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June 29, 2016 / 23 Sivan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘talk’

Straight Talk

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

I am finally doing what I should have done long ago
l am learning Arabic.

I have been studying in a course for about half a year now and let me tell you – it is empowering.

Firstly, if you know Hebrew, it is certainly a step up in learning its sister Semitic tongue.
Arabic, like other Semitic languages, was influenced by the earlier Hebrew.

When Arabs realize that I can address them in their own language, it really makes them pause and wonder who is that person before them? You get “some respect.” Looks like an Ashkenazi Jew, even a tourist but… how, where, why…who is he?

You can imagine the possibilities…

Some weeks ago for the first time, I took my Arabic outside the class room  to the “Machane Yehuda” outdoor market in downtown Jerusalem. The colorful stalls are often manned by young boisterous Arab employees, yelling for the attention of the shopping crowd.

Most of these hawkers live in East Jerusalem or beyond and have little opportunity to really talk to Jew for more than a quick fruit or vegetable sale.

Well, I stopped at my favorite bread and pita stall, as I normally do, and I asked for bread, in his language, Needless to say he was surprised. I actually was able to get out a couple of short sentences and he was convinced. He glanced at his fellow employee with a look that said, “Who is he”?
So he asked me, “Where are you from”? I answered “from the US”.

They were really puzzled now. I added, “but now I live here in Israel.” I asked him, and where are you from’? He answered very matter of factly, from here, Palestine”

I gave him an incredulous look and asked, “Where?” He repeated, “Palestine” I corrected him. We are in Israel. not Palestine.”.
He then corrected me. There is no Israel, just Palestine.”  I had to explain to him that there is in fact no such place as Palestine.
It is not mentioned in the Koran even once nor for that matter is Jerusalem mention in the Koran.
I think that they were not aware of this fact and my mention of their Koran made them rather upset. One of them had to be calmed down by a fellow worker.
I pointed out that “Palestine exists only in your head, no where else.”
Boy was I pleased with myself. I spread the truth in the language of denial.
The pita was extra tasty.

Then there was a short conversation I had the other day with a Muslim woman, scarf and all, which began with simple pleasantries on the train.
When was the last time a Jewish man–or any man– spoke to her on the train? Who was this stranger speaking her language?

She was happy to inform me that she lives in a village outside Jerusalem, Nakuba, and went on to add that her family originally comes from a different village, Tzuba. I said, “yes I know that place. It is a kibbutz today. From that village on the hill, the Arabs shot down on Jewish transportation coming and going to Jerusalem, strangling the city.” Therefore I reminded her, the Arab militia and the residents had to be expelled.
Well, she didn’t expect a tough love history lesson and the niceties were gone. So was my Arabic.

But we were talking, in Hebrew, which was interesting.

She said how would you feel if someone took YOUR house?”
I had to explain to her the very basics of how this “conflict’ arose.
She had no patience for facts. She said,”you shot on us, not WE on you’!
Now, this is not an illiterate worker in the market. She is an educated student from our best Israeli schools.

Yet, her “narrative” is stronger than facts and fae more resilient than higher education, logic, or any benefits the Jewish state can bestow upon her.

A great man once said that, a “dumb, illiterate Arab is far less dangerous to Israel than a smart educated one – especially the ones that WE educate.”

That man was pretty smart.

I can say that in Arabic.

Shalom Pollack

Soul Talk – Giving Your Children the Right Values [audio]

Monday, May 9th, 2016

Rabbi David Aaron discusses how to instill religious values in your kids.

Rabbi David Aaron

Rabbi David Aaron

Israel News Talk Radio

Temple Mount Talk is Cheap

Tuesday, April 19th, 2016

This past week the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Association (UNESCO) adopted a resolution ignoring Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and Western Wall. The resolution, which is riddled with polemical condemnations of Israel as the “Occupying Power,” refers to the Temple Mount strictly as Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif, the Arabic names for the holy site. The resolution does make mention of the Western Wall, but only twice in quotations following its Arabic name Al-Buraq.

The contents of the resolution are quite disturbing. Among other things, UNESCO blasted Israel for creating the new egalitarian prayer section by the Western Wall (so much for pluralism), and accused Israel of “banning Muslims from burying their dead in some spaces [and] planting Jewish fake graves in other spaces of the Muslim cemeteries,” an allegation that rings of a modern day blood-libel.

Israeli politicians, among them Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, lambasted UNESCO for denying the Jewish people’s historic connection to the Temple Mount. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s thunderous condemnation certainly fits the absurdity of the resolution, however, the Israeli Government’s subsequent inaction regarding its policy towards the Temple Mount is perhaps more absurd than the resolution itself.

We can expect very little, if anything, from the UN and its institutions whose hypocritical and virulently anti-Israel bias shows no sign of respite. But we can’t expect the UN to be more Zionistic than the Israeli Government itself. UNESCO’s resolution is the logical product of Israel’s own draconian policies enforced on Jews at the Temple Mount.

In the democratic State of Israel in the year 2016, Jews are only permitted to ascend to the Temple Mount at two designated timeslots each day (excluding Friday and Saturday), and are strictly forbidden from praying at Judaism’s holiest site. Religious objects such as a tallit, prayer book, or even a Star of David are prohibited. Violators of these regulations are arrested on the spot.

To demand from the world to recognize the Jewish people’s historic ties to the Temple Mount while simultaneously restricting Jewish access and prayer rights on the Temple Mount is in essence a schizophrenic acquiescence to Muslim ownership of the holy site.

If that wasn’t bad enough, two days following the resolution, Israel’s Police Commissioner announced a renewal of an open-ended ban of Israeli MKs visiting the Temple Mount. For all intents and purposes, the Israeli Government is providing the UN with positive reinforcement for bad behavior.

The Government’s discriminatory policy towards the Temple Mount lends further credence to the UN’s false assertion that the Jewish people have no ties to the spot on which the First and Second Temples stood. After seven years of a right-wing coalition, the unfortunate reality is that the Government has no intention to change the inequitable status quo and provide equal rights to Jews on the Temple Mount.

In addition to the discriminatory nature of this policy, the Government’s abdication of responsibility over control of the Temple Mount has national ramifications. Israeli poet Uri Zvi Greenberg famously said, “He who controls the Temple Mount, controls the land.” Currently, the Islamic Waqf controls the Temple Mount.

As for the Prime Minister and the politicians who blasted the UNESCO resolution – talk is cheap. The people of Israel deserve action.

Eytan Meir

Israeli Source: Obama No Longer Committed to Iran Attack Option

Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

A senior Israeli government official has told Kol Israel this morning that he doubts the Obama Administration’s commitment to prevent Iran “at any cost” from attainting a nuclear weapon.

The official explained that the Administration’s behavior in Syria, in complete contradiction of President Obama’s declarations, shows Israel that it cannot rely on American promises.

The senior official added that Israel could execute a strike against Iran without American operational support, but such an attack would be less effective than an American operation.

Israel is extremely concerned that the U.S. might be seeking direct negotiations between Washington and Tehran, leading to easing the sanctions against Iran in return for Iranian concessions that would fall short of Israel’s demands.

It’s likely that the high level official’s statement is an expression of the Netanyahu government’s anxiety over the glee with which the Obama Administration has welcomed the election of a new Iranian president. A White House statement following the inauguration of President Hasan Rouhani Sunday read:

“We congratulate the Iranian people for making their voices heard during the election. We note that President Rouhani recognized that his election represented a call by the Iranian people for change, and we hope that the new Iranian Government will heed the will of the voters by making choices that will lead to a better life for the Iranian people. We do believe that his inauguration presents an opportunity for Iran to act quickly to resolve the international community’s deep concerns over Iran’s nuclear program. And, as we’ve said all along, should the new government choose to engage substantively and seriously to meet its international obligations, we are ready to talk to them when they are ready to do so.”

Direct talks, as suggested by the White House statement, always begin with “confidence building measures,” and the Netanyahu government must be worried that it would be picking up the tab on the new couple’s honeymoon.

In the State Dept. daily press briefing yesterday, Deputy Spokesperson Marie Harf was asked: “The Israeli Government said over the weekend it does not trust Rouhani because of statements which they say indicate, again, an existential threat to Israel’s existence. Is the U.S. taking that concern under consideration when it looks at how it might want to engage with Rouhani?”

Harf answered that the U.S. will take “the whole range of security concerns, the security problems Iran has presented for the region into account,” when it decides how to deal with the new Iranian Government. She reiterated that it’s important “to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon because of the threat they could pose to Israel, to the region, and indeed to us as well.” But, finally, hope sprang eternal, and Harf acknowledged that the U.S. is “waiting to talk to them when they are ready to engage substantively.” Meaning – one on one.

Harf was next asked “What’s the first step that you would want to see Rouhani take on the nuclear issue?”

“We have a proposal on the table,” she said. “We’ve had it on the table for some time and we’re waiting for a substantive response from the Iranian side on how to move forward. And we’ve been clear that that’s what needs to happen next.”

All of which suggests that the Supreme Leader Sayyed Ali Khamenei has played a brilliant game in picking his new “moderate” president.

Khamenei made Rouhani chief of Iran’s nuclear negotiations in 2003, for the same reason he made him president this time around – the man can talk a candy out of the western babies’ hands. Rouhani ran the negotiations between Iran and three European states in Tehran and continued later in Brussels, Geneva and Paris.

Rouhani’s team back then was described as “the best diplomats in the Iranian Foreign Ministry.” They prevented further escalation of accusations against Iran, and so prevented Iran’s nuclear case from going to the UN Security Council. They figured out how to temporarily suspend parts of Iran’s nuclear activities to appease the West.

And so, while building confidence, insisting on Iran’s rights, reducing international pressures and the possibility of war, and preventing Iran’s case from being reported to the UN Security Council, Iran succeeded in completing its nuclear fuel cycle and took groundbreaking steps to produce a nuclear weapon.

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israeli-source-obama-no-longer-committed-to-iran-attack-option/2013/08/06/

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