Libby Kahane, widow of Rabbi Meir Kahane HY”D, was questioned by police this week after her grandson, Meir Ettinger broke his bail conditions last Shabbat.
Ettinger has been under house arrest for several months after being indicted approximately six months ago on charges that he gathered information on IDF troop movements in order to block further evacuations of outposts in Judea and Samaria.
Rebbetzin Kahane had signed on as a guarantor on the conditions for Ettinger’s release.
The terms of his release include: not using the telephone, not using the internet, and not to leave his house. Police arrested Ettinger after he went to pray on Shabbat.
The IDF Operations Department has put together instructions for military operations in cyberspace against enemies of the Jewish state.
According to a document released by the department, the IDF will engage in consistent and continuous intelligence gathering operations online, and said it will handle cyberspace as a battlefield as important as those at sea in the air, and on the ground, executing attacks when necessary.
Among the goals of Israel’s cyber warfare program are thwarting and disrupting enemy projects limiting the operational freedom of the state and the IDF, reducing the capabilities of Israel’s enemies online and on the ground, conducting public diplomacy, advocating for Israel, and assisting in IDF military operations in combat.
In January, the Israeli Defense Ministry established a special cyber warfare administration, to conduct cyber warfare in a coordinated effort between the IDF and Israeli security agencies.
January saw a significant increase in cyber attacks on Israeli interests. Hackers broke into the Israel Fire and Rescue Services website, threatening a war between Israel and Hamas, Fatah and Islamic Jihad, writing “Death to Israel”, and posting a picture of an armed Palestinian Authority man. They also broke into the website of Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon .
In an attack causing grief throughout Israel, a group of Saudi hackers published the credit card information of many thousands of Israelis, urging haters of Israel and other hackers to use the credit card information to make purchases online. Israeli banks froze the accounts of those who were hacked, and compensated owners of cards which were used to make illegal purchases.
According to senior security adviser to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Isaac Ben-Israel, the state of Israel suffers 1,000 cyber-attacks every day. Ben-Israel said the increased number of attacks have led Israel to pass laws requiring that major Israeli infrastructures institute measures to protect themselves from cyber terrorism.
Israel’s involvement in cyberwarfare has not been limited to its victimization, however.
In June 2010, Israel gained international admiration for its alleged involvement in the Stuxnet virus which caused severe damage to the Siemens supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems utilized by Iran’s uranium enrichment infrastructure.
In September 2007, Israel carried airstrikes on Syria dubbed Operation Orchard. Sources in US industry and military speculated that Israeli cyberwarfare had allowed Israel to pass under Syrian radar undetected.
I missed the Asifa. Admittedly, I wasn’t planning on going, though I do feel jealous of those software developers who managed to get 50,000 men (and an unknown number of women who participated remotely) to pay actual money to listen to a multi-hour sales pitch of their products, and then have their community leaders tell them to go buy them, which on top of that, they probably will.
Now that’s marketing to a captive audience.
Obviously internet filtering is important if you have kids in the house, and I guess for a closed, insulated community being hit on the head with the outside world it warrants an outing to Citi Field on a Sunday to find out how to protect yourself (and to get out of the Beis Medrash on a Rabbinically sanctioned field trip).
But in my mind, I was comparing it to another mass gathering that same Sunday – one I participated in with my family.
The Jerusalem Day Parade.
30,000 people, a significant number of them teenagers, mostly religious, gathered together to celebrate one of the modern, open, unexpected and important miracles of our day, the reunification of Jerusalem.
I admit that at one point I wondered, which gathering was the bigger Kiddush Hashem?
But mostly I asked myself, which one would inspire my children about the beauty and possibilities of Judaism?
A public gathering that demands yet even more conformity to community social pressures and standards, this time only to buy a kosher phone, or use an internet filter with the proper hechsher, or a gathering that thanks God for the incredible gift he gave us that actually we prayed for.
Obviously, one gathering isn’t mutually exclusive of the other.
I’m sure many of the Israeli yeshiva students who marched yesterday have internet filters in their homes.
But I wonder, how many men at the Asifa said Hallel that morning, or at least didn’t say Tachanun in commemoration of the miracle that occurred for all of Klal Yisrael, that they too benefit from whenever they visit their national homeland.
One of the questions posed to PM Netanyahu and his new coalition bride Shaul Mofaz by one of those pesky Israeli TV reporters was: Only a short while ago, Mofaz called Bibi a liar. Now the two of you are headed into a long-term marriage (a year and a half is eternity in Israeli politics). What’s the deal, then, is Bibi still a liar? Is he no longer a liar?
Surprisingly, both men were totally ready for the taunt, and both pulled out their obviously rehearsed answers which, I believe were, more or less: “Blah blah before, then blah yada yada and then, you know, like that.”
But the question is still a question. It reminded me of the story about the lion who sent the fox to find his daughter a husband. The fox went to the bear and couldn’t find a shidduch there. he went to the wolf – no shidduch. So he stood in the middle of the road, seriously worried, what is he going to tell the lion?
A dog passed by and saw the fox looking so worried, so he asked what’s his problem.
The fox told him everything and the dog said: “Whay didn’t you come to me? I have a lovely boy, at just the right age, ready to go.
The fox wagged his tail nervously and answered, “Listen, the father of the bride is our master, the Rebbe Reb Aryeh Leib Lion, I was looking to get him the son of Reb Dov Bear, or Reb Ze’ev Wolf. But it looks to me that you—please don’t be offended—you look like dog…”
So the dog wagged his own tail and said, “And you’re supposed to be the smartest of all the beasts? I say you haven’t been keeping up with social progress. It used to be, the Rebbe was the most important person. Now any politician can rise up and become important. And it so happens that a politician can often be a dog…”
SMACK ME SILLY AND PASS THE PICKLES, WE GOT US A UNITY GOVERNMENT
JoeSettler and Jameel combine their analytic resources to divine who got what out of the new Israeli coalition government of 94 (Ninety Four) MKs and who knows, 45 ministers and deputies? Such a small country, so many chauffeured limousines…
Winners and Losers: Israel’s Historic Unity Government Avigdor Lieberman: Loser. Lieberman will keep his job, avoid elections, and get the opportunity to try to pass more laws he wants. But on the downside, the investigation(s) against him will now continue, and his influence has been severely diminished. We’ll see if he can make a comeback out of this.
Moshe Feiglin: Loser (Netanyahu election shenanigans aside) Moshe would have done well in elections. It remains to be seen if Likud MKs will still have as much influence in the unity government, because right now his influence is through them. On the other hand, there’s a slight chance he may be entering the Knesset as a new MK to replace someone else who might be leaving. In which case, he will become a winner. JoeSettler and Jameel, The Muqata
The campaign is a costly one – $850,000 just to rent the Citi Field stadium. Tacking on the cost of promotion and logistics it is estimated to cost nearly 2 million dollars. The principal donor on behalf of the Hasidic sector can be found in Mr. Hershel Schreiber, the owner of the famous photographic retailer in Manhattan, B&H.
This is grand! A fortune that was made almost exclusively because and through the Internet, is now being spent to try and curb the evil influence of the Internet. Boggles the mind.
Gluck thinks it makes no difference what the subject matter is, you just can’t get Haredi Jews to agree on anything:
By now, however, some serious structural problems with this whole campaign are emerging, chief among which is the virtual impossibility of uniting a substantial portion of the deeply fractious haredi sector under a single banner. No matter how hard the organizers tried and continue to try to steer clear of petty rivalry among the hundreds of different subsects that comprise Ultra-orthodoxy, by satisfying some groups others will automatically feel snubbed and thus boycott the conference. Jacob Gluck, HasidicNews.com
Harry Maryles writes that he feels “compelled to point out an article in Hamodia that demonstrates quite clearly a major difference between Haredim and other Orthodox Jews. The subject is the internet. And it is Rav Matisyahu Salomon who seems to be leading the charge. Below is a composite of Rav Salomon’s point vs. Harry’s. Go read the who;e thing, it’s as good as usual.
This Jewish guy gets to a small town out in the hinterland, and in his kosher traveler’s guide he finds a motel that’s run by a Jewish lady. Sunday morning the church bells are ringing and he hears the motel owner yelling out: Jimmy, the bells are ringing, time to go to church!
So the guest knocks on her office door and asks, What’s it to you if Jimmy goes to church or not?
So she wipes a tearful eye and says, Jimmy is my only child, and, God forgive me, he converted to Christianity. So I’m thinking, if I didn’t merit to have a God fearing Jewish son, at least let him be a God fearing sheigetz.
Reading Menachem Lipkin’s entry (see below) about Ami magazine and their coverage of things non-Haredi reminded me of that story. In a sense, we, Haredi, stam frum, and secular, are wishing for the other to be the best God awful misguided fool they can be.
Better than violence..
GEORGE CONSTANZA COULD WIN THE VIETNAM WAR
What an awesome article by Sultan Knish! And, incidentally, you can apply everything he wrote about GW’s and Obama’s fundamental failures in Afghanistan to Israel’s failures with the Palestinians. It comes down to politicians doing stuff because it made sense at the time. It’s the stuff that spawns all human tragedy.
My recommendation to all political leaders is to follow the example of Seinfeld’s George Constanza, who knew the value of doing the opposite of what made sense to him.
The Afghanistan victory lap is as much about disguising the ‘cut and run’ phase; as it is about reminding the folks in Virginia and Iowa that the man on television parachuted in, cut the throats of all of Osama’s guards, shot him in the face and then made a topical quip. Waving around Bin Laden’s head is a good way to distract them from the fact that the United States has lost the war in Afghanistan, that Obama’s own strategy there failed badly and cost numerous American and British lives, and that we are turning the country over to the Taliban.
Afghanistan and Iraq were part of a strategy for containing and draining the fever swamps of terrorism. That strategy failed for a variety of reasons, not the least of them being that we failed to learn the lessons of Vietnam. The Obama Administration alone managed to roll out a “hearts and minds” strategy and a brief push to intimidate the other side into coming to the negotiating table for a face-saving withdrawal. It’s almost a pity that Obama wasn’t old enough to have to dodged the draft. At least that way he might have actually known something about the Vietnam War. Daniel Greenfield, Sultan Knish
WE’RE ALL THE SAME UNDER THE BEARD
I’m waiting for the day when the media offer this headline:
Secular People Stole a Million Dollars
Agnostic Molested Children
Religiously Ambivalent Guy Cheated the IRS
It’s only fair. If we’re so happy to point out that this or that individual who just robbed the public treasure is a shomer Shabbat, we should also mention that the guy who did the hit and run eats traif.
And, speaking of folks who won’t publish the picture of a woman, here’s a gripe against the Haredi Ami magazine.
Yom Ha’Atzmaut Through Charedi Eyes Ami’s CEO and Editor In Chief, Rabbi Yizchok Frankfurter, penned an editorial that was very troubling. It represents much that is wrong with this type of publication today. Make no mistake, while Ami pretends to be an opened-minded publication, throwing out a few bones here and there to unsuspecting readers, at its core, as proven by this editorial and the fact that they won’t publish pictures of women among other things, they are solidly in the Chareidi camp. Menachem Lipkin, Emes Ve-Emunah
CULTURE SHOCK NEVER GOES AWAY
The difference between knowing and being…
My Children Live a Mixture of America and Israel. Today, my husband mentioned Shirley Temple and my children were oblivious to who she was. It happens quite often and is, for many people, unexpected. For the most part, their English skills are quite good. They are, most definitely, all bilingual. They understand English, read it, and speak it quite well. But where they “fall” – is with the culture and the sayings related to it. Paula R. Stern, A Soldier’s Mother
THERE’S AN INTELLECTUAL IN MY SOUP
Leslie Stein (“The Making of Modern Israel: 1948-1967″) is tackling the familiar question: Can one be an anti-Zionist without being an anti-Semite? But don’t assume you know what she’s about to say. Read, man, read, she’s really good.
There is a huge argument raging right now on Twitter about the next big Internet Asifa scheduled for the end of May in Citi Field. Let me briefly summarize the other positions:
#1 The Asifa is just the latest attempt by the zealots and the gedolim they control to control our thoughts
#2 They’re worried about a neo-hashkofa haskola* and are trying to limit access to blogs and the like
#3 They fear their authority is eroding
* I first heard the phrase “neo-haskola” from Mis-nagid in 2005, and have used it promiscuously ever since
To which I reply: No, sorry. This Asifa has nothing to do with any of that. They’ve given up trying to ban the Internet, and the average haredi isn’t interested in thinking or reading. The problem, primarily, is porn.
To which the others reply (paraphrased): But people have always looked at porn! That can’t be the issue! Its a scam! A trick! They don’t really care about porn! They are just using that as an excuse! What they really want to do is run our lives, and close our minds. If they are saying they care about porn, they are a bunch of liars! And hypocrites! Porn has always been a problem! How dare they make believe that they all of a sudden care!
To which I reply: Sure people have always looked at porn, but over the last few years porn has become easier to consume. You can do it quickly, privately and at no cost. The desire to look at porn is a constant, I agree. But the obstacles to looking at porn have been mostly removed. When obstacles disappear consumption goes up. That’s ECO 101.
To which they reply: What are you talking about? You could ALWAYS look at porn
To which I reply: Sure people have always looked at porn, but over the last few years its become easier. You can do it quickly, privately and at no cost. The desire to look at porn is a constant, I agree. But the obstacles to looking at porn have been mostly removed. When obstacles disappear consumption goes up. That’s ECO 101
For some reason, my opponents are unable or unwilling to understand this. In their replies, they point out again, and again in various ways, that porn was always available. What they aren’t grasping is that nowadays more people are seeing more porn because, thanks to the Internet, the porn-watching experience has become so simple. In yesteryear, a shy kid might not be brave enough to ask an older cousin for a magazine, and he might not have had the money to buy one himself. Plus there was always the danger of being spotted in the store, or of the parents finding the contraband. Today, none of that is a worry. The teenager of 2012 can sit with his iPod and feast at a never-ending porn shmorg — all free, all private, with little to no risk of discovery. As a result, porn consumption has skyrocketed.
The purpose of the Asifa is to raise awareness and to discuss solutions. The analogy I gave on Twitter is this: Say you lived in a neighborhood that was frequently visited by bears. The non-idiots in the community would understand immediately that bears are attracted by food and you can encourage them to move on by cutting off their food supply. The non-idiots would take down their bird feeders and keep their garbage in doors for as long as possible. Expert non-idiots might start treating their garbage with some kind of bear repellent. But what abut the non-idiots who just don’t know about the bear? What about the people who are idiots? Until both groups are told about the problem and taught bear-control procedures, the bear will keep coming back. So, what you need to do is have a public meeting, where the problem can be publicized and solutions can be taught.
Its the same with the porn problem. Non-idiots already have filters and are already watching their kids and teaching them how to make good choices. But most people are not non-idiots. Most people don’t know what to do, and may not even be aware of the severity of problem. For instance, most people don’t know (until its too late) that a kid with an iPod is running a XXX theater during recess. Most people don’t know (until its too late) that their 15 year old texts on shabbos. Most people don’t know (until its too late) that their spouse has developed an inappropriate friendship with someone on Facebook How do you fix that? How do you protect people before it’s too late? By raising awareness at a public meeting, which is just another word for asifa.
I’m oversimplifying. Other problems the asifa will tackle include kids who text on shabbos, adults who look at porn, and married people who use the Internet to form emotional connections with members of the opposite sex or to meet extramarital partners and set up assignations. All of that happens today with greater frequency for the same reason 14 year old boys see more porn: Its become cheaper and easier to do. The purpose of the asifa is to raise awareness about all of these problems and to let people know what they can do to protect themselves and their families.
Tens of thousands of Ultra-Orthodox Jews will participate in a huge rally to be held on Sunday evening, May 20, at Citi Field in Queens, New York, to combat the evils of the Internet and the damages caused by advanced electronic devices.
The NY Mets will be playing in Toronto on the same day.
The website JDN cites one of the event organizers who said: “This will be a mass rally never before seen in the history of Orthodox Jewry in the U.S. It will be a gathering of unity of all the Jews living in the U.S., a gathering to disseminate information and a prayer rally for the success of Klal-Israel’s war on the Technology which threatens the sanctity of the homes of Israel.”
The “Gdolei Israel” (leading sages) behind the conference have specifically ordered to schedule it for the eve of Rosh Chodesh Sivan, a day which is considered particularly fortuitous when it comes to children’s education, since the goal of their campaign is to save the generation from the ravages of advanced technology.
The following has been published in the Haredi press, regarding the upcoming event:
A Letter from our Masters the Great Men of Israel Shlita In Preparation for the International Conference in the U.S. Against the Scourge of Technology
It is well known that in recent times through the Internet many serious family-related problems have been created, and it all happens because of it, and something must be done so they won’t be hurt. And since this touches almost everyone, we must assemble together to protect and be protected, and we hope that through this gathering in search of ideas we will be helped from Heaven to save the many, and may it be that we will be successful in encouraging the public not to stumble over this obstacle, and the Lord will guide us in a truthful path. And note that sometimes the suspension of Torah is the very way in which it must be kept.
The letter is signed by Rabbi Aharon Leib Shteinman, Dean of Ponovezh Litze’irim; Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, a highly regarded Bnei-Brak posek; and Rabbi Nissim Karelitz, Chairman of the rabbinical court of Bnei Brak.
According to JDN, the event’s production costs of some $1.5 million were raised from private philanthropists.