Friday, July 1, 2016

You and I: sponsors of mass murder!?

Before you get all riled up about the Iranian regime sponsoring international terror, or Saudi sheikhs funding ISIS or al Kaieda, take a good look in the mirror.

That's right. If you are a tax-paying American citizen, YOU are funding "Palestinian State"-sponsored terrorism. Link to article

Time for a change. A regime change. No, not in Iran or Syria. In Washington DC.
If our government continues to fund the "PA," we need to bring down our government, or at least vote these goons out of office once and for all.

But that is not enough. The problem is that the State of Israel is funding the "PA" too. Israel also needs a regime change.

We need a truly Jewish State, one that is not frightened by its own shadow or cowtoe to world opinion, a government that will fulfill its most basic duty to defend its citizens by eliminating its enemies.

If Arabs justify murdering a child in her bed because where her bed is, then those Arabs and their beds must be deported. If an Israeli government cannot understand that, then Israel needs a new government. Period.

As for us American Jews, we must no longer sit by idly and silently while our funding of mass murder continues. Barely seventy years since the Holocaust, there is yet another mass murder campain targetting our people that we cannot afford to ignore.

Let's take action once and for all.

Do it for Halel Yaffa Ariel, may G-d avenge her blood.

Article: "Dear Diaspora Jews: Your Money is Killing Us!"

Monday, June 27, 2016

From the Mouths of Babes, part 2

The Green Kids were recently arguing about whether poems need to rhyme.

So I interjected:

"Hey guys, listen to my poem:
"Roses are red,
"violets are blue,
"Some poems rhyme,
"but some don't."

Without missing a beat, Levi Green retorts:

"Hey Tatty, wanna hear my poem?
"Roses are red,
"Violets are blue,
"Some poems don't rhyme
"but some do."

Good one, Levi.

From the Mouths of Babes...

Sholom (age 6) explains traffic light colors to Meir (age 4):

"Red means stop, green means go, and yellow means go faster."

(presumably based on observing dad's driving)

Sunday, June 26, 2016


It’s bad enough we stayed in this unequitable and abusive marriage all these years, but now it’s high time to leave! Why should we subjugate ourselves to the absurd notion that our nationhood is dependent on the phony favor of foreign powers in New York City, or Brussels or where ever!?

Israexit! That’s right. Time for Israel to exit the so-called “United Nations” once and for all. It’s all a façade. There’s no unity. It’s all about crony corruption and convenient Israel scapegoating. The only thing that unites these poor excuse for nations is their hatred of Israel. So why should Israel stay?

Besides for exiting the UN, Israel needs to divorce itself from the incorrigible lie of Palestinianism and “occupation.”  Judea and Samaria are Jewish ancestral lands, inhabited by indigenous Jews from time immemorial until today. And will always remain so. If so-called Palestinians can’t stomach that, then they are welcome to leave. Perhaps world leaders can absorb a couple million more Arab refugees. We can call it Palexit. Where’s your hospitality, Mr. Obama?

Some “pundits” say an Israexit will cause financial instability. But since when is economics more important than security and life itself? So we’ll have fewer trading partners… but at least we’ll have defensible borders, and safe city streets, pizza shops, bus stations, preschools...

This dubious union with the United Nations (and EU, UK & US et al) has caused us to become disunited with our own, marginalizing our fellow Israelites by dubbing them as “settlers” and treating them as inferiors. But toward bloodthirsty Islamic gangsters we are urged to practice “restraint,” while Jewish blood flows in the streets, all at the cynical dictates of some rogue and bellicose hypocrites called the United Nations. What has become of our independence? We surrendered it to a false notion that a union of foreign nations care about our survival and safety. We have become co-dependents to an inimical “Family of Nations” who is not our family and will never be.

So let’s exit once and for all.

While we’re at it, let’s exit Exile altogether and proceed to the true and complete Redemption through Moshiach tzidkeinu! It’s time for the Israexodus, and the ultimate Israedemption of our people from four corners of globe!

And then, the whole world will experience true unity, as it has been foretold by our prophet Isaiah (2:2):

And it shall be at the end of the days, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be firmly established at the top of the mountains, and it shall be raised above the hills, and all the nations shall stream to it.

And many peoples shall go, and they shall say, "Come, let us go up to the Lord's mount, to the house of the God of Jacob, and let Him teach us of His ways, and we will go in His paths," for out of Zion shall the Torah come forth, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.   

And he (Moshiach) shall judge between the nations and reprove many peoples, and they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift the sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.     

"O house of Jacob, come and let us go in the light of the Lord."

But until that glorious time, Israel stands alone among the nations. As the wicked prophet Bilaam attested (Numbers 24:9):

From Israel's very beginning, I see them as mountain peaks; they are a nation who dwells alone, and are not reckoned among the nations...

PS: It’s worth pointing out that none of the UN member states recognize Israel’s eternal capital, Jerusalem. In fact, more than one out of every six UN member states (17%) refuse to recognize Israel’s existence period. Who needs it? The UN is heading down the same path to irrelevance as the ill-fated League of Nations.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Reflections on the "Skin Gap" video

Someone recently sent me a video entitled "The Skin Gap: The Most Pervasive Gender Inequality You've Never Heard Of," produced by "Jew in the City."

It was well-done and is a worthwhile video to watch. However, it only skims the surface of the gender gap that exists in modern fashion. Hopefully, it will begin a long overdue conversation about the messages that popular culture is sending women. (I have wished to write on this sorely-neglected topic for years but felt somewhat awkward. Now that the public dialogue has begun, I'll share my two cents)

Here is the video, followed by the letter I sent to its producer.

Dear City Jew,

Thank you for producing this revealing video. It succinctly exposes the appalling apparel disparity between male and female in popular culture.

In today's confusing world of trans-dressing and identity dysphoria, a video like that might be misconstrued as advocating for skimpier or more contemporarily feminine styles of dress for males so as to “close the gap.” Surely that was not your intention, but just pointing it out. I hope that all viewers gleaned the intended message from your otherwise terrific burlesque. Thanks for expressing this message in such a humorous yet provocative way.

However, your exclusive focus on skin per se presents a somewhat superficial, skin-deep perspective on the "gender gap," if you will. Your exposé falls a bit short at the hem.
It's not just that culture dictates that knees, elbows, shoulders, collar bones, abdomens, belly buttons, etc., be bared and exhibited. It's not just the show of epidermis.

It's much more pervasive than that. Modern women’s apparel reflects a ubiquitous societal pressure to spotlight and objectify the female body, bare, opaque or otherwise. It’s the tightness, for starters.

Even the women's clothes that are meant to provide covering tend to be suggestive of shape and contour.

Compare an average pair of men's jeans to a woman's jeans. The latter is significantgly more tight-fitting, virtually clinging to the skin. Of course, this highlights the shape of the thigh itself, for example. Not only the thigh, but often the buttocks and crotch too!  Sheesh… is nothing off limits?

The same is true with regards to the upper body, and even more so. The "gender gap" is blatantly evident, not only if there's excessive skin exposure. It's often the tightness of the shirt that emphasizes precise shape and contour of the very body parts that visibly identify someone as female, for mammals, at least.

In fact, skin-tight apparel is arguably more risqué than skimpy clothing, because it suggests the precise shape of something that is ostensibly meant to be covered, and rightfully so.

Although we are starting to see somewhat tighter-fitting styles of men's clothing too, the gap is huge and out of proportions.

I can’t imagine that tight-legged jeans are anywhere nearly as comfortable as a roomier pair. Much like high-heeled footwear that serve only aesthetic purposes at the sacrifice of comfort and utility. Perhaps there’s value in appearing taller that justifies the discomfort of high heels. Is exhibiting the shape of one’s legs worth the discomfort of tight pants?
The word I used above is "suggestive." Think about what that word means. What is a wearer trying to suggest when purposely or unwittingly silhouetting the nether part of her torso and thighs?

Since when does a self-respecting person welcome any random passerby to discern the precise shape and curvature of his rear end or crotch? Or thighs or belly?

A woman generally keeps her weight a secret, or at least doesn’t advertise it. So why must she advertise her waist size?

I personally feel that tight-fitting clothes cheapens a person’s appearance. It strikes me like someone crying for attention, or demanding to be noticed. There’s an implied statement, and I’m struggling to figure out what that statement is.

The precise and unambiguous shapeliness of certain parts of another person’s body is really none of my business, whether bare or opaque. When I see someone dressing that way in public, I feel like commenting in modern acrostic parlance: “TFS” (“thanks for sharing”) or better yet, “WTMI” (“way too much information.” Why must I be privy to the exact form of your private (hence covered) body parts?

But apparently, trend-setting females of our society and their clothiers seem to feel otherwise. Our culture promotes a style of dress (or lack thereof) that not only attracts attention, but in a blaring yet unspoken way, invites voyeuristic curiosity.

Is the tight or scanty garment intended be make its wearer attractive, or seductive?

It's almost as though modern society beckons the woman to “show her goods" and put her body on display. Is that all she has to show for herself?

Indeed, modern fashion serves to showcase and exteriorize a woman’s body. And that’s the bare naked truth.

Where are the egalitarians? Why aren’t they demanding that we “level the playing field” and make women’s clothes equally as comfortable and loose-fitting as their male counterparts?

I know you weren’t trying to cover up or (mini) skirt the issue of suggestive clothing, but it might be worthwhile to remind your viewers that the so-called “Skin Gap” is not limited to skin. The dress discrepancy between the sexes is manifest not only in the low-cut and sleeveless, but also in the full-length and the long-sleeved, as you’d surely concur.

Perhaps in your sequel film, you can place your male actor in a leotard, or better yet, in a translucent leotard, on a cold day.

Thank you again for calling attention to this absurd inequality that has become a modern-day emperor’s new clothes, or shall I say, the “empress’ new clothes?” (And who's the empress trying to impress?)

M. Green

(A Jew from the Suburb)

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Israel Denial, part 2

Denying the State of Israel's existence has always been the vogue among Muslim and other hostile states. But recently we have begun to witness Israel denial tolerated in the mainstream.

Israel has been omitted from maps by NPR, Harper Collins, BMW and Air France, to name a few. (Links below)

Incredibly, this bizarre phenomenon has been predicted and mapped out (pun intended) nearly three thousand years ago in the Hebrew Scriptures.

Psalms chapter 83 describes a time when the nations will clamor for Israel's destruction. In an uproar, the nations will seek crafty pretexts with which to eliminate G-d's treasured people.

In verse 5, "They will say: 'Come, let us erase them from being a nation, and that the name Israel never be mentioned again.'"

אָמְר֗וּ לְ֭כוּ וְנַכְחִידֵ֣ם מִגּ֑וֹי  וְלֹֽא־יִזָּכֵ֖ר שֵֽׁם־יִשְׂרָאֵ֣ל עֽוֹד׃

In this context, the phrase "ונכחידם מגוי" has been traditionally translated "let us destroy them from being a nation." However, the verb כחד usually denotes to erase, omit, conceal or deny. It can be read, "Let us deny them from being a nation," or "Let us deny their statehood."

Alternatively, it can be read, "Let's hide or ignore the fact that they are a nation," or "Let's omit them from being among the nations," so that "Israel not be mentioned again."

The Midrash points out that the nations are referred to here as "Your enemies," i.e. the enemies of G-d, and that their war on Israel is in fact a war on G-d. "As long as Israel survives," the nations reckon, "He is called 'G-d of Israel.' But once Israel is uprooted, then whose G-d is He?"

The Psalm begins:
1. A Psalm, a song of Asaph.
2. O God, have no silence, do not be silent and do not be still, O God.
(This implies that the world stands by silently as hostile nations raise their heads insolently and call for Israel's destruction, or omission.)
3. For behold, Your enemies uproar, and those who hate You raise their heads.
4. Against Your people they scheme cunningly, and they plot against Your hidden ones  ("ויתיעצו על צפוניך").
Our Sages comment on "Your hidden ones" that just as G-d is a mystery, so is G-d's people a mystery. Indeed, they are "hidden" in "Your" inscrutable mystery.
(See previous discussion of the true definition of Israel)
5. They will say: "Come, let us erase them from being a nation, and that the name Israel never be mentioned again."
The nations' effort to erase Israel is due to the fact that G-d is concealed ("צפוניך"), and consequently the true value of Israel as G-d's people is likewise concealed.

Some commentaries explain that the Psalm refers to the world's hostile attitude toward Israel in the last days of exile prior to the Final Redemption.

It is obvious to me that we are witnessing the unfolding of a three-thousand-year-old Biblical prophecy and the arrival of the Final Redemption.

Let's hope and pray that the end of the chapter be speedily realized:
17. Fill their faces with shame, and they will seek Your countenance, O Lord...
19. Let them know that You-Your name alone is God, Most High over all the earth.
Meanwhile, the surest way to usher the final Redemption is by "putting Israel back on the map" by increasing in Torah and mitzvot, by living up to our lofty name, Israel. By summoning our secret reservoirs of self sacrifice ("צפוניך") to study Torah and observe Mitzvot, we effectively make G-dliness known all over the earth.

And then, even our biggest enemies will come to know the truth.

וְיֵדְעוּ כִּי אַתָּה שִׁמְךָ ה' לְבַדֶּךָ עֶלְיוֹן עַל כָּל הָאָרֶץ


Friday, March 4, 2016

Israel is real.

"Israel is not a state."

Not surprisingly, Iran recently articulated a view held by thirty-five other mostly-Muslim nations, some 17% of United Nation member states who do not recognize Israel's statehood. The Iranian nuclear chief was asked whether or not he thinks an Israeli-Iranian war could arise as a result of last year’s nuclear deal between Iran and world powers. He responded: “We essentially do not see [Israel] as a state, therefore it’s not a threat to Iran.”(article)

Of course, the absurd remark bespeaks a total escape from reality. Israel is undeniably a sovereign state with a stable government and formidable military that Iran certainly reckons with. Yet nevertheless, Israel-denial seems to be a hallmark of the irrational world of depraved fundamentalist Islamists. The very notion that a "Jewish State" could possibly exist is unacceptable to them, so it's ideologically easier to simply pretend it doesn't. Perhaps even more absurdly, the State of Israel has in the past been ready to concede vast stretches of territory to hostile Arab terrorists, thereby compromising it own security, all in exchange for a mere piece of paper in which the nominal "peace partners" simply agree to recognize Israel's existence! And yet in spite of Israel's best efforts to achieve recognition, Iran and others do not acknowledge its statehood.

However, as delusional as the above statement is, I must confess that there is deeper significance in these words that we ought to consider.

In fact, in a strange way I actually agree! Israel is not a state.

Wait! Before your feathers get ruffled, please hear me out.

Israel is not really a state. There happens to be a modern sovereign state called "Israel," but that state is not Israel, at least not in the truest sense of the word Israel. You heard me right. The "State of Israel" is not really Israel.

To illustrate: is the Milky Way a candy bar? Or an amusement park? Or one of numerous songs or movies? Or an overpriced chic kosher restaurant on West Pico Boulevard in Los Angeles?

No. The candy bar may have been named after a galaxy, but the candy bar is not a galaxy, just as a mobile device called "Galaxy" isn't a galaxy either. It's just a puny, soon-to-be-obsolete mobile device. An infinitesimally tiny speck of dust in an incomparably vast galaxy.

Wikipedia gives us disambiguation choices for these secondary contextual meanings.

However, Wikipedia and the world make a colossal error when it comes to Israel. They define Israel primarily as a modern state, while the true meaning of Israel is barely mentioned among their numerous disambiguated offerings.

What does Israel really refer to? Who (or what) is Israel?

Let's go back to the original and primary source. Throughout the Bible, the name "Israel" refers to G-d's chosen people, also referred to as "the children of Israel," the descendants of our patriarch Jacob, the original person who was named Israel. So Israel refers to all Jews.

"Hear O Israel, G-D is our G-d, G-d is one." (Deuteronomy) Hear O Jew. When I declare these words twice daily, I am calling upon myself to hear/understand/take to heart that G-d is one. Israel is me.

The Prophets exclaimed in awe: "Who is like Your people Israel, one nation on earth?" (Samuel and Kings) Israel is a people, Your (G-d's) people. Israel is a people and an individual, and many individuals. Israel is all and each of us.

The Talmud relates that when Israel below dons tefillin that proclaims the Shema, that G-d is one, G-d metaphorically dons tefillin above that proclaims the latter verse, that Israel is one.

Deuteronomy: את ה' האמרת היום וה' האמירך היום להיות לו לעם סגולה -- "You have declared G-d's singularity in this world on this day, and G-d has declared your singularity in the world on this day, that you may be His treasured nation..."

Who is Israel? Israel is you and me. Your Jewish neighbor down the street, the one you talk to and the one you don't talk to. The Hareidi Jew who makes you feel uncomfortable. The agnostic Jew, the marginal Jew, the committed and the uncommitted Jew, the cosmopolitan Jew, the ghetto Jew and the "settler" Jew. The inspired Jew and the disillusioned Jew. The chassidic and the unchassidic, Sephardic, Ashkenazic or Mizrachi. The Schlimiel Jew the Schlimazel Jew and the Nudnik Jew. They, we, are all Israel.

We are one because G-d is one.

G-d is undefinable, and Israel is undefinable. We are G-d's and G-d is ours.

כל הנוגע בהם כאילו נוגע בבת עינו של הקב"ה
Israel's enemies are enemies of G-d. Those who love Israel love G-d.

Israel is not a state nor even a land. The land is referred to as "Eretz Yisrael," the "Land of Israel," i.e. the Land that belongs to Israel. Israel is the people to whom the land belongs, whether they reside in their Land yet or not.

Israel is a Jew, a diaspora Jew just as much as a Jerusalemite Jew.

Israel is not a state nor a government. The modern sovereign state that happens to be called Israel is not Israel. But the Jew in Madagascar, in Massachusetts or Tehran -- he (or she) is Israel, every bit as much as the Jew who lives in Tel Aviv.

Being "Israeli" or a citizen of the modern state of Israel does not make one Israel. Being a Jew makes one Israel.

A Jew who lives in Judea and Samaria doesn't just live in Israel. He (or she) IS Israel.

(Parenthetically, Judea and Samaria are both part of the Land that G-d bequeathed to His people Israel. No government or official has the right to cede any inch of that territory to foreign occupiers who are not Israel. Even a majority vote in the State of Israel does not give the democratically elected Israeli official any mandate to cede this territory, since it is the personal inheritance of all Israel, ie every Jew on earth. The Knesset is only authorized to safeguard the Land, but in no way to relinquish it to any foreigner, Heaven forfend. The Knesset is NOT Israel. One can be a member of the Israeli Knesset and not be Israel.)

The mitzva (commandment of the Torah) referred to as "Ahavat Yisrael" ("Love of Israel") does not mean to love a state, political entity, or even the Land, as holy as it is. It means to love your fellow Jew. Once you appreciate the inestimable value of a Jew, once you can truly love your fellow as yourself, then you can appreciate how precious is the sacred and eternal Land promised to G-d's people.

An Canadian is Canadian because of the state. So is a Frenchman or an American. The state gives him his national identity. But Israel is not Israel because of a state. A Jew is Israel because G-d is one. And the state is called Israel only because Israel is Israel.

To define Israel as a state is to define the Milky Way as a candy bar and worse.

It is to reduce the pinnacle of Creation, an unfathomable part of G-d from above, as it were, to nothing more than a cheap video game at Walmart.

Please don't get me wrong. I do not wish to denigrate or minimize my appreciation for the State of Israel. It is a state that deserves our support and assistance and even sacrifice. But it is nothing more than a man-made state like all others. Greece and Cyprus are also states, as is the United States.

The State of Israel is a vitally important state, as it funds a military that defends six million Israels who dwell in its midst. It regulates the economy and provides social services for its citizens, Israels and non-Israels alike. But it exists as a means to a greater end. It is not the ends in itself. It is not really Israel. It exists to serve Israel. We pray that it will endure and flourish until the ultimate sovereignty of Israel is restored, the era of Moshiach ben David Melech Yisrael, chai v'kayam. We pray that until that time, it will fulfill its purpose and protect its citizens from harm by ousting or eliminating the dangerous and hostile elements in its midst and near its borders.

So, to conclude, Israel is not a state. It is a part of G-d from above, an awesome Cosmic force that is transforming the world into the Dwelling Place for the Creator that it was intended to be. Israel is every Jewish man, woman and child who are poised to achieve their glorious destiny. Israel is the heart and soul and hands and feet of the Jew, the ambassador for G-d in this world. Israel is the People of the Book, G-d's book, who are ordained by G-d to impart His wisdom to the world as a Light unto the Nations. Israel is G-d's gift to mankind, entrusted with the mission of teaching the Seven Noahide Laws to humanity, Iranians and Arabs included.

Once we understand and truly acknowledge what Israel is, ie who we are as individuals and as a people, we can then appreciate the great need for a State for Israel. But please let's not confuse our ends with our means. Let's not reverse our definitions, as Wikipedia might have us believe, that Israel is a modern state that Jews ought to pride themselves in because of its great modern achievements, and that this modern state somehow justifies or validates the Jewish people as "nation among the nations," since we now have a soccer team and a national flag to hoist up high like Greece and Cyprus, etc. If we make this grave error, then we have lost sight of who we are and have trivialized why we are here.

So our partner in Heaven, our Divine Creator, sends a vile arch-terrorist to insolently declare that Israel is not a state to remind us that indeed, we are not a state. The state is a state only because we are Israel. If Israel is nothing more than a state, then there's nothing to justify its existence. Hence the state-denial by the Islamists.

Pardon my elaboration, but I hope the message is now clear. You are Israel. So now get out there and tell the world who you are.

PS: Israel means "the one who struggled with angels and with man and prevailed." Curiously, even our most egregious and implacable foes (like Iran, Hamas, et al)  call us Israel, thereby acknowledging our ascendancy. Subconsciously they concede that we will ultimately prevail.