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Posts Tagged ‘Scotland’

Church of Scotland Thinks Twice, Grants Israel the Right to Exist

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

The Church of Scotland has called last week’s publication of a Church and Society Council report that denies Israel’s right to exist a “misunderstanding” and now says the Jewish state can remain as part of the world.

The Jewish communities of Scotland were shocked by the report, and the local Council of Christians and Jews helped arrange a meeting between officials of the Church and the Jewish community.

A statement after the meeting explained that the Church has not changed its “long held position of the rights of Israel to exist.”

It added, “The Church condemns all violence and acts of terrorism where they happen around the world. The Church condemns all things that create a culture of anti-Semitism.”

The statement added that the Church of Scotland is concerned over what it calls injustices of Palestinian Authority Arabs that “should not be misunderstood as questioning the right of the State of Israel to exist”.

The 10-page report published last week was entitled “The Inheritance of Abraham” and rejected “claims that scripture offers any peoples a privileged claim for possession of a particular territory.”

It also suggested that some Jews believe they have a right to the land of Israel “as compensation for the suffering of the Holocaust.”

Scottish Brewer from Gush Etzion Crafts Traditional Beer

Monday, April 15th, 2013

The Israeli beer industry includes a wide range of brew masters from native Israelis to North American immigrants whose microbreweries can be found across the country from the Golan, Western Galilee and Jezreel Valley, to Ein Hod and Emek Hefer in the north and in the Negev.

In the hills of Judea, Gush Etzion also has its very own brewery known as the Lone Tree Brewery. Established four years ago by David Shire, originally from Glasgow, Scotland and his wife, Miriam from Tunisia, along with an American couple, Yochanan and Susan Levin, the brewery offers a wide array of flavors to the Israeli market.

Most likely the only Scottish brew master in Israel and maybe even in the Middle East, Shire has been living in Israel for the past 30 years.  A biologist, who was studying for a PhD when he first made aliyah while working at Hadassah, Shire made a career switch to landscape gardening and eventually discovered the brewery business as well.

“Back in the UK, you feel as though you must have a certain professional status, but once in Israel, I found that this was largely not the case – it’s acceptable to work in all sorts of jobs. I would rather work in gardening and making beer than in a lab with mice,” Shire told Tazpit News Agency.

Growing up in Scotland, Shire was very familiar with beer and believed that there was a void to fill in the Israeli market. Along with his American counterparts, the Levins, who are also his neighbors in the Neve Daniel community, Shire and his wife discussed one night the possibility of opening a boutique brewery. “We didn’t necessarily drink a lot of beer growing up, but we knew what good beer is supposed to taste like,” said Shire whose mother still lives in Glasgow.

“With that in mind, we wanted to make the best beer possible,” Shire explained, pointing to a periodic table of beer styles tacked on the brewery wall.

The initiative didn’t begin with sweeping expectations. “We started out small, making our own styles of beer based on traditional recipes. The next step was to see if the beer would sell.”

In addition to creating seven unique flavors of beer which include London Pale Ale, Belgian Piraat Ale, California Steam Ale, and Extra Oatmeal Stout, an Irish flavor, Shire and his partners also had to come up with a unique label for their beer. “We wanted a name that would reflect that the beer was crafted in the hills of Judea, and therefore we chose Lone Tree, a symbol of this region.”

The lone tree is a 700 year-old oak tree that stands in Gush Etzion near the Alon Shvut community. The tree became a symbolic landmark to Jewish residents forced to leave behind their communities when Gush Etzion fell to the Jordanian Legion in May 1948. Among the heavy losses, the Jordanians destroyed Kibbutz Kfar Etzion, established in 1935 while also killing its 127 Jewish defenders the day before Israel’s Declaration of Independence. During the 19 years that Gush Etzion was under Jordanian control until Israel’s victory in the 1967 war, the children of Gush Etzion would go to certain observation points in Jerusalem to glimpse the oak tree from afar, dreaming of their return home.

Today, the Lone Tree Brewery, which is located a few minutes away from the famous oak tree, sells its brews across Gush Etzion and Jerusalem, producing a few hundred bottles each month with plans to expand. The brewery also makes specialty beers for Jewish holidays including a popular date and pomegranate beer for Rosh Hashana.

“There is something magical about making beer here in Israel,” adds Shire, pouring a glass of Extra Oatmeal Stout. “When tourists come to visit us, they get to experience phenomenal views of the Judean hills and the coast, soak in the area’s history, all while drinking a quality hand-crafted beer. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

The Lone Tree Brewery is located in the Gush Etzion forest in the Abu-Cleb Recreational Park, a 15-minute drive from Jerusalem.

Scottish Council Vows to Boycott Israel

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

A county council in Scotland has expressed its support for boycotting Israel.

Clackmananshire County Council, the smallest local authority in Scotland, passed a motion in which it resolved to “resist, insofar as legislative considerations permit, any action that gives political or economic support to the State of Israel.”

The motion, passed last week without opposition and with only three abstentions, also compared Israel to apartheid South Africa and hoped that “individual and collective sanctions against the State of Israel will end apartheid and suffering in Palestine.” The move has been condemned by Britain’s Jewish community and pro-Israel groups.

A statement from the Fair Play campaign group — an organization set up in 2006 by the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council — criticized the council.

“The idea of Clackmannanshire Council having its own foreign policy is ridiculous. This misguided and offensive motion will have no impact on the real world, a fact acknowledged by the motion itself when it stresses that it will only act ‘insofar as legislative considerations permit.’ We urge the Council to grow up and abandon this biased stunt of a motion,” the statement said.

King James II

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

This is a portrait of King James II by Nicolas de Largillière, c. 1686.

James II was King of England and Ireland, and also doubled under the name James VII as King of Scotland. His reign began on February 6, 1685.

He was the last Catholic monarch to reign over the Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland. After he produced a Catholic heir, the English gentry invited his son in law William of Orange from the Netherlands to invade their country. James II abdicated in a hurry in 1688 and fled to France. He was replaced by William of Orange who became William III, ruling jointly with his wife, who was James’s daughter, Mary II (both Protestants) and together they were the William and Mary team.

James made one half-hearted attempt to take back his country in 1689, but gave up again and Lived out his life sponsored by his cousin, King Louis XIV.

James II, like Louis, was a believer in the absolute monarchy, kings ruling by the grace of God, etc. He also believed, strangely enough, in religious liberty for all his subjects. The first belief made him an enemy of the aristocracy, the second angered the Curch of England. So there you go.

Today, November 13, back in 1685, when he was still very much the king—for another three years or so—King James II of England ordered his Attorney General to stop any proceedings against the Jews because “they should not be troubled upon the King’s account but they should quietly enjoy the free exercise of their religion whilst they behaved dutifully and obediently to his government.”

I’m a great believer in gratitude to those who have done right by us. I often think of King James II when I get into debates with my friends both on the left and on the right over my deep admiration for the late President Richard Nixon. Like James II, he was despised by the powers that be across the board (even though he won by a landslide in 1972). But in October, 1973, by about the tenth day of the Yom Kippur war, Israel had run out of practically everything, and it was Richard Nixon who saved our hide, with a fleet of Galaxy cargo planes the size of spaceships, that brought in ammunition and supplies.

So, my word for today is Gratitude. To James II and Millhouse I and all the misunderstood rulers and despots who did right by us.

Scotland’s Only Glatt Kosher Restaurant

Thursday, June 21st, 2012

If you are seeking a new place to visit this summer with all kosher amenities at your disposal, why not visit Scotland? Glasgow has a full range of Jewish facilities to cater for tourists and business people alike. Including daily minyanim, a mikveh for men and women, and kosher food. Edinburgh has a mikveh for ladies, minyanim only a few times during the week.

Whatever holiday you require, be it luxury, basic or partial self-catering, let L’Chaim’s Restaurant provide all your culinary requirements. These include nightly dining at L’Chaim’s gourmet restaurant, ready to heat/hot meals delivered to your hotel (or can be collected), breakfast trays, lunch trays, fresh sandwiches, and a comprehensive menu of all Shabbos meals including cholent with or without a slow cooker anywhere in Scotland.

The restaurant is under the hashgacha of the West of Scotland Kashrus commission and is personally supervised by Rabbi Chaim and Rebbetzin Sora Jacobs, Lubavitch shluchim in Glasgow for 42 years. Only Kedassia or MH Manchester shechita is used.

When you walk into L’Chaim’s you are invited to dine in the candle-lit dining room with its own decorative ambiance. Its elegant setting and smart décor is ideal for a relaxing night out and business meetings.

Once seated, freshly baked French baguettes are brought to your table and the experience of first class cuisine in trendy surroundings begins. L’Chaim’s has a wine license and you can enjoy a choice of 15 popular kosher wines.

The restaurant is located on the complex of Giffnock Shul, the largest congregation in Scotland, headed by Rabbi Moshe Rubin. It is the only shul with a daily and Shabbos minyan both morning and evening.

Besides numerous luxury hotels in Glasgow, there are two small hotels close to Giffnock Shul, enabling people to enjoy Shabbos minyanim and atmosphere. People can purchase all their Shabbos and weekday meals from L’Chaim’s.

You can try one of the two hotels listed below: Redhurst Hotel, tel. 0141-638-6465, Redhurst@lineone.ne. Orchard Park Hotel, tel. 0141-638-1044, e-mail ozcapaldi@hotmail.com.

Hotels in Scotland will heat and store meals for guests as required and provide a table for guests to enjoy their Shabbos and weekday kosher food. Check with the hotel when booking your room.

For further information, see go to www.lchaimsrestaurant.co.uk.

Lockerbie Bomber Dies in Libya

Monday, May 21st, 2012

A former Libyan intelligence officer sentenced to life in prison for his role in bombing Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, has died in a Libyan prison.  He was 60.

Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, was sentenced to life in prison for the December 21, 1988 bombing of the transatlantic flight from London to New York in which 270 people were killed – 259 on board and 11 people on the ground, including 189 Americans.

Megrahi was the only person convicted of the crime, though he maintained his innocence.  Al Amin Khalifa Fhimah, another Libyan intelligence officer charged in the attack, was found not guilty.

Megrahi was diagnosed with terminal prostate cancer in 2009 and released home to Libya from Scottish prison on compassionate grounds, leading to international accusations that British and Scottish oil interests led to the release.

Scottish Student who Defiled Israeli Flag Appeals Sentence

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Paul Donnachie, 19, a student who racially abused a Jewish student at St Andrews University in Scotland and was sentenced to 150 hours of community service and ordered to pay £300 compensation, is appealing his conviction of defiling an Israeli flag in a racially aggravated manner.

Donnachie was convicted of racially aggravated breach of the peace and of abusing fellow student Chanan Reitblat in March, when he put his hands down his trousers and rubbed his genitals before wiping his hands on an Israeli flag. Donnachie, who was subsequently expelled by the university, also shouted about “a nation built on terrorism” and claimed “they are all suicide bombers.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/scottish-student-who-defiled-israeli-flag-appeals-sentence/2012/04/03/

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