On 4 July 1976, the Israel Defense Forces successfully rescued 94 Israeli passengers and 12 crew members who had been taken hostage at the Entebbe Airport in Uganda, a week after their French jet airliner had been hijacked by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Red Army Faction.
The airliner was hijacked during a planned stopover in Athens on 27 June. Captain Michel Bacos recounted hearing shouts from inside the cabin, upon which he sent his chief engineer to investigate. When the engineer opened the door, he found himself face to face with a man armed with a revolver and a hand grenade, who along with three other hijackers, ordered the plane to reroute to Uganda, where they were joined by their accomplices.
Upon arrival in Entebbe, the hijackers freed over 250 passengers who did not appear to be Israeli or Jewish. They then announced that they would hold the Jewish and Israeli hostages at a terminal in the Entebbe airport until 53 pro-Palestinian militants imprisoned in Israel and other locations were freed. The airplane crew was offered their freedom. However, they refused it, saying that their duty was to stay with their passengers until they were safe.
In Israel, the military leadership met in Tel Aviv, working to gather all possible intelligence on the hostage situation and design a rescue mission. Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak (‘99-’01), was at the helm the operation. Against all odds, an engineer that had submitted a proposal to build a new terminal at the Entebbe airport came forward with the design plans of the airport where the hostages were being held.
The plan called for Israelis to fly an aircraft into Uganda and subsequently approach the hostages’ location in a motorcade identical to the one used by Ugandan dictator Idi Amin. Although the army was able to track down a rare Mercedes limousine in line with those used by the motorcade, the color was wrong, and the IDF was forced to spray paint it the correct color to blend in.
The first Israeli aircraft landed without any problems, but the plan quickly went awry. As subsequent aircrafts approached, a Ugandan soldier raised his rifle, causing Israeli team leader Lt. Col. Yoni Netanyahu to fire at the soldier with a silenced pistol. Another Israeli soldier shot his gun in tandem – without a silencer. The surprise was revealed, and a battle ensued.
The IDF forces began running toward the terminal under fire from the Ugandans. The Israeli commandos surged into the airport, killing one hijacker instantly, and two more as they approached. Meanwhile, an Israeli soldier announced to the hostages on a megaphone in Hebrew and English, “Lie down, don’t get up. The army is here, the army is here.”
When Sara Davidson, one of the hostages, heard the gunfire, she assumed that the terrorists had begun murdering hostages and so she quickly took her 13-year-old son Benny to hide in one of the bathrooms. Sara recalled: “I was just hoping they will kill me and that maybe I can save him. And during these terrible noises, smells and shouting and shooting, I heard him saying Shema Yisrael.”
When the firefight was over, leaving all the hijackers and at least 20 Ugandan soldiers dead, the IDF led all of the hostages onto one of the Israeli aircrafts. Onboard, were 102 hostages and crew. Four people were declared dead or missing.
Among the killed was unit commander Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu, who had been shot shortly after the first aircraft’s landing. The operation, which is commonly referred to as Operation Entebbe, was codenamed by the military as Operation Thunderbolt, and retroactively codenamed Operation Yonatan in memory of the fallen soldier
On 4 July 2016, Uganda and Israel commemorated the 40th anniversary of the operation at a somber ceremony at the Entebbe Airport, where Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu had been was killed. The Israeli delegation was led by Lt. Col. Netantahyu’s brother, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Surgical sterilizations, abortions, and other birth control measures are being forced upon Muslim women in China to make minorities “disappear”, says a horrifying report. The totalitarian regime is trying to slash its Muslim population, while encouraging the country’s Han majority to have more kids, the agency adds. Its investigative report on the brutal treatment of women of child-bearing age has been released alongside disturbing new research by China scholar Adrian Zenz.
He has warned, "By 2019, Xinjiang planned to subject at least 80 percent of women of childbearing age to intrusive birth prevention surgeries - IUDs or sterilizations. "Draconian measures that impose surgical birth control methods enable the state to increase or decrease minority population growth at will, akin to opening or closing a faucet." (Sun / VFI News)
Source: Barry & Batya Segal, Vision for Israel, PO Box 7743, Charlotte NC 28241-7743
Last week I toured much of Northern Israel, from the Jezreel Valley, Lower and Upper Galilee regions, to the Golan Heights. The natural beau-ty of this part of Israel, as well as the explosive proliferation of agriculture, was striking and inspiring.
The abundance of flora in Israel today makes it easy to forget that this land at the turn of the 20th century was a parched wasteland. It also raises the questions: How did this miraculous transformation take place—and who was responsible?
On his visit to Palestine in 1867, Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) called the Sea of Galilee “a solemn, sailless, tintless lake, as unpoetical as any bathtub on earth.” On the other hand, last week I found the Kinneret (its Hebrew name), a sparkling blue jewel surrounded on its north, south and west by vegetable fields, orchards and forests.
Traveling by horseback through the Jezreel Valley, Clemens noted, “There is not a solitary village throughout its whole extent—not for 30 miles in either direction. There are two or three small clusters of Bedouin tents, but not a single permanent habitation. One may ride 10 miles, hereabouts, and not see 10 human beings.”
Clemens continues, “Of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, I think Palestine must be the prince... Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes. Over it broods the spell of a curse that has withered its fields and fettered its energies.”
According to Allon Tal’s 2002 book, “Pollution in a Promised Land,” the Jezreel Valley around 1900 remained an undeveloped swamp—des-cribed as “barren and boring, a miserable plain without a tree or river … all in ruins.” Tal relates how one traveler in 1905 described mud so deep that the mules fell and the donkeys almost vanished in it. It wasn’t until 1924 that Zionist settlers finished the Herculean two-year task of converting these marshes into the rich, fertile farmland of today.
Later, in 1918, following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I, Herbert Samuel was named British High Commissioner of the Mandate for Palestine. In his 1921 Annual Report on the Civil Administration, Samuel wrote,
“It is obvious to every passing traveler, and well-known to every European resident, that the country was before the War, and is now, undeveloped and under-populated. The methods of agriculture are, for the most part, primitive; the area of land now cultivated could yield a far greater product. There are in addition large cultivable areas that are left untilled. The summits and slopes of the hills are admirably suited to the growth of trees, but there are no forests. Miles of sand dunes that could be redeemed, are untouched, a danger, by their en-croachment, to the neigh-boring tillage. The Jordan and the Yarmuk offer an abundance of water-power; but it is unused...
“After the persecutions in Russia forty years ago ... Jewish agricultural colonies were founded. They developed the culture of oranges and gave importance to the Jaffa orange trade. They cultivated the vine, and manufactured and exported wine. They drained swamps. They planted eucalyptus trees. They practised, with modern methods, all the processes of agriculture.”
Palestine’s devastation can be attributed to many factors, mostly centered on poverty. At the turn of the century, an estimated 70% of the area’s Arab inhabitants were subsistence farmers. They took what they needed from the land—including unreplenished wood for fire —and allowed unrestrained sheep and goat grazing, as well as the hunting of native species, like the Syria bear and small deer, to extinction...
However, Jewish immigration—bearing great intention and aspirations—had begun. Within a few generations, it would transform this neglected, relatively barren territory into a lush cornucopia of food and forests with a majority Jewish population.
Fast forward to the fruitful land I witnessed in Northern Israel last week. What happened in the 100 years between 1920 and 2020? Wisely, the Zionists focused on agriculture to support Israel’s growing population of both Jews and Arabs. The new immigrants purchased land that was largely semi-arid, much of which had become untillable due to deforestation, soil erosion and neglect. These pioneers cleared rocky fields, built terraces, drained swamps, planted trees, fought soil erosion, and desalinated salty land.
Today, Israel is a major exporter of fresh produce and a world-leader in agricultural tech-nologies, notwithstanding the reality that Israel’s geography is not naturally hospitable to agri-culture. More than half of Israel’s land area is desert, and its climate and dearth of water resources discourage farming.
Imagine: Only 20% of Israel’s land area is naturally arable. Yet Israel now produces some 95% of its own food requirements. Much of this success, of course, is owed to Israel’s phenomenal, groundbreaking inventions in agricultural and food technology—starting with drip irrigation and water desalination. Israeli dairy cows are the most productive milk producers on the planet...
The head of the Muslim World League has “Jesus” in his name and loves the Jews. Go figure.
July 3, 2020 |
Sheikh Mohammed Al-Issa is Secretary General of the Muslim World League (MWL) based in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. He was recently recognized for his contribution to combating anti-Semitism as the first recipient of the annual Combat Anti-Semitism Award.
Sheikh Al-Issa has been recognized before for uniting people of all faiths in publicly condemning Holocaust denial and inspiring the next generation to fight hatred and promote peace. At the beginning of the year, Sheikh Al-Issa and other high-ranking Islamic dignitaries from all over the world visited the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau, where many Jews perished in the Holocaust.
The award was presented to the former Minister of Justice of Saudi Arabia in an online event due to the corona crisis. No mention has been made of Sheikh Mohammed Al-Issa in the Palestinian media. On the contrary, Palestinian publications, including school textbooks, still engage in Holocaust denial and incitement against the Jewish people.
In his online speech, Sheikh Al-Issa sharply condemned the Holocaust deniers in the Muslim world for spreading lies. “Jews and Muslims have lived together for centuries, but unfortunately our paths have diverged in the past few decades,” emphasized Al-Issa, who bears the Arabic name for Jesus, meaning Sheikh Mohammed Al-Jesus. “We absolutely need to build new bridges for dialogue between the two communities. Since becoming the Secretary General of the Muslim World League, I have been committed to fighting hatred and violence. When I was in Auschwitz-Birkenau, I stood next to my Jewish siblings and told them that the Holocaust was the greatest horror in history and promised that this should never happen again.”
The sheikh stressed that as long as there are those who distort history and deny the Holocaust, “we will stand against those liars, no matter where they are. Denial of history serves the extremists who only promote hatred and racism. As Muslims, we have a duty to study history and to stand by the international community as part of our faith.”
The Muslim cleric also took aim at those exploiting the coronavirus crisis to further spread hate: “The coronavirus is a common enemy that makes no distinction between Muslims and Jews. Extremists are taking advantage of the global pandemic to promote the ideology of hate and separation. We have to join forces to fight the virus if we want to keep hope alive against this threat.” Indeed, both in the Middle East and in the West, the Jews have been blamed for the coronavirus crisis.
There is no logic or reason behind such claims. Hate leads to blind madness. Voices like these from Sheikh Mohammed Al-Issa are therefore crucial, especially amid a sea of hateful voices like those in Tehran, from Hezbollah in Lebanon or from Hamas in the Gaza Strip, all of whom speak and dream primarily of Israel’s destruction. Incidentally, when you speak to Palestinians about the Holocaust and the extermination of Jews, about half of them still insist that this is a Zionist lie.
Supreme Court Gives Religious Schools a Win in Montana
The Supreme Court has ruled that state governments offering scholarships to children in private schools cannot disallow religious schools from participating in the program.
The case, Espinoza vs. the Montana Department of Revenue, involved a scholarship program the state set up in 2015 to fund private education options for qualifying families. Several low-income mothers who qualified for funding were refused for the sole reason that they intended to send their children to Christian schools. These women took legal action and in 2018, the Montana Supreme Court ruled that the entire scholarship program violated the state’s Constitution.
However, the U.S. Supreme Court ruling stated that Montana’s Supreme Court got it wrong. Denying funds to religious private schools while offering the same funds to secular ones constitutes discrimination. This, according to the majority court, hurts not only educational institutions but also parents and children who want to exercise their First Amendment rights.
As Chief Justice John Roberts pointed out, the state is not required to set up a program to provide scholarship money for parents to send children to private schools. However, states that do so cannot ban certain private schools from taking part. (This is also a win for Jewish schools as well as religious schools across the USA.)
Mark Levy: A Pioneer in Early 20th Century Messianic Judaism
At the third national conference of the Hebrew Christian Alliance of America, held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1917, a Jewish immigrant from England by the name of Mark Levy presented a paper in which he criticized the Church for “Gentilizing” Jewish believers. He argued that Jewish believers should be allowed “to exercise their Jewish national loyalty.” His views were not well received because at that time most all Jewish believers had been assimilated into churches.1
Levy pushed his view by introducing a resolution that read as follows:2
"Resolved, that the HCAA endorse the resolution that our Jewish brethren are left free to admit their children into the covenant of Abraham [circumcision] and observe other God-given rites and ceremonies of Israel, if they so desire, when they accept… Messiah… provided that it is distinctly understood that neither Jew nor Gentile can be saved by works of the Law, but only through the merits and mediation of our compassionate Messiah, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham, the Son of God." This resolution was overwhelmingly defeated, with only Levy and one other person voting for it.
Levy’s idea of returning to the roots of the Christian faith by allowing a distinctly Jewish expression of Christianity was not entirely new. In 1882 a Russian rabbi named Joseph Rabinowitz had established a synagogue of Jewish believers in Kishinev, Russia called “Israelites of the New Covenant.” 3
1. Dr. Robert I. Winer, The Calling: The History of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America, 1915-1990, (Wynnewood, PA: Messianic Jewish Alliance of America, 1990), pp. 5, 101-105.
2. Ibid., p. 20.
3. Schiffman, The Return of the Remnant, pp. 27-28.
Editor's Note: Unfortunately for him, Mark Levy was ahead of his time. A few decades later, Messianic Judaism blossomed. Mark Levy's ideas are not considered at all radical today. He was merely suggesting that Jewish believers in Yeshua be permitted to observe the mitzvot (commandments). Today, most Messianic Jews believe that it is incumbent upon Messianic Jews to observe Torah. We also encourage Gentiles to be Torah-observant. RAC
On July 4th, yet another massive fire damaged a power plant in its restive Khuzestan province. Iran said, once again, this was an accident.
On July 3, ImageSat International (ISI) revealed images of the Khojir facility, the one that blew up on June 26. That was the first of the four explosions. The ISI assessment says that gas tanks were damaged under a shed and that the gas was destined for a missile facility nearby.
We now know that another incident occurred at a medical center days later in Tehran and then another explosion damaged the Natanz facility on July 2. The July 2 explosion was then identified by Kuwait’s Al-Jarida media as a cyber attack. This ups the concerns for Tehran, because if it feels it is under a cyberattack it will need to respond. (JPost / VFI News)
"The Lord tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence." —Psalm 11:5
Chief Justice of South Africa Mogoeng Mogoeng, who has been facing criticism in South Africa for attacking the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party's alleged one-sided approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, responded to the attacks by saying that he will not retract his statements, according to report Saturday.
The Chief Justice rejected the notion of a retraction during a prayer meeting was organized by Healing The Nation Of Africa Campaign, which Mogoeng agreed to lead. Mogoeng's comments were made during a live webinar on July 7, where he lamented his country’s adoption of a lopsided attitude toward the Israel-Palestinian conflict and said that it would have greater influence if it displayed a more balanced ap-proach.
He said that his nation’s history of forgiveness and understanding should have informed its approach to peacemaking, adding that as a practicing Christian he believed that those who curse Israel will themselves be cursed. (JPost / VFI News)
"I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” Gen. 12:3
Source: Barry & Batya Segal, Vision for Israel, PO Box 7743, Charlotte NC 28241-7743
Arab World Mourns Israeli Who Died Saving Bedouin Family from Drowning by Itamar Eichner
Bridges for Peace, P.O. Box 1093
8 July 2020 | Numerous internet users from all across the Arab and Muslim world were touched in recent days by the story of Michael Ben Zikri, an Israeli man who drowned over the weekend after saving a Bedouin family at Shiqma Reservoir in the country’s south, and have shared their condolences with his family.
Ben Zikri has become a symbol of coexistence between Jews and Muslims after the Foreign Ministry shared his story on its social media accounts in Persian and Arabic. “This is true humanitarianism,” commented an Iraqi user by the name of Mirna. “There is no difference between humans, God has taught us to love one another.”
“Humanity has no religion, may he dwell in heaven and blessings come upon his families and loved ones for his noble act,” wrote another user.
A Saudi user by the name of Othman mentioned in his comment a passage from the Quran in which Allah said that whoever saves a single soul is considered as if he saved all people.
“The fact we have political differences with you guys doesn’t mean there is a disagreement between us about humanitarianism,” wrote a user from Egypt. “This is the people of Israel who love all and help all,” wrote another user from Iraq.
The foreign ministry’s social media manager in the Arabic language, Yonatan Gonen, said that the post was shared all around the Arab and Muslim world and countless users were touched by Ben Zikri’s story. “This is a touching story that couldn’t leave users from Arab states indifferent, even those who are hostile to Israel,” said Gonen.
“Users from Morocco to Iraq, from Oman to Syria, could identify with the story and unanimously pointed at Michael’s heroism on a very large scale, some even pointed [out] Israel’s coexistence as a role model.”
Ben Zikri, 45, drowned on Friday when he rescued three children and their aunt, all residents of the Bedouin town of Hura, after the four got caught in turbulence. He was laid to rest on Sunday in Ashkelon cemetery and dozens of Hura residents attended his funeral. Ben Zikri is survived by his wife and three children.
Ben Zikri’s childhood friend, Minister of Religious Affairs Ya’akov Avitan, eulogized him and spoke of his generous nature. “Anytime a person was in trouble, Michael was the first to help,” said Avitan. Original source: Ynetnews
ZOA Thanks Sen. Loeffler (R-GA) for Condemning Black Lives
ZOA's Morton Klein and Mark Levenson
The Zionist Organization of America thanks and commends U.S. Senator Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) for calling out the Black Lives Matter political organization for its Jew-hatred. Sen. Loeffler told Laura Ingraham on her TV show on Wednesday evening: “This organization is divisive in its goals. It’s anti-Semitic. It doesn’t support the nuclear family. This is what we need to understand.”
The Black Lives Matter organization is a partner of the Movement for Black Lives, according to its Website. The Movement for Black Lives Website has a doctrine that declares that the Jewish State of Israel practices “Apartheid” and commits genocide against Palestinian-Arabs, and urges an end to US aid to Israel.
During Black Lives Matters demonstrations, synagogues and Jewish owned businesses were attacked with graffiti and were looted and destroyed in Los Angeles. Anti-Israel slogans have been shouted at other Black Lives Matter demonstrations, and a statue of Raoul Wallenberg, who saved thousands of Jews during the Holocaust, was desecrated.
ZOA calls on all patriots and people of good conscience to join Sen. Loeffler in calling out the Black Lives Matter political organization for its Jew-hatred and its anti-Israel activities and associations, as well as it’s call to defund police and abolish prisons and the US military, as well as its call to end the nuclear family and asking young children to choose their own gender.
The ZOA supports justice and fairness and equality of opportunity for all people of all races, religions, creeds, and ethnicities.
Editor's Note: I would never support an otherwise good Jewish organization that was hostile to Blacks. I find it disturbing that so many Blacks are hostile to Jews, and support Black Lives Matter, which happens to be anti-Semitic. There are many good civil rights organizations to join that do not promote anti-Semitism or other forms of racism. Jews overwhelmingly supported Blacks during the civil rights struggles of the 1950s and 1960s, often marching along side Dr. Martin Luther King. MLK fought both racism against Blacks as well as racism against Jews. Martin Luther King remains a good example to us all. RAC
“The only two certainties in life are death and taxes.” It is a line attributed to both Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin. No matter who coined it, few can doubt its veracity. Today, it might be revised to add a third certainty: Louis Farrakhan is an anti-Semite and a hate monger. We cite as evidence his July 4 address, “The Criterion,” that was scheduled to air on, but cancelled by, Fox Soul, a new streaming service by the broadcast giant.
It was then aired on Revolt TV, a channel founded and run by Sean “Puffy” Combs, also known as P. Diddy, Diddy and Puff Daddy. The rapper and songwriter, worth an estimated $885 million, evidently was proud to air Farrakhan’s message, tweeting: “Everyone can watch … Just not the scared ones.”
Truth be told, Jews have every reason to be scared. They recall another hate monger from the 1930s who started out by putting across his message in the beer halls, until he had millions of followers goose-stepping with him through the streets of Germany.
During his speech, Farrakhan — who has called Jews “termites” and falsely accused Jews of being behind the slave trade — stated that Jews are “responsible for this filth and degenerate behavior that Hollywood is putting out, turning men into women and women into men.” He has questioned whether the Holocaust occurred, stated that Jewish people are “Satan,” and claimed that Jews rejected the Torah and replaced it with the Talmud... He warned Black and brown Americans not to be immunized against COVID-19 if a vaccine is created, saying it will be a plot to depopulate them.
In the weeks leading up to Farrakhan’s address, personalities such as rappers Ice Cube and Snoop Dogg tweeted out remarks in support of Farrakhan to their millions of followers. The founder of Black Lives Matter-Los Angeles, Melina Abdullah, has been outspoken in her support of Farrakhan, as has Tamika Mallory, one of the organizers of the 2017 Women’s March.
A few days after “The Criterion” aired on Revolt TV, Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson posted on Instagram his admiration for Farrakhan and published a quote that he maintains came from Adolf Hitler, stating that white Jews “knows [sic] that the Negroes are the real Children of Israel and to keep Americas [sic] secret the Jews will blackmail America. They will extort America, their plan for world domination won't work if the Negroes know who they were.”
Jackson was criticized by Philadelphia Eagles management for his remarks and then issued an apology that later was condemned by sportswriter Reuben Frank of NBC Sports as showing a “profound lack of understanding for why people are offended.” He said: “It wasn’t an apology at all.”
While the reaction in the Jewish community to Farrakhan’s latest diatribe and the messages of support from prominent Black celebrities was predictably negative, what is most upsetting is the absolute silence from America’s Black leaders and clergy with regard to the hateful, anti-Semitic message. Many Jews have proudly expressed their solidarity for African Americans in the wake of the horrific deaths of George Floyd and other Blacks at the hands of police. American Jews, in large numbers, and leaders of the American Jewish community have been outspoken in their support for racial justice and police reforms.
So, we believe it’s fair to ask why there hasn’t been any condemnation or criticism by African American leaders of Louis Farrakhan’s hateful rhetoric. Why do they remain silent, when he defames not only Jews but others, including the LGBTQ community? He has spread falsehoods about those who are working to find a cure for the coronavirus pandemic, which so far has killed more than 135,000 Americans, a large number of them Blacks. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, “He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”
At a time when we are faced with a health emergency, when our economy has been shut down and millions of people have been thrown out of work, when there is the very real issue of finding a way to repair the wounds of racial injustice, this is the moment when haters and anti-Semites must be criticized—not supported. We must condemn Farrakhan’s words, not ignore them. As writer James Baldwin once said: “Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced.”
Just as Jewish Americans are trying to understand the realities faced by many Black Americans, the African American community also should be willing to examine the realities faced by American Jews. The virulent anti-Semitism of Louis Farrakhan is one such reality. And just as Jews are willing to stand with their Black brothers and sisters in the fight for racial justice, African Americans should be willing to stand with their Jewish brothers and sisters in the fight again anti-Semitism.
Let us recall that the only real winner in the U.S. decision to attend the 1936 Olympics in Berlin was Adolf Hitler. Likewise, in today’s world, when celebrities and sports figures honor Farrakhan and African American leaders remain silent, only hate wins.
In my interview to Hebrew Union College (HUC) in 1968, I was asked whether I smoked pot. My honest answer was no since I was not curious. The interviewer replied that I would never succeed due to lack of curiosity. I was admitted anyway.
I couldn’t foresee that the priority of the Reform movement was an emphasis on left wing politics over what I saw as liberal Jewish religion. I desired a liberal Jewish education not left wing politics.
Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise created the Reform movement as a liberal Jewish religion founded on Jewish-American values (and not halakha, ed.). Being a peace Democrat during the Civil War he tolerated slavery for the sake of maintaining the Union. Silence was his mantra. In his newspaper the American Israelite, he described black people as “savages.” His bust is displayed with no plans to remove it. The Reform movement maintains a double standard of overlooking its own prejudice while supporting the Black Lives Matter movement. The BLM platform is anti-Semitic, and its demonstrations contain anti-Israel elements. Like Rabbi Wise, Joe Biden has been silent on today’s violence and destruction.
The Democratic Party is not the one you remember and support today. As the Bob Dylan said, “the times they are a changing.” Today the Democratic Party and the liberal Jewish movements have been hijacked. Today the Democratic Party and the liberal Jewish movements have been hijacked by the radical left. Their leaders kneel to its anti-Israel members whose goal is to do weaken Israel and destroy it. The most recent attempt is to cut off military aid and oppose annexation. Time and again the Palestinians have rejected Israel’s peace initiatives while Democrats and J Street rabbis maintain the fantasy of a two-state solution.
Joe Biden has no new ideas, while Donald Trump has put forth a dynamic and innovative peace initiative. President Trump has done so much for Israel and the Jewish people. He has moved our embassy to Jerusalem, declared the Golan Heights for Israel and issued an executive order protecting Jewish college students from anti-Semitism. During the decades Joe Biden has been in Congress and as vice president, what has he done?
Liberal J Street rabbis feel entitled to dictate United States values to Israel. They pontificate with no risk to either themselves or their families. Their children go to colleges where anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism are rampant without knowing how to respond. They return home questioning support for Israel.
While our American children are without a care in the world, Israeli parents must send their children to the Army risking their lives at any moment. How they want their country structured is their business not ours. It is their security at stake not ours. If you want to change Israel, move there. Our obligation is to support whatever decision the Israelis decide. That includes supporting annexation.
...Legal immigration is good as long as immigrants wish to assimilate into American society. This is the immigration story of our parents who came to this country wanting to be Americans and speak our language and obey our laws. Unfortunately, many want us to substitute their culture and way of life for ours. Donald Trump understands this. Joe Biden would open our doors to everyone and provide them with free everything. Who do you think will be paying for all this? It will definitely be your tax dollars and probably your social security. Voting for the president will protect these hard earned benefits. It is not an entitlement as Democrats would have you believe.
On a personal note the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements have no manners or derech eretz as our tradition demands. In Leviticus Rabbah 9:3 it states that “Derech Eretz precedes the Torah.” Two years ago they insulted the president by refusing to take his call wishing the Jewish community a happy new year. What chutzpah! ... The president is owed an apology which was never given which was the reason I resigned from the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR).
I am proud to be the only Reform rabbi openly supporting President Trump. This election is not a mensch of the year contest. Neither candidate qualifies. In comparison there is no question that President Trump comes out ahead. I invite you to join me in supporting him for reelection in November.
Biden has no new ideas, but Donald Trump has an innovative peace initiative. We should support Israeli decisions, including annexation.
Alan Sherman is the executive vice president emeritus of the Palm Beach County Board of Rabbis. Reposted with writer's permission from the SUN SENTINEL
The ancient cathedral of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul – the former seat of eastern Christianity – could now be dedicated to use as a mosque after Turkey’s high court on Friday ruled its conversion into a museum in 1934 was unlawful.
The court’s decision revokes that museum status and would allow Hagia Sophia to become a working mosque once more, a decision which sparked a furious response within minutes of being confirmed, with UNESCO warning, “We call upon the Turkish authorities to engage in dialogue before taking any decision that might impact the universal value of the site.”
It was a decision long sought by conservative Muslims in Turkey and beyond, and especially by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose popularity is waning after 18 years atop Turkish politics, the New York Times reports. (BB / VFI News)
Source: Barry & Batya Segal, Vision for Israel, PO Box 7743, Charlotte NC 28241-7743
Editor's Note: Vision for Israel is a great source for Enews. They also do much to help the poor in Israel, as well as Holocaust survivors. It is a very worthy ministry.
It should be noted that the Hagia Sophia is an architectural wonder. It was built as a magnificent Cathedral, completed in 537 CE for the Eastern Church. It was forcibly taken over by the Ottoman Turks in 1453 and turned into an Islamic mosque. It was then turned into a museum in 1934. Erdogan now wants to turn it back into a mosque again.
This is typical of Islamic conquests. Churches were often destroyed or turned into mosques. Har HaBayit (the Temple Mount) was taken over by Islamic conquest 1300 years ago. This happens to be the holiest site in Judaism. However, today there are only mosques on the Temple Mount, no synagogues or churches. Also, only Muslims are allowed to pray on the Temple Mount.
In the Six-Day War of 1967, the surrounding Arab nations were seeking to destroy Israel. Instead, Israel won the war, and was able to conquer the Biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria (the "West Bank"). This included the Old City of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. However, General Moshe Dayan, in a gesture of peace, gave control over the Temple Mount to the Muslims in 1968. Such gestures do not bring peace. Egypt and Syria again attacked Israel in the Yom Kippur War of 1973 in a surprise attack on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. However, thank God, Israel again defeated her enemies. RAC
Historical and Legal Milestones for Israeli Sovereignty in Judea and Samaria
by Alan Baker www.bridgesforpeace.com
The subject of the rights of the Jewish people and the State of Israel under international law in the West Bank areas of Judea and Samaria involves a complex and extensive web of historical, legal, military and political issues.
Jewish Historical Claims to "West Bank"
Israel’s claims to sovereignty regarding the West Bank areas of Judea and Samaria did not originate with Israel’s attaining control of the area following the 1967 Six Day War. Israel’s rights are based on the indigenous and historical claims of the Jewish people in the area as a whole, virtually from time immemorial.
Israel’s international legal rights were ac-knowledged in 1917 by the Balfour Declaration’s promise to the Jews to re-establish their historical national home in Palestine. These rights are based on clear historical, archeological and biblical evidence (Gen. 15:18; 26:3; Joshua 1:4).
The Balfour Declaration was subsequently recognized internationally and encapsulated into international law through a series of international instruments commencing with the 1920 San Remo Declaration by the Supreme Council of the Principal Allied Powers, followed by the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine. The continued validity of these foundational legal rights was also assured under Article 80 of the United Nations Charter.
During the 1967 Six Day War, in which Egypt, Syria and Jordan offensively invaded Israel in a combined military action, Israel attained control of the areas of Gaza, the Golan [as well as] Judea and Samaria, and established a military administration to govern the local population pursuant to the accepted norms and requirements of international law. UN Security Council resolution 242 (1967) called for a negotiated solution to the conflict.
Since neither Jordan nor Egypt had acquired recognized sovereign powers in the areas, they could not be formally defined as occupied territories, and Israel committed itself to act in accordance with the relevant norms of international law, pending a negotiated settlement. This was done without officially acknowledging the formal applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention to the areas.
Congressman John Lewis:
“Getting Into Good Trouble”
to Make a Better America
By Rabbi Marvin Hier and Rabbi Abraham Cooper
Unlike his mentor and role model, Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., who was violently taken from us in 1968 by an assassin’s bullet, Congressman John Lewis, 80, died in a hospice after a struggle with pancreatic cancer. His obits have long been in preparation.
No other person has been honored more often by the Simon Wiesenthal Center than John Lewis—recipient of both our Humanitarian Laureate, Medal of Valor, and whose words have been heard by 7 million visitors to our Museum of Tolerance. Here’s why:
His first decades of activism were detailed in his 1998 autobiography, Walking With The Wind, though twenty more years of “getting into good trouble”—as Lewis put it—were still in the works.
The broad outlines of his story are well known:
· The son of sharecroppers whose family called him “the Preacher” for his childhood eulogies to fallen birds, he grew up alternating between school and picking cotton and peanuts.
· In 1958, just turned eighteen, he wrote to his hero, Reverend King, about his aspirations for moral leadership. King reciprocated with a bus ticket to visit him in Atlanta.
· Lewis’ first arrest came in 1960 at the lunch counter sit-ins in Nashville. In 1961, he was among the 13 original Freedom Riders, black and white, who challenged the unrepentant heart of the Jim Crow South, to integrate interstate bus travel.
· He was a youth organizer of 1963’s Million Man March on Washington where, like Reverend King, he inspired and challenged the throng of over 200,000 with his own stirring words:
“By the force of our demands, our determination and our numbers . . . we shall splinter the segregated South into 1000 pieces and put them together in the image of God and democracy. We must say: ‘Wake up, America!’ For we cannot stop, and we will not and cannot be patient.”
· Then at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, in 1965, television images of his brutalization by state troopers galvanized a horrified nation behind the passage of the Voting Rights Act that ultimately transformed the South.
· Persevering, he fought the good fight through the remainder of the civil rights movement and beyond. In 1986, in an upset victory he won a Democratic primary in Atlanta over Julian Bond for election to the U.S. House where he served for over three decades as “the conscience of the Congress.”
“I’ve always felt an affinity with the Jewish community,” Lewis wrote in his autobiography. Growing up in rural Troy, Alabama, “I heard many white people pronounced the word ‘Jew’ in the same way they used the term ‘nigger’. They would spit the word out like a bad piece of food. ... I grew up studying Bible stories about the Jewish people. I felt a kinship with the children of Israel. I could see that their struggle was very similar to ours.”
For American Jews, Congressman Lewis was an African American Joshua following in Reverend King’s lead. In 1996, despite sharing many of the goals of that year’s Million Man March, Congressman Lewis refused to attend because his motivation was “my conscience not my complexion,” and he could not endorse the leadership of march organizer and longtime anti-Semitic bigot, Minister Louis Farrakhan.
In 1998, Congressman Lewis issued a clarion call to America that rings as true today as then:
“The rise of a man like Louis Farrakhan speaks to both the hunger of the people of this nation to be led as well as the lack of leaders to step in and fill that role. It’s not just black people, but whites as well who are looking for a human symbol, who are hungry for heroes. There’s a need there.”
Israel Has as Much Oil as Saudi Arabia Israel Report July 9th
David Silver www.out-of-zion.com
Millions of dollars are waiting underground, Professor Eugene Kendall recently told the Knesset. There are about 250 billion barrels of oil in oil shale in Israel, similar to the amount of oil Saudi Arabia has. Professor Kendall called on the Knesset it to leverage the resources. We know where they lie, Kendall, former head of the National Economic Council in the Prime Minister's Office, told the Knesset's Special Committee for Overseeing the Fund for Managing State Revenues from the Tax on Profits from Gas and Oil on Tuesday, and said that a committee that was not authorized to deal with oil decided not to approve even a 20-acre experiment either.
Tens of billions of dollars lie underground and nobody is doing anything with it, he added. Committee head Member of Knesset (MK) Avi Dichter said Kendall's revelation was dramatic and has a lot of weight. Oil shale is an organic-rich fine-grained sedimentary rock containing kerogen, a solid mixture of organic chemical compounds, from which liquid hydrocarbons can be produced. Oil shale is similar to petroleum and can be refined into many different substances, including diesel fuel, gasoline, and liquid petroleum gas.
"And (God) made him (Israel) to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock" (Deut. 32:13). See also Deut. 33:19,24.