Sunday, July 31, 2005

Good Articles In "BeSheva"

This week's issue of BeSheva had some good articles. They are in Hebrew, but perhaps Arutz 7 will translate them into English at some stage. In any case here are links to the articles that I recommend:

Rav Pealim - an article about Rabbi Yoel Schwartz Shlita of Yeshivat Dvar Yerushalayim. Especially interesting are his views on the redemption(Yaak, be sure to check it out!).

Avi HaAtzurim - an article about Eliyahu Herbst, the man who served as a father figure for the youths who were imprisoned because of their anti-expulsion activities.

Ma Yo'ilu HaHafganot? - Rabbi Eliezer Melamed Shlita explains why demonstrations against the expulsion are important.

Ami Ayalon's Pro-Disengagement Rally Flops

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Disengagement Improves Security - Bwahaha!

That is why Kassam rockets are continuing to fall in Sderot. That is why the "Red Dawn" early warning system has been installed in Ashkelon! A groyse yishar koyach to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and the Israeli Government!

(Anyone who thinks that things will get better after the expulsion/withdrawal has apparently been asleep for the last ten years.)

What's New In Darfur?

Way back in March I blogged about the conflict in Darfur and its devastating results. Since then I haven't seen too much about Darfur in the MSM or the blogosphere. Click here to read the latest on the situation in Darfur.

The OU Takes Israel To Task For "Indifference To Civil Liberties"

Aveirah Goreret Aveirah. The sin of expelling the Jews of the Gaza Strip and Northern Samaria drags along with it the sin of the violation of civil liberties of those who oppose the expulsion, and even those suspected of opposing the expulsion. The OU has their say on the profiling of religious Jews:
"As an organization that represents the interests of Orthodox Jewry, we are stunned by reports of security forces singling out persons displaying outward appearances of religious observance for disparate harsh treatment," said the letter, signed by OU president Stephen Savitsky, OU executive vice president Rabbi Tzvi Weinreb, chairman of international public affairs Mark Bane and director of international public affairs Nathan Diament.
Read the rest here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

New York Minute

"He Who Blogs" a.k.a. Sultan Knish, has started a photo blog called New York Minute.

Seeing the Sultan's beautiful pictures of New York City brought back long forgotten memories. As one who grew up in suburban New Jersey, New York City was simply "the city." This was the place where the pre-teshuvah Cosmic X went to see rock concerts, baseball and basketball games, etc. This was the place where the post-teshuvah Cosmic X would go to see the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Avigdor Miller, and others.

An early memory of New York that I have is being in Manhattan on a very cold day. I think that my parents took us in to the city to visit the Museum of Natural History. There was a guy with a push-cart that sold hot, salty pretzels. My parents bought me one. You can't imagine how delicious a hot salty pretzel is to a kid on a freezing cold New York winter day.

Here's Something Worth Reading

Arutz 7 has an interesting article about a conference that examined the Israeli media's coverage of the "disengagement". Read it here.

Monday, July 25, 2005

A Haughty Frum Idiot

Mincha at the kotel is always a good way to recharge the spiritual batteries. One of the advantages of living in Jerusalem is the ability to recharge often.

On the way down to the kotel, as I passed through the shuk, I regretted that I only know a few words of Arabic. Wouldn't it be nice to know what the merchants are saying? When could I find time to learn Arabic? I have to work, learn Torah, teach my children Torah, and do all the other duties of the average baalhabus. Apparently I won't be learning Arabic in the near future.

After Mincha I go up to the Jewish Quarter. Lots of tourists are here today. I look at some of them and think to myself: "Do these people know where they are. This is Jerusalem, the Old City of Jerusalem! Why did they came here dressed as if they were at the beach?"

"Cool it, Cosmic," I continue thinking to myself. "Try to remember how you were dressed in 1982 when you came with other college students to visit Israel. Zechor Maasecha HaRishonim! You went to the Kotel, and these are your thoughts? Have you become a haughty frum idiot?"

I hope that the answer is no!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Bein Hametzarim

The stomach churns and growls. The head aches. It's a fast day, the 17th of Tammuz.

This is a date of disasters for the Jewish people, one of them being that on this date the wall around Jerusalem was breached. The destruction of the Temple followed three weeks later on the 9th of Av.

The challenges of life are many, and it is easy to get caught up in them and forget how much we are lacking our holy Temple. Our Rabbis instituted many pracitices that accompany us daily in order to cause us to remember the Temple. Unfortunately, these things become routine and often go unnoticed. When was the last time I looked at the unpainted cubit by cubit square on the wall in my house? How much kavanah did I have when I said "retzeh" this morning?

However, a fast day, when you are denied some of your most basic needs (food and water), is hard to ignore. As the stomach growls and the head aches, we are forced to remember the tragedy of the destruction of the Temple. We are forced to remember the causeless hatred that brought this calamity upon us. It is a day for introspection and teshuvah.

As I gaze upon the Temple Mount, I feel the destruction more keenly. A mosque stands on the site of the Temple. From another mosque on the Temple Mount huge crowds of Muslims regulary hear anti-Jewish incitement. If all this were not enough, our Israeli and ostensively Jewish government is planning to destroy the Jewish communities of Gaza and Northern Samaria. Voices of senseless hatred spew forth from the Israeli media, directed at the settlers and those that support them. Indeed, bein hametzarim. Please G-d, we need a miracle.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

My Son Was In Gush Katif...

My oldest son came back from Moshav Gadid in Gush Katif yesterday, after having spent the Shabbat with relatives. He marvelled at the courage of the residents there who continue their daily routine in the face of mortar attacks. While he was there a few mortars fell. "The first time around it's scary, but afterwards you get used to it," he said. Over 6000 (!) mortar shells have fallen on the Jewish communitees in the Gaza Strip with an amazingly low rate of injuries or fatalities. My son told me of an incident that happened recently: A shell fell two meters from one of the residents, but it did not explode! That guy said Birkat HaGomel at the first opportunity!

He also told me of a meeting between high ranking army officers and the residents. Basically the officers came to explain to the residents how the army is going to come and throw them out of their houses. From August 15-17, the residents will be given time to pack their possesions and leave. After that, if the residents have not left, the army will come and pack up the residents' belongings and kick the residents out of their houses. Anything attached to the walls of the houses will be left behind.

I feel sorry for the residents who have been abandoned by the Sharon government and the Knesset. I feel sorry for the rest of us here in Israel who will surely suffer from the backwind that this withdrawal under fire will supply the terrorists with. I feel sorry for Jews all over the world who will have to suffer the consequences of this modern day "sin of the spies." I feel sorry for the civilized world, that will pay the price of surrendering to Islamic terror. I feel most sorry, however, for the soldiers and policemen that will carry out the orders to expel and destroy. This is a big aveirah, a very big aveirah. It will be with them forever, in this world and in the next. "I was just following orders" is not an excuse.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

At The President's House

Even thought I'm not a grandfather I stopped by the "Saba and Savta demonstration" across the street from the President Katzav's residence. The place is situated in the Kiryat Shmuel section of Jerusalem. This is a part of Jerusaelem that I rarely see. The municipality keeps the place sparkling clean, much cleaner than most Jerusalem neighborhoods.

I met there about 20 Sabot and Savtot(grandfathers and grandmothers), most if not all were native English speakers. For some strange reason in Israel these kind of people are called Anglo-Saxons! A very nice, spirited group.

Afterwards I crossed the street to see if I could get a tour of the President's home. (I vaguely remember doing something like that over 20 years ago as a student. I was visiting Israel with a group of University students. We even received an audience with then President Navon.) I was told that the only time the President's house is open to the public is Chol HaMoed Sukkot. I guess that I'll have to wait and come with my Lulav.

Later on I was walking through the neighborhood and I saw sign hanging from one of the apartments:
We are choosing life and leaving Gaza - Peace Now
Talk about Chutzpah! The utopian daydreamers that brought Arafat and Co. to Israel and made our life hell are still giving us advice!

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Israeli Defense Force Or The Israeli Destruction Force?

The IDF is now being used to destroy Jewish settlements in Israel instead of protecting them. The present siege on the Jewish communities in the Gaza Strip is the first step in this process of demolishing Jewish towns and expelling their inhabitatnts.

This is a drastic change in the ostensive purpose of the IDF. Therefore, the army should change its name from the Israeli Defense Force to The Israeli Destruction Force. This is quite convenient as not only does the acronym IDF remain in English, the Hebrew acronym Tzahal will also remain unchanged (Tzva Hagana LeYisrael ==> Tzva Heres LeYisrael).

What do you think, Chief of Staff Dan Halutz?

The 10 Commandments of Expulsion

Biting satire from Sultan_Knish.

Look What Ha'aretz Published!

It's hard to believe, but check this out:
So you have no choice. Get up tomorrow morning, go back to the hothouses, which you have been cultivating for many years. Go back to your saplings, go back to your land, the Eternal One of Israel will send you a blessing, because the Eternal People is not afraid of a long road.
Are the winds of teshuva blowing at Ha'aretz?

"Disengagement" Brings Terror

As Sharon charges forward with his expulsion plan, the consequences of the plan are already being felt:
Arab terrorists killed 22-year-old Dana Gelkowitz at Moshav Netiv Ha'Asara in a massive mortar shelling Thursday evening. She lived in Kibbutz Bror Chail, where she is to be buried on Friday.

The moshav is located about 200 meters (650 feet) north of the Erez Crossing in northern Gaza and has been the target of previous mortar shell and rocket attacks.
For those who do not understand: Moshav Netiv Ha'Asara is in pre-1967 Israel! But this is just the beginning:
Terrorists continued massive mortar and rocket attacks Saturday on Israel, wounding dozens. Sharon allowed IDF air-strikes, but put on hold a ground response after Rice said she will visit.

Sixteen people, including seven children, were injured in a Kassam rocket blast on a house in Nissanit in northern Gaza on Saturday evening. They were hospitalized for light to moderate wounds.

Ten rockets and mortars exploded on Sderot throughout Saturday, continuing the shelling which became heavy there Friday. Several residents became hysterical. The two-day assault on Sderot caused many residents to flee to friends and relatives further away from Gaza. The remaining residents mostly stayed inside their homes, except to walk to synagogue Friday night and Saturday.
Who will open the eyes of our blind leaders?

Update: Two Seriously Wounded in Shelling Attack

Update: Prayers Requested for Mortar Attack Victim Yigal ben Zahava

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Mass Prayer To Cancel The Evil Decree

I would really like to be there but I probably won't be able. Yishar Koach in advance to all those who will be there!

To The Mosquito That Disturbed My Sleep Last Night

I hope that you get eaten by a bird!

The Latest Cosmic X Protest Pics

There were probably as many cops as there were protesters at the entrance to Jerusalem:


more cops

Meet Vasili, your friendly Border Guard Policeman imported from the FSU. Shto?


This protester holds a banner and prays at the same time:


A lone protester at "Ganei Sakharov". The sign says, "A Jew does not expel a Jew":

yehudi lo megaresh yehudi

A trash bin burns on "Kanfei Nesharim" Street:

trash bin

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Right-Wing Activists Plan Road-Blockings for 5:00pm

This means that the Cosmic X film crew (that is to say me, myself, and I) will, with G-d's help, be on hand with a video camera to make sure that the police do not use excessive force. Hopefully I will have some screen-captures up tomorrow.

Some New Blogs That I Found

Israel Perspectives: Feeling 'Right' at Home:
Perspectives on daily life in Israel, politics, and issues confronting the Jewish People through the eyes of one who was born and raised in New York, and who, as of January 2003, finds himself taking an active role in the compelling drama that is the life of the Jewish People in the Land of Israel.

Tel-Chai Nation:
Israel, much like the fortress of Tel-Chai that Jospeh Trumpeldor fought to defend from Arab conquestors in the 19th century, finds itself beseiged by enemies both within and without. Terrorists, would-be friends inside and outside Israel, and even bad government officials. Here are the discussions of one proud Zionist resident on the state of the nation and abroad.

Heshy's House:
We discuss why as Jews we oppose: abortion-on-demand, euthansia, evolution, gay incestuous & bestial marraiges, gun control, life on other planets, radical feminism, spaying & neutering of animals & women in combat. As Jews we support: death penalty, mandatory uniforms in public schools, seperate gender public schools, school vouchers, voluntary prayer in public schools and a strong U.S. defense.

The Muqata:
If Israel wants to throw you out of your house, convert to Islam. They don't transfer Arabs...just Jews.

Why The Left Wants To Destroy Settlements

Another excellent article by Caroline Glick: Our World: Scorched-earth Kulturkampf. Here is an excerpt:
WHAT WE see here unfolding is a situation where the anti-religious Left, the primary supporters of Ariel Sharon's policy to forcibly expel 10,000 Jews from their homes and communities, has given the policy their support – through its members' legal authority and public platforms – not because they see any security benefit arising from the move. In fact, they support the plan despite its security dangers because they see it as a culminating battle in their cultural war against religious Zionism.
Thanks to Galileeblog for bringing this article to my attention.

Update: In Defense of Nadia

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

To My Guest From Kibbutz Hamaapil

You came to the wrong place but I hope that you enjoyed your visit anyway. Come back soon!


Fake Bomb In Jerusalem's Central Bus Station

Read about it at ynet. It is interesting to note that many of the talkbacks think that the Shabak is behind this. I agree with what Rachel BenDavid (talkback no. 9) wrote:
Someone messed up - and should be fired

How is it that they can find out who sends suicide bombers and they can do "targeted assassinations", but they can't figure out how to prevent this?

Either it is a plant, or someone is messing up big time!

For those of you who don't believe that this is a plant, why aren't they firing the incompetent people in charge of stopping this??

Why isn't there a public outcry?
Indeed, I am shocked. The ynet article itself states what every Jerusalemite knows:
Security at the central bus station is one of the most extensive operations in the country. Passengers must pass through metal detectors, bags go through airport-style x-ray machines, and every passenger is frisked.
In summary, either this is a provocation of the Shabak, or an incredible, almost unbelievable security lapse. Either way those in charge of security at the Central Bus Station owe the public an explanation.

Update: Dummy Bomb Suspected GSS Provocation

Update: Rachel Ann weighs in on this one.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

The Yahrzeit Of The Lubavitcher Rebbe, R. Menachem M. Schneerson

Check out this fantastic timeline biography of the Rebbe's life.

I Was Removed From The Blogroll

Here's a question to my fellow bloggers: Do you get insulted when somebody removes you from their blogroll?

Gush Katif Stories

What can a blogger do when he has no inspiration? Link to what somebody else wrote, of course! Here's a nice article from Sara Yoheved Rigler: Gush Katif Stories

Thursday, July 07, 2005

I Love The Beach

Yesterday I took a day off from work and went to one of the "separate" beaches in Israel. I love the beach. I love the salty air, I love being lifted up, set down, and generally pushed around by the waves. I love lying in the sand. I love watching the waves smashing against the jetty. I love watching the pigeons and crows scavenging for leftovers that a human may have left behind. I love jogging along the shoreline, leaving behind footprints that are quickly smoothened by the next wave. I love seeing the sailboats moving gracefully through the water. I love gazing at the horizon where the blue sea meets the light blue sky.

Did I mention that I love the beach?

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

More Exclusive Cosmic X Protest Pics

No rowdy protests at the entrance to Jerusalem yesterday. The police, however, took no chances, and sent a contingent to keep order. They were left with nothing to do but sit around:

Men at work

The only one blocking the street is a cop:


These pro-expulsion blue ribbon distributers hail from the Baq'a neighborhood of Jerusalem. Baq'a was an Arab neighborhood until Israel's 1948 War of Independence:

We live in occupied territory

A peaceful demonstration at the intersection of Kiryat-Moshe Street and Herzl Boulevard:

Women in orange

The sign says "O my land don't cry. We will never leave you or abandon you":

Women in orange

The sign says "The sign says, "One does not compromise on his mother":

No comprimise

Painting the town orange:

orange kid

Profiting From Disengagement

Arutz 7 reports:
Kibbutz Kerem Shalom responded positively to a request from Defense Ministry officials, agreeing to host the major pre-disengagement training exercise scheduled to take place August 8-10. The Negev area community is situated in a good area for the exercise, and the forces will use the community dinning hall and other public and vacant buildings.

For its cooperation, the kibbutz will receive NIS 1 million. In addition, the women and children will not be present during the exercise, but will be treated to two free days in an IDF vacation resort village in Ashkelon.
My personal feeling is that this kibbutz will not see any blessing from the money they receive. They will probably regret that they gave a hand to the expulsion of Jews from their homes.

That's just my humble opinion.

Here's another article about the kibbutz and its plans to profit from Sharon's expulsion plan.

An Excellent Post About Joseph's Tomb in Shechem

Check out this great post by fellow Jerusalemite Eliyahu M'Tsiyon: JOSEPH'S TOMB in Sh'khem & The PA's Big Lie Method

Monday, July 04, 2005

We Need A Miracle

Read this post from The Jewish Worker. My conclusion: We need a miracle.
"And Gideon said unto him: 'Oh, my lord, if the LORD be with us, why then is all this befallen us? and where are all His wondrous works which our fathers told us of, saying: Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? but now the LORD hath cast us off, and delivered us into the hand of Midian.' And the LORD turned towards him, and said: 'Go in this thy might, and save Israel from the hand of Midian; have not I sent thee?'" (Judges 6:13-14)

Happy Birthday America!

What a cosmic way to celebrate a birthday!

The Lynch That Never Was

David at Israellycool exposes the Israeli MSM's latest fabrication. He has a link to pictures from showing the "victim" throwing rocks. The clincher is a picture showing a cameraman telling the "victim" how to pose. See also Israpundit here and here.

Update: See the very bottom of the Isreallycool post. His conclusion: The incident was not staged, but neither was it a lynch.

Update: See this link from Arutz 7.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Gay Pride Parade Fallout

Last Thursday I change my route as I walked home from work, making sure that I would be nowhere near the path of the "gay pride parade." I am not homophobic. I objected to this parade as it is an affront to the residents of Jerusalem and the special character of the city. My reaction would have been the same were there to be an "adulterer pride parade," an "incest pride parade," or a "zoophilia pride parade."

And here is a message for the guy who wanted to play "Pinchas the son of Elazar" and decided to knife a few gays: What Pinchas did was in accordance with Jewish Law, but what you did was not. You desecrated our holy city with needless violence. You are a fool that belongs in jail or in a mental hospital.

Haveil Havalim #27 At Mirty's Place

Thanks to Mirty for a job well done.

Policemen Lynch Protester In Israel?

Arutz 7 claims that policemen lynched a protester in Ramat Gan on June 29th. Here is my translation of a portion of the Hebrew article:
"He stuck his fingers into the protester's nostrils and pulled up and back in a quick and professional movement and ripped his entire face including damage to the eyes."
The article includes a video of the incident. I hope that Arutz 7 will also put the article up on the English site.

Update: Here's the story in English. Thanks Patrick!

Update: Blogger Yoel Ben-Avraham receives anonymous threats for "spreading anti-government incitement".
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