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Thursday, October 31, 2013

No Peace Until All Murderers Released

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                        

Does anyone see something wrong with this?  Since when would one country make peace only on the condition that its vile murderers are released out of a prison and into their custody?  Since when would one country abide by this demand and release murderers of their people?  

It has only happened with the USA leadership in peace discussions that have been forced upon Israel after asking patiently for years to talk about having peace  with Abbas.  Abbas had quit talking and there was no peace between Fatah in Judea and Samaria and their sidekick, Hamas in Gaza with Israel.  John Kerry, Secretary of State is the leader of these talks holding out the carrot and the stick.  He's allowed Abbas, evidently, to make such demands, and Israel has had to go along or be charged with holding up peace talks.  How convenient.  Allowing the utterly impossible and then blackmailing Israel into being the stubborn mule.

The exasperating thing is that the murderers are the top of the line most horrible kind of murderers that abide in Israel's jails.  In this tiny country of democracy and common sense, the death law is non-existent unless you were one of the worst of  Nazi killers.  All of Israel's citizens are up in arms about this release of horror.  "Among the most notable cases is Damouni Saad Mohammed Ahmed, who was convicted of involvement in the brutal lynch of IDF reservist Amnon Pomerantz, age 47,  in the Gaza Strip in 1990. "  He was found stoned and burned to death.  and by that is meant hit with stones, rocks, not drugged, and then burned.  It happened on Rosh Hashanah, our major holiday of the birth of the world.  He had become lost and wandered into a refugee camp and this is how they treated him.  The mob attacked.  Ahmed was the leader of this mob attack.  It must have felt like accidentally opening the door to the pit bulls' arena.  

Too bad Israel doesn't insert a chip in them for location purposes so that they will know where they are going as protection for others.  If they try anything, it should be back to prison without anymore chances of being released.  What they all have done is unimaginable to normal people.

The Palestinians are going wild with glee in their happiness to have won this bout with Israel by getting 26 murderers released in this 2nd release.  Abbas met them in Ramallah.   They are so happy to get back these "outstanding  heroes" in their culture. Surely now they will be the impetus to create more just like them.  More murderers are scheduled to be released, of course.   Is there anyone out there ready to trade neighbors?  Or Secretary of State?


Monday, October 28, 2013

The Balfour Declaration: Why It Was So Important

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                     

Finally the Jews had the answer they had worked so hard for.  Britain was for the establishment in Palestine of a national home for Jews.  Arthur James, Lord Balfour (1848-1930) was a British statesman and philosopher who was head of the government with which Herzl negotiated with in 1902-1903.  Later he was very impressed b Chaim Weizmann and his Zionist philosophy.  He was foreign secretary in 1917 when he issued the Balfour Declaration, an official statement from Britain.

                                                                                    Foreign Office
                                 November 2nd, 1917
Dear Lord Rothschild,
           I have much pleasure in conveying to you, on behalf of His Majesty's Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspirations which has been submitted to and approved by the Cabinet.

        His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.  

       I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation.

                           Arthur James Balfour

                           The Balfour Declaration

 This statement finally came about as the result of many long negotiations started by Chaim Weizmann, Nahum Sokolow and others shortly after the start of World War I.  Supporting this was Herbert Samuel, Chief Rabbi J.H. Hertz, the Haham Moses Gaster and others.  There was a lot of discussion on two things;  the formula of the Declaration and its timing.    The final decision of the British government was expedited by Balfour's visit to the US  in the spring of 1917 when he met with President Wilson who supported the efforts of the American Zionists who were headed by Brandeis.  

There were British Jews who were afraid that this would endanger the Jews in all countries.  This opposition made the government more cautious, and the wording submitted to recognize Palestine as the national home of the Jewish people and for providing a "Jewish National Colonizing Corporation" for the resettlement and economic development of the country was not accepted.  

When the Declaration had been approved by the British cabinet, it was sent to Lord Walter Rothschild who was asked to take it to the Zionist Federation. On April 24, 1920, it was decided by the Supreme Council of the Principal Allied Powers at the conference in San Remo that Britain should administer Palestine and be responsible for the implementation of the Balfour Declaration.  

In 1921, Transjordan was detached from the area covered by the British Mandate for Palestine and made a separate Emirate under Abdullah (1882-1951).  First he was an Emir, and then made himself king of Transjordan.  He was the 2nd son of Hussein, sherif of Mecca, so he was from Saudi Arabia.  It was his support of Britain during WWI that led to his nomination as ruler of Transjordan in 1923.  He was credited with a moderate attitude toward Zionism and had negotiated with Chaim Weizmann in 1922, but invaded Israel in 1948 anyway.  His attempts to reach an understanding with Israel were nullified by the growing influence of the Palestinian Arabs, and he was assassinated in Jerusalem allegedly at the instance of the Mufti, Haj Amin el-Husseini, the person who had gone to Germany and had met with Adolf Hitler.    . 

 It was approved by other Allied governments and incorporated into the Mandate in 1922.  According to Article II the Mandatory Power was responsible for placing the country under such political, administrative, and economic conditions as would secure the establishment of the Jewish national home and the development of self-governing institutions;  also for safeguarding the civil and religious rights of all the inhabitants of Palestine, irrespective of race and religion.  

Other articles provided for the facilitation of Jewish immigration by the Mandatory Power, while ensuring the rights and status of the other sections of the community, and for encouraging settlement of the Jews on the land, including unrequired state and wastelands; for enacting a national laws to enable Jews taking up their residence in Palestine to acquire Palestine citizenship;  the recognition of English, Arabic and Hebrew as the official languages of Palestine; and the recognition of the holy days of the respective communities as legal days of rest.  

Article 25 delimits the borders of the country, excluding Transjordan from Palestine. King Abdullah had  renamed it the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in 1946.  The Palestine Mandate ended on May 15, 1948 with the withdrawal of the British administration.  This is the day Israel was then declared a state with the blessing of the vote in the United Nations.  Right away King Abdullah fought against the new Israel and took over the Arab area of Palestine which was Judah, Samaria and east Jerusalem.  

What the Arab King Abdullah had taken that was to be part of the Jewish Homeland was lost to Israel by his grandson, Hussein, in the Six Day War when all the Arabs had attacked Israel and lost, much to their surprise.  Hussein, born in 1935, succeeded to the throne in 1952.  He removed British officers from his Arab Legion in 1956 and signed a pact with Egypt and Syria but later refrained from joining the fighting during the Sinai Campaign.  His army had to retreat from Eastern Palestine when defeated in 1967.  Then he was threatened by Arab terrorist organizations with whom he had a major showdown in September 1970 with Black September.  In 1988 he renounced claims to the West Bank in view of Arab decisions that the PLO was the rightful authority.  

Transjordan had been the home of some of the 12 tribes of Israel back in c1200 BCE.   Reuben , Gad and half of Manasseh were cattle-keeping tribes and had settled there.  King David (1010-970 BCE)  later had conquered the whole land of what came to be called Transjordan including the rich copper mines of the Arabah.  His son, King Solomon (961-920 BCE)  had lost them or only held temporarily.  W Ammon was held by a Jewish family, the Tobiads for a time.  Then after the destruction of the first Temple by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BCE, it was rebuilt in 538-515 BCE.   The Edomites moved into southern Judah and their place was taken by the Nabateans.   Greek towns were established in hellenistic days. 

In the Byzantine days (70-637 CE) , Transjordan began to decline which was accelerated by the Arab conquest of Mohammad (570-620 CE) .  From the 8th to the 19th centuries, it was mostly left to the Bedouins to occupy except when the crusaders established themselves in Oultre Jourdain.  The first Crusade was in 1096-9.  This is when attacks were made on Jews living in Northern France and especially in the Rhineland where massacres occurred in cites of Mainz, Worms, Speyer, Cologne, etc and other places where Jews had found refuge from the Roman attack in Judah.  Jerusalem was taken by them in 1099 and in that Jews and Karaites were massacred.   Crusades went on with the last being in 1320 with attacks on Jews in southern France and northern Spain.  

Resource:  The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
update: 11:20am

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Hezbollah in Syria's Slaughter and Israel's Acts of Kindness

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                            

Shiite Hezbollah fighters are supporting President Bashar Assad's forces.   In the north of Syria is Aleppo, a former center of Jewish life.  Today, one of two main alliances who emerged in September is the Islamic Alliance.   In the south is the 2nd group, carrying the black flag of jihad,  which includes the Damascus suburbs. Both groups  are  Salafist organizations.   "Salafism is deemed a hybrid of Wahhabism and other movements since the 1960s.  Salafism has become associated with literaliststrict and puritanical approaches to Islam and, particularly in the West, with the Salafi Jihadis who espouse violent jihad against civilians as a legitimate expression of Islam,   though leading Salafi scholars have condemned attacks on civilians,  and Salafi who support such attacks are in a minority.
 Damascus was the home of the Jewish Quarter, whose Jewish population  were removed in 1994 when Israel managed a dangerous airlift to rescue them out of a severe situation of having been quartered there somewhat like what happened in the Warsaw Ghetto.  The other Salafist organization is The Army of Islam who has taken over this part of Syria.  These two groups want Shariah law.     They have denounced the Syrian National Coalition who has lost its power and is backed by the USA.

The in-politicians  of Assad and the rebels themselves  have no thought of their morality in how they treat their own people.  The paper reports about Marwan, a 35 year old Syrian refugee and former  clothing salesman from Homs, Syria, now living in the refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan.  He was on his way to the grocery store and picked on as a possible opposition rebel and shot by a policeman in the knee and elbow  and then tortured.  So this was Assad's people who did this.   Officers hung him from the ceiling by his wrists and then beat him with sticks for a month and a half.  They wanted him to confess to fighting for the opposition.  He was then blindfolded and taken to Damascus where they put him in a 3 foot square cell for over 3 months with 4 others.  He was hung by his wrists again during the night every 3rd day, so I suppose this was better treatment  than before.  Finally he was released but without any documents saying he was innocent.

What this story leaves out has been filled in by a contact of mine.  People can be picked up who are innocent  and possibly more affluent and held for ransom.  $10,000 will get you out of jail.  Before someone coughs up the money, though, you will be tortured.  Often, the person is actually killed if the money doesn't come through.  Bodies of deceased will be visible for those alive and undergoing the torture.  This is how these rebels get money to proceed.
The rebels are mostly Sunnis.   What is happening is that rebel factions are fighting each other.   A thousand militias are trying to merge into a few big coalitions.  Do they even know what they are fighting for or have they just allowed themselves to become fighters without any forethought.  It seems as if the whole of Syria has turned into gangs fighting each other for turf and that's it and any sort of behavior goes as long as the outcome is success.  The civilians are just in the way of their actions.

This is why the United Nations thinks that another 2 million or more refugees will be added onto the already 2 million in 2014, which isn't that far away.  2.25 million might be displaced within the country before they get to a refugee center.  They are building a 2nd giant refugee camp in Jordan to hold 130,000 called Al Azraq.  Jordan can only take 300 per day into their country.  This is hard on their water supply and food.  Syria was at the start of the Civil War a country with a population of 22,505,000 with 90% Sunni/Shi'a following the Hanafi/Alevi  fiqh.  It was a state of Islamic people  that was neither  religious nor state controlled.  Their military power consisted of about 296,000 soldiers.  Now, about 10,000 foreign jihadists have joined the fight.

Speaking of food, you can imagine that this is running out in Syria. All the fighters should have realized by now that wheat growing in the fields has to get to the bakeries.  There are many steps that have to be taken before it gets there.    They have to provide food, water, electricity and schools besides defense.  Farming under these conditions has almost stopped as they're running out of fertilizer and money to operate.  Diesel prices are soaring even though they are living in an oil producing country. With bombs falling everywhere, I doubt if many people are out in fields working. People can't get food.  They'll be leaving on that reason alone.

 Some have resorted to eating bark off trees in Homs, Syria reports Batool, a 15 year old in the 9th grade in a refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan.  They would like to go to France or Sweden but have had no replies to their applications.  She had 3 cousins shot and killed in Homs.  They still have family living there.  They're running out of savings.

Though Israelis are the hated and terrible "Jews, " there are  Jews who have been helping the refugees with medical aid  and food all along at the border who organized themselves.  Their comment is that nobody asked permission to kill, so we aren't asking permission to save lives. They've been helping out since 2000.  "Seventy tons of sanitation items, 670 tons of food, 120 tons of basic home items and 20 tons of medication are just a sample of the aid one Israeli NGO has delivered to Syrian refugees amid the current crisis."   Some wounded Syrians have even been taken into Israeli hospitals.   Such terrible people we are.

A mysterious website at has a mission to bring attention to Hezbollah's "Unit 910" which is Hezbollah's international operations unit.  The mysterious website is offering a reward for information about this  international wing.  It's not known who is offering this or who is responsible for this website which is fighting against Hezbollah, the Shiite Muslim movement in Lebanon and is against Israel.  Shiites are mostly found in Iran, which is 98% Shi'a following the Jafari fiqh.  They have a lot of fighters to spare with a population of 76,923,300.  Supposedly they have an army of 545,000.

Resource:  Oregonian newspaper 10/26/13 page Frontpage and A13,, WAve of refugees heightens fears of spreading violence by Richard Read reporting from Baalbek, Lebanon,  Syria
Batool, 15 year old, Oregonian, 10/26/13 page A14 report about Homs, Syria
Oregonian 10/26/13 page A12, The Buzz on anti-Hezbollah website

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Obama Letting Up on Sanctions on Iran

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                          

Obama must be under the spell of  Iran's President  Rouhani's  smile.   On Thursday, his administration has asked Congress to hold off on starting any new sanctions against Iran.

He things negotiators need flexibility in talks to get Iran to comply with demands that it must prove its nuclear program is peaceful.

Does anyone in this whole world really think they are on a peaceful path with their uranium?  Come on now.  Everything they are doing points to developing speedily an atomic bomb.

" Israel's opinion through Yadlin is that we should not let Rouhani drag talks out for 2 years and then realize that he deceived us, and that we don't have military option on the table anymore."  "Yadlin is anxious to see a good deal that will stop the Iranian capability to produce nuclear weapons.  If negotiations fail, then there will be legitimacy to take preventative action to stop Iran."
Jen Psaki, State Department spokeswoman, said that a pause "would be helpful" in gaining flexibility while seeing if negotiations will move forward.  They had asked for a pause in the past, as well.  More sanctions can always be added later if the Iranians fail to show reason of peaceful intent.  None are being lifted that are already in place.

Rouhani is in fact a radical Iranian speaking for the regime but he doesn't set the rules.  He wants to reach an agreement because the sanctions are hurting his country and are in the way of their basic goal to produce atomic weapons.  "If the Iranians get the sanctions lifted now, they will never stop the nuclear program.  Lifting the sanctions should be only an end result, when Iran will answer fully to the UN Security Council demands.  The important thing is the deal itself and what it entails.

Meanwhile, Reza Olangian,  a Californian with dual USA-Iran citizenship,  was  arrested in Estonia in October 2012 and brought to New York on federal charges because he tried to buy surface to air missiles for Iran, beating the sanctions.   In 2007 he was actively engaged in buying missiles for Iran.  They were  the SAMs.  This Friday a multicount indictment was unsealed of conspiring to get weapons and violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.  He said that both times he  had been working for the Iranian government.

Israel has been watching Iran for years, ever since they started acquiring uranium and building a plant.  Their former defense-intelligence chief, Amos Yadlin, is with Netanyahu on Israel's decisions about Iran.  They have two choices; to live with an Iran with an A bomb or bombing their source to building it.  He's with the Prime Minister on the bombing.

Israel is such a small country.  The Iranian ex-president, Rafsanjani said in 2001 that Israel is a one-bomb country and that a proud Iranian or Islamic nation can absorb 2 or 3 bombs.  But the real problem is that if Iran gets the bomb, then all the other Middle Eastern countries will have to have this capability as well.  Nuclear weapons in terrorist hands will be a nuclear nightmare.
The whole Middle East is against an Iran with an Atom Bomb.  He sees something happening at the end of this year, which is about here, or the beginning of 2014.  It's that close.  Yes, Israel can handle the necessary steps to be taken.  They don't need the USA, but it would certainly be nice if they were together on this.  Yes, they are prepared for repercussions from Iran.  Israel has been patiently waiting for a change of heart from Iran as they are in a" zone of immunity."  This means that there is a time when Israel can achieve their goal and if they wait too long they won't be able to do so.  It will be too late.

Yadlin said that the leading factor in deciding Israel's next move   "is the negotiations and the parameters of any future deal.   Their decision may not be an attack or not.  It might be just leaving the problem to Obama to solve, a decision to live with a problematic deal, or a decision to live with the bomb, with all its ramifications."  

Because of this change in the White House in working to stop congress from siding with Netanyahu on Iran, Senators are concerned that there will be an easing of sanctions on Iran to facilitate talks.  Congress has been leading the way to tighten sanctions on Iran.  The first round of talks ended last week.  The chief negotiator, Wendy Sherman, is the one calming their fears.  Negotiators, such as Wendy,  had praised Iran's supposed flexibility.  Republican Senators are ready to impose more sanctions on them and Marco Rubio drafted a new resolution against Iran, saying that they cannot be trusted.  He pointed out that Tehran has disregarded previous international agreements and that they need to take a firm stand about the nuclear capabilities Iran will be permitted to keep.

Resource:  from New Republic "Israel Doesn't Need America on D-Day by Ben Birnbaum-9 pages
Oregonian newspaper 10/26/13  page A4; Obama administration seeks to pause push for Iran sanctions by Matthew Lee, AP, and  The Buzz; Missile buyer, McClatchy Washington Bureau
update: 10/28/13 from Netanyahu

Friday, October 25, 2013

Releasing Murderers to Sate Arabs At Peace Table

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                        

Who does Israel have in prisons that the Palestinian Authority will not continue talking until they are all released?  "A recent terrorist release saw the government set free several convicted murderers, including terrorists who burned young children alive, and who slaughtered senior citizens with axes.  These are not nice murderers such as you might find in the USA, if you can consider any murderer "nice."  These acts are revolting!  We're dealing with a people who make it a science to be cruel just to get their own way.

Justice Minister, Tzipi Livni, 55,  is in a bind.  She heads Israel's negotiations with the PA.  The PA leaders have repeatedly  threatened that there will be no peace agreement with Israel unless Israel releases "every terrorist" from their prisons, no matter what they have done.

A bill has been brought into the Knesset that would ban the release of terrorists as a good-will gesture to the PA because of the crimes committed by these people.  It is ludicrous to release such criminals who will undoubtedly go out and commit such crimes again until caught.  Livni has been actually working to bury this bill because she thinks it will make life harder for her to appease the PA leaders.  They'll probably just walk out.  So she's been pressuring Netanyahu to join her to stop the bill before it is voted on.  The Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party was outraged and said that it's more important to keep terrorist murderers in jail that to keep Livni in the government.  What it comes down to for many as they see it is that she can get permits for construction in Judea and Samaria for Jews if terrorists are released.  What's important is to save lives and keep murderers in jail, not building, they said.

Names up for release of course are of mass murderers and arch-terrorists.  There are no nice guys that are terrorists in Israel's jails.

Personally, the deaths I've been reading about in our Oregonian newspaper as violent ones that are occurring in Syria and Lebanon.  Today, the story of Portland nurse Martina Ford met a mother whose baby had been shot to death while she held the child in her arms.  In past days I've read about children shot in Syria just for being on the street, as if someone were target practicing using them as targets.  The deaths are hideous.  It's unimaginable cruelty  that is going on.  Terrorists lead the way in practice and then get to be glorified for doing so.

I know that Israel does not nor ever intended to let such prisoners out of their jails.  They are under pressure by the world to bring about Abbas to the peace table and have gone to such lengths, putting themselves in harm's way.  Our government should be ashamed of themselves for allowing or encouraging this to have ever taken place.   Whatever happened to such decisions as the Geneva Convention?  There should have been an outrage of expecting such a thing to bring about peace when murderers are not of the same mind.

"US Secretary of State John Kerry, who in July nudged Israel and the Palestinian Authority into resuming talks frozen since September 2010, was on Wednesday meeting Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in Rome, according to officials, to discuss Iran, Syria and the talks with the Palestinian Authority.  The talks were due to run for seven hours. "

Resource:  Arutz Shevaa, Report:  Livni triying to avoid vote on terrorist release by Maayana Miskin
Oregonian newspaper 10/25/13 , traveling the globe to give:  a nurse's trip to Lebanon by Richard Read, front page,

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Assyrians Who Carried Away the 10 Tribes of Israel


The Assyrians attacked Israel and took away 10 of the 12 tribes of Jacob in 721 BCE.  Who were they?  Where did they come from?  Are they the Syrians of today?   That was 2,734 years ago.

They were also a Semitic people, just like the Jews who lived in Israel.   They were from the northern area of Mesopotamia (Iraq) , which was the land between the  Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and were centered at the city-state of Ashur, which is now the Saladin Province of Iraq.  Nineveh was also one of their major cities.  It was originally one of a number of Akkadian city states in Mesopotamia.  Once it had been a great power.  .   The Assyrians tried to create their own empire. They lasted for about 15 centuries.    They were stopped by the Babylonian king, Hammurabi, who ruled from Babylon from 1728 to 1686 BCE.  So we can say that Assyria was Iraq.

The Asiatic Hurrians (Mitanni) invaded Assyria, but they were overcome by the Hittite Empire that had been growing in strength.  However, the Hittites gave up control of Ashur because it was far away from their center, so gave the Assyrians their  independence in c 1400. BCE.

The successes of King David (1010-970 BCE) and his son, King Solomon (961-920 BCE) against the Aramean states in Mesopotamia and Syria probably helped Assyria's recovery.    Damascus was taken in 806 BCE which freed Israel from Damascus' control. Damascus was the capital of Syria and still is.  It had a Jewish connection since the days of King David  in whose realm it was comprised.  It was the capital of Aram-Dammesek which was important in the days of the kings of Israel and was either a friend or a foe of Israel in different periods. A lot of Jews lived in Damascus during King Herod's reign.  He had built a theater and a gymnasium there.  When the Jews revolted against Rome starting in 67 CE, many Jews were killed in Damascus.  

By 745-727 BCE, a leader named Tiglath-Pileser III tried to renew another period of Assyrian expansion.  At least 13 states came under their domination:  Uratu, Persia, Media, Mannea, Babylonia, Arabia, Phoenicia,  Nabateaa, Chaldea, Cyprus, Moab, Edom and the Neo-Hittites.

He became king of Babylon and the Assyrian empire now stretched from the Caucasus Mountains to Arabia and from the Caspian Sea to Cyprus.  Tiglath-Pileser III had organized the Assyrian army into a first rate professional fighting force.  He also improved the administration of his empire and set the example for others that followed him.  He introduced Eastern Aramaic is their own language.

Shalmaneser V (726-723 BCE) ruled after him for a short while and consolidated their power and stopped the Egyptian attempts to get a foothold in the Middle East by defeating and driving out Pharaoh Piye from the area.  He is even mentioned in the Biblical sources as having conquered the Samaritans and being responsible for deporting the 10 Lost Tribes of Israel to Assyria. His attack on Samaria, the capital of Israel, was a siege.   He took 27,290 Israelites to Assyria and Media and replaced them with  Syrian and Babylonian prisoners.  

Sargon II (722-705 BCE) kept the empire going.  He also drove out the Cimmerians and Scythians from Iran as they had invaded and attacked the Persians and Medes, which were now vassals of Assyria.   Israel fell to them in 721 BCE.  Mannea, Cilicia Cappadocia and Commagene were also conquered.  They ravaged the Uratuwas, and Babylon, Aram, Phoenicia, Israel, and Arabia.  Cyprus and Midas (King of Phygia) were all  forced to pay tribute.

Sargon's stele (pillar)  has been found as far west as Lamaca in Cyprus (found in 1845  It was their way to brag about their accomplishments.  
 He conquered Gurgum, Milid, the Georgian state of Tabal, and all the Hittite kingdoms of the Taurus Mountains.

Egypt tried again to gain a foothold by supporting Israel's rebellion against the empire, but Sargon II crushed the uprising, and Piye was routed and driven back over the Sinai.  Sargon II was killed in 705 BCE while on a punitive raid against the Cimmerians, and Sennacherib succeeded him.

Sennacherib, king of Assyria from 705-681 BCE, Sargon's son,  was marching south and took the Phoenician cities one by one, defeated the Egyptians at Eltekeh in 701, took Ascalon and Joppa and 44 other cities and many prisoners, sacked Lachish and Jerusalem in 700 and ravaged Judah but didn't take it.  King Hezekiah of Judah was able to hold out and got some moderate terms of agreement by paying tribute and ceding some territory.  Sennacherib had to then leave as a plague hit his army.

Babylonia took  Judah finally in 597 and 586 BCE which was 100 years later.  This land is the scene of the Tower of Babel, also known as the land of Shinar or the Kasdim (Chaldees.).  Abraham was born in Ur of the Chaldeans but migrated to Canaan to live.  It was the symbol of insolent pagan tyranny.  The Babylonian Nebuchadnezzar II (604-561 BCE) inherited the Assyrian empire and took Judah in 597 BCE and again in 586 BCE.  He also exiled many Jews to Babylon,  for slavery,  most likely.   They probably came in contact with their previous Jewish tribal cousins of the captured 10 tribes.    Cyrus II (d: 529 BCE) king of Persia, had overrun the Babylonian Empire and took what had been Israel and Judah.  He  told the Jews when he conquered the land in 538 BCE  that they could return to their homes and even told them to rebuild their temple when they got there.   The Jews thought he was Divine!

What are these Semites that are Jews and Assyrians?  Our story is that Shem was one of the 3 sons of Noah, and the nations of Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad and Aram came from Shem.  Arpachshad was  father of Eber and ancestor of Abraham.  People that speak languages similar to Hebrew are called Semitic people and their languages are Semitic languages.  For example, Arabic is very similar to Hebrew.  It is called a cognate (related by descent from the same ancestral language) to Hebrew and is a branch of the Semitic languages.  There are many words that are exactly alike, and many that are almost exactly alike.  Shalom and Salaam are good examples, meaning hello, good-by and peace.  Since Ishmael and Esau were descendants of Abraham and forerunners of the Arabs, and Jews are also from Abraham and we both have Semitic languages, we say we are distant cousins.  We even share DNA that is very similar in that there is the haplogroup called the Cohen gene of J1c3d found in many Jews who are actually Cohens in the synagogue.  It's also found in some Arabs with a slight difference in it's title at the end showing it is a branch, but also labeled as J1c3d.   This should be the genes going back to Abraham and Noah.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Jesus Used in Fight Over Jerusalem

Nadene Goldfoot                                                              

                                            Christian Church in Jerusalem

The latest weapon being used against Israel by the Arabs is to say that Jesus of Nazareth was a "Palestinian."  When you hear a statement like that, you immediately think of him as an Arab, because today "Palestinians" refer to the Arabs that call themselves Palestinian Arabs.  The city of Nazareth has been taken over by the Arabs. It is the largest Muslim majority city in Israel today.  It has a population of 60,000 of which 2/3 are now Muslim.   So has Bethlehem, which was turned over to the Arabs in 1995.  It has a population of 30,000.  Christian Arabs have become a minority in these places.    These used to be Christian communities and of course before them, Jewish communities.

The fact is that until May 14, 1948, both Arabs and Jews were referred to as "Palestinians."  The land was called Palestine from 135 CE on, renamed by the Romans.  But Jesus wasn't alive in 135.  He was living in Judah in the northern Galilee as the nation of  Judah existed up till the year of 70.

 Palestine was never a country.  It was simply the name given to the previous "Israel and Judah" that came to be owned by the Ottoman Empire from their take-over.  After the Romans had taken Judah, there was the Umayyad Dynasty, Abbasid Empire, Khanids and Mamluks, Safavid and then the Ottomans of Turkey.  None of them lived in this desolate swamp/desert weed filled dried out piece of land except mosquitoes and camels and maybe the few nomads that rode camels.  It was a place to tramp through to get to the other side.

 Turkey held onto it until they lost it in WWI and the British were given the mandate as to carry out the League of Nations' decision to turn it over to be a Jewish Homeland.  Jews were considered "wanderers," people without a nation who lost theirs to the Romans.  Even a plant was named, "Wandering Jew."  Yes, we had wandered through many a nation in the last 2,000 years looking for a home.

Of course this is a false claim.  The story of a Jewish Jesus puts him in the position of being born December 25th, and the year would be 1 CE as the calendar places it.  He was to have died from crucifixion at the age of 37. According to the Christians, who own this story, he was Jewish, not a pagan Arab.   Some put his death at 29 CE.  The name, Jesus, is the Greek translation of Joshua, a Jewish name as Joshua was the leader of the Israelites who was given the title and responsibility  by Moses.  The branches separating Arabs from Jews from their common relative of Abraham, born  in the 2nd millennium BCE  was about 2,000 years previously.

 It was in the year 70 CE that Jerusalem was attacked by the Romans where it was destroyed and burned down.  Almost all the Jews were either taken away as slaves or fled in different directions.  Some were able to hide and stayed.  By 132 CE a Jewish man by the name of Simon Bar Kokhba, descended from King David, made a last stand against the Romans when the Romans were rebuilding  Jerusalem as a Roman colony and not allowing circumcision for the Jewish inhabitants still there.  By 133 the Romans held a counterattack with 35,000 soldiers led by Hadrian as Kokhba had retaken Jerusalem, but he was killed in 135 and the revolt ended in a slaughter.  It was then that the Romans renamed the land  in Latin, the language of the Romans, as Palaestina, now called Palestine.  They did that  to erase the connection of the Jews to the land of Israel.

Now, logistically and truthfully, Jesus was not alive then nor was he an Arab of that period.  How could he have attended a Synagogue?  No, the whole argument about Jesus has always been that he was a Jewish person, son of Mary who was married to Joseph, and both of them were Jewish.

What the Arabs are doing is trying to connect all Christians to their side of the fight of taking away all of Israel from the Jews and giving it to the Arabs.  Don't fall for such nonsense.  The Toronto Star Newspaper has.  Write them a letter telling them they have fallen for propaganda against Israel.  "Anti-Israel adherents continue to peddle the fiction that Jesus was a “Palestinian” who preached Islam."  They're peddling the idea that he was a "Shahid."  They have the concept of Christianity and Islam all mixed together to use against Israel.  

The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Saturday, October 19, 2013

USA's Long Cozy Connections With Muslim Brotherhood

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                 

Has anyone noticed that the USA is planning on denying Egypt their usual loan on the  grounds that they kicked out the biggest head of the Muslim Brotherhood, Morsi, who was elected President?  Egypt could only take him for one year and out he went.  I'm not crying about it.  The Muslim Brotherhood's Charter is the standard for Hamas; destroy Israel and kill all Jews.

What is the Muslim Brotherhood to the United States?  Do they have our same values?  Not that I can see.  Quite the opposite, if you ask me.  The only thing they can offer is money and power of the Middle East. They have their own agenda.

Back with Bill Clinton's first lady, Hillary, who was Obama's Secretary of State, we see that  her closest lady is Huma Abedin, Anthony Weiner's Muslim wife.  Three of her family members are big shots in the Muslim Brotherhood such as her mother, who is prominent member of the Muslim sisterhood.    Three guesses as to Huma's allegiance lies with.  Hillary loves her like a daughter.  Huma served as an assistant-editor of an Islamist journal in 1996 when she became a White House intern.  The journal job lasted until 2008 when she became Deputy Chief of Staff for Hillary.  The journal itself was put together by her mother and other family members.  Abedin also worked as a consultant on the Clinton Foundation and didn't disclose her consulting work to the government.

The Clinton Foundation  got a large donation from the Alavi Foundation, a front for the Iranian regime who aimed to advance their point of view. " The Alavi Foundation is the successor organization to the Pahlavi Foundation, a nonprofit group used by Mohammad Reza Pahlavi to advance Iran's charitable interests in America.  Most of the charity's income is from rent collected on the New York Fifth Avenue skyscraper the Piaget Building, which was built in 1978 under the Shah, who was overthrown in 1979."   They donated $30,000 in 2005.  Supposedly it was to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.  Bribes do talk in this world today.  But that was a pittance.

In 2008 the Foundation received millions of dollars from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar.  Qatar has been a favorite of Hillary's even though it is a major supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood.  On February 15, 2010, Hillary was in an official Al-Jazeera town hall interview at the Carnegie Mellon University branch campus in Qatar and was introduced by Sheikh Abdallah al-Thani.  She said she was impressed with their Qatar Foundation which is a partnership between the USA and Qatar.  Now, nothing much is wrong with that except that al-Jazeera is the station that broadcasts the religious sermons every week of Imam al-Qaradawi, a theologian of terror who also conveys the message to kill all Jews.  He's been the close associate of the ruler of Qatar, al Thani.

Qaradawi, the Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader,  calls for the Muslim world to damage the US economy by boycotting American products, incites Muslims to conquer Rome, warns the US to change their policies or face "collapse" and calls for another Holocaust against Jews by the Muslims.  His statement heard was,  "Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them (Jews).   Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one."

Egypt, who has gone back to Sadat's calling the Brotherhood a terrorist organization, which it certainly is,  just arrested Gehad (Jihad) el-Haddad.  It turns out that he was working for the William J. Clinton Foundation as its Egyptian director.  His father is Essam el-Haddad, a bigshot on the Brotherhood's Guidance Bureau. .  El-Haddad was also at the same time working with the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood, the Freedom and Justice Party.  Then he became a member of the Steering Committee for their Renaissance Program, the plan to institute Sharia law in Egypt.  He was  also a spokesperson and media stategist for Morsi's campaign to become president.  So there has been  this very strong connection between those for the Muslim Brotherhood right in the leading chair of our government.

Who is one of the senior advisors at the Department of Homeland Security?  Mohamed Elibiary.  He was promoted to Senior Fellow on September 12 and had been a delegate for John McCain in 2008.  He's also the founder of Lone Star Intelligence LLC, and served on the DHS Countering Violent Extremism Working Group and the DHS faith-based Security and Communications Advisory Committee. He's a very active fellow.  What's the problem with him?

He praises the Muslim Brotherhood and says the US should support it.  He tells the tale that in Egypt it's a non-violent socio-political movement and that you can't call it dogmatic, violent or autocratic or dicatorial, totalitarian or jihadist.  No. He knows it in a personal manner, he says, better than the "Average White Guy, who has no more insight than what's available in the media."  He believes that it has acted responsibly, if not always effectively in the very early stages of democratic transition.    He feels that the US should partner with the Muslim Brotherhood by saying, "Our government needs to deepen our strategic engagement with MB.  He compares them to the Christian Evangelicals!  How John Hagee is going to love that comparison!  He's one evangelical that supports the Jewish state of Israel and is not a terrorist organization out to murder anyone.  Elibiary  associates with the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of American and pro-Khomeini groups and spoke at their conference.  It's a hardline Islamist group who call for fatwas for the gradual establishment of sharia law in America by using deception, marital rape, jihad against Israel and banning of Muslims in joining the FBI or serving in the US military in a combat capacity.  Of course they would do that!  Remember, he's a bigwig in Homeland Security.

Obama just chose Jeh Johnson to fill the shoes of Janet Napolitano, 56, former governor of Arizona who became secretary of the Department of Homeland Security and  left in September to head the U of California.  He's been another advisor on counter-terrorism and a former official at the Pentagon.He is a New Yorker,  there on 9/11 which is his birthday.   He's been a friend of Obama for years who wants this 56 year old confirmed as soon as possible.  He doesn't come with border security credentials that Napolitano had, however.  Also, " in private life, he became a prominent Democratic fund-raiser, up through the Obama campaign, before returning to the Defense Department as its top lawyer during the president's first term."  

"   The Brotherhood remains virulently anti-Semitic. “Today the Jews are not the Israelites praised by Allah, but the descendants of the Israelites who defied His word. Allah was angry with them and turned them into monkeys and pigs….There is no doubt that the battle in which the Muslims overcome the Jews [will come]....In that battle the Muslims will fight the Jews and kill them." Muslim Brotherhood Spiritual leader Yusuf al-Qaradawi"  

Resource: Muslim Brotherhood Charter goals
MEMRI Sheikh Al-Qaradawi & Qatar's Education City Hosting American University Branches,DB7611A   ADL
Oregonian newspaper, 10/19/13 page A2, Obama taps an insider for Homeland

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Turkey Keeps Punishing Israel: 10 Spies Outed

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                         

Israel had 10 spies operating in Iran.  Every country has spies in other countries.  However, who would suspect that Turkey, still holding a mean grudge against Israel over the 2010 Mavi Marmara ship incident, would know who these spies were and would expose them to the world?  That's just what Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan did.  He approved the exposing.  Ankara's decision to expose these Mossad informants was decided early last year when Turkish-Israeli relations deteriorated.  After all that confrontation cost Israel dearly already.  To be able to come to a peaceful agreement over an incident where Turkey was the defiant person in the situation and brought on the results to themselves and where Israel was merely protecting their own lives  still looms in Turkey's vengeful mind.

Now, this is an important loss of intelligence for Israel that could have benefited surly people like Erdogan and his country as well.  It was his cruel effort to cut the Israelis to the core.  Mossad was running their Iranian spy network through Turkey and Turkey's  intelligence was able to monitor covert Israeli-Iranian  meetings.  We all know why this was important, even to the whole world.  It's about the Iranian development of nuclear power that can be used as an A bomb to destroy Israel.  It's a big deal that can affect the whole Middle East and the United States.  Is Turkey trying to curry favors with Iran by doing this?  If so, they are already condescending power to Iran in this act.

Israel's Netanyahu initially refused to apologize to Erdogan, who disregarded warnings and didn't consider Israel's position at all while pretending to be a friend back in 2010.  Turkey suffered deaths because of the stand they took, and have not forgiven Israel, as we can see.  Israel and Turkey had had a good relationship lasting the past 50 years, so Mossad probably didn't see this act coming.  It goes to show that we can't trust anyone. It's a nasty betrayal.

More of their betrayal is "Ankara – a NATO ally – chose a U.S.-sanctioned Chinese company to build a missile defense system in Turkey, triggering concerns in Washington."  They're covering all their bases, aren't they?  

Resource: Breaking Israel News

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Who Was Moses and Why Do Jews Follow Him and Not Jesus or Mohammad?

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                        

*Abraham, an Ibri (Hebrew, and meaning from the other side)  whose family  migrated  from the other side (east ) of the Euphrates River   was born in Ur, now in Iraq, and was the son of Terah, an Idol maker.  One day Abraham told his father his views that idols were just what they made, statues made of clay and had no higher power.  They were not gods.  Terah's business was ruined with this revelation and they left town to live by themselves as there was too much pressure in Ur to go along with this belief.    Behind all these ideas was G-d leading Abraham along and into a higher state of consciousness.  They wound up in nearby Canaan, a land of pagan idolaters similar to Ur, for that was what most people were in the days in the 2nd millennium BCE.  This means 2,000 years before Jesus was born.

(Euphrates: From the Caucasus Mtns of Armenia, it flows southwesterly across east-central Turkey, then generally southeast through Syria and Iraq, ending in the waters of the Persian Gulf. It joins with the Tigris in southern Iraq, and from that junction continues on as the Shatt al Arab. Overall it's (2,235 miles) (3,596 km) in length, and is certainly the longest river in the Middle East. Historically important in ancient history, the once great city of Babylon stood on its banks.)

Abraham's son was Isaac, born to him by his wife, Sarah.  Their grandson was Jacob.  Jacob took his household of 70 people during a famine into Egypt.  They stayed a little too long, and their numbers came to the attention of a population counter.  They were afraid of their becoming a majority group, and so took them all as slaves to work on the Pharaoh's building projects of pyramids and storage cities. Anti-Semitism started right here.  The Hebrews were too dangerous to keep and too important to lose. The Bible mentions that they were used as workers on these storage cities.

A new Pharaoh decided to kill off the Hebrews.    If a girl was born she would live, but the boys were to be killed. This would force the females to blend into Egypt's population. The pharaoh had a 2nd reason to decide on infanticide.  His astrologer told him that the savior of the Jews was about to be born, so he ordered all boys to be killed for that reason.    However, the midwives  wouldn't do it.  This went on until the Pharaoh came up with another ruling.  All boys born of the Hebrews were to be thrown into the Nile River.

 Amram and Jochebed, his aunt, both from the tribe of Levi,  were expecting a child and were wondering how they would keep it alive if it were a boy.  After concealing him for 3 months, she had to do something drastic for the edict still was in effect.  She put him in a wicker basket smearing with clay and pitch and put her boy into it and then put it in the river among the reeds growing along  the bank.  His older sister, Mirium watched for his safety at a distance so she could report back to her parents.

The Pharaoh's daughter found the baby boy as she and her maidens were walking along the river.  She took the baby and raised him as her own child, but she saw he was one of the Hebrew boys.  She allowed a Hebrew wet nurse to come and allow him to suckle, and it was in reality his own mother, Jochebed.  The princess named him "Moses", meaning "I drew him out of the water." He grew up in the household as a prince.

The next scene is that of Moses as an adult witnessing for the first time an Egyptian taskmaster beating a Hebrew slave, and it made him so angry that he struck down the taskmaster for being so cruel.  Evidently he accidentally killed him, so hid his body in the sand.  The next day he witnessed two Hebrews fighting each other and tried to break them up, and they in turn let Moses know that they witnessed him killing the taskmaster.  Now he was worried, as even then in Egypt you couldn't get away with that.  He found out that the Pharaoh had been advised about his deed, and so he decided that he had to leave Egypt.  He fled to Midian.

7 daughters of a religious Midianite man, a priest,   found him by a well just at the time they were being threatened by some shepherds with their sheep who were trying to drive the girls away. Moses roused himself just in time to come to their defense.  Moses wound up being given the eldest daughter, Zipporah for a wife.  His 1st son was named Gershom.  His 2nd was Eliezer.

One day when he was with his father in law's  sheep, he saw a bush on fire but not burning down.  Out of it came G-d's voice directing him to return to Egypt and go to the present Pharaoh and ask for the release of his people.  When asking who was sending him, the answer was, "I shall be as I shall be."

So went Moses and after much pleading, was able to take the 600,000 out of Egypt.  His older brother, Aaron, did the speaking for him as he had a speech impediment.  Then he proceeded along the way that took him 40 years to write the rules of future living for this people.  He wrote the 10 commandments first, but that was followed by much more which we call today, "The 5 books of Moses."

 One of the 12 tribes was Judah, and was the largest.  It survived the downfall of the Northern Kingdom of Israel in 722 BCE when 10 of the 12 tribes were led into captivity.  This is why we are called Jewish and our faith is called Judaism and our language is Hebrew and our land was renamed "Israel," for the first state which was ruled by King Saul.

Many Jews own a 2 volume set of the 5 books called the Haftorahs.  There's a lot of information there to learn and to study.  Our main emphasis is about behavior being fair with others in all matters.  We believe in life, "L' chaim!"  We do not get concerned about what happens to us when we die.  That's in G-ds hands anyway, but we do believe in an afterlife, in a world to come (Olam haba) where man is judged and where his soul continues to flourish.  The belief is that all Israel has a share in the world to come" (Mishna Sanhaedrin 11:1).   Our Jewish tradition cherishes life.  The Torah was given to Israel so that "you shall live" by the teachings and not die through them.  Death to us has no virtue since "The dead cannot praise the Lord...."

 The first direction was to believe in one G-d only.  We feel that we are all the sons and daughters of the one G-d, that we have this spark within us.  That's why we do not worship Jesus or even Mohammad.  To us they remain as men, which even the Muslims agree with us.  It is the basis of our religion.  The Jewish concept of G-d rejects any compromise with the spirituality of G-d.  The notion of man becoming G-d or G-d assuming the form of man was repugnant to the Jewish religious spirit.  They were to see this happening over and over in the Greek and Roman civilizations.  The Jewish mind and faith cannot accept the notion of the infinite Divine reducing Himself to a finite mortal.

We were not to make representations of G-d in an image,  This was forbidden to us, which even Abraham realized before Moses's teachings.  The 2nd Commandments that "You shall not make for yourself a sculptued shall not bow down to them nor serve them" was understood as even for people who didn't really believe that the image was G-d but was only a symbol representing G-d.  The sin of the Golden calf, when Aaron allowed the children of Israel to think that the calf was G-d when Moses had left the group to climb Mt. Sinai was not allowed just because they had demanded a visual image of G-d, Moses's unseen belief in a higher power.

 Moses was 80 years old when he started the 40 year trek, and died at age 120.  Moses had handed the mantle of leadership over to Joshua.  He died but outside of the Holy Land.  His burial place is unknown so as not to start any worship of him.  Moses is accepted as the author of the Pentateuch (5 Books of Moses) and the creator of Judaism, thereby the father of monotheism other than Abraham.  Other writings such as the Midrash and late Aggadah tell of many legends about him.  Other works were pseudepigraphically ascribed to him.

It is not easy to become Jewish.  We regard ourselves as being of one family, extended in most cases.  However, it has been said that one can find a common ancestor if you go back 5 generations between a husband and a wife.  Membership is through the mother, but not limited to just this way.  A convert is looked upon as adopted into it and becomes a partner in faith and with the people of Israel, assuming burdens and tribulation along with sharing in its heritage and its privileges.  They are assuming the spiritual mission of the future by tying themselves to our collective past.  When the central sanctuary in Jerusalem was built, Jews saw it as a "House of Prayer for all peoples" (Isaiah 56: 7) (Kings I 8:41-43.)  We come in all colors of skin.  Our kinship is a mystical experience more than a rationally definable one.  Jews are a conundrum.  We are a faith, a religion as well as a nation.    So we use the term people.  We are a people.

While many religions have fallen by the wayside along with their cultures and people, we  come out of the past intact. In fact, ancient prophecies by the well known prophets are now coming true, especially with the creation of Israel and the ingathering of the Jewish people.   We have maintained our beliefs but have kept up with the present, not to be thought of as "the old."  I for one am so proud to have had such stubborn ancestors who stood by their beliefs in a religion so rightous, that we do not have the history of forcing anyone to believe as we do, but have tried to upgrade whatever we have found that we were living in; like our environment, social life, everyone's lives, not just our own.  For Tikkun olam, repairing the world, is always on our minds, not destroying it.

Resource: Tanakh, Stone Edition, Exodus 1
*To Be a Jews by Rabbi Hayim Halaevy Donin-
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Aleppo, Syria's Most Dashing Israeli Spy, Eli Cohen

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                          

Eli Cohen was a Mizrachi Jew.  That means he is a Jew from the Middle East.  Mizrah means East, and that's the name of Egypt, Mitzrayim. Often they are classed together with Sephardi Jews of Spain and Portugal.   He was born in Alexandria, Egypt  December 16,  1924 to an orthodox as well as Zionistic family.  His father sought refuge there from Aleppo in 1914 when Jews were being treated so terribly in Syria.  Aleppo had been the largest city and province where Jews lived.  Damascus also had a large population of Jews as well.  The original people had been there from the time of King David.  Later they were joined by Spanish Jews who needed refuge from the Spanish Inquisition of 1492 when Jews had to either leave the country or convert to Christianity.

He tried to enlist  in the Egyptian Army in January 1947.  Otherwise, being Jews, they  were treated as dhimmis all over the Middle East, meaning that they were penalized for being Jewish and were 2nd class citizens, and  would have had to pay a high poll tax.  They turned him down because they questioned his loyalty.  He had been studying at the university, so later that year he left and had to study  at home after facing harassment by the Muslim Brotherhood for being Jewish.

Israel was created on May 14, 1948.  After that, many Jewish families left Egypt to live there as the Muslim countries reacted to this by throwing out their Jewish populations.  His parents emigrated with his  brothers, Abraham and Maurice in 1949, but he remained in Egypt to finish a degree in electronics and to work on activities that would aid Israel.

By 1951, Egypt had a military coup and they were against any Jews in the country involved in any activity that was Zionistic.  He was arrested and questioned by the police.  In Syria the methods of interrogation are brutal, and they are known to have used electric shock treatments.  Egypt was probably practicing similar brutal methods which even Brooklyn police used in early days, such as the rubber hose  treatment in the 20's and 30's.  Luckily, the Egyptians could find no proof of his actions in Operation Goshen when Israel smuggled out Egyptian Jews and resettled them in Israel because of Egypt's hostility towards Jews then..  There have been several follow up rescues taking out Jews in groups that had been virtually imprisoned in their own neighborhoods with no freedoms at all.

I taught with a young  Egyptian Jewish lady in 1981in Safed at the junior high  and she told me she was one of the last to leave Egypt.  Only a few older ladies remained.

Eli emigrated to Israel, arriving in Haifa in a ship from Naples Italy in December 1956 after the Suez Crisis which had caused more persecution of Jews.  Many were expelled from Egypt then.  In 1957 he was recruited by the Israel Defense forces and placed in military intelligence where he became a counterintelligence analyst.  This was boring for him so he tried to join the Mossad who rejected him.  He left in a huff and worked as a filing clerk in an insurance office in Tel Aviv, quite a humble position for this talented young man.

There he met and married Nadia Majald, an Iraqi-Jewish immigrant in 1959.  They had 3 children, Sophie, Irit and Shai and settled in Bat Yam.  Now he was recruited by Mossad after someone re-visited lists of rejected candidates.  They watched him for 2 weeks and it was decided he was perfect for the job.  This was followed up with a 6 month course in their training school.  He was then a field agent and was given a false identity.

Finally Eli Cohen was caught as a spy and hung  in Al-Marjeh Square, Damascus on May 18, 1965 at the age of 40 years.   With him was 80 year old Chief Rabbi of Syria, Nissim Andabo.  Nadia sent a letter to President Hafez al-Assad and asked his forgiveness for Eli's actions in November.  She hoped to receive his remains but the Syrians refused.  Syria buried him 3  times so no one could find him.

A film about him is "The Impossible Spy" a story about his life.
The Jews of Aleppo 

Monday, October 7, 2013

Syria's Position Today

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                          

After over 100,00 people have been killed in the Syrian Civil War and 2 million have been forced from their homes out of a population of 22,505,000,  the fighting may be coming to a halt.  The Syrian opposition group against Assad  is the Syrian National Coalition, backed by the West.   These rebels are outgunned by the regime forces who have gained speed since Assad agreed to give up his chemical weapons stocks and has thrown off the threat of of imminent US military action from jet planes. Deadly battles have been taking place, however.

The Sunni town al-Mitras of 8,000  lies in an area dominated by Assad's Alawite Shi'a sect where a lot of shelling has taken place.  Assad's soldiers want the surrender of dozens of fighters in there.  The town's officials persuaded defectors and rebels to surrender to the authorities with the promise of being freed after "repenting."  This ploy has often been used in stalemates in Syria such as the recent one in Talkalakh.  Bayda and Banias, nearby Sunni towns,  is where troops killed 248 people after days of shelling.

Syria is 13% Shia like Iran and the Alawites are a Shia group which is why Iran backs Assad.  The Twelvers and Ismailis follow that sect.  This is a Civil War of religion more than it is about politics with the 2 intertwined.

With either group, the worst thing to be was Jewish even though both Sunnis and Shia could be carrying some Jewish genes since Jews lived in the area since King David of Israel  who lived from 1010 BCE to 970 BCE. Syria was part of Israel-Judah which the Bible called Aram.  The coast had been settled in those days by the Phoenicians.  In the 8th century BCE, Syria had been overrun by the Assyrians who had  also attacked Israel in 721 BCE.  Assyria itself was an ancient state in western Asia whose people were also Semites and had established an aggressive kingdom in the 20th century BCE.  I think a lot of the present day Syrians must have inherited some of that aggressiveness.

Sunni Muslims are the majority and dominate the revolt  which started in March 2011, inspired by the Arab Spring in Egypt.  Christians and other Muslim sects have been on the side of the regime, which is surprising because the regime was so terrible to the Jews of Syria that they finally were forced find ways to escape. In the end, a Canadian woman helped to get them to Israel and the USA in 1994.

After the creation of Israel in 1948 the Jews in Syria were terribly persecuted.  This was far worse than the Jews of the Middle East being treated as dhimmis or 2nd class citizens which was bad enough where they had no rights as real citizens.  Instead, they had restrictions and had to pay a poll tax others did not have to pay.   Rights were taken away such as owning their property, travel or even to practice their occupations.  If they tried to leave the country they were persecuted.  If they were Jews who needed to travel for business purposes they had to travel alone for fear they would flee to a free country.  The big fear of the government was that the men would join the Israeli forces and fight against them in the Israeli army.   Here in Aleppo, the 3,000 year old Jewish history went back to King David.  Damascus's Jewish community also went back to that period and  both went back to Jews entering the country after the 1492 expulsion of Jews from Spain's Spanish Inquisition.  Why the Christians stand with Assad seems artificial if they are for freedom.

Beautiful neighborhoods of modern homes have been bombed away. New homes have been flattened in communities that were modern with all the amenities of a Florida home.  Cemeteries guarding genealogy for families have been destroyed.   Assad has been reported to have secretly moved chemically tipped missiles over to Lebanon, now.  That's what happened most likely to the same chemicals that started in Iraq.

 The last I read was that Assad may not seek another term.  How sad.  He's finally getting the message that he no longer is finding favor with his people.  He'll probably take his money and hide out in South America.

Update: 10/9/13  Since 1,400 people were killed by Sarin gas attacks on 8/21/13 in Syria, 100  experts will arrive in Damascus today to expand on work by the first team that came on 10/1/13 to find and see to the destruction of these chemicals.  They have to identify, sequester and oversee about 1,000 tons of the chemical arsenal and have about 8 months to do the job.  The actual work of it is to be done by Syrian forces.  Their job is to verify that Syria has destroyed the entire arsenal which is to be done by mid 2014.

Resource:  Oregonian newspaper 10/6/13 page A11, Bloodshed precedes cease-fire agreement by Bassem Mrous, AP.
Picture by Ahmed Jadallah/Reuters, lone fighter in Alawite district surveying damage
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
Oregonian newspaper, 10/9/13, page A9, 2nd chemical team going to Syria by Ben Hubbard, NY Times