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Friday, May 30, 2014

Jewish Holiday of Shavuot: June 3rd to June 5th

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                    

Charles Heston in the role of Moses in the Ten Commandments 1956
Shavuot=weeks  Here we go again with an important holiday to observe and with our delicious foods, it's something we do look forward to in that we get to eat cheese blinzes and other special goodies according to our customs!  We start our celebration the evening of June 3rd and it's over on June 5th this year which in the Hebrew calendar is the 5th of Sivan to the 7th of Sivon.  .

This is Shavuot/Shavuos, when we were given the Torah by Moses.  Imagine yourself sitting around amongst 600,000 of your family and friends and having left Egypt, marching and resting towards the Promised Land, and Moses has all sit down and listen to him in the mountains of Mt. Sinai, where hopefully the sound will carry to all. He probably had some men blow the Shofar (ram's horn) to get everyone's attention and quiet.

The number 7 is very special as there are 7 days in a week, and the Israelites had to work every single day when slaves in Egypt; no weekend for them.  Exactly 7 weeks after they left Egypt and while camping here at the foot of Mt. Sinai somewhere in the Sinai Peninsula, the awesome event was witnessed by all of our ancestors.

Moses came down the mountain and gave these 600,000 the 10 Commandments.  This was the Revelation, when G-d's will was revealed for all forever after.  This of course if not the whole Torah, which consists sof 613 commandments, but they were its foundation and became the moral bedrock for much of Western civilization.

So we celebrate this season of GIVING of our Torah.  We ask why this festival is not called the season of the receiving of our Torah?  The answer is that while the giving may have taken place at one time which we are commemorating, the receiving of the Torah must continue to take place every day and everywhere.

The Jews who were witnesses to this great event accepted this Covenant with G-d by declaring,
"We will do and we will listen."  (naaseh v'nishma).

The Torah makes it plain that "Neither with you only do I make this Covenant, but with him that standeth here with us, and also with him that is not here with us this day, meaning that future generations and those who would later accept this law.

Shavuot emphasizes the spiritually important lesson that the release from bondage like the Israelites were from slavery and the winning of political freedom doesn't give anyone complete freedom unless it includes the  spiritual restraints, disciplines and duties in this Revelation and in Israel's acceptance of the Torah.

That means it wasn't the end all to be freed after 400 years of slavery and that's it.  .  We had to be re-educated with a new way of living and thinking.

We have counted 7 full weeks from the 2nd day of the Passover.  Therefore, it is tied to Passover and ends the festival of Passover which led to leaving Egypt.

After getting to Israel, it is thought of also as an agricultural festival in the land of Israel, also remembering that this is the time of the harvest for wheat, and is remembered as the Day of the First Fruits, because it marks the beginning of the fruit harvest and was the occasion for the  bringing of the first ripe fruits to the Temple as an offering of Thanksgiving.
                                                                         
Now, get out the cottage cheese for those cheese blintzes.  We eat such a delightful food since it is the custom to eat at least one dairy meal during the holiday and emphasizes "a land flowing with milk and honey."  This is another way of remembering that we were given the Torah at this time, and recognizing that we have the Written and the Oral Torah.  We have read verses saying, "the choicest first fruits of the land unto the house of the Lord your G-d" in celebration of Shavuot also stress that "you must not boil a kid in its mother's milk."   The Oral Torah based its prohibition of eating meat and milk together at the same meal, so a separate dairy meal is deliberately eaten to emphasize the total unity of the verse and the authenticity of the Oral Torah as well.  For the Orthodox, they wait at least 6 hours before eating meat after eating a dairy product.  This means that a hamburger and milkshake is not a meal for us.  Think of how the mother cow or goat would feel if she realized you would eat her child when she just gave you her milk.  In this way we are taught that animals have feelings and we are to include them in our actions.

Makes at least 2 dozen Jewish Cheese Blintzes

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Blintzes:
  • 4 large beaten eggs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Filling:
  • 1 pound dry curd or farmers cheese or ricotta
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/4 cup sugar or more to taste
We're not just a group of people celebrating and eating all the time.  We were asked to accept this covenant and did so which has led to being singled out and hated by much of mankind.  and yet, here we are,  about 14 million stubborn people following a promise made over 3,200 years ago to Moses and to G-d.  This group of Israelites and their descendants and those others following with them were to be the holy candle shining out for others as an example; a kingdom of priests and a holy nation, so they all had to be sanctified.  Holiness must be in all our religious law and encompasses every aspect of human concern and experience.  The person, the time and the place must remain holy.  All laws deal with one of these 3 aspects.  

Our definition of a holy person is different from other religions.  It is not to be the ascetic, saintly withdrawal from life or denying oneself in all human pleasures or repression of all human drives.  Our holy person is to participate in the human life sharing joy and sorrowful experiences of life, enjoying pleasures but choosing the right from the wrong, the true from the false, the good from the bad, the sacred from the profane, the pure from the impure, the clean from the unclean.  The holy person can make  the ethical-moral-religious discrimination of what life has to offer. 

 Rashi said that you shall be holy,  meaning you shall separate yourselves...but from idolatry, secularism, the vulgar and the profane.  We are to live a life of sanctity,  and help create a more sanctified society.  In other words, we are not to be sheep and follow the crowd, but to be the leaders, the shepherds and to set the correct examples.  

Resource: To Be a Jew: a guide to Jewish observance in contemporary Life by Rabbi Hayim Halevy Donin, p. 30-37 and more.
 http://easteuropeanfood.about.com/od/crossculturalnoodles/r/cheeseblintzes.htm
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0049833/



Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Holiest in the World

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                  

Earth is unique in that as far as we know, it's the only planet in the universe that is conducive for life as we know it, so it is very holy.  Remember, it's the 3rd from the sun, in just the right spot for life.    We have plants and animals and us humans.  On earth is the crossroads of civilization and a tiny part of it has been fought over since the beginning of time with the Jews saying that for them it is holy, and that is Israel.  In Israel is the holiest city for 3 religions; Jews, Christians and Muslims, Jerusalem.    In Jerusalem was the holiest site for Jews, which was the Temple.  In the Temple was the holiest spot which was called the holy of holies.
                                                                           
There are 70 groups of people in the world and among these holy people ( for a holy planet the inhabitants are also holy)  are the people of Israel.  The holiest of these people of Israel was the tribe of Levi.  In the tribe of Levi, the holiest were the priests.  Among the priests the holiest was the high priest.  He prayed in the holy of holies on special holidays.  Abraham went into Canaan from Ur with his family which numbered 70.
                                                                         
On the Jewish calendar, there are 354 days in the year.  Among these the holidays are holy.  The Sabbath is higher in holiness than the holidays.  Among the Sabbaths the holiest is the Day of Atonement, the Sabbath of Sabbaths, or Yom Kippur.

There are 70 languages in the world.  Among these holy languages is the holy language of Hebrew.  Holier than all else in this language is the holy Torah (5 books of Moses).  In the Torah the holiest part is the 10 Commandments.  In the 10 Commandments the holiest of all words is the Name of G-d.

Once a year at a certain hour, these 4 supreme sanctities of the world were joined with one another.  That was on the Day of Atonement, when the high priest would enter the holy of holies and there utter the Name of G-d.  Because this hour was beyond measure holy and awesome;   it was the time of utmost peril not only for the high priest but for the whole of Israel.  All Jews fast on Yom Kippur asking for forgiveness from G-d.
For if, at this hour, there had, G-d forbid, entered the mind of the high priest a false or sinful thought, the entire world would have been destroyed., and on October 6, 1973 Israel was attacked on Yom Kippur by our neighbors, a coalition of Arab forces,  but won that war.

Every spot where a man raises his eyes to heaven is a holy of holies.  Every man, having been created by G-d in His own image and likeness, is a high priest.  Every day of a man's life is a Day of Atonement and every word that a man speaks with sincerity is the Name of the Lord.

Remember who you are and where you are; on a very special place in the universe.  We need to take care of this special place as well as our own bodies before we lose both.
                                                                           
A little Gematria will show how special our life is.  This is where our Hebrew alphabet stands for not only letters to read with but numbers as well.
Aleph=1
Bet=2
Gimel=3
Dalet=4
Hay=5
Vuv=6
Zion=7  (also the name of Jerusalem, and that there was 7 days in a week with the 7th being Shabbat
Khet=8
Tet=9
Yud=10
Kaph=20
Lamed=30
Mem=40
Nun =50
Samekh=60
Ayin=70
Pay=80
Tzadi=90
Kaf=100
Raish=200
Shin=300
Tav=400

When reading and writing, the word is read from right to left.
The name for G-d  in the creation story is Eloheem:  , (mem , yud, hay, lamed, aleph) The numerical value is the same as the Hebrew word Hatabah:  Nature., which is spelled with (ayin, bet, tet, hay).  They both add up to 86.

Resource:  The Jewish Catalog, , folk tale adapted from a version in The Dybbuk by Saul An-Ski
http://www.biblesearchers.com/temples/jeremiah10.shtml  High priest clothing
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3621090,00.html  Yom Kippur War 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Israel's Administered Areas Due To Six Day War and Present Demographics

Nadene Goldfoot                                                             


Let's go back 42 years to the year 1972.  Almost a million Arabs lived in the administered areas.
The last census was in 2013.  over 4 million Arabs lived in the Palestinians areas.  4,420,549 according to the latest figures.  That growth has happened in the past 41 years.

1. Judaea and Samaria,  640,000 of them lived here,   the so wrongly called West Bank area which is 5,900 sq km or 2,270 sq. miles. Between 1948 and 1967 it was ruled by Jordan, which annexed it in 1950.  Originally part of British Mandate of Palestine-taken in WWI (first world war) from Ottoman Empire who lost to the Allies (England, France, USA) .  4 Israeli settled towns were pulled out by Israel in 2005.  In 2010 they had 2.52 million. By 2013 they had 2,719,112 .  By July 2014 Judaea, Samaria and East Jerusalem's population numbers 2,731,052.  This includes Arabs (83%) and Jews (17%).

2.  388,600 Arabs were living in the Gaza Strip of 360 sq. km or 140 sq. miles, same history but administered from 1948 to 1967  by Egypt who did not annex it.  2007 voting chose Hamas terrorists to rule.  2012 UN decided it was part of the future state of Palestine  Israel left by September 14, 2005.  By 2010 Gaza's population was up to 1.60 million.(July 2010 was 1,604,238).   By 2013 they had 1,701,437.

3.  North Sinai  (Sinai Desert) 1948 to 1967 administered by Egypt, 60,000 sq km or.23,000 sq miles with 2.5 million population today which is including more:  North SinaiSouth SinaiSuezIsmailia, and Port Said.  With the most interesting history, Israel is not administering it today.  " Israel invaded and occupied Sinai during the Suez Crisis (known in Egypt as the Tripartite Aggression) of 1956, and during the Six Day War of 1967. On 6 October 1973, Egypt launched the October War to liberate the peninsula, which was the site of fierce fighting between Egyptian and Israeli forces. In 1982, after the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty of 1979, Israel withdrew from the entirety of Sinai. Today, Sinai has become a tourist destination due to its natural setting, rich coral reefs, and biblical history. Mount Sinai is one of the most religiously significant places in Abrahamic faiths.".(1)

4.  8,000 were living in the Golan Heights which consists of 1,250 sq km or 500 sq miles. 1948 to 1967 administered by Syria.  Citing " UN Resolution 242, which calls for "safe and recognised boundaries free from threats or acts of force" Israel in 1981 took it over with Israeli law and administration.  Approximately 10% of Syrian Golan Druze have accepted Israeli citizenship. According to the CIA World Factbook, as of 2010, "there are 41 Israeli settlements and civilian land use sites in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights" .

"Jews started to move into the Golan in the 1970s.  The Israeli-occupied territory is administered by the Golan Regional Council, based in Katzrin, which has a population of 6,400. There another 19 moshavim and 10 kibbutzim. In 1989, the settler population was 10,000. In 2010 the settlers had expanded to 20,000 living in 32 settlements."  The former population governed by Syria,  the population of the Quneitra Governorate numbers 79,000.
                                                                                 
    Yasser Arafat:of  PLO-Fatah,  1st President of Palestine Authority 1994-died November 11, 2004

This population consists mostly of Moslems.  The smaller Christian communities are made up of Greek Orthodox and Latin Orthodox who live mainly in Ramallah, Bethlehem and Beit Jala.  Living in the Golan Heights are the Druzses.  Today Bethlehem is 2/3 Muslim.  Ramallah today is the sea of Fatah.
                                                                                 
 Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah, : 2nd President of Palestine Authority January 9, 2005 to present

The status of the administered areas had not changed since June 1967 until 1973 as it was pending a peace settlement in which the borders between Israel and its neighbors would be then decided.  It is that of territories occupied during a war.  Israel had not annexed any part of the areas by 1973.  East Jerusalem was reunited in June 1967 with West Jerusalem.
                                                                               
 Ismail Haniyeh, elected January 25, 2006, Hamas Prime Minister, changed to Salam Fayyad by Abbas on June 14, 2007, remains disputed, taken over as head of Gaza.  .

Israel administered them because they were attacked in June 1967 by all the Arab nations and won this war that lasted 6 days.  This meant that until a peace settlement was arrived at, Israel had a basic policy that they followed.

1. Maintain security for all, Israelis and Arabs alike.
2. People under Israel administration would live normal lives without losing contact with other Arabs.
3. Make possible economic development happen quickly.
4. Encourage co-existence and cooperation between Arabs and Israelis. to set example for future relations between the 2 peoples.

Summary up to 1973:  October 6, 1973 was the Yom Kippur War or 6 Day War
1.  Goals were being attained.
2. Areas were quiet and thriving.
3. Local affairs administered by local population.
4. Open bridges on the Jordan allowed movement in both directions between areas and Arab States.Before 1967 they lived separated lives.

Who administered the Administered Areas in Accordance with International Law?
1. Israel Defence forces appointed military governors (army officer) for each of the 4 areas. Each of these commanders were sovereign and responsible for military (security) and civilian branches (economic and social services).  .
2.  Local affairs were to be administered by the Arab population through existing bodies such as municipalities and police.  Because of this self governing, the staff of the Israeli Military administration was very small.  there were 500 staff members in Judaea and Samaria and Gaza compared with 12,500 local personnel.
3. In Judaea and Samaria there were 23 municipalities and 31 rural councils.
4. In Gaza and North Sinai there were 3 municipalities and 7 rural councils.
Following Jordanian law, there were elections in 1972.  They had  lively election campaigns.  Candidates were on TV.  voter participation was 75%.  Half of the mayors were replaced by new ones.

Changes:

Major conflict erupted in Gaza in December 2006, when the Hamas executive authority attempted to replace the Palestinian police as the primary authority in Gaza.   Schools in Samaria and Judaea teach hatred towards Jews.  Their maps do not show Israel-the land is labeled "Palestine." Children are brainwashed through songs, TV children's programs to hate and to kill Jews.

 May 2012, a new Fatah government appointment in the "West Bank", in a move that has angered the Hamas government in Gaza, which slammed the decision to form a new cabinet, accusing Abbas’s Palestinian Authority and the Fatah movement he heads of abandoning reconciliation. 

On September 2012, Ismail Haniya, head of the Hamas government in Gaza, announced a cabinet reshuffle, appointing seven new ministers including a new finance minister. Haniya said the reshuffle was "normal procedure after nearly six years of work by some ministers and in order to achieve specific goals for the current period. 

April 23, 2014, Fatah and Hamas have reconciled.  They say they will have elections in 6 

months.   

Recent Peace talks ended.between Israel and Fatah  1967 to 2014 --No peace decisions in

past 47  years.  

Pope Francis visited areas and has invited Israel and Palestinian leaders to the Vatican for peace talks.  He 

offered the invitation on Sunday while in Bethlehem. Incidentally, Bethlehem had 8,820 population in 1945. 

 Today it is a Palestinian city.  In 2007 it had 25,266.  Most Christians have left.  The Palestinians blamed 

the Israeli travel regulations, but "however, other commentators attribute the diminishing Christian population primarily to persecution of Christians by Muslims."  This is something the Pope asked Abbas to start protecting; the Christians.  

Resource: Facts About Israel
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaza_Strip
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/President_of_the_Palestinian_National_Authority
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Governance_of_the_Gaza_Strip
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ismail_Haniyeh
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golan_Heights
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israeli_disengagement_from_Gaza
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_the_Palestinian_territories
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinai_Peninsula (1)
http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/1.586924
Messsages from a Syrian Jew Trapped in Egypt (on Sinai, diving in Taba).
http://www.cnn.com/2014/05/25/world/pope-mideast-trip/


Monday, May 26, 2014

The Capital of Israel: Jerusalem and Why It's Important to Jews

Nadene Goldfoot                                                             

What city is the capital of Israel? It's what has always been our capital.   It happens to be Jerusalem, of course. Today, Jerusalem is a united city of which has 64% Jewish population.   According to Zechariah 8:3, Jerusalem shall be called "The City of Truth."  (Thus said Hashem, Master of Legions:  I have become zealous with great zeal on behalf of Zion (Zion is another name for Jerusalem) ;  I have become zealous with great wrath on its behalf.  Thus said Hashem (another word for G-d) :  I have returned to Zion, and I have made my dwelling in the midst of Jerusalem;  Jerusalem will be called "the City of Truth" and the mountain of Hashem, Master of Legions, "the Holy Mountain."  Thus said Hashem, Master of Legions:  Old men and old women will once again sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each with his staff in his hand because of advanced age;  and the streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in its streets. 

  It has been Israel's capital since 1948, when Israel was reborn again.  In 1973 there were 300,000 people living there.  This isn't the first time it has been the capital of the Jewish people.  It was their capital between 1000 BCE and 586 BCE, and again between 516 BCE and 70 CE.  In 70 CE it was overtaken and destroyed by the Romans.

About 5 minutes after Israel was declared a state via the radio on May 14, 1948, the people were attacked.  Jerusalem was divided into 2 parts. The UN had partitioned Jerusalem and had a resolution pertaining to this made on November 29, 1947 which provided for the creation of an independent area of Jerusalem under UN administration.  However, Arabs attacked Jews which soon reached the dimensions of a regular war between the Haganah and the Arabs who first showed up as the local bands of fighters and then the Arab Legion of Transjordan which put an end to the internationalization scheme.  The struggle lasted from from December 1947 to July 1948.

 During this period the Jewish quarter in the Old City had to be evacuated and was destroyed.  All the New City  but not the Arab quarters north of the walls fell into Jewish hands.  The Arab Legion tried to shell and starve the Jews of Jerusalem into surrender but this was foiled by the fortitude of the Jews and the opening of the Burma Road which restored the connection between Jewish Jerusalem and the coastal region.  So even though the USA and other countries have not recognized it as Israel's capital, Israelis always have.

 The west and south part  went to the new state of Israel as the whole city should have.  Israel also was able to hold onto Mount Zion and an enclave on Mt. Scopus.  The city extended westward by the construction of the Knesset and Government quarter (Ha-Kiryah) with the National Museum and University campus nearby.  New housing projects of which Kuryat Yovel, the largest, were constructed.  Herzl and other Zionist leaders were re-interred on a mountain west of the city on Mt. Herzl.  The slopes were laid out as a cemetery for soldiers who died on active service.  New rabbinical centers were also erected.  A number of factories were set up, but the city was the administrative center of the country.

Many rulers have occupied the country, but only for the Jews has Jerusalem been the capital of the nation living in this land which the Jews refer to as Eretz Yisrael (The Land of Israel).  In Psalms, 122,3, which we associate with King David's writings, he wrote that Jerusalem, which is bound firmly together..."  and so it is.  The wall that separated east from the rest of Jerusalem has been taken down and the city is whole and one again. So it was that on June 5, 1967 the outset of the Six-Day War, Jordanian troops in the Old City and Jordanian sections of the city bombarded the New City.  The Israel army reacted and 2 days later the entire city came under Israel's control. Jews had been denied access to the Western/Wailing wall for 20 years so that's the first place they went to and the end of this war.  On June 29, 1967, Israel formally united the 2 sections of the city and the barriers were removed.

 The built- up Jerusalem is like a city that is united together, for there the tribes ascended, the tribes of G-d, a testimony for Israel, to give thanks to the name of Hashem, for there sat thrones of judgment, thrones for the house of David.  Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; those who love you will be serene, May there be peace within your wall, serenity within your palaces.  For the sake of my brethren and my comrades, I shall speak of peace in your midst.  For the sake of the House of Hashem, our G-d, I will request good for you.  

The Jews living there today are the people with the longest unbroken historical association with the city which dates from the time, nearly 3,000 years ago, when King David (1010 BCE-970 BCE) made it his capital.  Only the Jews have made Jerusalem the focal point of national and religious aspirations.  It is the seat of the President of the State, the Knesset, the Government, the Supreme Court, the Chief Rabbinate, and Hebrew University and the Israel Museum.  So even though the USA and other countries have not recognized it as Israel's capital, Israelis always have. Israel is being truthful.  How can they possibly have returned to have a Jewish National Home without having Jerusalem as its rightful capital?  The state of Judah had Jerusalem as its capital and from Judah comes the name, Jews.  The Jews have returned and of course Jerusalem is their capital.  Not recognizing this right is the problem of the countries unwilling to see this, not Israel's problem. It's already written in the Bible.  Tel Aviv is not the capital!

What is the holiest shrine in Israel for the Jews?  It is the Western Wall (Wailing Wall) that dates back from the time of the 2nd Temple.  This is the place that the Pope just chose to visit.  He followed custom and wrote a note and placed it between the rocks of the wall to G-d.  This wall is in eastern Jerusalem, the area that the Palestinians now demand to make part of their new state of Palestine.  This is the city that they have no connection with, either religious or culture, expect that many have lived here from 1948 to 1967 when it was held by Jordan.  Though it was to be part of the Jewish Homeland, Jordan helped themselves and took it when Israel had to fight for the rights allocated to them by the League of Nations in having this land.  Jordan lost it in 1967 when all the Arab states attacked Israel and lost the battle of which Israel was outnumbered completely.  Logically, there was no way they could have lost such a fight, but they did, and so Israel's history is following the prophets of old; that Israel would be reclaimed and that Jews would return and Jerusalem would be its capital.

Jerusalem is also important to the other religions as well.  For Christians, they regard the Church of the Holy Sepulchre as their holiest place there.  For Moslems, Jerusalem is 3rd in holiness after Mecca and Medina.  It is 3rd because they believe that Mohammad made a trip there on his flying horse.  The name "Jerusalem" is never mentioned in the Koran.  It is mentioned 154 times in the Christian Bible and Zion is mentioned 7 times.   A mosque has been built on the Temple Mount where King Solomon's Temple once stood, the mosque of Al Aqsa and is one of the holiest shrines of Islam.  Holy places are each administered by the religious bodies to which they belong and have been since 1967.

Jerusalem has been called by many names.  Zion is one.  Others are the City of David, city of righteousness, the faithful city, the city of G-d, the holy city, city of truth, Ariel, and in Latin was Hierosolyma;  Yerushalayim in Hebrew, Aelia Capitolina by Hadrian which he dubbed his Roman colony that sat on the ruins of Jerusalem.  The Arabs call it el Quds (the Holy), or Beit el-Makdes (the house of Holiness, and in Hebrew it is Bet ha-Mikdash (Temple).

In 1967 the population of eastern Jerusalem was 139,000 Moslems and Christians and was added to the rest of the population making 493,500 by 1990.  Jerusalem Law of 1980 extended Israel's sovereignty over the entire city.  Excavations had been carried out at the site of the City of David were now supplemented by diggings around the western and southern walls of the Temple enclosure.  It is important to preserve artifacts  before our history is all destroyed by those that deny we ever existed there, which would be the Palestinians.

The population of Jerusalem today is 464,527 Jews and 228,690 Arabs which makes a total of 693,217. El Paso, Texas has more than 700,000 and Portland, Oregon has 583,776.  Cairo, Egypt has 6.76 million.  Amman, Jordan has a population of 2,842,629 of which half Jordan's population  are Palestinians.  Syria, a country that had over 22 million, has been so destroyed that the number in Damascus now is not known.  It had had about 5 1/2 million population and was Syria's 2nd largest city.  Aleppo was the largest  before the Civil War.

Regardless of whether the world wants to accept the truth that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel or not, it is in every aspect; religiously and according to the nation, it is the heart of Israel.  For we promised to pray to return to Jerusalem  when we were in exile or we would lose the cunning of our hands. We were never to remove Jerusalem from our  hearts and minds.   Psalms 137:5  If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its skill.  Let my tongue adhere to my palate.  If I fail to recall you, if I fail to elevate Jerusalem above my foremost joy, Remember, Hashem, for the offspring of Edom, the day of Jerusalem; for those who say, Destroy, Destroy! to its very foundations.  ...

Resource:Facts About Israel, Division of Information, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Jerusalem
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
Tanach, The Stone Edition (Bible)
http://www.danielpipes.org/84/the-muslim-claim-to-jerusalem
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographic_history_of_Jerusalem
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Society_&_Culture/newpop.html
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/155939
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_cities_in_Syria

Memorial Day Thoughts for USA and Israel

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Memorial Day 2014 Washington DC

                                                                       
                      Benny Gantz Paying Tribute to Fallen in Israel's Yom Kippur War of 1973

"Imagine taking a walk from New York City to Chicago. That’s about an 800-mile trek, and it would take about two weeks of non-stop walking to complete it – a lot longer if you stopped to rest.

Now, imagine that all throughout your walk there were a continuous line of people standing shoulder to shoulder, one after another through the streets of New York City, into the back roads of New Jersey, over each rolling hill in Pennsylvania – people as far as the eye can see. It continues through Ohio and Indiana into Illinois. Finally, you arrive in Chicago after having walked past 1,321,612 people.

That’s a LOT of people. It also happens to be the same number of people who have died in combat while serving this country.

It’s sobering to think of all those faces. Each face has a story – a soldier whose life was cut down in its prime and likely left behind a spouse or a child or both. Most (625,000) died during the bloody, gruesome close quarter combat of the Civil War. Another 405,399 died in World War II, and 116,516 died in World War I. There have been many different wars, and they’ve stretched across many different eras, but one thing has remained constant: The amazing courage and willingness of the American soldier to lay down his or her own life for the cause of liberty. "(1)

This means that from 1776 when the USA was created till now, we have lost over a million sons in battle to protect the rights of citizens of our country; rights that other countries still have not attained. We had to sacrifice the lives of  our 1,321,612 to die in battle protecting us over the past 238 years.    Today we are a country of 317 million people in a world of 7.1 billion.

Though Israel was re-created on May 14, 1948, it has an established history of more than 35 centuries long  with origins  in the Biblical period of the 17th to the 6th century BCE.   We know they started again with a population of 650,000  66 years ago in 1948.  By the 1972 census they had 3,164,000 and today have nearly 8.2 million.  Israel's population is made up of 6.135 million Jews and 1.694 million Arabs which is  75% Jews and 20.7% Arabs to be exact.  It was established as the Jewish Homeland but is a pluralist society.  This means that different cultures and social traditions coexist.  For example, in 1972 Jews numbered 2,636,660 and were 85.2%; Moslems were 343,900 and made up 11.1%; Christians numbered 77,300 and were 2.4%; and Druzes & others were 37,300 and made up 1.3% of the population.  Like the USA, it has a population from all corners of the globe.

The 10 Lost Tribes are already being found and are returning to Israel.  Others are returning from countries that have a high amount of anti-Semitism that has also taken lives, so they are moving to Israel after suffering from much persecution for being Jews such as what has been happening in France.

Out of its 66 years of present day existence, Israel has had 7 major wars.  9,745 soldiers have been killed in engagements and terrorist attacks up to 1997.

Before Israel was declared a state the Jews lost lives defending the Jewish Homeland declared in the League of Nations in July 24, 1922.  The Balfour Declaration was signed on November 2, 1917.

Resource:  http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/robert-schlesinger/2013/12/31/us-population-2014-317-million-and-71-billion-in-the-world
http://www.jpost.com/National-News/On-its-66th-birthday-Israels-population-nears-82-million-351045
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israeli_casualties_of_war
Facts About Israel 1973; Division of Information Ministry for foreign affairs, Jerusalem
http://www.danielpipes.org/4990/arab-israeli-fatalities-rank-49th
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/History/73_War.html
http://www.mythsandfacts.org/conflict/mandate_for_palestine/mandate_for_palestine.htm
http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/peace/guide/pages/declaration%20of%20establishment%20of%20state%20of%20israel.aspx
Resource:  (1) Glenn Beck from his program

Monday, May 19, 2014

Pope Francis's Three Day Visit to Holy Land-May 24-26th

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                                 

77 year old Pope Francis (Jorge Mario Bergoglio) , born in Buenos Aires,  Argentina,  is scheduled to visit Israel on May 26th, which is an important event.  He is the 4th Pope to visit what Christians call "The Holy Land" of Jordan, Palestinian Territories and Israel and will do so in his 3 day visit which for him starts on Saturday the 24th..  There will be live streaming of the visit.  Many countries that are Catholic majorities will be interested in this, such as the USA, Brazil, Italy, Spain, Poland, Germany and France.  Israel's Tourism Ministry is very interested as they are investing about $2.9 million dollars in marketing for the visit of the Pope. Last month a campaign was on going where people were asked to upload a 15-second video on why they wanted to visit the Holy Land.  Gustavo Aldolfo Franco Picaza from Venezuela won  a free trip to Israel with his winning video.  Hundreds of journalists will cover the Pope's visit.

"He is a visitor of the highest importance", stated Minister Dr. Uzi Landau, Israel's Tourism Minister.  Israel spends a lot of shekels on Christian sites.  Christian tourism brings about 60% of tourists, and this visit should increase that number.  Out of Israel's population of 8,134,100, 2.0% are Christians or 155,100.  "Argentines in Israel are the largest immigrant group from Latin America and one of the fastest growing groups. The vast majority of Argentines in Israel are Jewish Argentines who make Aliyah but there is also an important group of non-Jewish Argentines who choose Israel as their new home. There are about 50,000 Argentines residing in Israel although some estimates put the figure at 70,000.
Most Jewish Argentines are Ashkenazi Jews."

Considering that Christian groups are highly involved in the BDS movement against Israel like the Presbyterians, this is a positive event for Israel, so the thought that the Pope will recognize Palestine and call for an end to occupation is a huge disappointment and stab in Israel's heart after whizzing through in 3 days.

The PA (Palestinian Authority of Abbas) and the Arab Christians probably led by Sabeel are already celebrating Pope Francis's visit to their territory  which starts this coming Sunday as a visit to end "occupation.".  The Pope evidently has already decided on starting his trip with going to Bethlehem, which is held by the PA and is a sign to them of recognition. Whereas Bethlehem used to be populated by all Christians, it is now 2/3 Muslim.   This piece of information comes from Father Jamal Khader of the Latin patriarchate in Jerusalem.  Information of starting in Bethlehem comes form Rabbi Sergio Bergman of Argentina and close friend of the Pope who said that he intends to define himself as the "Che Guevera of the Palestinians" and support their "struggle and rights" during his visit.

He plans on traveling in an open car in Bethlehem and meet with Abbas and hold a "mass" prayer services there instead of in Jerusalem to show support for the PA.  Then he plans on visiting the Dheishe  refugee camp to see them suffering.  Palestinians have been in such camps since 1948, and are the longest people to stay in such camps.  The surrounding Muslim countries do not accept them in any state of being except as refugees in camps.

Christians have been violently persecuted in Bethlehem by the Muslims who have taken over Bethlehem, but the Pope has not said a word about it.  This is turning out to be a highly political visit as the Arabs see it.  The Pope will lunch with Palestinian families who have suffered from the occupation.

The Arabs are delighted that this visit is to Palestinian sites first and see it as a slight to Israel.

Besides visiting PA-controlled areas, the Pope plans to visit Arab-populated neighborhoods of eastern Jerusalem.  He will later visit with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at the "Vatican-owned Notre Dame complex located between Jewish and Arab neighborhoods.  There the Israelis hope to explain their point of view of political events in the region.  Since the Arabs keep pushing the idea of Israel's "occupation," which they are stressing, Netanyahu will have to address much background and history in about a half hour.  What he wants to address the most is to explain the Iranian threat to Israel.

The question remains about his visiting in Gaza.  After all, Fatah and Hamas are united these days, so does he dare go there?  That's an area not very friendly at all to Christians.  In 2005 it was estimated that there were about 5,000 Christians living in Gaza.

The Greek Orthodox Church is also a main branch of Christianity in Israel and the 2 groups have not always been friendly with each other.  "Francis will meet the patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew, regarded as the “first among equals” in the Orthodox world, and for the first time in the Holy Land the two leaders will preside together over a public prayer. The encounter recalls a famous 1964 meeting between Paul Paul VI and Patriarch Athenagoras of Constantinople, which led to lifting excommunications born of the feud between Eastern and Western Christianity and that date to 1054.. "

Councilman Aryeh King is not planning on attending an official welcoming of the pope unless he has packed in his suitcase all the treasures of the Jewish people stolen by past popes known to be stored in the Vatican's basement.  That's not going to happen, so he won't be in attendance.

The "Last Supper Hall' is located at the complex of King David's Tomb.  Christian services are held there at the complex once a year.

Christians are disappearing in the Middle East. They've gone from making up 26% of the population to 10% in the Middle East.  "In the rubble of Syrian cities like Aleppo and Damascus, Christians who refused to convert to Islam have been kidnapped, shot and beheaded by Islamist opposition fighters. In Egypt, mobs of Muslim Brotherhood members burn Coptic Christian churches in the same way they once obliterated Jewish synagogues. And in Iraq, terrorists deliberately target Christian worshippers. This past Christmas, 26 people were killed when a bomb ripped through a crowd of worshipers leaving a church in Baghdad's southern Dora neighborhood." 

 The only country they are safe  in is Israel.  I imagine that the Pope will attack this only state protecting Christians in deference to the Palestinians who have done quite a number on them already in Bethlehem.  After all, it's a Jewish state, and everyone attacks Israel for their own  imagined reasons.  The sun and stars will move in heaven when someone of importance stands up for Israel.  

Resource:  http://www.algemeiner.com/2014/05/19/israel-tourism-ministry-prepares-to-welcome-pope-francis/
Arutz Sheva:  Pope will recognize Palestine, call to end occupation by Ari Yashar
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2014/05/17/what-stake-when-pope-francis-visits-holy-land/T3bErULMEJVFelIUfeqC0J/story.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Francis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Israel
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_
Christianshttp://www.danielpipes.org/1050/disappearing-christians-in-the-middle-east
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303630904579417482632439814 Ron Proser on the Middle East War on Christians

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Al-Aqsa Mosque Imam Declares War on Israel

                                               Al-Aqsa Mosque on Temple Mount
                                                                                                          

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                
Mosque of Omar or Dome of the Rock


War has been declared last week  by Imam Raed al Danna against Israel.  He's an Imam from East Jerusalem at the Al Aqsa Mosque.  He called all the surrounding Muslim nations to destroy Israel.  This Imam announced this while visiting in Milan, Italy at a Muslim conference.  He emphasized Egypt and Jordan, nations that have peace pacts with Israel to liberate the land from the Jews.  He is waiting for a legion of conquerors to take over Israel.   The leadership of this mosque had been in the hands of Muhammad Ahmad Hussein,  who was expected to avoid controversy and self-aggrandizement.  Now he serves as the 7th and current Grand Mufti of Jerusalem.The appointment came from Abbas.  
  
On January 9, 2011, while addressing a crowd at an event marking the 47th anniversary of the founding of Fatah, Hussein quoted a controversial hadith (saying attributed to the Prophet Muhammad), stating: "The Hour will not come until you fight the Jews. The Jews will hide behind stones or trees. Then the stones or trees will call: O Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him."  Hadiths supposedly have been written by people after Mohammad's death.  That could be why this is controversial.  This one makes very good anti-Semitic propaganda used to instigate war.  

The site has been a place of unrest lately. Just before Passover on Monday April 14th,   the Israeli police had to limit  attendance at Al-Aqsa because of the fear of more violence after clashes happening over the weekend.  Security measures taken are that the men under 50 couldn't attend.  Neither could any women until a security assessment of the possibility  of more disturbances had been taken.  What can they expect after this announcement by the head Imam?  5 people were arrested on Sunday during a clash.  Muslim rioters threw stones and many Molotov cocktails.  Police officers responded with stun grenades.  Members of Hamas were were in the crowd, probably leading the protesters.  They had to pick Passover to riot!  During major Jewish holidays, when Muslims prefer to attack, the military blocks the road to Israel from Judea-Samaria for 48 hours from midnight.  Entry would be permitted only to medical, humanitarian and exceptional cases.  

Jews are getting anxious to be able to pray at the holy site where the Temple once stood, but cannot get near it or be seen moving their body back and forth while standing in prayer by the Muslim guards.  Moshe Dayan in 1967 gave permission to rule on the site to the Muslim Imam.

"“We have returned to all that is holy in our land. We have returned never to be parted from it again.” 
–Defense Minister Moshe Dayan, upon reaching the Western Wall  

However, "Chief Rabbinate Council reminded the public that "in view of the fact that the holiness of the area never ceases, it is forbidden to ascend the Temple Mount until the Temple is built.  So the Muslims don't allow Jews there and our rabbis say it's not for us at this time as a place to pray.  That should keep things peaceful, but many Jews are not aware of this fact and try to get close, and the Muslims lie in wait for it to happen.  

The Muslims consider the Al-Aqsa Mosque as the "Farthest Mosque" mentioned in the Koran.  It infers this is in Jerusalem, but never mentions the word, Jerusalem.  This couldn't be since Mohammad, who was the author of the Koran, died in 632 and the mosque was built in the year 705 CE by the Umayyads who ruled in Palestine.  The mosque lies along the southern wall of Haram al-Sharif.  It has become the 3rd holiest site in Islam and is in the Old City of Jerusalem. This has a silver dome.   It sits on the same site with the Dome of the Rock or "Noble Sanctuary."

Muslims believe that Muhammad was transported from their Sacred Mosque in Mecca to al-Aqsa during the Night Journey on a flying horse named Buraq.
 Their tradition is that Muhammad led prayers towards this site until the 17th month after the emigration, when Allah directed him to turn towards the Kaaba.  Our Jewish tradition suggests that the change was due to his frustration with Arabian Jews who refused his attempts to convert them to Islam, his new religion.

 This site is called the Temple Mount on Mount Moriah, the holiest site in Jerusalem, the place where the Jewish Temple stood before being destroyed by the Romans in  70 CE, which was the 2nd time the original Temple had been restored.  The First Temple was built by King Solomon, ruler of Israel, who lived from 961 to 920 BCE, dedicated to G-d and as a place to keep the Ark-10 Commandments.  The Assyrians attacked and carted away Jews by 722 BCE after destroying the Temple in 721 BCE.  The Babylonians then attacked Judah in 597 and 586.  Cyrus of Persia (today's Iran)  freed them and told them to go back home and rebuild their Temple which they did.  Herod was appointed king of Judah by the Romans  after he attacked and captured Jerusalem in 37 with the Roman army and he renovated the Temple, but the Romans destroyed it when they seized Jerusalem in 70 CE.

It seems to be the custom of Islamists to build mosques over others' religious sites as a show of ownership.  The Dome of the Rock, otherwise called the Mosque of Omar, is the one with the beautiful golden dome that stands out in Jerusalem.  It was also built in the center of the Jewish Temple area called al-Harim ash Sherif by Caliph Abd al-Malik in about 738.  He had it built to replace the temporary building set up by Caliph Omar 100 years earlier.  It is situated on the traditional site of Mt. Moriah, too.

So Israel has many mosques.  There is freedom of religion for the 1.7 million Muslim citizens of Israel.  One of these days the 3rd Temple will be built.  The location is not known.

Update: 5/8/14:  The Muslim Waqf members saw a 16 yr old Jew's lips move and arrested him for praying.  http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/180358#.U2uclIFdU8o

Resource:  http://www.memritv.org/embedded_player/index.php?clip_id=4252 declaring war on Israel
http://midnightwatcher.wordpress.com/2014/05/02/imam-from-jerusalems-al-aqsa-mosque-calls-upon-surrounding-muslim-nations-to-destroy-israel/
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Aqsa_Mosque
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Ahmad_Hussein
http://www.thesundaily.my/news/1016102
http://www.sixdaywar.org/content/ReunificationJerusalem.asp
http://my.telegraph.co.uk/abdulmuhd/amuhd/563/muhammad-claims-to-jerusalem-is-a-myth/

  

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Rigging UN Post Against Israel With Falk's Wife

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                 

One of my pet peeves has been  the UN's appointment of Richard Falk in a Human Rights position who did nothing but bombast Israel at every chance he could.  The reason he is used as ammunition against Israel is that he is a self-hating Jew (in denial) who is dead set to destroy Israel.  .  The man is deviant and he has a wife just like him except she's not Jewish;  she's Turkish, born in a Muslim household in Turkey and raised and educated there,  though now she doesn't practice her religion, she says.   That one fact in itself may be coloring her attitude towards Israel.    As he is finally leaving this last 6 year post spewing falsehoods against Israel, his wife, Hilal Elver, anxious to fill his seat of power,  is being groomed for the same position.

Falk is a person who promoted 9/11 conspiracies of David Ray Griffen who thanked him in his book, "The New Pearl Harbor." "Griffin has published a number of books on the subject of the September 11 attacks, suggesting that there was a conspiracy involving some elements of the United States government." 

Falk accused Israel of genocide. He also accused Israel of apartheid in his latest and final UN report.  He said that criticism of Turkey's President Erdogen was  exaggerated.   Most likely that's because he is married to a Turkish lady who was successful in their government, Hilal Elver.   Falk has targeted America and the West in articles, books and lectures every chance he gets.

His better half, Hilal, is also his shadow and is in agreement with all the above points of her husband.  Hilal Elver, PhD, works at the U of C in Santa Barbara as a research professor.  She has a law degree from Ankara, Turkey.  Unfortunately, Turkey has become more religious with Erdogen lately who is more into Sharia law and more against Israel.   She lectured in Qatar and threw in another attack against Israel that her husband missed  and accused Israel of water apartheid.  I take it that meant she is saying that Israel is not allowing her neighbors to have any water which according to my reports is absolutely false. As a researcher, she must be hiding files that show how much good Israel has done for her neighbors.  Israel is drinking sea water by creating desalination plants.  She is helping her neighbors in any water crisis.  Without Israel her neighbors would soon be drinking sand.  Who else has been highly innovative in creating ways to improve life?  Israel already signed a peace treaty about water with Jordan in 1994 and one with the PA in 1995.

 The duo do have a great technique.  They pronounce a sentence against Israel so authoritatively that gullible and like-minded people just gobble it up without doing any checking.  It was Hitler's method.

Hilal Elver Falk is a co-author and Richard's collaborator.  With her PhD she might even be his instigator.  It's hard to tell who the leader is of this twosome.  She is supposed to be an expert on the right to food.

The position that Richard has held was created by the Cubans and for years was held by Jean Ziegler who was the founder and recipient of the "Moammar Qaddafi Human Rights Prize."  Remember Qaddafi?  "He was internationally condemned as a dictator and autocrat whose authoritarian administration violated the human rights of Libyan citizens and supported international terrorism."  This dictator of Libya started his power in 1969 so had been their ruler for 42 years.  What kind of man can back such a person?   He's what I would pronounce as having a mental condition of meshugana, which is pretty bad.   A Human Right's Prize?  He used that prize to attack America, Israel and the West.  Ziegler " condemned the Jewish state so often that journalists began to describe him, mistakenly, as the council’s investigator on Palestine."  They do manage to select people wholly against Israel, don't they?  Ziegler, a Swiss socialist,  was a spokesman for Cuba.  The problem always has been that such positions have been rigged to be people who will speak out against Israel.  Now, Israel had a lot of socialism going on too, especially starting kibbutzim, but they were highly successful at it.  Cuba?  Well...not as much.  Here, Zeigler's anti-Semitic stand got in the say of his politics, perhaps.  
                                                                         
Richard Falk has been bearing false witness against Israel for his reign of the past 6 years.  "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor" is one of the 10 Commandments found in Exodus and is the 9th commandment.  This also prohibits gossip and slander. This was to keep such things as a Richard Falk using slander and lies against the accused  from never happening but to use 3 witnesses who are objective.  Using one person who is not is prohibited in our 3,324 years old law.  It's interesting in that Islam accepts Moses as a Prophet.  What do they think of the 10 commandments?  They say they support those as well.  However, the UN, who has been favoring such Muslim countries very much in attacks against Israel, is ignoring this commandment. If Judaism, Christianity and Islam respect the 10 Commandments, shouldn't the UN start to consider them in their organization?  The UN has become a bastion of lies more than a place of helping countries to solve their problems.  In taking this stand, the UN is harming Israel just as sure as the rockets, missiles and mortars that have been raining down on Israel from Gaza. They are guilty of aiding and abetting Israel's neighbors who are trying to drive her into the sea.
    .
Richard Falk is known for his extremist politics  and Hilal will probably do him one better.  In this way, Richard Falk would maintain his influence.  It's now up to the United States  and Samantha Power, the US Ambassador, to oppose her appointment on Thursday, May 8th.  This was to have taken place in March but was postponed.
Hilal's latest endeavor has been  "on a book project dealing with secularism and human rights in the Islamic world."   
                               She was appointed.  
Update: http://www.unwatch.org/cms.asp?id=5653277&campaign_id=65378

Resource:  UN Watch:  briefing@unwatch.org
http://blog.unwatch.org/index.php/2014/03/04/uns-musical-chairs-richard-falks-wife-is-top-nominee-for-human-rights-council-post/
http://jewishfactsfromportland.blogspot.com/2012/12/richard-falks-role-in-un-against-israel.html
http://jewishfactsfromportland.blogspot.com/2012/07/anti-israel-jew-uns-richard-anderson.html
http://jewishfactsfromportland.blogspot.com/2012/02/anti-semite-honored-at-stanford.html
http://jewishfactsfromportland.blogspot.com/2012/03/qatar-blasts-israel-at-human-rights.html
http://jewishbubba.blogspot.com/2014/03/who-will-replace-richard-falk-in-un.html
http://jewishbubba.blogspot.com/2013/05/falks-mouth-full-of-maliciousness.html
http://jewishbubba.blogspot.com/2013/02/when-self-hating-jew-sides-with-known.html
http://www.global.ucsb.edu/orfaleacenter/fellows/Elver.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/17/opinion/israeli-water-mideast-peace.html?_r=0
http://environment.research.yale.edu/documents/downloads/0-9/103shamir.pdf  water agreements
http://foeme.org/www/?module=projects
http://forward.com/articles/140075/un-official-answers-questions-about-fierce-critici/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muammar_Gaddafi
Tanakh, The Stone Edition, Exodus, verse 20: 13.