Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Chuck Hagel, New Secretary of Defense

The 3rd man of President Barack Hussein Obama's  team  in his cabinet has just been confirmed.  Obama may be happy about it, but many of us are not.  He won by a vote of 58 to 41.  All three were questionable as to Israel's interests with the last, Chuck Hagel (b: October 4, 1946)  of Nebraska, as Secretary of Defense,  raising more shackles of distrust.

Though the relationship between the USA and Israel is unshakable, someone should inform this threesome about it.  For some reason, all three on this platter have shown antagonism of various amounts towards Israel.  However, that must have  got them selected, and the forces that be could not dismiss any of them.

The interesting factor is that Hagel ran as a Republican but is not liked by the Republicans except for four. The  four Republicans that voted for him were Rand Paul of Kentucky, son of  Ron Paul, Independent, who was no surprise.  Both are known to be anti-Israel.  Thad Cochran of Mississippi, Mike Johanns of Nebraska, who decided to back a fellow Nebraskan, and Richard C.Shelby of Alabama were the others. Angus King of Maine and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, both Independents, voted with the Democrats.  Obama had campaigned for Sanders in Vermont.  

Unmoved and among the 58 yea voters were Democrats Ron Wyden  and Jeff Merkley of Oregon. The Senators stuck together, with all Democrats voting for Hagel  and all Republicans against him except these 4 Republicans.

Republicans had many different problems with Hagel.  Problems they had with him were cast as that he was unqualified for the job, hostile toward Israel and soft on Iran.  John McCain of Arizona voiced the opinion that several GOP lawmakers had a lot of ill will towards him for his criticism of President George W. Bush over the Iraq War and for backing Democratic candidates.  Obama, in defense, said that Hagel was one who understood conflict and called him "the leader that our troops deserve."  He had been wounded and had 2 Purple Hearts when an infantry squad leader Sergeant in Vietnam.  The former two term Senator was questioned  and answered poorly, but still got the vote.  He had served in 1996 and again in 2002 as Senator from Nebraska.

Evidently the song by Sarah Vaughan in Damn Yankees got to the Senators: only instead of Lola, it was Obama.  "Whatever Obama wants, Obama gets, and little man,  Obama wants Hagel,  because the Republicans couldn't raise one Democrat to question Hagel's resume.

 Here we have two Republicans at variance;    Hagel,  a  2 term Senator who was a sergeant with 2 Purple Hearts and  we also have John McCain, Senior Senator, Captain in the Air Force and pilot, shot down in Vietnam War and was a prisoner of War for 6 years.  Hagel's objectives are in line with Obama's while McCain ran against the Democrat party and was a presidential candidate with opposing views.  Of course John was never in the running for Secretary of Defense, but he certainly has an admirable resume for it.  .

Resource: Atlas Shrugs Report
Oregonian Newspaper, front page and A6

UN's Most Recent Iniquity: How They Honored Syria

Nadene Goldfoot
This transgression is simply laughable and shows the inner workings of the UN members' minds.  They have come to the "revolting and absurd" decision to unanimously re-elect the Assad regime of Syria to a senior post on a decolonization committee charged with, and here comes the laughable part:

Upholding fundamental human rights in opposing the "subjugation, domination and exploitation" of peoples.  
You can be sure that he will continue to be the leader in judging Israel and finding her at fault no matter what the situation is.

Syria is now using this propaganda victory which is being trumpeted by their state-funded SANA News Agency.  They've  killed at least 70,000 of their own people.  Bashar al-Assad, 47 years old,  is a mass murderer.  His father, Hafez, ruled for 30 years previously to Bashar's rule starting in 2000 at the age of 35 years.  The UN is actually helping Assad and his regime to be pictured as a UN human rights arbiter.  It's an insult to all those who have died by his decisions.  This now rests on the head of Ban Ki-moon for Assad's being able to be re-elected..  As one comment puts it, it's like welcoming Hitler to a post, and this post has to do with his own activities that 55 parliamentarians, human rights and religious groups are up in arms over.  They are calling for Syria's expulsion, but instead, the UN places them again in this overseeing position.  Many people have lost faith in anything that comes out of the UN today.  Perhaps it's time, with  the USA in such economic strife,  to cut the strings with this organization.  We're throwing away money which is going down the drain.

US Secretary of State John Kerry is saying that the USA and France want a speedy political transition in Syria.  The USA is facing immediate cuts throughout all government expenses and he says that they are "debating increased aid' to the opposition groups.  Obviously Assad is a bad dude, but it's possible that his replacement could be worse.  The one thing that Assad did was keep the border with Israel fairly peaceful.  I just hate to see anything like the Muslim Brotherhood gain a foot in this country.

Assad, who could be up before an international board for murder, "had graduated from the medical school of the University of Damascus in 1988, and started to work as a physician in the army. Four years later, he attended postgraduate studies at the Western Eye Hospital , in London, specializing in ophthalmology. He should be a most intelligent man, but certainly lacked the fundamentals of getting along with his people and being a fair politician.  He's called a president but acts more like a Czar.  Since when do real presidents serve in a life-time position like his father?  It belies the title, "president."

Syria had 22,505,000 people but with  so many killed in their uprising, now must have about 22,435,000.  90% are Muslim, mostly Sunni and some 13% are Shi'a.  3% are Druse, and 10-12% Christians who live in either Damascus or Allepo.  There are Kurds who also live in Syria. Syria's  military power was made up of about 296,000 troops.  It's the 17th largest populated Muslim country in the world, the 1st being Indonesia.

When I lived in Israel from 1980-1985, we used to see Syrian TV on our screens as well as TV programs from Lebanon and Egypt.  It was the Syrians who showed the ultimate violence of soldiers lined up and in a shocking demonstration, bite animals they were holding in their hands.  It was most shocking to me, and I've never forgotten this violent demonstration.  It's not a country of peace.

Resource:  UN Watch

Monday, February 25, 2013

An Israeli Story of Escaping Out of Iran Equal to Argo's Story

Nadene Goldfoot
Watching Hollywood's Oscars last night was IDF Brig. General  Itzhak Segev, now retired.  He happened to be Israel's last military attache in Tehran, so Argo was a reminder to him of his own experience while in Iran.

Way back when Khomeini returned to Tehran on February 1, 1979, 6 Israeli diplomats and other businessmen were still in Iran.  Seeing 5 million people line the streets to greet him back after his 14 years of exile to Turkey and then France, Israel's Ambassador Joseph Hermelin knew that they all had to get out of the country quickly with this change of politics.  Tony Mendez's story actually happened 9 months afterwards in November 1979.

What happened was an angry mob immediately took over the Israeli Embassy and Segev had to find an escape route for 33 Israelis who were in several different places.  It wasn't an easy job, as Argo's story wasn't, either.

Evidently the rule to be learned here is that Iran is not a safe country to be caught in with Khomeini at the helm.  In fact, Ambassadors and their personnel can die in them if you're in a dangerous country as our people in Libya did.    CIA's Tony Mendez,  and Segev were outstanding to be able to save their people. They  should have a get-together and share their experiences that were harrowing for both of them.  Maybe they can come up with some rules and regulations for the USA to follow to be better protected.

I was most happy that Argo won the Oscar for best picture.  I was biting my nails and sitting on the edge of my seat and I was home watching it.  Whew!

 Israel's ambassador, Joseph Hermelin b: 1922 in Austria, " was next assigned to South Africa.  He had escaped Austria after the Nazi takeover and joined the Jewish Brigade which fought with the Allies during the war. Later. he served as a Captain in Israel's army in the War for independence in 1948.   His wife, Sarah also served in the army and was the first woman to rise to the rank of Major.In preparation for his duties in South Africa, Hermelin studied Afrikaans, one of the two official languages of the country. His predecessor's fluency in that language gained him great popularity with South Africans."

The Master of Disguise: My Secret Life in the CIA by Antonio J. Mendez (Nov 7, 2000)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

2012's French Anti-Semitism

Nadene Goldfoot
Things were promised to get better for Jews in France, but it's not happening.  614 anti-Semitic acts were documented last year.  There were 389 acts in 2011.  That's an increase of 58%.  Those Jews that left for Israel already left for this reason.  I realize that if you own your own home or business or both and have a large family in France, it's difficult to make aliyah.  Then again, many people are afraid to go to Israel where people can bee looked upon as being targets for more killers.

These attacks where victims were accosted physically or verbally on the street increased 82% from 177 cases to 315.  One fourth of the 96 physical assaults involved a weapon.  This certainly is damaging the image of France., and Richard Prasquier, head of the CRIF Jewish representative group, thinks so, too.

He said that anti-Semitic acts have exploded in the past 13 years.  Jews must be protects when they study, gather together or pray.  It's that bad.

We remember the Toulouse shooting.  Two peaks of anti-Semitic attacks happened following that episode.  90 acts happened within 10 days.  A kosher supermarket was bombed on October 6, 2012 in Sarcelles.  Two people were lightly wounded.  28 acts were recorded in the next 8 days afterwards.

I notice this happening on Law and Order, our American TV program.  A terrible crime seems to instigate copy-cat behavior.  Too bad the French police  were not prepared to deal with it.


Qaradawi of Qatar: and His Fatwa Against His Own Backsliders

Nadene Goldfoot
Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi is a host with his own show on Al-Jazeera, now available in the USA through our dear ex-Vice President, Al Gore.  He's the Sunni religious leader that Sadat kicked out of Egypt, where he was born.

Qaradawi has long wanted to kill all Jews and would do it himself if he had the opportunity, so he's put out a fatwa against us all, especially those in Israel, of course.  His problem of being wheel-chair bound makes killing a little hard these days.  He hasn't made any distinction between Jewish men or women, so we're all in the same boat.

His views are most extreme which is why he wasn't welcome with Sadat.  He's not a man teaching people to be kind or to love mankind.  Instead, this 86 year old Machiavellian, the spiritual and intellectual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, also  has terrible views about women and  homosexuals along with us Jews.  He supports wife beating, Palestinian suicide bombers and the killing ofboth  homosexuals and  Jews.

To him, beating a wife, however, should only be a last resort, though beaten only lightly.   I'm sure that would work on some of our American wife beaters who have temper management problems.  What does "lightly" mean?  It means he may use his hands but not to hit her in the face or other sensitive areas.  This happens to a wife if she has been disobedient to her husband.  If she went out immodestly dressed without her body- covering Burka, or Burqa, she is asking to be raped.    So he said in 2004, "To be absolved from guilt, raped women must have shown some sort of good conduct-probably meaning that she was concealed in her covering at the time.  He's not the only one.  "A fatwa, written by Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid on the Saudi Arabian website Islam QA, states:
The correct view as indicated by the evidence is that the woman's face is 'awrah which must be covered. It is the most tempting part of her body, because what people look at most is the face, so the face is the greatest 'awrah of a woman.  
So what happens to her is she isn't absolved of guilt?  She most likely is killed.  Usually the covering is all black, and the Middle East is very hot.  I feel so sorry for them for having to sweat under all that.  .

We Jews have Mea Shearim, the very orthodox section in Jerusalem with Haredi Jews who also believe in being modest and covering certain parts of the body. Qaradawi makes our rabbis look like very liberal men.   A married orthodox woman anywhere in Israel will cover her hair either with a scarf  or a tasteful wig and wear a dress that covers her upper arms down to just below her elbow.  Some Muslim women there belonging to a different sect, and will wear white scarves over their hair.  For this Jewish group, it is the men who dress in black suits as seen in Mea Shearim.  Jewish women would never ever stand being beaten or slapped around.  We feel we are either princesses or queens.  Women rule!  Men had better watch their p's and q's. Jewish women go into the army (IDF) and many become sergeants, directing the men.  They can fly planes, too, but our leaders are discussing that they don't want them to crash as they would be treated differently than men if taken alive.  At least they're using their noodle about us.

Homosexuals should be punished by burning or stoning, Qaradawi states.    He realizes that some people will regard this as being cruel, but to him people must "maintain the purity of the Islamic society and to keep it clean of perverted elements."  This is like the shades of the Salem witch-hunts.

In 2009 on Al-Jazeera, he said "Oh Allah, take this oppressive, Jewish Zionist band of people.  Oh Allah, do not spare a single one of them...Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them, down to the very last one."  If Allah can't do his bidding, he has endorsed suicide bombers to do the dirty deed,  which he asked for in 2005 on a BBC interview.  He thinks this kind of martyrdom is evidence of G-d's justice.  He is indeed meshugana.  He even likes to use women as the bombers.  In 2004 he said that the committed Muslim women in Palestine have the right to participate and have their own role in jihad and to attain martyrdom.  I wonder if they are rewarded with 72 virginal men.  Now they won't be any reward.

It was bad enough when Al-Jazeera was broadcasting out of Qatar and universities here were picking it up, but now that Al Gore sold their TV company to Al-Jazeera , this sale turns out to be  traitorous to the only Democratic country in the Middle East, Israel.  It's chilling to hear that Gore's goals are the same as Al-Jazeera, which are the goals he was developing on his own TV station known as Current as demonstrated with very leftist politicians such as Keith Olbermann, Joy Behar, Elio Spitzer and Jennifer Granholm.  He refused to sell to rightist  Glenn Beck, so money wasn't  the only consideration.   So now Gore has a really hateful messenger to carry on.  I believe in "freedom of speech, " but this is religious hatred.  Where are our courts on this?  Al-Jazeera is promoting the act of killing!


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

North Korea and Iran: A Twosome Sharing Nuclear Information?

Nadene Goldfoot
Netanyahu just said yesterday that Iran is getting closer to the red line that he had set at the UN. I note that they've been slowed down by computer viruses like the Stuxnet in June 2010,  thought to have been planted by the USA and Israel but not proven.  Iran claimed that five Iranian nuclear scientists were killed and they hung an Israeli.   They're building centrifuges that enrich the uranium needed to make nuclear bombs at 3 times the pace.  They could cross that red line and get to a high enrichment of 90% enriched uranium in a much shorter time.

In 2007, the Israelis bombed the al-Kibar nuclear site in Syria which the North Koreans helped to design.  It was a plutonium facility.

Lee Smith, Senior Editor at the Weekly Standard and Fellow at the Foundation For Defense of Democracies  and writer about the ties between Iranians and North Korean scientists, feels that they may already have the bomb.    His background gives him some skills to learn about what the Iranians have been doing.   Smith has a B.A. from George Washington University, where he received awards in English and Latin. He received the Sage Graduate School Fellowship at Cornell University, and studied Arabic at the American University in Cairo and Université Saint-Joseph in Beirut. He knows Spanish, Arabic, French, and Latin.  English must be his native language.

For at least the last 10 years, the North Koreans have cooperated with Iran on nuclear and missile issues.  The Iranians have several full-time weapons engineers on site in North Korea.  This has not been a secret.

Last fall, North Korea and Iran signed a paper regarding science and technology.  The North Koreans published the names who signed, including the head of Iran’s atomic energy organization and the defense minister.  They are exchanging information.  There are precedents for states passing on designs.  The New York Times spoke with a senior US official who said that the North Koreans are testing for 2 countries.

North Korea has been into nuclear goals since December 12, 1985 when they acceded to the Nuclear Non proliferation Treaty.  They then withdrew from the IAEA in 1994.  By July 9,  President Kim II Sung died and Kim Jong II took over.  By August 31, 1998, their 3 stage rocket was fired with a range of 930-1,240 miles which went over Japan.  By July 4, 2006 they had a 7 ballistic missile fail but by October 9th had an underground test.  April 5, 2009 they tested a 3 stage rocket.   May 25, 2009 was a 2nd underground test.  December 17, 2011, Kim Jong II died and Kim Jong-Un took over.  On April 13, a satellite rocket failed but by December 12, 2012, they launched the Unha-3.

January 2013:   Kim Jong-un, 20 some years old,  said that the USA was the prime target for Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile tests.  "North Korea is a "serious threat" to the United States and Washington must be prepared to deal with it, US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta warned after Pyongyang conducted a nuclear test.

"We saw what North Korea has done these last few weeks with a missile test and now a nuclear test," said Leon Panetta,  the outgoing defense secretary, at a farewell ceremony.  Their goal is to be a force to be reckoned with.  Now South Korea is planning to build ballistic missiles.

On February 2013: Iran’s Ali Khomeini rejected negotiation with the USA over their nuclear ability.   Both North Korea and Iran feel that no one can stop them.  They are both paranoid, secretive regimes.  Jeffrey Lewis, Director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at Monterrey Institute feels it’s hard to know if North Korea would give the blueprints to Iran.  They do need money, though, and Iran would pay.

North Korea’s 1st test most likely used plutonium.

Iranians were at North Korea’s 2nd nuclear test.  In May 2009 the explosion was half the size as its 3rd test.  They most likely used plutonium.

Iranians were at North Korea’s last nuclear test on Tuesday the 12th.  It was a 5.0 in magnitude, half the size of the Hiroshima blast.  It was believed to be an enriched uranium devise.  “Pyongyang appears to detonate a nuclear device with regional monitors detecting an unusual seismic event, of a magnitude between 4.9 and 5.1, in the same location as the North's Punggye-ri nuclear test site. Seoul estimates the blast yield at six to seven kilotons.”

I'll be listening to Lee speak tomorrow night.  There might be more insights into just what is going on.

Research: Why Iran Already Has the Bomb by Lee Smith.  orignally from Tablet Magazine:

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Whatever Happened to Avigdor Lieberman?

Nadene Goldfoot
Avigdor Lieberman, former Foreign Minister in Israel, is on trial in Jerusalem  for a financial scandal with charges of fraud and breach of trust that happened about 10 years ago.  How can this happen to a Knesset member?  His  prosecutors say that he intervened to promote Zeev Ben Aryeh, former Ambassador to Belarus, to a post in Latvia. Both places were former parts of the Pale of Settlement.  This reward he gave to Aryeh was supposedly for a tip-off about another separate criminal investigation he was facing.  He is pleading innocence.   He feels this has been a witch hunt.

Israel's fault-finders can really tsk tsk over this scandal.  It seems that anyone in Israel is held under a microscope and must be perfect.  Of course every country wishes their elected to be so.  Sometimes they can be tempted and weaken.  The trick is not to let too many of them do so. Israel has more critics than any other country.  Notice, please, that Israel is a democracy and whether important or not, a person will get caught in any malice and must pay the piper for any wrong-doing.  After all, the country that has the Mossad is not asleep on the job.

Avigdor was born June 5, 1958 in Kishinev, Soviet Union which is now Chis,ina or Moldova. Moldova lies between Romania and Ukraine.  It was Ukraine that was part of the Pale of Russia.   His father, Lev Leiberman (May 18, 1921-July 2, 2007) had served in the Red Army and was in a Siberian Gulag for 7 years under Joseph Stalin's rule.  His family had a strong Jewish identity, pretty good for a Jew in Soviet Russia, where Judaism had been outlawed along with all other religions.    He spoke only Yiddish up to the age of 3 while  my father spoke Yiddish till age 5 in the USA.  He graduated high school and applied to study international law at Kiev University, but was rejected for being Jewish.  So he enrolled at the Agriculture Institute with a major in hydrological land improvement.

Twenty year old Lieberman and his family emigrated to Israel in 1978, just two years before I did.  He thought of living on a kibbutz before moving into Beersheba;  whereas I lived in Haifa and went through studies to gain an Israeli teaching certificate so I could continue in my profession and teach English.  He went into the army and served in the Artillery Corps,  becoming a Corporal eventually.  After his 3 years of service  he enrolled at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and earned his BS in international relations and political science.  He was active in a student group associated with Likud.  There were Arab groups at the university, too, that he would clash with.  However, Jamal Zahalka, an Arab Knesset member from Balad who was at the University with Lieberman said he yelled a lot but avoided any of the rough action (fights).  Believe me, my Russian friends that I studied with yelled a lot on the phones in our Ulpan when talking to family back in Russia.  I was in a class of 40 students studying Hebrew, and most were from Russia.

There are the Knesset Elections Law that bans parties that incite racism and Kach group was declared a terrorist organization in  1994.  Kach was the party of Rabbi Meir Kahane and Haaretz newspaper, a paper most critical of Israel, wrote that Lieberman was a member of the party for a short period with testimony based from 2 activists in the movement.  Lieberman rejected the story and said it was an "orchestrated provocation."

Lieberman had  helped to found the Zionist Forum for Soviet Jewry from 1983-1988.  In 1988 he started working with Benjamin Netanyahu.  Lieberman was director-General of the Likud party.  When Netanyahu was elected Prime Minister, Lieberman served as Director-General of his office from 1996-1997.

In 1997 Lieberman resigned from Likud after Netanyahu granted concessions to the Palestinians in the Wye River Memorandum.  He was disappointed when Yisrael Baaliyah, a new immigrant's party led by Natan Sharansky, also from Russia,  didn't quit the coalition government in protest.  So in 1999 Lieberman formed the Yisrael Beiteinu party for Soviet immigrants  who supported the hard line in negotiating with Palestinians.  By March 2001, Lieberman was appointed Minister of National Infrastructure, but resigned the next year.

Likud and Yisrael Beiteinu merged in October 2012 and ran together on a single ballot in Israel's January 22, 2013 elections that we just had.  Lieberman had originally opposed the road map which has now fallen apart.

Lieberman and his wife Ella, another Moldovan immigrant, have a daughter and 2 sons.  They live in Nokdim which is on the Judean Desert of Judah (West Bank to foreigners).  They've lived there since 1988, but he is willing to leave his home if it's part of a peace agreement.  So as hard lined as he is, he wants peace more than anything, which is the attitude all Israeli have.  Lieberman speaks Russian, Romanian, Hebrew and English.  I moved to Israel and confessed that I only spoke English and a few words of Spanish.  He only had 2 years on me and is speaking Hebrew in the Knesset.  You have to hand it to these Russians.  They do know how to study languages.  I figure he learned a lot at the university as well, but not about political quagmires.  Ethics comes in our religion, so we do hope he's innocent.  We don't worry about what happens to us when we die since we try to live up to all our laws and mitzvot.

I must add that when my father-in-law came to Israel to visit us he expected to see all rabbis walking the streets.  He was shocked beyond belief when he spied his first female prostitute in Haifa.  Yes, we are real people and this is a real country like others, but we do answer to a higher power, just like Hebrew National Hot Dogs, and do try to do the very best humanly possible.

Letters From Israel by Nadene Goldfoot

How Palestinian Refugees Differed From Others, How Jewish Refugees Differed From Them All

                                                                               Exodus 1947                          
Nadene Goldfoot                                                                       
Arabs have been migrants. Mark Twain can attest to that as he visited the Holy Land on a trip starting in February 1, 1867. Bedouins attacked his camp, the land where the man rides and carries the child on a pigmy jackass but the woman walks. Mark Twain traveled miles of desolate country whose soil is rich enough but was only weeds.  He saw only 3 people, Arabs, wearing only a long coarse shirt, and they were shepherds, and charmed their flocks with a reed pipe.  

 Migration comes from a tradition of migration and migrants.  They were wrongly regarded immediately upon arrival in Western Palestine as people "existing" for millennia within the Jewish-settled area of Western Palestine.  They were just continuing in 1948 their traditional pattern of moving to an area where they thought their relatives were better treated than they were.  The British made them into instant natives which in turn counted them as instant refugees.  Then they actually had a better life in the UNWRA camp setting than they had as "landless impoverished laborers in the Arab world."

Wrongly counted as refugees were these Arab itinerant workers from  the neighboring countries.   Many of the refugees were fleeing from Israel but the British neglected to realize that they had just recently gone into Israel and then counted them as natives when Israel was the Jewish-settled area of Western Palestine.   There they earned better wages and found better living conditions within the Jewish settlements.

On the other hand, German, Russian, Czech, Hungarian, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Afghan,  Lebanese and Syrian refugees had to flee and became migrants in order to escape persecution, dictatorship, or certain death.  Syrians and Lebanese have moved right over to Jordan and are in camps.  The land of Jordan, taken illegally by King Hussein, is land meant to be the Jewish National Home.

When the Jewish refugees were lucky enough to arrive on ships to Palestine, the British would not let them into the Jewish communities.  They were refugees fleeing for their lives from Nazis.  Even though The British were given the Mandate to bring about the Jewish National Home, they treated it  as "Arab" land.  So they restricted Jewish immigration and let "illegal" Arab immigrants in.  They were appeasing Arab "discontent." When my 2nd cousin, Stanley Goldfoot left Capetown, South Africa in 1933  at age 18 or 19, his ship put up the Swastika flag in the middle of the ocean and he wasn't sure he'd get to land in Palestine.  Luckily, he did.  A few years more and it would have been impossible.  At this time there were also restrictions on Jewish immigration into the USA.

On January 12, 1938 the Poseidan ship came to Palestine with 65 Jewish illegal immigrants.  By then 8,000 had entered illegally with the help of Jewish Agency in Palestine. The Aliya Bet worked from 1939 to 1942  and then from 1945 to 1948, trying to get illegal Jews into the country.  "No country was willing to take Jewish immigrants. However, some countries would give them transit visas."

The ship "Exodus" from France carried 4,500 Jewish refugees including 600 orphans  that were Holocaust survivors on July 11, 1947 and the Jews were considered illegal so couldn't disembark.  "Displaced person camps run by American, French and Italian officials often turned a blind eye to the situation, with only British officials restricting movement in and out of their camps. In 1945, the British reaffirmed the pre-war policy restricting Jewish immigration to Palestine which had been put in place following the influx of a quarter of a million Jews fleeing the rise of Nazism in the 1930s and had been a major cause of the Arab revolt of 1936-1939."

  • "Exodus was attacked by five British destroyers and a cruiser. Ruth Gruber, a journalist,  left Jerusalem immediately for Haifa and witnessed the Exodus entering the harbor, looking, as Gruber wrote, "like a matchbox splintered by a nutcracker."
  • During the "battle," the British rammed the Exodus and stormed it with guns, tear gas and truncheons. Gruber noted that the crew, mostly Jews from America and Palestine, fought back with potatoes, sticks and cans of kosher meat. The Exodus’s second officer, Bill Bernstein of San Francisco, was clubbed to death trying to prevent a British soldier from entering the wheelhouse. Two orphans were killed, one shot in the face point blank after he tossed an orange at a soldier.
  • When she learned that the prisoners from the Exodus were being transferred to Cyprus, she flew there overnight. While she waited for the Exodus detainees, she photographed earlier Jewish prisoners living behind barbed wire in steaming hot tents with almost no water or sanitary facilities. "You had to smell Cyprus to believe it," she cabled the New York Herald."

  • Half of 142 attempts to enter by Jews were stopped and the people were sent to internment camps in Cyprus.  50,000 ended up in such camps.  1,600+  Jews drowned at sea.  About 2,000 Jews actually entered Palestine.
     This was in violation of the International League of Nation Mandate.  They were, in fact, facilitating Arab settlement onto Jewish-settled land.  They just thought that Arabs had always been there which has caused the lies of today.  Here we have the case that Arabs came to Western Palestine because they were attracted by the superior economic conditions created by the Zionists.   No wonder Churchill could point out in 1939:
    • Far from being persecuted, the Arabs have crowded into the country and multiplied until their population has increased more than even all world Jewry could lift up (increase) the Jewish population.
    Why were the British so pro-Arab besides being obviously anti-Semitic?  "Since the British relied on the Arab (or Arab-supporting) regimes of the Middle East, a pro-Arab policy in Palestine served them best to protect rights to Arab oil, the Suez canal, and British interests in India and beyond."  Since they had been in Palestine fighting against the Ottoman Empire during WWI and had solicited TE Elliot to help get Arabs to fight with them, they were the ones given the mandate.  Let us not forget that Jews fought against the Ottoman Empire as well with the British.  

    Book:  From Time Immemorial by Joan Peters page 392-393
    Book: Exodus by Leon Uris
    Movie:  Exodus with Paul Newman
    The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain

    Saturday, February 16, 2013

    When Jews Lived in Russia

                                                 1559   Fortified synagogue in Husiatyn, Russia                    
    Nadene Goldfoot
    300 CE Since the Babylonian captivity, Jews were led to Armenia and Georgia, parts of Russia.  Records from the 4th Century show that 10,000 to 30,000 Jews lived in settlements in the Crimea.  Nebuchadnezzar II inherited the Assyrian Empire and took Judah in 597 BCE, exiling many Jews to Babylonia.  The Ten Tribes of Israel were exiled previously and some were still there in Babylonia.

    700-800 CE Under the influence of the Caucasian Jewish communities, Khazaria's  Bulan, the Khagan Bek (King)  of the Khazars (White Ugrians) , and the ruling classes of Khazaria,  about 4,000 of his nobles , adopted Judaism at some point in the mid-to-late 8th or early 9th centuries. It was the Royal House that converted. It was also the Royal House that intermarried with that of Byzantium.     After the overthrow of the Khazarian kingdom by Svialoslav I of Kiev  (969), Khazar Jews may have fled in large numbers to the Crimea, the Caucasus, and the Russian principality of Kiev which was formerly a part of the Khazar territory.   It is thought that descendants of the Khazar Jews probably survived among the Crimea Karaites, the Krimchaks, and other Jews of eastern European origin. Khazaria was located in what is now Ukraine, southern Russia and Kazakhstan.

    986 CE:  Duke Vladimir the Great living in Kiev converted to Christianity.  Jews participated in  a disputation whereas he wanted to convert all of the Kiev population as well.    He also consulted with Jewish envoys (who may or may not have been Khazars), and questioned them about their religion but ultimately rejected it, saying that their loss of Jerusalem was evidence of their having been abandoned by G-d.

    1000's-1100's  Jews appear to have occupied a separate quarter in Kiev, known as the Jewish town (Old Ruthenian Жидове, Zhidove, i.e. "The Jews"), the gates probably leading to which were known as the Jewish gates (Old Ruthenian Жидовская ворота, Zhidovskaya vorota).
    1083  Khazaria's power broken on the Volga by Russian archduke Yaroslav..
    1100's Kiev had a Jewish gate that led to the Jewish Quarter.
    1113 Jewish Quarter in Kiev was looted.  Jews were attending western yeshivot and spoke with German rabbis.  
    1400's Jewish traders from Lithuania disseminated a Judaizing sect ( were spreading such as sowing seed) in Novgorod and Moscow causing drastic reaction.  It sounds like they were converting people to Judaism.  
    1550  Clauses in treaties with foreign powers said that Jews could not visit the country.
    1563 Jews refused to be baptised into Christianity so 300 were drowned at Polotsk and Vitebsk.
    1667 Jews were expelled from Eastern Ukraine when it was annexed to Russia. 
    1678 Clauses in treaties again said that Jews could not visit Ukraine.
    1727 Jews expelled from land
    1738 Jews expelled from land
    1742 Jews expelled from land.
    1753   35,000 Jews driven out of Russia
    1762 Catherine II allowed all aliens to live in Russia except Jews. 
    1772, 1793, 1795: Poland was partitioned and Jews from White Russia, Ukraine, Lithuania and Courland became Russian subjects.  and were ruled by the Czars for over 100 years.  
    1786: Jews restricted to towns, foundation of Pale of Settlement 
    1795). (Karaites had equality with Christians)
    1802 Council for Jewish Affairs from authority of Derzhavin report on White Russia
    1804 Council defined Pale of Russia restricting Jews to villages
    1807-1808 Limited activities of the Kahal in religion and charity, prohibited traditional Jewish costume, promoted agriculture
    1812 Napoleon invaded Russia
    1801-1825 life of Alexander I, benevolent at first to Jews, then turned reactionary, 20,000 Jews expelled from Vitebsk and Mohilev.
    1824 Jews remaining  in these provinces were forbidden to live near the frontier.  600 oppressive enactments for Jews published during reign of Nicholas I who thought they were injurious element.
    1827 Jews imposed with military service.
    1835 Frontier of the Pale of Settlement restricted until  1915.  
    1836 Jewish books censored.
    1844 Kahal was abolished  Alexander II tried to Russify the Jews by education and relaxed restrictions.  65,000 Russian Jews were engaged in agriculture.  Jews became prominent in economics, culture and left-wing politics; social anti-Semitism now began to replace the former religious prejudices.
    1880's Mass immigration of Jews to America, Palestine
    1881 Alexander II assassisnated.  May Laws enacted
    1891 Jews expelled from Moscow and clauses were into high schools and secondary schools.  Jews turned to Zionism, Socialism.
    1897 Bund founded and the revolutionary movement.  
    1905 Organization founded advocating equal Jewish rights
    1906 12 Jewish deputies elected to the Duma from Liberal Party. Anti Semitism showed up with Beilis case, a Blood Libel.  
    1917 WWI, 5,600,000 Jews lived in the Empire of Czars (including about 2 million in Poland).  Those living near war zones were deported.  300,000 Jews were in the Russian army.  Jews were scapegoats after war and were expelled from Kovno, Grodno, Courland.  Not allowed to print Hebrew or Yiddish.  
    April 2, 1917 government abrogated all anti-Jewish decrees.  Jews were then in Kerensky regime and later in Bolshevik Revolution (Trotsky, Zinoviev, Sverdloy).  
    1918 Jewish departments in commissariats of national affairs and education.  
    April 1919, Soviet government abolished the non communist Jewish institutions.  Civil War with pogroms, Soviet government proclaimed anti-Semitism a criminal offense. 
    1921-29 Jewish economic position improved.  Jews were settled on land to encourage agriculture (Komzet) in Ukraine, Crimea and Biro-Bidian.  American Jewish Agricultural Corporation  supplied the means for settlement.  
    1930 Efforts made to discourage Jewish practices, Purges caused Jews to be removed.  
    1940 WWII annexation of White Russia, W. Volhynia, E Galicia, N Bukovina, Bessarabia, Lithuania and Latvia led to mass deportation of Jews, especially the intelligentsia, from these regions.  .  
    1941, Nazis invaded Russia, aimed at exterminating the Jewish population.  Of the 500,000 Jews in White Russia, half escaped to the interior and 200,000 were slaughtered.  

    Resource: The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
    The Jews of Khazaria 2nd edition by Kevin Alan Brook


    Friday, February 15, 2013

    Tracing Our Jewish Genealogy Back All the Way

    Nadene Goldfoot                                                                 
    Could any of the Biblical characters be our direct ancestors?  Almost all historians are in agreement that this is possible.  There are no Jewish families that can be traced in an unbroken line back to biblical times, but Jewish groups moved a lot and can be traced from the fall of the Kingdom of Judah in 586 BCE to the present.  Zedekiah (597-586) was the last King of Judah.  Babylonia had overcome them.

    The travels included walking through centuries spent in Persia where Queen Esther, married to King Ahashueros lived.  They then went to Turkey, the Crimea and finally into Europe where they became Ashkenazim.  Others moved across North Africa to Morocco and then into Spain where they became today's Sephardim.  Some also have the oral history of  getting  to Spain with the Romans and Visagoths.  They most likely were captives then.

    This same road was traveled later with exiles who returned to  Judah  in the 5th century BCE.   Large numbers of the inhabitants had been  deported but they continued to keep their national and religious ideals so were able to renew their Jewish life after 539 BCE in the area of the former kingdom of Judah.  The descendants of these Jews were Jews who were in Jerusalem at the time of the 2nd Temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE.

    There were 97,000  Jews who survived that slaughter according to Josephus.  They made their way to Europe either by way of Persia (Iran) or North Africa.

    We then lost 6 million in the Holocaust of WWII.  Today there are about 14 million Jews in the world .  All of them would fit into at least one of 5 groups. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were our forefathers and Jacob had 12 sons: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Gad, Asher, Dan, Naphtali, Joseph and Benjamin.

     Most are the descendants of the tribes of Judah, the largest tribe, and perhaps also from Benjamin and Simeon.  Jews of the 2nd Temple period who called themselves the:

    1. "Kohanim, descended from Aaron, the priest or Kohen (Cohen) 1st to read from Torah in synagogue

    2.  Levites, teachers from tribe of Levi, 2nd to read Torah in synagogue

    3. Israelites were from the other tribes.   Before that there were 12 tribes but 9 have disappeared and had been thought are no longer Jewish.  Some are now appearing from Muslim and Christian groups and others have actually been practicing Judaism as their ancestors knew it.

    4 Khazars had converted in the 8th Century CE and would have no Biblical lineage.  They would then have the possibility of descending from their royal house being it was they who converted.  If anyone in your family was a Kohanim or Levite or had  no roots in Eastern Europe, they were not of Khazar ancestry.  However, an Arab historian in the 9th century traced the Khazars back to the Biblical character Khazar, a 7th son of Togarmah.  He is considered the ancestor of all Turkish tribes and was the grandson of Japhet, the 3rd son of Noah, who was the 8th great grandfather of Abraham, patriarch of Ishmael and Isaac.

    5.  Converts to Judaism in the past and present.  It is said that their souls stood with the 600,000 with Moses at Mt. Sinai.  Wasn't this large group a conglomeration including a few other slaves that followed Moses as well?  They all followed Moses's teachings and became Jews that way, regardless of whether or not their ancestor was Jacob.  After all, they had been held as slaves for 400 years in Egypt.  I wouldn't be surprised if some chromosome segments didn't come from Egyptians, too.

    Since Judah absorbed the smaller remnants of Benjamin and Simeon, it cannot be proved which one you came from, but the best guess would be Judah, the largest of the tribes.  We can say for sure that we are direct descendants of Jacob, father of all 12 tribes.  The difference would be that Jacob's first wife was Leah, and his 2nd was her sister, Rachel.  He also fathered children by each of their handmaids, Zilpah and Bilhah.

    We figure 25 years for a generation, making that there have been more than 150 generations of Jews since Abraham.  Today every Jew can figure that he has chromosomes from Judah, Benjamin, Levi, Aaron, and even perhaps the Khazars as well as gentiles.  We can say that we are certainly descended from Jacob, father of Judah, Benjamin and Levi.  Of coarse then we were descended from his father, Isaac and then back to Abraham, grandfather of Jacob.  That leads us to Abraham's father, Terah and 18 more generations back takes us to Adam.  My dna test has even found a few segments (2.9%) of Neanderthal.

    If you are a man and have your DNA tested, you can find out what Haplogroup your male line is.  J1 is the haplogroup called the Cohen gene.  Most male Jews are of this group.  So are many Muslims.  If you have the family finder test, or at least the 67 allele test, the results are finer and more complex, leading to lines of families, such as which J1 is a Jewish line, even as fine as saying if it's Ashkenazi or Sephardi or not.  Since so many of us cannot go back very far in European history, DNA tests can give us lots of answers.

    It's a little harder to prove Jewish roots for women.  We women do not have as many haplogroups as men. Bryan Sykes wrote the book, "The Seven Daughters of Eve", finding only 7 haplogroups by 1977.  A few more have been found since then, one of which my Lithuanian grandmother belonged to which was "W."  .   In fact, today it is thought that all Jewish women descended from only 4 Jewish women.   That wouldn't necessarily be our 4 matriarchs of Sarah, Rebekah, Leah and Rachel, but somebody at some time in history.

    Resource:  Finding Our Fathers-a guidebook to Jewish Genealogy by Dan Rottenberg p. 64-65.
    23 and Me DNA company
    FamilyTreeDNA company
    Update: Ana

    Wednesday, February 13, 2013

    Jewish Women's Rights and Responsibilities

    Nadene Goldfoot
    Jews came along after Abraham, living in Ur (today's Iraq) in the 2nd millennium BCE , realized that there was one G-d.  Moses (1391-1271 BCE) was from the tribe of Judah and laid down the laws that made us truly Jewish.  From there we have the practices of Judaism that we have followed for the past 3,000+ years that concern both males and females.  .

    In today's modern age, some Jewish women in the USA are not only becoming rabbis (teachers of our religion) , but  are even wearing tallit.  They are surprised to find that this is unacceptable in Israel, for a religious observance at the Western Wall, where it was being done, must be in accordance with the custom of the holy site and which doesn't offend the sensitivities of the worshipers.  Women that wear prayer shawls have been deemed unduly provocative because of the biblical injunction against women wearing men's clothing and vice versa.  No transgender clothing.

    A tallit or prayer shawl  is a four-cornered robe with the required tzitzit and has become the garment traditionally worn by men during morning prayer services.  It is the fringes or tzitzit on the 4 corners that provide it with its religious significance.  It is one of the mitzvot to put on tzitzit so that you may look upon them and remember to do all the commandments of the Lord.

    Chabad, an orthodox Jewish group, says that women are not obligated to wear a tallit because they are exempt from fulfilling almost all time-bound positive commandments, like reciting the Shema.  Women may fulfill all mitzvot if they so desire, but the prevailing custom is that women don't wear  a tallit.  There is not even a requirement for men to wear one.  She is drawing undo attention to herself  by showing  excessive piety in an inappropriately ostentatious manner if she wears one.   What is unusual is that this practice is happening in the Conservative and Reform movements but not in the Orthodox where the men do perform  this act.    On a mystical level, the inner workings of this mitzvah are male oriented and just don't "do it" for a woman.

    For women who want to wear one or who are doing so,  Rabbi Moshe Feinstein of the 20th century writes that a woman should wear a distinctively feminine tallit and that this comes from a yearning to fulfill this mitzvah and recognize that they are not doing it out of a requirement and that it isn't a protest, challenging what they perceive as a gender bias in Jewish law.  Then it would not be considered as a mitzvot but to the contrary.

    Back in 1981, my neighbor in Safed, Israel, Harry Hazen, explained to me why these certain practices are not for women.  There are certain things that are only for men, and because one held to be only for men means that others cannot be done legitimately.    The wearing of tefillin  is expected just for men.  They are the straps that wrap around his arm and the box he wears on his forehead.    This is worn first for a boy when he is 13 and sets apart the men from the boys.  It is the religious symbol and ritual obligation identifying with becoming Bar-Mitzvah "of age."    A male Jew is testifying to his identification with the Jewish past, its present, and its future.  Whether he prays in the synagogue or in his home, it is a required daily weekday observance and something a woman does not have to do.  For the man, tefillin is a reminder of the entire Torah which he is bidden to observe.

    Women are not bound  to the formal prayer service or the set times for the 3 daily services.  They are not required, as are the men, to join in public congregational worship.  This is taking into consideration a woman's primary responsibility as wife and mother.  A woman nursing a child is not expected to drop everything, including her baby, to attend set prayer schedules but a man is expected to arrange his schedule and work to conform to religious requirements.   The law can't distinguish between nursing and non-nursing mothers so this leniency extends to all.  Women are required to pray but can do so at anytime convenient for them and in private if they wish.  They attend synagogue on Sabbaths and festivals but their attendance is not a religious statutory requirement.

    Women have had more respect and regard in Judaism than in any other religion.  Wasn't it the women who didn't give up in their 400 years of servitude in Egypt and kept on having children when the men had given up all hope? Mirium, sister of Moses  led the Israelite women in triumphal song and dance and is one of our prophets. She and her brother Aaron even challenged Moses's lone leadership.  For her chutzpah she suffered with leprosy, but it was a temporary condition.   Perhaps that is why Deborah (Devorah) from 1150 BCE roused the Israelite tribes to revolt under Barak against the Canaanite King Jabin of Hazor and Sisera as told in Judges 4:4.  She was a leader, prophetess and a judge.

    We remember and respect our 4 matriarchs of the Jewish people, Sarah, wife of Abraham and mother of  Isaac; Rebekah, wife of Isaac and mother of Esau and Jacob; Leah, sister of Rachel and 1st wife of Jacob; Rachel, 2nd wife of Jacob. We also remember  Ruth the Moabite, daughter in law of Naomi and mother of King David, and  Queen Esther who saved all the Jews from total annihilation by Haman's  decree in Persia.  We've had Queen Jezebel of Israel and Queens Athaliah and Salome Alexandra of Judah.  We should not forget Prime Minister Golda Meier of Israel in today's world.  Women have not taken a back seat in our lives.

    Back in the Hellenistic times Jewish women were treated in a superior status from Greek women.  A Jewish female was in independent legal personality permitted to own property either as a single or married woman.  .Monogamy didn't happen until about  1000 CE but continued in Oriental Jewries.  Judaism has always looked upon sex as a healthy act and so recognized a woman's dignity.  In Eastern Europe it was the tradition for the woman to work in order to help her husband to study.  Thus they became great businesswomen.  The Hadassah organization came about by women for women and have taken in men today as well.  Wizo (Women's International Zionist Organization)  is another one that helps the community, started by women.

    In the USA Jewish women have been called the "Jewish American Princess"  because we expect to be treated royally by our husbands.   Every Friday night a Jewish man reads a special tract from the book of Proverbs 31 by King Solomon "A Woman of Valor" (Eshet Chayil) that speaks royally of his wife.  It also gives a woman something to live up to.   A male cannot but feel likewise if he's heard this all his life at his table as a son.

     Is a person a Jew or not? In orthodoxy  it depends on his mother.  If she's Jewish, he is also.  Not only is this something that could be verified as to where he came from, he is taught and raised by the mother. This is why.

    Israel was created to be a democratic haven for Jews.  We have been without our state for over 2,000 years and have been living in Christian and Muslim lands with their laws.  Being we are a small group, 0.02% of the world population, this is the only Jewish state in the world with Jewish laws.  If we lose the taste of Judaism here, there will be no reason to call it a Jewish state.  Soon the population would be wiped..  Unlike any other state or country, Israel does have  rabbis who sets down the rules to be followed.  In fact, the Chief Rabbinate consists of 2, the Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger and the Sephardic Rabbi Shlomo Amar.  If Judaism is to continue in this world, it is important that our practices are happening in Israel.

    There is one thing that rabbinic male Jews have a problem with, and that's in the Book of Proverbs which warns men against female wiles, and we have used them, for sure, I admit.  But it also depicts the "woman of worth" who is the mainstay of her household.  The Talmud is nervously aware of the sexual power of the woman.  Evidently Jewish men are easily aroused by a woman's hair whereas other men might be aroused by our legs, bottoms, or even upper arms as well as our faces.  This is why the Orthodox women cover their beautiful luxurious hair and are modest in their dress which includes covering their arms to below their elbows.   In the Middle Ages when Jews were objects of ownership by gentiles like the Blacks were in the USA's south not too long ago, the landlord would take a woman sexually before she was married  if he were such a cad, and many were.  So in order to turn him off, the young lady would shave her head.  He'd see her and suddenly freeze.  This has really been the basis for head coverings.

    Women's rights in Judaism are found in the Mishnah (Horayot 3:7, in which it is stated that in some respects a woman takes precedence over a man and in others a man over a woman. A woman must be provided with clothing from the charity chest before a man because she suffers greater embarrassment.  If both man and woman are captured by bandits the woman must be ransomed first.  If both a man and woman stand in danger of defilement by bandits the man must be freed before the woman because his defilement (by other men) is unnatural.  Wow!  This tells me that raping has gone on ever since mankind including the act of man raping another man.  .

    If both are in danger and only one can be saved, the man's life comes first.  I think that this is because of his ability to father more life.  We need the man's sperm to carry on a family line.  There are always very practical reasons for doing things. Could it also be that Jewish men were scarcer to have than women in a community:?  A man in turn was capable of defending more people than a woman was?    If both a man and a woman lose some property and only one of them gets theirs restored, the man comes first.

    Quite frankly, I had noticed in Conservative synagogues  that with the change of accepting women in  a minyon  (10 Jews) that are needed at a service, the men were sluffing off.  They might have felt that their showing up was not a necessity to the group anymore.  That is sad.  It's been happening in the workplace as well.  They are being replaced.  I've always felt that Judaism had provided equal roles for men and for women.  I've even felt superior, being a Jewish princess, that we are not expected to show up for all these prayer groups because we are innately superior anyway.  It's the men who need to pray, ask for forgiveness and guidance, etc. We had other just as important responsibilities.

    Isn't it amazing  to see  the subjects our Jewish  men have discussed and have come to agreements of what is right or wrong to do and put it all in writing?   It speaks to the mind and imagination and events over eons of time they knew about.  I bet that TV and movie script writers would love to have spoken with them to create more involved plots about life.  The book, "Portnoy's Complaint" by Philip Roth in 1969  goes into dealing with his strongly willed  Jewish mother and puts Jewish mothers in a bad light.  The novel tells the humorous monologue of "a lust-ridden, mother-addicted young Jewish bachelor", who confesses to his psychoanalyst in "intimate, shameful detail, and coarse, abusive language".

    I'm proud to be a Jewish woman and love the fact that our religion goes back so far in time with such wisdom.  I'd hate to have our rituals  cast off.  They all make up the taste and flavor of our religion.  These are all reminders of who we are, our history  and what we should be doing and heavens knows we really do need them.  One only has to look at the reasons for these acts and know that there is an intelligence behind our religion.

    Resource: Oregonian newspaper, February 13, 2013, page B8,  For orthodox religion, a tradition-modernity clash; Men Holding the Line, by Ruth Marcus on Editorial page.  by Rabbi Menachem Posner
     To Be a Jew-a guide to Jewish observance in contemporary life by Rabbi Hayim Halevy Donin
    The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
    What Does Judaism Say About.. ? by Louis Jacobs's_Complaint

    Friday, February 8, 2013

    When a Self Hating Jew Sides with Known Terrorists: That's Corruption

    Nadene Goldfoot                                                                 
    In 2008, the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) appointed Falk to a six-year term as a United Nations Special Rapporteur on "the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.

    "The concept of the ‘self-hating Jew’ strengthens a narrow, ethnocentric view of the Jewish people. It exerts a monopoly over patriotism. It promotes a definition of Jewish identity which relies on the notion of an eternal enemy, and how much more dangerous when that enemy is a fifth column within the group. It plays on real fears of anti-Semitism and at the same time exaggerates the problem by claiming that critical Jews are ‘infected’ by it too.  However, there are ways to be positively critical which can be helpful.  The ways a self-hating Jew does it is destructive and is a decidedly great help to people who want to destroy Israel.  That is the difference.

    Such a title on certain people or groups has been used for Jews who are against the stand that Israel has had to take to stay alive and not be "driven into the sea."  Chaim Weizmann once said at the beginning of Israel's existence around 1950 that "he was the president of 3 million presidents."  Jews are not good followers.  They seem to be all empowered with creative active minds that love to solve problems.  I think that there are some that are wearing sunglasses over their minds to keep out the dirty facts of life and what is happening to the one and only Jewish state in the world.  Perhaps they are the Lufmentch spoken about in stories about Chelm  whose minds are up in the clouds.  It's like dividing  people between those who see a glass as half full or half empty.  The difference of not understanding Israel, the only democratic nation in the Middle East is putting its life in jeopardy.  The people who live there are voters, and it's their life that is on the line; not someone living in the USA.  They want to live far more than their enemies who  know that they will go to their heaven and be greeted by 72 virgins.  A Jew toasts with L'chaim (to life).  For us it's life that's precious; not death.

    Such a person against Israel is a self-hating Jew, Richard Falk, who was kicked out of the Human Rights Watch.  He is a 9/11 conspiracy theorist, so this also adds a layer to his psychological demeanor.  It's well known that this group only discusses Israel in great detail .  It's as if they are the only problem in the world, at a time when Syria, for example, has killed 60,000 of its own people.  But little Israel is the big bogeyman in the world.

    The surprise is that the UN Human Rights Council postponed a debate on Israel's alleged violation.  Good grief!  The world went into a "state of apoplexy" when Israel asked for a postponement and "dared to miss a scheduled review session on January 29th.  In fact, as I understand, they decided not to allow the group into Israel at all because every time they have, they are condemned.  It took another group, the UN WATCH, to expose the Human Rights Groups' charges as rank hypocrisy.  Enough is enough!

    Come to find out, Richard Falk was scheduled to present his report on Monday, March 18th, their day against Israel that has become a permanent feature of every session.  However, he will be skipping his scheduled appearance and postponing his report by several months.  Now the council will postpone their attack on Israel as well.  Their anti-Israel lobby  knows of a competing report on settlements they will use instead.  .

    Falk had angered Ramallah (Abbas of Fatah) with his report's grant of UN standing with Hamas, who is thought of as the enemy of Fatah at times.  He had made stinging remarks about the PA and leader Mahmoud Abbas.  That is a switch, picking on one one the Palestinian groups.  It gives Israel and Fatah one thing in common, now: the chastisement from Falk!  But he's in agreement with Hamas!  They're the terrorists of the terrorists.  Falk had said that Hamas should do the investigations, and here  they are,  the vice to Fatah.  There is this pecking order Falk is not following.  Zuhairi, Palestinian deputy ambassador,  was very upset by this.  So he was thinking of blocking Falk's report anyway.

    The council's so-called debates on Israel take on the process of a Stalinist show trial where the verdict is delivered in advance, and rapists and murderers parade as the prosecutors of justice.  They use a double standard about Israel in the first place.  The group is usually made up of Arab Muslims who have decided that Israel must be destroyed anyway.  They are not capable of deciding a thing about Israel fairly.  They display a "pathological prejudice against Israel" which makes the whole body of the UN's reputation stink.  With Richard Falk, who has been the worst accuser of all, it is quite realistic to call him a self-hating Jew.

    We have no time for such people as Falk and other self-hating Jews. Maybe they don't care if there's a Jewish state in the world but 6 million Jews living there are dependant on it.   Even J Street has to realize a few facts.  " This has been war. Palestinian rockets have been slamming into major Israeli cities and we're only in a cease fire right now.  Israeli aircraft and  armor were firing on Gaza. A bombing rocked Jerusalem. All over the south, people have been taking cover since 2006 and praying.  The disgruntled should either move to Israel and vote, or start reading and joining classes to learn more about the situation.

    I had moved to Israel in 1980 because I wanted to help.  I realized that this was the first time since we lost our country in 70 CE that we had a state where people could live without being treated with anti-Semitism.    The first time to have our own state in 2,000 years!  I was 13 years old then, the year of my confirmation!  Think of that.  After suffering in the Holocaust and losing 6 million people!  In our lifetime, Israel's life is the most important thing we can do to help.  Why would anybody hinder?   Every day it exists is a fight against tyranny.  So I kvetch when I see my native country act in any harmful way against Israel, whether by the President, or any on his council or any UN group and especially Richard Falk.

    UN Watch

    Thursday, February 7, 2013

    Israeli Supermodel, Bar Refaeli Can Kiss

    Nadene Goldfoot
    Bar Refaeli, Israel's supermodel was just interviewed on Jay Leno's show.  She's the one that was kissing the nerd, Jesse Heiman, a Hollywood extra,  on the Super Bowl's commerical.  Bar was born June 4, 1985 in Hod HaSharon, Tel Aviv, Israel.  She is 5'8.5 " tall, blonde and blue eyed with measurements to die for of 35", 24" 35".  She told Jay that Tel Aviv is a cross between New York City and Los Angeles being it also has the sea and the sand.

    Her parents own a horse ranch in Israel.  Yes, I have seen horse ranches in Israel.  I'm sure Bush would not, but there are in miniature of Texas's.  DNA does help since her mother was also a model in the 1970's who used her maiden name of Tzipi Levine.  Refaeli began modeling at the age of 8 months in commercials.  She wore braces until 15.   She was the cover-model for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue in 2009.

    The one thing she has not done is serve in the military.  She avoided compulsory service of 2 years by marrying a family friend, which got her off the hook, and then later divorced him, which pretty much tells the army why she did that.  Now she's trying to evade paying taxes to Israel because she is living and working overseas.  She has earned $2 million dollars in the past 2 years which means she would owe Israel 46% of that.

    Every 18 year old has to go into the army.  Men go in for 3 years and women for 2.  They also then serve for one month every year in their milueem period until about the age of 55.  Evidently it's  becoming a trend for these young people to try to avoid the army, and so far for the past 10 years the religious have been able to avoid it by an exemption that may come to an end with this new Knesset.  For the past 64 years, the whole time of Israel's existence, this has had to take place.  It has helped to shape the closeness people feel in Israel.    The book "Start-up Nation" about new businesses in Israel, explain that by serving in the IDF people have learned skills that have created such knowledge about starting businesses and that people that haven't served are not as desirous and are not hired. This almost 28 year old gal will never need such skills, just the ability to keep her figure.


    Start-up Nation: The Story of Israel's Economic Miracle by Dan Senor and Saul Singer

    Wednesday, February 6, 2013

    Mila Kunis, Actress: Victim of Anti-Semitism in Ukraine:

                                                                        Mila Kunis
    Nadene Goldfoot
    A Ukrainian-American actress, Mila Kunis, formerly Milena Markovna Kunis, is  Jewish.. She was born in Chernivtsi in the Ukrainian SSR.  All Jews were forced to live in the Pale of Settlement of which Ukraine was a part from 1791 to 1917. She lost many relatives in the Holocaust when 900,000 Jews were murdered in Ukraine by the Nazis.   Mila was recently slammed by the far-right Svoboda Party member of the Ukrainian Parliament proclaiming that she wasn't "Ukrainian but a zhydovka," (Jew).   (from Yid you get Zid-Zyyd or Jew).  He is saying that Jews were not considered Ukrainians when 1/3 of  Ukrainians before WWII were Jews.

    Natan Sharansky was a Ukranian Jew who was a Soviet refusenik and was jailed because he wanted to leave the country for Israel, and then called a spy,  He had even tried to learn to read Hebrew.  My Hebrew teacher was sending him lessons on the sly from Israel.  He became a Human Rights activist, author and member of the Knesset in Israel.  Born as Anatoly Borisovich Shcharansky in Stalino, Soviet Union in 1948, the city's name was later changed to Donetsk which is in Ukraine.  He was a child chess prodigy and became a mathematician.  .

     One of Kiev's city gates is called the Judaic Gate.  Jews immigrated to the Ukraine in waves from Khazaria, the Caliphate and Byzantium between the 9th and 12th centuries and from Central Europe in the 14th and 15th centuries, and then from Poland in the 16th century.  The Russian government encouraged Jewish agricultural settlement in southern Ukraine from 1804-59 so that by 1897 there were 21 Jewish colonies in the Kherson province and 16 in Yekaterinoslav with 26,326 people.  In the 1920's the Soviet government promoted Jewish settlement in the Ukraine with funds from the American Joint Distribution Committee in the regions of Kalinindorf, Zlatopol and Stalindorf, a time my cousin's family immigrated to the states from Ukraine.

     By 1930 there were 90,000 Jewish agriculturists there.  Jewish economy and culture suffered under Soviet rule of Communism.  About half of Soviet Russia's 3 million Jews lived in Ukraine before WWII under Nazi rule.  If they hadn't fled to Russia they were wiped out by the Germans and Ukrainians in 1941-1942.  By 1970 the Jewish population was 777,126.  In 1989 it was 484,129.  They weren't allowed to leave and go to Israel. Today Ukraine has the 3rd largest Jewish population in Europe and it is the 5th largest group in the world.  Kiev has 110,000 Jews of an aging population with a medium of age 45.

    "Zhydovka " is said as a deeply hurtful slur which is what his party members are known for doing, regularly injecting anti-Semitism into their speeches and public pronouncements.  It should be easy to do since the Ukraine was a part of the Pale of Settlement where Jews had to live.  They were isolated this way from the rest of Russia.

    "Under Nikita Khrushchev’s rule over Ukraine, Ukrainian Jews who fled to Soviet Asia during the occupation slowly returned to reclaim their homes, possessions and jobs. The Ukrainians who remained in the communities were hostile to the returning Jews. The government, once again, refused to interfere in the conflicts between the Russians and the Jews. It seems to be a constant hotbed of anti-Semitism in Ukraine.

    As Russia seems to have backed Hezbollah terrorists who are in Lebanon, Russians in Ukraine are seen to be part of a trend of spewing out anti-Semitic messages and inciting violence seen in the past.  Take the Svododa party who gained over 10% of the national vote.  Their campaigning was one of injecting fear into their society.  They warned that foreigners and minorities are going to take over the country and they sounded like repeating Nazi propaganda of Joseph Goebbels.  The people mistrust the Jews of all the people they could distrust the most.  The odd fact is that in the early 1900's, many Russian Jews immigrated from the Pale of Settlement to the USA.  Then the Nazis in WWII did away with most in the Holocaust.  That there were any Jews left in Ukraine is a surprise to me!  And these few left are the minorities that are going to take over the country?  The Ukrainians should be so lucky!

    Mila came to Los Angeles with her family at age 7 in 1991 from Ukraine  Her family moved because of anti-Semitism in the former Soviet Union.  Her parents said they saw no future there for her or her older brother.  Her parents raised her as a Jew as much as they could being religion of any sort was suppressed in the Soviet Union. They came with only $250, which was all they were allowed to take out.  Her parents gave up good jobs and degrees which were not transferable.  Today her parents have "amazing" jobs and they are very lucky and not poor.

     As an after-school activity, her parents enrolled her in acting classes and she was soon discovered by an agent.  Before she knew it she was appearing in several TV series and commercials.  Her first significant role came before her 15th birthday, playing Jackie Burkhart on the TV series, "That '0's Show."  A year later she was cast as the voice of Meg Griffin on the animated series "Family Guy."

    After that she has been in many films such as "The Book of Eli, and Black Swan where she played the part of Lily.  She's received the nomination for a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress and an award for Outstanding Performance by a female actor in a supporting role.

    As for romance, when she was 18 she went with actor Macaulay Culkin that lasted for 8 years.  Of course, I hope that she finds a nice Jewish boy and has a family.   .  She is a beautiful young lady and is part of the American Democratic Party.  Even her native country, Ukraine has heard of Mila.  Such anti-Semitism developing there again should remind us that our world has shrunk and is intertwined.  What goes on in Ukraine affects Jews in other places.  Have we had dreams of having a more tolerant and peaceful international community? People slip into their old ways of needing a scapegoat and always pick on the Jews.

    Resource: from Oleksandr Feldman, President of the Ukrainian Jewish committee and member of Parliament of Ukraine

    Monday, February 4, 2013

    It's Been Hard to be a Jew

    Nadene Goldfoot
    After being the object of hatred in Christian communities for 1,500 years through writings in the New Testament and thus the people's attitudes with blaming Jews for killing their Christ, along comes Islam in the 600's who also has a hate-on towards Jews because we wouldn't convert.  It took Pope Benedict XVI to exonerate Jews in March 2011.   Mohammed wrote  pretty detestable things  about us for not converting and put it in the Koran.  Then Jews had 2 religious books to live down.  In the Koran are such things as "because of the wrongdoing of the Jews; distorting with their tongues and slandering religion; the most vehement of mankind in hostility are the Jews and the idolators; the greediest of mankind; desire nothing but your ruin; commit evil and become engrossed in sin; Allah hath cursed them for their disbelief; taste ye the punishment of burning."  We were treated as the scourge of the land by both religions yet were forced to live among them.

    By 70 CE when Jerusalem fell to the Romans, 10,000 Jews then lived in Damascus, Syria but lived  outside the general community. The Arab Muslims took Syria over in 634 and things actually got better for the Jews there as they were allowed to be Jewish but had to pay the poll tax.  Damascus, Aleppo and Palmyra had large Jewish settlements.  In 1492 Jews came from the Spanish Inquisition and settled.

     Eventually, Jews were treated differently in Muslim lands by not being allowed to carry weapons, nor could they bear witness against Muslims in courts of law nor marry Muslim women.  Jews were subject to special taxation. They couldn't even ride a horse to town.  Jews couldn't wear Muslim clothing.  Usually they were not allowed to build or repair places of worship.  These were humiliating acts but there were more.  Local authorities and the Muslim population in general were oppressive by using extortion and acts of violence on the Jews,  who were called dhimmis.

    There was one difference between the acts of Christians and acts of Muslims.  The Christians would drink and get drunk, and in this state would create pogroms against Jews which led to deaths.  Muslims didn't drink, so all their vile acts were in a clear state of mind, just out of plain meanness.  Tunisia's Jews suffered when Muhammad Bey took the throne in 1855 and tried to reform the contemptible dhimmi status which caused an uproar.  A case came up where the people would not take the word of a Jew in defense against a Muslim's charge of blasphemy against Islam.  The Bey didn't dare intervene and the Jew was decapitated.  On the island of Djerba, Arab tribes turned upon the Jewish Quarters which they sacked and destroyed everything.  It was just like a pogrom in Russia.  On Yom Kippur the synagogues were profaned and defiled.  The Scrolls were torn to pieces and burned.  Men were injured and trampled.  All the women and girls were raped.  The governor of the island refused to intervene to reestablish order.  This vandalism did not stop for 5 days and nights.

    Jews were kept in ghettos in many lands in Europe, starting with Italy where ghettos first started.  It was also practiced in Muslim lands called by many names; hara, mellah, or simply the Jewish Quarter.  In Egypt, this is typical.  "There are in this country about 5,000 Jews "Yahood", most of whom reside in the metropolis, in a miserable, close and dirty quarter, intersected by lanes, many of which are so narrow as hardly to admit 2 persons passing each other in them.  By 1920 there were a few Jewish families in Cairo who had some financial success which allowed them out of the ghetto and to be held under fairly tolerant rule.  Poor Jews would then move in.  "Our people are crowded and clustered into houses about to collapse, in dark cellars, narrow alleys and crooked lanes choked with mud and stinking refuse, earning their meager living in dark shops and suffocating workshops, toiling back to back, sun-scorched and sleepless.  Their hard struggle for existence both inside and outside the home is rewarded by a few beans and black bread."  Things did not change for them for hundreds of years.

     There were times that Jews had left the Ottoman Empire for Eastern Europe, only to be invited back because of the need of their expertise on money management.  That's how Jews had been invited to live in Eastern Europe.  They had this gift of dealing with finances that the European rulers did not acquire.  It could have come from being traders on the Silk Road so early with lots of practice.

     Jews lived in Lithuania in 1321 and by 1495 the 10,000  were told to leave.  By 1566 when they were back, they had to wear a Jewish badge.  Again during WWI, 100,000 Lithuanian Jews were expelled or immigrated elsewhere.   When WWII started, there were 175,000 Jews there.  After deportations, massacres by the Germans and Lithuanian population, 24,000 remained in 1959 with half gone to Israel by 1989.   4,000 Jews were counted in the 2005 census.

    Golda Meier (1898-1978) was Israel's Prime Minister, elected in 1969.  She was born in the city of Kiev which is in the Ukraine that was part of the Pale of Settlement, the only place Jews could live. It was in 1882 to 1890 that 750,000 Jews living in Russia were forced to re-settle in the Pale.  Her name at birth was Golda Maborich, then changed to Golda Meyerson.   Golda came to the United States as a child after a pogrom but  made aliyah to  Palestine in 1921.  Peggy Mann wrote a biography about her called "Golda," and she wrote her autobiography called "My Life." "Meir wrote in her autobiography that her earliest memories were of her father boarding up the front door in response to rumors of an imminent pogrom". The film, "Fiddler on the Roof" depicts a pogrom on a shteitel.

    I have to hand it to my ancestors for not breaking down and converting to one of these religions.  It was not an easy task to live in either Eastern or Western Europe or the Middle East for a Jew.  Being a people without a land meant being without a power or a protector, and they were treated most vile anyway for religious reasons.

    So it's not surprising that the Muslims cannot accept Jews being they were thought of by them for almost 2,000 years as subservients, dhimmis,  and we see Muslims leaders such as Morsi now calling us descendents from monkeys and pigs.  As for Europe, England in 1290 was the first to expel Jews which lasted for over 350 years.  Jews weren't invited back until 1657!   This also happened in France, Spain, Hungary, Austria, Lithuania, Sicily, Sardinia, Rhodes, Naples, Poland, Russia, Meshed, Cyrus, Persia, Moscow and St. Petersburg.  too.

    In 1937, Damascus, Syria became a headquarters of anti-Jewish activities when a Nazi delegation paid a visit.  Anti-Jewish propaganda increased and there were German-Arab youth organizations springing up.  An armed extremist group, the Arab National Youth Organization, declared a boycott against Arab merchants who bought "Zionist goods from Palestine." The 30,000 Jews were not allowed to leave Syria then.  In 1945 the director of a Jewish school was murdered.  A Syrian student mob celebrated a Muslim holiday by desecrating the Great Synagogue of Aleppo.  They beat up Jews who were praying and burned prayer books in the street.

    They were people to kick around and use as scapegoats.  How appalled they all must be now to see a vibrant Israel, the tiniest among them but strong.  For the Muslim they feel humiliation where it is not intended.  Israel just is trying their best to stay alive and not be driven out as they had been before they had their own country.  Europe must be feeling that they were the leaders of the world and now they must accommodate Jews who had been at the bottom of the heap.  They've allowed the UN to run amok and continue picking on Israel only.

    September 1, 1939 was the beginning of the war with Germany with the invasion of Poland, and when 6 million Jews were slaughtered.  It was over on May 2, 1945 when Germany surrendered.  The greatest day of all was May 14, 1948 when Israel became a state, accepted in the United Nations.  Immediately, this tiny state was attacked by all the surrounding Arab nations.  It took 1,875 years to regain our state and it still fights for its survival in a very intolerant world.

    Anti-Semitism had been prevalent in the 1930's and 1940's in the USA, the land of the free and home of the brave.  The New Deal was a Jewish conspiracy, so people thought.  So was the entry of the USA into the 2nd World War, and so was international communism.  Country clubs didn't allow in Jews.  Jews weren't hired in many positions such as the telephone company in New York City.  There were quotas for Jews that wanted to go to certain colleges and universities.  Fraternities and Sororities were anti-Semitic.  Henry Ford of Ford automobiles was an anti-Semite.  He even wrote a series of articles based on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which were collected into a book called  " The International Jew."   It took a lawsuit to stop the reprinting of this awful book.  "The Protocols" continues to be a most popular book in Muslim countries today.

    Little Israel just told the UN Human Rights group (UNHCR) to stay away, that the people who created human rights in the first place do not need to be policed.  They have enough of their own people who keep watch over this. "Canada and the United States have accused the council of focusing disproportionately on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.   The United States boycotted the Council during the George W. Bush administration, but reversed its position on it during the the Obama administration."

    Pale of Settlement: Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Belurussia

    The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia
    From Time Immemorial-the origins of the Arab-Jewish conflict over Palestine by Joan Peters
    Facts About Israel 1973
    Book:  Kike!  by Michael Selzer