Friday, February 27, 2009

Dust in the Wind

Dust covered Jerusalem (and most of Israel) last week. Here is what it looked like:

The dust provided a filter for this pic of the sun:

Awake, awake, put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city; for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake thyself from the dust; arise, and sit down, O Jerusalem; loose thyself from the bands of thy neck, O captive daughter of Zion.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Memorial Evening For Yedidyah Gefen z"l

I attended a memorial evening for Yedidyah Gefen, a soldier that was killed nine years ago in Lebanon. You can learn about him here.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Rosh Chodesh Adar

We are supposed to be "marbim besimcha" now. Okay, on the count of three be happy: 1, 2, 3 be happy!!! Did you smile? Good!

On a more serious note read Esther Pollard's debunking of the latest "informed opinion" on the Pollard case.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

How Wet I Am

It rained all day long, thank God! It cold (by Israeli standards) and a lot of hail fell as well. We really needed that.

Friday, February 20, 2009


This Shabbat, in addition to reading Parshat Mishpatim, we will also be reading Parshat Shekalim. Parshat Shekalim is one of the four special readings that are read at this time of year. For me, it is a sign that Passover is coming up. Chametzphobia is starting to set in!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sports and anti-Semitism

I read the following news item at INN:
Dana Strelinikov from Ma’alot in northern Israel won the Fencing World Cup for those under the age of 17 this week in Slovakia. Participants from 32 countries took part in the competition.

Stelinikov defeated representatives of the Czech Republic, Poland, Switzerland, and Hungary to take the gold. Two other participants from Israel came in the fifth and ninth places.
I used to fence when I was in high school. At one point I was even the captain of the foil team. So I was curious to learn more about the competition. A Google search brought me here, which in turn brought me to And this is what I saw (click on the pic):

The web is a wonderful place, is it not?

Update: RubaiSport has a blog. I left the guy a comment. Let's see what happens.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Quote of the Day

With regards to releasing terrorists to obtain the release of Gilad Shalit:
Rami Igra, former head of the Mossad's captive and MIA department who also attended the meeting, spoke of past prisoner exchange deals Israel has agreed to: "We need to keep a moral view for the long run. We have to envision those who may be killed because of the release to terrorists and not just the person held in Gaza right now."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Esther Pollard Debunks Eli Kavon

Esther Pollard also saw the terrible article which I blogged about in The Sick American Jew. A snippet:
Kavon's grandiose declarations of American patriotism are no excuse for dismissing an issue that strikes at the very heart of the American system of justice: equality before the law for all Americans. His patriotic breast-beating notwithstanding, there can be no excuse for distorting facts, changing history and ignorance of American law.

The US Constitution, Article 3, Section 3 defines the crime of treason as follows: "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort." By repeatedly describing Jonathan as if he were a "traitor, his crime "treason" and his actions as "treasonous," Kavon is not only defaming Jonathan, he is implying that Israel is an enemy nation at war with the US, which is absurd.

In Thy Blood, Live!!!

Rabbi Yitzchak Dadon, the author and Torah scholar who killed the terrorist in Merkaz HaRav, entered his son Elkannah into the Abrahamic covenant today. The brit took place in the Merkaz HaRav library where the Arab terrorist murdered eight young Torah scholars in cold blood. The mohel was non other than Tzemach Hirshfeld, the father of Yonadav Haim Hirschfeld z"l, one of the students that was murdered.

Arutz 7 has the video. It's in Hebrew and it is a must see!

Update: Now in English.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Official Election Results

You can see them here. If you are really a geek, you can download the results per polling booth into an excel file.

The Healthy American Jew

My friend Tovya left the following comment on my recent post, "The Sick American Jew". Although I have a few reservations (I put them inside square brackets), his comment shows us how the healthy Jew sees himself:
I'm with you 110%, Cosmic.

I read that article yesterday, and it really made me mad when I read it. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE America, but my loyalty is with Israel first... because I'm a JEW.

I'm a JEW first. I daven shacharis, mincha, and maariv everyday.. I'm shomer shabbos, I keep glatt kosher Why? Because I'm a Jew first.

America has been a wonderful country to me, and I thank G-d everyday for the blessings that my family came here prior to WWII, so we never had to experience the Shoah...

With that being said, there is only one Jewish nation in the world where I know I am always welcome, and that is Eretz Yisrael.

So, had I been Mr. Pollard, I would have done the same thing in a heart beat. [Here I disagree. He should not have passed classified material to anyone without receiving the permission of his superiors.] He did the right thing, and unfortunately, he embarrassed (and possibly implicated) a lot of Israeli and American politicians by providing information to the only truly loyal and dependable U.S. ally in the world.

Pollard isn't a traitor, he's a hero, and the shame of injustice hangs over the head of every U.S. president and Israeli prime minister who has failed to release him like he deserves.

And shame on the writer of this story for speaking so poorly about a man who loved his people enough to take the risk of saving Jewish lives. G-d bless Jonathan Pollard.
Tovya, Yishar Koach!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Sick American Jew

If you want to understand how the exile warps the Jewish mind, read this:
Legally, American Jews are Americans first. Their belief and identity as Jews is a private matter, one of free choice and volunteerism. The word "Jew" is not stamped on my passport. I have no legal status in America as a Jew. I am an American. As long as I remain an American citizen, my legal identity is that of my nation. If, for some reason, there were to be a conflict between my legal status as an American and my private status as a Jew and a Zionist, my loyalty as an American would come first. If I did not believe this, I might fall into Pollard's trap. Jonathan Pollard should have realized that as much as Israel and the US have in common in terms of long-term goals, the first allegiance of an American Jew is to America - not to the Jewish state.

THE POLLARD AFFAIR should serve as a reminder to American Jews that, as Jews living in America, we are living lives not of dual loyalty but of dual identity. As far apart as is the chasm between Norman Podhoretz and Noam Chomsky in the realm of ideology, both men are legally Americans. The Satmar Hassid living in New Square and the Jewish atheist who eats bacon for breakfast on Yom Kippur in Los Angeles are each Americans. As an American, I have more in common with an American of African descent than I do with a Jew in Israel, even a Jew in Jerusalem who is from the same shtetl in Russia from whence my ancestors came.
The truth is that we are Jews before we are Americans. We are Jews before we are Israelis. We are Jews from the day we born until 120 years. We are Jews 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We are Jews inside our homes and outside of them.

By the way, the author of the article asks,
"Did not Jonathan Pollard realize this when he was committing acts of treason against America?"
The answer is:
Jonathan Pollard was never charged with treason. [Legally, treason is a charge that is only applicable when one spies for an enemy state in time of war.]

Jonathan Pollard was indicted on only one charge: one count of passing classified information to an ally, without intent to harm the United States.
The exile is our enemy.

Dishonest Reporting 'Award' 2008


The Rightists Won in Spite of What the Spinmasters Say

To all the Israeli MSM journalists: Wake up! The left lost, and lost big (in spite of what this guy says). At this time the Right-religious block has 65 members whereas the leftist block has 55. This may change somewhat after the soldiers' votes are counted. Take away from the leftist block votes for the Arab parties that seek the destruction of Israel and they are left with 44 seats!

The spinmasters are at work. Rabin crony Eitan Haber, had the audacity to write the following:
The election results allow the rightist bloc with Lieberman plus Shas, United Torah Judaism, the Jewish Home, and National Union to form a government. Yet I bet this is Bibi Netanyahu’s nightmare. As opposed to those who trust in God, Bibi, the man of the world, knows that the State of Israel’s existence – yes, existence! – depends on legitimacy on the part of the nations of the world, and a rightist government like the one he can form will be an ostracized and blacklisted one-time event.

Last week it was published that Iran and Israel are the two countries most hated by international public opinion. Now, the last thing Bibi Netanyahu needs is to compete with Ahmadinejad for top spot.
The guy just can't stand the thought of a government that represents the vast majority of the Jewish public. He points out that we are hated by the international public. First of all, so what? The international public is ill-informed, and eagerly eats up all of the myths that come out of Pallywood. I do not seek their approval. Secondly, it looks like the Kadima policy of destroying settlements and giving our homeland to our enemies didn't buy him the love he so desperately craves.

This editorial
at is also pretty pathetic:
Tuesday's elections gave Kadima 28 mandates and Likud 27 (the balance of power can still shift once all the ballots are counted). It is clear that the two winners need to join forces in a national unity government. Together with Israel Beiteinu's 15 mandates - provided that party would accept a platform that ensures civil rights and equality for all Israelis, including Israeli Arabs - they can effortlessly and expeditiously form a ruling coalition and get down to the business of governing.
The Post's attempt to present Kadima as a winner, when they received less that 25% of the vote, and when the entire Jewish leftist block received less 40% of the vote, is an offense to the intelligence of their readers. I can't stand the spinmasters!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Kfar Chabad Voted For the National Union

According to this site these are the election results in Kfar Chabad:

National Union 1400
Shas 200
Likud 170
UTJ 111
Yisrael Beiteinu 20
Others 19
Invalid 10

The Lubavitcher Rebbe zt"l always instructed his followers to vote for the most ultra-Orthodox party. So now we know who they are! The National Union!

Who in the World Voted for Kadima?

Many Israelis are wondering how in the world did this party, so full of corruption, responsible for the disastrous Second Lebanon War and a rocket battered South, manage to receive 28 (at the time of this post) mandates?

I saw the answer at INN. Kadima is the party of the rich and comfortable:
Kadima leader Tzipi Livni, a resident of Tel Aviv, lost in most geographical areas of the country except for Gush Dan and Haifa. Kadima's strength in Tuesday's election came on the heels of the well-heeled of Tel Aviv and Herzliya, who also have been out of the range of Grad rockets.
Read the rest!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Exit Poll Results


Channel 1:

Likud: 28
Kadima: 30
Yisrael Beiteinu: 14
HaAvoda: 13
Shas: 9
HaIchud HaLeumi: 3
HaBayit HaYehudi: 4
Yahadut HaTorah: 5
Meretz :5
Arab Parties: 9

Channel 2:

Likud: 27
Kadima: 29
Yisrael Beiteinu: 15
HaAvoda: 13
Shas: 10
HaIchud HaLeumi: 3
HaBayit HaYehudi: 4
Yahadut HaTorah: 5
Meretz : 4
Arab Parties: 10

Channel 10:

Likud: 28
Kadima: 30
Yisrael Beiteinu: 15
HaAvoda: 13
Shas: 9
HaIchud HaLeumi: 3
HaBayit HaYehudi: 3
Yahadut HaTorah: 5
Meretz : 4
Arab Parties: 10

The bottom line is that Avigdor Lieberman will decide who will be the next Prime Minister.

Here is the current Knesset for comparison:

Current Knesset:

Likud: 12
Kadima: 29
Yisrael Beiteinu: 11
HaAvoda: 18
Shas: 12
HaIchud HaLeumi: 2
HaBayit HaYehudi: 5
Achi: 2
Agudat Yisrael: 4
Degel HaTorah: 2
Meretz : 4
Arab Parties: 10
Pensioners: 6
Meimad: 1
The Right Way: 1

Israeli Police Surrender To Arab Threats of Violence

From (
Ichud Leumi MK Aryeh Eldad is reportedly en route to Umm El-Fahm in order to replace Baruch Marzel as the party's election booth monitor there.

In response to the police decision to block Marzel from entering the city and carrying out his duty, MK Eldad said: "The Israel Police, apparently at [Attorney General Menachem] Mazuz's instructions, surrendered this morning to the Arab terror of Israel's enemies from within. The State of Israel has announced openly that it surrenders to violence, blackmail and treachery from the Arab sector."

The Commander of the Police's Amakim Region, Brig-Gen.Zohar Dvir, met Land of Israel activist Baruch Marzel at Barka'I Junction on Highway 65 and handed him an official letter announcing he could not enter Umm El Fahm. Police said the decision was "based upon intelligence reports of a serious danger to the public safety and in order to make it possible to hold elections properly and without disorder."
This is the same police that bends over backwards (no pun intended) to let homosexuals parade in Jerusalem.

I've Voted

This was pretty cool. Right after Shacharit, at about 7:10 AM, I passed by the polling station and surprise, it was already open. About five minutes later I was already done voting.

Who did I vote for? I voted for the list that best represents me and what I believe in, the National Union. I cannot agree with Jameel's and ZB's eloquent essays on why they are voting for the Likud. But you have to appreciate the amount of thought that they devoted to the matter.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

For Tu Bishevat

Would you like to see some of my posts and pics of Israel's trees? Click here.

Mystery Election Poster Redux

Last week I posted about a mysterious anti-Leitzman poster. This morning I saw two followup posters on the way to work.

The first one more or less clarifies what I thought about last week. The creators of the poster are still bitter about Meir Porush's defeat in the Jerusalem mayoral race and Leitzman's role in that defeat.

The poster claims that Leitzman gave the Holy City of Jerusalem over to the secularists and claims that there will be "less funds, less synagogues, and less yiddishkeit".

The glue was still fresh when I saw this second group of posters. However the anonymous hands that put these posters up were long gone. The poster says that "we all are suffering". The symbolism here is straightforward: the shtreimel represents the Hasidic community and the Fedora the "Lithuanians", both of whom are handcuffed by Leitzman's "agressiveness" and "domineeringness".

What still puzzles me about these posters is the bottom line: "Because of Leitzman there is 'another way' and he who understands will understand."

What is 'another way'? Is it to vote for Shas, or for the National Union? Believe it or not, last night I met a guy wearing a shtreimel who said that he is going to vote for the National Union.

I still don't understand exactly what the poster creator is hinting to.

HH #203


Thursday, February 05, 2009

Rabbi Noah Weinberg z"l

Rabbi Noah Weinberg, the renowned founder and Dean of Yeshiva Aish HaTorah in Jerusalem, passed away Thursday morning in Jerusalem at the age of 78.
Rabbi Weinberg was a great man who had a tremendous impact on the Jewish world. May his memory be a blessing.

Update: A tribute to Rabbi Weinberg

By The Way

Did you see that Comrade Tovya is back from a three year blogging hiatus?

And by the way, check out ZB's "The real reasons Israel can't play the violin"? Definitely worth the read.

By the way, check out Jameel's reaction to Lisa Goldman's article that I blogged about yesterday:
I'm not quite sure who qualifies as a Hebrew Language "prominent" political blogger, but her posted results are similar to those of the equally detached Tel Aviv University poll last week that gave the radical left Meretz party, 27 seats. (Meretz doesn't even have 27 people on their Knesset list).

During the IDF cast lead operation, there were tiny, insulated groups from Tel Aviv that demonstrated against IDF "war crimes" in Gaza, demonstrated against the "war", continued to go to Yaalin to throw rocks against IDF troops as part of the weekly radical leftist and anarchist violent protests against the security fence -- and in general, demonstrated their complete and utter disconnection from reality and empathy for Israel's southern residents, who have been under rocket threat for years.

These people demonstrated in the luxury of a rocket-free Tel-Aviv. They had no gumption to demonstrate in Ashkelon or Sderot -- either for fear of getting hit by rockets, or for fear of getting politically lynched by furious residents.

Leftists can declare they own the media as much as they want, which is probably why they got so incensed this past summer that the "First International Jewish Blogger Convention" did not include anarchists, anti-Zionists or Muslims.
By the way, Lisa has a followup to her previous article. It seems that some in the Israeli Left are sobering up, which is great news:
After years of voting for Meretz and for parties even further left on the spectrum, I have sobered up. There is not, and there never will be, peace between us and the Palestinians. I prefer to be the one holding the gun and not the one looking into the gaping jaws. In the social-economic field, too, we have absolutely no chance of being a social-democratic state.

With this insight, I prefer a party with an economic orientation that takes care of my needs. Because that way, on election day I will be able to take a double dose of anti-nausea medication and vote Likud for the first time in my life.
By the way do you know Why Diaspora Jews Love the Exile?

And by the way, Batya posted this video:

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Interesting Headlines

Hamas Police Steal Humanitarian Aid from UNRWA Warehouse

General Stern Will Pay Soldier NIS 31,500

Probe: Arab MD Refused to Vacate Family; Enemy Fired from Home

Shas Mimics National Union Slogan

And finally, a campaign slogan that doesn't translate well:"Orange Ones To The Government":

Are Most Israeli Bloggers Leftists?

Lisa Goldman seems to think so:
Assuming the polls are accurate – and they have been quite consistent – Israeli voters are poised to elect a rightwing government in next week's elections. But if bloggers were representative of the mainstream, Israel's next government would probably be a Jewish-Arab coalition of socialists, social democrats and environmentalists.

The disparity between the polls and the blogosphere is quite remarkable – especially in Tel Aviv, Israel's liberal heartland, where the two parties vying for the votes of hipsters and leftist intellectuals are the Green Movement-Meimad, an environmentalist–religious partnership headed by a liberal rabbi; and Hadash, a Jewish-Arab socialist party.
I am wondering where she gets her statistics from. What do you think?

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Great Article About National Union Leader Katzeleh

This was originally published in last week's issue of BeSheva. I'm glad that they translated it for the English speaking public. A snippet:
Patsi will never forget what Ketzaleh said to him during those blood drenched moments of fire and smoke. He recalls: “We had no medic and few medical supplies, but we did our best to help the wounded, and especially Ketzaleh, who was literally cut in two except for a part of his pelvis which somehow held his body together. It was obvious that without a helicopter to evacuate him, his chances of survival were nil, so I requested the command post to send one. ‘Negative’, was the answer I received from the assistant division commander, Yaakov Even, later promoted to General. ‘The air force refuses to send one because you are too close to the battlefront,' they said. For me, this was a moment that was just too much to bear.”

Know Thy Enemy

Meet Sheikh Yousuf al-Qaradawi (hat tip LGF):

Ya Sheikh, Na'al Abuk!

Mystery Election Poster

Here's an anti Leitzman poster, claiming that "he is to blame." Exactly what he is to blame for the creators of the poster will not tell us. They wrote "he who understands will understand." I have a feeling that it has something to do with the previous municipal elections that Porush lost to Barkat, but I haven't been able to fathom all of the "codes" in the poster. For your consideration:

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