the Jews in Ukraine now must heed – if they even had a chance to hear it as the rising war begins to rage around them.

So far the Jews of Kharkov seem to be safe – but the city has a bloody past in terms of protecting its Jews. More than 15,000 Jewish residents of Kharkov were murdered between December 1941 and January 1942, herded by Germans into a ghetto area set up for them about five miles from the city and periodically hauled out and shot to death. Some were just buried alive. A mass grave was discovered not far from the site, in the Drobitzki Valley.

Many of the supporters of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko are also anti-Semitic, sources told the Arutz Sheva website in an interview in February. As a result, some of the community is considering aliyah.

In the eastern Ukraine on Monday, armed gunmen also seized town of Kostyantynivka, entering the administration building and the police headquarters. International media reported that masked gunmen were wearing camouflage outfits and were armed with assault weapons.

Both towns are located in the Donetsk region, along with Sloviansk, a third city which also has now been declared an independent entity by pro-Russian secessionists.

Protesters seized a local state TV station in the city of Donetsk. The protesters demanded the launch of a ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ TV channel, and that Russian TV channels be broadcast. The Ukrainian flag was lowered from the building and the flag of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic was raised in its place – but later, that too was removed. Nevertheless, a source told Interfax-Ukraine that secessionist security personnel remained at the TV station to enforce the demands.

Hana Levi Julian

Netanyahu Connects Hitler with Nuclear Iran

Sunday, April 27th, 2014

World leaders do not understand the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran just as they misjudged or did not even want to understand “the enormity of the threat to humanity posed by Nazism, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Sunday night, the beginning of Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day.

Speaking at Yad VaShem in Jerusalem, the Prime Minister asked rhetorically, “Why, in the years preceding the Holocaust, did the overwhelming majority of world leaders and Jewish leaders fail to detect the danger in time? In retrospect, all the warning signs were there: the strengthening of the Nazi regime year after year; the horrific anti-Semitic propaganda which grew stronger with each passing month; and the murderous attacks on Jews which began as a trickle and transformed into a huge wave….

“Very few world leaders understood the enormity of the threat to humanity posed by Nazism….. The bitter and tragic truth is this: it is not that they did not see it. They did not want to see it. And why did they choose not to see the truth? Because they did not want to face the consequences of that truth.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu explained that world leaders in the 1930s adopted of a policy that was based on “one axiom – avoid another confrontation at any cost.”

He quoted the Biblical phrase from the Book of Psalms, “They have eyes, but cannot see; they have ears, but cannot hear.”

Netanyahu then turned his attention to Iran, which has called for destroying Israel and is recognized by the virtually the entire western world as retrying to develop a nuclear weapon.

“Today, just like then, there are those who dismiss Iran’s extreme rhetoric as one that serves domestic purposes,” he said. “Today, just like then, there are those who view Iran’s nuclear ambitions as the result of the natural will of a proud nation – a will that should be accepted.

“And just like then, those who make such claims are deluding themselves. They are making an historic mistake.”

Netanyahu quoted the Bible throughout his speech and concluded a train of thought that implied that the Jews in Israel, unlike those in without a Jewish state under the Nazi regime, will not let themselves be destroyed.

He cited the fourth Book of the Torah (BaMidbar, or Numbers, 23:13-26,) in which the non-Jewish told King Balak, who had paid him to curse Israel, “The people will arise like a lion cub and raise itself like a lion; it will not lie down until it consumes prey, and drinks the blood of the slain.”

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Palestinian Authority Daily Claims Netanyahu Has ‘Nazi Genes’

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

The official Palestinian Authority daily last week, days before International Holocaust Remembrance Day, published an op-ed demonizing Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who it said has Nazi genes that he may have “acquired it genetically from the days of the Nazis and the Aryan race.”

The report, translated and published by the Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), claimed that the reason Netanyahu is compared to Hitler is because Netanyahu “is demanding that the Palestinians recognize the Jewishness of the State of Israel,” – a “Jewishness,” which is racist, the writer states.”

That is pretty interesting stuff for the Palestinian Authority, whose leader Mahmoud Abbas wrote his doctoral thesis on Holocaust denial. It seems that the Palestinian Authority does not deny the Holocaust when it can be used to slander Jews.

“Instead of Netanyahu disassociating himself from any act that would remind him of Hitler’s racism, he imitates it and wants to replicate it against the people of Palestine, its inhabitants and nation and even against the citizens of the State of Israel themselves,” the article declared.

Last year, after a Palestinian prisoner claimed that Israel’s treatment of prisoners “is identical to what the Nazi Germans did to the Jews during the Holocaust,” another regular columnist for the official PA daily responded with another false accusation.

“Are you not ashamed, oh tyrants, of what you talk about to this day (i.e., the Holocaust), in order to win the world’s sympathy and to extort hundreds of millions of dollars from the Germans specifically and the Europeans in general?” he wrote.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu responded on Tuesday to the slander, telling visiting Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvilie, “I’m concerned that in the Palestinian press we’ve had continual references to Nazi Germany, comparing Israel and Israel’s leaders to Nazis, saying that we carry Nazi genes. This is a way of poisoning the atmosphere for peace. It must stop. This whole incitement against Israel must cease if we’re to have the genuine peace that we deserve and our Palestinian neighbors deserve as well”

Jewish Press News Briefs

Mezuzah Arsonist Strikes Again, Evoking Familiar Jewish Fears

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

A day after 11 mezuzahs were found burned in the Taylor-Wythe Houses in Williamsburg, shortly after 1 PM Tuesday, another mezuzah was found burned outside an apartment at 130 Clymer St., in the same housing development.

In both incidents the vandal started on the 13th floor, but this time he fled after burning just one.

NYPD released surveillance footage of him as a person of interest was described as a male Hispanic between 20 and 25 years old, wearing a purple do-rag, and a black jacket with an “NY” symbol on the shoulder and “New York” across the chest,” and lighting a match.

Local resident David Greenblatt told NYC Channel 2 News that the surveillance images came as a relief.

“Yes it is, because it means that we’re going to pursue such crimes, and hopefully, that will deter them,” Greenblatt said. “That’s what we need.”

Resident Pessie Gelb said, “I was a little bit shocked to see what’s going on again. The next building? What is it going to happen again?”

Her neighbor Lydia Pena said, “I think it’s real horrible. You shouldn’t touch nothing that doesn’t belong to you.”

There was an even more insightful reaction, from resident Raizy Fogel, who told Channel 2: “It’s devastating, it’s very sad and such things shouldn’t happen.”

Fogel said the attack on a specifically Jewish religious item was intended to send a message on Holocaust Remembrance Day.

The message, Fogel said, is “that we are unwanted here, and I don’t know why.”

Give her another minute, another hour, another day – she’ll get the message…

Yori Yanover

Brooklyn Anti-Semites Mark Holocaust Day by Burning Mezuzahs

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

Anti-Semitic vandals torched more than 10 mezuzahs on the doorposts in the Williamsburg district of Brooklyn apartments Monday, Holocaust Remembrance Day. It is not known if the attack was carried by an individual or a group. The attacks took place on at least 10 different floors.

New York police are considering the arson as an anti-Semitic crime although officials said they did not know if the timing of the attack was coincidental or not. There was little damage to the apartments except for the burned mezuzahs.

“This was a brazen act of religious desecration,” Councilman Stephen Levin told The New York Times. “It’s hard to explain just how deeply painful this is to the religious Jewish community. It’s a blessing on a home. It’s a profoundly hurtful thing to do.”

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

PA Refuses to Change ‘A Few Words’ for Kerry

Monday, April 8th, 2013

The Palestinian Authority revealed Monday that it refused to agree with visiting U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s request to change a “few words” in the 2002 Saudi Peace Initiative.

The Saudi peace plan promises “normalization” of relations with Israel – without express recognition of the country – in return for Israel’s retreating back to the 1949 Temporary Armistice Lines that existed until 1967 and accepting the immigration of several million foreign Arabs.

Even the most leftist of Israelis, except for those really on the fringe of the fringe, have rejected the demand for allowing a flood of Arabs to destroy the Jewish character of the country.

But Kerry is undaunted.

In typical State Dept. tunnel thinking, he dug up the Saudi Peace Plan in an effort win the support of the Arab League and, according to senior PA negotiator Saeb Erekat, asked Ramallah to make a small compromise in the wording.

“Kerry asked us to change a few words in the Arab Peace Initiative but we refused,” Erekat told the Voice of Palestine radio station Sunday, according to the Washington Post.

The Palestinian Authority really has no reason to compromise.

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has carefully carried out a one-track-mind strategy for eight years, replacing Yasser Arafat’s pistol on the belt with a suit and tie and globetrotting to win international support.

While official Palestinian Authority media honor suicide bombers and without a wink show Arabs in Judea, Samaria and Gaza maps of Palestine with borders of the Mediterranean Coast and the Jordan River, Abbas has played along with the Bush administrations without committing to anything.

Feeling full confidence that he no longer needs the United States, Abbas went to the United Nations in November and won his long-sought recognition, although only in a resolution, that recognizes all of his demands without recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.

Kerry is trying to turn back the point of no return, and even after Erekat said he turned him down, the Secretary of State, was seen in Israel without blindfolders on Monday even though he said he sees “a road ahead” on the two-state solution for peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Kerry met President Shimon Peres on Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day and participated in the national wreath-laying ceremony at Yad VaShem.

Invoking the same evangelical-like tone of President Barack Obama when he visit Israel last month, Kerry said, “You have to believe in the possibilities to be able to get there. You and I believe in them and I’m convinced there is a road ahead.”

The road ahead for Abbas is elsewhere.

While Kerry was solemnly saying that the wailing sirens of Yom HaShoah had a “profound impact” on him, Abbas, whose doctoral thesis was on Holocaust denial, was on his way to Qatar to meet with Arab League diplomats for the next step on how to negotiate without negotiating.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/pa-refuses-to-change-a-few-words-for-kerry/2013/04/08/

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