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Posts Tagged ‘trees’

The Noose Around Israel’s Neck

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

Israel is being hanged on a public gallows erected on the grounds of the United Nations with yards of rope gleefully supplied by the Muslim world. But the hangmen are mostly Westerners who still think that the Muslim lynch mob at their doorstep can be pacified with the death of a single victim.

There are three things you can do when you are about to be hanged. You can walk proudly, recite a glorious line or two to embed your martyrdom in historical memory, and then allow yourself to be hanged. Jews have an extensive body of experience with that brand of martyrdom.

Alternatively you can plead your case all the way to the gallows, arguing that a mistake has been made, that your case has been improperly reviewed, begging for someone to listen and do something. This way also ends in a hanging. But it’s the hanging of a slave without even a shred of dignity attached to it. A man that dies pleading with his murderers, and puts his fate in the honesty of the liars and hypocrites whose own crimes makes the worst of his look like virtues, is a craven fool.

Because there is really only one thing you can do when the noose is being placed around your neck. Resist. A noose works by tightening around your neck and cutting off your air or breaking your neck. If you resist the tightening of the noose, you may actually survive. On the other hand if you follow through all the procedures, if you allow your hands to be tied behind your back, and the noose to be fastened around your neck while trusting in the system to do right by you– your death is inevitable.

For seventeen years Israel has been walking toward the gallows. Its leaders have led it there by the nose ring of international assurances. Its people have been led there by refusing to see what is waiting ahead for them, even while the blood was being cleaned off the streets. Every attempt to reach a peaceful solution, every concession and show of good faith, has only tightened the bonds around its hands and the noose around its neck.

That is because every concession Israel has made, has further restricted not only its ability to defend itself, but even its ability to do basic things such as build residential housing in the capital of its own nation. Every gesture and agreement Israel has signed has bound it to ever more restrictive terms. And none of them have brought any peace. All they have ever done is set the bar higher for the next round of concessions demanded by the enemy and its aiders and abettors in the next phase of negotiations.

This is not a peace process, and it has never been one. It is a public lynching. It is the lynching of a country whose only real crime is that its existence offends the religious fanaticism and prejudices of a billion Muslims, who control much of the world’s oil, and whose followers are willing to riot and kill in the streets of nearly every major city in the world at the slightest offense.

The lynching began as a trial where the murderer wore a fine suit and his victim sat in an orange jumpsuit in the dock. Every day during the trial, the murderer would be allowed to leave the courtroom to kill again. And every afternoon he would return to the courtroom with bloody hands that the judge and jurors would pretend not to see. And if the victim dared to call attention to those bloody hands, he would be silenced and told that those murders too were his fault. Hadn’t he after all provoked the murderer into committing them?

Now the trial is coming to a close. The farce that the proceedings ever had anything to do with peace is unraveling. And we can thank Hamas and Obama for that. The endgame is all too clear. The undoing of that “mistake” which allowed the oldest and most persecuted minority in the Middle East to briefly reclaim their homeland from the tyranny of Muslim Caliphs and Sultans. To serve as a homeland for their persecuted brethren from the east and the west. From the south and the north. That mistake.

Uprooted

Monday, November 5th, 2012

Liad Arussy sent us this image of a collapsed tree in Fair Lawn, NJ, after Hurricane Sandy. She wrote: “Once stood so strong, now fallen in shame.”

Lying on its side, the tree is not dead, and the slab of grassy soil that was lifted along with its roots is alive, too, only not upright.

I hope whomever it is at the Fair Lawn municipality who is deposited with the responsibility of up-righting the uprooted trees will come over quickly, dig up the hole in the ground and replant this magnificent tree. I hope the orange ribbon, wrapped around the tree like some natural crime scene, doesn’t mean that the tree is slated to be hauled on a big truck and taken to be sliced up into convenient wood slabs.

We have enough wood, what we need are living, breathing trees.

Politics And Torah — Friends Or Enemies?

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Many trees upstate were damaged by the hurricane that swept through the East Coast at the end of last summer, and I was involved in finding the safest equipment to clean up the mess. I love trees and found the chore of cutting them down very difficult, especially knowing that the stately 60 year old trees would be impossible to replace. Even though we planted new trees, I don’t know whether I will be there to enjoy these new saplings when they are 60 years old. I realize that the storm waters that destroyed the trees came at His will, and He could just as easily cause miraculous growth so that the new trees would be as stately as they ones they replaced. We know that all is in His hands, and even though we are required to put forth our efforts, the ultimate success is dependant on His will. However, there always seem to be those certain areas where we forget that the Almighty is really running the show.

The Orchos Tzaddikim (Ways of the Righteous) explains: When a man splits wood with an axe, although it is the axe that is actually splitting the wood, the power doesn’t come from the blade, rather from the man who wields it. The blade is merely the instrument of cutting. Furthermore, one whose livelihood and needs depend on somebody else should not put his trust in that person; he should only place his trust in Hashem.

Imagine there are a hundred blind men, who are walking, one behind the other. Each one has his hand on his friend’s shoulder and is being led by the man before him, until they reach the front of the line where there is one man who can see. Each man in the line is not really leading the man behind him, even though it may seem that way. In reality, the seeing man at the head of the line is the one who is really leading them all. If the seeing man would detach himself from the group, they would all stumble and fall.

The Orchos Tzadikkim concludes, “Let a man take this to heart and reflect that there is no leader but the Holy One Blessed be He, and we are all like blind men, each being assisted and aided by his neighbor, and each neighbor being powerless to assist if not for the first Supreme Leader, the Giver of all, all of Whose ways are just.”

In our daily lives, there are many people who seem to be directing our happiness, success and welfare, yet it is really Hashem alone who is orchestrating our destined level of success. The puppets that are our bosses or political leaders are really just as “blind” as we are; yet we endow them with so much power. We become frustrated with them, despite their powerlessness to dictate our financial and personal successes.

We spend an inordinate amount of time obsessing, worrying, and arguing about our leadership on a national level. Ultimately, no matter how much research, time and effort we put into casting our individual votes, we don’t pick our government leaders. We expend so much time and emotional energy on the campaign issues (or non-issues) and the election fodder, that we often forget that when all is said and done, the final false promise is made, and the last vote is counted, it is only our Father in Heaven who both counts the votes and ultimately decides who runs our country.

Our relationship with Hashem is characterized in many different ways. One of the most important ways is Hashem as our King. However, this relationship may be lacking because most of us have never experienced the awe and respect one would have for a human king. Not many decades ago, people spoke of the government and its representatives, particularly the president, with respect. In the current climate, there is no expectation of respect for our leadership in the press, media, or in the population at large. While many of our leaders may not seem to be deserving of our respect, it is however, likely that this attitude reflects an overall lack of respect for authority that is prevalent today.

Theft and Destruction at Jewish-Owned Olive Grove

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

A Jewish farmer went to harvest olives Tuesday morning from an olive grove he owns in the Shilo region, but on arrival he found that the grove had been stripped of olives, and dozens of trees had been destroyed.

All that farmer Erez Ben-Saadon was left with were broken branches, cloth olive sacks with Arabic writing on them, and spilled olives on the ground.

“We don’t know what to do now,” he said. “We’re talking about tens of thousands of shekels lost, and serious damage to the grove.”

This is not the first time Ben-Saadon has fallen victim to theft and vandalism at the hands of his Arab neighbors. “Last Sabbath, Arabs harvested from my trees and stole olives from 40 other trees in the same area,” he reported.

“A few years ago, they planted three bombs in our vineyard in Har Bracha,” he added. “It was a miracle that nobody was hurt.”

“Uprooting trees, theft, and throwing rocks at farmers are not rare, unfortunately,” he said. “Every year we suffer from assaults and thefts, both from the Arabs and from anarchists and leftists from around the world.”

“It’s outrageous that next to my home in Rechelim, Arabs harvest olives without being disturbed, and yet they attack us in the media, as if we’re plotting against them, while Arab attacks and thefts targeting Jewish farmers in Samaria are met with silence,” he declared.

Samaria Residents’ Committee head Benny Katzover confirmed that farmers in the region have faced frequent harassment, theft and vandalism during the olive harvest season, as well as attempted libel. “Unfortunately, this serious issue is met with a lack of proper response,” he said.

“I call on the legal authorities to take Arab and far-left attacks as seriously as they take Jewish attacks on Arabs,” he added.

Mount of Olives Trees Are World’s Oldest

Sunday, October 21st, 2012

Tests conducted on olive trees on Jerusalem’s historic Mount of Olives are the oldest known trees in the world, according to a study released on Friday conducted by the National Research Council of Italy Trees and Timber Institute.

Trees from the Garden of Gethsemane, in an area taken over by a triumvirate of Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, and Roman Catholic churches, were dated back to the years 1092, 1166, and 1198, according to the study which was done with the participation of 5 Italian universities.

Chief Researcher Professor Antonio Cimato said at a presentation of the results in Rome that there are no plants of greater age cited in scientific literature.

Analysis of DNA from the trees indicated that they came from the same parent plant.

The study was publicized – seemingly unintentionally – at the same time as Jewish people around the world studied and read the weekly Torah portion which corresponded this week to Parshat Noah, in which the story of the flooding of the world, and its redemption through the biblical figure Noah is told.  In the story, Noah released a dove to bring back signs of life after the flood.  The dove returned with an olive branch in its beak – which Jewish tradition teaches was plucked from a tree on the Mount of Olives.

The Mount of Olives is the location of the world’s largest and most ancient Jewish cemetery.  It sits just above the site of King David’s capital city, and was a location of significance for work pertaining to service in the Holy Temples.  According to biblical prophecy in the Book of Zechariah, the Messiah will arrive on the Mount of Olives, before descending to redeem Jerusalem.

Palestinians Caught in the Act (Video)

Monday, October 15th, 2012

Every year the Palestinians blame the Settlers for cutting down their olive trees.

In fact, the JPost reported today:

A PLO official called on Sunday for international observers to protect Palestinian olive farmers and their groves, after more than 450 trees were vandalized last week as the harvest began.

“We urge every country with a diplomatic mission to Palestine to dispatch observer teams to Palestinian olive groves in order to discourage attacks by settlers and to document any abuse that occurs,” PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi said.

“Given Israel’s support for the settlers and its refusal to allow the Palestinian Authority to provide protection through the occupied territory, the Palestinian people require international intervention to ensure their security,” Ashrawi wrote.

Everything the PLO says needs to be taken with a few grains of salt…especially, when this video was provided today by the Shomron Settlement Council, taken today – of Palestinians and a Leftwing activist actively cutting down a Palestinian Olive Grove near Alon Moreh (what better way to demand international observers).

Too bad for them we caught it all on video.  Not that Ashrawi cares, as long as she can blame the evil Zionist Joos.

See for yourselves:

Forester-For-A-Day: KKL-JNF Involves Citizens in Maintaining Israeli Forests

Monday, September 10th, 2012

KKL-JNF’s ( Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael- Jewish National Fund) “Forester For a Day” program is a new ecological initiative that offers visitors a unique opportunity to assist in maintaining Israel’s forests, prevent forest fires and promote an overall atmosphere of environmental awareness.

The KKL-JNF owns 13 percent of the land in Israel, and has planted 240 million trees and establish more than 1,000 parks. Building on KKL-JNF’s  hugely successful flagship tree-planting project, the “Forester-For-A-Day” program lets participants connect with the soil of Israel in a very personal way.

Participants work side-by-side with KKL-JNF foresters to prune trees, prepare forest paths and fire breaks, and clear underbrush. The program is tailored to groups only (15-100 participants), and is available in English, French, German, and Spanish. Spread out in four locations across the country – Birya forest in the Golan, Carmel forest  in the Galillee, Ben Shemen forest in the Center, and Lahav forest in the South – the program runs 2-3 hours in its entirety, and provides an opportunity for volunteers of all ages to experience Israel in a unique way and make a direct contribute to its preservation.

The cost is $18 per person, and participants receive a bottle of water, KKL-JNF hat and pin, certificate of appreciation after their work is completed.

The Jewish Press sat down with Revital Ovadia, Coordinator of Forester-For-A-Day, to find out more about the program.

The Jewish Press (JP): How did the Forester-For-A-Day program get started?

Revital Ovadia (RO): Unfortunately, it was a tragedy – the Carmel Forest fire in December 2010 – that inspired the program. But we decided to take a tragedy and bring something positive out of it.

What has been the feedback? Have many people have participated in the program?

As of today – which is only a year into the program’s implementation – there have been hundreds of participants: bar and bat mitzvah parties, groups wanting to get involved, as well as workplace and family events.

The feedback has been great. The best indication of its success is the fact that when the Israeli public heard about the program – which was tailored specifically for non-Israelis – many requested to participate in it. And so we opened it up to Israeli participation as well!

Has the program had an effect yet on the environment? Has it helped with the rehabilitation after the Carmel fire?

The Carmel Forest has been rehabilitating at an impressive rate, thanks in  part to the program, as well as all the volunteers who came to help KKL-JNF after the fire.

Still, we are not permitted to plant new trees until next year – in order to let the soil regenerate. So we are looking forward to returning to planting trees and intensifying the Carmel Forest’s rehabilitation.

What are some other programs people can get involved with KKL-JNF?

KKL-JNF has a wide range of programs and activities, including bicycle and hiking trails in Israel’s forests and in the parks. Groups can also coordinate such activities to precede or follow the Forester-For-A-Day program.

For more information on the campaign, contact Revital Ovadia at KKL-JNF revio@kkl.org.il.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/interviews-and-profiles/forester-for-a-day-kkl-jnf-involves-citizens-in-maintaining-israeli-forests/2012/09/10/

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