Photo Credit:
Douglas Family Bar Mitzvah Photo

For the longest time, I’ve begged (on my blogs) the Israeli Government, official and media to act outrageously insulted and demand suitable compensation or else against those who treat Israel badly. That includes offenses like Turkey’s sending the flotilla of weapons to support Gazan arab terrorists against us, or the countries led by the USA that refuse to recognize Jerusalem as our Capital City and everything in between.

So I was completely overjoyed when the new Netanyahu, Likud Government actually exhibited outrage at the anti-Israel comments of the head of Orange recently. And just like I’ve always said, “if you act strong people will respect you,” the Orange company head is in Israel to apologize and smoothe things over.

Orange chief executive Stephane Richard, whose remarks about ending a licensing deal have caused anger in Israel, will meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday during a visit to the country, a company spokeswoman said.
“Richard declared that he is happy to have a chance to clarify Orange Group commitment to Israel,” spokeswoman Nilly Richman said in a statement, adding that the CEO also planned to meet Israel’s former head of state Shimon Peres.
After arriving in Israel on Thursday, he visited Tel Aviv-based Orange Fab, an accelerator program for Israeli high-tech start-ups that was purchased by Orange.
Israel protested to France after Richard said last week that he would terminate a licensing arrangement with Israel’s Partner Communications “tomorrow morning” if the contracts allowed. Orange is 25 percent owned by the French government. (Reuters)

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We’re always getting bullied, because we kowtow in response instead of hitting back. Today there is a lot of emphasis in child-raising in how to teach your children not to be a victim. International Relations and diplomacy work the same way. Israel’s being “nice” about being insulted and trying to placate the bullies only increases the diplomatic offensive against Israel.

More About Jewish Pride…

In an interesting twist, two generations after Issur Danielovitch aka Kirk Douglas married the non-Jewish Diana, his grandson Dylan, son of Michael and the non-Jew Catherine Zeta Jones, is strongly identifying as a Jew. At his request he even had a Bar Mitzvah of sorts.

A few decades ago, it would be unheard of for a family with Jewish roots, but non-Jewish according to Jewish Law, to come out so publicly and proudly as Jewish.

“I have no formal religious background,” he said. “So this came as a surprise to some degree.”
His son, intrigued by his many Jewish friends who were going through the process of studying for their bar mitzva, spent many Saturdays observing what they learned in Hebrew school. After several months, “he came to me and his mom and said, ‘Mom, dad, I want to have a bar mitzva.’”
“’When I go to their houses on Friday night, we light the candles, I feel something. When I go there and listen to them talk, my soul feels something,’” Dylan told his father.
“I said, ‘That’s fantastic,’” Douglas recalled, the pride for his son clearly evident in his voice. (Jerusalem Post)

I certainly can’t predict of this strong Jewish identity will last in young Dylan, if it will fade away or he’ll get more involved or even convert. At the same time, I wonder about the non-Jews in my extended family. Will any of them try to return to their Jewish roots? 

At the book launch for Rabbi Shlomo Riskin’s latest book, he and Caroline Glick discussed the situation of families like that of the Douglases. Chazal gives a different status to non-Jews of paternal Jewish roots versus non-Jews without any genealogical Jewish history. According to Riskin, potential converts of paternal Jewish lines,  zera yisrael, Jewish Seed, are supposed to be welcomed to conversion proceedings (education) and not given the usual series of refusals.

May Israel’s leaders lead with strong confident Jewish Values, fearing only G-d Almighty, and may all Jews and also those of Jewish roots return to Our Jewish People and Jewish Land, Torah and Mitzvot.

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10 COMMENTS

  1. Alas, (or is it baruch Hashem?) That is not so. Just like feeling like an African American does not make one an African American, and feeling like a woman does not make one a woman. I think the Douglases realize that. The article is not blind to it: "I certainly can’t predict of this strong Jewish identity will last in young Dylan, if it will fade away or he’ll get more involved or even convert. "

  2. Rubbish! Judaism defines who is Jewish! Not a secular,agnostic,atheistic 'gentile like' pariah! Schachter you have no credentials to pass Judgment on what is Judaism. Watch bcat.tv Judaism every Wednesday 10:00AM & 6:00PM New York Time scroll down to Community Media then click on Brooklyn Public Network then click on arrow in channel 2. Shame! Shame! Shame on you!

  3. I’m always moved when I hear about strong feelings towards the Jewish people; certainly the Douglases. We are many with a Jewish paternal bloodline reaching out. If we were Jews enough to be persecuted by the Nazis why can’t we be recognized as such? Don’t get me wrong, I respect Halacha, but I agree with the article, that paternal Jewish lines should be accommodated more easily to eventual conversion.

  4. I don't want to be mean to anybody, but we cannot change what has been religious law for eons. I know people want to be nice and all inclusive, non-judgmental, etc, etc, but this is not a kumbaya moment for the squishy to make the rules. What has stood us in good stead all of these years cannot be changed by a group of ignorant, but well meaning people.
    It ain't easy being a Jew, nor should it be, but the power of the orthodox to determine if a conversion is valid is wrong, but it should not be as easy as printing your name on a piece of parchment. We are an exclusive people you know.
    I respect the Douglases (some of them anyway), but being a Jew is not the same as changing your car or house. It is a lifetime commitment. If Dylan wants to be a JKew, then he casn take classes like the rest of the poeiople who want to convert.

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