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The past decade saw the privatization of El Al and today the airline is more dedicated to keeping public shareholders happy than she is to fulfilling any sort of national mission. A perfect case in point happened recently when a profit-motivated El Al attempted to charge the President of the State of Israel an exorbitant $4,700 to haul a security mandated oxygen tank.
The Third Jewish Commonwealth has accomplished remarkable growth and productivity in its first six decades, and inspires the world with its resourcefulness. Yet as a young country, Israel has much room for improvement. Here are the Top 12 most pressing issues facing the reborn nation today:
There is a tradition from the Vilna Gaon that Milchemes Gog and Magog at the time of Moshiach will last only 12 minutes. In that short amount of time 1/3 of the world will be destroyed, 1/3 severely wounded and 1/3 will survive. Until recently this was incomprehensible - how could such destruction happen so quickly?
Here we are again – Shavuos, the yom tov commemorating the giving of the Torah, God’s greatest gift to mankind. If someone were to say to me, “It’s unbelievable that Hashem gave us His amazing Torah,” I would respond, “That’s the wrong way to put it. ‘Unbelievable’ means ‘not to be believed.’ The correct expression is, ‘It’s beyond belief’ – meaning more than belief. Hashem loves His charming nation beyond words.”
One of the questions a person is asked when he reaches his Heavenly rest is, "Did you yearn for Salvation?" If a Jew does not long for the Redemption, for Salvation from the exile, then something is wrong. If he is happy in the Diaspora, then his Judaism is out of focus, and he is out of touch with his soul's deepest yearnings. As The Kuzari poignantly declares, his prayers for Jerusalem and Zion are like the chatterings of a nightingale, melodious but empty of meaning.
The Asifa was a sober and responsible approach to a real problem, and I was impressed by the quickness with which the organizers responded to the potential pitfalls of being portrayed as Luddites, which does not befit a nation of scholars and questioners.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan once said that democracy was like a trolley. You ride it until you get to your destination and then get off. Presumably that’s at the point where you have consolidated power to the point you can do whatever you want and have turned Turkey into an Islamist state.
While Pakistan has been invited to the NATO summit in Chicago next week, Israel has been left out, at the request of Turkey, according...
The Talmud tells us that compassion is one of the three traits that distinguish the nation of Israel (the others are shame and kindness). The Torah abounds with commandments that exercise this quality, and Rabbi Avigdor Miller, zt”l, explains that they are given for exactly that purpose.
President Barack Obama's recent self-congratulatory comments on the killing of Osama bin Laden must be viewed against the backdrop of past presidents, and how they related to the role of the military.
We're a seriously self-obsessed nation, goes without saying. And if we spot you even mumbling something under your mustache or into your beer – we just know it was about us and how we control things, and grab your money and all that. But what if you say nothing about us – and you're Gore Vidal? Tricky, right? We'll answer that and 9 more mysteries after you click.
Yaakov Avinu received word that his brother Eisav was coming to greet him. He understood fully well that this was not to be a warm family reunion. Eisav came accompanied by a band of four hundred armed men, bent on revenge. The Torah says Yaakov was “very frightened,” so he prepared for war.
President Shimon Peres: "Our mutual unwavering commitment to each other is crucial. The young generation's commitment to our state is essential as our shared tomorrow will be defined by innovation. As partners of our nation, your ability to secure a future defined by scientific development and discoveries is vital to our shared mission."
"Under the Prayer Shawl - Secrets of the Priestly Blessing", was shot on location at the 2011 annual massive blessing by the Jewish Priests...
Paul Donnachie, 19, a student who racially abused a Jewish student at St Andrews University in Scotland and was sentenced to 150 hours of...
A new feature-length documentary starring one of Harvard University’s all-time most popular professors reveals the secret components of Israel’s success as an international leader in innovation and humanitarianism.
Following the murder of Jews in Toulouse, France, Chairman of the National Union MK Yaakov Katz (Ketzale) expressed his condolences to the families of the dead and called on all French Jews to "immigrate to Israel and strengthen the nation the dwells in Zion."
It's time for the realists to acknowledge that Israel not only has a moral and ideological claim to American support, but it also has a claim base on realpolitik.
A Jerusalem district court begins hearings today on a suit by a Zionist organization claiming it was defamed by a leftist group that called it "fascist."
Americans never seem to tire of Richard Nixon, the man who strode the nation’s political stage for three decades, as congressman, senator, vice president and president, only to see his career come crashing down when his involvement in the Watergate scandal led to his resignation – the only U.S. president to so step down – in order to avoid certain impeachment.